It’s my life.

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by downunder23, May 24, 2023.

  1. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    This has been an issue for me all my adult dating life. Well at least since images were able to be searched for on the internet, which would have been in my early to mid 20’s. It is certainly had been a contributor to my marriage breakdown and then the end of my long term relationship post my marriage. While there were many issues within both those relationships the impacts that porn had on me and how I showed up in my relationships was certainly a big part of where things went wrong.

    More recently I have started a relationship with the most amazing girl, we have been serious for over a year now but since the start of this relationship I have had constant problems with not being able to climax. Now I am ok with sometimes not being able to finish and that certainly leads to some amazing times between us but when it is almost every time then this is the point where I worry.

    I have been aware of YBOP for many many years and have put in some really lame attempts to change my behaviours but nothing serious because my devious brain always came up with the best excuses for not changing my behaviour even though I had a sneaky suspicion that this was ruining my life.

    Now I am scared it is going to destroy the best thing I have ever had in my life. My new lady is just everything that I can desire and we are having so much fun both in and out of the bedroom. And I know that if I continue on the course I am on and have always been on then this too shall destroy what I have now. I have struggled most my life with mental health issues, when I was married I was diagnosed with depression and went on the merry-go round of all the different meds they could think of, none of which helped. I had at times battled with drinking too much and often when I would get a bit drunk at home I would go on these porn benders late at night when everyone had gone to bed.

    All in all I have not lead a healthy path in this department and of course this a spilled over into other parts of my life too. I have never had a healthy relationship with sex, for reasons, but it is honestly my struggle with porn that is the most destructive thing in my life. I don’t seek it out all the time, I sometimes don’t seek it out every day, but I know that it is ruining my ability to be with a real woman, and if I keep just going down this path like I have all my life then this too will destroy something wonderful that I have found.

    So my new chapter starts today.
    Larry and path-forward like this.
  2. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Hey DU23

    Welcome to the forum! The relationship issues are no surprise for us folks, as axiomatic as it sounds after developing maladaptive behaviours, we live maladaptive lives. We choose flight over fight.

    I think you've already underscored what risks not quitting carry. I believe being active, having a day planned out that leaves no "window of opportunity" for porn is a great start. Exercising, walks and outings with your sweetheart, meetups with your mates. Do it all, living is the anecdote to passivity.

    Updating your journal and commenting on journals also helps with the accountability.

    Some inspiring journals:

    The people listed above got clean and have long since moved on. I was a contemporary of the last one (LTE) and interacted with him under my previous name, he was a hero to myself and another fella my age (29). I feel honoured to have received a response to a message by Dangerous Dave too, I haven't seen anyone that comes close to those 3 men. I believe having heroes/role models is important, quitting for me has been hardest not when things are hard, but when things are going swimmingly, it can come as an almost imposter syndrome.

    You can do this, one day at a time. I wish you every bit of success, take care of your relationship with yourself, and all others will naturally harmonise.
    DBA and path-forward like this.
  3. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    Thank you 1MLA, I will check out these posts for sure.

    I just want to say in here, it is amazing just how my mind just keeps drifting there, this compulsion to want to do it. I am finding I am fighting myself a bit tonight but not tonight I won't do it.

    My first day struggling through this and I just had to put it out there my struggle with this and how I will not let it win today.
  4. Larry

    Larry Member

    Congratulations, you have taken the first step. There will be some tough days and some much easier ones, but you can get through it all. I can identify with much of what you said. I am married to a wonderful woman whom I love very much. But I am so pissed at myself for wasting so many years of our relationship. Some of that was due to my abuse of porn and some was due to my periodic depression that has been going on for decades. But I am determined to overcome both and stop wasting so much precious time. Welcome to the battle.
  5. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Hey DU23

    You'll find your mind drifts better than those in the Fast X film. Meditation will help from detaching to thoughts. Usually they occur at certain moments of the day, they don't call em daydreams for nothing ;)

    1st week is the most challenging, most difficult according to almost everybody, but it will give you incredible confidence when you're out on the other side. Again, day by day, lean into the pain and keep building that mental muscle.
  6. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    Thank you Larry, I would actually shudder to think about how much time of my life I have wasted away on porn and how much of my life I have wasted from the affects of porn. Needless to say the affects it has all had on my family. This is an issue I have mentally battled myself with for a long time now but only now have the courage to step up and actually do something about it. Well it has been said that the only easy day was yesterday but today I am stepping up to the battle and today I will fight for my life back.
    Larry likes this.
  7. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    Haha yes an abt analogy indeed, and I shall get back into meditation, I had not thought about doing this, I have at various times in my life gotten into meditation but like most am quick to give it up with all those really clever excuses our minds are amazingly good at coming up with to steer us away from this practice, but I shall persevere.

    Well today is day 2 for me, it is tricky at this point because I am home alone with time off work for covid and I have an exam coming up for which I need to study but this is a good time to start (not that I specifically waited for this time it is just coincidence) because I have some pretty big stuff to focus on, so I suspect I shall be posting a bit on here as I battle my way through this time.
  8. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Hey DU23

    Start off small if you do meditation like 3-5 mins in silence for a week then gradually increase as you see fit. Also there's the meditation of being aware you can practice as you move in your day-to-day activities, the awareness of movement, of what's going through your mind as your queueing up/sitting at your desk.

    If a triggering fantasy passes through your head, instead of being fearful, imagine playing with the image, changing the colour, fastforwarding and rewinding it, giving the woman an elongated nose like an elephants trunk, facial warts, to make the body look like an ironing board. Mess with the voices, imagine in the image the lady is going to the toilet or has skid marks in her underwear.

    Apologies for the graphicness, I think you'll get my drift, that making p unattractive, makes idea of use less appetising, and humanises the people, that it's just a fantasy, all an act, and they're people with bodily functions like us. Meditating will help with that.

    You got this!
  9. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    So I am moving into day 3 today and I have to say gee there have been moments when my default just kicks in. Interesting note of observation, now that I am paying attention to it I now realise how pervasive it is in my life, those moments when it is like this reflex kicks in and my default just moves toward wanting to go there. At this stage I have been able to divert myself away from it but I can see how as these early days progress I am quite sure the urge will grow in strength. So my plan at this point is that when I notice the urge is too much, I will come here and write something here to remind myself what I am striving to achieve and what is at stake if I don't. By having this plan I know for certain what I will do to overcome this compulsion that I know I will be faced with in the next few days.

    Any and all suggestions are most welcome 1MLA because with this guidance, just like my plan for my urges, if I have a method prepared for dealing with these images as they come up then I know I will be able to overcome them. As you suggest, just merely trying to push them away will not suffice as I know from times when I have been mediating, that simply not want to see them will only make them stronger, but by allowing them and then devaluing them it will give the images much less power over me.

    So bring on the rest of today!
  10. DBA

    DBA Active Member

    Hi downunder23,

    I made a list of suggeestions to Burnt Tao (put Burnt Tao into the search box to see the thread).

    The main thing is that it is NOT a matter of self control.
    Instead, list the triggers, then arrange your life so as to avoid them, and plan ahead what you will do
    instead of PMO if a trigger occurs.

    Also list activities you could engage in that would distract you.

    Finally, of course, put really strong porn blockers on all your devices. I pay monthly for mine,
    and this helps my motivation as I don't want the money wasted.
  11. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Hey DU23

    How are you feeling today? Just remember it is a constant fluctuation the first week. You've done amazing in knocking out Day 3, day 3 is like the swing vote, that basketball pivot before a slam dunk. Falling at day 1 is easy, because we rationalise "I'm close to day zero, why not start straight after'', day 2 is similar. However I feel day 3 is like the feeling of a Wednesday, you're at midweek, you get through its night and you have just Thursday before Friday and the weekend. Conquering day 3 mentally is like already completing a week, your mind has embraced the comfort to build up muscle. A lot of victories are mental, apparently in the NBA no one's ever come back losing 3-0 in a series, so like an old rap group said "3 and that's the magic number"

    I like what the Brother DBA wrote too, and for good measure here is the comment @DBA was referring to, it's absolutely golden advice that saves a tonne of time. Like the saying goes (2nd comment on the thread):

    An image block is also useful if you're on YouTube/netflix or even news sites as they contain a lot of triggering images, you can download them straight to Google Chrome, here's the link:—-best-ad-blocker/gighmmpiobklfepjocnamgkkbiglidom

    @downunder23 I love the last paragraph about allowing and devaluing thoughts, that's a great way of seeing it. Like I've heard it said 'where your attention goes, energy flows'.

    You got this! ;) Happy 3rd birthday Young man ️️️
  12. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    First thing I would like to say is thank you for the support, it has been great to be on here and get such support from guys that I know have been through and are going through everything I am going through. The resources and information you have provided is amazing, certainly me thinking about things that I really didn't think about so again thank you for that.

    I have the list, thank you DBA, and will work on the points in there. First thought I had with this and I think this kinda blows my mind, that the thrill of P & O is the greater (dopamine) reward then sex with my gf, bloody hell at the tender age of 48 you'd think I'd know this..... so moving forward I think it will really shape my expectation sex with my gf because when I read that statement I had a real moment of realisation that maybe I was expecting the same thrill I get with P when I was having sex with my gf and then when I didn't get that I was then instinctively going to P for it.

    Still a lot to work on and I will check in later, the thing I will work on is the triggers and then my strategies to deal with them. In the mean time got some busy time with my family which will really help me with my day today.
  13. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Family time will keep you connected, and connection is indeed the opposite of addiction. Even I didn't notice that wisdom you mention by DBA, just goes to show, repetition is the mother of learning. You're 48, but you'll only feel more youth and vitality than ever staying on this path ;) , In context today's youth are fapping it away, that's more tragic imho. I was there too, and that's why I'm here, because time counts.

    Staying clean essentially is recreating the world, whereby something that was once everything (p) fades into obsolescence and you become the author of your greatest work: your life.

    Enjoy family time :D
  14. DBA

    DBA Active Member

    Hi downunder 33

    But remember that love, social contact and emotional closeness are a HUGE compensation. We are social beings.
  15. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    So now I think comes a definite hurdle within this process. First I want to out it out there that I am doing well with this, the work I am doing here is just what I need to help me through these struggles and it really is very helpful. Now, my gf stayed last night, we had sex, I had an O which doesn't always happen, and we even followed up today which is pretty normal for us, we have an extremely healthy attraction and desire for each other. Here is the crux, if I look at P again it will fuck up this amazing thing I have going, and that was a powerful and very welcome thought I had this morning.

    I will draw on the strength of this realisation and make sure I am putting in the work that I have going here. Putting together my lists of triggers, values, alternate activities. The triggers will be something I will have to be much more observant to, because off the top of my head I can't put many down on paper, I think the only things I came up with were boredom and the exhaustion / frustration from study (I am studying postgraduate diploma for my work) where I was PMO as a release / break from the work of studying. So I will continue to develop my ability to recognise just what my triggers are.

    I am working on my values and on putting together the activities I can do to help me divert when I am triggered by this compulsion, at the moment the main issue will be in the evenings when it is just me at home and I feel that urge come on. I am getting into the sim racing scene, namely iracing and this is my go to at this point when those evenings happen. During the days when I am home it is a bit easier, I enjoy building projects in my shed/garage/workshop, mostly I made things out of wood, all be it at a beginners level, but lately I have also been enjoying building my own rig/stand for the sim racing pedals. Truly it doesn't matter what I am making in my workshop, just being in there building something is when I can really find my space and get into the zone with building and creating, I also have a coffee table on the go so usually have things there to keep me busy when I have the time to spend in there.

    It would be interesting to hear about what other guys do for activities to divert themselves when they are triggered by the urge. I know it is all a very individual thing mostly driven by what interests us, but largely the things I have down in my list are great for during the day, like going for ride on my motorbike, not ideal to be sitting on the couch late at night feeling that pull to bring up that material and going "right, time to strap on my motorbike gear and jump on my bike for a little midnight hoon around the block" so I will keep trying to develop more relevant things to be able to draw upon for those late night urges.

    Well getting through day 5 now, 4 days of success behind me. Once again the support here is amazing, it truly is good knowing I am not doing this on my own.
  16. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    So another night with my gf, we had sex and amazingly I did have an O which probably wouldn't normally happen. Look I'm not here to share my sex life but at this stage of my journey I feel the need to at least document here in my journal some little things that I think are going to be important at this stage of my journey. And in the past I know I would have had the mindset now that "well I won't see my gf for a couple of days so therefore I am allowed a little indulgence" and I will jump into some PMO and of course end up over doing it. I probably would not have had an O with my gf, so also I would have the mindset of "well I'm allowed to have an O so what's the harm". The good thing here is I am now better informed and I have started to get my strategies in place so that I am better prepared now too. I was going to say that I have good motivation right now but more often then not when motivation is truly tested then usually doesn't withstand the urge, especially without any strategy in place in order to deal with the urges.

    Another thing that I have had on my mind is with my tracker counter I have only put "without P" I did not include M and O. Now I set this tracker up on the first day I signed up here and my thought at the time was I didn't want to set myself up for failure in setting the bar way too high for myself. My thought was that given my usual lack of O real my gf, if I have gone a while without one then is not M & O without P a reasonable solution. I think I need to look into this more because I am now thinking that if I get to that point and the MO just doesn't work then won't that increase my chance that I will then search out P, because that is what I have done in the past.
  17. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Porns not made to satisfy, doesn't matter if one could watch a million hours of porn, one would end up being comparable to a rat on the wheel.

    Don't worry about sharing, it's your journal bro, total freedom of expression, we've been addicts for a lifetime, repressing ourselves in some way or another for a lifetime and that can't continue if we want to discover who we really are without the plaster of porn. In one of the journals I sent you, the one of JDoe he talks about intimacy with his wife a lot, and it's very educational, and I find your entries highly informative too.

    With regards to the O, you likely already heard that term 'chaser effect' (your entry helps me infer that) whereby after an O, we chase after another O. I think tracking O can be useful if you want to isolate it to see eg how frequency of O's might affect mood. O in itself is wonderful, almost inevitable (if the goal is procreation). That for me was a powerful realisation that O is what's necessary to procreate, hence my personal view is one can live without it.

    There's a style of sex called Karezza, whose focus is more tactile, so heavily centred on gentle touching, slow, sensual intimacy as a way to rewire from the fast-paced, rough, heavy goal-orientated O sex a lot of us learned from p. If the theme of O and Karezza interests you, there's a book called Cupid's Poisoned Arrow by Marnia Robinson, the wife of the late Gary Wilson who inspired many of us with his YBOP site and book. In short, Robinson's book is eye-opening Marnia found that too many Os can cause conflict between partners, because as we all know we do experience some form of mood alteration after O. As with everything the right quantity guarantees quality.

    Having said that, I very much support your approach of studying how many Os might be right for you, whether that's by counter/journal or both. It's a sign of great maturity, and I read your journal and it warms my hear to see how self-aware you're becoming.

    With respect to M or MO, I can only share my own experience that in my mind at least it's too tied to PMO, it's very much the engine of PMO, without it it's like watching people eat to stave off hunger. However, that's my experience, I can't speak for everyone, in LTE's journal I remember in the 29th day he had an M slip, but never returned to it thereafter and lol he never died.

    Our culture always taught us that one needs to MO to prevent prostate cancer. Thankfully wet dreams and a loving partner are great means of natural releases ;) . I'm really excited for how your life, journal and views continue to change as you keep on healing, and for how your general relationships will keep improving. So long as we cultivate indifference to porn, MO gradually stops mattering as much. However, you choose to proceed with M and O, that's perfectly fine, so long as it's fine for you and serves you well.

    Onwards to one week DU23, wishing you a week of great returns.
    Last edited: May 29, 2023
  18. downunder23

    downunder23 New Member

    So I think today marks a week for me with no P. Yay! The last couple of days have been delightfully busy so really has kept my mind on other things. It is nice to feel that on the odd occasion I have felt the thought of it start to slip in a little bit but it has been easy to deflect away and just kept getting on with my stuff. What I am finding amazing is the great resources for support that I am finding in here, so glad I have gotten onto this forum now. When I looked at the YBOP website a few years ago I guess I wasn't ready back then to step into this format in order to help myself but I am here now and the support is great.

    I have an exam coming up in just over a fortnight and I am thinking a lot of my time and energy will be devoted to that over the next little while but still I must keep myself vigilant and keep putting some effort into developing the work I will need to grow here and to keep myself away from P. I honestly believe within myself that if I go back to porn it really will destroy my relationship and I really don't want that.

    But with diligence and the right work I won't go back there.
    path-forward and Rudolf Geyse like this.
  19. DBA

    DBA Active Member

    Good luck with your exam. The last thing you want to do is relapse before then (or indeed after!). As we all know when we resort to PMO we put work aside
    and you need to revise and also get good sleep.
  20. 1MoreLookAway

    1MoreLookAway Member

    Congrats on the week, I always knew you'd do it, just like you'll know you're going to ace that exam! Studying has a funny way of boomeranging back with results ;) You're nearly at double digits, what a time to be alive! ;)

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