Over the last two weeks, the actor has posted a three-part video series titled "Dirty Little Secret" on his official Facebook page in which he opens up about how he overcame his pornography addiction.
In the first video diary, posted Feb. 11, Crews, 47, revealed his "dirty little secret" is that he was addicted to pornography for years – and even though he overcame the addiction six or seven years ago, "it really, really messed up my life in a lot of ways," he said.
"It became a thing where I didn't tell anybody. It was my secret, nobody knew, and that allowed it to grow, and it got bad," he explained. "If day turns into night and you are still watching, you probably got a problem, and that was me. I didn't tell my wife, didn't tell my friends, nobody knew."
Of his decision to speak about it publicly, the former NFL player said that "when you put it out there in the open ... it loses its power," and now that he is clean, it's become his "battle to help other people who are going through the same thing."
Crews said once his wife Rebecca King-Crews, 50, confronted him about it, he decided to tackle the problem and seek help.
"My wife was literally like, 'I don't know you anymore, I'm out of here,' " he recalled. "That changed me. I had to change because I realized this thing is a major, major problem. I literally had to go to rehab for it."
But, he clarified, "I did not get help so I could get my wife back, I got help because I needed it. She did decide to stay with me because she knew I was repentant, she knew I was going to get help and she knew I was sorry. ... And it's not enough to just ask forgiveness, it's always necessary to make amends."
"My issue was and is with pornography is it changes the way you think about people. People become objects, people become body parts, they become things to be used rather than people to be loved," he went on. "You start to use people, you start to feel like you're the man and they're just whatever."
In the second video diary, posted Feb. 17, the Brooklyn Nine-Nine actor expanded on how therapy helped him address his addiction.
"I went to therapy big time. When I went into therapy, I didn't know what was going on. I didn't know how to beat it, I couldn't do it alone," he said. "What I was told is I needed to become more aware. Being aware is really just about knowing how you feel, knowing where you are in a particular moment. I had to realize when I was feeling depressed, I had to realize when I was feeling lonely because those are the times that I was more likely to use pornography."
The main thing Crews said he learned he needed to understand is the concept of shame.
"Shame doesn't say you did something bad, shame says you are bad. And when you think and believe that you are bad, there's no way out," he said. "You say: 'You know what, forget it, I might as well use drugs, I might as well overeat, I might as well use porn.' Because if you believe that are bad, then you act accordingly. What you have to change is that paradigm in your life, you have to believe that you are good."
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Crews also explained several women had reached out to him, asking how to address the issue with their husbands or boyfriends: "If a man has this kind of addiction, what you have to do, women everywhere, is be fearless. Men are run by pride. A lot of times, women operate on fear and men like to manipulate that. ... Women, you need to be fearless. You need to confront your man about this problem. ... My wife didn't accept it and it was a wake up [call] that I needed."
"I'm calling on men to be more accountable," Crews added. "A true man and a true woman is a person who takes responsibility for everything in his life, good and bad."
In the most recent video, shared Tuesday, Crews got candid about what he calls his "sense of entitlement."
"I had the biggest sense of entitlement, ever. I felt the world owed me something. I felt like my wife owed me sex. When you have a sense of entitlement, it's extremely dangerous," he said. "What entitlement does is it gives you self-pity. And self-pity ... feels good. It feels good."
"This sense of entitlement – and I'm just speaking for men, it tends to be a very male pride oriented thing, because I believed that I was more valuable than my wife as a human being because I was a man," he admitted. "When you believe that you are more valuable then another person, you kind of feel like they owe you. I was wrong. In fact, the belief that I was more valuable than my wife actually made me half a man."
Crews then explained his perspective on how the porn addiction came about, and how dangerous it actually was.
"Every man out there desires intimacy. Every time you look at pornography, it's a desire for intimacy," he said. "You are trying to fight your feelings of being alone by filling it with pornography in an attempt to feel that you are with someone and you know someone. But pornography is an intimacy killer. It kills all intimacy."
Crews, who said his wife also sought therapy, admitted pornography "was killing my relationship. Every time I watched it, I was walled off, it was like another brick that came between me and my wife."
"Guys, you have to examine what you believe about you in your relationships. ... If you do not change your beliefs, it is impossible to change your action," Crews urged. "The more we talk about it, the more we can beat it."