response to mortal sin : LUSENET : Catholic Pages Forum : One Thread

I was reading over your reply Paul and much of it I already do. First a little background. My wife has been mentally ill for the last 4 years of are marriage. At one point she was constantly breaking things cutting herself to release her pain etc. She was diagnosed with Manic Depression and Borderline personality disorders. She was hospitalized mulitple times. During this period we both had affairs. I also used Pornagraphy and masturbation to escape. I became addicted to them. How during this period God led me to the Brothers and Sisters of Charity and saved are marriage and led us both into the Church. I struggle with alot of anger toward the symptoms and neediness of my wife though better is still not facing her illness. I have fallen into Pornography recently and the other. I have go to confession weekly I hate this sin and sometimes hate myself. I guess my question is when an addiction as you by the jugular is it mortal. I am attempting accountability with a fellow christian worker, and my formation director at BSCD, and go to confession weekly though admittedly I did not confess the last time I fell. God knows I want to be the Husband she deserves. I guess my feelings move well beyond the discussion I am sorry. I have noted that Adoration of the Eucharist, Rosary services, and frequent communion help. I also look at my prayer life as a guage to see where I am at. I pray the liturgy of the hours.

-- Anonymous, May 08, 1998



The best practical advice I've ever had to help break bad habits is to fill your time with healthy things. If you busy yourself, it's harder to find the time to even think about doing what you are usually tempted to do.

As for pornography, it's horrific how easy it is to expose yourself to explicit material on the Internet, especially in newsgroups. My best advice to you ... uninstall your newsreader, delete every picture you've copied to your hard drive and tape a holy card with a picture of St Joseph or Our Lady on your monitor! That will make it all the harder to act on your temptation next time. The worst thing about pornography is that it poisons the mind. You constantly recall images you've seen and that is the start of the temptation all over again. You have to work hard to avoid the temptation. Brother John-Paul Ignatius recently told us all on the CIN mailing lists about a new ministry starting up at for people who are addicted to pornography. Sort of a Catholic support/buddy group -- I don't know much about it, but his announcement said it was all anonymous and private. Maybe you should consider learning a bit more about that and whether it might be helpful to you.

As for masturbation, an Opus Dei priest once said to me that if you think about it beforehand (sort of planning when you'll do it) and act on that thought, it's a mortal sin. I didn't have time to explore with him the whole idea of habitual sin, but when you start thinking of it as mortal sin, you certainly try harder to overcome the temptation.

You're in my prayers. I wish I knew exactly what to say to help... Confession and a strong interior life is the best place to overcome any temptation and habit. Well, that's my plan, and I'm sticking to it!

God bless, Paul

PS. Don't get discouraged by always having to confess the same sins. That's the Devil trying to get under your skin. God wants you to keep trying, even if it takes forever.

-- Anonymous, May 09, 1998

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