The Stopping Starts, Again

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by sonofJack, Jun 26, 2013.

  1. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    NoFap, you hit it on the head: it's just another day.

    All those 0s look great.

    They remind me of how I learned to say "no."

    Onwards to 1001!
  2. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    1001 Arabian Nights, and 1001 P free days: They both sound cool! 8)
  3. a short guy

    a short guy Well-Known Member

    Yes, just another beautiful P-free day! :) Cheers!!! and Congratulations!!!
  4. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Another day, indeed. A very special one!
    It's fitting that it happened on a Saturday! Do something you love today, my friend.
  5. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    This is an observation, and a question.

    When I started my 1st reboot in 2012, I tried to tear down all the easy access routes to the problem. To recap, at the time my goal was to curb my masturbation, rather than to seek a cure for ED, or get away from pornography. At the time, porn did not seem to be much of a problem.

    There was a disc of bikini shots, that progressed from bikini, to no bikini. There were two old, frayed magazines, and there were a few soft porn pics on our downstairs desktop computer. All were trashed.

    I also had to consider other pre-wank situations, excessive drinking, long-hot showers, and my lifelong choice of sleepwear, which was nothing.

    The shower thing was easy, as I could track my progress by the lowered gas and water bills, but wearing pyjamas, or anything for that matter, to bed was problematic. I tried, really I did. My wife commented on it; at first she thought it was about time, then she changed her mind when she noticed that I was tossing and turning more than usual, and I was getting up in the middle of the night two or three times for she-didn't-know-what.

    For the past four years, every time I felt myself slipping back, I'd wear something to bed, and every time I did that, I slipped closer and closer to the edge. It was quite a conundrum.

    As an experiment, I did the opposite. Even when the walls started falling, I'd sleep naked as when I came into the world, and without a single incident. In fact, it seemed to be the catalyst for pulling me back on track.

    It's clear by my own experience, and by what most of you say on here, that the number one stressor in this game is fatigue. I'm not talking about the happy tired feeling that comes at the end of a long hard day. The fatigue that pushes this stupid obsession the hardest, at least for me, is that which comes from not taking care of myself: drinking more than necessary (and too close to bedtime), staying up too late, getting up too early, and eating shitty food.

    Not surprisingly, long hot showers, racy movies, LuLu Lemon pants on the right woman, and my time spent naked, are far less of a factor than simply not staying in control of my health.

    The question I have for you is: what have you changed that has been successful, and what has possibly made this whole process even more difficult?

    Answer here, or message me if it's something you feel uncomfortable sharing with the group.
  6. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    Thanks devnull, but really it's just another day.

    Hey, I'm still here. Mostly I've been creeping your conversations, happy to see all the progress being made, but feeling like I just don't have a lot to add anymore.

    For anyone who's read my excruciatingly long posts: on Sunday, my wife and I watched an HBO show together. There were lots of gratuitous scenes of gorgeous naked women and men in it, and given our history together, there was that non-verbal understanding between us that these are things that can lead to sexy time. There was also wine, so confidence was high that our mini Ice Age was about to thaw.

    Well not quite.

    She has many good solid reasons for not being able to partake in intercourse. This isn't something she's happy with, nor can she easily fix it either. The body can do some pretty cruel things to itself, and so can the mind. She's far more accepting of this than I am.

    Her solution for this is incomplete though. She insists that seeing me happy kinda gets her off, but I'm not totally buying that. What's more, she doesn't seem to comprehend how mutual satisfaction is the payoff; just one more bit of proof that we are here for each other. Yet I can't complain, can I? At the very least, our current version of "sex" is a somewhat more fulfilling than when it was just me alone in front of the downstairs desktop, beating off to images of random naked people.

    If this process has done anything for me, it is learning how far superior real human loving intimacy is to cheap thrills.
  7. NCBob

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

    That's a great thing to know, SOJ :)
  8. Gone fishing

    Gone fishing Active Member

    Human intimacy - human relationships- is what life is all about. Life is full of really good relationships, experiences, places and things once we open ourselves to receive. Pornography is the antithesis of openness. It's a lonely experience that closes one off from the good life and shuts out the goodness. SoJ I hope you wife will seek tratment for what is causes her not to be able to have intercourse.
  9. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    When I was an angsty teen, my 12th grade English teacher decided to add pop psychology to the curriculum. Science was always my thing as a kid; science and math, the two streams of study that seem to have concrete cause and effect. So my first reaction to this thinky speculative stuff was that it had to be crap.

    Somehow, Mr. S got me to engage with I'm Okay, You're Okay (though my first report on it was that it should be renamed I'm Okay, but You're Pretty Fucked Up). It had less to do with what the book was saying, and more the whole idea that I could take control of the one aspect of myself that pushed me off course: my emotions.

    At 16, I was book smart, street smart, and socially stupid. My brother tried to teach me how to get with girls, but I was uncoachable. My best buddies and I chased the wrong girls, with the wrong approach, at the wrong time. It made no sense that three relatively okay looking, healthy, somewhat athletic, straight A students like ourselves, would constantly be passed over for dim witted, neanderthals. Maybe the fact that we insisted on pronouncing neanderthals in proper German, had some small part in the girl-repellant we seemed to exude.

    At least we were (in our minds) top flight skiers, could sail any boat on the lake better than anybody else on the lake, and rode our bikes 30 miles down the highway, and back (no paved shoulders; we were maybe not that bright), without breaking a sweat. At least we had all that.

    We also had our built-in frustration relief mechanism, which only took a minute or two, some relative privacy, and whatever was close by to catch the byproduct. As much as this may sound inappropriate here (I apologize if it does, but not for how I feel about it), masturbation got me, and my friends through the worst of our teenage years. Hell, my brother's method may have been somewhat more socially acceptable, but it also made him a father of two lovely girls, before his 19th birthday.

    As the years unfolded, I was attracted to a multitude of self-help theories. Some were dietary, as I strove to be the best skinny, slow, unskilled hockey player, centre fielder, and triathlete. Most though, were to make me a more productive, less freaked out, and all around smarter person, and most failed spectacularly.

    It became clear to me as I approached my 40s, that nearly all of this was snake oil. I even dug up my battered old copy of I'm Okay, You're Okay, and laughed at how Tony Robbins it all sounded; it may have been the beginning of what I think was the most destructive social experiment of our time: the Everyone Gets A Medal mentality, where nobody is left out, yet nobody feels like they've achieved, anything (the nadir was reached when at a kid's running race that I'd organized, a mom came to me afterward to collect the finisher's medals for her two children, who'd stayed home because it rained that day. I looked her in the eyes, smiled, and crushed her world with a one word answer: "no.").

    The only way I was going to evolve, was with science.

    Instead of jumping on every shiny new fad, I signed on with a good old fashioned running coach. His approach fit my personality just right, as he'd not just tell me what I was to do and not do, but gave me papers to read on the theories behind it all. I studied basic nutrition, to find that my minimalist, healthy diet, which was randomly disrupted by occasional pizzas, Doritos, and alcohol, was actually a good thing.

    Then there was the whole brain thing. No logical course of action seemed capable of curbing my appetite for jerking off. I tried many: 12 step programs, self hypnosis, imagining the horror of sex with Margaret Thatcher. None had a lingering effect.

    It wasn't until finding YBR, that I was finally exposed to the kind of fact-based information that my mind needs to get me where I want to be. This site is a crowd sourced miracle of ideas, intellectual, spiritual, philosophical, and, even outright unintelligible. The one solution that seems most prevalent, at least on the threads I read regularly, is mindfulness. For a science guy, this sucks. I need empirically based facts, not ancient fairy tales.

    Needless to say, I've slowly come to realize that runaway emotions have been distracting my logical mind, and derailing me for decades. My challenge was to reframe them. Emotions are not some foreign internal force; some kind of inner domestic terrorist. They are just our reptile brains' ways of reacting to the myriad perceived rewards and penalties that we confront every minute of our lives. To try and force ourselves into controlling them, is a losing proposition at best. The only way to get to where you need to be, is by accepting not just who you are, but also how you feel. Just because you react to something, does not mean that you have to also act upon it.

    Let me say this for you: fuck he talks a lot! I know, but there's a point to this, really there is.

    I've been changing my morning routine over the past months. No more getting out of bed, into the shower, slamming down some food, and getting out into the world. I once felt that the only exercise was that which caused sweat, near-exhaustion, and some degree of pain. Now, I go for 30-50 minute walks every morning. I dress like I'm going for a run, but it's just a nice brisk, phone-free, route-free, walk. It is exercise, but not the way I've been accustomed to it. It's also one of the most pleasurable experiences I've ever had. I see new neighbourhoods, new neighbours, new dogs, new sights, and even have enough breath to say hi to everyone I encounter.

    This week, I added one more facet to my walks. I've turned them into a mind exercise as well. I spend a few minutes in a meditative state, then think long and hard about 5 achievements, social, career, family, home, and intellectual, from the previous day. This is not easy. Yesterday, it took me almost a half hour to think of one single thing I'd learned from the day before, but I found it, and felt wonderful for it! Then I think hard about 5 things I'm grateful for. Some are easy. Some repeat. But each time, I try to expand on why I'm grateful. The more I make myself go deep, the better (for example, "grateful that I am healthy enough to exercise" has morphed to "grateful that I understand the value of striving to improve my health every day.").

    For the past month, I've also told someone every day how they're important to me. This doesn't have to be intense (I'm not a huggy, touchy-feely guy, not by a long shot), just something simple like letting a student know that I appreciate her teaching me Arabic phrases, or telling a bus driver that I like that he is always on time. I plan to expand that to 5 times (at least) every day as well.

    I didn't come up with any of this through my sheer brilliance, by joining a cult, or from a blow to the head. They are all simply extensions of ideas I've read on here, and coincidentally, they are very close to an article I stumbled upon here:

    Does it work? It says it does, which means shit really, but the fact that this is based on clinical psychology, does give me some confidence in what's being put forward. My experiment with this is only weeks old, and I'm the only subject of my study, so to call it scientific, is a bit of an insult to scientists, but for what it's worth: I do feel a bit calmer, sleep a bit better, mix with people a bit more, and overreact to insignificant incidents a lot less.

    One final word: this may not do anything to keep you from masturbating, getting aroused by pornographic images, or any of the pathology that has brought you here, but it may give you pause to at least think about what you're doing, when you do it.

    At the very least, mindfulness is a step. It's one single step on that million step journey to where you really want to be.
  10. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    Short post today, I promise.

    An odd artifact of a few days practicing my mindfulness exercises: a vivid, interesting, and very deep dream. Things came up in my sleep state, that I'd not thought about in nearly 50 years. But there they were, clear as the day they happened.

    Things I obsess about tend to follow me into my dreams. Now that I'm focusing on the most positive elements of my daily world, those are joining me in the nightly netherworld too.

    What a strange and wonderful life this is.
  11. NCBob

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

    SOJ, I must admit my eyes glazed over when I looked at the length of your post on the 29th :)

    Mindfulness is a wonderful thing!
  12. bobjes

    bobjes Active Member


    Thank you so much, that was a very enjoyable, uplifting post. I laughed out loud at least 3 times!
    And I took note of the pointers.

    Have you read "The Rosie Project" by Graeme Simsion?

  13. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    Yeah, it was lengthy NCB. I got so attached to parts of it, that I gave up trying to edit.

    Bobjes, I'll check the Rosie Project.

    Halloween has come and gone. Luckily, no scary clowns in the neighbourhood, nor at the school. I'm not good with clowns, not by a long shot.

    Students dressed for the occasion, and a great number undressed for it too. I can understand taking some of those costumes out to the clubs later, but showing up for class like that mystifies me. I didn't get it back when I went to school either. This probably explains a lot.

    We had a great night, with lots of cute little kids at the door, followed by about a half dozen slacker kids, who though too old to trickortreat, still want to go out and get candy. We prepare for them every year, with full sized chocolate bars, so they don't feel like their night was wasted.

    Just as things were ending, we had a bit of a surprise at the door: two young guys wearing masks and shoes. Yup, that was all they had on. When I came to the door, they immediately fucked off into the night at a rather impressive speed. Either they were on a dare, or had the wrong address for a party that will probably be talked about for ages.

    By 9, it was all done. The lights were out. The candy was exhausted.

    Another day in paradise.
  14. newleaf63

    newleaf63 Member

    hello soj

    just wanted to say there is a great deal of good in your posts, never think for a minute that you don't have a lot to say and what you do say is most helpful to us who are way behind you in terms of counters.

    you were and continue to be a huge inspiration. please keep posting, not only for our good but yours as well.

    im glad to reconnect with you. I'm sorry i may have given you the impression that i was fixed. i certainly wasn't.

    all the best and hello again
  15. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

  16. NCBob

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

    Short, sweet, and too the point, SOJ :)

    Unbelievable game, for sure!
  17. a short guy

    a short guy Well-Known Member

    I came here to enjoy your latest diatribe and this is what I get! ;) It was an amazing world series!
  18. a short guy

    a short guy Well-Known Member

    I've been doing EMDR with a psychotherapist, involves sitting with my physical feelings and difficult emotions, just observing and being with them, knowing it's OK to have them. It's new, different, interesting and hopefully helpful. So far, lately, I've not been doing that in daily life, far too much spontaneously acting upon my emotions.
  19. sonofJack

    sonofJack I deserve self-respect

    My mom fell in her apartment about 5 weeks back, resulting in a tiny, but painful, fracture in her upper femur. She spent a week in the big hospital here, and the subsequent days at our rehab hospital. My mom turns 89 in a few days, and while I've been adamant with the family that she's independent, and doing fine, the fall was a wakeup call to me, and the rest of us, that she may need to consider a higher level of daily care.

    This lady was a not-great-but-reliable 2nd base person. She had stamina that defied her tiny size, and quiet demeanour. She was always a voracious reader, and writer, journaling ever day of her life.

    Now, she's slowing down. Parkinson's, hyperthyroidism, arthritis, and 88 years of flitting around this planet, have started to make themselves noticed. Most of my family is wound up about her fading faculties (which are slowly slipping), while I've been obsessed with how her body is giving in. The two may be related; are related, but goddamn it, fixing her physically seems so much more doable than the other thing.

    Her transition back to her apartment begins next week, and though my sister moved back to her winter house in Florida (saying that she feels guilty so many times, that I knew she wanted me to give her the okay. I did not), my immediate family, my niece, her seniors residence, and the government agency that I was introduced to yesterday, are all-in for helping us through it all.

    Accrued stress is a big topic on here. We can handle one big stress, so much better than we can a half-dozen seemingly minor ones. Mom's health is a major challenge to deal with, but somehow seems to be going on almost in the background. Add to that my two adult children moving back home, their individual job situations, my daughter's 2500 mile long-distance relationship, my wife's playground-level social structure at her work, and the small event that happened in America this past week (what the f u c k?), and you have more than enough accrued stress for any recovering PMO adherent.

    Yeah, on Tuesday night, when I went to bed at 11pm, it was clear that Mr. Trump would be the new leader of your country. What happens in America, echoes off us here in Canada. We may not be the same person, but we are in many ways conjoined twins. By 11:30, it was clear that I could not sleep. At midnight, I actually resolved that the only way to get my mind to stop for the night, was to sit up on the edge of the bed and masturbate. That was very adult of me.

    I didn't do it, mainly because with our now full house, it is just not something I'd ever want to share.

    America's challenges will work themselves out; they always do. My mom is in great hands, and I'm doing everything I can to give her the life she deserves. My wife's workplace will never rise above the grade 3 level, because it is run by people who have not reached that milestone themselves. I may be tripping over my kids regularly, but I'm so happy that they're both safe, and continually evolving into even more wonderful adults.

    Masturbating won't help any of this, in fact, it just doesn't figure into it at all.

    In the midst of it all, I got to act out some major fantasies in public this past week. More about that on my next post.
  20. bobjes

    bobjes Active Member

    Laughing out loud. This is exactly how my mind works at times.

    My Mum just broke her arm too. We are brainstorming options for her ageing, support she might need in the future and looking at all the different scenarios. She is adult about it which is great, not so sure about how my brother is coping with it.

    Thanks for your sharing.

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