Crawling Back Up The Rabbit Hole

Discussion in 'Ages 25-29' started by RedPill, Apr 4, 2012.

  1. TheUnderdog

    TheUnderdog Active Member Staff Member

    Then you need to talk to her.

    You have to tell her everything you're telling us, in a manner that doesn't hurt her feelings, of course.

    My story with Rachel is similar to yours. I really like her beautiful face and her personality, but her body never turned me on. I was always wishing she were hotter, had a tighter ass or bigger boobs. I had ED for 2 months in the beginning (I think we tried having sex somewhere around 9 times before we finally did it), but even after I got rid of the ED I still wasn't desiring her. Our relationship is good but this has always bothered me. Lately I've been seeing things differently now and our sex life has improved.

    I don't believe I've been re-programming my brain against my will. It's more like seeing things from a different perspective.

    Back in December I tried to push you towards breaking up with her and you didn't do it. Now I'm giving you the opposite advice and it doesn't sound like you're going to do it either.

    You need to get out of the grey zone.

    Either try to make it work or break it up.
  2. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    You're right man. I need to make a solid decision. Unfortunately, I have a feeling I'll always be second-guessing myself if I stay with her.

    Her body isn't bad actually, but she doesn't have a pretty face (which is my main issue) and she dresses pretty casually with minimal makeup. I don't think she is feminine enough for me. She's a bit of a 'tom-boy'.

    Other than that though, we're just so comfortable in each other's company. Our personalities are well-matched.

    It's a proper conundrum. :-\
  3. Hey Red, hope you can work things out with the girl. Just wondering on the financial aspect of your problem - can't you go out on cheaper dates? It sounds to me that she really cares for you and if she really does I think she would understand that you need to spend more money on living expenses first for the meantime.
  4. It's all about the bricks

    Red, I think I'm in a similar situation. I don't like my gf 100%. Like yours, she does have a nice body but her face is not very pretty. She's a bit of a tomboy too and she's not wearing much makeup either but I like that about her. I've been with a sort-of-bimbo before and it just pissed me off how much time she spent on her looks. No, I like that part of my gf. She's low maintenance. In fact, you pointed that out to me once and it was then that I started appreciating it more.

    I posted this on Canada's journal too. It's from a personality test I took (triggered by Queen's Gambit post on your journal a few days ago). I don't believe it's all true or that all people can belong in one of 16 categories but, in my case, the results helped me identify with parts of my personality. I read about my personality type's strengths and weaknesses, issues with romantic relationships, friendships, work, etc and most of it was accurate. Sure, I am a unique person, but I do realise that my experiences are almost 90% identical to other human beings' no matter their location, race or upbringing. We all go through a lot of the same shit. I don't mind being tagged into some kind of category, especially when it's not too strict and allows me to better understand and improve myself.

    Here's the part I believe might also apply to you too:
    The bold part is what troubles me lately. A part of me knows I want more. Better compatibility. The one true soulmate. She should be out there. The perfect match. Then again, there's another part that calls BS on that. A more realistic voice. But what's confusing is that this voice goes against my gut feeling (sometimes). But couldn't my gut feeling be wrong? Or influenced by addiction? When I'm off porn for a few weeks, I have a much better relationship with my gf. I like her more. When I'm happy with myself, I am also happier with her. That clarifies things a bit. It's when my life is shit and I'm scared and worried that this quest for perfection starts to matter. When I relapse. When I procrastinate. When I get stressed out. My gf or her looks have nothing to do with it.

    Then there's this other part of my personality. The obsession of the opinions of others. Of being accepted. And that part is also activated when I'm depressed and my self-esteem is super low. This also moves my focus on the quest for perfection again. But that's BS too. Because when I'm ok with myself, those opinions don't matter. I don't give a shit what X,Y or Z say about my gf, about my work or about anything.

    I agree with Underdog that our issues are 99% psychological. Fears and obsessions. I am dealing with perfectionism and social approval. There's probably more.

    Here's the thing. The addiction kept us hypnotised all this time. We are now slowly waking up and realising wtf is going on. We don't like what we see. It's difficult to realise it, let alone deal with it.

    But now I see how fucked up this perfectionism, this social approval, this fear of rejection and failure have made me so far. How I focus mostly on the negative, on what might go wrong, on how I'll fail and be rejected and just live in fear avoiding challenges, automatically labelling them as guaranteed situations for being ridiculed. Movies played thousands of times in my head, yet never really materialised. I've been training for years my negative part like Christian Bale trained for Dark Knight and my positive self like whatever he did for the Machinist. I don't know why is that and I don't really care. But there is *something* that suggests I should live my life feeling shit and being depressed. What is that? And why the opposing voice matters less? Why I don't feel like becoming better, happier, healthier? Why that feels wrong???

    I have no idea. Maybe it's because it's difficult? Maybe that's how I'm used to behaving all these years? I don't know. Maybe one day it'll become clearer. But it should be the other way around. So until then, I just realise and accept that there is an alternative way to live. I'm researching and I'm looking for practical ways to train (even fool) myself to reverse this stupid negative and one-sided perspective on life.

    It's the basics. Sleep. Exercise. Eat healthy. Earn a decent living.

    About our negatively distorted perceptions of our girlfriends and other stuff, a simple exercise: I write about 1 positive experience during the last 24 hours and list 3 things I'm grateful for every day. I make sure one of these things is always about my gf. It was really difficult at first. I really COULDN'T find positive things to write about her. Then I started looking for them more actively. It gets easier. It takes less than 10'. Still, there are days I neglect my needs, I plan nothing fun or social, I bury myself with work. Then I suck at this exercise. I have nothing to write. But it's a sign I'm not training my positive perspective right. And if I ignore it for too long, I'll probably feel worse and relapse, then take it out on my gf and start dreaming about other perfect girls and how I'm supposed to go get them. More fantasies. Or, sometimes I'm abel to see what's coming and start creating opportunities so I have something to write about in the following days. That's when I start calling people and setting up get togethers. Or make plans with my gf about the weekend. Set up something to look forward to. That stuff I never did before. That's usually what others would do and ask me and I'd reject them most of the time because of work or because I felt shitty. Now it's the other way around. And yes, it felt *fake* at first and a little weird and forced but it really doesn't matter. Who says I shouldn't go through a period of discomfort and a weird feeling of feeling inauthentic and untrue to myself (which is fake) in order to grow or solve a problem? If we never did that none of us would ever walk.

    Anyway.. I really need to wrap this up because I got carried away a little bit and I should get back to work but I honestly think you might identify with some of that stuff or at least find something helpful. I hope so.

    Don't worry man.

    Your gf's not with you to drain you financially, mentally, physically and sexually. I'm sure she's made that clear. She likes you man. And I'm sure there's a part of you that really likes her too but there's also another part that for some strange reason keeps you from accepting and embracing it. Sure, she has her own issues and you have your own. You can work on those together. And there's no rush.

    Now, I'd also like to do something with my gf tomorrow, even though I don't think much of valentine's day but it's the weekend and I haven't planned anything yet. Last weekend we went to a weird exhibition. The exhibition sucked but we had a great time anyway. We then met with a friend and went for lunch and a drink together. We really enjoyed it. Anyway. I don't know about tomorrow. Maybe we'll go to some place we've never been before, or go play ping pong or something... whatever. Hope you also come up with something and have a good time too man. It really doesn't have to be expensive and there's no need to worry that it's something she'll love 100%. I don't know about you but I worry about that stuff and I usually stress out too much to plan something she'll love which never goes the way I expect because I'm not a mind reader or a fortune teller. All I want is to just have a good time with someone I like and that is enough. The rest can sort itself out.

    Right.. I'm out. Take care mate!
  5. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    Thanks SB. We usually do more economical things like go for a walk or go to the cinema on a cheap day. She's normally really cool about not having to constantly go out and spend money, but it's our very first Valentine's Day together. Can't really cheapskate that one... even though I'm of the strong opinion that it's one big arbitrary bullshit marketing ploy. :mad:

    Woah Asha! Too much info here to reply to right now! Will come back with a proper response later on. Thanks so much for your epic contribution. For now, just in case you're wondering what my MBTI is and would like to compare types, I'm a solid INTP. Through and through. I know it's not scientifically validated, and no one person is just one specific type, but I was into the whole Myers-Briggs thing for a long time while trying to figure out my ideal career. And every time I did a test (differing ones of various formats too), it always came up the same result - INTP. The description here is about 95% bang on for my development, personality, career and relationships:

    INTPs have a very hard time in the modern world. It's like we were meant for another point in history.

    Anyway, gotta go right now, I'm meeting a friend in the afternoon and then maybe a quick meetup with my girlfriend. I don't know what I'll tell her. We talked last night on the phone and it cheered me up a bit, so I might not be too hasty with mentioning a breakup :-X

    Will post later on...
  6. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    Quick update on my situation:

    I’m still with my girlfriend. We’ve still not had penetrative sex yet, which is really pissing me off. She’s great though, we get on really well. I did feel a slight tingling ‘downstairs’ when kissing and groping her passionately the other night. Slow progress I know, but at least it’s something. Just noticing that my last post was just before Valentine's Day! Wow. It went really well, she loved it and said she felt spoiled, and the evening ended rather intimately ;)

    I’ve been a lot more active with my career situation, and a bit more energetic. I fixed my website, LinkedIn profile, Twitter account, and rebranded my CV and cover letter template. I think I’ve figured out a direction to head in, over the long-term. It’s a career that has a significant amount of overlap with what I do already, and shouldn’t need a great deal of formal retraining in, certainly not as much as going back to do a full science degree, which is what I was considering until recently. That was a fantasy, I’ll never be able to afford that in my current situation, and I’m wasting time day-dreaming about it. I might be able to do a Masters at some point when I have more money, but it hopefully won’t be required for this new career path. Most of the gaps in my knowledge can be filled by reading books, online courses/tutorials, and working on a more specialised portfolio.

    In the meantime, I’m applying for crappy sales assistant positions at local stores, to help pay the bills and give me some time to plan and develop a proper career shift. A public-facing position in a store will provide daily interaction with people, which will help me develop my face-to-face communication skills and confidence (helpful for most careers). It'll be more physical than sitting at a computer all day too. I’m also applying to design studio positions, and have a separate CV design for these. Not holding my breath for these applications though, as my portfolio is too scattershot to be relevant for most positions. I’m trying to remain positive and keep applying though. I’m also going to start being more active in looking for new clients, if all my applications for full-time employment proves fruitless.

    Withdrawal symptoms have been up and down. Two weeks ago, I had the worst anxiety ever. Tense shoulders, heavy feeling in my chest, negative thoughts, constant feelings of impending doom and hopelessness. I felt totally worthless. This went on for about 48 hours without a break. I’d been rebooting on 100% hard mode for about 10 days at that point, so it was probably a combination of withdrawal and the fact that clients were delaying payment and not answering my emails, and the feeling that I was running out of money and might have to move back in with my parents in a few months time.

    The clients eventually paid, and the anxiety went away a bit, but I’m still shitting myself about unemployment and how to survive in the real world. I feel like I’ve never properly learned how to save and manage my finances, and pay attention to things like insurance, mortgages and retirement plans. I have no solid foundation to build a future on. I don't feel like a 'proper adult' yet.

    Had a wet dream last week and that set off a chaser effect for the following two days. I edged a bit, but didn’t O. Back on the wagon again. Overall though, I can see now how much I’ve improved in terms of energy, a less negative outlook and a more action-orientated approach to getting things done (less procrastination). My lack of erection with my girlfriend is very concerning, but I’m trying not to let it get me down. I am much more connected to reality now, and have been feeling more motivation to strive for a higher quality of life. This is the most balanced I have felt for a long while.

    I’m hoping that a new job (even a crappy part-time one) is on the horizon and that it will provide much-needed structure and purpose to my day, not to mention financial stability.
  7. Hey Red! Sounds to me that you are working already to turn your life around. Sometimes we have to hit rock bottom to be able to start taking massive action. As you probably already know, that's how I was able to light a fire under my ass and start getting shit done.
    The crappy sales assistant position sounds like a great opportunity for you. If I were in your situation, I would look at those kinds of jobs in a positive manner because here in our country, it's fucking hard to get those kinds of mediocre jobs that will "pay the bills". The average monthly salary of a sales person in the mall here is around 240 euros. Imagine that. I'm not joking. We don't have the equivalent of "bartending to pay the bills" kinds of jobs here so you are lucky to be living in a place where that kind of work is possible. ;D
    I'm happy to see that you're still with your girlfriend. Hope you guys work it out.
  8. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    Thanks SB, that week of anxiety and depression 2-3 weeks ago was pretty horrendous. It really woke me up to how fucked my life is. Hopefully that was my true rock bottom and I'm climbing out of it now.

    When I say 'crappy jobs' I just mean that they are not interesting and have no growth potential. This doesn't mean that they are easy to get hired for. I haven't heard back from anyone so far. Most of them are looking for someone with extensive sales experience, and sometimes even from within their niche market! They used to be the kind of jobs you could pick up part-time quite easily when in Uni for a bit of extra cash. Now, there are so many more fully-grown adults looking for extra work to help with their living costs; even these positions have become competitive. Britain is not as pleasant a place to live as many foreigners think, thanks to the Conservative's obsession with austerity measures. The nation is going into the gutter. I want to emigrate as soon as I'm stable and can afford it.

    As for 'paying the bills', sales assistant positions are all minimum wage with flexible hours, so they don't exactly give you a life of luxury. Luckily, I have been surviving on a low monthly expenditure for a looooong time now, so I'm used to living on very little. A 20/25 hour-per-week shift should be enough to pay my bills, and I can perhaps gain some freelance work to make extra income.

    There is still the issue of physical attraction, I'm not going to lie. But I am becoming much more attracted to her in a holistic sense, as a human being. I miss her company when I'm alone. I enjoy spending time with her and kissing/cuddling/sleeping with her. I don't think I would be as determined to change if she wasn't in my life right now. I would be much more cynical, isolated and unproductive, and probably fapping my brains out on a regular basis. I'd be terrified to lose her right now, so I'll take that as a good sign. :)
  9. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    I’m doing ok at the moment. Despite a bit of a relapse (edging) at the start of the week, I feel like I’m gradually getting better overall. Yes, my ED is still nearly 100% (still no successful sex with my girlfriend) but my mind is definitely more motivated to tackle problems head-on and dig my way out of this hole.

    I have finally set a viable career path and I’m actively studying it, assigning myself projects, networking and generally being more proactive about things. I felt so hopeless, as if I had no employable skills of any kind. I had not focussed on a speciality and was just scraping by, relying on one or two clients bringing me random projects sporadically, and doing mediocre work. But now I realise that I had the ability all along, I just need to demonstrate it more effectively. I need to create personal projects that I’m proud of, rather than waiting for freelance work to come in and applying the minimum effort to dull, uninspiring briefs. If I create a portfolio full of projects that I’m proud of, I will feel more confident in my skills and become more attractive to employers.

    Just the basic mental acquisition of motivation is enough to make me feel 10x better about myself. And if I feel more optimistic about my future career path, I’ll feel less anxious and depressed. The loss of these mental inhibitors will surely improve my overall energy levels, mental abilities, empathy for others, and sexual attraction to my girlfriend.

    For some of us, giving up PMO may be enough on its own, but the more severe cases (chronic depression/anxiety) among us need to look at the root causes of our mental conditions and address them if we ever hope to stay sober indefinitely. Of course, this is common knowledge that many of us have been aware of for some time, but I’ve only just acquired the mental clarity and motivation to feel like I can actually pick a direction and have the strength to follow it through.

    I’m hoping that once this career lynchpin is secured, I’ll be able to relax, open up, and enjoy real life and real relationships, sex included. I’m on the path now, just need to walk it with patience and mindfulness.

    Outside career issues, I communicate more regularly with friends and family, exercise regularly (although need to be more consistent and not so dependant on weather) and I’m getting to bed earlier (and getting a slightly better quality of sleep). Just need to handle the anxiety when it escalates. I'm trying to organise and handle multiple things at the moment and it's stretching my brain to its current limits, but the stress and pain needs to be experienced and accepted as part of life. I'm pushing forward regardless.
  10. TheUnderdog

    TheUnderdog Active Member Staff Member

    I'm curious, how does your girlfriend feel about this?

    Mine was totally supportive and understanding during the first few months, but then started to lose patience and demanded more from me.

    Also, have you considered Cialis? I think your case in particular could be benefited from it. Just take a 5mg pill a few hours before seeing your girlfriend (without telling her anything). You might end up getting hard and finally be able to have sex with her. This in turn can give you confidence and a maybe even a boost in libido.

    I really think you should try it out.
  11. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    Hey mate, good to hear from you. Did you get my PM?

    Since I've had a somewhat discouraging experience with other types of medication in the past, I decided a long time ago that I was going to go the drugs-free route with my recovery. I just know it is the porn and brain desensitisation. Found this post on the topic:

    You need some form of arousal signal coming from the brain in the first place for it to have even a chance of the Cialis helping. I'm in flatline and still recovering right now. Add to that the cost (strapped for cash right now) and the list of possible side-effects (loss of vision?!!!) and it just isn't worth the experiment.

    As I said in the previous post, I've got a lot of shit on my plate right now regarding skills acquisition, job hunting and organising birthdays, trips, etc. so I'm not that bothered about the lack of sex right now. Sure it would be amazing, and for a lot of guys on here, that is all they want, but I'm trying to turn my entire fucking life around with this recovery. So I just relax when I'm with my girlfriend and enjoy our time together and don't feel any performance anxiety when we are fooling around.

    We have semi-regular chats in bed about how I'm progressing with the reboot and when I've probed her for any concerns she may be having about how long it is taking, she does say it makes her wonder about what I'm doing during the week when she doesn't see me. I've told her that I've had one or two small slip-ups here and there but that these are getting more infrequent and less impactful. I explained that I'm acting out A LOT LESS than the average guy out there. She knows I am tackling a lot of shit simultaneously right now and is a very empathetic and supportive person. She tells me all the time that she loves me.

    I'm going to continue the natural road to recovery and if she becomes impatient and breaks up with me because of it, so be it. I've made up my mind and I'm sticking to it. I'm not going to ingest something that I don't feel comfortable with for someone else's (possible) gain. I can't afford to dwell on the lack of sex right now. It will happen at some stage once I am more neurochemically balanced and stable in my lifestyle. I care for her deeply, but my main focus right now is to get a job and become more secure and confident in myself professionally and financially. It will lower my overall stress levels over the long-term, make me feel like a part of society again and give me the money to eat more healthily and afford natural remedies like vitamins/minerals (further helping brain recovery).

    Anything that interferes with that process has to go, period. If that means breaking up with her then that's what has to happen.
  12. Great to see that you're putting yourself as priority numero uno, red. When you start valuing yourself and making self-improvement a borderline obsession, magical things happen. Keep up the good fight!
  13. Hey Red, how's everything going?
  14. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    Hey SB,

    I’m rarely on this forum anymore. I’m still with my girlfriend, but I’ve still not shaken the addiction either. I managed to find employment and started a few months ago, so I’m more distracted during the day (in an office with other people instead of working at home), but I’ve stopped exercising because I’m so exhausted after a full shift. Had to do some overtime (unpaid!) for a couple of weeks there and between that and seeing my girlfriend, I’ve just had no time for personal development. No exercise, very little reading, not properly started any e-learning courses, etc.

    I’m visiting the folks for Christmas holidays and I feel like I’m never going to have time to myself ever again. Running after kids, entertaining guests, answering constant WhatsApp notifications… it all makes the introvert in me want to run away to a log cabin in the woods somewhere and curl up with a stack of books in front of the fire for a month or two.

    Getting back to PMO specifics, I’ve orgasmed very few times in the past 4-5 months. I have edged occasionally, but not to the point where I’m sore or totally burnt out. However, I’m still pretty dead when my girlfriend tries to stimulate me in bed. This is what is keeping me back from leaving porn for good. If real sex was an option and gave me ANY level of stimulation/satisfaction, then I would know what was at stake and that there was something worth fighting for; that there was a true alternative you know?

    Anyway, I promised myself I wouldn’t rant and make this one too long like my old posts. I don’t really have anything optimistic or positive to offer any aspiring rebooters so that’s why I’m staying away from the forum. It needs positive role models and I’m not one of them. Guys like you are what the forum needs, so keeping posting and giving your encouraging words and advice.

    Better go now, I'm being harangued into family participation again.
  15. Canada2012

    Canada2012 Active Member

    Good to hear from you RedP.

    I wonder if the issue with you could be your overall energy level? I fully agree that the daily grind can wear us down & I have many nights where I feel drained (mostly due to work), but your current post makes me wonder whether you could be stuck with something physiological, physical, or psychological, that cuts you off from your innate store of energy.

    If that makes you wonder as well. Just know there are many potential solutions out there and don't give it up as a lost battle!

    Good job on the overall PMO reduction. I did reduce a lot as well without full abstinence and feel much better about my addiction as well.

    Last but very importantly, we ALL have something positive to contribute here and it has nothing to do with how well we're doing. What motivates people is not a youtube video about rocky destroying a building with his bare hands but resonance, which is the sensation of being part of the greater whole by relating to others. I'm sure your story has influenced others so don't stay away out of shame! (stay away out of a choice to do so because you feel like it instead ;) )

  16. Moody

    Moody New Member

    Hey man, you're making progress, and even if it doesn't seem like it, I'd say that's pretty positive.
    I wouldn't look at the busy-ness of your life as too much of a bane, it is helping you keep away from the dreaded P.
    I'm a firm believer that no touching yourself at all is the way to go for recovery, but everybody is different and will make their own way to victory.

    Keep at it, man - I'm pullin' for ya.
  17. Miss your posts buddy!

    Good to hear from you again. Congratulations on getting new employment! I'm happy for your because you are now less stressed about moving in again with your parents, feeding yourself, etc. That's already a huge step forward.

    We all have something to contribute to this forum, including you who's been around here more than me.
    You have more experience, which translates to more stories and advice you can give to "young" rebooters.
    I do my best to be positive, but I assure you that there are times that I have my down moments. Everybody does. ;)

  18. Queen|s Gambit

    Queen|s Gambit New Member

    +1 Awesome, you're still on the road, that is all that matters. I feel like I have progressed a lot but still have nothing to show for it.

    It is the J-Curve. Long game is the only game in town.

    I know what you mean with exhausted. I had a pretty intense job. When I came home I was so tired I just went to take a nap for 30-60 minutes. Maybe you can try exercising/meditating in the morning?
  19. RedPill

    RedPill Back to Reality...

    Well, apparently it's just over a year ago since I last posted on this forum. Time for an update...

    Let's get down to brass tacks - I'm still with the same girl, and we've still not had sex. I know. CRAZY. Trust me, I know. Over two years together and we've still not had full successful penetrative sex. We've fooled around here and there, but nothing crazy. I've come to the realisation now that we are more like best friends than lovers. I'm really not that physically attracted to her at all. Now I'm still relapsing to porn here and there, so I'm under no illusion that I'm cured sexually, but I feel much more human than I used to, and far less pessimistic. I'm more balanced and calm and confident, and women are responding to that!

    I'm currently in a situation with two hot girls at work. One of them is borderline obsessed with me, and she practically molested me at the office christmas party. We kissed and groped each other multiple times over the course of the evening and probably would have ended up in bed together if we hadn't both been sharing rooms with other people. I had to throw her out of my room before the guy I was sharing with arrived back to catch us. Worst thing is she is married with two kids. We were both very drunk! But she definitely pursued me. She even properly harassed me on WhatsApp to meet her in town one night the next week. She literally wouldn't take no for an answer. I met up with her and she basically confessed to thinking about be constantly and being a nervous wreck at work around me. She wants to be with me but equally she's got a family. She very sexy and she's quite an affectionate person too, but she seems a little unstable and I don't want to get involved with splitting up a family, especially if that leaves me dealing with her kids at some point!

    The other girl is probably the most divine creature I've ever met. She is astonishingly beautiful - blond, petite, very fit body and a gorgeous face and smile. She's also very smart, hard working, down to earth, kind and... I could go on. I work right next to her and we've developed quite a strong bond. She's a naturally giggly and flirty girl (without being slutty) so I was obviously cautious for a long while that even though I was making her laugh a lot and we smile at each other and chat and respect one another, I told myself that she is just a nice bubbly person that enjoys a bit of banter. But things have changed so much in the last 6 months we've been getting more and more flirty that people have noticed and it has gotten to the point where we were standing in the street after work the other night (nobody else around) and we were talking about how rare it is to strike up a chemistry at work like we've got. And we sort of looked at each other for a moment and I thought we probably could have kissed if I would just have made a move to.

    So why didn't I? Well, three reasons mainly, and no, none of them are due to already having a girlfriend. The first is that there is still this slight chance that I've just maybe read too much into it and she only sees me as a friend who she likes to flirt with. Now my intuition about girls has never let me down before, I've never been wrong about a girl liking me, but she seems SO perfect that I can't quite believe she would really be interested in little old me. She could literally have any guy she wanted. This leads me onto my second point. I feel as though the moment I have her, I honestly wouldn't have a clue what to do with her. She's so motivated and active that she'd want me to take her places and experience loads of things and I'm just not quite at that level yet, and I might never be. I'm not the sort to whisk her away for a weekend in Paris or a secret fancy dinner. I don't even own a car. And my flat would probably not be up to her standards of tidiness (she's a bit of a clean freak). I think she's under the impression that I'm this mysterious charismatic older guy with intelligence and wit and tons of crazy life experiences in my past. In reality, I'm just a confused young(ish) man who doesn't know what he wants from life and spends most of his evenings and energy trying not to touch his dick. So I can't help but think we'd be incompatible from an everyday lifestyle perspective. The third snagging point is a big one - what if (snowball's chance in hell) things actually do go well between us and we end up in bed together and I can't perform? Ever heard the expression "Don't shit where you eat?". It's too risky to connect that back to work. I can tell that if we started seeing each other, her female friend at work would want to know all the juicy details, and if she found out about Mr. Floppy, then it would be the hot gossip of the month around the office. I don't think I could work there after that.

    At any rate, these encounters have made me realise that I was only holding on to my current relationship because I was afraid that I wasn't good enough for anyone else. Regardless of whether or not I end up with either of these two other women, I need to end things with my current relationship. I'm not in it for the right reasons, and she is now pressuring me to move in with her. So I think things have reached breaking point.

    And that's pretty much where I'm at! I don't know if anyone knows me on this forum anymore or even cares. I'm sure most of my generation of forum buddies have all recovered and moved on with their lives by now. But I thought it was worth writing down somewhere and here is as good a place as any. If anyone does read this, can they advise on a more suitable place to ask for advice on the above love-triangle situation? Is there a relationship advice section that I don't know about? It's changed quite a bit since I last logged in!
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  20. It's all about the bricks

    Hey man, I still look forward to reading your stuff and I still care :) and I haven't fully recovered either :)

    My relapses are weeks and months apart now but they still happen. Still, there is progress and I'm happy about that. Most of the progress is due to telling my gf all about the addiction and actually sharing my counter with her. Sometimes she even circles the days for me. It feels very supportive :)

    As for your love triangle situation.. it sure is a pickle!

    Improving your current relationship feels like the best path to me, but I'm a little biased because that's what I've been doing for the past few years. Sure, there are better girls than my girlfriend around but we've made it this far and we worked really hard on resolving our issues before they escalate, and in general I'm very happy with the level of understanding and the clarity of communication between us. Sure, I do have crushes with random women now and then and daydream about perfect relationships with them. But that's because they are strangers. I hardly know them and their issues, and maybe they just remind me of some BS story hollywood has fed me. I choose to "settle". Although I prefer to see it as "not giving up" on our relationship. Especially when I realise that we are both works in progress, we have no idea what we're doing and what we want, but we both try to understand ourselves, share our discoveries, and help and improve each other. For me, that's gold and hard to experience if you don't "settle" and work for it.

    The married mom, I'd stay away from. You're probably one of those hollywood scenarios in her mind which is starting to materialise. I feel (but I could certainly be wrong) that instead of trying to fix things at home she's trying to sabotage and destroy everything. I wouldn't want to be involved in this. Also, it sounds a bit wild and PMOey... not sure where it might lead...

    The bubbly girl... sounds great! If current-gf really doesn't work, I'd say go for her and ignore all the what-ifs and worst-case scenarios. They are just thoughts and predictions that almost never come true. If you make a move and she's not into it, it'd be a little bit uncomfortable but you won't die. If she does like it, you can then find out how much she wants those trips to Paris. Maybe not at all. If you get to bed and it doesn't work, still nothing bad or unrecoverable will happen.

    I guess what I'm saying is whatever you decide to do, it won't be the end of the world and you'll be able to deal with it. Even if you stay with your current gf, fool around with the mom, give it a shot with work-girl or ignore all three and just keep looking, it'll be ok. Some insight! Right? Duh! I know... I guess the actual point is, try to figure out what you want from a relationship, how *you* want to *be* in a relationship and not how X, Y, Z girl expects you to be and simply be this. It will be fulfilling regardless of which girl you decide to try it with.

    You are an intelligent guy, you are in the situation you are in professionally, financially, psychologically, etc, and it's all good, and there are girls who will accept it and love it and won't care about all that stuff you're prematurely worrying about on their behalf, and there are girls who might be mean and bitches and might hurt you and make fun of you but that's just them hurting and being unable to relate or communicate properly, which is sad but still, it has no effect on your worth.

    Anyway.. hope some of it makes sense...

    Please keep posting.. I'll try it as well.. it hasn't been a priority lately..

    Take care!

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