The Road Goes Ever On

Discussion in 'Ages 25-29' started by Eternity, Feb 25, 2012.

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  1. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Hello! I recently started a blog on Reuniting under the name Fallen. I'm 28 years old and I'm totally inexperienced in terms of relationships and sex. I always wondered what's wrong with me, and then I found YBOP and realized that I'm addicted to PMO.

    I haven't brought up my background so far, so I will briefly do that here. Like many, I discovered masturbation when I was young (but probably earlier than most, when I was 8 or 9). I didn't understand what it was at first, but it felt good. When I was 11 I got a porn mag via friends (apparently they had found a hidden stash somewhere), but I was actually disgusted by it. I didn't look at it again until I was around 14. By then, I had started masturbating to non-nude pictures, which I found to be more arousing than porn. This actually never changed, and even today non-nude/softcore has been my priority over more extreme stuff.

    As my Internet connection got faster and faster, my picture hoarding increased. I was always looking for the perfect picture, and when I found it, it was no longer perfect once the session had ended. My addiction reached its peak when I moved out from my parents. Consequently, so did my social anxiety. While I've always been shy, I wasn't afraid of people before. However, I went out less and less, and eventually I only went out when I had to get food in order to survive. At this time I was also addicted to online RPGs, which I found to be a great escape from the real world. Obviously I lost contact with my friends.

    I always wanted to change my life, but no matter what I couldn't overcome my anxiety. I began to study at university, and while I made some acquaintances, I was still withdrawn. At this time I was still PMO:ing daily. Fast-forward to 2012. After an exhausting binge in the beginning of February, I got sick of it. I didn't want to do it anymore. That's when I found YBOP and discovered that masturbating was more than just a bad habit. February 7th was the last time I PMO'd. And I intend to keep it that way. Today is day 18 of no PMO, and it's been easy so far. However, I'm aware that it could turn around any day, and I'm prepared for it. I won't let withdrawals drag me back down to the bottom of the pit that I'm trying to climb. I feel better about myself, and I think I'm making good progress.

    My goal is a better life. I want to be happy. I want to gain social experience, especially with women. I want to achieve something that I can be proud of, and I think stopping PMO is a good first step.

    Let's beat this addiction.
     
  2. cicero

    cicero "It is a great thing to know our vices."

    Re: Farewell, addiction!

    I like your goals! In my experience, making a positive life change in one area (quitting porn) can really build momentum in other areas (social anxiety, girls), and day-to-day life ends up being better in all sorts of gross and subtle ways. Remember this when the going gets tough (that's what I need to do, lol).

    Good luck!
     
  3. Rockhardington

    Rockhardington Persistence not Perfection

    Re: Farewell, addiction!

    The less time you spend in porno-land the better you will be with people. It takes a while to "thaw", but you will. Think of socializing as "exposure therapy". The more you do it, the more comfortable you will be in social situations and the more "social intelligence" you gain. The pain of exposing yourself to these situations can be unbearable at first, but keep your end goal in focus. There will a degree of pain and anxiety, but it does go away after a while. Trust me, I was the most socially awkward person 10 years ago. I slowly figured out it was two emotions under that feeling- shame and lack of confidence. All social situations are going to be awkward with those in the mix. Part of my reasons to go to school was to force myself to be around people. I sat on the computer for years and realized that I had a problem.

    You can do this. You are right. Stopping compulsive porn use is a great first step. Your confidence will increase over time and you will be able to do a lot more in your life for yourself. I'm still hooked after 5 years of wrestling with it, but I've gotten so much more doe in my life and experienced so much personal and social growth just by reducing my levels of it. By not using porn to handle every little stress or insecurity that came into my life.

    Keep trying, even if you repeatedly fail (which is normal and part of the process) and revisit these posts a year later and notice how much growth you experienced.
     
  4. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: Farewell, addiction!

    Thanks cicero. It feels better already, compared to a month ago. Many things have become more interesting, such as nature and music. Good luck to you too!

    I agree, Rockhardington. I think I've improved a lot since I started studying again. I used to be unable to speak with girls, I got really nervous and couldn't find the words. I got over that, though, and today it's no longer that much of a problem. I'm still not good at talking, but that goes for talking to anyone. I hope that as I gain confidence, I will be able to converse spontaneously, rather than having to plan what I'm going to say. Thanks for your support.
     
  5. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: Farewell, addiction!

    Three weeks

    Well, today is day 21 of no PMO. I can't say it's been fast, but it hasn't felt that long either. There's not much to report, really. I had one minor urge to M which I easily dismissed, but apart from that the last week has been uneventful. I have, on the other hand, felt like doing something social, but I haven't found anything to do. I live in a very small town (in some countries it would probably be called a village) and there's not much to do around here. Been exercising, though. My energy still hasn't balanced out: some days I feel like I could run a marathon, and others I feel tired after a quick walk.

    Actually, there are a couple of improvements. I feel less irritated these days. Before, I'd get irritated at everything, but now it's easier to deal with stuff. I'm not saying I don't get upset at all, it's just not about every little thing anymore. Also, I had a lot of sexual dreams/nightmares during week 2, but those seem to have vanished now.

    I have to focus on beating the problem of boredom. Luckily spring isn't far away, so that means I can be outside more. Still, it'd be nice to spend some time with people. Linked to boredom is my internet usage. This is probably my worst problem currently, I waste so much time on checking useless stuff. I'm going to work on limiting my online time.
     
  6. Rockhardington

    Rockhardington Persistence not Perfection

    Re: Farewell, addiction!

    Yes, compulsory internet use is a problem for me too. The addiction can morph into other things and its good to keep an eye on these things. Find what other compulsory thoughts you engage in and you'll get a glimpse of the anxiety that is underneath all of this.

    Being in a small village can be challenging, but I live in a big city and still find excuses to be alone and isolated. Alcoholics drinking around each other can still be lonely and isolated because they are not engaging with anybody in any meaningful way. The number of people around you is not as important as the quality of your interactions. Now that you are out of some fog, now is the chance to build with those that you do know. Even watching a show with someone else or being on the internet showing a friend or family member whatever adds a different dimension to things. But yeah, its tough to break out of these self-imposed limitations. Our addict mind is clever and will make excuses to keep you alone. The addict is like a jealous lover, always trying to trick you to keep you near her despite your own well-being and growth.

    Youre being a little social here by being accountable of your activities to strangers. The journaling will help some. But find any excuse to be around people. Go to the market, chit chat with the old folk. You are a part of the community, is there anything you could contribute to it now that you are becoming you again?
     
  7. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: Farewell, addiction!

    That's true, I would most likely find excuses to avoid people no matter where I live. I used to think that I simply need to move somewhere else, and my life will change just like that. But it's not the location that needs to change, it's me. I have been visiting a friend occasionally during the past year, and I'm going to try to hang out with him more often. I also feel that I have distanced myself too much from my parents (something that started in my teens, and when I moved out I'd rarely visit) and I'd like to spend more time with them. I also made a few friends when I was studying , but they're all girls so it feels a bit awkward to ask them to hang out with me. I'm not that brave yet! We still meet up (in groups) regularly, though.

    I think I should take up photography again, I bought a camera last summer which I've barely used. I lost my motivation (possibly due to PMO), but now I want to give it another go. That would bring me outside and probably around people. Other than that, I'll have to look around. There's got to be something to do.
     
  8. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Four weeks

    Four weeks

    Almost a month! I started working last week so that's definitely helped me staying away from temptations. Being unemployed meant that I had way too much time on my hands, so going from that to only 4-5 hours of free time each day is a huge change. It also limits my time spent on the Internet, and it makes me able to afford going out for stuff, so it's really nice. Right now I'm too exhausted to worry about the social aspect (although work means that I'll be around people), so I'll have to gradually start focusing on that as I get used to the changes.

    I've mainly noticed two positive changes: one is that my memory is better (especially remembering numbers), the other is that I'm far less tired at work compared to when I've worked before. I used to be close to a zombie during the entire morning, but now I have an easier time waking and getting up. This is probably also due to me trying to sleep around 8 hours/night. It means I have to go to bed around 10PM, but that's fine.

    Apologies for not having anything else to tell. There's not much going on right now, especially not down there. Not even random morning wood. But hopefully I'll have some kind of reaction eventually.
     
  9. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Day 38 (I think)

    First, sorry for being inactive. I'm reading journals daily, but I don't have enough time to reply (I tend to take a long time to write something, even a quick reply). It's great to see the progress of the members.

    I'm doing well, but I realized that I've got addicted to something else - sweets/snacks. Gotta cut that, starting tomorrow. Not only is it unhealthy, but also expensive. Let's see if my willpower can do the trick there as well. It should be easy, all I need to do is to avoid buying any.

    I'm getting more and more used to working, and I feel that I'm more effective with my time these days. For example, yesterday morning I got shopping done, picked up a concert ticket, and did the dishes. Before, it would have taken me several days to get all of that done. I think that it's linked to my growing motivation - I actually want to get these things done! I'm also more focused on finishing one task at a time, both at work and at home. I don't run between several things, even when it gets stressful.

    I haven't been able to exercise much, in the sense that I get dressed for it. But I'm taking my bike to work and the job itself is physical, involving a lot of walking and (sometimes heavy) lifting. However, soon I hope that I will be able to go for a quick run or walk in the evenings. I haven't been able to due to pain in my foot, but I'm just about recovered. It's not that I'm exhausted after work, there's lots of energy left. Speaking of, my energy levels seem to have balanced out. I neither feel quite as "hyper" as I often did during the first weeks, nor do I feel fatigued.

    I'm still flatlining (not that I'm expecting a quick recovery). I had a nocturnal emission around day 30, the first one ever in my life. I didn't feel any negative effects the following day. I haven't missed PMO, but as always I'm cautious. I don't really think about it anymore, but it's most likely still lurking in my brain.

    I think I'm seeing improvements with my social anxiety. It's hard to explain, but as I mentioned I'm going to a concert soon. The old me would always find an excuse not to go, but this time I feel more excited than worried. Hopefully this is a good sign. I'm also planning to travel in the autumn, something I'm looking forward to a lot. I've barely been outside my own country before, so it's going to be great to see new sights!

    Well, it seems my short update turned into a long one. Due to my lack of activity, I wish the best of luck to everyone!

    PS. I changed the title of this journal
     
  10. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Day 45 or so, I'm not counting very carefully anymore

    I just got home from the concert and it made me realize how much fun I missed out on when I would rather sit inside and gather material for my nightly PMO rituals. Although I was going alone I didn't feel any awkwardness, rather the opposite - I felt like I belonged there. Maybe this is the beginning of something? Also, there were quite a few attractive women there, but I felt nothing. Still flatlining, in other words.

    I had another NE/WD around day 40, roughly 10 days after the first one. I think I had a minor chaser the next day, because I felt kinda horny when I woke up in the morning. I didn't let it conquer me, though. After all, I've decided that I have quit forever.

    Finally I have to mention something I've experienced. I wake up almost every night because I have to pee, and sometimes I wake up to a pretty healthy erection (50%+). I'm not sure if this qualifies as morning wood, or if it's due to me having to pee. I more or less expect to wake up once/night, even when I don't drink anything several (5-6) hours before I go to bed. It's not killing me, but it'd be nice to get a full night's sleep, heh.
     
  11. Existential

    Existential New Member

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Reading your posts are really motivating. I am on day 5 because I relapsed after getting to day 12 (my average is 2 weeks then I relapse). I really want to get over those two weeks and forget about PMOing forever. Congrats on making it to 45 days and hope you start seeing a more rebalanced self.
     
  12. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Thanks! 12 days isn't bad, and it's not like the weeks away are pointless. Keep at it and you'll get there. Do you know what's causing you to relapse? If so, you can be extra careful when those situations arise.
     
  13. Existential

    Existential New Member

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Yeah, its the weekends that make me relapse specifically Sunday mornings and afternoons. I don't know why it happens on the week ends, maybe its because I got used to PMOing on the weekends only for such a long time that that's my trigger. In a few hrs it will be day 7 so I'm happy about that and Ill be looking forward to the 2nd week and see how that one goes.
     
  14. waffel

    waffel New Member

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Have you tried peeing whilst sitting on the toilet seat? That way you fully empty your bladder & it helps to relax the prostate.
     
  15. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    I hadn't thought about that at all, gonna try it tonight. Thanks for the suggestion!

    Edit: I just have to add that today, music sounds better than it has in a very, very long time. I'm listening to some stuff I haven't heard in years, and it's far better than I could remember!
     
  16. Gucci

    Gucci Guest

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Great journal!

    I'm having the one-piss-a-night issue as well. It's kind of annoying, I think it worsen the quality of sleep quite a bit.

    How far are you in right now and how are you doing?
     
  17. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    Thanks!

    They sure are, but I actually didn't wake up at all last night! I felt so much more refreshed in the morning. I'm sure it's because I didn't drink much during the day, though.

    I'm on day 53 now if my calculations are correct.

    It may be temporary, and definitely sudden, but since yesterday I've been longing for a girlfriend. While I've always wanted a relationship, I think in the end it was all about the sex. I felt like a loser for never having done it, and I thought a relationship would make me feel "normal". It's different this time, though. I want to connect. I want to cuddle and feel another person's warmth. Sex can wait, it's no longer my priority (note: I'm not saying that I don't want it!). Most importantly, I want to fall in love. I've had feelings before, but I don't think those were love, I was mainly attracted to the girls' bodies.

    Which leads to the problem of my shyness. I think I'm slowly getting there, though. Before, it would be unthinkable that I even approached a girl, but now it feels like I'm leaning on the edge. Eventually, I think I will be able to take the step to the other side and achieve my goals.

    I haven't had any wet dreams since day 40, which is good. I thought I'd have them every 10th day, so hopefully they'll get rarer. I've been exercising a bit more, but I really need new shoes. The ones I have hurt my feet if I use them too much. The weather made a 180 as well, and yesterday it snowed. Gotta love Sweden! Either way, I'm planning to pick up new shoes soon and seriously start running.

    I started to read "No More Mr. Nice Guy" by Robert A. Glover this week. I'm not far into it, so I'm still not sure what I think of it. One thing is for sure, though - I am definitely a "Nice Guy". So much of what he demonstrates applies to myself. I will continue to read it and post my thoughts in a later entry.

    Edit: I've made it a project to do something away from home every weekend. It can be anything, as long as I don't sit inside all the time. Last weekend I went to a concert and yesterday I went to Stockholm with a couple of friends for some shopping. Next weekend is Easter so maybe I can get out more than once.
     
  18. Re: My journey to a better life!

    What I have learned from you is that you need to have patience and be positive. Thus, there may be a sign of change.
    May I ask you what was the concert you went to?
     
  19. Eternity

    Eternity Patience

    Re: My journey to a better life!

    It was the Swedish punk/rock legend Thåström. It was amazing, and I'm planning to go see him again this summer. If I hadn't quit PMO, I don't think I would have gone in the end. I'd always chicken out if I had to go on my own, so it's a great sign of progress that I went this time.

    Over the years I've planned to go to many concerts, but every time I've decided not to due to the trouble of getting to and from the concert locations. Well, that's complete BS. In reality I didn't want to leave my comfort zone, thus staying at home with my games and porn. There was also the risk that I would have to stay at a youth hostel or something overnight, which was unthinkable. I needed to be at my own place where I could freely masturbate.

    I'm so glad I've left this behind me forever.
     
  20. Re: My journey to a better life!

    Well I don't know that band, but I'm glad you had the courage to go. I'm going to see Sodom, the famous german thrash metal band in 11 days. I'm very excited.
     
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