Immediately after I dropped Part 1, I realized that I had screwed up. The things I shared, while true, were directed at another person and I had never given that person the common courtesy of telling him those things directly. So I wrote him a letter. Then I sat on it for 2 weeks. I re-read it saturday with fresh eyes and I made some corrections, then I sent it. By "corrections" of course I mean I removed a butt load of fluff, sugar-coating, and word-smithing that were an attempt to make myself sound less like a tool and more like a wise, concerned friend. I amputated that crap and tried to stick to what was true. I thought I could say what I wanted to say about all this in one post. Then I thought maybe two. However, I didn't expect to have to write Bill this letter and it just so happens that the letter says most of what I wanted to cover anyways, so I'll just share that instead.
It's long, so I'm breaking up yet another post.
Thank you for the letters. I’m not sure if I warned you up front that I’m no good at sending mail, but you should believe me now. It’s just not my thing.
What I appreciate most about your letters is that I really don’t get the impression you’re blowing smoke up my skirt. You tell me the things that suck and the things that don’t. When you say that you want to be a man of integrity, I believe you. I want that for you, too. That’s why I send you the books. Well, I say that “I” send you the books, but in reality they are from my wife and I. I have read your letters to her. Giving away books is a thing we do. It just feels good when we give them to our friends and family and even complete strangers that I meet online.
Lately I started a blog, a public online journal, in order to capture certain life experiences and my thoughts about them. It’s mostly for my daughters, but also for me. Not too long ago I wrote a post about you and I documented my thoughts and feelings surrounding the events when I first heard about you, what you did, and when you showed up at XXXChurch and Higher-Calling.com. I want you to know that in this blog post I was brutally honest and shared things that I never shared with you directly. In light of me sharing this stuff online I feel it is only fair for me to let you know.
I was pissed, Bill. I was disgusted. I had what I think is a “normal reaction” to your offense. We have had hundreds and hundreds of sex addicts show up on our forums over the years, and I could empathize with most of them, but it was harder for me to empathize with you. I’m not naive enough to believe that you are the only member we’ve ever had that has your struggles. That is not what made you unique. I am convinced that way more men have your struggle than we know. What makes you unique is not the type of porn you collected, it’s that you admitted it. And so I struggled with grace. And that is an ugly thing about me.
Once you were caught, you owned up to it. You confessed. You went public, even. And that put me in a very strange situation. Because I respected the hell out of you for that. When I hear about anyone participating in the exploitation of children it floors my emotions. I get instantly combative. But there you were, admitting it. Talking about it. Taking responsibility for it. Trying to shed light to help others out of it, or steer them away from it. On the one hand I was repulsed and unforgiving and rightly so. On the other, I was impressed. I imagine all the talking you did was against the advice of your attorney, but that didn’t stop you.