Your Husband’s Using Internet P**n. What do you do?

You just found out your husband’s using internet p**n. What do you do?

1. Make sure he knows that you know he’s been using porn, and that it is completely unacceptable to you. Don’t accept a simple, “Sorry, it won’t happen again.” Instead, let him know that you consider his porn use to be serious enough to warrant action in addition to apology.   

2. Insist on getting an internet filter/accountability device immediately.   I’d recommend any of the following:

Triple X Watch
Be Safe Online
Filter Review

3. Remind him that you’re his partner and want the best for him, your marriage and your family. Don’t resort to shaming or humiliating him, and don’t give yourself excuses for lashing out at him for hurting you. Sinning against him will be as wrong and unproductive as the sin he’s committed against you.

4. On the other hand, don’t apologize for being angry and hurt, because you have been hugely betrayed. Let him know how you feel, and ask for him to understand that his choice to lust after other women has wounded you deeply, and that it will take you some time to recover.

5. Talk this over with a Christian counselor, your pastor, or a trusted mentor. Get help assessing the seriousness of your husband’s problem, and consider whether or not ongoing counseling or more focused ministry might be necessary for him. Don’t treat it like a minor “blip” in your marriage, because porn use can have devastating consequences to the family if it’s not nipped in the bud. Remember all that’s good about your husband and your marriage, and work with him towards insuring that his use of porn is something that will never happen again.

Key Verses
“But have no fellowship with the unfruitful works of darkness, but rather, expose them.”
Ephesians 5:11

“And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God for Christ’s sake has forgiven you.”
-Ephesians 4: 32

The Game Plan: The Men’s Thirty Day Strategy for Attaining Sexual Integrity
by Joe Dallas

Living With Your Husband’s Secret Wars
by Marsha Means

I Surrender All: Rebuilding a Marriage Broken by Pornography
by Clay and Renee Crosse


  1. I just wanted to give an update since my last post…I did ask my husband of 25 years to leave…after many lies and acts of infidelity, including an affair with a man for over a year behind my back.( in 2003)
    Why do I feel sorry for it God’s love or my stupidity ?
    I am just not sure how to be separated from him…how can I cut him off of relating to me…we have 2(grown) children and lots of plans for the future….I use to be terrified of the thought that he may leave me after our kids are grown….now the thought isn’t that scary…just extremly SAD!! There are alot of good things about our relationship…I just shouldnt have to share our oneness with anyone else…Should I ask him to come back and work on things under the same roof…how long should we be separated?…I told him…”My heart would know when his heart toward me had changed” ..And i believe this change will come from him recieving Gods love on a very deep level for himself…he longs for Father Love …like I long for Husband love …and God can satisfy both our longings and then bring us back together…This is my prayer for all of us who’s husbands have ssa.
    Blessings !

  2. Hi Nicole,
    I would like to recommend a book named “Tough Love” ,by James Dobson…I am reading it now and it is helping me see the need of setting boundaries with my husbands continued behavior. Also a book that has helped me tremendously in seeing how our LORD passionatley pursues us…His unfaithful beloved ones…This book is “Redeeming Love”, by Francine Rivers…it is a Love novel about the book of Hosea…not recommended for people under 16. You may actually feel the presence of Gods arms around you while reading this book…it is powerful is actually making me yearn to be in God’s presence…which is the best kind of satisfaction…!!
    Blessings to you girlfriend…God is crazy about you !

  3. Hi,
    My husband and I have been married just over two years. Last week we had a great weekend. I made him dinner and dressed up and the next day we spent together. That night I went to bed early because I was tired and he stayed up a bit longer. I had gone to bed around 11pm and woke up at 2 am to find he still wasn’t in bed. I had a bad feeling but brushed it aside and went back to sleep. When I woke up I had that same bad feeling, but worse. I got up and looked at the history on the computer and found porn. I got so angry and wanted to throw the computer or wake him up and chew him out but I didn’t, I texted my friend and asked if I could meet her before church started. When she didn’t respond right away I decided I had to get out of the house anyway. I left a note for my husband that said I had to get out and would see him at church. I was tempted to leave the history up on the computer but did not. I went to a coffee shop until my friend called me back. When I went to her house she told me about the things she and her fiance had been talking through about his sexual past and talked with me about forgiveness and grace. It was really good and when I saw my husband at church I held his hand the whole time, he quickly figured out why I was upset and we talked after church. I explained that I forgave him and that I wanted to help him out of this. Later that night though, all my negative emotions came out. I yelled at him and asked how he could do that to me. I told him I didnt know if I could trust him and I couldn’t stay with him if he continued this.

    A little back story to this, he told me shortly after we started dating that he had struggled with porn before and since I was 18 and very naive I thought it wouldn’t be a problem. I had had an exboyfriend who struggled with porn before but had not struggled while we had dated (he did it more out of bordom than addiction). Then 2 months before we got married he admitted that he had messed up again. I screamed and cried and hit him in the chest and was torn to pieces. He was so upset by my reaction and swore to never bring that into our marriage.

    So now I’m at a loss of what to do. I want to forgive him but part of me also wonders how often this happened. I passionately hate the porn industry and am grieved that he would support that. I have had friends go into stripping and am so scared for what it is doing to them. One of the things my husband brought up was that he only watches American porn because at least they want to be doing what they are doing, I got really angry when he said that because I know that is not always true.

    We are still working on a lot of things but I feel so undermined and taken advantage. I am 9 years younger than him, he’s been a youth pastor for 10 years, and wants to be a pastor one day. I’m just so hurt that this happened and emotionally am having a hard time holding up.

  4. Hi Renee,
    I have written you before,about a year ago.I’ve been married to my college sweetheart for 25 years. He told me about his SSA struggle near our 7th year Anniv .For years we have stayed together…now I wonder if I made a mistake …forgiving so easily without consequenses…because he has had 3 affairs…one for a whole year behind my back…countless encounters with strangers and just today …after 2 years of being sober(I thought)I found out he has been going to the YMCA for encounters again…he says he has only masturbated with strangers…and it has been going on only 6 months…I really don’t believe either statement…We have 2 children. A 21 yr old daughter and a 19 yr old son …My husband recently recieved his Masters Degee in Professional Counseling…and we have been seeing a Counselor for the last 6 months. He has not been honest with anyone about his temptations…not even his good friend and accountability friend of 4 years…or our counselor!! Should I ask him to leave? We can’t afford 2 households…I have invested alot of years trying to forgive and believe and restore…but now I question his desire for healing…I can’t do it for him…I KNOW God is able and will use all of our pain for good and His glory too…I am just afraid of doing the wrong thing…what if God wants me to hold on …like the example in Hosea…His love for us is sooo committed over and over even after we are continually unfaithful to Him!! BUT I am so lonley and tired of not feeling his love and desire for me as a real presense in our relationship…I am sad, scared, confused…and I am also scared my husband…in his shame and grief would kill himself if I asked him to leave…plus my kids would be devastated (they’ve Known everything since they were 14 and 16… Why is it so hard for my husband to have sustained healing…I feel it has everything to do with his fear of total abandoned trust in God to really love him…he had a horrificly sad childhood…complete with sexual abuse by a trusted older man when he was 12 years old…I have heard recently that people who suffered alot as children and therefore have lots of struggles in life…are the “Poor In Spirit” that the beattitudes speaks of…for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven…..I believe Gods grace is abundant for all our restoration…but we often do not appropriate it because we want a quick fix to make the pain go away…but would the pain of losing his wife be enough to make him really seek God for all his needs?….I know he does love me…just not intimatly sexual or romantic. It is like a “good idea” to him but not a reality (what it truly means to Love a wife…that is )
    I have to count the cost also if I ask him to leave…the cost of hurting our kids and destroying other relationships…like the college students we rent to in our apartment in the basement…we all have good relationships…but I guess it is all with certain MASK…we all wear. Maybe God can only do His best work when we all drop the Mask…..the worst is really already over for him….he had to tell mine and his family members about his struggle back when he went to LIA…(Now he sees this as a terrible mistake that only heaped more shame on him)…Anyway…please pray that I get clear direction I want to do the right thing for all of us.
    I guess I could write a book…there is soooo much more !
    Blessings to you and this Ministry !

  5. Jennifer,
    I’m so sorry to hear your story. His lack of integrity and honesty with you, and his continued use of pornography make your situation pretty unbearable. I agree that the first concern you must have is about what’s healthy for you and your children. That means you may have to seek safety and stability elsewhere, at least for a while.

    Setting boundaries and enforcing them is the right thing to do and is meant for your own (and your children’s) protection. We lock our doors to keep destructive things out and our homes safe. If your husband begins to feel the consequences of the boundaries you set, then so be it. Sometimes that’s what it takes for a person to “hit bottom” and come to their senses. But he and he alone is responsible for making the decision to pursue his recovery earnestly or not. That’s one thing no one else can do for him. Of course, you should pray for him and for your marriage. But you have been severely wounded and taking the necessary steps to get care and support for yourself is needed now. You won’t be able to take care of your children if you don’t.

    It sounds like you are seeking good Christian counsel on this, and my prayers are with you. This isn’t easy, and it’s not something that you asked for; but God will give you strength and endurance, and I pray, peace in Him as you go through this process. Please stay in touch and let us know how you’re doing. Take good care. -R

  6. Jennifer says:

    I am struggling with the issue of whether to separate from my husband. He has a long standing addiction to pornography which came to light shortly before we were married. He promised to stop and I, naively, trusted him. This scenario has repeated itself countless times in our 5 year marriage. He also has an addiction to narcotics and alcohol. He had been sober for 4 years when he relapsed last year after I discovered that his addiction to pornography was worse than I knew and that he used transgendered porn and had sex toys that he used on himself in a homosexual manner. He finally went to drug rehab for a month (so that he didn’t lose his job) and they also sent him to sex rehab for an additional month. He has been home since Oct 2008 and some things have improved, but not others. He is not using drugs/alcohol that I am aware of, however I have caught him several times with the porn and there are numerous occasions when I have been suspicious but he denies. He is very deceptive and I have no trust in anything he tells me anymore. There have been so many lies.
    I am at the point where I feel I need to make a decision for myself (for a change). I have been praying and seeking Godly counsel. Not only is my husband unrepentant, but he is not even truthful about what he is doing unless I have absolute irrefutable truth to the contrary of what he is saying. Our sermon in church last Sunday was about pornography and sexual immorality. He seemed unaffected and a mere 2 days later, I suspect he has used pornography again while I was at work today.
    We have 2 young children and I love my husband and want for this marriage to work. I believe God brought us together in this sacred union. I am willing to stand beside my husband and forgive him and help him fight this battle. Unfortunately, it does not appear to be a battle he is interested in fighting. I realize through some Al-anon, counseling and prayer, that it has nothing to do with me and this is his sin and battle to overcome. But what if there is no repentance, no apology, no brokenness? I don’t want to give up, but some days it is too painful to stay. And I know this is affecting the type of mother I am being to my children…short-tempered, distracted, etc. My pastor had said in his message that if you’re husband is unrepentant, you need to pray even harder until you wear the skin off your knees. I am willing to do that, but do I need to do it from here in the same house?
    Sorry for the long post. Feel free to edit as you see fit. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated.

  7. Rachel,

    My first response is to ask plainly why you’re still engaged to a man who’s treated you this way. “Struggling” with a habit is one thing, but deliberately contacting other women for hookups while complaining that he doesn’t “get what he needs from you” isn’t what a man does when he’s trying to overcome a problem. So let me start by asking you to seriously reconsider this engagement, and ask yourself if this is an investment you really should be making.

    You mentioned that you stayed with him and have tried to help him with his addiction -he should not be relying on you to help keep him “sober”, nor should you be his overseer. It appears this has set up a co-dependent relationship that is very unhealthy. and it seems like you’re bearing the brunt of his sickness now. You say you have a sickness in your stomach, you’re insecure and hate who you are, you’re incredibly hurt and you don’t know when you’re ever going to heal. One thing is for sure: if you don’t take some radical action to take care of yourself, you will continue with no healing in sight.

    I am sure you had reasons for staying with him so long, and I hope you’ll be open to re-examining them. So I would strongly urge you get into counseling first for yourself. A good Christian counselor or pastor will help you sort this all out and come to terms with all of this. Please, please take care of yourself. And please stay in touch with us and let us know how you’re doing. -R

  8. My fiance and I have been together for a little over three years. From the beginning I found out about his porn addiction, and it had been a battle ever since. It took him a while to realize that it was even wrong, and once he did he was very remorseful every time I found porn on the computer. But it would always happen again. I never left him though, cause I understand the nature of the addiction and poison and I’ve been there with him to help him fight it through. Well a few days ago I found a secret email account he created so that he could communicate with girls on craigslist to try to hook up. He made sure he told each one, “I’m engaged, but I just don’t get what a man needs from her”. There are several other things that were said that were so incredibly hurtful, and seeing the sentence, “So how exactly do we hook up?” will forever haunt me. I’m pretty much at the end of my rope now. I don’t know when I’m ever going to heal from anything, let alone when I’ll ever be able to hold his hand without feeling disgusted. I just don’t know how to make the sickness in my stomach go away. I know what we need to do, we’re going to get individual and couples counseling, I just don’t think we’ll find good christian counseling for free anywhere. But I know we can make it, I’m just more worried about me. I pretty much hate who I am because I the insecurities I’ve got over the past 3 years of his porn use and then now this.

  9. Patricia,
    I’m sorry I’ve taken so long to post a reply to you here. Unfortunately we had a week with no internet access, as our provider had some repair work to do. I’m just now catching up with everyone.

    It sounds like there’s alot of hurt there, and I don’t necessarily think it is wrong for a wife to ask for a break for awhile from a husband that has been betraying her trust so deeply. It’s hard to heal when you’re still bleeding, so the bleeding has to stop first. Then, if he’s willing, you could go to counseling and work out the terms under which you will base your marriage from here out. Many people need help from a third party to do this, so I could recommend seeing a pastor or Christian counselor. You’ll need to set some boundaries on what you will accept and what you will not accept from him. You’ll have see him make some consistent progress, and rebuild trust. And it sounds to me like he needs to have a sense of renewed hope that healing for him is possible as well.

    There are many people who have overcome addiction and dependency on pornography and many marriages that have been restored… but I don’t want to mislead you–it takes hard work, honesty and courage. As Christians, we know we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, and that God is faithful to complete His work in us. The question is, are we willing to let Him into those deep places and relinquish them in faith and obedience?

    Again, I hope you and your husband will see a good Christian counselor to help you both get a sense of direction and give you and your family some stability. I’m sure your kids are very important to both of you, and you owe it to them to get clarity. They need you both very much.

    Please stay in touch and let us know how you’re doing.. and take good care. -R

  10. Patricia says:

    When my husband and I got married, he did not tell me that he had an addiction to using Internet porn and masterbating. I was suspious when we did not make love unless i came onto him, but before we got married he was very hot for me.
    I then found out about the porn and he denied it, but this has now been going on for all of our marraige ( 6years) I have gotten him to have some councelling which lasted about 6months, then, that stopped but he carried on, we’ve had many arguments about this, I have threatned to leave him many times, i have spoken to Pastors about it, i spoken to friends about it, i’ve read books about ti, ive prayed about it, to cut this very long story short I have now asked my husband to leave, which has now done, one night now…but i would like to know if i’ve done the right thing, have i abandoned him when i should work things out with him..he does not talk to me about it, unless i asked him, he says hes getting someone to be accountable to..but he has not done it, he does not have any friends to talk to. He just goes to work and comes home and only goes out to socialise when I go with him. theres so much, i had 2 children with him but i had 2 before we got married and he had 1 too, butthe 4 of mine still live at home and i know they will want to know where there dad is soon and im sure what to say. We are both saved, but of late my husband has lost his desire to go to church, he says he dnt want anything to do with bible anymore..we’ve never really had a great prayer life together. He has had this problem for many many years and he seems to want to change, but he does not do stuff with me as men should or cold do with and for there wives. Im not sure if i want to go through this hurt anymore, and i have issues of mine own that i have to deal with aswell. I dnt know any woman whos husband has gone through this, been deliverd and what they did to over come it…should i stay apart from him so he can sort himself out? please someone help

  11. Caz: This must be awful for you, especially in light of the fact your daughter is the one who discovered it. Most likely, this is not the first time he’s used porn, only the first time you discovered it, and the first time is really like you described – feeling dead, numb, stunned. Now, after that initial shock has subsided, you have to deal with some real issues and you have to deal with them with clarity and strength.

    It’s important that your daughter sees you setting boundaries with your husband so she knows you’re taking action in her behalf, and that you’ve modeled for her the appropriate response when this happens in a martital relationship. It’s important that your husband understands that what he has done has damaged not only your trust in him, but his daughter’s innocence and trust in him. If he is serious about his apology, he needs to take action that shows he is taking concrete steps to prevent this from happening again. This would include a filter on your computer at home, accountability in a men’s support group or with a pastor or trusted friend. And, just because other “males” do porn, it doesn’t make it okay. A true man is a man of integrity, honesty and one who pursues stength. Taking steps to be accountable in overcoming a weakness is pursing strength and it is to be admired.

    I would recommend you and your husband get into counseling so that you and he can negotiate the ground rules going forward. It’s important also to get support (in counseling, your pastor, or trusted friends) for yourself so you can handle your anger, pain and distrust appropriately and respond to your husband in a constructive way. Your daughter also needs your support right now and you’ll be better able to help her if you get help for yourself.

    If you need a referal for counseling, or resources, please see my husband’s website at You’ll find information on phone counseling, a free podcast The Sexual Resolution with Joe Dallas and other resources. Please keep us posted on how you’re doing. We will be keeping you in our prayers. -R

  12. My teenage daughter caught my husban on internet porn. She watched him from outside looking into the window and was totally shocked. she ran looking for me…told me I confronted my husband and we had a heated discussion. He apologised but I feel dead inside. He lied to me as well while getting it out. says this is the first time but I have notice small things happening in our home so I had already suspected he was doing porn on the internet. I dont know how to talk to him about it he blamed me told me i was judging him, condeming him. My daughter is devastated he was always her hero. she practiclaly feels the same way even though I don tell her how I am feeling. I have no idea.
    what to do. I have read everything on it I possibly can yet I know how bad it is at his work as he told me the other males do it. What do i do where do I go from here?
    He makes as if he is coming back to the Lord but does nothing just talk!

  13. Grace, first let me say how sorry I am to hear about the difficulties you and your husband have been going through. You are both very courageous people and I admire you both for your committment to work through all these issues. I’m sure it has not been easy.

    I’m hoping you have ongoing support from a pastor, counselor and/or good friends who can pray with you and be there for you. Whatever structures put in place today will help tommorrow as you go through this. So if you aren’t currently getting some sort of support, I hope you will seek it out.

    Thanks for sharing your story, and I hope you’ll visit WifeBoat again to update us. I know God will complete the good work He began in you. He is faithful! God bless you and your husband. -R

  14. When I married my husband I knew he had a history of same sex attraction, He had been clean for 2.5 years when we married. Then 6 mos into the marriage he lost his Job and had a relasped. I was crushed and naive about HA. He did get help and over the years has struggled off and on. Five years ago I discovered that he was using H Porn . Once again I was devastated. However the Lord gave me the grace to
    stay and work it through. 3 years ago he was diagnosed with cancer and came to some life and death decisions. He had to come to the end of himself . He had alot of time to pray and think. The pain of SA addiction in marriage is very difficult.
    What also happened for me is I had to come to terms with my own issues around
    a different addictive behaviour. The Lord has been gracious and loving . We have been married 16 years . Lots of hard work and still more to go but thank I thanks God I chose to stay. His grace has been sufficient.He isn’t finished with either of us yet….

  15. Tim– What timing you have. I was just working on a post on wives dealing with a husband’s same-sex attraction when you commented. (See my post: Your husband’s admitted he’s homosexual. What Now?)

    This post addresses the initial stage a wife goes through when she discovers her husband struggles with and/or acted out on homosexual feelings. In later posts, I hope to address the issues a woman goes through related to her own crisis of identity and faith. Thanks for being ahead of the curve. God Bless.

  16. I agree completely. Would like to see more along these lines with reference to same sex attraction. Thanks

  17. thank you for saying that this isn’t a minor “blip”
    I feel so frustrated that our culture has deeme this as okay and that we should even join in to rev things up.
    The ability to shut my own mind down and not overthink about his problem and what he as seen and why we do what we do … is what i am working on most… or need to be working on..Help me Lord.. I know I can’t do it without you!

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