Thankful for a Fresh Start

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by LTE, Dec 4, 2012.

  1. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    A number that truly stands for something more than just the number of days not doing something, LTE. Well done!
  2. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    Thanks, SOJ.
  3. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    Just wanted to check in and say hello, lte. Make it a GREAT weekend :)
  4. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    Thanks NCB. Have a good one.
  5. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    LTE, your posts over the last several weeks have really helped me. Especially your consistent message regarding the myth of masturbation being "necessary". I count myself as one of your converts. We'll see how long I can hold out, but regardless of how that goes, I know that it's not necessary unless we convince ourselves that it is. Of course, like most of us, my reboot absolutely requires the elimination of porn as well.

    Congrats on another milestone. Seems like just yesterday that you were celebrating 700, and now it's another 100 days down. Like you've been saying, your life has changed for the better in many ways, and that's the best beacon of hope you can shine for us.

    Enjoy your weekend!
  6. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    Thanks my friend. I want to stress that my sentiments regarding this are not moralistic. I don't believe that masturbation is a deadly sin, or anything of that nature, but I believe it is a bad way to treat ourselves.

    At this point, I don't think in terms of holding out; it's just how I live. I mention this to offer hope to everyone dealing with this problem. It's not as if you are trying to hold your breath for the rest of your life. It's simply a matter of realizing that you are in control of your sexual desires, your physical urges (so to speak) and that masturbation is a choice. Once I realized that I didn't need to do it and that I would never gain a bit of real satisfaction from masturbation the rest was pretty easy.

    What is always true? You . . . are always in control.
  7. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    That's really a good distinction to make: masturbation is not the same thing as holding your breath. It is not a life and death matter, it is a choice. You can choose to do otherwise.
  8. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    . . . and live happily and comfortably. I haven't ejaculated in roughly 800 days. My prostate is not particularly uncomfortable, my scrotum has not exploded, I haven't started wearing a tunic and sporting a bowl haircut nor do I chant all day long. :) I am happier, healthier and strips get than I've been in years; in many respects happier, healthier and stronger than I've ever been.

    Let be be emphatic about this; I am not advocating celibacy as a lifestyle. I don't have a partner now, but if I find a loving partner I intend to be sexually active with her. All I am getting at is this; being in control of yourself equips you for a better life whatever happens in the future. It is possible, it is not that hard to accomplish and it feels great once you do accomplish it.
  9. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    lte - this reminds me of taking guitar lessons. I'm noticing that I'm "holding out" as I practice - holding my breath just waiting to make it successfully to the next chord or progression - in anticipation of a failure as some point in doing this. This really gets in the way of both enjoying the experience and playing well. My guitar playing - and my life in general (sans PMO) will be much more fluid and enjoyable as I'm able to be in the moment. Kind of moving from white knuckling to white light... :)

    I'm delighted you've found this groove for yourself!
  10. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    I've heard that mistakes happen at transition points. IOW, a mistake in playing music would be most likely to happen at the end of a phrase, end of a verse, etc. Mistakes driving a car are much more likely to happen at an intersection than in the middle of a block. Moving to a new home, changing jobs, graduating from school, these are transition points which can be rough to navigate.

    A long time ago, I did some work that occasionally meant walking across a narrow beam. I quickly learned that if I looked at my feet it was much harder than if I looked ahead and trusted my feet to find the beam on their own. It must've worked too, I am, after all, still here to write about it. Fixate on the details and the easiest task can become hard. Fixate on the horizon and the toughest of tasks become easier. While I am strongly in favor of progress counters for rebooting, I think it's important not to fixate on them. If you have to fixate on anything, think to the end result, freedom from porn and masturbation. If that seems daunting, remind yourself that you only have to deal with today's challenges and don't worry about tomorrow, but always keep in mind that the goal of this is to build a new life for yourself where you are in control.
  11. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    Steven Covey in "7 Habits of Highly Effective People" identified "begin with the end in mind" as the 2nd habit. I think he made a mistake there, lol. It should have been the first :)
  12. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    sounds like I struck the right chord, lte :)

    I appreciate your thoughts - and will get back to you on that front soon...
  13. Well said, NCB.

    I've not always been in this place, myself. I'll float in and out of it in a once-in-a-while type of way, usually at the mercy of some dysfunctional cyclic motion, every time the stresses of life become too uncomfortable.

    Since my latest 'reboot' or focus on recovery, it's been something I rather keep out of mind, until I choose to think about it, whether to help or be helped. But if I'm not thinking about it from a place of non-obsession, and it becomes something I have to fight-off, I'm not approaching things correctly somehow. And then it becomes something I have to investigate, why am I thinking this way? Once I identify the [mis-]process, I become empowered to make better choices, and learn that much more about myself.
  14. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    Let me suggest an explanation. My guesstimate regarding this is that you still have a place deep inside that believes P & MO are effective in making you feel better. If you believe that some way, somehow, you will find satisfaction from P and/or MO then you will perceive this process as denying yourself something.

    IMO, neither porn or masturbation can offer any real benefits. Yes, it can break tension for a few moments, but the tension returns quickly. It can't offer any lasting relief from anxiety and it can offer absolutely ZERO sexual satisfaction, because there is no emotional energy exchanged.

    Using PMO to relieve sexual tension is tantamount to eating a bar of soap to satisfy hunger. Soap is great for washing your face, but it's not nutritious and could possibly be poisonous if taken internally. At the very least you would suffer digestive distress.

    Looking at porn and masturbating cannot satisfy sexual desire. Never, not for even a minute. Ejaculation is is not synonymous with sexual satisfaction. High degrees of excitement are not synonymous with sexual satisfaction. Novelty is not synonymous with sexual satisfaction. (Sensing a pattern here?) :) Sex is not a solo activity. Let me elaborate:

    Take out a game board or a deck of cards and setup for two players, then play both parts. It can be chess, Monopoly, Clue, or 5-card draw Poker; the game doesn't matter because there's no sport involving strategy in which one player can successfully play two hands. If you know what the other guy's cards are, what the other guy's strategy is . . . well, there's just not much sport in it. In the world of games, no one can have much fun playing against themselves.

    It takes two to play a game of strategy and it takes two to have sex. If the two people happen to love one another deeply, that can only help to make matters better. But without a partner, it's like playing a board game against yourself.
  15. WRAT

    WRAT Active Member

    Great analogy LTE. Thanks for sharing.
  16. Yes, excellent analogy. In fact, lte, I used to try and play card games, or chess with myself (when I was younger) and it didn't work- wasn't fun, nor satisfying- too darn predictable... :)

    If I could clarify the portion from which you quoted, it's in relation to someone who still responds a certain way to either internal or else external stimuli. Now, the response may be based on, as it will be in early recovery, on the false notion that [solo-] sex holds some kind of answer for the stresses and anxiety of life- and that's why an investigation as to why we're reacting a certain way is needed. It's a matter of taking our mind from a place of fantasy (supposing that sex with ourselves offers any kind of answer), to a place of reality- which is to face the emotional stress directly, maybe solve it some other way, or to just simply undergo the feelings from which we're trying to escape.

    When we 'know ourselves', we certainly change in relation to the delusions we once held.
  17. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    Hey, lte - I thought I'd check in for a second...

    I've been having plenty of difficulty with navigating transitions with certain emotions - feeling stressed, excited, overwhelmed, tired, joyful, and hopeful.

    Rather than skim over them and use PMO as a reactive springboard, I need to ask myself what I'm feeling, how do I best manage this feeling, what do I need, and how do I get my need met. Really get in the moment, so that I can truly hear what is going on, and live my life accordingly.

    Even as I write this, I am reminded that growing up, there was so much skimming over emotions in my family. PMO has become such an effective way to continue glossing over them.

    If I'm to learn the song, I need to touch on all the notes.

    Thanks for the reminder :)
  18. Caoimhín

    Caoimhín Winter's coming...

    Some of the habits and patterns that we are playing out have been going on in our families for even longer than we've been around. The patterns of denying and suppressing emotion is something we learnt as children. Isn't it amazing to realise this? YOu are working at breaking some truly engrained behaviours. Well done!

    But well done as well for starting to recognise the patterns. Imagine how difficult it is to recognise someting that maybe everyone in your family was doing on some level... something that was ubiquitous to your up-brining? Like the air around you.
  19. NCBob

    NCBob The 11th commandment: Thou shalt not peek:-)

    Thanks, Caoimhín :)

    It's like saying the King has no clothes - and we all know that goes over like a lead balllon :(
  20. LTE

    LTE Master Of My Domain

    Sometimes you just have to surf the emotion, stay on top of it, but don't fight it. I had a stressful afternoon. There were a lot of nagging problems to solve and they began to pile up by mid afternoon. I felt myself becoming anxious and I just told myself to lean into the anxiety. Let it follow its course, but not allow it to overwhelm. As soon as I remembered to do this, I felt better equipped to deal with it and, by and large, that afternoon was successful.

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