I had the best of intentions to write about something else for this month’s blog post, but this past Sunday, our family received some news that shocked us so incredibly that I felt I needed an outlet to both work through it in my own mind and heart.
When a family member warned us that there was some bad news, we thought it might be something concerning our youngest cousin, who was born less than two months ago with intestinal problems and had already undergone an operation for it. In part it was, the bad news was that his parents were getting a divorce. Divorce occurs among LDS couples, but this was particularly shocking to us, because we couldn’t understand, why just after having a newly born baby (their 2nd son), would they want to get a divorce? Sadly, it turns out that the culprit was pornography.
In today’s society, pornography is becoming more prevalent and regarded as something casual. In varying degrees, pornography is all around us, whether it’s on billboard signs, magazine covers, television shows, and Internet sites. Pornography dulls moral sensitivity, prompts voyeurstic flights from the challenges of reality and is, above all, very addicting. It destroys marriages, families and lives. The late president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Gordon B. Hinckley cautioned: “Stay away from the great and terrible flood of pornography that is sweeping across the earth and makes a few men rich while it destroys many others who become enslaved to it. Stay away from it.” Like all addictions, once enslaved, it becomes increasingly difficult for the person to get out. However, like all addictions, there is help and hope to overcoming it. If you know someone with this addiction, I refer you to an article written in the 2005 Ensign about the steps to recognizing and overcoming pornography, entitled “The Road Back: Abandoning Pornography”. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day also has a website called Combating Pornography: Replacing Darkness with Light which can be used as a resource and for encouragement.
My heart goes out to family members, whether spouse, children or parents, of those who are addicted to pornography. I can only imagine their sense of pain and betrayal. Have any of you helped someone through a pornography addiction or a loved one who has been betrayed by it? I wish there was something I could do or say to help my cousin and her children. My thoughts keep returning to my gratitude for the healing power of the Atonement. I know it can heal and give hope to her, her children, her husband and to anyone who seeks the Lord’s help, even when I’m at a lost of how I can help.