Myth #8 Poor Parenting is the Cause
Believe it or not there are dudes (and chicks) out there that blame their parents for their porn struggles. Their not alone either because there are some “experts” who would agree that poor parenting is the culprit when it comes to sexual addiction. I’m not dismissing instances of childhood sexual abuse, parental abandonment, or the early exposure to sexually explicit material at the hand of a parent. These are sad realities that can’t be overlooked because they do shape the sexuality of young people.
But to use such circumstances as an excuse to continue a pattern of acting out sexually is wrong. Thankfully the circumstances which we grew up in don’t have to be the final determination of where our lives will end up. As we come of age we have the opportunity to acknowledge wounds, allow scars to heal, and to deal appropriately with our past with an eye firmly fixed on the future.
So how do we avoid the trap of blaming our parent(s) for our out of control sexuality? It may start by simply acknowledging that we live in a fallen and broken world and our parents fall into the category of sinners (just like everyone else). As much as we might think that our parents had it all together that simply isn’t the case. In many instances they did their best to keep up the facade that everything was “peachy” in Mayberry. Yet, later in life we learned that our parents had all sorts of issues. They were in process, they made mistakes, and they acted foolishly just like I have and just like you have.
Yes, in some cases truly horrific things have been done by parents. I’m not excusing any of it, but as we grow up I think we learn that all parents come to the table with their own baggage. Some of that baggage comes from the pain of their childhoods. They may have come of age when it wasn’t appropriate or acceptable to address the things that happened to them so they learned to cope. Unfortunately since their “stuff” wasn’t handled properly then the cycle simply passes on to the next generation. Reminds me of the passage in the old testament that says, “Visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate me; And shewing mercy unto thousands of them that love me, and keep my commandments.” Exodus 20:5-6
The goal for those trying to leave the blame game behind is to begin to own their junk. We don’t let it define us but we must accept that it has shaped us at some level. At the same time we have to be willing to get rid of that junk! I’ve seen that at times we choose to hang on to stuff because it makes us feel better about ourselves. While we wouldn’t come right out and say that we are still blaming our parents there’s an underlying blame game still going on.
Forgiveness and grace are a huge part of this throwing out the junk step as well. Forgiveness isn’t easy but it is essential for sobriety and a healthy new walk. Pray earnestly for this gift. Grace is also essential. The same grace that is given to every sinner is also available to our parents regardless of how badly they screwed up! Grace has traditionally been defined as, “unmerited favor”, in other words it’s something our parents could ever earn or deserve. It’s the same thing with all of us. We didn’t and could never earn God’s favor or deserve His forgiveness yet we are the beneficiaries of this divine mystery.
Stop playing the “blame game”, and stop believing this silly myth. It will keep you entangled and miserable, missing out on a life of true freedom and joy.