Message to the Spouse
You are not made to bear your partner's burden of recovery. But you can be a great healing agent for him / her. More and more research is proving that connection / attachment is what heals the addiction. It is because of this that couples therapy ends up being integral in the process. Our attachment style / history also points to why addiction / betrayal may have happened. Emotionally Focused Therapy (EFT) is researched based and shows to be highly affective in helping couples reconnect after a betrayal break. Please know the person acting out is responsible for his or her behavior. It is never your responsibility to keep them satisfied or sober in order for them to not act out. We believe that the spouse is to be part of the recovery team and not excluded. So much so, that we recommend that the spouse see a therapist if to help guide you through this process. guiding you through the spouses recovery. In addition, discovering porn or sexual addiction can often times be very traumatic. Therefore, it is vital that you have someone trained in the process so that you are not walking through this alone.
The First Step
If you suspect porn or sexual addiction, we recommend that you not push for full disclosure without counseling support. It is generally recommended that both of you come for the first session to help in the assessment process. Then a treatment protocol / plan can be made laying out the steps for recovery. There is sometimes necessity to see a therapist individually for a brief time period. But individual therapy tends to prolong the struggles / conflict in the relationship so its recommended that couples counseling start sooner than later. In a basic sense, individual therapy helps the individual get back on track but does not really address the marriage. That is why couples therapy at the end is vital.
It is highly recommended that you not attempt disclosure on your own. It is our experience that a forced disclosure generally is more traumatic than beneficial. Disclosure is more about a process than an event. As a result, we take a team approach is that is very systematic in working towards disclosure. There are several approaches to disclosure and really needs to be addressed on a case by case basis as to the best route.