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Journals => Ages 40 and up => Topic started by: Erasmus_xlt on May 18, 2016, 01:25:09 AM

Title: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 18, 2016, 01:25:09 AM
Day 1.
Busted.  Again.
Its amazing how desperately dumb I can be. 
So, I'm doing homework at the table where I have the computer set up.  My wife is in the bedroom because she hasn't been feeling very well.  She even had to endure an invasive medical procedure to only find out that the doctors do not know what is causing the problem.
I've digressed...(already!)
I reason in my mind that its been a while since we made love (of course, my difficulty obtaining an erection and ejaculating prematurely haven't helped) so a little porn to help is better than the alternative (hooking up with someone on a dating site...)

Aside - Ah, so you see that, eh?  My problem already goes beyond internet porn addiction and straight into sexual addiction of which porn is but one outlet.  Acting out has already ruined one marriage so, porn is my only outlet now.

I open up a browser window to one of the free porn sites I visit on an infrequent regular basis ( you know, I'm fooling myself into thinking that I'm really trying to quit...riiiiight!) and start watching a short video.  Suddenly, she comes out of the room(!)  Oh the horror!.  I try to close the window, but can't.  Instead, I hide the window behind my school work - but the sound is still playing in my headset.

"Keep walking, keep walking" I'm thinking to myself as she heads toward the kitchen.  Then she stops.

"What are you listening to," she innocently asks.  Then, she bends down to listen in and that's when the woman in the video starts moaning loudly in the throes of ecstasy.  I'm mortified.  She demands to know what I'm doing and I sheepishly show her the video playing in the background.  She is hurt beyond belief and ready to kill me.  That night did not end well.  I hate sleeping on the couch.

Skipping forward a couple of days, she discovers that I was using the tablet to cast erotic videos and soft-porn to the tv.  Insult on top of anger.  You know what I did.  That's not a question...you've probably been there too.  I justified and lied.  Presumably, to not expose her to the truth and horrendous pain that she would experience.  But, the truth is, I lied because I was embarrassed and felt lower than snail slime and was trying to protect my non-existent ego.

How is it that I am on the brink of destroying a second marriage?  After all, I am a seminary graduate.  I project blame on the demons that haunt my every waking moment (and most of the sleeping ones too).  I blame my father.  My sisters.  Kids in the neighborhood.  That boy in the bathroom.  That church leader.  Those girls that teased me.  Doors that should have been shut.  Heck, I was even aroused by sex in the Bible (that Song of Solomon!).  But, it's me.

I am the Broken Hallelujah.  I put the nail in His hands.  I pierced His side.  I stole my wife's security.  I damaged her soul.  I did it.  It was me.  I can't blame my past for hijacking my future because of acting on my ever present lust and desire.  I am sinking deep in sin - and I can barely swim recreationally.  Now, she won't talk to me.  She barely looks at me.  She sleeps in the spare bedroom.  And, I am desperately dumb. 

My name is "Erasmus" (name changed to hide the guilty).  I am a wannabe recovering Sex Addict.  Its been two weeks since I have P'd, longer since I have M'd or O'd. 
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 18, 2016, 11:48:44 AM
I am dead.

I have 3 emotional states: normal, happy; dead-pan; and raging. 

I am told that I am intelligent and tested with a high IQ (I don't remember the number).  But, my emotional intelligence is close to non-existent.  I've been told to emote and share my emotions.  When I try, I'm told that I don't have a right to feel the way I do.  Huh?

I blame my lack of emotional intelligence on my addiction to porn and escalation to acting out.  I don't have to emote with the woman on the screen.  She isn't going to judge me, make fun of me, mock me or demand more of me. She just performs.

I hate myself for this.  I married a woman that was all I ever dreamed a woman could be physically.  She is so darn sexy.  When we were dating, it was she who asked me why I hadn't made love to her yet.  I thought she loved sex as much as me.  Now, my addiction and subsequent ED have caused her to avoid my touch.

Also, her intelligence blew me away - she is every bit my mental equal and perhaps even superior to me in many ways. I find her intelligence to be quite seductive.   But, then I found out that she has emotions.  I am struggling to cope with her feelings.  I can't understand why she reacts the way that she does.  Intellectually I can reason why, but I can't sympathize or empathize with her because I don't feel that way.  And that hurts her more.

I've had a couple of breakthroughs emotionally. It scared me.  It made me think that I was right to fear emotions.  But we did get close during those times.  But, I can't just manufacture or fake emotions.  It's funny, isn't it: I lied about my porn use but lying about emotions - no way!

So now, she says I have destroyed her and our marriage.  She says I am a control freak and sick.  No matter what I try to say (she won't let me finish) she says I am manipulating and trying to control her.  Is that who I am?  Is this who I have become? Is this an outcome of the addiction? I don't recognize that person; it doesn't sound like the me I know or think I am.  Or, is that what she sees because of the filter of her life that she is seeing me through? 

There is only one way to find out; break the addiction and then see I am on the other side.  The only question is, will she still be around to meet the real me without porn?  He's shown up a time or two.  However, my porn addicted alter-ego shows back up again and takes over.  Am I going to lose her?  Have I lost her already?  I hope not.  I really do love her.  But, does she have any love for me remaining?

I am dead. 

I need a resurrection.

Another problem is that I may be codependent.  I don't want to lose her.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Bo1968 on May 18, 2016, 12:05:49 PM
Let's put your wife aside for a moment (I had to when she told me to leave the house nine days ago). You cannot save your marriage, you cannot stop, you are a broken clay pot...but just as the potter reformed that clay in to a beautiful vessel as He describes Israel, you can be healed. BUT NOT ON YOUR OWN, you have to get your stuff straight before you can worry about her or the marriage. Otherwise you are just a drowning person pulling another victim in to the water with you. You know the easy answers, get Covenant Eyes or X3 Church filters, only use the computer when she is in the room, not the next room over! I too have gravitated from straight P in to electronic conversations with other woman, but it is still interactive P. Same concept, get worked up, feed the beast, and then move on. No commitment, no contact, just selfishness and GUILT. Hang in there brother, Christ came to save, He is not filled with condemnation so beating up the past does do any good. We all have consequences for our actions, Phil 3:13 is our "get up off the floor verse". We have work to do for the Kingdom my friend...message me whenever you need, I got your back. Bare one another's burdens and all :)
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 18, 2016, 11:18:09 PM
I appreciate the straight talk.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 19, 2016, 12:18:04 AM
This feels different this time.

I have read a book entitled "Feels Like Redemption".  The author related his experience with porn and gaining freedom through a mystical encounter with himself. I'm not sure if I'm going to drink the Kool-Aid yet or not but, I did take some introspective moments to consider why I am who I am.

My life as early as I can remember has always had sexual situations and imagery. I remember as a teen telling my mother that if I had not made a decision to follow Jesus when I did, she would probably have been a grandmother before I was 15. Thankfully, that didn't happen.

So, I'm analyzing myself more trying to determine why porn? I know about dopamine. But, why porn?  What makes me turn to the pretty pixels of depravity?   While in church on Sunday, I wrote a list of possible triggers: angry, mad, sad, lonely, dejected, rejected, elated, frustrated, stressed, distressed, distracted, unattractive, confused, refused, disrespected, belittled, mocked, (need I go on?).

While composing this list again, I just realized that these are all emotions. Hmmm...I wrote about my struggles with emotions yesterday. Has porn become a horrible substitute for my emotions? I feel, therefore I PMO? I don't think Shakespeare would approve, but maybe I'm onto something.  Even if not all the reason, perhaps I've discovered a piece of the puzzle.

And, maybe, that's why this time feels different. I'm going further than "Just stop", "PMO is bad", "I have to stop sinning by spilling my seed on the ground" (Biblical reference), "if I were truly a Christian, I wouldn't have this problem (except that I am and I do)".  This time around its less like a commercial and more like a multi-part, investigative documentary.

This time FEELS different.  I sure hope so.  I can't afford a relapse.


BTW, I have an appointment with Mental Health at the VA tomorrow (ummm...today).  I hope I can get someone helpful.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 20, 2016, 01:09:23 AM
I received a label today - narcissist. I only have a sliver of an idea of what that is but Google knows.

So, using the power of Google I found that a narcissist is a person with an inflated sense of self-importance.
To me, that right there is funny.  I was taught from an early age that I could be replaced at anytime.  And, the rest of my life has proven that to me.  I'm a nobody in a world of nobody's - except of course for The Donald.  But, as that was but one source, I looked deeper...

Psychology Today is a well known and venerated journal in the annals of thought.  Let's see what they had to say concerning narcississtic persons (that can't spell): https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/what-mentally-strong-people-dont-do/201511/7-things-only-narcissists-do (https://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/what-mentally-strong-people-dont-do/201511/7-things-only-narcissists-do)

1. They make it clear they know everything.
According to my wife, I correct everything she says.Now, I don't know about everything, but I do find myself correcting her often but, usually its when she is trying to tell me what I am thinking or twisting what I said to make it into something I totally didnt say - at least that's how I feel about it.  So according to her - Strike One.

2. They insist on being the exception to the rule.
I guess it was a narcissist that said, "rules were made to be broken."  My rule of thumb is that rules were made to be negotiated.  (like deadlines.)  I always attributed that to my happy go lucky attitude of my sanguine personality type.  Rules were made by people to enforce their idea of order upon others, right?  Yeah, I hear you...Strike Two!

3. They project an image of superiority.
According to the article, narcissist want to appear "wealthy, popular and elite."  I live in a rental manufactured home.  I drove a 1998 Ford F-150 until it protested and died after throwing a tantrum.  I wear clothes that went out of fashion decades ago.  Not to mention, I am fat and out of shape.  Heck, I shop at discount stores like Dollar General.  I think I have to call Ball on this one.  Someone else may disagree...

4. They make a great first impression, but quickly wear out their welcome.
Well, since I learned that I am not the person my wife married and she is at a point where she doesn't know if she wants to reconcile our marriage, I might fall into this category.  I've had some other instances where I was the center of attention for a while and then everyone seemed to move their interest elsewhere.  Oh yeah!  I'm a facilitator(Army Instructor).  I facilitate classes and then they move to practical application.  Not sure...Can I call Foul Ball this time? (or, is that me not wanting to admit its true...)

5. They boost their egos by implying others are inferior.
I'm a jack of all trades, master of one or two.  At least that;s how I joke with people when I introduce myself.  I've been fortunate to travel internationally at a young age and experienced a lot.  I just state things as they are, but I try to not put people down.  However, my wife has recently told me that she thinks I act superior.  Perhaps I don't see myself very clearly...Strike Three?

6. They assume everyone adores them.
That's not me. I don't want anyone to hate me, but there are some people I know that can't stand me.  Not all personalities get along, and I know that.  I don't assume anything about anyone - at least as far as I know.  Ball!

7. They put their own feelings ahead of other people’s needs.
I'll admit that I do - sometimes.  But, I will disadvantage myself to help someone else in an instant.  I enjoy helping and serving others and not only when its convenient or beneficial to me.  But, my wife might disagree, especially when she is angry.  So, I don't know.  Another Foul?

With the above questions in mind, am I a narcissistic person.  My wife and pastor think I am.  I would admit that I have some narcissistic tendencies some times, but I don't think I am clinically narcissistic.  But, hey, what do I know?  If I am, I guess the psychologist is going to either love or hate to see me coming. 

You know what the funny thing is about labels?  They don't always stick...
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 20, 2016, 08:52:11 AM
I did some more reading on narcissistic personality disorder.  I don't know if I actually have the disorder fully, but I do recognize many of the traits in me when I am in fight mode which happens when my wife catches me using porn.

BTW, my wife knows about my blog and read it.  I knew she would eventually find it, but I didn't expect it this quickly.  As I don't intend to stop journaling (it's quite therapeutic) this is a way for her to see into my psyche and know what I am thinking and (hopefully) feeling.  I don't do well with expressing my feelings in verbal communication.  Even though public speaking or just talking is an area I do well until it comes to emotions.

Back on topic.  As I think about it, what I said earlier about my narcissistic tendencies is not completely true.  Another time that I can see my narcissistic self raising up is when I am on a porn binge.  My wife says she can feel it and she can tell even when she hasn't busted me and that's probably part of it.  Not to mention that there is a spiritual side to this battle that is quite palpable.

What does all this mean to me?  Breaking the bond of porn from which God has already freed me will change me physically, emotionally, and spiritually.  To that end, I am enlisting every tool I can think of or find .  They will all be evaluated as to their effectiveness and either added to my toolbox or discarded.

This site and journalling is a tool.  Your Brain on Porn is in my toolbox.  Covenant Eyes is in my box.  Triple X Church is also included, but it's way too easy to bypass their filter - especially since I work in IT.  I'm looking into a metal health professional with the VA, but I'm not sure how that is going to work yet.  I tried to look into a sex therapist in Athens, GA who is highly regarded but, I'm afraid my finances won't allow that yet.  I'm consulting with my Pastor and he's trying to find a Christian Counselor for me.  My wife and I are in separate rooms now, and that may be beneficial.  I am trying to be consistent with my devotional reading.  I am attending a group called Celebrate Recovery weekly.  I am trying to accelerate my degree and finish this term.  I am spending more time than ever in prayer and meditation. Eventually, I want to get back to working out, but that's a financial issue (and time).  What am I missing?

I need to be healed spiritually so that I can be a man after God's heart and have a close relationship with him and my wife.  Also, I can be a better servant to others.

I need to be healed mentally, so that my mind does not gravitate to the draw of porn and my brain is working as it should.

I need to be healed emotionally, so that I can better sympathize/empathize with my wife and her feelings in order to be the man she thought she married.

I need to be healed physically.  I purposely put this last because I think all the other areas will bring about the physical healing.  This will allow me to love my wife as she needs and deserves.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: RecoveryJunkie on May 20, 2016, 10:24:30 AM
Keep us the positive stuff. Your personal relationship and walk with God is paramount. I don't believe identifying with Narcissistic Disorder is helpful or positive. If you find you have a tendency Fr that throw yourself i to helping others. While journalist ng on here try to state one feeling you've had during the day. You can build on that. I think your 20 day sis monumental. Stay the course and continue to utilize the tools as much as possible while practicing not becoming self absorbed while recovering.
God bless you sir! Thanks for sharing your journey...
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on May 20, 2016, 11:26:16 AM
RJ is right, these labels aren't helpful. People shouldn't diagnose themselves in this way. If you really believe you have a narcissistic streak - go get assessed and treated by a professional. Just because you can be self-absorbed, selfish, ignorant of others' needs, arrogant etc. doesn't mean you have narcissistic personality disorder. Actually, the fact that you have joined a forum like this and are concerned about your own shortcomings suggests you don't have it. What you probably is have is a bunch of stuff that you need to work on. We all have stuff to work on. Everybody here has a porn problem to work on, and multiple other things to go with it. Joining here is a chance to get honest with yourself and take stock of your life, and make the changes that you know you need to make.

We're all in the same boat - stick around and we can help each other get there.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 20, 2016, 02:56:58 PM
RJ and Malando, thank you.
I wanted to deny the label, but that seems like it would have been incredibly narcissistic of me.  The reason I looked deeper into this is not so that I could wear a brand or label, but to realize what others were seeing in me so that I could correct the behavior. 

As sex has been in my life since my earliest memories (and possibly before), I am not fooling myself about the process.  I expect pain and suffering to get to where I need to be.  I have rebooted before (although I didn't call it that) and failed so often I have just about given up on myself.  I even told my wife to divorce me because she didn't deserve the hell I've put her through.  The fact that she's still here (even if barely) is motivation to succeed.

But, you're right.  This is the most honest I've been with myself about this problem. I am actively seeking a solution to claim the freedom that God said is already mine. I have been able to see my mind drifting and stop it before it got anywhere.  Fortunately, my life is hectic right now I don't have time for idle thinking.  And the reward is so great, a right relationship with God and my wonderful wife, that I can't afford to blow it.  I will be glad to get to the point where I don't have to actively think about not indulging.

Again, thanks for the words of encouragement.  We are all on the same team trying to make it around the bases.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: hope2reboot on May 20, 2016, 03:45:22 PM
I know the feeling of giving up on yourself.....man do I know the feeling. Good thing is that His mercies are new EVERY morning. I've asked God to take my life because of this crazy thing but so far he hasn't. Keep going brother no matter what as I believe He's on our side and sees what's in our heart and probably led us to this site to help us.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 20, 2016, 07:57:40 PM
Nice to meet you Hope2Reboot.  Yes, I have prayed for God to take me out so I don't keep putting my wife through this rollercoaster.  I have driven 120mph down the road hoping I'd lose control and then stop because I couldn't bear to think I might injure or kill someone else.  No, I'm not suicidal. It was me screaming for an easy fix instead of knuckling down and doing the work. 

So,here I am at 47 having to do the work because my wife and I are sleeping in separate rooms because she can't stand the idea of sleeping with me.  We had a meeting with the Pastor last night where she outed me to him.  I had told him a lot earlier when I talked to him, but she dumped on him my entire life.  I was laid bare.  It hurt.  I wanted to scream but couldn't.  I did leave for a while and punched some wood (hurt myself too) it was too much. But, it was revealing too. 

I now feel like she hates me.  I don't think she wants to reconcile at all.  What I got from the discussion is that she's basically going to do everything she can so she can move out and be able to take care of herself.  She asked (then told) me to not come home last night.  I sat in my car in a parking lot, screamed and yelled for a while. Then I drive to a Waffle House for a few hours. Finally, I called my sister and tried unsuccessfully to sleep on her sofa. I wanted to cry through all of it. Then I got mad at myself because I didn't/couldn't/wouldn't. 

Let me tell you, the Lord has His work cut out to heal me.  But, I know He did/can/will if I want it.  45 years of being abused (have to call it what it is), being molested and attempted rape are not going to be turned around in 20 or 30 or maybe even 90 days.  Wow.  That's the first time I've acknowledge that is what it was.

Now I'm at a conundrum...  Do I plan what to do if I do relapse or by planning am I opening a door for it to happen?  Or, by not planning am I setting myself up to binge?  I'll have to think about it and talk to some folks about it. I don't want to relapse but I see where so many people here do.  What is going to make me any different?

Anyway, God is still God.  I am still his child.  He will take care of my wife and I pray that He gives her the care and love she needs.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 20, 2016, 08:31:49 PM
You know...

That daggum counter is motivation too.   If I have to reset it and tell my wife (and I would have to tell her) it would devastate us.  She's already questioned me about it. But, praise God it serves as yet another part of the armour of protection.

For now, I'm exhausted. Good night all and God bless you all.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 21, 2016, 10:05:24 AM
Another morning and no morning wood.  I haven't spent a lot of time talking about my physical symptoms but mine are not quite the same as most I've read about here.

I started with M when I was about 12.  Looking back, I wonder what took so long.  I didn't do it regularly and mostly I was edging (if I understand correctly that edging is M without O) because I thought I had to go pee.  After I found out about O, I started M'ing more.

As far back as I can remember, I have had problems with PE.  I learned to do some things to help me last longer, but it usually involved stopping and frustrating my partner.  Then, I found that M'ing before intercourse helped delay my O.

I was able to resist porn for over a year before I married the woman of my dreams.  The first couple of times we made love, I came too fast .  I remembered that porn and M'ing helped with that and allowed it to draw me back in.  But, I binged and my brain had to have it.  Meds like Viagra, Cialis and OTC concoctions helped also so I didn't have to PMO.  But, i was still on the rollercoaster of binging on P and fasting from P.

I would stop when I got caught but it wouldn't last.  I would be drawn back in.  Then, ED and PE became constant wether I was watching or not - especially after being diagnosed with diabetes.

Now, I'm in a separate room.  No porn.  Haven't M'ed since before the last time I P'ed.  I wonder if a reset will even help my physical state. Help or not.  I resolve to be done with P.  I don't enjoy it.  I don't like what it has done to me physically.  I don't like the person I become when I am P'ing.  I'm done.  Finished.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: TheBaron on May 21, 2016, 12:21:19 PM
Hang in there, mate. You can do it!! And don't give up hope. I'm sure your wife sees your effort and recognizes that you are trying your best, that you are giving it your all. The longer you are able to refrain from watching P the better the chances of reconciliation with your wife.

I think I read in one of your older posts that she knows about your journal and that she reads it. I have a lot less experience in both life and relationships but maybe it helps if you involve her more into your whole rebooting process? Talk to her directly about your feelings, as openly as you wrote them down here.

I know it is hard for us men to admit our weaknesses and talk about emotions. However, keeping the greater goal in mind, isn't it worth a try?

All the best, mate and keep updating your journal.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: hope2reboot on May 21, 2016, 12:50:47 PM
I think it's great that you have such a good relationship with your sister. I too have the same although I haven't told her about my PMO problem. That's great that you can share this with her. I'm not married or living with anyone so I can't really say much on how to deal with the issues you're going through. I do think that it's very hard for women to understand this issue although from what I've been reading some women have this PMO issue as well. I've found that reading the posts on this site is quite helpful. I came across the following success story that seems to have helped a lot of people.

http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=1256.0

The title of the post is "Hello Gentlemen. Now we begin." Member is William.

Hang in there man. I'll send a few words to our Father for his help for you and your wife.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 22, 2016, 01:45:24 AM
Thank you H2R and Barry.  I appreciate your comments and the links you have shared.

Fortunately,  I didn't have to tell my sister anything.  I asked if I could use her empty spare room.  She offered her couch with no questions asked.  That says a lot about her.  She has her Doctorate in Psychology (I think).

I mentioned that I might not get any physical improvement.  I recognize now that I am experiencing withdrawal symptoms!  Whoo hoo!  I have horrible headaches, brain fog, unusual muscle spasms, irritable bowels and chest pain.  I've been to the doctor for just about all of these symptoms before but I never equated them with rebooting from porn addiction.  It's exciting!

I can barely think straight and it's affecting my work.  Hard to believe but, I'm counting it all joy.  If this is what it takes to be healed, I embrace it whole-heartedly.  This addiction will not win again. I realize now that these symptoms are my body's way of saying that something is dying. Well, good riddance.

Have you noticed the time when many of these posts go up?  Insomnia!  Yes! Another nail in porn addictions casket.  I don't know how long it will take to seal the casket, but it's never going to be opened again.  Previously, I'd go back to porn to get me through.  Those days are over.  My body and brain are lying to me and this time, I'm calling them on it!

On the other side of the ball, my wife told me tonight that I don't know what love is.  You might think that's a horrible thing to say but, I have said the same thing myself. I learned early in life not to get too close to people because they're all going to leave one day.  That's the downside of a military family. But, I do love my wife very much the best way I know how.

I have the Bible as a guide and know that the greatest love is to lay down your life for someone .  I would do that for my wife.  I know about romance and chivalry from reading about it in books.  But, knowing how to live in a loving relationship?  I can't say I do know.  It wasn't really modeled for me.  Mom (GRHS) and Dad kissed so rarely in front of us kids that it was a big deal when it happened.  I do realize that I have tried to be better to my wife than he was to my mother and his new wife.  But, it's obviously not enough. That doesn't mean I don't love her.  But, it does mean I have room to learn.  I know I need to learn to make an emotional connection.

As far as including my wife in the reboot process, I intend to at the appropriate time.  She talks to me on a limited basis right now.  She is grieving in her own way. When both of us are ready we will talk more - if she is ever ready. This betrayal has hit her hard and I know enough that I have to let her feel it in her own way.  I learned early in life that you can't dictate someone else's feelings.

My first step at learning is to put this porn addiction 6 feet under.  After that, I hope it eliminates the self-centered and egotistical thinking that goes with it so that I can learn to love as God would have me love. Someone mentioned putting my wife aside and taking care of myself.  I can't do that because we are one.  Taking care of myself is taking care of her.  She is a big part of my motivation and inspiration.  She makes the withdrawal symptoms worth it.  To regain her trust and to make love to her again drives me to embrace this change. My wife is the most beautiful woman i know.  She's wonderful in so many ways.  I hate myself for hurting her so cruelly.

I started to watch some of the videos recommend here.  I had to switch to mp3s of audio only.  Some used blurred out images that I realized my mind was trying to clarify.  I will not allow that to derail or delay my progress. God promised a way out for every temptation; one of the differences this time is that I use them.

F R E E D O M!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on May 22, 2016, 07:57:31 AM
I am assuming you got caught but no discussion of the addiction itself.  Your wife could be helped by going to this blog

markchamberlainphd.blogspot.com (http://markchamberlainphd.blogspot.com)

I has much valuable information there.  It is what helped me as an SO.  It also has information for the addict on quitting and also what your wife is going through.  My husband and I read this blog together and also read the book together as well. 

You can do this.  But when people are married, I think it helps the partner to know.  Not know all the details of what was watched, but to know that porn is an issue.  Then you can work on it together.  She will have to heal too.  It will be ugly at times but you will become closer because there are no secrets.  The lying and secrets is what bothers most of the SOs more than anything. 

I know a lot of men say it will get ugly and my wife will be hurt.  Yes she will be angry.  Read above about secrets.  Yes she will be hurt by your admission, but she is already being hurt.  Believe it or not, if you are porning, you are not there for her 100%.  Think of it as having cancer as you get through this.  First there is learning you have the disease.  Then there is who do we tell?  After that, we get some medicine to see if it works.  Then chemo.  But they say there is still a little cancer there.  Then we have surgery to get it out.  Then radiation.  Along the way we have lost weight, sometimes become jaundiced and are tired.  Then we lose all our hair.  Then at the end we find out we are cancer free.  We find out the pain was worth it!    This is how it is in healing from this.  The pain of telling and healing together is worth it!  You will be closer.  I cannot tell you how much I love my husband for talking bout this with me.  (I discovered)  I cannot tell you how happy I am that he stuck with me as we did the hard stuff.  That he manned up and absorbed my pain.  And the greatest thing of all, no secrets.  No lying.  Just us. 

We are a lot older than most on here.  But having a marriage without secrets however short or long that may be is worth every pain I felt and every pain he felt.  We went from being room mates to impassioned lovers.  And that is the truth.  If we can do it others can!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: hope2reboot on May 22, 2016, 05:36:04 PM
Gracie, your words made me weep. A completely open and honest relationship is a beautiful thing when there are women out there like you. I think most men feel they can't be completely honest with their SO because they don't think they could ever understand.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 22, 2016, 06:19:26 PM
Thank you Gracie.  I signed up for the 30 day Love Heals program. What you describe is what I want with my wife.

I didn't discuss my addiction here because i think we all know how bad it can be.  I don't want to glorify the sin.  However, my wife found one of the site's I visited and exploded. 

Let me see if I can summarize my addiction in this regard: my preference is for women that are built like my wife.  Even if they aren't t, I imagine us together doing what the actors are doing.  I have told her this and don't expect her to feel good about knowing that this is what I do.

Secondly, I rarely see the actresses faces.  I'm watching the action and seeing us.  I do occasionally see that there is an attractive woman and see myself with her.  Then I feel guilty and ashamed on top of the guilt and shame I already felt for being there in the first place.

And yes, I have escalated and seen things that repulsed me.  I detest acts of degradation, I can't identify with groups, I can't watch homosexual acts or trannys. I've seen all of these and been repulsed.

I am no saint because I don't like some and like others.  Porn has ruined the most important relationships in my life.  It was heartbreaking to see what I had reduced my wife to.  I have embarrassed, humiliated, abused, neglected and I demeaned her because of my addiction.  She let me know quite clearly that I invited all those whores into our bedroom and (I wanted to cry) expected her to keep up.

Of course I never thought of it like that.  I was too busy looking for the easy fix.  I was so caught up in my own little world.  I didn't go to her because I was afraid I would be belittled and maligned like everyone else has done.  I didn't trust her enough.  According to her (probably some truth to this), I didn't love her enough.  And I hate myself for this.  I loathe the person I am. I really want to love her totally.

After I left this morning, I looked for a place to die.  When I couldn't find one, I knew I was not going to kill myself.  I'm here to fight for my wife.  Fight to become better.  Fight to love wholly and without reservation.  Fighting to love my wife the way that she longs for. Fighting for love.

I'm not surprised that my first 30 days are days of discovery.  I've hidden, lied and deceived so long. It's tough to be honest about what I've done or who I have been. I just want that behind me.  Move on to the new person I am becoming.  But my wife isn't ready for that and I can't rush her.  Who am I to tell her how to grieve?

Another golden moment of coming to my senses:. I'm the one getting in the way of the very thing I want.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on May 22, 2016, 09:21:58 PM
It is odd that you mentioned "whores in the bedroom".  That is what I told my husband.  They were all there in bed with him.  We now have a new bed which has helped immensely! 

I subscribed to the 30 day program to see what it was like.  He has so much good practical stuff in his writings.  His blog and book truly saved our marriage!  It helped my husband understand why he did it, and why I was lost.  Great stuff in there. 

Let us know what you think of the program here.  It would be neat if you wrote your thoughts each day and then looked back to see how your thinking has changed. 

Good luck!!  It can be done...you can be closer than ever.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 23, 2016, 05:38:08 AM
That's a great idea.  Writing about the interactions will also require me to interact and not just read it and keep going.

Which book?
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 23, 2016, 11:00:22 AM
I will be starting a separate journal for the 30 day Love Heals program.  At this point I don't know if my wife will be supporting me and working through it with me.  My lies, subterfuge and deceit (not to mention the porn itself) have her in deep revulsion towards me.

She has told me that she is divorcing me.  That is, the me that is the porn addict, the user, abuser and false accuser.  The me that is the whoremonger.  The me that has been in a marriage for 5 years where there was no love.  The me that was self-centered, manipulative, condescending and narcissistic.  I guess since I put him in a casket, it's ok for her to divorce him. I will need her help to create the new me, but I don't know when she will be ready for that.

This rebooting thingy should be interesting.  They say it takes 1 month for every year.  If it's for every year of sexual inundation, then I am looking at approximately 40 months.  If it is for every year of porn viewing, I'm looking at about 20 months.  If it is for every year of high speed internet porn, then I will need about 14 months to Reboot.

Right now I am a little less than 25 days into my Reboot.  I have the withdrawal symptoms that are common.  I find myself flat-lining.  I can't tell you when was the last time I had an erection (whenever the last time I made love to my wife was) and that was only a partial. Today, my head has cleared a bit after taking Firocept for the headache.

On the spiritual side, doing several daily devotions using the Bible app, is a great source of help and encouragement.  Everyday there is something there that speaks to the person I am becoming.

I'm still reading through Reboot Nation logs.  Watching videos from YouTube, listening to porn recovery podcasts, reading articles about recovery.  I am literally saturating myself with anti-porn information.  But, what really has me excited is becoming.

I don't want to be the same person I am but without the porn addiction.  I mean, don't get me wrong, I still want to be me.  But, chisel away all those behaviors and attitudes that don't look like Christ as mentioned above.  I want to know what love really is.  I want to be an emotional support for my wife.  I want to feel true intimacy and closeness.  I want to trust enough to be hurt.

There, I said it.  "Trust enough to be hurt.". I just realized that is what is wrong with me.  I've learned to shut people out in an attempt to protect my heart.  I got tired of being picked on as a child and hardened my heart.  I learned the cold, heartless poker face so I wouldn't be picked on for crying infront of everyone. 

Oh God, I just remembered a time when a girl I liked in early elementary school (1st grade?) made fun of me before the entire school (at least that's what it felt like) because I didnt know how to kiss her.  Where did that come from?  Is that a part of where this started?  It's definitely a probable influence.

Anyway, my wife (a big part of this blog - see the title) has mocked me during her anger and rage.  I felt every word of it, but try to remind myself that I have brought this on myself.  Then, I get defensive and become offensive.  It's that little kid in me fighting back.  That would also explain why half of my arguments don't make sense and are just mean and hurtful.

Thats enough for now. This introspective thing sucks.  Even if it is a necessary evil to get to where I want to be.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on May 23, 2016, 11:39:22 AM
The book is Love You, Hate the Porn.  By Mark Chamberlain and Geoff Steurer.  You can watch Geoff's videos on youtube.

https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=geoff+steurer (https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=geoff+steurer)

There are several there about porn and marriage and relationships and healing  They are very good. 

My husband and I read the book together.  I read it first and used a color of ink and underlined and wrote in margins that expressed how I felt.  Then he read the book and underlined the important parts for him.  Then we read together and discussed the underlined parts.

You might have your wife go to the blog and read some of what is there.  You can then let her know what you now realize.  When she yells and is unkind she is pushing you away because it is easier.  Let her know that you can acknowledge what you did and that you can change and are willing to do whatever it takes.  Hearing my husband say those words was like getting gold.

This will take time.  This month marks five years and I still have to talk about my emotions with him.  He understands it is my steam valve.  We hold each other and text a lot!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 24, 2016, 06:03:08 AM
I made it my Mental Health appointment yesterday. The intake Nurse Practitioner knew very quickly that she was out of her league as I started explaining what was going on.  She asked if I wanted to see a doctor I had been with before and I let her know I needed someone that was a CSAT (Certified Sexual Addiction Therapist) as recommended by Todd Love and Mark Chamberlain.

She didn't know what that was so I showed her and showed her a few in our area so that she could do some research .  I could see that she was uncomfortable and she wasn't ready for my story of abuse and addiction.  So she prescribed some Prozac for me and is going to consult with the team and figure out what to do.

She asked about my previous visit.  I told it didn't work because I was misdirected in the treatment.  I didn't know that the depression I was experiencing then was due to a reboot.  The only thing that the Sertraline helped with was delaying my orgasm - sometimes too long, but at least long enough for my wife to be fulfilled.

I have also decided that after my Hard 90 Reboot with no relapses that I am going to rededicate my life to Christ and get baptized again.  I will be putting the old addicted me to death and arising to a newness of life without porn and it's influences.

My wife and I had a good talk last evening. We were able to talk without arguing.  We had understanding and empathy.  I know it's not happily ever after yet, but maybe it's the line we can look back to as when the healing process began.  We went for a ride with the top down and for me it was exhilarating. 

Here is to a new beginning. I know it's the last one that she'll probably put up with and it's the last one I want to go through. This one is the real one.

I started another blog on the 30 day Love Heals program.  I will probably keep up with both this one and that as they have different purposes.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on May 24, 2016, 06:36:00 AM
Good for you!  Way to go!  First, going to a doctor and making sure you are connected to someone that can truly help.  Second, talking with your wife.  Every time my husband would talk to me, I would write, he is understanding how I feel more. 

We were so happy with the closeness that last year for our 30 year anniversary, we renewed our vows and he became my"new husband".  He said the old him had been gone for 4years and he wanted to start as a new husband. 

Keep talking.  Stopping the talking makes you feel lonely and porn loves lonely.  Your wife can be your rock, if only you will let her.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on May 24, 2016, 09:57:22 AM
Good for you, Erasmus. Stay strong, man. You'll be well rewarded for sticking it out. You'll be a better person and proud of yourself, and you might even get your wife back! I hope you do.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 24, 2016, 06:18:43 PM
I came from work today before going to a Celebrate Recovery meeting and gave my wife divorce papers.  She was shocked and scared.  But enough is enough.

She said she wanted to divorce me. The me that is the porn addict, the user, abuser and false accuser.  The me that is the whoremonger.  The me that has been in a marriage for 5 years where there was no love.  The me that was self-centered, manipulative, condescending and narcissistic.  So I wrote divorce papers up at work that would pass in court (except for a phrase or two) and gave them to her with her name as the plaintiff.

The point was that the part of me that was addicted to porn is gone and not welcome here anymore.  It's a new beginning. Now, we basically start courting each other.  We get to discover each other again.  Who knows maybe we'll get married again further down the road (renew our vows, that is). I can't wait to see who I become.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 24, 2016, 06:22:10 PM
Thank both of you for your encouragement.  The no P has been very easy so far.  I don't expect that to last, but I will be stronger to face it knowing that there are people out there (in addition to my wife) that are concerned about me.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on May 25, 2016, 05:10:41 AM
I think reading savingmysoul's journal would help you.  His story and yours are very similar.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 25, 2016, 04:15:31 PM
It's been 25 day of no P.  I don't miss it.  I don't want it. Ever.

I had the pleasure of reading SMS's blog.  We do have some similarities: we both know that going back is futile.  We both love our wives and want to prove to them that we are worthy of their love.  We both have wives that are struggling with the betrayal, treason and abandonment that we forced upon them in our selfishness.  We both know that those that are telling us to not worry about our wives or to fix ourselves first or that our wives had a part to play also... may mean well but are not in our situation and/or likely not experiencing continued success. 

Where we differ is time.  Whereas SMS is further along in his journey, I am fairly new.  My wife's wounds are raw and open.  The scab is not forming at all yet and she is bleeding freely.  She tries to hold a conversation with me, and then the weight of it all crashes down on her and squeezes angry venom out of her.  She's mad and she's not getting over it anytime soon.

Another difference, my wife and I sleep in different rooms.  Making love is not a consideration.  That's not a bad thing right now since I have severe ED. She reminds me (not gently)  how limp and useless I have been.  I need the time to reset anyway.  I really don't know if she will be here.  I feel that she wants to leave and if she could safely leave she would.  I feel her hate and contempt.  I know I caused it by trying to protect and hold on to my coping mechanism -porn through lying, manipulating, redirecting, and she has added controlling.  Is there any wonder that she is scared.  Let me tell you, time DOES NOT heal all wounds. I'm hoping that a record of change will heal her wounds.

I don't know where my journey will end.  I don't know if I will travel alone.  One of the worst feelings in the world is to be married but to be alone.  Ask my wife about the last five years.  I thought we were ok.  I even deceived myself. Now we both know that we are alone.

I am encouraged by bloggers that have long term success.  They give me something to look forward to.  And bloggers like SMS with whom I share some similarities are encouraging.  I wish him much success and the eventual prize he is striving for - his wife's heart.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 25, 2016, 08:55:27 PM
I have been 25 days without porn.  I have had no urge to view it.  I don't want to view it.  You can't make me!

I woke up this morning with a little life in my genital area.  Not much, but every little bit is a victory. 

I had a dream that I was making love to my wife and I guess that triggered it.  But upon waking, my rational mind kicked in, told me that I was still dreaming because that's not going to happen anytime soon, and I loss the little bit of an erection that I kinda had.  While, that may sound depressing, I was reassured - this reboot might work out after all.

On the other hand, I was texting with my wife later in the day and said something that sounded egocentric.  No amount of apologizing or trying to explain helped.  Then, I stuck my proverbial foot in my proverbial mouth (hand, I guess) and said something dumb about the language of out text and which of us sounded like the abusive one...

Yeah, I know.  Famous last words.  That was the end of the conversation for the rest of the day.  I have been trying to let her vent, but using foul language is a big turn off for me and I don't hear much of anything when profanity is used.  It just does something to me.  I guess I have pegged another issue to work through.  It's her venting, let her vent, right?

On the other hand, (how many hands do you have?)  My Bible reading today talked about what a thriving marriage looks like: It majors in unrestrained celebration of life in its fullness - sensual pleasure, spiritual delights, and all of the beauties of God's creation; a marriage in which the partners prioritize periodic times of shared refreshment and renewal; a marriage in which spouses regularly practice the art of extravagant verbal love-making.  That's what I want.

The key to this type of marriage, according to the author, is communication; open, honest and caring communication.  Those are exactly the things that porn addiction maligns and destroys.  If my marriage is going to be renewed, we will have to build this type of intimacy and trust.  And, it has to start with me having integrity.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Mr Eko on May 26, 2016, 12:21:45 AM
Hi Erasmus,

I have beaten this addiction with God's help. I invite you to read what I wrote in the section - success stories , you will find there how I did it and what to do when being in urge. If you have any questions for details just ask, but please - read first what I wrote there.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 26, 2016, 08:49:41 AM
I have been 26 days without porn.  Porn is already defeated.  It's just taken me over 40 years to actualize it in my life.

I read Mr Eko's blog yesterday and created a wonderfully worded post that was subsequently deleted before I could post it.  I am reposting my reply in my own blog now.

Everyone believes in a god even if they don't call it that.  For some, their God is Jehovah or Yahweh.  For others, their god is affluence, money or themselves.  Many of us have unwittingly made porn and sex into our god.

What I have noticed on this site is those who's god is themselves, usually tend to relapse often.  The problem is that you know how flawed your god is and you can only attain to the extent of your faith in yourself.  We all know how limited we are or we wouldn't be here.  An inward focus makes it difficult to correct an inward problem.

The group that has some measure of success puts their faith in a group or another person.  These people are outward focused putting their faith in a loved one, a process or a program.  Their external focus allows them to harness the strength of those around them to augment their own strength thereby increasing their chance of success.

The trend I seem to notice in the group that seems to have the best long term success is that they put their faith in God.  Faith in God puts the ultimate, unlimited power of the universe at your disposal to overcome any and every problem.  The focus here is external and all encompassing.  Faith in God allows the best of all three of the groups.

When you have Faith in God, it does not mean that He is automatically going to fix everything.  The axiom is to pray like it all depends on God and work like it all depends on you.  Your work can then be multiplied by an unlimited factor.  God and the team you assemble around you are all working on your behalf. My team includes God, my wife, my pastor, Celebrate Recovery, a mental health professional - possibly two, as well as this and other sites such as Covenant Eyes, Triple X Church , Your Brain on Porn, Focus on the Family, Love You Hate the Porn, etc.

So if you really want to beat any problem in life including porn or sex addiction, believe in something bigger than yourself.  Personally, I recommend God the creator of life and sustainer of the universe.  If anyone can renew the heart, brain and spirit it's Him.

I look forward to the day I will realize the words of our sovereign Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, "Your faith has made you whole."
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on May 26, 2016, 09:51:19 AM
I have been 26 days without porn.  Porn is already defeated.  It's just taken me over 40 years to actualize it in my life.

I read Mr Eko's blog yesterday and created a wonderfully worded post that was subsequently deleted before I could post it.  I am reposting my reply in my own blog now.

Everyone believes in a god even if they don't call it that.  For some, their God is Jehovah or Yahweh.  For others, their god is affluence, money or themselves.  Many of us have unwittingly made porn and sex into our god.

What I have noticed on this site is those who's god is themselves, usually tend to relapse often.  The problem is that you know how flawed your god is and you can only attain to the extent of your faith in yourself.  We all know how limited we are or we wouldn't be here.  An inward focus makes it difficult to correct an inward problem.

The group that has some measure of success puts their faith in a group or another person.  These people are outward focused putting their faith in a loved one, a process or a program.  Their external focus allows them to harness the strength of those around them to augment their own strength thereby increasing their chance of success.

The trend I seem to notice in the group that seems to have the best long term success is that they put their faith in God.  Faith in God puts the ultimate, unlimited power of the universe at your disposal to overcome any and every problem.  The focus here is external and all encompassing.  Faith in God allows the best of all three of the groups.

When you have Faith in God, it does not mean that He is automatically going to fix everything.  The axiom is to pray like it all depends on God and work like it all depends on you.  Your work can then be multiplied by an unlimited factor.  God and the team you assemble around you are all working on your behalf. My team includes God, my wife, my pastor, Celebrate Recovery, a mental health professional - possibly two, as well as this and other sites such as Covenant Eyes, Triple X Church , Your Brain on Porn, Focus on the Family, Love You Hate the Porn, etc.

So if you really want to beat any problem in life including porn or sex addiction, believe in something bigger than yourself.  Personally, I recommend God the creator of life and sustainer of the universe.  If anyone can renew the heart, brain and spirit it's Him.

I look forward to the day I will realize the words of our sovereign Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, "Your faith has made you whole."

I don't know that I buy this logic, Erasmus. I think that if you took 100 people who are addicted to porn and realise it's problem enough to quit it, 50 are religious and 50 are not - I doubt you'd find a statistical difference in the success of their recovery. It does ultimately depend on a person's resolve and the steps they take to address the problem. The ones that catch your eye are the ones who credit God with their recover. As a non-religious person, I've read plenty of accounts of people who have recovered who never even mentioned religion.

You already cited a multifactorial approach including various sources of support - God being just one of them. There's no reason to think that an atheist who uses the support of various people/resources to recover is going to do any worse. And with all due respect, you are a believer and you are still in the grip of this after 40 years. I don't mean to denigrate your recovery but I think anybody who has only 26 days free of porn is guilty of hubris if they think they are free and clear and totally cured. I know that I will not consider myself cured by a long shot in a week or two when I cross that bridge. I might believe I'm cured when it's been year or two, not before.

I think it's worth noting that when you take your contributions here in that direction, you are cutting off a large number of people reading it. It's a fact that religion is not the centre of a lot of people's lives like it is in yours. When you make God the be all and end all and make the other resources small by comparison, I think it's very alienating. By all means mention your beliefs, but don't go too hard on it because you will not reach a good many people because they will feel like, "well, I'm not a believer, I can't pretend to be - this guy can give me nothing". But actually I do think you have plenty to offer. There are many things you say that are widely applicable to believers and non-believers alike.

For the record, I'm cool with people mentioning the role their God plays in their life, but what I'm not cool with is when people start preaching that without God, you aren't going to get there. People can't just make a choice to have God. They either feel it or they don't. And trust me, I have just as much motivation to quit as you do. It's about love and respect for my family. That is as powerful for me as your God is to you.

And this:
Quote
Everyone believes in a god even if they don't call it that.  For some, their God is Jehovah or Yahweh.  For others, their god is affluence, money or themselves.  Many of us have unwittingly made porn and sex into our god.

I wonder if you are aware of the implications you are making here? I won't even say it. I'll let you mull it over.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 26, 2016, 01:24:14 PM
I appreciate the diplomatic way that you expressed yourself.  Being religious and trusting God in faith are not the same.  I have a head full of knowledge about God but letting Him guide and direct my life is a different story.

Sure, there can be success outside of God.  I alluded to that even with someone doing things by themselves.  However, it seems that it is much more difficult.

Trusting Jesus as your Savior is not a magical spell that makes everything right.  It still takes work.  And it's the only way with eternal results.  Unfortunately, for a lot of people who claim to be a Christian it's more about fire insurance.

I think I mentioned in my original post that I was a seminary graduate.  The Bible is my guide for life and source of truth.  I have not been trusting God to handle this problem.  I am now.  Does, that mean I won't have failings?  Only if I take my eyes off of him and start looking at myself again.

As far as the implications of the other gods mentioned, I'm not sure what you may be implying, but there are many idols that people worship.  As the Bible states, we stopped worshipping the creator and started worshipping the creation.  It's also been said that God created man in his own image.  Then man turned around and did the same.

As you've been reading many of my posts as I have been reading yours, you know that I have not made as strong a statement about my faith as this one up to this point.  But my faith is a large part of my recovery through this.  I have even sought secular help because I know Christians don't have a corner on the market.  I will occasionally make declarations concerning my faith.  This is one of them. 

Let me say that I know I have a long way to go.  A very long way.  So far, I can't see the finish line.  But, the Bible tells me that Jesus already has won and through Him, I have won also.  So, although I may lose a battle, I know who wins in the end.  That right there is encouraging.

I wish you much strength and success as you continue your journey.  We started this about the same time and I think we can learn from each other as well as encourage each other.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on May 26, 2016, 03:01:30 PM
May 26, 2016

Started reading your journal today since you were kind enough to comment on mine.  The first thing I noticed reading all the way through from beginning to now in one sitting is the noticeable change in your demeanor.  Early on I have to say, "The label" seemed to fit what I was reading, but I picked up on the pain and the frustration too.  As i progressed in your journal I could see God working in you, your attitude was different, less confrontational and more honest.  I think its natural, at least for men when they first have to start dealing with talking about feelings and how they feel or make others feel, that we use humor in an effort to soften the delivery, I think.  I know things with your wife are questionable, but in time women can have a vast capacity for forgiveness.  I'm glad you've been so successful and found the support you need to find lasting victory.  I too was good with computers and would feel compelled to see if i could beat my filters and i tried xxxchurch too.  I now have K9 and Pluckeye running in tandem and havent felt the slightest desire to try and find a weakness.  You keep doing what your doing, your body will heal in time, so don't fall for any mind tricks to try and test if little man still works.  Thats a common trap guys fall into too, I did once.  You havent mentioned DeltaFosB, your coming up on when it starts leaving the brain, usually right around 6 weeks, so be ever mindful of the mileposts in the journey.  I've had issues around the 21 day mark before, so I have a separate counter setup to remind me I'm reaching a stumbling point so I'm hyper vigilant to any mind tricks or Satan's Fiery arrows around that time.  For me my next marker will be around 60 days as that is when the DeltaFosB is usually clear of the brain.  Your really doing great, the changes in you are evident and I'm praying for you that you and your wife reconcile and are better than ever.  Maybe have a 2nd Honeymoon... ;D

See you in the trenches,

Chip
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on May 26, 2016, 03:17:13 PM
I appreciate the diplomatic way that you expressed yourself.  Being religious and trusting God in faith are not the same.  I have a head full of knowledge about God but letting Him guide and direct my life is a different story.

Sure, there can be success outside of God.  I alluded to that even with someone doing things by themselves.  However, it seems that it is much more difficult.

Trusting Jesus as your Savior is not a magical spell that makes everything right.  It still takes work.  And it's the only way with eternal results.  Unfortunately, for a lot of people who claim to be a Christian it's more about fire insurance.

I think I mentioned in my original post that I was a seminary graduate.  The Bible is my guide for life and source of truth.  I have not been trusting God to handle this problem.  I am now.  Does, that mean I won't have failings?  Only if I take my eyes off of him and start looking at myself again.

As far as the implications of the other gods mentioned, I'm not sure what you may be implying, but there are many idols that people worship.  As the Bible states, we stopped worshipping the creator and started worshipping the creation.  It's also been said that God created man in his own image.  Then man turned around and did the same.

As you've been reading many of my posts as I have been reading yours, you know that I have not made as strong a statement about my faith as this one up to this point.  But my faith is a large part of my recovery through this.  I have even sought secular help because I know Christians don't have a corner on the market.  I will occasionally make declarations concerning my faith.  This is one of them. 

Let me say that I know I have a long way to go.  A very long way.  So far, I can't see the finish line.  But, the Bible tells me that Jesus already has won and through Him, I have won also.  So, although I may lose a battle, I know who wins in the end.  That right there is encouraging.

I wish you much strength and success as you continue your journey.  We started this about the same time and I think we can learn from each other as well as encourage each other.

Thank-you Erasmus for your considered reply. I am a big believer in using whatever support you can get your hands on. I've seen a shift in your posts even in the short time I've been quitting. Whatever you're doing is working for you. Go with God! :)
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 27, 2016, 06:47:27 PM
Thank you for those that have noticed a shift in the personality of my posts.  I'm not sure what the shift is exactly but, from what I know (which may not be as much as I thought I knew) other people can usually spot changes before the person concerned.  I do know I am trying.

To that extent, I have changed one of my previous post because upon rereading it, the wording and intended humor left the meaning somewhat opaque.  The corrected paragraph now reads: "I married a woman that was all I ever dreamed a woman could be physically.  She is so darn sexy.  When we were dating, it was she who asked me why I hadn't made love to her yet.  I thought she loved sex as much as me.  Now, my addiction and subsequent ED have caused her to avoid my touch." And who can blame her.

This blog is intended to be about me and my journey toward God and my wife.  It is not about bashing her or trying to make me look like a victim.  Let's get it straight, I was the abuser and she has been the victim.  I love her and I will learn how to love her as much or more than I have mistreated her in the past.

I think the exercise I completed yesterday for my 30 day challenge has been helpful for me to understand my part in a conversation.  I have always felt awkward in conversations.  I don't like talking about myself, I'm not a good story teller and I'm always trying to fix things.  Being able to just listen while encouraging the conversation was different.

I look forward to more conversations while becoming more intimate with my wife.  That word intimacy is interesting...  Someone broke it down as "In to me see" and that's what I am trying to do.  I'm also working on trusting as well as being trusted. 

I am on day 27 with no P and longer without M or O.  I  have a long way to go.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on May 27, 2016, 07:56:01 PM

I am on day 27 with no P and longer without M or O.  I  have a long way to go.
The journey of a thousand begins with a single step, one foot in front of the other.  Everyday that passes you are that much further from who you were and that much closer to who you can and will be.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 27, 2016, 10:19:46 PM
Day 27. I remember why I used P.  I remember why I lied.

It's one of those times.  I remember why I lied and why I would turn to porn.  This is one of those nights that if I weren't doing it for more than just my wife, I'd be back in it. 

I'm not going to.  I don't really want to.  But this would have been one of those situations.  Instead, I meditated for a few moments and laid down.  Now I'm dumping here. 

That's all I'm going to say about that.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 28, 2016, 06:00:05 AM
Today is Day 28 from where I marked my last viewing of porn. My last M and O was before that.

I wonder about this full disclosure process.  All I see is more pain for everyone involved and opportunities for betrayal so as to reinforce the fact that i should not have been open in the first place.  It's hard to not believe that trusting is overrated.

If I tell someone something in confidence and one of the first things they say is, "I'm telling!" why bother?  Or, they taunt and mock or denigrate me for it, doesn't that just prove that I should not have opened my mouth?

I think I see the ugly place this is going, but I'll ride it out. Maybe this is part of my harder before it gets better.  Maybe, just maybe it will be worth it all in the end.

I mentioned previously that I was a sex addict and my outlet of choice now has been limited to porn.  Before my current marriage (what's left of it) and before and during my previous marriage I acted out using a web hook-up site or people that I met in the course of being on the road.  In my early twenties, I also visited massage parlors or paid for a "comfort lady".  That was all before free high-speed porn.

I'm finding that putting the past behind me may be my idea but not necessarily other people's ideas.  I don't look forward to sitting in a therapist's office recounting all of the dirty deeds from my past or with anyone else for that matter.  There is nothing there but pain and misery, missed opportunities and failure to live up to my potential.

I know nothing good can come out of my wallowing in my misery.  But throwing up can be therapeutic.  Wallowing in mud can cool you down.  Just having a forum where I can vent helps to ease some of the pressure.

28 days into the REST of my life. Please?
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on May 28, 2016, 10:52:08 PM
Today is Day 28 from where I marked my last viewing of porn. My last M and O was before that.

I wonder about this full disclosure process.  All I see is more pain for everyone involved and opportunities for betrayal so as to reinforce the fact that i should not have been open in the first place.  It's hard to not believe that trusting is overrated.

If I tell someone something in confidence and one of the first things they say is, "I'm telling!" why bother?  Or, they taunt and mock or denigrate me for it, doesn't that just prove that I should not have opened my mouth?

I think I see the ugly place this is going, but I'll ride it out. Maybe this is part of my harder before it gets better.  Maybe, just maybe it will be worth it all in the end.

I mentioned previously that I was a sex addict and my outlet of choice now has been limited to porn.  Before my current marriage (what's left of it) and before and during my previous marriage I acted out using a web hook-up site or people that I met in the course of being on the road.  In my early twenties, I also visited massage parlors or paid for a "comfort lady".  That was all before free high-speed porn.

I'm finding that putting the past behind me may be my idea but not necessarily other people's ideas.  I don't look forward to sitting in a therapist's office recounting all of the dirty deeds from my past or with anyone else for that matter.  There is nothing there but pain and misery, missed opportunities and failure to live up to my potential.

I know nothing good can come out of my wallowing in my misery.  But throwing up can be therapeutic.  Wallowing in mud can cool you down.  Just having a forum where I can vent helps to ease some of the pressure.

28 days into the REST of my life. Please?
I'm so sorry that things arent going as smoothly for you at this point.  Porn and its after effects can really show you the dark side.  I remember when I first decided to come out to people besides my wife, not everyone was receptive or understanding or for that matter very Christian about it.  I wish I could tell you it'll all get better, but that might be a lie or at least an exaggeration.  First on the list is getting you right with God, I think you've begun the path of "True Repentance" so that's good.  Next on the list is your wife and your working on that diligently as well, all I can say is be humble, honest and open to her.  Everyone else will just have to shake out over time and you'll probably find out some others in your circle are struggling too and you'll be able to help them as well.  Some mistakes I feel some other guys have made in coming out, is too many details, discretion I think is the best path when you choose to share with someone other than a counselor. 

You've already ripped the bandage off, the wound is laid bare.  Now it needs to be thoroughly cleaned out, medicated and time to heal, don't even consider a trip back, that it'll just cause an infection.  Its tough, no doubt about it, but your not alone and things will improve.  I use to be kinda stuck in the past myself.  I had this long list of things were I had failed that I carried around with me in my head, its a side effect to the porn.  Well what I did was make a list, on paper, of every time I made a decision I regretted, going back at least a decade or more, however much time you need.  Once I finished the list I went back and wrote in what I thought the right decision should have been for each case.  After I finished, I prayed about it, asked forgiveness where it was needed and then I burned the list...  The past is gone, it is what it is, no changes, no do overs.  The only option is to move forward with the wisdom of experience and hindsight and make a better tomorrow and tomorrow can be pretty cool.

Chip
 
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 28, 2016, 11:50:49 PM
Thanks Chip.  I agree about leaving the past in the past.  Unfortunately, I can understand that some people have to reconcile with the past in order to move forward in the future.  I said I can understand but, that doesn't mean I like it.  Your suggestion to write it down then burn it isn't a bad idea.  I may have to try that one out...
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 30, 2016, 10:59:40 AM
Day 30 (on Memorial Day).  A small victory of sorts.  A pit stop on the Journey of Life.

Here is to the first of many 30 day victories.  There will be many more to come.  The funny thing is that this was not a hard-fought battle.  I did not have to exercise a lot of self-will or self-restraint to not watch porn.  For the day where I woke up with an erection after dreaming about my wife, while there was a thought of M'ing, there was no follow through.  Would it have been ok since I was thinking of my wife?  I don't know at this point.  But, for me, it's better to limit any and all sexual thoughts in order to successfully reboot.

It seems that my wife is venting on a nightly basis.  She has a lot built up inside her.  I just hope that it doesn't become a habit and we are never able to move on.  To that extent, I am providing honest answers as I can and trying (mostly unsuccessfully) to not fuel the inferno.  She does not like my answers (I don't like them all either) and thinks I am lying mostly.  I have lied so much in the past, that I understand.  But, she agreed that I am definitely exposing more of my dirty underworld as she asks about it.

I am finding it hard to answer some questions concerning motivation for using porn.  I have answered as best as I can, but the answers do not satisfy her.  Heck, sometimes they don't satisfy me.  I feel like the me I was and the me I am becoming (the REAL me) are fighting and it just causes confusion.  Hopefully, that is less of an issue as I get further away from where I was and closer to where I am going.

Here is to the next 30 days!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 30, 2016, 02:16:04 PM
It's been 30 days without porn, masturbation or orgasm in any context and I feel ok.

Cognitive Dissonance!

Thank you, Terry Crews!

My wife's anger is very real and very apropos.  As she is expressing her anger, she often states that I can't love her if I am doing porn.  I struggle to provide an answer and couldn't explain how I can do both - they are not mutually exclusive.  While browsing videos on Yourbrainonporn.com.  The answer may be cognitive dissonance. 

Cognitive dissonance is the mental stress or discomfort experienced by an individual who holds two or more contradictory beliefs, ideas, or values at the same time, performs an action that is contradictory to one or more beliefs, ideas, or values, or is confronted by new information that conflicts with existing beliefs, ideas, or values." 

Now, before anyone thinks this is a good thing, it isn't.  As people, we can't live with dissonance.  Our minds try to resolve that dissonance and create a oneness where both ideas can coexist.  In the matter of loving her and loving porn, I unconsciously started objectifying my wife the same way that porn objectifies women.  In my selfish feelings of entitlement, I started acting on that new paradigm by becoming narcissistic and quite arrogant.  I unconsciously brought the worlds together; not by humanizing the porn, but by e-humanizing my wife!

That means, my wife has been right all along.   And where she said I never listened to her, she was right.  I heard her, but I didn't feel that it applied to me.  My mind wrote it off.  It means I was a bigger jerk than I ever knew.  Wow.  I've made her life miserable because of my PIN (Porn Induced Narcissism). 

Now that I realize what has happened, I can better address this area.  However, I did not become this way overnight and it will take time to reconcile this cognitive dissonance by recognizing the porn for what it truly is an restoring my wife to the place should be in my mind.  Then, I will be able to give her the respect and love that she deserves.  She will be seen as a human rather than as an object (wish I knew this 5 years ago).

Enjoy your Memorial Day.  God Bless the families of those that have given their all.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on May 30, 2016, 02:49:26 PM
Congrats on 30 Days post-PMO! 

It's better that shes talking instead brewing, just hang tough and try to be as honest as you can with her.  I don't know if your wife is a reader but, some good books by Christian authors are, "Every Mans Battle" and "Every Womans Battle" I believe they are by Steve Arterburn and his wife.  It may help her with understanding it wasn't about being dissatisfied with her.  I saw something Gracie wrote in another post and I thought it might be beneficial for you to read.

http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=1256.400

Building a little on what Chip said.  I think the disconnect from wives, the secrecy and non-communication is what makes us feel it is us and we are not good enough.  Remember sex is an emotional connect for us.  If the emotion is gone, then there is something wrong.  Then we find out they are watching and touching themselves and let's face it most of the women is porn are somebody's definition of perfect, then the result of no communication, secrecy, disconnect, not much physicality from our husbands lead us to it is us.  Porn warps your definition of women and yourself how can it not warp your definition of beauty?  Attractiveness of others?  Sexual preferences as in positions what you expect us to do.

On the one hand, we hear it is not us.  On the other we are told it warps a PA's brain.  Remember then, we are dealing with and responding to a warped brain and pretty much someone we do not know.  We have never been through this before.  Remember we have no one to talk to.  The overwhelming viewpoint on men using porn is that they use because their wife is not good enough in bed, attractive enough, or a cold fish.  We already feel pretty bad about ourselves so do we want to see what happens when we reveal our pain to others?  OH HELL NO.  So we can pretty much only share our feeling with this man we do not know.  And he does not want to share because he has conditioned himself to secrecy. 

I have been here since the beginning of this forum.  I was the first or second female on here.  And I have tried and tried to get men to see it is not about the physical result of using porn.  It is about the emotional disconnect.  Especially if you have a long term partner.  I desperately do not any woman to have to experience this pain.   Let us express our hurt and anger.  With you is the only time we can.  And we do need to talk this through.  We have noticed little signs along the way and ignored them.  Because we love you.  Now we feel stupid.  And we cry and yell because we care.  Because we want you in spite of the pain.  Because we still love you.  And we know if we keep inside an don't talk to you, it will slowly erode our love for you, the love of our life!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 31, 2016, 10:44:41 AM
Thank you for the repost Chip.  Gracie is a very insightful and helpful person.  Her words from the woman's point of view do help. 

Day 31.  Had an urge.  Let it pass.  Now, I just have a headache.

Just listened to Dr. Ross Rosenberg concerning codependency and sexual addiction.  He states that the sex addicted partner starts as codependent.  Then, when the narcissistic partner is unable to meet the needs for sex and or intimacy that is when they will act out. Then, while acting out, the addict becomes narcissistic and the narcissistic partner will respond negatively.

He goes on to state that these relationships usually end in divorce.  They end in divorce because the narcissistic partner feels that their needs are not getting met and they are incapable of realizing that they need help.

Talk about a twist in the conversation.  But, the main thing I noticed was about the porn induced narcissism - validation of my hypothesis.  The encouraging message is that if it was induced by porn, then it should be reduced by eliminating the porn.

One other thing, while most male porn addicts are reporting delayed O, my O is pre-mature.  I'm wondering why the difference?  Is it because the streaming of porn is relatively new to me?  Mostly, I downloaded porn before 2010, when I started streaming or, maybe my diabetes is a factor? Or is it that being inside my wife is so much better than any video or my hand could ever be?

I may never know.  Oh well, another 30 begins today.  I wish to all rebooters long and continued success.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Objectified1 on May 31, 2016, 08:01:15 PM
If I understand it correctly, from what I've read, it's in how you maturbate. If you edge a lot
Your problem may be delayed O. If you do it as fast as you can just to get to the O then you train yourself to finish quickly. Your body adapts to whatever you do the most.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 31, 2016, 09:43:28 PM
If I understand it correctly, from what I've read, it's in how you maturbate. If you edge a lot
Your problem may be delayed O. If you do it as fast as you can just to get to the O then you train yourself to finish quickly. Your body adapts to whatever you do the most.

I think I have heard that also.  Thanks for the reminder.  Never thought about edging as a young man, so I never had that problem.  Your comment is appreciated.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on May 31, 2016, 09:56:24 PM
30 Days of no P; no M; no O.  I am basically flat-lining and that's not a problem right now.

I had a good meeting with my accountability partner (who also happens to be my pastor).  He questioned me about some things that came up on my Covenant Eyes internet usage report, which was good.  We talked about how the week was going.  He asked me some tough questions - some of which I couldn't answer. 

While I was at my meeting, I received a call from the VA MH (Mental Health) unit.  They called to let me know that they figured out how to get a consult from outside the VA to help me.  The process still has to be approved, but there is progress.

Other than that, I have had a headache all day.  Eating didn't help.  Sleeping didn't help.  I finally took some medication, so I'll see if it helps.  Until then, God bless everyone and sleep well.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 01, 2016, 06:31:04 AM
Day 32 of this journey of getting my life right.

I awoke with morning wood.  But as soon as realized it, it dissipated.  But, that's ok.  It happened.  I pray that at the end of this 90 Day Hard Reboot and Sex Fast, that my equipment is working better and I'll be able to make love to my wife.  I can only hope that she's ready at that time.

Have a lot to take care of today.  Peace to all.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 01, 2016, 07:34:36 AM
Day 32 of this journey of getting my life right.

I awoke with morning wood.  But as soon as realized it, it dissipated.  But, that's ok.  It happened.  I pray that at the end of this 90 Day Hard Reboot and Sex Fast, that my equipment is working better and I'll be able to make love to my wife.  I can only hope that she's ready at that time.

Have a lot to take care of today.  Peace to all.
Keep it up.  The blessings will come and know that I am praying for you.  If you need anything do hesitate to give a shout.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 01, 2016, 09:12:54 PM
Day 32.  I have much further to go.

Now that I have the first 30 days behind me, I want to concentrate on helping my wife.  To that end and after listening to some YouTube videos on intimacy I resolve the following:

1. Take responsibility.  I admit that I messed up.  I admit that I did not treat you with the love and honor that I swore to you when we married.  I admit that watching porn is still mental and emotional adultery.  I admit that my treatment of you has been in many ways abusive, manipulative and controlling.

2. No More Secrets.  I will trust you with my secret hurts, pains and emotions. I will make myself vulnerable to you by allowing you to see into me.  I will do my best to keep you aware of what I am doing. 

3.  Get Help.  I will realize when my burden is too heavy to bear alone.  I will learn to reach out to you and, when appropriate, other men to augment my strength to handle my loads.  I will consult with professionals in their field of expertise to address problems that are outside of my scope of knowledge.

4.  No more viewing.  I will not actively seek out porn of any kind via any media.  I will endeavour to keep my heart, mind and eyes on things that would please a holy God.  Any unintentional porn will be immediately dealt with and removed from my area of viewing or I will move away from it.

5.  Create a new life.  We will create a new life together without the influence of porn or its side effects.  A new paradigm will be in effect where we will get to know each other in intimacy as we really are.

These are 5 steps that I am making to give us a better relationship than we even initially expected.  I will continue to grow into these as time goes by.  These 5 resolutions are meant to be the basis from which we can build a foundation for our future.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on June 01, 2016, 09:40:32 PM
Sounds very noble, Erasmus. You are really taking responsibility for your life and weaknesses. I admire that. I think we all need such a customised pact with ourselves to live by - not just as we exit the life as a P addict, but right through life.

Best wishes, M.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 02, 2016, 06:36:35 AM
Sounds very noble, Erasmus. You are really taking responsibility for your life and weaknesses. I admire that. I think we all need such a customised pact with ourselves to live by - not just as we exit the life as a P addict, but right through life.

Best wishes, M.

Thanks  Malando.  I want her to know that this time is different.  I also see this as a resolution to myself for who I am becoming.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 02, 2016, 10:28:24 AM
33 days and it feels good to be free of the porn and all that goes with it.

I've been doing some reading on Focus on the Family's website and saw some good info I thought I would share concerning the stages and progression of porn addiction.  One thing that is obvious is that he is not talking about internet porn addiction. The stages they present are:

1. Early exposure. Most guys who get addicted to porn start early. They see the stuff when they are very young, and it gets its foot in the door.

2. Addiction. Later comes addiction. You keep coming back to porn. It becomes a regular part of your life. You're hooked. You can't quit.

3. Escalation. After a while, escalation begins. You start to look for more and more graphic porn. You start using porn that would have disgusted you when you started. Now it excites you.

4. Desensitization. Eventually, you start to become numb. Even the most graphic, degrading porn doesn't excite you anymore. You become desperate to feel the same thrill again but can't find it.

5. Acting out sexually. At this point, many men make a dangerous jump and start acting out sexually. They move from the paper and plastic images of porn to the real world.

I think this cycle better describes sex addiction rather than porn addiction through high speed internet streaming.  However, the path of progress is similar except for the final stage.

Just passing along tidbits to help.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 02, 2016, 02:33:16 PM
33 days and it feels good to be free of the porn and all that goes with it.

I've been doing some reading on Focus on the Family's website and saw some good info I thought I would share concerning the stages and progression of porn addiction.  One thing that is obvious is that he is not talking about internet porn addiction. The stages they present are:

1. Early exposure. Most guys who get addicted to porn start early. They see the stuff when they are very young, and it gets its foot in the door.

2. Addiction. Later comes addiction. You keep coming back to porn. It becomes a regular part of your life. You're hooked. You can't quit.

3. Escalation. After a while, escalation begins. You start to look for more and more graphic porn. You start using porn that would have disgusted you when you started. Now it excites you.

4. Desensitization. Eventually, you start to become numb. Even the most graphic, degrading porn doesn't excite you anymore. You become desperate to feel the same thrill again but can't find it.

5. Acting out sexually. At this point, many men make a dangerous jump and start acting out sexually. They move from the paper and plastic images of porn to the real world.

I think this cycle better describes sex addiction rather than porn addiction through high speed internet streaming.  However, the path of progress is similar except for the final stage.

Just passing along tidbits to help.
Oh yeah, I saw an interview once with a Dude who progressed to raping a woman.  Seeing the interview and the thought of myself ending up where he was scared me to death, but my struggle continued as there weren't places like RN back then.  A famous serial killer got his start down the wrong path with porn, Ted Bundy.  Plenty of good reasons for us to stop playing with fire, I'd say.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 03, 2016, 10:09:32 AM
@Chip, I saw where Bundy had his start in porn.  The author of the piece also went to jail when his porn addiction escalated to attempted rape.  As you said, another good reason to put this all behind us.

Day 33 with no porn and breaking the addiction that is ruining my life.

I have a fantastic wife.  I'm learning more about her all the time.  She is super intelligent and exceedingly well read.  She is beautiful and has the body I always wanted in a partner.  She has told me that we could have been making love more if I weren't turning to porn.

So why was I turning to porn after about a year from it?  There really is no good answer.  I realize now that instead of turning to porn, I should have been trying to talk to her about what I was feeling.  Unfortunately, my experience before her has been that my feelings usually didn't matter.  That pat answers of "you'll get over it" or "don't be such a baby" or "feelings don't matter" just didn't cut it.

Well, I intend to find out what it means to "know" someone in the Biblical sense.  To learn intimacy.  To accept the pain as well as pleasure of emotions.  It may not sound manly, but I don't care if it gets me closer to my wife.

Day 34...screw porn, I want my wife!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 03, 2016, 10:38:17 AM
@Chip, I saw where Bundy had his start in porn.  The author of the piece also went to jail when his porn addiction escalated to attempted rape.  As you said, another good reason to put this all behind us.

Day 33 with no porn and breaking the addiction that is ruining my life.

I have a fantastic wife.  I'm learning more about her all the time.  She is super intelligent and exceedingly well read.  She is beautiful and has the body I always wanted in a partner.  She has told me that we could have been making love more if I weren't turning to porn.

So why was I turning to porn after about a year from it?  There really is no good answer.  I realize now that instead of turning to porn, I should have been trying to talk to her about what I was feeling.  Unfortunately, my experience before her has been that my feelings usually didn't matter.  That pat answers of "you'll get over it" or "don't be such a baby" or "feelings don't matter" just didn't cut it.

Well, I intend to find out what it means to "know" someone in the Biblical sense.  To learn intimacy.  To accept the pain as well as pleasure of emotions.  It may not sound manly, but I don't care if it gets me closer to my wife.

Day 34...screw porn, I want my wife!
Amen, Brother!  Preach on.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on June 04, 2016, 06:12:28 AM
Erasmus,
It is good to see your progress.  I enjoy reading about your learning from Mark Chamberlain.  I do want to say something about the hand on your heart.  This is so you can calm yourself as you think.  However, my husband and I, when we felt alone in bed or had thoughts of "wow this is hard to do" we would put our hand on the other's heart and just breathe.  And sometimes look each other in the eyes.  There in our eyes we could see what the other could not say.  Hurt, love, sometimes anger.  But we touched.  Body contact when talking about this is so important.  It keeps you grounded to the other person. 

And the exercises you are working on are to bring you in tune with your emotions.  To help you reconnect the wiring that became re-routed.  Acknowledging feelings and emotions and how we feel is hard.  Not just the PA but also the wives.  Hope you have or have had a good day. 
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 04, 2016, 08:19:41 AM
Thank you @Gracie.  I appreciate your kind words and guidance.  When/If my wife is ready, I would like to practice touch much more.  I have been very adverse to touch (I guess from my background) even though part of me seeks it.

Day 35 of the rest of my life without lust/porn.

Just that line alone changes the dynamics, doesn't it?  When it comes down to the nitty gritty, I don't just want to be free from an addiction to porn or sex.  Those are symptoms of a much bigger issue: the love for God that is not evident in my life because of lusting for something else.

I know that God loves me and I know it's not with the imperfect love my human father gave me (not saying he was a horrible father, but unmistakably flawed).  I know that Gods love for me is not like my wife's love for me as she too is still limited by humanity.

No, Gods love for me is all encompassing, all knowing, always forgiving even when correcting, always available when I fail Him (often).  His love is unlimited and unconditional. He loves sacrificially and according to my need.  His love never fails.  His love is truly amazing.

The problem is that my screwed up life finds that hard to believe for myself on a personal level.  I know others have said it is true for them.  I have seen it change other people's lives.  But, the church I grew up in was full of father's that were molesting their daughters (likely, my own also) and kids that were molesting each other (in the nursery, behind the church and at each others houses).  That, I'm sure, paid a heavy toll on me.  And then, the rejection of my teen years (yes, I was the nerd that dressed funny) by all the girls I was interested in led me to porn and self-love (M).

But, God.  I have always made Him a part of my life.  I've always known He was there.  I have always tried to do good things for Him.  The problem is that I didn't give Him all of my life and I haven't loved Him as I should.  Furthermore, if I couldn't love God right, how could I love my wife right?

Oh, I know I've created a mess.  But, 35 days ago (actually, a little before that) I set out on a journey to fix that mess.  It starts by having a right relationship with God and being truthful to my wife.  I have a long way to go and look forward to who I will be when I get there.

TODAY is the first day of the rest of my life.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 04, 2016, 08:45:53 AM
Erasmus,
It is good to see your progress.  I enjoy reading about your learning from Mark Chamberlain.  I do want to say something about the hand on your heart.  This is so you can calm yourself as you think.  However, my husband and I, when we felt alone in bed or had thoughts of "wow this is hard to do" we would put our hand on the other's heart and just breathe.  And sometimes look each other in the eyes.  There in our eyes we could see what the other could not say.  Hurt, love, sometimes anger.  But we touched.  Body contact when talking about this is so important.  It keeps you grounded to the other person. 

And the exercises you are working on are to bring you in tune with your emotions.  To help you reconnect the wiring that became re-routed.  Acknowledging feelings and emotions and how we feel is hard.  Not just the PA but also the wives.  Hope you have or have had a good day.
Very powerful, I'll have to remember that.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 06, 2016, 05:50:37 AM
Day 36.

I took last week off to take care of some things.  I feel like I barely did anything..  The shed is still not complete, I didn't get the cover on the greenhouse, no progress with the wife and I need to cut the grass and plant the grow boxes.

At least I didn't look at any porn.  I did get to see my son in Athens, GA. I spent time with my daughter too.  Oh well, back to the tedium of work.

Meh.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 07, 2016, 09:35:56 AM
38 days with no porn.

I feel like crap.  I think the Prozac is making me worse.  Or the reboot is stronger than the Prozac.  My head is spinning; brain fog; can't concentrate; still can't get a true erection (I wasn't getting them with porn towards the end neither); irritable; I detest having to be at work and am finding no joy while at church which I love.

I can't handle the constant rage that my wife is expressing daily. Yesterday evening, I was on the verge of calling a divorce lawyer.  I stumbled across a blog post on www.blazinggrace.com (http://www.blazinggrace.com) that basically said (but not in these words) "Suck it up you wussy.  You caused this now deal with the consequences .  You can choose your actions but you can't choose the consequences."  So, I will try to take in her pain and anguish and rage without my usual crutch.  The way I'm looking at it, I will be better in the long run even if it means I am alone.

She's asking for answers I don't have.  When I try to answer and it conflicts with something I said before, she calls me on it and says it's further proof that she can't trust me and I'm not changing. I'm trying to be truthful but I can't think right and things dont come out my mouth in a sensible way.  I'm a mess. 

I don't even feel like a man right now.  I'm really struggling and starting to believe that I am all the things my wife says about me.  But, I can't go there. If I am what she says I am, then why change?  But I know I am not defined by my negative actions but God knows my heart.  I know my heart is good and I have to make that show up in my actions.

I want intimacy and acceptance.  I want the love and adoration of my wife.  I want her to trust and respect me.  I may never earn back what was once freely given, but that doesn't mean I won't keep trying even if she decides she has had enough and leaves.

Miserable but at least not relying on Porn.  This too shall pass...
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on June 07, 2016, 10:07:15 AM
I feel very badly for what you are going through, Erasmus. I wonder if your wife is not getting some perverse pleasure out of watching you squirm. I mean, I understand her hurt and anger, but it's still not an excuse to try to completely break the morale of your husband. There needs to be a limit to the amount of vitriol somebody is allowed to express. I wonder whether she would respect you more if you said, "look, I really want to make amends for what I did, and I'm going to get myself fully recovered from this addiction and live a better life, but you need to decide if you want to be part of that. I'll be doing it either way, but I can't be raked over the coals on a daily basis just for the sport of it. I'll accept whatever decision you make, but from now on the conversion and emoting needs to have a constructive basis. If it's constructive, I'll listen. That's what I need to recover, and that's what I'm determined to do."

I don't think you should accept that this daily character assassination is what you will have to endure in perpetuity to atone for what your wife went through. That's not healthy and it's not sustainable. It also won't repair her opinion of you. You need to be uncompromising in your efforts to recover, but you also need to carry yourself with some dignity so that she respects you. It seems to be that there is no balance or proportion to this. Women respect strength with humility. Don't be a doormat or you'll never recover from it.

Best wishes,
M.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Boo on June 07, 2016, 10:47:38 AM
I feel very badly for what you are going through, Erasmus. I wonder if your wife is not getting some perverse pleasure out of watching you squirm. I mean, I understand her hurt and anger, but it's still not an excuse to try to completely break the morale of your husband. There needs to be a limit to the amount of vitriol somebody is allowed to express. I wonder whether she would respect you more if you said, "look, I really want to make amends for what I did, and I'm going to get myself fully recovered from this addiction and live a better life, but you need to decide if you want to be part of that. I'll be doing it either way, but I can't be raked over the coals on a daily basis just for the sport of it. I'll accept whatever decision you make, but from now on the conversion and emoting needs to have a constructive basis. If it's constructive, I'll listen. That's what I need to recover, and that's what I'm determined to do."

I don't think you should accept that this daily character assassination is what you will have to endure in perpetuity to atone for what your wife went through. That's not healthy and it's not sustainable. It also won't repair her opinion of you. You need to be uncompromising in your efforts to recover, but you also need to carry yourself with some dignity so that she respects you. It seems to be that there is no balance or proportion to this. Women respect strength with humility. Don't be a doormat or you'll never recover from it.

Best wishes,
M.

This is excellent counsel. I'm old school and believe that you have to be the "man of the house" despite any past failings. If you can't live in that space and get the respect that goes with it, then you probably have a marriage that's in deep trouble. I hate to say that, but a reading of your journal shows some indication of it.

This is strictly my opinion, but I think Prozac is a dangerous thing to be on long term. I've known people and I speak from personal observations.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 07, 2016, 11:03:21 AM
@Boo, I just started on the Prozac and it won't be long term.  I do have a marriage that's in deep trouble because I caused it. I have lost her respect and have to re-earn it.

@Malando, she is hurt and wounded and fighting for her life.  I don't think there is any pleasure to gain from it.  I think she just has to grieve and unfortunately there is no one way to grieve.  She is being hit hard with the depth and reality of all of this and the long term affects.  She is right for fighting to survive.  I just don't like it.  Perhaps it will be better in the long run.  Only time will tell.  I have to deal with the fallout from the disaster I created.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on June 07, 2016, 07:32:08 PM
@Malando, she is hurt and wounded and fighting for her life.  I don't think there is any pleasure to gain from it.  I think she just has to grieve and unfortunately there is no one way to grieve.  She is being hit hard with the depth and reality of all of this and the long term affects.  She is right for fighting to survive.  I just don't like it.  Perhaps it will be better in the long run.  Only time will tell.  I have to deal with the fallout from the disaster I created.

Only you can judge how proportional your wife's reaction is, Erasmus. Just make sure it is proportional though because if it's not and all sorts of unrelated issues are being dragged into this under the banner of your P-addiction, that's not a good thing. Venting itself can become habit forming. I'm just concerned that the balance has been tipped from discussing the problem constructively over to endless expressions of frustration. I don't advocate this as a way of atoning because it simplifies the situation too much. It demoralises you every day - so whilst you might rid yourself of a P-addiction, you might very well develop other issues that are not conducive to being a happy, balanced person.

Maybe I'm out of line speculating about your relationship at all, and I'm sorry if I've overstepped my bounds - but I've been following your thread in detail and I just feel that something is really off. It doesn't appear to be headed in the right direction. I feel you should get some encouragement from your wife once in a while. There needs to be more teamwork - it's a relationship you are healing, not just a P-addiction. Your wife carries some responsibility here too. She can't just call herself perfect and label you as the problem. The notion that she is "fighting for her life" is histrionic in the extreme. She's hurt, sure. She's questioning her future, sure. But "fighting for her life" has a certain exaggerated feel that makes me think the sense of proportion in all this might have been lost. It's never that simple. You must still be a man, be dignified. Only say sorry so much, let your actions do the talking.

Btw, I'm aware that I can only base my comments on what you write here. Who's to say how accurately it depicts your wife? Please take my comments not as directives for you to act, but as a response to what you are presenting here. Based on your story, something needs to change, in my opinion.

I really wish you some peace, Erasmus. I can see you are doing your best to be a better man and to reboot your life.

Best wishes,
M.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 08, 2016, 07:22:03 AM
Day 39. Porn is a broken crutch never offering any help again.

Had a good meeting last night with my Celebrate Recovery group.  Initially, I didn't expect to get much out of these meetings.  Most of the people there have drug, alcohol and anger issues. And then two people with sexual addictions gave their testimonies.

The man that resonated with me did not have the same story as me.  However, he told about the several marriages he had been through and the many, many affairs he had engaged in.  Then, he told of jobs lost and opportunities missed.  Finally, he shared his road to redemption.

As he told the last woman he was with his problems, she was very angry.  She had stood by him through a couple of affairs.  She stayed mad, angry and furious with him for months on end because of his betrayal.  Day after day he listened to her and could almost know what she was going to say, but he listened without fighting back (lesson learned: quit fighting back).

Weeks, months of the same thing until she ran out of steam.  Then she cried.  They cried together.  Then things started improving.  She still has trouble trusting but, they are closer than ever.  They were both baptized together.  Talks of marriage may be forthcoming.  Their days together keep improving.

So, it was good to hear his story; how he handled the rage, accusations and answer-less questions. My situation is not that different than others who have hurt their loved ones.  The greater the love, the greater the pain, the greater the recovery perhaps.

Anyway, after I got home last night, my wife and I had a very productive dialogue.  It wasn't easy, but we actually communicated. It was good.  It was promising. I love her very much.  Perhaps even more as I learn more about what love really is.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 08, 2016, 09:16:20 AM
Day 39. Porn is a broken crutch never offering any help again.

Had a good meeting last night with my Celebrate Recovery group.  Initially, I didn't expect to get much out of these meetings.  Most of the people there have drug, alcohol and anger issues. And then two people with sexual addictions gave their testimonies.

The man that resonated with me did not have the same story as me.  However, he told about the several marriages he had been through and the many, many affairs he had engaged in.  Then, he told of jobs lost and opportunities missed.  Finally, he shared his road to redemption.

As he told the last woman he was with his problems, she was very angry.  She had stood by him through a couple of affairs.  She stayed mad, angry and furious with him for months on end because of his betrayal.  Day after day he listened to her and could almost know what she was going to say, but he listened without fighting back (lesson learned: quit fighting back).

Weeks, months of the same thing until she ran out of steam.  Then she cried.  They cried together.  Then things started improving.  She still has trouble trusting but, they are closer than ever.  They were both baptized together.  Talks of marriage may be forthcoming.  Their days together keep improving.

So, it was good to hear his story; how he handled the rage, accusations and answer-less questions. My situation is not that different than others who have hurt their loved ones.  The greater the love, the greater the pain, the greater the recovery perhaps.

Anyway, after I got home last night, my wife and I had a very productive dialogue.  It wasn't easy, but we actually communicated. It was good.  It was promising. I love her very much.  Perhaps even more as I learn more about what love really is.
Your story is a beacon of hope for many.  Thank you for sharing and being so honest and open.  Congrats as well on turning 40 soon.  ;D
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 09, 2016, 10:28:33 AM
Day 40.  Almost a day for every year of porn in my 46 years of life.

Biblically speaking 40 is a number related to testing:  It rained 40 days and 40 nights; Moses was in Egypt 40 years, 40 years he lived in the wilderness and 40 years he led Israel in the wilderness; Jonah preached to Nineveh for 40 days; Jesus was tempted for 40 days and Jesus ascended 40 days after his resurrection.

I have been tested and tried.  I had some failures as well as some victories.  I mostly have my team in place and many tools to help.  Which reminds me, I had my first appointment with the counselor yesterday.  It was mostly just an intake interview but, I left with a challenge for homework.

I have tested my wife's patience (quite unintentionally) as well.  My relationship with her still requires that I learn much more.  But, as I desire her respect, love and intimacy, I am learning to do what it takes to gain her back.  She is the grand prize in all of this.  Please don't think that my comments about her anger toward me is all there is to her - she is so much more.  My comments when I am hurt, angry, lonely or tired (HALT) tend to be exaggerated snapshots of time.  She could say the same and much more of my outbursts of rage.

BTW, HALT means to stop.  When we are hungry, angry, lonely or tired we ahould stop and consider what is going on.  Those are the times when we are most likely to be tempted and fail...

I just received a call saying that I just won a free cruise to the Bahamas to be taken anytime in the next 18 months.  Wouldn't that be a cool idea... renew our marriage vows, cruise to Europe and then come home to a new bed and a new beginning.  I turned down the offer when they started talking about money, but the idea is still planted for the not too distant future.

So, I've made the first forty days.  I look forward to 40 weeks, 40 months and ultimately 40 years and beyond.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 09, 2016, 11:35:04 AM
You continue to astound, impress and educate me with your faith and wisdom.  It's hard to reconcile the man I read now, versus the one in the beginning, two different Dude's. 

Be blessed my brother,

Chip
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 09, 2016, 02:57:35 PM
@Chip,
Thanks Brother.  But, I feel like I haven't even started in most regards.  Day by day with each passing moment, I find strength to carry on. A wonderful God and a fantastic lady are good inspiration for doing the right thing.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 10, 2016, 08:40:11 AM
41 Days without porn and it's problems.  41 Days toward becoming a friend of God and my wife's best friend.

My wife married me for a reason.  It wasn't to escape her circumstances at that time.  It wasn't for my money, my good looks or my position in life.  Whatever her reason may have been or whomever she thought I may be was decimated when she found out that she was married to a porn addict.

That's when she discovered she was married to a hypocrite, a con artist, a traitor, an egomaniac, a liar, a cheat and a thief.  I considered myself to be nice, kind, thoughtful, considerate, benevolent and humble but porn poisoned everything good about me and made it something else.  Instead of nice I became mean. I traded kindness for inconsiderateness.  Thoughtful was exchanged for being thoughtless.  I stopped being considerate of others and became self-centered.  The only benevolence I offered was when I received something out of it in exchange.  Humility was discarded for conceit and false pride.

That, gentlemen is what the false world of pornography makes of a person.  We become slaves to our own desires.  We are citizens of a world with a population of 4: me, my sluts, my penis and anyone else who lives for my pleasure.  There are occasional glimpses of the world outside of the protective bubble we live in, but the shackles of porn quickly drag us back down into the cellar of our depravity.

We think we are still that nice guy that was around before porn.  We think that is who the world sees.  But that person has been possessed by something malignant and vile.  It turns all of your good intentions in to evil so that nothing goes right in your life. And, that conniving entity convinces you that you're ok and it's everyone else that has a problem.

But, there is hope.  You can break free and return to being who you were.  It won't be easy.  It requires training and hard work.  It won't happen overnight.  But, it will happen.  Use the tools to break the shackles.  Assemble a team to assist with your escape plan.  Get trainers for your body and your mind. And stay on the path while moving in the right direction. 

Never lose focus of your goal.  That's what will keep you on track when you step off the path.  It's like the autopilot on an airplane; always checking it's position in relation to the goal and correcting the ATTITUDE of the aircraft to keep it on target.  That's why you don't have to be perfect, but you must be committed. 

I'm at day 41.  I have much further to go.  We are here to encourage and support each other.  I hope this helps someone get through their day successfully.

Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 12, 2016, 01:21:51 AM
42 Days of learning to live again.

It's hard to let myself die.  But, that's what I have to do. I have to die so that I can live. 

A paradox no doubt.  But, for too long now, it has all been about me.  My wants.  My desires.  My way.  The world tells us as men that we are the man.  We make the rules.  We wear the pants in the house.  We get what we want.  What we want, we just take it.  And, that's a football.

A football is leather on the outside.  As hard as it is, you'd think the leather went all the way through.  But, it's only filled with air.  That's a good description for an excuse:.a skin of truth stuffed with a lie.

As men we are to lead our wife and our family.  Yet, we are also told to be willing to die to ourselves.  We are to be willing to give our life for our wife.  Initially, I thought, "Sure, I'd die to save my wife in an emergency.". But, I've been studying and people are saying that the ultimate sacrifice is not dying for my wife, but living for my wife.  Preferring her wants and desires above my own.  THATS HARDER. 

The fear is that if I do that, I won't get anything I want.  Well, all I can say is that at this point it's worth the trouble to try.  After all, it hasn't worked my way.

Now, I'm not saying that this is going to work overnight.  I'm also not saying that she won't take advantage of the situation.  But, God is infinitely more wise than I am.  If he says this is the way it should be, who am I to argue?

Dying is still hard...
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: fyg on June 12, 2016, 07:36:48 AM
Hi Erasmus,

Your last post is the only one I've read so far, but I hear the message in all your words there. I'm not religious, nor do I have a wife. But, my experiences are very similar, in that trying for what 'I' want to get from others rarely works in a fair way when it's self-interest based.

I hear the gamble too
Quote
The fear is that if I do that, I won't get anything I want
. I feel that too. Personally, and if I may, I believe that our societies are so geared to individuality that we forget we are all interconnected. Maybe we've all forgotten that? I'm doing some reading around Buddhism (insert desired religion or philosophy, also :) ) at the moment and it's talks of this interconnectedness.

Cheers! :)
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Objectified1 on June 12, 2016, 07:35:10 PM
Your last post was definitely a great one :). Your afraid you won't get anything you want but I know from experience if you put her first and live for her it will inspire such love in her
For you that she will give you anything and everything that is in her power to give.  So you won't have to worry about not getting anything. We try to push and pull to get what we want. But giving others what they want and living for others actually inspires them to freely give to us. So the way to get what we want in a deeply satisfying way is to give first.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 14, 2016, 09:29:16 PM
It's been 45 days since I last intentionally viewed porn.  Do you how refreshing it is to say that?  It would be even better of course, to not need to say it, but that's an alternate reality.

Thank for all the words of encouragement for my last post.  I only wish that dying to self was as easy as saying the words.  It's not that I didn't mean it.  I did.  I do.  I will.  But life is not linear.  Just because I say it does not make it so tight away.

I have lived so much of my life being opaque.  I didn't tell everyone everything that I did.  I could give just enough to keep people happy.  Not lies, but not the whole truth.  My wife demands that I live at another level.  A level quite unfamiliar to me.  A level I must aspire to before I lose the best thing that's happened to me.

To that end, I am not only quitting a bad habit.  But I have to truly rewire my brain to tell the whole truth.  Not just part.  Not just enough. All of it.  I know you don't think that should be that hard.  But, frankly , it is.  Not because I intend to lie but, because it's a life long pattern of evasiveness.  And, no, I don't know why. 

But change, I must.  Die to self, I must.  This almost makes breaking the porn habit easy.  But. I know it isn't and I know I must be intentional in my actions and thoughts.  No idle thoughts or automatic reactions.  Auto pilot takes the path of least resistance.  Every thought must be accounted for.

Hard work will be with me for the rest of my life.  I must remain strong, sober and vigilant as everyone that reads this must.  Otherwise, the vicious cycle of binging and rebooting will cause me to be a shell of a human wondering how I ended up somewhere I don't want to be.

Fight the good fight!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Objectified1 on June 15, 2016, 08:03:32 AM
You say hard work will be with you the rest of your life. I believe it will be hard work
Till you create the habit. Just about anything gets easier in time and will become automatic. It won't be hard work your whole life :) .
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 15, 2016, 09:10:51 AM
It will be great when good, acceptable habits replace the habits that have ruled my life these last 20+ years of my 46 years on earth.  But, I have no illusions that having a good relationship will not continue to require hard work.  It will get easier and it will be much better for both of us.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 15, 2016, 09:23:54 AM
It's been 45 days since I last intentionally viewed porn.  Do you how refreshing it is to say that?  It would be even better of course, to not need to say it, but that's an alternate reality.

Thank for all the words of encouragement for my last post.  I only wish that dying to self was as easy as saying the words.  It's not that I didn't mean it.  I did.  I do.  I will.  But life is not linear.  Just because I say it does not make it so tight away.

I have lived so much of my life being opaque.  I didn't tell everyone everything that I did.  I could give just enough to keep people happy.  Not lies, but not the whole truth.  My wife demands that I live at another level.  A level quite unfamiliar to me.  A level I must aspire to before I lose the best thing that's happened to me.

To that end, I am not only quitting a bad habit.  But I have to truly rewire my brain to tell the whole truth.  Not just part.  Not just enough. All of it.  I know you don't think that should be that hard.  But, frankly , it is.  Not because I intend to lie but, because it's a life long pattern of evasiveness.  And, no, I don't know why. 

But change, I must.  Die to self, I must.  This almost makes breaking the porn habit easy.  But. I know it isn't and I know I must be intentional in my actions and thoughts.  No idle thoughts or automatic reactions.  Auto pilot takes the path of least resistance.  Every thought must be accounted for.

Hard work will be with me for the rest of my life.  I must remain strong, sober and vigilant as everyone that reads this must.  Otherwise, the vicious cycle of binging and rebooting will cause me to be a shell of a human wondering how I ended up somewhere I don't want to be.

Fight the good fight!
The Kicker is, once you finally let yourself go(die) and you no longer seek to self please, what you get in return is 100 times better than anything you could've gotten for yourself.  We'll look back and wonder why in the world did I use all that time and energy on myself when it didn't even make me happy.  Porn is such an empty desolate disaster, it gives absolutely nothing and takes everything.  Its the worst deal anyone can make.  Your post are amazing, they are food for the spirit and a blessing to read.  keep going, it only gets better from here.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 15, 2016, 10:47:18 AM
Thanks @Chip.  I appreciate that you see progress in me and that my posts might help someone.  I can't take full credit for the change in tone of my posts.  As my wife reads and let's me know what she hears, I realize I have to make changes.

Additionally, as my 30 day Love Journey has been progressing, I am learning that I have to do better at protecting my wife by censoring what I put in public about her.  As I am learning to empathize more with her and see things from her point of view (or at least what I think her point if view might be), I am viewing my actions and words differently.

Don't get me wrong, I can see how it will be difficult and I still don't get it right often.  But the change is happening in me.  I know I can't just be intentional about quitting porn and think that will fix everything else that's wrong.  I have to be intentional about everything.  That is going to make everything tough.  I expect to second guess myself on everything.

That means that my confidence is shaken.  I can't trust myself. Until I get that back and can live by making good and right decisions, life will be hard.  But the change must happen or I will be a miserable old man.

Stay strong.  Stay sober. Stay vigilant.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 15, 2016, 11:46:26 AM
I hear you, but I think the misery will be passing.

Stay strong brother
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 15, 2016, 02:24:51 PM
This is a repost of a post by a SO, Gracie.  I found it to be very insightful and educational.  I would like to implement these rules with my wife when we get to a point when we can.

@Gracie:. Only you know your heart and mind.  I discovered my husband's use 4 years ago.  I told him "I do not know if I can get past this."  (I should point out here that it was not internet,, but we had all the movie channels so he had lots of access.) I started reading and reading.  I came across a lot of information that basically said, "Boys will be boys."  And I felt funny, this is not how it feels to be on the other side of this.  It did not feel like "boys will be boys"  I was pretty sure that if it was that instance it would not feel like it did.  I knew that was not what I was looking for information wise.

I had a man that was kind and loving and cared.  I had a man that I enjoyed having sex with frequently.  This man had changed.  (You know, the hindsight glasses thing)  It had happened over a period of time.  Until finally, due to a health difficulty of mine, he chose to sleep on the couch.  I thought how understanding.  But then there was no sex.  Maybe once a week.  I had to ask.  When I did, he asked if he had missed a signal.  Then came the time we made love and he went downstairs.  I went down half hour later to get some water and he was rolled over facing the couch but porn was on. 

I went away on a short trip the next morning. (Already planned)  When I got back, I said we have to have some rules so I do not just walk away.  (Due to past life experiences all the way back to childhood, I just moved on, if not in body, in mind.)  The rules were:

No more porn.  (We disconnected the satellite tv.  Even if we got rid of movie channels there were free weekends.)
We are in bed together every night.
We stay in be together every night, all night.
We sleep naked.
We sit together on the couch.  No one in a chair.
We kiss hello and goodbye each time we leave the house and come back.  (Not just going to work)
We cuddle.  Full body hugs in bed every morning and every evening while in bed naked.
If we discussed this, some part of our bodies had to be touching while we talked. (foot, hand, side by side etc)


Those were the beginning rules. I came up with these while reading about this and reading about marriage conflict, in the early stages.   These helped a lot.  Did I get mad?  Yes  Did I yell? Yes  Did he get mean?  Yes  He became a man I had NEVER seen before.  I was scared.  I also got depressed.  Almost suicidal.
We have been married a long time. 

The routine above kept us tied to each other.  Even when sad, sad, sad, I participated.  Even when mad, mad, mad, I participated.  And he did too.  Sometimes after a release of emotion, the full body hug was difficult but we did it.  Sometimes, it was the most comforting thing of all.  The routine got us through.  We both got something we had been missing.  Physical contact.  Do not underestimate the power of that touch.  It took a lot to do this.  I would tell him I loved him but I did not like what he had done, and what he had done undermined the foundation of our marriage.  When the dislike was great, it was difficult.  There were times that he felt he disliked me.  I had taken away his "pleasure"   

There are other things we added in along the way.  The most important was we would say, "I'm not going anywhere." as we worked through this.  And even now when I have "moments" he will hold me and say that.   And never underestimate saying I Love You.

I also found a website/blog that helped us immensely. It is for the PA and the SO.  markchamberlainphd.blogspot.com  It is amazing.  He has recently added a 30 day recovery course for recovering addicts that is quite good.  He and I read it together.  He has archived the blog posts as well and they have a gold mine of information.  He and Geoff Steurer wrote a book, "Love You, Hate the Porn.  We read that together as well.  Geoff also has youtube videos as well.

You should not have to be the police.  Try what I suggested above.  Let him know, "This is the commitment I need."  I hope this helped.  We are a supportive forum.  Read and post often.   
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 15, 2016, 11:11:53 PM
This is information I want to be able to get to later.  It is from a post in the success stories by someone that found success by concentrating on building his relationship with his wife rather than on beating porn:

So glad to hear of your progress.

This article has lots of men's self reports about relationship improvements after giving up porn: http://yourbrainonporn.com/guys-who-gave-porn-sex-and-romance.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 18, 2016, 05:08:29 AM
I have always known that one of the best ways to learn something is to teach others.  I became a better sax player when I taught music at a private high school.  I became a better preacher when I taught Bible classes.  I became a better handwriting analyst when I taught others to be analysts. I became a better dog trainer when I started training other people's dogs.

So, one of the things I have engaged in is commenting in other people's blogs.  It helps me get outside of myself.  It strengths my resolve because I am not just thinking about me and I am repeating the principles over and over to help others as well as myself.

It's not because I know more than everyone else.  But if I can help someone then I help myself. There are plenty of people with more success at this than me.  I read them also so that I can get to where they are.

 I'm still learning on the relationship side of things.and gladly welcome sound advice in this arena. I appreciate the comments I receive from the community.  I especially glean wisdom from SOs of PAs  that have reignited the passion in their lives.  Learning to love and be loved is of utmost importance to me at this juncture in my life.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 18, 2016, 05:28:26 AM
I just read this statement in someone else's blog:

Yes, my wife is an incredible blessing. I've thought alot about the power of my relationship with my wife as I have worked to change my life to one without PMO and eliminating other facets of the addiction. I believe that she, and the relationship we have, were the reasons that created the urgency and resolve to change. That was essential in the early months. At some point, something changed and we became partners in this journey, and no longer was I motivated by potentially losing her, but I am motivated by becoming the kind of man she deserves.

He was fortunate to have had many years of building a solid relationship with his wife before porn became a problem.  Unfortunately, I did not have that luxury.  My wife feels that I have wasted the 5 years of her life and is really struggling to find something to build on for the rest of our life together.

I think she is getting to where we can build a marriage that is strong.  Where we can both be nurtured by it.  But, we both recognize the importance of having counseling to get us through. Even in her anger, my wife helps me.  I look forward to when we are constructively build our marriage together without the flaw of pornography affecting me and ultimately her.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 19, 2016, 05:17:59 AM
50 days without porn.  50 days without a crutch.  I'm still standing.

The number 50 is important in Biblical numerology.  In the New Testament, the Holy Spirit was given to Christians 50 days after Jesus arose from the dead on the Day of Pentecost.  The Holy Spirit is the supernatural guide and comforter given to empower Christians in God's work and to escape temptation.

The number 50 also represents freedom and deliverance.  Every 50th year is a year of Jubilee for Israel.  In that year all depts are forgiven and all inheritances are returned to the debtor.  This happens on the Day of Atonement during the Year of Jubilee.

Looking at these two together (there are other references for the number 50), we have forgiveness from our sins and the Holy Spirit to guide us on our journey to keep us from temptation.  As a Christian, that is a big deal.  However, the Holy Spirit guides and leads.  He does not force or coerce us to do anything; He is the small voice telling us"no".

Last night, I dreamed (I don't normally dream or I don't remember dreaming, but lately I have been) that I lapsed and binged on porn for hours. I had a second dream where someone posted a picture of a naked woman with short hair.

I think I had these dreams because my wife and I talked about what makes this time different than other times.  We also talked about when she previously had short hair.  It's amazing how the mind works.  I don't try to put much meaning into these; just crazy tidbits of information the brain is mulling over as I am going to sleep.

But, a significant part of my reasoning for avoiding porn is my wife.  The biggest part is my relationship with God.  I trust that the Holy Spirit will lead me out of temptation and deliver me from this evil.  And, that He will comfort my wife and heal our relationship.

May this be a Day of Atonement and Jubilee for many others when you reach 50 days.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 19, 2016, 06:32:26 AM
50 days porn free and now, it's not all about me.

I'm at a point where I am realizing that only thinking about me and my problem is keeping me in a grave with the ends kicked out (a rut). To move on, I have to think also about my wife and our relationship.

I will continue to work on me because I'm a work in progress.  But, I will endeavour to become a relationship expert, an intimacy expert and an expert about my wife.  I was directed to this blog from the Partners area and found it to be insightful:

http://rebootblueprint.com/porn-induced-partner-trauma/ (http://rebootblueprint.com/porn-induced-partner-trauma/)

Hopefully, it will help those of us on my side of this issue to better understand what our actions have done to our partners.

Another article with additional links:
http://rebootblueprint.com/partner-of-a-porn-addict-advice/ (http://rebootblueprint.com/partner-of-a-porn-addict-advice/)
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on June 19, 2016, 07:46:01 AM
Congrats on 50 days! Yes, I think there's that point where the work we are doing expands to encompass our spouse, but remains rooted in our own desire and commitment to make a life change for and within ourselves. If we are blessed to have a strong wife who is willing to partner with us in our journey, and we have done the work of becoming more open, accessible, honest, present and connected to our partner, then the outcome of our work begins to include great improvements in our relationship with her.

Way to go, I appreciate your passion and resolve, it helps us all.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 19, 2016, 05:41:58 PM
50 days porn free and now, it's not all about me.

I'm at a point where I am realizing that only thinking about me and my problem is keeping me in a grave with the ends kicked out (a rut). To move on, I have to think also about my wife and our relationship.

I will continue to work on me because I'm a work in progress.  But, I will endeavour to become a relationship expert, an intimacy expert and an expert about my wife.  I was directed to this blog from the Partners area and found it to be insightful:

http://rebootblueprint.com/porn-induced-partner-trauma/ (http://rebootblueprint.com/porn-induced-partner-trauma/)

Hopefully, it will help those of us on my side of this issue to better understand what our actions have done to our partners.

Another article with additional links:
http://rebootblueprint.com/partner-of-a-porn-addict-advice/ (http://rebootblueprint.com/partner-of-a-porn-addict-advice/)
First, Congrats on turning 50! 
Second, thanks for the links I'm gonna check them out.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 26, 2016, 07:42:24 AM
I've been busy with life and an over-abundance of meetings and not able to post as regularly as I had been.  My therapist has recommended that I do 90 meetings of SA in 90 days.  I have found several meetings in town, but I will try to figure out how to do some of them online.

My wife and I are talking and making progress.  She has been asked about taking a promotion at work also.  My wife continues to impress me and I love her very much.

While 40 days and 50 days were significant milestones along my journey, they are merely that: milestones.  When you are traveling to infinity and beyond, it helps to see the signposts along the way.

One thing that I have been considering as I have listened to the stories of other people is that mine is a bit different.  Most seem to be addicted to the people that they see.  My addiction is more to the act.  I think this is because I was exposed to the act of sex at an early age and because I resisted forming attachments to people because of all the traveling.  That also may help me understand why I am big in doing things and not just being or feeling.  I will have to explore this train of thought more.

In any event, I'm still working on making  deeper connection with my wife as I am learning more about true intimacy with God. Reading my Bible and reading my wife are two of the biggest adventures right now.  I've read the Bible completely several times now.  I've learned a lot ABOUT God but I feel that I don't really KNOW God.  Likewise, I know ABOUT my wife but am only now getting to KNOW who she really is.

I'm starting to enjoy the Journey.  I have much further to go. I have much learning to do. I know it's early yet, but the addiction is behind me.  Intimacy is before me.  Emotional education is here and now.  The kid I was stuck at is growing up.

Stay strong, stay sober, stay vigilant.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 26, 2016, 10:46:15 AM
Glad to hear from you Erasmus_xlt, I was just wondering why I hadn't seen anything from you in a bit.  Glad to hear the progress continues, I look forward to your updates and it sounds like your journey is shaping up to be quite an adventure!  I'm so happy for you and it is a blessing seeing you grow and change as the Holy spirit continues to mold and shape you.  You are an asset, an inspiration and a friend.

Be Well Brother,

Chip
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 27, 2016, 10:17:57 PM
@Chip, I appreciate your encouragement and support.  I am blessed to have you as a brother in this time.  Your thoughtful words are a reflection of your tender heart.  I pray that you have the success you long for and the intestinal fortitude to say no when necessary.

Read an article about intimacy today after attending a Celebrate Recovery meeting.  It talked about the fact that emotional intimacy requires vulnerability. Well, that explains why I don't know much about intimacy: until very recently, I resisted being vulnerable to anyone - including my wife.  Early on, I called myself being vulnerable by basically dumping my past on her.  I guess I was trying to explain what she was getting into, but I minimized it also.

The article also suggests ways to provide for intimacy.  it mentions that you can focus on showing unconditional acceptance (non-judgementality), genuineness and understanding (empathy) through your own behaviour.  My question is, "How do you do that in an authentic way?". While I tested high for IQ, I recognize that I am emotionally illiterate.  However, I am not emotionally stupid.  I understand the words but, I feel like she is going to think I'm faking when I try to that part of me.  I don't want to fake - I've done that for too long already.

 The article also says that you can further build intimacy through your own emotional transparency.  It's hard to be emotionally transparent when you don't really know what you are feeling.  I've spent too long numbing myself against feeling that it's hard to accurately describe what I am feeling.  I hope I am getting better.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 28, 2016, 09:16:22 AM
I think maybe your concerns, your questions in regards to emotional honesty, you kinda started to answer that for yourself in your post.  To just put pride aside and say, "I don't know what I'm feeling" is a start.  The fact that you are expressing it instead of sitting on it or medicating it, is a move forward.  Emotions and feelings are difficult to quantify sometimes, but just admitting they exist, is a start.  Keep peeling back the layers and as you continue to pray and study, bit by bit all will be revealed to you in a manner and time that you can handle.  God is mysterious, but He only wants the best for us.

Chip
 
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on June 29, 2016, 05:55:38 AM
60 days free from porn.

The number 60 in Biblical numerology is associated with pride.  The scripture says that "Pride goes before destruction...".  I take that as a warning to not be prideful of reaching 60 days free from something that has destroyed so much.  While it is an accomplishment of note, it's merely a drop in the bucket of the rest of my life.

Pride is a large part of why I am in this situation in the first place.  Too much pride to tell someone about what was happening to me as a child.  Too much pride to talk to someone about what I was feeling.  Too much pride to tell my wife what was going on with me.  Too much pride to admit my wrong and come clean.

Yes, there is a place for good pride - pride of accomplishments.  But pride taken to excess or false pride when accomplishing something I should not be doing anyway is NOT a good thing.  I resent the years and relationships I have lost.  And yet, I am glad to be on a path of personal improvement.

Here's to another 60!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on June 29, 2016, 06:41:12 AM
In any event, I'm still working on making  deeper connection with my wife as I am learning more about true intimacy with God. Reading my Bible and reading my wife are two of the biggest adventures right now.  I've read the Bible completely several times now.  I've learned a lot ABOUT God but I feel that I don't really KNOW God.  Likewise, I know ABOUT my wife but am only now getting to KNOW who she really is.


E, my therapist recommended that I read the book "The Road Less Traveled" and I did so during my silent retreat this past week...I gotta say, it was very impactful for me, and it might be helpful to you. The author, M. Scott Peck, is a psychotherapist, and he uses his experience as an entry point into an examination of spiritual development and God in our lives. It might be helpful for you, it was amazingly relevant for me as I view my journey as a process of spiritual growth and building relationships with my wife, God, family, friends, co-workers, etc.

Keep on keepin' on.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on June 29, 2016, 07:29:33 AM
60 days free from porn.

The number 60 in Biblical numerology is associated with pride.  The scripture says that "Pride goes before destruction...".  I take that as a warning to not be prideful of reaching 60 days free from something that has destroyed so much.  While it is an accomplishment of note, it's merely a drop in the bucket of the rest of my life.

Pride is a large part of why I am in this situation in the first place.  Too much pride to tell someone about what was happening to me as a child.  Too much pride to talk to someone about what I was feeling.  Too much pride to tell my wife what was going on with me.  Too much pride to admit my wrong and come clean.

Yes, there is a place for good pride - pride of accomplishments.  But pride taken to excess or false pride when accomplishing something I should not be doing anyway is NOT a good thing.  I resent the years and relationships I have lost.  And yet, I am glad to be on a path of personal improvement.

Here's to another 60!
Indeed, I think "Pride" keeps a lot of men stuck in porn's prison longer than they have to be.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Gracie on July 02, 2016, 08:48:45 AM
I feel that everyone should be able to have a place they can vent their feelings.  This is a tough thing to work through.  I would have been a basket case I not been here and on other forums.  Porn addiction is not something that either the PA or the SO can just walk up and talk to anyone about.  And women especially need this because of the way we are emotionally wired.  And men need it to go What the heck do I do now.

Blogging is great.  It is how we are able to express ourselves and this helps us heal.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on July 02, 2016, 08:51:10 AM
On the matter of pride...

Yes, I agree pride can become a problem if unchecked, and it is so intertwined with the selfishness of porn consumption...and pride definitely takes a painful hit when you dedicate yourself to the truth, clean the slate by telling the truth and the whole truth. But the experience after that pain and shame is the freedom, relief and joy of living openly. Living there for the first time in my life it feels great and makes me want to stay in the openness. But it is continual effort, living openly means living a life willing to be personally challenged.

Then pride becomes appropriately centered around accomplishments and growth...true self-satisfaction, self-love.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on July 02, 2016, 08:55:00 AM
And on the matter of blogging, we each find our own recipe for success; may or may not include blogging...or therapy, or support groups, or any number of other tools for growth and healing.

Sorry it doesn't work for you Ur...but it helps me to renew my commitment to growth and makes me more accountable to a larger group of individuals trying to successfully make the same changes.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on July 03, 2016, 11:26:15 PM
@Gracie, I agree with the premise, but in practice it has not worked out that way for me.  I may continue doing it because it is a help for me, but I will always have to consider the side affects to others who may read my blog and feel that they have to take exception to it.

@Balanced, it's not that blogging does not work for me.  In all actuality, blogging has been very beneficial to me as it helped me to fully articulate my thoughts.  The problem is that someone else would rather criticize my blog posts instead of writing their own.  Imagine having a diary and every time you wrote in your diary, someone close to you would read it and made negative comments about it.  It kind of defeats the entire purpose of having a diary...

July 3, 2016
.I am working with a 12 step program called Celebrate Recovery.  I am also attending SA meetings.  My therapists has recommended that I complete 90 days of meetings in 90 days and according to what I have seen online, that is a common recommendation and it usually has beneficial results.  I am working on online meetings still but I have Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday covered with face-to-face meetings.I will probably end up keeping the Monday, Tuesday and Saturday meetings but all the rest will probably become on-line meetings.
I plan to start a new blog as I journey through the 12 steps.

As far as my life goes, my wife and I are still in separate rooms.  We haven't participated in the act of marriage in more than 4 months ( partly due to her recovering from surgery, the rest is because of me and porn).  I have also put myself on a 90 day fast from sex as a means to give my body a break (might as well turn a negative to a positive).

When we try to talk, it often ends with me walking away after a while.  I don't do screaming and yelling well and I shut down when profanity is used.  I mean, I try to stay engaged, but its the beginning of the end for me.  It's not just with her, the same thing happens at work; people start using profanity and I don't hear much more after that.  If I don't walk, I may erupt in a blind rage and have no idea what I say during those periods.

I'm hoping that we can reconcile, but I have less and less hope as time elapses.  I don't know what that might mean for the future, but it looks more and more bleak.  I know its only been four months.  But, if I am expected to make drastic changes in a limited time, why shouldn't I expect the same?  How about any changes?  I guess I need to focus on being happy with myself whether we are husband and wife or just housemates as we are now.    We will see therapist this week.  Maybe we will make progress there.

Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on July 04, 2016, 08:49:54 AM
Erasmus, sorry, and I'm confused...I was replying to UrGonna...

62 days all for naught?

Blogging doesn't work for me.  All it does is give ammunition to be used against me.  Words and phrases are isolated and/or misconstrued to not have the meaning I originally intended.  Furthermore, what I say and mean is repeated back to me. 

I was blogging to vent and get out my thoughts.  I see now that the better way would have been to ask someone else what I should say and then just blogged their thoughts.

So, in an attempt to reduce future arguments, I am limiting my blogging to nothing personal that could potentially be used in a court.  While I know it's not the way it's supposed to work, it makes life easier in the long run.

Here's to a better me, no matter what...
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on July 04, 2016, 09:36:58 AM
@Balanced - UrGonnaDealWithMeNow was probably logged on my Google account when I posted that remark.  I am surprised that hasn't happened more often.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on July 05, 2016, 05:05:33 PM
Day 66.  Hardest day yet, but still victorious.

I awoke today with a headache, a stiff neck and a sore lower back.  I am angry at the state of my marriage and that I can't fix it. I'm lonely even though my wife and I are in the same house.  And, I am tired and sleepy; even with my CPAP, I haven't been sleeping well.  HALT busted wide open.

I had a temping thought but I thought about where I want to be with my wife and abou making love to her and I was good.  (I was encouraged that I could be tempted and not sin.) I don't know when that will happen again but I hope not too far into the future.  My ninety days will be over by the end of the month.  I'd love to make love with her on her birthday at the end of the month.

I had an appointment with the VA mental health and got my Prozac cancelled.  My blood pressure was 140 something over 80 something (translate: high).  Otherwise, fairly uneventful.

I've been trying to get the 90 in 90 and right now I have 5 of 7 days covered.  I need to figure out the phone meetings  for two or three days.  I am also working on getting a sponsor.

So that's my update.  Onward to a better life because of a better me.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on July 06, 2016, 08:32:49 AM
Hang in there, and congratulations for overcoming temptation, that's a real victory and every time you demonstrate that kind of strength and resolve you emerge stronger.

I don't know enough to provide any insights into your relationship with your wife, but I can tell you that what has been most helpful to me is open, honest, constant communication with my wife. If there is any way you can foster that, it would be worth trying, again and again.

I've been on the journey for nearly 1,000 days, and only in the last four months have I had this kind of open communication with my wife. And even during the past four months we have had our challenges...silence, raised voices, etc...but we have stayed in it, talking through everything even if it is uncomfortable.

Stay strong, do everything you think you should and be happy with that...become the man you want to be and live that way. That's the best thing you can do for you and for your wife.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on July 06, 2016, 10:06:25 AM
^^^ What balanced said ^^^

If you can find a way to withstand the harsh language that comes out when y'all argue, I think you can overcome your current marital status.  Obviously I don't know your wife, but in my 21 years of marriage I've learned that when my wife seems really angry and especially hurtful towards me, that whats she's really saying is she is hurting and if I can let her get it all out, without firing back and just take it, that seems to help.  That and of course, "I'm sorry I hurt you".  They have odd indirect ways of expressing themselves and trying to read between the lines for hidden meanings in what we say and do.  21 years and she still thinks I communicate in code.  Be humble.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Objectified1 on July 06, 2016, 09:30:54 PM
Chip, I laughed at your post. I am only 12 Years married but the male sex puzzles me! I feel the same about my husband as you said your wife feels about you. You seem to be quite in tune to her. I can be hurtful to my hubby, especially in connection with this stuff. However like you said, when he allows me to just get it out and doesn't retaliate it helps!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: TK-421 on July 06, 2016, 11:44:49 PM
Hi Erasmus - I don't think I've posted in your journal before, but see we started on here around the same time. I haven't read all of your journal, but see that a big part of what weighs on you is your relationship with your wife. Fair enough. I know a big part of the difficulty with porn and sex addictions is the toll it takes on our relationships with our spouses. The title of your journal says that God and your wife deserve better. What about you? Do you deserve better? What I'm meaning to say is that I think it's important to focus on yourself. Not in a selfish way, but the motivation to change needs to be because you want to be a better man. If you are actively taking steps to be the man you are meant to be, the other stuff will be easier to deal with.

A big part of this addiction is the pain and hurt we cause our spouses. If you're like me, this isn't the first time your wife has dealt with your porn use.  There's usually a fair amount of lying, justifying, anger, broken promises and commitments to change (often that don't work out). No wonder our spouses are skeptical. If you've been clean for 2 months, it feels like huge progress. To a spouse that has had porn in the marriage with many failed attempts, it really is nothing.

So my advice, focus on yourself and get better. Show your wife you are serious and committed through your actions, not just words.  When the time is right, focus on your relationship with your wife.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on July 07, 2016, 04:32:18 AM
I'd like to thank everyone for your comments.  It does come down to taking time to focus on getting myself straight and being in this for the long haul.

Unfortunately, my wife and I saw the counselors together yesterday and it has been strongly recommended that I not post here anymore. So, with this being my farewell post after losing this battle, I face future without an outlet like this.  I was told to use SA to vent, but that isn't the same, right?  I can't say everything there that I can say here in a group of anonymous people that my chances of meeting are slim to none.  Besides, their failure rate is the same as people in here.  Oh well.  At least it will keep the arguments at bay. Oh, and I will most likely be celibate for quite a while longer after that meeting... months longer.

To the Nation , I wish you all a good fight.  Even if you are not part of Sexaholics Anonymous, you can use those steps to chart your journey to sexual responsibility.  Above all, protect your mind, heart and soul.  May God grant you the serenity to accept the things you cannot change,  courage to change the things you can, and wisdom to know the difference.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: TK-421 on July 07, 2016, 07:54:16 AM
I'm curious what the reasoning was of the councillor was that you should not post here? It seems to me that any resource that is available for making positive change should be used? 
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on July 07, 2016, 08:35:50 AM
Good luck, E, give a shout if you need backup...I wish you the very best!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on July 07, 2016, 10:20:21 AM
I'd like to thank everyone for your comments.  It does come down to taking time to focus on getting myself straight and being in this for the long haul.

Unfortunately, my wife and I saw the counselors together yesterday and it has been strongly recommended that I not post here anymore. So, with this being my farewell post after losing this battle, I face future without an outlet like this.  I was told to use SA to vent, but that isn't the same, right?  I can't say everything there that I can say here in a group of anonymous people that my chances of meeting are slim to none.  Besides, their failure rate is the same as people in here.  Oh well.  At least it will keep the arguments at bay. Oh, and I will most likely be celibate for quite a while longer after that meeting... months longer.

To the Nation , I wish you all a good fight.  Even if you are not part of Sexaholics Anonymous, you can use those steps to chart your journey to sexual responsibility.  Above all, protect your mind, heart and soul.  May God grant you the serenity to accept the things you cannot change,  courage to change the things you can, and wisdom to know the difference.
Well I'd be lying if I said I'm not disappointed, you've been a good friend and counselor.  I understand the advice to interact more with your wife, but I don't get cutting off RN.  Its not like you got on here and trashed on your wife, you got on here and trashed on you.  Anyway, I know I may never meet you this side of heaven but I'm positive I will see you in Glory.

With much regret and sorrow,
Your brother in Christ
Chip
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Objectified1 on July 07, 2016, 07:05:24 PM
So sorry to hear. I thought your journal was great to read and you are an encouragement to others. If I was your wife I would be glad to see oh communicating like you are. She may come around. This is hard for her.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on July 10, 2016, 01:11:38 PM
I'll go a step further and say it's a damn stupid "recommendation". It's been patently obvious that Erasmus has benefitted enormously from sharing his story here and writing his journal. It hasn't breached any confidentiality, it hasn't been obsessive or excessive. It makes me wonder if these jokers actually know what they are doing. It sounds more like a competitive insecurity on behalf of SA. I'm disappointed. It makes me think SA is definitely not for me if this is their attitude.

Sorry you left, Erasmus. I hope you are able to do well without RN - and if things start to go pear shaped, get yourself back here because you were winning the battle while you were here!

All the best,
M
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Erasmus_xlt on July 30, 2016, 12:35:27 PM
Day 90!

First I would like to thank everyone for your encouraging words as I had to step away.  Although I am not actively posting here on a regular basis, I do peek in to see what is going on.  For many of you, we have been relating well and developing strong ties of support that I truly miss.

90 DAYS!  90 in numerology relates to FREEDOM!  Now, I'm not going to say I am free from my strugglejust yet, but I am more empowered to be free than ever.  After following through with some basics (internet filters, deletion of any sites I became a member of to act out, counseling, 12 Step group, and a realization of how much of a problem this really is) I was feeling that I had a good plan in place.  I don't feel like I am ready to publish a success story as yet, but I will relate some things that I have found helpful:

1.  The first thing that I had to realize was how hopelessly and utterly powerless I am to do this on my own.  Years of addiction and multiple attempts to stop in my own power showed me how little ability I had to succeed by sheer will power.  My brain had been rewired so much and was so dependent on the chemical cocktail that had become my elixir of choice that it would do everything in its power to ensure I did not stop.  I was so wrapped up in sexual acting out.  When I stopped doing that, I turned to streaming porn.  When I withdrew from porn, I lusted and fantasized.

2.  I realized I needed something bigger than me to win this battle.  Whether it was my wife (I had already failed there once), a small group (very hesitant to participate in a group), or with an individual (when forced to do so) they all lacked the power to make the difference.  This was bigger than all of us.  I had to turn to my God as I understood him to have victory over my self.

3. I had to let someone else have control.  I had already ruined my family and was working on losing another one.  I couldn't think clearly and my work was suffering.  My body and mind were betraying me.  I had to get myself out of the way and let God direct my life.

4. When confronted with temptation, I began to pray, "Lord, let me find in You whatever it is I desire from this woman I am lusting after.". That alone would immediately redirect my thinking.  However, I do now find myself lusting for a physical relationship with my wife and that is a problem.  It is a problem because I have come to realize that it is borne out of my selfishness my addiction more than my love for her (and, I love her very much).

Stay strong, sober and vigilant.  You can win this struggle I'd you have a big enough reason.
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: Chip on July 30, 2016, 01:12:35 PM
Congrats on 90 Days, it makes me happy to see you doing so well.  Your journal to me, in and of itself, is "A Success Story".  I've seen the Lord working in you, the changes He's made, from start to now, you are a "New" man in Christ.

Peace to you my Brother,

Chip
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: balanced on July 30, 2016, 02:26:37 PM
E, great to hear from you, great to hear that you are in a much better and stronger place, and congrats on 90+ days, that's awesome.

It is interesting the growing number of guys who report that reaching a point of asking God for help, and how powerful and strengthening that is in our struggles.

A while back I too had to make sure that I was interested in making love to my wife for the right reasons, not because of some timing expectation or as a way to redirect my urges, but to make it about our relationships and make love for the right reason...love. Achieving this new level of balance and living the truth as been one of the best results. So keep challenging yourself on this, and making sure your intentions are right, you will arrive at a far more meaningful and fulfilling place in your relationship.

Thanks for checking in!
Title: Re: Because God and my Wife Deserve Better
Post by: malando on July 30, 2016, 02:46:06 PM
Very happy for you, E. The whole turn to God thing is not possible for me, but I'm glad it's got you on the straight and narrow. Don't feel too bad for desiring your wife - it might be somewhat selfish, but desire always is. You can't purify sexual desire into an altruistic act. You are meant to desire your wife. You can simultaneously treat her well and prioritise her pleasure, but there's nothing wrong with wanting pleasure with your own wife. If you both want it, don't hold back. In fact, isn't there a bit in the bible about sexually satisfying your spouse being a responsibility?

Keep going!
M