When we read about movie stars in glossy magazines, it’s tempting to believe that they have perfect lives and obviously inhabit a world that most of us can only aspire to.
Star of The Expendables movies trilogy, as well as television’s Brooklyn Nine-Nine and a host of successful quirky commercials for Old Spice shaving products, actor Terry Crews is a case in point.
Prior to his acting career he was a successful American NFL footballer, married to former beauty queen and model Rebecca King and with five children.
On his Twitter feed Crews describes himself as “lover to my wife, father to my children, friend to my friends and servant to my Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ”.
While this description is definitely true, there is one thing missing that destroyed this perfect picture and nearly wrecked Crews’ happy marriage.
His addiction to pornography.
While life on the surface was happy and glamorous, in 2014 this brave man confessed to the world that he had previously been in the grip of an addiction to pornography. He now wanted to bring the subject out of the darkness into the light, and help others who were also victim to this obsession conquer it, as he had done.
In his autobiography Manhood: How to be a Better Man or Just Live with One, Crews made public his longstanding pornography addiction and admitted it had seriously affected his marriage and his life before he entered rehabilitation. Later he made a video, Dirty Little Secrets, which is part of his personal mission to help people caught up in a similar struggle.
Crews told Relevant Magazine that he hit a low point after years of addiction, and said the pornography made him think about people as objects and things to be used rather than people to be loved.
“If day turns into night and you’re still watching, you probably have a problem,” he said.
In Dirty Little Secrets he encourages other pornography addicts not to struggle on alone and hide the addiction.
“By not telling people, it becomes more powerful. But when you tell and put it out there in the open…it loses its power.”
It’s a credit to Crews’ honesty, determination and faith in God that he has been clear of his addiction for several years, and has managed to save his 17-year marriage to Rebecca.
Born in 1968 in Michigan, he won an Art Excellence scholarship to Western Michigan University, as well as a full athletic scholarship to play football. He played football for six years in the NFL with various teams, and was able to combine his artistic talent with his sporting prowess by painting a line of NFL licensed lithographs.
After his NFL retirement in 1997, he moved to Los Angeles to act, with his first break being the extreme sports show Battle Dome.
In 2000 his first movie The 6th Day began a very busy film and television career. He is said to be an accomplished flautist, so Crews manages to combine artistic, musical and sporting talent with acting ability.
During his struggle with pornography addiction, Crews always felt that God was with him, even in the midst of his personal torment, he told Relevant.
“You can find meaning in suffering. You don’t learn it before you go through it. It’s like God speaks to everyone and tells them what the right move is. But you’ve got to be open,” he insisted.
With his struggle with and triumph over addiction, Crews’ tweet that Jesus Christ has been his saviour certainly rings true.