I think I could feel my brain rewiring

Discussion in 'Ages 30-39' started by nuclpow, Aug 13, 2012.

  1. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day 27.

    I still am getting strong urges, but I haven't relapsed. I am proud of myself for not relapsing, I should probably reward myself with something I like (that's not porn). I wonder what I like (that's not porn). I like movies (that are not porn), or books. Maybe I should just get out more often. I am pretty socially anxious still, so I am going to have difficulty getting out, but I can do it a little more I think.

    I read somewhere, I think on yourbrainonporn.com, that in the rebooting process your brain is like a table that's had one leg cut off (this is the addiction or porn leg), and instead of learning to rebalance on three legs your brain will do anything to convince you to put the addiction leg back on. Well, I think my increased temptations lately are my brain trying to get me to put the porn leg back on. But I have to fight it until completion, that is, until my brain finally rebalances on the three legs it was supposed to be on the entire time.

    I have found writing e-mails to my social worker something I can do to kill the boredom, but I need more toys and an occupation to keep me busy. Posting here helps too, but mostly I need an occupation :).

    Thanks for reading.
  2. gavney

    gavney Active Member

    Hey, well done on progress so far.

    It sounds like you're having problems finding replacements activities after quitting PMO.

    I see you've been doing some running, which is great, well done. I do that also and it has helped. I know you said you're walking also, but there has been evidence that vigorous exercise (as opposed to short walks) has benefits that you don't get from doing non-vigorous exercise, such as a short walk.

    What are your ideas for doing more socialising? Do you do any sport? I find playing soccer twice a week is a big help for me. It's regular, it's social and it is also exercise, so ticks alot of boxes.

    Best of Luck!
  3. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day 30.

    I am triggered because I went and viewed a webcomic with a lot of sexual content. I don't know why I did that, I guess I'm bored, plus I like the comic a little. Also my Internet porn addiction is trying to make me look up porn. I think the only reason I haven't binged is because the medication kills more than 75% of my sex drive, which I've mentioned many times here.

    After counting the days since I've posted I realised I've been lazy a little. I should have posted one or two times since last, and mentioned that I was triggered to look up porn.

    Man I miss porn. I haven't been remembering my original motivation (to get my brain back from Internet porn). I think I've mostly lasted this long on the medication and the sheer stubbornness. I'd also ruin my chances of having real sex with a real woman, something I shouldn't think about if I want to quit porn.

    I don't know what to do to keep going, I guess I'll keep being stubborn and occasionally try to think about getting my full brain back, including the pre-frontal cortex.

    I forgot to mention that I have been a lot, lot more brave about going out and talking to people, and I think clearer, since about 2 weeks ago in my rebooting attempt. This is because I've been clean from porn of course.

    Glad I posted. Okay done this post.
  4. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Good thing you posted! Stay away from 'innocent things' like cartoons and only slighly erotic comtent. It's your addict side trying to pull you into acting out step by step. Keep that door closed!

    Good that you realize what you are doing this for. Keep it up for a healthy transition!
  5. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Thanks for complimenting me on my progress so far.

    Yes, I am having trouble finding healthy activities to replace porn and unhealthy screen time.
    No running, just ~20 minute walks to a family member's house. It's uphill and rather arduous so I count it as hard exercise.

    I'm too overweight to run far at the moment.
    I was going to play slo-pitch with a family member's church team but I missed my chance to register. I haven't given up yet, maybe I can still join, I think it's a perfectly great idea. So I'm going to keep trying to go.
    Thanks for your comment, and I really mean it!
  6. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Thanks for your reply, Gilgamesh!

    Yeah, it took me 1-2 days to wind down from reading that sexual webcomic. It was an unpleasant experience and I kept wondering why I would do it to myself, 24-48 hours of feeling uncomfortable for a few minutes of pleasure. I hope it will help me remember not to try it again. And you're right, it's the addict side of me trying to throw me back in to addiction again, it's amazing how it almost has a mind of its own. I don't know why I did that (read the sexual webcomic) except for me not keeping up my guard against the addiction trying to work its way back in.
    Getting my brain, and my personal life back, is a lot easier to keep in mind goal than having a romantic relationship and then sex. The latter makes it so I have to think about sex, which is very counter-productive.

    I noticed some petals falling off a blooming tree in my back yard today, in the bright sunlight and pleasant weather, and I sort of felt like I did when I was a child, before all this depression and porn addiction. If I've been under the influence of depression and porn for the last 20 years no wonder my life isn't very good. I was amazed at how different I felt just looking out my window at the pretty blooming tree in the sunlight. If I were to feel like that 100% of the time, instead of for a few seconds once every time I try to quit porn addiction, I would be a very healthy person and be able to do 10 times as much. It would be beautiful and amazing.

    Thanks again for your reply, Gilgamesh.
    Last edited: May 27, 2018
  7. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    In what way did the sexual webcomic make you feel bad afterwards? Did it lead to urges, or depression, or guilt or something?

    It's interesting how your memory can work against you, but also work for you. It can give you flashbacks on porn scenes or the feeling you get when watching porn, but as you wrote, your memory can also remind you of positive experiences from long ago. It reads like a beautiful experience you had. I hope your memory will show you more of that as your healing progresses. Maybe it's interesting to try to do things that you used to do, that made you feel good. Maybe that will bring you closer to your true self. The other day fellow rebooter Pete McVries wrote me about a study showing the benefits of being outside in nature. I'll quote him.....
  8. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    quote: "A recent Dutch study suggests that spending time in nature and performing repetitive tasks such as gardening can fight stress better than other leisure activities. In the study, one group of people was asked to read indoors after completing a stressful task while the other group was instructed to garden for 30 minutes. The gardeners not only reported being in a better mood than the readers, but also had lower levels of the stress hormone cortisol."
  9. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day xx.

    I masturbated a little two or three days ago, I'm not really sure why. But to make a long story short I just PMOed today. I don't know what triggered me, possibly I was just exhausted from the stress of trying so much. (Am I white knuckling it?) I was also triggered by something I read about a person with a bad personality, and I thought it was describing me more than a little bit too. Maybe that frustration is what caused me to give up. I know I'm not reset all the way to the start with this, but I think I've wiped out about 20 days of progress, which is most of my abstinence so far. I'm trying not to let my mood fluctuate too much since strong emotions reinforce addictions, whether they're good or bad.

    I think my plan of trying on willpower just isn't going to work. I was thinking of getting on more medication so my sex drive is even lower, but I know I'll need more than that to quite, reboot and rewire my brain.
    Urges, yeah. It gave me temptations for about two days afterwards, and I felt so bad fighting off those temptations I wondered why I looked at the webcomic.

    Looking back now browsing this webcomic was part of a decline and fall into PMO.
    I'm not sure it was a beautiful experience with the tree blossoms, but it was pleasant. It's just that I think life should be like that all the time, and since I don't get ordinary pleasant experiences like that (a consequence of porn addiction) I'm more vulnerable for the bad pleasure of porn.
    There is a garden in the back. They appear to be growing flowers and vegetables. I've hung around it once but I guess that's not the same as actually picking weeds or watering it.


    It might help if I visit my family more (I don't have many friends) to help keep my stress level low, but the bottom line is I don't have a solid plan for quitting Internet porn. I have about 50% of a plan.
    Last edited: Jun 1, 2018
  10. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day xx.

    One more P and MO since last.

    I wrote in my last post that I had 50% of a plan to reboot. I'm going to try and write it down now so I don't forget. And later I'll try to increase it to 100%.
    • Stay on medication that lowers my sex drive and have it increased so it kills my sex drive even more
    • Post to Your Brain Rebalanced regularly, every 1-3 days, especially when temptation is high
    • Go outside more so I have something healthy to do that reduces porn cravings
    • Ask my psychiatrist for information for quitting Internet porn less visit
    • Visit my family regularly to decrease boredom and loneliness
    • Get an e-book reader so I can read more books and decrease my boredom
    • Get a video game system so I can reward myself when I've been good and to decrease boredom
    • Get counselling/CBT as has been recommended by a kind stranger on my journal
    • Get a part time job to increase personal satisfaction and to decrease boredom (and to help pay for things)
    • Join softball team and play twice a week
    I have filtering but I'm not sure if it helps or not. My plan is just to leave it where it is.

    Okay that was more items than I thought.

    About the recent P and MO, they were pretty separate so I'm counting them separately. I also don't plan to reset my counter back to zero. It's too discouraging for one, and I don't think it's factually true for another. I'm not reset all the way to zero. Instead I will count my P and MOs and put them beside my day counter.
    Last edited: Jun 4, 2018
  11. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day xx.

    A few more PMOs since last. I am basically crash landing from my rebooting attempt.

    And it's no wonder, with a poor plan and nothing really but willpower to push me through I didn't have even 30% of a solid plan.

    I think I'm dancing around the bush a bit, and one thing I don't want to try but I think would work wonders: I think I should go without Internet access, or limit it to 1-2 hours per day. I don't know how I'll explain it to my ISP or the people who e-mail me, but I think it's my only option. Either way I think I should go with the suggestion from yourbrainonporn.com about making a to-do list before you go on-line. I've been here about 4 years and I still have barely ever done that.

    I'll need to get some books and video games, and a full or part time job or volunteer position in order to fill up the time all day.

    I have more to post later.
  12. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day xx.

    I should probably reset my day counter to 0 now. I've done P and MO just about every day for a few weeks. It's only a little P at a time, comparatively. Normally I'd go on 5-6 hour binges. I think the main thing is the medication that reduces my libido again, so porn is often a turn-off for me and I can stand only about 2 minutes at a time.

    I'm trying to form a new plan for rebooting. Have you guys seen any of the videos about how if rats are in a "rat park" they don't go for the heroin or cocaine laced water, they go for the normal water almost every time? Here's one. The theory is that if your life is bad (and mine is) that's what's really keeping you in addiction, not the addiction itself. Well, I believe that the addiction is its own problem still, but my plan is to make my life as good as possible with employment, entertainment, other people to talk to, maybe even with friends and a romantic relationship. Then I think Internet porn will be a lot easier to quit.

    Anyway I'm sorry to disappoint you guys, but I guess my plan is to keep coming up with plans until we, collectively, find one that works.
  13. TheScriabin

    TheScriabin Well-Known Member

    ^You are not disappointing anyone mate. I’m sure everybody here can relate with th extraordinary struggle and superhuman strength it takes to quit P. Disappointing ourselves is all that matters, but even then if we can turn those feelings around and use them positively as part of our growth, we’ll grow stronge and be well on our way.

    Addiction is a chicken vs egg thing: a bad life fuels the addiction and addiction fuels the bad life. Getting to the routes of the emotional traumas that lead to addiction will help bring us some clarity, which therapy can assist us with, but it still won’t change the addiction. Nothing but determination and the hard slog of beating those cravings and managing our lives better will fix it, and even then, former addicts always talk of being ‘permanently in recovery’. It is about personal responsibility, parenting ourselves, lovingly but sometimes sternly too when we need it, like a devoted father would and should do. It’s been the same situation with my struggle with social anxiety disorder, as I absolutely got to the route of the problem in therapy, but I was still stuck because the vicious automatic cycles of negative thinking were so ingrained. Changing this is immensely challenging, and it was almost disappointing that therapy didn’t really help, but that’s part of growing up, therapy is there to help us learn to be adults so we can solve our own problems.
  14. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Day 2.

    I am starting a new rebooting attempt. I know I'm almost certainly destined to fail (I've failed like 50 times before), but the point is just to learn something, and porn and masturbation are bad for me anyway.

    I agree. I learned to that I should feel guilty if I act out, but I should always 100% of the time turn that guilt into trying again

    I think it's some of each, too, with the chicken and the egg thing.

    I think I'm in a lot of pain though, from past happenings and my attitude towards the way I treat myself. I think I probably treat myself really badly. If the pain goes away I should be tempted to look up porn a lot less.

    I have taken some steps to defeat my addiction. I've bought two used video game systems and they are already helping combat the #1 reason I was looking up porn the past reboot attempt, boredom. (Well actually only one works yet, but it works at helping me not look up porn just because I'm stupid bored.)

    Thanks a lot for your post, I read the part about how therapy doesn't necessarily help you solve things, just lets you know, and you have to solve it and parent yourself. I still think it'd be worth it for me to get therapy, although I may have to go slow.

    So here are the things I'm going to attempt this rebooting attempt:
    • Play video games when bored stupid instead of look up porn
    • Get an increase in my sex drive-decreasing prescription medications
    • Get a job or volunteer position to spend less time with nothing to do
    • Get my second video game system working (I will have to buy a television)
    • Try to better my life so I'm in a lot less pain by treating myself a lot better
    • Go to counselling to learn how to treat myself better and remove some ways I'm being stupid
    So good luck to me.
  15. TheScriabin

    TheScriabin Well-Known Member

    That list looks good - but I would personally advise only using the video games as down time to relax and unwind as a conscious treat to yourself after a day’s work/volunteering if you manage to get into that. As an aid to recovery if it helps keep you away from P, then that’s good, but if it is just there to alleviate boredom I’d be weary of it. The problem with medicating away boredom in this way is it tends to leave our brains in charge rather than us in charge.

    Yes, the very best of luck to you :)
  16. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I understand playing video games as an alternative is sketchy around here, because it still is heavy on dopamine. Maybe it's less worrisome from my little handheld gaming unit. But so far I've only been playing in short gaps which are probably quite healthy.

    Thanks very much!

    Day I don't know.

    I've looked up porn a few times and masturbated more than that. I'm not truly rebooting at this rate. I guess I don't have the energy to attempt a proper reboot attempt. However, I'm not consuming much porn (sometimes just a few seconds), which is better than I was doing before I started this reboot attempt. I've gotten on slightly more medication which may be helping me abstain. I'm often able to turn down porn and instead look up an informational or musical YouTube video instead, which satisfies the urge for electronic stimulation. I noticed this made me angry one night when I had done that, which I assume is a good sign of rebooting, that at least a part of me knew I wasn't getting porn and to live with it and deal with it. However, this intermittent porn thing isn't a good plan, so I'm still trying to think of a way to reboot and I plan to get on even more medication if I can.

    I don't know what else to say, thanks for reading.
  17. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    I've been clean for a couple days. Before that it was bad, though, with porn almost every day.

    Lately I've been trying to talk to this lady I know and her mother, and after I sent my e-mail I got the idea that these two were not pro-porn and I'd have to stay away from porn if I wanted to have a good relationship with them. At any rate it's been a good influence on me and it's why I've been staying away from porn the last 2-3 days (or maybe it's more).

    I've also been viewing r/pornfree on reddit, which has a great list of "concrete" tips to quit porn, all of which I should do, including finding a support group IRL. (I have a support group on-line, this one.:) )

    So here goes my 15th or so rebooting attempt (not including other attempts to quit masturbation and pornography).
  18. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    I've successfully been staying away from porn for a week or so. I feel a lot better and I think there's a lot to go too. I am thinking clearer, too. The motivation of talking to some girls I know who are definitely anti-porn is working so far. I'm glad I've been clean for a little while.

    I am hoping to date a girl in my building and maybe get cuddle buddy status with her, or get some skin-to-skin contact like Your Brain On Porn advises. I think I can do it.

    I just listened to Gary's The Great Porn Experiment again and am reminded of how messed up the dopamine is in my brain and how good it would be to correct it. I miss the 6 part series on Internet porn, I used to listen to it regularly (back when I started all this Your Brain On Porn-inspired rebooting idea). But I think I should listen to his presentation again.

    I still need better plans for scheduling my computer use, having an internet filter, going out of my home, associating with other people, having a job and a few other things on the /r/pornfree list of concrete ideas for stopping internet porn. I guess I'll just have to think about those.
  19. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    I just posted but I want to post some more about me just viewing the new Your Brain On Porn introduction video. I'm really glad I did, it's helped boost my motivation to stop porn a little more, but also reminded me that my low motivation (which I'm having a difficult time with in real life) is caused at least partially by internet porn addiction.

    I want to talk about how I don't look too motivated in my posts to do a lot, really. Like I keep saying, I know I should do things, but then I don't do them. It's true my motivation is low (see above), but I also don't think my apartment is ideal enough in which to quit internet porn addiction. I think that it's still a little too small. It'll help if I go into the back yard more often, get dates and a girlfriend, schedule my computer time, spend more time with friends and family, get an occupation, get a television and stereo, visit my family more, play a few video games, but I still think that won't quite be enough space to give up my addiction. It's like this apartment is not going to be enough of a "rat park" heaven to give me the separation really to quit porn.

    Those are my thoughts for now.
  20. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    It's been almost two weeks, and I haven't perused any porn!

    Unfortunately I jerked off to sexual fantasy once and set back my reboot 1-2 weeks I guess, but overall I seem to be doing unaccountably well and I'm pretty proud of myself. I think the giving myself permission to show interest (not romantic interest, but kindness) in a young woman I know has helped a lot. Maybe because I'm viewing porn through their eyes now and I know they would not consider it acceptable. I don't think it will last, but I don't have any better plans for now.

    I do plan to try and get a job and get a big TV and computer so I can spend more time doing fun things (watching movies and TV and programming and playing computer games), which should significantly decrease my interest in porn. I should also try to get a girlfriend, which will be easier if I get a job and clean my apartment. It will probably help a lot to have a girlfriend, even if I can't have sex with her. (I want to go without sex until marriage, and plus I have PIED so I can't even have sex with anyone if I tried, also YBOP recommends no orgasm during rebooting.) A cuddle buddy relationship might work wonders for me. Plus she'd also be a friend, and it would help rewired me to real women. There's this young woman in my building I like, who seems to like me a little, I plan to try for her (but have to get a job, etc, like above).

    Okay thanks for reading.

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