I was sitting in my parent’s office working on homework. I opened the computer history to look up a website that I closed, when I noticed a lot of pornography sites. As soon as I saw the sites I left the house. My mom was at a party at a friend’s house, so I jumped into my car and drove to her friend’s house.
I was able to hold it together when my mom’s friend answered her door. My mom came outside to talk to me. I looked her in the eyes and asked the question I didn’t really want to have answered, “Is dad addicted to pornography?” The tears started to flow. I couldn’t control it any more.
Mom put her arms around me and held me close as she answered my question. “Yes.” She continued to tell me that she has known for years. She almost left my dad because of it. But she loved my dad and she wanted to work things out with him.
My reality was shattered. Dad was someone who I trusted. We talked about everything. He was the person I went to if I had any spiritual questions or school problems. He was up on a pedestal in my mind. And all of a sudden I found out that he was not perfect. That pedestal came crashing down on top of me. My dad was not who I thought he was. I felt like he had been lying to me for all these years. I felt like I couldn’t go talk to him any more.
I came back to Provo. Not knowing what else to do, I wallowed. I couldn’t talk to my roommates; they wouldn’t understand. They would never want to talk to me again. I sat in my room and stared at the wall for hours at a time. I didn’t know what to do with myself. I was depressed.
I dropped weight because I wasn’t eating anything. I stopped doing everything that I was supposed to do. My whole life suffered. I was dating someone, and I refused to be alone with him. I wouldn’t let him touch me. I was scared that he was addicted to pornography as well and that he was only with me because of the physical contact and not because he loved me.
One night I was in my room crying when a roommate walked in and demanded I tell her what is going on because I was not the person who was her friend. When I told her she was one of my biggest supporters. She was who I went to from that time forward to talk and cry and get the help that I needed. I finally told my boyfriend when he demanded what was going on. He was also a big support. It turned out that he was here for me. He loved me.
It has been over a year since I found out about my dad’s addiction. It is still hard. I cry myself to sleep. Sometimes it is still hard. I will be in class and someone will say something that reminds me of my dad. I do my best to remember that my dad loves me. He shows me his love often through text messages, phone calls and hugs. I return that love to him. That is what he needs most, love and support to help him know that he can overcome this addiction.
When it comes to pornography, there are many people who are involved and affected. It was my dad who was addicted, and I was affected because of his addiction. Pornography is not something that is a personal thing that only affects the person doing the viewing. I was hurt, and it affected me in every aspect of my life. If you are viewing pornography, get help because you are hurting everyone around you. Families have been torn apart, trust has been lost and an addiction takes its place.