Committing to Life

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by mcbc_rewired, Apr 8, 2013.

  1. mcbc_rewired

    mcbc_rewired Active Member

    Hey

    Thanks FT and imout. Good to hear from you.

    I am doing ok. Had a little lapse which is ok. Some heavy shit came up from the past but I suspect that the coming up was a necessary step to release.

    Once again I noticed how much porn does my head in and doesn't help at all, other than of course numbing.

    So looking forward and seeing how I go. There is no question in my mind that I cannot get rid of the urge to porn without getting rid of the reasons for the urge to porn.

    Wanting to do porn for me isn't lust, its a drug. Just a painkiller.

    So am working on this and on realising that this painkiller helped a lot at times. I think that helps.
     
  2. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I took this quote from page one of your journal. It made me smile and feel happy. I was there with you on that beautiful walk. Many other posters commented on how good it made them feel. I thought it was worthy of quoting again on page 29. :) You've done a lot of amazing work on yourself!
     
  3. mcbc_rewired

    mcbc_rewired Active Member

    Thanks Saville.

    A painful reminder to be honest. Things not going well in the marriage at the moment. A little to do with the odd relapse recently but mostly bigger 'structural issues" and things she needs to amend as much as I do. Talked it through in therapy and therapist agrees too. Will be communicating this stuff to her at some point when time but no idea if will have any impact.

    We can't carry on like this though. Anyway will see.

    Mostly working on other stuff in my life which needs fixing. one critical big issue which will hopefully resolve in the next month. I think this is what sent me back to P. Anyway I know P doesnt help make it better but sometimes it is hard.

    So back on the boards again starting again after a lapse today.
     
  4. mcbc_rewired

    mcbc_rewired Active Member

    Today and yesterday when I have had time, I have been reviewing YBOP. I will be doing this more, partly because it helps me stay focused on why I am doing this, and partly because it is so damned interesting.

    I am wary of following tangents into the clouds - another form of escape from reality - but I have to say I found this fascinating:

    This is fascinating to me because I recently went to some conferences on the impact of childhood trauma on brain development. In almost all cases, childhood trauma has a negative impact on brain development, in particular the frontal cortex, the cerebellum and hippocampus/amygdala, all words that give me brain fog but nevetheless equal:
    1. Stop lets think first before acting (frontal cortex)
    2. Yikes everything is scary but is it really )hippocampus)

    (http://mindforums.com/brain-and-development-affected-after-child-abuse, http://eprints.lse.ac.uk/52856/1/Jovchelovitch_Kids_Company_Diagnosis_2013.pdf).

    It follows that if the frontal cortex (in particular the anterior insular cortex apparently) is weakened in trauma, and that since "weakened frontal cortex pathways (hypofrontality) lose the tug of war to cravings", then someone who experienced childhood trauma *may* already be more likely to be vulnerable to addiction even before starting the addictive behaviour. This may be obvious to some but it is news to me.

    My experience of meeting many, many trauma survivors now in adulthood, bares this out with a host of addictions ranging from drugs to PMO.

    What this means is that PMO addicts with a history of childhood trauma need to bring tools to the reboot phase to boost frontal cortex etc development that had been frozen in childhood. If he or she does not deal with this, the vulnerability to addiction (because of poor frontal cortex development) remains the same even long after PMO free.

    In addition, its hard to say what is cause and effect here, because addiction to fantasy and MO, at least in my case and some others here, pre-dated PMO addiction way back to as young as 10-12. So the sensitisation/desensitisation battle mentioned on YBOP may have already begun very early. Either way the net effect is poor control of cravings.

    But there is more to this. Since the trauma, like any PTSD, leads to effects on the hippocampus (constant and heightened anxiety leading to excessive cortisol release or the opposite apparently) which result in depression, anxiety etc, dope of any kind, again, will appeal in numbing this. It also follows that since trauma leads to anxiety and depression, and since PMO has the same effect, PMO will exacerbate pre-existing emotional problems. I..e if you were a bit whizzy before, no wonder you are demented bluebottle now.

    It surely must follow that quitting PMO will alleviate these emotional problems but *not* expunge them entirely since they already existed. In addition as we know, without the PMO fog, we feel and see these emotions with much more clarity and strength after quitting PMO.

    What this means is that any PMO addict with a history of childhood trauma needs to come armed with coping strategies to overcome the pre-existing emotional problems. If not the triggers that led to PMO will remain the same and the vulnerability will be unchanged.

    The good news is we all know from reading YBOP and many other things that brains are plastic in the sense of like plasticine – neuroplasticity being all the rage. More specifically, it has been shown both demonstrably and empirically that the effects of childhood trauma need not be permanent (there is loads of stuff on this but quickly: http://ww.mtfc.com/2006%20Fisher_Gunnar_et_al_2006_Ann_NY_Acad_Sci.pdf)

    For me it means there are two things any PMO addict with a history of childhood trauma needs when rebooting, more than just determination:

    1. Tools to help develop more resistance in the brain to impulsivity (frontal cortex)
    2. Strategies to reduce fear and anxiety (hippocampus)

    Some may say this is all just excuses for splurging on loads of P, M and O and childhood experience is irrelevant but my view is that knowledge and understanding in itself is a tool to overcome PMO addiction. And this means history. Indeed almost everyone here as corroborated on this by saying that YBOP turned a light on in their heads, and this *new knowledge* alone was enough to change their behaviour. I.e. knoweldge = power to change so it follows that a thorough understanding of the impact of childhood on current mind, body and spirit is very useful in battling addiction.

    So what are the tools? I don't know but here is my guess:

    1. Understanding - i.e. knowledge that has been digested and fully taken in, in the sense of leading to action. By simply *knowing* that there are brain chemistry issues prior to PMO addiction that make addiction both more likely and damaging, will help the rebooter know what he is up against and how to deal with it. As many of us have found, awareness of the triggers, and where they come from, has been essential learning prior to being able to successfully reboot.
    2. Therapy - this goes without saying in my book but each to his own.
    3. Meditation: I have more knowledge than understanding on this because I resist it so much, but the rapidly growing pile of evidence tells us that there is a significant improvement in healthy brain function and structure (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1361002/ and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Insular_cortex)
    4. Exercise: goes without saying. We all know the impact of exercise (in moderation) on stress, mood, mental control in general.
    5. Healthy Diet: ditto above but I would add that foods that have strong reactions on the body like big doses of caffeine, refined sugars, refined carbs to an extent, have a negative impact on mood, stress levels, mental control etc.
    6. Emotional support in significant relationships of family and friends etc. Again goes without saying but the science backs this up in that attachment therapy has a deep impact on neglected children particularly in respect of development of the anterior insular cortex where empathy and decision control rest.
    7. Purpose: its easiest to just reference Viktor Frankl on this as he said it all I think.

    No doubt many other things, but these are what occur to me now as being most important and have helped me to what is still a patchy record but some significant progress. I.e. the tools are really quite simple.

    There is no doubt in my mind that determination is just one of the necessary conditions for moving on to a full life away from PMO. This is true for everyone I think but I am sure from the above that the science also tells us that it is certainly true for those with a history of childhood trauma.

    What I find fascinating is that the above tools for reboot are precisely the same that many here have found useful, irrespective of their histories. Which just proves the point to me that the effect of most trauma (except the most extreme impacts) is just a question of degree; that all adults face the same challenges, but the degree, or volume of noise, of those challenges is different according to their history – the more trauma the louder the noise.

    So it follows that the tools to live a full and good life free of PMO are the same for everyone, but equally, that with a history of trauma, their implementation must be all the more precise and muscular, in order to overcome both PMO and its causes.

    I am determined to crack this PMO addiction and any help in working out the above to better make this happen would be appreciated, certainly by me but also perhaps by others –– if the above is at all on the right track (and if its not, equally it would help knowing this!).
     
  5. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Great post! There's a lot of information in there and I'm going to read it again to digest more of what you're saying. It makes sense to me that something took place before the porn and it is why we were all so readily drawn in by it. It has become our perfect coping tool. I've asked myself a million times, or more, why I'm stuck in a rut, and what you've written above really resonates with me.

    Hey, bro, I quoted some of your above post in my journal. :)

    Cheers!
     

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