John is the director of Pure Mind Online, a Sexual Integrity Mentor and a licensed mental health counselor. He has a Masters in Marriage and Family Therapy, and helped develop the Energize! Couples Retreats. He is working to create a network of Accountability Partners for men. For help finding an Accountability Partner contact John at firstname.lastname@example.org
Marjorie is working to create a network of Accountability Partners to support women in their recovery from a pornography habit. She is dedicated to helping Blessed couples create healthy and happy marriages. To get in touch with an Accountability Partner for women please contact her at email@example.com
Making the Right Choice
Find someone you trust
There are certain key characteristics we are looking for:
1. Same gender if possible. They can more easily understand your vulnerabilities and, if necessary, your excuses.
2. Able keep confidentiality. Do you have evidence they can keep secrets?
3. Mature enough to take it seriously. This is why a peer may not be suitable sometimes.
4. Challenging, but not condemning. Can they challenge you to live your own ideals, without looking down on you? Remember, sometimes we think someone will be more judgemental than they really are; we project our own shame and guilt on them or label them as “the church.” If they otherwise fit, give them the benefit of the doubt and ask them.
And consider you may need more than one, each with different strengths.
Whom not to choose
If you are engaged or blessed in marriage, it is often unwise to have your fiance(e) or spouse be your primary Accountability Partner. It could be too stressful for both of you. In that case, a better arrangement may be for you or for your Accountability Partner to give them a summary of your progress.
Also, don’t choose someone who is prone to make excuses for your messing up and not serious about helping you overcome. This would include someone who is rationalizing their own irresponsible behavior in some key area of their life.
For example, this kind of exchange is useless: “I slipped up and binged this week. ” “Yeah, me too. Oh, well. Talk next week.” This is what Covenant Eyes calls “a circle of cheap confession by which you obtain cheap peace for your troubled conscience.”