Coming back to life

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by pantera, Apr 25, 2012.

  1. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Hi guys, (day 0)

    3rd of april I decided to never to porn again in my life. I'm motivated; a family member is getting a baby and don't want to become this 50 year porn watching uncle. Next to that for every little(and big) bumps in life I always take my pornography. But it doesnt solve my problems. Sort of my best friend, that's eventually no good for me.

    I'm 30 years old, think from the outside a nice life, university grad, great company to work for, got friends. But reality is that I have no clue what the purpose of life is or the things I'm trying to do.

    I have never been able to keep a relationship longer than 2 years and I think porn has been a big cause in that. After 2 days of watching porn im not interested in my GF. This influenced the relationship and at points became dominant. Not wanting my GF, but prefer the chicks online. I remember sometimes getting up at 6 to watch porn before she waked up.

    I tried to stop but I never could. 3rd of april i decided to stop forever. Highly motivated by the talks on YBOP. Somehow I thought this was just the insight I needed. On the 20th I relapsed. Not with porn but with playing a videogame FM2012 till 6am in the morning. I was just looking for something else to give me the porn vibe. The day after I felt supertired and empty and decided that it wouldnt be to bad to see some porn. With this result: The last five days I spent about 10 hours a day on porn, sleeping 5-6 hours and working. (while working occasionaly watching as well). Got blisters in my mouth. I eat bad food. I take enormous risks for my job my doing this and I feel like a shithole. I'm like the alcoholic that took one sip and is drunk for 5 days in a row.

    I decided (while i was clean) about april 14 to seek professional help to aid my recovery. I will start that next week. THis day will have been my last day of porn (and while writing it, how sad, i don't even believe myself, since i said that 50 -100 times in my life.

    I've been watching porn since I was 14 on a almost daily base. Was picked on on school and when coming home, I watched porn or played video games to escape reality, that was my life. In university life changed, I got girls, did sports, watched less porn. But after graduation existential fears came up again and porn came more dominant back in my life and since then it didnt really leave me. One time I didnt watch for 50 days (a long vacation). But in normal life I think I was never able to abstain from porn 3 weeks.

    I want to cross that border now. I'm afraid of the shit that will come. And afraid I will not make it again. But I'll give it my best shot.

    While quitting porn (just installed k9), I will stop watching TV, drink no more coffee, drink no alcohol, play no video games, stop the endless internet circles im watching (news, mail, blogs), eat no high sugar food (chocolate), no high bad fat food (crisps), since I know from experience, these empty things just replace my porn with another addiction. Max non work related internet use (1 hour a day).

    It feels like I can do nothing but there are books and friends. It feels little because on the above I have spent 80% of my time.
    I've got a bad knee injury, so sports will be hard.

    I will try, go for it, share my experience, thoughts with you guys. Hope you recognize some parts of yourself and hope to get some support. Since I think I'm not able to do it on my own.

    In about 2 weeks my 5 week addiction program will start and I will report on that as well.

  2. Onanymous

    Onanymous Living in the real world now

    Good luck, Pantera.

    Have you given any thought to what activities will now fill your time? Can you join any clubs or classes?
  3. Laurynas

    Laurynas 300 Days+ Experienced.

    Hi Pantera,

    being an optimist is alright.. But you will almost definitely crack if you restrict every part of what you've mentioned in the post I've quoted. If you took 1, 2 things at start - it would be ok, although those things would require major will and with this amount - your will should be skyhigh..

    Let's be optimists but stay in reality, what you think?
  4. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Day 1. Coming back to life.

    Hi Laurynas and Onanymous,

    Thanks for the replies!

    Haven't got real plans how to spend this time. So guess I will run into awkward situations having nothing to do and not escaping in any form of solitary entertainment. Let's see what it does. Have plans to read some books again and also deal with my feelings instead of pushing them away, so that could mean writing them down. Maybe spend some more time with friends.

    And yes I agree it's ambitious but from experience i know for myself all these things are the same addictive patterns. And I don't want to replace one with the other. So I know it's ambitious, but this is the target that I set. If porn is 10 in addiction, tv and internet is 3 (and i hate these nights that I spend surfing sites while watching TV and go to bed a too late). I don't sleep well on that as well. Wasted time.

    Terrible headache, still tired and empty from by 5 day porn binge. Feel so empty that I don't even crave the porn. It seems that for me there is a max I reach (and that was 5 days this time). I've had enough for now. Most times this first few days are not so bad from the craving side of the story. But from the empty feeling I have inside me. As if I gave my brain a hard reset with the porn binge. And life comes back to me now (mostly obligations that postponed and postponed) and have to solve somehow the next few days. Porn is a great escape that is so powerful I forget about all obligations (taxes, bills, people i should call back, work that is important but not urgent). Yuck. :) I don't feel like doing anything. Guess I'll take a book now and make some green tea.


  5. MetaMorph

    MetaMorph New Member

    Man, I really relate to the procrastination and the problems that PMO causes in terms of putting off things that need done, then when the binge is over they still need done but I just wasted all the time I had to do them, and have to put them off again!

    Now I'm spending too much time in here lol! So I'm still procrastinating but at least I don't feel like I drank poison!!

    Good luck today brother. 8)
  6. Onanymous

    Onanymous Living in the real world now

    Pantera, I think your ambitious goal is doable -- and in fact getting rid of video games and tv are getting rid of very similar addictions to PMO -- but these three things will be important:

    1) Have a solid plan to avoid triggers and fill all of your spare time with attention-requiring and fun activity. The idle mind is the hindbrain's work space. I think sitting at home with a book is courting a relapse. Super dangerous situation.

    2) Exercise outdoors as much as possible. You can get your brain "addicted" to regular physical exertion, and it's a good habit to learn. And being outdoors is stimulating -- the sights, smells and sounds all keep your mind occupied and happy. I never feel any cravings or stress when I am exercising outdoors. Ideas: join a tennis class or pickup basketball game or running club. The social nature of these activities will be therapeutic as well. And learning a new physical skill will create new brain maps. As you go to sleep at night, you'll be playing a movie of your tennis serve in your head instead of...other things.

    3) Be as social as you possibly can be. And I don't mean picking up girls all day. Just being in conversation with people can keep you on the right path. I know I found it hard to PMO in the past too soon after a conversation with someone. It's like I could feel them watching me, and I was embarrassed. Our hunter-gatherer ancestors rarely had any privacy, and that was actually good for them. An individual was always thinking about his social value. And isolation is not good for social value.

    Please don't try to just keep your life the same and simply remove certain behaviors. There are few success stories in that genre. Hijack your brain with a lifestyle overhaul. Keep it distracted with cool new things, so it doesn't try so hard to go back to the past. Remap your brain every day with new active behavior, not merely the absence of old behaviors.

    (Of course, with all of the above, I'm telling myself to do these things as much as I am communicating with you. These are all things I have discovered to work for me, but it helps to remind my brain how valuable they are. Because my brain still falsely attaches value to the old behaviors, too.)

    Good luck with the project, and remember the first few days can be the hardest in terms of withdrawal symptoms and dark moods. But it gets better. My day 4 was horrible, but Day 7 was easily my best day in the past year.

    When you feel the urge to do something old, do something new. And set yourself up now so that the "something new" is easy to do. Join the tennis club, buy the new basketball, set yourself up.
  7. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Hi Metamorph and Onanymous,

    Thanks for the understanding :) I agree about drinking the poison. It seems what works best for me, if I want to stop procrastinating. To stop all distracting behaviour, (dont read, write, watch tv, internet) at a certain point I get restless and it's better to do something, which I postponed for weeks, than do nothing. Difficult thing is to dare to sit alone and not distract yourself.

    Onanymous, thanks for the advice. I think it's not good to fill all time and avoid all triggers, because it's not possible to do that forever. I've got to learn to live with triggers (though I installed K9, I believe a good thing) and have spare time and dare to be alone (moments to contemplate, meditate or just hang, these tend to be the moments I best value in life, but also the most dangerous ones. I agree.

    1. But I agree on being more social and outdoors. I have a f***up knee injury which already takes me months which prohibits me to walk a lot. SO excersizing is hard, but I will pick up swimming and cycling. (not so bad) And spend more time in nature.

    2. And social is important as well, I plan to see the friends I value most more.

    3. Is contrary to you 1, i plan to spend time alone more. But sit in the dunes, at sea, in nature. (not in a computer/city environment)

    Day 2:
    Was back to work today after the injury and it disctracted me of all porn thoughts. Had not one. Always some sort of a rush. When back in town, had a few drinks with friends. I enjoyed that. It's good to connect with other people, also good to be in groups. I tend to see most friends 1 on 1, its deeper and safer in some way, but groups have a nice primal feeling to me. (not to much in groups, but sometimes it's good)
    SO no porn, tv, useless internet. Had a few alcoholic drinks and a cup of coffee this morning. But I'm fine with that.
    I know alcohol is a trigger for me. Especially the day after, when I have a hangover. Thats a real trigger for me. If I want to overcome that I really need to go outside or do something social.
    So actually feeling quite ok, still a bit numb but getting better (picking life a bit up after the binge)
    I'm most a afraid when I have everything back on track again (house clean, bills paid, working, seeing friends, family). That is a big trigger for me. Because it feels predictable and boring, boring everyday John Doe life, I'm no good at that, and from that empty existence (is this all there is?) Porn is a escape as well. I'm curious what you thoughts are on that.


  8. Laurynas

    Laurynas 300 Days+ Experienced.

    Only a few days passed and you cracked on your major will requiring goals, no surprise though, it's not easy to quit from the 1st attempt but still i'm quite sceptical about you trying to quit/replace so many things at once, I only say that because I've experienced it, I wanted everything done as fast as possible and as much as possible.. Guess what? Then you have to deal with lots of failures.. You need to concentrate on 1 or 2 at a time, when you're doing ok with them - add another one.. But it's your choice, human tend to learn better from their own mistakes then learn from others:)

    The "I'm fine with that" looks quite tragic to me (sorry if it offends you) but you're fine with that that you cracked on your goal when only a few days passed. :)
  9. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Hi Laurynas,

    Thanks to your critical feedback and you don't offend me. It's good to be critical at me it only helps me. I try to be as honest as possible and this is the only way I can find strange thought and behavioural patterns in myself. And maybe you're right and I should prioritize the goals i have.

    I have 1 goal why I'm here:
    1. Never watch porn again in my life (my nr 1 addiction, I can have day long binges that exhaust me, has all priority, set in stone goal)

    Rest is and what I should minimize (because I think it's an illussion to do/use the things under never again in my life. I should be very watchful. Because if I do the things too much it triggers porn and other escaping behaviour.
    2. Don't play video games (my nr 2 addiction)
    3. Don't watch watch TV to escape of forget or use the internet for that.
    4. Substances as coffee and alcohol are triggers for me. But I don't have an addictive feeling to them. Since I only use them in social occasions. Hangovers are hard triggers.
    5. and also highfat and high sugar foods are triggers.

    Day 3:

    Bit of a hangover, but not too bad, no real porn craving, yesterday was fun with friends. Though feeling bit strange, no real plans for the weekend. Have the craving to escape, plug in TV, thoughtless surfing. But feel strong enough to resist.

    It's strange how I feel different from day zero and the thing that scares me is the feeling I have to porn now. ( as if it's not so bad) I'm surprised how easily I forget, how incredibly bad I feel during and after a porn binge. Must be hardwired already. This is my biggest risk I think. That I forget (feelingwise) how many days I lost in my life. The way I feel is quite different from day 0. I'm more positive on life and even on the severity of my addiction. (these are feelings and rationally I know better than that) It's a risk, because after 1 or 2 weeks I will get overconfident on my abilities. I will keep writing here to remind me on what my main goal is.

    The coming and going of feelings surprise me. They go up and down they influence me heavily, but I need to take some distance from my feelings, cravings sometimes.


  10. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Day 4
    Still bit of head ache, bit tired, no real craving for porn. Though had a few moments that triggered me yesterday.
    Sometimes I just grab my computer without thinking and I type in a porn site. Just realizing before clicking enter what I was doing. Seems a fully automated process.

    I feel I have a lot of time now, cannot surf internet, watch TV or watch porn. But what to do with this time? I don't really feel like doing anything at all. (and that empty feeling was usually filled with porn, tv or internet). I know I could go do some sports or go see friends. But I don't feel like it. It's a bored/maybe lazy? feeling. Think I just grab my car and have a drive to nature. (that idea appeals the most). Also thinking back on old relationships with gf which were severely negatively influenced by my porn. I always had and wanted girlfriends but when I had 1, I kept the feeling and listened to the need to escape in my own porn-world. I don't know why, maybe thats what addiction is.


  11. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Day 5
    Feeling quite good (best day so far).
    No need for porn. Went cycling yesterday for 40km. Which was great. The sun on my body and eyes gave back some energy.
    My mind starts working again. Getting some energy back again. Wrote an article on a topic i was thinking on the last few days.

    Please read it and give me your feedback:

    Curious what you think of it.

    Thanks and greets,

  12. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Day 6
    Workday, took a few coffees. Feel no need for porn. Am quite confident. The negative effects of the last binge seem to have left my body. I feel quite healthy. Porn seems no issue in my life now (this scares me, as my feelings so easily forget the negative impact of porn). I really have to rationally push myself to feel bad about my addiction. I think i'm in my high at this moment like some others wrote on this forum after a week.

    Thursday im going to see the psychologist for the first time to start the 5-week treatment.

    I really have to push myself to keep making instead of consuming. To stay creative, active and alive. As it's so easy to just sit around (thoughtless surfing and zapping tv) and to eat and die.
  13. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Day 7
    I feel quite well. Got energy, it's nice. Bit stressfull at work. But no craving for porn. I think stress is a trigger as well for me.
    Even though I don't feel it now. By stressfull running around I become detached from my true goals and ambitions. It's essential to close the laptop.
    End the day and start the relaxed part. THis is sometimes hard, because sitting down after a busy day gives me a creepy feeling of restlessness. A feeling I would like to push away (PMO is great for that). I close down my laptop now and enjoy my evening.

  14. pantera

    pantera New Member

    Day 8
    Had a stressfull day at work. The meeting with the therapist didn't work out well.
    No real click. I'm quite dissappointed. Not sure if we should continue together.
    Feel the need to escape to not think about it.
    Porn pulls me. Feel not so positive as yesterday. Differs on a day by day basis In think.
    Let's see tomorrow.

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