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  • Rabbi Benyamin Bresinger

Even During the Pandemic?! Joel's story

Updated: May 28


My name is Joel. I'm here to tell you my story. It's very difficult for me to share it, but it's something I need to do because if anyone can relate to my experience and if relating my story helps one person, it's all worth it.


On the outside, my family looks perfect - and in many ways we are - but I've had a secret for years. The secret was killing me on the inside, and it was causing stress and tension to my family and to my wife.


I couldn't stop looking at porn. I started when I was younger, before I was married. I thought that marriage would cure my addiction, but any time I was stressed or angry, somehow the place I would turn to was online, searching for images and video.


About 8 years ago, I crossed the line. I found a place and got a massage. It's difficult to admit it, but I was paying for sex.


That became something I would do on a regular basis for several months, and I always promised I would never go again. But every time I would find myself giving in and finding another massage place. It was really killing me. When Corona came along, everything was shut down and that wasn't on my mind whatsoever until a couple months in when all the stress and pressure seemed to be closing in on me and I found myself bolting for the door. It was almost an out-of-body experience. I watched myself from afar as in midst of a pandemic I went to one of those places and went in without any concern for my own well-being or my family's health. I have a heart condition. But it didn't matter to me. I was out of my mind. On the way, I decided enough is enough. I let out a scream from a deep place. I'll do anything. I can't do this anymore. Please! Enough! About an hour later, I Googled "help addiction sex Montreal." I called and I can't tell you how grateful I am for what they have done for me and for my family. It is life changing. I am so thankful for the non-judgmental expertise that they have. And they aren't only helping me. My entire family is getting treatment because they too are affected by my addiction. Thanks to Chabad Lifeline's care, I have found hope. --- Please note: Names and some identifying details have been changed to protect the privacy of the people in this story. In the past year, many people have been through hell and back. We have had to increase our staff and are helping so many families affected by addiction. Join us in helping people like Joel and his family find positive change. Be part of the solution. Buy raffle tickets today and partner with our essential work. Click here to get your raffle tickets.

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