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Topics - BlueHeronFan

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Ages 20-29 / Not gonna go it alone
« on: December 30, 2018, 01:48:51 AM »
Here's me in a nutshell: I really fell into heavy pornography use and masturbation through high school (probably at least one session every day). I started to struggle with it (tried to stop) when I went to college and have continued to make incremental progress in overcoming this problem in the years that have followed. I'm in graduate school, and it's been a couple years since I've actually looked at anything with explicit nudity--but I've still found substitutes for explicit material and have found myself spending a big chunk of time, like one night about every one to three months, looking at non-explicit material and edging.

It's been a frustrating point in my journey. It's like there's a switch in my head that gets flipped "on" every couple months. For the most part, I feel like I function normally without thinking about porn, without wanting it, easily being able to say no when an urge or opportunity passes me by. But, every so often, it seems like it grabs me and won't let go until I waste a night edging to non-explicit stuff. Then I feel defeated, sort of like I haven't really made all that much progress. Lately, though, things have started happening more frequently (a few times in the last two months), and I've found myself looking up explicit things but then looking at the corner of the screen or something like that (not looking directly at the nudity on-screen). I'm not sure what I think about that, but I know that I can't quite bring myself to cross the line into explicit pornographic images or masturbation to orgasm. So I guess I feel like I'm stuck in a weird sort of limbo. I know I want to quit, and I feel pretty successful at it most of the time, but then I slip up every so often, and I worry that it might be getting worse rather than better right now.

I've learned a lot about myself over the years in battling this problem. I've learned that it most often comes at me when I'm feeling frustrated or hopeless about the future (especially in the context of my hopes for a marriage and family sometime in the future, like porn tries to fill that gap in its own terrible way). So I guess I've started spending more time paying attention to my emotions since it seems like it's negative emotions that fuel thoughts of porn that eventually lead to acting out. I've been working on my emotions through meditation, yoga, and more dedicated religious practice. I think I'm starting to turn a corner on how I feel about myself and my relationship to other people. I still wonder, though, sometimes about the balance between being compassionate with myself but not letting myself off the hook for bad behavior.

Anyhow, a long story made short, I was listening to something the other day that said a community is important in overcoming things like addiction. I found this place in my search for a community and hope that being a part of this group will be one of the things that's been missing in my recovery

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