Discussion in 'Internet Addiction' started by TheUnderdog, Jun 24, 2012.
I believe that there is something here that isn't being talked about. This is a flaw in most "just don't touch your member" or "just stop watching porn" reboot mentalities. Just like masturbation and porn, Internet usage is hard-wired into your brain, in the sense that your brain needs the chemicals produced by being on the internet in order to function properly. In a sense, your brain is using the internet to keep your body and mind in balance.
The same is with porn addiction: Porn offers a cocktail of chemicals that fill your needs in some way, and leave you empty in others (which is what creates the addiction), and in order to truly quit porn, you have to find new and healthy ways to fill those needs.
So lets analyze what needs the internet is filling in our lives. What are the emotional and chemical needs that the Internet is currently helping us fulfill, and what needs aren't being met. That is the true beginning of the solution to the problem, because once you know what this thing is doing for you, you can know how to fill that void in healthy ways that benefit your life.
For me personally, while I am not an addict of this forum, I am an addict of the nofap IRC. For months, it has been a guilty pleasure but I'm starting to realize that it is something that is keeping me from going out there and making real friends and cultivating real relationships with people.
So what are the emotions that the IRC is giving me?
-A sense of transparency: I can be perfectly honest with the people on the IRC, because they have known me for months, and I can tell them anything and everything about my life.
-A sense of acceptance: Once again, it is a group of people that accept who I am. This is important for my social needs
-Social communication with people, allowing me to vent and discuss the thoughts in my mind
-Motivation to continue forward with improving my life also comes from IRC
This is all I could think of for the NOFAP IRC, though I'm sure there are more needs being met. In order for me to effectively quit IRC, I would have to fill those needs in a new and healthy way that benefits my real life.
This forum could be attributed to the same set of criteria, social interaction on this forum provides acceptance, motivation, social communication, etc. In fact, these are the two websites that I primarily frequent most, in addiction to amazon / grooveshark to find new music to listen to. And interestingly enough, these two forms of communication fill a void in my life: I don't have many friends in real life, and the ones that I do have, I don't know well enough to share the intimate details of my life with. But is this website and the nofap IRC helping me improve my life? In a sense, yes, but also no. Yes because I am a recovering addict, and support is very helpful. No, because it doesn't provide real relations with people. Instead of cultivating real relationships with people in the real world, I am cultivating relationships with people that will end as soon as that person decides to leave this forum. In that sense, this forum is an escape, because it is never going to be enough. No matter how much I pour into it, the relations are on unstable grounds, and the problem persists: my real life social situation isn't going to improve until I put in the effort to improve it. I can have 2000+ posts on this forum, but it won't fulfill that need for genuine friendship. It will never be enough.
Aside from that, I don't really use the internet for any other purposes except for work, but lets say for example someone had a youtube problem:
What are the possible needs that youtube could fill?
-A desire for adrenaline, some videos might release high amounts of adrenaline
-A desire for entertainment, an escape from problems (danger zone)
-A serotonin fix, feeling good about yourself, etc (watching comedy, cat videos, etc).
I hope you can see where I'm going with this. In order to remove this portion of the internet out of your life, you would have to replace that void that is left once you remove this behaviour out of your life. As I mentioned in my post on the 10th page of underdog's orgasm reboot thread, this mentality can be applied to anything. In order to institute new behaviors in your life, you have to give something up. You have to make your body crave that void that is left behind by the old behaviour. For example, if you wanted to get up earlier, you have to go to sleep earlier. It is a give and get relationship. By going to sleep earlier, you give your brain the same amount of rest that it would get when you went to sleep at a later time, thus allowing you to achieve a new and healthy version of the behaviour - waking up earlier. The same concept is applied with porn, with going to the gym, with losing weight, etc. You have to give something up to get the results - you have to create that void, and then fill it with the new behaviour that you want to introduce into your life.
Great post man, I was thinking about the same thing a few days ago.
Internet Porn is the Crack Cocaine of sexual addiction. The user can not stop without the help of a porn filter.
You can stop for a day, a week or a month, but you will return when you cant do without that dopamine hit. The addict is powerless. Admitting that is the first step to recovery.
K9 and NetNanney will do the job. There are others.
To do this effectively you will need an accountability partner that holds the pass word.
What about using the net or computer for reading? Is that still counterproductive? I know I spend too much time on the net reading junk sometimes but on the other hand I read on kindle or have to do work on the computer.
What are the benefits of quitting the internet?
Separate names with a comma.