EPISODE 45: How to know if you can trust your spouse again

Jul 19, 2020

Artwork for podcast Overcome Pornography: The Self Mastery Podcast

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This is the link to Brene Brown's YouTube video.

-       Brene brown is talks about this in her SUPERSOUL SESSIONS: THE ANATOMY OF TRUST .

-       First, Brené references Charles Feltman work on trust and uses his definition. 

-       Which is, ‘trust is choosing to make something important to you vulnerable to the actions of someone else’

-       In the case of pornography use, what is it that we spouses making vulnerable?


-       For many women, this is right at the top of the list for what they would call a nightmare scenario. 

-       This is probably something that many of them worry about because of how they anticipate they will feel 

-       I think the moment you get married you have placed this all important and sacred eternal life in the hands of a partner

-       I think the thing that feels most vulnerable when you find out that your husband is using pornography is that you may have just lost everything 

-       That’s devastating. 

-       For members you are committing to eternal marriage

-       You feel vulnerable

-       Wonder if your marriage is in jeopardy

Darcy: What about the users, what are they making vulnerable?




-       I think this is, for so many men, their greatest failing and for many of us a huge source of shame

-       Which, when we are either found out or confess, is a huge moment of vulnerability to the actions of the non-user

-       What will they do?

-       How will they react?

-       How much should I tell them?

-       Are all questions that run through our minds. 



I think its also important to touch on what distrust is as well. 


‘Distrust is what I have shared with you that’s important to me is not safe with you.“  again from Charles Feltman



This is really important when we take a look at the two things that are vulnerable for the two parties. 


For the men – They have probably just participated in talking about the thing that they are most ashamed of


For the women – they have had the thing they hold most dear ripped up in front of them. 


The thing that the men hold dear is their ability to be a worthy, loving husband.  


The thing the women hold dear is their ability to have a worthy, loving husband. 





So, I think this is a moment where, wives react in a way that takes what the husband has done and puts her in a position of distrust as well.  



He has acted in a way that creates distrust by taking the spoken or unspoken agreement that he would not use pornography and not kept it safe.  


So, this moment is where she now has his most vulnerable and important sense of self in her hands. 


I’ll be honest – the thing I did and the thing so many of us want to do is to tell him we’re leaving or if you keep doing this we are getting divorced. 


Some women just cry


Some lash out 


I’m not here to judge any of that. 


But What we want to do is give you a few tools that will help you build trust and create the relationship you want 


Especially when what has happened feels like the opposite of trustworthiness.  


This comes out of the research that Brene Brown did into how trust works. 


The first tool is:



-       Be clear about boundaries

-       Uphold them

-       Respect the boundaries of each other




-       Do what you say you are going to do

-       Over & over & over

-       That includes not promising things that you can’t deliver on

-       In a marriage, especially one that is dealing with pornography, that means:

o   Not promising things we can’t deliver on

o   Not threatening things we mean in a moment but then don’t really mean when it comes down to it

o   Honest in what we are feeling – 

o   Honest in how we will act – 




-       If you: Own your mistakes

-       Apologize 

-       Make amends

-       If I: Allowed to own it

-       Apologize

-       Make amends




-       What I share with you, you will hold in confidence

-       What you share with me, I will hold in confidence. 

-       Respect my story and the story of others

-       Who you choose to confide in is important and needs to be selected carefully. 

-       Not for social media

-       Not for everyone to hear. 





-       Choosing courage over comfort

o   Wife: step back into trusting

§  Maybe leaving if that is right 

o   Husband: get help


-       What is right over what is fast or easy

o   Wife: 


o   Husband:


-       Practicing your values, not just professing them

o   For both


o   Wife: owning your agency

o   Being clear about how you would like to move forward

o   Acting in line with the values you have been taught and believe



o   Husband: owning your agency

o   Being clear about how you would like to move forward

o   Acting in line with the values you have been taught and believe





-       Be in struggle and fall apart without judging one another. 

-       Its clear in our marriage that at various times we have both struggled with things

-       You might say, well, he was sinning and she was just depressed. 

-       Creating trust, especially in a marriage is not really about saying, its ok for me to struggle with this but if you struggle with that, that’s not ok. 

-       We would rather help

-       Being able to ask for help, is trusting – if you can’t ask your spouse for help, as brene brown put it, that is not a trusting relationship

-       If you think less of yourself when you need help you also think less of others, even unconsciously, for needing help.

-       That eliminates trust

-       Being able to ask for and receive help has to be reciprocal in non-judgement





-       Assume the most generous thing about what the other person has done, said, or intentions

-       Assume that your spouse is not doing this in an effort to hurt you

-       Assume that your wife is threatening to leave because they are hurting



You say, I don’t trust you 


Be able to articulate what you need specifically with your partner


Self trust is also a huge component of how we interact with the world. 


When you have these difficult conversations, the first thing you may want to do is take a step back and reflect. 


Have I followed my own boundaries?

Have I been reliable?

Have I held myself accountable?

wasI protective of my story, Did I stay in integrity?

Was I judgmental of my self?

Did I give myself the benefit of the doubt?

#addictionrecovery #latterdaysaintsdealingwithpornographyinmarraige #LDS



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