The Church’s new Addressing Pornography website offers a helpful and hopeful approach for Latter-day Saints wanting protection, help and healing from pornography use.
Addressingpornography.lds.org — which replaces OvercomingPornography.org — represents a new way of talking about pornography and includes resources aimed at audiences not previously addressed, such as parents, and eventually, youth.
Visitors to the site will find answers to specific questions about how to protect against, respond to, and heal from pornography, whether they are:
- Individuals who have developed pornography habits they wish to overcome. Resources answer questions like “Why do I feel so bad about myself?” “Why does this keep happening?” and “Where can I turn for help?”
- Spouses of pornography users who have just found out about their spouse’s addiction, or are trying to move forward and heal. Questions they can find answers to include “How can I best help my spouse?” and “Will the pain and suffering ever end?”
“The goal is to help affected spouses focus on finding healing for themselves, not their spouse, as they learn to understand and work through the unique issues they face,” said Lee Gibbons, a senior product manager in the Priesthood and Family Department.
- Parents who wish to help their children prepare for inadvertent exposures to pornography, handle early experiences with pornography, or recover from compulsive use.
Parents can find answers to questions such as “How do I respond when I discover my child has viewed pornography,” and “How can I help my child progress spiritually after pornography use?”
“We are encouraging parents to take a new, importantly different approach to protecting and preparing, responding with love, and supporting their child’s healing, depending upon their child’s specific needs,” said Gibbons.
- Leaders who need guidance and support to better minister to individuals, spouses, parents, and youth impacted by pornography who are in their care. Additional videos can be found at the counseling resources.
Content specifically for youth as well as additional languages will come sometime in 2020, Gibbons said.
Videos and resources feature real people telling their stories, qualified therapists and experts giving explanations, and members of the First Presidency, Quorum of the Twelve, and general officers of the Church providing inspiring guidance.
“We are mortals; we all make mistakes. But God wants us to become more like His Beloved Son,” President Russell M. Nelson says in a video on the website. “(We can) literally become more like Him with every passing day. … We want to choose to be on the Lord’s side. We want to have Him as our God, and let Him know that we are His people.”
Five key principles emphasized throughout the experience center on the Savior's Atonement, love and power. The site also includes opportunities for study, reflection and application.
“As we act in accordance with the teachings of Christ, the power of the Spirit comes into our lives to do and become what we could never otherwise do or become,” according to the site. “There is hope, through the Savior, for us to be clean and to again have a brightness of hope.”
“There really is no single secret to success for what is a unique healing experience for each person,” said Gibbons, “except to trust in the Lord and follow the five Atonement-based principles.”
Also included in the Resources section are Family Home Evening lessons designed to help parents discuss pornography with their children and to equip children with skills to respond appropriately to pornographic content they likely will be exposed to.
The age-appropriate lessons include basic doctrines and principles about the sacredness of the body, sexual intimacy, following the Spirit, choosing good media, appropriate action steps for when a child sees pornography and repentance. They also include activities parents can select based on the ages and needs of family members.
The lessons are designed for a family home evening setting, but the references and activities can be used in a variety of situations.