My Life Since Becoming Free from Pornography and Masturbation

As I think about how my life has changed for the better since becoming free from viewing pornography and masturbating multiple times per day, I am awed by Jesus’s promise: “Seek first the kingdom of God, and His righteousness; and all these things will follow.”

It’s true, when we seek Christ first everything else falls into place.

Many of the strategies or tools I’ve used on my journey have produced fruits beyond what I could have imagined. For example, I began reading the daily Liturgy of the Word nearly 10 years ago each morning because I was particularly vulnerable to masturbating during these times. And what started then has developed into a profound trust in God speaking to me. 

Today, I approach the Liturgy of the Word with the expectation that each day there is something included to specifically instruct, encourage, and challenge me as well as make me aware of God’s love for me. I have become certain that because I expect the daily readings to speak to me that the Holy Spirit tills the soil of my heart so that I receive a new message each day. Becoming free from pornography and masturbation has intensified my trust in our loving God.

This growing closer to God through prayer has also occurred during Eucharistic adoration. Being free from pornography and masturbation, the serenity that I now enjoy with this discipline is amazing. I recently heard that spending time in adoration is like receiving a blood transfusion.  When one receives a blood transfusion one just sits and receives. One doesn’t have to do anything but be open to being filled. This has definitely been my experience with Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. A better relationship with Christ in prayer has been yet another gift of my sobriety. 

Becoming free from pornography and masturbation—and being open about it—has benefited me in many other ways as well. As I began sharing my story of addiction to pornography and masturbation and God’s amazing healing over these past five years, people have been incredibly encouraging and affirming. 

In fact, at one point, something I wrote and shared ended up on Facebook. A woman from my parish called me concerned that my privacy was being violated. While I felt so cared for, I explained to her that for years I lived in fear of something like this happening. 

I thought that if people really knew me that they would be repulsed by me. It reminded me of a quote I heard once: “You are only as sick as your secrets.” Yet, what I’ve realized since is that being more open has changed me for the better. I have become gentler and easier on myself and those around me. My wife even tells me that I don’t get as angry anymore. As a result, she feels safer sharing her thoughts and feelings with me. My openness has invited her own openness as well.

I’m often asked how I can start each morning with an hour and a half of prayer and Scripture.  As I mentioned earlier, years ago I started reading the Liturgy of the Word each morning, which only takes seven minutes. From there, and over time, I received the grace to add more and more time for prayer and reflection: listening to reflections on the daily readings, reading about the saints of the day, journaling about how I’ve grown so much closer to God and those I love since becoming free from pornography and masturbation, and more. Becoming free from pornography and masturbation has allowed me to spend more time deepening my prayer life and loving those around me as I’m called to do.

Another benefit of becoming free from the scourge of pornography and masturbation is that my sexual relationship with my wife has improved. We’re also better able to discuss intimacy issues as well as navigate the damage my pornography addiction caused for both of us.

My addiction to pornography and masturbation cost me, my wife, my children, and my community dearly. However, as I continue to grow in my recovery, I am close to honestly being able to say that I’m grateful for it. And this is because it has ultimately led me to the mercy of God. 

The joy I feel as I grow closer to our Lord, the excitement I feel as my wife and I continue to heal together, the hope I feel as I meet with various men’s, parent, and teen groups to help prevent others from getting harmed by the scourge of pornography and masturbation have all been amazing gifts. And they have affirmed my trust in God’s promise that He will complete the good work He began in me.

God is good. God is faithful. If you’re continuing your battle with pornography and masturbation, don’t get discouraged. Pray for a trust in God’s love, power, presence, and His desire to give you not only life—but life to the fullness!

Jim Gorski is a 57-year-old father of four children who has been married to the same woman for 34 years. He completed his master’s degree in social work in 1984 and has directed church music groups for the past 39 years. He remains a grateful child of the most high God and strives to trust in God’s loving mercy and His ability to provide for Jim’s every need.