Author Topic: My journey to restoration  (Read 21644 times)

Objectified1

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My journey to restoration
« on: March 13, 2016, 05:09:16 PM »
I decided it would be good for me to start a journal myself to document my recovery after my husbands porn use.

I am constantly surprised at a few things. One being the constant ups and downs and two being the things I am learning about men, women, people and relationships.

 I was raised in a christian home and so I Was taught (as a lot of people are not), the significance that sex plays in a relationship, about keeping ourselves pure, abstaining from lust etc. While I didn't exactly adhere when I was younger, as I got older I aligned my life more to the beliefs I was brought up in. My beliefs aligned with the beliefs I was taught as I trusted The Lord Jesus Christ with my salvation and wanted to please him with my life.

At no point in my life have I ever been perfect and never will be. I constantly strayed and was stunted in my life as a christian (still am and suspect always will be to a point) because I did not surrender my will and therefore my life to my Lord and Savior the Lord Jesus Christ.

 This event (my husband being into porn and various forms of lust) I feel has been instrumental in drawing me closer to God. Not only am I learning more to turn to him, but I have learned that he is the only one who can and will love me the way I am seeking. He is the only one who can fill the void within me. My husband can be my companion and my partner and can love me to a degree, but I cannot be completed in him like I can be in The Lord Jesus Christ. I am learning that God loves us to much to give us a life of ease. This hurts. This addiction/compulsion that my husband developed drives pain to my core. It hurts in such a way, I can't even describe. When your husband is looking at other women as desirable and (more or less) has replaced you with pixels on a screen and random women walking down the street, it does major damage to your self esteem and self image.

 I am learning that the problem is NOT me. I am learning, through many tears and doubts, long hours, days and weeks of wrestling within myself, contemplation, anger etc that I am more then a body. I am more then a perky pair of breasts and a firm backside. My value DOES NOT decrease when my physical body changes and is no longer top notch.  I was sitting in church this morning and it hit me. I do NOT need to worry about his thoughts or what he is seeing when he is looking at women. First of all, If he is not filling his mind with filth and porn then his views should change. We see what we think (more or less). When you look at that women walking down the street, even if she is attractive, if you see and take note (notice) that she is attractive, there is nothing wrong with that. However, there is a big difference in attraction and arousal. If you see that women and notice she is attractive and it arouses you and you start to think lustful thoughts about her, it is because your mind is not seeing a WOMEN, but an OBJECT. A Sex object for your viewing. Not a physically attractive PERSON on her way to work, with worries on her mind and kids to raise. Or maybe shes going to the grocery store to get supplies because she is having a party to celebrate her graduation.A PERSON. She is a PERSON.

 I am learning that God loves me and ascribes value to me, he sent his one and only son to die on the cross for me, and that no matter what anyone does, says or how they act that I am valuable and I am loved. My value is not tied to my body. I am so much more then a body. I never realized how much I was devaluing myself by feeling disgusted with my body after I found out what he was doing. By hating myself. I am a child of God.

 Men are visual, sure...so are women. We all subscribe value to beauty and that's fine. We should (if we are not filling our minds with filth, garbage in garbage out, and are somewhat mature individuals) get aroused by a combination of our spouses appearance AND the emotions that connect us to them...Women are more emotional them men, yes, but men are not idiots that do not have emotions and in this regard men's arousal's should work the same.  Sure we all CAN be aroused without emotion and purely by the physical....hence the porn problem, but if we are not teaching ourselves to do that it should be happening less and less.

 And one more thing I think I realized that is so important, God will take care of me and my husband. I cannot and will not try to "fix" him. I need to pray and leave things with God. It's how I found out what the problem was in the first place. God cares what happens in my life. He will not only help my husband recover, but he will help me have a complete restoration. When I find myself worrying and fretting about what is going on with hubby, if hes getting better, if he looked at her, does he find me fat and unattractive, does he love me, will he do this to me again, is he STILL doing it now, can I trust him etc....I try to leave it with God knowing that he loves me and will work all things for my good. Not only can God help me but he loves my husband as well, even more then I do and will bring him to restoration as well. It is a work in progress and I do and will fail at it continually, but then I just get before God in prayer, confess my lack of faith, pain, doubt and fear to him and start again.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #1 on: March 14, 2016, 09:29:39 AM »
Yesterday was a relatively good day. Very good for a Sunday.
When hubby and I were in the midst of his very staggered disclosure I was expecting our 4th child. Of course his disclosure was mostly lies to minimize or make the things he did less hurtful. In the summer, we decided to attend an event our church was having one Saturday at a campground. My new baby was exactly a week old. I remember telling him that I wasn't sure I should go. I was dead tired (I was induced due to preeclampsia) , my blood pressure still wasn't quite stable and I certainly wasn't emotionally stable. He talked me into going, although at the end he said we would stay home if I wanted. I know he was honestly not meaning to be insensitive. He thought that getting out would help me feel better.
While we were there, he was having trouble diverting his eyes from the 2 young (maybe 19, & 20) girls who were wearing booty shorts (thats what I call them). I of course am feeling pretty crappy about this because I can tell he is having trouble. I decide to go to the van to nurse the baby. I can see him from where I'm sitting. I watch his head follow her as she walks by (locked on her ass obviously). I remember thinking, God, just help me disappear. That hurt me so badly. That was early September.
 For so long after we would go to church we would fight. I always dreaded walking in there after that. Was he looking at them? Was he lusting after them? Even at church their dress is quite provocative. Very form fitting, mid upper thigh, stiletto like heels. I remember sitting in church looking at them thinking. I hate you (directed towards my husband). These girls, I had no feelings of anger towards them. They are young and still don't fully understand what they are doing. Unfortunately when I was that age I dressed similar. 
I have to say that he has greatly improved since then. I watch him like a hawk even though I don't want to...I am better at not doing it lately as well. As of the last few months I have not noticed him looking at them. That day at the camp ground, I remember I cried all the way home. I never told him why, I didn't even mention it till weeks later. I thought I was half crazy.  He DIDN'T just do that!? We were literally in the midst of all the mess when this happened. Lots of crying and fighting and pain, and here he was doing this STILL. I really thought maybe he was looking at the tennis court past her, had to be. He knew he screwed up bad, and he knows how bad this is hurting me right now, he wouldn't be still doing it, RIGHT? Those were my thoughts, but deep down I knew he was.  I was believing him before this point, when he would literally cry with me because of the hurt he caused me and promise he wasn't doing ANYTHING anymore. This was my realization that indeed he was still checking out random women. That hurt. The fact that I was nursing our child while he was at it.
Before all this came out it was just an annoyance that he checked out women, but once I found out he had been fantasizing about random women he saw, that changed everything. I was so insecure whenever we were around any decently attractive females, especially provocatively dressed ones. I still am to a large degree.
This memory has ruined my Sundays for almost the last year. This past Sunday, I have to say, was the best I have had since. It was great. I wasn't insecure about where he was looking and I enjoyed the meeting! I wasn't taken up with what anyone was wearing.  I hope the Sundays keep going like this. I even gave him a kiss WHILE we were at church and I held his hand. And we never fought. Small victory, but it is.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #2 on: March 15, 2016, 11:24:34 AM »
I have been good so far this week. It almost seems a lot of weeks, how my week goes, almost hinges on my Sunday. But come to think of it I have had good weeks up till thursday and then all down hill.

I sometimes try to figure out what creates the ups and downs and why such severe ones. I think its a combination of what the triggers are and how my husband reacts or is acting at the time. If he seems distant and then we go somewhere and he acts all strange the moment we are around an attractive member of the opposite sex, or maybe he takes a glance, I think its going to be a pretty low swing. If me and him are doing well, I am feeling good and we go out and an attractive member of the opposite sex is around and he acts all uncomfortable, then we can probably talk about it and I realize I'm just getting triggered and hes not lusting after others and not wanting me etc, or I just ignore it, it bothers me a bit but I can handle it and tell myself its nothing, he loves me, we just have to get over this stage.

Yesterday when he came home he was irritable. From the time he got home till we went to bed he was probably irritated 4 times about something I was or wasn't doing. It is unusual for him. He doesn't usually get irritated. Irritated for my husband is sitting somewhere with a slightly off look on his face. Sometimes he will say something a bit off key but not often. He wanted to be together, which was fine with me. However, after all his obvious irritation through the evening I wasn't jumping at being together. I was feeling kindof hurt. So that turned into a half hour talk and he told me he was just feeling really tired and he was sorry. I was much more receptive to being touched after our talk and being together was wonderful. It wasn't our past sex, and for the most part hasn't been for months. It was really making love.

Through all of this I never once held back on sex. I read that a lot of women don't want to be with their SO sexually when all this is going on and I can see why, but I didn't go that way. I think I went the opposite way. Personally I think it was a combination of pregnancy hormones and then maybe it was habit? I dont know. It's actually part of how I found out about all this crap. I was 3 months pregant and my libido went through the roof. Everyday I wanted to be together. That was all fine and dandy but he couldn't get it up or keep it up half the time. This was march...I never really found out why till 2-3 months later. It was quite frustrating. The one time I Want a lot of sex, he cant do it. In the last 13 months he has now turned me down more then I have turned him down. I can count on one hand how many times I said no. Except for the 2 weeks after the baby was born, so far, 6 days was the longest we went without it, and it was all due to him. I thought, I'm not going to ask or say anything I'm just going to not do anything and see how long it takes. By day 7 I was angry. He swears he never initiated it because he thought I never wanted it. I'm thinking, you can't be serious! He has got to be telling more lies. I never turned him down and was the main initiator for the last 13 months and suddenly I don't want it for 6 days? Made me shake my head.

However to give him the benefit of the doubt and to be fair to him, I had told him at the first of the 6 days that we were going to reset, so to speak, and try to go 30 days without it just to make sure he wasn't still using me to get his fix and that it is indeed his natural sex drive happening. He later told me that he really was taking me serious, and I was serious, till probably night 2.

I have to laugh because I know now when he doesn't want it. It goes like this, time for bed. He almost always makes it there before me. He leaves the door opened (I'm not interested clue #1), and then he also leaves his shorts on, which he never does ( I'm not interested clue #2). Sometimes I think he wraps himself up tightly in the blankets so I cant start it, lol, because once I start it he never refuses. Sometimes I get tired of being the starter. It makes me feel desirable when my husband pursues me, so to speak, and I like it.

There are many ups and downs on this journey but here at 10 months in I can definitely see some positive things. That's all for today.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2016, 11:15:12 AM »
Today I am thankful for my husband. I wish he had of had a better introduction to sex and etc, but I am thankful for him. I love my husband so much. I guess that's why this has been so painful. The thoughts of him desiring others, and I can not, no matter what anyone tells me,  see my husband masterbating to images and fantasys of other women as anything BUT desiring them. Maybe he didn't form the thoughts that he actually wanted these women. I believe he didn't actually want them but he sure enjoyed the thoughts of being with them. That hurts.

At this moment I am trusting him. I pray he doesn't do something to harm that trust. I do realize that the chances are more that he will then that he wont. But I am trusting him and believing that he is not checking out other women lustfully, watching porn and fantasizing about random people.
 I would imagine he sees beautiful women all day long, which is fine, as long as his thoughts are staying pure and he is seeing a beautiful women not a sex object he can consume. Lust harms, lust is selfish. It is desire to take something and use it for our own selfish desires and to our own gratification without seeing the wholeness of the person.
Love however, does not think of its own. Love is considerate and takes the whole person into account. Love or love making is giving and taking equally. It is receiving pleasure as a result and in addition to giving pleasure.
My husband makes love to me lately. I feel such love and loyalty to him when he does this. How can't I? When I can feel him, emotionally and physically, when he sees me when we are together physically, it moves my heart.  Making love fills us and completes us, relaxes us, makes us feel so much better afterwards. When you have taken part in a act of lust, you feel used, not noticed, devalued, the object he used to get his pleasure, unimportant, its usually rushed etc...I could go on.
I am thankful that it is wednesday and as of yet I have not had much in the form of upset or triggers in regards to my husbands past  p use.

J

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #4 on: March 16, 2016, 12:20:07 PM »
Hi Objectified1,

Welcome to reboot nation. I am a woman of faith myself who is on the opposite end, I am an addict in recovery. I am close to 11 months already.

My heart goes out to you, I know it's tough for you and for him. I am not here to make a case for your husband, but to encourage you, because another's person addiction can destroy the family dynamic. My father was an alcoholic. So I am familiar with both spectrums.

When I became an addict, I was already a christian, and the truth is, it is often hard for one to recognize in one's self. When I did acknowledge it, oh man what a struggle to quit. I tried off and on for years and what I realized is that I was still operating on much secrecy. The thing about addiction is that in order to start recovery it needs to be let out in the open. I don't mean announcing it to the world, but getting help.
I hit rock bottom, and wanted to die. That was the moment that I finally listen to what God had been telling me. I went out and got a life coach who is also a therapist that deals with addiction. After that, probably 3 months later I opened up to 2 people: my sister and a very close friend, another woman of faith.

The urges did not stop, but recognizing my triggers helped, and eventually the urges become fewer. They don't go completely away, but they do become easier to control.

The thing about any sin is that in order to stop, you have to stop feeding the monster. You are on point about something, if your husband has not taken steps to help stop his addiction, he will relapse. The period of a relapse is the worst, it's frustrating and very often produces self loathing.

But here's the other thing that comes in handy, it's important that you get support too. And get some help. When ever I was watching the stuff, I didn't desire the men per say,  what I desired was the feeling,  the rush, and the other thing I will disclose is that like any other drug, your body becomes tolerant after awhile. With drugs, you up the doses, with porn, in order to up the doses, you have to up the type of porn that is being viewed. In other words shock factor.

When I look back now, I can't believe I even ever watched the stuff because it's disgusting, it's a power play and the most unnatural form of love, because there is none.

Your faith will not only help you keep sane, but get you through the worse of your husbands addiction. And prayer is the most powerful tool.

So please believe me when I say what I am about to say, I say with the most loving words. As long as you continue to pray, there will always be hope, but this is something that your husband has to surrender completely to God as well. He will not get better until he does and yes it's very possible he will relapse. When he does, it is important that he knows he has your support, but it's also very important that he knows where you stand and your position. Addicts need support but they also need tough love. They need to know that there are consequences to their actions.

It is really difficult at the beginning. Irritability is only one of many withdrawal symptoms. What he will need is to replace the habit with a positive one. Exercise does help a lot but he will most likely have to find more than one healthy habit.

Thank you for sharing your story as well, it's not easy, but I want to encourage you to get help as well from a therapist or someone else you feel you can trust.

When I opened up to my own friend, I chose her for many reasons, but one was that she has experienced sexual abuse in her life and had been around many people that were recovering from problems just like my own. She wasn't one to disclose other people's laundry so I felt in my heart I could trust her.

I hope this helps and I apologize right now if anything said here bothers you. But if it does, don't ignore it. Sometimes the truth can hurt.






Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #5 on: March 16, 2016, 02:24:40 PM »
It has been 10 months since we started on this long painful journey of recovery. He has been talking to another man at our church although I'm not sure how useful it will be.  I guess it won't hurt.
I understand what you saying about it being the rush and not the people in the porn that you want. I get that, but in a sense it is the people to me. I realize it is the feelings and associated drugs (dopamine etc)  that goes with it but those feelings and drugs are coming as a result of the other people. The acts that he/you are fantasizing about doing WITH those other people. Its not the acts so much that are getting him off, but the new, different people. He was training himself that different is better than his boring old wife. A lot of men's views these days sadly.
 I most definitely do not take offence to anything you have said, on the contrary. I enjoy to get feedback and other views/opinions on what I am writing.  If it had nothing to do with people, with me, with OTHER's then he would've picked something else to hide in (Alcohol, drugs etc) or he would've fantasized about his wife, but he didn't. His wife wasn't giving him the Rush that those other people were. Like he told me, our sex life was boring compared to his fantasies.
I realize that he could relapse and I still have to deal with that. The thought of it truly terrifies me. I am beginning to trust him to much and I guess that's always a wake up call. I need to put my faith in God and I need to trust that no matter what my husband chooses to do, I have God and I will be ok. He will never leave me or forsake me. I have told him that if he ever deceives me and carries on things behind my back again for years, even months it will be over, no questions asked. If he messes up and tells me right away, if we have transparency and 100% truth, honesty, we can deal with it. It even kills me to say that. I can't bear the thoughts of him even "messing up" again. But I know if I can trust him, if hes not hiding it from me we can probably deal with it. This scares me to say because part of me is scared he will use it as an excuse to do it again.
Thanks for your insight, I appreciate it. Please, give it as much as you like. You might say something that will open my eyes more so I can understand. I so badly want to understand because the fact that I cant put myself there and I cant see myself ever doing the same to him makes it so much harder for me. It is what makes it hurt so much partly. I want to understand. When I don't I am left to assume that he did those things because he doesn't love me, I am not enough for him.

J

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #6 on: March 17, 2016, 03:39:13 AM »
My heart goes out to you. The pain is very real for both of you, which is why I suggested you seek help as well, and not the type of help the prescribes drugs, the type of help that will be an advocate for you and help you know how valuable you are with or without your husband.

I admire you for sticking around and fighting for your marriage, we need more people like you in this world that puts their trust in God. One of the things that helped me was watching a lecture given by Shelley Ludden, a former porn star who has an amazing testimony of how Christ rescued her from her life. She once said that porn stars are people that are suffering and loathe themselves, when we watch porn what really happens is that we become part of their suffering.

That was an eye opener for me. I also learned that there is a high rate of sexual sin along with porn use in the church among Christians. That was a turning point in my life to realize it's a tool of destruction to separate God's people.

It seems you have checked up on a lot of things, which is more than what most people will do. I understand a boring sex life, as your husband may have stated, may have been the original reason he got into watching porn, but I assure you it's not the reason he kept watching. Yes, the rush , but also it starts to desensitize a person. What he may not have realized is that it changes the chemistry of his brain and the view of women. Porn is about submission, a man showing full dominance over a woman.

A boring sex life is something many couples go through at one point or another, but I do wonder if there may have been another underline issue. I am curious, how long had he been viewing porn in the first place?

Stay strong, because you are wonderfully made. And trust your gut, whatever it is God may be telling you. Feel free to ask me any questions if it will help.

 :)



Warthog

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #7 on: March 17, 2016, 08:08:19 AM »

I understand what you saying about it being the rush and not the people in the porn that you want. I get that, but in a sense it is the people to me. I realize it is the feelings and associated drugs (dopamine etc)  that goes with it but those feelings and drugs are coming as a result of the other people. The acts that he/you are fantasizing about doing WITH those other people

But it isn't.  It is simply the depiction of the act itself. It is purely the visual stimulation and resulting mental stimulation.  Look at some of the animated porn.  I guarantee that men masturbate to it and "get off" to such.  I did.  The "women" in those vids bear no relationship to any real female, or even real human. 

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #8 on: March 17, 2016, 10:07:39 AM »
Thanks Warthog, I find it way to hard to relate. Sometimes I feel like I'm just waiting for something to click and then I'll get it. It is so confusing that it is obviously so different for men and women. Yesterday, it was alright . It was probably my worst day so far this week though. If I get myself into a pattern of thinking or onto something negative sometimes I tend to get stuck on it. Yesterday thinking about if he relapses then had me thinking about if he's even really clean. Is he just using porn substitutes like he was for the first few months? Or what is the REAL story? I need to leave it with God when I'm feeling like that. Sometimes it's easy to let it brew in your mind till you hate him again instead of just leaving it with God. By the time he got off woke I was cranky and not to inviting. I don't feel sorry for him. How long did I go with a live in shell No fault of my own. Any uncomfortableness he has surrounding this is his own doing. Part of what bothers me is his lack of effort. Sure he has put in SOME effort. He has stopped the behaviour, but I'm not going to accept simply stopping. He has to figure out WHY it happened and I want him to have a plan. That's what smart people do. I am an extremist. I'll admit that. With anything it's all or
Nothing  for me. I try not to be like that but that's my usual. I tend to not notice any good he's down and focus on the stuff he's not done. I'm getting better slowly. He has agreed he has to do more. We had a talk last night and I felt better afterwards. If we don't have much of a discussion about issues for a few days I get uptight and I don't even realize it. I always feel better after we talk. I saw a post on here about a guy who had PIED but was not addicted, didn't have a craving for the porn. I always thought because my husband did it
To the point he had PIED that he was addicted. When he quit he did just quit and he didn't seem to have a ton of difficulty. He said he never did and doesn't have trouble with quitting the porn, with him the trouble is just quitting masturbation. To me the two go hand in hand. Plus he also is tempted to masturbate always after a fight. If we've had a fight the night before and it didn't get resolved he's usually tempted in the am. To me that's another sign of addiction, he used it to medicate pain or alter moods. I guess whenever I do have a bad day or I'm feeling down its always because I'm worried about what he's doing or not trusting him. Going on 11 months in this garbage and  finally starting to have more good days then bad ones. I say that now.... We will see how next week is.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #9 on: March 17, 2016, 10:36:28 AM »
Warthog, I am going to think about what you wrote. You are saying that it's just seeing  the act, more or less. Nothing to do with the people at all? I guess. I could understand that. That such a simple explanation but makes so much sense haha.
J, he had stated that the fantasizes were more exciting then our sex life but he also claimed that he loved our sex life and etc. I think what happened is once he got into the porn and fantasizing our sex life wasn't as good because he lost sensitivity in his penis and had ED. Well that's going to dampen any sex life! He was introduced to sex through porn you might as well say, and his father even put it on for him and his friends to watch when they were young teenagers. However he rarely watched it once we got married and I truly belied he had a bad relationship with it but wasn't addicted. He started really watching it once we were having financial issues due to his health problems. He felt inadequate as a provider and was stressed about it . He started to watch porn because the orgasm that resulted helped him deal with his day before it started I guess. That was 3 years ago when he started that. I figured it all out as a result of his ED.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2016, 10:38:39 AM by Objectified1 »

Warthog

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #10 on: March 17, 2016, 01:31:56 PM »
Warthog, I am going to think about what you wrote. You are saying that it's just seeing  the act, more or less. Nothing to do with the people at all? I guess. I could understand that. That such a simple explanation but makes so much sense haha.

The "dehumanization" of acts in porn is one of the reasons the Catholic church says that porn is bad (in addition to masturbation itself being sinful).  They call it "the inherent dignity of the human person" as being violated.  One that watches porn is SINNING AGAINST THE ACTORS, not just the wife/partner of the one masturbating, because they aren't being seen as fellow human beings....just objects.

And I can understand well what your husband went through, as I pretty much had the same sort of progression into more intense usage...viewing porn "does" give a bigger "kick" than normal sex.  Why that is, I don't know...not a psychologist. It just does.

And it IS a tool that does give relief from stress....I used it for that also.  I didn't have your husbands problem with physical health, but much the same otherwise.  But I can pretty much assure you that it wasn't about "you" at all.


Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #11 on: March 17, 2016, 02:06:17 PM »
When I think about him replacing me with pixels on a screen and make believe things in his head I feel intense hate for him. As far as watching porn giving a bigger kick, they say men trade intimacy for intensity. As well, porn may be more intense but it is not more enjoyable if you are actuall making love with your SO. What we were doing then was crapy DUE to his porn use. I wasn't enjoying our sex either...

pinkerton

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #12 on: March 17, 2016, 02:11:31 PM »
That bit about the catholic view of P being wrong because it is a sin against the actors we see - is one of the most interesting things i've heard. Makes perfect sense, i like that.
 And i saw the thread about the PIED guys who aren't addicted, at first i figured they were full of crap. But it looks like they are right. Crazy how the same things affect us differently.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #13 on: March 17, 2016, 02:39:36 PM »
Pinkerton, If you read the covenant eyes blog  there's an article there that actually compares porn to rape. Why? Because there is no a women on this earth who willfully with full knowledge degrades herself and allows her self to be abused like that. Most women are into drugs/alcohol and/or have been abused in some way before porn warping their view of themselves, others and sex. Anytime you commit lust you sin against the other person and that's all porn is, lust. Therefore, when you take part in porn you are contributing to rape. An extreme view but I don't  disagree. The guys in the not addicted thread, I believed it right away and it made me feel better about my husband s story because I always just assumed he was lieing when he said he he never craved the porn. However , I'm not sure what to think, he still has the urge to masturbate. He was definitely if not still addicted to looking at women. He also told me that he never ever edged or watched it longer then necessary etc. I didn't believe him , but those guys say the same. He claims he would just find a video, which wouldn't take him long and then masturbate to it Whicch took him a few minutes tops I guess. He said it was just all about the finish that was all. Good job with your 23 days pinkerton. I hope your thinking up that 90 day success story!

J

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #14 on: March 17, 2016, 04:16:19 PM »
He also told me that he never ever edged or watched it longer then necessary etc. I didn't believe him , but those guys say the same. He claims he would just find a video, which wouldn't take him long and then masturbate to it Whicch took him a few minutes tops I guess. He said it was just all about the finish that was all. Good job with your 23 days pinkerton. I hope your thinking up that 90 day success story!

You know, I really always do try to find the best in people and I really wouldn't want to create any more doubt than what you are experiencing. There are people that are able to stick to their guns and say no. Just to tell you a little about my story, the minute I decided to go off the porn I went completely off. Did not watch it at all, which was hard when I was stressed or having a bad day. Now, because porn does have a very strong impression on the mind, it's very challenging to unthink it. There were days that some of the images I had seen would replay in my head. I would try to stop them but they were very initially very strong. And I will say for full disclosure, although I wasn't watching the stuff, the urges were still there and would sometimes lead to self stimulation. I still have had challenges with that area, but they are no where as bad as before.

I went through withdrawal and everyones symptoms are different, but for me it was irritability, ups and downs, anxiety, short temper, desire to eat more, mind fog, short term memory, and a few times replacing the urges with watching extensive hours of tv or even playing useless games. But here is one thing I will say, they go away as long as you are clean. I don't get mind fog, I have created healthier habits, I am more patient with myself, a lot more disciplined... the point is there is visual improvement and others notice.

What I did was get a life coach and disclosed my story. She helped me to identify triggers and how to deal with them but also got down to the nitty gritty of what was going on and understanding that porn addiction is not the true problem ( I mean it is not good at all) but that it was a symptom of a greater problem(s) that I wasn't dealing with.

Once I was able to see the problem and identify it, things started to get a lot better and suddenly I could see again. She helped me to acknowledge my emotions and not simply ignore them as I tend to do. Also, to practice transparency which is key to communication. The biggest and hardest part was discovering that there is a circle in our own lives that we often try to place people in and in my own frustration I would go out my way to try to help them, when I realized that in that circle I was the only thing in it that I could control, that was very life changing and it was also a habit I had to work on and still am.

My quality of life has deeply improved. Now let me share a little bit of the other spectrum in my own life of dealing with an alcoholic father, (that was not what triggered the porn use, completely different story). For years, my family and I tried to help him. Very frustratingly so. My mother would threaten to divorce him, he would stop for maybe a week, or two the most, then come home drunk. This went off and on for years. I was kid when we noticed and it continued on until a few years back, which I am now in my 30's. What started as a cry to want to help, led to self blaming, what did I do wrong ( and I was a kid) then the older I grew the more I started to hate him for what he was putting us through. Then I left a year after college and wanted nothing to do with him.

There were days that I just wanted him dead, ( I don't mean like to kill him). Just a desire for him to be out of our lives, I didn't care what happened to him. He would go up and then down, on and off like this for years and he never wanted help, wanted to do things his way and wouldn't acknowledge the issue. 4 years ago I had a change of heart and decided to start listening to God. I started writing letters to my dad and in one of them I asked for his forgiveness, for not always being a respectful daughter (cause I said some really nasty things to him a few times). And it made him cry. I told him I forgave him long ago. It was tough letter to write because I didn't necessarily feel that way but I did it because I needed closure, I needed the peace. I also was trying to quit porn and finally understood why he struggled, the difference being I was trying o do something about it. What also changed was I realized I wasn't responsible for my dads choices, I am responsible for my own and I didn't want to end up like him. I also made it a point to let my family know it was time to back off and let God take over.

They struggled a bit more but I finally felt free and stopped worrying about him knowing he has a choice and that his choices are not my fault. The one prayer I constantly had was please don't let my dad die or suffer. Then it changed to God, do what you have to do, but I only ask that he not leave this earth without accepting you into his life and if that means you, God, have to take drastic measures then so be it. A year ago my father was diagnosed with Parkinson's. He had to stop working, and started on meds, which caused him problems. I forgot to disclose he had an addiction to pain meds as well. Double whammy. Since the meds weren't making things more complicated we opted to take him off them and get him on a natural diet. It forced him to stop drinking and taking pain killers, his withdrawal was not pleasant, but he started to get better and better.

The next thing I know, my sister calls and tells me that my father decided on his own to turn his life over to Christ and he told them the minute he did, he felt a relief like something bad lifting off.

That was the short version. I read here lots of postings about how it is for the addict but there is always the flip side. How it is for the family of the addict. For the addict there is physical pain with an underline emotional pain and for the family it's very emotional pain that can cause physical pain. It's hard no matter what side it is period. But it's also hard to do the right thing when there is so much emotion and memories tied into it.

The point is that each person is responsible for their own actions and the addict can fall into a lot of selfish behaviors and victimize themselves. I didn't start to get better until I owned up to what I was doing and I have been an addict for 10 years. My father over 20. I wanted to stop and struggled to stop, my father didn't stop until he was forced to and had to hit rock bottom.

I will also add that I was furious with my mom for many years as well because she said she would leave him and never did. I resented her for not putting in more effort, but in the end God directs my path. Figuring out the problem is key, and owning up to it is powerful. I am not proud at all of having this addiction, because I really felt tarnished for it, but I won't pretend to be a victim either. I had to fight back in order to get better. I did the very things I needed to do to get to where I am. Do I still struggle, yes from time to time, but it's a lifetime process that is getting better everyday.

Support, Communication, are both key, but they have to be backed with action and accountability. As the wife of the addict, you have to guard your mental health as well. And I know some people here may disagree with my position, but after experiencing both spectrums it really does come down to thinking about what's best for yourself, your spouse, your kids, etc. It will drive you nuts, so it's important to pray but also leave to God the parts you cannot do. Take care of yourself, you are going through something too. You definitely cannot change your husband but you can start and work on you and trust God to keep you in check. Your husband has to really want this too and if he does, he himself will decide to put in the effort.

I pray things will work out for both of you.  And know we are here not to judge or criticize. If you are angry, you are angry, plain and simple. It's okay. That doesn't mean you are planning anything rash against him, it just means you are not happy with the situation. If you enjoy reading, there are two books that have helped me as well: The Battlefield of the Mind and Power Thoughts, both by Joyce Meyer.
 



Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #15 on: March 18, 2016, 09:47:02 AM »
Thanks for the response J. You have had quite the journey! Life can be tough sometimes that's for sure. Looks like your doing well, congrats!

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #16 on: March 18, 2016, 10:14:51 AM »
I wrote quite the message and it didn't post...grrrr. Anyway, Last night night hubby and I had a good conversation. It's always nice to talk about things. At first we were both so touchy and it was REAL hard to talk about. Mainly because every time he said anything it near tore my heart out and I'm not good with that. I'm not sure who is.

He is better at answering why now. Before it was always "I don't know" and even though I realize that he probably doesn't know the answer to a lot of my questions, it would make me very angry. I NEED answers, I deserve answers. Last night I asked him why again. He said to him porn and masturbation were completely separate things to "making love" (obviously so) and that because they were he thought in his mind that it was nothing and he didn't feel he was doing anything wrong. He realizes the difference now. Obviously it isn't nothing when you are putting a wedge in between you and your wife. When you are developing ED and cant make love to your wife, there is an issue.
When we first started all this it took a while to figure out what I was feeling even. Most of the time I didn't know what was bothering me or why. I would get up and go about my day, upset. He is very quiet in the am. Very. But it reminds me of how he was back then. Him being quiet in the am's would upset me greatly once we started trying to recover. He would leave for work and then we would spend most of the am texting/talking on the phone. Me, are you ok? What's wrong? are you still doing stuff ?Are you sure? Are you upset? Sometimes he would drive the hour and a half drive back home to be with me if I was upset. I appreciated it greatly. I didn't ask him to and him doing it showed how much he cared.
So now he sets two alarms 15 minutes apart, (hehe) and cuddles with me for 15 minutes. I love to lay with him before he leaves with his arms around me. It is SO nice to have my husband back. He kisses me a bunch we don't even have to talk and I feel great when he leaves.
 He hates to talk in the am. I was thinking about it because this am he talked to me, quite a bit. And we were both up making breakfast. It was nice and different.
I love my husband, Thank God we are getting rid of this porn garbage. I pray that God will keep it out for good.
He also stopped locking the bathroom door in the am. The am was mostly when he used to do stuff and he is the only one up in the am usually. It gives me peace of mind. I know the chances of him doing stuff with the door unlocked is slim. I know, I'm horrible, but a wife needs reassurance, soooo most mornings I check to see if hes done anything. I am pretty sure he has caught on....haha. When he comes in to get dressed for work I wait till he is undressed and then play around with him for a min or two to see if he gets an erection. When he does I'm happy and then I leave him hanging till the evening HAHA. I know if he had an orgasm 5 minutes previously it would be tough getting him to have an erection, been there already. Never again.
« Last Edit: March 18, 2016, 10:21:03 AM by Objectified1 »

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #17 on: March 19, 2016, 12:10:45 AM »
Just feel like writing. Today I went grocery shopping. By myself. You might think to yourself, AND? You wouldn't think that if you had four kids. It's the first time I went out on my own In A while. It was quite boring. However by the time I left I was feeling quite crappy. It's really not that lovely that I now (since my husbands various forms of lust have surfaced) cannot see an attractive or provocatively dressed girl without feeling very unattractive. I don't even know what it is, I guess it's lookin at them and thinking that my husband would lust after them (this is subconscious). Which oF course then feels like they look better then Me or he wouldn't have to stare at thEm when he has me. I am angry and feeling quite hateful towards him by the time I leave the grocery store. Why do women wear these skin tight clothes? And you always see one or two with so much skin showing you wonder why they put clothes on at all. I am fretting about the spring/summer and it is my internal clue that I need to get on my knees before God. I'm thinking if I feel this bad in the middle of winter and most of the woodmen are putting all their clothes on, how will I rep come spring and summer when half of them are going out mostly naked? This is driving me mad. Even being like this is driving me mad. I was never insecure like this in my life and it infuriates me that he has this power over me. I feel like my weakness is him when his weakness is OTHER women. Ouch. Growing up I was always a small girl. 5' 1", 100-110 lbs and I had no issues getting a man. I chose him. I guess in a sense that stings. I feel like I chose him because I thought he loved me like I love him and now I'm not sure he does. Now I'm, of course, the same height, But 150 lbs after 2 kids in 3 years. He makes me feel fat and gross and ugly. He swears it had nothing to do with me, whatever.

Gabe Deem

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #18 on: March 19, 2016, 04:57:33 PM »
Glad I dropped in here to read this (Sorry to hijack your journal Objectified, I just wanted to quickly comment on this)

Quote
Warthog, I am going to think about what you wrote. You are saying that it's just seeing the act, more or less. Nothing to do with the people at all? I guess. I could understand that. That such a simple explanation but makes so much sense haha

For a porn addict Warthog is spot on about what is bolded above. This is what I've always tried to explain and point out when I say a partners "attraction" has nothing to do with their partners porn addiction. If a porn user has become sexually conditioned, and desensitized, it becomes more about scenario and fetish, than it does about who is in the video clip. Anime is a great example, there are tons of addicts who are not even watching real people. There are addicts like myself who was watching porn with girls I consider far less attractive than my partner, yet I was seeking and searching for clips to shock me and give me a bigger neurochemical rush, so I ended up watching genres of porn I once considered repulsive, like "facial abuse" and "gang bangs" which I have never been interested in in real life and would never consider.

And to Objectified1, keep your head up, and keep healing. I hope the best for you! Much Love
Twitter and Instagram @gabedeem

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #19 on: March 19, 2016, 07:04:35 PM »
Thanks Gabe.

pinkerton

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #20 on: March 21, 2016, 07:05:11 AM »
Totally feel for you on going to the store with 4 kids. That's tiring.
  I tried so hard to get it through to my wife that it had nothing to do with her being unattractive or less attractive or me wanting other women. I thought if i could just make her 'get it' then she would be ok. But sometimes what we feel doesn't care much about facts. Especially when they are being told to us by someone that has lied to us. And maybe the fact that it had "nothing to do with her" is hurtful in itself. She was left out.
 I know it will get better with time. And my wife doesn't look like she did when we got married, time and babies change things, but i still think she's beautiful and sexy. I'm sure your husband feels the same.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #21 on: March 23, 2016, 08:36:12 PM »
Recap on my week. Sunday was not a great day. Certainly not like last week. I swear he still is looking, and if I were to listen to I my head I would most likely be right. It's so hard having someone you love lie to you continually. Your heart wants to believe them, your whole being wants to believe them, but you know from recent evidence (try the last 3 years), it would Almost be stupid to do so. It's part of what makes it so hard to trust him. He tries to make me believe I'm almost seeing things. No, he wasn't looking up that girls skirt that was bent over unknowingly showing off her whole Backside. Now, this is the man who has admitted to me repeatedly that he went out of his way to look and find women to look at it. Now he's telling me that yes he was watching her try to get the toy from the 2 fighting children and no he didn't at first notice that you could almost see her whole backside, when he did he turned away. Nope, don't believe you hubby.  Anyway, as a result (there was one or two other times I suspected he was looking) my day turned out pretty bad. I was irritable, cranky and upset. I know I have to leave it and pray about it. I know it's up to God to change him. I know I can trust God to look out for me, but it's so hard. Who likes to think about being deceived AGAIN. God cares about me, much more then my husband and he cares about my husband much more then I do. I need to continually keep God in the forefront of my mind. It's so easy to get bogged down by this stuff. I am dreading summer when all the girls are out in their next to nothings... Sigh. GOD, Leave it to God. So when I got home from church Sunday I called my dad who knows all about what's going on with me and my husband right down to his ED. My dad is a Christian with a strong faith. While he agrees that what my husband did was wrong and hurtful, he doesn't fully comprehend the extend of the damage this can do & has done to me and us. He of course feels that my husband loves me etc etc... He feels that men can lust after others AND love their wives . Anyway, I find when I discuss it with a real live human, he is literally the one person I have ever discussed it in person, I get very emotional about it. I do sometimes when I write on here as well but when I talk about it out loud I feel the pain as if it was yesterday and all the other emotions that go with it . Talking to my dad and crying on the phone, some of the emotions I feel very strongly are, hurt, anger, humiliated... That's a big one. I feel very humiliated That my husband did this to me. I feel like such a fool. And it seems when I speak it out loud it's like ripping open a raw wound. So when I got off the phone we had a bit of a discussion but not huge. All week since then I have to say it's been a rough week in regards to my husbands issues. I have been suspicious all week. To be fair he is causing it in my opinion. He is unusually quiet. Which just has me in a paranoid state. When he was doing all the stuff he was doing he was overly distant and quiet a lot. So now whenever he's quiet I'm upset. So we had Sunday and then him being quiet Monday and Tuesday. He swears he is just tired but I strongly feel he is keeping something from me. I'll tell you one thing, I won't go through this again. If I am not worth it to stay away from porn then I'm not
Going to be here. Addicted or not, I don't care. I actually don't think he has a strong addiction anyway because he quit just like that. Although he says it's not the strength of the addiction it's what his relationship means to him. He claims he didn't see anything wrong with it and didn't think it was affecting our relationship but once he realized it was he quit. Which is not totally true. He knew it was affecting our relationship long before I knew, but he refused to stop till I knew about it. Anyway, I will spend time in prayer and reading which I have been neglecting this week. Could be part of the reason I am allowing this stuff to get to me more.

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #22 on: March 27, 2016, 03:08:10 PM »
What a day so far. It's beautiful out. Joggers in skin tight spandex pants everywhere. Every time I see one i cringe inside. Makes me feel so ugly. Makes me angry. How dare him compare me to every female that walks (isn't that what fabtasizing about other is doing more or less)! Why marry someone to dream about everyone else?! How in the world can't you think this is going to hurt your SO? Really? Oh yes hubby.. You saw a girl on the street today so you went to the bathroom when you got home and masturbated, ultimately having an orgasm to the thoughts of doing/ being with her in various sexual positions/ ways. Have NO IDEA why that would upset ANYONE?! sorry, but this Doesn't sit right with me. I can't, don't and won't believe that he never thought that would be hurtful. I notice he wasn't discussing his fantasies with me. Why is that? Why wouldn't he tell
Me he was doing this if it's not hurtful and he never thought it would be. I think the reasons are obvious. It's hidden because it's OBVIOUSLY hurtful and it's the same as cheating in my mind. Where does cheating start?! In the head... It all starts in the mind. I am tired of feeling like crap beside him. I am mad today because I am SO sick of this! I am SO sick of going places and feeling like the ugly piece of crap beside him while all the desirable ones are out there. I feel like he's forced to be by my side. What is it? The kids? The fact that it would be too uncomfortable to change his life? Sick of this! I want to feel special to the man I'm with. Chosen. I want to know that he CHOOSES me. He has made me feel so ugly and valueless and at times I feel intense hate for him because of it. One of the only things that stops me from trying to just start again is the fact that I am a Christian. I am accountable before God for the things I do. I know that he wants me to stay with my husband and if I intentionally go against Gods will it will end up worse then the alternative. I believe Gods will for me is always what's best in my life. At times it is hard though and i really don't want to do Gods will. I think to myself, I can't do this. The nicer it gets out, the more I think, I can't do this. I am not spending 90% of my summer feeling like the ugly duckling tieing him down. The only way to do it is through God. "Seek ye first the kingdom of God.." I have to do that EVERYDAY. I have to seek him first. What an immature and selfish thing he has done. Sometimes I can't believe how immature he seems. I'm thinking really? I married a child, an oversized child! When life gets tough and things arnt going his way, instead of looking for a solution or trying to find a way to make things better or maybe focusing on his family he spends his time in childish self absorbed fantasies that give him a false ego boost. Pretending he's better if only in his imagination. And the way he chose to give himself a ego boost... Through sexually satisfying my Sisters and other random women in his fantasizes?! This is what makes you a man?! This is what makes you a great guy. Your special
Penis powers?! My how our world is screwed up! Men don't take pride in being a hero to their wife , or children, or being a good provider or a child of God. No, I am great guy if I can demoralize myself and other women and put more pegs on my bedpost. The more women I screw and ultimately pleasure (which by the way, is about making HIM feel good really, not her), the better I am? How twisted. Meanwhile, your wife, who really loves you is alone. What's for your love and attention and can't get it because it's caught up in women you have nothing to do with. HOW RIDICULOUS! I pray that God will help me get through this summer, day by day, with my family
Still in tact by the end of it. I have also considered leaving him for the summer but then I think, if I leave for the summer, I might as well stay gone. It's stupid. If I can't stand to be Around him when there's any women that's fairly attractive or provocatively dressed something has  to change. I need to pray. Prayer helps. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2016, 04:10:21 PM by Objectified1 »

punctual doer

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #23 on: March 27, 2016, 11:24:14 PM »
Hello I'm a 21 yo (soon) male and I 'm pretty touched by your last post.
I'm going to give you some advices that can help your husband or you as well.

I suggest you a stupid simple stuff called karezza that could drastically improve your relationship: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6jOp7XmjGY
And also do the "Sexual Transmutation" by Napoleon Hill: thinking about your goals and use the sexual energy to reach excellence.  Actually, semen has really important nutrients for the body and its "retention" will definately improve it (I experienced it after 2months clean from M/P in May 2013 where I met my biggest crush).



Here's my personnal tips:
1_Buy a big beautiful copybook.
2_Buy pens.
3_Entitle your copybook's cover "TOMORROW".
4_Take 10 minutes to write down your daily tomorrow plan between 5AM and 9PM.
5_I suggest you to include at least 5 hours of workout per week.
6_When your to do list is 70 or 100% complete at the end of the day, write in red the things that didn't work or that need to be improved next time.
7_Do this every single day.
8_Also if you can, cross a calendar to know the progress you've made.
Keeping a streak like this will improve your good-dopamine pathways (and will destroys the junk-dopamine ones).

WARNING: It is very simple to do. But you have to choose constant commitment over constant novelty. You'll may be irritated or frustrated at first, but then it will be good trust me. ACT RIGHT ON TIME is your mission now. It is so simple to do and ironically very tough. So get ready for that daily tomorrow plan.


AND ALSO, set your goals with a deadline to reach them (5-10-20 years from now for example). Precise your wildest dreams as much as possible, set gradual goals (or "ideal points") in order to feed the gap between your current situation and where you want to be. Step by step.

Get educated with tons of books and videos and audios and pictures on the Internet. Don't forget to GO OUTSIDE and feel that crowd pressure and social anxiety,  it is another good-dopamine pathways remedy. You'll find yourself weird first, but you'll laugh after a while.


I suggest you to follow hollywood star Terry Crews on Facebook or youtube because he dealt with PMO addiction too and now sober for more than 6 years with his wife and kids  he managed to get back, he revealed his learning in his "Dirty Little Secret" video series on Youtube also. I'm reading his book "Manhood" also, powerfull and inspirational.

Full responsibility, being thankfull and laser-like focus are the three keys.


God bless you.
« Last Edit: March 28, 2016, 01:17:09 AM by punctual doer »

Objectified1

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Re: My journey to restoration
« Reply #24 on: March 29, 2016, 11:27:40 AM »
This week so far isn't turning out to be much better then last week. However, my sunday was good, as far as I can remember. I have the feeling like something is up. He swears there's nothing. Everything is great, he's not doing anything, he's not lying to me. I can't believe him. I want to but he has told SO many lies through all this that all I can think is, yea, but remember when I was so hurt over all this that I could barely function and you were lying to me THEN. He feels distant, different. He is looking at women more again, it's not in my head like he tries to convince me. Gaslighting they call it. Plus, he is having trouble with his ED again. It has never fully went away yet anyway, but it seems to be getting bad again. He is tired a lot lately and we are fighting, if that's what you would call it when I tell him how I feel and he just looks at me, upset about it. I guess it's more accurate to say we are stressed lately. I do notice it seems to affect his ED when we are stressed/fighting. I don't know why though. It never did before. But I suppose we never really fought before because he never expressed himself. He just kept quiet and probably PMO'd.  :-\  I want to believe him, so in the meantime I will leave it with God. He allowed me to see the issue in the first place, he wont allow it to go on again behind my back. Praying for a better week. I want to have a better week then I have had in a long time. I will have a better week, I will make it a better week then it has been in a long time.
« Last Edit: March 29, 2016, 11:29:16 AM by Objectified1 »