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Messages - unchained

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51
Ages 40 and up / Re: Enhancement Drugs
« on: January 14, 2016, 03:01:25 PM »
Click on someone else's counter and it will take you to a page to set up your's.

52
I've modified my spreadsheet a bit to include all of the different things I try to do daily as part of this healing process...cold shower, meditation, journaling, posting here, exercise, etc.

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

On days that I don't start out right, I tend to do less of the other things as well.  It is apparent that it is crucial (for me anyway) to start the day with strong momentum to help me push hard through the rest of the day.

53
Ages 40 and up / Re: 45 and up until yesterday had no idea!?
« on: January 13, 2016, 01:09:28 PM »
I have so many questions but I'll leave it at that for now cause god knows I could go on and on.

Welcome to the Nation.

Go here:
http://yourbrainonporn.com

Start with all of the videos on the righthand side of the screen.  Then read, read, read everything on the site.  You'll also want to listen to each of Gary's radio podcasts that are also linked to on the right hand side of the screen.  Make educating yourself about your addiction your new hobby.  There is much to learn.  There is also much hope.  Here, you'll find encouragement, support & advise.  This thing is beatable.  Personally, the healing regarding erectile health came about VERY fast once I stayed away from porn.  The psychological aspect of making a permanent break with porn has been much more challenging.

Good luck.

54
Ages 40 and up / Re: WTF I didn't even know i was addicted to porn!
« on: January 13, 2016, 12:57:28 PM »
As far as the wife is concerned, it's hard to say.  Each relationship is very different.

I can't say what you should or shouldn't say, but one thing is for sure...beating yourself up with guilt and shame will only push you back toward the addiction.  Do your best to remain positive, you have good reason to be positive.  You are now aware and taking steps to get better.  In doing so, you will also become a better partner to your wife.

I would suggest that you be honest with your wife and let her know what you are experiencing as you quit.  If she can see that you are honestly trying to quit and taking active steps stay away from porn, it may help her begin to trust again.

I spared my wife all of the ugly details about just how much and exactly what I watched, but I do tell her what I feel as I struggle with quitting this addiction.  I also make an effort to let her see that I am investing in my own healing.  For example, I journal in the morning in the open.  She see's me as I meditate.  I brag to her when I stay in a freezing shower for 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 or 10 minutes.  I openly get on my laptop and come here in the evening.  I discuss with her new information that I learn about porn addiction or addiction in general.  I don't do these things for "show" as I do them anyway, however I feel that it reassures her to see me doing things...anything...to stay on the path away from porn, big things and small.

It's one thing to tell your wife you are going to quit.  It is another to demonstrate to her that you are doing so.  You may also want to scour every detail, read every word, watch every video, listen to every radio episode and podcast on yourbrainonporn.com.  After you have done so, do it again.  You'll find information there that you can share with her as well.

55
Yeah...it can get kind of confusing...the way folks use the term "edging" to mean different things.

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

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

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

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

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


56
Hey guys can i clarify, in this context, edging is not Ming nearly to O then stopping?
But pushing the boundaries of what p is?
Viewing things that are closer and closer to P?
Great thread, Please help

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

I have heard some refer to any behavior that is close to crossing the line into viewing porn as edging.  I've heard people talking about other addictions referring to edging behavior as doing things that are close to the actual addiction itself and are behaviors that can very easily cause you to fall back into the abyss.

57
Thanks for the Radio idea, I had no idea, im gonna check into it.  This is the wildest descision in a very long time.  Your posts are inspiring.
Thanks
Hans

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

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

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

I like Gary's shows and listen to each one over and over.  Some episodes have recovered addicts who discuss their own journey and healing from addiction.  The conversations are encouraging.

58
My downfall always starts with a little look. As someone struggling with addiction I'm not capable of letting in a little poison and then being OK.

It always starts with just a little look.  That is the lie we tell ourselves, like the alcoholic who convinces himself that this time he can have just one drink and that will be all.  It never works out that way.

59
If anyone here isn't familiar with the Pornfree Radio podcasts by Matt Dobschuetz, you may want to check them out.  I downloaded them free at iTunes and listen to them when I'm alone in my car.

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

I now see my attraction to porn will probably always stay with me to some degree.  In some ways that realization is actually liberating.  I don't have to beat it or kill it.  I don't have to feel like a failure because it is still there.  I simply need to not act on the desire...to choose a separate course of action.  Just like in the Serenity Prayer, I will accept the things I cannot change which in this case the desire to seek out images of naked women...but I WILL change the things I can which is how I act.

60
Porn is not a victimless habit. That's what keeps reminding me of the freedom that awaits in leaving it behind.

You are 100% correct Chile.  That in itself should be sufficient motivation to stay away.  Sadly for me, when I am in "the moment" of temptation any consideration for any other person seems to go right out the window.  The addiction takes over in complete selfishness.  To be honest, when I do cave in I don't even care about myself.  I'm completely aware of the negative consequences for myself and even that isn't strong enough motivation to walk away if I get too close to the edge.  The addicted pathways in my brain would have me do damage to myself if it means satisfying the addiction...at least temporarily.

61
I heard the following C.S. Lewis quote regarding masturbation a couple of weeks back.  It is so true and applicable to our own struggles that I wanted to post it here.

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

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

All of what he said in the quote resonated deeply with me.  After hearing it I was reminded why it is important for me to avoid MO just as importantly as PMO if I am to become the man that I hope to be.  If what he says is true about masturbation alone, then adding porn to the mix would be like magnifying it exponentially.  C.S. Lewis died in 1963.  I wonder what his words would be today.

62
Thanks for the posts guys

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


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

I agree Leon. I incorporate prayer into my meditation practice and have found that meditation improved my ability to stay focused and clear minded in prayer.

63
Thanks Bob. I appreciate your encouragement.

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

I hope everyone here who celebrates Christmas had a truly joyful day.

64
Ages 40 and up / Re: A Slow Turning
« on: December 24, 2015, 08:57:47 PM »
I'm a huge Gerry Rafferty fan. Always liked The Right Moment.  Right Down The Line is one of my favorite songs....heck, I used to live on Baker Street...no shit.

Keep in mind, he was a huge talent but his life ended too soon because of an addiction he couldn't overcome.

65
Jumped back into the cold shower routine this morning.  Man it was cold...colder than I remember.  I went several months earlier this year with a cold shower every day, but I swear the water is much colder in December than it was in the summer.

In the end it made me feel like a bad-ass standing there refusing to let the cold water beat me.  There is much truth to the claims that cold showers help a recovering addict's mind set all day long.  The 5 minutes of discomfort pays dividends all day long.

66
I've been having a hard time getting traction.  I'm not stuck in a daily PMO routine, but more like 1-2 times a week.  Sometimes I'll stay clean for a couple of weeks, but it has been a while now since I've had a real long meaningful streak.

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

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

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

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

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

67
Ages 40 and up / Re: Yes I Can!
« on: December 23, 2015, 01:53:59 PM »
Doing good Bob!  In the past, when I was able to keep MO at bay, it made staying away from P much much easier.

68
Ages 40 and up / Re: Patience
« on: November 06, 2015, 04:39:19 PM »
Don't even worry about 24 hours...just focus on the moment.  You'll be fine.

69
Porn Induced Erectile Dysfunction/Delayed Ejaculation / Re: Morning Wood!
« on: November 06, 2015, 10:27:52 AM »
Good luck.  Get back out there!

70
Counter back on

71
I'm back...

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

All of that changed when I was free from porn.  I did the right things.  I've had a great year.  This past Sunday I spent the day hiding in my garage pretending I was working on stuff while I looked at 3 inch pictures of naked women all afternoon on an old cell phone instead of playing with my kids...that's just sad.

72
Ages 40 and up / Re: Awake.
« on: November 05, 2015, 03:28:24 PM »
I need to get organized today and get back into my routine. Journal, Pray, Meditate, Exercise, Self Care, and most of all get around people so I am not isolated.

That is where I messed up.  I had tremendous success for a long time as long as I stuck to my system.  Eventually I became over confident, got lax in staying focussed on my routine and eventually slipped.

I read we have two choices as it relates to pain with addiction...and we get to choose which one we will endure.  We can endure the pain and suffering of giving in to our addiction or we can endure the pain of self control.  It is a simple as that.  The pain of self control eventually leads to happiness, the pain of giving in to addiction leads to more pain.

73
Ages 40 and up / Re: Breaking Free from Porn
« on: November 05, 2015, 03:12:03 PM »
Play stupid games...Win stupid prizes.

I'll file that one away in the memory bank for reference down the line.

74
Ages 40 and up / Re: Kurall's Reboot 2.0
« on: September 20, 2015, 10:08:22 AM »
It may be that I'll have to defend many of my posts, but my intentions in saying these things are

Hey Leon.  I didn't mean to dispute your comment.  In fact your reply was evidently posted while I was in the process of writing mine.  My reply was not in repose to what you wrote, but rather to Kurall Creator himself.  I do see that it looks that way, but it was purely by coincidence.

I will say that I am in favor of anything that helps one put any distance between themselves and porn...at least in the early stages.  I know that blockers are debated in their overall effectiveness.  In the end, one must make the decision to not use porn, not simple be blocked.  Even if they were 100% foolproof (which they are not), one has to retrain his own brain to not use porn when it is an option, otherwise we'll likely fail when the opportunity presents itself.  They have worked for some but other have felt them otherwise useless.

Personally, I like accountability software.  I block absolutely nothing, but 100% of my internet activity is sent to my wife in a weekly report.  It doesn't stop me, but it makes me think.  When a triggering email or link pops up, it forces me to slow down my thinking as I realize that I will have to answer for what I have viewed.  More than once I have not clicked on an email or clicked on a link because of the accountability software.  It didn't stop me, but it forced me to make a choice.  For that I am grateful and plan to continue using it as I move on.  On a side note for those in a relationship, the reports can also serve to comfort the partner.  After all, in the depths of my addiction I have lied many times about my internet use...lies that she believed and were later found out.  Now, she can have faith in what I tell her about my internet use.

75
I think I may forgo the whole day counter thing.  For some reason, it makes me feel tethered to PMO.  I see the days like links on a chain and at the end of the chain is an anchor.  At least that is how it feels at this moment.  Don't get me wrong, I'm not stopping my system for recovery, in fact I'm tweaking it based on where I'm at in this process.

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

There's something inside of me now that feels long term recovery is more than counting days.  I think it is good for a while...maybe a long while, but can't help but feel that to truly break free I cannot keep my focus looking back.  It may not be like that for everyone, but it feels that way to me.

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