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Messages - 5Dawgs

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Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: April 02, 2018, 02:53:34 PM »
Well, it happened.  Fell off the wagon.  Made it 34 days before relapse.  I feel sick.  34 days is at least 3 times longer than I've ever gone, but I feel like such a failure having to start over from the beginning.  I'll spend some time reviewing what led up to this, but in the meantime, I'm back to hating myself.

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 14, 2018, 10:43:38 PM »
Been absent for a few days.  Not because I've failed, but because I have succeeded in staying busy enough to avoid porn.  And the #1 reason I have succeeded in this effort is because of the guys on this forum.  The success stories and encouragement have been a Godsend, and I am forever grateful.  I have a LOOOOOOOOOONG way to go.  But at day 17, I have distanced myself further from porn than since this all started decades ago.  Work, writing, guitar, and a few other things have filled all the voids that were typically filled with addiction.  The urges are still there.  Still real.  But the ability to overcome them is more accessible due to the many options to occupy my time. 

For the first time, I can actually BELIEVE that recovery is possible.  Thank you, guys.  More to come. 

Success to you all.

Ages 40 and up / Re: My path to real life
« on: March 14, 2018, 10:15:57 PM »
Ditto that.  2 of my favorite lines from the Star Wars films.  Call me a nerd, but they've actually become mottoes of my mine:

- "Your focus determines your reality."
- "I'm sure another solution will present itself."
(Qui Gon Jin, 'Episode I, The Phantom Menace')

Focus on the "what" and the "why", and the "who", "where", "when" and "how" will take care of themselves.

Ages 40 and up / Re: My path to real life
« on: March 11, 2018, 02:31:40 PM »
Wanting to sleep all day, emptiness, loss of interest - all classic depression symptoms, my friend.  Seek help for that, if you haven't already.  Professionals can help us manage depression without acting out in ways we regret.  I speak from experience.

Stay strong and be well.

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 09, 2018, 10:21:13 PM »
Day 12 complete.  Headed to bed having kept the beast caged. 

Thank you for the details, Mouse.  My intention is to NEVER go back to porn or masturbation, but I'm trying to keep things in perspective and accept that I am not perfect.  And I probably should clarify what I meant when I used the word FRUSTRATED.  Basically, I would like to go back to getting and maintaining an erection without pills.  So I was wondering what kind of recovery time to expect so that I don't get frustrated that I'm still relying on meds to sustain my sex life.

Ages 40 and up / Re: Deadcat's Journal (Age 44)
« on: March 09, 2018, 02:48:41 PM »
Business trips are the WORST!  Alone in a hotel room can be hell.  Thankfully, I do not have any on my calendar for the foreseeable future, because I've never had a trip where I didn't fail.  Next time will be different though, because I have you all to confide in while I'm away from home.

Stay strong.

Ages 40 and up / Re: The party is over
« on: March 09, 2018, 01:22:39 PM »
Me too.  I guess you could say I'm an "ass man".  I can see that averting the eyes is going to be the hardest part for me as I get started. 

I'm new to the reboot strategy (12 days in), but I'm wondering based on my circumstances what my expectations should be for overcoming PIED.  Here's where I am:

  • 49 years old.  PMO since I was 16 but addicted since about 21. 

    PMO frequency anywhere from 1 to 4 times per week prior to reboot.  I would say and average of 2.5 times per week.

    Typical PMO sessions of around 3 hours with about 30 minutes to an hour of edging before climax.

    Married with sex of 1 to 2 times per week, but more 1 than 2.  (Very attractive wife who is my best friend and been together since we were 18.  We're only 3 months apart in age.)

    For the last couple of years, I have been seeing a urologist for an enlarged prostate due to chronic prostatis.  I'm currently taking Flowmax nightly before bed, because without it my pee stream is nothing but a trickle. 

    PIED started about a year and a half ago, although I had never heard of PIED until just recently.  Started as softness and quickly went down hill from there.  I have no doubt it is PIED, but I wonder how much of it is lack of confidence and performance anxiety as well.

    Currently need Viagra to get more than about 40% hard (at most).  It does get me to 100%.  Viagra is a must to have sex at all, because 40% may be enough for penetration, but not remotely satisfying to my wife.  Plus, the more flaccid I am, the quicker I finish.

    In the past 12 days, I've had sex twice, and no PMO whatsoever.  I think I'm STARTING to see some results because I've woken up the last 2 days with about half a hardon after sleeping.  The only time that ever happens is the morning after viagra, and I'm sure that's just because of some of the drug still being in my system.  Until 2 days ago, no viagra, no morning wood.

So given all those details, can anyone help me form some expectations?  I've read that older guys tend to get over PIED more quickly.  Is this true?  How long before it's justified to get frustrated?

Thanks for any help or advice!

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 09, 2018, 12:30:13 PM »
Feeling very stressed and mentally weak today.  Working from home and alone in the house.  This is day 12, and the temptation and urge is stronger than it has been since I started. 

So I am taking a preemptive strike against the enemy by recording here for all to see my commitment to overcome!  I will stand strong and resist, and my next post will be to report my success. 

Never give up.

Ages 40 and up / Re: Update on my pathetic humiliating life
« on: March 09, 2018, 11:47:36 AM »
Hi, Olaf.  I'm 5Dawgs.  Reading your story, it's clear that you have a lot going on in your life that fuels your depression.  I've suffered depression and anxiety most of my life.  Medication is a must for me.  Counseling has helped a little, but it's not a consistent thing. 

This doesn't work for everyone, but it's something that's worked for me:  Gratitude.  I know, I know, you've probably heard that before.  But I just know that it has helped me turn things around more times than I can count.  Some things I caught in your posts:

  • You're fostering children despite your financial condition.  That is AMAZING!  I'm in awe of that, and I recognize that, regardless of your income, you are a much stronger man that me.

    You're marriage is not what you want it to be, but you do have a partner, a companion, when so many others are lonely.  That's not meant to make you feel guilty, it's just to encourage you to be thankful that you have a starting point to build upon, and there is always a reason to hope.

    You are healthy and fit at an age when the majority of guys are declining.  And I suspect that is not by accident.  Be proud of that!

    Despite your relapses, you are strong enough to pick yourself up and start again. 

    Also despite your relapses, you are bold enough the share your failures and inspire others here who are also struggling. 

My suggestion: 

  • Write down 2 lists.  One of all the things you are thankful for, and one of all the things you want to change.

    For each thing you want to change, make a list of ideas, steps, action items you can do to bring about the change.  (No doubt some you are already doing.)

    Begin working those action items daily, but do so while DETACHING YOURSELF FROM THE OUTCOME!  Just do what you know you need to and can do WITHOUT THINKING ABOUT THE RETURN.  Focusing on what you NEED instead of what you can DO breeds impatience, frustration, doubt, discouragement, disappointment, and sadness.  All things that will hold you back and make it difficult or impossible to DO what you NEED to do in order to HAVE what you NEED to have.

I'm sure there are things you can add to those suggestions (prayer, meditation, affirmation, etc.).  But for me, focusing on what I CAN DO, right here, today, right now, and then repeating it tomorrow, is the most essential starting point.

I hope this helps.  Be well and press on, brother.

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 09, 2018, 10:55:36 AM »
"No one ever makes the first jump."

"Free your mind."

Ages 40 and up / Re: Looking for some advice
« on: March 09, 2018, 12:06:56 AM »
I've not experienced this, so I can only speak from theory.  But what I think I would do in that situation is try to talk about it during a counseling session with my wife so that someone could help mediate and facilitate the conversation.  I think that way, both people are compelled to share their feelings more deeply.  I'm inspired by your willingness to work through this together for so long, and I wish you well as you continue forward.

Ages 40 and up / Re: My Turn to Start 10 July 2017
« on: March 08, 2018, 11:55:59 PM »
Your first point about the conflict with your colleague reminded me of this speech by Christopher Walken in the movie Pool Hall Junkies.

If you haven't seen the movie, it's metaphorical, of course.  There's never a "time to kill" in the literal sense, and he's referring to beating an opponent in a pool tournament.  I find the story to be an inspiring reminder that every once in a while, we need to make sure others know our worth. And also make sure they know that WE know our own worth.

I had a similar blowup recently with a similar colleague.  Afterwards I politely apologized for my temper without conceding the argument.  I felt this made me the "bigger man", and not long after he reciprocated with his own apology.  But I believe he was left with a healthy fear and new respect for me.  And like the lion, I went back to my normal docile self when it was over, but I believe now he knows not to test me again.   

Maybe an event like that can serve as a boost to your confidence, as it did for me.  Keep moving forward, brother.

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 08, 2018, 11:27:11 PM »
Day 11.  I don't remember how many days my longest streak was, but whatever the number, I must be pretty close to it by now.  Couldn't have been more than 2 weeks, so I'm going to use 14 days as the benchmark.  That means that by Monday morning, I will have traveled farther toward freedom than I ever have since this nightmare started nearly 30 years ago.  It's kind of like riding a rocket to space and struggling to reach escape velocity to break free of the atmosphere and settle into orbit.  There's a difference, though.  Astronauts know how far they need to go before they are safely in space.  I don't know how far I need to go before I can consider myself safe.  It seems like the number may be unique to each guy making this trip.  And will I ever really be safe?  I don't want to go back.  There's another difference. I don't want to "orbit".  Because orbiting might mean settling into some routine where I PMO a lot less but stay around the edges of the atmosphere and venture in once in a while.  I don't want that.  No orbits, no landings or splash downs.  Just keep going further and further and never go back.  Just like trying to imagine riding a spaceship past the moon, the planets, and out of the solar system, it seems out of reach.  Impossible.  As I read the stories and thoughts of others sharing their struggles, I can't seem to find any who took off and just kept going without falling back - usually more than once.  It feels arrogant of me to think that I can go forever without a relapse when most others can't, and then I get scared, frightened that the fall is inevitable.  I worry about what it will do to my spirit if it happens. 

I've been told many times that I think to much.  Probably right.  Just be here, now, focus on now.  One day at a time.  One temptation at a time.  One challenge at a time.  So much easier said than done.

Reading in bed helps keep my mind right, and it makes me tired and helps me fall asleep.  I recommend, if you don't have one, pick yourself up a cheap Amazon Kindle that includes the "blue shade" feature.  This allows you to read in bed with the lights out and prevents the screen from emitting the parts of the light spectrum that could make it hard to sleep.  I like a good thriller, because it keeps my brain 100% occupied.  Since reading makes me tired, even a good thriller can't keep me from nodding off.

Oh, one more thing - I recommend if you read in bed with a Kindle, lay on your SIDE.  Can't tell you how many times I was laying on my back and dropped the damn thing on my face! LOL!

I've taken Lamictal for manic depression and sertraline for anxiety for many years.  In my case, they are a must and have made a big difference in my life and my effect on those around me.  I recommend you work with a QUALIFIED doctor on your medication needs, but you need to be 100% honest and open with him/her to ensure that you're on the right regimen.  And if you do have depression and/or anxiety, it may take a long time, possibly a year or two, to achieve the right balance of mediation choice and dosage before you settle in to a comfortable groove.  It requires patience, and it also requires you to recognize when you may have fallen out of balance mentally.  Also be aware that there are several antidepressants/anxiety meds that can aggravate sexual dysfunction.   

Ages 40 and up / Re: My path to real life
« on: March 07, 2018, 12:27:47 PM »
English may not be your primary language, but I follow you just fine.  I have the same thoughts you do, and it's hard.  If anyone ever asked me what is the most beautiful sight in the world, I would say without hesitation - the female human body.  In all it's shapes, sizes, and varieties - not just what the false standards set by our over-sexed society.  I believe I will always feel that way, and I'll be happy if I do.  The trick for me is de-sexualizing the female form and appreciating her for her beauty, rather than as an object for my own pleasure.  Right now I am trying to practice averting my eyes, but I hope to grow to look on a woman as I would a beautiful painting, or a sculpture, or some other work of art.  I imagine that women who maintain a nice appearance do so because they take pride in themselves and want to make a good impression on those who see them.  They do not deserve to be mentally undressed by me or anyone.  However, there are some women, thankfully in the minority, who deliberately dress provocatively, perhaps to illicit a sexual response from a man.  My goal is to always be able to avert my eyes from their direction.  To instinctively say "I don't appreciate that, and I won't allow myself to respond in the manner she wants."  Of course, it's easier said than done.  But I'll keep trying.

Ages 40 and up / Re: The party is over
« on: March 07, 2018, 12:05:49 PM »
Stay strong.  I noticed that the longer my work days the more likely I was to PMO.  You're several weeks ahead of me in your reboot, and you're story is inspiring.  Keep the faith, stay the course, and thanks for sharing.

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 07, 2018, 11:54:23 AM »
10 days into my reboot, and I think I'm starting to see some changes.  Mentally, not physically.  I've read comments from others talking about how their "brain fog" clears.  I don't know if that's happening for me yet or if I'm just looking for it because I read about it.  But something is different.  The last couple of days I have been thinking more about goals and motivation and success tactics, and it's like there is this sudden thirst for knowledge coming over me.  Most nights it's normal for me to sit down in front of the TV and just vegetate and become a "receiver" of whatever is coming off the screen.  But it occurred to me this morning, that I haven't even turned on the television since Sunday.   Instead I've been reading and planning and thinking about what I want to accomplish in the second half of my life.  It makes me shudder to think of the time I've wasted and allowed to be stolen from me during the first half.  It's halftime in the game and I'm way down in the score because I let my opponent have all the control.  My defense is worn out, and my offense is flustered.  I think maybe this forum is my locker room, and the guys who post here are my teammates.  Halftime in the locker room is for regrouping and adjusting the game plan.  In my case, it's actually more like creating a game plan, because I never had one.  I'm living proof that you can't win by winging it.

Ideas are coming to me out of nowhere.  My dream has always been to be a writer, a speaker, a teacher - and I've been able to enjoy little tastes of that through my career.  But I want more than a taste.  I want the whole meal.  I want to be able to do what I love most every day, and through it inspire and help improve the lives of others, and actually earn a living that way.  And for the first time in a long while, ideas on how to move in that direction are coming to me.  Inspiration is something I thought I knew, but I'm starting to wonder if I really did.  Because I am feeling inspired, but it's different this time.  There's a belief that what I want to accomplish actually CAN be. 

10 days in - isn't it too early for this?  Can this be real, or am I just imagining what I want to see?  If it is real, what's it going to be like a month in, 6 months, a year?  I'm trying not to get my hopes up too high.  This is uncharted territory for me.  It's exciting, but a bit frightening as well.  I'm afraid of falling.  If I do, will it be even harder to get back up?  Will my inspiration depreciate because my confidence gets damaged?  It's remarkable how surreal this experience is already - 10 days in.

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 07, 2018, 12:08:34 AM »
Day **9**!!!  I looked at my calendar today and realized that I had miscounted from my last PMO.  So instead of being day 7, it's actually day 9!  And a great day it was.  Productive day at work, dinner with the family, and then 2 HOURS re-learning the guitar.  I suddenly looked up and noticed it was past midnight, and I hadn't yet made my journal entry.  Headed to bed in a few minutes with a light heart for an awesome day. 

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 05, 2018, 07:19:00 PM »
Well, Day 6 is mostly over.  Got home from work to find that the wife and son went to the gym, so I'm home alone.  The temptation is definitely real today.  But I was strong enough to open the computer and go right to this site, so I'm proud of that.  Now that I have done my check-in, I think it would be best to shut the computer off and avoid it until my family gets home.  This is the first day since starting that I've felt a real urge for porn.  Gonna fight it and come back tomorrow to claim Day 7.

Ages 40 and up / Re: The party is over
« on: March 04, 2018, 11:09:35 PM »
Yard work is my favorite warm month hobby.  Great for exercise and thinking.  Got me through most of the weekend as well.

Ages 40 and up / Re: My path to real life
« on: March 04, 2018, 11:07:45 PM »
Congrats on hitting a month!  I'm still very new here, and I've read some posts from guys who have celebrated some 3-digit number of days, but to me 30 days seems like a mountain to climb.  I don't think I've made it 30 days since my addiction really took hold 25+ years ago.  Over 100 might as well be the moon.  You should be proud.  Thanks for sharing!

Ages 40 and up / Re: 5Dawgs Journal
« on: March 04, 2018, 11:02:15 PM »
Thanks, Free. Had to order some new strings to restore my old electric, but they should be here tomorrow and then I can get it restrung and start dabbling in it again. 

Day 5 has come and gone.  Very quiet day for temptations and triggers.  Spent the afternoon in my favorite warmer month hobby - yard work.  Some people look at me sideways when I talk about how much I enjoy working in the yard.  For me, it's good exercise and good thinking time.  Today was clearing weeds and cutting up a couple of trees I took down from my wooded back yard.  I save the logs as firewood for the fire pit.  My feet and hands are sore, but my heart is full because I had a positive day with no triggers. 

Trying not to get too excited.  5 days is a just a drop in the bucket I need to fill.  One drip at a time.

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