Not All Podcasts Are Created Equal

As you navigate through sexual betrayal, have you been injured by resources meant to heal? How do you know what material to incorporate into your recovery? What if you discover information designed for someone farther along this journey, but you aren’t in a place to receive it? Is it possible to take in too much helpful material?

Needing Information Now

The Bible says to “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding” (Proverbs 3:5). The aftermath of D-Day #2 found me leaning on the internet. Just as I might do if he was diagnosed with cancer, I began researching, hungry for information but isolated by shame. Day after day, I Googled what to do if your husband is addicted to pornography, and is there treatment for porn addiction? I wanted answers. I needed an explanation, something that would make this make sense. Knowledge is power, right? I needed an explanation, something that would make this mayhem make sense.

One of the first resources I came across was sent to me by our pastor. It was a series of interviews featuring a betrayed wife, as she explained how pornography had overtaken her marriage. However, her story involved discovering her spouse was not only addicted to porn and sex, but hard-core drugs as well. These co-occurring disorders wreaked havoc in her own life, as she was slowly influenced to go against her morals and engage in these same activities. Hearing this scenario left me with more questions than answers, along with a growing knot in my stomach. Was porn just the tip of the iceberg? Would I soon discover my own husband mired in illegal activities on top of everything else we were dealing with? Did porn and substance use somehow go together? Was I destined to follow in her footsteps and become an addict myself? My first exposure to so-called “recovery” material was so triggering, I couldn’t even finish it.

A short time later, I stumbled across an article that seemed promising- written by a PhD, it began by explaining how marital infidelity could actually be the birthplace of a completely new relationship while acknowledging the old had to die. That might have been encouraging, had it not been for the line that addressed affairs and physical intimacy, claiming the sex you had with your husband wasn’t worth having. My heart was already in such a fragile place, to have (what felt like) the entire weight of my husband’s actions placed on my inadequacy in the bedroom was crushing. Even though my husband had never uttered such a statement, because it came from an “expert,” I assumed it must be true.

Some podcasts we listen to can be patronizing, insensitive, and damaging, even though they were ostensibly from a Biblical
perspective.  Others can be presumptuous, judgmental, and not trauma-informed.  But not all podcasts are created equal!

Finding Hope in a Podcast

Hope for Wives, a podcast co-hosted by our executive director Lyschel Burket,  is partner-sensitive. The material presented is generated by women of faith, who have walked this journey themselves. Along with Lyschel, the podcast is co-hosted by Bonny Burns of and Pam Blizzard of Each of these women work hard to ensure that scientific, evidence-based data is promoted and always keep the target audience in mind. While the episodes are topical as it relates to betrayal, each episode gently folds in scriptural and spiritual encouragement. The tough subjects are discussed. Bonny Burns has  background in biology that leads to a perspective on sexuality that is  factual and healthy, exploring marital intimacy in a way that is affirming to betrayed wives (because she is one). Pam Blizzard offers a wise perspective on building boundaries. And Lyschel comes to the microphone with years of building community and helping women find healing from betrayal trauma.

No matter if you are folding laundry, commuting to work, or going about your day, the Hope for Wives podcast will be helpful for taking a Godly perspective on present day struggles and to move through the recovery at your own pace.

Filtering the Helpful from the Harmful

After turning off one particular podcast and driving around furiously, the Holy Spirit convicted me about how much weight I was giving the podcaster’s voice. God continued to work on my heart and turned my mind to the words of our constitution. Thomas Jefferson had written that all men are created equal, which is deeply embedded in our national psyche. All men. Not everything man makes or man-made. “Not all podcasts are created equal, Leah. If knowledge is power, wisdom is better.” James 1:5 assures us that we can ask God for wisdom, and He will give generously. How can you know which podcasts and therapeutic resources are helpful and which are harmful? Consider these questions:

  • Does this message align with scripture and point to Jesus?
  • Who wrote it/said it? What are their qualifications and motivation for putting this out there?
  • What is my motivation for seeking this?
  • How do I feel about myself after hearing or reading this? Conviction comes from the Lord, while condemnation is a tool of the enemy. (John 16:8)
  • Is this discussing a moral issue of right vs. wrong, sharing a general principle to apply, or is it someone’s personal opinion/preference? What category does this fall under? There is a lot of content out there in that last category masquerading as being in the first two.
  • Is it prescriptive or burdensome- recommending an exact frequency, approach, or strategy as THE cure-all? Can the author/speaker acknowledge their own bias?
  • Does it allow room for God given individuality and the Holy Spirit to work?
  • How does this fit with what you already know is true about God, yourself, and others?

Hope for Wives is committed to presenting scripture-fed and spirit-led material to guide and encourage you as you navigate through sexual betrayal. When you listen, you can expect guidance given in humility and a betrayed wive’s best interests taken to heart. Friends, it is important to assume a humble posture that will allow us to be teachable and receive guidance from others (Proverbs 15:22) BUT to also guard our hearts, the wellspring of life (Proverbs 4:23). My prayer is that God will lead you to wise council, and the Holy Spirit would highlight the information you need to know at this step in your recovery.


Post contributed by Hope Redefined Coach Leah Gillam, LCSW-S, APSATS CCPS-C

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