From teen years with porn-induced ED to healthy sex life

Discussion in 'Success Stories' started by Ph12ajd, Feb 15, 2022.

  1. Ph12ajd

    Ph12ajd New Member

    Hey everyone, I can already imagine rambling on for ages so will try and cut to the chase here!

    Around ten years ago, I was really really struggling with porn addiction and desperate to hear recovery stories to keep me going. But whenever I went on forums , none of the encouraging stories really applied to me, because they were starting from a far higher base than I was. They would be married people who had had a lifetime of healthy sex, whose porn habits had dulled their sex drive but a couple of months away from porn would see it spring back. I kept seeing “50 day recovery story!” posts etc

    I’m happy for those guys who had a straightforward recovery – that’s awesome. But I never saw anything which could really give me hope in my own situation – which was someone who would masturbate to porn probably 15-20 times a week, from the age of 13ish, had never had a fully formed sex life to build on, and was genuinely worried I might never be able to be in a functioning sexual relationship because I had so many experiences of anxiety ED. I’d gone through six-month periods without porn and still didn’t have my sex drive back.

    For years I’ve been meaning to post something to reassure everyone going through the same thing now, who looks at recovery stories and worries they’re out at a more extreme end and can’t recover - it is possible to recover!

    To really rattle through it, I’ve basically gone from porn-induced ED every time I tried to have sex – and some really horrific embarrassing experiences – to being , not quite back to normal, but close enough that it doesn’t inhibit a healthy romantic/sexual relationship too much. I can have successful sex most times, and have had 100% successful sex at night and then again the following morning – which is par for the course for some guys but for me, felt like a massive milestone! So I’m confident most guys in a similar situation will be able to make at least the same amount of progress. (I didn’t have much to do with really extreme porn, so can’t speak to that issue specifically, and I’m glad I didn’t have to recover from that too).

    I can already feel I’m rambling so will try and really keep it short. In essence – I’ve been recovering for about a decade now and have tried most things in my time . I tried taking Viagra or Cialis and visiting sex workers , then lowering the dose each time to try and get my confidence back – which didn’t really work because I felt so emotionally fraught about using sex workers I think I introduced more mental issues than I solved! I went to psycho-sexual therapy for a couple of years. I did all kinds of homeopathy stuff to try and improve my sex drive. I did years of dating through asexual dating sites. I would relapse sometimes but by far my biggest worry was that even when I didn’t relapse – went six months without porn – I still wouldn’t feel my sex drive kick back into gear.

    Basically, in the end, having grown up a bit more, I decided to bite the bullet and get dating apps, and just fess up the general problem pretty much straight away. I know this would be really hard for some people and of course I’m not insisting it’s the only way to go. But I thought it might help to explain what worked for me personally .

    I got lucky because I met an incredibly patient, caring girl through the apps - who I am still with – and basically being in a trusting relationship just totally unlocked my ability to have sex. I’ve been in a fairly typical sexual relationship for almost three years now. The thing that is really really striking – totally revelatory – is how different a healthy sex drive is to a porn-warped one. The whole experience of watching porn carries certain feelings/sensations which just don’t carry over to normal healthy sex. Normal in-person sex should be a FAR more rounded experience, with much deeper pleasures, including bodily ones around touch, smell etc. To use a crude analogy, porn kind of feels like snorting sherbet if healthy sex is like a three-course meal – it’s better for you, genuinely satisfying in a deeper way, and actually way more enjoyable.

    People often say this but it genuinely is really important to try and replace porn with something, rather than just simply trying to stop using it. I took up loads of new hobbies which were healthy – like long-distance running, which also helped with endorphins and dopamine.. Initially I spent week after week literally just counting the days passing and wanting the number to go up, and doing nothing while it did – which is an impossible situation to sustain and just generally makes for a miserable time. The ultimate aim is to build a full enough life that, instead of wanting to watch porn and successfully resisting, you stop wanting to watch it.

    It's a tricky thing to disentangle what was down to the porn directly, and what was the confidence issues caused by the porn, but either way the breakthrough for me was the same – to have explained to someone that I was potentially asexual, and would at most probably only ever be a 7/10 on the sex drive rating, and just removing all pressure to perform. To state the obvious, this has to be coupled with not watching porn. Even 10 years after I first quit, when I relapse now it still genuinely knocks my sex drive out of whack for a week or so.

    Just a heads up that I will spread this message around a bit on other similar forums – so if you see it elsewhere, please don’t think that makes it spam or anything like that! I will check back in on this thread to answer questions but basically, I’ve been meaning to get the essence of this story across for ages and finally feel in a place where I can do that. If you’re 17 and reading this and worried you’ll never get better, because you’ve grown up watching porn every day and don’t know how to wire your brain to normal sex – there is hope, I promise.
     
    Libertad, Lucas_Gab and stp890 like this.
  2. stp890

    stp890 New Member

    Congratulations:):rolleyes:
     

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