Recovery Journal: I Am a Stone

Discussion in 'Ages 25-29' started by WilltoPower, May 12, 2019.

  1. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 17

    Almost through the first week of the semester. It's daunting. I'm going to be challenged this semester. I want to be refined so challenge is a good thing, but it's very uncomfortable. This also means that there will be threats to my recovery. I will experience stress and anxiety this semester which will be times I won't necessarily be thinking through clearly. I will definitely be needing to prepare for those times.

    I'm not feeling the best outside the work load either. I'm trying to do my best to be more social at school. I'm not doing as well as I'd hoped. It's only week one so I realize that my attempts are not over. However, I am feeling a bit lonely at school.

    I was tempted to use this evening. My brother was watching a movie in the living room that had porn in the scenes. Obviously not full on hardcore porn, but it was still porn. Anyways, I stayed in the living room for too long, but I did leave. Luckily, I just told myself that using would be counterproductive to my goals. Dodged a bullet.
  2. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 18

    Well, I have masturbated three times in the last two days. While I am much more concerned with pornography, I am convinced that masturbation is not a healthy activity for me to engage in at this point in my life. I told myself I was only going to do it once, then I did it again a few hour later and earlier today. The chaser got to me. On the bright side, I didn't use any porn.

    I'm a week into the semester and the stress was building up. My brother has been watching a TV show that shows a lot of softcore porn and I have not been faithful in my protocol to leave the room when he watches the TV show. So the edging I am sure had a role in my behavior.

    Other than that, I started searching for a therapist again. I found ten potentials so I am confident I will be receiving treatment some time in the future.

    A reset on my streak counter, but I am still doing well in contrast to the past.
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2020
    baywalker likes this.
  3. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 19

    Nothing much to report. The ease of not being tempted to search for porn continues. I'm disappointed if I'm being honest. I am creeping onto 30 consecutive days without porn for the first time probably in my adult life, and I feel no excitement. I mostly feel like an empty shell in between the times I'm in class or entrenched in conversation...

    Anyways, I got an appointment with a therapist on Monday. I'm staying skeptical for now though. That last therapist was just awful.
  4. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 20

    Went to a therapist today. I really liked that this therapist took the time to listen to my story. She asked me questions of course. One of them has got me really feeling sad. I'm excited about this therapist, but I'm also anxious about the process.
  5. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 21

    It has been 30 days since I last used pornography. This is the longest I have ever gone without porn for at least since I have been an adult. I should be happy about this celebrating this small victory, but all I feel is sadness.

    For some reason, I haven't had much trouble abstaining from porn since I last used it. Maybe its the daily meditation or the fantasy annihilation method I've been using. I don't know. What I do know is that up until now, these 30 days have left me hollow. I'm not completely devoid of emotion, but they have been dulled.

    After seeing the therapist, my thoughts have been fixed on the questions she asked me and recalling some confusion I experienced when I first discovered porn.

    I am finally feeling something more intense which I first found to be better than feeling almost nothing, but just a few hours ago it got so intense that I just wanted to escape it.

    I nearly relapsed.

    I luckily prepared for cravings and threw on an emergency guided meditation for porn addiction I found on YouTube.

    The sadness has been diminishing, but its still present. I want it to stop.
  6. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 22

    Still haven't relapsed with porn, but I honestly want to. Ever since that therapy session, I have been going through so much sadness, anxiety, and loneliness. Its only been a week and a half. School has been stressful. I feel like I'm barely treading water. I don't know that I'm going to make it to the next session. I feel so insecure right now. I have my first yoga class tomorrow. Hopefully, I will find it re-energizing. Fuck. I shouldn't have searched google why I have never experienced intimacy. Now this idea that I fear intimacy is screwing with my head. I should have left it alone and let my therapist tell me this or that. Now I'm going to be filtering everything through that lens. Alright, speaking of things my therapist told me, I better stop this negative self-talk. I saw this morning that Art of Manliness posted an article on the topic. I'm going to read that tonight.
  7. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 23

    Just got back from yoga. Meh. Its nothing special. I’d rather actually work out or meditate. I am around women, but I don’t know that that is some kind of benefit.

    I read the post on AoM this morning. I guess writing my negative self-talk thoughts in this journal is a good first step after all.

    I’ve been feeling stressed these past few days. Constantly shaking my leg and tensing my neck and head muscles. My thoughts are all over the place when I’m doing my ridiculous amounts of required reading and I keep thing, “I am never going to be able to focus.”

    Nearly another week down. Counting down the days till my next therapy session: 17.5
  8. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Journal Entry 17

    Its just one of those days. I'm just feeling empty and a bit hopeless. I could really just relapse today, but I know that I'll regret not going farther. I'll always wonder if things would be different if I stayed clean for three, six, twelve, or twenty four months. I may not feel much now, but I could be doing so much better in two years if I stick with it. You got this, WilltoPower.

    16 days till therapy.
  9. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    I just fucked up. It was dumb, but I wanted to see a woman’s face that had the look of longing. Of course, I input a search that was on the line and there it was: hardcore pornography. I felt anxiety as soon as I saw it, but rather than closing the tab, I clicked on the image, and then I just searched for some more until I used it to gratify myself. I feel sick with myself right now. Why the fuck would I do this?! Why wasn’t I thinking. Porn doesn’t make me feel better. It just makes feel like shit. Fuck me. I don’t know how to fix this one. I don’t know how to cope with this feeling of isolation. I'll speak to my therapist about it and form a plan.

    Current longest period without porn is now 40 days.
  10. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Screwed up again today. I was just so preoccupied with how I can get back to porn so easily. FUCK ME. I hate myself so much right now.

    I reinstalled Pluckeye and set the delay to an hour. I tried using a less restrictive software, Cold Turkey, but that was an utter failure. I do not trust myself without this sort of restriction.
  11. Thelongwayhome27

    Thelongwayhome27 Well-Known Member

    hey man don't be too hard on yourself. This stuff isn't easy. See if you can accept what happened, forgive yourself. I find that the kinder I am on myself when I have slipped, the sooner I manage to bounce back.

    Try to see if you can focus on doing the little good things, regardless of if you PMOed or not, and soon enough you'll build back some positive momentum again.

    best of luck !
  12. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Thank you.

    I'm going through a lot of emotions after feeling very little for a while now. I've moved on from anger already. I'm still a mess, but I have professional help. I just gotta do my best to keep it together until I see my therapist. This has been the longest two weeks in a long time for me, and it will be another two weeks until my next appointment.

    I just gotta stick with it. I can't give up like I have in the past. I'm uncomfortable, but that's the only way I'm going to move on.
    Thelongwayhome27 likes this.
  13. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    I am no longer feeling intense anger with myself (I began to feel some more after I posted last night), but I guess I still haven't forgiven myself for those secondary uses. I guess I expect too much from myself, or I just can't rationalize why I used a second and third time.

    What "worries" me is that I have a general feeling of indifference. I may have just numbed myself, and I don't want that. Maybe after a few days or a week, my emotions will begin to emerge again. I can only hope.

    I'll just keep doing the work for now.
    Thelongwayhome27 likes this.
  14. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    I'm still feeling indifferent for the most part this morning.

    I did listen to a podcast episode of PornReboot and I think it helped me to finally forgive myself for my latest relapse. I am aware of this sense though I still feel very little.
    Thelongwayhome27 likes this.
  15. Rebel

    Rebel Active Member

    It's okay man, I hope we learn from our mistakes.
  16. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Screwed up again yesterday. Didn't feel like writing about and I don't feel like writing about it now either, but I'm forcing myself to take action anyways. I don't have much to analyze. I used, and I'm not sure why. Maybe its because I am so disconnected with my emotions right now that I just wanted to feel the rush of crossing the line. Well I think I am sufficiently numb at this point that using didn't do much for me. I could easily just give up at the moment out of pure apathy, but I started this most recent try at recovery in apathy, and emotions eventually came back. At the moment, it sounds far fetched, but I don't feel anything using porn right now so why not try letting go of it again. I'm going to take off all my filters because I am convinced that I have been relying on them rather than confronting my issues and cultivating healthy behaviors. I can always reinstall software.

    I really don't feel like being around people or doing anything including my responsibilities. I really don't care about therapy coming up either. All that said, I'm going to keep on just doing the actions that I think I would do if I were motivated to recover so that means I will be doing my best to be abstinent, reading and meditating in the morning, and going to therapy. I'm going to try to focus more on my studies which I have been neglecting also.

    I really didn't want to share any of this honestly. I guess deep down somewhere underneath all that is numb, there is still some shame.
    Rebel likes this.
  17. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    I have fallen into a state of apathy in the past few days. I used porn again last night because of this state of indifference. After I used, I realized that I need to take this apathy head on so this morning, I am using my normal reading time to head off this state of not caring. I did a quick google search and read "The Curse of Apathy: Sources and Solutions" on Psychology Today. I used the article to create a worksheet.

    Events leading up to apathy: (1) ~30 days of pornography abstinence
    (2) first therapy session
    (3) intense sadness
    (4) removal of Pluckeye filter
    (5) subconscious preoccupation with pornographic image
    (6) searching for image in an effort to satisfy fantasy of intimacy/cope with sadness
    (7) engaged with pornography which I was inadvertently exposed
    (8) repeated use of pornography​

    Belief as a result of events: I am incapable of change.

    Counter Evidence: In the past, I consistently exercised for 6 months while working 12 or more hour shifts, 6 days/week, on an inconsistent schedule.

    Self-talk/Reprogramming: You can do this. You can change. You can bounce back from this setback.

    Plan of Action: Install repeat reminder app onto my phone, and engage in the positive self-talk once an hour.
    I should also inject some novelty into my daily/weekly routine. I am not sure what to do for this quite yet. I have some ideas, but nothing for sure yet.
    Rebel likes this.
  18. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Feeling a little bit better. Still feel mostly emotionally blunt, but I have a more positive outlook.

    The other day, I was thinking that because I was feeling indifferent I should just cancel therapy. Aftrall, if I am not caring, therapy won't work, but then I realized that this is the cycle I continually engage in: attempt to quit, relapse, become apathetic. I've tried to do be clean and break away from this cycle dozens of times. I can't do this myself. The very fact that I relapsed again shows that I need therapy. This realization itself really helped me to get out of the self-defeating attitude I was engaging in. While I'm not looking forward to telling my therapist that I masturbated to pornography several times, I am ready to start a healing process.
    Rebel likes this.
  19. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    I was feeling lonely, had a headache, and I was hungry. I searched for non-pornographic images. I read something a while ago called “natural grounding,” and I was using that as an excuse to surf for images of women. Of course, I eventually got into some images that were suggestive. I ended up using those images to masturbate to. While I did not use hardcore pornography, it was pornography to me in that moment. I will not allow myself to be mad. I will not engage in negative self-talk. I took some ibuprofen, making a note of this stumble, and I will now go eat.

    Feeling some sadness and now indifference... Every day feels so long. I no longer am feeling motivated to do anything and I'm not finding joy in my classes which I normally do. I don't want to talk with anybody really, and I would rather not go anywhere. I hate this. Maybe I should put those filers back on. I can go 40 days again easily that way and maybe feeling will come back. I don't know. I really see why weekly sessions are recommended. One hour is not going to be enough time
    Last edited: Feb 16, 2020
  20. WilltoPower

    WilltoPower Member

    Feeling a bit stressed with school deadlines. I took a break to watch some TV. Katy Perry appeared wearing a tight dress displaying a lot of cleavage. Next thing I knew, I was searching for suggestive images and began masturbating to them. I stopped in the middle and threw on an urge surfing meditation. I am disappointed in what I have done, but I am relieved that I quit mid-behavior. Reset my timer even though I didn't use "porn" as it is normally thought of and even though I terminated my masturbation mid-way.

    I just got to make it through this weekend. I will finally meet with my therapist on Monday again. I really hope that she can help me.

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