Author Topic: New Here - Looking for support  (Read 31 times)

DizzyRum

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New Here - Looking for support
« on: November 09, 2019, 01:00:02 AM »
Hi - I am new here and feeling pretty positive about everything I have read.

A bit about me, I am in my 40s and have watched porn since a teenager. I started with magazines and as the internet evolved so did my use of porn.

I watch porn 2-3 times a day and over the last couple of years have experienced issues with ED. With each encounter they have got worse to a point where I know it will happen even before it does.

I turned to Viagra, but the problem persisted. I convinved myself it was the partners I was with, but it persisted no matter who I was with.

I am in an open relationship, so my partner is happy for me to meet other women - but because of this problem I have lost all confidence and I feel like I am missing out. Because of my fear of ED I avoid meeting people, I also put porn ahead of intimacy with my partner and we rarely do anything together, although the ED issue doesn't really happen with her (yet!!!).

I understand how addiction works, it feels like porn has crept up on me, I always believed it was harmless but now I am realising that it has caused damage - not just ED either.

So, I want to make a change, I don't want to use willpower, I want to feel free and in a place where I don't want artificual stimulation - however, at the moment this feels more like a dream than a reality.

I am prepared to put the work in and want to learn and understand all I can.

So today, I am starting me reboot - I intend to still be intimate with partner, but will not masterbate and by posting this I am making myself accountable to the group.

Any advice, tips or support greatly appreciated.

Thanks

DoneAtLast

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Re: New Here - Looking for support
« Reply #1 on: November 10, 2019, 12:10:14 PM »
Welcome.

Rebooting never happens first try, but it is entirely possible.  It seems that you're mature enough and educated enough on the matters at hand that you'll have it a bit easier.  Also, those of us (I'm in my late 30s) who were in adulthood by the time high speed internet hit the scene tend not to be as deep in the woods.  Sometimes it can turn out to be a deeper rabbit hole than we think, so brace yourself to learn some new things about yourself.  Everyone who goes through the process ends up rethinking everything they thought they knew about sex, too.  Porn lies to us a lot, and it can be quite a journey breaking free.

Regarding willpower, it is a true paradox.  Addiction is when our behaviors take over our will (my own definition, no one else's), and our will alone can't free us, because it is precisely the thing being hijacked.  But, it can't be done without our will, either.  The paradox is that every time we engage in addictive behavior, it is both an act of the will and not an act of the will.  It is the only way I can think it describe the experience.  So, this means that 1) you can't rely solely on your will, or "white knuckling" as we like to say, and 2) you can't work around your own will.  If you don't fully want to be free of porn, you won't find some magic exercise routine or dietary supplement that will make you stop wanting it.  I see fellas on here always looking for the magic thing that will circumvent them wanting to be free of porn with their whole being, so they can just wake up and not want it.  If it happens I'll be an advocate for it, but I haven't seen anything like that yet.

As you cut back and try to quit, you'll have many opportunities to be acutely aware of your triggers.  I think of it like this: in the moments before you start looking at porn, you're in full blown "zombie mode".  You don't have much control, and the automatic functions of the brain take the reins, while the now-weakened pre-frontal cortex goes to the back seat.  The time before that is a slow transformation, and if you go back far enough (likely how you were when you posted this), you have full control of your faculties.  Triggers bring on "zombie mode" through all sorts of automatic psychological cues.  They can be sexual, especially if they are related to a preferred fetish or porn type.  Even subtle sexual cues can be problematic for some during reboots (I've heard anime and video games mentioned many times), so it may feel like you're going full on Amish to pull this off.  That's okay, you can always reintroduce stuff later as you're ready.  They can be situational, like unwinding with a beer after a day at work.  Or, maybe just grabbing the tablet and flipping through the news before bed.  They can be emotional, like thinking about an old girlfriend that cheated on you, or a bad teacher in school.  This is where (I believe) the porn addiction world would stand to learn from other addiction communities, like alcoholics to understand trauma and how addictions try to suppress it.  Remember Pavlov's dogs.  They salivated to bells... not because bells were food, but because of sheer associative conditioning.  When there is a stimulus like porn and masturbation on the table, we can develop some VERY strong associations.