What Are Christian Accountability Partners For Porn Recovery?

Happy Christian accountability partners for porn recovery

When you’re trying to break free from porn and the shame that goes with it, having an accountability partner can make all the difference in your success or failure. Your partner doesn’t need to be your pastor or someone in your church, but if you can find one there, that’s great! But you can also go online and find a community of people who are going through the same thing as you. And really, these are your friends, so make sure you choose people who will care about your struggles and not hold them against you.

An Overview Of Accountability Partners For Porn Addiction

Being a person who is accountable means that you stay true to what you said you would do. This is a way of life that will likely lead you to great results in whatever you’re doing. This sounds really nice and dandy, to stay accountable means to get results, awesome! Unfortunately, it’s not quite that simple. Staying accountable to just yourself is not something I believe is wise, especially when it comes to porn addiction. This is where accountability partners come into play. Ideally, they help point out blind spots in your life that need attention. Their job is to encourage you, support you and sharpen you as you share your thoughts and emotions and pursue your recovery and life goals. A good accountability partner is there to offer practical advice and hold you accountable, but even more, they’re there to be safe, compassionate, curious, and unconditionally loving at all times.

The Benefits Of Christian Accountability Partners For Porn Recovery

I have heard it said that you’re 66% more likely to hit your goals when you run with like-minded people. That’s a substantial increase in the likelihood that you will recover from your addiction to porn! With this said, the benefit of having a good accountability partner is that you will be more much likely to hit your goals and break free from bondage. Even more than this stat, there’s a famous saying out there that says “the opposite of addiction is not sobriety, its connection”. This profound statement means that the very essence of your sobriety will be in how you connect with other people in your life. I like to think of your accountability partner as a vital connection as you recover from porn because they’re going to be one of your first touches when you need someone to talk to. Now, it’s crucial that this person feels unconditional in their love, even when they challenge you, you must still feel loved. The benefit here is that you will reach out when in need rather than sink into isolation wondering if they’re really there for you. Imagine, in your deepest pain and ugliest struggle, having someone you can call knowing 100% that they will be safe, loving, and supportive no matter what has happened.

How To Ask For An Accountability Partner For Pornography Addiction

The classic way of finding accountability partners is to join a recovery group/support group, ask a close friend/family member, or get it through an app of some sort (covenant eyes, or Relay as examples). There’s nothing wrong with any of these approaches, however, wisdom is required to ensure you connect with people that will truly hold you accountable in ways that are actually helpful. One of the first things to consider is how you would ask someone to be in a relationship with you. Would you tell some sob story or some “woe is me” tale? Probably not… I’m sure you would find common ground, interests, and desires and make a connection based on those things, right? This is a simple mindset shift that can make all the difference when looking for a good accountability partner. The main idea I want to explain here is that the sob story approach is more about pity. Someone feels sorry for you so they offer their support, however, they feel burdened by the task and may not know how to help. The other option is to share about your life, goals, and vision and how it relates to the person. This approach is much more about giving someone an exciting opportunity to be a part of your life, your journey, and your redemption. This in my opinion is asking someone to live out the great commission that Jesus Christ asked us to be obedient in. Doesn’t that sound so much better than just asking someone to hold you accountable? The goal here is to invite someone into the very fabric of your life, to become friends, to be on purpose together for the Glory of God.

What not to say to a potential accountability partner:

Hey Joe, I’m struggling with porn and really need some help. Would you mind checking in with me every day and seeing how I’m doing? Maybe we can get together for coffee weekly to help me stay motivated? What do you say?”

What to say to potential Christian accountability partners for porn recovery :

Hey Joe, I have noticed a few things about you that I really admire – you’re an amazing husband, you are really healthy and I see that you care a lot about discipleship. I know it’s important to surround myself with people that can sharpen me and when thinking about who that could be, I thought about you. Right now, I am on a journey to becoming a Godly man and part of that includes getting free from porn. I really want to renew my mind, grow closer to God, and rebuild trust with my wife. I was wondering if you would be open to pursuing Christ together and becoming healthy men of God side by side? This would ideally look like some weekly touch points to check in and stay accountable to our word and a weekly coffee to dig into some areas that we need sharpening. What do you think?

How To Choose An Accountability Partner For Porn Recovery

Simply put, a good accountability partner has fruit on the tree. This means that you will want to seek out people (of the same gender) who have some things that you want – ideally, character traits and quality relationships. This may sound like a narrow lens on how you may choose someone to hold you accountable… I get it. However, I do want to widen the lens a bit and say that if someone is in their own recovery from porn addiction they’re not disqualified. If this is the case, I believe it’s crucial that they are bearing good fruit along the way so iron is still sharpening iron. When thinking about how to choose a good accountability partner, what you’re really asking is “who” do I choose? Ultimately, it comes down to safety. Who do you feel safe with? or who are you willing to get to know to see how safe you feel? This is at the core of choosing the right accountability partner. If you don’t feel safe, you won’t reach out. And if you don’t reach out, you won’t experience the love, support, and sharpening that you need while quitting porn. Safety, in its essence, is feeling as if you are protected by love and mercy even when you make mistakes. These are the type of relationships we all need. The ones that resemble Jesus Christ and the love He has for us at all times.

Secret Habit Coaching Community: Christian Accountability Partners For Porn Recovery : Join other like-minded men when you work with Shawn

Is My Family Member A Good Choice As An Accountability Partner For Pornography Addiction?

Family members are typically a place of familiarity, making them seem like a good place to start for accountability. They can seem better than a close friend simply because of proximity. However, I want to explain why I disagree with this notion in most cases. To keep this clean, the concept of family members needs to break down into 2 roles: parents and siblings. 

Parents:

Parents often want the “best” for their kids. They will offer practical advice when you share your thoughts rather than offering safety, compassion, curiosity, and the help you really need. Now, this is not in all cases, but I have seen it happen more times than not. Parents naturally have a position of authority that can make this dynamic very challenging. They may not know how to respond in any other way than the “parent”. This will make it challenging to consider them helpful as accountability partners as you look to get free from porn. If you happen to have parents who you think can play the role of accountability partner, then I would encourage you to consider how you feel during and after the interaction. It’s vital to reflect and ensure you’re feeling loved rather than “fixed” all the way throughout. 

Siblings:

Finding accountability in siblings can happen because of shared experiences. This means that you can talk about how certain aspects of your childhood may have impacted your life today. This can be a great benefit if you feel safe and supported by them along the way. It’s important to note that a lot of siblings are just not close enough to feel safe and secure to talk about such deep topics. If that’s the case, that is ok. But if you do happen to have a sibling you can talk to and be held accountable, it’s again important to recognize how you feel during and after the interaction.

What To Do When You’ve Made Progress And Become Accountable By Yourself

Progress feels amazing, there’s no denying it. It can be the motivator behind our success. However, there comes a point where pride seeps in and our downfall becomes evident. Self-sufficiency doesn’t work in the Kingdom of Heaven. Any addiction recovery, especially porn addiction recovery requires connection, relationship, and accountability that goes beyond just you, and even just you and God. Scripture shows us that we are to seek wise counsel, confess to another, and make disciples. These are all signs that we cannot do life alone. Not because God says we can’t, but because we wither when we isolate. One of the greatest challenges of “lone wolves” is that they eventually stagnate and develop severe blind spots. When it comes to quitting porn, too many guys quit the behavior, but never find freedom in their minds. This is a massive problem… When someone tells me they’re free from porn when they clearly only have sobriety and fight every day to keep it. This is a warning sign that this dude needs some good-quality accountability.

How To Tell If A Christian Accountability Partner For Porn Recovery Is Lying To You Or Dishonest About Their Sexual History And Current Behaviours

The Holy Spirit is the great “convictor”. He nudges the heart even when it seems as if there are no red flags to be seen. When you develop a relationship with your accountability partner, you will begin to do life together. You will get to know each other on a level that should clear out any “BS”. What I mean by that is you should be able to sense if something is off – by sound, sight, or sense. It’s so important for us to “trust our gut” aka. Listen to the Holy Spirit. Some signs I would look out for would be a lack of eye contact, a change in personality, a change in communication style, boasting, over-spiritualizing, and/or focusing on behavior modification rather than true heart change. There would be many more potential signs but these can be some very common ones to be aware of. My hope for you is that the safety you two have developed would cause your relationship to be focused on sharpening one another. This would mean that you feel comfortable sharing your concerns if there are any. This is the true mark of a healthy relationship – conflict resolution! Scripture tells us that we are to confront people who are in sin and to be able to do this with love, grace and curiosity will go a long way. 

In Conclusion

Having yourself a couple of good accountability partners as you recover from porn addiction is going to be the game changer you need to break free. By following the principles laid out here and seeking what it means to have true accountability in a healthy relationship, you will be well on your way to finding the connection that we believe leads to sobriety and freedom from porn.

Read this article to encourage you to hope, if you are asking: Can I Recovery From Porn Addiction?

Secret Habit Coaching Community: Christian Accountability Partners For Porn Recovery: Join other like-minded men when you work with Shawn

Shawn Bonneteau

Shawn Bonneteau

Author of this Article

Shawn is the co-founder of Secret Habit. He loves to write, speak and coach men. He has a story of addiction to porn and masturbation, as well as a struggle with Erectile Dysfunction that haunted him for many years into his marriage. He feels called to use his story to bring hope and healing to those stuck in sexual bondage.

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