Overcoming addiction


Orthodox Catechumen
Gold Member
My advice will be a bit different:

You need to have a physical practice, that will transmute the energy of lust into love for God. I know it seems too esoteric or strange, but it's the only way for most people, if you really want to resolve the problem and not fight it constantly.

For example, when you get those thoughts and want to visit a prostitute, you do 100 prostrations while mentally repeating the Jesus Prayer. If it's still not working, the physical aspect has to be even more difficult (100 prostrations aren't easy as well). St. Benedict had to jump naked into a bush of sharp thorns and stinging nettles to curb the lust he had for a woman and he's a Saint. You can and should include fasting, either intermittent or constant, that's going to extinguish the fire of lust, since you will have less energy and you will have to focus.

Do not disregard the physical aspect, you have to fight the body with physical methods. What's happening to you is both a mental and hormonal imbalance and it takes a while to resolve.

Second thing is this: you have to understand why are you addicted to prostitutes, which void are they filling? You will have to contemplate this deeply and when you understand it, you have to fix that shortcoming in a normal, Godly way. You owe this to your family.

Keep us updated with your progress, you will win this battle with God's help, but only if you accept it.

I have been doing prostrations with prayer and enjoy it very much. It really helps overcome sinful thoughts.

OP, you have to think and spend time with your family and examine the causes for this. All the posts in this thread are great advice.


I have to questions:

1. Are you really addicted to prostitutes or do you simply want to cheat on your wife with no consequences? Because if you cheat on her with a "normal" woman you're more likely to get caught and of course you have to invest more time and effort by going on dates etc.

2. Do you exercise? I remember from overcoming porn addiction I essentially went completely overboard with my training. I'm talking randomly leaving the house at 2 a.m to do hill sprints or to go my 24h gym to do squats and deadlifts although I had already done those very same exercises that day. But there was no other way to kill the urge. Sure, this will make your libido skyrocket. However, you'll basically have no choice but to let that super libido out on your wife and she will probably thank you for it.
1. I can't say 100% but I've always seen it as an addiction. It's lust, it's the buzz of arranging a quick hookup. I am not interested in any sort of "girlfriend" experiences.

2. Yup, I follow a dedicated routine. I'm into bodyweight/calisthenics/gymnastics.

To the other brothers, thanks for replying. Indeed I need to turn to God more, be more genuine in my prayers, and seek release with my wife as mentioned.


Other Christian
I was a heroin addict for seven years, and then spent five years as an alcoholic, cocaine addict and sex degenerate, including prostitutes. With the right girl, prostitutes are as addictive as heroin, and I really mean that. You cannot stop thinking about it, day and night. So, you have an addiction and you need help. You would benefit enormously from going to group meetings like AA. You should also work through the 12 steps. They have a very strong spiritual component. It sounds to me like you still feel as though you have some control over this - so the first thing is to realise you don’t. You also need to confess, as others have said. You would be AMAZED how thoughts (and desires) that have secretly festered for years will disappear once you speak them aloud to another person. You will feel lighter immediately.

There are also several behavioural tips that can help - especially making it harder to follow through (eg block all escort sites on your phone/PC, delete any phone numbers, etc.)

You are right that this will never go away. You are an addict. You have a chronic disease you will have to manage for the rest of your life. But it gets much, much easier. Have faith and stick with it. Godspeed.

Jacques Bel

From a spiritual point of view, as a Catholic, I highly encourage you to pray the Rosary (or if you're not completely comfortable with the Catholic version, the prayer rule of St. Seraphim of Sarov). I can't explain how or why, but all I know is that when I pray the Rosary, things go well, I get less tempted (or stronger against temptations) and I drastically reduce my sinning. However, the moment I stop praying it, I come back to my old habits in a very strong way. Try it, and see. Also, get to confession and receive the Eucharist frequently.

From a practical standpoint, you must analyse your habit and avoid falling there. Where do you meet with prostitutes? Avoid getting there. When do you go there? Fill up that time with your family/hobby/whatever. Who reminds you of prostitutes? Avoid being with that person.

You can only win with the help of God. Desperation comes from the enemy. But please, be very diligent about this, and be honest with God and with yourself, for you're not only risking your own soul, but the ones of your wife and specially your children. With the help of God, you can help them grow up and become great men. But if you're not diligent enough in a practical level, you'll break your family and harm your kids for all of their lives.

So don't be proud. We are weak. Get professional help if you need it! And throw yourself into the arms of God. Trust Him. You're closer to Him each day, you despise sin and you want His help. Keep praying and fighting.

I'll pray for you.

Jacques Bel

Let me also add that you're not back in tile 1 each time you fall. There's prayer involved since the last time you fell, and demons are very intelligent and know the best moment to tempt us and take revenge on us. They are more intelligent than us and have been observing and studying us for all of our lives. They know us better than ourselves. So they take revenge on us when they can.

Whenever I've been serious about fighting any sin and getting close to God, I've been fiercely tempted and attacked in moments of physical or psychological weakness. Whenever I've been lukewarm, I've been "tranquil", like they forgot about me.

So don't take that sudden temptations as a bad sign, but as a very good one!


As I have written in another topic related to lust, the following things worked for me in stopping with PUA/dating and pornography:

- finding out what are your specific “triggers” (work or study related stress, fear of not finding a spouse [or having marital problems], films/series with too much sensuality etc) and addressing those triggers as much as possible;
- learning to pray the Jesus Prayer whenever a lustful thought (or any other sinful thought for that matter) arises in your mind — if the thought is more vivid, pray aloud;
- going to confession and communion regularly; and
- having patience: whenever you fall, just start over again. Sanctification is a process and you will overcome with His Grace.

In addition, what others have already remarked:

- find something else to redirect your ‘addictive’ energy to. It is better to be ‘addicted’ to working out, board-gaming, oldtimer cars etcetera than to sex, drugs, alcohol and the like.

I understand that you are not Christian. I strongly recommend turning to Christ and talking to a Catholic or Orthodox priest (and following up on his advice).