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

    Thanks for the reminder, @Pete McVries. There's several reasons I shouldn't look at pretty girls on the internet, or revealing music videos. The pretty girls thing always tempts me to start looking up porn, so that habit has to go. I like artsy fartsy music videos, but I guess I should switch to the "audio only" or "lyric videos" for these videos, or just listen to the radio. Getting sexually aroused is just setting me back and it's against what I believe in for both practical and religious reasons.

    I've been good lately and there was this movie I didn't watch because it said it had nudity. I'm going to have to not watch a lot of entertainment if I can't see anything sexy by women. Maybe I should get that second streaming service to make up for it. Yeah, I agree with you and there's a lot of stuff that is risky that I have to leave alone, and I plan to. Getting cocky because I have a long streak will be my undoing, which would totally be a drag.
    I would like that, but I'd also like to cuddle really bad at this point. Don't worry, I don't plan on telling her that on the first date. I don't know when I will have the nerve to ask her out, maybe next week.
    :)

    @Doper, thanks for the full quote and for reading and for your support.

    Edit: I didn't think through this post before making it. I want to add in a status update.

    Status

    I cut off looking at or watching sexy/sexual stuff over the past 1-2 days. My urge to M has gone up a lot, and I'm not sure if the two are related or not. This hasn't happened to me for a while. Mostly, I think I need to get out of the house more. (I got out last Tuesday or so.) I don't know what I should do about this urge to jerk off. I need to do something to get my mind off it, hopefully by doing something constructive. I'll think about this for a while.
     
    Last edited: Feb 28, 2020
  2. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status

    No P or M since last. I intentionally looked up something that might have been sexy and watched part of a sexy music video. I was tempted to look up P today.

    Music videos

    I obviously need to avoid revealing music videos or music videos that turn me on. It'll be hard for me to avoid sexy music videos since I've been watching them since I was an adolescent and they're kind of a hobby for me. I'll avoid the ones that turn me on, maybe I just need to tighten my behaviour a little. Some of the sexier videos don't turn me on for some reason because I feel the singer isn't slutty. But if the singer is sexually abominable even the slightest sexuality is triggering. But I'm going to be conservative for a while.

    For the future

    I should still get counselling or therapy, but I haven't worked up the nerve to call them. The first nine sessions are free, but I'm putting off going partially because don't know how I'm going to pay for the rest, but also because of anxiety to do with people, and because part of me wants to leave my pain and grief alone, and I feel embarrassed and I feel too ashamed to go, and plus it's a long walk. I guess I need to work on those things so that I can go.
     
    Last edited: Feb 29, 2020
  3. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Hello rebooters,

    Status

    No P or M. I've been avoiding fantasising successfully, and I've cut down a little on watching sexy music videos. I don't know if it's okay for me to play them and not look at them or not, or if I will really do that.

    I went out today and I still have some endorphins in my blood from the physical activity of walking there and back. I think my impulses to masturbate are greatly reduced from my physical activity and outing. Maybe I have to go out more often in order to quit masturbation and porn. Maybe every 2-5 days. It won't be easy for me, but it's a lot easier than it used to be.

    I should reward myself for being clean and for going out, but I'm not sure what to use as a reward. I like sweets but I'm too overweight for that and I can't reward myself with anything sexual at this time. Perhaps if I get a sex partner I can ask if she can reward me with sex. I like TV, movies and computer games, but I have to play those anyway just to stay sane. Maybe I should reward myself with toys, books, or with a nice restaurant meal.

    I am close to 150 days clean without willfully looking at porn. That's a goal that I had set like 6 years ago as a length of time it might probably take me to reboot and I'm glad I've finally reached. I don't think I am rebooted, but here are some advantages to my life so far:
    • Less self-conscious and ashamed, not feeling so bad about myself
    • Less guilty and harder to put down
    • More confident
    • Not seeing abominable or unwanted things I don't want to see
    • Sharper eyes
    • A lot better sleep
    • Sharper mind
    • More able to make plans and to keep them
    • Just healthier and more able to do things, like work, and also to have fun
    • Feel happier and more at peace
    I still think my list earlier about what's helped me recover is helpful and true. Filtering, medication, being good to myself as far as giving myself things to do such as movies and video games are the biggest helps. I may have to add "getting out regularly" to that list, because it might be the only thing that will help me with my impulses to masturbate.

    I can't really overstate how much better I feel know than earlier when I was binging in abominable porn all day, every few days. I am so thankful for my condition as it is now.

    Take care, rebooters.
     
    Last edited: Mar 4, 2020
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  4. Pete McVries

    Pete McVries Well-Known Member

    Reward yourself with going out again. You benefited from it, so you should try to cultivate it without overwhelming yourself. Where did you go to, if I may ask? To a club, or to a park?

    In the last paragraph, you talk about sex like it is a good to be traded. But it is not like that and you dont say thank you when receiving what you wanted initially. It is a mutual activity that ideally both parties enjoy and want to do. You have read "No more Mr. Nice Guy", didn't you? The way you phrased it, it sounds exactly the way Glover describes nice guys. They want a reward for being nice or a good boy - and you know what happens if they do not get it ;). Just some food for thought, I'm not dissing!
     
  5. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    I went to my brother's house. Yes, I was thinking of rewarding myself by going out such as going to the movies, going to the park, eating at a restaurant, just going for a walk. I should think of more ideas.
    I've read about one third of NMMNG!. I'm familiar with that concept, but I think I was thinking about it differently than you think. Either way I'll think about what you say.

    Maybe I'm thinking more along the lines of not punishing myself by disallowing myself to have sex anymore. Does that make sense?

    Status

    I unintentionally saw nudity on Netflix last night, and later I watched a show about sex with no nudity (or even much women showing skin). I don't know for sure if it's related but I later did an MO to fantasy. (I wasn't really able to control the fantasy, either.) I guess I was thinking that it was okay to have fantasy and M. It seems I haven't decided not to do those things like I have with porn. I've also been tempted lately to go to one of my favourite porn sites. I should be telling myself that it's wrong to do that, and that everything the website represents is fiction, that is, what it shows is not like real life at all. Maybe I'm in the phase of recovery where I have nostalgia for old porn, and I need to learn that it was all a lie.

    I'm not sure what to do about me watching sex comedies. I'm kind of hungry for comedy and maybe starving for sex. I really want to have a lot of sex in a relationship and I feel like it's unnatural that I've put it off for so many years. I'll think and maybe pray about it. Honestly I think I'm going to keep watching that show. I'm going to take it easy for a while and see if any ideas occur to me.

    Real romance

    I want to send a text message to the girl in the building I like. I don't want to imagine having a sexual relationship with her since she's so young, but I can imagine a friendship or at least a good acquaintanceship, and sometimes I like to imagine a cuddling relationship. Maybe that last one's a bad idea... But, I objectively like her as a person so I should follow up on it. I'll have to get a haircut and shave first, I think. Too bad I have pimples. I'd like to make a good impression on this woman. Eh, I'd like to talk to her but now I think asking her out is a bad idea.

    For the future

    I've gotta figure out how not to masturbate and have sexual fantasies. Maybe I should make realistic plans to have sex. TheUnderdog, our fearless leader, says we should focus on love and not sex. I think that's a great and wonderful idea. I'm not sure what that means in this context. Should I love everyone and then a sex partner will appear? Should I stop thinking about sex at all and just et out there and interact with assorted people? Maybe if I make it to church regularly I'll have enough people to talk to.
     
  6. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status

    My counter is still accurate, 158 days no intentional porn. I am tempted a lot today to disable my blocking and look up porn. I don't know what's so special about today that this is happening, but I a lot on my mind and a lot of stress on me, maybe that's it. Or maybe it's just my sex drive coming back.

    I feel fairly crappy because I am not having sex, and it doesn't look like I'll be able to any time soon. I even feel like I'm not allowed to have sex or sexual activity with someone (even if married). Am I being punished here, am I punishing myself? And plus I probably still have ED, either porn-induced or from my psychiatric medication. I haven't had an erection without porn or porn fantasy in years.

    I think I'm not at all well or able enough to get married, and I am having way too many social problems to go out to places or to go to church. (The social problems may be self-induced.) And if I can't do that, I'm not going to find someone to have sex with or be able to get married. I guess all these barriers to sex (some might be self-induced) are why I am feeling crappy.

    For the future

    I don't really know what to do. I should finish reading NMMNG! and Life Strategies by Doctor Phil and also consider loosening up socially so I can go to gatherings and to church. I still haven't rewarded myself for 150 days clean, because it's not so easy for me to go out or to spend money, which I should still do. I'm going to order a second streaming service now to help reward myself (done). Maybe I should buy myself a cake for 150 days clean, or bake one.

    I guess I have to address my social blocks if I want to have sex, too. Honestly, I'm starting to get afraid of having sex now, maybe that's another difficulty for me.
     
    Last edited: Mar 12, 2020
  7. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status

    No porn or M since last.

    On rewarding myself

    I'm still thinking I should reward myself for going 150 days clean. I bought myself extra fruit because I like that, and I think I should go to a movie and make myself or buy myself a cake. I think that could be an adequate reward.
     
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  8. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status

    No P or M since last. I'm being tempted to masturbate but so far haven't given in. I also unwisely looked at some sexy pictures. I knew that web page was probably going to have sexy pictures of women, but I went anyway. (The pictures were sexier than I expected, and they were all women.) I closed that tab, but I think I am still affected by it. I've been able to turn down the temptation to sexually fantasise by reminding myself that getting into the fantasy would keep me from dealing with and improving real life (and meeting and having intimacy with real women), and actually would take me in the wrong direction in life instead.

    I wonder if my confessing some of the minor things I do and my temptations to masturbate is a good use of this journal, but it seems to be working for me and I guess that's the main thing. I guess it helps make clear that leering even at fully clothed women is something that I can't do if I want to stay off porn and recover from it, or even be a half-decent person.

    Working

    I went to an appointment today, but mostly I feel like I am not using my time wisely. I am watching too much YouTube, TV, and not doing much chores or work or school. Life is easy this way, but it has a limited future. I'm not sure what is causing this lack of motivation, but I'm going off my medication that I think causes it. It should help me catch up on life.

    For the future

    I'm tempted only a small amount to look up porn. The main temptations are sexual fantasies and masturbation. I know I said that I want to go out for a reward to myself, and I still think I should do that, but I'm not sure I can go to the movies with the Covid-19 pandemic going on. Maybe I'll try to go to a park a couple times to reward myself. I feel like I need to get out more, even though I was already out today.

    I guess I'll just try to catch up with school in the future and try to reward myself by going to parks.
     
    Last edited: Mar 17, 2020
    Gil79 likes this.
  9. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status

    I did more constructive activities today than usual. I wonder if that uses up my self-control, because later today I found tempted to look up a sex show on Netflix. I know that willpower is a limited resource, so maybe I mostly ran out of it today, and that's what happened. I didn't watch the sex show on Netflix, but I instead watched a documentary type show on sex. It was about sexual fantasies and had a lot of nudity in it (women's breasts and men's bums). I shouldn't have watched it, but maybe I could have just listened to the audio. It's also happening because I'm sex-hungry, and I'm pursuing sex in an irrational way (with screens instead of people).

    I've watched documentaries about sex before without it going horribly wrong, but maybe today I should have stopped at the TV-MA warning or the the warning of nudity at the beginning (I didn't notice), or the actual nudity later.

    Sexual fantasies

    I am thinking that quitting fantasies is not going to be so easy. I suppose I've written about this before, but it looks like I'll have to do a lot to replace them. At least I have a couple people to talk to about my life and my Covid-19 anxieties, so at least there's that. Mostly I should get back on my life plan.

    Life plan

    As far as my life plan goes I'm doing okay, but at a slow pace, in learning for school, and I'm handling social rejection a lot easier, and in my perception I'm receiving a lot less rudeness, and I'm increasing in the amount of hours worked slowly. That's all great! Those all were items on my life plan lists. I guess it took a while, but I succeeded, which is great! I'm so surprised I got so far.

    I just reviewed some of my life plan files and I think I should get counselling. I also think I should do what I did today and work as much as I can during the day. I guess what happened today might happen again, where my self-control gets used up and I look at nudity, but maybe I should just not use the internet after my self-control gets used up. I'm not sure I can manage that, but maybe I can plan what I do on the internet ahead of time. That might do it.

    Final section

    Anyway I MOed to TV nudity and fantasies. I'm noting it in my signature, but I'm not counting it as porn even though it's near to it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2020
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  10. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Slow pace is good, it is typically more durable than more drastic changes
     
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  11. Living

    Living Well-Known Member

    Awesome to read how you are making progress on your life plan! Congratulations on that. And I second @Gil79: these small steps you are taking right now are the ones that matter. And I do think it's a good thing to stick to your life plan. My experience is that when you work towards things you value you will actually have less need to fantasize. So that's a win-win:)

    As for self-control getting used up: while that is true, it is also something you can train pretty much like a muscle. By repeated making choices that involve self-control you will get more self-control. An interesting read might be 'The willpower instinct' by Kelly McGonnical. She also has some good video's that explain a thing or two. One I really liked was this one:

     
  12. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    If anyone had asked me how I was doing on my life goals I would have said I had made no progress and had been lazy. I'd like to make the list again. Here's a list of life goals I've made progress on:
    • Less worried about people's social responses to me
    • Less perceived social rejection and rudeness
    • More school done, at least a little
    • Some part time employment done
    • Still have relationship with support crew, still talking to them regularly
    That's a great video. I was familiar with most of it, and it says on the Your Brain On Porn site that feeling guilty, ashamed, or any other strong emotion after acting out helps strengthen the addiction. So some years ago I began to not punish or be mean to myself for PMOing. I think this has helped tonnes. Other things that helped me from that video are:
    • Exercise helps with will power
    • Meditation helps with will power
    • Sleep helps with will power (I already knew this one)
    • Procrastination is like an addiction to, with its will power issues and self-punishment. I think I'm a very bad procrastinator, so it's something I can work on, not punishing myself for procrastination (with more procrastination).
    I am thinking I should resume my meditation habit (I kind of liked doing it anyway). Maybe I will set an alarm on my smartphone to remind me to meditate twice every day. It's helped a lot in the past, and it's always helped. I'll let you know if I do it. (Edit: I set an alarm on my phone and meditated for roughly 15 minutes. I did a poor job at it, but I feel very good now. I should do this twice a day in the future, though maybe for 5/10 minutes each, not 15.)

    Thanks for linking it to me.
     
    Last edited: Mar 20, 2020
  13. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status report

    I did two MOs over the past few days. The first MO was minimal both in time and in fantasy,so it might have been an emergency release or "good MO". I think the second was a "chaser effect" MO, and took longer and used a lot more fantasy. The first one I'm fine with, the second I could have done better. I may also be getting increased MO impulses because I'm kind of trapped in my studio apartment. Although I've got a good view, at least some space, high speed internet access, video games, books and two streaming services I feel a little trapped in here, and feeling trapped seems to lead to MO impulses to me.

    I guess my idea is to wait 14 days after last symptoms and then go hang around in the back yard.

    About nudity seen recently

    I'm now thinking that it's extremely obvious that I shouldn't have been watching TV nudity in a sex education documentary on Netflix, especially not with scenes of making out and of lesbianism. It was irrational (or insane) of me to watch it. I'm not going to reset my counter for it though since it was TV nudity and not porn. I remember I had done a lot that day and that my will power/self-control was low, and that I'm hungry for sex so I wanted to watch something sexual on Netflix, but I feel like I haven't gotten to the base reason I did something foolish like that. My plan is to keep thinking about it.

    I feel like I'm not getting much done in life. Maybe this is the underlying reason I'm looking for. Maybe I should consult all my life plan files again, better yet, I guess I should make a new one.

    Life plan 7
    • Reliable housing
    • Improved personal appearance and clothing
    • Financial savings
    • Getting out of the house more regularly
    • Organising my apartment
    • Money for activities such as swimming, hockey, martial arts, counselling
    • Going swimming, bicycle riding, doing martial arts
    • Getting counselling, going to a counsellor
    • More furniture for my apartment
    • In real life friends my own age
    • A girlfriend
    • Eat out and go out more often
    I think that's good enough for now.

    For the future


    I still plan to reward myself for being good for 170 days by going out to eat and going to watch a good movie in the theatre. That should be okay, and within my budget.

    Take care rebooters.
     
    Last edited: Mar 25, 2020
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  14. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Tonight instead of FMO I got a good book and read part of a chapter. I have plenty of books to read, maybe I can read more than a chapter per night. This doesn't directly relate to internet porn, but I'd like to talk about why I don't read books already. The reason is I feel like I'm in a crisis or that I'm doing something wrong in life that will seriously mess things up. So I don't want to read books because I don't want to put off dealing with something that serious. This belief is probably false, or if it was true it's since gone. But this crisis, or feeling of crisis, probably helped keep me in porn through stressing me out all the time, and keeping me in a box with no way out. I got to figure out what this crisis is and abandon it or solve it, it's taking years of my life away. Maybe if I force myself to read at night the things bothering me will occur to me, and then I can go do something about them. (I'm much more able to do things now than when I started internet porn addiction.)

    Maybe counselling will do it. I almost called the counselling place today. I'm sure they're closed for Covid-19 but a practice call, and I might get a secretary, will probably do me good.

    Edit: The book reading thing may also have been caused by me successfully meditating regularly for the past 3 days at least. I've been trying for 15 minutes a night, and I'm partially successful in meditating the entire time. It seems to clear my head a lot, and help me make priorities. I don't know why I had such a hard time doing it the last time I tried it.
     
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2020
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  15. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    I'm not doing well lately and I don't know why. I've FMOed every day, or almost every day, for 4-5 days. I guess the fantasy women are drawing me in. I don't know what to about this except maybe get out of the house (despite Covid-19), try to deal with some of the bad thoughts bothering me, keep remembering that it's a hole with no way out, and pray about it.

    I think I have a lot on my mind, which is lowering my self-control. I want to see a doctor, get counselling, get some things for my home, and many other things, but I can't seem to at the moment. Maybe this is what's stressing me.

    It's amazing how hard it is for me to play Wii Sports. I think it's because my brain is degenerated from internet porn addiction. I am frustrated that it's not cinch easy to do it. I don't have any fun. But it seems to be good for me, so I think I should do it once a day.

    I'm going to keep meditating and, of course, staying away from porn.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020
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  16. Thelongwayhome27

    Thelongwayhome27 Well-Known Member

    I hope you're gonna feel a bit better soon. I'm sure the current situation with Covid-19 has it's impact for many of us. Just staying so much more at home, not knowing what's gonna happen is challenging and can create unease. Or can make it easier for one to justify acting out (this is where I have had serious problems).

    I think, though, you're still going really good. I hope you find a way to manage the MO fantasies back to a normal level.

    Meditation, daily walks outside, keeping a regular schedule should probably all help in staying on the good path.
     
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  17. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Thanks for your very compassionate reply. I agree it's reasonable to be stressed with this situation, which probably isn't helping me. I think being in the apartment too long was leading to FMO, something I'd concluded recently.

    I have been self-isolating, which I think is part of the problem. I took out the garbage as an excuse to go outside and I saw some beautiful stars and planets in the few minutes I was out there and I feel a lot better, now.
    Yeah, I have kept away from porn for 170 days now, which is amazing me because it used to be that I would do it multiple times a day and I felt like I couldn't help it. It took a long time and a lot of steps to reach this point, and I hope I come up with a formula to quit to help anyone addicted to internet porn recover.
    I'm meditating every day, and I'm gonna take a stab at keeping a regular schedule instead of sleeping until 3 PM every day. I'll go outside more once I'm sure I have no symptoms for a couple weeks. Thanks again for your reply.
     
    Last edited: Mar 27, 2020
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  18. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Status

    I still am FMOing. I don't know why, but feeling trapped in my apartment probably isn't helping. Another trigger might be me thinking about porn and reconsidering looking at it. This temptation isn't very powerful, but it might be enough to destabilise me into sex fantasy. Also, I might be getting nostalgia over previous porn viewed, even though I have never found exactly what I was looking for in porn. There's always been something missing or slightly off or unbelievable or unrealistic with any porn I've ever seen, no matter how close it was.

    I wonder if I'm replacing porn with fantasy. I know that if I keep going with FMO I will never recover from PMO, and FMO is enough of a problem by itself. It takes me a way from real people, even friends and possible girlfriends. And plus my fantasies are so bad they would be unacceptable in real life, too. I wonder if every time I FMO I set my reboot a few days backwards, almost as if I had done a little porn.

    I feel bad about wasting you all's time, but I got to write down what's setting me back.

    Life plan

    I like my previous life plan still. I think I should get out and meet people, both men and women, dateable and not dateable. Here's some places I could meet people:
    • Technology groups
    • Role playing cafe
    • Bicycle riding
    • Martial arts class
    • Going swimming
    • Religious group
    It's possible that thoughts of forcing myself to go out and do these things are stressing me out and leading to FMO. Also, I've been fantasising a little beyond my life plans. I've been fantasising about having a well-paying job, a wife, children, a big house, being able to talk to just anyone and do anything that I want normally. I wonder if this fantasy, which I think is currently beyond my ability to have, is causing me stress which is leading to FMO.

    Maybe I should only have fantasies life plans that are reasonably possible, like what I just wrote above about meeting people.

    On the plus side, I think it's great news that I've slightly met some of my life plan goals, and that I can even seriously concern extending them and going further in life. It's so good it's hard for me to believe that I can be advancing my life so substantially over the days and months.

    For the future

    All that said, I think the main thing making me FMO is being crammed in my apartment all the time. Maybe I can go out in the dead of night, but I want to self-isolate.

    I'm gonna try to take it easy on myself and try to avoid fantasising about advanced life plans, and instead fantasise about reachable goals. And also I think I should take it easy and not stress myself about going on my intermediate life goals.

    As usual I posted more than I thought I would and I feel better. I don't really have a plan for quitting FMO yet. Maybe if I video chat my family it'll help with the feelings of being stuck on here.

    I can also try going on an increased dose of medication, which will probably lower my sex drive.

    Also I intentionally looked at some sexual pictures today, which is a very bad idea for a porn addict, and a bad idea for anyone else. I even left them open for a while, but they're closed, now. Maybe I shouldn't read Imgur.
     
    Last edited: Mar 30, 2020
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  19. trapped7

    trapped7 "what you resist persists"

    Socialising and connecting with others is so important to mental health. Especially in our times, where it's easy to get isolated at home, having endless amounts of entertainment at our disposals.
    Your list with suggested places sounds great - I hope you can get out there soon enough.

    Right now it's of course better to stay inside more, depending on where you live, so that doesn't exactly make it easier.
     
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  20. Thelongwayhome27

    Thelongwayhome27 Well-Known Member

    Yeah, honestly it's not worth it. Even if we do stumble on a video that is perfect to us, it' still just a video, a screen. And after a rush, we're left with a craving that is not even satiable anymore, which is not a nice state to be in. It can be the most perfect video to us but it will not replace human contact, and something will just be missing. It's like it asks so much just for a second of pleasure that very soon dissipates away.

    I think it's a much better plan to realistically and at our own pace, whichever that pace for us is, to walk towards the goal of meeting a person in real life. And besides that of developing other interests then sex.

    Maybe we can use the extra time we have now to ourselves, locked inside, to think about how we can be a bit more social, but at our own capacity, once the lock down is over. :)
     
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