What do you do when you stumble across a blog of a sex-obsessed Catholic divulging the details of their daily struggle with porn? Before any jokes roll in, it’s not titillating – it’s a seriously concerning confusion of obsession, repression, guilt and disturbing sexual naivety. It’s the sort of thing you hope is someone’s very realistic character writing project, but you fear may be true. And when the blogger expresses the desire to one day become a priest, it sends alarm bells ringing all round your head.
When it comes to the world of blogs, I’m now used to randomly sticking my oar in whenever I read anything that interests me, angers me or intrigues me. This is the first time I feel it’s important what I say and how I say it. But what on earth can you actually say to someone who believes they are innately evil, that Satan is tempting them all day and that if they go to church and say a few set prayers on a regular basis they have a hope of being ‘cured’ of ‘sinful’ sexual desire? How do you explain to someone that the guilt their religion is thrusting upon them is compounding their obsession? How do you get a religious person to objectively analyse their behaviour, take full responsibility for it and look for real solutions? How do you explain to a Catholic that sexual desire is normal but guilty, repressed obsession often leads to dangerous and unacceptable behaviour?