Nuwanda's path to liberation

Discussion in 'Ages 20-24' started by Nuwanda, Jan 21, 2017.

  1. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    Yesterday I relapsed. Normally, before I came to this forum, this would have been much a bigger deal. Even though I dont feel nearly as motivated as I did on my streak, I feel okay. And most important, I feel like it does matter if I binge for days or not. I feel like getting back on the path and keep going. Thats progress. And now it is time to understand more, to get closer to a good sexuality. Because what I find always make me relapse are the same things every time.

    First, wet dreams/sexual dreams. This makes me fantasize, which is what happened yesterday. It comes with this feeling of powerlessness, like it is not meant to be escaped. I try to keep my mind on other things, but I always come back to fantasizing. Only the movies I knew there would be sexuality in seemed interesting. And nothing that is not sexual seems interesting at all. I keep it at bay for some time, but the sexual thoughs always come back, and they never go away for long. I don't think I have ever managed to not relapse when this happens. Sometimes I have sexual dreams and it doesn't make me fantasize, but when it does, boy is it hard to stop. So my question here would be: How do you keep the urges at bay? What are some tactics I should try out?

    Second, stress/sadness. One of the good things that comes from not looking at porn for me is more vibrant feelings. Being able to cry, laugh and care more for others. Sometimes though, the feeling of sadness gets to big, and I use porn to escape. I have realized this, escapeism is very real in me. When I have to many tasks at hand, and feel like I have no way to cope, just masturbating and forgetting about it all is the easiest. Which of course is not functional at all. So my question here would be: How do you deal with the hard feelings? How do you either accept them, or repel them?

    I want to say that I am thankfull this forum exists, it makes me hopefull for the future. It has helped me grow, and it is wonderfull to see how it can transform lives. Thank you everybody.
  2. NatureHeals

    NatureHeals Active Member

    exact same here. I'm sure everyone can relate to this.
    I was clean all last week then relapsed yday. Binged 3 times.

    Here are some things to try out.
    When you have sexual thoughts try to excercise
    Replace your habit
    sexual thoughts ---> porn
    sexual thoughts ---> excercise

    start a hobby where you have a chance to interact with people.

    Join the weekly challenge thread
    each week I start a new thread.
    It really has made me stronger.

    this is something I'm trying out for a month. after 4 days I get big urges so once every friday I will masturbate in shower with no fantasy.
    like taking nicotine patches to get rid of smoking. after a month I will stop masturbating.
    I know some say cold turkey is best but I've tried that for years, for me I'm trying this. Plus this forum is a plus
  3. niskanen91

    niskanen91 Active Member

    Hey, Razorface.

    To be honest, I wouldn't buy into "it's alright to relapse" vibe that is being sold by some members on this forum. Relapsing is not OK. Of course, binging is the worst possible scenario but even using porn once per week is bad and makes recovery take much longer.

    To be honest, I don't think you can't stop fantasizing, the good news is that you don't need to. I mean, EVERY man on this planet fantasizes about sex, what is the problem though is:
    - porn use,
    - masturbation (I know that masturbation itself usually isn't harmful but for those with PIED/porn addiction it is a step back).

    Both of those are under your control and in order to recover from PIED you have to stop those.

    Another thing that I don't understand on this forum is bashing "escapism". How do people deal with stress? Well, women talk about their problems (with friends, family, whoever really) and while it usually doesn't solve the problem, it lowers their stress. Men, on the other hand, "escape". The thing is that you may escape to wrong things, like porn, alcohol, drugs etc. and you can use gym, sports, reading books as your escape.

    To sum it up:
    - as a man you won't be able to stop fantasizing about sexual things,
    - you just need to find healthy ways to escape.

    Hope it helps.
    TheLongWalk and NatureHeals like this.
  4. NatureHeals

    NatureHeals Active Member

    well said niskanen91. I'm glad your on this forum!
  5. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    What I meant about this is that once you have relapsed, you have relapsed. I am trying to get into the mindset that I am never going to watch porn or masturbate ever again. I thought I wasn't, but that was ultimately not true. In the past I have just made myself feel like shit for relapsing every single time which usually leads to a week or longer of binging. Because this is one of my problems, getting back on track after a relapse. I have had probably 5 or more 40+ day long streaks, though i try not to focus too much on how long my streak is. So yeah I agree, it is important to not normalize relapsing, but I think it is important to not make yourself feel like shit because of it as well.

    Thank you! That I feel can be part of the problem. That I am so afraid of fantasizing that I end up doing just that anyways. And yes, there is a big difference between fantasizing and looking at porn. And yes, for me just masturbating withouth porn to relieve pressure or something just doesn't work. It always leads to porn.

    I think the big difference in escapism is between running away from responsibilities and taking a break from them. I go to the gym, and maybe the most beautiful part of it is just taking a break from everything and focusing on something simple like lifting heavy weights. The problem for me is that when I feel pain, or have to much work at hand I find myself wanting to escape into the world of porn not as a break, but for as long as possible so I dont have to deal with my real life problems. That is what I mean by escapism. You are right though, I need to find a healthy habit for when stress becomes too big, a healthy break so to speak. Reading and playing guitar is what I mostly use. If you have more ideas they would be appreciated.

    Thank you for the thorough reply, you have a lot of knowledge. It is hard at times to find the path that suits me. For example, the balance between spending to much and too little time at this forum. And the balance between taking a break and running away. And the balance between normalizing relapses and not hating yourself from them. If you view it differently I would like your thoughts. Thanks again :)
  6. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    Yes, this is a good one. Making a habit of doing something productive with my sexual thoughs. I like this! Sometimes I really beat my self up for having sexual thoughts, at least when I feel they are inappropriate. Which doesn't help me much at all.

    Thank you, I will look into this.

    I get that a lot of people can do this, but this is not for me. I always go back to porn while doing this.

    Thanks for replying, seems like you are getting pretty far on your path :)
    NatureHeals likes this.
  7. Wabi-sabi

    Wabi-sabi Imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete


    Really, it's a balancing act. It's pretty much impossible to reboot without going through numerous relapses, and if you beat yourself up every time you relapse, the mental turmoil will push you into a massive binge.

    At the same time, I don't believe in moderation - we have to quit watching porn, and that means we should strive not to relapse. But, it's a Catch-22 because fearing relapses is a trap. (I think you also fear wet dreams, which gives them too much power over you. I haven't had a wet dream in 30 years, which includes three years rebooting/relapsing.)

    As I keep saying here, the first step is always to forgive yourself - for watching porn in the first place, for being unhappy, for stumbling. . . whatever.

    What helps me is to regard my urges - and any subsequent relapses - as a teacher. It shows I have become bogged down in fear and negativity, and haven't been doing enough to rebuild my self-image.

    The following quote from Pema Chodron helped me a great deal: "Maybe the only enemy is that we don’t like the way reality is now and therefore wish it would go away fast. But what we find as practitioners is that nothing ever goes away until it has taught us what we need to know. If we run a hundred miles an hour to the other end of the continent in order to get away from the obstacle, we find the very same problem waiting for us when we arrive. It just keeps returning with new names, forms, manifestations until we learn whatever it has to teach us about where we are separating ourselves from reality, how we are pulling back instead of opening up, closing down instead of allowing ourselves to experience fully whatever we encounter, without hesitating or retreating into ourselves."

    Porn is my brain's way of telling me that I'm caught up in habit, fear, anger, stress and unhappiness.
    UK Don, tricking mind and freeman35 like this.
  8. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    I think this is key. I see the negativity from porn manifest itself in other parts of my life. Like not wanting to take responsibility, sloth and so on. I think thats why a lifestyle change is what have helped me most on the path. Just abstaining is not grabbing the problem by the root.

    I read your posts a lot, and they motivate me. You have an interesting way of viewing yourself and the world in general. Thanks for replying.
    Wabi-sabi likes this.
  9. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    After a long break from this forum I am back. So where have I been, what I have I been up too? I have been travelling a lot, firstly by studying in Australia, and later by backpacking in South East Asia. These times have been valueable for myself for sure. Even though I have grown a lot as a person, I have not improved significantly upon my pornography addiction lately. I have been thinking of getting back in here after I was done travelling, but I didn't keep that promise to myself. I procrastinated on it. But hey, here I am now. There is a reason though. My relapses have been so insignificant, I haven't truly decided to stop masturbating, and I haven't truly mad a plan to beat this addiction. But there was a changing moment. I have a lot of work to do these days, and in the middle of the week I found myself ahead of schedule. Great right? Well, I saw it as an opportunity to spend the day in bed and watch movies. And then masturbate to porn. I spend probably 6-7 hours in bed, just not wanting to do anything. Well, at one moment somebody knocked on my door, and it was two girlfriends of mine. They wanted me to come out with them, and they were all pumped up for this halloween party. And there I was. In bed, naked, with stained sheets watching some time-wasting youtube video. They were slightly drunk, so I don't know what they made of it. One of them left because I said I wouldn't come, and one sat down to talk with me, asking why I was in bed at 8:30. I had no good reason. Like I am gonna tell I just laid there all day watching porn and other useless crap on the internet? So I told here I was tired. Couldn't come. Had to sleep because I had a lot to in the morning. Oh and what did I have to do? All that which I had pushed away. She didnt really buy it at all, but they both left. To be out and have a great night together with my friends. I just really realised how I am missing out, and felt truly humiliated. I have improved so much as a person since I started this adventure, but I haven't properly dealt with this pornogphy addiction asterix quite yet. The morning after I felt like complete shit, and I allowed myself to. I reread the chapter on NAC in Tony Robbins "Awaken the giant within". I decided that morning to truly make a habit out of working on my pornography addiction. Hence why I am here currently. Well, still managed to postpone posting here, but I still took an important action. Something truly weird. But I am happy I did it. I went out to buy a can of dog food. If I ever masturbate to porn again I will eat it. All of it. I felt truly humiliated buying that can. And riding home from the store I felt like I was at rock bottom. And in a way I was. But now I feel this massive relief. I truly know deep inside I will never masturbate to pornography ever agin. And that thought is truly liberating. I will be here almost daily checking in and reading up. I'm also going to put healthy habits in place of my addiction, and make sure it lasts for life. I am handling this problem face on, and that makes me feel alive. I am excited to see what you all have been up to, and you will no doubt hear from me again.

    freeman35 likes this.
  10. freeman35

    freeman35 Active Member

    Whatever happens, the wagon is there waiting for you to get back on. It never pulls away from you. Good luck and I hope next time 2 girls knock on your door wanting to go out and party you are ready for them....:)
    Nuwanda likes this.
  11. freeman35

    freeman35 Active Member

    Great quote.

    Here's my stab at answering the question 'what is my porn addiction teaching me that I need to know'

    It's teaching me that I am being fearful - of the world, of my own potential. Telling me I am not using my talents and abilities the way they could be used. That I am not being tested enough. And it isn't about working hard so much as being your own type of awesomeness.

    I have just looked at a news websites and the stream of bad news, and the cacophony of muddled views and opinions on social media, and I have just thought about how humanity's default setting seems to be that of a confused rabble trying to make sense of what we even are, and I thought it's no wonder that some of us get addicted to porn (or anything else) with the sheer amount of alienating behavior that we subject each other to. Whilst we are a species capable of great things, we nonetheless create an overwhelming amount of nonsense and noise whilst we try to do it. I get dragged under by all of this and lose my sense of self in this world and turn to a crutch. I try to figure humanity out, try to answer unanswerable questions about life, and get lost in it all.

    I know that, whilst I am not always a strong person, I can access strength, and that when I am in top form I am a MF'ng game changer of a human being, capable of all sorts of brilliance and wonderment. Sounds arrogant, but I believe that's what my addiction is trying to teach me. And you.

    All of the energy and creativity that you have frittered away into an addiction - you created that energy and there is a lot of it isn't there? It's telling you how strong you are - how powerful you could be, if you will only recognise that fact and accept that you are one special, talented human being.

    You are the type of person who, if they decided one day to kick some serious ass, would probably conquer the world in some way or another.
    tricking mind likes this.
  12. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    Very insightful. I agree with you on a lot of this. I personally tend to think of myself as quite lucky for becoming addicted to pornography, as it has forced me to consider many parts of myself I otherwise wouldn't have had the incentive to explore. I think for me this is the ultimate lesson from pornography, being honest with myself about who I am, how I feel, and what I have to do with my life to become truly happy.
    freeman35 likes this.
  13. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    I feel great today. I have had a couple urges the last couple days, but I haven't had any problems letting them go. This has felt much easier than before. I feel on fire!
  14. freeman35

    freeman35 Active Member

    I agree - for many people (or me at least) this is the only path to recovery. Unless you discover what is good about you and what your strengths are, you will seek the crutch and the temporary pain relief of the addictive behavior. Unless you plant flowers, the weeds will come back.

    It actually takes a lot of courage to look at yourself and say 'what am I good at' and for it to not be arrogant or delusional. Its about saying to yourself 'what does this world want from me, what is it waiting for me to give'. It can help to imagine yourself living a more rewarding, more creative life, but in doing so - creating opportunities for others to do the same. Hard work alone will serve those who are already wealthy (and very few others) - but inspired work that develops and encourages your talents will serve those with whom you are in daily contact with - i.e the people who matter.

    There are people in this world who are living their brilliance but don't appreciate or acknowledge it. It might not be so much as case of changing everything but of acknowledging what you already do that is awesome and building on that. As an example, the actor Phillip Seymour Hoffman could not have been more talented and yet still fell prey to addiction. It isn't about simply being amazing at something but being able to harness it in a way that you feel fulfilled, and if you go off the rails, being able to get back on, and continue to evolve.

    Anyway I'm probably typing far too much - good luck!
  15. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    Very well written. Being honest about oneself is very hard. Do you have a journal on your own? I would be interested in seeing how you are personally dealing with pornography addiction.
  16. Imfree

    Imfree Active Member

    OP, It sounds you have a lot going for you and you are in a better position to beat this for good than most people.

    On escapism: I sometimes engage in non-porn forms of escapism. Escapism isn't necessarily bad per-se. Porn is something like escapism, but more than that. It's not a fantasy or a break. It's that feeling of wanting to escape from existing altogether. It's the feeling of wanting to be dead. Wanting to close the blinds and never think about coming back out.
  17. freeman35

    freeman35 Active Member

    I don't currently do a journal but I might start one. I will give you the honest situation: I have reduced my porn useage a lot without 100% stopping and have benefited from that although it's not ideal, it is the right direction. I would not advise anyone to use this as a structured approach. It is in reality just how it has panned out - a series of periods of sobriety followed by a short relapse. I use porn about one a week on average. For a while I was downhearted with every relapse but now I focus more on the benefits of sobriety and aim to always go longer than the last stretch. I don't believe that every relapse is 'back to square one'. I just don't think the brain works like that. I have been off porn completely for a few months here and there, but not longer that that for a number of years now. I obviously aim to end my porn use completely, but I have not personally found the concept of 'I will never use porn again' helpful. What is helpful is 'Today, I will be free of porn' followed by 'Today I will ......(insert a goal)'. I don't consider MO without porn to be a relapse, because MO reduces anyway when porn is not being used - usually to about twice a week, though that is also due to my age (39). I am currently 8 days without porn. and the previous stretch was also 8 days.

    Today I will be free of porn.

    When the urge arises - remember the greatest moment of your life, or one of them. Or your greatest achievement. Realize that that is who you are. Then look at how being a porn addict fits into THAT person's life. It won't.
  18. freeman35

    freeman35 Active Member

    Also, thanks for the story of the two girls knocking on your door, you pressed a button with that one, it gave me cause to reflect and more determination.
  19. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    Thanks for the encouraging words. I totally agree with your statement on escapism. We need to find healthy ways to pause from the stress of everyday life. I think all serious pornography addicts have in common seriously intense emotions that can becomme overwhelming . Our struggle is finding healthy ways to cope with being overwhelmed, instead of indulging in the quick fix that pornography is.
  20. Nuwanda

    Nuwanda Member

    I too have for the longest time had periods of abstaining from porn, then indulging, then abstaining. This is progress over continously PMO'ing, but it still isn't the end goal. Getting from there to completely being off pornography is the hard part of course. The story I wrote about the two girls was an important moment for me, because I felt like I hit rock bottom. This feeling really helped me quit my bullshit. It is kind of brutal, but I really feel like I needed to have it completely shit to finally be honest with myself again. Whenever I feel urges I notice that they come in times of lesser productivity; they are a sign that I need to get back on track.

    Personally I can't just MO, but I do respect this approach if done honestly. I like your approach of "today I will be free of porn" because it makes you take it one day of the time. I think it brings you right back into the moment, a way of seizing the day. As I said I would really like to read a journal about your journey. The benefit is that you have to keep yourself more accountable for your actions, and the sense of community makes the journey a lot more pleasant. I think having a habit of improving ones mindset and thoughts about pornograhy in general is a vital step to beating this addiction. Hope you join me in this choice.

    The "I will never use porn again" mindset is only helpful if it is 100% honest. Getting to that point is the hard part. For me, I feel very different than before. I have made a conscious choice to never masturbate to pornography again, and I know deep inside myself that it would bring me more pain to do PMO than to not PMO. The challenge now is keeping this mindset, nurturing it, making sure it persists. I am only just over a week in on this run, so I don't have a lot of bragging rights, but I really feel like I have PMO'd for the last time.

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