A Retirement of Sorts

I don’t plan to update rowboatandmarbles.org for the foreseeable future.

You may have noticed that I’ve only posted one piece of new writing about addiction and recovery in 2016. In 2015, there were only a few posts. It’s not that recovery is no longer important to me. It’s just that I have the distinct feeling that I’ve said most of what needed to be said and it’s time to call it quits to the recovery blogging. I still write, but now it’s mostly for me and my recovery experience.

Thousands of copies of my book Sitting in a Rowboat Throwing Marbles at a Battleship are now out there in the world. Hopefully, they’re being read by Mormons and then passed on to others who need help understanding the nature of sexual addiction and finding the pathway to recovery. I expect that the Kindle version will remain available. Once the paperback books sell out, however, I’m not sure that I will in a position to pay for another printing. It’s prohibitively expensive to self-publish an addiction recovery book geared exclusively towards Mormons.

I’m grateful to the many readers of the website and especially to the many people who took the time to comment on what they’d read. They didn’t always agree with me and I certainly didn’t always agree with them, but that’s okay. We were working on a dialog. We were trying to understand a problem that is afflicting so many LDS families and we were working toward a solution. Thanks for the encouragement.

I remain an addict, but I’m a happy addict. I’m happy because I’ve found a solution and I continue to work on my recovery, one day at a time. I’m so grateful to the other addicts in recovery who have been so loving and kind to me. I remain sorry for the pain my past behavior has caused to loved ones. I continue to work on living amends.

It’s interesting to me to realize that if I were trying to help a Mormon sex and porn addict figure out what his problem was, I would still, without hesitation, send him to this website or give him a copy of the book. I think they remain two of the best resources for helping Latter-day Saints cut through the confusion surrounding addiction.

I know I sound at times like a broken record, but it’s because what I’ve learned and experienced is important to me and helpful to others. Some of the things I said in the first few posts remain vital to the message of recovery for Latter-day Saint addicts:

  • Addiction is a disease of secrecy and isolation that cannot–absolutely cannot–be fixed by trying to deal with it in secrecy and isolation. Addict brains are always desperately trying to convince Mormon addicts that focusing on some additional spiritual activity of a private nature is all that is necessary to overcome “this little problem.”
  • Repentance from sin and recovery from addiction are not the same thing. They are intertwined but they are not the same thing. Just because I sincerely try to repent of the sinful behavior involved in my addiction, it does not automatically means that I’ve achieved recovery from my addiction. In addition to repentance, I need to implement a program of addiction recovery that actually works.
  • The single most important factor in successful recovery is an addict’s willingness to associate with other addicts who are further along in recovery than he or she is. Period.

Finally, I have been working on a second book. At this point, I don’t know that it will ever see the light of day. With professional and family responsibilities and the demands of my own personal recovery, I can’t devote the time required to finish and publish it right now. If you are familiar with my writing and you ever see this book out there, you’ll immediately know it’s mine by the title:

Jesus is My Savior, Not My Shortcut

God bless all those who struggle with addiction, whether inside or outside the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.


A Retirement of Sorts — 12 Comments

  1. Andrew this website has been very valuable to me and to some of the people I’ve sponsored. It’s a wealth of knowledge and it’s certainly affected my recovery. Reading rowboats and marbles was key to me finally accepting step 1. (Although when I first read it I still thought I was an exception to the rule.) Thank you so much for your efforts. You’ve helped more people than you know.

  2. Thank you for sharing your testimony through these articles. This was the turning point for seeing hope in our future while understanding that the addiction recovery will remain an active part of our lives forever. The SA meetings have been the pot of gold! My husband is now a couple years sober and we truly believe that the addiction has been a blessing bc it’s forced us to turn to the atonement in a more personal way than not. Thank you!!! Thank you!! Thank you to you and your wife for sharing your steps to hope, recovering, and happiness!

  3. Thanks Andrew for all your service and for educating us on addiction. I loved your first book and will definitely read your next book when it comes out. The fireside you did for us was excellent and I am sure it made on impact in ways that we will never know. Glad you are happy and still in recovery.


  4. I want to thank you for your book it helped me to understand addiction and the power it has. You described my H to a T with the lust addiction. I downloaded your book and read it. I knew I had to have a hard copy to highlight. I bought four copies- one for me, one for my Bishop, one for my Stake President and one to lend to other people! I think your book should be required reading for EVERYONE whether there is a problem in their family or not! I can’t thank you enough.

  5. Thank you. I have read your book twice and will again in the future. I refer some of your articles to my sponsees. I would like to see your next book. I am sure it would be worthwhile.

  6. Andrew, it has been nearly 3 years ago that I read your essay on rowboats and marbles. It was a truly life-changing moment for me, and in turn, for my family. Thank you for sharing your story and your insights. For me, it has meant everything.

  7. You will always be one of my heros. Your book changed the direction of my marriage. You have shed a lot of light on the dark subject of addiction. May many blessings rain upon your head for it.