I’ve decided to leap in with both feet and begin formally providing peer support counseling to people who are dealing with pornography addiction or those who have porn addicts in their lives who are directly affected. I appreciate the encouragement from the people who have urged me to direct my energy in this direction. It will be interesting to see what happens.
You can view the site for the new venture at PornAddictCounseling.org
Almost nobody knows just how many people I have been providing support and advice to in the last three or four months. Once my book came out and I started doing podcasts and interviews, I started getting a lot of email. That only increased when I was introduced to a handful of online forums.
Before I recognized it, my morning routine involved answering email for 90 minutes to 2 hours every morning after dropping my son off at school. There was usually another hour after lunch and sometimes another hour in the early evening. When people are writing to you from all over the world, stuff comes in around the clock.
I really like helping. I feel like it gives me purpose. I have a lot of knowledge about pornography addiction and I’m a former addict who is successful in recovery who doesn’t mind talking about it. It makes me rare and makes sense for someone to seek me out for advice, suggestions or support. I’ve enjoyed helping and it gives me such a sense of happiness when something I’ve said has helped someone.
In early March, it became very clear to me that the time I was devoting to helping people was eating into the time I use to make money as a freelance writer. Thankfully, I have a couple of steady clients who pay well, but that “extra time” I used to pick up odd jobs here and there was gone. Those odd jobs can mean 20%-40% of my income many months and without it, things were getting tight.
A close friend suggested a fee for my peer support and counseling in late March. I did a bit of research and it’s far more common than I realized. Suddenly, it didn’t seem so crazy and there was now a way I could both help people and replace the money I’m not taking in from writing anymore.
After talking it over in early April with my wife and therapist who both thought it was a good idea, I enrolled in a life coaching course (which frankly, I’m not sure was worth the money or my life has just provided ample training) and finished in early May. I built the website last week.
So today, I officially launch this side affair. I’m not going to push it like I’ve pushed my book. (Have you still not bought one? What’s wrong with you? Cool people buy it and you want to be cool, right? Super cool people buy two.) I’m going to treat this organically. Maybe putting a price on this scares people away. Maybe it’s the start of a second career. Time will tell.
I hope you’ll check the site out and let me know if there’s anything that’s missing or if there’s something you’d like to see there. It’s not meant to be an active blog like this site, so I want to get it right in the beginning. And nothing should change about this site. I’ll still post something original on Monday and then either do a Q&A, statistic of the month or “Getting Trivial Things Off My Chest” on Thursdays.
Finally, I want to thank people for their support leading to the start of this endeavor, especially those who provided name-changed testimonials.
The one thing I don’t have yet is a clever name for the whole thing. Any ideas?
Once again, you can check it out at PornAddictCounseling.org