Living with a sexually addicted spouse
By J. David Jones, MS
The wife of a sexual addict is often the most misunderstood victim that exists in the church today. Her world is filled with a sense of absolute betrayal. She feels betrayed by the man she committed her life to and often feels betrayed by God. Her world is one of varied emotions. They range from total despair to rage in a matter of moments. Her world is often consumed by guilt, shame and embarrassment. She often blames herself for not seeing “the warning signs” of her husband’s secret sin. Most often she feels alone in her struggle and afraid to share her plight because of how others may respond or how it will affect her children and the family’s reputation in the church.
When a sex addict’s sin is exposed within the church, the focus and attention is often squarely focused upon the addict. This intense focus is warranted in the early stages of his recovery and healing. His sin has been exposed and he is at the center of the chaos and crisis. This crisis of his addiction needs to be stabilized.
In the past several years many books, workbooks and programs have been developed to address the needs of the sexual addict. Very few books, workbooks and programs have been developed to address the spouse’s needs. Because of this intense focus upon the addict and the lack of resources or guidance for helping the spouse, she is often left to fend for herself.