38-year-old virgin

Discussion in 'Ages 30-39' started by Londoner, Mar 25, 2016.

  1. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    Yes, you read that right. I'm a 35-year-old guy who has never had sex, never had a girlfriend and only been kissed once (about five years ago). I also have depression and suicidal thoughts, which is no doubt related to this, and I'm on Prozac for it. I'll probably add more details about myself as I go along.

    Firstly, just to say, I think this website is brilliant and it's great that complete strangers are helping each other through their addictions.

    I first got into porn in my mid-teens through still images my friend had downloaded (the internet was still just starting to take off at that point). Over time, as my internet bandwidth increased, so did my porn use and my tastes also escalated into more and more hardcore stuff.

    Then in January this year, I suddenly decided to search online for "porn addiction" and came across this and related wesbsites. After reading much information on the subject and people's experiences of rebooting, I decided to give it a go.

    My first attempt at rebooting lasted two weeks. The first week was incredibly difficult and I was practically shaking at times. The second week was slightly better, but I then reset deliberately.

    After that, I've only managed to stop a week at a time before relapsing, but my current streak is 11 days. I'm very much in the flatline period at the moment, but the urge to look at porn is still there - especially today as I asked a girl out directly (I don't think I've actually done that before) and she turned me down, so I'm feeling dejected.

    My goal for now is to get to 90 days without P, M or O. I've been unconsciously edging in bed when I'm half asleep/awake, but I'm not counting that as a failure/reset.

    I don't know if this process will indirectly help address my other life problems, but it's a good place to start. I'm hoping that by joining this group I will be more motivated to keep at it by holding myself accountable to all of you. :)
    nuclpow and kevinking like this.
  2. The Czech

    The Czech Member

    Welcome. I feel you on the depression/suicidal thoughts, I had them as well and probably because of this; we started on a very similar situation regarding girls and sex. I never got as far as medication though, probably since I'm younger.

    Kudos for asking out a girl directly after so little time into the reboot!! It took me about five months to do it.

    You're feeling down because this addiction (any addiction, really) stems from an inability to control and deal with your negative emotions. Hence the urges to look at porn are still there. I bet you'll have (if you haven't had them yet) mood swings, days where everything is wonderful and days where everything is shit and you just want to be swallowed up by the ground. A huge part of recovering is learning to accept this and deal with that in a productive manner (i.e. that doesn't involve porn). I chose approaching girls, because that's what obsessed me, and I find the more progress I made in that regard, the less I felt inclined to look at porn.

    It looks like you're honest enough with yourself to succeed in this.
  3. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    Thank you for your replies, they mean a lot. I'm still feeling down today, but will try to concentrate on other things.

    I will also start to get involved in other people's threads when I feel I have something valuable to contribute, because this all works when we're all here to support each other. Thanks again. :)
  4. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    I'm probably going to post random thoughts as they pop into my head. Even if I get past the flatline period, I don't think it will lead me to having a relationship of any kind.
  5. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    The sharp pain I get down the back of my penis after periods of death-grip bingeing seems to be quite noticeable during my abstinence. I assume this is just a sign that it is healing?

    My morning woods have disappeared more quickly this time.
  6. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    How old are you, Czech? While I doubt it can be "cured", the medication has definitely helped stabilise my moods. Even though I still have suicidal thoughts, they nowhere near as frequent as they were before I started taking anti-depressants.

    I certainly did in my first reboot attempt. As I said, the first week was unbearable and definitely affected my mood. I don't think I even got any work done that week.
  7. The Czech

    The Czech Member

    I'm 24, discovered rebooting when I was 21. I think back then, medication could definitely have been an option for me. But I kept this problem a secret, even from my family, so it's not like I ever had the chance to get them prescribed. But, judging by how things were developing in my life, if I had gone down that path for a few more years, I know that it would have been inevitable at some point.

    I'm actually studying to be a Psychiatrist, and from what I know the general consensus on antidepressive medication is that in these cases very rarely can it be a "final" solution to the problem, merely a patch. It is generally meant to help you re-estabilize, get some sort of momentum, gain a bit of 'happiness' back (as in, feel like a human being again) so you can actually work on yourself & your life so you can definitely solve your main cause of pain.

    If you think depression is related to this addiction in some sort of way, trying actively to get rid of it (by that I mean not just "abstaining from porn", but replacing it with something healthier/more productive for you) will surely make some/most of it go away.

    In my case, being depressed stemmed from social anxiety. And I know now that my anxiety was a character trait (being shy & introverted) that grew and evolved the wrong way through my teenage years as I used porn and masturbation to escape the real world. Once I cut back on porn and masturbation, and forced myself to be social, to approach girls, and to learn to make a fool of myself in public I eventually learned 'not to give a fuck' and ingrained that precious belief in my personality. That made the social anxiety go away, and with it the depression.
  8. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    You're right of course. I will persevere - hopefully I will meet other girls and find it in me to ask them out.
  9. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    It's the other way round. I'm depressed because of my total lack of relationships, which has led to my reliance on porn. Therefore removing porn is merely removing a symptom rather than the cause, but it's a start, right? :-\

    What I'm hoping is that by removing porn from my life, it will push me to try and form relationships with real women.
    nuclpow likes this.
  10. The Czech

    The Czech Member

    It's a matter of perspective. Has your lack of relationships driven you to porn, or the other way around? Even if we're dealing with the former, are you sure porn didn't worsen it, entering a never ending vicious cycle?

    Either way, you're right about how to deal with this in a practical sense. It's what I wanted to come through on the last paragraph of my previous message. You get rid of the symptom by actively solving the root cause, and you solve your root cause by getting rid of the symptom. Both behaviors influence each other in a positive feedback loop.

    The fact that you've done something you never did before (asking a girl out) after some time without porn is significant evidence of this. You were rejected, thus had more cravings for porn, but did you think you'd have them if you actually got the girl? Be sure to keep trying and find out! :D
    nuclpow likes this.
  11. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    Thanks - this is helping me to think things through.

    It's a bit of everything you say, I think. Lack of relationships is mainly caused by lack of self-esteem, which has then led to heavy porn use - because I feel I might as well use it while I'm not getting anywhere with women. And while I'm doing that, I'm not even trying to get anywhere with women because I know I always have porn to fall back on when I can't pluck up the courage to talk to girls I like. So the feedback loop definitely seems to apply here.

    To answer your last question, it's almost certainly no - I would not have cravings if I'd got the girl because I'd be happy and just thinking about her. I'm still thinking about her, but obviously in a sad/depressed/frustrated way.

    Meanwhile, I dreamt about my favourite porn scene (again) last night. Not being in the scene myself - just watching and M-ing to it. Since my only experience of "sex" is watching it, not doing it, I assume my brain has nothing else to go on. It's given me cravings again, but I've stayed away so far.
    nuclpow likes this.
  12. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member


    I'm into my third week now. It's a bit more difficult at work because when it gets boring, my mind tends to wander towards porn scenes.

    I'm still in the flatline. I'm so glad I've read these websites and know that it's normal, otherwise I'd be terrified!
    nuclpow likes this.
  13. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    Urgh, I've been so tempted all day. The only thing that's stopping me relapsing right now is knowing how much I'll hate myself afterwards. I have things to do online, but will log off now before I succumb.
  14. GQ1000

    GQ1000 Facing life without being held back by fear!

    Hang in there buddy. The best option is to get far away from electronic devices when feeling that way. Get outside among people, go for a walk, or ring a family member or friend for a chat. The urges will pass, the trick is to keep the mind busy on other things.
  15. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    Thanks, GQ. Today was difficult again, starting with a weak morning wood - it's gone from 0% to about 40%.

    I'm starting to wonder what I'll do once the 90 days is over (if I even get that far). It's not like I have a partner to be intimate with, so the only way I can relieve my frustration is through M. And since I have no real experience, all my fantasies will be based on P - which can only be a slippery slope.
  16. Fapstronaut

    Fapstronaut "Now that I know better, I do better"

    Do you work out? That can be a great way to get that frustration out, plus its a positive dopamine hit. OR, try a cold shower?
  17. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    I don't work out much, just do a few pull-ups in the morning. The problem is, all my urges come when I'm at work so not much I can do then except plough through it.

    Anyway, I had a bad day today and just PMO'd twice. I didn't even feel much pleasure while doing it. I'm not annoyed at myself for breaking this particular streak (made it to 16 days PMO-free), but I did feel rather disgusted straight afterwards by what I'd just watched.
  18. jjveetec

    jjveetec Well-Known Member

    I'd suggest you to try NoA (no arousal) - makes it easier for me (and looks like a lot of other people too):

    I used to take Fluoxetine (and other SSRI medication) and Xanax. They helped for a moment, but I feel like they kept fucking up chemical balance of my brain.
    I had suicidal thoughts and suicide attempt ages ago and started to take this shit afterwards.

    My suggestion will be controversial: consider getting off prozac as soon as you can. Combination of sun, vitamin C and cold showers should deal with depression much more effectively.
    nuclpow likes this.
  19. Londoner

    Londoner Well-Known Member

    Thanks - the NoA method may be the best approach for me now, though it will be difficult. Newspapers, billboards and TV full of sexualised imagery, all in constant view - not to mention all the actual women I see out in public. The breathing exercise should be effective though, so I will it give it my best shot.

    I tried to wean myself off the anti-depressants once and I felt awful. Ironically, Fluoxetine actually lowers libido quite drastically, though I've been on it for so long (and with escalating porn habits) the effect of it isn't as strong as when I first started.
  20. jjveetec

    jjveetec Well-Known Member

    It's doable. I'm doing this - I stopped virtually all ogling. On a very bad day I will maybe do this a few times, but even this will go away in time. It's difficult at the beginning when you have to constantly force yourself to look away (I sometimes felt like there are powerful magnets drawing my eyes to look at those beautiful girls... But after a number of repetitions you'll change your habitual response. Limbic system wants dopamine and is always searching for a fix...
    What works for us, is law of the "conservation of energy". Brain wants dopamine and tries to direct your attention to a nice butt on the street. But when it doesn't get it, the energy was wasted. It can afford to lose energy for nothing only for so long. If you're persistent, the urge to look will go away. Eventually it will efortless. It happened to me after approx. 3 weeks during my last reboot.

    I think it's quite normal to feel awful when you quit sometihing you're dependent on.
    But I wouldn't advise to simply toss fluoxetine without any back-up. \
    You tried to replace it with some alternative cures, or simply stopped taking without any substitute?
    nuclpow likes this.

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