Caoimhín's Way

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Caoimhín, Nov 11, 2013.

  1. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Hey Caoimhín, well, I'm one of those old faces that are still hanging around here. Like you, I use porn as a way of relieving anxiety, and even more, stress. You are correct that the struggle is difficult, but you have had great success in dealing with it. I looked at you back in 2014-15 as an example of someone who was dealing effectively with this addiction, and I still do. Hey, you're at 20 days! For many of us (including me), that would be something to be really proud of, let alone the 3+ years you accomplished. Whatever it was that got you to kick it, you've still got within you. It's an ongoing struggle, to be sure, but certainly worth the effort. Good to see you again, even under the circumstances...
    Boxer17, Saville and Caoimhín like this.
  2. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    Thanks Mozenjo. Part of me does feel like I've taken a big step backwards but, thinking back to when I started the journey to rid my life of porn, I am a very different guy today. Lots of progress, lots more to do.
    Boxer17 likes this.
  3. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Yerp! I had no idea of some of the issues until I stopped PMO'ing everyday. It's amazing what a clear mind can reveal. My biggest struggle is with just feeling kind of meh when I wake up. However, I think now that I've stopped drinking, and am not stuffing my face with chips and chocolate, that that's going to turn around. It's a grind, but we all have it in us to live our best life. Yeah, that's cliché...sorry, not sorry. :cool:
  4. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    Hey Caoimhin, you never really said good-by in 2105, so I figured you be showing up again:)

    Good to have you back!
    Caoimhín likes this.
  5. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    NCBob - Thanks for all being here when I got back. As I sit inside the house, on day 2 of really shitty stormy, wintry weather, in the old days, I would have been PMOing like a fool. So things have changed for sure!
  6. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    Realised how useful this journal has been. Absolutely no one in my "real" world knows about my porn issues. In my mind, everyone sees me as a good guy and revealing something like this goes completely against this image. It is not really how I see myself... as the addictive pull of exitement has always dragged me into more extreme forms of porn that are no where near the type of lifestyle that I would want to live. The porn world is horrific. It is not how I want to be. It is a deep and dark secret. This is the only community that I can talk freely. I've kept so much of my struggles in my head. So thank you to everyone here!

    Things that I need to work on:

    alcohol - Throughout my recovery from depression, anxiety, porn, and a few others, I've continued to drink. Quite a bit. Usually alone. Another dark secret. I did do an entire year without any booze a few years ago and was suprised at how easy it was. But then slipped back into it for no other reason than to numb myself to the world. Strangely though, my body has begun recently responding negatively to even small amounts of any kind of alcohol, producing headaches. I have always been subject to headaches, migraines in particular, but this feels quite different. It is almost as if the pull to drink has weakened or that my body has developed a new defence against alcohol. Long may it continue. I do enjoy going out for a drink with friends but even one beer seems to be enough of a risk of feeling like crap.

    exercise - at this point, many of my good fitness habits have fallen to the wayside. I still play soccer once-twice a week but during the winter find it difficult to motivate myself to get outside and get some fresh air and exercise. Last year, I stopped going to the gym but that was mostly a financial thing. I do absolutely know that exercise has been the key ingredient to overcoming crushing depression. It is a great way of getting out of my head and just being in the moment. Particularly sports!

    Internet - Ironically, as this forum is Internet-based. But I am really talking about social medias or just simply spending the whole day on-line. I guess that porn fits in here too as it is really amazing how fast time flies when you are clicking ever foreward to find the next video... It is sapping a lot of time and energy away from things that I really value. The big one is actually reading a book. Much of my tech time is reading though or watching interesting videos or podcasts. I do not consider these things to be a waste of time, however the reflex to check social media is very persistant.

    boundaries - As I am a people pleaser, this is a big mountain for me. Whenever I stand up for myself or debate a point, I feel as if I am being a difficult person and unreasonable with my expectations. But here is the sticking point: I am an idealist, although not really a perfectionist. To me, the world and the people in it is unfair and I expect a lot from everything. Ultimately, it doesn't play out the way I want. People constantly disappoint me because they do not act like I think they should... leaving it up to me, all the time, to make things right. The goal is to let myself be uncomfortable with these feelings when I set a boundary, be with them and normalise them.

    living in my head - This is where my world is... in the past, in the future, but not in the present. A big goal of mine will be to be more centred on the now and on my body and try to get myself out of my head. The irony of masturbation is that it should be all about the physical sensations of orgasm but porn and even fantasy are in my head. Last time I was with a real woman, due in a big way to porn addiction and some of the physical problems caused by it, I had to fantasise about porn in order maintain an erection and to orgasm... as opposed to enjoying and experiencing the physical sensations of the person with me. Started MOing as a teenager with fantasies and don't think that I have ever left that sphere of the brain. Would like to learn other ways of reconnecting with the body.

    Things that I am doing really well with or making progress:

    meditation - every day for 15 - 30 minutes minimum. I actually look foreward to my sessions as it really does feel like a bit of a mental break. Would like to meditate twice daily.

    business - my personal business is a small source of income but a real outlet for creativity. Also, I work at a "paying" job where I have been able to explore many creative avenues that in the past would have been avoided or fearful to me. I have really accomplished a lot of cool and innovative things and am proud of this. At work, I can muster my braveness but cannot do that in a couple of key personal areas, including intimate relationships, conflict, decision-making (concerning difficult decisions). Transferring this "professional" skill into all areas of my life is the goal.

    letting go of the past - progress but really far to go. Regarding making difficult decisions, the messages are clear: I need to let go of the past. My mis-doings regarding porn, intimate relationships, my parents (both deceased), my brother, possessions that I have filled with unnecessary sentimentality. It is a long list. I stress out every day about the house full of possessions that I am NOT dealing with from my parents. I've cut out my brother and a few other relatives who made my life crazy in the past but still feel the tug of guilt about it... as if I am the only wrong-doer. But I have made some significant changes: First, I do not purchase or add significant amounts to the pile of crap that surrounds me. So technically, the situation is not getting worse. I have also gotten rid of quite a bit of my parent's stuff but feel an extreme tug to hoard it in order to keep them near me. I have recently decided to make a big step and sell their house which has meant so much to me in the past. By doing this, my financial situation will become more tenable and my level of stress with be reduced. To achieve this, I will have to go through thousands of decisions about how to get rid of possessions. I have to accept that it will take me much longer to do than most people. Had the innovative idea to ask for help (I never ask for help as, in my mind, I am responsible for everything and everyone in the entire world).


    MO - using this practice to help me connect with my body. Avoiding fantasy.

    Reading - replacing computer time with paper book time.

    Writing - another casualty of social media.

    Decluttering - it's a mountain. One step at a time.

    Fasting - I want to begin a monthly fast, 3 - 5 days per month. The goal will be to make me more conscious about food, detoxify my body, help eliminate certain things (hopefully alcohol, sugar, junk food).

    Quite a ramble: this is the state of things.
    Doofus, Libertad and Saville like this.
  7. Doofus

    Doofus Active Member

    Wow! This is amazingly close to a description of me and my struggles. Like you I use booze and social media to help me deal with my anxiety and depression. Like you I'm a people pleaser.

    Something I'm considering, in part because my younger son, T, really suffers from anxiety, is a version of the GAPS diet. I don't know if we're allowed to link here, so I won't but you can google it. I'm hoping it or something else will help my son before he starts college. My older boy has struggled in various ways at school. He's less obviously anxious, but I think mental health has played a role in some of his struggles. I want to get ahead of it with T.

    I can talk about the (very non-scientific...)specifics of what I'm doing if anyone is interested. Otherwise, I'll just report back if it turns out to be helpful.

    Anyway, thanks for contributing here. The more of us, the stronger we are.
    Caoimhín likes this.
  8. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    Thanks for dropping by @Doofus and if you can help your sons to start dealing with some of these issues such as anxiety and depression, the earlier the better!
  9. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    I am aware of little tugs that porn is exerting on me throughout the day. I've been spending a lot of time at home alone and the thought that comes after the micro-flash of MOing is that: well, I already fell off the wagon for a whole month, resetting now is not really that big a deal.

    There even seems to be a bit of excitement about relapsing.

    That is why I will need to keep myself accountable and be sharp during the next while.

    My decision to maintain MO without fantasy: is this the smart thing to do? or should I go the entire no PMO. It is true that after O, all the urges subside.
    Mozenjo likes this.
  10. Doofus

    Doofus Active Member

    Self-awareness is, I believe, a very important tool in beating this thing. And you have it @Caoimhín .

    As to whether you need to give up MO as well, that's up to you. I've given it up this go-round, but I haven't given up O (with wife only). I don't know if that's made it easier or harder for me to succeed. Regardless, I think we all have to decide for ourselves what we would like our sexuality to look like. It's a hard question to answer. I know I haven't settled on one yet.

    My suggestion is to try different things. If one approach isn't helping you achieve your goals, try a different one. And, of course, report back here so we can learn from you. :)
  11. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    This is the one area where I have not been clean. I don't regularly MO, but often right after sex with the wife I rub one out. This is a habit that set in over the past fall. I found that it really debilitated me. I wasn't looking at P, but I was down and listless. I've been good since the new year and I feel a ton better. My erections are better, I'm more plugged into my wife, etc.

    Of course, I have a wife, so once a week I can at least look forward to getting my rocks off, such as they are. lol Fantasy is bad news, as you already wrote up above. We've used fantasy since we were young, because obviously it was a place to retreat to, to soothe ourselves. I think you need to be brave, to be bold, and think about a future with a woman. This will give you incentive to stay away from MO. You will never have all your shit together, so you may as well put yourself out there.

    Yes, I do know how hard that is...but, you can do it. From what I've read in your journal you'd be quite a catch.
    Caoimhín likes this.
  12. -Luke-

    -Luke- Well-Known Member

    The MO question is really difficult. For the most part I've always tried to avoid it, but I realized that sometimes I just feel better after an orgasm when I was on a long NoPMO streak. I think if it helps you to deal with porn cravings and if you don't fantasize, you should try to keep with it. But it's reall hard, because different people react totally different after an orgasm. So I agree with Doofus here. Try different things, observe and analyize. For some things there just isn't an answer that fits for all of us.

    Do you guys experience a chaser effect after an orgasm?
  13. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...


    Honestly, I don't think that I do... however, it bears investigation. I guess that the best way to do that is to at least have some days / periods without Os to compare. I was staunchly anti-MO during my initial phase back in the beginning of this journey.

    I know I've read many times about chaser effects but what are some of the common signs... could wanting to MO every day be one of them?
  14. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Yep. Once I start I want to do it and do it and do it.
  15. Mad Dog

    Mad Dog Well-Known Member

    For me learning to no mo was as difficult as porn and in some ways more so. Learning to just jump Heather was very strange at first. Now she is like " omg again !" :D I realized the solitude of mo and total control was what I missed. Now I am almost totally "Heather blasting" but I still think of mo ---I think maybe I always ---will. Who knows.;)
    Saville likes this.
  16. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Wow, this all sounds so familiar! What I gather from this is that it's easier to stay off it the longer you're off it. to stay off it!
  17. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    After reading some other guy's journals and reflecting on my recent experience, I have decided to refine my goals :

    No porn
    No fantasy used with M
    Limit M to 2-3 times a week

    I had a bit of a revelation in understanding my relapse. Prior to going into full blown PMO, I spent a couple of weeks where my use of porn-related fantasy (basically I will call this memories of porn... damned amazing how much of this stuff is still in my brain waiting to get out). Was not looking at porn but ...

    The other part of this revelation was that the reason that I resorted to fantasising about "more exciting sex" because I was basically flatlined. I was having difficulty to orgasm just from plain M, even maintaining an erection, so the solution was to imagine something more exciting. I think it was something like a panic mode out of the fear of not just being able to "point and shoot" on a second's notice.

    Had not linked the two before. The O and erection problems seem to have subsided so the panic is over.
    Saville likes this.
  18. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    Wow, it felt like it could have caught on like a grass fire: I opened facebook to do a quick check and had a friend request (from someone I did not know.) Clicked the link and it was filled with porn. I think that I stared for about 1 min at a few of the pictures and then found myself with some kind of fucking nostalgia, ie missing the PMO. Why? WHY? My head is actually spinning from the rush.

    Shut it down quickly. More resolve to limit my Facepuke to once a day and just to check if someone is trying to reach me.
  19. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Good one. Facepuke! :D I dig it!

    I haven't had anyone send me P via facebook, but a few ladies have sent messages my way, women I used to know in the past. I always delete the messages without reading them and then block them. Messaging women, sexting, was a very bad habit of mine back in the day. It seems stupid now, but I used to get so jazzed by telling women what I was going to do to them. :rolleyes:

    Good for you deleting that crap right away!
    Boxer17 and Caoimhín like this.
  20. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Indeed, Caoimhín, glad to see you didn't get sucked in to the mire!

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