As an ally or friend to someone working to overcome pornography, knowing what to say to them through their inevitable ups and downs can be challenging. You may not even have any idea of what you can say that will be encouraging, and that’s okay. Just being there for someone struggling with porn can have an incredibly positive impact on their recovery.
Here are 10 things you can say to a person who is seeking freedom from porn:
1. “You can call or text me whenever you are feeling tempted.”
In moments when triggers are present and temptation creeps in, having someone to contact is often the key to killing this temptation and staying pure. If your friend is feeling alone, hearing your voice or receiving a text will remove some of that loneliness and encourage them to talk to you instead of watching porn.
When you do get that call or text, the remaining phrases below can be a great encouragement!
2. “I want to help you.”
It can be easy for someone struggling with porn to feel like a burden to their ally. After all, you’re taking time out of your life to help them with a problem you may have never struggled with.
If you truly want to help them, assure them of this! Remind them that you want to walk alongside them to leave porn in the dust and bask in the rays of freedom.
3. “I do not look at you any differently because of this.”
Although those struggling with porn might feel like they are different from everyone else, you need to remind them that you do not view them as a “porn addict.” Reassure them that even though they are fighting porn, you don’t base your opinion of them around this. Remind them of their positive character traits, and treat them with respect.
4. “If you relapse, I’m not going to judge you.”
Let’s face it. Relapses are likely to happen. Before they do, let your friend know that you will not judge them. Of course, you want to encourage them not to relapse, but it’s also important that they know where you stand if they do.
And when they do relapse? Continue to stand by their side and offer support instead of judgment.
Related: In Case of Relapse
5. “Porn is not easy to overcome.”
I have heard so many people comment on how they thought porn would be easy to quit. In theory, it seems like it would be. Just stop looking at it, right?
Porn is far from easy to overcome, and your friend needs to hear that over and over.
6. “No matter how long it takes, I’m going to be here for you.”
Recovering from porn is a “two steps forward, one step back” kind of journey. Your friend needs to know that no matter the length of time it takes for them to be freed from porn, you’re going to be there for them. Some people spend years fighting, and if you’re willing to help them, they are going to need your help for the long haul.
7. “Your recovery is important to me.”
Life is busy and chaotic. We all get that. Making sure your friend knows that you will prioritize their recovery can motivate them to make it a priority as well.
Putting these words into action will also show your friend that you value their recovery and truly mean what you say.
Related: How to Be the Best Ally Ever
8. “I appreciate your honesty.”
Confessing to relapses can be daunting. It can produce shame, so let your friend know that you prefer honesty, even if it’s not what you want to hear. Commend them when they are honest with you, and be a truth-filled example to them!
9. “The freedom will be SO worth the battle you are fighting.”
Few things are greater than being able to say “I am free from porn.” In the days when their battle is tough and victory seems impossible, remind your friend of the pure joy that comes with freedom.
10. “Let’s celebrate your success!”
Get this party started! Your friend is choosing to fight against pornography! Even if/when they do relapse, remind them of the times they have succeeded in overcoming temptation. Even if they have been porn-free for a week, let them know that this is worth celebrating! It will motivate them to continue to say “no” to porn.
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