Adventures on Planet Shame

Discussion in 'Ages 25-29' started by Caesura, Jul 10, 2016.

  1. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Hey guys,

    I've been rebooting for over 3 years. I have a serious mental illness, so I'm disabled. I'm a virgin, and I hate it. I had one eight-month streak of no-MO, but mostly I've masturbated once per week or two weeks.

    My recovery has been agonizingly slow. Cravings and intrusive thoughts batter me all day until my body hurts. Surges of shame and guilt paralyze me. I need sex really badly, but it's elusive.

    On the other hand, I've had a few benefits. Just two weeks of noporn relieved a huge amount of emotional pain. After a year or two, my derealization got better. And now I'm well enough to drive a car again.

    I'm not going to say anything else at the moment, because my brain is getting internet fog. Just to be clear, this will be my journal.
     
  2. David in Catharsis

    David in Catharsis New Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    Hey bro. I think something I didn't really understand before and I think lots of people in this forum struggle with is that being able to have sex or be in relationships requires having balance in your life.
    Having a social circle, involving in activities you enjoy and that make you grow and learn help with meeting people and giving a positive impression. The approach that lots of people have in this forum is to avoid porn and hope that everything else is going to fix by itself, which never works as seen here with tons of people (like me) who get stuck.

    I used to think that if I quit porn and got in better shape than most people, I would be able to have sex easily. It's kind of an entitled point of view.

    With that being said, you are on the right path. You are more functional and want to participate in volunteering, which can help with social interaction.

    I'm also interested in knowing more about your surges of guilt and shame. Why do you think they appear?
    Btw, when you talk about recovery, do you mean from mental illness in general or just from porn addiction?
     
  3. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    The guilt and shame used to happen any time I used, even if the content of the porn/fantasy was nothing major. I think it's partly just a symptom of using. It hasn't gone away, though. I think that's because I'm pretty mentally ill in general, so my neuroplasticity is low. It's going to take a while.

    When I talk about "recovery," it's sometimes ambiguous. Often it does just mean addiction recovery.

    I think porn addiction is probably not much different than any other addiction. The healing depends largely on abstinence. That's not to say lifestyle changes aren't valuable, or they don't have healing effects. I don't think an actual addiction scientist would say lifestyle was the MAIN thing. That's a pseudoscientific belief that has caught on in this forum. It's truthy; it seems insightful, but there's probably no hard evidence to back it up.

    Do I think abstinence will solve all my problems? No. Do I think girls dig guys who are active and successful? Yes. But those are different questions. The HEALING happens when you stop using... mostly. For ED, I'm sure a lot of guys do need sexual rewiring.

    Right now, I am working on lifestyle change, but it's going to take longer than most people, because I have schizophrenia. It's a crippling illness. I still don't have a normal amount of energy. If I improve my life too rapidly, I also start to self-sabotage. So I have to go slowly and sustainably.

    I think I've found something to be passionate about recently, but I don't want to say what it is. I've become more concerned with maintaining anonymity, as we discussed. I hope this passion lasts.

    (Edit: I looked back on David's post. It seems like he was mostly saying "Lifestyle changes help you with relationships/sex," which I agree with)
     
  4. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    I'm frustrated tonight, but it's not terrible. It seems like my sex-avoidance is getting worse, even though other things are improving. My hostile feelings and destructive urges have been weaker and less frequent. I've been more active than usual lately, as well. But more than ever, I want to avoid real girls. I don't think I can meet their standards, either. It just blows my fucking mind how easy it is for healthy men to get sex.

    Progress in my strength training is giving me reason to live. Not my only reason, but maybe my only meaningful reason.
     
  5. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    Had cravings last night to fantasize about gay sex and MO, but it passed. Lately I've been thinking my recovery will take another 3-5 years. That's assuming I stay off porn entirely. I can accept that right now, but when I get horny, my acceptance will crumble.

    I've decided I'm dealing with grief about the addiction, not just the addiction itself (and schizophrenia, etc). I'm tentatively starting to eat one or two desserts every week, and loosening my restriction on restaurant food. It'll make me gain more weight, but also give me something to look forward to. I need it. Sex isn't happening any time soon.
     
  6. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    Bit of a clusterfuck right now. I somehow injured my elbow yesterday. It's minor, but it'll stop me from working out for a while, right when I was making progress. Woke up early this morning, couldn't get back to sleep. Started getting very horny, so I got out of bed and bought a soda to snap out of it. Now I'm sleep deprived. Again.

    Probably won't do much today. I need a couple of lazy days every week, anyway. I want things to start going right, though. Progress on my hobbies is always stalled.
     
  7. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    Yesterday was better than I thought it would be. I felt okay. Didn't do much, but I did clean the dishes. Some friends are having a meet-up tonight, so I'll be going to that.

    I still have videogame dreams almost every night. Last night's dreams were very alluring; I woke up with huge cravings to game. At this moment, games have actually displaced porn as my prime temptation, which is a relief. It doesn't make me feel as guilty.

    However, I feel like I'm sending out a vibe that says, "Go away," or, "Keep your distance." My brain is trying to push people out so I can just play games.
     
  8. hope2overcome

    hope2overcome No Love, No Sex

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    I have the opposite reaction to video games. When I play too much I feel claustrophobic and I get so fucking bored, my brain says "Go away" but to video games. My brain actually tries to push video games away so I can socialize with people but alas nobody I know of wants to socialize, they like their isolated box they fit inside of. Meh.
     
  9. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness,

    Thanks for commenting, hope. I often used to push games away, back when I played them. But now I've been off them for a year or more, and it made me want to push people away. Odd! Good luck finding some more sociable friends.

    Yesterday was a great day. I interviewed for a volunteer position, and made a great impression. Then, I went to an open mic and read some of my creative writing. I approached the most attractive girl at the open mic--she looks good, and seems to have a really great personality. Apparently, she's not single. I was not afraid or upset.

    In the past two days, my inhibitions have been lower. I feel freer. But right now, my self-defeating side is trying to restore those old restrictions and the rigidity. If I can stay free, good things will happen. Eventually, I'll be free, even if he gets the upper hand for a while.
     
  10. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Today and yesterday were bad. Lots of depression and self-hatred. Tomorrow I start volunteering, so maybe that'll cheer me up. I get so sad about not having sex. It's still the only thing I want.

    My porn-conditioning is still quite deep. I have a lot of the same attitudes I had at the start. So much misogyny and entitlement. I'm ashamed and afraid of myself.
     
  11. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    MO'd just now. Figured I couldn't sustain it much longer, and this would be a good time. I shouldn't have any major social events for a few days (fingers crossed), so I won't have to creep anyone out with my post-MO vibe. But I'll be depressed. Not looking forward to this.

    It may be a while before my counter changes; I hate typing in the password. This run was 33 days long--almost 5 weeks.
     
  12. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Somehow, I haven't had the usual reaction to MOing earlier. However, I ate a bunch of dessert today and got upset about it. I thought I could tolerate getting fatter, and I really need morale, so having dessert more often seemed like the way to go. But my thighs are already rubbing together. My pants are getting tighter. I'm sick of it. I'm recommitting to staying lean... which may require getting off the antidepressant, or using a different one.

    It's gonna be hard. I can't rely on the hope for sex to motivate me, because I no longer believe it's coming "any day now." It's years away. I have to somehow reorient myself, learn a new reason for living and dieting.
     
  13. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Yesterday was alright, and today is okay so far. I saw some girls and an older woman who were all attractive (not in one group), but I didn't approach. Partly, they seemed grouchy and focused on what they were doing.

    My mind is going through a good phase. Less destructiveness, more confidence. It almost certainly won't last. In 24 hours, I may feel like a psychopath. Anyway, I'm pretty focused on my new diet right now, and that will keep me occupied.
     
  14. David in Catharsis

    David in Catharsis New Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Hello my friend. Do you feel like your lack of motivation makes you cheat on your diet more? Do you have more appetite on anti depressants? In my case, I overeat because sometimes I tell myself "what's the point of looking great and putting so much effort when nothing will change? I will still have all my problems and no girl will talk to me". I also overeat out of a compulsion and I don't even enjoy it.

    Honestly, my sex drive has generally been pretty low for the past two years or so, because I PMO or fuck prostitutes to get a quick fix or relieve anxiety, so I've kind of drowned my sexual desire.

    From what I read though, your sex drive seems pretty high and you masturbate fairly infrequently, so I imagine your sexual frustration makes you feel pretty bad. I experienced it from 16-19 years old and it was one of my main worries and sources of distress, so I know how you feel.

    I commend you for your drive to clean up your diet again, as it's pretty hard to do when you lack motivation. I've felt depressed in the past when I looked awesome, but knew my life was empty as hell and there was no way I could get a girl interested in me past my looks.

    And to comment on the changes of phases. I can relate a lot. One hour I can feel like I've found the key to solve my problems and I feel happy and able to do things I really enjoy (I spend most of my days involved in silly compulsions :-\) and the next I feel like there is no fucking way I'll ever change or be "normal/functional". As time passes by, you learn to accept these mood/attitude changes and don't feel as surprised (even though it generally causes some shock initially).

    Also, I feel like having a normal life and balancing time properly between studies, hobbies, exercise and social interaction takes a lot of focus and effort that seem unnatural to me. This even happens when I am not too hard on myself and set "easy goals". My natural state these days seems to be inertia, aka not doing fuck all.

    I don't wanna hijack your journal, but I wanna share another common thought I have, since I know we are not that different. I was praised a lot as a kid, both in my cognitive and physical abilities and this seems to have built a big ego and sometimes I think I'm better than everyone else even if I don't do anything. Like, why the hell would I need to prove myself if I know I'm good at almost anything.
    Of course the world doesn't work this way and everyone has to work hard to achieve what they want.
     
  15. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Your posts are helpful, David. We share plenty of the same problems, and it gives me a little comfort not to be alone in it. All of us addicts hijack each other's journals, if you haven't noticed! We're self-absorbed and don't know what else to talk about.

    My sexual desire ebbs and flows, but the flows bowl me over. I feel excruciating disappointment sometimes, too. Not only have I been really hoping to have sex before 30 (and originally the number was 25), I've always wanted to do it with a girl in her early-to-mid twenties, too. But the years are passing, and this hope is diminishing. I'll probly be attracted to girls my age when I'm 30. They have some advantages. They have experience. Supposedly they tend to peak sexually around 30. Some people say they're less superficial at that age, too.

    But I'll have missed out on sex with girls who are at their peak beauty. I don't need a girl to be 20 years old forever, but I'd have liked to have at least one young love. Superficiality looks really bad from the outside, but the people who get those superficial experiences are probably enriched by it, even if they eventually repudiate their superficiality.

    Anyway... enough dreariness. I bought groceries for the week, so hopefully I'm set to try this new diet. I'm worried I didn't get enough vegetables though; I'm going to be eating a lot more of them.

    My sleep has been really good lately. What's up with that? Maybe it's the increase in veggies.
     
  16. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Asked a girl if she was single, but she was married. Oh well. I was relieved, really; I don't feel ready. But I never will. Goddamn, she was pretty. Anyway, I feel alright for now.
     
  17. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Re: 3+ years no-PMO, slow progress, mental illness

    Had a good chance to talk to a girl, but I didn't. Now I regret it. That might pain me for a while.

    Most people say they get better at connecting with others after quitting. I seem to feel more and more distant, even though I'm socializing more. My friendships are weakening.

    I'm alright, though. Right now I understand how much worse my life could be. I'm luckier than some people.
     
  18. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    I think tonight may be the biggest test of my recovery so far. Temptations are assailing me. They're not the strongest, but my defenses are weak. Getting sex has taken so much longer than I hoped and needed. So has the healing. You can't run forever on occasional masturbation and underwhelming results.

    I have seen that rebooting helps me, but with all the other illnesses I have, and the glacial pace of improvement, I am disappointed. This life has worn me down. So will I make it through tonight? No one can say. I need to, because I'm volunteering and shit. People will see the corrupt version of me, and our relationships won't be the same.

    I'm unlikely to learn anything from a relapse. If anything, my rigid, obsessive-compulsive brain will just double its commitment to dysfunctional beliefs and rules. One relapse opens the door to more relapses, and even binges.

    Update: it happened. I relapsed for the first time, after a streak of over three years. I'm shaking. What will the effects be? I'm pretty sure I know, and we'll find out in a while. I lost all curiosity about my recovery; I couldn't ask myself, "What might happen tomorrow, if I just stay clean?" because I knew it would be the same shit: mental illness, every day.
     
  19. Caesura

    Caesura Member

    Relapsed again. My strength is failing me. I struggled and struggled with it, then I gave in.

    To clarify what I mean by "relapse," I'm saying I PMO'd yesterday and today. The content has not been too bad, so far. The effects of yesterday's session were not much different from MOing to fantasy, but we'll see what it's like after two in a row. Neither session felt as intense as I remember porn being.

    I need to get this back under control somehow, but I'm worried I can't.
     
  20. TheLongWalk

    TheLongWalk Guest

    Hop back on the horse and don't get caught in a relapse loop. You got this, come on!
     

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