What drives this for me

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Atomicpunk, Oct 25, 2022.

  1. Atomicpunk

    Atomicpunk New Member

    I’m 46, divorced. In a career I despise and in the process of ending a decades long porn addiction.

    I’m also extremely intelligent, capable, hardworking and dare I say, not physically unattractive.

    The struggle to quit has been extremely difficult. I’ve sworn a thousand times, “I’ll quit tomorrow.” Never works. Make it a week on willpower, fall back into it. The idea is repulsive, and yet every day I’m back at it.

    So the question occurred: why? I’m highly paid if not highly satisfied. Competent, if not happy.

    I read something on here earlier today that kind of made sense of it. Masturbation isn’t about orgasm. The orgasm is about avoiding something else.

    I grew up in a house where domestic violence was common. All I saw growing up was Dad beating up Mom. The day of his funeral, Mom told me that she had introduced physical violence into their relationship. He called her a name, she slapped him across the face.

    But three year old me didn’t know that. I just knew that Dad was beating mom and it was my job to stop it. So I took a hairbrush and tried to stab him in the back with it.

    He never hit me. Spanked me once, which I deserved. One time. He never hit any of the other women in his life. And there were many. Mom stopped slapping me around when I was 17 and when I stood up to her she said, “if I have to fear you, I’ll kill you.” And I said, “do your worst.” She did nothing.

    But three year old me just saw the parent I identified with, the one who was charismatic and funny and respected and good and all that beating up the one who left bruises on my ass every time I acted up. And I knew it was wrong. So I tried to stop it.

    I watched a lot more. Physical, yes. Verbal, endlessly. I was so identified with him that I decided at four to follow in his footsteps. But the fighting continued.

    one time, at 7, I was on the couch. They started fighting. I had just discovered my penis recently. That when I played with it, things didn’t hurt so bad.

    My parents divorced a few months later. My Dad was an occasional visitor. Not knowing their history and how crazy she is 100% capable of being, I blamed him being adulterous, which was correct. He did do it. But living with my mother was not “not easy.” It was crazy world all the time. So when I got sad because I missed my Dad, I could always jerk off.

    Around 10 porn came into my life. The masturbation was the point, porn was just the stimulus.

    At 14 I found out that my hero, my idol, my North Star, the man I wanted to be, had molested two little girls. Just like when I was three, I took the blame for his actions on myself. Porn became a daily thing.

    Like any good addict, I adjusted technique to the available technology.

    I’m not an alcoholic, but I have known plenty and lots of drug addicts, too. They don’t even like the drug, the same way I don’t even like porn, haven’t for years. They want to escape. Just like I do.

    I learned when I ran homeless shelters that addiction is nothing but a maladaptive behavior pattern made to survive what seems like an unlivable situation. Addicts are still people, in many cases, better people than most corporate America shills I work with on a daily basis. More honest. More authentic. More caring. More decent. Just better people all the way around.

    I’m no expert on recovery and this may be nothing but the word vomit of a stranger. But for now (to eternal chagrin of my very Southern Baptist mother), I’m thinking like a lifelong Catholic who believes that confession is good for the soul.
  2. Mad Dog

    Mad Dog Well-Known Member

    We have no conscious choice as yo we are born into nor do we have the mental capacity yet to do anything about it. But you are a survivor and you now can do for you. Your road I'd not going to be easy but you are among some amazing men. Read, read, read its here and welcome aboard !
    path-forward likes this.
  3. path-forward

    path-forward Well-Known Member

    Welcome @Atomicpunk

    you have come to the right place. Your first post covered a lot of territory and was a great start. Many of us have emotional trauma from childhood - myself included. Took me a lot of years to fully address it and work to be at peace with it.

    As said in that great scene in Good Will Hunting:

    “It’s not your fault…. It’s not your fault”

    And like most of us, I have also used PMO as a way of self medication from feelings of depression, anxiety, melancholy, etc - even from feelings of being bored. And like you - I started masturbating around 7. And it was at least daily by 10. I discovered playboy at 12 and porn quickly became an obsession in my life. The internet in the 90s making it so much worse.

    You came here for great reasons. It will be a very challenging journey at times to give up PMO. But it is key to get right back in the horse, if you relapse. No binging. Learn from any relapses. Journal in detail what you learned from a relapse or even just temptation.

    there is a lot of great insights to read from your brothers here. I recommend spending a lot of time reading here.

    journaling helps A LOT. Over time also comment on others’ posts - as it will help you reinforce what you are learning. And most importantly - remind you that you are not alone in your quest to beat PMO. We are all brothers here.

    I would also try to give up MO - at least for 60 days. I have found MO is a slippery slope to PMO - at least for myself.

    Most importantly. Take it a day at a time. Celebrate your victories. And do not let defeats overwhelm you. Get back on the horse immediately.

    You got this!
    Libertad likes this.
  4. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    You may have more to work on than just porn.
    path-forward and Libertad like this.
  5. Libertad

    Libertad Well-Known Member

    Welcome @Atomicpunk ,
    @path-forward already mentioned the most important points in my opinion. Also something which is helpfull to me, is not to view PMO as something extremly powerfull, in my mind I called it this shit. When the temptation came, I said to myself, I don´t want to do this shit anymore, it will only lead to more shit in my life. This deminished the feeling of powerlessness a little when confronted with urges and temptations.

    About the judging of addicts in comparison to corporate America people, not sure what the catholic view is on this aspect. If one has not much to loose, it is easier to say and do whatever is on your mind than for someone who takes on responsibilities like a job and family and owns something he might loose. Just my thoughts.

    Again, welcome and all the best for your journey.
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2022
    path-forward likes this.

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