Author Topic: Free At Last  (Read 50332 times)

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #575 on: August 16, 2019, 05:42:18 PM »
You are right, your encouragement really helps and of course the journey is totally worth it. I am happy to announce...

77 days

After going down, the rollercoaster went up a bit again and I had really great moments at work where I felt really confident. I doubt others even notice the difference, but I do have a clearer voice and notice this myself while speaking. It's not like moments of insecurities vanish completely, but they are less present and I am not thinking the whole time about what others might think of me. The further away I am from porn, the less I feel the need to hide. There is still a long way ahead to overcome shame, but I am on the right track.

Way to be, man! Just keep doing what you're doing: it's clearly working!

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #576 on: August 18, 2019, 05:53:02 PM »
And once again thank you all very much! :)

80 days

There are positive and negative news, both are connected. I skipped healthy routines during the last days, didn't care about nutrition and got drunk. The worst news is: I actually broke my restrictions and took my cell phone home the whole weekend. Nothing happened and I kept it at the door without taking it to any of my rooms, but I checked it frequently. The good news is, it didn't affect my reboot (yet!) and I reached 80 days without any porn, porn subs, sexting, artificial stimulation at all - not even MO'd once. It's still an amazing streak.

The reason for taking my phone home is that for the third consecutive weekend I got a girl's number and this time I am really interested to say the least. I am checking the phone frequently for her messages and don't want to be without communication for twelve hours or longer. I must calm down, because I've got this feeling of going all-in without caring about anything else. We talked a few hours in a group, I didn't even meet her alone yet and have absolutely no idea about my chances with her. I just know that starting today I will go back to my routines and restrictions immediately, because they are priorities in my life and I know that if things with the girl fail and I keep being lazy, I am in big trouble of falling into a hole and to relapse.

Lero

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #577 on: August 18, 2019, 06:07:15 PM »
80 days, man! This is wow!

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #578 on: August 19, 2019, 05:01:21 PM »
I am checking the phone frequently for her messages and don't want to be without communication for twelve hours or longer. I must calm down, because I've got this feeling of going all-in without caring about anything else. We talked a few hours in a group, I didn't even meet her alone yet and have absolutely no idea about my chances with her. I just know that starting today I will go back to my routines and restrictions immediately, because they are priorities in my life and I know that if things with the girl fail and I keep being lazy, I am in big trouble of falling into a hole and to relapse.

I know the feeling! But I have heard it can be good not to bend over backwards in order to be available, especially in the early stages. Stick to your rules (for your own sake) and try (easier to say than do) not to worry about messing things up. For all she knows, you might be one of those people who has a "no screens after 7:00" policies or whatever. If she's really going to get bent out of shape because you can't text her until the next day, that's her problem, not yours.

But I got distracted and lost my train of thought: Congrats on meeting someone! I hope things work out, but even if they don't, it's good that you're getting out there. Keep on keepin' on!

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #579 on: August 22, 2019, 02:05:51 AM »
80 days, man! This is wow!

Thank you, Lero!  :)

I know the feeling! But I have heard it can be good not to bend over backwards in order to be available, especially in the early stages. Stick to your rules (for your own sake) and try (easier to say than do) not to worry about messing things up. For all she knows, you might be one of those people who has a "no screens after 7:00" policies or whatever. If she's really going to get bent out of shape because you can't text her until the next day, that's her problem, not yours.

Thanks, I tried to take things easier and left my cell phone out of my house over night after gym. It's just that normally I shut it off after work already and I changed that lately. Took the phone home after work, left it by the door and checked it every half hour, that worked for me. I have to think about a long term solution, for now it still led me to:

83 days

Got my tasks at home done, went to the gym three days in a row, made good use of my time and keep advancing at work. Going to meet the girl again (not alone, but with friends again - but we're in contact and she doesn't seem completely uninterested in me) and while normally I wouldn't want to think about a possible negative outcome but just wait for what happens, I am still a little afraid. More than being afraid of rejection, I am afraid of not being able to handle the feeling of getting rejected. This is such an important key in my personal history and I need to find out where this comes from and why it affects me so much. Rejection triggers a feeling of incredibly low self-worth and led me back to my addiction in the past. I guess I have to learn a lot about myself and need to become more stable in my abstinence to deal with negative emotions that I ran from for too long by using porn.

83 days is an amazing success to me on the one hand, on the other hand there seems to be a welcome-sign to life that says "Welcome to reality! It's tough some times, get used to it." - I am willing to accept that challenge, but I am at the very beginning and have to learn a lot about myself and how to deal with this reality.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #580 on: August 22, 2019, 05:59:29 PM »
More than being afraid of rejection, I am afraid of not being able to handle the feeling of getting rejected.

I relate to this feeling. I wish I could say something wise and helpful. I guess I'll just say that I know a lot of my relapses have happened when I had my hopes high for a romantic relationship to happen but then it didn't work out. That disappointment usually sends me crashing down.

Here's to hoping it works out, and there's no harm in taking things slow! It's good that you're aware of your feelings and are thinking about how to prepare yourself emotionally if they don't work out. That would be a pretty unfortunate reason to relapse (even if it has been one of my favorite reasons for relapse...)

Keep at it!

Lero

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #581 on: August 23, 2019, 09:25:42 AM »
That's right, man. The follow-up of a rejection could be more painful than the moment when the rejection happened, because you keep thinking about it.

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #582 on: August 24, 2019, 06:28:51 PM »
Thank you very much, BlueHeronFan and Lero!

86 days

It's going very slow, but there are chances things might work out with the girl. We met again (in a group, as we have a friend in common) and she was touching my arm in various occasions, laughing a lot and later apologized in a message that she had to leave earlier, but wants to see me again next week.

On the one hand it's a good sign, on the other hand the whole process of meeting her showed me some patterns in my behaviour that are dangerous. My personal development and progress must not be influenced by meeting a girl. If things work out - great! If they don't work out - I will just keep going and there will be another opportunity!

My focus needs to be put back on establishing new, positive habits in my life and keep advancing. I decided not to go out, but go to the gym, eat healthy, will sleep a lot and repeat the same for the next days. I will significantly reduce drinking alcohol, because it has gotten out of hand lately. There is a lot of work ahead and apart from my healthy habits, I need to question my behaviour and my fears and leave my comfort zone.

Quitting porn is hard work, but the key to a long term success is to spot the behaviours that led me to using porn over and over again and not all of them are porn related and none of them will disappear automatically after 90 days of abstinence. It's important to point that out again and again, because subconsciously I am disappointed to not have all my fears and troubles gone just by quitting porn. There are no superpowers, but still it's absolutely necessary to kick porn and all its substitutes out of my life forever.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #583 on: August 24, 2019, 06:52:26 PM »
My personal development and progress must not be influenced by meeting a girl. If things work out - great! If they don't work out - I will just keep going and there will be another opportunity!

Glad to hear things are still chugging along!

I'm with you on this one. For me, I'm not trying to get better in order to find a girl. I'm trying to be better so that, when a girl comes along, I'll be ready for here. Lol, that sounded like a bigger difference in my head. I guess what I'm trying to say is that it's not just about getting a girl. It's about becoming, independently, the kind of man that the right kind of girl would be interested in. It's really about being happy and fulfilled in my single life first so that I can contribute to a relationship later.

Away we go!

Non-Dual Adventurer

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #584 on: August 26, 2019, 06:53:21 PM »
You're right about spotting those pesky behaviours that lead you toward relapse. Today, I was having some real urges. I didn't watch P but I did drink a beer for lunch... Now, I enjoy the occasional lunch beer - it's not in itself a problem apart from I drank it to numb the pain of the withdrawal. I caught it though, and ended up chanting some mantra to calm down because I was so restless. Keep on keeping on, mate! The big 9-0 is just round the corner!

Lero

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #585 on: August 27, 2019, 12:35:25 AM »
You're right about spotting those pesky behaviours that lead you toward relapse. Today, I was having some real urges. I didn't watch P but I did drink a beer for lunch... Now, I enjoy the occasional lunch beer - it's not in itself a problem apart from I drank it to numb the pain of the withdrawal. I caught it though, and ended up chanting some mantra to calm down because I was so restless. Keep on keeping on, mate! The big 9-0 is just round the corner!

Navigating life without our "coping mechanisms" can get tough. I am definitely irritated but I believe that things lead to something eventually.

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #586 on: August 29, 2019, 06:50:07 AM »
Thanks a lot guys and sorry I didn't contribute to this community much lately - I keep being very busy which is a good sign on the one hand, but on the other I will try to catch up with your journals this weekend. Being busy helped me reach:

90 days

Yes, 90 days no porn, no porn subs, no sexting, no MO for the first time since I started watching porn about 18 years ago. It's only a number, but realizing how long it took (6 years trying to quit, 3.5 years writing a journal here) and how many relapses I had along the way, I really do feel proud. I had one major streak in 2016 of almost 4 months that included frequent MO and at some point I kept counting despite edging to porn subs - this time I just did it hard mode and it's actually easier after some time.

This still isn't the end of this journey and lately I am working harder than ever before on advancing with my whole life. Will give a little more detailed update this weekend - keep going everybody and remember: If I can do it - I have been a hopeless case for far too long - you can do it too!

Lero

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #587 on: August 29, 2019, 06:51:49 AM »
You did it, man! This is outstanding! No MO too? This is wow! Complete fucking hard mode, get outta here! Have you noticed any changes/benefits after all this time?

Non-Dual Adventurer

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #588 on: August 29, 2019, 11:59:24 AM »
Yes Achilles, you fucking legend! Congratulations on doing 90 days hard-mode! That's a major achievement! As you say, it's not the end of the journey, but you've bitten off (potentially) the hardest chunk! You're probably not getting urges so much anymore, either, which makes it easier, but just don't let your brain trick you that now it's okay to watch youtube videos with scantily clad women, or whatever your go-to P sub was. For me, after 100 days hard-mode, I thought it okay to start MO'ing again. It was a slow decline, but after a couple of months I was peeking again and found myself on Omegle having cam sex. Then I slowly descending back into a less regular P habit. Really messed up and the shame was so great that it took me 5 years to get back on board with my recovery. I'm sure you won't be as stupid as I was but I just thought I'd a word of warning anyway, because I care about you and your journey. :)

Peace dude,

- Adventurer

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #589 on: August 29, 2019, 05:09:46 PM »
This still isn't the end of this journey and lately I am working harder than ever before on advancing with my whole life. Will give a little more detailed update this weekend - keep going everybody and remember: If I can do it - I have been a hopeless case for far too long - you can do it too!

Huge congratulations on 90 days! And for working on advancing your whole life! Recovery is so much more than just quitting one bad habit. It really is about changing your whole life for the better.

And way to be also for recognizing that this isn't the end. Day 91 is every bit as important as Day 1. You know what has worked to get you this far, just keep doing it and see how much farther you will go!

squid

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #590 on: September 01, 2019, 12:15:09 PM »
Nice job dude!  That's inspiring, how does it feel?

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #591 on: September 03, 2019, 05:24:44 PM »
96 days

I apologize once again for not being a supportive part of this community lately and thank you for your comments. I still didn't catch up with your journals and can't concentrate on reading them at the moment.

My number one priority lately hasn't been quitting porn, but meeting this girl again. My efforts on working on myself had that exact purpose, I didn't go to the gym for myself, but thinking about presenting myself in the best possible way to the girl. It was the first time in years I felt I maybe could enter a serious relationship again and I had real hopes things could work out.

After meeting her on friday I felt something was wrong and today I received a long text message explaining why she wasn't ready and why it was better to be honest and stop the whole process of getting to know each other.

It has been a long time since I experienced rejection, but it feels just the same every time: I feel like choking, like crying, my heart rate increases, I can't eat. There is this huge, paralyzing wave of sadness coming over me. I do feel empty and unwanted. My reaction to this isn't normal, I am facing one of my biggest fears. I'm almost in physical pain.

I used to avoid these situations my whole life or just numb myself to escape them.

But this time I have to face this pain and face my fear. I have to endure this feeling. This is life. Being rejected is part of living. The avoidance of pain and fear also means lost opportunities of joy and happiness. The purpose of this journey is to feel again, to live again. To no longer numb myself to uncomfortable situations and to be able to experience life in all its positive and negative aspects.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #592 on: September 03, 2019, 06:05:45 PM »
Really sorry to hear it, man. That's tough. I know that feeling of getting my hopes up and then having them come crashing down.

All your effort in getting yourself ready for this girl is still totally worth it. It didn't work out with her, but you are already in a much better position to attract someone even better. You're a different, improved person from a few months ago.

Just think: the problem wasn't that you weren't ready for a relationship. It was that she wasn't ready. Whatever her reasons for stepping back, it wasn't because you weren't good enough. You were ready, and that preparation will serve you, no matter who you end up with eventually.

Maybe that's not very comforting, but it's something I tell myself a lot. Like you, a big part of my recovery efforts (and other life changes) are about getting ready for a serious relationship. I don't know where she is or when she'll show up, but I know I'm going to do everything I can to be ready for her when she gets here.

When that day comes, neither of us is going to have to back out because we "weren't ready." You and I are going to be so well prepared. Keep on going, and don't be afraid to slow down a little and take care of yourself (in healthy ways). We're fighting it all together, not just porn.

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #593 on: September 08, 2019, 05:34:51 AM »
Thank you very much, BlueHeronFan! You are absolutely right, but unfortunately, I left the good path due to focussing too much on her. It was a big mistake, but it's not too late to turn things around.

100 days

It's pure luck I am writing this, because I ignored all the rules and good habits. Getting drunk and high has been my replacement, my nutrition is shit, I didn't do sports and took my cell phone home. Today I even watched YouTube in bed. The number of days I reached seems magic, but I am not happy with my life of the last days since getting rejected and falling into some kind of self-pity.

This is kind of a "day 0" in terms of everything but porn and I will do a big clean up of my house and return to the heaviest of restrictions right away. I will stop drinking for a while because drunk I am vulnerable to substance abuse. Replacing one demon with another isn't the idea of recovery. The longest streak ever of no porn, no porn subs, no sexting, no MO ist still alive despite adverse circumstances - now it's my turn to build upon it a free life.

Free-man

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #594 on: September 08, 2019, 11:26:12 AM »
Congratulations for 100 days clean!
Amazing number. Yep, it's time to change bad habits.

BlueHeronFan

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #595 on: September 08, 2019, 08:24:26 PM »
Glad you made it through, even with all those risks in the mix.

But, like you said, that's no reason to keep those things around. Clean house and move on for another 100!

Arthur2

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #596 on: September 08, 2019, 10:22:33 PM »
100 days is impressive, man !

And good job for not PMOing even in the face of a tough rejection.
We all know that this is very tough to deal with.
So i want to congratulate you for handling it well and keeping your streak.

I myself am trying to reboot and rejection is also tough for me to face.

achilles heel

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #597 on: September 09, 2019, 12:25:15 AM »
Thanks for your support, guys, but unfortunately I failed!

Day 0

I just MO'd on sexting for hours, exchanging fantasies with a girl I hadn't seen in a long time. Facebook wasn't blocked anymore, now it's up to me to show not everything is lost. I will pick myself back up and be a part of this community again. It's important to not let this repeat and find strategies right away. More later.

Free-man

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #598 on: September 09, 2019, 12:12:49 PM »
Sad to hear that,
What happened? what was the trigger?
Note it for the future.
We're here to support you.

squid

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Re: Free At Last
« Reply #599 on: September 09, 2019, 12:20:40 PM »
That's a bummer Achilles, but still, compared to high speed internet p, sexting with someone you actually know shouldn't set you back too much.  I'd be very concerned about the chaser though.  Maybe take a trip or find someway to distract yourself for a few days to get some distance.