Too Late to the Party?

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Saville, May 15, 2016.

  1. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I've been lurking here over the past 3 weeks and have finally found the wherewithal to post. There is a lot of pain in the journals of this forum, but also a lot of inspiration. I feel less lonely after having read the words of so many enlightened men, as well as a few women. I never realized I was a porn addict and fantasist until I saw Gary's TedTalk. I didn't like that I needed porn for release and recognized that it was an enormous time waster, but I saw the porn-void as endemic of a bland marital life. Because I blamed my wife for not being sexually available, I used that as an excuse to watch porn and also to have two affairs. My marriage has been long and fraught with drama and difficulty, but it wasn't until recently, after reading "No More Mr. Nice Guy," that I realized that what I brought to the marital table was deficient and lead to my (and my wife's) inevitable struggles. I'm taking responsibility for my own behaviour. My wife is still sexually unavailable and for the past two years I have lived the life of a celibate, but I believe that can now change. Through this forum and YBOP, as well as some other reading, I have found a new vocabulary; I know what's "wrong" with me. It's a start!

    My two affairs could be characterized as abysmal and pathetic failures. I had ED with both women, and though I eventually was able to O with them both, it was not without a helluva lot of fantasizing. Both women were initially gobsmacked at my inability to perform. We had flirted heavily over the internet and had had such viable cyber-sex that it seemed impossible that our meetings would be anything but extraordinary. I'm surprised they gave me another chance to bed them, frankly, and I'm equally surprised that I went through the torture of trying to get off with them. I guess I had something to prove, namely that I didn't, indeed, have any kind of ED. Both affairs were short-lived, thankfully, and unsurprisingly. After both I felt the lowest I had ever felt in my life.

    My wife found out about the affairs, but for some inexplicable reason she didn't kick me to the curb. Perhaps she felt/feels guilty for having withdrawn sexually from me for many years. I tried speaking to her about it, but once she was satisfied that the dalliances were over she just got on with life as though nothing whatsoever had happened. Denial?

    With the fallout of all this drama I got into porn in a big way. My porn use escalated into areas where I previously had no sexually inkling, as I chased the dopamine rush that was ever hard to find. Sometimes it felt like I would need to wrap my dick in barbwire to get any feeling out of it. I recently just learned the term deathgrip and that about explains how brutally I treated my penis. I beat off everyday and often twice, with the occasional foray into a third time. I often felt low after M, but giving into multiple tugs on the pud led to deep depression. I would have to sleep at such times just to get away from myself and my own uselessness.

    Along with porn use I always fantasized as I made love to a woman. I would always think of someone else and so I was never present in lovemaking. I realize now that my wife probably could tell this on an unconscious level and may well, indeed, have contributed to her becoming unavailable. And, truth be told, there were many times where I preferred to M rather than have real sex. Our lovemaking also became convoluted in the sense that after I had made her O she would then give me a hand job to get me off. Our habit became that and so we stopped having that wonderful sense of us O'ing together. In other words, through our habits we killed off any chance for intimacy.

    I stopped looking at porn 25 days ago, and though I had some heroic struggles at the beginning, I am, at present, not that tempted to look. I have M'd three times during that time, but have not fantasized at all. I'm astonished that I was able to O without creating some elaborate fantasy, but after a week of no P I had the most fantastic of O's using only a soft blanket instead of my hand. My penis, which had just one week before been as responsive as road-kill, felt sensitive for the first time in years. Wow! The other two O's were also good, though I noticed after the last one that I felt that familiar down sensation and went to bed afterward. A slippery slope?

    In general, since quitting porn, I have felt incredibly tired. I mean tired all day long. I feel listless inside, unmotivated, yet, I also feel incredibly restless. I have that energy that wants to be used for M'ing. I get pictures in my head of some of my favourite porn stars and scenes, which I dismiss as quickly as I can. I know that I have wasted so much of life, but at age 56 I'm ready to begin a new journey, hoping that it is not too late to regain intimacy with my wife and also to feel passionate about something...anything.

    Thanks to those who've read my first offering. I feel encouraged for the first time in many years!
     
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  2. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I struggled all of yesterday with not looking at P. My wife left yesterday for a conference and this is usually my cue to immerse myself in porn central. At one point I even thought I'd just go for it, thinking for a moment that with my penis a bit more sensitized that I would be able to handle it. In other words I was trying to talk myself into failing. I went for a walk and when I came back the feeling of wanting to MO was gone. I felt light and happy on the walk, which has not be the norm for me over the past few years. At another point in the evening I felt like crying when I thought of my first post. I have never written about my dastardly deeds before and seeing it in writing made me feel ashamed, truly ashamed, perhaps for the first time. Emotionally I am like a tap turning on and off.

    Since my porn use there has developed this disconnect inside of me, like I am unable to access real emotion. Even when my kids do something praise worthy I say all the right things, but inside I feel little. It sounds awful, I know. On the outside I'm fun, supportive, dad, but inside there's not much of me left. I wish to feel but it just isn't there. After three weeks of no P I feel I'm getting back in touch; I pray that this so. That feeling of deadness inside, where I just go through the motions is awful. I guess this is why P is so insidious. It slowly robs one of any feeling. All one has is the computer, the chair and the jag rag. If that isn't weep worthy I don't know what is.

    Today, to keep me distracted, I'm going to do a few jobs around the house that I never finished. I renovated a few years ago and in my usual fashion didn't bother to do all the finishing. Today I make a start on that. Perhaps the wife will even be surprised at my industry. :)

    Forward and onward, brothers!
     
  3. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Last night I had a powerful dream. I was standing in line to see my favorite baseball team. I had a backpack and a suitcase with me. I had butted my way to the head of the line and I could see some people were unhappy with me. As I entered the stadium there was a church service going on, the kind of church my wife attends. Suddenly I couldn't find either my pack or suitcase. I knew I was in a dream, but felt compelled to look for them anyway. I got to my seat and my wife was already sitting there. I saw what looked like my pack at her feet and when I reached over to grab it there she said "that's not yours." I grabbed it anyway and looked inside and there was nothing inside that belonged to me.

    I see this as a hopeful sign. What I believed I would find in the pack, I didn't. What I believe, or have believed, in other words is empty, not real. What and where I've been seeking is not where I'll find what I'm looking for. I'm sure that all sounds convoluted, but it makes sense to me.

    I was incredibly tempted to MO last night. I thought "at least it's not looking at P and probably won't set me back at all." I see MO'ing with any kind of frequency as a slippery slope so I'm resolved to not even think about it until I have two weeks of abstinence.

    After reading so many journals here I can see that each person's journey is unique. There is no magic bullet when creating a new life. Although the emphasis here is to quit porn there is also a lot of men challenging themselves to create better, more edifying lives. I find that intensely inspiring. The list of books I now have to read is ever growing.

    Others have pointed out to be careful, wary even, to not let the forum and all the self-help books take the place of really making good change. I see where I can easily fall into this category. I've always found it much easier to inform myself than to take that knowledge and actually use it. In the book "The Prophet" he says "what is knowledge save for work!"

    I also find that many of us here are very hard on themselves. We are quick to list all our failings, our shame, our disgust with ourselves, but how will this ever lift us out of the addiction pit? I've always been self-deprecating and I find it only powers me down. I heard a joke once "I used to be into self-deprecation...I found I wasn't any good at it."

    I feel good this morning! ;D
     
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  4. Tony74

    Tony74 Guest

    Just wanted to welcome you to the forum Seville and to drop you some encouragement for your journey. I can definitely relate to your story. Happy to have you aboard and wishing you all the best on your journey.
     
  5. A Streetcar

    A Streetcar New Member

    Hi Saville,
    Yup, being alone is the most tempting chance to revert. I am going away, alone, on a work-related trip soon. Right now my goal is no P, M, or O for the first night I am away. It sounds cliche, but it's a "one day at a time" approach to get myself through this trip.
     
  6. Zippy

    Zippy Member

    Yes, from my own experience, and having read countless journals, I'm convinced that masturbation will scupper your long term plans. Get clean, then come clean to your wife, and you have a chance at the life you want.
     
  7. Guy_Stewart

    Guy_Stewart Well-Known Member

    Saville:

    Thanks for the post on my thread and welcome!

    It will be a privilege walking with you, as well. My wife and I haven't made love for the past two years -- though she is a five year breast cancer survivor and had a radical double mastectomy, aggressive chemo, and JUST got off the last cancer med a month ago. I am NOT saying that is the "why" of my porn addiction -- it just helped make my prior addiction WORSE.

    At any rate, welcome to this band of brothers! I look forward to growing with you!
     
  8. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    @ Musicman: Thanks for the welcome and encouragement. :D I'm so grateful I found this site. It's awesome to know I am not alone in this.

    @ A Streetcar: Thank you! The first two days of her absence were brutal, but you're right, one day at a time. I love your attitude. It's the little successes that count. If we always look at the big picture then we're dooming ourselves to failure.

    @Zippy: Yes, I can totally see how one session of MO'ing, even without fantasy can lead to wanting more, because that's exactly what happened. After 3 weeks P-free I thought I could MO without any further issues. Wrong! I got the chaser effect that is so well described here and all I could think about was some of my favorite P scenes and how I would like to watch them. Grrr! :mad: Going to try the nofap regimen for awhile. Def not ready to tell my wife, yet, but I do see the wisdom of what you are saying.

    @Guy_Stewart: Thanks for the welcome. :) You and your wife have really had a time of it. I pray for healing in all areas of your lives. Your words have really lifted me today!

    I had a good day yesterday. I did a bit of work around the house, exercised, and went out to a movie with four young guys. My gym buds often ask me to go out, but I usually decline. I've realized I need to spend more bro time so I think about women a lot less. It was funny to be in seated in the middle of these guys at the theater and they weren't thinking about my age at all. Captain America: Civil Wars is awesome!

    I woke up super early this morning with a substantial woody. It seemed a shame to let it go to waste, but I'm getting acquainted with the routine from all the reading I've done here. Don't touch the pecker!

    One thing I am grateful for on this site is the complete lack of judgment. I have never told anyone about my affairs, not even my best guy friend. He told me once that he thought anyone who would stoop so low was despicable, so he is hardly a safe source to go to with anything confidential. He lives, himself, in a sexless marriage and is just content to have it that way. Perhaps he has his own P addiction which he hasn't confronted yet? There is so much suffering and a lot of it comes from the inability to just communicate. Anyway, thanks to all of you for not condemning me, as I really feel I've condemned myself enough. I feel safe here to say anything I want and that, as you all know, is huge.

    I remember after the last affair that my wife and I seemed to on the brink of divorce. I even asked her if that was what she wanted. That night she took me to bed and we had wonderful sex. My penis worked perfectly and our love making was intimate and intense. I guess once she was confident that the affair was firmly in the past that she would prove she still had her mojo...which she did, and I think still does. It is that night that gives me hope for us finding each other sexually again. I miss that so much.

    My habit, before reading YBOP was to fap whenever my wife was being a "bitch." Now I'm trying not to let that button get pushed. We are going away on a holiday soon, and while it might be presumptuous, I'm planning on us getting together in the sack. Perhaps it's too early, but I feel I should strike while the iron is hot, so to speak. Hopefully she's ready and I am too. If we do end up making love I'm going to worry about my needs first, but I'm not going to fret about O'ing or not. I feel excited at the prospect. It's almost like I'm enjoying the chase again. :D
     
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  9. Unkel G-Man

    Unkel G-Man New Member

    I used to think the slogan, "One day at a time" was kinda trite. Ignorance apparently is my strong suit! :)

    However, having the benefit of 20/20 hindsight, I can see how my sobriety has been enhanced by using this simple (and POWERFUL) phrase.

    You only have to get through today. Or, you only have to get through the next hour/minute. Don't worry about tomorrow. Tomorrow truly never comes, so concern yourself only with today. It's an amazing concept, if you can embrace it.

    Stay strong!
     
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  10. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Unkel G-Man, thank you so much for your support!

    Today I'm 30 days P free. I've MO'd 4 times, but didn't use fantasy to do it, except for the last time (today) where I let a porn scene creep into my mind for a couple of seconds. Yes, this is why I need to go MO free, as well, at least for longer than just 7 days. I was trying to make it to two weeks, but I felt jazzed up after a massage today and slipped. I've been having massages for a few months to deal with a sore hip and it was never sexual, not ever, until today. But, because I'm porn free, and my body can feel a woman's touch, I felt rather aroused. At one point I was thinking of dead cats just to stop from getting a boner. She has really helped me a lot, but I don't think I'm going to go for another massage for a couple of months. I am gratified to feel more sensitive than before, but realize I must be vigilant. Oh, but it's so very easy to slip into old habits.

    I don't feel as tired as I did. At the beginning of all this I just couldn't wake the hell up. I'm definitely doing more around the house, though I am in no way being industrious.

    I did notice a beautiful young woman (in her 30's) staring at me the other day. I'm not deluded enough to think I've become a babe-magnet, but I do think she saw an older man who was centered, and she took note of that. Perhaps I remind her of her dad or uncle. I'm not being disingenuous here. I absolutely don't believe she found me attractive and I also was not thinking of her in any other way than as a lovely to look at person. I used to have looks, but now in my 50's I think they've diminished quite a lot, not to mention my hair loss and gut. ;D

    I mentioned before I was gratified at the lack of judgment here. I've never had that, not ever. Every where I've turned there has been that looming eye assessing all that I do. Of course, like many of you I'm my own worst enemy. I most definitely married my mom, as my wife is far too critical and can often suck the joy out of a moment just because she isn't being noticed. Her upbringing was not a stellar one and so, like so many others here have observed, we marry that person who supports our failure. Still, I believe that we both can grow if we truly wish it.

    I definitely am through blaming my wife for my short-comings. I chose to watch porn, to masturbate endlessly to fantasy, to fantasize while having sex with her, and to absent myself emotionally. I did that! Maybe I'll grow up and find I must leave her to be healthy, but at present I have the opportunity to really flourish now that I have some knowledge about my addiction. It's time to get serious and choose healthy options.

    Moz mentioned the book The Slight Edge and I have found that helpful. The beginning of the book made me cringe, my cynicism was ready to abandon it. However, though the book has a ton of filler, it also has a simple, yet compelling, message: "it's easy to do it, it's easy to not do it." Or, in the case of P you can reverse that quote. The author posits that something like working out or eating healthy is something easy we can choose to do, or not to do. Whether we choose to do either of those things today it doesn't matter, not today it doesn't, but in the long run it does. So, giving up P for one day doesn't feel like an accomplishment, but choosing not to look today adds up to a string of days and then months.

    Seeking out P is a low investment in ourselves. It's like paying ourselves negative interest. (I'm not an economist so if that sounds wrong forgive me :eek: Think of it as a metaphor 8) ) It's like whistling at a woman or catcalling. There is no investment in getting to know the person. Yet, funny as it sounds some women will give a catcalling man their number. The men do it because they get a reward for their lack of effort. Going to an escort, watching P, having an affair, there is little investment of ourselves. We all know that you get what you pay for. Watching P is like buying at the dollar store.

    I do wish I could have held off another week before MO'ing, but I feel good. 30 days P free feels like a miracle. I know I'm walking in the shadow of many here who have done much more than that...it's what inspires me and gives me hope.

    Thank you to all you men!
     
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  11. Tony74

    Tony74 Guest

    You are doing great Saville. I think the best thing about this process is the self discovery that occurs as you learn to free yourself from this addiction.
     
  12. hope2overcome

    hope2overcome No Love, No Sex

    Hey Saville, Welcome to the forum. I read through some of your posts and it seems you have gathered quite a bit of knowledge regarding this addiction and issues that others face which you can relate to. I do believe, from my own experience on this forum, most of your problems such as lack of feeling will go away. Abstinence from porn is truly a magic bullet for a lot of symptoms.
     
  13. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Thank you hope2overcome! I'm feeling more already and I find this forum a stimulating place to be. Knowing I am not alone and that many men my age are walking this journey gives me incentive and hope.

    I'm doing well on the not watching P front, but I've gained 5lbs over the last month. :p I'm substituting sugar and booze for P. I had been off sugar for awhile, but now I'm back on it full force and detest that. I'm also drinking way too much beer. I was in the habit of having a glass of wine at night, but since it's warmed up here I'm now cracking open the brews. Today I'm going to stop the sugar and ease up on the drinking. I think it's all tied together with P use, or rather, it's part and parcel of a mind that would turn to P in the first place for satisfaction.

    My wife has been away for almost a week and I didn't watch P once. I kept myself busy, as many here advocate, and read the journals of other warriors. There are so many men here who are trying to better their lives. Most people here are really delving into deeper parts of themselves. We are all well aware of women's issues, which are important, but men issues are no less important. I think until we realize that all people matter, all sexes matter, we are doomed to make the same mistakes over and over. Men, we, objectify women, but women also objectify men.

    As I've mentioned I read No More Mr. Nice Guy. There are some things he postulates that I don't agree with, but there are other things that are revelations to me. I know now that my view of being a man was mostly shaped by my mom. Because I wanted to please my mom the women's movement had a lot of impact on me. I learned that I must pleasure the woman to orgasm first, that her pleasure was more important than mine. I let my gf's and wife lead the way in the pleasure department, in the sense that they had to be pleased first, or maybe even more than me. My women needed to have multiple orgasm so that I would not be a failure in the bedroom. I honestly thought I was a great lover. I felt like I was really plugged into how to be intimate with a female, and, if a woman told me she had trouble with her man because he "didn't give a shit" then I always believed that if she was with me she would know what real loving was. I can't believe how naive and lacking in insight I was, but that's what conditioning does to us; it's also what led me to have affairs. I chatted with women online and at the first sign of needing rescue I was there with my white steed.

    I am not proud of my affairs. I know I did a heinous act of betrayal. I justified it because my wife "didn't understand me," or because we rarely had sex. Didn't I deserve to be happy? Yes, I did/do deserve to be happy, but I had no idea what that meant...until now. :D Anyone who thinks affairs are fun, like having your cake and eating it too is far off base. An affair is fraught with tension, drama, and stress. You're hiding the ultimate sin and endeavoring to not get caught. My affairs were horror shows and left me reeling and even less feeling than before. It took me years to get over what they killed inside. Well, what I killed inside.

    I'm not sure why I'm writing so much about that, but I guess it's something I never gave voice to, so why not in my journal. Writing it out really makes me see it differently. Like with P, I can't go back and change what I did, but it's time to get over the guilt and shame and move the hell on. How can we be better men if we are tethered to teats of guilt and shame?

    OK, so I ate some chocolate and had a beer today. I didn't pmo and so it's a big day! Woo Hoo! I'm going to go the gym and work off those calories and tomorrow I'll make better choices. 8)
     
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  14. wecome, saville, to the club. we're glad you're here. for every 1 million men afflicted with this addiction, ten are here posting regularly. we are a select but distinguished group. like the Lord viewed David...as a man after his own heart...it wasn't because he was perfect, it was because he always acknowledged his shortcomings and tried to make them right with God immediately. that's my role model. i will strive for perfection but accept better.
     
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  15. TommyH

    TommyH New Member

    Saville,

    Welcome! It's never too late. Never too late to change our lives, that is. What comes of that could be renewed passion in your marriage, could be something less favorable, we just never know until we try but the change ultimately has to be for ourselves. For our sanity, our sobriety, and so we can lead lives that we feel proud of and happy in. The unfolding of that will be a great motivator for your wife, I would think.

    Become who you know you can be. The rest falls in place as it will, but at 56 you've got a lot to offer the world and the best version of you is one that is porn-free.

    Keep coming back, keep posting. You're in the right place.
     
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  16. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    HarvestofSorrow, thank you. I'm not religious, but I love the story of David. He was an adulterer and murderer, yet God used him for great things. Again, thank you for sharing and reminding me that redemption is as ancient as the human race. :)

    TommyH, wow! I felt tears in my eyes reading your words. Thank you for that beautiful and encouraging post. You really hit my heart. So grateful tor the band of brothers and the generosity of strangers.

    Not too much to report, today. I went to the gym with a fire in my belly last night only to discover they'd closed early. Wtf? I drove around, bought a bottle of wine, and allowed myself two glasses after promising I wouldn't. Grr. My wife gets home today after being away for a week and I'm excited about that. At one time we were madly in love, until we became just mad. ha ha The new me is looking forward to the future. I know now that I must remain P free, fantasy free, and also that I'm allowed to get my needs met by my wife. I don't want to be married single, because that is part of what led me down an awful path. I don't want to interiorize everything forever. I'm enjoy reading books like The Slight Edge and No More Mr. Nice Guy, but it must all be put into action, otherwise I'm just spinning my wheels; definitely done enough of that.

    Porn is pathetic, P is stupid, P is ugly, P is a waste of precious time. There is nothing benign about jacking off to P. It is an act of self-loathing, a statement that I am unworthy of real love. I AM worthy!
     
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  17. Saville...your last paragraph about hoe pathetic P is....spot on. Well said and totslly true.
     
  18. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Saville, your first page is very inspirational! Thanks again for your posts in my journal and welcome to the group.

    You've hit on many of the common truths that run through so many of the journals here. Despite our differences, our brains have been hijacked by P in pretty much the same way, so I believe the techniques for throwing the hijacker off the plane and taking control again are similar for all of us.

    I wish you well as you work on your relationship. I'm certain that removing P from your life will take the blinders off and you'll be able to see yourself, your wife, and your marriage with a fresh perspective. The crutch we share here actually cripples us, as it doesn't allow us to truly share our lives with others. I think your experience with the 30 year old girl noticing you is proof that you are already exuding the real you that is re-emerging. You are shedding that feeling of deadness you mentioned in your first journal entries.

    Keep writing. Write what you feel. This is a safe place for that. If the shame of past deeds has been keeping you down, then if there was ever a group of people who won't condemn you for revealing them, this is that group. Letting go of shame and guilt is so cleansing.

    BTW, glad to hear you liked the Captain America movie. I'm going to see it with my son today. Can't wait!
     
  19. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    Thanks, Moz!!

    All day long I think what I can write in my journal and then when I sit down I can't remember any of them. Oh, yes, I remember that yesterday I had a bit of a cry. I read what Moz and HarvestofSorrow wrote and I felt validated as a human being. I realized I'm OK, not a mutant. I could feel the tears coming and instead of shutting it down I just let it all out. I sobbed a bit and it felt great. My tears were tears of relief. I'm so grateful to everyone here. I've read many journals, and though I haven't commented on them all...thank you one and all.

    Porn is an act of sabotage. Porn is a narcissistic psycho that feels nothing and wants to devour us. Porn is also nothing. Because it's nothing I don't need it, because why would I want nothing in my life?

    Yesterday my wife got home after being gone an entire week. I posted a lot here and did not watch P once. Woot! I was excited she was coming back, which is unusual because usually I feel dread. Normally, I know we will fall into the same habits, find our own little spaces apart from each other in the house, and probably sleep in different beds. I usually feel agitation, because I know that I won't be able to wank myself into a stupor at all hours, because SHE will be hovering, hoovering, and hectoring. Some how she senses I want alone time with my hand, my calloused, rough, lover, and she will invade that time with domestic want and need. Yet, yesterday I couldn't wait for her plane to land. I embraced her warmly, we kissed, and I could feel myself getting a boner. 8) I had feelings of want for her all evening and I could tell she was enjoying my company.

    At home we embraced a couple of more times and each time I stirred in my loins. I wanted to make love to her, but I felt shy, too. I was afraid of being intimate once I was faced with the prospect that she might actually say yes. I realize I must get over this. In some ways we are strangers who once fell in love, made a home, babies, et al. After only 33 days of going P free will I be able to perform in bed with my wife after two years of abstinence? Will I stay hard, will I allow myself to feel, will I forgo the fantasy that she's someone else? I know I need to act, regardless of the fear, and I will. I guess yesterday was not the night.
     
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  20. Guy_Stewart

    Guy_Stewart Well-Known Member

    Saville: YOU are my hero! A week porn-free; and now a body response!

    Proud to be in your band of brothers!

    Keep on!
     

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