Friday, December 13, 2013

To the Wives of Addicts from an Addict

In my study this morning, I read this "O thou afflicted, tossed with tempest, and not comforted!" (3 Nephi 22:11). My first thought when I read this is that it is a perfect description of someone who is dealing with the addiction of a loved one. As I continued to think on this, I began to understand more about how many ways we, as addicts, contribute to your affliction. I thought about how we add to the tempests in your life and how we are not there to comfort you when you need it. With that in mind, I would like to offer my apologies.

First, I am sorry for all of the lies. You willingly gave yourselves to us. You deserve for us to give you ourselves in return. Instead, you got a bunch of lies and half-truths. We lied to you from the beginning. In fact, we lied to you so many times, we began to believe some of those lies, but the reality is that none of them were true. We were lying to ourselves at the same time we were lying to you.

I am also sorry for the damage we have done to your self-worth. We should have been the ones building you up. We should have been your best support. Instead, by our words and actions you made you feel like you weren't good enough, pretty enough, sexy enough, or any number of ways we made you feel like your worth was less than it really is. The truth is you are daughters of God. Your worth is infinite and eternal, and we have no right to make you feel that you are less than you truly are.

I'm sorry for the separation we have caused. You are our wives. You are the ones we should be most involved with, but due to our choices, we have caused an emotional separation between us and you. We have been withdrawn from you when you needed to feel closeness. We have kept a part of ourselves back from you when we covenanted to give our whole selves to you.

I am sorry for not supporting you. You depend on us to help you and lift you, but our addiction has held us back. When you needed us most, we were not there for you either physically, because we were in the midst of acting out in our addiction, or emotionally, because we were dealing with the internal turmoil created by our actions.

I know this is not a complete list of the many ways we have harmed you, but please accept this sincere attempt from one addict to begin the process of repairing the damage we have done. You are truly angels in our lives. We do not deserve your love and goodness, and you do not deserve the torment we have put you through. This may not always be clear to us when we are in the depths of our addiction, but in our moments of clarity, we recognize how wonderful you are and how much we have come to rely on you for our strength.

I would like to leave you with the words of Isaiah that come just a few verses after where I started today. "In righteousness shalt thou be established" (3 Nephi 22:14). You are simply amazing. You will be exalted because of your righteousness, and I hope that we come to our senses and join you on that journey.

6 comments:

  1. I believe your sentiments here are sincere, and very possibly appreciated by your wife. However, I think an apology to everyone's wife married to a sex addict is so unnecessary. You or I have no control over another's life or relationship. My addiction has definitely affected the lives of others. But not the relationships of every wife living with a husband struggling with sexual addiction. I do feel a great amount of empathy for other addicts as well as their loved ones and spouses. But I am in no way responsible for them or their spouses in any way.

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    1. I had a hard time trying to figure out how to respond to this. In the end, I think it is best to simply state that I only post those things I feel inspired to write. I will follow my inspiration and trust in the Lord that it will touch those it is meant for at the appropriate time.

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