Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Doofus, Jan 8, 2014.
Beginning of day 33.
Good on you!
Way to go. I’m restarting and on day 1
I wrote this long rant about my wife and life last night. I decided not to post it, though. I guess I'm feeling a little better about both this morning.
Woke up this morning with wood, but I didn't have it when I woke at 2. I got back to sleep, then, though, and without alcohol. I remembered to take my zinc.
I'll probably post more later, but I need to get to work here on the morning of day 34.
Day 36. Had make out and O with wife this morning. Everything worked great! Zinc/melatonin, however, did not. I was up from 2 - 5, drinking bad sherry to try to get back to sleep. Luckily we had a snow day today! I guess when faced with 15" of snow, even my college, which used to brag that it never closes, closes.
Anyway, I'm here and writing because I am experiencing a really strong chaser effect from this morning. I ran, but only for 15 minutes - nobody shovels their walks here it seems and the streets are too narrow. So, as to not be a hypocrite and to try to get endorphins/dopamine whatever flowing without PMO, I shoveled our drive and walk, which took about 2 hours - I did it immediately following my run, so I still had my hrm on. I had to stop every 5 minutes or so to stay aerobic - I'd forgotten how hard shoveling snow can be! Anyway, all of that work should have re-established some inner resolve against PMO - nope. I'll grade, write exams here in a minute. Usually that's a pretty big sex-drive killer.
Fightin it here on day 36
And still fightin it on day 37. Feeling somewhat productive, though, in spite of the fact that zinc once again failed me. I'm very eager to get that light alarm clock - supposedly it will arrive Friday.
Not sure what to do about this horniness. I will say that, on the positive side of this current struggle, I'm not really craving P, just O. Workmen are here as is my son, so asking my wife to service me is out - and it's probably would be out anyway. It's not the weekend after all.
I'll be cooking in a little bit - s0 that should help quell these urges. That, and, hopefully writing here.
So, I'm about to give up on the zinc. Last night was the third night in a row where I remembered to take the zinc (and melatonin) and still woke up in the middle of the night. I was up, briefly, at 1:30. Got to sleep that time. But then I woke again at 2:30 and was up until 5. I did get back to sleep until 8:45, so total sleep was better than average, but I'm still disappointed. I did my stretches yesterday too and am not feeling too stressed, at least consciously.
On the PMO recovery front, the first two times I woke I was not hard. This morning though I was. This was probably due (too?) to the sex dream I had right before I woke. The dream involved my wife only. So that's also a positive.
Anyway, I'll get back to work here at the beginning of day 38.
Keep up the good job, Doofus! You can try taking magnesium before going to bed, it helps me sleep better. Just a warning though, if you take more than 1000 mg it could give you very intense dreams, nightmares as well.
Thank you, Icarus! I had tried the magnesium, but only in conjunction with zinc and melatonin. I'll try it alone and in reasonable doses. Thanks for the tip.
I'll write more later here on day 39.
Taking both zinc and magnesium at the same time is not the best idea. Zinc partly inhibits the absorption of magnesium. My advice is to take zinc in the morning and magnesium in the evening.
Thank you, Icarus! I'm changing up my routine tonight!
Did not change up my routine, instead fell asleep on the couch after having too much wine to drink. Ugh. At least I'm still PMO free here on day 40.
I've been drinking way too much the last couple weeks. Did a bit better last night but still had almost a bottle and a half of wine and fell asleep at my desk. The only victory I can claim on that front is that I'm still not drinking vodka having weaned myself off of that finally at the same time I started no PMO.
Another success was that I finally assembled and used a bike trailer I had purchased last summer. Doing just that was surprisingly hard. In any case, my next objective is to not drive my car, unless absolutely necessary, for the entirety of break. I'm hoping to build on the success I've had so far with no PMO to attack other goals/deficiencies, other addictions, especially alcohol and the internet.
Speaking of which, my social media feeds and other sites still sometimes have sexually provocative pictures or articles that I sometimes click on. I click off immediately and come here usually, but I still haven't kicked completely. Don't get me wrong, I'm still no PMO, but I haven't entirely mastered the temptation... maybe, as I've written elsewhere in this thread, that's not possible - the desire for sex, in many forms, is too built-in.
Had weekly hand job yesterday from my wife. All went well. No ED or DE. I guess I should be happy that she still loves me enough or feels committed to the relationship enough that she'll do that. But, I don't get the feeling she's doing it out of a physical desire for me, or out of any desire really. I don't get how she can be (presumably....) so asexual, post-menopause or not. It's depressing. I sometimes think about asking her for a hall pass. It would take the burden off her and let me experience, possibly, sex with someone who was really into it. I know there's tons of reasons that that wouldn't actually be so simple, but it's something I think about.
My little college is in pretty big trouble. We're not on warning, but it's inevitable. Our accrediting agency, who has been monitoring us since last year was convinced not to place us on warning for our finances (warning is a public admonition, usually the first noticed step in the inexorable death spiral of a college) but set benchmarks for us which we can't possibly reach. In 5 years, I believe, the college will be closed. I'm 54. This is not good news. In the extreme. I think this is one reason I'm here writing so much now - this stress is tempting me to run back into the arms of PMO. Or, at least, MO. I"m still not feeling that tempted to look at P. Sexy images? Yes. But not P specifically. I don't know if that makes a difference, though. I tell myself that it does because those images are almost impossible to avoid -from the internet to billboards to magazine covers in the grocery store aisles. Not looking at all would be an impossible standard to meet.
Luckily, though everything has functioned well with my wife for the most part, especially recently, I'm still not getting day-time erections and I'm not at all confident I could MO right now. So, if only for that weak reason I'm not going to MO today, day 43.
Oh. Tried just magnesium last night and it worked pretty well. Slept until 4:30 (I've been waking up between 1:30 and 2:30 the last few weeks..) Unfortunately, I still don't understand my light alarm very well - I didn't realize you had to turn the alarm on! So, I stayed awake at 4:30 waiting for it to go off, which I had set it to do at 5 and then fretting about why it did not. Figured it out this morning and sat with it just now as it cycled through 30 minutes of gradual brightening. I feel a little better having done that. What I'm hoping is that the clock will help me re-set my circadian rhythm which in turn will help re-set and restore various hormones and other chemicals (seretonin, dopamine....) that will help me break out of this depression.
Be careful with the alcohol, buddy. Don't let alcohol take the place of porn in your life, don't trade one bad habit for another. About the sexy images... they are kinda part of our modern life. As you said we see then everywhere - in the social media in ads, on billboards... just don't dwell on them, cause, at least in my case in the past, watching sexy pictures have gradually let me to watching porn. It's a slippery slope, you start with the pics and think that's it's not harmful cause it's not porn, but your brain can't really tell the difference between them and porn, it just knows what it likes and what not. It still releases dopamine and then it demands more and more and before you know it you are watching porn again. Just keep that in mind if stumble upon a sexy pic and you feel like looking for some more.
Good luck with your fight and keep up the good job!
Another advice about the sleeping habits. You might want to ditch the melatonin or cycle it cause the body tends to build up tolerance towards it when you supplement it.
Thanks Icarus. Check on the alcohol. I've done a bit better the last two nights. I definitely drank less last night, but, then couldn't fall asleep until 1. I slept through after that (until 5.....). Took only the magnesium so that's 2 for 2 with that.. Light alarm worked great, too! My experience confirms what you're saying about the melatonin. I haven't taken one the last few nights. I need to do some more research, but I seem to recall that melatonin is one in a chain of substances that interact in varied and powerful ways. Those other substances include seratonin and dopamine. Perhaps a connection with my addictions?
Because I didn't sleep much I'm here writing instead of out running. I got up and made coffee and eggs for my wife and me, but going out into the freezing dark felt too hard to do on so little sleep. I'll get out there in a bit, but it's late enough that I have to wait to see if I'm driving my son to school - long story there, but the short version is he's only taking online classes so he only goes when he has to for proctored tests or just because he wants to see other humans.
I have a TON of grading to do today and little time to do it. I used some of my sleeplessness last night to work, but not as much as I should have.
On the PMO front, I've been pretty good. I was very horny at various points yesterday, but resisted both P and M. I'll work harder today on avoiding those sexy images, or, at least, not lingering on them, Icarus.
So begins day 44.
Another good night and morning. The combination of magnesium and the light alarm seems to be working well. Slept well - though not as long as I'd have liked - and only woke briefly once. As a result, I didn't drink at all in the middle of the night, and, I felt sleepy before bed, though it took until 10:30 to fall asleep so I didn't drink as much as I usually do before bed, either. So, 6.5 hours, but that's a big improvement over most nights. Icarus, what you said about dreams seems to be true. I had this, seemingly, all-night dream, in which at one point, I woke several times (in the dream..) to no erection and part of the dream was me bemoaning my lack of progress on my recovery. The funny thing is that when I woke this morning, from that dream, I was rock hard. So that's good.
All of this is doubly amazing given that I didn't run much yesterday and didn't stretch, and, though I worked very hard yesterday, still haven't finished grades, which are due at noon (5.5 hours....). Something I did yesterday that made a difference in my productivity was use the pomodoro app. It kept me from getting sucked into the internet - either social media or darker temptations - and I found the ticking noise while I was working very soothing. I don't feel anxious at all, which is unusual for me when this close to a hard deadline. (Usually, too, I wouldn't have slept well, or, at all. My anxiety has been very bad the last few years.)
In spite of that deadline, I'm writing here, now, while I'm feeling optimistic about solving my various issues. This way, on darker days, I can return to this post and draw a little comfort or inspiration from it knowing how things were going pretty well on day 45.
Well, yesterday I turned my grades in with 2.5 hours to spare. It's not like I've never beat the deadline before, but I'm pretty happy about that. Wasted the afternoon, really, while the drywall guy was here, but, after he left, I did get in a decent length run - about 1:45, so that was good. Plus I stretched after. Also good. I did drive to the store to shop for dinner. It was dark, I was tired after run, and it was late, so I didn't bike to the store as I had pledged to do over the course of break. I'm a little disappointed in myself over that. Though, as it was, I dinner wasn't ready until 8:15 and my wife wanted to be in bed by 9, so.... I fell asleep on the couch, too. Too much alcohol and pretty tired. I woke up at 11:30, got back to bed, but didn't remember to take my magnesium. Woke up at 1:30. I took the magnesium then but also washed it down with a couple more glasses of wine. Ugh.
The light alarm clock worked really well again this morning. My N is small so far, but I'm really liking how I feel waking up to it these first few days, and, really, throughout the day I've felt better. I wonder if my depression could really be related to light exposure. I used to joke that I had anti-SAD. Years ago, it seemed I was most depressed in summer and happiest when it was overcast. Maybe that's changed somehow.
On the PMO front I spent a little time yesterday afternoon looking at pictures of female celebrities - like red carpet looks. Not a lot, but too much. They were of course a little racy.
The times I woke up last night I didn't have an erection. I don't know if that's just a consequence of the non-linear path of recovery, or of peeking or of drinking too much, but I'm going to try to bear down on both peeking and my drinking today, day 46.
Really tempted right now, so I'm going to write here instead.
Waiting for a guy from our contractors to come and fix the damage to our sink that the other guys from our contractors did, before we pay them what we owe - which, hopefully, is what I anticipate owing them and not extra. I think the anxiety about that, and, about money in general, is a trigger for me. I was proud of myself though for calling the owner of the company and insisting that they pay for or do the repairs. The last few months, I've seemingly lacked the inner strength to engage in that kind of confrontation or conflict.
Also, I'm done with work, my wife's at work and the boys are still asleep. I didn't get out to run this morning - just too sleepy. The light alarm did wake me, but I didn't have that refreshed feeling I've had the last few mornings. I fell asleep on the couch last night, and did drink a glass (but only a glass) to get back to sleep after I woke at 11:30. I did remember to take the magnesium, though, so that's something. But after I woke up to move my car so my wife could get to work, I just went back to sleep. I didn't need to get up until 8 to go to my therapy appointment. And I didn't.
Lots of icky family stuff coming up, too. InLaws tomorrow, my family in a week. There are tough things to decide and/or confront with my boys. It just never seems to end. The holidays may be holy, but they're hardly vacation.
It seems a lot of us on here use PMO or other self-soothing strategies to avoid the pain of unpleasant emotions, or, even, sometimes, those things that trigger those emotions entirely. This is certainly the case for me. Combinations of PMO, booze, even healthier escapes like exercise, or re-orgainzing my document files have enabled me to, in the worst cases, avoid the pain that comes from avoiding situations - important situations - that might bring painful emotions. And as a result, the resilience necessary to do those important things, is, like a muscles, weakened from disuse. I thin this is what's happened to me.
I was working too much, and so couldn't do everything that had to be done. Though my wife chortles derisively when I've said it out loud to her, I am, in fact, a perfectionist. It's just that that trait often keeps me from even trying to perfect. Over time, not facing tasks because I couldn't do them became not facing them because I wouldn't or was too afraid to try and now, here I am.
I think this no PMO thing is helping. For whatever reason, the fear of permanent PIED was greater than the fear of no PMO and so I've made it to today with my streak in tact. Maybe it's because I knew I had other self-soothing techniques I could rely on? Yes. That's definitely true. But it hasn't been entirely easy either. I've been tempted - as I was before I started this post. So, resisting the lure of PMO, however weak, is important to my recovery more generally. My recovery from my other addictions, and, hopefully, my change into a man able to face difficult things again and to meet victory and defeat with greater equanimity than I have recently.
Anyway, as Mao said, a journey of a 1000 miles begins with a single step. And I've taken more than that as I type this here on day 47.
Really good point. This is something many of us need to be wary about, especially since when we're hungover the following day we're more likely to relapse. I have various nights out/social gatherings planned with family and friends over the Christmas period. My plan is to limit myself to a maximum of 4 drinks per evening and try not to exceed that amount.
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