Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by devnull, Jul 23, 2017.

  1. devnull

    devnull Member

    Hello men. Some of you may remember me, I last joined here just short of a year ago, and somewhat miraculously got clean.

    I disappeared from the site rather abruptly after being clean for a while. This wasn't due to relapse, but because I was starting a job where being traced to my account here could have had negative employment consequences.

    Sanity prevailed for most of the time away from the site. I masturbated without P and as little fantasy as possible for around half the time I was away. These sessions were intentionally functional and quick, and after ejaculating there was always that thought 'thank fuck I don't do "sessions" any more', and associated gratefulness that I was in remission.

    Then the P started to sneak back in. 5 minutes a day every few days. First page of a website only, not much hunting/clicking. That was maintained for some months. See? I can use P responsibly! Right? Er... no.

    Then came an increase in hunting/clicking. Then came favorite-collecting, then downloading. Then paid subscriptions and collection building. And expensive trips to sex shops. Then the rest of my life started to take a backseat to the addiction, and I had to admit to myself that I was again out of control. One minute swearing off, and literally the next minute jacking off again 'just one more time'. The work, sports and relationships I had built started to suffer. I had again become a P-wraith. This rapid descent from 'maintaining' to 'out of control' had taken only around two months.

    So now I'm here again. What collected materials I had, have been deleted. Just doing that was incredibly difficult and entailed considerable anguish. But what choice do I have, really. I can either have a life (job, relationships, health, prospects of happiness, ease, comfort, contentment etc etc), or be an addict. It sounds like an easy choice, but as most of you will know, it is not. Thankfully I was relatively clean not so long ago, so there is the memory of that to spur me on.

    Looking forward to re-engaging here and catching up with everybody. Well done to all those who have lasted the course. And to those that are still struggling, well, I'm right here with you, and hoping we can help each other out.
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2017
    Billy B. likes this.
  2. titan_transcendence

    titan_transcendence Well-Known Member

    Hi Devnull!

    Its both good and bad thing to see you are back in here, obviously. I always wondered what happened to you after your disappearance from here. Good to hear that you managed so well for very long time. But also sad to hear that this monster got a hold of you once again. Did it really happen just like that you described, deviously slinking back to your life little by little? Was there any other reasons why it came back (or you let it in once again)?
    Anyways, I hope that you will manage as well as before now when returning in here. :)
  3. devnull

    devnull Member

    Hey TT.

    I can remember what happened prior to the first binge, just short of a few months ago. There was a business trip of considerable duration, and I was spending all day every day with the same people, all males. There was a lot of bawdy talk from these people, and one guy in particular talked a lot about sex, fetishes, hookers, porn. I spent almost all day every day with this guy. There was also a LOT of rubbernecking and objectification involved: 'wow, look at that one over there', etc. Looking back on it, I can see that all this time with these guys, and particularly this one guy who I was with mostly, was a sort of 'supertrigger' for me. On the way home I could feel a very large urge buildup, and going on a binge was the first thing I did when I arrived home. In retrospect, I had already pre-committed to a binge before I got home - it had become just a matter of getting back and doing it. After that binge happened, the floodgates were well and truly busted, and it was back to full-fledged active addiction and the decline in quality of life, finances, social contact, sleep, diet, intellectual ability and physical health that it entails for me.

    Shortly before the trip, I had definitely escalated the P usage though. I was being much more clicky/flighty on the 'tube' type site I frequented, and had even created a login there so I could favorite stuff and go back to it. 'Magpie' type collecting behavior. So I was already in the danger zone for a big relapse, this business trip just tipped me over the edge I guess.

    But going back even further, I suppose that even though I had been 'maintaining', very satisfactorily and seemingly stably, on a "5 minutes every couple of days" diet of P for a LONG time before that, watching P was very likely going to lead to watching more P, eventually. And even further before that, maybe M was always going to lead to P? I don't know. Based on prior efforts, I don't feel good about my chances of leading an M-less existence , but I am also not interested (nor in the best spot, physically or mentally) to have a relationship, and wouldn't want to subject someone else to my issues anyway. Hum.

    I feel hopeful that I will quit P again and get my life back on track without too much trouble or fallout (relative to last time). I am uncertain as to how to stay free forever after, though.

    Right now it's a nice day outside. And yet here I am, the addict the day after a binge, with a killer headache, the sniffles, brain fog, messed up guts, feeling listless, not confident, not feeling like doing the job that I love so much when 'normal'. What a sorry state! I can still remember what 'purity' feels like, so that is a massive plus point for recovery - a clear vision of what life will be like when I'm out of this again. Last time I was so deep-in that I had no idea what a raging-addiction-free existence looked like.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  4. devnull

    devnull Member

    Hey, HeyRevolver. Nice to meet you too.

    Edit: And thank you for your good wishes!
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  5. bobjes

    bobjes Active Member

    Hey Devnull,

    The first thing I felt when I saw your post was relief. Yep I missed you!:)
    I was worried about you too. Happy to hear you got the job you wanted.
    Great work on your PMO free period. And I wish you back to 'normal' ;) soon enough. You showed a lot of determination before, and strength and insight. May you find these qualities on your PMO journey again. (hmm, sounds like 'make A great again', lol)
    You know what to expect, and yes we will be cheering you on.

    Nor do I feel good about an M-less existence. But I do know that if I want to get to healthy masturbation I need to change my entire outlook. It needs to become a celebration of my inherent sexuality. I still hardly masturbate. The way I do it still reminds me too much of the PMO days. Even now my brain is still rooted in visual clues and fantasy if I am by myself, so I leave it for now and I am happy to leave it. I have also learned that my body gets excited through touch, mainly touch of the couple of women I had the pleasure to spend time with in the last half year.

    That pretty much describes me till about 2 months ago. That is changing. I am accepting myself more for who I am. I feel so much more solid within myself that I now have the space and energy to entertain the idea of relationships.

    That is a lot about me, sorry for the hijacking. I just want to highlight that the real deep benefits of living a PMO free existence seem to come after quite some time.

    But lets first get your head out of the fog. o_O:(:);)

    So happy to hear you!
  6. devnull

    devnull Member

    @bobjes: Hijacking? Hijack away. :) Good to hear from you. I have often reminisced with fondness about the good folks here. Like 40New30 said in a recent post of his (paraphrasing) "you guys know me much better/more intimately than anyone in real life". That is certainly true for me. I spilled all my beans here.

    In retrospect it was a stupid, fear based decision to quit the site, but it was one I thought I had to make at the time to get that job and to hide this unfortunate background of addiction. And it was spurred on by the thought that I was 'OK now'. But now, I think even if I'm doing OK for a decent stretch, I do need to keep active in such a community. Like you and others still here. Keep myself honest, let others help, help others. And if work finds out that I have these issues... fuck it. I'll survive, and recovery is the most important thing because everything else turns to shit without it.

    You know, when I was writing about an M-less existence, I did recall your experiments with 'authentic' sexuality, including self-touching, which you seem to be alluding to in the above posts. I'll give it a go: first of all I'll do my very best not to M at all, and if I do, then I'll try to make it 'authentic'. I have a sense of what 'authentic' means, despite not being able to put it into words. Unfortunately I'm imagining that desperation for release and authenticity might be somewhat at odds. But we will see. As Saville is rightly keen on pointing out, imagining/thinking/forecasting about things is often a waste of time - better to 'just do'.

    It's great to hear you have been excited with some real women! :) You sound very at-ease with yourself, and that is so great to see. Thanks for your support, and I look forward to cheerleading your continued success.

    PS Yep, thankfully I know what to expect and what to do. I 'simply' have to suffer until it is over again. Simple but often not easy.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  7. learningOrder

    learningOrder Member

    Hey Devnull - I've also gone clean and fell back into the binge lifestyle quite a number of times, so I relate to your situation pretty intimately.

    I used to have a therapist that would compare addiction as standing at the opening of a huge chasm - and that each day of sobriety was like taking a step back from it. At first all it takes is a small misstep to fall back in, but with time there is more and more buffer before falling in. Maybe if you can get a few days under your belt - even if you're just white-knuckling it - you can get yourself back into the groove.

    I know what a prison it can feel like to be stuck in the compulsion. You are smarter and stronger than the compulsion (even if it wins a few battles).
  8. devnull

    devnull Member

    Hello learningOrder! We addicts are 'lucky' in one sense I guess, because one addict can relate only too well to the struggles of another! :) Thanks for the support. I've yet to read your journal - hope you are doing OK.
  9. devnull

    devnull Member

    To make sure I didn't give the wrong impression in a previous post, I have to explicitly admit to eventually 'going along' with 'that guy' and responding to much of his sex/fetish/P-talk, and I was also engaging in the rubbernecking and comments. I must maintain more distance from such people/activities in future, although I work with this guy every day - the business trip was just especially intense all day and all evening with him nonstop, amplified by being in an all-male group egging each other on.

    I'm not judging him or his activities, I don't see there's anything inherently wrong with that sort of behavior. If he's happy like that, good for him. It's simply that as an addict I can't afford to go there myself because it's triggering. I'll either avoid or politely shut down such things in future. He might not like it too much, but I've got to protect myself.

    I think objectification or pornification of women is a problem for me in general. Last weekend I was mentally and emotionally unavailable during my time outside the house, because I was lost in a sea of summertime body-lechery. Again, it's not the activity itself that I find problematic in isolation (e.g. in others who can do and enjoy it without negative consequence), but it's simply not good for me to do it because I'm an addict. I have a son, and I very much prefer to be 'present' with him rather than being distant and self-absorbed.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  10. 40New30

    40New30 Keep going

    Welcome back, devnull. I've slipped back into active binging several times since I started rebooting, honestly I think it's crazy when guys can beat porn easily and not have a few binge relapses, but I was/am a very severe addict.

    You're right you can have you life or be an addict, that's the choice, you're going to be just fine if you know that.

    It is difficult to sort out what sexual thoughts and behaviors will be "OK" and not lead to relapse, what situations you can be in, etc...but really it seems to be all about stopping yourself for viewing and touching, whatever it takes.

    I know exactly what you're talking about when you say you had already made up your mind to relapse and couldn't wait to get home (I had a few very scary episodes like this), next time you just need to completely talk yourself out of that immediately. I do that by thinking about the pain of being an addict, it works for me every time at this point. I have gotten to the edge a few times, even in the last 6 months, and I have successfully pulled myself back every single time by just saying "no".
  11. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    We all wondered what had become of you; your withdrawal being so quick and complete. I can totally relate to being afraid an employer, wife, stalker (lol) might happen upon our anonymous words. Though none of us knows each other, we know ourselves, which can be unsettling enough. :)

    Glad to have you back, devnull! Looking forward to your continued journey.
  12. fcjl8

    fcjl8 The only path for me

    Hi sir,

    I have come back to YBR after a two year absence in which I had long 6-9 month periods of sobriety followed by massive binges, late last year I was back to daily use. Like you said, I also, often almost planned a relapse. Strangely happy and proud to be weeks or months clean but self sabotaging as well. I think it is great that you are back on the freedom train! Please let me know if I can help you in anyway.

  13. devnull

    devnull Member

    Thanks guys for the support! It really means something to be back and welcomed under not-so-great circumstances, when I'm chemically on a post-binge downer. I'm not alone in this thing.

    @40New30: Yes, doing whatever it takes, just suffer through whatever will come. "It will pass". I might buy a ring or a coin with that slogan on it, dammit.
    @Saville: It would be damaging if someone in real life found out I was an addict, but then again, that's the real me. I've got issues! I sort of envy the guys you see on YT who have their sordid pasts all out their for others to see. I'm not so inclined, though. I didn't use my real email address this time, because I've heard that hacks and subsequent leaks of forum user details are quite common.
    @fcjl8: Thanks for your kind offer of assistance. I'll be well pleased if you check my journal and contribute your thoughts, when they arise! I'll support you too.
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2017
  14. devnull

    devnull Member

    Nothing to report, really. Mild urges to M, some mental visuals of images/videos. Still nuked from the last binge.
  15. Fry2

    Fry2 Well-Known Member

    Good to see you're alive Devnull. We were worried of what might have happened to you. Having had a couple of those binge relapses (with drugs involved) I can absolutely relate to what happended to you. The slow and gradual buildup until you eventually loose control and binge sounds very familiar. Let's now make the seemingly easy decision for a better life every day.
    devnull likes this.
  16. devnull

    devnull Member

    Played some social sport yesterday, and predictably did really badly due to post-binge hangover. I play with simple, normal, happy, well-balanced people of around my own age. I remember when I started, how I felt like an alien, or a freak, among them. They were so... pure? But slowly their 'innocence' - for lack of a better word - rubbed off on me, and I started to feel like part of the group. And now I am most definitely part of the group. Amazing! I super appreciate being around normal people, it's so grounding. Isolation is SO BAD for me, and it's yet another thing that I can see fed into the vortex of my relapse. Decreased social sports, taking the opportunity to work from home for weeks at a time... That's not going to happen again. I need as much contact with 'normies' as I can stand.

    I've had anger arise (an unusual emotion for me). Anger at having fucked things up with a relapse. It's just SO FUCKING GOOD to have a crystal clear consciousness, a razor-blade intellect and a smooth-running body. It took so long to build these capabilities back up, and then they were pissed away so cheaply, and now I feel so very far away from regaining them. This anger is of a good, productive, sort. The type that is going to keep me on track.

    A new question came up for me which I hadn't thought of before: Can ANYONE not get addicted to PMO? It seems like a stupid question, but it's so hard for me to comprehend how anybody could use it responsibly. But I suppose it must happen, right? Lucky bastards. I would sincerely love to be able to view P, but there's just no way I can do it without harming myself massively.

    Anyway, I've been doing a good job of not touching myself and not letchering, despite having the urges to and plenty of opportunity. Thumbs up from me to me.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2017
  17. devnull

    devnull Member

    I had a small period of flashbacks from the recent binges, which had me holding my head in my hands and groaning a little bit. But it passed. P really is the sweetest damn poison.

    Even though I am currently stable, I can still feel there is such a fine line in my brain between such stability and throwing my entire life away just to get that fix. Ugh. What a curse addiction is.

    This time around I'm really really aiming for no M. It will surely be a new type of hell at first, but it's got to be done. Hopefully it will add an extra layer of insulation.
    Billy B. likes this.
  18. titan_transcendence

    titan_transcendence Well-Known Member

    Your post make me actually to consider this difference in people like you and me compared to those "pure" people; lets say addicts and with "normal" people. I wrote some of my thoughts in my latest entry, about how I tend to live in kind of dissociated state of being a lot of time. Its like theres two kind of existence for me: the quite normal, real life and then that fantasy imbued drugged state of being/or state of depressive brooding when I barely notice whats going around me. In those latter states of being Im not "really there" just dwelling in my own head and thoughts. I guess those "pure" people that you mentioned live in reality all the time, socializing, living their lives, being at the moment. Maybe thats the difference? The key is the feeling of involuntary isolation, which is not the healthy for man because he is an social animal, whether one like it or not.

    I think its the same effect that with any harmful substances: some can manage quite well to use them moderately, some are hooked badly right away. If a person has any kind of imbalance in his life or personality I guess the addiction will develop much quicker. Are those balanced, generally more happy individuals safe from any addiction? Not easy to know the truth but I bet they can step away from those things harmful of them pretty easier than those guys who have not had much happiness in their lives anyways. In latter case, the way to happiness must be learned with hard work and changing false thought patterns and beliefs.

    You are doing good! Just continue the things you are doing and Im sure you will pretty soon feel much better again! :)
    devnull likes this.
  19. Rapha

    Rapha Active Member

    We play these games in our minds, e.g. what if my favourite sites have new exciting content uploaded, what am I missing out on? In reality, by leaving P behind you're not missing out on anything. By your own admission when you were away from P you felt sharper, more sociable, had improved relationships and interest in sports etc. Also you said you had a crystal clear conscience during your spell of being clean - that's priceless IMO.

    The truth is, this addiction isn't your real friend. It's like having a 'friend' that stabs you in the back.
    Boxer17 likes this.
  20. Boxer17

    Boxer17 Active Member

    That is so true. The what am I missing factor has been a recurring triggering mechanism for me.
    P is a "friend" that knifes us
  21. NCBob

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

    Great to see you back on the forum, devnull:)
  22. NCBob

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

    Great way to look at this, HeyRevolver:)
  23. devnull

    devnull Member

    Thanks for your comments guys.

    Yes. For me it's so much the new content I might miss, but the content I've already seen and 'fear' (strange term, but quite accurate) never seeing again. It's still the 'what I'm missing out on' factor, though.

    Most of the addiction for me is just about getting THE FIX. It's not that 'I had a bad day' or 'I feel anxious' or 'I'm lonely', and therefore 'deserve a P session'. Rather, it's a simple but all-powerful 'I MUST GET THE FIX'. I suppose if it was drugs (which it is, of course, just endogenous) you'd call it 'jonesing', or more conventionally: 'craving' (in the extreme). It feels like I've got a gaping hole in my brain chemistry that only P can fill with its liquid ecstasy, and then I start getting fixated on the fulfillment. This in itself wouldn't be so bad for me if I could just rub one out and be done with it. But a proper 'fix', or high, calls for a relentless edging, which is where the super intense highs come in, leading to those super intense lows after O (which may take many hours or even days to reach).

    Rewinding a bit, I guess what I'm trying to say is that at some point the addiction lost connection to external circumstances and became entirely self-propelling. Of course this self-propelling addiction is fundamentally the same in that I'm still 'buying off my enemies', it's just that my main enemy is 'wanting to get a fix', AKA 'the monkey on my back'.

    I do notice increased craving and desperation for the fix during periods of high anxiety/doubt/fear though, these things are definitely aggravating factors.

    If only we could get as high as kites and not ruin our entire lives in the process, eh? But no, it's not possible. Abstinence is therefore the only sane option. Unfortunately addiction and sanity are at somewhat opposite ends of the spectrum, and it's not as easy as saying 'this is bad for me, I'll stop', haha! I still find it strange that I can be a very responsible, hardworking, honest and valued person when around others*, but a raging addict when alone and with his dick in his hand. Schizophrenic. I aspire to lead a life where I'm pretty much the same person no matter the location or circumstance. I seem to remember reading a quote that said something like 'the greatest testament to character is what a person will do when nobody is looking'.

    *unless 'jonesing', at which point I become restless, distant and scheming


    The sexual energy is creeping up. Soon it'll be time to suffer.
    Last edited: Jul 28, 2017
    NCBob likes this.
  24. fcjl8

    fcjl8 The only path for me

    Yes sir! I could have written those words myself! I agree with what you said about character and "when no one is looking" but then again we always have the man in the mirror...
    Do not beat yourself up over the past... I know that is easy to say... but it really hurts progress at this point. I focus on how thankful I am to be clean today... right now.
  25. devnull

    devnull Member

    Hey @fcjl8, thanks for commenting, it's always good to know one is understood by a brother addict! I don't really beat myself up any more. After having read YBOP years ago and understanding about delta-FOSB, it clicked that it wasn't really "my fault" that my willpower was nil, it was a brain condition. Of course this didn't mean I was any the happier about the overall situation. :)

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