Reboot Nation

Journals => Ages 40 and up => Topic started by: unchained on September 22, 2014, 11:21:53 PM

Title: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 22, 2014, 11:21:53 PM
Hi,
I just spend over an hour writing my entire porn life history only to have it disappear when I tried to preview the post.  I don't have the energy to relive it all again, so I'll do everyone here a favor by hitting the high spots:

Began reading porn (soft core stuff, Playboy) around 2nd grade.  Didn't know why…I only knew I liked it.
More explicit stuff at 12 or so (Hustler, Swank, Club Int'l, Cheri, etc)
Started PMO almost daily at 13
Been consistently sexually active since 16 (but still looked at porn most daily)
1st computer with access to constant porn at 22
Very minor ED in my 20's (hard time achieving erections with new partners, but all things ok once relaxed)
Started dating wife at 25, married at 30 (no issues, still looking at porn, even some nights after sex)
1st kid at 33, 2nd at 35 (porn use really picked up)
  All typical excuses.  Wife too busy with kids to have time for me. I wanted more than she did and this is how I deal with it, etc.

I began having ED issues here and there consistently a year or so ago.  I found this sight and ybop this spring.  I tried initially to quit in April.  I only achieved marginal success, but was able to get a good erection in less than a week.  Unfortunately, I think my "success" convinced me that I could "manage" my addition, like a hard core drinker convincing himself that he can have a couple of drinks a day.  Before long, I was back into PMO even day.

The ED frustrates me now.  We still have sex, but it is forced on my part.  I'll stroke my cock in the shower to some fantasy and have to get out and put it in right away.  Most times, it works once I am inside her, but sometimes it goes down.  Also, I worry so much about it going down that I concentrate so hard on the feeling that I have really fast orgasms.  Anyway, the sex is less than ideal.

Last week, I tried to start a fresh reboot on Monday.  I felt really good about last week and we had sex on Friday.  I wasn't initially able to achieve an erection and we ended up showering together.  I stroked my cock in the shower like she was a 2d subject and I was able to get hard enough for sex.  It wasn't ideal, but it was sex.  It only made me more convinced that I needed to get better.

Sunday, I f'd up. Wife took kids to evening children's church program and I PMO'd.  I was in a good mindset all day, but one little trigger and I was all alone…
 
Anyway, I was depressed and mad all last night, but it is different than before.  This time instead of like being struck out by a bad ass pitcher thinking "I'm just a loser and will never be any good", I was more pissed feeling like I could and should have done better and "you can hit off of this son of a bitch". I am positive today.  I don't feel brain fog.  I resisted a binge (which usually always occurred before anytime I tried to quit).  Sure, I wished I did better, but I've seen one more of his tricky pitches and I am ready to get back to the plate.  I am totally in the game, playing to win.  No excuses for letting myself down the last time, I own that, but I am ready to make my healing happen….now.

Today wasn't like when I f'd up before.  I am not anxious, nervous, jittery or constantly thinking of porn.  I'm still mad I messed up, but I don't feel like I am on day one even though I am on day one all over again.  There is no brain fog or anything, just motivation.

I have been blessed in so many ways.  I truly love my wife.  Even if I didn't, she is a beautiful and sexy lady.  Any man would be lucky to be with her.  She now knows about my addiction and is understanding.  It is such a sad sad situation that I would let myself get to the point that I cannot be with her because of my addiction to images on a 2d screen.  The wasted time ends now.  I desire to be a better husband, man and father.  The time I have wasted in my life is mind boggling.  I desire to be healthy.  I desire to have a mind not polluted with the junk that I have poured into it for the last 25+ years.

Any advise is appreciated.  Prayers from those so inclined would also be appreciated.  Even thought this is my 1st post, I truly appreciate this site and everything those here have to offer.  I have lurked here a lot and feel like I know many of you already.

Sorry for the long post.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on September 23, 2014, 09:14:56 AM
Welcome to the Nation, Unchained.

Here you will find support and advice - and most importantly education. Read all you can - there are links on the home page to get you started. 

There are many of us here who share your pain, understand what you are feeling - and all of us here are here to lend a hand to keep you sober, or pick you up should you need it.

Journal often, read others - for they may contain similar stories and both failures and successes.

This is a journey that will be rewarding and frustrating, but I invite you to walk it with the rest of us as we all look to be better men, husbands, and fathers.

Find your strength, embrace it - you can do this.

SMS
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: icanbeatthis on September 24, 2014, 02:22:20 AM
mate, so great to read your post. thinking that we have a lot in common !! in fact, 90% of us here have much the same story. can i say that i am in month three of no porn and no wanking. the sex with the mrs is great and the temptations to look at porn are gone. if i do get any, coming here is all i do and it gets me thru. i want to be the best Little179 i can be and looking at porn on a laptop does not make me that. i emptied my life of this shit and had to fill it up with good stuff.........so that is the answer for me at the moment, filling my life with good things to take the place of the time wasting porn shit that i spent so much of my life staring at, and for what........i got to the stage of looking and not even getting hard doing it, but still did...what a loser i was.....keep at it mate, it is all good from here on.............be the best man you can
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 24, 2014, 06:48:53 AM
Hello guys and thanks for the encouragement.  I do truly appreciate it and it does help knowing I am not alone.

I have spent a ton of time here and ybop the last two weeks.  Reading through other journals and success stories have helped me tremendously.  After seeing all of the positive reinforcement provided by others, I knew I had to start a journal for myself…partially to digest my own thoughts and feelings.  I think it helps to put pen to paper (so to speak) and also I felt the need to actually become part of this community.

I felt really good yesterday and am positive about my today as well.  I know this is just day three since my reset, but I really don't feel like I am starting from ground zero.  Last week was pretty tough at times.  I was anxious, had tons of nervous energy, had some trouble sleeping…etc.  I also remember sweating a lot more than normal.  So, I feel more like I am on day 9 with a screw up on day 6.  Regardless, none of the day counting is completely significant, I know, but counting days in the beginning does give me a slight sense of accomplishment.

I have so much I would like to say this morning, but I have a dentist appointment, so I've got to run.  Thanks again and I hope to post more of my "progress" this evening.

Stay strong guys.  If someone like me can make it even a few days, then I am sure you can get 100% clean forever.  I WAS such a weak, weak man.  Today I feel STRONG.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 25, 2014, 07:14:04 AM
Good morning.  I just rolled out of bed and getting ready to start my day….still going strong, still positive and still hopeful for a healthy me in the future.

The first thing I usually do in the morning is PMO.  I wake up and wonder what all new ladies, pics & vids have been posted to my favorite websites.  The thought of not looking to see what had been updated used to drive me nuts.  I have tried the white knuckled approach to quitting PMO many times over the years.  I always felt that my problem was masturbation, not porn.  I felt it was an overwhelming urge to masturbate that I could not resist and that the porn was just a tool to help.  It is laughable when I look back at my behavior.  I would almost always look at porn in the morning during my attempts to quit, of course telling myself nothing was going to happen, but it always did.  I would see something that would get me going, or sometimes it would be different.  I would check out the updates unaffected.  That would bug me.  I'd think "how can you sit and look at all of these women and not get hard?"  So, I would touch myself while looking just to make sure my erection would work, of course all the time telling myself I was still quitting PMO.  I was just going to make sure my erection was ok…yeah right.  It lead to failure each and every time.  I now know the true addiction is the porn itself…shut it off and the other pieces of the puzzle will be easier to put into their proper places.  Beginning today, I plan to start a new morning ritual.  I plan to make posting here in my journal my new "start the day" habit.  Instead of avoiding porn when I am at my weakest, I am going to attack it head on.  Instead of running away at that time or trying to redirect my thoughts, I am coming here to focus on the healing.  I will replace the bad habit with a constructive one. 

I did have another good night of sleep, so that's good.  It's funny, but as I woke, my mind was thinking of porn…not really having a dream about sex or porn, but as I woke my brain immediately started to tell me what kind of porn it wanted this morning for my usual PMO before work.  It wasn't hard to shut it off.  As a matter of act, it happened in an instant.  I guess it goes to show that after you do something for so long, your brain and body will run on autopilot.

A couple of days last week and maybe Monday of this week, I woke with 50%-75% morning erections…no such luck the last three days.  I was kind of hoping they would bounce back sooner than later, but I'm not discouraged, just hoping for fast recovery.

I feel I have a lot to tell about my addiction, my behavior & the path I have been down, but I need to ease into some of that.  Those thoughts are full of dangerous triggers for me.  I will say that it pains me to think of all the lonely hours I have sat in front of a computer screen in search of some illusive perfect picture or video that would satisfy the fetishes I developed over the years, only to find something I thought was perfect, and for some reason my mind would not let me just finish myself off.  I would be thinking "this is great, but there me be one even better".  It was crazy, maddening at times.

…well, I am pushing hard to leave all of that madness behind.  It is true that I have wasted precious time in my past.  But today is today and tomorrow is tomorrow.  Man, if anyone out there is still thinking about quitting, maybe you are just now beginning to learn about porn addiction and seeing how it is affecting your life, take it from me who has just begun my journey after over 2 1/2 decades of porn use, quit as soon as you can.  Even a few days has already begun to change my mindset, how I feel about myself, my energy, my feelings toward my family…it is amazing.  I want this life, not my old life of sneaking around to jerk off in the dark alone.

Good luck to you all.  I'll pray for your strength and recovery as I pray for mine.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 26, 2014, 07:00:05 AM
Well…another day down.  One higher number in my day count.

I suppose today would be 11 if I didn't reset last Sunday.  Looking back at Sunday, it is very disappointing.  I had so many opportunities to change direction before it went too far.  It started with testing myself, which I realize now is something that I just cannot do, ever.  It worked, I got hard, told myself to go something else…go for a walk, work in the yard, whatever…but nope.  Once I get on that train, there is no stopping it.

Since then, I've done pretty good a pushing any sexual images out of my mind, with a couple of exceptions.  I do allow myself on occasion to think of my wife.  I do not make up fantasies, but try to  remember real events.  I don't linger on them long enough to get an erection, or focus and try to get an erection…I just allow the images to stay there long enough remind me of the real pleasure I do have with her and on top of that, she's damn sexy to me and I enjoy seeing her and remembering her naked.  Hopefully, it won't slow down my recovery too much.  Like I said, I don't allow the thoughts to linger too long.

I've used some of the visual imagery that several have posted in their own forums to wipe out porn thoughts that pop up during the day.  One was to image a big red "X" stamping out any image that pops into my head.  When I used that one, I also image a loud buzzer at the same time…kind of like the buzzer sound when you guess wrong at Family Feud.  I have also used someone else's idea of a big broom sweeping the thoughts away.  Both seem to work pretty good.  Since we are in the 40+ forum, I suppose everyone here is old enough to remember the Carol Burnett show.  Anyway, my broom imagery is now the cartoon lady that used to mop up.  I may try to come up with one or two on my own…have a full arsenal at the ready.  Heck, I may as well make it entertaining.

I do not however stamp, sweep  or mop up my wife…I reckon that would not be respectful…lol.  I give the thought about a three count and then just move on.  Remember the scene in National Lampoon's Vacation when they went to the Grand Canyon?  Clark stole cash from the register and was making a run for the car wile the family was look at the view.  Clark was in a hurry to get them going Clark was asked if he was going to take a look.  He faced the canyon, bobbed his head two or three times and said "Alright" and moves on…that's pretty much what I do.

Best of luck to everyone today.  I have more to share but time is short this morning.  Heck I am on day two of my new morning ritual…maybe I need a counter for that, too.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 26, 2014, 11:36:10 AM
I have another goal to focus on and a reason to stay strong.  Last night I booked a 3 day trip for our 10 year anniversary in November.  The wife & I have not taken any trips alone since our kids were born.  The most we have been away from them has just been for 1 night.  This trip is just for 3 days & 2 nights, but I am looking forward to it a lot.  Hopefully, if all goes well with the kids, we'll do it more often in the future.  I think it would be good for our relationship.

I have even counted ahead to see what my day count will be when we leave...yep, I am that confident.  I will be on 54.  Gosh I hope and pray that my pied will be gone or manageable by then.  My pied was never 100% to begin with.  I could usually manage to get it up, but the times I couldn't rocked my confidence. 

My wife is generally always open to sex.  As long as we can sneak away from the kids for a bit, she's good to go.  I have passed up so many opportunities because of fear of ed.  What a waste...no more.

Also, I had a minor success this morning.  I got hard when I kissed the wife goodbye.  She pop kissed me, I complained that I wanted a real kiss.  One relatively short 5 second open mouth kiss and I was 75% erect...maybe there's hope for a full recovery for me!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 27, 2014, 05:05:46 AM
A small victory…just woke at 6:00 am with good morning wood.  Man, does that feel good.  I had to get up to use the bathroom and wanted to share in my happiness, but like I said, it is 6:00 am and it's Saturday…think I'll see if I can go back to sleep for another hour or so.  I doubt I';ll be able to sleep, however, as I'm pretty awake and excited…not in a sexual sense, just excited to be more "normal", even if it is a little bit.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 27, 2014, 04:45:28 PM
Today I spend about 6 hours taking care of the lawn.  I had a hard time keeping my thoughts away from sex, porn, fantasy.  I continuously chased them away, but it was/is a struggle.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 27, 2014, 09:02:30 PM
Came in from yard work this evening. Wife was in shower. I got in when she got out, but positive thing is I got mostly hard just by seeing her naked. I usually need more stimulation.  Anyway, I was still stiff when I got out of the shower...she noticed (but she's having her period), so she offered a bj/hj. I feel tons better.  Only got 60%-75% hard & I came really fast.  Hopefully that will improve in time.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 29, 2014, 07:18:45 AM
Last night was a full week since PMO!  I know one week is just a baby step, but I could probably count on one hand how many times I've gone a week in 27 years.

The two previous weeks, Sunday nights tripped me up.  I decided two weeks ago Saturday, 16 days ago, to attempt quitting my porn addiction after I couldn't get it up for sex with the wife.  The very next evening I failed when I was home alone.  This led to a minor binge of two PMO's Sunday evening followed by one when I woke up Monday.  On Monday, I came back here as well as ybop and started reading heavily.  I felt I was doing ok until the very next Sunday and I did it again, however, that time I didn't binge.  Just the once, felt bad, thought about it, learned from it, moved on.  That Monday evening, I started my journal here.  Having an outlet made a huge impact on how my week went.

This week has been easier but there are times that I have had a hard time saying focused.  I come here and read journals as often as I can.  I see counters of 30+, 50+, 100+ days and I think, gosh that will take forever.  And then I look at when the journals started and it was August, July or June and the gives me encouragement.  June and July wasn't that long ago.  I know it is possible for me to quit porn, not for just a high number on my counter, but forever.

I've read and am trying to adopt the "porn is not an option" mindset.  I agree with the concept and it is important to adopt that way of thinking.  Otherwise, I'll be wrestling with the temptation forever.  However, I will say that in the beginning it is tough.  Initially, I told myself "you just need to make it through each day, one at a time".  Thinking about a lifetime of quitting can be tough early on, almost overwhelming, but staying clean today…I think I can do that.  I learned the "just make it through today" approach years ago when I had to go to AA a few times because I was picked up for driving under the influence when I was 20.  I remembered it and applied it to my own situation several years later when I decided to quit smoking.  It truly does help when it is hard to envision staying away from a powerful addiction for a lifetime.

With a few days behind me, 14 with the exception of one reset, I feel I can better start to focus on the lifetime goal of "porn is not an option".  I want to feel as though it doesn't exist in my brain…that there is no draw, there is no temptation, there is nothing in porn that I want or need.  I will be clean today, I know that for a fact.  I have to be.  There is no other way for me to get better, so there is no other way for me, period.

Stay strong.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on September 29, 2014, 05:10:45 PM
Good reading your journal entries unchained. Keep walking the path.
I have also suggested that men in relationships focus on improving the intimacy in thier relationship as doing so shifted the focus from the battle with porn to something more positive for me. I wrote a piece about it here that may interest you?

http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=1894.0


Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 29, 2014, 10:12:19 PM
Thanks rider.   I am familiar with your post (absorbed it) and feel we have much in common…as well as I do so many others such as Little179.  I feel your post is right on for me and my situation and that that even though we have this addiction, we all do love our wives, and that for me is a motivating factor.  I don't feel any need to prove myself to any quantity of women, I just want a healthy sex life with my wife.  She is now and has always been as much as I could want and certainly more than I deserve, but my addiction has taken me down a path that has threatened to take away our some of our intimacy.  I regret that with all of my heart.

I know and understand that the many of younger guys here are still out there…trying to find a SO.  In some ways, I'm sure that makes some of the issues such as ED tougher for them.  I never had an issue until my mid-30's even with tons, tons, tons (read way too much) porn.  But at the same time, I also had an active sexual life with real women.   It seems that makes a difference.  I would have a hard time trying right now to work it hard to get someone new into the "mood" so to speak while at the same time knowing that I may not be able to rise to the occasion.  That would be tough.  My wife is understanding and listens to what I am going through.

I am feeling better every day.  Guys out there on day one, two…or still thinking about starting day one…it does get better rather quickly.  I still spend a lot of time here throughout the day.  I take my phone to the bathroom, sneak a peak at success stories when I can, etc.

I've read sooo many pages on this and other sites and see the commonality of progressing fetishes and extreme images to satisfy oneself.  I have to say that my desires never crossed into she male or gay porn or anything like that.  I am not judging anyone here what so ever, just stating where I am and my own situation. I will say, however, the my own fetishes did progress over time.  I developed a pretty big foot fetish.  I've thought about this often.  Young guys probably wouldn't get this, but think about porn from the late 70's to early 90's sometime (the stuff I grew up on) and you'll see that women almost never had their shoes off.  To me, feet became almost became more forbidden in that you never saw them.  Magazines, movies, they always wore high heels.  You would see a completely nude woman, but she would have shoes on her feet.  My wife gets that I like feet and is ok with it (she has wonderful sexy big feet), but sometime its seems like my fetish has overshadowed the big picture of what sex should be.  Instead of feeling how great it is to have sex, to look in her eyes, to look at her beautiful body, I sometimes have to focus on her feet to stay hard..how messed up is that?  When I would look at porn, it got to the point that a fetish would totally take control, I would obsess about it and not even look at a woman as a whole (even as a sex object). I would get so focused on something as simple as a foot that I would zoom in on it and finish myself off just looking at that.  Hopefully, as I overcome my porn addiction I will find more balance in what turns me on.  I hope my fetishes don't completely disappear…after all, I don't want other parts of get body to no longer interest me, but I hope that they diminish to the point that I don't objectify a single part of my wife's body to get me sexually aroused.

Anyway…enough talking about fetishes….that can be dangerous for me…just a little at a time.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 29, 2014, 10:14:17 PM
My first goal says 30 days…my real goal is truly a lifetime…but 10 days will sure look nice on my counter.

Stay strong.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 30, 2014, 06:35:17 AM
It's funny how quickly one habit can begin to be replaced with another.  I just got out of be and instinctively looked for my laptop.  Two weeks ago it would have been in search of porn, now it is to come here.  Don't have much to say this morning.  I think I'll go read a couple success stories.

Stay strong.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 30, 2014, 10:44:43 AM
I've gone through a bunch of emotions today.  I'm really not sure what to think.  Aside from the hj/bj I got on Saturday and one instance of morning wood, I have been completely without an erection since my reset 9 days ago.  I wonder "is this flatline?"  I have no idea.  It seems like many guys here are more in touch with what's  going on with their bodies.  How do I know...I mean, I can't blame my cock for being limp when I chase every sexual thought out of my head.

On top of that, I still have reason not to trust myself.  Yesterday morning at work I read an email from one of my favorite porn sites.  I knew to instantly delete it, but couldn't resist opening it just for a glance.  It was maybe a 5 second look, but wtf, I know better.  I then quickly deleted it and set my email software to block that domain.  I am still disappointed.

Then last night I was watching Monday night football in our bedroom while the wife slept.  We have a sitting area with a couch in our bedroom.  I have found that being there after everyone else is asleep helps me avoid temptation.  Anyway, I still had a full beer when the game was over, so I started flipping channels.  Anyway, I turned it to some late night adult HBO or Showtime  channel, at first by accident...only I watched for a few minutes...it may have just been one.  It was typical fake sex...Guessing you would say Hard R rated.  I thought "what the fuck are you doing asshole?"  That type of soft porn hasn't done anything for me since I was in middle school, but I know full well that it can easily cause me to decide to sneak off to our computer room for something more to my liking.  So I shut off the tv and went straight to bed.

In some way I feel these were a success  b/c I didn't let it escalate, but I CANNOT allow myself to be tempted, at all.  I know that temptations will arise in life that I don't control, but I do need to be better at completely avoiding the ones that I can control.

So I wake with a shriveled dick worrying about all this shit.  My wife understands that I am addicted & trying hard to heal.  But she doesn't comprehend how tough this addiction is or what it takes to beat it.  I feel she thinks "just don't do it".  Like telling an alcoholic, just don't drink.  In the end, I suppose it is really that simple, but it doesn't  feel that way to the addict on the inside looking out.  Does anyone know of a really good video or read that is geared to explaining porn addiction to the wife?

My posts are rediculousy long...sorry.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Havetodothis40 on September 30, 2014, 11:41:54 AM
Unchained,  ( I can't help but think of the Van Halen song), Hopefulwife on Redit shares this letter she made for wives/SO of guys like us.

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1OT0RNgNtJAXCbSa8B4db93P42IZAKVB1qyEHUyUf5TQ/edit?usp=sharing

http://www.reddit.com/user/hopefulwife

I also heard yourbrainonporn.com is a decent site to point them to.

On my first streak it was day 7 before I got morning wood.  It stayed there for a while, but then it went away.  It takes a while.  Also remember some people suggest no O at all, not just PMO. 



Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on September 30, 2014, 04:30:56 PM
Hi Unchained,
The first 3 weeks were the hardest for me, so don't be disheartened if it takes a few more weeks before you see some progress.

For me finding the right information early on I believe was critical to my success. The "Porn is not an option mindest" just made sense to me. When I read the thread the message resonated with me instantly. If you haven't read it yet, here is the link.

http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/index.php?PHPSESSID=f5777bcfb4f7a9c5e5eae32d7a90087d&topic=3078.0

The same day I was sent the porn is not an option mindset link, I was sent the link to kareeza and amongst that information I found the link about the non sexual bonding techniques. Again that made sense to me that by rebonding with my wife in non sexual ways it takes the pressure off to perform. Interestingly, it also took the focus off the battle to stop watching porn and instead I was focused on building intimacy with my wife. The consequence of the added intimacy was an increase in sexual desire which lead to more sex and because there was no performance focus, things just began to work more naturally all of its own.

But the importnat thing is to accept your going to be tempted during the reboot and you have to manage that. The best way I found was to focus on the intimacy with my wife and just enjoy the way things go.     

Below is a link to the non sexual bonding techniques my wife and I used. Sometimes the link can be hard to find on the source page.           

http://www.reuniting.info/download/pdf/Bonding.Behaviors.pdf
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on September 30, 2014, 08:52:05 PM
Thanks guys…it is nice to know someone is out there listening to my thoughts.  I am very familiar with your own journals/stories and they have been a big part of what progress I have made so far.

I do feel like I am making progress.  Every day is another feather in my cap.  Years ago, when I quit smoking, the number of successful days of not smoking made the difference about not relapsing more than once.  After I had a lot of days under my belt, something made me not want to give that up.  I am starting to feel the same way regarding quitting porn.  I know I am still early on, but I believe success builds upon success.  I hope to put as much distance between me and porn as I can & hope healing comes quickly.

Thanks for the links.  I will read & watch them thoroughly.  I used to average 1-2 hours a day dedicated to porn.  Before marriage & kids…much more.  But for the last 6 years or so, it's been an hour or two.  I probably spend at least that, most like much much more every day reading success stories, journals, nofap stories, anything I can that is a positive reinforcement to quitting porn.  It's getting  easier and I know that as time moves on, I'll need to transition the time little at a time to "regular" hobbies or interests.  It is my hope, though, that as my story becomes a "success" story, that maybe I can offer some advice a help other along as well.

…damn…if I just knew the consequences years ago.  I knew what I was doing was immoral (that's my opinion), but I never saw what the porn was bringing with it, but such is the effect of doing what you know is wrong.  I am damaged, my wife and family are effected…it is my fault, it is my responsibility and I will do what I can to live my life right.

BTW, I am a math minded person.  If I looked at porn one hour a night since 13, which is a big underestimate, I've spent between 13 & 14 months of my life looking at porn.  There have been days without porn, but there have been all-nighters, too.  My best guess is that I have probably spent something closer to 3 or more years of my life staring at naked women on sheets of paper or on a computer screen.  Even if I never look at another pic and live to 100 years old, thats 3% of every minute I lived.  If you assume you sleep 1/3 of every day, that would mean that 5% of my waking hours on this planet…if I live to 100 and quit now at 40…would have been wasted on porn.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 01, 2014, 02:08:07 AM
The maths is depressing to think about. But a handy wake up call none the less.

I feel your right too when you said success builds on success. The further along I get the more positive I feel that I can actually beat this thing finally. I know I'm no where near in the clear yet, nor can I say I'm cured because I know the feelings and urges are still there. Their no where near as strong as prior to my reboot, and when they tempt me I can shut them down quickly. But the thing is they are still there laying dormant inside me and I suspect they will be there for years to come.

That is why I keep saying that I suspect (actually I believe) my reboot will take years to complete successfully and that remaining vigilant of my thoughts will be something I will have to do for the remainder of my life.         

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 01, 2014, 12:32:49 PM
Rider...how long did you wait to start having sex with your wife again?

Some folks say to wait a while and I've read it can be good to have sex if you watch out for the chaser...I am unsure.  I will say that I want to as soon as I can, as long as it doesn't mess things up.

I am still PMO & MO free since a week ago Sunday.  This morning I decided to test my erection in the shower.  Probably not a good idea. I tried to focus on thoughts of the wife but a million porn images raced through my mind.  On top of that, I don't think the way I was thinking of my wife was better than the porn.  I was focusing on images of her naked and in positions that may as well been porn.  They were still images.  I have read that remembering real sex during M may not be bad, but I was focused on imagery, not the actual feeling or sensations.  Anyway, I had no intention to O anyway, so I stopped and moved on.  I think that I'll leave my dick alone for now...but it was functional.

I did have a nice conversation with the wife before I left for work.  She knows about my addiction and that I am trying to stop.  I went into depth about what I am going through and how I feel. She is very supportive...thank God for that.  I loaded the ybop website on her phone and asked her to please spend at least a half an hour today just reading what she can.  This place is great help, but it would also be nice if she had a true understanding about what is going on.  Sometimes I feel a little lonely in my struggle.

One last note & I'll be done...got another erection when I kissed the wife goodbye...that felt really good!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 01, 2014, 04:50:03 PM
We never took a break from sex. I've had more sex in the first month of my reboot than I would usually have in any equivelant period prior to rebooting. Because I have focused on nurturing the non sexual intimacy in our relationship, the pleasant side effect was more desire to have sex. It's bound to happen naturally when you think about it  ;)

I also advise guys to stop worrying about thier dicks working. When you focus on building intimacy rather than focusing on your performance, things just happen naturally. At least they did for me  :D

So many rebooters appear to be focused primarily on whether they will achieve an erection and be able to perform. Some believe in abstaining from all sex and orgasms for months to give the body a chance to recover or rewire, however I don;t know how doing nothing for a period of time rewires anything? i would assume you have to be doing the new action over and over to rewire teh brain? So whether or not abstaining from sex and O works will be an individual thing.

My own opinion is that abstinance must surely lead to a greater sense of pressure and performance anxiety when the time finally comes around to have sex. For anyone who has experienced the emotional and psychological heartache of ED and performance anxiety, to know that "tonights the night", we've abstained for a month. My wifes expectations are high, my own expectations are high that I will be able to perform?

Wow, that's a lot of pressure to have on you to perform. I personally don't feel any rebooter needs that kind of pressure. 

When my wife and I make love there's no expectation that we'll have sex. We just share intimacy and see where it takes us naturally. Sometimes we cuddle a kiss and might get aroused, but because we're both tired we might leave it at that and then fall asleep in each others arms. Other times we take it further and have sex. Others time we just treat each other to an O without expecting anything in return.

So I keep advising not to focus on anything other than building intimacy between you and your wife and leave the rest to nature.   
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 01, 2014, 08:52:21 PM
Just on the topic of whether abstaining from sex is beneficial to rewiring, I have been re-watching the YBOP video's again because I recall hearing something about the rewiring process that made me feel at the time that abstaining wouldn't be helpful in the rewiring process.

I've been back over the video's and I found the piece that talks about rewiring. It is in video 4 at from around the 9 minute mark. It says about rewiring that "the more we use circuits the stronger they get". I take from that that to abstain from any sex doesn't help rewire the brain because essentially your not creating any new circuits by abstaining? 

Here's the link to the video's if you want to check it out for yourself.

http://yourbrainonporn.com/your-brain-on-porn-series
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 02, 2014, 06:53:01 AM
Thanks for the link.  I'll check it out when I can get to another computer.  I have the porn blocker so tight on my laptop that I can't watch videos on this computer.  I can go to ybop, but it won't let me see any videos…lol.

The abstaining from PMO has gotten tons better.  Really, it isn't that bad at all right now.  For me, the anxiety in the beginning was the worst.  I felt like I would explode or freak out at any minute.  The last week has been very manageable.

My family & I are leaving to go on vacation for 8 days on Saturday.  Hopefully, it will be a positive distraction as well.  I will try to keep up busy.  In the past, long times of idleness were weak times for me.  Sitting around the house on weekends tends to be tougher than when I am working during the week.

Like many others have said, I can sense some of my other attitudes slowly changing.  I feel more involved with my children.  I guess I was always involved…but I am just more focused and into the things we do…it is more enjoyable for me and I am sure I engage them better.  For that reason, I am looking forward to spending time with my family on this vacation more than usual.

One last thing I have noticed so far, I sleep much better.  Has anyone else felt the same?  At first I didn't, it was actually worse.  I had a hard time going to sleep and woke often, but after the first week or so I sleep really good and wake feeling great.

Let's hope the improvements keep coming!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 02, 2014, 11:04:49 PM
It's good to read that you're seeing and being aware of some tangible benefits already.
They can certainly help reinforce your determination to keep on the path!

Regarding your question about sleep quality. I had no trouble sleeping either before or after my reboot  ;)   
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 03, 2014, 08:24:37 AM
Having tough time pushing porn memories out of my mind this morning. It's difficult not to daydream when I am driving. Still completely clean on porn...no cheating, but I worry about these memories. I worry if even porn thoughts slow my progress.  I just got to work and snuck off to bathroom to post here. For just one instant, I heard my brain tell me to take a peak at porn instead of coming here. I never really considered it, but I heard it loud & clear.

Just posting here now has calmed me.  My thoughts have gone a new direction & I am relaxed.  Three weeks ago that would never have happened. If I got porn on the mind, I would have been a wreck until I got pmo.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Havetodothis40 on October 03, 2014, 09:36:33 AM
Congrats on avoiding the urges.  I come here a lot when I feel some urges, just to remind me of how badly I need this to work.

You're doing great.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on October 03, 2014, 11:20:59 AM
Hang in there - the memories/images/etc. will fade over time.  All the work you do to catch yourself when you do see the images and redirecting your energy becomes less of a planned response and becomes automatic.  I have seen this - I did not have to go through urges/triggers and stuff, but an image would flash in from time to time and I would catch it immediately and redirect my thought to a new healthy thought - my family, my wife, things I needed to get done, etc.  I go days now with out having to deal with that stuff.  What has happened is all these new healthy thoughts are happening now without any effort - they are there, and there is no room for any of that crap from the dark side.

Stay strong - you are doing great!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 03, 2014, 11:38:02 AM
Thanks.  I've read both of your journals entirely and am pulling for you as well.

One thing I did very early on was to set my phone to send me a message every day at noon.  It reads "Not Now...Not Ever."  Even though I know it's coming, I'm usually not thinking about it and it takes me by surprise.  This morning I decided to add a different one for when I get up & a couple more during the day.  A little motivational message couldn't hurt.

I know at some point that focusing on quitting porn won't  be an all day deal...that I'll just live my life. It was the same thing when I quit smoking.  For a while, a few weeks I guess, I had to focus on it almost constantly.  As time passed, so did the cravings and eventually I didn't even think about it anymore.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on October 03, 2014, 12:01:06 PM
You WILL get to that point, trust me.

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 03, 2014, 03:55:32 PM
Thanks for the encouragement. Today I really needed it.  I think I allowed myself to let images linger in my mind for too long this morning and it has caused a feeling of anxiety all day.  I draw strength from those of you who have traveled further down the road and say it gets better. I believe in healing if I work the process.

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 04, 2014, 03:11:07 PM
Just got to beach.  It was a long 9 hour drive. Kept porn out of my mind but have CRAZY anxiety thinking about having sex with wife this week. Still haven't  unloaded luggage...just needed to check in here.  I am not worried about a porn slippage, I just wish this anxiety would go away.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 05, 2014, 08:19:46 AM
Today marks two weeks since my last PMO.

I had a dream last night that I went on a 1-2 day PMO binge.  It was almost like I caught myself in my own dream and held myself accountable.  I remember feeling awful...almost suicidal in my dream.  It was a huge relief when I woke and realized that I have not slipped.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 05, 2014, 09:52:29 AM
I wonder if anyone has any thoughts on this.

I've mentioned before that over time I developed a couple of fetishes.  The biggest of which is a female foot fetish. Yesterday on the drive here, my wife relaxing in the passenger's seat would put one of her bare feet on the dash.  I found myself not able to not fixate on her foot. Sure enough I got an erection.  She noticed me touching my dick and laughingly asked if I had a problem.  She knows about my "foot thing", but I suppose to someone without hang-ups, she doesn't realize what it was doing to me.  I asked her to keep them covered the rest of the way here.

Does anyone else have any experience with this?  One one hand, I hope my fetishes fade a bit.  Sometimes during sex, I would have to totally zone out of everything except my wife's foot to stay erect.  All the while I have a beautiful loving wife, who is great in bed by the way, completely into the sex...that should be my focus...not just her feet.  On the other hand, I like feet.  I don't want to completely loose that either.  I just hope I achieve some balance where I don't require that focus.

Anyway, what troubles me is that I was sitting there viewing her much like I would have porn.  It wasn't like we were in bed playing.  She was silently resting and I was gawking.  I was able to get it up, but the prospect of real sex scares me.  There are times I think I could take a naked picture of my wife, walk into the next room and get hard looking at it when I can't when we are together in bed.

Until my last ed issue 3 weeks ago, we had regular & good sex with an occasional issue.  I know the cause of that.  I should have more confidence, but for some reason...have none.

I feel that one or two positive experiences could give me back the confidence I need, but a couple of failures could toss me into the abyss.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 05, 2014, 05:21:43 PM
Mental roller coaster today...fucking nightmare.  Half naked chick's everywhere...including wife. Know she's willing. Doubting self. Staring at hot women knowing damn well my cock would not be up for it. Feel like crying. Feel like going crazy.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 05, 2014, 05:47:24 PM
Just took shower...so damn crazy I tested erection again...required fantasy to get it up.  Damn I feel like I am treading water. Didn't O but came close enough that some cum came out. I am my own worst enemy.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 05, 2014, 06:40:40 PM
Watching cartoons with kids. Feel I am down off the edge. I am like Fonzie for the moment.  Think I need to take sex off the table for a bit.  I know it would feel nice and give me confidence (if successful), but maybe I'd be better off just not worrying about my dick whatsoever...focus energy on staying away from porn (doing good at that) and occupying myself with family.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 06, 2014, 10:12:12 AM
Just had a talk with the wife. Feel ok I suppose.  Beginning to realize  this is going to be a long process.  Took me 27 years do dig this hole..I suppose it will take longer than 2 weeks to get out of it.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on October 06, 2014, 10:44:31 AM
Hang in there,

It is a process - and it will take longer than two weeks.  It may take a lot longer, or it may not.

You seem to have the fortitude to endure the times you have described, and that is a big part of the battle - you recongnize your triggers/urges and you seem to be dealing with them well.  These are the things you need to continue to build on.  I would also agree with you that you need to give yourself a rest - especially the brain.  I am over 9 months free from P & M, but still struggling with PIED.  I just completed a 6 week abstinance with questionable improvements - my wife and I are getting ready to start another period of rest.  While I don't have the personal experience yet to confirm that this is critical to success, I do believe that abstinance for long periods is the way to go (others have done this and have had some success) I do believe that no O is the key.  I hope to have some good positive results to feed back with.

As far as testing yourself - I have not even tried.  I just don't feel the need to M, and I don't want P - what I really truly want is the O - but with my wife only, when we want always when we want.  I see alot on here about testing oneself, so i can't say it is good or it is bad.  Personally, I won't do it - but it may work for you.

Hang tough my brother
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: STR on October 06, 2014, 11:50:19 AM
Took me 27 years do dig this hole..I suppose it will take longer than 2 weeks to get out of it.

Yep. I am closing in on 600 days with no PMO, and I am still not 100% recovered. I still go through occasional flatline stages of no sexual interest, and I still experience occasional ED with my wife. While I am periodically tempted to masturbate in order to "make sure my penis still works", I have found that touching myself only sets my recovery back and reduces my ability to become aroused by my wife.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 06, 2014, 05:30:24 PM
Thanks for the replies and wish I hadn't read....in some ways.

I MO'd this morning. Got aroused with brief touch of wife and then begun the hour ritual of her getting kids ready for beach.  I couldn't bear another day on the razors edge. I consciously decided to MO...focused on feeling only...honestly slipped into fantasy of wife only. I felt better all day when done.

I don't know if I messed up. I will say I could focus better today and had fun with family. Constant sex thoughts didn't torment me.  Maybe I slowed my progress, but I had an good day.

I am still over 2 weeks without porn and that's a good start for me.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 06, 2014, 05:32:59 PM
Hi Unchained,

Mate, I'm a little confused this morning?

I was on here briefly yesterday and I saw you had written a post saying you had caved in, and I saw that your counter had been reset to 0. You wrote in that post words along the lines of "you weren't going to let the slip up deter you or rob you of the progress you'd made so far".

Today I see that post is gone and your counter is back at 15 days?  .....  What's going on?

A big part of this journey is about being honest with yourself. We're all essentially anonymous individuals here so there is really no need to hide from the truth. If your not able to be honest here, what do you hope to achieve from being here?

It's not about creating a journal that reads like a success story for others. It's about journaling your thoughts, struggles and successes for your own benefit, so you should never have to fear journaling your truth, or changing your truth for anyone elses benefit.

So what's really going on?     

 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 06, 2014, 05:39:10 PM
You must be confused. I am still  clean since sep 21...about 7:00 pm eastern time to be exact. I have not reset and don't  intend to.

Last week...maybe 4-5 days ago I reset my counter because I realized it was off 1 day. 1 day may not seem like a big deal but it was to me. I wanted "credit" for every day, so I reset it.

I appreciate the honesty here and would not betray that.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 06, 2014, 05:53:48 PM
Hi Unchained,

Mate, I'm a little confused this morning?

I was on here briefly yesterday and I saw you had written a post saying you had caved in, and I saw that your counter had been reset to 0. You wrote in that post words along the lines of "you weren't going to let the slip up deter you or rob you of the progress you'd made so far".

Today I see that post is gone and your counter is back at 15 days?  .....  What's going on?

A big part of this journey is about being honest with yourself. We're all essentially anonymous individuals here so there is really no need to hide from the truth. If your not able to be honest here, what do you hope to achieve from being here?

It's not about creating a journal that reads like a success story for others. It's about journaling your thoughts, struggles and successes for your own benefit, so you should never have to fear journaling your truth, or changing your truth for anyone elses benefit.

So what's really going on?     

This is bothering me. You must have me confused with someone else.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 06, 2014, 06:07:07 PM
Have pm'd you privately.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 06, 2014, 06:27:45 PM
Have pm'd you privately.

And one sent back to you
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 06, 2014, 06:55:01 PM
Hi Unchained,

Mate I apologise. I was indeed mistaken.

I've just gone back over a few other threads and have realised it was someone else I follow that made that post.

Please accept my apology.

Rider 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 07, 2014, 08:54:49 AM
Glad you found the other person's post. I don't like the feeling of people thinking I am being less than honest...which is ironic because all of the dishonesty in my behavior that led me here.

I have mixed feelings about yesterday. On one hand I feel a little like a failure in that I MO'd. On the other, I feel like a ton of pressure has been relieved.  I think I put a lot of hope in being able to perform with the wife this week. I was constantly thinking of my dick, wondering if it would be ready. I was dying to touch her, but afraid I couldn't finish what I started.  I was in constant turmoil.  I was testing myself in the shower and keeping myself in a perpetual state of anxiety.

My discussion with my wife yesterday took me a while to absorb.  I told her I need to not worry about sex at all for a bit.  She was so ok about it that I had a hard time understanding.  She also said that she would prefer a lifetime without sex to a life with sex that included me constantly jerking off to images of naked women.

Anyway, as the day went on, I realized that to my wife, sex is just one part of an otherwise full and well lived life.  Her world doesn't revolve sex the way mine had.  Her happiness doesn't hinge on getting off 1, 2 or 3 times today.  Don't  get me wrong, she is a sexual person, but it doesn't define her.  Thinking about this made me recognize just how messed up my priorities have become in the course of porn addiction.

I think my body is possibly in a flatline and I am trying to force things to happen.  I now think the answer may be to just go with it and let my body tell me when it is ready.  A wife who is willing to be patient sure makes life easier.  Once again, I have been my own worst enemy.  It is my goal to relax and let the healing work instead of measuring every moment against where I think I should be.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 07, 2014, 04:51:13 PM
I have mixed feelings about yesterday. On one hand I feel a little like a failure in that I MO'd. On the other, I feel like a ton of pressure has been relieved.  I think I put a lot of hope in being able to perform with the wife this week. I was constantly thinking of my dick, wondering if it would be ready. I was dying to touch her, but afraid I couldn't finish what I started.  I was in constant turmoil.  I was testing myself in the shower and keeping myself in a perpetual state of anxiety.


Wise words Unchained. Just relax about the whole thing and let nature take care of what nature does best. Anyone who has suffered from ED can understand the emotional effect performance anxiety has on the mind. That perpetual state or anxiety and constantly thinking about whether you dick is going to work is entirely counter productive to a positive outcome.

I think for us married men and guy's with a willing SO, masturbation has to be put into the same category as porn. It's not an option for us especailly as we are rebooting. I think any solo sexual experiences come with a degree of guilt attached to them that only makes the performance anxiety worse. I know I feel more confident that ED won't be an issue if it's been a few days since Mrs Rider and I have had sex. Conversely, before beginning my reboot, if Mrs Rider was feeling frisky at night and I'd Mo'd earlier that day, I had a lot of guilt driven anxiety because I knew the MO session earlier that day would leave me feeling less horny that evening. The thoughts alone become a self fullfilling prophecy.

I have mentioned in my own journal and on others that for me the secret to beating the anxiety was to focus on the non sexual bonding techniques and just enjoy sharing in the intimacy of our time together without any expectations of having sex. When you do that you remove the pressure to perform because there is no pressure to perform  :)

Have you ever had the experience where you go to make love and during the foreplay Mr Happy is uncooperative? Nothings happening down there. Your brain feels foggy and it feels as though the connection betweeen your brain and penis has been severed half way down your body? I used to get that feeling all the time. Then when you realise this isn't going to happen, you feel terrible. You hug your dear understanding wife apologising for your lack of performance and you call it a night. The pressures off, you both know there'll be no sex tonight. Then 20 minutes later as you cuddle you realise your still feeling horny and this time Mr Happy's feeling it too and is finally coming alive, albeit to late as your wife is now almost asleep and has no interest in starting things over again, so you lay there in bed next to your wife feeling rock hard with nowhere to go.

The non sexual bonding techniques allowed me to increase the level of intimacy in my relationship with Mrs Rider. That increased intimacy puts my mind in a place where there is no pressure and no anxiety. Once in that state nature just does what nature does best.

Also stop testing yourself in the shower too. All of that is only reinforcing a mindset that you'll only get aroused alone.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 07, 2014, 05:26:10 PM
I had a great day today...best most normal feeling in as  long time. I played with kids in the waves on the beach, in the pool...read a magazine & relaxed while wife watched kids...otherwise what "normal" people experience on vacation. It felt nice.

Stayed on beach with daughter (6 years old but soon to be 7) while wife brought younger son to room.  We had a walk along the beach holding hands...perfect stuff being a dad...what it is supposed to be. I damn near cried.

Came to room and wife was in shower. Got in with her and almost immediately got 80-90% erection. I was ready to go but we had a kid in the tub outside of shower...not possible.

Anyway, I am positive at the moment, but a still semi-erect cock brings  back a tad of anxiety.

There's  hope for me yet! Thanks for your encouragement and those of you who have simply posted your your own experience in your journals. My feeling of optimism would not be possible without you. Before forums like this & ybop, I knew I had a problem but there was nowhere to turn.  It's nice to not be alone...even if your friends are anonymous.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 07, 2014, 06:24:21 PM
Awesome news. Glad your enjoying your family time.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 10, 2014, 09:28:36 AM
Like others have said, staying away from porn isn't as difficult as it was in the beginning.  It has actually gotten rather easy.  I am not fighting with temptation because I do not accept the possibility that I will seek it out.

However, it is tough for me at times to keep images out of my brain.  I think that is going to take a long time.

If you have read my journal from the start, you'll  know that PMO was my morning ritual. I'd hide out in the bathroom for a long time, edging, feeding my addiction & finally O before getting ready for work. I immediately replaced that with posting here & reading success stories & journals.  Now I've read them all & only read the updates.

The other day my wife said "don't forget when you are on your forum all the time to find a bible verse or two to read". So, the other morning I installed 3 apps on my phone, a daily devotional, a daily scripture & a daily bible verses app.  They are now all part of what is taking the place of what was PMO time, along with coming here, too.

Others have said it time and again, we have to fill the time we used for destructive behaviors with time used for things that improve our lives.  It was harder for me to see that a few weeks ago.  I was too deep in my thoughts of struggle.  I see now that it is true and feel that a focus on my spiritual health is a much better way to begin each day.

On a side note...I just recalled an interview given by a guy I grew up with who went on to be a pro football player. He was/is a great guy. In college he was one to be in the weight room every day, giving it his all even in the off-season.  Anyway, he was asked about it in an interview and said "character is defined by what you do when no one is looking".  If that's the case, and I don't doubt it, then my character has been sorely lacking for the last 27 years, or so.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on October 10, 2014, 09:48:39 AM
Great Post!

It is true that that images and flashes diminish over time.  I am finding I can go a few days and not have any of that to deal with.  You have a great morning routine that has filled you with healthy habits. 

I also agree with you on the character bit - it is about moving away from a self-centered drive to more of a purposeful drive. 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 11, 2014, 10:57:15 AM
Any guys out there further along than I have an opinion regarding when to have sex? Tomorrow is 3 weeks since my last PMO. At the end of week 1 the wife gave me a hj that ended quickly. Since the I have MO'd twice...both times I tried to focus on real sex with wife, but some fantasy crept in as well.

We have been on vacation all week. While one would assume that makes for lots of opportunity for sex, our two children are young and there really hasn't been any alone time for us to relax together.  I probably could ask and she'd say something like "ok, but make it quick, the kids need....".  I don't want to try like that.  I feel the need to relax, kiss and work up to it, not just hurry it along.

anyway, part of me feels I am ready, but I am nervous. Last night we were watching a DVD in bed with the kids. I reached out and rubbed my wife's stomach, not anything sexual as the kids were with us, but I got an immediate erection just from touching her. I hope that is a good sign.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 12, 2014, 09:57:33 PM
Unchained,

Have sex anytime it feels right. With the kids around its harder, but just wait till their asleep and go with the flow. Don't be nervous about it though. Just be in the moment and enjoy the intimacy.

Good luck!  ;)
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 14, 2014, 09:17:13 AM
22 behind me...working on 23

I think my best streak was probably 56 +/- days when I just turned 19.  I remember that because it was boot camp.  After that, probably my honeymoon, which would have been 11 days.

Right now I still get a bit frustrated sometimes...feel I could use a little more emotional support from the wife.  At the same time, I am trying not to be too needy.  I know she has a lot of responsibilities and doesn't need to hear my agonizing constantly, so I shut it off and it makes me feel distant.  I also am well aware that my emotional state is more than likely caused more by withdrawal than anything between us, so I am keeping faith. This, too, shall pass.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 15, 2014, 04:06:00 PM
Some days are tougher than others.  I was born a natural worrier, I suppose.  At times it has been beneficial, but this is not one of those times.  In my professional life, I am a problem solver. Worry (or thinking of all that can go wrong) helps me see and fix problems before they arise.  Until any issue, small or large, is resolved it gets my full attention until it is fixed...it has to be that way because I own my own business.  That and it's just the way I am wired.

Now...translate that to beating this addiction and ed and I feel I am going insane at times. I know neither will be cured in a day, but it never leaves my conscious...never.  In my heart, I know I am doing well.  Since starting this journal, i have not sought out porn...not even once.  It has found me in the form of junk emails and i have prevailed.  I have the knowledge, desire, support, will power and strength to trample and crush porn addiction (I HATE loosing at anything).  But the anxiety is getting to me.

At this moment, I am in my office bathroom (just like home...only place I can find peace) and I feel like laying on the floor and crying.  Someone tell me this is some type of brain change from lack of dopamine.

I will not give in and I will not loose, but I am ready to start feeling better.

Sorry if this post comes across as whining, but I see this journal for the benefits it holds in my future, as well as now.  Maybe future reflection on how porn has damaged me now will keep me on the straight and narrow.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: icanbeatthis on October 15, 2014, 07:35:03 PM
Hi mate. Sorry i haven't been here for a while.  School holidays were here and kds around all day so no real chance to get online that much. Glad to see you are still here and going well. I had day 90 on the 14th and believe that if I can do this, you can. I just don't have porn as an option. I find coming here is almost a habit. I am a shift worker and as such have times when I am home alone. That used to bewhen I sat in front of the laptop searching for the elusive pic or video that unconsciously would make my life complete. ?...what a joke.  What was i thinking.  I now realize that I needed to fill the space left by porn with something else that wasn't killing my marriage.  I was at the stage where I dreaded having sex with wife with my fear of ED. Performance anxiety i used to joke about with the wife, but it was real. I now have no issues. I get as hard as a rock. I still have times where I can wander in my thoughts and recall some porn I remember but have no issues with that at the moment, I don't think that matters.  Fill the space.  Be strong my friend.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 15, 2014, 10:48:41 PM
Some days are tougher than others.  I was born a natural worrier, I suppose.  At times it has been beneficial, but this is not one of those times.  In my professional life, I am a problem solver. Worry (or thinking of all that can go wrong) helps me see and fix problems before they arise.  Until any issue, small or large, is resolved it gets my full attention until it is fixed...it has to be that way because I own my own business.  That and it's just the way I am wired.

Now...translate that to beating this addiction and ed and I feel I am going insane at times. I know neither will be cured in a day, but it never leaves my conscious...never.  In my heart, I know I am doing well.  Since starting this journal, i have not sought out porn...not even once.  It has found me in the form of junk emails and i have prevailed.  I have the knowledge, desire, support, will power and strength to trample and crush porn addiction (I HATE loosing at anything).  But the anxiety is getting to me.

At this moment, I am in my office bathroom (just like home...only place I can find peace) and I feel like laying on the floor and crying.  Someone tell me this is some type of brain change from lack of dopamine.

I will not give in and I will not loose, but I am ready to start feeling better.

Sorry if this post comes across as whining, but I see this journal for the benefits it holds in my future, as well as now.  Maybe future reflection on how porn has damaged me now will keep me on the straight and narrow.

Hang in there, your doing great. We're all different in the way our reboots affect us emotionally, and I guess we'll all have different mental battles to fight as well. Only advice I can offer is remain focused on the goal, and when you feel your under pressure picture yourself 12 months down the track being porn free and having a great relationship with your wife.

Some days will be harder than others and we can only walk this journey one step at a time.   
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 16, 2014, 09:38:16 AM
Thanks for the responses.  The support from this forum is one reason I have been successful in this reboot.

I am in a MUCH better frame of mind today.  I had sex with the wife and, holy cow, do I feel better.  I know it wasn't my best performance, but I really needed that initial success.

I got an erection thinking of wife as I pulled into my driveway.  I hugged her hello and she noticed and jokingly asked if I was looking at porn on my ride home.  She was helping daughter with homework and we were getting ready to go eat out, but my erection stayed, so I said we need to go do it right now.  She said ok.  It was fast but I functioned properly.  I feel ready to begin to attempt a regular sex life again.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 21, 2014, 04:31:15 PM
I caved in this weekend.

I was discouraged and didn't want to think about this forum. Even though anonymous, I felt ashamed to come here and 'fess up.

Anyway. I am now trying not to keep kicking myself. I acknowledge it is important to not accept caving in as it can lead to more resets, but at the same time I did go 26 days.  That is a new record for me. I wish I didn't slip, but am trying to focus on what worked and why I eventually gave in.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 21, 2014, 06:18:36 PM
Hang in there Unchained. I know exactly how you feel  ;)
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 21, 2014, 10:17:55 PM
Hey guys...this has bugged me for a while...my name is not unchained

The whole time I was military, even my close friends called  me by my last name...always seemed impersonal.

My name is Adam

I am 40, have 2 kids, I love my wife, and I am fighting....hard...to break free from the grips of porn.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 22, 2014, 08:58:15 PM
Feeling ok right now.  Would say I feel strong, but I've felt strong before and failed.

I confessed to wife today.  I hated to disappoint her, but felt honesty must be at core of our relationship.  It sucks...wish I didn't fail...wish this was all behind me, but I am doing better than any time I can remember.

Today I am clean.  Started meditation today to better train my brain how to be directed where I want it to go.  Still working hard to be a better man.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 23, 2014, 12:34:48 PM
In a pretty good frame of mind today.  It is truly a beautiful day outside.

Sometimes I wonder where my brain is in terms of healing.  I know counting days is pointless.  After 26 days i had a reset...will the next two weeks be as hard as they were last time?  I almost dont feel any different other than a couple of days kicking myself.  Sometimes I feel I am over thinking this process...Constant consciousness of my thoughts, feelings, physical differences.  It can be exhausting.

On a positive note, I feel the time I have spent attempting to learn meditation may pay off.  I do feel very relaxed and calm for at least a couple of hours afterward.  I woke early today, too early to get out of bed and lay there quite anxious. I used the technique to focus on my breathing and was able to relax.  I felt that in a way, I was deflecting negative thoughts instead of wrestling with them.  That makes for a much better state of mind for me.

Lastly, I am trying to change the way in which I pray.  Constant begging for help keeps me in a mindset that I am fighting a more powerful foe. While I do still ask for strength, I try to quickly move on to thankfulness for all of my many blessings.  Focusing on the good makes me feel good.  Thinking of what I have also makes me joyful to fight to keep it.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 23, 2014, 07:58:30 PM
Hi Adam,

It seems we're both having better days today and that's something to be thankful for in itself  :)

That was a great last post you wrote. I particularly liked the last paragraph. Asking for strength rather than begging for help seems the way to go, and puts the responsibility squarely in your own control.

Keep up the great work  ;)

 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 24, 2014, 11:20:59 AM
Feeling the most 'at peace' today than I felt in longer than I can remember.  A couple of things have happened that have led me to a better understanding of myself, both before this reboot and where I am now.

Came home last night. Wife in kitchen starting supper & I needed to hurry outside to do some yard work before it got dark. Anyway, I playfully squeezed her bootie before going outside and immediately got an erection.

One, I was thrilled it happened so fast & because it was just from a simple touch.  I told the wife, but there was no way either one of us could do anything sexual at the moment.  This is where I realized my attitude has begun to change.  I was happy.  You see, before, if I ever got sexually charged I expected my needs to be addressed right then.  Now, obviously my wife has not dropped everything every time I was horny, so in the past, I would get resentful and let that become my excuse to PMO...either right then or stay up late or whenever.  Last night, I was happy and accepted the reality of the situation.

I though about the situation & how I got to the point that I demanded immediate satisfaction.  It became apparent that my view of sex has been completely one sided...all about me.  It was me & the girl(s) in the magazine, on the computer, in my mind.  If I was horny I grabbed the magazine or turned on the computer.  They were there to service me...in my time...on my terms.  They were not active participants.  They were just being used for my pleasure.

Over time, my need to immediately satisfy any urge consumed my thought process.  It caused  much anxiety over the years.  This reboot has begun to break that down somewhat.  I actually got an erection, did nothing about it, was able to concentrate the rest of the night, slept well and didn't die.

so this morning, wife drops off daughter at school, come home and like usual, gets back in bed for a little bit.  I was getting ready for work and our young son had gotten into bed with wife and they were watching cartoons.  After getting dressed, I laid down next to wife for a 2 minute snuggle. I rubbed her back and wham, hard again.  Obviously, nothing was going to happen in that situation...and once again, I was ok with it.

This brings me to my other success...in 12 hours I got 2 really good erections from simply touching the skin of my wife.  She was fully clothed in both cases and I had no visual stimulation.  I feel that this is how it is supposed to be.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on October 26, 2014, 12:37:26 AM
I'm glad your finding success and enjoying it. Keep up the good work.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 30, 2014, 02:27:22 PM
Haven't posted in my journal for a few days.  Been doing pretty good.  I realize that healing my brain is going to take longer than I hoped, but am beginning to accept that.

I downloaded and read the e-books "Your brain on porn", "Ten keys to breaking porn addiction" and "The porn circuit."  All were very good reads for us addicts.  I plan to read them all again.

As I begin to reflect on my personality, I see that I have some OCD tendencies.  I think that played a huge role in my addiction.  I amassed a huge collection of porn and built a part of my life around cataloging and organizing it. Always in search of the perfect photo or movie clip.  All the while, what I saved no longer interested me, I spent untold hours in search of more.  I was just hitting that dopemine button over and over and over.

Even as a teenager, I would spend tons of time cataloging my magazine collections...keeping lists of names, poses, types of dress, level of explecitness, whatever from each pictorial so that I could easily find whatever I may be in the mood for.  The thing is, even then I was always searching for more porn and still looked at all I had each session.  That was the addiction part.  The endless organizing and cataloging was my OCD involved in my addiction.  I feel OCD to an addiction is like pouring gasoline on a fire.

Recognizing is the first step to healing.  Sometimes I feel consumed by this addiction. I trust in the process and have faith.  I have begun to feel real results, but wish I could give my mind a break.  Quitting porn is my brains new focus and it won't let up.  Always at the forefront, always mindful of how I feel, always telling me what not to think about...even when I am not thinking about it...ugh

Oh...one other thing.  I would normally tell anyone thinking about quitting to do it today...the sooner the better.  But if you have a beach vacation planned within the 1st week or two, I'd put it off.  That was a porn addicts worst nightmare.

I wish everyone well.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on October 30, 2014, 06:06:24 PM
I amassed a huge collection of porn and built a part of my life around cataloging and organizing it. Always in search of the perfect photo or movie clip.  All the while, what I saved no longer interested me, I spent untold hours in search of more.  I was just hitting that dopemine button over and over and over.

Hi Unchained
I can so identify with what you wrote. I didn't get into so much detail trying to organize everything, but the stuff that I did save was never enough. Would also spend hours looking for that new picture or video. And then I'd reach a stage where I got so disgusted with myself that I'd try to quit and get rid of everything only to have the vicious circle started all over again. 

We can do this. IMPOSSIBLE IS NOTHING
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 30, 2014, 09:03:09 PM
Thanks for the encouragement.

I had another bit of success this evening.  I found a portable hard drive in my desk at my office.  I knew there was porn on it, but good stuff (clean stuff like family pics) stored on it as well.  I plugged it in and found my organized (as always) collection of pics & vids.  I tried to delete the porn folders in totality, but it would always give me an error...so I had to venture into each folder.  Of course I saw thumbnails...my brain lit up like a fire engine spotlight...I could feel it.  It was like an electric shock.  My brain begged for me to open the pics.  I was like a boxer taking hard hits, but I stayed on my feet.  I was able to delete everything in bits...and it wasn't 2 or 3 times, but dozens.  I spent at least 15 minutes deleting everything in batches.  Of course, after opening  each folder, I would change the settings to "list" and away from "thumbnail" view, so I wasn't sitting there tempting myself.  If you have read my previous posts, you'll understand that there were many folders and they all were set to open to thumbnail views.

Anyway, I got them all deleted.  Some were my very favorites and it was hard not to look.  I recognized the file & folder names, but I did it.  Also, I was alone and in my office.  My brain was screaming "no one will know".

Today I prevailed.  I'll say it again, today I prevailed.

I had to come here and post.  I am excited and told the wife. She seemed more bothered that I would have had that at my work and didn't appreciate my victory.  I understand that she doesn't understand the thinking of an addict.  I hoarded porn like an alcoholic stashes vodka.

it was tough.  When done deleting, I locked up our building and went to the bathroom. I looked in the mirror and my face was completely flushed.  My skin on my face felt tight and hot.  Whatever the reaction to seeing/resisting the porn, it had a visible and felt effect on me.

I feel good.  I wish I didn't have to go through that.  I wish there was no porn, or at least no worries of me seeing it.  I stood strong, but the "go ahead and do it" voices were strong, too. In the end, I go back to the thinking of a dazed boxer who won the fight...yeah I won the fight, but I feel a little beat up and see that I still have vulnerabilities.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 2heal on October 30, 2014, 09:41:42 PM
Hi, unchained.  I just spent the evening reading through your journal.  I just want to say, I'm pulling for you and wish you success.  It looks like you're on your way.  We're all in this together.  Keep up the fight.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 30, 2014, 09:54:29 PM
Hi, unchained.  I just spent the evening reading through your journal.  I just want to say, I'm pulling for you and wish you success.  It looks like you're on your way.  We're all in this together.  Keep up the fight.

Thanks...know my journal is a long read...I am long winded.

I appreciate your support.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: CrazyGopher on October 30, 2014, 10:05:57 PM
I'll admit I was on the edge of my seat reading the story of your adventure in deleting those images tonight.

I can relate to the intense feelings that even tiny thumbnails can produce, and the difficulty of dealing with the experience. I had a similar challenge once when I was trying to clean up the mess left by a forum member who was posting disguised links to porn in one of these forums. Your analogy of a boxer taking hits is an apt one: afterwards, I felt dazed and off-balance for quite a while.

I appreciate the challenge that you faced and I feel inspired by the courage you demonstrated in doing what needed to be done without giving in to temptation. So, thank you for that, and stay strong!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on October 31, 2014, 06:55:09 PM
Way to go, good job unchained. You were the champion in the ring.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on October 31, 2014, 09:46:44 PM
Thanks guys.  Your support means a lot to me.  The support of anonymous folks here may mean the most.  I know you feel what I feel.  I do my best to communicate with my wife, but she cannot understand what a struggle...and victory...some of these small accomplishments can be.  I feel like I've conquered Mt Everest at times and she looks at me like "so, you deleted some porn".  Even with all of the knowledge that is out there now from sites like ybop, I would not be where I am without this forum.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 01, 2014, 03:22:37 PM
2 accomplishments today.

1. Back to two weeks of porn abstinence.

2. Had sex with wife this afternoon.  Penis stayed 80% afterward and then back up just a few minutes later watching her dress.  Asked her if maybe we could do it again tomorrow, she said maybe tonight...

I know there is a long road ahead, but I feel such relief.  No longer is my lifelong addiction a secret that torments me. She knows the truth.  Temptations are fewer and normal life seems to be taking hold.  My time in prayer has grown as has the time I read the bible.  I am not always sneaking off to use porn.  Porn thoughts and desires aren't keeping me emotionally divorced from my family.  Ahh...such a moment of peace.

Wife & I had long talk this morning...a good one.  Our 10 year anniversary is next week, and to be honest, we don't have a lot of us time.  Son is 5 and daughter turned 7 last week.  We talked about finding ways to keep us strong.  Mostly it is just making time for us...not just sex, but time with each other.  I feel if the connection stays strong, the sex will find its way.

For the 1st time in this process, maybe it is just this moment and I should appreciate it, the path seems easy.  Trust the Lord. Trust this process. Keep my back to porn. Communicate the best I can with wife. Remain active here to maintain focus.  Do all of that...and I can maintain a life free from porn, finally.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on November 03, 2014, 09:58:37 AM
Nice job Unchained!

grats on your accomplishments - Trust the process, trust in yourself and then the rest will start to fall into line.

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 03, 2014, 12:06:56 PM
Thanks...never got my 2nd go 'round this weekend, we just stayed too busy, however, I am pleased to say that my night time wood seems to be making a comeback.  I woke up twice Sat night/Sun morning with a full erection and again this morning.  I hope that is a good sign.

Both of my slips have been from the very real chaser.  I really don't know how to feel about the chaser.  Obviously, I don't want to avoid sex in fear of it, but it does come knocking.  I've decided to try to satisfy it with the wife if possible, and if not, on my own.  I can now get an erection with touch only and will mo without porn to keep porn thoughts at bay.  I really don't understand what is bad about getting release every few days as long as I heal my brain from porn.  It would have been impossible 6 weeks ago not to fantasize about porn, but I have MO'd a few times recently just focused on feeling.  I feel calm afterward and porn enters my mind much less during the day.  Am I going wrong?
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Havetodothis40 on November 03, 2014, 07:03:01 PM
Maybe knowing the chaser is coming will help you deflect it in the future. 

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on November 04, 2014, 09:10:55 AM
it is very important to prepare to deal with triggers, urges, chasers now - before you are faced with them.
waiting until they confront you, trying to decide what to do then can be a receipe for disaster.
I agree - you know they may present themselves. so what will you do when they do show up?
Have a plan.
Know where you will go, what you will do - what healthy behaviors and emotions will you fill that space with?
you can do this, you can beat this you have the strength.

Stay strong....
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 04, 2014, 05:51:19 PM
Hi unchained. I'm a bit clueless about the chaser. Can someone enlighten me please  :-[
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 04, 2014, 08:29:21 PM
Hi unchained. I'm a bit clueless about the chaser. Can someone enlighten me please  :-[

Ahhh...the chaser.

Basically, if you O whether with MO, with a lady or otherwise, you get the chaser effect.  Within a day, or two in my case, you get extremely horny again which can lead to pitfalls if you are not prepared.

For that reason, some abstain completely until they are pretty far along in their reboot.

It may sound silly. But the chaser is real.  I've reset 2x's...both after having successful sex with wife two days prior.

I had sex with wife this weekend, crazy horny monday, MO'd on my own terms Monday morning...no porn thoughts, just sensation.  Guess what, crazy horny today, but I'm ok, I knew it was coming and was focused.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 05, 2014, 07:44:40 PM
 ;) thanks unchained, not silly at all, now I'm in the picture and can put a name to my experiences too. The chaser might explain (in my case) why when I relapsed in the past, I tended to binge on PMO until I felt disgusted enough to try and unchain those shackles again. I guess the brain or body craves that dopamine rush which is not a bad thing, we just need to be in control of it, as you said
I knew it was coming and was focused.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 06, 2014, 08:55:29 AM
Coming up on 3 weeks since my reset.  The 1st time I still had a lot of anxiety.  I am still a worrier and thinking of this addiction and hoping for healing is never out of my mind, but I feel much more at peace.

In some ways I feel a little blah.  Who knows, maybe I am going into the flatline...I'm not sure.  Actually, I'm not sure if I've been in one at all.  I severely limited mo, but never completely stopped either.  It's been maybe once every 5-6 days, some longer some shorter.  I've also had a few o's with the wife.  Would these keep me from entering a flatline?
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 06, 2014, 08:49:21 PM
I decided today to begin to reign in my drinking.

Quitting pmo has caused me to take a closer look at my life.  When I think of who I want to be a year from now, it is not a guy who spends two hours at a time in the bathroom with a laptop looking at porn.  I also don't want to be over drinking every night.

For a while I have told myself that I would beat porn and then focus on alcohol.  I've noticed that I may be increasing the beer maybe to replace the dopamine that my brain is no longer getting from pmo.  It scares me that if I don't address the alcohol now, it may escalate to a whole new level.

It is time to quit putting off facing the problems I have created in my life by overindulgence.  I really want to be content and comfortable in my skin w/o all of this "self medication".
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 07, 2014, 10:52:43 AM
Feel good today.  About 37 hours since last drink and no withdrawals yet...wish me luck

Slept good last night. Woke a few times but I feel well rested.  Oh, got morning/nighttime wood, too.

The porn has become easier to deal with lately, but I am not sure about mo.  I know people have different opinions and I'd rather not give it up for life, but am considering it now if it speeds the process.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Jaystock on November 07, 2014, 04:14:33 PM
Your story sounds identical  to mine. I'm so sick of this circle I'm living in
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 07, 2014, 05:40:31 PM
Your story sounds identical  to mine. I'm so sick of this circle I'm living in

Yeah...me too.  The bitch of it all is that I have a happy life outside of the addictions I have brought on myself.

I knew porn was going to be tougher than alcohol.  I've wanted rid of porn since my teens, and I turned 40 earlier this year.  I am feeling better about where I am in my porn struggle.  I know I have to remain vigilant, but my resistance is getting stronger and the cravings weaker.  I am more aware of triggers and my own thoughts, and I've got a few tools at my disposal to rid my mind of dangerous thoughts.

I feel genuinely optimistic .  Optimistic enough that I feel ready to take on drinking, too.  I don't know where the alcohol road will lead.  Unlike porn, it hasn't caused any issues other than I noticed that I am using it daily.  My wife isn't concerned about my use, but I think it is time to give it a break for a while.

Last night was the 1st time in a long time that my wife and I went to bed at the same time.  I am usually up for a while pounding beers.  It was nice to lay there and hold her while we talked, and I was sober.  I want more of that.  After 5 minutes we had a 5 year old in the bed, but we still snuggled...and that's alright with me.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 07, 2014, 07:45:31 PM
Last night was the 1st time in a long time that my wife and I went to bed at the same time.  I am usually up for a while pounding beers.  It was nice to lay there and hold her while we talked, and I was sober.  I want more of that.  After 5 minutes we had a 5 year old in the bed, but we still snuggled...and that's alright with me.
Hey Unchained
It makes a nice read. Those are the good moments of life. Precious memories with your loved ones.
I really want to be content and comfortable in my skin w/o all of this "self medication".
There are so many ways in which we 'self-medicate'. Are we not wired to always be looking for a way to feel good? I think we have to learn how to self-medicate with positive and worthwhile things.

Keep up the good work and intentions.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 08, 2014, 10:08:00 AM
Made it back to three weeks...feels good.

Stayed sober last night, too. Couldn't tell you last time I didn't drink on a Friday night.  At about 2.5 days w/o a drink.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 2heal on November 08, 2014, 01:41:56 PM
unchained.  I think that's awesome.  You're conquering two at once and sounds like it's going well.  We're with you.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 08, 2014, 03:40:10 PM
Thanks 2heal.

Working on both has been making today rough.  I can definitely see that I was using more alcohol as a crutch for staying away from pmo.

Physically, I feel good.  Mentally, I am alert. Emotionally, I am aware that my feelings have been selfish and am feeling negative at the moment.  I have heard my mind ask "wonder how many new models are at your favorite sites?"

Wife just went to her sisters for a bit and took the kids.  I just finished blowing leaves off the driveway and am going for a ride.  I can be trusted alone lately and don't think I would slip, but I need to change scenery and get these thoughts out of my mind.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 09, 2014, 02:54:25 PM
Back to 22. Feeling more positive today.  Read a few success stories that gave me encouragement.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 09, 2014, 05:04:15 PM
 :) Glad to hear you're in a positive frame of mind. You're self aware which definitely makes you more alert and prepared.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 10, 2014, 11:23:38 AM
On 23...the last time I slipped on day 26.

I know my counter shows a 30 day goal.  I am actually shooting for life, but want one of those green check marks.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 10, 2014, 08:51:42 PM
I know my counter shows a 30 day goal.  I am actually shooting for life, but want one of those green check marks.
I'm shooting for life too my friend. Keep up the good work. You can go to 30 days and beyond.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 11, 2014, 09:57:00 PM
25 days when I wake up.  Going to top my previous 26 days before reset earlier in this reboot.

Successful sex with wife tonight.  Probably not much help as far as a rewire.  I understand that takes touch, love, intimacy, etc.  I asked if we could once the kids were in bed asleep.  She said "really, now? well...make it quick".  Anyway, I functioned and am much relieved.

For me, I never had a complete inability to perform.  I do think it was getting worse and probably would have become full on failure, but it usually worked.  For that reason, I am not sure what all rewiring needs to happen.  Part of me feels I need to just gain my confidence back.  Rewire to thinking my dick works.  Fear of failure has caused me to avoid sex unless I was extremely horny instead of making a move on many occasions.

That and obviously abstinence from porn so that my brain doesn't require an endless supply of hotties to get me aroused.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 12, 2014, 09:06:38 PM
Hey buddy, I'm glad to hear about the successful quicky with the wife.  8) About the confidence thing... I feel positive that your whole reboot process will be instrumental in gradually increasing your confidence. The fact that you can speak to your wife openly should also take away some performance anxiety.
...I am not sure what all rewiring needs to happen.  Part of me feels I need to just gain my confidence back...  Fear of failure has caused me to avoid sex unless I was extremely horny instead of making a move on many occasions.
You're a brave man, no need to fear failure, just give it a go.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 13, 2014, 11:45:05 AM
Back to 26 days.  Tomorrow will be 27 which is a personal best for me since I went through boot camp when I was 19.

Had a crazy dream last night. In my dream I decided it was ok to mo to magazines since it wasn't internet.  And in my dream world, it all made perfect sense. I vividly remember pictorials from the 80 ' s & 90 ' s in my dream.  I was tickled pink in my dream because I had access to "non damaging porn". I woke up glad that I hadn't really done the things I dreamed of, but was a little discouraged that my mind would come up with such a scheme...even in a dream.

It was a reminder that I must be ever vigilant.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on November 13, 2014, 12:22:59 PM
Grats on getting back to 26 days - 27 is right around the corner.

Funny what ones brain will do. 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 14, 2014, 04:43:40 PM
Wahoo.  I am at a personal best now. From today forward I am in uncharted waters.  Feels good.  The last few days have been the best since I started this reboot 54 days ago.  I actually felt normal...no anxiety or constant self evaluation.  I still came here, read some success stories & journals and even had a few bad thoughts run through my mind, but for the first time I feel like I am just living my life and not trapped inside of a porn addiction hell hole.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 14, 2014, 09:52:36 PM
Today my wife & I left for a long weekend trip for out 10th anniversary.  Tonight we had crazy good relations...and I had a bit too much to drink.  Man that is good for the ego!

Stay strong.  Some guys have seen improvements faster and some slower, but it does happen.  Guess I'm not one of those two week guys, but progress is being made.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 16, 2014, 08:53:22 AM
Reading journals and saw I am at 29.  The last couple days have been easy, but I have also had no temptations or alone time.  Feeling good, but must not let guard down.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Poker on November 16, 2014, 09:29:24 PM
I also think of VH when I see your handle.....    :)

Proud of you man....  you seem to be doing a lot better in your journey.  It really does give a guy like me hope just starting my journey.

Cheers,

p.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: savingmysoul on November 17, 2014, 07:47:00 AM
Grats on the 30 day goal!

Keep the momentum moving you to a better place.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: nobother on November 17, 2014, 12:54:13 PM
I would hate to think about how many hours/days/weeks I have wasted on porn.  It's amazing that when I was actively doing it I would tell myself "Just one or two more videos. . . ." and before long another hour or two hours is gone.

I have had a l-o-n-g history of PMO.....since high school.  Of course, back then we only had magazines and bad VHS videos.  Now it's high speed to hell with the internet.

Hope you are well and achieving your goals.  I just passed my first week without PMO (wohoo!).  It was not without difficulty.  Keep moving forward - and not look back (hard to do, I know).
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 17, 2014, 05:31:16 PM
Hi Buddy, you did it  :D 30 Days, congrats on that tick, keep going, you're doing great and inspiring us.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 17, 2014, 10:07:59 PM
Thanks guys .  Your encouragement truly means the world to me.

30 days has never been my true goal, but I wanted to hit a few mile markers along the way.  I'll bask in the glow of my check mark for a day or two and then bump it up.

I am still happy to be feeling normal again.  No superpowers...just ok with myself...that and my penis is functioning...lol.

Part of me still misses looking at naked women, I mean, what's not to like about naked women? But I realize  now that doing so damages me in many ways...physically, spiritually, marriage, time from kids work & hobbies, you name it.  At the end of the day, I still kind of miss it, but I know the things I want and treasure more are harmed by it.

I feel as though I am making progress to where I need to be.  It is not realistic to think I can live the rest of my life white knuckled resisting porn like the first week or two.  I also cannot spend all of my free time here to keep myself occupied & focused.  Those things were needed but looking forward, it has to come down to one simple little choice...my life without porn is better than my life with porn.  It is as simple as that.

Just like my life without cigarettes.  The cravings got weaker & weaker. Now, 99 out of 100 times I smell smoke it disgusts me. I don't wish to be the guy puffing away, in fact, I feel for him trapped in addiction.  But there is that occasional time it smells good.  It will probably always be that way.  My father quit smoking 5 years before I was born and he says he still misses it sometimes.  You just have to get to a place where you not only know you are better without it, but get to a place in your own mind that you aren't fighting "against" addiction any longer, but fighting "for" the better life without it.

For me...that has been the tipping point.  I feel the further I distance myself from porn, the less its gravity can pull me.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 21, 2014, 09:46:38 AM
Changed my counter from 30 day goal to 60 days.

Think I'll work harder moving forward to avoid mo.  I have drastically reduced from a couple of times a day when I was using porn to a couple of times a week in the shower.  I would like to direct all of my sexual energy toward my wife.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Accountable on November 21, 2014, 02:37:57 PM
I'm fairly new here and just spent the past little bit reading your entire journal.  Great read.  Alot of your issues sound like mine as well, which I suppose is true of most guys here.  Nice to see everyone has ups and downs and advice on how to handle each one.  Congrats on your recent success and continued good luck!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 21, 2014, 07:25:23 PM
Good luck buddy
Changed my counter from 30 day goal to 60 days.

Think I'll work harder moving forward to avoid mo.  I have drastically reduced from a couple of times a day when I was using porn to a couple of times a week in the shower.  I would like to direct all of my sexual energy toward my wife.
Soon you'll set your counter to 'eternity'  8) Commending you on your intentions. You can do it and enjoy the lasting benefits. Considered asking your wife to help with MO instead of you doing it? I don't think it will count as MO if your wife is involved. Thoughts?
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on November 21, 2014, 08:11:06 PM
Thanks for the thoughts guys.

Accountable...I am familiar with your story, too.  I read everything posted here in the old guys forum.  I wish you well, too.

Horpio...I like the way you think!  Your suggestion is funny b/c that is exactly what happened this morning.  Wife is having period.  Told her the joke about the whole theme park doesn't shut down just b/c the roller coaster isn't working.  Anyway I got a bj/hj before going to work.

I would have posted that earlier, but didn't want my journal to become posts of nothing more than me getting off.  However, I will say I am seeing improvements in many ways.  There is a long way to go for sure.  I have morning wood some days, some not.  I have had sex with wife 3 x's plus a bj in the last two weeks without any issues.  I can mo on my own and try not to think of porn (sometimes old images still pop up and are hard to chase away in the heat of the moment).  Now...if I were a single dude, I'm  not 100% sure I would be confident to pick up a lady for a hook up.  But I am relaxed with a woman who I have a 15 year history of good sex with (it doesn't hurt she's dang sexy to me and I love her in addition to the fact that I find her desirable).  I am sure that comfort helps tremendously.

Each success builds my confidence.  I believe that pied can cause performance anxiety and the two feed each other.  I remember "proving" to myself that I was ok by jerking off to porn after failing with my wife.  After learning about pied, there were enough ed instances in totality that caused a LOT of anxiety towards sex in general.  I looked at my wife and always wanted her, but dreaded and feared making a move.  That is breaking down.  I dug the hole a little deeper every day, now I am climbing out a little bit every day.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Poker on November 21, 2014, 11:19:11 PM
I am very pleased to see progress.....   it really does make it worth it.   :)

Cheers!

p.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 2heal on November 21, 2014, 11:45:02 PM
Unchained, I'm glad you're having some success.  I'm in that dreaded position you referred to.  I'm not sure how much of my problem is pied and how much is anxiety.  I know for sure there was/is pied, I'm just having trouble figuring out if any remaining issues are pied.  I had so many failures before I divorced that I know anxiety is an issue for me.  And, since I am single now, I fear getting into a relationship or even looking for a hookup, strictly for fear of failure.  I'm afraid to even test it.  It's such an embarrassment to fail.  Keep keeping on.  We want to hear about your progress.  It helps keep us motivated.  I for one think I'm going to have to get M out of my life completely.  I think it's slowing my process down. 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: rider654321 on November 23, 2014, 11:45:04 PM
Hi Unchained,
Just caught up with your posts. Glad to hear all is going well with you. Great work my friend. keep it up.

Rider
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on November 26, 2014, 12:50:10 AM
Hey buddy

Things seem to be going fine on your side. Glad to hear that. Sounds as if you have a great relationship with your wife, something to feel proud of and very grateful for. Keep on posting.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: lyon03 on November 26, 2014, 11:20:11 AM
Great post unchained. Glad to read you're reconnecting with your wife, rather than a screen. Porn kills love. Stay strong brother. We're all in this together.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on December 03, 2014, 09:35:59 PM
I need to catch up in my journal a bit tonight.  Some good, some bad...but I am in a good spot.

First, I want to thank you guys for your encouragement.  I've been here daily, but some days felt like I didn't have much to say, a couple of days I was discouraged and ashamed, and later I felt so good that I didn't want to post without catching my journal up completely.

My last post was on Friday the 21st.  The following Tuesday I was cruising along nicely...feeling normal, my anxiety had pretty much disappeared, confidence on the return...all things well.  Work was light late in the day and I was feeling nostalgic.  I decided to see if I could locate and possibly contact a few old Navy buddies I haven't seen in 20 years.  So, I found one name on a LinkedIn account, but his photo was tiny and the info was limited b/c I dont have an account.  I don't care for social media, but thought, "what the heck?" & registered for an account.  Once I made an account & logged on, the sight brought up links to dozens of people I know.  I assume the computer sees into my browsing history...deleted & otherwise, because among those shown was a nude model in Europe I had Googled in the past.  When I saw her link...I got tunnel vision.

In that instant, I forgot all else. I left the site & googled her name for photos.  Before I go too far, I'd like to clarify that I didn't PMO, but it wasn't much better.  I was like a starving man, who after walked across the desert without food & water stumbled across an all-you-can-eat buffet.  I endulged.  I wish I didn't, but I did.  I looked for a long time, horny as hell.  I made up my mind (in a crazy stupid way) to mo later, but not while looking at the porn. Eventually, I had to leave and shut off my computer.  I was on my way to the bathroom to MO....stopped in my tracks and said loudly "fuck no!" & went home in that instant.

I felt like shit.  I felt like maybe I should reset my counter even though I stopped before falling off the cliff.  At the same time, I felt some accomplishment in backing away from the edge.  Even still, I was kicking myself for having to back away.  The best way to keep ones self from falling off the cliff is to stay away from the edge.  In fact, don't even go within a freaking mile of the cliff...then it is of no danger...

Ugh...that is what I wrestled with most of last week.  By the weekend, I began to feel easy in my skin again.  I had successful relations with the wife again on Saturday and Sunday.  The last few days have been great.  I've read many posts that there are ups & downs...that is for dang sure.

It still bugs me that I was weak enough to tempt myself & view porn early last week, but I am in a positive mindset at the moment.  I know my actions didn't honor my wife, my family or myself, but I am definitely in a better place than I was a few months ago.  I have gone from 1-2 pmo's daily to 1 PMO in over 70 days followed by a porn session without MO.  Yep, those 2 slips aren't perfect, but I am a work in progress...moving forward and getting better.  So far this week, porn hasn't crossed my mind....no bs.

Oh, I believe and have mentioned in posts here and to others that I believe pied leads to performance anxiety.  One feeds the other.  It is also true that success builds success.  Since having good sex with the wife, my confidence has rebounded and I am more aggressive in making a move.  Thankfully, my wife is pretty much always receptive.  I feel confident, so I try more.  I get (and give) more, which makes me more confident, so I am eager to go for it again.

I know those of us here have entirely different situations & hopes regarding quitting porn.  I hope to walk away from the porn addiction that has effected my thoughts & actions for 25+ years as well as stop the pied that popped up rather recently.  I want a mind free of porn (pure as possible after all of the garbage I have allowed in) and a healthy and loving sexual relationship with my wife.  On both accounts, I am infinitely closer than I was at the end of September.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: lyon03 on December 04, 2014, 12:28:20 AM
Thanks for your honest and heartfelt post. You stared down the beast...and won! This is a victory. We spend our entire lives feeding this addiction. We then have to cut it out, day by day, hour by hour. This is both painful and rewarding. So inevitably things pop up, like your model, and trigger us. I'd come back to the above post every time you feel an urge. Remember how much shame you felt when looking at porn and as this will help to stop. Unlike most guys on this website, it sounds like you have a supportive wife who still enjoys sex...CHERISH THAT! Why then focus on your limp noodle? Don't focus so much on your d*ck. You can give her the world's strongest orgasm without ever using your penis. Once I let go of my d*ck obsession, I had the most intimate sex ever. I'm rooting for you. Stay strong. PORN IS NOT AN OPTION.   
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 2heal on December 04, 2014, 06:40:37 PM
It's posts like this that helps me.  It helps me realize I'm not alone in this struggle.  We have our good days and we have are bad days.  The important thing is that you get back on track and carry on.  Yeah, you may have looked at a little porn, but you had the wherewithal to hold back from the MO too.  In the past, you would have given in.  That shows your progress.  I'm glad you're beating this thing.  You're going to make it!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on December 05, 2014, 09:53:43 PM
Thanks Lyon & 2heal.

Lyon, you are right.  I do have a great wife who is all i could hope for in a spouse.  Without a doubt, having her in my life has made this and all other aspects of my life better.  She is truly a gift to me from God.  I need to not only remember that, but also accept the responsibility that was entrusted to me by Him to be a good husband to her.  I am completely familiar with your situation...from post 1 to now.  I hope you find a love that empowers you to to be the best person you can be, but also gives you a sense of comfort and ease.  I have that....always have, but MY actions because of MY addiction has hidden that from me.  Thanks be to God that it I did not loose it forever.

2heal...thanks for your comment.  I have gained tremendously from the lessons learned from guys I admired being honest about their mistakes.  I love success stories and they motivate me, but my path has not been perfect and when I see others keep going after trips and falls it keeps me going, too.  Rider has been here less frequently lately, but he and I f'd up right at the same time when he was around 60 days and I was about 26.  Those 1st couple weeks were so difficult and he was one I followed & looked up to a lot (still do).  I was crushed when I slipped and didn't even want to come here.  A couple days later I came to the nation and saw him say he caved.  Now, I am not saying that I am glad he slipped because I hope every single person here succeeds, but his honesty motivated me to step back up to the plate, admit my own failure, but more importantly put it behind me and carry on...ever forward.

I'm embarrassed for my behavior last week.  At the same time, I am proud that I walked away when I never could have done so before...it's not perfect, but I hope my situation may help the "me" from before. Hopefully that person may see that while it's not the ideal to mess up, it's not the end of the world either.  Just keep making progress.  Two steps forward and one step back is better than no steps forward....

...having said that, I am aiming for two steps forward, no steps back...for eternity.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on December 07, 2014, 05:34:18 PM
You are doing great Unchained. On 50 days now :D Keep on posting and we'll keep on reading and drawing inspiration from your story.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on December 12, 2014, 09:17:54 PM
Feeling good this week.  Mostly just life happening, work, kids, etc.

I must be honest in what initially motivated me to attempt to quit pmo, it was what I believe to be pied.  It wasn't a constant companion, but happened enough to cause me tremendous anxiety.  Previously, my entire life was focused on my dick, whether watching porn or having sex with my wife.  I enjoyed both...frequently...and felt like I was impotent when I had failures with her.

I am now thankful that porn addiction leads to pied, because if it didn't, I would never have decided to quit.  I am/was a selfish enough person that had there been no physical consequences, I would still be mired in the same behavior.   The attempt fix my dick has improved my life so much more.

The big things we discuss here seem to be coming true.  I am having more frequent sex with the wife and I LOVE that.  I feel closer to her, not just b/c the sex, but we are more engaged. It helps I don't waste 2-3 hours a day looking at porn, but I now go to bed when she does, we talk before going to sleep.  I don't spend my mornings in the bathroom with my laptop. I get ready and have time for her before starting my day.  We don't live a romance novel by any means, but we communicate better about things big and small.

Two months ago, that would have been all I hoped for.  However, I've discovered something far greater.  I no longer feel enslaved.  I no longer feel the miserable anxiety after a day without porn.  It still haunts me, but I feel free of the chains.  There is a long road ahead, but my days are not spent in constant wander of whether there is some model out there I haven't seen nudie yet.  I feel free...I feel ok to just live my normal day, and while the demons are there at times, they are quieter than they have been since I was just a boy.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on December 13, 2014, 09:20:59 PM
Wow! That's a great, encouraging, inspirational and positive post buddy. You are truly becoming unchained. Good to hear about the improved relationship with your wife and the effort you put into that.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: lyon03 on December 14, 2014, 03:10:55 AM
What a wonderful and heartfelt post. Thank you for sharing. I've learned something today. PMO is an addiction, addicts are self-centred, and our d*ck obsessions are simply an extension of this negative self-centredness, shame, and guilt. Once we give over to others, like our wives, magically the wood performs because you are having meaningful sex with your brain/soul rather than just your penis. Stay strong. PORN IS NOT AN OPTION. 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Poker on December 14, 2014, 11:30:28 PM
That was an amazing post. Very inspiring.  :)

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: tryinghard46 on December 17, 2014, 03:07:47 PM
I've read through you're 2 months of recovery and I'm excited to hear if you're at day 60 and all's still good?  I just started recovery today. I'm 46 and started porn around 11, I'm not sure if I can do it or not.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on December 17, 2014, 05:51:49 PM
Hi Tryinghard
Of course you can do it. We're here to support you. Good luck on your journey, it's a worthwhile one.

I've read through you're 2 months of recovery and I'm excited to hear if you're at day 60 and all's still good?  I just started recovery today. I'm 46 and started porn around 11, I'm not sure if I can do it or not.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on December 17, 2014, 10:48:53 PM
Hey guys.  Thanks for your posts.  All of your encouragement helps keep me focused on being a better person.

Tryinghard...live up to your namesake and you will not fail.  In the distance is a finish line.  It may be a long way, but it's not out of site.  I hope you never stumble and fall (as I have fallen), but if you do...look FORWARD to the end goal, get up...then walk...then jog...then run toward the finish line again.  Never let what happened last year, last week or yesterday keep you from focusing on the finish line.

Personally, I have felt very unsure of myself lately.  I feel like I am in a state of transition and it may last a while.  If you have read my journal from the start, you'll know that I have ocd tendencies and porn was a huge part of my life.  Porn withdrawal caused tremendous anxiety for me.  That has (thankfully) eased over the last few weeks.  My unease comes from the fact that I am getting better, I suppose.  The best way I know to describe what I am feeling is that it seems I am letting my guard down.  At some point, it has to happen.  I can't live the rest if my life focused on not focusing on porn.  In some way, that keeps the thought of porn alive.

It's a tough spot.  It's like holding onto the bicycle seat with your child learning to ride.  When do you let go?  Too soon and it's a crash...never let go and they will always be dependent.  Me...I suppose that I need to be peddling on my own, but still need a guiding hand two inches from the seat running alongside of me...all you dads who have had kids know exactly what I mean.

For me, the guiding hand is this forum.  Your comments encourage and stabilize me when I wobble. Some day, I hope to break free, pedal hard and not look back.  However, I realize that I am not ready to leave behind my safety net just yet.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: lyon03 on December 18, 2014, 01:27:43 AM
Ahhh self-doubt. I think it's when you change but feel disconnected from your life because your circumstances haven't changed. This reminds me of the summer of 1990. I had just come back from a life-changing summer in Europe. I had learned a new language, worked in the Alps, rock climbed, lost my virginity, learned to scuba dive in the Med, and generally had an amazing time. I flew home bursting with happiness and ready to share these experiences with my friends/family. Cut to the family kitchen. I got about 60 seconds into my story when my mom cut me off. "Look at these t-shirts I just bought on our trip to Florida." No one really cared.

I guess that while you've gone through a complete transformation, you're still living the same life. This can be disappointing. But WE all understand what you're going through. Just because we don't get a big, gold 'PORN FREE' star doesn't mean you haven't made progress.

Keep posting and keep going brother. While the other people in your life may not understand the full transformation, WE all do. Stay strong. PORN IS NOT AN OPTION.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Poker on December 18, 2014, 11:32:06 PM
I want you to look at this way.....   this problem is totally fixable.  Totally and completely.   And.... its also breakable again.  Do not put yourself through this incredible process of getting better and rewiring, only to throw it away down the road.....

Cheers,

p.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: horpio on December 23, 2014, 12:22:18 AM
Hi Unchained
For me, there is nothing wrong with having to keep the safety net. It might be prudent. 
Look at trapeze artists for example. They always have a safety net. And even with a safety net there is still the possibility that they can fall awkwardly onto the net and still get hurt. 

A positive spin-off of staying within the safety net of this forum is that it gives us the opportunity to support others because we've been there, we're rebooters ourselves.

When I joined the forum, I was on here every day and even more than once a day. It was like oxygen to me. But when the 'novelty' wore off, I realized that I was still the one who had to deal with my everyday stuff. I couldn't be on the forum constantly. I had to carry on with my life.

While great to know that there is a safety net, I think it helps us grow legs to face our challenges on our own. I still both want to and need to check in regularly as it firstly keeps me on track and secondly because I feel a responsibility towards the community.

All the best to you. I can't get into your shoes regarding ocd. I can only sympathize.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 24, 2015, 09:10:43 AM
Hey...I'm back.  I need the accountability of this forum to help me stay on track.  At about 60 days or so I slipped.  After that, I slowly fell back into my old habits.  At first, it was once a week, then twice, then eventually most every day.

I have managed a few 4 or 5 day abstinence streaks, but my devotion was only half hearted and only lasted a short while.

I've got more to share, but for now I just needed to get a first post out there....I've been putting it off.  I keep telling myself "I'll get back on track tomorrow".  Well, tomorrow is today.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on April 24, 2015, 09:31:57 AM
Glad you came back Unchained. You can do 1 week, then 30 days, then 60 days again, whatever you`re comfortable with. From there you will be all the more wiser because you`ve been there before. Peace brother.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: sodonewithit on April 24, 2015, 09:37:36 AM
Coming back is a far better option than staying away.  Everyone here understands and isn't judging so it's just good to see you using the support.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 25, 2015, 09:51:59 PM
Today was good. I stayed busy pretty much all day. I spent this afternoon helping a buddy lift his Jeep.

My usual pmo routine is first thing in the morning.  This morning I woke up horny for porn.  I was awake a good 2 hours before the wife and kids and spent the time here reading journals.

I quit posting in December and it is amazing how many new guys are here.  I suppose that is good and bad.  It is sad just how many guys find themselves addicted to porn, but the good is that many are finding sites like this for support.

Once again I find myself disappointed in my behavior, but I am optomistic about the future. I feel calm in this attempt knowing what to expect. In the past, it was success that tripped me up.  Things were going great and I would slip up...maybe I got over confident. This time I don't want free of porn to make my dick work...I want free of porn to make my life work.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on April 26, 2015, 07:38:50 PM
You have the right attitude Unchained. You're best days are ahead of you as you leave porn behind. For some reason restoration is sweeter than never needing to be restored.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 27, 2015, 06:09:54 AM
Still doing well. This morning marks 4 days.  I have had a few urges, but no real anxiety yet. For that I am glad.

Previously, my only real withdrawal symptom was extreme anxiety. I'm beginning to wonder how much of that was in my head...I tend to be a worrier.  At the moment I feel quite at ease.

Today I get to skip work b/c my daughter has a field trip & I am going along.  Parents drive separate from the bus and it is at least an hour drive, so I plan to listen to Gabe's videos while I drive.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 27, 2015, 09:02:29 PM
I had a great day today!

I live in East Tennessee in one of the most beautiful parts  of the world.  Springtime is incredible here.  Today I accompanied my daughter on a school field trip to the mountains and we had a wonderful time.  Since I took the whole day off work, this afternoon I worked in my lawn and listened to audio from Gary, Gabe & Noah and it kept me positive & optimistic all day long.

My previous attempts always had a more "white-knuckled" feel to them, some more than others.  I know 4 days isn't incredible, but I feel good.  Maybe there is a tinge of anxiety, but completely manageable...at least so far.  At the moment I feel like my porn addiction is/was a great big bag of shit.  I carried it around on my back since I was about 12-13 years old.  I set it down again almost 5 days ago and my goal is to get as far away from that bag of shit as I can.  In getting away from porn addiction, distance is time.  The biggest distance I can fathom is forever.  For now, its one day at a time…whatever it takes.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 28, 2015, 12:54:56 PM
Feeling some withdrawals today...not too bad, but a bit uncomfortable.  At work I am stuck behind a desk which makes it worse.  I feel slightly anxious and my head is a little swimmy...kind of like the way I feel when hung over, but after the headache is gone.

I'll remain optomistic.  It is easier to feel that way this time around, because I know it's temporary.  My first attempt was very difficult because I had no idea how long withdrawal would last or how bad it would get.

Since I fell off the wagon, my pmo sessions were relatively short...a half hour or so.  I don't know if that will make a difference in withdrawal symptoms.  Before I would edge and keep my dopamine levels through the roof for hours at a time.  Hopefully my brain won't scream as hard this time.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 29, 2015, 03:19:19 PM
Another decent day so far.  Porn cravings are pretty mild, but I feel a tension building from a lack of o.

I've had successful sex with wife pretty regularly since October.  At that time I was about 3 weeks into my 1st reboot. Even during my Jan-mid April relapse we were still having regular sex. I had a failure two weeks ago (but I did get it up later that day for sex) which got my attention and caused me to recommit to my reboot.

I'm a little anxious to try right now, but would really like some sex. Part of me says to wait and part of me feels I should go for it. 
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: sodonewithit on April 29, 2015, 07:21:51 PM
My own thoughts on sex are positive as I believe the clear separation between a warm woman and a cold screen is what I need.  I've found myself wanting it more but I'm not sure if it's the hit, the comfort or the sex.  Nonetheless it can't hurt and itis a better ioption than the other.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 30, 2015, 07:24:33 AM
Made it back to a full week...wahoo!  Feels good. I made up my mind that I will stay positive in this process and will celebrate even small successes.

My PMO habit was usually first thing in the morning.  I would grab my laptop and head to the bathroom.  I now come here.  I keep having relapse dreams right before I wake up.  It's happened at least the last 4 mornings.  I know not to hold myself accountable for the dreams, but it sure would be nice if they would stop.  I suppose my brain has been conditioned for its porn dopamine fix when I get out of bed and is acting like the dog who salivates to the sound of a bell.  It's time for some retraining I reckon.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on April 30, 2015, 09:41:23 AM
I didn't mention this earlier this morning b/c I was afraid I may chicken out, but I decided today to take the plunge and try the whole cold shower bit.   If you haven't heard it before, check out the following link to Gary Wilson's radio show.  His conversation is not completely about porn recovery, but it is still interesting:

http://archive.org/download/Cyber20130409/cyber20130409.mp3 (http://archive.org/download/Cyber20130409/cyber20130409.mp3)

Anyway, I tried it and the after affects are quite impressive.  I must admit that I kind of eased into things. I started the shower cooler than what was comfortable and cleaned up real quick.  After that I kept turning the water colder and colder until it was as cold as it would go.  It was so cold it took my breath away at moments and I had to step away from the water.  After a moment, I decided to force myself to stay in the stream for one minute, so I counted to 60 very, very slowly.  At first, it was almost painful.  By the time I got to 50, I started counting even slower.  I was almost feeling "fuck you cold water, I'm a man!".  What a rush!

On a side note, I really love to laugh.  Humor is what helps me through the day.  If you want to see something really funny, you need to check out the appearance of an already shriveled flatline dick after you get out of a freezing cold shower...quite humorous indeed.

In the past, the shower has tripped me up on more than one occasion.  I'm not dead set against MO, but it always eventually led me back to P.  I can tell you that stroking my dick was the last thing on my mind in freezing water.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 01, 2015, 05:05:59 PM
Did the cold shower again this morning.  I think I'll keep it up for a while.  It really is amazing how it makes you feel.  I feel more positive, awake, energetic...but mostly ALIVE.  My anxiety is also tons less.

I have avoided any and all sexual imagery for the last 8.5 days.  I won't even look at ads in the Sunday paper. For me it is not just porn, but anything sexual.  I've not mo'd to a bikini pic since I was 12-13, heck something like that wouldn't stand a chance to get me hard.  I need much more explicit material than that.  However, mild stuff gets my mind going and the next thing you know I would be craving porn.  Then it becomes a wrestling match that I sometimes win, sometimes loose.  At best, I end up anxious and unhappy...at worst, I dig my hole of addiction deeper.

I am positive that, once again, a week of porn didn't kill me.  I know the results that will soon come and am at peace with the fact that some healing may take time.  I have a supportive wife.  That means a lot, but she doesn't truly understand what it takes to break this addiction....how could she?

I feel like I have more to say, but one finger typing on a phone sucks.  Besides, it's Friday night and I'm getting off work.  Think I'll get something for the grill and few cold beers.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 02, 2015, 06:54:51 PM
Unchained, your posts are funny and informative. I´m still too chicken to do the cold showers but I hope to man up and make them a regular part of my routine.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 02, 2015, 09:46:07 PM
Thanks for the reply Chile. You should try the cold shower sometime. Guys have posted about it in their journals, but I was always afraid to try.  It does seem to help improve optimism, reduce anxiety and pretty much lasts all day long.

Today was a great day. I got up early and was working on the lawn by 8:30 (I usually drag my butt  around the house on Saturdays).  I came in from mowing and BAM!...the wife was getting out of the shower.  I promise not to throw out any unintentional triggers, but I have been like a monk on this reboot, no peeps, no peeks, no thoughts that I let linger and I honestly kind of hoped to avoid something like this for a bit.  However I was functional and am quite happy to report good sex.

If that set me back...so be it.  I have since felt great all day.  Felt good about myself, felt good to be intimate with my wife...just felt great all around. I am well aware of the chaser (been bit by it before), but if it comes knocking tomorrow, I'll just have to spend a little more quality time with the wife.

I've been listening to all of Gary Wilson's radio shows.  They (all 30 something of them) are available at yourbrainonporn.com.  I am a devout Christian and truly believe in the power of prayer and in the faith that God can see us through all things. In this moment it helps me to focus on the science.  I tend to see things logically. It helps to know, learn & understand the brain changes that have taken place.  It helps provide the tools and understanding needed to combat withdrawal from porn addiction.  From there, I rely on faith that God will give me strength to conquer any trials I may have, as well as His faithfulness to see me through and the grace to forgive me for the mess that I caused in the first place.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 02, 2015, 09:58:31 PM
Good sex with the wife helps to re-wire your brain for healthy dopamine. Real sex becomes becomes better than pixel sex once again. It´s part of the recovery process and totally worth any chaser effect you might have to deal with. I´m glad you appreciate the science aspect and don´t discount the spiritual side of things. I´m going to give myself a goal of trying the cold showers before the month is over.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 05, 2015, 07:04:34 AM
If anyone has read back through my journal, you'll know that I feel like I have slight OCD tendencies (never diagnosed).  Most anything that is in my life that I attach any importance to, I focus on it 100% and end up becoming a walking encyclopedia on the subject.  I've been that way most of my life.  Sports, hobbies, porn, whatever it was...in the old days, I would amass a library of books & magazines and memorize anything I could regarding the interest.  Now, of course, we have internet sites for everything under the sun as well as forums on every topic that I can read and learn even more.  Because of that personality trait and how porn works in the brain in all people, I was literally addicted to porn from the first time I saw it.  I was porn's perfect addict.

Now, the current focus of my attention (aside from learning about how addiction affects the brain) is lawn care…yes lawn care.  My wife and I built a new home in 2013 and I want a lawn like a golf course, maybe better.  Anyway, I've spent the last year immersed in professional lawn care forums, sate university agricultural sites, etc learning about how to achieve what I am looking for and have learned something about grass that also applies to the brain.  One can waste a lot of energy trying to eliminate weeds.  And while it may be appropriate to pull or poison weeds when you see them, the best prevention for weeds is to have a thick turf to begin with.  The better the turf, the less chance a weed can become established to begin with.  It is the same with your brain.  Keep it occupied and full with good, and the bad (porn thoughts) will appear less often and individual weeds here and there are easy to deal with.  You have to deal with the bad thoughts, but if you don't keep your mind occupied, keeping all of the bad thoughts plucked can be overpowering.  My goal is to focus on making my thoughts good, thus choking out the bad rather than staying so focused on fighting the bad all day…now, if I could just get it full of good quickly enough to prevent any weed growth, lol.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 05, 2015, 07:39:10 AM
The lawn analogy is an awesome lesson for today Unchained. Thanks!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 05, 2015, 11:17:06 AM
The lawn analogy is an awesome lesson for today Unchained. Thanks!

Analogies have always helped me get my hands around bigger issues.

I have been wondering recently just how much PMO has played into my personality and who I have become as a person.  When I read from others about how ocd, concentration problems, social anxieties, lack of motivation & drive, irritability, etc can all be caused or worsened by constant PMO, I am truly curious who I will be when I come out the other side.  It's funny, but this journey started because of a limp dick, but my motivation is focused on so many other positive aspects of recovery right now.  Don't get me wrong...a nice hard stiffie in the wife is pretty good, too.  It will be great when I know I can 100% count on it to be there for me and not have any anxiety about the possibility of PIED.

Anyway, I discovered my first porno mag at 7 and was completely blown away.  I knew right away that I liked what I saw, but at that time knew nothing about MO.  From then I would occasionally happen across a mag at a friend's house.  By 12, I had amassed an impressive collection and even found my 1st porno VHS.  The neighborhood kids would get off the bus at my house and we would all sit around and watch it, girls and guys all amazed at what we were watching.  It was a John Holmes flick without sound.  It wasn't until 13 that I discovered MO to to along with my P...and holy cow was that great!

Since then I have not been without PMO for any length of time aside from when I was in boot camp which was just over 9 weeks.  There may have been a week or two here and there along the way, but the streaks would not have been long enough to break any type of addiction.  I think I probably realized I was addicted at around 22 (I'll be 41 later this month).  At that time, it was still magazines, but I was hooked just as bad as guys are today to internet porn.  After a day or two of no PMO, I would experience tremendous anxiety.  By age 23 in 1997 I got the internet and it only go worse from there.  Looking back, there were so many signs that I can now clearly see.  I was / am a social person and never went without a girlfriend for long.  I always managed to have relationships with girls & later women who were very attractive.  Even if I was having daily sex I would still have anxiety if I didn't use P.  In college, I would stay up and PMO after having sex with my girlfriend (actually I continued to do the same thing all the way up until now).  There were several failed attempts to quit in my 20's and I realized that I was addicted, but there didn't seem to be any other issues so I decided to just live with the secret.

Sorry this has taken so long, but I cannot see any possible way that PMO hasn't altered who I have been all throughout my life.  I have been a slave to the selfish behavior and constant impure thoughts that porn causes.  It has surely affected the way I saw every woman I have had any contact with for my entire life.  It has taken time, energy, money.  It has ended relationships.  Looking back, my views of what a woman should look like and how she should behave have caused relationships to end and have kept some from even starting because of my insane expectations.  I wanted a girl who could match what P gave me.  It was impossible.  Heck, what I wanted was so varied from day to day, or even session to session many times a day...think I'm in the mood for a tall thin brunette to satisfy me, maybe a big boobed blonde or a redhead whose small chested with a big butt...this time around I want petite Asian, no a tall Asian, a black girl big then small, Arabic, a barely legal 18 year old then a 40+ lady who looks like she could be your next door neighbor...it goes on and on forever...never ending.  It is a carousel that refuses to stop, so I'm jumping off the mother f'ing piece of life crushing sh**.  I have to.  It will never let me off on its own.  It has to be my choice.  It has to be through my actions and commitment to do the hard work.  I want to see for the first time in my life how this world around me appears without looking through the fog of porn.  What a realization...never in my life since being 7 have I been truly been free from the mind poisoning world of porn.

For those of you who have not, I would highly recommend the videos & audio at yourbrainonporn.com.  It's one thing to read a success story, but hearing it makes it more real.  The stuff Gary, Gabe, Noah & others put out there is tremendously inspirational.  I know from their accounts and others they have on the broadcasts along with them that a man's body will not explode if it goes without O for a short, or even a very long time.  I used to think that no MO was an impossibility and was trying to stay away from P, but continue to MO, which made things increasingly difficult.  My previous reboot attempts have been a fight between me and porn.  I was convinced that my sexual urges preceeded my thoughts of P.  Basically, I was thinking that my body needs sexual relief and then the P thoughts would creep in.  That's really not how it works.  It is the brain trying to force the P in.  In the end, that is what the brain wants.  It wants dopamine and it knows that it will get it from P, so it begs, pleads, screams, has temper tantrums, lies, reasons...whatever it takes.

I am not even worried about my body at the moment.  My dick is still there and goes where I go.  Aside from that, I don't think about it.  The focus has to be the brain.  The path seems so simple to me at the moment that I feel like a fool for not seeing it before.  Tons of people have successfully broken the addiction to porn.  Some wrestled and fought their way through, some have prayed their way through, some have found help in therapy or accountability partners, some guys are lucky enough to just put it down and walk away.  At the end of the day, it is simply just finding a way to distance yourself from the porn.  Do that for long enough and the addiction breaks down.  Unfortunately, I can't drop porn and run a safe distance from in in a moment.  I've said it before...distance from porn is time.  For me, I see it as a mile a day and at the moment I'd like to get 100 miles away.  So, because I will make it to my 100 mile goal even if I have to crawl through broken glass to get there and since I prefer pleasure to pain, I have made up my mind to pursue a path of positive thinking, optimism, positive reinforcement, basically anything I can do to make this process not hurt.  Posting here helps.  Reading about the addiction process helps.  Listening to experts helps.   Reading & hearing success stories helps.

Oh, you guys have got try the cold showers.  It sounds crazy, but I am convinced that they have 100%, without a doubt, made a difference in the first two weeks of this reboot.  There is science behind it.  Porn addiction destroys dopamine receptors.  When you quit porn, your dopamine drops tremendously.  Combine low dopamine with few receptors and we all feel like crap.  The science indicates that cold showers awaken and stimulate your dopamine receptors, which makes your body react to the dopamine that is still in there.  Essentially, it makes you feel good.  It makes you feel positive.  It removes the anxiety that your brain causes as it sits there starving for dopamine.  Like I said, whatever I can do to make the process less painful is what I am all about.  I am happy to take a 5 minute cold shower in discomfort when it truly makes me feel great the whole day long.

Sorry for the long and rambling post, but my brain feels electrified today.  I have thoughts and feelings coming at me from every direction.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 05, 2015, 02:20:17 PM
Still trying to work up the courage for the cold showers. Yeah, porn makes us want something different all the time, and all of it fake. Reality can never satisfy with our brains cooked on it. Stay focused and you'll get to your 100-mile point in another 3 months. That's a pretty good deal to remove decades worth of porn-induced dopamine.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Rocket on May 05, 2015, 08:54:04 PM
I actually tried the cold shower thing last night.  It works pretty well.  I took a normal hot shower, then before I shut it off, I blasted it on cold for about 30 seconds.  It actually works as a feel good type of thing.  I know the old adage of "you are horny, go take a cold shower" isn't really what it's about.  It doesn't make you less wanting sex.  It just puts you in a better mood for some physical reason due to the cold receptors on your skin hitting your brain.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 05, 2015, 09:57:18 PM
Hi Chile.  Been reading your journal and glad you had a good trip.  Sorry it was so dang hot, maybe January would be a good time to make a trip there.

Rocket, glad you tried the cold shower.  I am convinced it helps…so much so I hope we can start a movement within the old timers conqueror PMO world.  It is no joke it makes the whole day better.  I don't start hot, but wash up just colder than luke warm.  I try to keep it less than comfortable, but tolerable so that I wash well. After that, I turn it down until it makes me shiver and kind of takes my breath. I leave it there and keep track of time…started at 1 minute, then 1:30, now 2 minutes, then I turn it as cold as it goes and stay about about 30 more seconds.  It is exhilarating….not bad like you would think, but empowering.

You are 100% right that it has nothing to do with the old tale of killing your sex drive…though it may temporarily squash sex thoughts in dick shriveling water...it has everything to do with the mindset that "I am a man an can do anything I set my mind to do!!!"
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 05, 2015, 10:42:18 PM
You really are unchained. Go for broke man!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 06, 2015, 10:08:34 AM
Thanks Chile.

I cannot say for sure what is going on in my brain or why, but I've had a sense of true optimism this whole week.  I've felt a boost in energy, almost too muck like I've drank too much coffee or something.  At the same time, late in the day I feel a tinge of anxiety and the least bit of a headache.  It doesn't really hurt, but I can feel pressure.

During this reboot, I have not let my mind sit idle.  I don't even listen to music in my car.  I stream the audio  / video from ybop and listen intently.  I watch little to no tv.  I've decided it is basically junk food for the brain.  In the evening, I'll catch up on the news & then look to see if anything that would truly engage me is on.  If not, I shut it off and come here or one of the other sites or forums and read.  I am trying not to let me brain sit bored and watch or listen to things on autopilot, because that is when PMO thoughts pop into my head.

Gotta keep my brain occupied with good stuff to keep bad stuff out...a thick full turf is the best defense against weeds taking root

Tomorrow marks two weeks and I'm 14 miles away from porn
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: notgivinup on May 06, 2015, 10:13:34 AM
unchained....glad to read about you successes. I'm glad you are feeling the boost today. It's great to have a good day. It helps the journey.

I also wanted to say thank you for your encouraging words to me lately. Thank you.

I will 2nd the cold shower thing. It does actually boost energy. I have done it every day except one since this past January. I know what's coming when I turn it on full cold...as cold as it will get...and it takes my breath away. But, I know it's doing good things for my body and my reboot.

Thanks again for staying on this journey. I know that you are going to make it out of this. I know that we are going to successfully give up pmo and find new life. You are already experiencing it.

Thanks again.

NGU
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 06, 2015, 12:53:13 PM
I am so glad to see you filling your mind with substance and eliminating the mindless junk. Mindless junk is different for everyone, but most would agree that television is oftentimes an instrument to dumb ourselves down and be exposed to porn triggers. Movies usually have the same effect on me, but for others they can be a valid form of relaxation. You're doing awesome man.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 07, 2015, 06:33:07 AM
2 weeks ago at this moment I was loafing my mule to pictures of women i will never meet.  Now I am communing with a group of guys who i will likely never meet and who, like me, are attempting to not loaf ones mule to women we'll never meet...funny

Been thinking of why I f'd up after 2 months of sobriety.  It wasn't stress, problems, loneliness, anger, boredom or anything I can directly point to, sad to say. I simply went back because I liked it. Maybe I thought I was cured and could handle it or had a nice long streak and deserved a treat. That reminded me of a story I heard somewhere a while back:


Treating yourself to porn as a way to reward yourself for staying away from porn is like working all day to clean your house and then rewarding yourself for your hard work by dumping your trash bags all over the nice, clean house.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 07, 2015, 11:14:56 AM
I was thinking about a realization that I had early is this reboot and decided to share it.  Hopefully, things I have come to realize from my past mistakes may make someone else's journey easier.

You are not having to battle on multiple fronts.  I previously believed that I had a mental addiction to porn as well as a need to masturbate.  After a few days, I would be in agony for "relief", so I would masturbate.  Of course, it became impossible to keep P thoughts out of my head in a MO session.  I had the mistaken belief that lack of MO was unobtainable, so I really never tried to stop.  The perceived need to MO was just one of my brains tricks to keep the P alive.  So, the P would be there in my head.  I would feed it, so it would keep popping up.  The "need" to MO is bs.  It is just your brain trying to get the camel's nose under the tent.  DO NOT believe the bs.  All you have to do is walk away from porn.  Put distance between yourself and porn.  Let it die from your consciousness.

When I used to try to MO without P, I was in a constant state of fighting it.  Even if I didn't give in to temptation, it was still there with me.  You see, the goal is to get away from porn...to leave it...to walk AWAY from it.  You cannot succeed if you are constantly fighting it.  If you are fighting it, it is right there along side of you.  You don't want porn to be along side of you, you want it as far away as possible.  Think of yourself as a boxer in the ring and the other boxer is porn.  You may be winning each round, but you are still having to fight.  Hell, if you stay in the ring, he may even win a few rounds or knock your ass out.  Maybe you get up again and win a few rounds yourself, but the point is you are always in this struggle, always fighting, he's always right there with you.  I suppose I've won a few rounds myself, and I've lost plenty too.  The thing is, he's an opponent that will never be ko'd.  He will always get up and fight.  It will never end.  Me...I've decided I'm not interested in the fight.  I'm not interested in beating porn.  I'm out.  I'm slipping through the ropes, taking off my gloves and walking away.  I decided to not even wait until the end of the next round.  I'm out...my back is to the ring.  Fuck him.  The only way to win is to not fight.  He no longer has a place in my consciousness.  I am not going to drag this fight through the rest of my life.  It is over, done with, kaput.

That visualization has made this reboot so vastly different from my previously attempts.  Sure, my brain is causing some withdrawal symptoms, I feel them.  Low dopamine levels for a bit won't kill me and I know it is temporary.  I know I have only one focus, and that is to keep my back to porn and keep walking.  The MO urge is just a trick.  Listening to guys who go 90+ days, even 9+ months without MO helped me understand that the "need" to O is just lie from the brain to get you back in the ring with P.  This may sound crazy, but once you understand MO is not truly a part of the fight...it's off the table, your only focus...the only thing that is really antagonizing you is PORN.  That's it.

So I was thinking about this and remembered when I was in my late 20's and had decided to quit smoking.  When I decided it was time to quit, I knew there were two separate issues to address, the mental addiction as well as the physical addiction to nicotine.  Together, they can be one tough opponent, so I went to the pharmacist and asked what is the strongest thing they can give me without a prescription.  He suggested the Nicoderm patch, so I bought them and off I went.

I'm sorry for being a long winded schmuck, but bear with me, I find this story entertaining.  Anyway, it came with patches, a booklet and an audio tape.  I listened to the tape which talked about addiction, all about how to use the patches and some motivational stuff.  I remember it saying that if you smoke 1st thing in the morning, you may want to wear a patch to bed at night so that you would have some nicotine in your system when you wake up.  That way, the cravings wouldn't be so bad when you got out of bed.  I was a heavy smoker at the time.  Heck, I would light up before turning off the alarm.  After my 1st smoke, I'd immediately light the next and smoke it in he shower.  The 3rd while I got ready and then at least one more on my way to school...and it would still be 7:30 in the morning.  I felt it would be wise to wear the highest dosage patch to bed at night.  So, after a few days into quitting, I thought I was going crazy...and this is 100% no shit.  I woke up two days in a row completely naked, sweating like a pig, crawling in the floor of my bedroom.  My dreams were insane and I thought I was loosing it.  I was convinced that quitting was going to be too difficult & was about to give up on the whole idea of quitting, but decided to listen to the tapes again.  When I re-listened to the tape, I heard something that I missed the 1st time.  It said that if you decide to wear the patch at night, to be aware that some people experience "overly vivid dreams".

So...I was still on track to quit smoking, just no patch at night.  The very next morning I woke with horrendous nicotine withdrawals.  I felt like shit and was once again thinking that quitting was going to be an impossibility.  Regardless, I stuck a patch on my arm and hopped in the shower.  It was in that shower at that moment that my outlook and possible the entire course of my life changed direction.  In that shower, I began to feel the patch doing it's job.  I could feel it enter my system, and as it did I had faith that it would address my physical addiction.  All I had to do at that point was to deal with the mental addiction.  It became simple...just don't do it.  I weened myself off of the patches over time and I went from a 1.5-2 pack a day smoker to quit and I've not had a single cigarette in 16 years.  Cigarettes are no longer even in my consciousness.  The mental addiction was tough at times, but I got to the point that my desire to quit was stronger than my compulsion to smoke.  My frontal cortex finally began to win the tug of war.

I've had that same moment again and it is funny because it has also happened in the shower.  While I don't believe that freezing showers are the answer to my problems...ohh how I wish it were that simple.  I've had a moment of clarity while standing in the cold water.  As I forced myself to stay in a situation that is uncomfortable, I realized that I have the mental toughness to endure sucky situations.  I can do it, I have FAITH in my ability to keep walking.  That means everything.  Faith in your ability to keep distancing yourself from the fight is key.

I've heard since day 1 that "porn is not an option"...but I've always heard it wrong.  I would be fighting the urge for porn and would tell myself that porn is not an option, like it was some type of shield or something.  I have this mental image of myself curled up in a fetal position repeating "porn is not an option, porn is not an option".  That's not what I now think Gabe meant when he stated porn is not an option.  I think he took it off the table, it doesn't exist on his palette of possibilities, it is not a consideration.  He's not fighting it because it is not even within the realm of possibilities.  He put the porn down, walked away...the fighting is over.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 07, 2015, 12:53:02 PM
You have a talent for explaining useful stuff very clearly Unchained. I want to remember the camel nose and boxing ring analogies. A big reason I've made it this far (barely 3 weeks) is by realizing MO is just a backwards detour to Porno Copia. So is peeking, sitting in the fetal position you talked about trying to convince myself that porn is not an option, and stepping into the boxing ring as my only strategy because I haven't filled my mind and life with other pursuits.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 08, 2015, 12:32:15 PM
I had a minor success this morning.  I got an erection kissing my wife goodbye before I left for work.  It sucked not to be able to use it, but it sure was nice getting it just from a nice long sexy kiss.

I've noticed something in previous reboot attempts and wonder about other guys experiences.  The further I get from porn, the more affectionate I become towards my wife.  We are not and have never been incredibly touchy-feely type people.  We used to be more than we are now, but then life happened and we are always chasing small kids around, getting them up and ready, getting them bathed, doing homework, getting them ready for bed...I'm sure it is or has been the same for everyone else here.  We usually end up going to bed at different times and I'll get a quick pop kiss in the mornings along with an "I love you" on the way out the door.  We talk and communicate quite well.  In 10 years of marriage, 5 years of dating (and friendship for 13 years prior to that), I can only recall 3 arguments.  We have a wonderful loving relationship that is based on a true friendship.  Anyway, back to the increase in affection.  In past attempts, I thought it may been due to slight depression as a result from withdrawals making me feel a little needy, but I'm not so sure anymore.  I feel that maybe that part of me had been dulled by constant PMO.

I've been thinking about the way I used PMO and how it affected my actual sex-life with the wife.  With PMO, I would surf and surf and surf for that perfect picture to finish with.  Over time I developed a couple of fetishes and would end up completely focused on that to get the job done.  It is obvious to me now that I used my wife just like one of my PMO sessions.  Unlike some guys, I didn't need to think of porn to stay hard, but I would have to stay focused on some of her body parts that appealed to my fetishes.  I was never in the moment.  It was basically using her just like porn.  I was focused on her, not feeling things with her.  That is not what I want any more.

I can remember a time when it was different.  My PMO addiction goes all the way back to my early teens, but I still connected with the girls I was with, even up to just a year or two ago.  I feel like I eventually had to focus of the fetishes because the PIED was creeping in.  The panic thoughts of ED caused me to zone in on a fetish to stay hard.

It's funny that we don't see how the addiction is changing us as we slowly alter our brains.  Had it not been for the shock of ED and looking for an answer, I would not have even given it any thought.  It took almost 30 years to get to the point that the negative aspects were severe enough that I would even consider not using my beloved porn.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 09, 2015, 09:31:38 PM
Good day today.

The weekends have tended to be a bit more of a struggle for me in the past.  The wife & kids usually sleep late on Saturdays and I get up early.  It usually gives me at least a couple of hours for PMO if not more.  In previous attempts, I would sometimes dread weekends because of he idle time and battles that would come because of it.

Today, I stayed busy and I never had the 1st thought cross my mind…not even one.  Man, what a good day today was.  I realize that it won't all be easy like today.  Trials will come, stress will come, temptations will come, but today was great.  I was like the guy who never had this burden to bare.  Wow…some guys just live their life without all of this…holy moly.

I sometime feel that it (the PMO addiction) is always with me.  I'm in a room living my life and porn is paintings hanging on each and every wall.  I try to look away, look down, look at what I am doing and try to focus on that, but the porn is still present.  I try not to let it move to the front of my thoughts, try not to give it any attention, but it seems present looking for a way to get my attention, nagging at me in the background.  I probably sound like a nut job, but it's hard to put into words.  However, today it wasn't there.  No anxiety, fighting, worry, images bouncing around in my head.

I want more of days like today.

I don't look at porn
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 09, 2015, 09:54:57 PM
You can´t sound any nuttier than the rest of us addicts. Looking away or changing the channel in your mind is exactly what you should be doing. Great job.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 11, 2015, 05:08:23 PM
I have not felt the constant companion of anxiety the last few days.  It comes & goes, but as long as I stay focused on other things, the anxiousness simply isn't there.

Today I had a couple of rough moments.  This afternoon I accidentally stumbled upon some thumbnail sized nudie images when doing an unrelated search at yahoo.  I could feel my pulse speed up and a rush in my brain.  I was at work and would not have had the opportunity to take it any further regardless, but ordinarily I would get tunnel vision and think of nothing but porn until I got the chance to binge.  In the past, I've had triggers in the morning before that kept me in a state of craving all day long.  Today, I clicked away & redirected my mind.  Then everything calmed down inside of me and at some point the situation left my consciousness.

My last hour at work is basically pointless.  The work day is done, but I stay an extra hour just in case we get a few more phone calls.  Usually very little is going on, so I surf the internet or do something to simply pass the time.  Today there was a noticeable feeling of tension and anxiety creeping in.  It wasn't porn thoughts...I've managed to get to the point I can feel them coming and turn my back to the porn monster, but just a sense of discomfort within my brain.  I'm sure it is just starvation for dopamine.  I can feel its craving.  Coming here, reading a few journals, commenting on a couple and then posting to my own has given me just enough redirection of focus to ease the edginess.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 11, 2015, 07:23:31 PM
Another successful day Unchained. I can relate to negative emotions that try to get in without being noticed, and once they`re in they act like wild bulls in a china shop. I watched too much of a dumb show today on TV and the commercials were highly sexualized. Eventually I turned the TV off, but I wish I had done it immediately. I felt guilt and depression seeping into my brain as if some negative force was peeing on my head. I am renewing my mind now and I know I'm going to be OK, but the experienced reminded me to have a clinical respect for how subtle and fast the wrong emotions can work on us. Peace brother.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 12, 2015, 05:28:54 PM
I watched too much of a dumb show today on TV and the commercials were highly sexualized. Eventually I turned the TV off, but I wish I had done it immediately.

I have gotten to where I watch almost no TV.  Basically, it bores me to death.  I find myself scrolling through channels endlessly to finally settle on something that I don't enjoy anyway.

Sometimes I wonder if my mucked up brain reward system has made things that entertain other folks unpleasant to me.  Other times, I feel like I'm one of the few soles in the world that see TV for what it is...junkfood for the brain.  For now, I've decided to just roll with the punches.  My life is pretty busy anyway.  From the time I get home until 9:30'ish I am helping with homework, bath time, reading time, etc.  After that I immerse myself in addiction recovery.  I used to focus entirely on porn addiction but I've read everything I could find, so now I search for addiction recovery in more general terms.

I'm still a firm believer in cold showers.  It feels like they truly eliminate the withdrawals for the biggest part of the day...and I can use every bit of free help I can get.  Five minutes of heart pumping excitement at 7:30 AM and then I'm on a high that lasts at least until 2:00-3:00.  My new cold shower routine is to shower quick in water that is much much colder than comfortable, but no where near as cold as it will go.  Once clean, I crank it down all the way and stay in the water 4 more minutes (working up to 5).  While in the cold, I rotate, raise my arms, have it hit my face, over my head, the back of my shoulders, but I try to change positions every 15 seconds or so.  To keep from wimping out, I use a clock to make sure I don't cheat.

I can feel the difference and believe in the science that suggests they stimulate my addict brain's decreased dopamine receptors, which makes them react to my addict brain's limited dopamine output.  Basically, it makes me feel good, not depressed or anxious in the way that withdrawal has affected me before.  Who knows...maybe it's BS, but I do feel better and it feels like one small thing I can latch on to, just to help ease the anxiousness.  I think we all need something to latch on to...in a way, that is what porn was for many of us.  Now that it is gone, there has to be something to fill the void.  I freeze my balls when I get out of bed in the morning now instead of emptying them while looking at a screen like the rat hitting the dopamine button.  No longer do I start my morning feeling drained, I feel invigorated...not such a bad trade off.  If anyone has ever heard of CSIED (Cold Shower Induced Erectile Disfunction) please let me know and I'll stop.  For now, this seems to be working for me.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 12, 2015, 05:54:41 PM
Stay cold brother!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 12, 2015, 08:35:46 PM
Had successful sex with the wife after dinner tonight.

I'm not 100% sure how I feel about it though.  It certainly didn't arise from touch, cuddling or being in a loving moment.  Nope, I came home, spotted something about my wife that plays into one of my fetishes and kind of fell into a zone, like I saw porn.   My wife was living porn, but only she wasn't doing anything sexy…just preparing dinner.  I told her I basically "needed it".  She agreed and we went at it in a purely physical sense.

Now, don't get me wrong, I feel a calm relief that follows O and sex with my wife is probably my favorite activity, but it still feels like I used her physically like porn.  I am hoping in the end, this process will alter some of my views regarding sex and sexuality.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 13, 2015, 07:15:37 AM
Back to 20 days...20 has always seemed like a good start to me.  At three weeks many of the withdrawals have either eased or will do so soon.  Without having to deal with the anxiety, it can become easier to focus on the things that will bring about permanent change.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 13, 2015, 10:21:32 AM
I wouldn't worry too much about how you have sex with your wife. You are in recovery and getting healthier every day. If you have to objectify someone, who better to do it with than your hot wife in a loving and committed relationship? It doesn't mean that you objectify her as a person the same way we do with porn. I've done the same thing with my wife and as the poison of porn flushes out of my head, I am objectifying my wife less and enjoying her sexuality more.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Jimmy James on May 14, 2015, 05:09:26 AM
The longer you go without porn, the less you will objectify your wife and other women.  It will take time.  But don't worry about this recent event.  Just don't let it be a trigger to go back to porn.  Let it be motivation to continue your reboot.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 14, 2015, 07:26:44 AM
Thanks Chile & JJ.  I appreciate the encouragement and can use all I get.

Today marks 3 weeks for me...feeling good...not just about the time behind, but I feel I'm on very solid ground.

Today is a good day...one mile further from porn.

I do not look at porn

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Jay1946 on May 14, 2015, 08:46:02 AM
For me the three week mark is when my cravings for a dopamine fix are at their max...that is, if I haven't fallen in the prior week of two. In the last week my brain has been using all kinds of excuses to get that dopamine rush, but so far I've resisted, thanks to the video in yourbrainonporn.com and the great encouragement from all of you guys here.

Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 14, 2015, 09:22:40 AM
For me the three week mark is when my cravings for a dopamine fix are at their max...that is, if I haven't fallen in the prior week of two. In the last week my brain has been using all kinds of excuses to get that dopamine rush, but so far I've resisted, thanks to the video in yourbrainonporn.com and the great encouragement from all of you guys here.

Congratulations on the connection with your wife...that's a huge deal.  For me, the anxiety tends to increase starting around one week in.  From there it builds until somewhere around three week mark and then eases.  However, as it eases there are still some pretty intense spikes that hit and can catch me off-guard.

I feel REALLY good right now.

My cold shower therapy is still going strong.  I started that two weeks ago today and have only had one warm shower in that time.  At first I planned to allow hot showers on the weekend, but weekends are tough for me.  Since the cold showers make such a huge difference, it's an all-the-time deal now.  My body has adapted to the cold.  I take the entire shower cold now and after cleaning I stay in the water for a full 5 minutes with the water as cold as it will go...man, what a rush.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 14, 2015, 11:26:05 AM
I also think there is something to be said for getting past 2 or 3 weeks. For me, 2 weeks was always the invisible ceiling. I don't want to sound like I've arrived (I certainly have NOT), but I suspect my frontal lobes are gaining traction. Porn still appeals to me but it is noticeably easier to say no.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 15, 2015, 05:20:15 PM
I re-read my entire journal today...I've been putting that off.  I didn't want to go back and revisit myself when I was past 60 days.  Prior to the last few days it was almost like I could see the 60+ day me being disappointed in the failure me.  I felt that way for a long time & that attitude probably prolonged my binge for weeks if not months.  It hurt to read about that guy who was pumped up, feeling success, seeing positive results, but that's ok.  I've come to terms with where I am at..."it is what it is".  This is where I am NOW and I'm back on the path to a healthy me.  I have more tools at my disposal, a clearer mindset and a better vision of how to get where I need to go.  I feel like I just took a full breath of air through my nose after it being swelled shut for a long, long time (I would rather be kicked in the gut than have a stuffy nose) and it is refreshing.

Feeling good.  I'm always optimistic at quitting time on Fridays.  Time to pick up something for the grill and a few beers.  Yes indeedie, today is a good day...one more porn free day to add to my counter.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 15, 2015, 06:43:08 PM
Just noticed I am 25% to my 90 day goal.  Only 3 days of excruciating misery to endure for over one under my belt.  WAHOOO!

Just kidding...my anxiety has dropped to zero, the withdrawals are getting soooo much better.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 17, 2015, 10:45:02 AM
Feeling good today.  In a week, I'll be past the one month mark...that will be a nice mile stone.

After church this morning, I hugged my wife, told her that I loved her and that I was happy in our marriage.  I don't say things like that often enough.

We have a wonderful Sunday school class. It's a small group and we discuss openly (I don't go so far as saying I'm a porn addict, lol). Today our lesson involved marriage and sexuality.  I sat there and thought about how much has been given to me and how lucky I am.  I am trying to stay focused on the positive and not beat myself up in this reboot, so I won't say I am kicking myself for my mistakes, I am focusing on what I have, what I want to be in the future and have the mindset to do what is necessary to get there.

Please don't think me preachy (I have too many faults to get in the pulpit), but even if you are not a Christian, the following visualization is powerful.  After saving the adulterous woman from being stoned, Jesus said "Go and sin no more".  He didn't say "go and live with guilt", or "go and wrestle with your conscious" or "I saved you but sit here and wallow in shame for a bit".

Obviously, she had consequences in front of her for her actions, as do we.  But the point is this, go AWAY from the actions that got us to this place.

2000 years ago, we were told to turn our back to and "go" away from the bahaviors that hurt us and those we love.  Today I am one day further down that path...and I feel pretty good.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Jay1946 on May 17, 2015, 11:51:14 AM
Unchained:

Very wise words. We need to focus on where we want to be, rather than be chained to our past. If we've been addicted to porn for dozens of years, it's unrealistic to expect that we're never going to fall again. What's important is that when we fall, we pick ourselves up and continue on our journey without delay. I find rebootnation an incredible place for encouragement. Sharing our journey here has given me the push I needed to stay committed.

I'm also experiencing greater closeness with my wife, as you describe with yours. Today, Sunday, our four children and our grandchildren are otherwise occupied and we're looking forward to spending the day together. I know that if I was fully into porn I wouldn't feel the happiness I now feel to spend the day only with my wife.

Wishing you a steady journey....
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 17, 2015, 04:37:53 PM
I'm so glad to be taking this journey with guys like you, Unchained and Jay1946. I am strengthened just by reading your posts.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 17, 2015, 09:51:31 PM
Hey Unchained I read this and thought of you and your cold showers:

http://complete-health-and-happiness.com/put-an-ice-cube-at-this-point-on-your-head-and-see-what-happens/
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 18, 2015, 10:30:48 PM
Thanks for the link Chile…may give that a go.

Today was a good day…heck it's my birthday.  I'm 41 and really feel pretty dang good.  I should exercise a bit more but overall, aside from being a porn addict, am pretty happy in all aspects of my life…and I'm leaving the porn behind.

Wife gave me birthday sex when I got home from work!  Yeeehaw…that was a treat.  In three weeks of reboot we have had sex multiple times which includes the fact she was out of commission for the better part of a week for her period.

This attempt has been TONS better than before.  I don't worry if I can avoid porn, I know I can.  I don't struggle with fighting porn, I turn my back and walk away.  The anxiety isn't there nagging at me that I need relief (I attribute that to the cold showers).  I feel good, I feel positive…most importantly I feel that the path I am on is the path that leads to a happier me.  And that happier me makes for a better husband and father to make the people I care most about happier as well.

Lord please give me more days like today…happy days without porn in my life
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 18, 2015, 10:42:43 PM
Happy birthday Unchained! You have become a valued friend, even if it's only in cyberspace. I'm glad you are doing so well. Your confidence is not arrogant at all. Arrogant confidence always proceeds a nasty fall, but real confidence is what creates inspiration and real men. I have incorporated a lot of your practical wisdom in just walking away. I guess my word "fight" has been changed to "resist", and one of the best ways to resist is by walking away.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 53nomorepmo on May 20, 2015, 12:18:23 PM
Feeling good today.  In a week, I'll be past the one month mark...that will be a nice mile stone.

After church this morning, I hugged my wife, told her that I loved her and that I was happy in our marriage.  I don't say things like that often enough.

We have a wonderful Sunday school class. It's a small group and we discuss openly (I don't go so far as saying I'm a porn addict, lol). Today our lesson involved marriage and sexuality.  I sat there and thought about how much has been given to me and how lucky I am.  I am trying to stay focused on the positive and not beat myself up in this reboot, so I won't say I am kicking myself for my mistakes, I am focusing on what I have, what I want to be in the future and have the mindset to do what is necessary to get there.

Please don't think me preachy (I have too many faults to get in the pulpit), but even if you are not a Christian, the following visualization is powerful.  After saving the adulterous woman from being stoned, Jesus said "Go and sin no more".  He didn't say "go and live with guilt", or "go and wrestle with your conscious" or "I saved you but sit here and wallow in shame for a bit".

Obviously, she had consequences in front of her for her actions, as do we.  But the point is this, go AWAY from the actions that got us to this place.

2000 years ago, we were told to turn our back to and "go" away from the bahaviors that hurt us and those we love.  Today I am one day further down that path...and I feel pretty good.
Unchained, I have just read of your entire journal and have found it very inspiring.  Thank you, your comment above concerning not looking back is so very important in my opinion.  If I look back it looks pretty damn dark.  Looking forward is the only option and for me anyway.  The only possible way to recover.  I too developed some unusual fetishes, but unlike yours carrying them out would never work in my life.  Not sure I want to get specific in describing these fetishes in a recovery journal, but suffice it to say looking back won't help me recover..   So no more PMO I will try my best to sin no more.  :-)  Happy Birthday!  Thanks for sharing your struggle!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 21, 2015, 11:58:49 AM
Thanks 53nomorepmo

One thing that seems to be helping me is covenanteyes

I initially installed it on my phone, but not my laptop.  On my laptop, I made my wife the administrator and turned the parental settings as tight as they would go, but that became a pain.  I had to have her come and type in her password for just about every single site I wanted to go visit.  Eventually I found ways around the controls and was using my laptop for PMO once again.

At the beginning of this attempt, I reset my computer.  It has no type of porn blocker, but I installed covenanteyes on it as well.  For me, accountability works better than walls.  Last night I allowed myself to view nude images on my work computer after a simple news headline mentioned a pornstar.  I feel terrible for not simply walking away, so this morning I installed covenanteyes on my work computer as well.  It is apparent to me that I need to be 100% all-the-time accountable for what I view on the internet.

At first I didn't like the idea of my wife getting a report of my internet usage.  I viewed it like some guy handing his balls over to his wife, but I realized that being accountable for my internet use was the only way it was going to work for me.  I like the way this type accountability makes me feel.  There is really nothing stopping me from going to any site I want other than the knowledge that I will be discovered.  I have to constantly make the choice that porn is not worth the price to be paid.  I believe that making that choice every time I look at my phone, laptop or work computer will help me recover from the addictive cycle faster than simply blocking access to porn or by avoiding the internet altogether.  There will surely be more headlines some day that will serve as a trigger, I just have to keep turning my back and refuse to let porn entice me into a fight.

If any of you haven't listened to Gary's radio shows...you should.  I downloaded all of them and listen to them every day in the car.  Show #21 has some good info about how to keep from letting a porn trigger or que grown into a full blown struggle.  Here's a link:

http://yourbrainonporn.com/brett-explains-how-cope-porn-cues-and-sexual-tension-show-21 (http://yourbrainonporn.com/brett-explains-how-cope-porn-cues-and-sexual-tension-show-21)


Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Jay1946 on May 21, 2015, 04:34:47 PM
Unchained:


Great advice. In my case I installed Covenant Eyes in both my laptop and Iphone and it's worked well. One of the guys in my 12 step group gave me the same advice as you did-that I use the accountability feature of CE (sends a person you choose a report of your internet use)-but I have not done it yet. My wife told me when I started this battle that she did not want to know the "ugly details", so, she would not want to be the one receiving the reports, and I just can't think of someone else I trust completely that I could choose to receive them.


Having said that, though, the filter does help me, because it places a barrier between my urges and their actual fulfillment, and just the thought that I have to take many additional steps to get to my fix works as a big deterrent for me. I also find that the more days I've been free of PMO the less the attraction.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 22, 2015, 10:26:44 PM
Looking for something to watch and the freaking AVN awards are on Showtime.

It's sad when I think about it.  Sure, us old cats fell Into porn because it played on our natural curiosity when we were young, but today society not only says porn is acceptable, it makes porn look glamorous...so sad.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 53nomorepmo on May 23, 2015, 11:44:16 AM
The good news is groups like this are helping to spread the word about the danger of porn to our well being.  So important especially for younger guys.  I am optimistic this thinking will become common knowledge in time.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 24, 2015, 07:01:07 AM
I am trying not to over analyze my healing in this process.  In the past, I was in a constant state of worry about how much or if any progress had been made.  I see now that it always kept me on edge and am not sure if it was the cause of or the result of the extreme anxiety I experienced going through withdrawal.  So, while I'm not hung up on some things such as morning wood, I'm happy to have noticed that while mine never completely went away, it is an almost daily occurrence now and it seems to be a full on flagpole type erection rather than just 80% hard and laying there.

On another note, I'm at the beach this week with my family.  There are triggers everywhere you turn your head, but I'm ok.  At some point in life I have to acknowledge seeing a sexy lady without letting it escalate into the compulsion to PMO.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 53nomorepmo on May 24, 2015, 10:52:23 AM
I am trying not to over analyze my healing in this process.  In the past, I was in a constant state of worry about how much or if any progress had been made.  I see now that it always kept me on edge and am not sure if it was the cause of or the result of the extreme anxiety I experienced going through withdrawal.  So, while I'm not hung up on some things such as morning wood, I'm happy to have noticed that while mine never completely went away, it is an almost daily occurrence now and it seems to be a full on flagpole type erection rather than just 80% hard and laying there.

On another note, I'm at the beach this week with my family.  There are triggers everywhere you turn your head, but I'm ok.  At some point in life I have to acknowledge seeing a sexy lady without letting it escalate into the compulsion to PMO.

This is great progress, I am 100% in agreement with your comment about letting go of analyzing every movement downstairs.  It sounds like you got a handle on recognizing your triggers and avoiding the habit. 

What you are describing sounds wonderful, normal and healthy!

You are a lucky guy!  Keep that loving relationship you have going and the "PMO is not an option" mindset and I am guessing it will become even easier to ignore those triggers.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 28, 2015, 07:04:27 PM
Vacation time can be tough.  Don't get me wrong, I am having fun and it is nice to relax, but it helps me to have something concrete to focus on to get through the day.

On a positive note, I've had successful sex with the wife a couple times in the last 3 days...no complaints about that.

There is no opportunity to relapse as I have all of my internet access points monitored, but the thoughts still try to find their way in.  I try not to focus and have success in doing so, but they are still there in the background.  Maybe this is just how it's going to be for a while...who knows?  It isn't bad like the anxiety of withdrawal, I just want it off of me...away from me.

Anyone like Jimmy Buffett? Aside from his politics, I am a huge fan.  My favorite song of his is "Stranded on a Sandbar"...the 2nd verse starts like this:

Now I used to go crazy for days at a time,
Now I'm taking my time with my days.
Haven't found the answers like some that I know,
I'm just stuck in a fairly nice maze.


That's how I feel. Not bad, just a little stuck, but I'm working on the answers.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 29, 2015, 09:24:26 AM
I think sometimes we overlook a pretty basic fact when we struggle with what trips us up…we're guys and we naturally like looking at nude women.

Yes there are a lot of things that may push us to want to PMO, but for me it has mostly been that I like to look at women.  I'm not excusing it because in overindulging, I have become addicted and have caused pain to myself and others.  Porn needs to go no matter what the reason for my use, but some times I think we "over think" what drives us to seek porn.  There are many who have had any number of bad things happen to them in life that may be at the root of this addiction and I am not attempting to discount their experiences…but those are not my experiences.

I basically have no excuse.  I was a kid who found magazines of nude women.  I liked what I saw…so much so that I sought it out.  When I found more explicit material like Hustler and the like, I moved from the equivalent of pot to crack…"holy moly this is what a grown woman looks like down there, wahoo!".  Later when internet and high speed came along, I basically spent more and more time seeking more and more of the same.  At times I have seen things that disgusted me, but never developed a taste for such things.  I'd say at least 90% of my PMO was still in search of still images, though very explicit still images, usually through sites that I would pay to join.  I would have several memberships at a time and would only join sites that had daily updates with lots of women in each update.  I have indulged & overindulged.  In the end, eventually still pics wouldn't be enough to get me hard, so I would go to a tube site, get hard looking at videos (always straight and usually one on one sex), and then go back and finish to stills of an individual lady.  My fetishes developed around individual body parts and the stills allowed me to single out a "perfect" image and focus on whatever it was that I was looking for that day.  I was still using multiple tabs, multiple searches and the like, but I used the net the same way I used mags as a kid.  I can remember sitting in my bedroom floor at about 13 with at least 30-40 magazines spread out all around me frantically searching for which picture to finish with.  I eventually became a 40 year old version of that same kid doing the same thing (but with a computer) all the while I had the "real thing" available to me but I wanted the novelty…it has always been about the novelty.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: 53nomorepmo on May 29, 2015, 09:53:20 AM
I think sometimes we overlook a pretty basic fact when we struggle with what trips us up…we're guys and we naturally like looking at nude women.

Unchained I like how you started this post.  This problem does derive from something we all are naturally wired to do.  We are wired to seek out women/sex and novelty so that we can procreate and spread our seed as widely as possible.  Sounds OK so far, except here comes this damn technology that puts this natural drive in overdrive.  Now we are wired to follow a screen and push the reward button, over and over again, (dopamine) until we have screwed up our ability to react properly to the real world.... You absolutely nailed it and your narrative describes the process.  Now that I have read enough of these journals I realize this is the common thread the thing that makes all our different stories the same... No more PMO for me, I want this rewire job badly enough to give it up, and hopefully forever.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: notgivinup on May 29, 2015, 01:02:47 PM
Hey Unchained...just saw your journal today...and have been reading. I haven't made it all the way through yet, but I have been encouraged by what I have read.
I got to 69 days in my first attempt here...and then had a fall, and another a week later, and another a week after that.
But, I'm back again...and continue to learn tons....so much from other guys here.

Thanks for your honesty and all you write about...and thanks for your consistency here.
I'm glad you're part of RN. I am looking forward to reading the rest of your journal.

Thanks,
NGU
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on May 29, 2015, 01:55:08 PM
I hope you enjoy your vacation time Unchained!
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Abu X on May 29, 2015, 02:54:21 PM
Hi Unchained your journal has been an inspiration for me and although my porn addiction is different to yours as I enjoyed the videos more than the still I did move from the soft magazines to the hard core magazines and then the internet etc but I have never paid any memberships for porn probably the only reason that I didn't want my cc details dished out.

Keep posting brother, enjoying your jounal
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on May 30, 2015, 10:55:56 AM
Thanks for your input guys.  I follow all of your journals and draw bits of wisdom from them all.  The collective experiences and insights from everyone here has helped me in my own attempt to walk away from porn.  That is the reason sites like this one are so important.  Without working on my own journal, other's input on my situation and reading the accounts of others, it would be infinitely more difficult.  Thanks again.

Abu...I suppose I've spent somewhere north of $20,000 on internet porn in the last 18 years.  At $100/month (conservative estimate) for 12 months a year for 18 years Is $21,600.  Holy cow what a waste.

Scott, I've read your journal and your drive to keep going after a stumble is inspiring.  That drive will eventually see you to success.  I hope some day to become a 100% recovery story & maybe our journals will encourage others when they see it is a journey that is sometimes met with setbacks along the way.

Today is my last day of vacation...heading home tomorrow.  In some ways I feel the need to get back to my regular life. I'm ready to work some positive activities into the void filled by pmo.  To this point, I have filled it with reading here, ybop, listening to every video at ybop.  I read & listen to Gary, Noah, Mark Queppet, etc.  I still intend do do so, it helps me stay on track, but I'm past the withdrawal & constant anxiety phase and it is time to start filling my life with other interests as well.

It sure doesn't hurt that I love my wife...I love my life.  What has been given to me is worth working for.  I hope to spend time investing in the relationships that matter, not hiding in the bathroom with my laptop.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 05, 2015, 07:01:04 AM
Rough week back at work.  I was away from the office for 10 days and have had a tough time putting out all of the fires that started while I was gone.  At times I have found it very difficult to be nice to people...and I don't like seeing that in myself.

On a positive, I've got a nice streak going here.  I've started running again and that makes me feel good.  I'm not overweight but I've lost a couple of pounds.  I stay busy from the time I get up until bedtime.  That has helped more than anything.  I may have many triggers, but my #1 trigger is boredom.  Sitting idle watching a tv program that doesn't interest me is a recipe for a fall...so I keep moving.  At 10:30 last night I re-leveled my lawnmower deck while listening to Gary's radio podcasts....then I took a 10 minute long cold shower as cold as it would go.  The thing is...last night I wasn't triggered, tempted or fighting anything.  I did these things preemptively...feels kind of good.
Title: Re: 40 year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: RG on June 05, 2015, 08:38:29 AM
Unchained,
I also have struggled being nice or not being a Jerk. The scary part for me is I didn’t even know I was being that way. As I have gone down the trail of recovery several times this same issue has surfaced. I think that perhaps because we haven’t allowed ourselves to really “feel” for so long it shocks us when we start to realize what is really going on around us that we have been blind to. The realization is a part of recovery and learning to deal with other people without using PMO is part of the process. You are making progress!
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 05, 2015, 04:29:51 PM
I've been doing pretty good during this reboot avoiding potential triggers.  I don't watch much tv, I don't surf the internet out of boredom...heck I don't even listen to he radio b/c most songs seem to be about sex.  Ever since I had a close call a couple of weeks ago, I quit checking legitimate news sites during the day.

...and then today I was looking for podcasts or a possible audiobook at iTunes to download about either pornography addiction or addiction in general.  I already have some podcasts & all of Gary Wilson's radio shows on both my phone & ipod so I can listen to them while I drive.  Anyway, I'm looking for pornography addiction related material in the audiobooks section and tons and tons of stuff came up about porn, but it was all porn material.  The simple names of the books made my heart race, my stomach dropped like I was on a roller coaster and my mouth actually watered.    There were no pornographic images, just names of stories.  I could feel my brain get a tremendous instant buzz.  I could actually hear ringing in my ears for a moment as I looked at the titles.  There was a book, maybe two, regarding addiction but I knew I had to get the hell out of there.

I don't feel like I will slip...I'm not overly worried about that.  However, it did plant a small seed to make me want to seek more but my higher thought processes are stronger.  The worst part is that I have felt anxiety most of the day since that exposure.  There is something in the back of my mind that was asleep...and is now awake.  I'm not having any conscious thoughts or mental images of porn, I'm not even having to chase any away...it's not like that.  I feel like there is an intruder just outside my door.  He's not made himself known or actually threatened me openly in any way YET, but he's out there...just outside the door, waiting.  I can sense him, see the shadow cast by his feet at the base of the door.  I feel he's waiting...just waiting.  It has me a bit uneasy.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on June 05, 2015, 05:33:12 PM
You're doing great Unchained. Avoiding as much stimulation as possible, while learning as much as you can, gives your brain a great head-start. There will be times when it's in your face no matter what you do. Keep walking the walk.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 07, 2015, 06:50:17 AM
Today is halfway to 90.  I'm thinking I need to consider an attempt of 90 days no MO as well.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Gracie on June 07, 2015, 06:58:08 AM
Try the book "Love You Hate the Porn" by Mark Chamberlain and Geoff Steurer.   It talks about men's reasons for looking and the effects on the wife.  BUT it also gives solutions and hope in understanding one another.  There is also a blog by the same title.  It has tabs across the top that are awesomely helpful and then it has an archive of his blogs.  This book literally let me know I should stay and let him know he could do it.  (My husband)
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 08, 2015, 12:33:46 PM
Thanks for the info Gracie.  I visited the site and will order the book.

I've decided it is time for me to be a little more proactive in my addiction recovery.  At first, it was all about trying to get a few days of sobriety, then a week and then more weeks, etc.  With the constant agony of the anxiety from withdrawals behind me it is time to lay the groundwork for a lifetime of sobriety.

It is painful to admit and saddens me, but I realize now that it won't be as simple as going 60, 90, 120, 150 days or a year and then declaring myself cured.  It seems that abstaining from an addiction alone is just part of the puzzle.

I feel positive at the moment and have been working my own little plan based off of recovery strategies that I found on a myriad of sites.  I love the cold showers and would recommend them to anyone trying to heal.  They definitely improve mood, alertness & energy levels and all of these things can help decrease triggers and help you deal with triggers that arise.  I have also started running again and have started doing push-ups and pull-ups as well.  I try to stay occupied and read more.

In reading and listening to audio about addiction recovery I've come to learn that avoiding and focusing on triggers is not the answer.  Basically, when I am bored, sad, angry my brain cries out for relief.  The brain sees all of these things as a threat to survival.  It wants to feel good, so it tries it's best to get ME to feed it what it wants to feel good.  For us porn addicts, porn is the A #1 way to make that happen.  I've spent so much time self-medicating with porn that my brain doesn't understand that it's ok to feel bored or sad.  I have to learn to stand back, recognize what emotions are causing my brain to cry out and find an alternative method to improve the situation.  It's not about fighting the urge or resisting...it's about redirecting thoughts to other thoughts or behaviors that improve the situation.  I no longer have to fight porn, in fact fighting it makes it stronger.  At the end of the day, my brain needs to understand that sometimes it's ok to be sad or lonely or stressed or tired.  I do not have to medicate my brain to make those emotions disappear, I need to see them for what they are.  If it is something I can improve, then great, if not then maybe I'll just have to deal with the sadness or whatever it is for a while.  Cranking up my dopamine artificially for hours on end to feel better is not the answer.

If you get a chance, check out the link to InnerGold's short 5 part porn addiction series below:

http://www.yourbrainonporn.com/video-series-porn-and-brain (http://www.yourbrainonporn.com/video-series-porn-and-brain)

The videos are short and very informative.

I don't see that anyone here has used their method (or at least didn't turn up anything in a search), but there seems to be several at yourbrainrebalanced that used InnerGold.  Like I said before, it is time for me to get proactive.  I want a better life and am seriously considering using the online course that they offer.  If anyone here either has any direct experience or knows anyone who has tried it, please let me know.

I also like that it involves the spouse and has materials specifically for their understanding of the addiction process.  I try to tell my wife what I am going through, but I am in no way a professional counsellor and I don't have an education in brain processes (though I'm learning rapidly).
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on June 08, 2015, 01:27:27 PM
Nice post Unchained. I am going to watch the videos from the link. I like how you are being proactive and settling in for a deeper reboot. I have suspected that a healthy reboot takes years to complete, but the first 90-150 days without porn are extremely important in settling our brains. It is no small accomplishment, yet the reboot will continue for any guy who successfully leaves porn behind.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 08, 2015, 03:11:27 PM
Hey Chile,
I suppose I'm beginning to realize that there are two processes going on at the same time.  It seems like the sexual dysfunctions related to porn addiction heal relatively quickly for most.  While most of us wish it was even faster, a few weeks to a few months to fix ED is actually pretty fast when you consider the long term abuse most of us have put our brains through.  I think of this part as the reboot.  Then there's the process of the actual addiction within the brain.  The ability to get hard, while nice, is not an indication that the struggle to work through the addiction is over...in fact it may just be beginning.  I feel that is why so many of us have some success, even long success and then fall back in.  We are healed in a sexual sense but have still not addressed the addictive cycle itself.  It is like we have managed to white-knuckle it long enough to make our penises work, get exited and fall back into the trap.

I don't suppose everyone here is a full blown addict, but I can say that I have tried multiple times myself to stay quit and can't seem to manage to make it last.  I feel it is time for me to work a system, the same way someone quitting cocaine, heroin or meth would.

Some folks think this is only about high-speed porn.  For me it is any porn, pure and simple.  The high-speed may have been the cause of PIED because it changed my approach and the vast amount of porn that was accessible and the sheer speed at which I could access it.  I eventually had PIED because my wife couldn't compare to 500 different women in a short stretch...but I was just as addicted when it was slow speed and even magazines.  I couldn't quit then either.

The addiction it too big and too entrenched in my brain to starve it out like I did in quitting nicotine.  I've been doing porn nonstop since the mid-80's.  I need a structured, thought out plan to work towards a lifetime of sobriety.  It is not enough for me to string together a bunch of long streaks and failures.

I did go ahead and download the InnerGold system and plan on starting it tonight.  I will give it everything I have and will report to you guys here how I feel it is working for me.  It is relative inexpensive...costed less than two monthly subscriptions to my favorite porn site.  The price is worth the gamble to get me to the me I want to be.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on June 08, 2015, 04:21:22 PM
I'm curious about what the InnerGold system is and how it works. Long winning streaks are awesome, especially in the beginning, but like you said it's not enough to quit porn. I'm aiming for 90-150 days right now and it's a big deal when someone gets there, even if it's not a magic bullet. I've been there before and came back to porn. I've heard about guys who are 3-5 years into no PMO. They have come to terms with themselves and what causes the problems, yet they don't seem to lose their caution.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: CrazyGopher on June 09, 2015, 03:34:25 AM
I suppose I'm beginning to realize that there are two processes going on at the same time.  It seems like the sexual dysfunctions related to porn addiction heal relatively quickly for most.  While most of us wish it was even faster, a few weeks to a few months to fix ED is actually pretty fast when you consider the long term abuse most of us have put our brains through.  I think of this part as the reboot.  Then there's the process of the actual addiction within the brain.  The ability to get hard, while nice, is not an indication that the struggle to work through the addiction is over...in fact it may just be beginning.

This is really insightful stuff, unchained, and it deserves greater attention in the community. So many guys ask questions like "Am I healed?" or "When will I be healed?" and too often the answers they receive confuse these issues or don't address them as separate processes.

Anyway, just wanted to stop in to thank you for sharing this valuable insight. I hope the new system you are trying works well for you!
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 12, 2015, 09:14:43 AM
I found the following poster at Wendy Maltz's website.  If you don't know about her, she's a sex therapist & author who has been interviewed a couple of times on Gary Wilson's radio show.  I checked out her website and thought you guys may get something out of this:

(http://healthysex.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/hazards-poster-8x11.pdf)
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: notgivinup on June 12, 2015, 11:29:58 AM
Hey unchained....just started making my way through your journal today.
Congratulations on 50 days. Way to go.

I saw a list of helpful stuff you posted on another journal...and all great stuff....and it caused me to take a look at your journal.

I'm glad you're here. thanks for all you have written...and thank you for making the choice to leave pmo.

very encouraging read today.

Thanks.
NGU
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 12, 2015, 02:28:00 PM
Thanks gopher & ngu.

I just found a pic I liked to use as an avatar yesterday.  When I went into my profile to add the avatar, I noticed that a week from tomorrow will be one year from when I first signed up for an account here.  I have two emotions regarding the passing of a full year.  In someways I am disappointed because I would have thought that after a year that I'd be a little further down the path to healing.  I kind of felt sad when I saw the date and reflected on my mistakes over the last 12 months.  But then again, I remember the way I felt when I actually signed up for an account...I was almost hopeless.  I was discouraged, beat down and depressed.  I remember being tearful as I signed up.  Today I am none of those things.  I am hopeful...I am encouraged...I am standing tall and I feel good about where I am headed.

I mentioned a few posts back that I see this affliction as two separate conditions.  One is the changes that occur to the brain as it relates to sexuality...whether our tastes change, how much stimulation it requires to get an erection (or even if erections are possible), the DE for some and PE for others.  It is my personal opinion that these things simply heal themselves in time.  For those things to be fixed, time and distance from porn will heal the wounds.  I feel that many of us manage to stay clean for long enough for these wounds to begin to heal and then fall back.  Reset after reset.  It is an ongoing cycle that is frustrating, maddening, crushing.  This is exactly what happened to me in late December this past year.  I eventually gave up and didn't refocus my efforts until April.

The bigger picture for long term healing comes with the realization that we (or at least many of us) are dealing with a real-deal, full-blown, long term addiction.  Through my own inability to beat porn, to kick its ass, to rip it from my brain...out of sheer frustration I began to read more about how to approach addiction recovery.  If you read back a page or two I analogized what I felt as myself in a boxing ring with porn.  He's the heavyweight champ and I'm the skinny chump.  That is how I felt.  I was exhausted and eventually said f'it.  I don't want to fight any more.  I'm out of here.  Last night I was amazed to read in the InnerGold recovery manual that exact same analogy that I found in my own process.  The slight difference is that I imagined myself completely ignoring the taunts of the boxer as I walked away.  In truth, it is easier to acknowledge the shouts...they will always be there, they will never completely stop.  The answer is to hear them, acknowledge that they exist and focus attention elsewhere.  If you try to stamp the thoughts out, he'll just yell louder and the next thing you know you are back in the ring fighting.  We all talk about wanting the triggers to stop and I'd bet they will lessen as time passes and distance in put between ourselves and porn...but they will never go away, at least not as long as we still have a human brain.  That is just how it works.  The limbic system isn't bad b/c it wants us to use porn.  It is simply making a suggestion to do a thing that it thinks will make us feel better, however, we know that we feel worse in the end and that there are consequences to pay.  For that reason, I hear its request, thank it for its concern and then move on to some other thought or action.  Sometimes I can even feel the thought stay in my mind for a long period of time...it's just hanging out there trying to get me to pay closer attention but I just focus around it.

Have any of you ever driven a car with messed up windshield wipers or simply driven in the rain with them off for fun?  It's really not that hard to drive in the rain with no wipers unless it is a complete downpour.  You just have to focus your eyes beyond the droplets on the windshield instead of focusing ON them.  They are still there...you know they are there...but you are focused on the road ahead.  That is similar with how I feel about my thought process.  I'd like for something to wipe away my thoughts...to get rid of them...to make them stop from appearing in the first place...but that isn't going to happen.  I just have to focus around them.  Sometimes it may just be a drop or two and sometimes it is quite difficult, but the higher thinking part of my brain gets to make the decision of whether I am going to focus on the potentially dangerous droplets or if I keep my focus on safely traveling forward.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on June 12, 2015, 07:21:15 PM
Congratulations on 50 days Unchained, especially in coming back after those four months when you had lost hope. You help everyone here with your research and ability to communicate it clearly. You benefit this forum tangibly every time you post. Peace!
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 15, 2015, 12:42:07 PM
Congratulations on 50 days Unchained, especially in coming back after those four months when you had lost hope. You help everyone here with your research and ability to communicate it clearly. You benefit this forum tangibly every time you post. Peace!

Thanks Chile.  I know my posts are probably some of the longest winded stream-of-conscious type rambles on this forum.

There is a lot of stuff that goes through my mind every day as I deal with this process.  Couple that with all of the information on brain related changes caused by porn as well as addiction in general and it really helps to try to assemble my thoughts and experiences and put them on paper so to speak.  As I read and learn from other journals I also reread much of my own as well.  I measure where I was and how I felt with where I am and how I feel.  The continuous consideration of my own progress, thoughts and emotions is helping me tweak my approach as I move forward.  The mindset that this is an ongoing dynamic endeavor is actually making parts of the experience pleasurable.  Don't get me wrong, I would rather have not experienced the sporadic PIED which led to anxiety and times when I would avoid sex all together.  I would rather have not had the guilt or shame that I felt when I confessed to my wife.  I would rather have not had to experience the pains of withdrawals.  I would rather not have to deal with all of these porn thoughts that appear and attempt to drag me back into the addictive cycle.  I'm sure there are tons more negative consequences that I would have also rather avoided.  The positive part that I am referring to is how I feel now in my proactive approach to healing.  I see the time spent educating myself and learning about myself as an investment in the future me.  In that respect, the effort gives positive feelings about the process.  It feels good in the same way it feels good to do a grueling workout...it's tough but there is a sense of satisfaction in the knowledge of self improvement and in having faith that the pain will bring about positive change.  I truly have that faith...without any doubt.

Some of the tools that I've used to help deal with porn have made me happier and better focused in other areas of my life.  Specifically the meditation, cold showers & exercise are all things I hope to maintain in the rest of my future life, both because of how they make me feel, but I also think they will help to keep me on the path.  It's funny how using a tool to help with addiction can also be employed in other aspects of ones life.  For example, I feel the ability to maintain focus as learned through meditation will vastly improve my prayer time.  In the past, my mind would easily take-off and run in various directions when I tried to pray for an extended period of time.  It would always frustrate me.  I am definitely an amateur as it comes to meditation, but I can already feel the power of being able to redirect my thoughts to maintain focus.  If that ability leads me to a better prayer life, which in turn helps me to better hear what God is telling me, then that my friends is a good thing.  It is that type of change that this process is bringing out in me...and for that I am grateful to be heading down the path that I am on.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 19, 2015, 12:03:50 PM
Had a rough few days at work this week...very stressful.

Each of the last three mornings this week I have gotten out of bed and had texts from various employees explaining why they were either going to be in late or not at all.  Each situation required that I hurry in to work sooner to work than normal.

Because of this, I have not been able to enjoy my morning meditation since Tuesday.  It is amazing what a difference 10-15 minutes of meditation can make.  With meditation I am more capable of monitoring & directing my thoughts better all throughout the day.  The time that I spent first thing in the morning improving my thinking has been replaced with thoughts of anger, frustration and to some degree stress due to the anticipation of stress.

I am grateful for the accountability software that I installed on my computer & phone.  I feel that I probably would have slipped yesterday evening without it.  I wasn't horny.  I was anxious and sitting at my desk staring at the keyboard in my office just wanting to see some porn to escape from the stress.  There are no blockers installed, just the knowledge that my wife will see the report.  Thankfully, that knowledge was enough to stop me for long enough to talk myself back down off the ledge.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on June 19, 2015, 01:26:31 PM
I think that's a really good tool to have Unchained, referring to the software that reports your internet activity to your wife. I am thinking of adding the same thing. You took the right step to interrupt the porn process and it paid dividends. Great job.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 19, 2015, 09:34:51 PM
I think that's a really good tool to have Unchained, referring to the software that reports your internet activity to your wife. I am thinking of adding the same thing. You took the right step to interrupt the porn process and it paid dividends. Great job.

Thanks Chile.  I'm glad the weekend is here.

Regarding the software, I feel accountability may be more helpful than blocking in the end. A simple blocker is telling your lymbic brain "no".  Accountability tells your prefrontal cortex "think about it".  When we use our rational mind to think through the consequences and tell our lymbic brain "thanks for the suggestion but I'm going to do something else", then we are making great strides to becoming a person who can recognize triggers and move past them.  The triggers will never stop, porn blocker or not.

If we are struggling, then sure...use blockers or anything at our disposal to help keep porn at bay, but to truly change our lives, we have to be able to be hit with the mightiest of triggers...and choose to not act out.

In a perfect world I would have the tools to do that completely on my own, but for now the accountability software is a very effective tool.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 22, 2015, 11:51:50 AM
Just checking in.  This is a bit of a 60 day milestone ramble...

60 days looks good.  My last best streak was 62 days.

I'm trying not to focus as much on sex in my journal as I did in the past.  In prior attempts, my goal was a functioning dick and I pretty much judged where I was and what progress had been made according to my ability to perform and how much sex I was actually getting.  This time around I am thinking more about the addiction recovery and I know that the physical issues will take care (or seem to have already taken care) of themselves.

Having said that, I fully realize that our journals are read by many new guys here (whether they sign up for an account or not) who are just now realizing what porn has done to them and are freaking out.  I'm sure many such guys are still very dick focused..so if anyone out there feels as hopeless and frightened as I was before I began this process...please believe me, find a way to stay away from porn and things will work out.  I've had successful sex with my wife 4 times in the last week.  This is coming from a guy who viewed porn daily since 1985 and PMO'd daily (if not multiple times a day) since 1987.  The porn eventually led to occasional ED which caused anxiety and a general withdrawal from sex unless I was ragingly horny and knew I could perform.  Our sex-life had dwindled to 1-2 times a month.   I actually used to look forward to my wife's period because I knew the pressure was off.

Reflecting on the past 60 days it has been tough at times.  I am proud to have almost completely stayed away from porn, but I am a little disappointed in that I have MO's a bit more than I would have liked.  Even still, I was a guy who was averaging PMO 1-2 times daily...may last PMO was 60 days ago so I guess I've improved to an average of once in 60 days.  My MO average is more like once every 6.5 days with some good streaks and a few times on back to back days.

I still feel like this process is just beginning...at least the process of breaking free of the porn addiction.  I still feel the need to constantly police my thoughts.  It is becoming easier to pinpoint what frame of mind leads to unwanted thoughts.  It is more apparent that the root cause of many cravings come from being bored, stressed, angry or lonely.  I also feel urges if I feel physically bad (which in my case is usually a slight hangover from drinking the night before).  Sometimes thoughts can just pop up out of nowhere and I wonder "where the f' did that come from?".  Other times it is less actual porn thoughts but an underlying craving that builds in the back of my mind.  I'm still trying to focus around the thoughts and am working on improving my meditation skills which helps in this endeavor tremendously.

It is clear to me now that this is a life-long process.  It is more like a new way to live than just working on it for a while and then the addiction magically goes away.  I suppose I'm pretty good with that.   The skills that I am developing in my attempt to stay away from porn are skills that can be applied to many aspects of life.  My porn use became a mechanism that I employed to make myself feel better anytime I was not satisfied for whatever reason.  It was a drug upon which I became dependent.  With the porn-drug gone, it becomes glaring when I am unhappy because I have nothing to numb myself from the pain.  It leaves me with a plain and simple truth...something here sucks, so what are you going to do about it?...or can you do anything about it?  If the answer is yes, let's do what we can to fix it.  If the answer is no, then be a man, accept it and move on.

Porn also became a substitute for the true emotional attachment that I craved from my wife.  It is blurry to me whether I used porn to make up for that lack or if my porn use made me distant and she simply adapted to who I had become.  I am 100% devoted to my marriage and I know she is too, so we'll figure all of that stuff out as we go along.  I will say that I feel a strong desire to be closer...to touch, hug and be more loving than before and she acts like she doesn't know why.  She feels that I am doing this as some constant desire for sex which isn't the case at all.  In the past, any physical attention I showed her was a signal that I wanted sex...so I suppose I am reaping what I sewed.  Who knows, the feelings and emotions of a recovering addict can bounce all over the place...lots of highs and lows.  Even at 60 days, I need to remind myself that I am in the middle of an emotional process and I can possibly read things into situations that are not there and that I may not clearly be seeing things as they truly are.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on June 23, 2015, 08:56:36 PM
Write a book Unchanined! Congratulations on breaking 60 days.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 24, 2015, 09:23:18 AM
Back to 62.  Wahoo!

It was on day 62 that I failed in my previous best streak.  Looking back, my failure then was a slow progression of getting dangerously near the edge over time.  A couple of weeks prior I allowed myself to peek which led to more peeking which led to peeking and edging which led right back to where I has started.

This time I am on much firmer ground.  I'm not overconfident, will not say that I'll never slip and I try not to dwell on what it will take to live a lifetime free of something a small part of me is still very driven to do.

I realize that triggers will never go away.  It has to be a process of dealing with them in a way that the frontal cortex begins to win the tug-of-war against the limbic part of the brain.  The triggers seem to be far less strong lately, but I can't help but feel that has more to do with strengthening my rational brain than it does with the urges being weaker.  I think of it in the same way as building muscle.  If you've never worked out, then lifting 150 lbs may seem daunting or impossible at first.  Over time you build strength and it is no problem.  The weight has not become any lighter...you've become stronger.  Today, that is how I feel and it feels good.  The urges and triggers are there, but I have the strength to move them out of my way.

This morning I had a perfect opportunity to act out.   My wife does not usually work on Wednesdays but she is filling in for another girl.  My mother-in-law came to our house to watch the kids while my wife works.  The wife left for work at 7:15 and the mother-in-law wasn't coming over until 8:30.  The kids were still both asleep in bed.  We have one computer in the house that does not have covenanteyes installed.  It is in an office and I pretty much just stay out of there period.  Anyway, I heard a little voice inside my head saying that it would be nice to see what new ladies have been added to my favorite sites in the last couple of months.  In the past, this would have been a grueling temptation.  It would have filled my thoughts and I would have wrestled with it all morning even if I didn't give in.  I was brushing my hair when the thought popped into my mind.  Looking in the mirror, I said to my limbic brain "thanks for the suggestion, but I think I'll do something else."  Looking back...that was it...I didn't even think about it again until it crossed my mind as I was writing this entry.

Best of luck guys...stay strong.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 25, 2015, 12:32:14 PM
63 days is a new personal best for me...uncharted water baby!  Like a viking on his way to the new world.  I have not arrived but I'm on my way.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Gracie on June 25, 2015, 01:09:01 PM
Unchained,
I want to tell you how much I enjoyed reading your post of June 22nd.  You are getting it!  It is about the relationship not the penis.  To me, it kind of works like Field of Dreams the baseball movie.  "If you build it, they will come."  If the way PAs change the way they interact with their wives, they will choose you.  In other words, if you choose them (which you did when you married) again, they will choose you.  My husband's physical attention to me was a physical interaction during the day meant he wanted sex.  And it was not often.  He waited for me to indicate I wanted sex.  He never really made me the center.  So in a way you are right, we wives change to accommodate your change.  He chose to make us roommates.  I thought is this what happens in our 50's?  Then I thought he wanted to be with someone else, which I guess was partially true.  He wanted images late at night while I slept.  He now treasures the closeness we share. 

When you talk about triggers, he has them too.  Just the other day we were both stressed from work.  He said he was stressed.  I asked what was he stressed about.  He then said, "Nothing, never mind."  I had to go into the room where he was and say, "No.  you just said you were stressed and I care.  You need to tell me.  It is important to you."  And he told me.  Once he started in porn he pushed me away and then quit communicating and then was able to convince himself that I did not care.  So here was his instinct telling him to not talk because I did not care.  We talked about that afterword.  That he cannot assume what he thinks will happen or what I will think or am thinking.  But he did not recognize this in the moment.

Good progress!  Sorry this is so long.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on June 26, 2015, 03:18:02 PM
Thanks Gracie.  I appreciate the post.  Don't worry...it wasn't too long.  Besides I am the king of long posts.  I value your input and kind of wish we had more ladies posting here.  While I view this place as primarily a space that gives us guys and opportunity to support one another, give encouragement to one another in our failed attempts and cheer each other on in success, it is also nice to get a woman's perspective.  The perspective of a female partner gives this place some balance.

I have an app on my phone that sends me a short daily devotional every day.  I felt that today's devotional had information that was appropriate for many of us here.  The title was "Governing Yourself" and is full of inspirational passages as well as non-biblical quotations from some of the world's greatest thinkers.  I wanted to share some of them with you guys here.  I feel some are worthy of memorizing and adding to one's meditation (if you choose to do so).  So...here goes:


Conquer yourself.  Till you have done this, you are but a slave; for it is almost as well to be subjected to another's appetite as to your own.
---Richard Burton (1861-1940)

To rule self and subdue our passions is the more pariseworthy, because so few know how to do it.
---Francesco Guiccardini (1483-1540)

Self-control is a key factor in achieving success.  We can't control everything in life, but we can definitely control ourselves.
---Jan Mckingley Hilado (b. 1991)

Self-discipline begins with the mastery of your thoughts.  If you don't control what you think, you can't control what you do.  Simply, self-discipline enables you to think first and act afterward.
---Napoleon Hill (1883-1970)

I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies, for the hardest victory is over self.
---Aristotle (384BC-322BC)

To enjoy freedom we have to control ourselves.
---Virginia Woolf (1882-1941)

Most powerful is he who has himself in his own power.
---Seneca (4BC-65AD)

A person without self-control is like a breached city, one with no walls.
---Proverbs 25:28

The Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love, and self-discipline.
---2 Timothy 1:7

Every temptation that is resisted, every noble aspiration that is encouraged, every sinful thought that is repressed, every bitter word that is withheld, adds its little item to the impetus of that great moment which is bearing humanity onward toward a richer life and higher character.
---John Fiske (1842-1901)

For want of self-restraint many men are engaged all their lives in fighting with difficulties of their own making and rendering success impossible by their own crossgrained ungeltleness; whilst others, it may be much less gifted, make their way and achieve success by simple patience, equanimity, and self-control.
---Samuel Smiles (1812-1904)

Do you want to know the man against whom you have the most reason to guard yourself?  Your looking-glass will give you a very fair likeness of his face.
---Richard Whately (1787-1863)
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on July 10, 2015, 12:26:06 PM
Among the many benefits that I've read about as we walk away from porn is better sleep.

Last year for Christmas my wife bought me a Jawbone UP fitness tracker.  Basically, it's like a FitBit or any of the other wrist worn devices that track stuff like steps taken, calories burned, sleep, etc.  I've worn it for the past year or so and it has the ability to track your sleep, how much you wake during the night as well as how much of your sleep is light sleep and how much is deep sleep.  If it is accurate, my sleep is definitely improving.  I don't really spend any more time in bed (anywhere between 7.5-8 hrs a night), but I was only getting about 2 hours of deep sleep a night before (sometimes even less) and now I am consistently getting 6+ hours of deep sound sleep a night.

The change in my sleep has gradually progressed and parallels my distancing myself from porn.

Just food for thought...one more reason to stay porn free.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on July 10, 2015, 04:14:33 PM
Cold showers, distance from porn, and better sleep! Keep it up Unchained. You know there is even better stuff up ahead.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on August 07, 2015, 05:28:46 PM
I haven't posted in several weeks and thought I'd catch up a bit in my journal.

I'm still going strong (some days stronger than others) and felt that it may be helpful to myself and possibly others to write out what seems to be working for me.

I have read, listened to, and watched pretty much everything available at ybop...multiple times.  I have downloaded and read multiple books on porn addiction and addiction in general.  I also downloaded Gordon Bruin's InnerGold online treatment program.  From those sources as well as drawing from the wealth of knowledge garnered here from fellow rebooters, I have developed my own daily system to deal with cravings & triggers as well as hopefully keep them from popping up in the first place.

I want to apologize in advance for being long winded.  Following is a list of what seems to be working so far:

1. Journal, post in other's journals & look for updates at ybop.  I do this first thing every morning.  I try not to linger in bed in the morning when I wake up.  The first thing I look for is my cell phone and I take it with me to the bathroom as part of my morning ritual...heck, I'm just sitting there anyway (lol).  Anyway, I read journals here & look for updates at ybop.  Gary posts success stories from multiple sites & there seems to be good motivational success stories every day or two.  Reading journals is great, but I feel it helps to mix in some positive success stories instead of just reading through the trials & tribulations of trying to quit.

2. Cold showers.  I have found this to be one of the most effective & easiest things to do to improve overall mood and feeling of accomplishment.  The only thing it requires is to turn a knob completely to one direction and stand there for 5-10 minutes.  It could not be easier and the benefits are nothing short of amazing.  In the past 3 1/2 months, I've probably taken less than 10 hot showers.  Cold showers are now firmly entrenched in my porn-free routine.  I actually feel like something is missing from my day if I don't have one.  Some days, I'll take another cold shower when I get home just to make me feel better if I feel I need a pick-me-up.  I feel the benefits are multi-fold.  One is that they up regulate your dopamine receptors, making them more responsive to the lowered dopamine that us addicts produce.  The end response is that it makes you feel better, happier, more alert, more positive, etc.  And since negative feelings drive us towards porn, it stands to reason that feeling GOOD can help minimize cravings because our brain isn't constantly looking for an escape.  I have found the better I feel, the fewer unwanted thoughts find their way into my consciousness.  Secondly, I feel accomplished when I finish a long cold shower.  I have faced an uncomfortable situation head-on and accomplished a goal.  That is a good way to start the day...feeling accomplished.  In the same way I can consciously force myself to stand in the uncomfortable cold, I know I can use that same mental toughness when the time comes to resist urges to seek out porn.  I have confidence that I can stand the pain...because I do stand the pain.  Third, cold showers have physical benefits if you are trying to improve your overall health.  Ten minutes of shivering has been shown to reduce fat as well as ten minutes of running...and all you have to do is stand there (well, and shiver).

3. Meditation.  Addicts have a smaller and weaker pre-frontal cortex which is what governs decision making.  It has been proven that people who meditate have larger and more powerful pre-frontal cortexes.  So, it stands to reason that participating in an activity that would help to strengthen our weakened decision making part of our brains would be beneficial.  For me, it has been tremendously effective.  The InnerGold system encourages a type of medication in which one sits uninterrupted and recites a memorized powerful quote, poem or bible verse over and over.  While doing this, you attempt to keep focus completely on the words as you say them.  As other thoughts pop into your head (and they will), gently redirect your thoughts back to your memorized words and continue doing so over and over for a predetermined time.  I started at 5 minutes, but now try to meditate for 15 minutes every morning before work.  The process trains the meditator how to direct thought where he WANTS it.  Through consistent practice, I am much better equipped to deflect porn thoughts much in the same way as the stray thoughts that pop up while I meditate.  They pop up in my head, but I choose to focus elsewhere.  While they may come in and linger in the back of my mind, they hold no power over me if I choose NOT to focus on them.   I also see this as physical exercise for the brain.  It may very well be that as the pre-frontal cortex gets stronger and bigger, your decision making and thought choices get stronger as well.  The cravings may not really be weaker, it is that the brain has become stronger.  Think of a muscle you work at the gym.  You may have a hard time lifting 100 pounds the first time you hit the gym.  As you gain strength, it is less difficult to lift.  Over time, the same 100 lbs isn't any big deal at all, in fact it isn't even really work.  The 100 lbs hasn't changed in any way what-so-ever...you are just stronger.  Strong enough to shoulder the load, I feel that is what is happening in my brain.

4. Exercise.  When I exercise, I feel good about myself.  I feel as though I am actively working to improve myself.  It truly pays dividends to invest in one's self.  I enjoy running.  It gets me outside and is an outlet for stress.  I sleep better when I run consistently which also improves mood, energy levels and overall outlook.  I am also more fit and lean and that makes me feel good about myself.  I feel that so very much of trying to beat an addiction comes back to finding positive ways to feel good about ourselves and exercise is a really good way to do so.  I also added in another small measure of exercise during the day.  Every time I go pee, I do a set of push ups.  I started with 20, then after a week 25 and so on and now I do 40 every time I go to the bathroom with is at least 4-5 times a day.  I know it's not like hitting the gym, but it is still a little bit of exercise, doesn't cost anything & makes me feel better.

5. Mid-day break.  My work day is stressful.  I own my own business and dealing with problems with suppliers, customers & employees is just part of my daily routine.  As I have become more aware of the thoughts, feelings and urges that slowly build inside my brain during the day, I have noticed that I have to be extremely cautious when stressful situations become very intense.  If I allow them to take root I'm more likely to act on them later when I get a chance.  Since the stress is somewhat unavoidable, I make it a point to get out of the office every day for a short walk.  A 15-20 minute walk outside helps me decompress and even just walking a mile or so burns a few calories...at least more than sitting at my desk.

6. Mindless entertainment.  I pretty much watch little to no TV and I quit surfing the internet for the purpose of passing time.  At night, I'll watch 30 minutes of news & sometimes enjoy a program about how the universe works or a historical documentary.  On the weekend, if I'm home I may watch a race but that's about all the TV I see.  I stay away from all reality TV and won't consider an R rated movie.  Also, endless surfing the net out of boredom is history.  I see the internet as a tool.  If I need to look something up...I look it up.  I find out what I want to know and move on.  I use it as a tool for my work.  I use it as a tool in my healing...in coming hear and other sites that are productive in my recovery.  I am on ZERO social media sites.  The internet is not part of my social life and is no longer part of my sex life.

7. Radio.  After over three months, I just started allowing myself to listen to a little bit of radio or Pandora while alone in my car or while mowing my yard (which is a 3 hours ordeal).  There is a lot of material in most all music genres that paint sexual images in my mind.  I decided that it was better for me (for a time) to steer clear of even that much temptation.  Instead, I downloaded all 33 of Gary Wilson's radio shows (well, except for episode 29 which won't download for some reason) and listen to them over and over and over again in my car.  The 32 episodes are 12 hours 28 minutes of porn addiction education, advise & encouragement.  Much like when I meditate, I focused intently on his words...what he was saying as I drove to keep bad thoughts out.  I see that time as time I was investing into my recovery through gaining knowledge & drawing strength from the recovery stories of former addicts and information provided some of the experts he interviewed.  As I said earlier, I now am beginning to ease back into radio but only do so with a very deep awareness of my own thoughts.  Just this morning while driving to work I didn't like the direction my mind was headed, so off went the radio and on went Gary's radio podcasts.  Also, while I shave & get ready in the morning, I'll play the youtube videos from YBOP, Noah Church, Gabe, nofapacademy, etc.

8.  Accountability software.  I use CovenantEyes and it has saved my bacon more than once.  I do not use the blocker tool or any other type of blocker on any of my devices.  I simply have it set up to send 100% of my internet usage to my wife in a weekly report.  It is installed on my laptop, my smart phone, even my work computer.  I know myself well enough to know a blocker wasn't going to work.  I would simply find a way around it.  I also like the fact that I am not blocked...I can go to porn in an instant if I choose to, however, I know that she will know so it forces me to make the choice over and over that I choose not to look at porn.  Have you ever thought about why drug users who go to prison for an extended period of time go right back to the same drugs when they get out?  I've often thought "why would they do that...they've been sober for a year, maybe two?".  The problem is that sobriety is not necessarily healing from addiction.  They more or less abstained (although forcefully) not by their choice.  They didn't develop the tool set necessary to refuse their drug of choice when confronted by it once they are free to choose for themselves.  I feel much the same way about using a blocker to try to beat an addiction (don't get me wrong, they do have a place...especially when children are using the computer, etc).  However, us addicts need to find a healthy, safe way to reinforce our ability to choose not to choose porn...over and over again.

9.  Fish oil.  May sound stupid, but look it up.  Some studies have indicated that cultures that eat more fish have lower rates of depression.  Fish oils (specifically EPA & DHA) have been recommended by many experts to individuals healing from all sorts of addictions.  It seems to promote faster brain recovery.  I cannot swear by it, but fish oil supplements are not expensive and certainly won't hurt...plus it is good for your heart.  Just make sure to get a quality supplement that has been purified to remove mercury.

10.  Stay busy.  This can be tough in the evenings when I used to sit and watch TV out of boredom which would inevitably lead to thoughts of porn which would set me up for a PMO session.  Now I occupy myself by organizing my garage, doing small things around the house that have been nagging at me or anything I can come up with to be productive and busy.  "Idle hands are the devil's playthings."

11.  Spreadsheet.  I like this in place of a day counter.  On a side note...I love setting up spreadsheets in general.  Regardless,  I have a spreadsheet that tracks how many days since I started, how many days since my last reset from PMO, how many days since I reset from MO, what % of days since the start I have PMO'd & MO'd, 1 in how many days I have PMO's or MO'd (as in 1 in 7 or 1 in 10), my 30 day average for both PMO & MO, how far I ran on a given day, how many push-ups, average distance, average push-ups, current weight, weight loss, etc.  Early in the process it was tremendously helpful.  Once I reset after 26 days...well the next day I was at day 1 on a counter, but after 4 days I was showing 1 PMO in 30 days.  Two days after the PMO, I was averaging 1 PMO in 4 weeks.  Seeing it that way was a much more positive experience than looking at a big ole "2" on my PMO counter.  Now that I am further down the road I am proud of the numbers as they progress.  It is a visual aid to me in that I know if I slip that it will take a while to get them back to where they are now.  I know it's just a spreadsheet, but it is evidence of the hard work I have put into improving myself and it is something I take pride in.  It holds me accountable and I have backed away from looking at porn when the thought was building inside of me because the spreadsheet was open on my desktop (that was when I decided my work computer needed CovenantEyes, too).

You'll notice I haven't mentioned my dick once.  A year ago when I first became aware of PIED, that was the only thing that really mattered to me.  I was a chronic daily PMO'er and I had only sporadic ED, but it was enough to get my attention & started to cause tremendous anxiety as I worried about if I was going to be able to perform.  I managed to abstain from porn for 25 days with one reset and then 40 days and in both cases I was functioning again properly.  After a longer reset I decided that it was time to develop a system.  Simply abstaining wasn't going to cut it.  I needed to find a way to build a life free from porn...not just count days.  In the end, abstinence will not work.  We need to develop a set of tools.  We need a lifelong system.  Gary repeatedly mentions that PIED appears to be the last symptom that develops from long term porn use and that all of the others pretty much go un-noticed as they develop along the way.  Well, I feel that during the march away from porn, the symptoms fall off in reverse order of how they were acquired.  ED comes on last...ED goes away first...at least for me.  The fact that ED went away doesn't mean I am cured and healthy, it just means that one symptom has healed.  It would be a mistake to believe (and a mistake that tripped me up in the past) that we have beaten our addiction simply because we can get an erection when needed.  To me, that type of thinking is like a recovering alcoholic thinking that he was recovered the first morning he woke up without a hangover..."heck, I feel good this morning so I must be cured!".

Once again, feeling happy, staying busy, being aware of and directing one's thoughts, and being physically active will keep the primitive brain from seeking an escape.  Why would it want to escape feeling well?  Regardless, even the happiest person deals with stress, negative feelings and unfortunate situations in his life.  I have found the vast majority of triggering thoughts come up when feeling one of the following:
  (B)ored
  (L)onely
  (A)ngry
  (S)ad
  (T)ired
The BLAST acronym was mentioned in the InnerGold treatment and has helped me in times that I have been triggered by my own thoughts.  I still have thoughts pop-up and try not to give them any attention, but at the same time I try to get to the root of why is my primitive brain telling me it wants to seek medication in porn.  While some thoughts may be genuinely random (heck, all people have sexual thoughts, urges & desires), many times I can very easily identify that I am in one of the BLAST frames of mind.  That makes the situation SOO much more manageable.  You see, I don't have to fight the urge...I address the cause of the urge.  Maybe I can do something about it, maybe I can't.  If not, I thank my primitive brain for suggesting what it thinks would make me feel better but respectfully decline to participate in that behavior.

Bad thoughts are going to happen.  Negative emotions are going to happen.  Triggers outside of my control are going to happen.  That is just life.  My approach has been to do all I can on the front end to keep bad thoughts as far away from me as possible...to minimize them by filling my life with positive constructive behaviors.  But some still slip through and some will always slip through.  Hopefully, with the other tools I am developing I will be able to recognize them early and stop them before they escalate.

Well, like I said...I am long winded.  This is what is working for me at the moment and I will continue to learn from everyone here and may add more to my arsenal.  I do know 100% that the showers, meditation, continuing education, exercise & mid-day walks do work because there have been days that I have had to skip one or more for various reasons & I have felt a lowered state of mind, have experienced more unwanted thoughts and have also felt an increase in anxiety when I don't stick to my system.  So...for now, I will work my system and keep walking away from porn.  Porn is a little farther away each day.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: jjyb on August 07, 2015, 08:12:30 PM
Great stuff, thanks!
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: sodonewithit on August 07, 2015, 10:05:13 PM
Killing it unchained.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on August 10, 2015, 02:50:46 PM
Thanks for this post Unchained!
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on August 11, 2015, 10:31:01 PM
Thanks guys.  I appreciate your comments.

I'm still feeling good...still dealing with thoughts and temptations.  They come less often, but they still come.  I am sometimes CRAZY good at aiming my focus away from porn thoughts, but sometime I honestly let them linger longer than I should.

I've given a lot of thought over the last year or so regarding the difficulties in overcoming this addiction for us old guys versus the young guys versus those in-between.  I know it is commonly stated that us old guys heal quicker...well, we may from ED but that doesn't mean we don't have a more entrenched addiction than the young guys.  At the same time, younger guys may be less addicted but have little to no experience with real women, making their road back to sexual health more difficult.  I am sure that is tough for an inexperienced young man...especially one with PIED and no previous experience or a partner to help them find their way put of this jungle.  I've also read TONS of journals from the 30+, 40+ crowd and even though the ED may heal quicker, I am convinced that the true path to healing (the path to out of this addiction) may be considerably tougher than the younger men out there with porn issues.  First, we've done it longer.  Me...I've used porn daily since I was 11...that's a 30 year addiction.  Second, many of us have caused as a result of our own actions regrets, hurts, destroyed relationships, unexplored relationships, failed marriages, failed father relationships, etc along the way that we are now facing.  Dealing with and facing those truths often are enough to push our brains to seek the comfort that it so often found in porn.  Again...not to minimize a young guy trying to score the 1st time and discovering ED, but compare that to the guy who looks back and realizes he's lost his wife and kids because of this SHITTY addiction.  The young guy is motivated to fix his penis, the old guy sees the truth of the outcome of a lifelong addiction and is crushed.  That pain can keep pushing him back to sooth the pain with porn over and over and over again.

I am a guy who has failed repeatedly and a guy who feels like I have come to a sense of clarity.  My previous bests were 27 days, 39 days, 28 days & 40 days (which seems a little odd looking back because I didn't pay attention to the day count while relapsing).  I post this because I have been here for a long time, watched guys come & go, watched some who have seemed to succeed & I hope they have, watched some disappear after failures, seen some flat-out give up, watched some I have looked up to fall back into the abyss, I see current posters rise and fall in the same cycles that gripped me in the past wondering why they just can't beat this thing with willpower and desire to be better alone.  I read and hope...I read and feel discouraged.  It is nice to feel support from others and at the same time hurts to see those same people struggle with this life destroying addiction.  I am at a point to where I am comfortable to leave for a week or two.  And when I come back there are so many new journals that I can't keep up...can't remember the new stories.  It all makes me feel numb.  I pray for strangers, some I've never even posted on their journals, but I read them and hope for their success.

It's tough when I see over and over and over again guys who truly want to heal, truly love their wives and family want to quit...who fail and say "this time I will beat it!"  Well, take it from me...you will never, never, never, never BEAT it.  It cannot be defeated.  You cannot conquer any addiction.  It will never happen.  You will never kick its ass.  You will never slay it.  You will never shoot, stab, or nuke it.  You will NEVER rip porn out of your brain.  It is because WE, at some point (or over the course of 3 decades for me), have engaged in this activity make ourselves feel good...for whatever reason each of us have.  So now, regardless of what sucks...boredom, stress, anger, hurt, physical or emotional pain, loneliness..whatever, our brains says "hey, I know what will make us feel better"...and it suggests, pushes and even forces upon us porn thoughts.  We've done that, we've trained our brains to do that.  It cannot be erased.  You will never never remove the part of your brain that suggests porn every time you feel bored or lonely or tired or sad.  That part of the brain is simply doing its job, and it will continue to suggest what it has learned that takes us to a happy place.

Please don't think of this as a sad, negative or defeatist post.  I feel quite the contrary.  We can all walk away from porn...leave it behind.  There is success out there in healing and I am feeling it, but for anyone new here, I hope you find the peaceful warrior route sooner rather than after a year of struggles like me (I spent a year trying to wrestle a beast I could not beat).  So much of what we are going through, and how long we linger in the shadows all come down to a way of thinking.  I can say without a doubt that trying to "beat" the addiction will keep it around.  Take the same energy you want to use to crush you addiction...and deflect it...just like the martial artist who doesn't attack, but constantly deflects incoming blows.  Focus all energy on not attacking your enemy, but redirecting your thoughts.  Please believe me, it works.   I still fight every day, but I fight less.  My skills get stronger, and the attacks have become fewer.  Eventually, I hope to be free of the bastard who has been engaging me completely, but its not because I beat him, its because I didn't let him beat me.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on August 17, 2015, 04:19:31 PM
Still hanging in there.

In previous attempts to stay free from porn I refused to make MO abstinence part of my system.  I mistakenly felt that if I continued to allow myself some "relief" that it would help me stay away from porn.  I had read many other success stories and most guys seemed to indicate that giving up MO was something that they had to do...I just simply thought that it would be impossible.  I wish I could go back and talk to myself a year ago because if I simply embraced giving up MO sooner I would be further down the path today.  I am currently on day 43 since my last MO and the healing feels like it really started picking up steam once I gave up any and all sexual activity that doesn't involve my wife.

You guys may be different, but I found it impossible to MO without some sort of fantasy running through my mind.  It could be real memories or memories of porn.  I tried the whole "focus on sensations" bit, but I could not keep the porn imagery completely out.  So, inevitably I would end up on focusing on thoughts of porn after a while and it always eventually led me back to relapse.  In the end, I came to the conclusion that the MO had to go, just like the P had to go.  For me, trying to keep MO and resist P was like a recovering alcoholic who still hangs out in the bar and thinks that he won't eventually give in.  The MO & PMO are just too closely intertwined for my brain to recover if I don't quit them both.  MO was keeping P memories not only alive and well, but at the forefront of my mind.

In the end, the daily need for "release" is just a farce created by the brain to maintain the addictive cycle.  The horniness becomes manageable and I feel is healthy.  Instead of going around constantly drained of sexual energy, it builds and with MO off the table, the energy has nowhere to go other than to be focused on my wife...which is how it should have been all along.

I think quitting MO has sped my progress for a few reasons.  First, no sexual activity at all that doesn't involve my wife trains my brain to understand that there is simply one and only place that it will get sexual reward.  That doesn't mean that seeing certain things can't get my mind racing, but anything and everything that is a sexual cue in this world that isn't my wife is a dead-end for sexual activity.  The brain eventually understands that if it wants sex, then this is the only place to get it...all of the others are no longer an option.  Secondly, it speeds the rewire process.  If our goal is to rewire to our real partners, then it makes sense that I was slowing progress by acting alone.  How am I supposed to train my brain to react to her sexually if I am still have more sexual activity alone than with her...and usually thinking of images of porn.  Since she is the only sexual cue that is allowed to linger in my consciousness, my primal brain new sees her as a walking target of desire (in a loving manner, of course).  And third, since there is no other form of release, the sexual tension builds and I pursue her much more frequently.  Success builds upon success, I gain in confidence and am relaxed, which creates more success which builds more success...on and on and on.

If anyone out there seems stuck in the same pattern as I was...repeated 4-6 weeks of abstinence followed by relapse, or if you are doing good staying away from porn but feel the mental progress is moving slower than you would like, you may want to consider quitting MO as part of your system.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: L.T.D. on August 17, 2015, 06:51:16 PM
Great post Unchained. I agree. The way I found out I had a problem was that I googled "how much M is too much?" YBOP popped up. Still didn't think P was an issue. I know it is now but I still think M is the root problem, for me at least.

Since I found this site I have M'd twice (only thinking of my amazing girlfriend) but the ED was right there to greet me at the next actual sexual opportunity. I always had the attitude that "it's my toy, I'll play with it if i want to!" And being told my whole life that there is nothing wrong with it didn't help. This lead to desensitization and porn. Then the mental issues kicked in. Like not noticing sexual advances, the shameful feelings, the not expressing my feelings, and the general uncaring of just about everything. Always had PMO to rely on. Then the ED started. It's the snowball effect combined with the slow boiling frog.

My advice to anyone reading this is to abstain from M.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: Chile on August 17, 2015, 08:31:08 PM
Yeah I agree too. PMO is all the same animal, in my book anyways. For me it would be a noticeable improvement to go 4-6 weeks at a time without it, but I'm not going to despair or give up. Peace.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on August 25, 2015, 09:14:15 PM
Checking in. Feeling strong.

Thought I'd share a short post for once...lol.
Title: Re: 41 (now) year old, addict since 13 committed to freedom from porn
Post by: unchained on August 28, 2015, 11:53:48 AM
Sometimes I get a bit discouraged.

In all, I'm happy with my progress and am so grateful to be on this path.  I have gone longer without porn than any single time since I was 11.  That's pretty good, I think.  However I still have these images burned in my brain.  As a kid, I amassed a sizable porn collection of magazines that ranged from Playboy to Hustler to everything in between.  I invested a tremendous amount of time looking at them over and over and over.  Even the porn that I looked at online as I got older...I tended to prefer sites that had photo galleries of models.  I would study the pictures.  I've read that many guys click to completely different videos every few seconds and I did a fair share of that, but my preference was to study countless pictorials of whatever model tripped my trigger on any given day.  Some where my favorites that I returned to gain and again.  I can so vividly recall even the small details of their faces, hair, smiles and obviously their bodies.  Images pop into my mind out of nowhere...sometimes images that I haven't seen in 25 years...some go back to the beginning over 30 years ago.  That is why I feel discouraged at moments.  I wonder just how long the flashbacks will come, maybe as long as forever.  I've gotten pretty good at redirecting my thinking quickly, to focus thinking elsewhere.  It is becoming quite effortless and that is a blessing.  I suppose I sometimes wish that they wouldn't intrude in the first place, however I must accept the reality of my situation.

The reality is that porn imagery flashes in my mind in the same way as if a porn scene was shown during a commercial break during a family friendly TV show.  In one instant you are in no way whatsoever involved with or thinking of porn and then BAM...blindsided.  The reality is that I am a porn addict.  I carefully planted, nurtured and cultivated that imagery over the course of a 3 decade addiction.

I apologize if this post seems gloom and doom.  That's not my intention.  I am still happier without porn.  At no time do I regret quitting and I feel strong and confident in my ability to resist urges.  Sometimes I feel myself gaining in strength in the middle of being tempted as I resist.  I've read many times that each time we resist an urge, we strengthen our ability to resist the next time.  It sure would be nice if I could take a vacation from my own thoughts for a few days.  But, once again I must face reality and my reality is that the hard work continues.  Like it or not, feel like it or not, I will push on.

God grant me the serenity
To accept the things I cannot change;
Courage to change the things I can;
And wisdom to know the difference.
Amen

I've heard that simple little prayer my entire life, but have never understood the full gravity of its meaning until I came to the realization of the depth of my own addiction.  It's not always easy to clearly see what we have control over and what we don't.  The serenity and courage are tiny compared to having gained the wisdom to know the difference. Maybe the root of my current state of mind is from my lack of wisdom in this situation.  I am trying to control (or change) something I cannot force to change.  What I can control is not the fact that I am tempted, but rather what I do (how and what I do think about) when I am tempted.  The frustration that I'm being tempted is a moot point, I set those wheels in motion long ago and at least at this present moment they are simply part of my subconscious.  So...I suppose I will "accept" it for what it is even thought I wish it were different and muster up the courage to keep doing what I have been doing...resisting urges by redirecting thoughts and trying to do as much as I can to keep bad thoughts from popping up in the first place.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on August 29, 2015, 08:48:19 PM
So happy for you brother. I've always enjoyed your posts.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Gracie on August 30, 2015, 07:55:19 AM
I hope this helps with the porn imagery.  When my husband and I were going through his reboot, I made him keep his eyes open. Look at me when we made love.  I figured he kept his eyes open masturbating, he could with me too.  Watch your wife when she is naked.  Keep your eyes open during sex.  Replace those porn images with your wife.  (Yes we kept eyes open during kissing too!)  It works!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 03, 2015, 05:14:18 PM
Thanks Gracie.  I prefer to keep my eyes open.  I'd go more into detail but am careful not to throw around any triggers.

I know my last post was a tinge negative, especially for as far along as I am at this point.  I feel very confident in my ability to resist porn and am proud of how far I have come...I suppose I was just wallowing in a bit of self pity that intrusive thoughts still haunt me.  I know now that they will probably stay with me for a while but am grateful that I have developed the tools to keep my brain going where I want it to go.  In the past I had little to no control of my own thoughts once even the slightest suggestion of porn was introduced into my consciousness.

I've also began to see a bit of a pattern in my mood, thinking, intrusive thoughts and anxiety levels over time.  For me, starting around 4 days from the last time my wife and I have had sex I can feel the sexual tension starting to build inside of me.  Day 5 is more tense and by day 6 I have an anxiety that is manageable but is always in the back of my head.  It's funny, but the day after chaser seems to be long gone...don't get me wrong, sometimes on weekends we go at it Friday night, Saturday and again Sunday if I'm lucky...sometimes maybe just a couple of times on the weekend.  When I first started, if we had sex on Sunday, then Monday would be an all day fight against the chaser.  Now, however I'm fine for a couple of days but ever so slowly the sexual tension builds until I'm a walking horn-dog.  Heck, I suppose that's how it is supposed to be.  For a normal guy, you go a short bit and then chase the wife around the house.  For a porn addict it can be a bit more complicated.  As my natural horniness builds, my primitive brain seems to be whispering into my ear that I should seek porn...or at least causes old images to flash before my mind's eye, and it does so more and more until I'm able to start the clock over again by having sex with the wife.  On top of that, I realized that while I was making progress it was moving slower that I wanted and adopted abstinence from MO as part of my system (today is 60 days since my last MO).  So, it's not like I can say "heck, this anxiety is building up and the wife is crazy-busy with the kids tonight so I'll go take matters into my own hands".  I'm not against MO in any way but feel that I need MUCH more distance from porn before I can consider reintroducing it back into my life...even if just to give my wife some time off when she's on her period.  As it stands I need to have her give me some relief at least once during the week of her period.

I was thinking the other day about what a bitch it is to be addicted to porn...or anything that is a true natural reward such as overeating.  We are prewired to crave sex and food and really can't completely deny them.  Imagine if alcohol, nicotine, cocaine or meth was a 100% necessity for survival.  I wonder how many recovered alcoholics could stay clean if a moderate amount of alcohol was required for survival?  How hard would it be to overcome the addiction if you still had to drink a couple of drinks a day but never overindulge again?  For most addictions, the recovering addict cuts out the substance 100%.  It's cannot be that way for matters of sex or food.  Like it or not, your brain will never let you not think about sex again...it just won't.  In dealing with this addiction, I've become much more empathetic towards addicts of all types, but I truly feel for those who are addicted to natural rewards like up, specifically the obese.  I used to feel overweight people just didn't have enough will power to maintain a healthy weight.  As hard as this porn fight can be, how much harder is it to control a food addiction?  The addict has no choice but to maintain some sort of relationship with the behavior that was once an addiction...every freakin' day.  Now, I see they are just like me but with a different drug of choice...and my drug use isn't visible to the outside world.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 06, 2015, 07:52:48 AM
Today marks 63 days (9 weeks) since I last MO'd.  Man, what a difference it has made in my healing.  I would have never believed I had it in me to quit MO.  My goal has been to eliminate PMO, but realized that be next to impossible to do unless the MO stopped as well.

If anyone is stuck in th 2-4 week success and then relapse cycle, try giving up MO as well and see if it helps.  It had made a difference for me.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Gracie on September 06, 2015, 08:06:53 AM
Good for you!  You have the right mindset.  I hope you have read my post about This, is what it is.  I post these so that men, who feel their wife is not understanding enough, or is emotional can stand in her shoes even just briefly.  This is such a hard walk as a partner.  We were not in your brain we did not know and do not know what the thought process is.  And as a testament to how we feel we cannot talk about it, look at how many women post.  It is brief and then they are gone.  I love reading the journals of men like you and others that get that your wife is along for this recovery.  Keep up that focus as well.

It is also good to read the progress of the men here.  I only wish more people knew of the harm.  Congratulations on your hard work!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on September 06, 2015, 11:40:02 AM
Very helpful posts Unchained and Gracie. Thank you.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 06, 2015, 11:55:30 AM
Thanks Gracie.  My wife and I have a really good relationship.  She is truly my best friend.  As a matter of fact we were friends since childhood and really didn't even date until we were in our mid-late 20's.  Our love really did grow out of friendship and that has been a real blessing.

My wife is very loving, virtuous and strong in her Christian faith.  Unlike me, she completely takes to heart what she feels God would want her to do in every situation...not in a preachy way, but just how she goes about making choices in her life.  When pied started to creep into our sexlife (before I had any clue that porn could even cause ed) I became extremely frustrated the times that my erection wouldn't work.  I would all but have an anxiety attack.  At that time we never discussed my porn use, but she wasn't fooled.  Although never caught, she knew better than to think I was needing to sit on the toilet an hour and a half at a time with my laptop in tow.  So, anyway I was laying in bed with her with my chest pounding almost freaking out because I wanted sex but couldn't get an erection.  She said "we can try later".  I started complaining about not getting another chance & that she was going to start her period in a day or two which took next weekend off the table, too, etc, etc, etc.  So, she said "well, maybe God is sending you a sign.  Maybe you shouldn't look at so much porn.  You know God says to think is the same as to do so how do you think it makes me feel that you are imagining having sex with all those other women.  It's that same as doing it in God's eyes".  She was 100% correct.  In those few sentences she communicated a lot.  Although she didn't know it at the time (whether you believe in God or not) it was the porn that was causing my erection problems.  She had pointed out that I was not living the way I know was right.  I justified to myself that looking at pics was not the same as cheating, but in a way it was.  On a spiritual level I was committing adultery by lusting after other women.  She also let me know how my actions made her feel.  She felt undesirable because I preferred images on a screen over her.  She did not continue to beat me up, but it was that conversation that caused me to search for porn as a cause for erectile disfunction.  It's funny how things work out.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 08, 2015, 08:36:47 AM
Sex on a computer screen = shit on a popsicle stick.  I refuse to consume either one

Keep going and stay strong guys. It truly does get easier...and better!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 10, 2015, 09:46:04 AM
Bad and good

Bad.  Last night I did something really stupid.  I was checking my email on my phone and clicked on an email that I knew was from a pornsite.  On my computer, I have tons of filters in place that send such things straight to the trash...I don't even see them.  However, when I use my cell phone to remotely log onto my email server, it sees all emails that haven't been accessed yet.  So, I knew what it was and I clicked anyway.  There were pictures of their 10 most popular models...kind of Playboy type photos...nothing too graphic but my heart about exploded in my chest.  So then to make matters worse, at the time I was sitting on my couch watching TV and decided to click onto Cinemax.  I saw one topless sex scene, shut it off & went to bed.  I know better than to allow myself to do such things.

It's amazing to me the reaction I could feel from such a small dose of images.  I could feel the blood rushing through my veins and an adrenaline like high that was driving me toward wanting to use again.  In the past I would have been a goner.  Or if I managed to to not PMO, I would still be an anxious mess today at the very least.  I'm actually quite calm & focused, but irritated that I would knowingly allow myself to be tempted.  That was just dumb.  I've done too much hard work, I have invested too much time and energy into this process, I feel too good without porn in my life, I've made too much progress to go and do something as stupid and playing with the all-too-dangerous death, fire & destruction that porn truly is.

On a side note, I had been drinking and it probably affected my judgment, but that is not an excuse.  It is merely a recognition of the situation that I put myself in.  Since I do enjoy a few beers, I need to be very aware of my thoughts even if I've had a few...maybe even more so.

Good.  This morning I felt pretty good and followed my routine of cold shower, etc.  I've almost memorized every one of Gary's radio shows (in fact, sometimes I can quote several minutes word-for-word as he speaks...kind of like singing along to a favorite song).  But, because I know the material so well, my mind sometimes wanders as I drive.  So this morning I decided to start listening to the Pronfree Radio podcasts I downloaded from iTunes (free by the way).  They are by Matt Dobschuetz and I listened to show #30.  If anyone out there is struggling to create a simple "system" to develop for themselves to help stay clean, I highly recommend listening to this specific episode.  I found it encouraging that some of what he speaks about is exactly what I am already doing.  He also had some simple and good suggestions for a few things that I can add to my routine.

I've been doing the same routine for a few months now and am not quite saying it is starting to feel stale, but I am excited to add a few things to may help me progress.  One of the suggestions that I intend to do is The Five Minute Journal.  Check it out at fiveminutejournal.com (http://fiveminutejournal.com).  It looks like a pretty easy tool to add to recovery.

In a nutshell...I'm still hanging tough, still make some stupid decisions, am grateful that I had the strength to walk away and feel empowered that I am still taking proactive steps in my own recovery.  I know that time away from porn alone will never lead to complete recovery.  I have to actively work toward ridding myself of this awful addiction.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: L.T.D. on September 10, 2015, 10:37:29 AM
The force is strong with this one!!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on September 10, 2015, 03:13:13 PM
Praying for you Unchained.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 10, 2015, 04:13:28 PM
Praying for you Unchained.

Thanks Chile.  I appreciate all of the prayers I can get.

People talk about this as a non-linear process and I agree.  I still have good days, bad days, calm days, days with mild-to-moderate anxiety.  I have days when I question myself and my ability to stay quit, days that I am happy, feel like a normal person and none of this stuff even crosses my mind.  As a whole it gets easier, but working through this process is a long term commitment...without a doubt.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 15, 2015, 11:19:27 AM
I'm still tweaking my system.

I mentioned I was considering the Five Minute Journal in a previous post and ordered the book but it isn't here yet.  Since ordering the book, I have been included on their email list and have enjoyed reading the emails they have sent so far.

In the mean time I have updated my spreadsheet a bit.  I've found that charting my progress on a spreadsheet is just as helpful as journaling.  So, now my spreadsheet tracks all of the following:

Month, date, day of week
Days since committing to PMO recovery
Days since PMO reset
Days since MO reset
Record whether I PMO or MO on any given day
Total PMO's since beginning
PMO as a % since beginning (such as 10% if 1 PMO in 10 days or 4 in 40 days)
PMO 1 in ? Days (such as 7 if the average PMO is 1 in 7 days)
90 Day PMO Average as a %
30 Day PMO Average as a %
14 Day PMO Average as a %
Total MO's since beginning
MO as a % since beginning (such as 10% if 1 MO in 10 days or 4 in 40 days)
MO 1 in ? Days (such as 7 if the average MO is 1 in 7 days)
90 Day MO Average as a %
30 Day MO Average as a %
14 Day MO Average as a %
Cold Shower (Y or N)
Meditate (Y or N)
Daily Journal (Y or N)
Post in my own or comment on another RebootNation journal (Y or N)
20 minute walk after lunch (Y or N)
Run (Record Total Distance)
Push-Ups (Total number during day)
Body weight
Notes on mood, day, etc. (I try to note how I feel and what good things happen during the day, any stresses and also things I've noticed about myself I would like to work on)

If anyone has any other suggestions...let me know.  I really like the way this approach feels.  At this point in recovery, it feels more like the key is less about fighting & resisting urges and more about proactively attacking my day...doing the things that I know make a difference in how I feel mentally, physically, & spiritually (speaking of which I think I'll add a daily devotional to my spreadsheet).  The more I consistently I do these things, the less I have to contend with intrusive thoughts.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Free73 on September 15, 2015, 09:26:32 PM
Unchained,

I am in the very early stages of my reboot, but even early on, I am starting to visualise what I want from my future relationship. I am currently single after sabotaging another relationship with inconsistent affection and the typical come here/go away behaviour that has characterised all of my relationships. I know that PMO has contributed greatly to my behaviours and sabotaging patterns.......I live in fantasy rather than the present which is a death knell for any relationship. Fantasy is a way of avoiding responsibility, of avoiding pain, avoiding uncomfortable thoughts. I am slowly replacing the fantasy of PMO with visualising what I want in my future relationship........I am visualising being truly intimate with a partner and allowing that partner to see the real me (Intimacy = IN TO MEE SEE), to experience real love and genuine non-sexual affection. When I visualise these things, I get quite emotional because I have never experienced this in a relationship and the PMO causes me to retreat back into myself and fantasy even further. You are doing great with all your strategies and managing your daily life to avoid the PMO, but make sure that you are visualising the type of relationship you want with your wife, free of PMO. Visualisation is a powerful tool. I think it takes a while for new behaviours to become habit, but visualisation will help you get there quicker and it requires less energy than consciously trying to avoid old habits.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on September 20, 2015, 09:41:15 AM
I think I may forgo the whole day counter thing.  For some reason, it makes me feel tethered to PMO.  I see the days like links on a chain and at the end of the chain is an anchor.  At least that is how it feels at this moment.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not stopping my system for recovery, in fact I'm tweaking it based on where I'm at in this process.

In the beginning, the counter was liberating in ways.  It was great to see 1 day, 1 week, 2 weeks etc since a relapse...especially since I had gone YEARS using porn at least once a day.  The day counter gave me belief in my ability to make it one more day as they built.  Eventually the day counter became a motivational tool not to mess up as I did not want to give up a high number that I built.  In both ways I see the counter as an invaluable tool in the very early stages of quitting.

There's something inside of me now that feels long term recovery is more than counting days.  I think it is good for a while...maybe a long while, but can't help but feel that to truly break free I cannot keep my focus looking back.  It may not be like that for everyone, but it feels that way to me.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on September 20, 2015, 09:27:17 PM
I couldn't agree with you more Unchained. Eventually I will eliminate my counter too, but I am not as far along in my reboot to do it yet.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: bob on September 25, 2015, 07:03:57 AM
I switched to a spreadsheet. Allowed me to see a bigger picture. I could see my progress and my need to continue to work; minus the shame.

The following is a long read but provides directions on how to set up the spreadsheet about 3/4 down the post. It is worth the read.


http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/index.php?topic=15558.0 (http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/index.php?topic=15558.0)

What ever you do, know that we are with you and continue to encourage your be proud of your success in this process.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on November 05, 2015, 05:08:26 PM
I'm back...

I've actually not gone anywhere...been reading posts here every day, but I've been a little messed up in the head and didn't feel like putting it all out there.  I also didn't feel like I had much to contribute to anyone else...I feel like a hypocrite in many ways.

In the end, I need to stay with my journal as part of sticking with my system.  I also hope (if anyone out there reads this) that others may see some of my experience in what they are going through and hopefully me documenting my failures will keep others from doing the same.  Maybe my failures will speed someone else's healing.

A few weeks back I reset.  I had been so good for so long that I got lazy in my routine.  I felt good...felt happy.  It was almost like resisting got too easy.  I guess I started to get cocky.  Eventually I let my guard down and while surfing for something to watch late at night (which by the way...going to bed earlier is part of my system that I was unfortunately not following at that moment) and clicked on a late night Cinemax movie.  It was basically simulated sex showing lots and lots of boobs but it got me going & I mo'd.  I felt bad but that night I opened the door to let pro back into my life.

The next night I snuck off and did it again.  This time Cinemax wasn't enough & I actually paid for an on-demand porn flick.  It's the first time I've ever done that.  Even when I was heavy into porn, I would never pay for a movie, but I have all of my devices secure and it was the only way I had to see see porn and I had already given in to my addiction...so "to hell with $15".

For two weeks after that I was good, but still not working my routine.   Then one night I had an thought...oh what a glorious thought...it was a porn addict stroke of genius.  While laying in bed I recalled that my wife's old cell phone was in a drawer in our office.  Even though it doesn't get service, it can still access the internet wherever there is wi-fi.  So, for the course of about three weeks I used her phone to pmo on at least 6 or 8 occasions.  Of course each time was going to be the last...yeah, right.

So...last Monday (a week-and-a-half ago) I finally had enough...or so I thought.  I removed the battery from the phone, took it to my work and threw it in the dumpster.  My wife likes to keep old phones in case we loose or break one.  I figured this way, I would only have to buy a battery if something like that happened.  I was good until Sunday.  In typical addict fashion I was trying to figure out how to get a fix.  I was so depraved that I actually figured out how to use a battery from a Samsung S5 in my new phone in an old S3 if you get creative with a long zip-tie.  This led to a Sunday pmo session followed by a Monday morning session to cap things off.

It's funny, but I was so completely aware of what was happening in my brain with each occurrence, but I didn't really care.  I knew why and how it was happening, I could feel it.  I knew what to do to stop it...but I didn't.  I feel there is still a small part of my brain that holds out hope that p can still have a small part in my life...that it can be a little fun on the side and can be managed.  Of course, I know better.

For the last few weeks (about 6 or so), I've been in a cycle of a pmo here, maybe 2 there followed by a few days or even a week of abstinence.  However, even in the good times I was not following my routine that was so helpful.  I was more-or-less just living life and fighting urges as they came...win some, loose some.  I know (and knew) that doing so is not a recipe for success.  I simply must be diligent in sticking to a system and routine that sets me up for success, so today I am recommitting to a lifetime of sobriety...

...even took a cold shower this morning.  It's time to start working porn out of my life again instead of marking time.  I've let years get away from me and I see time moving faster all the time...that scares me.  I'm scared that if I don't truly make a life change that I'll find myself an old man in a very short time looking back with only regret that I spent so much of the time that God gave me stroking my wang to to 2 dimensional women.  On top of that, I've been blessed in so many other ways that it is almost sickening that I choose to invest the time I do have with porn women instead of my wife and family.

All of that changed when I was free from porn.  I did the right things.  I've had a great year.  This past Sunday I spent the day hiding in my garage pretending I was working on stuff while I looked at 3 inch pictures of naked women all afternoon on an old cell phone instead of playing with my kids...that's just sad.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on November 05, 2015, 06:27:02 PM
Great to see you back here Unchained. Sorry it's under the circumstances you describe. Perhaps you fell as hard as you did because your brain was so starved for porn dopamine, which shows just how far you had come in your reboot. Don't get down on yourself my friend. Go back to what worked and be the wiser for your experience. I'm sure you will.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on November 06, 2015, 10:08:27 AM
Counter back on
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on December 23, 2015, 03:34:32 PM
I've been having a hard time getting traction.  I'm not stuck in a daily PMO routine, but more like 1-2 times a week.  Sometimes I'll stay clean for a couple of weeks, but it has been a while now since I've had a real long meaningful streak.

After my last slip up a couple of months ago, I never truly got focussed on working a system and sticking to a plan that I knew would keep me healthy.  Instead, I simply tried to "fight" the urges...win some / loose some.  I know from experience...too much experience that trying to quit that way simply will not work.  Or, at least it will not work for me.

So...here I am...not gonna shout that I will never slip or stumble again because doing so and failing makes me feel like a hypocrite.  What I am doing is recommitting myself to actively get back on the path that was successful for me in the past.

I was thinking in the car the other day about this seemingly almost unbeatable addiction and why I am having so much difficulty.  It occurred to me that wanting to quit is not and will never be enough.  No one ever accomplished anything by "wanting" it.  They got off their butts and did something about it...proactively.  I know I can't get in good shape by wanting to have a better body.  I have to make the right choices.  To be the best physically that I can be, I have to eat right, I have to get enough sleep, I have to exercise, etc.  It takes work...not wishing or wanting.  You don't get a college degree by wanting it...no...you have to put in the time.  You have to go to class, do the homework, study and do all the other things necessary to achieve the goal.  It is like that with almost everything in life...so why should quitting porn be any different?

I can want it all I want, but nothing will change until I (re)roll up my sleeves and get back to the job of cleaning up the mess I have made.  This means I need an approach that to address it physically, emotionally, logically and spiritually.  Physically I will recommit to my exercise routine.  Emotionally I will better communicate with my wife (I tend to shut people out when discouraged, stressed, angry or unsure of myself and that leads back to PMO).  I will also refocus on my morning meditation to improve my emotional state.  Logically I will continue to educate myself about the hard science as it relates to porn addiction as well as addiction in general.  And spiritually I will ask for forgiveness for my sins, forgive myself for my mistakes, spend more time in God's word and seek God's will for my purpose in this world through prayer.

In the end I feel like I'm in a pretty good place.  A hands-on approach makes me feel like I'm more in the driver's seat than when I'm simply going through life trying to avoid temptations as they come along.  I have hope that this next year will be a great one.  As far as 2015 goes...while I've made mistakes I have been more PMO free than any single year since I began PMO in 1987, and that's a good thing I suppose.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on December 23, 2015, 06:26:22 PM
Good to hear from you again Unchained! Congratulations on your best year so far.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on December 24, 2015, 11:18:15 AM
Jumped back into the cold shower routine this morning.  Man it was cold...colder than I remember.  I went several months earlier this year with a cold shower every day, but I swear the water is much colder in December than it was in the summer.

In the end it made me feel like a bad-ass standing there refusing to let the cold water beat me.  There is much truth to the claims that cold showers help a recovering addict's mind set all day long.  The 5 minutes of discomfort pays dividends all day long.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: bob on December 24, 2015, 12:13:36 PM
What I am doing is recommitting myself to actively get back on the path that was successful for me in the past.


(and) I have been more PMO free than any single year since I began PMO in 1987, and that's a good thing I suppose.

These are wise words of wisdom from somebody that is clear thinking and working towards an honorable goal. You give me inspiration!

Thank you for being here with me.

Peace to you my brother.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on December 25, 2015, 09:19:31 PM
Thanks Bob. I appreciate your encouragement.

I had a wonderful Christmas today with my family. Even though only my wife is aware of my struggle with this addiction, today I was filled with hope & optimism which affected all aspects of the day.

I hope everyone here who celebrates Christmas had a truly joyful day.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: freshstart@40 on December 27, 2015, 06:27:12 AM
Hi Unchained
I have just started reading your journal as it sounds like you have been where i am in my journey and it is really helpful.
It may take me a while to get through it but i appreciate you taking the time to record your journey as it really helps guys like me.

Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: GottaTry on December 27, 2015, 01:52:49 PM
Quote
It's time to start working porn out of my life again instead of marking time.  I've let years get away from me and I see time moving faster all the time...that scares me.  I'm scared that if I don't truly make a life change that I'll find myself an old man in a very short time looking back with only regret that I spent so much of the time that God gave me stroking my wang to to 2 dimensional women.  On top of that, I've been blessed in so many other ways that it is almost sickening that I choose to invest the time I do have with porn women instead of my wife and family.

Unchained,

I've read your journal from front to end and let me tell you that I am rooting for you brother!  I see in you many of the same inner struggles I have.  I too am addicted.  But today,I finally found this place.  And I think it can help me try to overcome my addiction in the coming days, weeks, months and years. Thank you for sharing of yourself.  I'm not sure I'll have as much courage to share, but I will try.  Like you write, I'm scared too.  Last night I lost my latest reboot (heck, I've been crossing triggers and redlines for a few weeks now), got caught, and am now sick of what I am and where I'm taking my family.  It is sad, really.  I know I can do better, but unlike my last reboot, now I know I've got to have some help.  And reading your journal, and all the others, gives me a bit of that help.  Seeing that there are wives like Gracie out theregives me hope that I might not have crossed her final red line.

Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on December 27, 2015, 04:02:06 PM
I've been having a hard time getting traction.  I'm not stuck in a daily PMO routine, but more like 1-2 times a week.  Sometimes I'll stay clean for a couple of weeks, but it has been a while now since I've had a real long meaningful streak.

After my last slip up a couple of months ago, I never truly got focussed on working a system and sticking to a plan that I knew would keep me healthy.  Instead, I simply tried to "fight" the urges...win some / loose some.  I know from experience...too much experience that trying to quit that way simply will not work.  Or, at least it will not work for me.

So...here I am...not gonna shout that I will never slip or stumble again because doing so and failing makes me feel like a hypocrite.  What I am doing is recommitting myself to actively get back on the path that was successful for me in the past.

I was thinking in the car the other day about this seemingly almost unbeatable addiction and why I am having so much difficulty.  It occurred to me that wanting to quit is not and will never be enough.  No one ever accomplished anything by "wanting" it.  They got off their butts and did something about it...proactively.  I know I can't get in good shape by wanting to have a better body.  I have to make the right choices.  To be the best physically that I can be, I have to eat right, I have to get enough sleep, I have to exercise, etc.  It takes work...not wishing or wanting.  You don't get a college degree by wanting it...no...you have to put in the time.  You have to go to class, do the homework, study and do all the other things necessary to achieve the goal.  It is like that with almost everything in life...so why should quitting porn be any different?

I can want it all I want, but nothing will change until I (re)roll up my sleeves and get back to the job of cleaning up the mess I have made.  This means I need an approach that to address it physically, emotionally, logically and spiritually.  Physically I will recommit to my exercise routine.  Emotionally I will better communicate with my wife (I tend to shut people out when discouraged, stressed, angry or unsure of myself and that leads back to PMO).  I will also refocus on my morning meditation to improve my emotional state.  Logically I will continue to educate myself about the hard science as it relates to porn addiction as well as addiction in general.  And spiritually I will ask for forgiveness for my sins, forgive myself for my mistakes, spend more time in God's word and seek God's will for my purpose in this world through prayer.

In the end I feel like I'm in a pretty good place.  A hands-on approach makes me feel like I'm more in the driver's seat than when I'm simply going through life trying to avoid temptations as they come along.  I have hope that this next year will be a great one.  As far as 2015 goes...while I've made mistakes I have been more PMO free than any single year since I began PMO in 1987, and that's a good thing I suppose.

Grateful you posted here, Unchained. I feel after reading your latest posts that I'm on Team-Unchained, and wish to fight with you every step of the way back into that place of victory that you enjoyed not too long ago.

I can relate to your struggle, having reached 116 days last summer- I was riding high. Thereafter, especially during the last few months, had been really hard for me to regain traction, as you put it. Sure, I didn't have to reset my counter, but I didn't feel as if I was where I needed to be given the tenacity of this addiction.

Like yourself, I had to revisit what's worked for me in the [recent] past, and put it into practice.

One conclusion that I came up with for myself, and it's also what you're saying, is that one cannot do this mindlessly, as our bad habits are still not too dim yet as to not be reactivated.

This calls forth an incredible mindfulness and a diligent living on purpose concerning those areas you mentioned: physical health- are we eating right? Are we getting enough sleep? Emotional health- how are my emotions? What are my thoughts dwelling on? Why am I feeling a certain (negative) way? How can I change my perception toward what's true, as opposed to what's dysfunctional?  Spiritual health- This is where I put my meditation practice, as it gives me a chance not only to practice breathing and mindfulness, but to also realize my Oneness with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Also, prayer and reading His Word, not as a work that I have to do, but rather to tune my inward attitudes correctly so as to renew my mind according to who I am in Him.

Had a great Christmas, and am glad you also did. Looking forward to the good things in store for you in the New Year, new victories, building on the old winnings- which are by no means lost to us. 
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on December 31, 2015, 03:44:50 PM
Thanks for the posts guys

I appreciate hearing that others read what I am experiencing and can identify with it.  This addiction is definitely one that is kept in the dark for almost everyone of us.  Everyone knows a smoker smokes, but PMO addiction is kept hidden from everyone.  It is a truly lonely place to be and a terrifyingly lonely place to exist when you come to the realization that the PMO habit has grown stronger than your self control.  When I quit smoking years ago I told everyone that I was trying to quit.  I got much encouragement...people smiled & said wonderfully supportive and encouraging things.  I'd see someone out...they would notice I was still not smoking and would ask things like "how long has it been?" or they would pat me on the back and say "congratulations".  Those interactions helped keep me on track...they made me feel good about myself for quitting.  With PMO we suffer in silence and (for the most part) we struggle alone and heal in secret.  The closest thing I have to any sense that someone out there understands me is through this forum.  It is nice to feel understood and that I am not just some one-in-a-million sexually perverted freak.


Spiritual health- This is where I put my meditation practice, as it gives me a chance not only to practice breathing and mindfulness, but to also realize my Oneness with the Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

I agree Leon. I incorporate prayer into my meditation practice and have found that meditation improved my ability to stay focused and clear minded in prayer.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: GottaTry on January 01, 2016, 09:45:51 AM
It is a truly lonely place to be and a terrifyingly lonely place to exist when you come to the realization that the PMO habit has grown stronger than your self control. 

Yes. Yes it is a very lonely place. 
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 08, 2016, 05:39:05 PM
I heard the following C.S. Lewis quote regarding masturbation a couple of weeks back.  It is so true and applicable to our own struggles that I wanted to post it here.

"For me the real evil of masturbation would be that it takes an appetite which, in lawful use, leads the individual out of himself to complete (and correct) his own personality in that of another (and finally in children and even grandchildren) and turns it back; sends the man back into the prison of himself, there to keep a harem of imaginary brides. And this harem, once admitted, works against his ever getting out and really uniting with a real woman. For the harem is always accessible, always subservient, calls for no sacrifices or adjustments, and can be endowed with erotic and psychological attractions which no woman can rival. Among those shadowy brides he is always adored, always the perfect lover; no demand is made on his unselfishness, no mortification ever imposed on his vanity. In the end, they become merely the medium through which he increasingly adores himself…After all, almost the main work of life is to come out of our selves, out of the little dark prison we are all born in. Masturbation is to be avoided as all things are to be avoided which retard this process. The danger is that of coming to love the prison."  - C.S. Lewis

Dangerous...indeed.  I was in the prison he speaks of for almost 30 years.  I so loved my imaginary harem that I was blinded to the fact that I was even stuck in a prison at all.  My addiction convinced me that porn was heaven, not prison.  I would become euphoric when I knew I had time to be alone and access to porn.  All the while I was chained in a prison and couldn't even see it....or maybe I could, but as he said I came to love the prison itself.  I loved be inside my own world where I could selfishly indulge all of my own desires while neglecting the needs of those real people who care for and need me.

All of what he said in the quote resonated deeply with me.  After hearing it I was reminded why it is important for me to avoid MO just as importantly as PMO if I am to become the man that I hope to be.  If what he says is true about masturbation alone, then adding porn to the mix would be like magnifying it exponentially.  C.S. Lewis died in 1963.  I wonder what his words would be today.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: JKR on January 08, 2016, 11:46:04 PM
Quote
I would become euphoric when I knew I had time to be alone and access to porn.

How well I can relate to that! Every time when driving home from my family's house after a two or three day stay, I'd start feeling excited about getting home to be alone with my PC and the limitless porn I could find. I'd start planning out how I'd organize the time to maximize my enjoyment, edit and splice videos together to increase the pleasure because I was aware of the novelty effect and used it to my advantage. I was like a master chef, but of porn. The sad thing is that the pleasures I could reach after a while were never as good to what I could through more normal masturbation when younger - I had really burnt out my dopamine, like some kind of crack addict that needed the maximum dose just to feel 50% as good as what he used to be able to with only a little. So I'd lay off a week, go back, and it'd be great again and fall back into the eternal cycle. Only when I write it out do I see how sad it really all has been.

PMO certainly grew beyond my self control. I don't know how many times I tried to quit. Fifty? Never succeeded. Always came crawling back. But this forum has really changed things for me, and I hope most others. To be able to write out and articulate how porn has affected us, how it's twisted our thoughts and our behavior.

What I really appreciate here is reading other people's experiences and seeing how much they mirror my own. Suffering in completely silence is hurtful. So many people consider me a very eligible bachelor and wonder why I don't try to date people very often - maybe one person a year. It's PMO that does this, it robs us of normalcy, and greater joy, all because we can't break out of flooding our brains for the sake of instant gratification.

The C.S. Lewis quote is very poignant. It's spot on. The harem is always accessible, perfect, limitless, how could one ordinary woman ever compete with that? Yet we are meant to be able to experience the highest of highs with one ordinary person. For me, now, that isn't possible. Hopefully the future is bright thanks to a place like this.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on January 09, 2016, 12:03:06 AM
Porn is not a victimless habit. That's what keeps reminding me of the freedom that awaits in leaving it behind.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 11, 2016, 09:52:20 AM
Porn is not a victimless habit. That's what keeps reminding me of the freedom that awaits in leaving it behind.

You are 100% correct Chile.  That in itself should be sufficient motivation to stay away.  Sadly for me, when I am in "the moment" of temptation any consideration for any other person seems to go right out the window.  The addiction takes over in complete selfishness.  To be honest, when I do cave in I don't even care about myself.  I'm completely aware of the negative consequences for myself and even that isn't strong enough motivation to walk away if I get too close to the edge.  The addicted pathways in my brain would have me do damage to myself if it means satisfying the addiction...at least temporarily.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 11, 2016, 11:44:47 AM
If anyone here isn't familiar with the Pornfree Radio podcasts by Matt Dobschuetz, you may want to check them out.  I downloaded them free at iTunes and listen to them when I'm alone in my car.

Listening today he mentioned something that I would like to share.  He said that healing is not necessarily equal to lack of struggling.  That took a minute to sink in.  In the past I have always felt that if I hit some magical day count that the temptation to look at porn would go away.  However, as I stayed away from porn and began to heal (pied disappeared, concentration improved, anxiety levels improved, mild OCD symptoms eased), the temptation to look at porn was still there.  It definitely became more manageable to deal with but it never truly went away.  This would frustrate me and cause me to question if I were getting better.  I began to feel hopeless which would inevitably eventually drive me back toward a relapse.

I now see my attraction to porn will probably always stay with me to some degree.  In some ways that realization is actually liberating.  I don't have to beat it or kill it.  I don't have to feel like a failure because it is still there.  I simply need to not act on the desire...to choose a separate course of action.  Just like in the Serenity Prayer, I will accept the things I cannot change which in this case the desire to seek out images of naked women...but I WILL change the things I can which is how I act.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 11, 2016, 11:58:22 AM
I now see my attraction to porn will probably always stay with me to some degree.  In some ways that realization is actually liberating.  I don't have to beat it or kill it.  I don't have to feel like a failure because it is still there.  I simply need to not act on the desire...to choose a separate course of action.  Just like in the Serenity Prayer, I will accept the things I cannot change which in this case the desire to seek out images of naked women...but I WILL change the things I can which is how I act.

The way I view it for myself is, that yes on a natural level, women will always be attractive to me- visually, sexually. And, it's known that the women who can be seen in porn will give that same effect as occurs naturally. So in that sense, one could say that the desire will always be there.

What has to change is the meaning we assign to women, porn and sex. If we're white-knuckling it, and trying to simply abstain from indulgence, the attraction and draw will always be there, because we see a meaning in it for ourselves- it's still the answer, forbidden, yes, but still the answer to our inward pain and brokenness.

However, without abstinence, it's hard to clear up our minds long enough to figure this stuff out. We need a clear head in order to find alternate, legitimate and healtheir methods of coping. But the next step needs to be taken beyond not acting out, to actually recovering. We must know that there's a difference between abstinence and recovery. In recovery, you're no longer white-knuckling it (always desiring it on some level), because now you've assigned a different meaning to porn, women and sex- they are no longer any kind of answer to your inward pain.

So, yes- there's a natural attraction and desire that we can sometimes shame ourselves about, but has nothing really to do with addiction.

But, no- we needn't be forever desirous of women, porn and sex (as in masturbation) in an addictive non-healthy way, because we've literally changed the meaning of these things for ourselves.

This is the difference between merely trying to abstain versus recovery in it's truest sense, which is to recover a healthy way of dealing with ourselves, with intimacy and identity, and with the opposite sex.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: GottaTry on January 11, 2016, 05:18:33 PM
Unchained and all,

WOW. That CS Lewis quote really, really rocked me! Thanks for posting it.  At this moment, I am out of my prison cage and struggling with the effects it has wrought for the past few decades.  And more immediately, the effects it has had on my marriage of 17 years.  Lewis was smart.I wonder if his essence lives on in my wife who basically said the same things to me these past few weeks in her own struggle to understand why and how she failed.  Of course, I am the one who's failed - FAILED COMPLETELY - not her.  I hope that in time I can make her understand this.  It's been two weeks and I have had much longer stretches of no PMO but somehow let myself - nay, convince myself - that I can go back, that I can handle just a peek, that my actions will not hurt anyone else, that no one will know.  But, it cannot be this time.  And unlike previous attempts, I've found just this little support here in these words and among you men; support that I just cannot imagine myself finding in my local community or among peers and family.

So thanks again unchained.  And Leon and Chile.  All have written profoundly to me just here in this one thread. 
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 11, 2016, 08:33:57 PM
Unchained and all,

WOW. That CS Lewis quote really, really rocked me! Thanks for posting it.  At this moment, I am out of my prison cage and struggling with the effects it has wrought for the past few decades.  And more immediately, the effects it has had on my marriage of 17 years.  Lewis was smart.I wonder if his essence lives on in my wife who basically said the same things to me these past few weeks in her own struggle to understand why and how she failed.  Of course, I am the one who's failed - FAILED COMPLETELY - not her.  I hope that in time I can make her understand this.  It's been two weeks and I have had much longer stretches of no PMO but somehow let myself - nay, convince myself - that I can go back, that I can handle just a peek, that my actions will not hurt anyone else, that no one will know.  But, it cannot be this time.  And unlike previous attempts, I've found just this little support here in these words and among you men; support that I just cannot imagine myself finding in my local community or among peers and family.

So thanks again unchained.  And Leon and Chile.  All have written profoundly to me just here in this one thread.

You're welcome, GottaTry.

I can totally relate to that C.S. Lewis quote, perhaps we all could. It is quite the false freedom we think we enjoy, right?

I had that related to me in the form of a dream once. I was with my wife at this party, and we had to stay in what were called 'blue-rooms' where pretty tame stuff took place, but the 'red-rooms' were forbidden. But, unbeknownst to my wife, I'd sneak off to the 'red-rooms' where extra naughty stuff would take place.

This dream totally symbolized for me the double-life that I had effectively built up around that time in my life (2003). But, such a double-life, the one kills the other. If we have a 'successful' double-life, and can keep things a secret from our wife, the regular personae that we project around our wives and family simply becomes an outward shell of who we used to be, as the real person has died, killed from inside, by this thing called porn addiction.

Be well, G.T.

(By the way, tried to link to your journal, but I guess you haven't started one yet?  :) )
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on January 12, 2016, 12:47:49 AM
My downfall always starts with a little look. As someone struggling with addiction I'm not capable of letting in a little poison and then being OK. Just like Unchained said, once we get too close to that porn vortex there is not much that can stand in the way of a lapse. It's what I do with the desperate withdrawals that will decide my success in rebooting. I am trying to be aware of every emotion I'm feeling at any given time and why. This helps me know what I need to confront and what I can celebrate. Peace.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: hans32 on January 12, 2016, 03:09:38 AM
Thanks for the Radio idea, I had no idea, im gonna check into it.  This is the wildest descision in a very long time.  Your posts are inspiring.
Thanks
Hans
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 12, 2016, 10:33:40 AM
My downfall always starts with a little look. As someone struggling with addiction I'm not capable of letting in a little poison and then being OK. Just like Unchained said, once we get too close to that porn vortex there is not much that can stand in the way of a lapse. It's what I do with the desperate withdrawals that will decide my success in rebooting. I am trying to be aware of every emotion I'm feeling at any given time and why. This helps me know what I need to confront and what I can celebrate. Peace.

Hi, Chile.

What you say above leads to my expansion of the term edging. We have to be able to recognize in ourselves when we're edging up to the rim of the porn vortex- but without judging ourselves about it- stop, and assess what is going on internally or externally that is leading you to head in that direction. Being aware of your every emotion sounds to me like you're on your way to being able to recognize why we would respond that way to stress and/or anxiety.

But I wish to add- I understand that one little peek already undermines our resolve, and usually (mindlessly) is when habit takes over at that point. However, even at that point we can still stop, disrupt this process from fully playing out. Further more, I say, we must disrupt this process, if we're going to eventually change our habits, and create newer and healthier responses. If we find ourselves beginning to obsess, first understand why, breathing through it, slowing everything down, you can make it. You can reverse this bitch.

I'm not talking about playing around the edges, here. I'm talking about when we're triggered, and the urges arise, and we find ourselves falling into a habituated pattern- what can you do to change the usual outcome? You can, you must find a way to- do something, anything different. The triggers and urges are not always avoidable, and as long as life happens, they won't be avoidable. But what we do have power over is our responses- but not if we're mindlessly driving this car, we have to be in the moment, non-judgmentally, and breathe through it. Do something different, if you have to put your phone upside down on it's face while a video is playing, if you have to set a timer for 5 minutes, something- let's do this.

As far as withdrawals are concerned- that's the perfect opportunity to learn how to deal with urges by not responding to them, or responding in unexpected (and healthier) ways. Thank God for withdrawals- what an opportunity to tinker with this years-long habit, and change the mother. I remember some user had a quote under his profile that said, I love withdrawals. I think that should be our mentality.

Blessings, all.   
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 12, 2016, 10:45:34 AM
My downfall always starts with a little look. As someone struggling with addiction I'm not capable of letting in a little poison and then being OK.

It always starts with just a little look.  That is the lie we tell ourselves, like the alcoholic who convinces himself that this time he can have just one drink and that will be all.  It never works out that way.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 12, 2016, 11:35:19 AM
Thanks for the Radio idea, I had no idea, im gonna check into it.  This is the wildest descision in a very long time.  Your posts are inspiring.
Thanks
Hans

Listening to the podcasts has been extremely helpful to me.  Besides, I'm usually just mindlessly driving on autopilot on my drives to and from work.  Listening to the podcasts is a good time to learn as well as get motivation for the day.

Porfreeradio is good.  The podcasts are geared toward addiction recovery help & advise.  I also downloaded every one of Gary Wilson's radio shows.  Gary's shows are pretty much the science behind porn addiction.  He quotes many posts from recovery stories and such, but it is still more science focussed.

Gary's shows can all be accessed here:
http://yourbrainonporn.com/your-brain-cybersex-jungle-radio-show (http://yourbrainonporn.com/your-brain-cybersex-jungle-radio-show)

I like Gary's shows and listen to each one over and over.  Some episodes have recovered addicts who discuss their own journey and healing from addiction.  The conversations are encouraging.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: freshstart@40 on January 12, 2016, 02:15:13 PM
Hey guys can i clarify, in this context, edging is not Ming nearly to O then stopping?
But pushing the boundaries of what p is?
Viewing things that are closer and closer to P?
Great thread, Please help
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 12, 2016, 02:26:01 PM
Hey guys can i clarify, in this context, edging is not Ming nearly to O then stopping?
But pushing the boundaries of what p is?
Viewing things that are closer and closer to P?
Great thread, Please help

It kind of depends who you talk to.  To me, the act of edging is watching porn for an extended period of time staying at the edge of orgasm.  Basically, bringing yourself to the edge and stopping so you can keep going and going and going.

I have heard some refer to any behavior that is close to crossing the line into viewing porn as edging.  I've heard people talking about other addictions referring to edging behavior as doing things that are close to the actual addiction itself and are behaviors that can very easily cause you to fall back into the abyss.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: evinced on January 12, 2016, 05:13:49 PM
In everything I have read online edging means that you masturbate to the brink of ejaculation and stop. Take a brief pause to let the urge to cum subside and then continue again until on the edge and stop again etc etc.  Generally this is done to increase the intensity of the orgasm when you finally cum.  I imagine that this could be applied to other things but in my experience that has been the more common definition especially only.  I suspect that someone might edge while watching porn and then not actually have an orgasm and you might still call that edging.  Not sure if there are different definitions specific to the reboot process. Anyway, that's just my 2cents on this.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 12, 2016, 06:02:06 PM
Hey guys can i clarify, in this context, edging is not Ming nearly to O then stopping?
But pushing the boundaries of what p is?
Viewing things that are closer and closer to P?
Great thread, Please help

Hi, Freshstart. The usual definition of edging is as Unchained and evinced said below:

To me, the act of edging is watching porn for an extended period of time staying at the edge of orgasm.  Basically, bringing yourself to the edge and stopping so you can keep going and going and going.

In everything I have read online edging means that you masturbate to the brink of ejaculation and stop. Take a brief pause to let the urge to cum subside and then continue again until on the edge and stop again etc etc.  Generally this is done to increase the intensity of the orgasm when you finally cum.  I imagine that this could be applied to other things but in my experience that has been the more common definition especially only.  I suspect that someone might edge while watching porn and then not actually have an orgasm and you might still call that edging.  Not sure if there are different definitions specific to the reboot process. Anyway, that's just my 2cents on this.

When I first heard the term, I didn't fully know what they had meant either, but it sounded so much like- not only what occurred when I masturbated but stopped (thought I discovered this, ha!), and it also sounded like what I did when I edged-up-to porn through porn-substitutes, like music videos, or other provocative webcam type videos, etc...

So, when I say edging, I pretty much mean the standard definition as given by Unchained, etc... (it's also defined in the glossary provided by RN Here (http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=21.0). But, I'll still use it to refer to the edging-up-to porn via it's substitutes.

Sorry for any confusion- be well.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 12, 2016, 09:28:47 PM
Yeah...it can get kind of confusing...the way folks use the term "edging" to mean different things.

If you listen to Gary's radio shows, edging is pretty much always in reference to sitting in front of a computer loafing one's mule to porn imagery for an extended period of time.  That, for the most of us, is what brought us here.  We trained our brains to requite constant novelty & 1 bazillion different hot females (or whatever else gets you going) to get us at the point of orgasm.  Replace that with a single woman (even if she's hot) in a normal sexual situation and the brain doesn't compute...so we end up limp dicked looking for answers.

I mentioned the pornfreeradio podcasts earlier.  In that show the host, Matt, has been porn free for several years.  He uses the term "edging" completely differently...pretty much as Leon did a few posts back.  He uses edging to refer to actions or behaviors that are tip-toeing around the edges of porn.  It's not porn itself, but it is a danger-some.  It doesn't have to be surfing the web for bikini pics, it could be any myriad of thoughts, feelings or actions that we have eventually come to realize take us back to porn.

I know there are guys out there who say "porn sucks" and walk away.  For the rest of us, we distance ourselves from porn, reset, learn, get more distance, fail, learn, get more distance, fail, learn, etc, etc until we pick up on all of the subtle things that trip us up along the way.  When one starts to engage in behaviors that are drawing us back into porn, that can be seen as edging.

On a side note and a "hats off" to Matt, I want to share something he says that is somewhat relevant and gives me inspiration.  He always says "Just because you can't do it perfectly doesn't mean you can't do it."  Learn if you slip and keep moving.

Watch out for edging behavior...if not, you may find yourself edging...lol.

Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 14, 2016, 02:45:22 PM
I've modified my spreadsheet a bit to include all of the different things I try to do daily as part of this healing process...cold shower, meditation, journaling, posting here, exercise, etc.

One thing I have noticed is that if I start the day on the right foot, then I end up accomplishing much more of the items on the list.  I start my day with a cold shower...as cold as the water will go.  Some days I have to talk myself into it.  I'm usually still only half awake, just out of a warm bed and standing there freezing doesn't seem so appealing.  However, it totally kicks ass when it's time to get out and I've started the day by enduring an uncomfortable situation.  I feel it strengthens my willpower.  On top of that, it makes me feel like the man.  My heart is racing & I have tons of energy.  It's almost like the feeling you have when you get off of a roller coaster.

On days that I don't start out right, I tend to do less of the other things as well.  It is apparent that it is crucial (for me anyway) to start the day with strong momentum to help me push hard through the rest of the day.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on January 16, 2016, 09:21:22 PM
I'm sure you are right about the momentum thing to start your day. I've found the same thing to be true with the things I let leave my mouth. The tongue has been called a small rudder that directs the entire ship.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: freshstart@40 on January 17, 2016, 05:20:33 AM
Watch out for edging behavior...if not, you may find yourself edging...lol

Actually wise words Unchained, there may be some truth in that.

Thanks for the clarity Leon
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 17, 2016, 09:53:04 AM
@ Freshstart: You're welcome, brother.

@ Chile: Nothing's set in stone, brother. I know what you say is true about the tongue, but if something is spoken amiss, try to learn from it, but bottom line, don't beat yourself up about it. Receive that forgiveness that's yours, and go on. I used to shame myself about an incorrect thought I had, and before you know it, I was obsessing. Even in the little things, it's best to, not ignore, but let it go mindfully.

Also, "...out of the abundance of the heart..."- fill your heart with good things, and good things will come from your mouth.

@ Unchained: Sorry for invading your journal so much, lol... Good job on the discipline front, as having positive habits help us to focus on not only our abstinence, but on our overall recovery from this thing as well.

Be blessed.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 18, 2016, 12:30:40 PM
Unchained: Sorry for invading your journal so much, lol...

No problem.  I like an active thread.  At the very least it makes me feel like others out there here what I am going through.  It helps to not feel isolated.

I had a small victory this weekend that I attribute to consistent meditation practice.  I've been trying to go to bed a bit earlier than before.  I tend to get triggered if I'm up late at night.  Also, when I stay up too late I end up being tired the next day which can also cause the brain to go seeking pleasure as well.  The only negative with going to bed earlier is that I tend to wake up a lot earlier than I need to and end up laying in bed for a couple of hours trying to get back to sleep.  On Saturday I woke up with a raging hard-on in the middle of a dream that was an extremely sexually exciting.  To make matters worse, it was before 5AM and I didn't want to get out of bed until 7 at the earliest.  As I lay there, I began more or less meditating in bed in an attempt to direct my thoughts away from the dream.  It worked..I fell back asleep and unfortunately back into the same dream.  I woke up again with the same problem as before, but I redirected my thoughts again and went back to sleep.  This happened several times until I got out of bed at 7AM.

I actually felt pretty good about myself when I woke up.  The thoughts came, but I was able to take my mind where I wanted it.  I controlled my thoughts...they did not control me.  I decided if I can redirect my thoughts in the still of the night with little to no distractions available to focus on, then I can surely redirect them during the day.

Like I said...a small victory, but it sure felt good.  I feel empowered.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 18, 2016, 06:32:08 PM
Good job, Unchained. I would not call it a small victory, as it's very significant indeed. You learned that despite an internal trigger (the dream), and the resultant urges (the erection), that you could still redirect your thoughts, and meditatively go back to sleep- not once, but at least twice.

I had a couple of episodes where I would get flashed (without seeking it out) on Pinterest, and I'd feel my heart start racing. This happened a couple of times in the middle of the night (I generally don't look at my phone in the middle of the night much anymore), bam! I'd feel my heart racing, and immediately I'd leave the page, of course, but I'd start deep breathing, and just non-judgmentally stay in the moment. Doing this, even as I was in bed, helped me to go to sleep without any episode.

Empowerment is exactly the feeling, and it gives us that confidence to face down any future temptation that may arise.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 19, 2016, 02:48:48 PM
Thanks Leon.  I really feel like a change in perception is happening in my head.  It's a whole lot of little things that add up to make big differences in the overall picture.

I kind-of want to share my thinking for the benefit of new guys (who don't really want to read through 12 pages of history) as well as to organize my own thoughts in my journal.

I started trying to quit PMO in April 2014.  At that time the only thing I cared about was getting my dick to work again 100% of the time.  I scoured through journals looking for information.  All of the other guys were talking about so many other aspects of quitting that I didn't really care about; how their lives have changed, how their relationships have changed, the million things that tripped them up along the way, the need to pursue new hobbies, the need to build a structured system, the need to have a plan in the event powerful trigger, etc, etc.  I remember thinking "hobby?? really? I can't get porn out of my head long enough to concentrate on anything..let alone learn how to play some freakin' instrument!!!!".  I was focussed on just one thing...how many days before my erections work?  All of the work that others were putting into recovery was beyond my comprehension at that time.  I really just wanted to clinch my fists through some pre-determined number of days to fix my wang and thought that once my PIED was gone that I would miraculously not be drawn to porn ever again.  I thought that if the ED was fixed, then all of my problems would be fixed and porn would be just an old memory that would slowly fade away.

It's been a year and 9 months since I found YBOP which led me here.  I lurked, read and had a few short streaks until I began working in ernest in September 2014.  I spent more time here, started a journal and began absorbing what other men (and women) were contributing.  My streaks got longer and longer, but I still didn't have a thorough plan in place.  I was learning but my approach was still relying on avoiding porn & triggers, focussed on will power and counting days in belief of the idea that after some magical day count would put this all behind me.  After stumbles, resets and falls I slowly began building my own system.  I've read several books on quitting (just ask if you want any recommendations), bought and began working the InnerGold system and truly started the process of healing...not just my erections but rather breaking the chains of addiction.

I would like to say that at some point I just put it down and walked away.  I've read journals and there seems to be a lucky few who can just quit when they realize that PMO caused their ED.  Unfortunately, that has not been my story.  If I were to take this journal back in time to almost 2 years ago and show it to myself at that time, I know without a doubt that the 2014 me would probably go into a depression with the knowledge that I am still engaged in this process this far down the road.  However, I am feeling quite positive.  I am proud of what I have accomplished so far and am excited about the direction I am headed.  I am proud that I haven't given up...I am not defeated.

The perception change that I mentioned at the first is something that came on slowly and I've just noticed it recently.  Some folks may read this and yawn, roll their eyes or think "whatever", but somewhere along the line my mindset has shifted away from "I am doing these things to keep porn from beating me" to "I am doing these things because I want to win".  It may not sound monumental, but for me it is huge.  It gives me a whole new sense of clarity to my purpose.  I don't want to work hard so that my life doesn't suck, I want to work hard so that it is great.  It changes the focus of the hard work, the cold showers, the time in prayer, the meditating, the journaling, the reading, the listening, the constant mindfulness of my moods, emotions, physical feelings, etc (all of the things I've focused on to stay clean) into a positive investment in my self rather than constructing some type of shield to hide behind.

Being guys, we are all familiar with sports teams who find themselves in a position to win and instead of following through, they play "not to loose" rather than to win.  All too often when that happens, the team will let the victory that is in reach slip away.  That is an almost perfect analogy to my last few resets.  I end up playing defensively against porn instead of aggressively for a life worth living...all inside my head.  All of the things in my system worked, but I was doing them with the wrong mindset which is what eventually led to my failure.  Again, it may seem overly simplistic but I do believe it to be true.  It is much easier to walk into 40 degree F water when instead of convincing myself it will keep porn thoughts at bay I am telling myself  that I am doing this because I want a better me...I am working for an amazing life instead of against porn.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: harry on January 19, 2016, 04:43:09 PM
Hello unchained,

Thanks for all of your posts. They have been very helpful to me - especially this latest.

I will be checking out https://innergold.com/
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on January 20, 2016, 02:51:47 PM
Always enjoy your posts Unchained.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on January 20, 2016, 05:46:17 PM
The perception change that I mentioned at the first is something that came on slowly and I've just noticed it recently.  Some folks may read this and yawn, roll their eyes or think "whatever", but somewhere along the line my mindset has shifted away from "I am doing these things to keep porn from beating me" to "I am doing these things because I want to win".  It may not sound monumental, but for me it is huge.  It gives me a whole new sense of clarity to my purpose.  I don't want to work hard so that my life doesn't suck, I want to work hard so that it is great.  It changes the focus of the hard work, the cold showers, the time in prayer, the meditating, the journaling, the reading, the listening, the constant mindfulness of my moods, emotions, physical feelings, etc (all of the things I've focused on to stay clean) into a positive investment in my self rather than constructing some type of shield to hide behind.

Being guys, we are all familiar with sports teams who find themselves in a position to win and instead of following through, they play "not to loose" rather than to win.  All too often when that happens, the team will let the victory that is in reach slip away.  That is an almost perfect analogy to my last few resets.  I end up playing defensively against porn instead of aggressively for a life worth living...all inside my head.  All of the things in my system worked, but I was doing them with the wrong mindset which is what eventually led to my failure.  Again, it may seem overly simplistic but I do believe it to be true.  It is much easier to walk into 40 degree F water when instead of convincing myself it will keep porn thoughts at bay I am telling myself  that I am doing this because I want a better me...I am working for an amazing life instead of against porn.

This is actually very monumental, Unchained! Because this very mindset is the difference between simply trying to hang on and abstain to actually recovering from addiction, and pursuing the life we truly want.

This is a winners mentality!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 25, 2016, 03:03:07 PM
Thanks Leon. It seems that I've gotten to a place that I spend more time focussing on my thoughts than anything physical...but that doesn't mean the worries of my physical healing has left me completely.  I will say that the evidence seems conclusive...if we fix the mental problems then the physical will take care of themselves.

I'm on (and have been) on a bit of a vacation.  Its been fun and tough at the same time. I've come to rely on my routine and threre's nothing like a vacation to mess up a routine...just like messing up a diet or exercise routine.  I've been with the family in Orlando. We've been going to the Disney parks.  It has been fun, busy, wonderful, ,stressful.  I have been physically & emotionally tired.  I've been hungry, mad, stressed, happly, embarassed, excited, extremely tired and even bored (standing in countless lines). Thankfully, I have barriers in place or I would have probably self medicated after the family was all in bed.

Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: bob on January 25, 2016, 05:58:01 PM
I've been hungry, mad, stressed, happly, embarassed, excited, extremely tired and even bored (standing in countless lines).

Sounds like real life Unchained. Its what you say below that really shows how far you have come. More power to your efforts and your journey through this process.

Thankfully, I have barriers in place or I would have probably self medicated after the family was all in bed


Peace to you brother
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 27, 2016, 06:19:10 PM
Thank Bob.

I got back home from vacation last night.  I had fun, but it's nice to be back.  For me at this time a consistent routine is very beneficial.  Our schedule was so hectic that I didn't have time to do some the things that help me maintain focus.  I actually missed listening to my now memorized radio podcasts by Gary Wilson and others.  I didn't think they were appropriate listening while I drove with my 6 & 8 year olds in the car, lol.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 29, 2016, 11:52:18 AM
Still going strong...just wanted to check in.

I also have some exciting news to share on the sexual healing front.  I've come to realize since I began this process that in the past, 100% of my own sexuality has been objectifying women.  In my marriage as well as previous girlfriends I more or less ogled their bodies to get an erection and sex was more or less the physical act of pmo...there just happened to be someone else in the room I was in physical contact with rather than me alone with my computer.  I was always watching, looking at their bodies to stay turned on...sex was me pleasing myself inside of someone else.  It was just like I was watching it on a screen.  I suppose I have always been disconnected during sex as a result.

Please understand I love my wife and have had many deeply loving relationships before her.  I'm not the guy who can't see a women as anything other than a sex object, however, I know that porn has always caused me to over sexualize the way I see people and I know that I have inappropriately objectified women in the past.  This was not, however, so severe that it kept me from being able to love and respect the women I have been with.  It's just that when things get sexual I have trained my brain to need to stare at a woman's body to get aroused.  It's just like staring at 2D images in a magazine or on the screen...that it what my brain required for me to perform sexually.  Everything was sooo visual...because of this I've probably only had sex with the lights out a few times in my life.  Even if something sparked in the middle of the night I would always reach for the lamp because sex to me necessitated looking at a woman's body.

Last night, for the first time in a really long time I became aroused by nothing more than being in the presence of my wife.  It was rather late but she was still awake in bed when I went to bed.  **Not to worry, there will be no triggers in this story**.  Anyway, I lay on my back with my hands behind my head.  She was on her side facing me.  She reached out and held onto my arm as we lay there.  Just laying there, not speaking I became incredibly turned-on from just being beside her and feeling her touch.  I'll finish by saying we had successful sex.

The great thing is that it happened start to finish in the dark.  I was tuned on by her presence...not just looking at her body parts.  There was no messing around to get me going, not even a kiss.  It was just a natural desire without any type of sexual touch that made me 100% erect.

Of course, I wasn't analyzing anything at the moment.  It wasn't until afterwards that I realized what happened or rather how it happened.  I wanted to tell her, but she had already drifted off to sleep so I just lay there reveling in the fact that I functioned like I'm supposed to.  I damn near cried.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Gracie on January 29, 2016, 04:57:41 PM
Share that moment with her.  Let her celebrate the victory with you.  Just say wow when I laid next to you in the dark it was amazing!  You have no idea how it is to hear our presence is enough!  And congrats!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: harry on January 30, 2016, 01:17:38 AM
Hey unchained,

Thanks for sharing your success story! It is really amazing to read it. What an awesome moment to realize all this is working. You give me much hope.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: bob on January 30, 2016, 11:29:16 AM
You give us all hope Unchained.

Thanks for sharing my borhter.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 02, 2016, 12:20:55 PM
Holy cow! Main stream media finally catching up?  Maybe some light will finally shine on this addiction.

http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2016/02/02/porn-public-health-crisis-utah-weiler-thinks-so/?intcmp=hpbt4 (http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2016/02/02/porn-public-health-crisis-utah-weiler-thinks-so/?intcmp=hpbt4)
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: 4jen on February 02, 2016, 02:16:20 PM
Hi everybody. Im new to this forum. Im 41 yrs old and I have a porn addiction. I was exposed to it at age 5 by my moms second husband via dirty mags in the bathroom. Didnt quite inderstand it but it definitely aroused me. Had girlfriends growing up looked at magazines here and there. Got married to my beautiful wife at 19. We got a computer shortly after and i found internet porn. 2 crashed computers and 20 yrs of marriage later i started having issues getting hard with the wife. I would try to quit but always failed after awhile. I have been without looking at video porn for 5 wks. Yesterday i looked at a sex story. I tried to justify as im reading that its not the same. I did not jerk off however. Today i feel awful. Like i have to start over. Im so pissed at myself for reading that trash. Anybody else been there? I also feel distant from my wife at times and clam up when she wants sex. Thats not fair to her!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: HopeSprings on February 02, 2016, 02:42:03 PM
Holy cow! Main stream media finally catching up?  Maybe some light will finally shine on this addiction.

http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2016/02/02/porn-public-health-crisis-utah-weiler-thinks-so/?intcmp=hpbt4 (http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2016/02/02/porn-public-health-crisis-utah-weiler-thinks-so/?intcmp=hpbt4)

Dr Chloe Carmichael in my humble opinion is an idiot. It needs saying.
To paraphrase Mel Gibsons Porter in Payback: If I was just a little dumber, I could have been a psychologist.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: HopeSprings on February 02, 2016, 02:46:08 PM
Holy cow! Main stream media finally catching up?  Maybe some light will finally shine on this addiction.

http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2016/02/02/porn-public-health-crisis-utah-weiler-thinks-so/?intcmp=hpbt4 (http://www.foxnews.com/entertainment/2016/02/02/porn-public-health-crisis-utah-weiler-thinks-so/?intcmp=hpbt4)

Dr Chloe Carmichael in my humble opinion is an idiot. It needs saying. Porn in all its forms is a universal poison.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on February 02, 2016, 04:11:54 PM
Congratulations for getting back on track Unchained!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 03, 2016, 10:24:24 AM
I have been without looking at video porn for 5 wks. Yesterday i looked at a sex story. I tried to justify as im reading that its not the same. I did not jerk off however. Today i feel awful. Like i have to start over. Im so pissed at myself for reading that trash. Anybody else been there?

Been there?  Every guy at this site has been there.  I spent so much time "there" that I should have bought a second home and set up temporary residence.  You are definitely not alone.

First..congratulations on the success that you have had.  Five weeks is a long time and you should feel pride in your accomplishment and your success should give you hope for the future.

Second...you are not starting over.  Even if you failed and MO'd to the erotic story, you are not starting over.  It may be a hick-up, setback or whatever, but it doesn't take you back to square 1.  Learn what you can from the mistake and keep on moving.  The faster change your mindset from being discouraged or mad at your self to a mindset of seeing both your successes and failures as a learning opportunity then the faster you will feel better about yourself.  Remember, this addiction feeds on negative thoughts and feelings.

I see that this is your first post.  You may want to consider starting a new journal for yourself.  You will get support, feedback and encouragement here.  You will also get some accountability.  Lastly, it helps to get your thoughts "on paper" so to speak, as well.  Good luck.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 03, 2016, 10:56:19 AM
I've been trying to come up with a new acronym for the emotions that trip us up.

I'm familiar with BLAST (Bored, Lonely, Angry, Stressed, Tired).  Later I heard about HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired).  After giving it some thought I realized that the H definitely need to be in there.  I've also picked up on a couple of more conditions that send my brain seeking pleasure and PMO.  One is Entitled.  Often times I would use PMO as a sort of reward...like saying to myself "you did so good at such-and-such, you deserve a little treat".  Entitled has crept up on me more than once in reboot.  My brain would somehow convince me that my reward for staying away from porn should be a binge on porn...ugh.  The second condition is Ill (or could be Sick or Unwell).  I have medicated physical pain with PMO on many occasions, however, it is usually some type of self-induced illness, i.e. hangover.

The best I could come up with is:
B ored
L onely
E ntitled
M ad
I ll
S tressed
H ungry

Unfortulately, this leaves out Tired (or possibly F for Fatigued).  I've also played with A for Angry instead of M for Mad and the aforementioned S or U in place of I for Ill.

Any ideas?

Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on February 03, 2016, 06:04:34 PM
I've been trying to come up with a new acronym for the emotions that trip us up.

I'm familiar with BLAST (Bored, Lonely, Angry, Stressed, Tired).  Later I heard about HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired).  After giving it some thought I realized that the H definitely need to be in there.  I've also picked up on a couple of more conditions that send my brain seeking pleasure and PMO.  One is Entitled.  Often times I would use PMO as a sort of reward...like saying to myself "you did so good at such-and-such, you deserve a little treat".  Entitled has crept up on me more than once in reboot.  My brain would somehow convince me that my reward for staying away from porn should be a binge on porn...ugh.  The second condition is Ill (or could be Sick or Unwell).  I have medicated physical pain with PMO on many occasions, however, it is usually some type of self-induced illness, i.e. hangover.

The best I could come up with is:
B ored
L onely
E ntitled
M ad
I ll
S tressed
H ungry

Unfortulately, this leaves out Tired (or possibly F for Fatigued).  I've also played with A for Angry instead of M for Mad and the aforementioned S or U in place of I for Ill.

Any ideas?

Hi, Unchained. I've been familiar with the 'Halt' acronym for a while. Though, I would just call this 'Life'.

As long as we're healthy human beings, we'll feel all the above- but the thing is, can we change our usual responses to outward (stress) or inward (anxiety) stimuli? We may or may not be triggered by these feelings or conditions, but so what if we are? We must not respond as we've always responded. Eventually, we'll no longer be triggered, or sent into urges, based on these normal and healthy states.

So, our focus shouldn't be on the stimuli as much as on the responses.

Peace.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 04, 2016, 12:47:42 PM

So, our focus shouldn't be on the stimuli as much as on the responses.


True, but an understanding of the underlying emotions that can cause triggers to arise in the first place can help us implement an appropriate response earlier.

In the end I want both.  Whenever possible I'd prefer to be proactive about either avoiding a trigger entirely or redirect my thinking as early in the process as possible.  That's why it is important to be aware of our state of mind at all times.  When not possible and we find ourselves face to face with a very strong trigger I agree that a proper response is everything, worrying about whether you are tired or not is rather pointless in that situation.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 04, 2016, 02:07:29 PM
Congratulations for getting back on track Unchained!

Hey Chile...did you abandon your journal?  How about an update on your journey?
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Gracie on February 04, 2016, 02:07:51 PM
I am glad you posted Fox news story.  I posted it over in porn addiction.  However other than William no one responded.  I hope that this trend grows!
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: harry on February 04, 2016, 03:00:40 PM
You may be onto something with the cold shower thing. I tried it this morning and found it strangely exhilarating for the few moments I was able to handle it at the end of a cool shower. I did some research, and there is a lot data on the benefits of it. I will do it again tomorrow; hopefully, I can add few more seconds to my time. Thanks for the suggestion.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 04, 2016, 03:29:25 PM
You may be onto something with the cold shower thing. I tried it this morning and found it strangely exhilarating for the few moments I was able to handle it at the end of a cool shower. I did some research, and there is a lot data on the benefits of it. I will do it again tomorrow; hopefully, I can add few more seconds to my time. Thanks for the suggestion.

I can't take credit...It's not like I dreamed it up.  While it may sound cliche to take a cold shower to limit being horny, cold showers have actually been recommended for people dealing with all sorts of addictions.

IMO, cold showers are probably the single most effective thing you can do in early recovery to ease the anxiety.  They are known to stimulate your dopamine receptors which help you feel better even though your dopamine levels are depleted because of the addiction.  They help your body respond to the dopamine that you do have.  Cold showers make you feel better from day one and the benefits only get better over time especially if you are able to increase your time to 5 or 10 minutes.

Listen to this podcast by Gary Wilson when he interviews Todd Becker.  Part of their discussion is about cold showers, their benefits and why they are beneficial.

http://ia601704.us.archive.org/3/items/Cyber20130409/cyber20130409.mp3 (http://ia601704.us.archive.org/3/items/Cyber20130409/cyber20130409.mp3)
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Harry Molaski on February 04, 2016, 08:01:43 PM
http://www.amazon.com/Becoming-Iceman-Wim-Hof/dp/1937600467

I've just started to read this book. I recommend it. Harry
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 05, 2016, 10:47:05 AM
I've just started to read this book. I recommend it. Harry

I'm all for cold showers but don't know if I'm ready for anything that extreme just yet.

I would appreciate input from any of you other guys out there with experience beating other addictions aside from porn, specifically alcohol.  I'm a pretty heavy beer drinker.  I drink every night after work until bedtime.  It's not caused any real negative consequences and the wife doesn't even complain, but I'm not getting any younger and don't want to destroy my liver.  Also, I've noticed that many nights as everyone else is in bed and I sit on the couch getting drunker and drunker that I'm rather miserable.  However, in the same way that we porn users keep on seeking that one pic to finish to, I'll finish my beer and say "just one more".  In learning about porn addiction I heard something that struck a nerve with me a while back...but it got me thinking as much about alcohol as porn.  It was said that wanting does not equal liking.  That was/is profound.  That is exactly how I feel every night.  I really want the buzz, but once it comes I don't really enjoy it anymore and I'm afraid it will eventually destroy my health.  I've known for a while that I would eventually need to address it, but have been putting it off.  I was worried that tackling two issues at once would be too much to handle.  However, as I learn about brain changes like how addiction affects grey-matter, I'm beginning to wonder if a lack of will power from one addiction would slow down the ability to strengthen the pre-frontal cortex as it relates the another.

Specifically, if I have decreased grey-matter because of alcohol abuse, then it stands to reason that all of the efforts like meditation to specifically reverse the same changes that occurred because of porn abuse may be either slowed or ineffective.  I do feel like I'm making progress in distancing myself from porn but wonder if the alcohol abuse is a hinderance.  In the end I want to be free of both, but decided to address one at a time...I'm beginning to wonder if that is a successful strategy.

Year's ago when I was 20 I got in trouble for drinking and driving.  At the time I was hardly a heavy drinker, just a typical college student weekend partier.  Because of the episode I had to go to AA meetings, DUI school & a county run consultation for drinking recovery for a few weeks as part of my punishment.  I remember people at these programs earnestly trying to overcome their alcohol addictions...and 95% of them smoked.  The smoking came up more than once and I can remember people saying that it was advised that they only attempt to conquer one addiction at a time...that more than that would be too stressful.

Remembering that I decided to take on porn then addiction.  Again, I don't know if this is smart in the long run.  I want to be addiction free and I want to be free now.  Should I not start the process as soon as possible?  Why keep kicking the can down the road?  I also see that it would be very easily to escalate one addiction and make it much worse than it was to begin with as we use it to medicate to fill the void of the other.

Speaking of which, I'm just tired of all this self medicating.  The thing is I don't know what Im medicating.  I have never been abused.  I have supportive loving parents.  No divorce, no trauma.  I've never heard my parents say an unkind word to one another...and it's not like they avoided one another either.  Our family was and is close.  Not only did my folks never miss a ball game growing up, they never missed a practice either.  I grew up in the smartest classes and made all A's.  My folks didn't pressure me...just said "do your best" and it all came easy to me.  I grew up in church and my church life was always positive and supportive...I never felt repressed, shamed or any of that stuff.  I am still close with many kids I grew up with in church.  I played sports, had lots of close friends.  As a matter of fact, I still see my closest childhood friends all the time...lifelong good friends.  I was relatively popular in school...known to be the funny guy and never had problems meeting, talking to or dating girls.  Now, I own my own business and would be considered quite successful by most, have a beautiful loving wife and two great kids.  I cannot point to a single thing in my past that I am using porn or alcohol to medicate away...not one thing happened to cry about on some psychologists couch.  I can honestly say from the first time I looked at porn...I just liked it.  Alcohol...same thing.  I had fun.  I suppose I just never wanted the fun to end and overused to the point of making my reward system a train wreck.  I get really tired of reading stuff like people who get addicted must be broken in some way first and then are on the lookout for something to medicate the pain.  I'm sure that happens...it may be the cause for most addictions...I get that.  I, however, am the poster child for the asshole who has no excuse, no reason aside from being selfish enough that I want to make myself feel good all the time.

Anyway, sorry for the rant.  Any advise would be appreciated.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Gracie on February 05, 2016, 12:34:59 PM
This is something that my husband has said.  He was a selfish asshole.  He just moved away from us mentally.  When he said that, I said you didn't need the boys and I.  You had your harem waiting.  And if you didn't like one you could just choose another.  So there was no need to stick with us.  Sometimes as a wife I feel he got old enough and just settled for me and our marriage.  It was too much trouble to leave if he wasn't happy.  And I did ask if all that was the important thing, why stay?  He said he loved me.  I asked what did you do to show love?

Perhaps it is that easy.  Show the one you love, LOVE.  That old song, Love the One Your With.  Maybe that is all we need to do.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: harry on February 05, 2016, 03:33:40 PM
Hey unchained,

Thanks again for beating the drum on taking cold showers. I took a much, much colder shower this morning, and when I was done soaping, I turned the hot water off completely while I rinsed. It was damn cold, but once again, exhilarating. It increased my breathing and my heart rate. Plus, my anxiety level, which has been spiking lately, has subsided. Weirdly, I took a perverse kind of pleasure in forcing myself to stand under the cold water. But, i digress...

I do know a little bit about alcohol. I started drinking at 13, and by the time I was in my mid 20s, I knew I was an alcoholic. My parents were alcoholics as well as my maternal grandparents. I am the youngest of 5, and my mother was already experiencing blackouts at the time of my birth. I was bred to drink, and I enjoyed it immensely. I never thought I would have to quit. Like my parents, I was a pretty high functioning alcoholic for many, many years, until I wasn't. Drugs are also a huge part of my story. The consequences of my drinking are spread across decades and are way too numerous to count. I lost a 22 year relationship, 25 year career, and in the last few years I was passing blood daily and having seizures. I checked into rehab at 46 in 2008. It took me two years to get my first year of sobriety. In a few months, I'll have 7 years. I attend AA meetings regularly (3 or 4 meetings per week) because my sobriety is literally the most important thing in my life. Without it, I am doomed. 'Just one more' or 'let's have a nightcap' was how I lived.

When I found this forum and realized porn was a big problem, it occurred to me that I was doing the substitution thing again - porn for drugs and alcohol. I have a knack for finding things to take me out of my life. It's been a life long pattern. On 12/6, I decided to quit porn, cigs (i had started smoking a few cigs a day after 3yrs), and sugar. My thought was, I'll throw the three of them against the wall and see what sticks. No porn, no cigs, but sugar (my gateway drug) has beaten me again. I see nothing wrong with quitting two addictions at once. I know what they say in AA about smoking and alcohol. Why do I think it's ok to quit both addictions? I say this because you sound very motivated. You realize that drinking is not good for you, and may be hindering your brain's recovery from porn. You note that it would be easy for your drinking to escalate to fill the gap left by porn, and you are tired of self medicating and want to be addiction free. These are all of your own words.

You have the willingness needed to start today, or you can go with my personal favorite, "I'll quit tomorrow." Think of all the things you've learned working this program. Think of all of the helpful support and advice you've given to others. You have the tools necessary to begin this next journey. You know you will need to find something else to occupy your drinking time. AA meetings everywhere or virtual online meetings (http://www.aaonline.net/) can help fill the void and give you structure much in the way this forum has. That being said, there are many ways to quit drinking, and AA is not the only solution. You mentioned church - these are great places for support too.

You are not the poster child for the asshole who has no excuse, and in the end, who's cares why you are a heavy drinker? It could be any number of reasons, but the fact is you are. The question is - what are you going to do about it?   

Let me know if you have questions.


Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on February 07, 2016, 06:26:26 PM

So, our focus shouldn't be on the stimuli as much as on the responses.


True, but an understanding of the underlying emotions that can cause triggers to arise in the first place can help us implement an appropriate response earlier.

In the end I want both.  Whenever possible I'd prefer to be proactive about either avoiding a trigger entirely or redirect my thinking as early in the process as possible.  That's why it is important to be aware of our state of mind at all times.  When not possible and we find ourselves face to face with a very strong trigger I agree that a proper response is everything, worrying about whether you are tired or not is rather pointless in that situation.

Yes, Unchained. I'm at that place you're describing above, mindful of my emotions and thought processes pretty much most of the time. Of course habit kicks in, and we can coast, but this should be only because we're in a good place anyway. Otherwise, I question myself if my emotions go awry, or negative. This doesn't mean that I wish to escape them (as we did in fantasy), but to engage them. If I need to feel it, I will. Or, if it's more advantageous to change my emotional state or thought processes, I will. I am very much in agreement with what you said above.

My point concerning focusing on responses as opposed to stimuli is in direct relation to habit-change itself. Yet what you describe (now) about being mindful of our emotional states as a preventative, being mindful about what stimuli we face or how we interact with it, is extremely important. In our day-to-day maintenance of a healthy disposition, being mindful will help us to avoid falling into any previous distorted cognitions that lead us toward former destructive behaviors.

Be well.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on February 07, 2016, 06:48:06 PM
Speaking of which, I'm just tired of all this self medicating.  The thing is I don't know what Im medicating.  I have never been abused.  I have supportive loving parents.  No divorce, no trauma.  I've never heard my parents say an unkind word to one another...and it's not like they avoided one another either.  Our family was and is close.  Not only did my folks never miss a ball game growing up, they never missed a practice either.  I grew up in the smartest classes and made all A's.  My folks didn't pressure me...just said "do your best" and it all came easy to me.  I grew up in church and my church life was always positive and supportive...I never felt repressed, shamed or any of that stuff.  I am still close with many kids I grew up with in church.  I played sports, had lots of close friends.  As a matter of fact, I still see my closest childhood friends all the time...lifelong good friends.  I was relatively popular in school...known to be the funny guy and never had problems meeting, talking to or dating girls.  Now, I own my own business and would be considered quite successful by most, have a beautiful loving wife and two great kids.  I cannot point to a single thing in my past that I am using porn or alcohol to medicate away...not one thing happened to cry about on some psychologists couch.  I can honestly say from the first time I looked at porn...I just liked it.  Alcohol...same thing.  I had fun.  I suppose I just never wanted the fun to end and overused to the point of making my reward system a train wreck.  I get really tired of reading stuff like people who get addicted must be broken in some way first and then are on the lookout for something to medicate the pain.  I'm sure that happens...it may be the cause for most addictions...I get that.  I, however, am the poster child for the asshole who has no excuse, no reason aside from being selfish enough that I want to make myself feel good all the time.

Anyway, sorry for the rant.  Any advise would be appreciated.

Unchained, thank you for sharing these things with us. I'm one of the blokes who you might find on a psychologist's couch- not really now, but I certainly needed to be.

However, what you say is true enough and is the point Gabe Deem and others make here, that many younger folks just get hooked on it because it was fun, or what guys were supposed to do.

So what are you self-medicating? Because you're a fellow believer, I'll offer this possible answer:

In the last day, that great day of the feast, Jesus stood and cried, saying, If any man thirst, let him come unto me, and drink. He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. (But this spake he of the Spirit, which they that believe on him should receive: for the Holy Ghost was not yet given; because that Jesus was not yet glorified.) - John 7:37-39.

Deep down, we're all thirsty for God, though we may not know it consciously. It may be cliche, but, there's a 'God-shaped' hole in each of us, that only He can fill. Yes, we're believers, but we need to discover that we were created to worship God. Only He satisfies our deepest longings, the one we try to fill with career, academic accomplishments, alcohol, or pornography, all those things will cause us to 'thirst again' (John 4:13).

It may be that simple fact, a deeper longing, a deeper need that may not be detectable on a psychologist's couch.

Peace.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 09, 2016, 02:17:13 PM
Thanks for your guy's (and gal's) responses.  I truly appreciate them.

I've been feeling awfully alone lately.  Not so much alone in my life with family and friends, but alone in my addiction.  Sometimes it feels like there is no one (outside of this forum) that I can relate to.  My wife knows what I am dealing with, but she has no point of reference.  Sometimes I feel so alone that I have to force myself not to cry.

Not to be one to wallow in self-pity, today I reached out, through email, to a local sex therapist (who works specifically with pornography addicts) that has a weekly mens group meeting.  I hope something comes of it.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: harry on February 09, 2016, 06:27:07 PM
That sounds like an excellent idea. You'll be in my thoughts.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: bob on February 09, 2016, 07:53:30 PM
Unchained,

Know the feeling of being alone... I struggle with depression and I know I am in trouble when I am feeling alone
My wife knows what I am dealing with, but she has no point of reference.  Sometimes I feel so alone that I have to force myself not to cry.


The good thing is that you did something about it.
I reached out, through email, to a local sex therapist (who works specifically with pornography addicts) that has a weekly mens group meeting.  I hope something comes of it.

I hope this is successful for you. It always helps when there is someone to talk to. I will keep you in my thoughts
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on February 15, 2016, 11:33:53 AM
So, I wrote the counsellor who ran that only non-12-step men's group for porn addiction that I could find in my home town.  She wrote me back and said the group is temporarily not meeting because it was too difficult to find a time that enough men could meet consistently.

She seemed nice and asked if I was interested in one-on-one counseling, but I truly feel I need to find a group of men who are dealing with the same issues.

I must admit it's a bit depressing because the group sounded promising on her website. Today, I wrote my local SA group to see if I could attend.  I'm not really into the 12-step idea but think some real life eye-to-eye fellowship will help.  Fighting this addiction is sometimes as lonely as being immersed in it.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Chile on February 15, 2016, 01:45:15 PM
I still remember how discouraged i was when looking for a SA group here in S America and found none. Eventually I found RN and it's been a huge blessing, but some kind of face-to-face stuff is also needed, or telephone contact with accountability partners. SA has telephone conferencing every day and at all hours of the day (thanks for the tip Kenny Prestor!). I hope you can find the right group you can rub shoulders with.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Leon on February 15, 2016, 05:08:53 PM
Neither am I into the 12-Step approach, Unchained. But an SA meeting, if you can weed out the defeatist or disempowering philosophies, the fellowship and support would be no doubt beneficial.

Yes, fighting by oneself, where not many seem to understand the struggles we face, can make one feel pretty isolated.

Hope the SA group is helpful in that respect.

Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: harry on February 16, 2016, 06:08:48 PM
Hey unchained,

I’ve been in 12 step programs for years, and they can be challenging and/or irritating. Sometimes, 12 steppers don’t realize there are other ways to quit a particular addiction.

As an atheist, I am not able to work 6 of the steps because they have God or higher power in them. This issue caused me some difficulty early on until I realized the core principal of 12 step programs is this -

Practical experience shows that nothing will so much insure immunity from drinking as intensive work with other alcoholics. It works when other activities fail.

Today, the fellowship is very important to me, and it’s a big part of my support network.

It’s helpful when I remember the things I learn in AA are suggestions, and I can try them, use them, or discard them as I see fit.

Best of luck to you.
Title: Re: 41 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 05, 2018, 01:35:47 PM
Hi again everyone.  I've been gone for a while but see a few familiar names are still active.  I hope everyone is making progress in their recovery.

For me...I've basically fallen into a cycle of abstaining a week or two here, maybe several weeks and then slip into 2-3 pmo sessions in a week and then start over again.  It is a cycle that I am tired of.

I managed to find ways around some of the things I set in place to keep me away from porn.  Some are still in place and effective and are most likely the only reason that my pmo habit has been limited to a couple of times a week.  My opportunities to act out are limited but still present none-the-less.

Basically, it seems apparent that I am stuck in a quagmire of half-heartedly quitting porn while at the same time trying to keep it in my life as well.  All the while I worry about PIED creeping back in.  While it hasn't been an issue yet I must admit that there have been times I have chosen not to pursue sex with the wife because I was afraid that it may be an issue.

I feel the need to rededicate myself to the active pursuit of recovery, not just trying to abstain.  Part of that pursuit will be journaling here.  I also feel that a big missing piece from my plan has been getting involved in a group.  My approach has always been to try to solve all of my problems alone.  I see now that doing this all alone will probably not ultimately be successful for me.

Anyway, I just wanted to drop a note to say that I'm back.  There's more to say, but I tend to get long winded.

BTW...where did all the counters go?  I'm at 8 days and counting.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Jimbodel on January 05, 2018, 03:54:33 PM
Hey;  I am in the same boat, I went 2x35 days and since then I would go a few weeks, get bored and watch P.  I have noted what my triggers are and am curbing that area.  I have also set up a desk top popup that each boot in the morning pops up and reminds me to come here and read some stories as reinforcement as to why I don't want P in my life anymore.  I am also using opendns with family filter to make getting to porn a bit of a pain in the ass.

Stick with it bro; best of luck.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: TruthSeeker on January 09, 2018, 12:26:32 AM
Wow... it sounds like you are writing most of my story there.... It takes courage to confront the harsh reality of what we've done to ourselves and our families over all this time. Well flippin done for making a stand. I'm with you Bro.

There's an interesting resource I came across that might be worth getting... It's a book by Seth Taylor called Feels Like Redemption.

I've also tried to quit & rationalized PMO so many times I couldn't even count. I'm on day 2. Happy to be on the journey with you. If you screw up on the way, just remember to get back up. Jesus loves you intensely.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 09, 2018, 11:55:18 AM
Thanks for the replies guys.  I'll look into the book you suggested TruthSeeker.

Today is day 12 and things are going pretty good.

I've made some changes to the devices I have available to me and it has helped.  My only available access to porn at this point is a PS4 and I plan to install OpenDNS on my router tonight to block all adult sites on any devices at my house at the router level.  All other devices have Covenant Eyes installed, but they don't have a version for the PS4.  The PS4 has tripped me up quite a bit in the past, however it is in my bedroom and obviously I could only act out when the wife was not at home.  My wife works 2 days a week and leaves the house early on those days.  As such, I would tend to act out in the past every Monday and Tuesday morning.

Aside from securing my devices with accountability software, I've restarted doing some of the things that truly help me in the past.  So far I've done the following:

* Got back on the cold shower routine.  This one has been rough...it's cold here in January and the water is crazy cold.
* Journaling here.
* Exercise.  I've began running again.
* Spreadsheet.  I track moods, feelings, days without PMO, record exercise & note anything of relevance to how I feel.
* I have downloaded all episodes of Pornfreeradio and listen to them in my car on my commute to work and on the way home in the evening.

I plan to change my morning routine up a bit and start meditating again tomorrow.  I also plan to go back and revisit some of the books that have helped me in that past, both on the science of addiction as well as those about putting plans into practice that help to overcome addiction.

I also want to join a group.  I've not done this in the past and feel that it would help immensely.  Evidently, there are either no active porn recovery groups in my area or I've not been successful in locating them.  Instead I plan to reach out to one of the online groups that are out there even if it costs a little bit of $$.

For now, I'm optimistic and feeling pretty good.  I usually start this process with tons of energy and run on adrenaline for the 1st few weeks.  This time around I just decided I'm not happy with my direction and want to change it.  I'm ready to do the work to get some distance between me and my old habits.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 11, 2018, 07:37:56 AM
Woke up this morning and I'm back to two weeks
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: Jimbodel on January 11, 2018, 02:01:00 PM
Hey we are on the same time frame, 2 weeks for me too so we can encourage and track each other.  Opendns can be defeated by resorting to default dns, but it is a pain editing the router and rebooting unlike software if you know the PW.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 13, 2018, 11:22:49 AM
30 degrees...snow on ground outside...just got out of cold shower...as cold as it would go for a full 5 minutes.  At this moment I can take on anything and everything.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: bob on January 13, 2018, 03:01:21 PM
Stick with it and allow the thoughts to pass you by.

You are not, nor should you ever think that you are past behaviors. We move forward together in the mindfulness of a new life. I believe we can do this.

Peace
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 18, 2018, 10:13:25 AM
Thanks for the encouragement Bob.  Good to hear from you again.  I posted in your journal.  Let us know how you are doing.

I'm back to 21 days today!  It's been a while since I've been here.  Still PMO free for 2018.
Title: Re: 43 year old, addict since 13. Finally unchained from slavery to porn
Post by: unchained on January 25, 2018, 10:11:38 AM
Four weeks today.  Feels good to have a little distance between me and porn.

The restlessness, jitters and anxiety seem to have subsided for the most part.  The cravings still come and I feel a slight but constant desire to seek out my favorite porn.  There is a draw to go back to my favorite sites to see what new ladies have been posted in the last month that I have been away.  For the most part, I've been able to recognize those thoughts and have been successful in focusing my attention elsewhere.  However, I also recognize that there have been a couple of times that I probably would have slipped if it wasn't for Covenant Eyes on all of my devices.  I use no filters at all but the knowledge that my wife gets the report of all sites I visit was enough to keep me clean in those instances.  I take heart in the knowledge that the accountability software has helped me make the right decisions, but at the same time feel a little discouraged when I reflect on my own weakness.

Also, I think that I may be in a flatline at this point.  My dick seems small & lifeless and my balls are small and scrunched up all the time.  They basically look like I've been swimming in cold water.  I know this is part of the process, but I'm ready for it to be over.  Initially after quitting I had consistent MW but that has basically gone away for the last week or two.

Overall I feel pretty good.  I've lost 6.5 pounds by eating healthier and exercising.  I've been sleeping better.  Hopefully the flatline will be short-lived.  In the past, when I've had success staying away from porn, my wife and I were very sexually active.  Mentally, I feel ready to be there again, but I don't trust a dick that looks like it is trying to shrink itself back into my body...lol.  Oh well, I still have faith in the process but I sure wish it would heal quicker rather than slower.