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When Your Heart Hurts: 3 Hazards to Avoid on Your Path to Recovery


When your heart hurts, you’ll do almost anything to stop the pain so you may not recognize a few hazards.

The first time I took all three young children on a walk, I almost lost my eldest son. My daughter knew to hold onto the stroller when we walked. With the baby strapped safely in the stroller, I worked with my eldest son to keep one hand on the stroller or my pocket at all times.

“Mommy needs to know where you are,” I reasoned with him. However, my active two-year-old struggled to walk sedately with his mom, sister, and baby brother. Once we reached the park, the temptation became too great. He bolted…straight toward the slides on the other side of the parking lot.

After that heart-thumping escapade, Dave and I invested in a safety harness. Since our son loved dogs, he didn’t mind the soft, fuzzy puppy clasp. He joyfully ran ahead of me on the sidewalk, exploring to his heart’s content, while I felt calmer knowing where he was at all times. He couldn’t run off again.

Until he did.

He wanted freedom and figured out how to unhook the puppy clasp. We needed a solution.


With the safety harness attached to the back of his overalls, he couldn’t unhook the puppy. However, he did run flat out as far as possible, not realizing the hazard that the stretched harness posed.

A woman facing betrayal pain just wants it to stop.

Like my eager and exploring son, that woman runs flat-out toward a quick solution, not recognizing potential hazards that might hinder her recovery.

1. Tell me what to do.

It sounds good, but recovering from the emotional and relational devastation from discovering his porn use doesn’t fit neatly into a simple formula. I wish it did.

Your discovery is similar to others’. However, you are unique, and so is your situation. As a coach, my role remains to help you move forward according to your bent. You and I work through a series of questions to determine your best future.

The initial Let Me Help You Breathe session helps you uncover your next best step.

A “one-size-fits-all” approach isn’t in your best interest. I’d love to help you create your recovery plan. Let’s talk.

2. If I can get him to stop watching porn, we’ll be okay.

Not really. Until he discovers what motivates him to look at porn, he may struggle to quit. His best, true recovery for himself involves looking deep into his soul to heal the underlying need.

You might believe all you need is for him to quit. Yes, you do, but you must also recover from the trauma of his betrayal. If you turn a blind eye, you slap a sloppy bandage on the pain and shove it down, only for it to rear up at another point in your life. You can’t go back to life the way it was. Your recovery is just as important as his, so please don’t neglect or deny it. Get the help you need today.

3. Taking advice from someone who doesn’t understand betrayal trauma or addiction.

Not all clergy, counselors, or coaches receive training in betrayal trauma recovery or addiction recovery. A person addicted to porn benefits the most from working with a sexual addiction counselor or therapist. As a faith-based coach, I encourage my clients to meet with biblical worldview therapists specializing in this area in addition to specialized coaching.

I continue to study with experts in this complex field to become a better betrayal recovery coach. I want my clients to get the best help to recover fully, which sometimes means I refer them to someone more expert in a certain recovery method.

You can stop the pain. Make the choices that move you toward full recovery rather than a quick fix.

Don’t treat your recovery like my son running full out to the end of his safety harness. Listen to God’s encouragement to process through the pain, eventually bringing you the desired healing. He stops the pain and restores you.

I know how important working with biblical worldview sexual addiction therapists and coaches make in your recovery. Let me show you the way through the pain. Let’s relax your pain harness.

  • Kirsten D Samuel

    I empower Christian wives to discover they are seen, loved, and heard. These women find the freedom to be who they are beyond their partner’s struggles, and find hope that there is a life worth living.