Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by path-forward, Jul 17, 2022.
2 weeks in the books, man. Let's stay vigilant!
Agreed! Stay strong!
Just checking in. Things feel relatively stable with my divorce process right. and so far on good terms with my wife. Hoping it stays that way.
December 8 will be 90 days clean - which is my "short term" goal - but I really am committed to sustaining this as my "new behavior."
Heading towards 3 weeks clean! Woke up with the best morning wood in a long time. "It" had no interest in going away! lol. Was inspiring to me, as that used to me a daily event before I started getting PIED about 3 years ago.
I still have urges at times to peek at P - which I hate. But they are def decreasing.
With my divorce process progressing, I am trying to focus on personal growth overall - and have started working out more, reading more, better diet, etc. I have also planned some trips and am being more active in my social life.
My wife and I seem to have established a respectful and relatively relaxed communication by text. Hopefully it continues when the lawyers start getting more involved in a couple weeks. Thankfully we have had some good/productive discussions on that front on our own - so hoping there are no surprises that make things more adversarial.
While still very much grieving my pending divorce, I am very much at peace with the decision. And while I am ofc def not ready to date rn - I am excited about the potential to do that down the road. I need to get to a point - where I can discuss my divorce in only a few words and move on to other topics. But I am clearly not there yet - as to be expected.
@path-forward I have read some (but not most) of your journal. Your first post and others are very articulate. I read about one P slip and you reset your counter, have you had any other P slips or PMO sessions since starting your journal? Either way you're doing really well and should give yourself a hand.
Have you got blocking on all your devices? This was a pillar of recovery for me. I've also read about porn stashes you have online. Can you work up the nerve to delete them? I feel you on that, I kind of think that porn is special (when really, it's personal intimacy that's supposed to be special), and wouldn't want to delete it. But now I have more the attitude that all the porn that was ever made should be erased.
I've read about your divorce proceedings and I'm very sorry this is happening. Is it solely because of political differences, or because you are not rewiring from P as fast as she'd like you to? If this is none of my business, just skip this question.
Nuc - really appreciate the encouraging, gracious and sympathetic feedback. But I have had several different periods of relapses since joining here about a year ago. And yes, I still have a stash - but it’s saved online. And while maybe its rationalization - I find its easier to control myself - as its only one place I need to stop myself from looking. And I know if I deleted it rn - I would be very tempted to recreate it by going to multiple sources.
I have had several good clean streaks and relapsed from strong emotional issues - not being tempted directly by my single source of P. And it takes several steps to access it - which typically acts as a fail safe to stop me from looking.
Overall - I currently feel very committed to stopping. And only find the online stash a temptation, when I don’t feel fully committed. And when I’m not feeling committed, I would just go to multiple places - if my stash did not exist.
And maybe there was some confusion - but my divorce was not significantly influenced by political differences (tho we did have some differences that could be divisive at times) and def not at all related to my P addiction. My wife was actually very sympathetic and supportive regarding my addiction. But our actual major issues are not something I wish to further discuss on the forum. thankfully we have remained on very good terms thus far and I deeply hope it continues.
Thanks again for the encouragement and support. Means a lot to me!
Was feeling very sad today. Def a heavy grieving day with my divorce.
but I did not think of using P as an outlet. Actually fought harder not to as I know I was vulnerable.
talked to a friend for a while by phone. And then worked out hard - cardio, weights, planks and stretching. Feel sooo much better!
this is a version of myself I can be proud of.
also made plans to play tennis tomorrow plus a couple times during the week.
feeling good physically is def a key to feeling better emotionally!
I'm glad if I helped at all. I think I was too nosy, sorry about that. I hear you on not being ready to delete your P archive yet. It makes sense to me. It helped me to recover to have a lot of blocking.
Posting to your journal has a secondary purpose: I am trying to figure out how to help others here. I have been clean almost 4 years from IP, and not much MO for a couple years. I am trying to figure out how to help others get what I have. I am not even tempted to look at P anymore. (I do have some temptations to look at movie nudity, though.) I think I'm completely off porn and it's in the rear-view mirror, hopefully permanently for me. I think I've had a miracle. I am trying to figure out what advice to give to people other than a very large amount of God and AA stuff.
That's great nuclpow. Yes, you should find a structured way to share what has worked for you.
You're doing excellent P-F, you're already about to clock in a month soon and that's amidst everything you've had to endure! I find that alone a comforting thought to really reflect on because as addicts we often take flight from high pressure moments and situations of great discomfort. The reality is we're very strong, we're powerful, robust and the greatest pleasure will always comes at the cost of some unease, p is a total miseducation in this regard, it rewards without work. Understood in this way, imho pmo is the most pervasive and destructive form of social welfare, but that industry's PR people are so good at propaganda, most people will never understand it this way.
Much respect for talking to a friend and then supplementing that with a tonne of exercise and also planned activities the next day! That's the clearest sign of self investment in your own recovery.
I hope as the storm clears you enjoy longer moments of calm, as being p free becomes your new autopilot.
Keep going! Stay relentless!!!
1MLA - Thanks so much for your very supportive and encouraging post! Really means a lot to me during such a tough time! I am fighting hard and def a huge challenge at times.
It is really impressive to see that you can muster the energy and the will to fight these cravings in such an emotionally challenging time. I take my hat off to you!!!
I'm really impressed because you're not trying to be stoic but use your social network and activities to counter the inevitable pull any of us face from time to time. It's a very mature mindset and there's this sense that you've amounted a great deal of muscle memory over the years.
I feel like a seismic change is afoot, I noticed you said 'challenge' where many would say 'problem', it's very subtle but a great nuance. A challenge can be planning for an adventure, and a welcomed goal, a problem is something one doesn't want to deal with, so take a lot of pride in this.
Your urges are always there as a kind of get out of jail card, it promises something it can't deliver. Behind the urge there's really just a desire for equilibrium and security, something none of us never really stop striving for, addiction/no addiction. Your life is changing and you're navigating great extremes, so you can only just lean against the emotional ups and downs and surf them until you've levelled it out.
I think with this milestone you're coming into, you will build towards a Xmas, NYE and New year's Day clean.
Now that is pretty badass, if I might say so, the mantra is always one day at a time, and you've got this. It's our addiction, we own it and we'll own it, reverse engineer it and use it to get moderately addicted to better habits .
Keep on rocking!
@wintersturme and @1MoreLookAway - thanks so much for your incredibly supportive feedback! It's very helpful and greatly appreciated!
But unfortunately I tempted myself last night - just wanting to satisfy a strong desire to see a particular girl's nude photos "for 20 seconds" - for reasons I don't want to discuss here. But let's just say it was more personal than regular porn and I was feeling very lonely. And that 20 seconds ended up being about 5 to 7 minutes of looking at her photos and videos. I even touched myself for about a minute before stopping. Tho not close to an O thankfully.
It was really silly of me to think that I could control myself and keep it to 20 seconds. But it was also a lesson learned - that I need to stay absolutely 100% away from any type of nude photos and videos - even during periods of intense loneliness.
I changed my date for last looking at P.
I will take this episode as a further warning for how vigilant and strong I need to be - particularly during periods of loneliness.
I am committed to doing my very best to stay 100% clean - and clearly need to fight even harder!
Thanks again to everyone who has shown their support to me since my separation/divorce from my wife. It truly means a lot to me!
Go look for that loneliness. Lean in to it. Saturate yourself with those feelings. Own it. It is your lonelines, part of you. And if you live it, something beautiful will grow from there.
@path-forward , I decided to come out of my solo journaling and check in on some of the people who have checked in on my journal. I read back through a few of your recent posts (I'm not ready to go back and read the whole thing yet...) and I seer you're managing this as you're getting a divorce. I've been divorced (and am now remarried). Divorce was just awful, and mine was not even contentious, and we had no kids. I have every respect.
Everything we go through can be part of our recoveries. There may be a way to reframe even the most shameful or painful experiences to get strength, focus, or direction. Take courage.
I hope you continue well.
Sufficio - Thanks for your support and for sharing!
Very much appreciated.
Well - I just succumbed to PMO for a reason completely unrelated to an urge.
I have actually been feeling VERY flat line lately - BUT that was the issue! As it bothered me a lot. And today I recalled hearing that covid - which I had 2 months ago - can lead to ED. So I started researching. And "Dr Google" discussed a material increase in ED for males who had recently had Covid - specially when going through periods of depression like I was. And also that the prevalence of ED increased in the second and third months after Covid.
So given my flatline and my fairly obsessive at times OCD - I was literally manic in my need to confirm things were still working down below.
Good news they are working and I kept the session under 5 min. Bad news I made myself relapse, when I wasn't even having an urge or a surge in emotional pain.
And ofc I should have known better that feeling flat line is a very common reaction during the early periods of staying clean.
But its back on the horse with - fighting any temptation at moderation - as @Montesquieu articulated so well today.
Hang in there, @path-forward. Back on the horse!
Yeah, it's crazy how "Dr. Google" can lead us to do things we don't really want to make sure we're still sane and everything works. I definitely feel this and have experienced this many times.
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