Dear Rav Twerski, shlita,
I am a yeshivah bachur who recently joined the Guard Your Eyes website after many years of struggling with my addiction, and that was the beginning of changing the course of my life. At first, I managed approximately sixty days “clean” but fell in again after that. I am on my second time around (hopefully, b’ezras Hashem, the last), and I am so far about thirty days clean.
Recently, my anonymous GYE “partner,” who is going through the same problems, told me that he had gone to a lust addiction therapist and that it had really helped him a lot, and he thought it would do a great deal for me too, if I would go.
I wanted to ask your daas Torah, being that I am still skepti- cal about going. The surroundings I was brought up in, and my yeshivah too, don’t approve too much of psychologists, ther- apists, and the like. But if it’s the right thing for me to do, I’m fully prepared to go. I just don’t want to go only on the basis of my partner’s advice, since he is just a young anonymous person from the GYE website. What do you suggest?
From a real admirer (we’ve got basically
every one of your books at home).
Rabbi Twerski Responds
Because Freud was an atheist who was anti-religion, psychol- ogy got a bad rap years ago (which was well deserved). Modern psychology is generally not anti-religion.
A good lust-addiction therapist is not going to lead anyone off the derech. A person who is lust addicted is, in that area, off the derech already, and getting help with the addiction can actually enable him to strengthen his Yiddishkeit.
Of course, I cannot vouch for all therapists. If he has a good reputation, that should be okay.