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3 Key Characteristics Of a Sister-Friend You Need For Your Successful Betrayal Recovery

By April 24, 2024No Comments
Sister friend

So many questions bombard the wife of a man struggling with porn’s grip on his mind, body, and soul.

How do you find the help you need after discovering your husband’s struggle with pornography?

Could you ever talk about what happened without feeling overwhelmed by shame, embarrassment, and disgust?

Yet, the wife also needs loving care and assistance to face the devastating aftershocks of this discovery.

One danger that results from keeping porn use a secret is isolation.

Secrets like addictions force you to hold others at arm’s length. You can’t risk being around others often because you might say something that hints at the problem in your life and marriage.

However, as one who is over 15 years down the recovery road, I know the missing ingredient for many women facing recovery.

You need a close female friend to walk alongside you. I call this type of friend a sister-friend. Others refer to this special bond as a soul sister or heart sister.

From my experience, not every good friend becomes a sister-friend.

Throughout my life, I’ve had less than six women who fit this classification. When you face world-rocking destruction that comes from porn use recovery, addiction recovery, marriage dissolution, or the like, your sister-friend becomes an integral part of your recovery process.

What difference does your sister-friend make to your healthy recovery?

1. Confidante.

Anyone who’s faced soul-wrenching aftershocks needs someone to be honest with. But not just any person works. God refers to this type of friendship this way:

There are “friends” who destroy each other,
but a real friend sticks closer than a brother.

A sister-friend allows you to tell her anything and everything without judging you, analyzing your motives, or fixing the issue. She listens to your words and the ones you can’t speak. Your soul-sister holds your broken heart, mind, and soul tenderly, seeking to support and listen first.

She isn’t concerned primarily with fixing you or your problem. In her eyes, her role remains as companion and confidante. The one who loves you no matter what and supports you through the process. She might not agree with all your choices, but she will listen and allow you to verbally vomit as much as needed.

When asked, she will lovingly and prayerfully speak into your situation, always with the goal of encouraging, uplifting, and supporting you and your decisions. She doesn’t “take sides” but offers her steadfast presence.

Over the last 15 years, God gave me two sister-friends who fit this role. They know everything about me. We don’t agree on every aspect of life, but nothing I’ve told them has found its way to another person.

2. Prayer Warrior.

Your sister-friend prays for you without needing the details. While you probably tell her your deepest, darkest secrets, she doesn’t pry. Rather, she asks permission before asking the hard questions. If you don’t feel ready to answer or give details, she’s okay with that.

Sister-friends allow the Holy Spirit to work in you and your situation. Often, the sister-friend prays for your husband as diligently as she prays for you. Her desire is to help you grow deeper in your trust in God rather than depend on her.

The Apostle Paul prayed for the believers in Philippi. He warred for them on his knees. Look at what he says about praying for others:

Every time I think of you, I give thanks to my God. Whenever I pray, I make my requests for all of you with joy, for you have been my partners in spreading the Good News about Christ from the time you first heard it until now. And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.

Our marriage crisis taught me a deeper understanding of sister-friends. Before then, I didn’t recognize the absolute need for a sister-friend who is also a prayer warrior.

The woman whose first words were, “you cry as much as you need,” proved to be a sister-friend prayer warrior and continues to be that today. I treasure her compassion, prayer support, and courageous truth-telling. To this day, I know I can ask for prayer at any moment, and she’ll pray fervently and check back for any updates. She doesn’t require details; it’s just what I’m willing to impart.

3. Truth-teller.

Sister-friends love you unconditionally, but that doesn’t mean they rubber-stamp everything you think, say, or do. Every sister-friend I’ve ever had and currently have speaks the truth to me. She loves me enough to do this.

The wisest man of all time says this about truth-tellers:

An open rebuke
is better than hidden love!
Wounds from a sincere friend
are better than many kisses from an enemy.

My sister-friend allows me to vent, but when I cross the line into a pity party, she lovingly calls my attention to my whining. 🙂 I can’t say I always appreciate it in the moment. Who likes being corrected?

Truth-tellers seek your best every time. They’re willing to wound to help you identify a blind spot with prayer and compassion. Her goal is to walk with you to become all that God created you to be.

A few years ago, a sweet woman told me about her sister-friend who lovingly confronted her about a developing friendship. This sister-friend recognized the woman’s risky emotional connection with a man, not her husband. With prayer and loving words, this sister-friend called attention to the slippery slope. When I asked the woman how she felt when confronted by her sister-friend, she used words like thankful, difficult to hear, but necessary. Her sister-friend redirected her to work on her marriage.

A Sister-friend provides essential support in your recovery journey.

When asked, several of my clients tell me they don’t have a sister-friend. Look at your friends, those you consider closest to you. Who would be your sister-friend? If you don’t have one, ask God to provide her for you. Please remember, your sister-friend is not a man.

It takes time and effort to develop a sister-friend relationship that lasts and contains these three life-giving components.

  • Confidante.
  • Prayer warrior.
  • Truth-teller.

If you want to move your recovery journey forward, identifying and spending time with your sister-friend provides that safety net to process your hurts, receive prayer support, and hear the truth.

Who would identify you as their sister-friend? The relationships I have today with my sister-friends are reciprocal, fulfilling, encouraging, and challenging. I wouldn’t trade them for the world.

If you’re dealing with intimate betrayal and aren’t sure who you can talk to, please reach out. I promise confidentiality, truth, a listening heart, and empathy.

  • 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.