Author Topic: See them grow up  (Read 21234 times)

inpursuitofhappiness

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #25 on: February 07, 2017, 06:18:06 AM »
Good luck WIP and well done for recovery first time.

Your story at first inspired me, then later worried me which i guess is a good thing as it keep you on guard!

Your situation first time around similar to me, lost my way, destroyed my wife, and in process of rebuilding and keep everything i hold dear close, plus must be a better role model than my dad and step dad were, thats really important to me or maybe my son will follow a similar path.

Struggled along for years secretly but currently at 40 days and feeling really strong, so your story made me realise not to drop my guard when feeling good and so i thank you for that.

As you said keep grinding and kick the arse out of this, i have never hated an enemy so much and so that gives me the determination to really win this time.

Best of luck, lets both get to 90 and beyond!!!!!!

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #26 on: February 07, 2017, 10:15:19 AM »
Thanks for your post Inpursuitofhappiness. Love it!
I wish I could reassure myself that P addiction has a finite incubation period, and if I'm not presenting any symptoms after 90 days, I'm cured.... but that wasn't the case for me. I got complacent.

I like the "mountain climbing" analogy some of the guys use here ... you don't ascend seamlessly in one smooth trip. I also love the one my wife uses... this is a nasty, fist fight and even when you're winning, you're going to have to take a few shots yourself. Just got to stay aware, stay conscious and keep fighting.
« Last Edit: February 07, 2017, 10:17:15 AM by workinprogressUK »

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #27 on: February 08, 2017, 09:50:12 AM »
Wednesday and still PMO-free, which I guess means I'm 3 weeks in. That looks like quite a lot of days in my diary, but it feels like yesterday.

Feeling the benefits, mostly at work, where I have a lot of energy and focus. Work prospects for 2017 largely depend on a decision that's due early next week. I have to work hard on disconnecting the decision, which I can only influence, from my own judgement of success or worth. Whether I win the decision or not, I remain the same person with the same flaws and facets. Could somebody please remind me of this sage logic next week if it goes "tits-up" and I'm wallowing in misery?

Andyuk

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #28 on: February 08, 2017, 11:51:44 AM »
We'll be here!

newmeditations

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #29 on: February 09, 2017, 10:43:09 PM »
Had to laugh a little (I'm sorry) only because I can so relate to connecting work with self-worth. One of my favorite reasons to lower my self-worth even more by acting out. So true though that it is an imaginary connection and if we can hold on to the truth that it is not a verdict on our value it helps tremendously. I wish you a very successful outcome (often our worries are also imaginary) but if things don't go as planned, what else could it mean? (besides disaster)  ;) Always the option to decide what to believe.

Reminding you ahead of time in case I miss the update.


workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #30 on: February 13, 2017, 08:31:06 AM »
Navigated the weekend OK. Still no P or M. O with my SO, which was nice.
Struggled to keep my head down on a party night out in town on Saturday. Had a think about it yesterday and I chilled out. Being in that environment isn't safe for me, and I won't rush to repeat it. But beautiful women haven't, in themselves, been a big trigger for my acting out and I didn't act out after Saturday. I know my own, peculiar, little, triggers, and they're niggling away at me. My chimp is chuntering away! Actually typing this journal is bringing those triggers to the surface, so I think I'll finish here, log off, and go take a walk in the unusually nice weather we have in the UK today.
Take care yourselves!
WIP  :)

SmithsDisco

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #31 on: February 13, 2017, 10:18:13 AM »
Hey workinprogress

Your story is so similar to mine its scary !!
mid 40s UK man - married - 2 kids - similar history

i myself stopped PMO a few years back , and my recovery is up & down to say the least
I seem to go from recovered to flatline in an instant.
I have no real idea how to fully recover , although im guessing i may have messed up my head over the whole issue and im more left with PA / Mental issues towards ED.

Should you ever need to chat etc feel free to send me a PM .. Can swap email etc should you wish

All the best

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #32 on: February 13, 2017, 04:40:57 PM »
Thanks for your note, SmithsDisco. Much appreciated.

Firstbigstep

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #33 on: February 14, 2017, 02:44:55 AM »
Hmmm - I think the chimps are out in force at the moment!

I'm not sure if it's a seasonal thing (the old sap rising!) but I certainly feel more trigger sensitive at present.

The good thing is that I've resisted all urges to go back to the PMO routine (In fact, I don't miss the porn at all)

The less good thing is that I don't feel particularly good about it - as today is my 90 day "anniversary" - no irony that it's Valentine's Day! - I guess I should be feeling great. I wasn't expecting much, but thought I'd feel better than this.

Ho - hum - I guess that's the way it goes...

Another wrestling match with chimp brain beckons - he's a bit quieter this morning, thank goodness!

And SmithsDisco, I too worry that I may have done irreparable harm to my brain and psyche - I just hope the youngsters following along get to grips with this issue before they have spent as many years  in a self destructive cycle as some of us old hands have (excuse the rotten syntax!)

Again, if either of you guys want a direct contact, drop me an email address - the forum isn't always the ideal means of communicating!
I'm here to help and be helped, support and be supported.

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #34 on: February 14, 2017, 07:06:18 AM »
Indeed they are out in force, Firstbigstep  >:( Congrats on your 90 days though!

Agreed that living clean doesn't feel especially brilliant. But I do appreciate not feeling the horrible bouts of shame for my actions and the permanent pressure of living a lie. Makes me more effective and less selfish. Still consider myself to be a total arsehole for what I did before and that guilt kind of hangs around me like a bad smell that I just can't walk away from  :-[  So much fear! But living with the fear is something i currently judge to be better than the alternatives. I read a bit more of "The Buddha's Brain" last night. Maybe I'm just "shooting myself with a second arrow". I can find equanimity in so many situations, but not when I consider my own worth as a human being. Got to get that fixed.
Another day/night completed without acting out. I'm annoyingly weak emotionally. Wife was away last night. I feel anxious when she's not there and M is the most natural and obvious way to soothe that anxiety. Strangely, it's more acute when she is away and I am at home .... but I historically used chronic M much more when I was away than when I was home alone.
Bit of a vicious circle here today. I'm afraid and anxious about previous acting out with P. My limbic system's medication for fear and anxiety is P, so my chimp is demanding the very drug that has gotten me into this mess. I think it's going to be a long day, guys.
Wishing you all success in your battles today.

Firstbigstep

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #35 on: February 14, 2017, 09:25:53 AM »
Hey WIPUK,

I'm going to embark on using some affirmations about myself. I've used this in the past to help with some self esteem issues, but they've drifted off on the tidal wave of self disgust that my PMO habit helped me to nurture.

I think the discovery of what has caused us the problems we face is a shock, then to find that it's something we actually don't like just perpetuates the cycle.

Don't call yourself weak - I believe that we can learn of our problem in minutes (my revelation was just like light switch being flicked) Unfortunately, the readjustment and recovery take WAY WAY longer. It feels like a large piece of elastic between the two - my understanding and comprehension are away in the distance, whilst my brain is dragging its heels behind. It sometimes takes a few steps, but I think my brain is part chimp, part donkey, judging by its stubborn refusal to come to heel at present!
I'm here to help and be helped, support and be supported.

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #36 on: February 17, 2017, 11:25:24 AM »
Friday and still clean. Navigated a business trip away Weds/Thurs without letting my guard down. A few trigger moments but nothing that's especially acute. Holiday next week, which is always a stressful time. Will prep myself to minimise risk.
Thanks and take care.

Andyuk

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #37 on: February 17, 2017, 02:36:01 PM »
Good luck with holiday time and stay vigilant....

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #38 on: February 27, 2017, 08:09:17 AM »
Survived holiday by the skin of my teeth and now back at work. Triggered repeatedly on the journey home and had to go 12 rounds with myself to stay straight. How many times did some snide, little voice in my head whisper that it was OK to tune out and lapse into some easy fantasy? Picture on the hotel wall, somebody dressed in a certain way at the airport, feeling tired on the bus, urge to "edge" in the toilet on the flight, obligations that I owe when back at my desk.... trigger, trigger, trigger  :-[. You've all been there though, right? Some days you can just see it coming at you, like you're stuck in a tunnel and there's a train coming towards you fast? I knew it would be like that. Last day of a holiday is usually a tough one for me, and the first day back at work typically has a high propensity to trigger me too. So I'm being very gentle with myself today. Booked a lot of video conferences with colleagues. Did the school run with the kids. Healthy lunch followed by a little bit of fresh air. Good music playing in the office and a nice fire lit. Whatever it takes to soothe myself in a healthy way. Confident that I will make it through today too, even if I grind through half my teeth and eat 500 calories of chocolate  :)
Wishing you all strength and resilience today. Take care.

Andyuk

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #39 on: February 27, 2017, 04:16:24 PM »
Sounds tough but you made it through to the other side.
Well done!

TK-421

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #40 on: February 27, 2017, 10:49:29 PM »
Survived holiday by the skin of my teeth and now back at work. Triggered repeatedly on the journey home and had to go 12 rounds with myself to stay straight. How many times did some snide, little voice in my head whisper that it was OK to tune out and lapse into some easy fantasy? Picture on the hotel wall, somebody dressed in a certain way at the airport, feeling tired on the bus, urge to "edge" in the toilet on the flight, obligations that I owe when back at my desk.... trigger, trigger, trigger  :-[. You've all been there though, right? Some days you can just see it coming at you, like you're stuck in a tunnel and there's a train coming towards you fast? I knew it would be like that. Last day of a holiday is usually a tough one for me, and the first day back at work typically has a high propensity to trigger me too. So I'm being very gentle with myself today. Booked a lot of video conferences with colleagues. Did the school run with the kids. Healthy lunch followed by a little bit of fresh air. Good music playing in the office and a nice fire lit. Whatever it takes to soothe myself in a healthy way. Confident that I will make it through today too, even if I grind through half my teeth and eat 500 calories of chocolate  :)
Wishing you all strength and resilience today. Take care.

Keep up the good work.  Part of this is recognizing and acknowledging the triggers that we all come across on a daily basis.  The key is to acknowledge them and move on.  It is normal and healthy to notice an attractive woman.  The difficulties start when we linger on a person or image for too long and allow unhealthy fantasy to carry us away. The key to this is learning to love the feeling of exercising self-control more than the temporary pleasure that PMO and fantasy offer. 

I have found that I have to be especially vigilant when these triggers first appear.  Part of the recovery process is recognizing when these unhealthy and unwanted thoughts first come along and not giving them any space.  I found that when I first was trying to reboot that I was getting tripped up by Facebook photos or lingering on some attractive woman I saw in public.  It really is empowering when you truly begin to appreciate that you  have control over how you respond to a specific stimulus or trigger.  Believe me, if you are human you have the ability to control your actions.  After what for many of is is decades of doing whatever felt good in the moment, it is sometimes hard to grasp the concept that we can control any of this.  Urges can really just seem to come out of nowhere.  If we are vigilant though, what feel like uncontrollable urges come from allowing unhealthy thoughts and fantasy to bump around in the brain for too long. 

It really becomes empowering to learn that you can experience a trigger, acknowledge it, move on and then commend yourself for being a man who is in control of his actions and living a principled life in accordance with his values.

All the best.

TK-421
I never use porn or masturbate Now.  I am in charge of my life.

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #41 on: February 28, 2017, 07:32:03 AM »
Thanks for your support and feedback, guys. Must admit that I do feel empowered, confident and really positive today, having navigated my own little storm and reached calmer waters. I do tend to find that on tough days, it helps me to treat each trigger moment like an individual battle, unconnected to any bigger aspiration or fear. Just me and my chimp, in that single moment in time. I can either win that 5-second battle, or choose to lose, because I agree wholeheartedly that I do have a choice in that moment.

Found myself smiling in bed last night and this morning. "Mindfulness" is an over-used phrase but I have always struggled to have a quiet mind. I always preferred a lot of noise, which I don't think is always very helpful. I was lying in bed and could acknowledge to myself that I felt really warm, comfortable, happy and relaxed. Didn't need my brain to be anywhere, or in any way occupied. I just felt right. Don't know how that connects to anything else especially, but I think if I can find ways to keep my brain "tuned-in" to the nice stuff in my reality, and avoid feeling the need to tune-out, then I will put another barrier between me and P fantasies.

Anyway - another day ticked off. Have a good 'un yourselves.

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #42 on: March 03, 2017, 08:04:00 AM »
March 3rd. Back from a business trip to Barcelona and still P&M clean. Licking my wounds after toughest day so far yesterday. Kicking myself too, because whilst some triggers take me by surprise, others can be predicted and planned for.... and i failed to do that. I was in Spain in the first days back from holiday, feeling tired and full of cold. I was already vulnerable. Couldn't be helped. But I was there with a colleague who has consistently made very overt and persistent sexual advances towards me. I don't know what the guy sees in me, but on the 2 previous occasions we've been away with work together, he has propositioned me in the bluntest and most persistent manner. I had considered not going, but I gave him the benefit of the doubt, after he promised that he wouldn't repeat his past behaviour. But a few drinks into the evening and it started again. Subtle at first, and I tried gently to rebuff him. But he was eventually just blatantly asking me to sleep with him, so I ended up just getting up, telling him that it was not something I wanted, and leaving. That resulted in a next-day combination of tiredness, illness, mild hangover and terrible feelings of guilt that I must have lead this guy on at some time - given him the impression that his attentions were welcomed. So my head was a mess yesterday, with repeated, white-knuckle, battles against the urge to drop out into some fantasy. And the mess was exacerbated by knowing that I could have taken steps to prevent it from happening;

1. Don't turn business meetings into a night out drinking
2. Don't give a persistent sexual harasser another opportunity to hit on me

So I hope that in writing this, I can embed these lessons. I need to respect that I'm vulnerable at the moment and that I need to look after all the other facets of healthy living, unless I want to make this reboot even more difficult for myself. I'm away again next week and expected to socialise, so I need to commit to myself that booze is off limits. And I need to separate myself from this colleague and make sure that I don't put myself at risk again. I shouldn't have to put up with it, though, should I? The guy's a junior colleague. I don't know why I lack the self confidence and assertiveness to deal with it. I'm like a paralysed victim each time. Pathetic. I need to drum up the courage to deal with this in a mature manner. But I just can't help but feel like I'm the one in the wrong and that it's all my fault. Grrrrr  >:( sometimes I despise myself.

Right - silver lining - I'm still here and I'm still on the bright side of the street. No relapse... just. Be grateful for that. And maybe some long overdue lessons learned. Chin up! Move on. I live to fight another day.

Sorry for unloading.
« Last Edit: March 03, 2017, 08:06:53 AM by workinprogressUK »

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #43 on: March 03, 2017, 08:26:28 AM »
Maybe worth saying...
When I was on the ragged edge yesterday, one of the key motivations for not relapsing, was knowing that if I did, I'd have to come on here and write that I'd failed, or come on here and tell lies. Neither option was palatable, so thanks for being my virtual Accountability Partners :-) 

Firstbigstep

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #44 on: March 03, 2017, 10:17:59 AM »
WIP UK.

Firstly,  congratulations on getting through the last few days. You've done really well.

There is absolutely no justification for the behaviour of your colleague and no reason why you should have to tolerate it.

I'm no expert in these matters - it may be an issue that your HR department can help with if you want to go down that path. If not, I'd suggest you speak to him in a neutral lovcation, stone cold sober, and make your position clear. I'd also suggest that you warn him that you will go to HR if he makes any advances in the future.

Situations like that are very hard to deal with (been there once myself) and you have shown great strength and resolve to resist. Give yourself the congratulations you deserve.

Onward and upward - you're still winning!
I'm here to help and be helped, support and be supported.

MioSr

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #45 on: March 03, 2017, 12:12:37 PM »
Work,  just read your March 3rd post. Totally relate. I so often take the blame for situations which are uncomfortable. The thing to remember is that you've been kind and thoughtful, not the one to blame. You didn't want to hurt this guy's feelings. That's what I hear. You wanted to be true to yourself and not disappoint another. When the guy started pushing, it caused anxiety (understandably). I think you've only behaved admirably. People are going to push their agendas. That's really hard for those ofus who don't want to hurt others' feelings.

 I know for me, one of the allures of fantasy is that it's a realm where I'm not hurting others' feelings, only my own. Instead of entertaining the voice that says you're in the wrong, see if you can't amplify the one that says you've been kind and that this man is crossing boundaries repeatedly. You've got everything in the world to feel proud about. And a trip away with no P&M is a HUGE deal. Congratulations!

Go, go, go!

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #46 on: March 06, 2017, 11:36:48 AM »
Thanks both for your support and feedback. You're correct, MioSr, that I didn't feel comfortable being... rude? Is that it? I'm not sure. But I often lack the self-confidence to assert myself politely when things are still relatively low-level. That has resulted in a couple of occasions when things stay bottled-up for far too long before they've exploded, sometimes in violence. I'm trying to be more assertive.

And you're right, FBS, that I walked rather than reacting in an inappropriate way, which is a success. I still feel naive about getting into a tricky situation, but I am pleased that I extricated myself without screwing up.

Anyway, as you say, onwards and upwards!
No major challenges over the weekend. Monday successfully navigated so far. Must be getting close to 50 days P&M free now.

Dem

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #47 on: March 07, 2017, 07:35:51 AM »
Your thread has been very encouraging to me.  Married guy here trying to fight through this thing and it's almost like I am reading my own story. I'm grateful that my wife is patient with this experience and I pray something good happens for you. Be encouraged.
DW

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #48 on: March 07, 2017, 09:28:03 AM »
Thank you, Dem. I really appreciate that. Hoping that nothing bad happens here too!
Must admit, feeling good today. Been under the weather with a cold for the last week and it has an impact on me. Was reflecting on the Barcelona incident and reminded that my sex addiction was never so much about lusting after others, as an addiction to being lusted after by others. Goes back to the original chestnut that a lot of other people have shared - that I have always felt so damn ugly and unlovable, that i grew up with an overwhelming desire to be found attractive by somebody... anybody. So I didn't immediately reject a guy flirting with me, because a big part of my persona is really flattered and gratified that he was flirting with me. Didn't matter about gender or sexual orientation. Just the unresolved issue with self image raising its head. Glad I thought that through, because it was niggling me. And glad that I dealt with it, and it's in the past.

workinprogressUK

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Re: See them grow up
« Reply #49 on: March 08, 2017, 05:39:19 AM »
Great workout at the gym last night set me up for a good day today. Wife rebuffed my affections in bed this morning, but that's her prerogative and I'm not taking it personally. Couple of work situations making me feel physically nauseous this morning, which I know is not healthy. I have unrealistic expectations of myself sometimes.... erm.... all of the time  :-\. Need to be more realistic. Can't be making myself puke if I perceive the slightest error in my work. Despite that, I'm grateful for another day of serenity in relation to P today. Hoping for more "easy" days ahead!!