Well, this is a giant thing to unpack...

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by chingaso, Mar 8, 2021.

  1. chingaso

    chingaso New Member

    This is going to be my place to let it out and keep track of things. I'm 46. This all started when I was about 10. Never in my life have I talked to anybody about these things, ever. It's a lot to unpack when you finally realize what it is and what has gone on. What I'm about to write is probably going to be long, raw, and disjointed (it's not like this shit has fucked with our attention spans or thinking pathways at all).

    Some of this I've had an idea about for some time and some of it I just hashed out over the last few weeks.

    My name is ________, and I'm an addict (currently, I believe dopamine specifically).

    10 or so - started getting magazines from convenience stores. After that it was VHS tapes from the same places. My parents weren't bad, abusive, or uninvolved. We just seemed to miss this very important subject. Anyhow, with these items, I taught myself everything I thought there was to know about arousal, pleasure, and sex (if only we knew what primacy was when we were 11). Enter the internet in the late 80s/early 90s and now this gets obviously worse.

    I'm a kid. Not dating. This is my secret. Fuck, before I even dated a girl, I was already objectifying women and had already made sure I couldn't connect emotionally with anyone.

    16 - I lost my virginity to a prostitute in Mexico while on a fishing trip. Nothing more to say about that.

    16-17 or so - I start dating a girl in High School. She eludes to a lot of sexual stuff. I blow it off because I have no fucking actual idea what to do with it. We finally have sex. It's mediocre. I learn this night that I already can't climax from receiving oral sex (no biggie though right? Most girls don't like that anyway). The further sex was also mediocre and we weren't connecting. She cheated and we broke up.

    Oh, meanwhile, I'm doing marginally in school and already struggling with friendship and connection overall. Who loves the awkward kids? The kids that have the drugs.

    18-21 or so - I now seek to fill this void with meth, crime, and various women. I go to jail a few times. I get a girl pregnant. I beg my probation judge with a plan to straighten up. He cuts me loose and I join the Army.

    Little did I know, I'd be there for the next 22 years.

    Marriage #1 - 4 years. Unable to connect or communicate. Tumultuous and violent. Finally ended due to infidelity on her part, but mostly loss of trust and non-connection overall. Two biological boys from this marriage.

    Tried dating. Meh. Near daily PMO at this point. Also getting hookers off Craigslist and Backpage when that was a thing.

    Marriage #2 - 8 years. Unable to connect or communicate. Tumultuous and violent. This relationship has a bunch of swinger stuff in it and I'm also still getting hookers. Also using Yahoo Messenger and texting with other girls to meet up. She's fucking anything that moves while I'm deployed. Finally ended due to infidelity on her part, but mostly loss of trust and non-connection overall. I lost a parent in this relationship and I doubt that helped anyone. So, late 20's is when I start noticing erection issues. If you're having a medical issue, the Army would be glad to give you a pill for it (and never once mention any other options or concerns). One biological boy from this marriage and two step-children that I'll talk about at the end.

    Ok, now I'm fresh of another divorce, I'm still near daily PMO, I'm still getting hookers, and now I have fucking viagra pills. Hooray.

    Marriage #3 - 4 years. Again, unable to connect, relate, and communicate. Tumultuous. She's fucking anything that moves while I'm deployed. Finally ended due to infidelity on her part, but mostly loss of trust and non-connection overall. Still fucking around on each other, but not saying it. No kids from this marriage.

    No patterns yet right?

    Another divorce. Now, what we call the "Dark Days." Near daily PMO, hookers, viagra, and now single.
    Wild couple of years.

    Marriage #4 (Current) - 5 years and counting. I reconnect with an old friend and we decide to start dating. Somehow and some way, I connect with this person. I love this person and she is my friend. Currently, the only human being on the planet I trust. We are married now and mostly everything is great. No infidelity. We get along great. We've only had two minor disagreements ever. The sex is even great and frequent, except for two things: my boner is still pill induced and I still can't cum from receiving oral sex (well, once with A LOT of work). I've since retired from the military. I had even drifted away from porn and was doing PMO way less. Things were getting better and while I hadn't peeled back the onion yet, I kind of had an idea of what the problem was. Then 2020 happened. My 18 y/o son gets arrested, the pandemic starts, the college I'm in shuts down because of it, and my wife loses her job. What is the quickest, easiest, and hardest hitting way I know how to knock the edge of my stress? No shit huh.

    So yeah, there's one of the big zingers: I'm 46 years old. I'm married to and live with a beautiful woman that would love nothing more that to please me and have me finish in her mouth...and I don't have a fucking clue how to do that. It's fucking embarrassing and guilt ridden. Beyond that, it feels even worse for being such a first world problem. She deserves better.

    Any time I could get consent, I had also taken photos and video of my encounters, since my mid-20's. Additionally, I had kept those things cataloged and stored on an encrypted drive in a really creepy way, and kept them well beyond what was ever appropriate. I had also made a large secure bookmarks folder of various porn. Lots and lots of erotica too. I think I thought I could stop watching professional stuff, but keep these. I can't rationalize it, it doesn't make sense.

    So, what am I doing about it?

    I finally made this account and said some stuff out loud, hopefully to somebody that has some time to read.
    All the files and bookmarking I mentioned above, I deleted and bleached them yesterday.
    Day 3 of no PMO. Here we go.

    If anyone has read this far, I do have a few process questions on maybe things others have experienced. If this isn't the right place, someone please let me know.

    With my commitment, I can stop porn use. I don't see that being my issue honestly. Currently, I have questions like this:

    1. When you look back at the length of it and all the things it's affected...4 marriages, two biological kids that didn't want anything to do with me beyond my financial obligation to them, but also two step kids from a previous marriage that know everything about my relationship with their mother, and still consider me/interact with me as their Dad....not having been "there" or "plugged in" enough for these relationships, kids, family, or friendships. It's more than half over and I've mostly just hurt people. How do you work through/get past the shame, the guilt, the inadequacy, and the undeserving feelings. How do I change the nub in the subconscious that everyday reassures me what a piece of shit I am?

    2. If these pathways were hijacked at such a young age, what's really on the other side of this for me?
    I mean, in a sense I don't really know if I isolate and introvert because of porn or because of something else. What if I'm not at all like me now and say my wife doesn't like that or me?

    Thanks for listening. I've needed to do this for about 25 years.
  2. ruggerdoug

    ruggerdoug Well-Known Member

    First, welcome. Second, that's more than just two questions!

    You'll find we all read each other's stories, musings, rambles even if we don't comment on them. Believe it or not your pouring yourself out to the rest of us helps us all.

    We all share some of the same patterns.

    I might be too brief for the response your post deserves. I get on most mornings and have my first cup of coffee journaling. And then its off to work. So lots to say but not much time to share it.

    I'm 10 years older than you. Started at age 11 or 12 with a Penthouse magazine my mom bought when her and my Aunt went to the store to get my uncle (the preacher) the Jimmy Carter Playboy interview issue. Talk about unintended consequences.

    I consumed in much the same way you did. No fishing trip to Mexico but I did have an awkward first time where things didn't work and she shared at school. Managed a steady girlfriend in high school and college. Both tragic breakups. Married for almost 20 years in a marriage that failed because I got married to her in the first place.

    Not my full story but enough for you to know we've slogged through some of the same shit.

    1. My experience is this is not a porn issue or a cum from oral issue but a deeper down inside of you issue. It starts with your knocking off the bullshit thinking that you are a piece of shit. And that @chingaso will likely take a counselor or therapist to help you sort through. My experience is I used to shame talk myself back to born. Used to rely on that negative view of myself to avoid the attachments I really wanted. Anyway, stay here and journal your ass off but consider outside help.
    2. It's either more than half over or 100% of what's left is still available to you. Cool thing is you get to pick. Be different in the 100% of what is left. If you are like most of us you've got a shit ton of mental health things to work through and then you've got this porn / sex self medication thing going on. I suggest you journal here, get a therapist, read the forums, read yourbrainonborn.com, visit recoverynation.com and work. Ask the guys here for what they suggest but to shake this for good takes more than a mighty "I quit!" because the deep pathways we've carved into our brains.

    Anyway, coffee's done and I have to run. Welcome, again. And good luck!

    Rugger Doug
    realness likes this.
  3. UK Don

    UK Don Active Member

    Hello chingaso,

    I'm 23 but have been on this forum for a couple of years. Genuinely, congratulations on sharing your story - you can now begin to rebuild your life. I'll attempt to give you some quick answers to your questions.

    One thing I've learned is that you can't trick your mind. If you assess your previous actions, and associate those with someone who is a piece of shit, then you cannot change that. So what can you do?
    Change from now. Become the person you wish you had been, and I bet you'll start to view the person you were not simply as a piece of shit, but a piece of shit with all sorts of problems they couldn't/weren't equipped to cope with, so turned to destructive escapism. What problems you ask?

    Well if you commit to this journey, you're about to unearth all the problems that pushed you down the path you took. Without PMO as a crutch, you will gradually become less numb to everything going on in your life. All sorts of issues that you are currently (consciously) unaware of will begin to show through a mixture of thoughts and emotions during day to day life, and periods of self-reflection. This is where it is important to replace the void that PMO used to fill with more positive behaviours to help you deal with it all - I've found running and journaling to be of a massive help though I'm sure my methods will become more exciting post-lockdown.

    Regarding your point on beginning this at such a young-age, I think you have less to worry about than you imagine. High-speed internet P is by far the most damaging when discussing PMO abuse due to the ridiculous amount of dopamine it can ring out of your brain. As this was not around when your brain was developing, you should (in theory) recover quicker than the likes of me due to my exposure to high-speed internet P throughout crucial stages of development. Though bear in mind these theories are all just based on peoples experiences.

    Best of luck on your journey, I'll continue to follow your journal.
    realness likes this.
  4. realness

    realness Well-Known Member

    I'm excited for you @chingaso . I love reading the new journals here because it's another journey out of darkness and into healing and redemption. Ruggerdoug and UK Don are right on. I'll be brief to your questions.
    1) Dig into your identity, especially as someone who has been harmed by PMO and is on a path to healing. PMO and your unhealthy sexual past is not who you are. Your disclosure and turn of direction are proof of that. And this forward journey will define and reveal who you really are, the dude who's been numbed out and unhidden underneath all those unhealthy coping habits. I agree with Ruggerdoug too that counseling or therapy would really advance your journey. Besides being a really solid choice for you to make in your self care, it would also be a big statement to your family and those in your past about who you really are and what you are about in this season of your life.
    2) PMO has nothing positive and it cultivates a ton of negative traits. Selfishness, impatience, etc. Although it won't be dramatic, it's very clear that reducing and then eliminating PMO will only allow positive integrity and character traits to grow. And this can surely benefit your spouse and love ones.

    Keep coming back man!
  5. badger

    badger Well-Known Member

    ese chingaso,
    welcome my brother. you're in the right place. I am 66 years old and still trying to fix my past. impossible. you can look back, but don't stare. I hurt a lot of people with my addictions-alcohol and porn. been sober 17yrs. still fighting the porn. I know I hurt my family especially my wife due to my drinking, not being around and infidelity. by God's grace i'm still married-43yrs this april. all I can do is do the right thing today. can't do anything about tomorrow or yesterday. but just for today I know exactly what to do to respect, honor, love, communicate and protect my family. I just do the opposite of what I did back then. I don't want redemption, I just want to be able to sleep at night and be okay when I am by myself. anyway, welcome.
    ps I am a veteran too-U S Navy.
    Saville likes this.
  6. chingaso

    chingaso New Member

    Wow! I really appreciate the outpouring of support guys.

    Yesterday (Day 4) was amazing. I was actually kind of overwhelmed at the end of the day and couldn't write. I got a haircut at a new barber shop and talked with another grown man for about an hour (I can't tell you when the last time I did that was). Pro-tip for isolated dudes trying to reintegrate - the barber is an awesome place to start - part of their job is talking to people, they like it, most of them are good at it, and you don't have to worry about the eye contact thing just yet. When I exercised and went grocery shopping yesterday, I looked women in the eye rather than the body. To my complete and utter surprise, most of them smile and say hello. I almost cried twice. Just two drops on two separate occasions, but I felt something. So, that's good I think. I made dinner. I Face Timed with my cousin. We did a tequila shot together and talked for about an hour. He's the closest thing I have to having a brother, I haven't seen him in about two years, and we don't talk all that often outside of funny texts here and there. We've never done what we did last night. Just wild to receive such a flood of "the benefits" on only Day 4. Overwhelming.

    My wife comes home from a two-week trip she's been on tomorrow. I'll be on Day 6. I'm excited...and nervous.

    I'm just leaving this open at typing some in here throughout the day.

    Again, really appreciate the responses. I can't remember really reaching out and ever asking anyone for anything. The positive response is a lot to behold. Anyhow, I forgot to say the other day also...I made a mental health appointment with the VA...finally...and not just about this. Best thing I can give my wife and kids is a backside that has my healing in it.

    The mental health side of it really helps me frame it in a way I can understand...right now at least. I've quit hard drugs, crime, infidelity, tobacco, and porn stuff...but it always creeps back. I've been in 12 step programs. I can read. I was in the Army for 22 years. I'm familiar with change how you act, that'll change how you think, and eventually change how you feel. I have the skills to change a habit in the short term. What I don't have, is the skills to deal with the emotional shit that I've not dealt with...like rejection from women at a young age, never really gaining the acceptance or respect of my Dad, the death of my Dad, deaths of peers in the military, a career in the military, multiple marriages, and so on, and so on...this kind of stuff that comes up when you stop doing the dulling/coping thing you taught yourself to do at a young age. I don't have the skills for that....and that's why this shit keeps coming back. And that's why I'm going to go see a professional about it.

    Also, your story was one of the last three things I read that made me decide to fucking act on this. Thanks.

    See above, but also big thanks to you for helping frame this in a way I can understand and take action on.

    Ugh, I'm embarrassed about my impatience and some the stuff I've been so mad or upset about. The dog breathing? WTF? Lots of OCD/OCPD shit starts to manifest. Looking for something to be mad about on purpose...so you can fall back into that bullshit trap...and loving it...being mad all the time. Embarrassing and not who I want to be.

    Brother, thank you. I'm with you man...the next best right thing. That's what I'm trying to do. Always. Tangent, but I was thinking today about how I used to pride myself on being able to be so neutral...in the military...across a career...emotionally disconnected...just business. In some lights, it probably got me to where I am...alive, but the way we got there was so fucking destructive.


    My wife has been gone for a few weeks. Her car hasn't been driven in over a month. She comes home tomorrow. Today, I thought I'd gas and clean up her car before she got home. Come to find out, sometime in the last month, somebody in our apartment complex crashed into the left rear quarter panel of her car and damaged it enough to make an insurance claim. I was mad. I sat in it, zoomed out, got my shit together, didn't PMO, and went on about my day. Yay for me.

    It freaked me out to think that a semi-retired person, or a career change like myself, that is retired from some job where they have a pension, and maybe some disability, and they've been responsible with their money, and they don't have a lot of obligations. We've all already gotten terribly good at hiding this shit from our loved ones. Now, if I wanted to, I could have an apartment, a high speed internet connection, some food, and just disappear and die from this thing. Nobody would know. But...I'm using that freak out to drive this thing forward. Now it's a tool.

    I've felt like I'm right on the verge of losing my shit for about 30 years. I've felt like I've conformed and been stuck in clothes that aren't mine for about that same amount of time. We pride ourselves on the ability to persevere and keep moving forward. I did that, but I never stopped to look at or deal with...me.

    Some things I might share...

    This year, my wife and I had already started making better choices for ourselves (exercise, diet, and so on). For me, if I'm already on a roll of doing good stuff for myself, it's easier to go, "oh yeah, I don't need to be doing that PMO shit too." The 'ole snowball effect.

    Ok, now maybe some positive things. I don't want a big scientific argument, as I get the science of it all is soft...at best, but whatever...if the subconscious and the low self esteem and negative self talk are the real culprits...some of this shit makes some kind of sense...if nothing else, it helps only me.

    Here's some things that have been helping us this year, even before this PMO thing came to the forefront:

    - Solfeggio music, 528hz type stuff, long loops on YouTube, like you'd hear in a day spa or something. Very chill.
    - Exercise. We move ourselves two miles everyday...on foot, on bike, on paddle board, whatever. Additionally, I do the Arnold "no equipment" workout he posted for quarantine (and cool fact, was what he used when he initially came from Austria) and my wife does some yoga and tabata stuff. I also like to do 3-4 rounds of Wim Hof breathing before I workout. We also have been doing 10 push-ups a day for 100 days, since January 1st.
    - Diet. We've been eating better and lowering our cholesterol...on purpose...and it's working.
    - Smoking pot, drinking less...making it count. I'm not drinking the Early Times because I'm trying to forget something. I'm drinking the Cab from Napa because it's delicious.
    - I also listen to a gazillion podcasts, but in relation to this kind of stuff...Art of Manliness, Art of Charm, and Beyond The Uniform...I've found those three to be SUPER helpful in helping me sort shit out over the last year.

    Gents, we are equipped to do this. We just have to fucking do it. That's the hard part. Hack these chemicals (see attachment, I keep shit like this in my phone).

    My wife comes home tomorrow. I'll catch you all on the backside of that. Thanks again for the support. Be well.

    Attached Files:

  7. ruggerdoug

    ruggerdoug Well-Known Member

    @chingaso my Dad is still alive. We have a tepid relationship. My mom -- they divorced when I was young -- prevented much more than that. She's gone. I wanted a Dad that would fight to know me. He didn't.

    And I enjoy porn and masturbating.

    I can't stop one without dealing with the other. Finally.

    You can't stop dealing with the bad behavior without dealing with the emotional in your life.

    Deal with it. This is a long haul. And I bet you can do it.

  8. chingaso

    chingaso New Member

    Yeah man, that. All of that...and when you finally see it all framed correctly, I don't what to say other than it's big and overwhelming.

    I really appreciate the support.
  9. chingaso

    chingaso New Member

    Checking in. Staying strong, but starting to feel that "meh" or "flat" type stuff on our path. We'll be out SUPing most of the day though, so that should help.

    Be strong dudes, we've got this.
  10. chingaso

    chingaso New Member

    Staying strong. Not doing the thing. This lack of interest in sex at all is bullshit though.
  11. chingaso

    chingaso New Member

    All is well. Super-busy with school, exercise, and the wife. Definitely helps keep the mind occupied. So much more to see, do, think about, explore...when we're not consumed with porn and other shit that isn't good for us.
  12. Cali

    Cali Active Member

    You are doing great @chingaso, keep it up!
  13. badger

    badger Well-Known Member

    keep on truckin, my brother

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