Author Topic: Back On The Wagon: 2  (Read 18558 times)

PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #400 on: March 11, 2019, 05:49:02 AM »
Day 226

Had some very intense dreams last night about the woman I was involved with a few years ago. Previously when I've had dreams they've been about how angry she is with me, but this time she indicated that she wanted me back. I think that's quite interesting: I do think there's a degree to which we're fighting this battle in a world where there are forces for good and evil, and I do think that temptation is out there, trying to dilute my will and desire to put this thing to death.

As it happens, there's no way on earth that I'd get in contact with this woman, but it's weird how these things crop up from time to time.

Life is otherwise progressing. I'm making good progress with my work, and the sun is shining outside. No particular milestones to look forward to in my reboot - I just have to take one day at a time.
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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #401 on: March 18, 2019, 03:47:46 AM »
Day 233

Nothing major to report. Another week under my belt- no real desire to go back to old habits but there's still the ongoing fight against general feelings of low self worth and stress. Overall though I'm in reasonable shape.
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aquarius25

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #402 on: March 21, 2019, 12:42:43 PM »
Glad you are still on track. I would encourage you to reach out to your wife. Anytime you start to feel like you don't have worth look at how far you have come. Also talk with her and tell her how you are feeling. I am sure she probably has a lot of things to say towards your worth. I know that because For a woman to stick by your side means you have a lot to offer. Yes those negative thoughts are going to come but don't let them get you down because you have come a long way! You have a lot more character and are working towards becoming the person you want to be. You have over come a lot and you are doing everything you can to become a better you! That is huge and amazing. Don't discount that, instead realize just how amazing your progress has been! You got this.

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #403 on: March 22, 2019, 02:41:16 AM »
Thank you :) my wife is amazing, she's such a rock. I'm really open to her about feeling low from time to time - I've been through counselling and CBT in the past and she's been really supportive. She's amazing and I love her loads.

This is day 237 anyway. I'm doing my usual thing of posting on a day when I know it's going to be slightly tricky for me. I didn't have much sleep last night as I had to be up mega-early for work, and I've got an afternoon at home. Probably going to have a nap when I get in. Things are otherwise okay. Have a great weekend everyone!
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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #404 on: March 25, 2019, 04:00:17 AM »
Morning all

It's day 240 - I gave myself a bit of a shock over the weekend as I sailed far too close to the wind on Friday afternoon. Didn't go on a chat room or watch porn or anything but was properly properly tempted for the first time in ages. I know where I went wrong, but I scared myself.

Still on the wagon. Onwards and upwards for the week.
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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #405 on: April 28, 2019, 08:48:18 AM »
Hey all

I'm calling this day zero: I am still free of porn but I've lapsed in some middle circle areas and have masturbated a few times - ended up in a bit of a fug of spending too much time online, letting my thought life get out of control.

I'm not going to beat myself up too harshly: I managed eight months entirely clean and I've got the resources to go again. I just thought I'd be honest with you. I need God more than ever, and I think half my trouble has been that I let my spiritual life drift in the weeks prior to drifting off my reboot.

I've done three months, five months, eight months. Next aim is a year clean of any artificial stimulation. Orgasm only by sex. A close, close eye on who I develop friendships with. No porn. And most of all, seeking God and his will for me. Let's get started.

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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #406 on: April 29, 2019, 01:28:24 PM »
I'd forgotten how difficult the early days of a reboot are. Progressing okay but it takes a while to get momentum.

Got up early to pray though, which is a step in the right direction.
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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #407 on: May 01, 2019, 03:18:00 AM »
Day three. Not much to report.
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jixu

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #408 on: May 04, 2019, 08:27:42 AM »

I can relate to what you said about letting your spiritual life drift-I have noticed the same thing.  It seems so obvious after the fact! That is a big factor and motivation in my journey as well.

Keep up the excellent progress and keep the daily devotions going!     

aquarius25

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #409 on: May 13, 2019, 01:10:56 PM »
Outside influences can make a big difference. Glad you are staying focused.

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #410 on: June 04, 2019, 01:21:12 AM »
Hey all

This is day zero again. I'm so sorry to tell you that I got tangled up again in the same habits that I'd previously had. I never really properly escaped.

I was doing so well :( I got to eight months. I cannot believe I let myself get entangled again, that I let sin creep in, in tiny increments. It was the chat rooms that got me again. I know this is a porn site but this is another form of sexual addiction and I am so annoyed that it's got to me again.

I've been mostly clean the past two years. I want to be entirely clean. I don't have the resources to do this entirely by myself. I know how weak I am. I need my wife beside me to challenge me on my behaviour, phone use and so on. I need your support, I'm pleading for your forgiveness. And I need God. Oh I need him so much. I'm so weak. I'm despairing. I don't want to live like this.
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Pete McVries

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #411 on: June 04, 2019, 09:25:52 AM »
Juuuust a bump in the road. Back on the horse with you, no follow up relapses, don't binge, no negative self-talk, spend some quality time with your wife, and be kind to yourself! it's not about the streak, what's one relapse in eight months? 99% of rebooters would cut off their pinky fingers to achieve that kind of ratio. Don't lose perspective!

You got this!
nine months clean and counting...

PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #412 on: June 04, 2019, 01:33:23 PM »
Hey thank you. It's been quite a long relapse if I'm honest: fell off at the end of March, got back on a few times but never got past maybe day 5. I avoided this place because I didn't want to admit my failings - lots of people on here said they'd looked up to my example and I felt like I'd let everyone down.

As an initial action, I've installed an app on my phone that tracks the number of hours spent. If I'm going to break this I need to bring my average down significantly. I was averaging 6 hours a day last week :/

It's back to being only as clean as my last 24 hours. I can do today, and tomorrow I can do tomorrow.
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Edit_undo

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #413 on: June 04, 2019, 08:44:39 PM »
Sorry to hear you are struggling. Stand tall and get back in this fight.

I avoided this place because I didn't want to admit my failings - lots of people on here said they'd looked up to my example and I felt like I'd let everyone down
That’s understandable, but don’t let shame get the best of you. We are a community to build each other up when we need it. I agree with Pete, you are a success. Big picture is that you have improved leaps and bounds. All the best,

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #414 on: June 05, 2019, 01:22:44 PM »
Day 1 complete. Bit of a busy day but checking in clean. Will post something more comprehensive tomorrow.
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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #415 on: June 06, 2019, 12:39:37 AM »
Today is the start of day 2. I've just been pondering: why is it that it's been so difficult to gain momentum since I fell off the wagon at the end of March? There are a number of factors:

- Frankly, I really enjoyed going on chat rooms. It was a cheap and easy ego boost; I'm good at talking to women and people seem to find me attractive; it make me feel good in a way. It's a classic drug: easy, effective, reliable.
- I wasn't suffering any real side effects in terms of sexual performance etc. I found that if I cut out the apps on the day I was planning to have sex, I would be fine.
- I hadn't received anything to shock me out of it (i.e. a message from someone I'd previously been chatting to, who'd been really hurt by me)
- I'm having a really stressful time of late and it acted as an easy escape from the difficulties of life.
- I've not really got any proper accountability networks to rely on, to challenge me on my behaviours.

So basically, I was relying on my own willpower to quit.

But on the flipside, there are many, many compelling reasons not to go on chat rooms:
1. It's a form of infidelity. It's massively unfair on my wife.
2. As a result of 1, it threatens to destabilise my family. I can't be doing that to them.
3. I have no way of controlling it / keeping the usage time down / keeping it to friendly chat. I'm incapable of doing so.
4. It has an impact on my health, as I end up spending time when I should be sleeping or relaxing on my phone.
5. It has an impact on my job, as I'm distracted from my work.
6. It is an insult to the people I've  hurt before when I've ended up in online relationships with them.
7. It's unfair on the people I talk to, who might develop false hope of a romantic relationship with me.
8. It doesn't stop me from having sex, but it diminishes my sexual desire for my wife and to some extent my sexual performance.
9. It's massively against God's will for my life. It's also a sin.

And when I quit, and when I'm clean: I'm a better husband, better dad, better coworker, kinder and more aware person, a better servant of God.

I don't really believe in setting a zillion goals following a reboot. I think it's more a question of thinking: what went wrong and how can I make it better? A few things spring to mind:
1. I shouldn't neglect my relationship with God. I need to be up, praying and seeking him in the morning.
2. I shouldn't let the stresses of work overwhelm me. I need a better outlet for this.
3. I need to spend less time on my phone. To this end I've installed a tracker app so monitor my overall phone use.
4. I need better and more positive real-life relationships. I find this one the hardest, to be honest.

But anyway, it's day two: I don't need chat rooms in my life; I don't need to go back; and the better and greater joy is found in a clean life. Please hold me in your prayers and please keep me going through these tough few days.
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aquarius25

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #416 on: June 06, 2019, 10:08:29 AM »
Good insights! Something I would encourage you to ask yourself to find those deep root causes, Example would be in the 1 reason "it feels good" and "boosts your ego" the question would be why do you need this? Are you not feeling appreciated? Are you not feeling needed/ wanted in your relationship with your wife? What is causing you to need that and how can you deal with the root causes in your relationship with your wife and with God? I know my husband didn't have a lot of confidence. He had to accept and learn to love himself, to learn that he is perfectly created just as he is and that he is enough. Women talk a lot about being insecure but men don't talk about it as much. I feel like they are just as insecure though. They need to know that they are desired and needed just as much as women do. This is because we are all human and we were all created to connect with each other. My point being look at each reason why you do look at porn and ask yourself what is the root? What am I missing or needing in my heart and in my relationships that I am try to fill with porn and why? Then when you realize you can start to take healthy steps to replace it with more constructive and fulfilling things. Heck I would encourage you to sit down and talk with your wife about it. Have her answer the same questions, you can support each other. Then in addition to building good communication you are both able to strengthen each other and you won't feel alone in this. I think it is important for both partners to openly discuss their shortcomings and struggles. It prevents one partner from feeling like they are the only one who is struggling. Everyone struggles with something, you are not alone. At the end of the day ask yourself with each of these reasons, "Why am I not enough in this area? What void is porn filling an why? What do I need for me to feel fulfilled in this area?" Or even  ask "What lie am I believing about myself?" An example would be in my husbands case he was believing that he was not good enough just as he is. That is a lie, a complete lie, because he is more than enough, he is incredible. So once the lie is identified we asked "What truth can I replace this lie with?"

This is just a suggestion. These are questions and steps that helped us get to our root causes. Things still come up sometimes but we both feel like now we have to tools to handle them. If these don't work for you than you can completely disregard them, lol. I will be praying for you and your family!

PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #417 on: June 06, 2019, 12:29:53 PM »
Those are all good questions, Aquarius. I think there are a few factors in play:

1. I actually do quite like myself when I'm clean and everything. Life is good: I have a loving wife, gorgeous children, good job, house etc. If I look back to (say) January, I was happy, clean, stable. It's a bit like a drug in that respect: once I'm clean of it and my emotions are stable I'm in a good place.
2. I do think that my relationship with God slipped in the run up to my slip. I've been having difficulties at church relating to my daughter. Plus I was feeling really unsettled as a result of my dad announcing he's remarrying.
3. I have a lot of negative thoughts about myself, much like your husband. I can bat them away and believe I'm who God says I am, but then they do creep back in when troubles come.
4. the fact is, chat rooms don't fill a hole as such because there is no logical hole. (For example: sex with my wife is great! When I'm clean, we'll have sex a couple of times a week, it feels good, we both come... I find her really attractive too). Chat rooms just become like any other high - more like an escape than a hole. So I think I need to ask myself how I can better cope with stress, with doubts and how I can be a more resilient person. And how I can dig into better things - God, nature, friends, relationships - rather than retreating first to middle circle behaviour (e.g. excessive phone use, abandonment of usual prayer times etc) and then to chat room use.

I'm going to talk to my wife about it all in more detail, might help her to help me. I'm so keen to get properly clean!
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PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #418 on: June 07, 2019, 01:15:57 PM »
Well, I'm on to day three. It's so important to keep my head forward and not looking back - no good will come from pining for the past. I've quit and I'm getting clean, not because the high isn't enjoyable, but because the high is deadly. And life can be clean and pleasurable and fun and even sexy at times and those things can be achieved without making horrible compromises.
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Pete McVries

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #419 on: June 08, 2019, 09:37:59 AM »
Fighting on!
nine months clean and counting...

PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #420 on: June 09, 2019, 02:27:51 AM »
Today is day five. Off the top of my head, here are some of the benefits so far of being clean:

- I feel less morally compromised. Just better overall. I feel cleaner.
- I'm more present with friends and family.
- I've installed a phone use tracker and I've been on or under two hours a day each day since the start of this reboot. I'd like to get this down further, maybe to 1h30, but it's helped me examine the phone usage side of things.
- I was having some trouble with how my penis felt (oversensitivity) but that's all gone
- I don't feel like I have to plan times when my wife and I have sex. We had it spontaneously on Friday night before bed, which was really good.
- I can go to church today with a clean outlook and knowing I'm not compromised.

I've still got a long long way to go. I still feel like my spiritual life is not where it should be, and I'm still stressed about work. Both of these are areas that I need to focus on, so that I don't fall foul of the triggers that lead me to relapse. Also I need to not look back. If I'm honest with you all, part of the reason I quit was because I had a very open offer of sleeping with another woman who lives locally to me. On Tuesday morning I had a crossroads moment: if I keep going with this I could destroy my marriage and family for the sake of my lust. In spite of the massive danger, there's still a part of me that grieves for what I've walked away from, and I need to let that part of me die entirely. Or more actively, I need to kill it.
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Pete McVries

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #421 on: June 09, 2019, 06:37:37 AM »
In spite of the massive danger, there's still a part of me that grieves for what I've walked away from, and I need to let that part of me die entirely. Or more actively, I need to kill it.

Click me

Maybe, it's the wrong approach. If we are assuming that we are addicted for life, maybe we shouldn't try to kill the 'lust' or the 'addiction' but rather learn how to cope with it or how to keep it under control and not act out anymore? Killing something is a final act and perhaps it is impossible in our case? Just some food for thought!

Take care and keep on going, seems like you are doing all the right things to get back on track!

lots of people on here said they'd looked up to my example and I felt like I'd let everyone down.

You are not a shining example (who is and who really wants to be one?!) but you are one of us who is showing us how to save one's neck... 8)
nine months clean and counting...

PE30

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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #422 on: June 09, 2019, 01:25:52 PM »
Pete, I think you're right - I'm an addict for life, but let's hope that I live the rest of my life in recovery and not in the grips of addiction. I think the "killing" of an addiction is something that we have to do over and over again. It might be in the grand gesture - deleting all our apps, installing blockers etc - but it's more accurately a daily (or sometimes hourly) choice. I'm killing it right now because I'm choosing to be on here instead of pining after what I've lost. I hope that makes sense.

Just to say that I've installed an app called ActionDash - this has been really helpful in enabling my to keep an eye on my phone use. It's shone a light on just how many hours I waste on my phone when I'm spiralling / relapsing.
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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #423 on: June 10, 2019, 03:18:52 PM »
Day six. It's weird: this is the first proper reboot I've done that hasn't been precipitated by some external trigger (my wife getting suspicious, a message out of the blue from someone, etc). As a result, I feel happier and less devastated, but the temptation to relapse is stronger. After all, it would be easy to hide and without immediate consequence. However I think it's probably good to reboot in this manner. Guilt fades, suspicion diminishes, and at some point we all have to live our lives with our own inner moral compass as our guide. So it's down to me to live the life I'm supposed to live.
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Re: Back On The Wagon: 2
« Reply #424 on: June 12, 2019, 12:26:09 PM »
Day eight almost over with!

Probably the trickiest day on the reboot so far, as I was working from home. I was tempted a few times. But I've stayed the course. I think it sometimes helps to recognise the temptation at the start of the day, realise that it's going to be a difficult day, and resolve to keep clean. In my case, I achieved this by having lots of music on (including Christian music first thing), keeping as close to my to-do list as possible, and using safer spaces (e.g. talking to friends) when I was feeling bored of working.

I am due to be WFHing next week as well, but my wife is going to be with me so that'll be nice. I mean, it's no guarantee of staying clean (sadly it's far too easy to hide this sort of activity) but it's a help.

I am taking it one day at a time. I am turning 40 in 2 months' time and my aim is to make it through the last couple of months of my 30s clean. But I can't do that unless I am clean today and clean tomorrow, and that's about as far ahead as I dare look.

For those who pray, please pray that I'll stay firm.
Porn free since 2 February 2018.

Fighting on.