On a mission to become authentic

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Gil79, Feb 16, 2019.

  1. Montesquieu

    Montesquieu Member

    I’m glad to hear the urges have dissipated a bit and that you are feeling calm. I also notice that I feel calmer and less anxious during recovery. Incidentally, that’s also what researchers into hypersexual disorder tell us. Folks with hypersexual disorder have significantly more cortisol output and a dysfunctional stress response system (HPA Axis) which normalizes in abstinence. A reduction in feelings of anxiety is one of my main motivators, along with improved cognition and simply refraining from behaviors that are bad for my brain. I’m definitely getting old! :)

    Anyway, good continued luck!
    Gil79 likes this.
  2. mailboxsam

    mailboxsam Active Member

    Empty feeling… it’s a good sign
    Gil79 likes this.
  3. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Today I enter my fourth week without porn, masturbation, fantasy and orgasm. I still feel calm and positive. I haven't had significant urges this streak, but I have been challenged on other ways, especially this week: lack of sleep, being 3 days alone with the kids, busy at work, etc. without any time for relaxation. I feel positive about the future. There are many good things coming up and also many fronts in which I feel excitement on improving myself.

    Thanks @Montesquieu. Good to hear that that holds for you as well. Looking forward to see another update on your progress!

    Thanks @mailboxsam. That is an interesting way of looking at it. I guess that indeed that is a positive feeling. It also feels a bit scary
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  4. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    Gil - Great to hear you are doing so well! You sound very self aware of both the good in your life and the challenges. I think that is very important as I think many of us relapse when we dont appreciate how vulnerable we are at a given time.

    Keep up the great effort!
    Gil79 likes this.
  5. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    One huge benefit of the current streak is that I feel how I care less about the opinion of others. I have noticed this on several fronts (wife/family, colleagues, people in village). Not that I don't care about them, but I just put more value to my own opinion and feelings. In the last week I have said 'no' significantly more often than in the weeks before.

    One thing I am mentally struggling with is how to turn this 'streak' into permanent change. I have had quite some good streaks before in which I felt recovered and done to a level that I didn't understand how I could have ever been addicited. But still I kept going back to to consuming the poison.

    Thanks @path-forward. I agree that we have to have this vulnerability. The addiction exploits our weaknesses. We have to stay one step ahead by knowing our own.
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  6. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    The start of day 23, a Monday and on my way to work. Feeling a bit anxious of looking in my agenda. At the same time I am quite calm and confident that today and the rest of the week will all be fine. Just need to stay in the present and breathe. I don't see any difficulties on the addiction front for today, but will stay vigilant.
    Caz and path-forward like this.
  7. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Yeah, you're doing very well, at least for now. In my final days of being addicted I wasn't usually having any long streaks. It just happened, one day, the thought occurred to me before acting out, "You know, if you do this, and binge on porn, and you meet any really attractive women in the next few days, you are going to be totally embarrassed and tongue-tied, and not know what to say to them." And from then on that thought occurred to me every time I was about to binge.... shortly after that, I stopped looking up porn. It sounds corny, but I think that was the final ingredient in all my efforts to quit porn. How many supermodels have I met since then? None, right, but it worked.

    I say it worked, but it was one of many ingredients. I can share them if you want, but it did take a lot of effort and time for me to quit internet porn.

    I'm curious, how is the rest of your life going? Is the stress level low? Are you doing well with the wife and kids? How about your extended family? I ask these questions because I wonder if you're straining, or white-knuckling it, and you might snap back like a rubber band. Like I said, I had many ingredients to quitting porn, but it looks like one of the ingredients is my life problems had to get a lot smaller and more manageable first.
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  8. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    After not having seen my father for 4 years, I decided to go to his house and talk to him. Fours years ago I decided I didn't want to see him anymore. It was a tough decision, but it felt like the right thing to do. Yesterday I was in his hometown for work and quite impulsively decided to walk over to his house and just see how things would unfold naturally. On my way there I realized that I had been in that situation (walking to his house to see if he was there) so many times as a kid, often to be disappointed by him not being there or not opening the door. But this time things were different. This time I was mature and in control. Also I decided that this time I would be open to any feelings that would come up, lean in to them, let them do their work and leave my system whenever they would be ready to go. I decided not to act out, no matter what (my first package of cigarettes I bought at age 15, after a disappointing visit to his house). I felt nervous, but extremely confident that this was the right and natural thing to do.

    I rang the door, he opened, and I saw a beat-down man. A shadow. He looked surprised, in pain and angry. But he was open to talk to me. I let him talk about his frustrations first and then I took over. I took the lead in our conversation and I basically expressed everything that was on my chest in a calm and clear way. I wanted him to see my point of view on things and how much he has hurt me in the past. I told him that he is not the father that I missed. That I had already mourned for that father that I had in the past. I also told him that I need his honest story of our past. I wanted to know why he started drinking and why he could not stop, even though he was loosing his children. Somehow I got to the core of it all with just a few questions and I got answers that I never got before in all those years. I feel that I made him understood my pain and I felt his as well. I got a clear image of how I was still hoping and dreaming of being with my father as an 8 y/o boy, expecting that things would be better again, while at the same time he was in the grip of his demons, isolated and sedated on his mattress full piss (a picture he described to me yesterday), inevitably just falling deeper and deeper. I feel a lot of pain right now, but that is good. I can start to let it go now.

    One of the most important things I got yesterday, is that I am not like him. That has always been my biggest fear, that we share the same demons and that I will do to my children what he has done to me and my sister. But yesterday I felt a great inner power, and still do, that I am in control. I am above this and I will be the best father for my children and take the lead in (re)building a great legacy.
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  9. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Thanks for your post and for sharing your experiences @nuclpow
    I am indeed struggling with some things: family, social network, work especially. But on all those fronts I have been improving so much in the last couple of years, that I am very positive in how these things are developing and how I will find a balance. Nonetheless, there will always be stress and things will get hard at times. I really want to have the mindset to deal with that. And actually I feel like I am working on that now. Got to break through some (emotional) barriers though
    nuclpow likes this.
  10. Boxer17

    Boxer17 Well-Known Member

    I'll bet that realization must be a great burden lifted.
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  11. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Last night I had sex with my wife. I was a bit afraid of it, because I was afraid it would affect my progress. But it was really good. I think we also really needed this bonding experience (it had been a long time anyway). Today some mild urges have come back. As if the circulation of sexual energy started streaming again. Got to be careful in the upcoming days. I will make sure I have time to rest, turn off my phone at 7 PM and go to bed early (i.e. not later than my wife).

    In March there will be a 60k run here where I live. I have been running and working out a lot lately and I am in really good shape. I have decided to run this 60k run and downloaded a training scheme for the next 6 months, which should get me to finish it in 6 hours. I am really excited. I think the training scheme is quite tough to fit in, but I am just going for it. I feel this general urge and power lately to strive for something really badass.

    Thanks @Boxer17!
    -Luke-, StarWarsFan, Boxer17 and 3 others like this.
  12. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    First of all, Gil, congrats on connecting with your wife! That's awesome! Yes, the juices start flowing and it's time to stay on guard and be vigilant. I was not so vigilant last weekend. So, stick to your plan.
    Secondly, a 60k is a bit over 37 miles! Now that's badass alright! They'd be scraping me off the pavement with a spatula if I tried something like that :D
    Thanks for your very inspirational post. Stay strong, bud.
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  13. Boxer17

    Boxer17 Well-Known Member

    That's an hilarious mental image! Made me chuckle:p
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  14. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    I read this post, the one where you met your father, and your reply to me. It was a big deal to meet your father like that. Maybe you should reward yourself (or at least not be hard on yourself) about it. I didn't know you were raised by an alcoholic, that sounds very rough. Great job having a calm conversation with him.

    I was wondering if you were having sex with your wife. Do you mind sharing how often? I'd say it's a good idea to help lower your stress level and lower temptations to act out sexually. I think turning off the phone at 7 PM is a great idea, too, along with not staying awake after your wife has gone to bed.

    I can see you are on top of many things, but I am worried about your stress level.

    Do you have site blocking on any of your devices?
    Gil79 likes this.
  15. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Thanks @Mozenjo. Actually I think it is already really badass if you can push yourself to the level that they have to scrape you from the pavement, no matter what the distance is! :D
    Mozenjo likes this.
  16. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Thanks @nuclpow. It was a big deal indeed, and actually it was rewarding by itself. I took action and now I can wait and see for a while how things settle.

    My wife and I have sex maybe once a month or so. Sometimes twice, sometimes some months without. There are some barriers, and the most important ones are my porn use (not being interested in my wife) and just our busy life with the kids. Nonetheless it is always good when we have it.

    Yeah, stress is a thing for me. Especially work stress in combination with poor sleep.
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  17. nuclpow

    nuclpow Well-Known Member

    Yes, sounds good.
    Okay, thanks for letting me know.
    The stress is mostly work? I have rarely worked full time, so I might be talking out of my backside, but I have a couple questions. Is it full time? Is it something you really want to be doing?

    Please share about sleep as well. Getting good sleep was a critical ingredient in my recovery. Whenever I slept poorly I was way more easily tempted to look up P, I had a lot less self-control. What's wrong with your sleep? Getting to bed too late? Broken sleep? Just not enough of it?
  18. -Luke-

    -Luke- Well-Known Member

    Good to see things are moving in the right direction for you, Gil.

    60k? Jesus, you are now officially my favorite Dutch athlete since Johan Cruyff.
  19. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    Not really that much for an update. I haven't had any further urges, but had to stop some sexual fantasies in early stage. That was just a matter of seconds. Been running and working out and eating healthy. Sleep was quite okay the last couple of days, but could have been better. Bit of work stress/ anxiety for going to work tomorrow. Got to make sure that when I get back from work I turn of my phone and stay in the current 'I don't fap' mindset.

    Thanks for your feedback nuclpow. Yeah I work full time: 3 days from home, 2 days in a city quite far away (3 hours from door to door). I do enjoy the work, I have a lot of freedom and good pay, but I find it difficult to find my balance. I guess that will just take a bit of time. Still figuring some things out of which kinds of projects to focus on and how to arrange the traveling so that it doesn't exhaust me too much.

    My sleep has been poor since I have kids. I think I can count the number of nights of unbroken sleep in the last 7 years on both my hands. But things are getting better, way better. Indeed it makes a big difference in how I feel, how well I can cope with stress and how well I am able to deal with my impulses.

    Thanks a lot Luke. Hope you're doing well. Well, let's talk again after I have actually ran it. For now I have been only training smaller distances and registered for the run, haha. But I won't let you down :D
  20. Gil79

    Gil79 Seize the day

    I stopped drinking coffee last Friday. After one afternoon of feeling really sick and having bad headaches, I felt quite okay the rest of the weekend. But today I had to travel to work and I found out this was quite a thing without coffee. Not so much for waking up but for having uncomfortable feelings. I felt very nervous, anxious, worried and down. I felt like I needed my medicine, which in this case is coffee. This was quite a realization: I don't need it that much to perform well at work, but I use it to deal with discomfort. Now traveling back and feeling better. The weird thing is that I can't stop drinking water though. I think that my body really needs to readjust. No urges for F, M or P, but will turn my phone off when I arrive home tonight.

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