Author Topic: Not gonna go it alone  (Read 8380 times)

Non-Dual Adventurer

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #350 on: July 12, 2019, 10:52:49 AM »
I hope that today is a day filled with peace, love, and joy for you. I hope that you find yourself noticing life's innocent wonders; a friendly dog, a cute child, a beautiful tree, whatever it may be. I hope you feel loved and embraced by the universe itself, and that you feel yourself not as separate, but as fundamental to this moment we call the Now.

achilles heel

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #351 on: July 12, 2019, 11:33:49 AM »
Congratulations on writing new chapters of your success story every day and thanks for remaining an inspiration!  :)

I could say the same thing. In real life, nobody knew about my P addiction (and still doesn't). I don't have close friends like that. My friends are superficial. I know it sucks but... Coming here and getting this out of my chest: "Look, I'm a P addict, that's how I feel", was what I needed. It might help me get clean and not suffer in silence like a dog all my life. Also, this place is in my opinion the best place for P addiction. People here know a lot and there are people here who have streaks in double or triple digits. It goes without saying that this is where everyone P addict should be. It's like an AA online meeting but for P. Porn Addicts Anonymous or something like that. PAA hahaha  :D

Definitely! Telling a few people face-to-face has been helpful, but the group here has really made a difference. The people I have told have just sort of been supportive in the best way they know how, but the people here (you all) really know what it's like and can talk through things in a way more helpful and specific way. PAA all the way!  ;D

This is so important, people who have no idea about addiction in general or specifically porn addiction can't be really supportive the same way as someone who knows what we are really going through.

I liked your comparison of reboot and antibiotics, we have to kill this addiction even if it seems to be already gone. This is a chronic disease and we must still take it serious after weeks, months and maybe even years of abstinence.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #352 on: July 12, 2019, 06:24:42 PM »
Thanks for the tip, squid! I'm pretty sure I'm getting enough sleep during the night (I go to bed pretty early and wake up naturally), but a timed nap isn't a bad idea. Probably better than a 20 minute youtube break if I'm honest lol...

And thanks everyone for your continuing support! It really does take the edge off the day to come here and participate in this outpouring of positivity. Really proud of this community.

As for today, though, I had another close encounter with fate (to put it dramatically). I was working on a project at work, and I thought to myself, "Oh, you know what would be cool for this presentation? Stock footage." So I found a stock footage website, and I was scrolling around for something, looking at clips of ocean waves and traffic and stuff. Then there were some with women (from the shoulders up, nothing really objectionable). Then there was one with bikinis. Then, all of a sudden, I sort of felt myself going into that familiar trance where my heart started racing and the blood started flowing and the world around me started to fall away. There was no porn. I was on campus in an office with an open door, so it's not like there was really a risk of PMOing or anything. But the whole situation felt very similar to the early stages of a relapse (mindlessly scrolling through videos, maybe with the chance of seeing a beautiful woman then clicking for more and more).

Luckily, as the addictive trance fell over me, I managed to recognize it for what it was, so I closed the browser window and just sort of stared at the wall while I caught my breath and observed my body settling back down. Things quieted down okay, but I felt off for the rest of the afternoon. On some level I felt afterwards like I did after a relapse, like I almost felt compelled to confess to my boss (confess what, that I was scrolling through stock footage and it reminded of me when I used to scroll through porn?). I felt that same kind of guilt (probably something my mind/body is used to feeling after a dopamine rush like that), and it was hard for me to make eye contact with him while we were talking.

But then I got home, had dinner, watched some tv (even an extra episode because it's Friday, and I felt like that would be okay). Long story short, I will not be using stock footage for that project. Or ever, probably. I was really worried that that episode this afternoon would mess me up a lot once I got home, but things have been chill. Made it through another unexpected close call. What a week it has been! First that girl in the park and now this. Luckily nobody told me recovery would be easy or I'd be asking for my money back, lol.

Here is to a bright and restorative weekend! Wherever we are in our recovery, we've earned it!

Lero

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #353 on: July 13, 2019, 03:41:20 AM »
Outstanding, bro! You ended up in the middle of something that pushes us addicts to relapse but you moved on. This is great. In the past, after something like that I would've gone to the restroom to look for some more on my phone and jerk off. I know how it works very well: The tunnel vision where nothing matters except the craving for the dopamine rush. The body starts moving on autopilot and before you know, your dick is in your hand (I know you couldn't have done this there but what if you were home?). However, after some time, we develop the ability to see it coming and stop ourselves. You can already do this. The thing is we are like alcoholics. They can't drink a glass of wine at dinner anymore and we can't look at a beach footage either. And we must not fall into the trap of: "I have 150 days without P, I could handle a picture or some beach video, come on." But it's not really that simple. And we also need to be aware that triggers might show up just like that, in places where we are sure nothing should be there. We need a strategy to deal with this too. What you did was great. Moving from there and doing something else might help too, if you can. Anyway, it's not the end of the world. Like you said, we have to learn how to live our lives around this. Good luck. You are an inspiration for this entire forum. Streak in triple digits! This is wow!
« Last Edit: July 13, 2019, 03:48:54 AM by Lero »

Lero

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #354 on: July 13, 2019, 03:55:25 AM »
I'm pretty sure I'm getting enough sleep during the night (I go to bed pretty early and wake up naturally), but a timed nap isn't a bad idea. Probably better than a 20 minute youtube break if I'm honest lol...

To be honest, I would rather sleep than wasting time with Youtube (which is full of triggers by the way). And too much staring at a screen affects attention spawn. If you don't believe it, read about it.


achilles heel

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #355 on: July 13, 2019, 06:01:53 AM »
It's just great you recognize those patterns and analyze how they resemble your porn behaviour, that's the only way it works. My brain used to trick me into relapsing in such situations (although not in a public space, obviously) by telling me "You are here for another reason, if you stumble upon a little nudity it's not your fault." (in sports news for example). As soon as we enter the trance of mindless browsing, we are already in big danger. Fifth month and you are still as cautious as in the beginning - that's the attitude that will lead you to success!  :)

squid

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #356 on: July 13, 2019, 12:51:48 PM »
Nice work blue!  You're in the tricky stage of rebooting that I haven't gotten through yet.  To use a metaphor, you've left pmos orbit and joined us in the international space station of freedom, and know that it is worth it to not pmo.  Now it seems your emotions and feelings are coming back after so long of numbness.  You're re-entering the atmosphere my friend.  Finding where those emotions and feelings belong and fit into building a beautiful life.  They certainly don't belong being wasted on porn, we know that.  But as you descend from the sky you get to choose where to use that incredibly powerful energy.  You got this!

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #357 on: July 13, 2019, 06:56:52 PM »
You all are awesome, thanks so much (as always) for your incredible support and insights!

Lero, both of your comments are spot-on. I think that definitely could have had a different outcome if I had been at home, and I'm really grateful that I wasn't. (Although, that website would probably have been blocked at home anyway, thanks to my hardcore filters.) Either way, it was a close scrape, and I'm glad I can learn from it. Plus I think you're right, sleeping would be a way better choice than youtube. Gonna work on that this week.

achilles, I know exactly that feeling of "you are here for another reason, if you stumble upon a little nudity it's not your fault." It is the source of too many relapses to count for me. Like one time a few years ago, I thought I was doing "research" on how search engines are sexist by serving sexualized results for feminine terms and just regular ones for masculine terms. Well, they did serve me sexualized stuff, and I fell down hard. And then there's that game of seeing how close to sexy nudity I can get without actually getting to it. "No, it's fine, they're fully clothed." And then it's a full-blown relapse a half hour later. There are lots of ways to rationalize ourselves into trouble, and that's not something I'm willing to do anymore. It used to be that I'd feel "powerful" after a few weeks without PMO, but I haven't felt that same powerful feeling at all this time around. And that's probably a good thing: it was probably the feeling of invincibility that always came before a fall.

I really like the orbit metaphor, squid! It does feel like I'm coming back to earth in a lot of ways. I do think I have started to feel more emotions lately, and those aren't something I have been especially good at dealing with (I never gave myself the chance without numbing it all with porn). But I also have a couple years of meditation and a few months of more intensive focus on my emotions to help me sort through them. Maybe it's a weird thing to say, but I haven't cried in years. In the last couple weeks or so, though, I have caught myself welling up at scenes in tv shows and stuff. I guess it means something, and I guess I'll say it means I'm starting to ground back into real emotions.

Today was way more relaxed in comparison. I think I probably watched too much tv today, but, hey, it's Saturday. It's been a crazy week, and I figured I could take it a little easier than usual. But now at the end of the day, I might have taken it a little too far.

But, I did get a big proposal turned in today for a presentation next year. It's been hanging over my head for a few months, and I finally did it and turned it in. So that was a big fat check on my to-do list, and it feels good. I also got started on something else that I wanted to finish, but I got distracted and then had to cook. So it didn't happen today, but there isn't a huge rush. I'll get it.

I have caught myself in some romantic/relationship-oriented fantasies in the last few days, nothing sexual, but I know they don't usually stay that way. It's probably in part because of the triggers this past week. Just something I'm keeping an eye on. Spending time fantasizing/wishing I was with a woman is not really productive for finding or building a relationship with one, and in the past, these kinds of non-sexual fantasies have usually been the first baby steps toward relapse. So I'm keeping myself aware and trying to stay ahead of them.

achilles heel

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #358 on: July 14, 2019, 03:04:36 AM »
achilles, I know exactly that feeling of "you are here for another reason, if you stumble upon a little nudity it's not your fault." It is the source of too many relapses to count for me. Like one time a few years ago, I thought I was doing "research" on how search engines are sexist by serving sexualized results for feminine terms and just regular ones for masculine terms. Well, they did serve me sexualized stuff, and I fell down hard. And then there's that game of seeing how close to sexy nudity I can get without actually getting to it. "No, it's fine, they're fully clothed." And then it's a full-blown relapse a half hour later. There are lots of ways to rationalize ourselves into trouble, and that's not something I'm willing to do anymore. It used to be that I'd feel "powerful" after a few weeks without PMO, but I haven't felt that same powerful feeling at all this time around. And that's probably a good thing: it was probably the feeling of invincibility that always came before a fall.

Right, those rationalizations start way before even getting in real trouble and my strategy now is "No negotiation.", whatever thought about "Isn't this allowed, because it's not even a porn substitute?" arises, I just shut it down immediately. I can also relate to the feeling of being "invincible" when I reached a really long streak for the first times. "Those heavy restrictions aren't neccessary anymore, you've got this under control." and there I relapsed again.

To me it's important to see how those patterns are easily activated even after more than 4 months, you're working as a scout for the group walking ahead and telling about possible danger further down the road. Your thoughts and reflections are important for those of us who will hopefully follow your example.  :)

Lero

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #359 on: July 14, 2019, 05:39:56 AM »
You're doing great, Blue Heron! Quitting P must be number 1 priority and we have to do everything to make it happen. I had to stop going to Youtube, stop going to Facebook and even stop watching some movies and TV series because of triggers. Everything triggers me. And it's easy to say: "Fuck, man! This sucks! I can't do things that normal human beings do!" This is not a good mindset to have. We must not think negatively while fighting this hard thing. Instead, it's like you said, and I liked when you said that: We have to enjoy our life the way it is. There is so much to it than not being able to watch TV series, Youtube or whatever. To be honest, sometimes these are a waste of time.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2019, 05:42:38 AM by Lero »

zander13

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #360 on: July 14, 2019, 01:50:25 PM »
Keep moving forward dog.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #361 on: July 14, 2019, 07:44:23 PM »
Keep moving forward dog.

Thanks! I'll just keep doing what I can, a day at a time!

Right, those rationalizations start way before even getting in real trouble and my strategy now is "No negotiation.", whatever thought about "Isn't this allowed, because it's not even a porn substitute?" arises, I just shut it down immediately. I can also relate to the feeling of being "invincible" when I reached a really long streak for the first times. "Those heavy restrictions aren't neccessary anymore, you've got this under control." and there I relapsed again.

To me it's important to see how those patterns are easily activated even after more than 4 months, you're working as a scout for the group walking ahead and telling about possible danger further down the road. Your thoughts and reflections are important for those of us who will hopefully follow your example.  :)

This is an awesome thought. Yeah, I've definitely taken up a "no negotiations" policy, and it's an important thing. It's been a bit shift for me to change from thinking that my goal was to go back to living life like "normal" as though I didn't have a PMO problem and instead focus on living my life carefully and deliberately knowing that I do have a PMO problem. The goal isn't to out-grow my protections. The goal is to make them habits.

And thanks! I like the idea of being a forward scout for the rest of y'all. It makes me feel even more accountable and responsible not to let you down with a relapse.

You're doing great, Blue Heron! Quitting P must be number 1 priority and we have to do everything to make it happen. I had to stop going to Youtube, stop going to Facebook and even stop watching some movies and TV series because of triggers. Everything triggers me. And it's easy to say: "Fuck, man! This sucks! I can't do things that normal human beings do!" This is not a good mindset to have. We must not think negatively while fighting this hard thing. Instead, it's like you said, and I liked when you said that: We have to enjoy our life the way it is. There is so much to it than not being able to watch TV series, Youtube or whatever. To be honest, sometimes these are a waste of time.

Thanks, Lero! It definitely involves changing our lives and not wishing we could live like "normal" people do. I know I wasted a lot of time and made a lot of mistakes because I was trying to set my standards according to what was okay for people who weren't recovering from an addiction. I just can't afford to do that: I have to live life in a way that takes care of my particular vulnerabilities.

Today was a pretty good day, too, overall.

I was just telling achilles in his journal about how I had a great opportunity and plan to talk to a woman at church today, but I just straight-up didn't. It's like the connection between my brain and body just didn't work. I wanted to talk to her. I knew what I was going to say. But I just couldn't/didn't do it. Kind of weird and disappointing, but it is what it is. I've heard that she's moving soon anyway, so it's not like she's going to be "the one" anyway, but still. Would have been nice to get some practice talking to someone. Maybe next time.

After that, I came home, took a little nap, and spent most of the rest of the day cooking for the week. I made a recipe that I thought I was really good. For a moment, I got carried away thinking how awesome it would be to have someone there to share it with me, someone to cook for. But I sort of just let that thought go past me, and I tried instead to just focus on the moment and pleasure of eating good food.

On an unrelated note: In the last few days I've been feeling like progress has slowed down a lot for me. And that's probably a good thing, but it is a little weird-feeling. In the early stages of a streak, it seems like you're hitting a milestone every few days. 10 days is a party, then 20, then 50. But after a few months, getting through a week or two doesn't feel as special.

Now don't get the wrong idea: I dont' want to take this streak for granted or act like I'm not extremely grateful for the progress I've been making. I am sort of blown away by it every day. I don't mean to complain. Probably, I mean it mostly as a warning for all of you as you continue to progress (putting on my scout hat, lol). The longer you stay clean, the less exciting it is and the less dramatic your progress feels. And that makes sense: it all becomes more routine and more habitual. It isn't as much of a fight every day just to stay clean. You're not in constant danger, and, of course, you can't get lazy or complacent, but life slowly creeps back to normal as habits of sobriety settle in. There might be the odd unexpected trigger or urge that you have to respond to, but, for the most part, it might just start to get to the point where all you really think to post is "yeah, today was fine."

And that's probably the best thing, honestly. But it isn't very flashy. Tomorrow is day 130, but I'm not really pumped up about it. Just quietly pleased. I don't really know where I'm going with all this. I guess I'll just say that it isn't always as hard as the first few weeks (man, are those first few weeks excruciating). It does get easier in some ways, but the challenge then becomes staying careful and being alert even when life isn't forcing you to be as constantly as before.

Keep it going, guys! Knowing I get to check in with you all at the end of the day definitely helps me to stay fresh and engaged. Quieter, easier days are ahead: you just have to keep going!

Mondays are usually later for me. I hope to post tomorrow, but if not, I'll be back on Tuesday! Cheers!

squid

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #362 on: July 14, 2019, 10:27:13 PM »
Keep moving forward dog.

Thanks! I'll just keep doing what I can, a day at a time!

Right, those rationalizations start way before even getting in real trouble and my strategy now is "No negotiation.", whatever thought about "Isn't this allowed, because it's not even a porn substitute?" arises, I just shut it down immediately. I can also relate to the feeling of being "invincible" when I reached a really long streak for the first times. "Those heavy restrictions aren't neccessary anymore, you've got this under control." and there I relapsed again.

To me it's important to see how those patterns are easily activated even after more than 4 months, you're working as a scout for the group walking ahead and telling about possible danger further down the road. Your thoughts and reflections are important for those of us who will hopefully follow your example.  :)

This is an awesome thought. Yeah, I've definitely taken up a "no negotiations" policy, and it's an important thing. It's been a bit shift for me to change from thinking that my goal was to go back to living life like "normal" as though I didn't have a PMO problem and instead focus on living my life carefully and deliberately knowing that I do have a PMO problem. The goal isn't to out-grow my protections. The goal is to make them habits.

And thanks! I like the idea of being a forward scout for the rest of y'all. It makes me feel even more accountable and responsible not to let you down with a relapse.

You're doing great, Blue Heron! Quitting P must be number 1 priority and we have to do everything to make it happen. I had to stop going to Youtube, stop going to Facebook and even stop watching some movies and TV series because of triggers. Everything triggers me. And it's easy to say: "Fuck, man! This sucks! I can't do things that normal human beings do!" This is not a good mindset to have. We must not think negatively while fighting this hard thing. Instead, it's like you said, and I liked when you said that: We have to enjoy our life the way it is. There is so much to it than not being able to watch TV series, Youtube or whatever. To be honest, sometimes these are a waste of time.

Thanks, Lero! It definitely involves changing our lives and not wishing we could live like "normal" people do. I know I wasted a lot of time and made a lot of mistakes because I was trying to set my standards according to what was okay for people who weren't recovering from an addiction. I just can't afford to do that: I have to live life in a way that takes care of my particular vulnerabilities.

Today was a pretty good day, too, overall.

I was just telling achilles in his journal about how I had a great opportunity and plan to talk to a woman at church today, but I just straight-up didn't. It's like the connection between my brain and body just didn't work. I wanted to talk to her. I knew what I was going to say. But I just couldn't/didn't do it. Kind of weird and disappointing, but it is what it is. I've heard that she's moving soon anyway, so it's not like she's going to be "the one" anyway, but still. Would have been nice to get some practice talking to someone. Maybe next time.

After that, I came home, took a little nap, and spent most of the rest of the day cooking for the week. I made a recipe that I thought I was really good. For a moment, I got carried away thinking how awesome it would be to have someone there to share it with me, someone to cook for. But I sort of just let that thought go past me, and I tried instead to just focus on the moment and pleasure of eating good food.

On an unrelated note: In the last few days I've been feeling like progress has slowed down a lot for me. And that's probably a good thing, but it is a little weird-feeling. In the early stages of a streak, it seems like you're hitting a milestone every few days. 10 days is a party, then 20, then 50. But after a few months, getting through a week or two doesn't feel as special.

Now don't get the wrong idea: I dont' want to take this streak for granted or act like I'm not extremely grateful for the progress I've been making. I am sort of blown away by it every day. I don't mean to complain. Probably, I mean it mostly as a warning for all of you as you continue to progress (putting on my scout hat, lol). The longer you stay clean, the less exciting it is and the less dramatic your progress feels. And that makes sense: it all becomes more routine and more habitual. It isn't as much of a fight every day just to stay clean. You're not in constant danger, and, of course, you can't get lazy or complacent, but life slowly creeps back to normal as habits of sobriety settle in. There might be the odd unexpected trigger or urge that you have to respond to, but, for the most part, it might just start to get to the point where all you really think to post is "yeah, today was fine."

And that's probably the best thing, honestly. But it isn't very flashy. Tomorrow is day 130, but I'm not really pumped up about it. Just quietly pleased. I don't really know where I'm going with all this. I guess I'll just say that it isn't always as hard as the first few weeks (man, are those first few weeks excruciating). It does get easier in some ways, but the challenge then becomes staying careful and being alert even when life isn't forcing you to be as constantly as before.

Keep it going, guys! Knowing I get to check in with you all at the end of the day definitely helps me to stay fresh and engaged. Quieter, easier days are ahead: you just have to keep going!

Mondays are usually later for me. I hope to post tomorrow, but if not, I'll be back on Tuesday! Cheers!

Keep your head up man, you are doing great!  The comments you make in this community are really awesome, our scout!

pichaelthompson

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #363 on: July 15, 2019, 12:54:23 PM »
Yep, you're doing great with your urges as always and it's good that you have found ways to deal with them effectively! It can feel tiring when we look at life as a battle between moments of urges vs. moments of relaxation, and I think you do a good job of just enjoying the moments of peacefulness while letting the urges come and go, whenever they do and however strong they are. Keep it up, and I hope to keep following in your footsteps!

Non-Dual Adventurer

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #364 on: July 15, 2019, 01:51:39 PM »
Great stuff Blue!

Thanks for posting so frankly about the reality of how you feel right now in your reboot.
Having a 9 or 10 month long streak before and having it be less significant led me back to P. Months 9 and 10 were spent occasionally fantasising, I downloaded tinder 'cos I didn't know anyone, then started watching swimsuit youtube videos. I slid slowly and gradually into watching P again after that. There's never a moment or a time when you can say 'yes, now I'm clean for X days/months/years so now I can do what I want.' I also think that once clean for long, it can be harder to remember what it was like not to be clean. It's hard to remember that feeling of being absolutely flat with no energy and no motivation for anything. This recovery is an entire lifestyle change and upheaval. It's not really about overcoming P at the end of the day, it's about living a fulfilled life, and that's what you're doing right now man. And it's only gonna get better.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #365 on: July 15, 2019, 08:08:31 PM »
Keep your head up man, you are doing great!  The comments you make in this community are really awesome, our scout!

Thanks, squid! I'll keep doing my best!

Yep, you're doing great with your urges as always and it's good that you have found ways to deal with them effectively! It can feel tiring when we look at life as a battle between moments of urges vs. moments of relaxation, and I think you do a good job of just enjoying the moments of peacefulness while letting the urges come and go, whenever they do and however strong they are. Keep it up, and I hope to keep following in your footsteps!

Thanks as always! I'm definitely working more on savoring the moment. That has been my pet project for the last few weeks, and I think I'm getting better at it. All progress is progress, isn't it?

Great stuff Blue!

Thanks for posting so frankly about the reality of how you feel right now in your reboot.
Having a 9 or 10 month long streak before and having it be less significant led me back to P. Months 9 and 10 were spent occasionally fantasising, I downloaded tinder 'cos I didn't know anyone, then started watching swimsuit youtube videos. I slid slowly and gradually into watching P again after that. There's never a moment or a time when you can say 'yes, now I'm clean for X days/months/years so now I can do what I want.' I also think that once clean for long, it can be harder to remember what it was like not to be clean. It's hard to remember that feeling of being absolutely flat with no energy and no motivation for anything. This recovery is an entire lifestyle change and upheaval. It's not really about overcoming P at the end of the day, it's about living a fulfilled life, and that's what you're doing right now man. And it's only gonna get better.

Thanks, you're right! I felt like it was important to be honest about how it just sort of feels slow at the moment. I think we can get the idea that a long streak is a free ticket to an exciting and completely happy life. If we expect that and still have crummy days, that disappointment could lead us to a relapse. It really is all about a permanent lifestyle change, not about just doing our time until we can go back to "business as usual." (It was that business as usual that got us addicted in the first place!)

Today was pretty good. Not much to it. Went to work, got some things done. Ended up getting home earlier than usual for a Monday, which I'm happy about. Pretty normal day to start, hopefully, a pretty normal week.

squid

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #366 on: July 15, 2019, 09:58:56 PM »
Nice, off to a good start to the week!  Do you have any thoughts about how to handle weekends?  I feel like they are tricky because I don't have to go to work and suddenly have a ton of free time.

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #367 on: July 16, 2019, 03:10:45 AM »
Nice, off to a good start to the week!  Do you have any thoughts about how to handle weekends?  I feel like they are tricky because I don't have to go to work and suddenly have a ton of free time.

I have the same problem. Not going to work frees up many hours and I don't really have a way to fill all of them.

Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #368 on: July 16, 2019, 07:48:20 AM »
Pretty normal week? You deserve more than that my dear friend i wish you have  a ridiculously AMAZING WEEK  ;D
Keep fighting!
You are resilient!
You are loved!
Even though you’re struggling with your own reboot, you’re always there for everyone else, to listen and support. We notice that, and thank you.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2019, 08:03:34 AM by Thank you for all that you do for me »

achilles heel

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #369 on: July 16, 2019, 04:36:05 PM »
It really is all about a permanent lifestyle change, not about just doing our time until we can go back to "business as usual." (It was that business as usual that got us addicted in the first place!)

This is so right and at the same time so much easier said than done. I hope I will truly understand this and delete the secret thought of "When will I be cured and live like all the others?", but it's hard to accept that our business as usual will sooner or later end in porn again, as you mention.

Congratulations on further advancing with your new life!

squid

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #370 on: July 16, 2019, 04:45:08 PM »
It really is all about a permanent lifestyle change, not about just doing our time until we can go back to "business as usual." (It was that business as usual that got us addicted in the first place!)

This is so right and at the same time so much easier said than done. I hope I will truly understand this and delete the secret thought of "When will I be cured and live like all the others?", but it's hard to accept that our business as usual will sooner or later end in porn again, as you mention.

Congratulations on further advancing with your new life!

It's a sobering thought, but it makes sense.  My only consolation is that our new habits will grow old over time and will become the new business as usual.  We are still young men and the future is bright as we finally face our fear rather than running to p.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #371 on: July 16, 2019, 05:59:42 PM »
Nice, off to a good start to the week!  Do you have any thoughts about how to handle weekends?  I feel like they are tricky because I don't have to go to work and suddenly have a ton of free time.

I have the same problem. Not going to work frees up many hours and I don't really have a way to fill all of them.

Great question, guys! I don't know that I have an equally great answer, unfortunately. The thing is that I usually feel like the weekends are the busiest days of the week for me. Usually, I spend the week in class, and Saturday is the only chance I have to do homework and stuff, and then I usually end up spending a good chunk of the day on Sunday with church stuff. By the time Monday rolls around, it almost feels like a break sometimes.

But I guess that's part of the answer: stay busy. In a perfect world, weekends would be the time for me to work on my own projects and hobbies that I don't have time for during the week. But I think taking time to relax in safe ways is also good. Even if I'm not being super productive on a Saturday or a day off, spending an hour or two watching a tv show is way better than PMO, and I think it's important to rest and recharge for more work. Staying "busy" doesn't mean staying 100% efficiently productive all the time. It just means not saying, "Well, there's nothing else to do...might as well PMO."

And maybe that sounds silly, but just last week, I finished my tasks for the day like a half hour earlier than I expected, and my brain said literally these words to me: "Hey, that leaves you thirty minutes for porn. It's been a while, and you've got nothing else to do right now." I actually laughed at myself (what a bold suggestion!) and then just said, "Thanks, but no. I think I'll just read a book." Not necessarily a productive activity, but it was something that kept me busy and not focused on PMO.

Pretty normal week? You deserve more than that my dear friend i wish you have  a ridiculously AMAZING WEEK  ;D
Keep fighting!
You are resilient!
You are loved!
Even though you’re struggling with your own reboot, you’re always there for everyone else, to listen and support. We notice that, and thank you.

Thanks, man! I should have set my sights higher, lol. Always appreciate your good comments!

It really is all about a permanent lifestyle change, not about just doing our time until we can go back to "business as usual." (It was that business as usual that got us addicted in the first place!)

This is so right and at the same time so much easier said than done. I hope I will truly understand this and delete the secret thought of "When will I be cured and live like all the others?", but it's hard to accept that our business as usual will sooner or later end in porn again, as you mention.

Congratulations on further advancing with your new life!

It's a sobering thought, but it makes sense.  My only consolation is that our new habits will grow old over time and will become the new business as usual.  We are still young men and the future is bright as we finally face our fear rather than running to p.

Yeah, this is a real, sobering realization that has started to set in. It is really tough to accept that our "normal" can't be like everyone else's or even what we think it should be. I have spent a lot of time wondering when I'll get to the point where my life is just like the life of any old guy who has never looked at or even thought about porn before. Of course, that's kind of an insane expectation to have. I can have a bright future, but I can never change the fact that I have watched porn before. That means my life can never be just like the life of someone who never has.

But that doesn't mean my life will always be worse than someone who has never struggled with it. Just that it will be different. It also doesn't do me a lot of good to wish that I was back to how I was before it all started. A) because I literally can't go back, and B) because I was honestly a weaker and less self-sufficient person before. Learning how to live with addiction (or with vulnerability to addiction if you would rather think of it that way) has forced me to be in more touch with my thoughts and emotions and has caused me to learn more about how to deal with things as they happen and to take care of myself without just running to some kind of numbing dopamine fix.

So do I sometimes wish that I had a life that was never affected by porn? Yeah, sometimes. But, if I had a choice between going to back to a version of me that hadn't looked at porn yet and the version of me that I am today, I think I would probably stick with where I am. I have a ways to go still, but I'm way more confident and capable than I ever was before. And, in some weird way, my addiction has forced me to do that growing (so I guess I should be grateful for it, but I don't think I'm ready to go that far just yet). (And these are the kinds of thoughts and realizations I would never have if it weren't for being on this forum with all you. So huge thanks to everyone for talking about these things and working on this with me!)

Today was another quiet day. Went to work, and it was normal. I ended up wasting time this afternoon. I had good plans that I would get some things done, but I ended up just not doing them and goofing off instead. I'm a little disappointed in myself for that, but I am committed to making an actual plan for tomorrow so that it doesn't happen again.

I have noticed that I have a hard time getting started on things. Once I'm started, I can work on something for as long as it takes, but I lose a lot of time on the transitions. I'm going to have to find a way to get more motivated to get started on things. And, honestly, that's true for more than just my to-do list. Like I don't really have much problem talking to women: it's just impossible for me to start a conversation. So it's definitely time to think more about how to get going and not lose my momentum in between tasks.

Thanks again for being a part of my journey. I started this journal because I realized I couldn't do it alone, and you all have helped me realize just how true that was.


Lero

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #372 on: July 17, 2019, 02:40:12 AM »
It doesn't matter if we have to always work around stimulating stuff. Yeah, maybe we could never (or at least for a long time) look even at a picture but think about this: What if you were handicapped? You had just one arm. You would be forced to live your life like this. Now that we are "just P addicts", does it mean we don't have to treat it in the same way? Yes, I am handicapped by P. I can't look at pictures, I've stopped watching my favorite TV shows, I can't watch Youtube. So be it. I live my life the way it is.

pichaelthompson

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #373 on: July 17, 2019, 10:59:29 AM »
"If I had a choice between going to back to a version of me that hadn't looked at porn yet and the version of me that I am today, I think I would probably stick with where I am."

Wow, this is truly an amazing statement. So often I get hung up on past mistakes and fantasizing scenarios of who I'd be if I didn't make those mistakes. But the best part of life is the opportunity to move forward no matter what you did in the past, good or bad. When we are able to appreciate our flaws and find ways to improve on them, we have the confidence to go forward without fear, because any mistakes we would worry about in the future can be something that also be taken in stride, and used as learning experiences. Keep doing your thing, remember that you ALWAYS have support from this community!

Non-Dual Adventurer

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Re: Not gonna go it alone
« Reply #374 on: July 17, 2019, 11:34:13 AM »
Amazing insights from all you guys!

Before I was a P addict, I was suicidally depressed and suffered debilitating anxiety. If I hadn't turned to P, it would have been something else. I guess P was just the most accessible, and I had already been warned about the dangers of drugs, but never the dangers of P. I don't know everyone's reasons for turning to P in the first place, but for me, I feel that it had a purpose in my life to numb me from the pain. It wasn't a very healthy way to deal with it at all, but it sort of worked for a time. Overcoming P has been the single most challenging thing I have ever done, probably that any of us have ever done. Now, it's a crutch I just no longer need, as I lead an otherwise happy and fulfilling life.

I truly think that someone who has been an addict and has been clean for a long time can really make an impact on the world with empathy, love, and compassion for anyone and their problems, whatever they may be. You are well on your way, BlueHeron. You transcend the need for P every single day.