Accepting Responsibility

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by path-forward, Jul 17, 2022.

  1. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Yes, you're going great, path-forward! Keep up the good work!
    And we are definitely lucky to have Saville here. In addition to his wise words, he also leads by doing. Or in our case, not doing :)
    Here's to staying vigilant and not doing. Consistently.
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  2. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    thanks @Mozenjo! Appreciate the support and back at ya! Stay strong and focused.
    Mozenjo likes this.
  3. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Copy that!
    path-forward likes this.
  4. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    Walk of shame!
    Set my No Peeking date back to today. Happened a couple today times as well.

    Thankfully no touching etc and I shut the screen after 2 or 3 minutes each time.
    But still wayyy over the line for me and I’m fearful I’m even potentially slowing my “re-wiring” in a meaningful way.

    I’m also wondering if my P subs were effectively “my warning track” and now P itself is - given I have stopped the P subs. I’m ofc just fooling myself today - thinking I can now use P peeking as a warning track. VERY slippery slope! Need to regroup and focus on my many preventive practices.

    Unfortunately perfect storm for me in regard to multiple intense emotional triggers! including now my libido much improved as well! Lol.
    Just watching girls playing tennis in the US Open on TV got me charged up!
    Plus my wife is away til next Tuesday. So I am alone a lot!

    NEED TO KEEP FIGHTING! I know I will deeply regret it if I succumb to my addiction.
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2022
    Saville likes this.
  5. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Keep up the journaling! It sometimes can feel like we're Robinson Crusoe, all alone on a desert island, but even on a deserted island we can create a good life.

    We all know what's at stake. It's not only the dopamine addiction, it's also decades of inertia. We fight this on all fronts. One of the best interventions I do is to slow down my life while doing menial tasks. If I have yard work to do I move slowly. If people were watching they might think something was a bit off, but what I'm doing is a working meditation. I walk to the shed slowly. I pick up the rake, shovel, etc, slowly. I do the job at a steady, yet slower pace. The mundane task, along with slowing myself down, centers me and allows light to fall into my brain.
  6. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Yes, keep journaling! What keep tripping me up is the false sense of progress being made if I just keep the peeking at "acceptable" images. But there are no acceptable images. They are, because they're pixels, poison to us. As Saville says, anything that keeps the dopamine drip flowing and the cravings alive will keep that inertia going. We know all this right up to the point where we log in and do it anyway. Then it's exponentially harder to stop. So why torture ourselves? We deserve better, my friend. Keep up the fight, you're doing great!
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  7. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    wow! @Saville. As you would say - there was a lot to unpack there.

    that’s such an intriguing way to describe approaching living. It really resonated with me! I will definitely keep that in mind to slow things down - which will also help keep me in the moment.
    thanks so much for your insightful advice!

    and along with @Mozenjo - thanks for your encouragement to journal every day. Sometimes the public nature of this forum instinctively makes me feel like I am over sharing. But recently rereading older journal entries was extremely helpful in keeping me feeling disciplined and fully appreciating the journey. Also - I think it’s very important to share on both good days and bad.

    And @Mozenjo. Thanks to you as well for describing the importance of making sure our eyes are always wide open in regard to our actions - and not fooling ourselves that we are doing things “in moderation.” Your support and encouragement is much appreciated!

    Last edited: Sep 7, 2022
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  8. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    New Day 1 streak with both No P subs AND No peeking at P.

    Small step - but so important in continuing my journey to a broad based rewiring of my brain and lowering my dopamine addiction.

    I had some tough PMO scares with yesterday’s multiple P peeking. But I was thankfully able to close my browser after a couple min each time and walk away. Somehow I knew to fight hard not to start actually touching myself - which would start the path of No return.

    Approaching 100 days NO PMO. NO MO.

    today was also my first day back to playing sports after being injured for 2+ weeks. Felt wonderful! I felt very focused and in the moment - as I think I now fully appreciate how important is to me to exercise.

    I was reading some others posts today. And it made me fully appreciate that without PMO or MO - for the first time in my adolescent and adult life - there is no drug available to self-medicate and forget my emotional pain.
    I need to keep working on other outlets to feel emotionally better: talking to my wife, reading, hanging with friends, exercise, playing with my dog, watching movies and sports, long walks etc.

    This is the most challenging journey of my life - but I know how vital it is to my mental and physical health, my marriage, my family and my friendships.

    thanks again to everyone who has offered their support, encouragement and advice!

    The sense of brotherhood and zero judgement on this forum is so foundational to my journey to take control of my addiction.
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2022
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  9. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Hey there, one day totally clean is great! I'll be at that mark in a few hours. Let's make this one ultra clean as well, and get the momentum on the right side of the ledger again...
    path-forward likes this.
  10. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    Hey @Mozenjo - Thanks so much for the encouragement! Just read your own post. Was actually going to ping you - as I hadn’t seen a post from you in a few days.

    very sorry about the heat in CA! And your office AC.
    Hopefully it subsides soon

    so we are together now in our renewed focus on
    No p subs and NO peeking. let’s both focus on staying strong!

    for me the key is to finally look at p subs and peeking as insidious as PMO/MO itself. They all put you on a path of relapse.

    Let’s fight this battle together!

    (going to repeat much of my post on your own thread as an additional reminder)
    Rudolf Geyse likes this.
  11. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    Ugh. Got some troubling medical news on a family member tonight. And almost relapsed. But only peeked for about a min or two - and closed my browser. Sometimes I like to think I am subconsciously testing myself - but I know deep down that is just the addiction talking! But it is definitely getting very tough lately - despite all the knowledge and insights I have gleaned from this journey. No peeking date set back to today. :(
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2022
    Rudolf Geyse likes this.
  12. Rudolf Geyse

    Rudolf Geyse Well-Known Member

    Hey @path-forward . Think about at the start of your journey. After hearing this news, you might have had a full-blown relapse MO session that lasted for hours. You're doing great. Get back on the horse quickly and remind yourself about all the reasons you're avoiding P subs and peeking. All the best
  13. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I'm sorry to hear about that, but great job staying the course. As you know, life has its ups and downs. All of us at one time or another will get less than great news about something; our response is everything. Unfortunately, for people like us, there can be no special pass, no dispensation, to peek. Not casting stones, because I've definitely failed at this before myself, but rather just stating it as I see it. :)

    You are staying accountable to yourself which is radical, dude! Well done!
    path-forward likes this.
  14. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    @Saville. Thanks for your sympathy regarding my family situation and even more importantly - for your directness. I totally agree with your sentiments! Life is just hard sometimes - but that is not remotely an excuse to indulge an addiction.

    as always - thanks for all your support and encouragement! It’s extremely meaningful to me.
    Saville likes this.
  15. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    So today feels very special for me! But it is also a day, where I know I still have a lot of work and learning still to be done.

    Today is 100 days with No PMO and No MO. I am very proud of that, as it was a huge effort for me to get this far.

    But today is also frustratedly back to Day 1 of No peeking at porn, as I have peeked for a couple minutes on several days the past week including today - and it was sometimes a rough fight to make sure I closed the browser before going beyond that.

    I have a lot going on right now - but as @Saville and I have discussed - that does not make it any more acceptable.

    thankfully I am also close to 2 weeks with no P subs. BUT I need to close down P subs AND peeking to fully embrace my abstinence from my addiction.

    I know I need to stop the dopamine cravings across all aspects of my behavior - and I still am learning how to handle that. But I do feel like I am learning more about myself and ways to stop the compulsive behaviors. And hopefully all of my mental "fail safes" will help more going forward.

    Thanks very much to all my brothers on YBR that have provided so much support and insights! I could not have gotten this far without you.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2022
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  16. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    100 days! Woot! :cool:

    I know you are still healing, but are you regularly engaging with your wife sexually?
  17. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    thanks @Saville

    and unfortunately no - I am not engaging sexually with my wife right now and that is definitely an issue for me. We had a wonderful sexual session a month ago. Everything worked in regard to my PIED issues.

    But since then, she has had female health issues that are relatively serious and have precluded sex between us. While obviously I feel extremely bad for her, her health situation has taken away a key aspect of the positive reinforcement I was looking for - when I started this journey.

    her timing to feel better is unpredictable and it’s possible to flare up again. Trying my best to be patient. She is very aware of the issue as well and feels very bad for both of us.

    Just very unfortunate timing. Trying to fight through it. Her health situation overall has been a huge emotional trigger for me.

    trying to stay strong!

    I know the P peeking has to stop!

    just reread my post from earlier today.
    Should have had a trigger warning for “depressing sounding!” Haha!

    But I am proud to have made it this far.
    Next step - stop the peeking.
    While I am in unintended monk mode - I plan to do my best not to orgasm again - unless it’s with my wife - and at least preceded by PIV.
    Not going to feel bad for myself and rationalize excuses. Maybe the unintended monk mode is a blessing in disguise to help with the rewiring and getting my sensitivity back? I have always “believed in fate” and things happening for a reason. Maybe just one of those times.
    Last edited: Sep 10, 2022
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  18. Rudolf Geyse

    Rudolf Geyse Well-Known Member

    Big congrats @path-forward on that streak! Make sure you reward yourself with something legitimate that you enjoy!

    I can relate with your wife's health issues. My wife and I have been plagued with the same thing this year, one issue after another. I feel like we're both committed to it and we'll get there. Still have been trying to enjoy her where possible and keep up the connection, play team, all that good stuff. I've surprised myself that I have been able to man up, help out with the kids etc, and still not retreat into P use. I honestly thank God. I wish the same for you path, much strength to you cos it ain't easy!
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  19. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Yeah, it definitely can be. I applaud your strength and your perseverance. The grit that you are showing is making pearls.

    Is cuddling naked together out of the question? This helps with making the right connections. When my wife was sick for a time she didn't want sex, but offered me hand jobs. I declined the hand jobs at first, but then changed my mind. But, I was insistent that we get naked, kiss, and fondle. At least that way I didn't feel like I was divorced from the experience.
  20. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    Thank to everyone for the good wishes on reaching 100 days and for "trying hard" to hold back from a terrible series of emotional triggers.
    It is much appreciated.

    There is more tough stuff going on in my life than I have shared here, though I am not on this forum to make excuses for myself.

    BUT last night was the relapse we all dread: 3 hours of binging - and feeling like an out of control addict the whole time.
    Partially out of shame and partially out of frustration, I thought about taking a break from the YBR forum.

    But I have resolved to make my relapse just further motivation to get over this addiction. I need to get control of myself - or I will regret it the rest of my life. I felt like a Zombie out of control last night!

    I also learned a valuable lesson - which I should have known better. Being alone and feeling sad on a Sat night - is NOT the time to take an edible! Even a very light amount. As it just weakens one's resolve even further.

    I was awake a lot last night - thinking through how miserable I felt after binging - and how self-loathing I felt during the binging.

    I need to sear these feelings into my brain - so that there is not a next time.

    I am a pretty self-disciplined person - and truly thought I had this beat the first time around. But I now know how truly hard this addiction is to overcome. And I will be much more vigilant going forward.

    The P peeking has to stop - along with keeping my P subs under control as well.

    Thanks again for everyone's support and advice - Without the brothers on this forum - I would not be even close to believing I can beat this awful ugly addiction.

    May everyone's favorite football team win today!
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2022
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