New Year's Resolutions, Like Recovery, Take Commitment!

By Sandi Burningham, LCP, CSAC
LifeSTAR Therapist

It is once again that unique time of year in which we have the opportunity to both review and reflect on the year past as well as to ponder and prepare for the year to come. In the focal point of this transition, many choose to set goals or resolutions for the year to come. In fact, for many of you, recovery may have even started in a fashion similar to this. While some see New Year’s resolutions as a set-up for failure or just some fly-by-night, fanciful thinking, others structure and utilize resolutions effectively to achieve the desires of their hearts. When structured and utilized effectively, resolutions have the potential to result in great and long-lasting rewards. Yet, as with so many other things in life, the level of reward and satisfaction associated with achieving resolutions is directly correlated to the level of commitment and effort invested.

Therefore, it might be helpful at this time to...

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Assessing Risk of Relapse

Assessing Risk of Relapse
By: Jessica Hedgepeth, BS

Relapse. It’s an unpleasant word for most sexual addicts—one that conjures up thoughts of pain, disappointment, and defeat. Wide sweeping in its description, a relapse could constitute a wave or a full blown tsunami in the course of one’s recovery. Anxiety swells concerning this undesired event— can we predict it? Or does it sneak upon us like a thief in the night waiting to take away all we worked for?

Good news. You can forecast your susceptibility of relapse—as Dr. Stanton Peele wisely says, “Relapse is not an unfortunate event that happens to you; it is a series of bad choices that you make. “ By looking at your current patterns of behavior, the power to prevent relapse lies in your hands.

In Dr. Kevin Skinner’s book, “Treating Pornography Addiction” he discusses the common characteristic profile of an individual most prone to relapse. Just as...

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Creating a Safe Place to Talk About Dangerous Things

November 22, 2010

Creating a Safe Place to Talk About Dangerous Things Video

By Jeffrey J. Ford, MS, LMFT
Program Director – YouthSTAR of St. George, UT

Talking about sex and pornography has quickly become a top priority for parents and their children to discuss in recent years, and with research indicating that adolescents today appear to be using pornography much more than any other age group (Arnett, 2006) parents need to know how to talk about pornography and how to recognize signs that their child may be already struggling with pornography. In a study conducted at BYU Jason Carroll (2008) and others found that 9 out of 10 boys and one third of girls use pornography. Research like this can be sobering and overwhelming for parents that are trying to raise their kids today. Talking about pornography and sex is particularly difficult for parents that didn’t have that type of talk with their parents when they were kids. Some parents are unsure or confused about when to...

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What Exactly Does the Word "Recovery" Mean?

Let’s start with a few definitions found in the dictionary. The website Dictionary.com defines recovery the following three ways:

1) The regaining of or possibility of regaining something lost or taken away.

2) Restoration or return to health from sickness.

3) Restoration or return to any former and better state or condition.

When I watch someone going through the recovery process, I’m always interested in understanding whether or not they want to get well. There is an understanding that something isn’t right and they desire to make it right. This may sound basic and over-simplistic. However, I find that answering this question of “do you want to get well” is harder than you think, especially when things get difficult.

To “recover” is to put back in order that which is out of order. For most individuals struggling with addiction, they have turned away from their most important priorities. They need to restore those...

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Pornography Is A Tsunami


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Recovery Is Possible

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Pornography Grips You With Claws

Here is a great article in today’s Deseret News on the impact of pornography.

I love the quote from Naomi Wolf where she says, “[Women] can’t compete, and they know it. For how can a real women — with pores and her own breasts and even sexual needs of her own … — possibly compete with a cybervision of perfection, downloadable and extinguishable at will, who (is) utterly submissive and tailored to the customer’s least specification?”

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Looking For Love?

I was recently reading the first section of the new book “Pornland: How Porn has Highjacked Our Sexuality“and ran across this tagline the author found on a pornography site.  It said, “Don’t Come Here Looking for Love.”

Now, that’s probably the only honest thing one would find on a porn site.

Love is about mutual respect.  It’s about fidelity.  It’s about sacrifice.  It’s about giving (not taking).  They’re right…. there is no love in pornography.  As a matter of fact, pornography is the opposite of love.  It’s about exploitation.  It exploits and uses those who make it.  It exploits and robs those who view it.  And, sadly, it traumatizes the romantic partners of those who view it.

I wish that tagline would say a little more.  Perhaps there could be a warning label like on a cigarette package.  As a matter of fact, Wendy Maltz has...

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I Am Not My Body

July 20,2010

VIDEO

I am a fan of Stephanie Nielson’s blog “The NieNie Diaglogues.”   I love her stories of her marriage, her children, and her observations about ordinary life.  What I love most, however, is her message that she is not her body.  Stephanie was involved in a near-fatal plane crash in 2008 where she was burned on over 80% of her body.  She has chronicled her journey through multiple surgeries and excruciating rehabilitation.

Her husband, Mr. Nielson, as she affectionately refers to him, was burned on over 30% of his body.  Together, they have inspired thousands, if not millions, to keep moving forward when the pain seems unbearable.  Even though the source of their pain was originally physical and didn’t come from betrayal, there are still powerful messages of hope and healing in their story.

Her body has drastically changed (check out her blog and you’ll see pictures of her before the crash), but she...

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More Women Lured To Pornography Addiction

The Washington Times recent ran an article citing some statistics about women’s use of pornography.  One thing the article mentions is that when women use pornography, they are more likely to become victims of nonconsensual sex.  This is a terrible combination.   If men who use pornography are more likely to manipulate to get a sexual experience and women who view pornography are more likely to go along with it, then how can this be good for relationships, marriages, and families.  Many popular media outlets such as Oprah and other women’s magazines often cite the relationship benefits of pornography and erotica.  They talk about how wonderful it is for couples to “spice up” their marriages.  They talk about being more open-minded and less prudish.  They parade porn stars on their shows and talk about the glamour of the business.  It’s all a lie.  Jill Manning, PhD, says that the...

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