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Terms You Learn in Sexual Recovery – pt. 2

May 28, 2009

This week, I want to introduce you to terms that are frequently used in sexual recovery groups.  They have been important for me to understand, and have helped me examine my own life.

acting_masksActing out is when a person crosses a bottom line.  They have struggles with lust, masturbation, porn and give in. 

 In some groups, members report to each other how long it has been since they “acted out”.   

Acting out should not be so much about the behavior, but on what emotions, feelings, or needs the person was struggling with when they “acted out”. 

Triggers are stimuli that awaken lust or needs in a person that causes they to want to go through with an addictive behavior.  A trigger might be the type of skirt a girl has on.  It could be magazine rack.  It could be time alone with nothing to do.  It could be the mention of a website or certain Hollywood star.

cz75_triggerTriggers are specific to each person.  What triggers one person does not necessarily trigger another. 

Some triggers can be avoided, others cannot.  I can control whether or not I rent “R-rated’ movies or go into a porn shop.  But I cannot control what someone wears at work or at the mall.  To fight triggers, I have to have to have a good defensive strategy.  This includes:  setting up roadblocks, accountability, filling my mind with good things, prayer, journaling, talking things out with other men.

ritual_lgA ritual is a regular routine you get into that leads you to act out and cross a bottom line

A person comes home from work and sits down to relax at the TV.  Then before he knows it, he’s searching for sensual programming. 

A man drives by an adult bookstore on the way to work.  He has stopped in the past to rent some videos.  He struggles regularly with going to the bookstore, or not. 

Rituals can excelerate too.  They become a thing of comfort.  We can take more risks in our rituals.  A guy surfs the computer each day at work when he gets bored, then he starts looking at images, then he starts checking out questionable sites, then he is digging deeper and hooked.   

In recovery, we must work hard to break rituals.  Something has to change.  If we have a ritual that leads to a sinful behavior, we will cross it more often than not.  We need the help of others and good accountability in order to break rituals.
Come back tomorrow for Part 3 of the series

Click Here for Part 1:

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