In today's post I'm reviewing some of the best resources for those working through sex addiction (or problematic sexual behaviors) and betrayal trauma that I came across this year. Please note that not every resource is helpful for every individual/couple. Some resources that help some, trigger others. Thus, please proceed with caution with regards to any resource you are considering purchasing and using.
The Betrayal Trauma Journey
While it's not always easy to break down resources into categories, the following are works that are predominantly for or about the the betrayal trauma healing journey.
Naked Truth Poject Webinars: As a disclaimer, I work for Naked Truth Project as a counselor. However, I would be less than honest if I didn't say that our organization's webinars are some of the best resources I've seen this year for betrayed partners. Whether you need to know more about boundaries, have questions about forgiveness, or want help with the spiritual impact of betrayal trauma, my brilliant colleague, Cat Etherington, has produced a 90-minute webinar on the topic. We are now up to a total of 18 of these "topic focused" videos and there'll be more coming in 2020.
Affair Recovery Interview with MJ Denis: Affair Recovery has been producing a steady stream of excellent resources for years now. Last November they conducted an interview with Beyond Betrayal community contributor, MJ Denis on the topic of infidelity trauma. This free resource is available as a two-part series, and provides good information to anyone who wants to understand more about this topic as well as validation for those struggling with betrayal trauma.
Healing from Gaslighting/Narcisstic Abuse: Those of us who support betrayed partners are regularly asked for help identifying and understanding narcissistic abuse, domestic violence, etc. This year gaslighting specialist and PSA coach, Sarah Morales, introduced a full course on understanding and healing from the effects of gaslighting. As a subset of emotional abuse, gaslighting, is often employed (knowingly or unknowingly) by betraying partners to control their spouse and protect themselves. Sarah gives practical ways to opt out of gaslighting and bring in healthier patterns of relating.
As for narcissistic abuse, there are many resources on the topic, but I've been particularly impressed this year on the Christian perspective offered on the topic by the folks at Deeper Walk International.
Daring Ventures' Trauma 101: Jake Porter and his colleagues produced a webinar this year focused on the neuroscience of trauma. You can get a sample of the module on betrayal trauma here. The other modules look at the neuroscience of trauma (generally) and the role of earlier traumas on sex addiction. You can read more about this excellent series here.
The Healing-from-SA Journey
As already mentioned the Daring Ventures' resource listed above is helpful one for those facing sex addiction. Another new resource that came out this year which I think will help many struggling with chronically problematic sexual behaviors (CPSB) is:
Slaying the Monster: Six Battle Strategies for Overcoming Pornography: Available as both an easy-to-read book and a webinar, this resource is packed full of sage advice for the Christian looking to move out of porn use. Strategies author Marcus Warner lists include: finding a group, addressing trauma/wounds, solidfying our identity in Christ and spiritual warfare.
Full Disclosure: How to Share the Truth after Sexual Betrayal: This large workbook is likely to become the definitive resource for years to come on preparing to participate in a therapist-lead, full disclosure session. Written by Dan Drake and Janice Caudill (both APSATS board members as well as CSATS), this book, shows great sensitivity to both the betraying and betrayed partner. It leads with wisdom through one of the toughest areas (for many) of the healing process. There is a small companion book at present for the betrayed partner, with a full workbook expected in 2020.
Help Her Heal: An Empathy Workbook for Sex Addicts to Help Their Partners Heal: Though written by Carol Sheets for use by those with the problematic behaviors, this book has the potential to greatly benefit the relationship. Help Her Heal is designed to assist the betrayer in re-connecting with his empathy, practice empathic communication skills, and hold his spouse's pain while she heals.
Learning more about our experience (and how to get past it) is one of the ways we empower ourselves and prepare for change. I just want to add, though, that books, videos, etc. make one small part of the healing journey and work best when processed with other members of our support network.