My Journey

Discussion in 'Ages 20-24' started by Robane, May 7, 2012.

  1. Robane

    Robane Member

    My Struggle with Porn Addiction

    I've been struggling with an addiction to PMO ever since I was around 7 years old. I remember that was the age at which I first watched an on-screen sex scene. The scene was probably in a rated R movie that I saw and it only lasted about 1.5-2 minutes, but the images stuck. Later, whenever my parents weren't home, I used to watch the blotched erotica channels that were on cable TV at the time. Around the age of 12- 13 I started going onto internet porn sites every weekend. At that time I knew that what I was doing was wrong, but everyone my age was watching porn. Those were the days of the famous teen movies like, American Pie and Van Wilder (the 2002 version), which propagated the notion that PMO was a normal part of teenage life. At the time, everyone my age was watching porn. It was only until I reached college that I realized that I had intimacy problems. I wasn't able to get fully erect whenever I was with a girl, and I really couldn't figure out the reason why. I was definitely attracted to these women, and at that time I wasn't nervous about having sex with a girl. The only time I was aroused by the girl that I was with was whenever I fantasized about having sex with her, but whenever she was around I couldn't get an erection. After a few failed attempts at having sex, I started to avoid intimate situations with women. Whenever I did get into those situations, I would get nervous and the erectile dysfunction would kick in. I would tell the girl to blame it on the alcohol or the late hour of the night, but I knew it was because of me. At the time I never understood why I was able to get a strong erection while watching porn or fantasizing about a girl, but not get one while in the presence of an actual girl. I thought it was because of anxiety, and searched the internet for pills and techniques to get rid of it. I also avoided going out with friends, fearing that they would find out about my problems with women. So I stayed cooped up in my room either studying, playing video games, or watching porn. Plus I lived in a very big and stressful city, and I didn't have a lot of free time because of school and work. As I became more isolated, I resorted more to porn. I used to binge a couple of times per week. Apart from feeling tired and drowsy all the time, I didn't think that porn was a problem. This was until the internet in my room got cut off right before I was about to begin a porn session. I remember getting so pissed and restless that day. My stomach started to turn and I became short of breath. I finally found some old porn stashed on my computer, and the feeling subsided. After I finished and came to my senses, I was surprised by how strong of a hold porn had over me. It didn't just affect me mentally, but physically as well. That was when I equated my dependence on porn to an alcoholic's addiction to liquor. It was only by chance that I found out the link between porn and erectile dysfunction. My father showed me an article he was reading on his laptop that was totally unrelated to porn addiction. When he left the room, and I started to read the article. On the side of the page was a link to another article that was about pornography and erectile dysfunction. From then on the rest is history. I did some research, found yourbrainonporn.com, and I've been trying to overcome this addiction for a year now.
     
  2. Robane

    Robane Member

    Well I was able to stay off the porn sites for the rest of the night. Now I'm on day 20 of the reboot. Writing on the forum really helped me yesterday to avoid binging.
     
  3. Robane

    Robane Member

    Well it has been 12 days since I last watched porn or masturbate. I've also been avoiding fantasies about women during this period. This has really helped me to avoid relapsing. But for the past 3 nights I've been having intense wet dreams. This morning I had a sexual dream about watching porn, but I didn't have an orgasm. For the first half of the day I was really horny and I had a severe case of blue balls. I was really (I mean really) tempted to watch porn. I even went on my search engine and started typing the names of porn actresses and flicks that I wanted to watch. Luckily the K9 software was able to keep me at bay for a while. Still, the password was just downstairs in the trunk of my car, and it was easily accessible. Several times I decided to give up and go to the car and get the password, but before I got there my conscience would kick in and stop me. It was a real struggle. My head felt like it was about to explode. You dive really fast into a 20 ft deep pool, and the pressure in your head builds up as you go deeper? That's how I felt today trying to stop myself from getting that password. Finally I just decided to lay down and breathe. The headache went away, but the temptation and the blue balls didn't. I finally decided to M without porn. I immediately felt a lot better, and ultimately, the temptation to watch porn subsided. In my case, my addiction is to porn and fantasy, and not so much to masturbation and orgasm. I only M whenever I watch P. So at the present moment I want to tackle my habit to fantasize and watch P. Once I do that, then I will have dealt with the M and O issue. What happened today is apart of a recurring pattern though. At the end of the 2nd or 3rd week of a reboot I start having a string of wet dreams, which would ultimately precede a relapse. So we'll see what happens. So far, I've only been able to go 3 weeks without P three times this year. I want to make this the 4th time.
     
  4. Nassob

    Nassob New Member

    Hey man, keep resisting.
    Im actually at my first week, and already had a wet dream. And now about 2 days from the dream, I feel a overwhelming urge to watch porn, any porn at all.
    Im just saying that 3 weeks is a big deal, keep the motivation up. I hope that I can manage to get 3 weeks without relapsing.
    Good luck man
     
  5. Robane

    Robane Member

    Well, 6 weeks of abstinence from PMO came to an end yesterday. Six weeks ago I made the decision to go a whole month w/out PMO. I was really serious about reaching that goal. Every other day I wrote in my journal, so that I could remind myself of the goal that I had set for myself. Everyday I said a prayer asking God for the strength to make through each day. I changed my outlook on my relapse. I started tracking my progress day by day, hour by hour, constantly analyzing my thought processes in each of those time periods. If I slipped up and allowed a fantasy to enter my brain, I would stop whatever I was doing at that moment and write in my journal or repeat my affirmations until the compulsion to lust ceased. I really tried to not allow any thoughts of sex or P to enter my mind. But, for the past week or so I had been feeling just completely out of whack. I would get these mini-panic attacks (shortness of breath, sudden anxiety) just out of the blues. These short panic attacks usually would occur before binging on P. I think was my brain reacting to the withdrawal from P. This last reboot was the longest I had ever gone without PMO in my life.. literally. It just felt so unfamiliar to me to not watch P or MO. Yesterday before I relapsed, I had one of those panic attacks again, and this time it was accompanied by a short snippet of a memory of one my all-time favorite P scenes. At that time, my will power was just gone, and binged for a couple of hours. Now, of course I regret what I did. I feel ashamed.. I'm now trying to fight this major chaser effect.
     
  6. geordie

    geordie New Member

    robane first of all 6 weeks is tremendous!

    i know you said that you wrote in your journal or practised affirmations whenever you had cravings but what else did you do? did you find it was easy or it got easier as time passed or did you find that every day was a constant battle? the reason im asking is because im a bit curious about getting all the way to 6 weeks and then succumbing. were you just drained at the constant battle going on or was it just one of those things?

    im hoping in my reboot that by the time i get to 6 weeks porn will be such a bizzarre activity as i think a lot of it is habit and releaving boredom and loneliness for me. im currently on day 15 of this and have had relapses before. previous bests for me were 12 and 17 days so im looking to get to week 3 at least on the habit front. im very impressed with 6 weeks
     
  7. Robane

    Robane Member

    Hey man. Thanks for the congrats. Let me start off by saying that each individual struggling with this addiction has a different reboot process and different approaches to abstaining from P. With regards to affirmations, I view them as way that we can remind ourselves of the goals that we set for ourselves and of the battles that we have to face to reach those goals. I don’t necessarily think that the affirmation process exclusively involves repeating a list of goals and aspirations that we wrote down in weeks previous every morning. We could consciously or subconsciously remind ourselves of those goals by praying, reading religious scriptures that pertains to our struggle, meditating, listening to or reading inspirational testimonies or lectures about the issue, or even coming to this site or other sites like this one and reading entries and articles about the addiction. Personally, I start off each morning with a prayer and a reading from the scripture, but for non-religious people, the affirmation process might be different. The point is that we should spend some time each day reminding ourselves of the struggle we face and of the goals that we want to reach so that you could get out of the struggle. Every day our brains are bombarded with the stresses and preoccupations of life, and we can forget that we are dealing with a serious addiction. Those of us who deal with this addiction privately can easily forget just how serious it affects our lives after just a few weeks of abstinence. This is because we don’t have anyone to remind us of our struggle and ask us about our progress. I also think that around this time we begin to let our guard down, and let those old thoughts and mindsets that led us to relapse before back into our train of thought again. Since PMO had always been a way for our brains to automatically deal with stress, we ultimately end up relapsing. (Loneliness and boredom is also stressful, in that it is at those times when our brains crave human interaction). We need to retrain our brains to avoid automatically reacting to stress with PMO by constantly reminding it that PMO is something negative for us. In my case, this last relapse occurred after 2 days of really stressful work. In fact, the day of the relapse was the first time in 6 weeks that I did not do my daily affirmations. Now, like I said earlier, the reboot process for each individual is different. Some people need only a month of abstinence to get out of the addiction. I have been struggling with this addiction since early childhood, so this habit has become somewhat second nature to me. Plus I’m usually alone throughout the day. Thus I’m going to need a longer abstinence period to get out of the cycle. So far it's been pretty hectic dealing with the chaser effect, but I've managed to stay away from the PMO. What I need to work on during this reboot is the fantasizing. Looking back, sexual fantasy could also be blamed for this last relapse.
     
  8. Robane

    Robane Member

    Another thing that I've noticed is that the reboots get easier the longer you stay away from PMO. I remember how hard it was for me to make it 3 weeks w/out PMO. Even after relapsing on the third week, the next reboot of 6 weeks was a lot easier to accomplish. Even now after the last relapse, I feel a lot more confident and optimistic about this reboot. Of course, during that time I made sure to not let my guard down and I did my affirmation sessions each day.
     
  9. geordie

    geordie New Member

    that makes a lot of sense robane. i can relate to what you say when we talk about battling this addiction. it is very serious and as a lot of us deal with it privately. i get to a stage when i start to under estimate how bad this thing is and start to take it lightly. when i wrote in your journal above i was on day 15 and felt really positive. had a great 2 weeks and was buzzing. i started reading no more mr nice guy and it related to me and my behviour so much it was if i had my guts ripped out. and you can guess what i did to cope!
     
  10. Robane

    Robane Member

    Hey geordie. I'm going to check out that book No More Mr. Nice Guy. Just got through a week w/out PMO and I'm feeling really optimistic about my progress. Still there's this lingering desire to watch P, especially after getting back home after a really long and stressful day. This is the time when my stress hormones are out of whack, and the temptation of watching P is making me anxious and irritated. There's also like this faint inner voice saying "C'mon man... just open up a new window and go on that site.. you're on the computer already, just do it" But I'm glad I came on this site first. It is a good tool to distract me from myself!!
     
  11. makebelieve

    makebelieve Member

    I can see more and more too how important it is to be reminded of the negative effect of porn. Before you know it you will be sucked in the everywhere available sexual triggers of our society, and the step to porn may seem not so bad on that particular day.

    Visiting this forum works for me, but maybe I'll have to think of a little thing in my house, like a little altar, to remind me of my own insights. Or maybe even a little tattoo, on my foot for example, so I'll be reminded everyday I'm under the shower.
     
  12. Robane

    Robane Member

    I also try to keep my mind off the P by watching shows, reading articles online, or watching TV. I was reading some tips on how to conquer this PMO addiction on a website called feedtherightwolf. The author of the site was saying that one mechanism that might be useful is the ERP method ("Exposure and Response Prevention") that people with OCD use to treat their condition. I basically entails visualizing a trigger that would send you into a relapse and the using breathing techniques redirect your thoughts to something else. The author stressed not to use P as a trigger, but rather use thoughts of certain scenarios during which you normally watch P (i.e. being at home alone with the computer at night). Ususally, the only trigger for me to watch P is fantasy about P or about sex with a woman. Still, there are times whenever the mere thought of me knowing that there is an opportunity to watch P becomes a trigger in itself. This was the trigger for my last relapse.
     
  13. Robane

    Robane Member

    Well I'm glad to say that I'm around 4 weeks into my reboot. I have a lot of mixed feelings at the moment, though.. Generally I feel really positive right now, but for some reason that scares me. Usually, it is at this time into the reboot (4-6 weeks) that I slip up and fall into the temptation to watch P. I really don't know why it happens. Right now I feel great that I haven't partaken in this shameful habit that has really messed my life up. But I also have these severe and spontaneous episodes of blue-balls (that are not triggered by fantasy) every now and then, that make it easier to just give in to the temptation to watch P and relieve myself. So I really have put my guard up these days. The first 2 weeks for me are always the easiest, because it is then when the determination to quit this is really high. But later on into the reboot, when my brain re balances after a replase, that enthusiasm goes down, and I forget how bad it was when I used to watch P. This time though, I'm going really try and keep up the momentum from the first days of the reboot.
     
  14. Robane

    Robane Member

    I recently came across this technique to relieve stress and steer away from compulsive behaviors called Tapping. In this last reboot I've been using this technique to help me stop compulsive urges to fantasize. So far it has worked pretty well for me. It helps me remind myself about the affirmations I set in the beginning of the reboot, and it also helps break that train of sexual thoughts that leads to fantasy and then later to relapse. Here's the link I found- http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PU_F_eeKqB0
     
  15. Robane

    Robane Member

    Well, just like I said in my last post, it is really hard for me to stay away from P after the 4th week. Today I had to disable my K9, and a few hours after that I slipped up and started browsing those old sites. After a few minutes I decided that it wasn't worth it throwing away a whole month of reboot for just a minute of pleasure. So I got off the sites without MO'ing and came on here to release that energy built up from the sexual tension. The urges are still there, but I know I can't give up now. I really have to discipline myself.
     
  16. makebelieve

    makebelieve Member

    Disabling K9, that's hard for you... If you want it or not, you're brain will know that Porn, and adrenaline and dopamine rushes are in reach. I would advice to find ways to only disable K9 when others are around you. If you're doing that when you're alone, you're playing with fire...

    How are you doing now?
     
  17. Robane

    Robane Member

    Hey makebelive. It's been a while since I've been on the forum. What you said about disabling K9 only when people are around is a very good idea. Since August 12, I relapsed once. That was about 4 weeks ago from yesterday ))). Right now i'm at a pivotal moment in my reboot, because, like i stated earlier, after around 4 weeks i usually find myself giving into the urges and relapsing. As a matter of fact, just this morning I had a wet dream, and before coming on this site, I woke up from a nap i which I dreamt I was watching porn. So I have to be on alert for this next week. I have to get my brain accustomed to not craving for porn whenever I'm stressed emotionally.
     
  18. Robane

    Robane Member

    Hey everyone! For the past couple of weeks i have been participating in Tony Litster's free porn addiction recovery program called Cure the Craving. The program has really helped me understand the inner-workings of my compulsive behavior and realize why past reboot attempts were not effective enough to create lasting inroads into my recovery. Tony provides you with free materials that help you get your brain back in balance, so as to prevent you from seeking release through porn. Here's a link to the free recovery program- http://curethecraving.com/author/tonylitster/
     
  19. Robane

    Robane Member

    This is one of the hardest challenges in my life. Today I relapsed after 5 weeks of rebooting. Today was a really f-d up day. It started bad, went bad, and ended with PMO. Well, at least I was able to reboot for 5 weeks instead of 3 or 4 like the previous times. I really rate those guys who are able to last 90 days without relapse.
     
  20. Robane

    Robane Member

    I'm no longer counting days.... Now I'm just measuring progress!
     

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