Author Topic: My New Life  (Read 13967 times)

TheNewMe

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My New Life
« on: October 11, 2015, 06:20:57 PM »
(My philosophy of how to live a new life to the full and overcoming my addiction is based on TheUnderdog's post 'My thoughts on Rebooting' over at YBR) If you haven't read it, I recommend you do so! It can be a life changer!

For my REDEFINING PORN ADDICTION post, see below under the dotted line.


Introduction
Hi, I'm a 31 year old porn addict who's been struggling for the last couple of years after discovering my addiction and trying to recover from it. I've had a lot of ups and downs the past couple of years and after a few years over at YBR, I needed a change of scenery as I attempt to make some big changes to how I try to overcome my addiction.

A little bit about myself; I'm a film student (it took a long time before I finally figured out what to do...). I've been married for 7 years and we have no kids and 1 cat. My interest in anything porn related started in my teens and I can't even begin to fathom what kind of effect it has had on my life. I don't want to dwell too much on the past or what could've been as it's not helpful. So instead it's time to work towards a better tomorrow.

As mentioned, my new approach to recovery is based on a long and very good post by TheUnderdog (thanks mate!). He made me realize that I wasn't recovering, I was abstaining which doesn't help. So here are some points that I believe in and that I hope will help me finally be able to recover. It's about time.

1. My addiction is not the problem; it's a symptom
For the last couple of years I've focused on staying away from porn for as long as I could, using sheer will-power, waiting for my brain to reboot so that I could be 'healed' and get on with my life. That's like stuffing paper tissues up my nose to fix a cold. It's not addressing the problem. I would always relapse after no PMO for x number of days; sometimes only 3-4 days, sometimes 20-30 days and every once in a while I would make it to day 60 or day 80. But I wasn't addressing the problem; I was just trying to treat the symptom and it always ended in yet another relapse.

This time I'm not going to focus on the sympton. In fact, I hope to keep 'porn' or PMO off this journal entirely (after this post obviously). My main problem is that I'm not leading a satisfying life in a satisfying marriage and a satisfying outlook for the future. I'm frustrated not really knowing where I'm headed or what I'll end up doing after my studies (with my degree no one is lining up job offers to put it that way). After moving to a new city I have no friends nearby. I've been sitting inside waiting for my stupid brain to overcome the addiction so that I can go out and meet some people.

That's the wrong way around I've now (finally) realized.

I need to go out and start living my life NOW. I need to figure out what my future holds, what my dreams are and if I'm heading in the right direction. I need to figure out my Life Vision and start moving and working towards it right away. I've realized that when I'm busy doing things I like, like studying movies, writing (I write short stories, novels and articles) or listen to my favorite music, I don't offer porn a single thought. And that's exactly how it should be. Porn shouldn't occupy my mind at all but to keep it away I can't sit at home staring at a counter and hoping I have the will-power to close the web browser. I need to start living my life and let my new life replace porn.

I have a typical male brain; I can't focus on more than one thing at a time :D So, if my mind is occupied with other things, it won't think about porn.


2. Recovering, not abstaining
This is the 'life changing message' for me in TheUndedog's post and I've already written about it above. If you're abstaining, you're not recovering. There's a huge difference. Abstaining is focusing on the symptom, trying to reach a certain number of days since your last relapse while letting the real problem sit there unresolved. Recovering is forgetting the counter, because it only reminds you of your addiction, forgetting about porn and focusing on solving the problem, not the symptom. I'm not sure I'm getting my point across here so seriously, read TheUnderdog's post. It's great!


3. 'The "No Arousal" Method''
I have had a similar method for a while before reading that someone else had come up with a term for it. The main purpose of this method is that not only should you stay away from porn, you should divert your gaze from any woman whether she's on TV, in a film, on a poster or walking by on the street. How is my brain suppose to reboot if I'm constantly thinking about sex, looking at hot girls' bodies even though they have clothes? The whole 'male gaze' is a huge trigger for me and I would assume many porn addicts. Looking at women's bodies is exactly what we're doing when we watch porn and even though you're looking at someone with clothes on, your brain still makes that connection.  It's still a trigger and triggers leads to relapses. Follow the link above if that didn't make sense in my words :)

The 2nd reason why this method is so important for recovery is that it focuses on a new way of viewing women. Not as objects in a porn movie or subjects for my fantasies, but as human beings, people with thoughts, feelings, dreams and goals. I think it's a sign of respect and it helps my brain realize that woman aren't objects for my pleasure but friends, people I should interact with in a new way, a more 'human' way. Also, I see other men stare at my wife when we walk by and I hate it. I find it disrespectful and it makes me angry. I don't want to be that guy anymore.


4. No More Counter
First of all, let me say this. If the counter helps you recover (not abstain), I have no problem with it. I'm not here to judge anyone or tell anyone their 'doing it wrong'. I don't know you personally and I'm no expert so I'm in no position to do so.

Now, I've deleted my counter and I'm never getting it back. Here's the problem with the counter as I see it.
1) It encourages you to abstain, not recover, as it focuses on 'staying away from porn' rather than fixing the problem and start living your life.
2) No matter how many days you make it to, when you relapse, you reset the counter to 0. That often encourages binge-watching porn because you had to reset the counter anyway and it also tells you that you're back to square one, which isn't true either. If you've gone from watching porn twice a day for five years to once a week, that's huge progress, but the counter doesn't recognize that. Whether you had a relapse after 90 days or 2, you're still back at 0. That's extremely demotivating, at least for me, and it's just an effective way of telling me I'm horrible and doing terribly. I don't need that.
3) A counter is often combined with a goal; the number of days you want to reach. I don't know how many days I want to reach because I don't know how many more days I have on this earth. My focus is not on reaching 90 or 120 days because that's some kind of magical number that's going to solve anything. My focus is that I'm done, I'm never relapsing again so I have no need of keeping track of how many days it's been since my last relapse. Again, that only draws my attention back to PMO and I don't want that.

You can use a spreadsheet instead, but again, I feel like it's still focusing on the addiction rather than focusing on living (and fixing) my life. In 'My New Life' I don't want porn to get any attention what so ever in any area of my life. I don't even want a spreadsheet because it reminds me of the addiction. TheUnderdog addresses this in his post as well. (Seriously, read it! :) )

So, how easy is this going to be?
This is going to be very hard but I don't think it's more difficult that what I have been doing for the past couple of years, which yielded no noteworthy results. I'm going to struggle with lust and triggers but hopefully I can now start to fill my life (and thoughts) with other things that can push those triggers away. The other thing is that I only have this life to live so I'm going to start living my life NOW instead of waiting.

Anything else?
Not that I can think of at this moment, but I'll be sure to share if I think of anything. I will try to update often and as stated in this post, I will focus on living my new life, not PMO or porn. Please feel free to share your thoughts on all this. Any support is appreciated!


---------------------------------------
The following was written as a new post January 4th, 2016. I decided to paste it in here as it's part of my whole philosophy on reboot and recovery.



REDEFINING PORN ADDICTION: 'ADDICTED TO VISUAL STIMULATION'
1. What is porn?
For a porn addict, that might sound like a stupid question. But think about it for a second; how do you define porn? Why is a picture of a naked women by Playboy porn but a picture of a naked women from an art photographer isn't? Why is a nude scene on a porn site porn, but a nude scene in a movie isn't? How do you define 'porn'? If you say you're addicted to it, you should know what you're addicted to, right? How can you recover if you don't know what you're recovering from?

Reading posts on this forum and others I've come to realize that defining exactly what we're addicted to is more difficult than I thought. "It's porn, it's self-explanatory, right?" Not really. The good news is, the definition is also completely irrelevant.

Do you need porn to MO? Not really if you think about it. You can MO to nudity in TV shows, movies or magazines that are not classified as porn. I think most of us could MO to a girl in a bikini or tight yoga pants as well even though there's no nudity.

Here's my point: Defining what's porn or not doesn't really help us. If you MO to Game of Thrones or an online porn video doesn't really matter – your brain gets its fix either way. If you're aroused by both and MO to both, just staying away from porn doesn't help your recovery, right? Other non-addicted scholars can argue about what is and what isn't porn because that's not the point, it's not something we need to figure out. What matters to us is what we're addicted to and how to recover from it.


2. Understand your situation
As a porn addict I'm in a very different situation than other people, and I have to accept that. Just as an alcoholic has to accept that he can't enjoy a beer with his mates or a glass of wine with his wife, I have to accept that not every TV show or movie is fine for me to see. I've already given up Game of Thrones, Californication and a bunch of other shows because they were hurting my recovery and put me dangerously close, or lead me directly, to a relapse. If you haven't noticed already, wanting to recover from addiction requires a lot of sacrifices and if you haven't realized that yet, I hope you do soon.

I know I'm in a different situation than friends that aren't addicts and I have to accept that. They can watch shows with nudity with no problems or thoughts of porn or jerking off. I can't. Does that feel unfair? At first, yes, but then again, I put myself in this position so I can't blame anyone else but me. And if I want to recover I have to face the consequences of the position I've put myself in. I have to make the sacrifices necessary to ensure my recovery. It's not about being harsh or beating myself up – I put myself in this position and I'm ready to do whatever I have to to get myself out of it. I don't expect to recover unless I'm ready to do whatever recovery dictates. It's about going all in because I want to recover, not 50% because I want to get a little bit better but is not ready to sacrifice some of the things I like. An alcoholic can't recover while continuing to drink, even if he drinks less than he did – all you're doing then is keeping the addiction alive until you relapse. I can't recover if I keep finding nudity or hot girls and am aroused by what I see, even if it's not technically porn. All I'm doing then is keeping the addiction alive and keeping my brain away from a proper reboot.

Again, is it too harsh? All I'm doing is what's necessary to recover, to give my brain a proper reboot. I'm all in, doing this 100%. Otherwise I don't see the point of the struggle.


3. Triggers
If you're trying to recover and you haven't heard about triggers yet, it's about time. If you have, then skip ahead or read for repetition :)

By triggers we mean anything that triggers our reward system that drives our addiction (this is a very simplified explanation by the way). When you relapse it's probably not because of the last porn videos you saw. Something turned you on and made you go look at porn. Whatever that 'something' was, is the trigger that triggered the relapse. The problem is that a trigger can be almost anything; it can be nudity in a TV show, a hot girl in a bikini, a babe in yoga pants at the gym or just wanting to test out a certain google search. Basically, anything can be a trigger and it's different for everyone so I can't tell you what your triggers are.

So, here's a top tip: If you relapse, make sure you think back and try to figure out what the trigger was so that you can be aware of it the next time you see it.

Okay, let's get back to the main story.


4. Addicted to visual stimulation
I would like to suggest a new term for our condition: 'Addicted to Visual Stimulation'. I find it much more helpful in my recovery and in understanding my addiction than porn addiction. I can't even define 'porn' properly which makes it impossible to define and understand a 'porn addiction'. So, how do I define 'Visual Stimulation' then?

Whether you're aroused or turned on by the girl at the gym, hot girls in a TV show or a movie, certain video games or a google image search, I define them all as visual stimulation. Porn is obviously Visual Stimulation as well and is included in the category, but other than that, what we call Visual Stimulation differs from person to person. We are all different people with different tastes or turn-ons.

With the term Visual Stimulation I try to capture them all and at the same time be flexible, meaning that what turns me on and is included in my personal definition of Visual Stimulation isn't necessarily part of your definition. I.e. if I find hot girls in yoga pants highly arousing, that's part of my definition of Visual Stimulation, but if you don't find that arousing at all, it's not part of your definition. Get it?

I would argue that anything you can put into the category 'Visual Stimulation' is problematic and part of your addiction. Can you tell the difference between a lesbian porn scene and the famous love scene in "Blue is the warmest color"? Can you tell the difference between a nude picture from Playboy or an art photographer? Whether you can or not is not the point. The point is, they're all visually stimulating, giving your brain visual cues (see point 6) and keeping the addiction alive.


5. Finding your definition
So, what is your definition of Visual Stimulation and consequently your definition of your addiction?

That's a difficult question to answer because it's highly personal and varies from person to person based on what turns you on. But I think triggers is a great place to start because I think triggers tells us something about what we find arousing, in other words, visually stimulating. And every time you find a trigger, be honest with yourself and add it to your definition.


6. What's so bad about visual stimulation as long as it's not porn?
Short answer; I would recommend you read about 'The "No Arousal" Method'' or read this article from The Independent. The point is that visual cues light up your brain's reward center and will be stimulated, just like an alcoholic who sees an ad for alcohol. In my opinion visual stimulation keeps the addiction alive because you're constantly giving your brain visual cues that triggers the reward center. As an addict, our brains are already messed up, they're not wired properly and instead of being wired towards real physical women and sex as we're supposed to, our brains only rewards us when we find visual stimulation. That's why we need a real reboot and during that reboot I believe you need to get rid of any visual cues.


Conclusion
I've already started to use 'Addicted to Visual Stimulation' rather than 'porn addiction' and VS-MO (Visual Stimulation-Masturbate Orgasm) instead of PMO. I don't expect to revolutionize the world here and I don't expect my new term to be used rather than 'porn addiction' in general. But I do hope that my definition can help you understand your addiction a little bit better and hopefully help in your recovery as well.
« Last Edit: January 04, 2016, 11:38:05 AM by TheNewMe »

noitan

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #1 on: October 13, 2015, 09:23:03 PM »
Your journal not having a single reply astonishes me.

Thanks for sharing your tactic, and for posting that AWESOME topic. I think ir ealized most things Underdog said, but a compilation of thoughts like this is really reassuring.

Let's keep in touch.

http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=5097.0

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #2 on: October 14, 2015, 04:41:29 AM »
Thanks for the reply and yes, let's keep in touch! :)

TheUnderdog's post is awesome and was really life changing for me. I'm still struggling figuring things out and I'm not perfect in any way, but I really do believe this is the right way to go.

Anyway, I'm not sure when I last relapsed but I believe it was late September so I'm just using October 1st as the first day in this new life of mine. I have had no desire to look at porn this week and I think that's mainly due to the "No Arousal" method. I.e. on Monday I went to get my hair cut and except for one guy, there are only girls working at this particular hair salon (and the majority of them look pretty good..!). Additionally, this particular day I had my hair cut by a young trainee who looked like a younger version of Nicole Kidman (no kidding!). The old me would've spent every moment trying to get a glance at her butt when she wasn't looking and that could've easily triggered another relapse later on. But using the "No Arousal" method was awesome;

I was only looking at her face (which is why I know she looked like a Nicole Kidman lookalike) or myself in the mirror, so there were no triggers. But I also discovered that by only looking at her face, and getting eye contact a few times when we were talking, I felt a new feeling, like we made a completely different connection. It felt really good to connect with another person like this and it's something that I wouldn't have experienced if I had been focused on getting a look at her ass every time she looked away. Now, I'm married so don't think I was flirting or falling in love or anything and it's a bit hard to explain how I felt. But it was like I saw her as a beautiful person, not just a sexy body and it was like she was grateful for that (although she probably didn't think like that or say that, it's just how it felt).

Anyway, it was a great experience to connect with someone in a completely different way. Instead of feeling like a pervert only interested in taking mental pictures of her body for later, I felt like a human being among other human beings, all just trying to enjoy our time together.

I'm not sure you understood all that as it's hard to explain. But it was great. And I feel pretty good. I've filled my days with stuff to do and I haven't had time for porn or even fantasizing about porn which is a great feeling :)

Stay strong, my friends!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #3 on: October 17, 2015, 11:32:37 AM »
Warning: May contain triggers although I try to avoid them

I feel like I'm being tested all the time these past days and I'm reacting the way I want to.

These last few days I've worked really hard and been busy for most of the day with a tightly packed schedule. Because of this I've been more tired and exhausted as well, which is not good when you're battling an addiction. Being tired or exhausted makes you weaker and it's easier to cave when faced with triggers. I feel like I've been 'tested' these last couple of days, having to face several triggers while feeling weaker than normal. But I'm glad to say I've reacted the way I want to react;

I've already mentioned my trip to the hair dresser. That was a difficult temptation but I was able to keep my focus for a hair cut that took 1h45m (I'm not kidding! She was a trainee), looking at her face and not her body and therefore not giving my brain its fix that it craves.

The last couple of days I've been challenged every time I step outside (that's what it feels like at least). Went to the grocery store on Thursday and there was a girl there who was very fit and was wearing yoga pants, which is very common here for girls who jog a lot outside and is a major trigger for me. I saw her from a distance so I just glimpsed what she was wearing before I looked away. Getting in line to pay for my groceries she appeared again, but I looked at her head only before looking away. Same kind of thing happened today; I was walking outside and passed a girl in the same kind of outfit and again I reacted immediately before I got a glimpse of "any of the good stuff" if you know what I mean..

I was caught off guard today as well when I had to watch a documentary from the 1920's (not gonna tell you which one) which is usually safe as they were usually very strict about nudity in any movies older than the 1960's at least. But in a strange edited sequence the filmmaker shows a woman in different clothes and he cuts between outfits until all of a sudden she is shown naked. Only her breasts are visible but since it caught me off guard like that I couldn't help seeing them. I was not happy about that, but I was happy with my reaction which was to look away immediately.

It's very easy to linger when your brain is craving an artificial stimuli. I'm starving my brain at the moment so when something shows up, like the examples above, I'm glad to note that I'm starting to react automatically. It's very important, at least when I'm tired or exhausted, that I react immediately, otherwise it's very easy to linger and lingering makes a stronger imprint on my brain. The image I've seen is clearer and therefore harder to get rid off. And if I don't get rid off it right away, the possibility for a relapse increases.

Anyway, it's going good. Images of things I've seen before, images that are 'stored in my archive', still pop up now and again but I'm doing a decent job of immediately pushing them away again. The "No Arousal" method is crucial for my recovery. I can see that now and it annoys me that I haven't taken it too seriously before (except for one period of time that didn't last too long).

Stay strong, my friends!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #4 on: October 18, 2015, 03:29:48 AM »
My horrible view on women; Sunday is for reflection!

So, it's Sunday and apart from watching the NFL all night, Sunday is a nice day to reflect. I think all human beings should spend some time during the week to turn off all computers, cell phones and other distractions and spend some time alone thinking about life, the future, dreams and goals. But also, I think it's a good time to reflect on life; what's working, what's not working, what do I enjoy, what are my good/bad habits, how can I change them and so on. Anyway, I spent about 30 minutes reflecting today and I came to a startling conclusion.

A little backstory; for years now I've had trouble speaking to women. Not like 'I'm shy, I don't know what to say', but even worse, a LOT worse, I've struggled to take most women seriously when they talk (with a few exceptions). And I know this is horrible so I'm embarrassed to share this, but I can remember certain situations where several guys and girls have been present and we talk about a certain topic and I can take the guys seriously whenever they say something, but when a girl opens her mouth, it's like I'm thinking, 'no, that's probably wrong because you're a girl and if you're right, it's probably because you're stating the obvious'.

I know, I should be shot for thinking like this but here's the even worse than the horrible; I've been thinking like this when I talk to my wife as well.

I've been married for more than 7 years and after we got married and the whole 'I love you and want to hold your hands at all times!' phase was over, we've always struggled to have deep, meaningful conversations. I have a very good friend who I can always talk to. I mean, we can meet, have a cup of coffee and just talk for hours and we both enjoy that. We don't need any entertainment other than just talking. And we can talk about anything, from more trivial stuff to deep, meaningful topics like what's going on in our lives and things we struggle with and so on. So I know that I'm not only capable of having conversations like this, I also prefer to have conversations like this. But even in 7 years of marriage, I've never once had a conversation like this with my wife. And today it suddenly hit me why.

So where does this horrible view on women come from? In my case – and I'm just talking about myself here – I believe my porn usage is to blame. Porn gives you a terrible view on women. It reduces women to a thing, an object who's only there to satisfy the man. Often she's even abused in front of a camera and pretending that she likes it just to satisfy the man. She doesn't have a personality or dreams or any real future. So why should I assume, based on that view of women, that she has anything interesting to say other than cheesy frases from a porn movie?

I'm ashamed to say that I've sometimes thought about leaving my wife because we can't have a decent conversation. Now I realize that even if I had left her and met someone who I found more interesting, I probably wouldn't have taken her more seriously. Why would I? The problem lies with me, not with my wife or any other girl in the world.

I don't know how to fix my view but I believe I may be on the right track, not watching porn and using the No Arousal method which not only helps remove triggers, but forces you to see girls as real human beings, not objects for my desire. Hopefully a successful reboot will fix this issue as well. At least I'm aware of this now and can start working on it.

If any of you have been through the same and knows how to fix this, please let me know! :)

Gracie

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #5 on: October 18, 2015, 07:06:54 AM »
I am a wife.  My husband and I had conversations when we were first married.  As he used porn that changed.  Sit down with your wife, no interuptions  and just start a conversation.  Remember not all conversation must only be what interests you, that is hard to get past sometimes.  Ask her what she wanted to be when she was in elementary school and then see how that changed over time.  If she is not doing it, ask why not.  Tell her what you love about her, really love.  Ask her what she is worried about and then see if the two of you can make that better.  Look around at some project or hobby the two of you can do together.  Hold hands when you talk.  Sit next to each other.  Kiss hello and good bye (real kiss).  Look into her eyes when you talk.  Look into her eyes when you make love.  All of these help you connect and remember it will be new to you, but the results will be amazing.  She is waiting for this, trust me.

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #6 on: October 18, 2015, 10:57:24 AM »
Hi thenewme! Ive just read your journal and find what your saying very helpful. The stuff on the counter is true in my opinion and I also feel its counterproductive to switch back to zero if you have a relApse of any kind which I did have today on day 9 but I decided im gonna learn from it instead of beating myself up over it and make me feel.even more dissapointed. Although I do feel bad for being weak in a way.

I also like your thoughts on how we treat women as objects and dont treat them on an.equal.level sometimes. I think your probably right that porn has conditioned our brains this way. I know when im talking to a women my brain is just thinking of all the things I would love to do to her sexually and I know now this isnt normal and its disrespectful to women. Id like to connect with women on a meaningful level and even make some female freinds because I find them interesting and they are able to have a mature conversation but ridding my brain of this way of thinking is extremely hard.

Anyway brother keep up the good work and look forward to hearing some more insights from you. By the way gracie advice from you is also helpful because most of us havnt told our so about our problem and im not sure if I probably would maybe some day ill be man enough to tell her if its not too late by that stage.

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #7 on: October 18, 2015, 03:51:51 PM »
I am a wife.  My husband and I had conversations when we were first married.  As he used porn that changed.  Sit down with your wife, no interuptions  and just start a conversation.  Remember not all conversation must only be what interests you, that is hard to get past sometimes.  Ask her what she wanted to be when she was in elementary school and then see how that changed over time.  If she is not doing it, ask why not.  Tell her what you love about her, really love.  Ask her what she is worried about and then see if the two of you can make that better.  Look around at some project or hobby the two of you can do together.  Hold hands when you talk.  Sit next to each other.  Kiss hello and good bye (real kiss).  Look into her eyes when you talk.  Look into her eyes when you make love.  All of these help you connect and remember it will be new to you, but the results will be amazing.  She is waiting for this, trust me.

Hi Gracie and thanks for the comment!

My wife is aware of my addiction although we don't talk about it often. When we do have conversations it's not that we only talk about what I'm interested in, it's actually the opposite. I'm the kind of person who only talks when I'm asked about something, like if we're on a topic and someone asks me what I think about whatever. When people ask, I know they're interested in what I have to say but if I just take control of the conversation and talk about something I'm interested in, I would just feel like no one's interested in what I'm saying anyway and shut up. :) A question tells me she's interested in what I have to say.

So, our conversations are usually me asking questions and her talking. She rarely if ever asks questions in return and to be honest it gets exhausting in the end trying to keep a conversation going that way. I also get a bit annoyed when she never want's to hear what I have to say, you know? You feel like you're input has no value.

I don't know if you've been in my situation with a conversation partner who doesn't seem interested in what you have to say? Anyway, I rarely get the chance to talk to a wife who is familiar with this kind of marriage situation (porn being involved) so I really appreciate your input :) I want to make my marriage not only work, but be a great one!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #8 on: October 18, 2015, 03:59:05 PM »
Hi thenewme! Ive just read your journal and find what your saying very helpful. The stuff on the counter is true in my opinion and I also feel its counterproductive to switch back to zero if you have a relApse of any kind which I did have today on day 9 but I decided im gonna learn from it instead of beating myself up over it and make me feel.even more dissapointed. Although I do feel bad for being weak in a way.

I also like your thoughts on how we treat women as objects and dont treat them on an.equal.level sometimes. I think your probably right that porn has conditioned our brains this way. I know when im talking to a women my brain is just thinking of all the things I would love to do to her sexually and I know now this isnt normal and its disrespectful to women. Id like to connect with women on a meaningful level and even make some female freinds because I find them interesting and they are able to have a mature conversation but ridding my brain of this way of thinking is extremely hard.

Anyway brother keep up the good work and look forward to hearing some more insights from you. By the way gracie advice from you is also helpful because most of us havnt told our so about our problem and im not sure if I probably would maybe some day ill be man enough to tell her if its not too late by that stage.

Hi brother!

I'm glad to hear you find something useful in what I write. If I can help anyone in their recovery I count myself blessed :) I would definitely loose the counter, or at least replace it with a spread sheet. That way you can see your relapses, but you also see the progress. If you had 10 relapses in August, 6 in September and only 3 in October, that's progress and sadly not something a counter picks up.

I think you're doing the right thing not beating yourself up over a relapse. Try to stay positive and keep in mind that you are (probably) doing a lot better now than before you started recovering. One thing I would do is to write down what triggered the relapse this time. Try to learn from your relapse and use it against the addiction next time :)

I'm also glad you have a new view on women and want to change how you see them. I think a lot of addicts get their 'fix' from staring at hot women at the gym or on the street on or the TV and I think that is a major trigger that will eventually lead to another relapse. More importantly though, as you point out, I don't think it's normal to look at women the way many of us do so I'm trying to change that in my life and I'm glad you agree.

Stay strong brother and thanks for your encouraging words!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #9 on: October 18, 2015, 07:52:21 PM »
Hi TheNewMe  :)

Your story is so encouragement to me, I m so thankful for finding your post! I really want to learn about your NO AROUSAL METHOD, you could share some more abt that? for how long you did.it and how does it work

thank you so much

Hi and thanks for your kind words. I'm really glad to hear you found my post helpful and I hope it helps you make a great recovery :)

First of all, here is the original post to the "No Arousal" Method --> http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/index.php?topic=14525.0

I recommend you read it, but I'll share my thoughts on it as well.

The reason why I like the No Arousal method is because I think staring at women's bodies, either in real life or on TV, is artificial stimulation, just like porn is artificial stimulation. The girls keep their clothes on, but you're still looking at a woman's body just like you do when you're looking at porn (you're not interested in her face, just her body). So just like in porn, when you see a girl on the street or on television and you only look at her body, you 1) are still objectifying her just like when you watch porn, and 2) are still getting your 'fix' from artificial stimulation. So you're still giving your brain that satisfaction it gets from porn which can hurt your recovery. Furthermore, for a lot of people, looking at hot girls in tight clothes is a trigger which often leads to relapses.

What your brain needs is a full reboot, which means no artificial stimulation. The point of the reboot is to rewire your brain so that you react in a positive manner (with a natural erection) when you're touched by a woman, i.e. when you kiss or have sex. The point is not to rewire your brain to get its stimulation from looking because how is that any different from porn? You're still looking at girls the same way.

So there are two reasons why I recommend the "No Arousal" method:

1) looking at women's bodies is a major trigger for many people, and triggers if not dealt with lead to relapses and
2) when you're rewiring your brain, make sure part of that rewiring teaches the brain to treat women with respect, as people with feelings, dreams and personalities and not like objects for your desire.

In day to day life the "No Arousal" method is difficult, but not impossible. Basically what you have to do is make sure you don't give your brain any artificial stimulation from looking at a woman's body either in real life or on TV or movies etc. For me, this means the following;

  • If I see a woman on the street, I look at her face only and nothing below her face. If she's walking past me or away from me, I look somewhere else (at my shoes, my cell phone, the building at the side of the road). Basically, look anywhere else than her body.
  • When I'm watching TV or a movie and a hot woman shows up, I look at her face only or I look at something else on the screen, but I do not look at her body. If a woman starts to take her clothes off, I look away or sometimes close my eyes. My wife thought that was weird at first, but I explained why I needed to do it, and she understood.
  • Sometimes when watching TV or movies you can get caught off guard with a sudden display of nudity that you couldn't anticipate. In those cases you just have to react and look away.

One more point on TV and movies; you can always check on i.e. IMDb.com whether there's any nudity in a movie/television show or not. Sometimes you just have to stay clear of those films. I gave up Game of Thrones because there was just too much nudity and it was hurting my recovery.

The important thing here is to NOT LINGER. If you linger, meaning you accidentally get a look at a girls body (which sometimes happen), you are only making that mental image stronger, meaning you are making the trigger stronger. And, as mentioned, triggers often lead to relapses if not dealt with.

As I said, this is not easy, but it's far from impossible and I believe it's an important part of recovery and rewiring your brain. It's difficult getting used to and it requires mental strength and a great attitude, but the goal is that when you've done it for awhile, it becomes natural and an automatic reaction.

For me it took probably 8-10 days before it started becoming an automatic reaction, but I was very focused on it from day 1 which is very important. You have to focus before you go out or put the television on so that you are prepared for whatever might show up. For each day you manage to stay focused and disciplined, the stronger that automatic reaction becomes and the less triggers you have. It helps clear the mind of all that artificial stimulation.

I hope this was a good explanation. If not, read the original post and hopefully it's better explained there :)

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #10 on: October 20, 2015, 03:18:20 AM »
Looking Forward to Meeting the Real Me

I've read a lot of journals from a lot of different people from a lot of different countries and a very common complaint is about porn's effect on people's lives. I've read about people losing their job because of porn addiction. I've read about people losing their family, their wife or their long time girlfriends because of porn. I've read about people with social anxiety, who have lost contact with their friends, who feel insecure, who are locking themselves in instead of going out and experience life, who are ashamed of who they are and who have lost all self confidence because of their secret addiction – and it's all because of porn.

My conclusion after years of struggling with porn addiction and reading about other people in the same situation? Porn is stopping me from being who I really am.

I've lived under the spell of porn for a long time and hopefully I'm finally starting to break free from its grip. Luckily I haven't lost my wife because of porn, but I was caught at work once which was not only the most humiliating experience of my life, but it made me feel like the worst person in human history. I've lived years with no self confidence. I've lived years with social anxiety stopping me from going to parties or just going out sometimes. And I've been so focused on beating this addiction so that I can finally start living my life, that I've put my whole life on hold while I'm trying to get better. That's part of why I've decided to start living rather than focus on abstaining. Porn has robbed me of too much of my life already. It won't get another day.

I recently sold a Samsung tablet and had to reset it to its factory settings. In a way that's what I'm trying to do with my brain, although it's more difficult than pushing a couple of buttons. The goal of a reboot is to 'wipe the system clean' of all artificial stimulation and teach it to react to a woman's kiss and physical contact, not by staring at a body. That got me thinking, I wonder who I am after the 'factory reset'. Who am I when porn is not destroying my self confidence? Who am I when I'm not afraid to go to parties or experiencing exciting things in my life? Who am I when I'm not nervous about being caught looking at porn at work or nervous about colleagues or friends finding out my dark, disgusting secret?

I don't know yet. The longer I get away from my latest relapse, the more of a taste I get. But I'm really excited to see who I am after 90 days without porn, after 6 months without porn. And I'm really excited to see who I am after a whole year with no porn. I can't wait to meet the real slim shady me!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #11 on: October 22, 2015, 03:06:10 PM »
Withdrawal symptom: Not liking who you're with
It's been around a month since my last relapse (I don't use a counter so I don't know exactly) and I haven't experienced the worst withdrawal symptoms yet. But this last week I've not been able to enjoy my marriage which I think I would have to consider a withdrawal symptom.

Basically, the last week I've not been a fan of my marriage or my wife. It's a bit hard to explain but I've withdrawn from her, I've had serious doubts about our marriage and thinking that this isn't working and I should find someone else. Every negative side she might have has been amplified and it annoys me and irritates me and so on. Because of this I've been in a bad mood, almost depressed and I think the only reason she hasn't noticed is because she's all day at work and I'm busy with a lot of other things. I don't tell her about this because I know, or at least I think I know, that I'm the problem here. I'm the addict and I'm the one who needs to change and when I get some distance to my last relapse, it'll probably sort itself out. But it also means that right now I'm struggling to have any sort of contact with her which certainly isn't good because she almost becomes like a stranger to me.

I know this will pass and that's why I believe it's a withdrawal symptom. It's just a phase where I don't want any contact with girls, not even my wife, no physical contact or even a conversation. I just feel like I can't handle it right now. But it'll pass, I'm sure of that, I just have to keep strong and fight through it. I have to stay disciplined because right now my brain is really pushing hard for me to start looking at other girls like it's looking for a better option than my wife. I'm vulnerable right now so I need to be extra alert and disciplined.

But I'll get through it. Porn is not the answer and would only set me back. I'm on the right track and that's why these symptoms occur.

noitan

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #12 on: October 22, 2015, 06:39:08 PM »
THIS.

I can totally relate to this.

For my experience, and i'm not saying is the absolute truth, i think when this happens is our brains trying to find excuses to get our dopamine fixes, aka, withdrawal symptoms.

The thing is that our brain is a really evolved "machine", so when you start fueling it with what his wired to, he'll try to stablish other paths.

Frequently, when i pass through the first phases of the "x days streak", i catch myself thinkig how brighter my life would be if i just ended my relationship and went on finding other girls. I guess this is a dangerous symptom, who should be studied and analyzed by us.

Stay strong and wait out on this symptom. I think it will pass.

Gracie

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #13 on: October 22, 2015, 08:16:21 PM »
What my husband and I had to do for both of our sanity, was have a routine.  And then the routing became habit.  Some of what we did was my idea, some was his.  Every night we go to bed at the same time.  We do not have tv on.  We read, talk, and are together.  No getting up in the night and staying out of the room.  We have our night time cuddle, we call them full body hugs.  And we kiss goodnight.  We make sure we are touching in the night.  In the morning, we do the same thing before we get out of bed.  After we are ready for work we kiss and hug again as we leave the house.  We texted during the day.  I needed that to know I mattered and was in his brain.  He said he also needed to know I wasn't leaving.  When we get home from work, kiss again.  We sit together on the couch.  We hold hands.  We talk.  We even put sexual contact on a schedule because I have a tendency to deal with conflict by pulling inside myself.  I did the schedule so I would not do this.  And whenever we talked about the addiction, or anything that was emotional we touched, hands, feet, arms whatever.  This connected us. 

You can read some of my posts to see how ugly he was.  But all of the above gave me hope and gave him hope.  And now it is how we are with each other every day.  But most of all we talked.  About his pain, my pain, our marriage pain.  How we felt.  And sometimes it was a loud talk.  Because of the emotion.  But the physical touch, the talk , the routine were what got us through.

noitan

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #14 on: October 22, 2015, 08:54:53 PM »
What my husband and I had to do for both of our sanity, was have a routine.  And then the routing became habit.  Some of what we did was my idea, some was his.  Every night we go to bed at the same time.  We do not have tv on.  We read, talk, and are together.  No getting up in the night and staying out of the room.  We have our night time cuddle, we call them full body hugs.  And we kiss goodnight.  We make sure we are touching in the night.  In the morning, we do the same thing before we get out of bed.  After we are ready for work we kiss and hug again as we leave the house.  We texted during the day.  I needed that to know I mattered and was in his brain.  He said he also needed to know I wasn't leaving.  When we get home from work, kiss again.  We sit together on the couch.  We hold hands.  We talk.  We even put sexual contact on a schedule because I have a tendency to deal with conflict by pulling inside myself.  I did the schedule so I would not do this.  And whenever we talked about the addiction, or anything that was emotional we touched, hands, feet, arms whatever.  This connected us. 

You can read some of my posts to see how ugly he was.  But all of the above gave me hope and gave him hope.  And now it is how we are with each other every day.  But most of all we talked.  About his pain, my pain, our marriage pain.  How we felt.  And sometimes it was a loud talk.  Because of the emotion.  But the physical touch, the talk , the routine were what got us through.

Hi, you seem to have a lot of posts and topics. Can you send me the link where you tell your husband's story? Thanks

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #15 on: October 23, 2015, 05:12:45 AM »
What my husband and I had to do for both of our sanity, was have a routine.  And then the routing became habit.  Some of what we did was my idea, some was his.  Every night we go to bed at the same time.  We do not have tv on.  We read, talk, and are together.  No getting up in the night and staying out of the room.  We have our night time cuddle, we call them full body hugs.  And we kiss goodnight.  We make sure we are touching in the night.  In the morning, we do the same thing before we get out of bed.  After we are ready for work we kiss and hug again as we leave the house.  We texted during the day.  I needed that to know I mattered and was in his brain.  He said he also needed to know I wasn't leaving.  When we get home from work, kiss again.  We sit together on the couch.  We hold hands.  We talk.  We even put sexual contact on a schedule because I have a tendency to deal with conflict by pulling inside myself.  I did the schedule so I would not do this.  And whenever we talked about the addiction, or anything that was emotional we touched, hands, feet, arms whatever.  This connected us. 

You can read some of my posts to see how ugly he was.  But all of the above gave me hope and gave him hope.  And now it is how we are with each other every day.  But most of all we talked.  About his pain, my pain, our marriage pain.  How we felt.  And sometimes it was a loud talk.  Because of the emotion.  But the physical touch, the talk , the routine were what got us through.

Do you know how your husband felt when you started doing this? Was he in the same place I am? I understand what you're saying and I can see that this could really help us out so I really want to try, but at the same time, the place I am in right now, I can't see myself doing any of it. It's just a really bad place I'm in right now and I'm not sure how to dig my way out. I read one of your threads where you list these routines that became habits and I understand it's sometimes just about starting even when you don't want to but it's difficult. But I will try and take your advice. I KNOW it's important for my wife. I know she needs the physical contact you describe and especially going to bed at the same time will also help me in my recovery. Staying up late is always a danger for porn addicts. Thanks for your reply (you too noitan :) ). It's good to know that I'm not alone in my recovery :)

Gracie

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #16 on: October 23, 2015, 07:01:44 AM »
http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=26.0

This is where I started posting our story.  Then I went to partners page.  To answer a question, no he was not happy at all.  The go to bed at same time was my rule.  When we started this journey, I discovered his use.  I was going to see grandchildren the next day.  We had sex that night.  He went downstairs.  I came down a little later to get water and he was watching.  So it was a double whammy.  When I came back from the visit, I told him I did not know if I could get past this.  Then after a couple of weeks, I told him we had to do something because I did not like being around him. At all.  So since I needed help to not reject him, the bed time became a rule.  That is also why the touching and kissing came in.  I had to rewire that he could touch me and that not be his signal for sex.  (sometimes I felt like a slot machine)

 He was ugly during that time.  I could tell he did not like me.  He gave me a look one night that made me feel like there was a demon inside.  I can still see it now.  It was a look that said I was the yuckiest thing he had ever seen or dealt with.  He was reviled by me is what the look said.  I became very depressed.  I could not work, go anywhere or do anything.  I cried a lot.  But we did the routine.  I will write more another time.  It is still hard to write about.  but little by little I will tell you our story.  And it does have a happy ending.

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #17 on: October 24, 2015, 04:49:08 AM »
http://www.rebootnation.org/forum/index.php?topic=26.0

This is where I started posting our story.

Yup, that's the thread I was reading. Are you still updating that? Didn't seem like you had posted there in a while. Do you have another thread you're posting in now?

Then I went to partners page.  To answer a question, no he was not happy at all.  The go to bed at same time was my rule.  When we started this journey, I discovered his use.  I was going to see grandchildren the next day.  We had sex that night.  He went downstairs.  I came down a little later to get water and he was watching.  So it was a double whammy.  When I came back from the visit, I told him I did not know if I could get past this.  Then after a couple of weeks, I told him we had to do something because I did not like being around him. At all.  So since I needed help to not reject him, the bed time became a rule.  That is also why the touching and kissing came in.  I had to rewire that he could touch me and that not be his signal for sex.  (sometimes I felt like a slot machine)

 He was ugly during that time.  I could tell he did not like me.  He gave me a look one night that made me feel like there was a demon inside.  I can still see it now.  It was a look that said I was the yuckiest thing he had ever seen or dealt with.  He was reviled by me is what the look said.  I became very depressed.  I could not work, go anywhere or do anything.  I cried a lot.  But we did the routine.  I will write more another time.  It is still hard to write about.  but little by little I will tell you our story.  And it does have a happy ending.

I understand this is very difficult for you to share but I think a lot of people are helped by your posts. It's really helpful to me to see the other side of the relationship, at least as long as I find it difficult to talk to my wife about. I appreciate you replying to my thread as well. When you say "He was ugly during that time" could you explain what you mean by that? I think I understand but just to be sure.

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #18 on: October 24, 2015, 05:01:22 AM »
One of my hobbies is writing. I write novels, short stories and articles and I always have some project I'm working on. In November I will participate in NaNoWriMo (http://nanowrimo.org) for the 4th or 5th time and I'm currently working on the outline and characters and planning the story. I've been thinking about writing about a character that struggles with porn addiction for a while and I think I'm finally ready to write about that, even though it's going to be difficult. It's very personal, but often writing about the things you know makes for the best stories.

Anyway, I've planned out a scene where this character is relapsing and I wanted to write it like he's watching a video but he imagine's himself being inside the video, as the male character, getting it on with the girls in the video. To do that successfully I thought it would be a good idea to use a video that I've seen during one of my own PMO sessions and I started thinking about how I could write that scene. That obviously was not a good idea because I basically allowed my brain to think about a porn video. Yeah, not a good idea when you're recovering.  ::)

Just allowing those thoughts in my head for just a minute was enough to flood my brain with images from that particular video, which got my brain working on projecting images from another video as well. It was a real battle, my brain projecting images from these videos and me trying my best to get rid of them. I got semi hard before I finally were able to get my brain under control again and get rid of the images. It was the toughest mental battle I've had since my last relapse in September.

This all happened last night while I was in bed and the images are still there, lurking at the back of my mind. My wife is leaving for work soon and I'll be alone at home for almost 7 hours so I know this will be a tough day to get through without a relapse. I really have to focus my mind on other things. So my plan is to take a long walk, maybe play some video games (that often helps focus on something else) and watch some sports. But first I'm gonna go tell my wife exactly how difficult this was last night and that I'm afraid of a relapse today. That usually helps me stay clean, knowing that she knows what I'm struggling with.

Anyway, I make myself this promise; I will not relapse today!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #19 on: October 24, 2015, 07:37:35 PM »
Well, I didn't relapse and I'm proud of myself for that because last night and all day home alone I've been battling urges. My brain kept racking up images from porn videos I've seen in the past–of course only images that my brain knew would be hardest to resist today–and I had to keep battling to beat them down. I told my wife that today would be a tough day before she left for work and knowing that she knew helped me a lot. Every time I started to think that I should just give in to my urges, I thought about her, I thought about this journal and you people who also keep me accountable, and I focused my thoughts on something else.

Anyway, going to bed now happy that I didn't have a relapse. Another battle won.

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #20 on: October 25, 2015, 11:24:29 AM »
A new approach
So, I was reading FighterMageThief's journal and got inspired to try and set myself goals for each and everyday and update every evening on how it's going. These goals will be a number of things that I need/want/should do every day and the number of hours spent doing them. I use Pomodoro's to get things done; for those who aren't familiar with the Pomodoro technique it's very simple; 1 pomodoro is 25 minutes followed by a 5 minute break with a 30 minute break after every 4 Pomodoro's. During those 25 minutes you focus 100% on what you're suppose to do, meaning you put away your phone and other distractions during that time. So I break every task during the day into Pomodoro's which makes it easy to plan the day/week and with a good plan it's easier to get things done.

I've been planning all day and I aim to start tomorrow. My days will be a combination of school work and lectures, exercise, writing, reflecting, meditating, reading and updating on RebootNation etc. Being a film student it's also important to watch, read and write about films.

My goals for tomorrow (Monday):
School (curriculum, working on essays) = 8 pomodoros
Lectures (at Uni) = 4 pomodoros
Workout = 1 pomodoro
RebootNation (reading, updating) = 1 pomodoro
Writing (preparing for NaNoWriMo) = 2 pomodoros
Film (watching 1 film) = 3 pomodoros

Why am I doing this?
First of all, because I have a lot to do every day and this is a nice way of keeping myself accountable and making sure I get things done (I can easily waste hours on doing nothing every day if I'm not very strict with myself). Secondly, as part of my recovery, it's very important to have things to focus on all day long. It helps me to stay focused on living my life, doing things that matter and are important to me and it leaves no room for porn to enter my thoughts.

Thanks to FighterMageThief for the idea!

TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #21 on: October 27, 2015, 05:47:43 AM »
Awful day, but hopefully a turning point

Yesterday was one of the toughest days in my life. It was emotional, difficult, made me doubt everything and everyone and really brought me to my knees.

A little back story;
A couple of months ago my wife and I agreed that she would plan our dinners, one week at a time, and do the shopping. I have to do all economy related things, like paying rent, bills, making sure we have enough money at all times and so on, so we agreed that to help out she could make sure we stuck to a weekly food budget. The first few weeks this worked out well; she was really good at it, always finding good solutions and tasty dinners for a low amount of money. Then she started working full time, which we were both very happy about, but she stopped doing the weekly budgets and grocery shopping.

So yesterday I asked her if she could start doing that again since I felt like it was a great solution and I needed her to help me out with planning the economy etc. No weekly budget and plans meant we were going to the grocery store more often and spending a lot more money. She seemed unwilling to do this and I felt like she was really fighting me on this which made me annoyed and angry.

I went to the University for a couple of lectures but only manage to sit through the first class before leaving. I walked home and being a christian I prayed and asked God to help me figure out what was really going on between us. I'm not going to start an argument on whether God responded or if it was just my own reflections, but I came to the conclusion that our fight in the morning was just a symptom of a much bigger problem. And I realized that our marriage, our relationship hasn't been healthy for a long time.

It's difficult to explain the realization I came to while walking home but this is as close as I can get; at times I feel like we're in a father-daughter relationship, and at other times I feel like we're in a sibling relationship and we're both around 12 years old. I'll try to explain what I mean;

The Father-Daughter Relationship
I think our relationship got off on the wrong foot right from the start when we met over 8 years ago. When we got to know each other she almost introduced herself as a broken individual who immediately shared the areas of her life that she was ashamed of. I on the other hand was viewed by her as a great guy, a good person who had everything sorted. I didn't correct her and tell her about my struggles. Needless to say, right from the start our relationship was unhealthy in that I became someone who was there to take care of her, like she was this broken individual who needed me to "save her". This has then carried over to our marriage and yesterday I came to the realization that I was a father figure and she was like a daughter. For instance sometimes, even when she knows we don't have a lot of money in our bank account, she sometimes calls me and asks permission to spend money on something (like clothes or a meal), like a daughter calling her father to ask permission. Another example is that I feel like I always have to ask her to do things around the house. It's like I own the apartment we live in and she's the daughter with no responsibilities and I have to ask her to do stuff, like chores.

The Teenage Sister-Brother Relationship
The other realization I came to is that sometimes I get the feeling that we are siblings in our early teens sharing an apartment. It's like if I ask her to do something, like clean the kitchen or empty the dish washer or plan our meals that week, it's like she can't do anything unless she knows I'm doing at least the same amount of chores or more than her. Like siblings fighting over who should do what chores if that makes sense.

Neither relationship is healthy. I don't get the feeling that we are both two grownups trying to make this marriage work. The last few weeks I've felt exhausted because I feel like I'm fighting for this marriage alone. And that's part of the problem; I always feel like I have to figure out how to make this marriage work alone and that defeats the whole purpose of marriage. We're suppose to work together, as one.

Up until yesterday I think the main reason why I've always tried to fix this marriage alone is because I've always blamed my addiction as the sole reason for why our marriage hasn't been working out. So every time we have a fight or we can't communicate properly or we can't have a good conversation, I've always blamed myself and my addiction. That's why I've fought for our marriage alone for so long and it's only left me exhausted in a broken marriage.

Does this mean I'm without blame? Of course not. I should've recognized my position in this marriage as the 'good guy saving the broken girl' a long time ago. I think I've held her back from becoming who she is supposed to be or holding her down and not letting her be who she really is. I've told her several times that I want her to trust me and be herself but I still think I'm holding her back in some ways that I might not be aware of. And of course I don't blame her for not trusting a porn addict.

I think our fights recently have been symptoms of a bigger problem but I haven't quite figured out what the real problem is. It's like it's right there in front of me but I'm not getting it yet. At the same time I catch myself time and time again trying to fix this on my own like I always try to do, but I know the only solution here is to talk to my wife and start fixing this together. I'm just not sure how yet.

It's easy to give up when you realize just how broken your relationship is and it's easy to separate and go our different ways. This may sound weird but I'm kind of grateful that I'm from a broken home, that I've witnessed my mum and dad getting divorced because it has made me a fighter who's not giving up on our marriage. I think low points like yesterday can either be a point where you give up and let everything fall apart or you can treat it like a turning point, a low point where you were finally pushed into making necessary changes and start fixing the relationship. In my head there's no doubt that yesterday was a turning point. I'm spending today going through my thoughts, reflections and trying to figure this out and hopefully I'll have courage and wisdom when my wife gets home from work to talk to her and figure this out. Hopefully she's on board and hopefully she recognizes that our relationship is at a crucial point right now.

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #22 on: October 27, 2015, 11:47:50 AM »
Hi bro!
I just read your first post and I'm going to read the entire thread asap. Very interesting topics! You stimulated a sincere self-examination in me about the counter!
Together with PMO addiction, I have to keep guard on toward my Internet addiction, otherwise I could relapse on it, cause of the craving for check it, check people answers in here, and so on....
It's probable I will close my counter, I will brainstorm about it.

Every point you explained in your first post is complete and right to me, but I'd like to propose you the addition of another point, recalling it from my life xperience.
I'm in a psychotherapy "adventure" since december 2006, and let me say, it was helpful! I think substitution of PMO with more healthier habits is very important! But I think it's not sufficient too!

For bravehearts, I think one should go deep inside himself to discover his spiritual wound causes, and with the flaming fire of his soul's energy, should be so good to melt his emotional pain like iron and transform it.

Let's understand each other: I'm no any kind of damned doctor, and I AM NOBODY, to tell you what to do, or worst, HOW to do it! I choosed the psychotherapy way, and It worked a lot, now this battle is a lot easier to me! I choosed this one, but anyone can choose by himself!

I'm lucky about this, cause I've ever felt I'm completely and always in touch with spiritual abilities, with that light inside everyone of us, and psychotherapy was quite a obliged step to do for me,
cause I feel I always crave for divine. (Hope this statement doesn't drive anyone in confusion, I'm not religious, I'm spiritual!)

Even good reading helps out (WARNING: no good book will solve your problem!), I often read Osho books, and it calms me down, it opens my brain to new way of looking at life, new worlds...
Anyway, I think no complete healing is really complete if you don't go over your trauma and emotional pains, and it can be possible only with a hard and serious work on ourselves!

NewMe, what do you think about all this?
What do you think guys?
A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step... (Lao Tzu)


TheNewMe

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #23 on: October 27, 2015, 01:33:44 PM »
Hi bro!
I just read your first post and I'm going to read the entire thread asap. Very interesting topics! You stimulated a sincere self-examination in me about the counter!
Together with PMO addiction, I have to keep guard on toward my Internet addiction, otherwise I could relapse on it, cause of the craving for check it, check people answers in here, and so on....
It's probable I will close my counter, I will brainstorm about it.

Every point you explained in your first post is complete and right to me, but I'd like to propose you the addition of another point, recalling it from my life xperience.
I'm in a psychotherapy "adventure" since december 2006, and let me say, it was helpful! I think substitution of PMO with more healthier habits is very important! But I think it's not sufficient too!

For bravehearts, I think one should go deep inside himself to discover his spiritual wound causes, and with the flaming fire of his soul's energy, should be so good to melt his emotional pain like iron and transform it.

Let's understand each other: I'm no any kind of damned doctor, and I AM NOBODY, to tell you what to do, or worst, HOW to do it! I choosed the psychotherapy way, and It worked a lot, now this battle is a lot easier to me! I choosed this one, but anyone can choose by himself!

I'm lucky about this, cause I've ever felt I'm completely and always in touch with spiritual abilities, with that light inside everyone of us, and psychotherapy was quite a obliged step to do for me,
cause I feel I always crave for divine. (Hope this statement doesn't drive anyone in confusion, I'm not religious, I'm spiritual!)

Even good reading helps out (WARNING: no good book will solve your problem!), I often read Osho books, and it calms me down, it opens my brain to new way of looking at life, new worlds...
Anyway, I think no complete healing is really complete if you don't go over your trauma and emotional pains, and it can be possible only with a hard and serious work on ourselves!

NewMe, what do you think about all this?
What do you think guys?

I agree with you. I've often thought about talking to someone. I'm not sure that's a therapist or psychologist, but I absolutely think talking to someone is important. I think porn addiction is very difficult to overcome on your own so I've often thought about talking to someone about, not just my addiction, but as you say, other areas of my life that have been hurt or my emotional pains.

I have a friend who is a psychologist and I think he's one of the best, most sane people I know, but even he goes to see a psychologist simply because it's not good to keep everything to yourself. I don't know who to talk to yet, but I agree with you that it's a good idea to talk to someone about these things.

Gracie

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Re: My New Life
« Reply #24 on: October 27, 2015, 01:58:10 PM »
I have been gone for a few days so I will answer your question about ugly.  He was ugly.  I know that sounds redundant, but that is the word that best describes it.  He had a look of total distaste on his face when we talked.  He blamed his porn behavior on every one of the things that I was self conscious about and that I had shared with him.  He told me all of the things he thought I was lacking.  He told me all his rationalizations for his addiction.  Even denied the addiction.  He tore me down so he could feel he was better than someone.  He defended his behavior the only way he knew how.  I discovered his use.  The best defense is an excellent offense.  I was so down I could not function.  But, I made a routine to follow to help me get out of that mindset.  If he had not participated, I would have had to leave.  If he was not willing to try, then it was going to be the end of the marriage.  So little by little we crawled out of the abyss.  And that is exactly how it felt.

I can answer questions you have.  You can do it in this page or PM me.  But the above is the reason that I say talk to your wife.  Discovery is the worst way to find out.  Absolutely hands down the worst.  Please know that as you examine your relationship, that since you have been addicted your view of the situation is through porn glasses.  It makes it look like your wife is not the best person for you that you deserve better.  All relationships resemble other relationships at some point.  After all our most consistent forms of relationships for comparison are familial relationships.  There are times we all want to be taken care of.  Or be irresponsible. Porn  addiction is representative of both.  ie. Your wife doesn't take care of you so porn is the answer.  Or I don't care I deserve this.

Just know that even now as my husband and I talk about the addiction, he is surprised by two things:  1. He was so mean in his response.  2. That I stayed with him and loved him throughout recovery.  Also this is an ongoing recovery.  It may be worked through, but the memory is always there.

You can do this!  Do not let your porn brain trick you into random thoughts.  It wants its fix.