Author Topic: Gay guy reboot  (Read 26383 times)

harry

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #75 on: February 24, 2016, 05:19:32 PM »
Wow, look at you! You snuck right past 120 days. Congrats on your big accomplishment. You are a role model for the rest of us with this and your wise, insightful comments.


now-man

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #76 on: February 24, 2016, 06:21:37 PM »
Thanks Harry! I did notice the number, and it just didn't seem like it meant anything. Which is good actually - I saw the 120 days on my counter and thought "oh, that's nice."

The links I shared on your thread yesterday confirmed for me that, at 120 days, I’m still in the ‘first phase’ of this reboot. I’ve had significant positive results, but if I were telling myself “well why the f*ckity h*ll isn’t my c*ck rock hard all the time yet?” it would be unrealistic. Good to know. I can still look forward to more improvement in the boner dept. And everything else that leads to that, namely: closeness and intimacy with my partner; a return of real libido vs arousal addiction; the productivity and life enhancing choices that have taken the place of PMO.

After my 'hookup email' check, and then deleting the entire contents of that account, I thought "I guess it's time to step back and slow down." But I've been feeling rather randy. It feels like actual libido. I've been trying to detect any mental mischief, and this just feels more like the real thing. I've been wishing I had some time with my partner, but he's away and we've both been too busy to travel and meet. If I could get my hands on him... :P ;D :o :P ::)  Rawr!! (as Phase would say.) I've had a lot of solid night and morning wood, and daytime swelling too. No impulse towards porn. No difficulty to resist masturbating (though the opportunity was presenting itself - and by opportunity I mean big boner), I'd just much rather save it for a real live human partner.

I had the most awesome physician for years and he recently retired. I finally got a new doctor and just met with her a few days ago. When I was assigned to her, I asked if it would be possible to get a male doc instead, but was willing to give her a try. Well, she's super awesome! She spent an hour with me and I ended up telling her about YBOP and RN. Before I got two sentences in, she said "I'm aware of exactly what you're talking about" and we had an in depth and wide ranging discussion. She suggested we test my testosterone level (along with thyroid, B12, something else..) - well, duh, as much as I've read in here I hadn't thought to ask for that. So I did that today, should have the results in a day or two. I expect it's normal, but who knows. Good to check.

I'm leaving this evening to spend ten days with my dad. My brother who lives with him, and takes amazing care of him, is going on vacation, and I fill in when he does. Growing up with him as a fighter pilot in the Air Force, I didn't really like him, I didn't feel close to him or safe around him. That has changed over the years, I've learned to be less judgmental and he has become very sweet with me.  I've had the chance to help him and take care of him after his wife died. I'm very grateful for that. So, looking forward to a quiet week, a long bike ride every day, watching old movies with him. (the same movies. over. and. over.  ;) ) Seeing a few old high school friends.

I got to do a work trip to Hawaii, where my friend was recently killed in an accident. I spent time with his partner, his daughters, his ex-wife. Very beautiful to share time with them, amazing to see their open hearts and maturity as they walk through their loss. It can put other 'problems' into perspective. And it makes me so grateful for my reboot - it is not a small thing. It's what really matters in life.

I have been spending time here on RN most days, and often. It definitely feels a bit like a replacement activity for other... internet activities shall we say? But I'm all for it. Even though I can see the parallel, this place is helpful to me now.

Oh and lastly, I'm totally into the cold shower routine! After a couple times of just starting cold until the warm water came, now I just go all cold. It's exhilarating!
« Last Edit: February 24, 2016, 07:53:25 PM by now-man »

now-man

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #77 on: February 25, 2016, 10:48:09 AM »
Got my testosterone level results - first time I've ever had it checked. It says the normal range is greater than 240, mine was 1124. I don't know how high it can go, or what would be 'too high,' but it looks like a good result.

lyon03

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #78 on: February 25, 2016, 03:00:37 PM »
Well done brother on making it to 120+ days. That's a huge milestone. You are a million miles ahead of where I was at 120 days so I look forward to following your journey through the more emotional stages of reboot. What's great about these forums is sharing, encouraging, and learning from other members of the community. On a more medical note, clocking in a 6x the normal testosterone levels is probably another bonus of going porn-free. And it's great reading about your natural (and animal)  attraction to someone you love. Have a great visit with your dad and we'll see you on the boards very soon. Be well. PORN IS NOT AN OPTION.

thewhitewindow

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #79 on: February 25, 2016, 03:14:25 PM »
Now-Man, congratulations my friend.  That's incredible to read such a success story.  There really is nothing better than a physician who 'gets you', and can blabber on in their office.  You always leave feeling amazing.  Incredible about the test results as well! 

I hope you take meaningful and quality time spending with your father.  They don't live forever and it's those moments that are so important like watching the same movies over and over, lol.

Be strong on this vacation and I'll miss hearing from you. :)


now-man

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #80 on: March 02, 2016, 10:45:13 PM »
I’ve been staying with my dad for a week, taking care of him while my brother (who lives with him) is away on vacation.

I’m in the town where I lived from age 11 to 18. I left here three days after high school graduation and took the bus across the country to live in Manhattan and go to college. I was very happy back then to get far away. I actually like this town, but it is interesting to notice all the associations from my adolescence. In fact, I feel like I’m reliving a certain feeling-tone of that time.

My dad will be 89 soon. He’s in a long, slow decline. He’s doing pretty well, since my brother takes such good care of him. But he is a faint shadow of his younger self. He mostly sits in his chair and watches a limited number of movies or the History Channel. (I have a friend who calls it the Hitler Channel - haha). He drinks beer all day. He can’t really hold a conversation, but he can tell a number of stories, he has a limited number of stock responses. He whistles all day long and harmonizes with any music playing. He delivers the cue lines before the movie characters have a chance to say them.

All of which has a certain charm, and can be endearing. Overall, he’s really sweet with me.

I get his meals, feed him his copious pills, administer numerous inhalers, take him through a detailed bathing ritual every three days, slather his legs with steroid ointment, clean up after his spills, broken jam jars (he fought with me over the glass-shard infused bowl of jam he managed to salvage from the heap on the floor - “That’s good jam! I’ll work around the glass!”), and launder his blood stained and snot covered handkerchiefs, gingerly lifted from the various spots he leaves them around the house.

I often find myself feeling annoyed with him, if not disgusted. I’m a model of patience and kindness. I try to be cheerful. I just do what’s in front of me. I’m aware that I am grateful for the opportunity to be of service in this way. I’m deeply grateful to my brother who takes care of him the rest of the time, and seems to enjoy it, letting me and my other siblings off the hook.

And inside I feel this dull, aching boredom and low grade numbness. It’s okay with me. Just interesting to notice. There’s nothing else to do, so I walk through it. It’s funny really, how fine everything is, and how fortunate I am, and then have this internal dim feeling. A bit reminiscent of adolescence.

I go for a long bike ride every day, which I love, and feels really good. I’ve been taking cold showers every day, which is also very helpful - and the water up here is colder than in California.

I met up with an old buddy from here (one of the ‘elite eight’ as Phase called them) and we had a fun romp (my equipment performed well enough). It was a welcome distraction at the time, but I think has left me a little more ‘dim’ than I might otherwise be. Being here in my family context, it was reminiscent of old patterns. I have been filling in for my brother when he leaves town for a number of years now, and this is the first time since I started my reboot. In the past, my boredom here would be expressed in PMO and searching online for hookups that mostly didn’t pan out. I don’t feel any threat of moving towards PMO now. But I definitely feel the emptiness that I would have spent on it. Like I said, I'm willing to feel that and just wait. Another kind of withdrawal I suppose.

Also, I’m wanting more rewiring with my partner. We haven’t had a chance to be together for a month and a half now. I don’t want to interrupt what was building with him. I may get to finally spend some quality time with him this weekend.

The experiment continues. Learning by doing. Not perfect, but how else do you find the balance?

Patrick

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #81 on: March 02, 2016, 11:09:39 PM »
This is a touching story, now-man. Thanks for sharing. Take care.


thewhitewindow

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #82 on: March 03, 2016, 08:42:58 AM »
Now-Man, what a story.  I love your openness and your fathers story was both tender and bittersweet.  As parents age, we feel sorry for them because they're helpless in a way.  Age takes them slowly and it's harder for everyone around them.  It's so stressful, so much guilt around this.  I could go on about seeing both of my parents slowly passing away.  It still haunts me to this day. 

You're a saint for tending to him and so is your bro. 

You mentioned something that peaked my intrigue: 

Whenever I'd go back to my old stomping grounds visiting my mom/dad I'd feel a 'dim' sink in as it wasn't a happy place whatsoever.  It was a place where I was neglected, abused and traumatized sexually.  It was a place where all I had going for me was escape and fantasy.  I too have a member of the 'elite eight' that lives in the area. 

Five years ago, I realized I couldn't go back to my child hood home anymore.  I was visiting the 'elite eight' every single time I was home.  I recall actually leaving family gatherings early so I could act out with him.  Christmas and Thanksgiving - didn't matter.   

I know this isn't your story, but I can relate so much to that feeling of restlessness and 'dimness' you spoke of.  It's fascinating that our brain still recalls those feelings as soon as we're in that environment and goes into 'survival mode' as soon as it feels threatened.

Maybe I'm over thinking it.  I just find that intriguing. 
« Last Edit: March 03, 2016, 08:45:26 AM by Window »

lyon03

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #83 on: March 03, 2016, 03:13:33 PM »
Thanks for sharing brother. I liked what you shared about the 'dim' experience. What was fun and exciting previously, like a quick hook up, can often disappoint once we've experienced true intimacy with a loving partner. I look forward to reading about the fireworks when you reconnect with your husband. Be well my friend. PORN IS NOT AN OPTION.

Gabriel1960

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #84 on: March 06, 2016, 02:16:21 PM »
I'm so happy to have found this web suite!

You guys are giving me so much optimism for a brighter future!

Gabriel

now-man

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #85 on: March 21, 2016, 07:39:42 PM »
Hello Gentlemen,

It’s been a couple weeks since I’ve posted in my journal. While I was away taking care of my dad for two weeks I had the hookup with a buddy from my list. Then I noticed the ‘hookup machine’ turn on, like a switch in my mind. I didn’t do anything about it, but it was like a constant presence. I felt bored, kind of numb, a bit of that ‘f*ck it!” state of mind. My bike rides and cold showers gave me a focus to return to each day.

At one point my partner passed through town and I got to spend an hour with him. We went for a walk along the river and had a little fight (about scheduling our time together). It was over quickly, replaced with a hug. I was just kind of worn out, and he could see that.

At the end of the two weeks with my dad, I traveled to where my partner is living temporarily and spent a day and night with him. We had a good time together. We had sex and I was expecting that I might see a setback in my member’s performance, after a week and a half in that ‘hookup’ mindset. It wasn’t as bad as I feared, not 100% throughout, but enough to have a great time. More importantly it felt very connected, which felt healing.

Since I returned home I have been busy with work-travel and doing small projects at home. It has felt like the ‘hookup machine’ just slowly wound down to a state of quiet. I’ve continued exercising most days, and taking cold showers. They really are exhilarating, they provide a mental/physical reference point that’s helpful. It’s a way of expressing and reinforcing my reboot. It takes commitment to start it, more guts to see it through, and when it’s over I feel really great. Actually, sometimes it’s starting to feel really good right in the middle of the bracing cold. Almost better than warm water.

My partner came home unexpectedly for a day and night this past weekend. I had just returned from a work trip and was a bit weary. I didn’t think we’d necessarily jump in the sack, but he was raring to go. Again I wasn’t sure how I’d perform since I wasn’t feeling particularly horny. I decided that whatever we did, I would approach it with no expectation to reach O. Surprise! With the internal pressure off, I found myself feeling naturally very turned on to him, like in our early days together. I had my best results so far in the equipment department. It felt like things are getting back to normal down there. That was a very nice experience. And it also felt really connected.

While PMO doesn’t draw me in, my challenge seems to be in the area of hookups - my mind gravitates to thinking about them. Given the setup of my relationship I still hope that the occasional hookup can eventually be a healthy option. For now, it feels more like a habit response, and one that detracts from the benefits I’m realizing in this reboot with my partner.

harry

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #86 on: March 21, 2016, 11:19:46 PM »
Congrats on your ongoing improvements, now-man!

You summed up the cold shower experience very well. It really does take a commitment since every morning I try to talk myself out of taking one.


lyon03

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #87 on: March 22, 2016, 12:30:15 AM »
Well done brother. You repeated the words "connected" when referring to your partner. That's positive. I particularly liked this: "Given the setup of my relationship I still hope that the occasional hookup can eventually be a healthy option. For now, it feels more like a habit response, and one that detracts from the benefits I’m realizing in this reboot with my partner." I think this is a healthy progression my friend. I too used to believe that porn, anonymous sex, and masturbation were such incredible experiences. But eventually I realized that I was addicted to the dopamine-soaked hunt rather than the kill. For example, I would get incredibly turned on when using Grindr (a gay hook up app). But after having sex with yet another random nameless guy, I'd feel rather empty/hollow. The same can be written about the diminishing returns of masturbation. It was all about the anticipation rather than the post-climax feeling of, "Was that it?" What's my point? I believe your ambivalence about hookups is actually a positive development. You're enjoying the healthy connection/intimacy with your partner, while experiencing less and less excitement from meaningless sex. Thanks for sharing. I've learned something today.

thewhitewindow

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #88 on: March 23, 2016, 09:53:19 AM »
Congratulations, Now-Man!   :D  You are on a great path and I found your post relatable.  You have an insight that many people just don't possess.  A self-actualized awareness. 

That dopamine surge when a I start that pattern of seeking guys online is a DEEP addiction for me.  It's been three years since I've used and I know I could go right back to that, but I know I can't (partnered/monogamous).  Too much to loose at this point.  It would wreck havoc on my life.  However, there were times I've thought 'ah, fuck it'.  I must've used gay hook-up sites for 15 years, and the smart phone came out - another 3 years.  20 years!!!  All that precious time, lost.   

There should be more awareness about the addiction of gay hook-up sites.  Nobody ever talks about it because so many are addicted!  I bet the numbers are staggering. 

Congrats dude.  keep strong.  You're doing amazing. 


harry

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #89 on: March 24, 2016, 10:06:07 AM »
Hey now-man,

Wow, check out that counter! 150 DAYS!!!

While you've mentioned that PMO is not a big draw for you, the number above is still an awesome accomplishment. Being open to stopping porn has allowed you to see hookups in a different light.

Keep up the excellent work, my friend!



now-man

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #90 on: March 24, 2016, 09:03:37 PM »
Thanks Harry, I didn't notice til you mentioned it.

A lot of good stuff has come from no PMO and no MO. (And thanks to your inspiration, from COLD SHOWERS!! I'm loving them. I've turned into the cold shower salesman - I've taken over for you in the 'harangue everyone' dept. on that!  ;) ) I feel more present in my life. I'm more connected to my partner, more interested in him, I care more. It feels generous, not needy. And he's turning my crank like when we first met 16 years ago! I really didn't expect that. The man is HOT! and I get to see it again without porn goggles on.

I get to spend a whole long 3 day weekend with my partner starting tomorrow night. I'm looking forward to seeing what I experience with him.

I really appreciate your support Harry. It has meant a lot to me. Along with a lot of other really great guys here. I love this community! Thanks Gabe  :)
« Last Edit: March 24, 2016, 09:46:32 PM by now-man »

bob

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #91 on: March 24, 2016, 10:47:58 PM »
Way to go now-man.

150 days and still going strong. Keep it up.

lyon03

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #92 on: March 25, 2016, 01:31:42 AM »
Well done on reaching 150+ days brother. Enjoy your long weekend.

now-man

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #93 on: April 02, 2016, 10:58:09 PM »
I had a long, three day weekend with my partner last week. We had a really great time together. I keep feeling closer to him, and really grateful for that.

He came to town to go with me to an awards ceremony - I was nominated for an award. He is so proud of me and enthusiastic about it, it's very endearing. He brought some of his nicest clothes, and asked me several times how much we should dress up for the event - not something we ever do. I shrugged and protested that I didn't really care - slacks and a nice shirt would be fine. In the end he took us shopping and got himself a sport jacket (I don't know if he's ever worn one before) and I got a beautiful suit. So we were decked out. We had a really fun time.

During the visit we also had fun in the bedroom. Once would have been enough, but we went at it two days in a row. Again, it just happened easily and naturally. I'm pretty happy with the continuing improvement in my equipment. I'm not having to think about it much, I'm more focused on just being turned on with him, and my member is responding in kind.

And then there's the chaser effect. Over the past four days since he left I have felt hor-nee. I don't want to MO, or look at P, I want to get laid! I went on a work trip and tried to find a hookup using my old favorite website. I didn't want to spend time cruising on the website, I didn't stay on it long. I wasn't looking for images, I just wanted to find a quick hookup. But it didn't pan out. Afterwards however, I could tell that just visiting that website created another level of hunger. I was no longer just naturally horny, I was aroused by the hunt. I wanted to go back and keep checking it. That was familiar, and a no-go zone.

So I'm just watching my case of the hornies recede slowly. I got home from my trip and have been pretty productive, doing multiple projects at my house, going for runs, taking cold showers. I talked about it with a sobriety buddy. I'm feeling more centered. But I have to say, that chaser effect really kicks in my hookup mindset. I have a couple hookup buddies I could contact here at home, and I considered it. But after seeing how the website visit started the dopamine hunt, I know it's not the right time.

I'll just use the experience as another reference point. I feel the sexual frustration, and I tell myself "okay, I just get to wait and save it up for next time with my partner." I feel very fortunate to have that option! I think it would be much more challenging if I didn't. The feeling of wanting to get laid has a pretty demanding, childish voice. "I want, I want, I want!" Knowing I can wait until I'm with my partner again gives me a chance to exercise patience. If I didn't have that option, I think the demanding voice might seem more insistent.
« Last Edit: April 03, 2016, 11:22:03 AM by now-man »

lyon03

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #94 on: April 03, 2016, 08:17:29 AM »
Well done brother! I like what you've written here. What you've described sounds like your frontal lobe (logic, self-control, higher thinking) getting the upper hand on your primitive brain (primal urges). This is great progress friend and a super example for our fellow members. I always have to remind myself whether the short-term fixes like porn, masturbation, hook ups, are worth the time & effort when compared to true intimacy. Your post got me thinking so thank you. PORN IS NOT AN OPTION. 

Phase2

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #95 on: April 03, 2016, 10:57:02 AM »
Excellent. I like Lyon's comment too. Sounds like you are getting a grip on things.

I was interested in your little experiment getting back on the hook up site. I have the same problem. I really REALLY want to just quickly use it for a hook up, but it comes loaded with so much dopamine drama. Argh. I've stayed off it for three months and the more I know the more I want to stay off of it. But still.... :P

Keep going buddy. You are doing GREAT. Proud of you!



bob

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #96 on: April 03, 2016, 12:08:03 PM »
Oh now-man, Phase2,

I really REALLY want to just quickly use it for a hook up, but it comes loaded with so much dopamine drama. Argh.

I sometimes wonder if you guys, my gay friends, have a more difficult challenge then us straight guys. While I know instant hook ups are possible with straight folks, it seems like the opportunities within the gay community are more intense, more available.

Just thoughts from an ignorant straight guy.

Peace

Phase2

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #97 on: April 03, 2016, 03:57:47 PM »
Well generally, men are happily horndogs. So when you have two involved in the sexual negotiations, it's pretty easy. If the attraction is there, then BAM, it happens. When the negotiations involve a woman, there is often much more difficulty. Society puts a lot of pressure on women to be chaste, to wait, to have low mileage, to not be 'easy'. Men on the other hand, are applauded when they put another notch on their bedpost. He's a stud while she's a whore.

So, yes, it's a bit of a different deal. Maybe gay guys have a harder time getting off this 'crack' of social apps because we have more chances to get seriously addicted because the drug (sex) is easier to get.

But who knows. Seems pretty hard for all of us. Just glad I found RN to help me see through the fog. Thanks for staying involved!



BlueSun

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #98 on: May 04, 2016, 08:37:39 PM »
How awesome to see success!  I've been slowly making it through stories of those who have reached out to me. In every story I see something I relate to.  A lot of something's. And then some I don't (holy crap my testosterone was 200 when I had it checked -- what's your secret?!?!). I had just logged on to a hookup site a month ago before my reboot began and although I never hooked in the short week or so I checked manically to see who was on and to cruise their profile and pics of course.

Simply out of curiosity, of course. (lie)

I think because my pied and slavery to porn my confidence in meeting anyone, even for casual making out, is and was nil.  But it was a short leap before the dopamine "wants" tied me to that too.  I was actually trying to figure out which guys lived in my apartment complex, because it told me they were so many miles away.  Anything under .2 well, were practically in my back yard. And which apartment would that be...  How creepy is that?! 

I mention this because when I read about having a dedicated email account for it, I had decided to use my secondary account too and did the mental gymnastics calculating what it would take to delete it. An act of dedication to wellness.

But only today did I put it together.  I wasn't about to go that way, I was well on the way...

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Re: Gay guy reboot
« Reply #99 on: May 11, 2016, 11:00:47 AM »
Thanks for sharing your story now-man! I'm new-ish to the forum, and pleasantly surprised by the number of journals from fellow gay guys on here.

Sounds like you're doing great. I'm especially inspired by reading of your renewed connection to your partner. I'm in a new relationship (15 months). My last relationship lasted 8 years and while it ended for many reasons, I see in retrospect that porn-related complications were probably one part of the picture. I think we both gave up on working toward true intimacy at a certain point, and porn enabled that. Gave us a way to fill the void.

It's a pattern I'm definitely not looking to repeat!