Whether you are seeking therapy for an individual, couple or family, Christian counseling provides an excellent place for beginning the journey to freedom and healing. A Christian counselor is uniquely qualified to accompany you on this journey, and can provide hope and encouragement, no matter how desperate you may feel. G.K. Chesterton once said that “every man who knocks on the door of a brothel is looking for God.” A Christian counselor will be able to appreciate your search for God, and to direct it in a more appropriate and healthy direction.
Finding the Right Counselor is Crucial to Overcoming Sexual Addiction
As a Christian, it is clearly important for you to find a counselor whose values and beliefs are in line with your own. A good Christian counselor will be able to understand your worldview and can also offer you a non-judgmental and clinically sound environment in which to work through the difficult issues that accompany sexual addiction. In Christian counseling, you will be able to work through your challenging behaviors. And you will come out the other end with not only the emotional and interpersonal healing you seek, but also with a more vibrant relationship with the God you love.
What Does Christian Counseling for Sexual Addiction Involve?
My work with people who struggle with sexual addiction draws on the work of Dr. Patrick Carnes, the principles of Cognitive-Behavioral therapy, the Christian scriptures, and the Seattle-based ministry of Prodigals International. If you want to know what you can expect to deal with in Christian counseling, I would say that the work usually includes steps such as:
- Exploring the cycle of addiction
- Acknowledging one’s powerlessness
- Identifying addictive and destructive behaviors
- Formulating a plan for achieving purity and sobriety
- Establishing accountability in one’s relationships
- Articulating a coherent life history
- Creating a sexual autobiography
- Learning to silence one’s shame
- Identifying dangerous people, places and things that can “trigger” unwanted reactions
- Exploring the phenomenon of a “re-wired” brain
- Establishing boundaries
- Emotional chaos analysis
- Couples counseling (if necessary)
- Exploring what healthy sexuality means
- Considering ways to build increased marital intimacy
- Seeking increased intimacy with God
- Rebuilding trust
- Making amends and seeking forgiveness
- Building a life worth living
- Sharing your story
The work that I do with my clients usually involves some homework. While it is not a required part of treatment, this might include reading books or doing various written assignments. These could include self-analysis such as observing one’s thoughts, feelings and behaviors in daily life.
Overcoming Sexual Addiction is a Challenging Process
The process of overcoming an addiction to pornography – or other compulsive sexual behaviors – is not easy. But it is definitely a worthwhile challenge for those who are willing to engage in it. The process can be scary and will involve risk. It can be painful and you will need to be prepared to be vulnerable. Nevertheless, this process will ultimately be powerful and deeply liberating.
Everyone’s situation is different and each individual will have their own journey to healing. I offer my clients a place where they can work through their thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. We are not just concerned with talking about symptoms, but with the deeper level where we address the core of the troublesome issues. Our ultimate goal is to identify solutions together and to figure out how to move forward in a healthier way.
How Do I Start the Journey to Sexual Healing?
If you are someone who struggles with sexual behavior, it is very important to know that you are not alone. You are just one of the rare individuals who actually has the courage to be honest about it and to look for help. There is hope for you and change is possible.
The Christian counseling process is about redemption and restoration of the soul. It is grounded in the belief in a personal and living God, and in the experience of the abundant life that Jesus came to offer us. I find nothing more exciting than witnessing how this abundant life becomes real in the lives of those with whom I work. You may not feel able to believe that change is possible right now and that’s OK. But with the help of a good Christian counselor, you (and your spouse) can begin to find the solutions that you are seeking.
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The information, including but not limited to, text, graphics, images and other material contained on this article are for informational purposes only. No material on this site is intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Please contact one of our counselors for further information.