Author Topic: Journal of Jay  (Read 1421 times)

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #25 on: August 04, 2019, 03:40:13 PM »
Day 15 of sobriety. 

I'm not sure of the longest I have been without porn over the past two and a half decades, but it might not have been more than 15 days if I'm brutally honest.  I'm not totally sure, but I know this is something like the longest period of my life without it, and  I feel like I've moved to a different phase with porn.  The idea of watching it is starting to feel repellent to me, and I'm aware of moving further and further away from it.

That's not to say I don't feel cravings for 'something'.  I had sex with my girlfriend a couple of times over the past couple of days, and undoubtedly I feel an urge to masturbate this evening, which I am resisting.  I know 'healthy masturbating', i.e. not fantasising to porn, might be a normal part of a healthy sexuality, but I don't want to go there just yet.  I want to continue to exercise self-control over the urges, which I suspect is just about that dopamine surge and the chase for the buzz that my brain grew used to, and almost certainly this is triggered to some degree by having had sex yesterday.

It's a double-edged sword having a girlfriend and having sex during this process.  I'm really starting to feel the benefits of my energies focused on my partner and the actual sensations involved in sex, and this is a wonderful benefit of not clouding my sexuality with the extreme images of porn that I had resorted to by the end of my addiction.  On the other hand, there is definitely a chaser effect following sex...but maybe it's good for me to learn to control those urges, too, and maybe this will strengthen my recovery.  What I can say, with surprising ease now, is that having sex with someone I love is so so so much better than the helpless chase across the tube sites to find the 'perfect scene'...how could I have ever doubted it?

I'm so grateful for starting to find my way with all this, and for the help received in this forum by the stories and struggles you all convey.  Thank you.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #26 on: August 05, 2019, 03:09:29 PM »
Day 16.

I am still far away from using porn.  I'm not feeling any interest in it at all; in fact, I feel a bit disdainful towards it.  I'm amazed at the hold it had on me...except, I guess I've come to understand that it wasn't really the porn holding me, but the neurochemical chase.  I've always looked (unconsciously or otherwise) for some way to dissociate and move away from uncomfortable feelings.   

I'm aware of obsessive compulsive thoughts trying to take hold in my mind, predominantly around my girlfriend's past, but I am consciously trying not to pursue those thoughts down the dark alleys of my mind...I know that pursuit too well, and I recognise that it has been part of what I run away from by drowning in dopamine.  My mind can be intense and heavy at times, and that has led to the need to shut it down somehow, but I'm older and more mature now, and I have so much more agency over my thoughts and moods.  So the time is right to finally remove this drug from my life.

The gym is a difficult trigger point for me, in terms of obsessing over women's bodies.  i just got back from a work out, and I was definitely too interested in the bodies of some women.  It's natural to look and be attracted, nature has to do its thing, but I have to keep on working on not obsessing.   This feels like the hardest part of my recovery at this stage.  Porn is not interesting me, but I have to be aware of other behavioural elements that are risky and unhealthy. 

On occasions over the years my addiction has moved to real women - a couple of affairs whilst in previous relationships, a handful of escorts...so I have to address the whole 'complex' of issues surrounding this.  I have no desire to ever repeat those behaviours, but I know if I don't revolutionise my sexuality, rid it of all unhealthy components, then I am at risk of going down that path.  I don't need any of it anymore.  I don't need porn, I don't need lies, I don't need to make myself feel wanted by sleeping with a sex worker or having an affair...I don't need any of that stuff.  I need my freedom, and I need to realise my capacity as a man.  Today I am grateful for being on the right path. 
« Last Edit: August 05, 2019, 03:12:07 PM by Jay2019 »

hope2reboot

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #27 on: August 05, 2019, 07:10:27 PM »
Way to go Jay!! Keep on keeping on. Sounds like understanding what’s going on in your brain is helping you a lot. That’s what also helps me tons. In fact, the first time I learned about what was happening in my brain because of PMO, I was able to quit for almost 3 years. Unfortunately I didn’t really stick with this site and the learning and remembering what the addiction did to me that I probably became complacent and ended up falling off the wagon. Was off for about 6 months but back on again fighting the good fight. God bless and stay strong!

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #28 on: August 06, 2019, 04:40:22 PM »
Way to go Jay!! Keep on keeping on. Sounds like understanding what’s going on in your brain is helping you a lot. That’s what also helps me tons. In fact, the first time I learned about what was happening in my brain because of PMO, I was able to quit for almost 3 years. Unfortunately I didn’t really stick with this site and the learning and remembering what the addiction did to me that I probably became complacent and ended up falling off the wagon. Was off for about 6 months but back on again fighting the good fight. God bless and stay strong!

Thanks man.  Really good to have people like you around during this process, and I so appreciate your encouragement.   

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #29 on: August 06, 2019, 04:48:49 PM »
Day 17.

Porn free and minimal cravings. 

I spent the day at work, having an interview, then with family this evening.  Busy day, and no extended periods alone, which helps.  I have been busy this week, and there is no obvious let up until the weekend, so I'll need to watch out for tiredness, which can be a trigger.

Anyway, another day without porn, another day towards freedom.  Tired tonight, so I'll just go with that and sleep...as opposed to waking myself up with porn and feeling shattered in the morning... that's progress.

Lero

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #30 on: August 06, 2019, 04:55:18 PM »
Great job, man! We have almost the same number of days! I don't know why but I don't relapse when I'm tired.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #31 on: August 08, 2019, 04:32:06 PM »
Great job, man! We have almost the same number of days! I don't know why but I don't relapse when I'm tired.

Thanks Lero.  Appreciate it.   

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #32 on: August 08, 2019, 04:40:41 PM »
Day 18 fell on my son's birthday.  All good.  Dinner with with him and the family, and no threat of watching porn.

Day 19...still sober, and feeling far away from porn.   I have been busy today, and feel pretty exhausted...couple more weeks of this schedule, then I'll have less work, and more time...so a new set of circumstances to handle.  I'll think more about this over the next couple of weeks, but for now, one day at a time.   

It was tempting not to come in here and post, but I know it has been a valuable aspect of my early recovery, so I'm not going to abandon it.   I'm pretty sure I am very close to entering the longest period of my adult life with porn - and may have already exceeded it.   I don't know exactly how long I have gone previously, but I suspect not longer than a couple of weeks.   Too tired to collate my thoughts, but just want to acknowledge my progress, and give thanks for this site and the people attached to it.

hope2reboot

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #33 on: August 08, 2019, 08:42:46 PM »
Way to go Jay. Keep going, the long term rewards outweigh the short term pleasure by an enormous amount. There’s no comparison!

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #34 on: August 09, 2019, 04:12:11 PM »
Way to go Jay. Keep going, the long term rewards outweigh the short term pleasure by an enormous amount. There’s no comparison!

Absolutely none...such a feeling to be taking control of my own life again.  Thanks for the encouragement.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #35 on: August 10, 2019, 03:16:08 AM »
Day 20 - was so tired and busy, but sober.

Day 21 - okay, today is three weeks.  That's worth celebrating to me.  Three weeks without porn...new ground.  So, now I'll go to the gym - I have to be conscious and aware, because it is definitely a trigger to me.  The visual stimulation, and my tending to look for it, along with the feel good chemical release definitely combine to create an urge in me.  My plan to manage it is this:

Work hard on focusing on my work out, not on the women doing theirs!  Head straight to the coffee shop afterwards, not home where I would be alone.  From the coffee shop I will collect my son.  Tonight my girlfriend will be around.  So I should have no time at home alone following the gym, which is definitely a set of circumstances that has historically led me to binge on porn.

On the note of cravings, this morning I opened up my old tablet,  which I mostly used for watching porn.  I had to try to make an order for my mobile phone that was not going through on my laptop (which I didn't tend to use for porn)...so I needed a different device.  I noticed that it stirred cravings...not unbearable ones, but certainly my heart-rate increased and my brain thought it was getting a 'treat'.  Not today, though, because I am taking back agency over my life.  Three weeks, and I'm celebrating by treating myself to being porn-free.  One day at a time.

Lero

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #36 on: August 10, 2019, 04:58:36 AM »
Good job, man. 3 weeks. Tomorrow I'm there too.

hope2reboot

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #37 on: August 10, 2019, 03:26:10 PM »
Way to be strong Jay, keep going. Two weeks for me tomorrow. We can do this.....one day at a time.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #38 on: August 11, 2019, 05:14:15 PM »
Way to be strong Jay, keep going. Two weeks for me tomorrow. We can do this.....one day at a time.

Thanks for the encouragement.   Anyone can abstain for one day, right?  Keep going, too.  This is all worth it.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #39 on: August 11, 2019, 05:30:27 PM »
Day 22.

Urges to watch porn are minimal, ad I'm grateful for the lack of severe cravings.  Porn seems a bit small and pathetic at this point, when it has previous seemed so big as to eclipse my life and everything important in it.  I think something has clicked this time, and the moment has come for porn not to be an option.  It's complacency I need to guard against, because I know how much of a stranglehold porn has had on me...except, I kind of realise that it was really only neurochemicals, dopamine, etc. that built up porn into some great edifice or institution.  Porn is not that at all, and it does not have a hold on me.  I am readdressing the balance in my brain, and will keep working on the behaviours that might push me back closer to porn.

I'm grateful for all of you out there fighting back.  Keep going. 

Lero

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #40 on: August 12, 2019, 04:55:16 AM »
If you think about it, porn is just a button that we push to get a dopamine hit. It definitely helped me to look at it this way. I don't want porn, I want the dopamine and, unfortunately, only porn knows how to do that cause this is how I trained myself.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #41 on: August 12, 2019, 04:55:57 PM »
If you think about it, porn is just a button that we push to get a dopamine hit. It definitely helped me to look at it this way. I don't want porn, I want the dopamine and, unfortunately, only porn knows how to do that cause this is how I trained myself.

Hey.  I completely agree with that.  For me it is one of the most useful insights I've gained during this process.   It's dismantled porn for me, reduced it from this domineering monster in my life to a mere source of dopamine.   

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #42 on: August 12, 2019, 04:59:10 PM »
Day 23 and porn-free. 

Life is opening up.

Hope all are out there taking back your lives.

Lero

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #43 on: August 13, 2019, 05:31:04 AM »
Good, man. I have 23 days too.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #44 on: August 13, 2019, 04:59:25 PM »
24 days without porn...no cravings, beyond very mild, fleeting thoughts...

jixu

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #45 on: August 14, 2019, 06:51:37 AM »
25 days is huge, a great milestone.  Keep going, it is worth it!

hope2reboot

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #46 on: August 14, 2019, 08:57:43 PM »
Awesome Jay!

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #47 on: August 15, 2019, 03:32:31 PM »
25 days is huge, a great milestone.  Keep going, it is worth it!

Thanks for the encouragement - it means a lot.

Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #48 on: August 15, 2019, 03:43:33 PM »
Day 25 - porn free.  Orgasm with partner.  Everything is so much more sensitive sexually...I feel like I'm regaining my body and sexuality.  Without a doubt I am now into the longest period of my adult life without porn, and I'm loving not having it in my life...

...Day 26, the morning after being with my partner, I had the dreaded chaser effect...I was tired and had little willpower.  I had no urge to watch porn at all, but I did MO.  I made a point of clearing my head and not thinking of porn, just focusing on the sensation, but I don't like that I felt out of control for a minute.  There was none of the rituals associated with porn, no edging, no smoking, no images, no mentally recalling porn, but I treat it as a behaviour to watch, and I have to be mindful of the potential trigger and slide.  It's a learning curve, and I'm still going.  Porn is not an option.



Jay2019

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Re: Journal of Jay
« Reply #49 on: August 17, 2019, 01:03:38 AM »
Day 27:  I definitely felt some slight increase in cravings.  I thought, albeit momentarily, about watching porn.  I banished the thoughts from my head pretty quickly, and I know I now have the capacity to do that, rather than obsess about it, and allow the thought to escalate into action. 

Without a doubt, the chaser effect influenced me yesterday.  In addition, I was exhausted.  Thankfully my fairly gruelling work schedule will come to an end next Friday, and I will be posed with some different challenges, including more time alone at home; on the plus side, I will have space to structure my day with some of activities that provide structure, e.g. the gym, mindfulness, catching up with family and friends.  I have at least laid the foundations for a porn free life.  So much to be excited about right now.


Day 28 - So today is four weeks...wow...there were times when I thought I would never be able to live without watching porn.  I was wrong.  Four weeks without doing so gives me the confidence to know it is completely possible.  If I can do it, anyone can do it. So, for anyone out there trying to do this, believe me when I say that you can.   

I won't get complacent though.  One day at a time, I will go on living without porn.  Today 28 days will be behind me, and I will just concentrate on making sure I don't use porn today.   I have my son here now for a few hours; then I'm with my girlfriend and family.  I won't use porn today, and that's a great feeling.