Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by gettingthere, Apr 11, 2012.

  1. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    I am on day 35 of reboot and I want to thank you for making this site available. I intend on using this as a tool, among others, in getting free of porn addiction.
    My low point where I knew I needed to change came after 35 years (I'm 52), and luckily, before I became crippled for ever. For that I am thankful. The long spiral of my addiction stimuli is classic textbook for men my age. I'll recount later if I feel like it.
    I hope my experience helps others get through this difficult process. Primarily, though, I'm here to heal myself through the catharsis of acknowledging my downward path and shame.
    Turn around is fair play. So I decided enlist the internet, which had been my enemy, as an ally. This is a great tool and the healing material is just as easy to access as porn. (And I don't have to spend half of my day removing viruses from my computer.)
    I started out educating myself about porn addiction. This included the social, psychological, biological, chemical, and spiritual factors. Attaining this knowledge was an important element for me.
    Next I started visiting sites that explained the healing process because I knew I needed hope after so much despair had become ingrained in me. Others going through the same ordeal successfully, and pros like you, have let me know that inner health is possible.
    I made some concrete changes in my life. To relieve some loneliness I bought a dog, became active in my synagogue, joined a town committee, went on a legitimate dating site and joined a gym. Now I have a lover and I'm even getting in shape. (These didn't stop my wanking to porn.)
    Inadvertently I discovered another tool--the emotions of disgust and compassion. Exploring the world of porn itself was an eye opening process. The "starlets" are usually desperate, dumb, children when they are convinced they can make some easy money then get out. The actresses and directors reveal hideous common practices including intimidation, rape, violence, disease, drugs, and scars that estrange them from future normal relationships and their families. On the other side the advocates of porn cite freedom of speech and the use of porn as a "marital aid". Both rationales I found false and disengenuous. Further many of the "starlets" aren't even nice people, never mind someone you'd like to wake up with.
    I have adopted spiritual practices of prayer and meditation. I'm not a preacher and the concepts of sin and repentance didn't help me. But spiritual practice is critical for me and, again, the tools to gain these skills are free and available on the internet.
    Finally, I found this site and it helps provide new tools, especially support. Anonymity too can be a friend. The site helps me prepare for what is coming next in this difficult process and I don't feel so lonely or ashamed because others are doing it too.
  2. navi

    navi New Member

    Best of luck to you, you'll definitely feel a lot better having done this.
  3. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Thanks navi.
  4. spinergy

    spinergy New Member

    Welcome, gettingthere. I'm older, too (48), and on Day 38 of my current reboot attempt.

    If you're interested in the experiences of older guys, here's my journal:, and here's MetaMorph's (late 40's): , and here's paulier's (age 49):

    Congratulations on your decision to rid your life of this poison. We are on the way to being the men we are supposed to be.

    Stay strong!
  5. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Nice to "meet" ya Spin.
    Maybe we can take this trip together. We might be able to encourage eachother.
    A long while ago I was in a men's group. It was a powerful experience and great friendships developed with the support.
    The whole concept was not being judgmental and not offering advice if not requested.
    Something about not being distracted by thinking about getting into a girl's pants made it easy to relax and relate.
    I hereby give you permission to offer me advice.
  6. spinergy

    spinergy New Member

    Thanks--feel free to offer me advice too. I need all the help I can get.

    You probably will get unsolicited advice from others here--it's customary. That said, people generally respect each other's opinions, even if theirs differs.

    Let's do this!
  7. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Well I've made it to 41 days. Through the symbolic desert. I read that 40 days abstinence was necessary just to get the dopamine, etc. from continuing to seethe through the body. Now it's on to new dopamine, hopefully from healthy sources.
    So far so good. Discovering this site and using it for support, accountability and information is akin to a revelation--very powerful stuff.

    I am trying to be vigilant though as any little crack can start a torrent of images. That happened with the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue at the barber shop. My balance is so delicate right now that almost anything can start a landslide.
    The wrong picture, the wrong thought, the wrong emotion, all have heightened importance because of potential tragic consequences.

    I'm trying to keepitsimplestupid. I tell myself, "don't get confused", "don't overthink", "just worry about today".

    Shame and fear are still surging out of contro in my soul. For the moment these rip tide currents are dragging me around like drift wood. I hope and pray they will slowly lose their death grip.
  8. TheUnhappyFapper

    TheUnhappyFapper Active Member

    Getting, how are you finding it physically and with your lady friend? Are you seeing improvements?
  9. MetaMorph

    MetaMorph New Member

    gettingthere, you have a great handle on the situation, and I congratulate you on your success!

    Remember all the great reasons to stay strong, and the new life you're gaining with each day. Good luck today brother!!
  10. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Thanks for your support Spin, Fap, Met, it means a lot to me and helps me w/ the shame part immensely.
    Spin I can see why you've been an inspiration to so many here and I'm happy to join that group.
    Fap, performance is not really an issue. It's rather that I fear that I've scrambled my brain an ruined my life needlessly and permanently. My vitality is a distant memory.

    Today, day 42, I write about an area I've never dared to explore with others.

    When I was 14 I had two bleeds in my brain requiring 2 brain surgeries. I've had elpileptic seizures ever since. I've had many unfortunate experiences with extremely powerful and barely understood medications.
    My quality of life has fluctuated widely. I've lost years of my life with literally no memories.
    Epilepsy has effected many relationships, sometimes critically. Professional and school work have occasionally suffered.

    All that stuff is just simple facts. But there is a deep emotionally subjective aspect.
    The age 14 is pivotal for many reasons. Sexuality is changing shape. I discovered I wanted girls at the same time I looked in the mirror and saw an ugly kid with two black eyes, a shaved head with a nasty scar from ear to ear, and a pudgy body due to being on my back in the hospital for a long time. I think I would have been grateful for low self-esteem because I had none. Of course I was scared and pity doesn't help that.
    Finally I got invited to a party by a girl and I took it as an act of pity. I wore a hat and kids being kids, they tore it off and teased me.

    I'm not trying to elicit any emotion from anyone reading this. It's more a true journal, not a chronicle for you guys to derive insight or guidance. So don't feel like you need to read this as it's a stream of conscious venting--nothing more.

    The timing couldn't have been worse. Just when the hormones start to seethe, I felt scared, unattractive, and ashamed. Yes, epilepsy being invisible and unpredictable remains a mystery and misunderstood by many. "Is this a real disability?" "Shouldn't I be able to control this better?" "What if I have a seizure on a date?" These are hard questions even now, never mind at 15.

    I suppose it was predictable that I would, at some point, turn to sexual gratification as an outlet and escape from troubling emotions. It needn't have manifested in compulsive masterbation and porn addiction. That was a slow spiral that I am only capable of perceiving now. We all know this addiction only magnifies and multiplies feelings of lonliness and despair. That is the vicious cycle I was and am experiencing.

    There is a subtle aspect that really troubles me. It is a fact that people who experience brain trauma, abuse or have addicted parents, are more likely to become addicts. Not all individuals who are abused become addicts, but it is statistically more likely.

    So having at various times perceived that I had a real tangible problem that was hurting myself and others, I went searching in my soul for a reason. It was obvious that siezures were what made me "different". So I think at times I used them as a justification or excuse for bad behaviour. Part of me is still tempted to relinquish control and jump willingly into the victim role.

    That is where I am now. Finally I am realizing that being a "victim" and being in control of our actions are not mutually exclusive. Even if I did suffer some real trauma, I am still able to make better decisions for myself and others.

    I know recovery is possible and I can be a conduit for good in the world. I know this because it is happening.
  11. 00Schneider

    00Schneider New Member

    Some story you have there, but nice to see that you manage to make things clear for yourself, in my opinion this is the most important step.

    So, day 42, that´s pretty good work, keep going!
  12. wayne_992

    wayne_992 New Member

    I WAS LOOKING FOR ur Journal and ive finally found it, thanks for the comment on mine and feel free to comment again.
    and thats a great deal of work u put in to reach day 42. im now on day 8 of no porno but i had a semi relapse and so im now on day one of no masturbation.
  13. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Thanks Joey and Jun for your help. My shame feels literally like a noose around my neck just waiting for me to stumble off the chair so that I hang there twitching in horror. (Wow, I might publish that one...creepy! lol)

    Maybe it is my age (52) and the countless lost opportunities and hurt I have caused myself and others. The question is haunting, it is disturbing, it is the question itself, "will I ever live a day without shame?"

    I know this kind of talk can be a drag and I sure don't want to bring anyone down. On the positive side I'm on day 43 no PMO and feel hopeful and determined to make it to 100 days of reboot.

    Maybe my older perspective can help some of you young whippersnappers (lol). At 52 you can have a fulfilling love life with all of your equipment functioning.

    Also, and I want to stress this, you young guys might think that 6 months or a year is way too long to attempt something that might not even work. For you guys it seems like a really big chunk of time. Now take a step back and try to imagine yourself after 52 years of PMO. What I wouldn't give to take a year out of my life in my 20s, 30s, or 40s to get this ugly cancer out of my guts.
    Heck, I would even have listened to Barry Manilow each day for that year. lol

    I'm with all of you guys trying to use a shaky, dull, rusty scalpel to cut out this malignant cancer. (I'm on a roll with these metaphors. lol) The visual image of that surgery is horrifying. And we don't even have any anasthesia! At the end of the day, we will probably have a nasty scar to brag about. I'm not a bathing suit model so scars won't affect my salary. Bring on the rusty scalpel!
  14. MetaMorph

    MetaMorph New Member

    gettingthere, thanks for sharing your story. I really hope your sense of shame will decrease as you go through this process, as you say, you've definitely been a victim in all of this.

    I think this is an important life lesson; in many ways, life victimizes us, everyone. What young boy proactively seeks pornography on his own volition? None! I suspect we all found it accidentally, or are given it by others. And what about the fact that pornography exists without us first asking for it? What about porno pop-up ads on a gaming site? What about lingerie ads in our mom's catalogs? What about having been born with an irresistible sex urge??

    Realizing this is a good step toward getting our thinking rebalanced, especially for those who feel shame over our actions. This realization, that we don't own the first few steps into our misbehavior, gives us the first few steps up the ladder out of the pit of dispair... essentially, we're "owed" a pass for those first few steps that weren't our fault... and those first few steps are enough to take the next few steps on our own power, where we gain the confidence and pride to take a few more, until we're up where we can see daylight and know that, someday, the shame, and the need to act out, the ugly cycle, will be gone completely.

    Good luck today brother, here's wishes for a powerful, uplifted and clean day today my friend!
  15. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Day 44 and still counting.

    Thanks Meta for a really subtle, yet powerful, insight into the process of addiction we all experience.
    All of us have had the deck stacked against us to some degree from the beginning.

    Yesterday I learned what "flat line" is. I felt blah, lethargic, not animated by anything. It was not a nice feeling.
    I hope this is just a step in the process because I read a lot of people here experienced it.
    How pathetic to have a beautiful day, good health, loving family and friends, a good job...and all of that is just shapeless foggy white-noise.

    My number one concern continues to be deep shame. It's like a cancer I can't get rid of.
    Today I remembered I nice idea that might help me.
    You can never jump into the same river twice. It is literally not the same river and you are not the same person. The actual physical molecules and atoms are not the same.
    Quite truly I am not the same person I was 5 years or 1 year ago.
    I may have acted badly and even hurt others but I am not the same person. I am the man that is typing this message this moment.

    I really want to get beyond this gloomy shame thing. I want to be inspiration to others in my life but I don't feel I can because "I don't deserve" anything good.
    Ok now take a step back and challenge that statement. (Rational Emotional Behavioral Therapy) What does that mean "deserve"? A boxer steps into the ring so it is highly likely that he will be punched but that doesn't mean he "deserves" to be punched.
    Who or what can possibly determine what anyone "deserves"? A jury analyzes "facts" and a judge delivers a sentence based on statutory law. That is not the same thing as "deserving" to go to prison for 10 years for robbing a bank.
    Now lets step it up a notch because I do actually believe in Gd. Maybe it is Gd that determines what we "deserve". That necessarily implies that we can fathom Gd's rationale. Otherwise the concept of morality would be nothing more than an empty word. Therefore, since we can't possibly fathom Gd's rationale we can't say that Gd believes we deserve for no good to come our way.
    So really my feeling of shame is just that--an emotion with no correlation to what I deserve.
    So is there any reason to feel shame at all? Of course it can be a moral compass for future actions.
    But to attach to that shame from past actions in a way that it doesn't improve future actions is absurd. Further, that attachment probably confounds future actions rather than improving them.
    Therefore, logically, I should relinquish my shame after I've derived the benefit of guidance in future actions that entail a moral component. Simply, logically, by whatever means necessary, I need to relinquish my shame.

    Well now, hopefully, that exegesis will help me to jolt myself out of this gloomy stage. I want to help others in my life not bring them down. The REBT challenging process really works for me because I like to use logic to guide my actions.

    Anyone who has actually read this may be as weird as I am.(lol)
    Onward and upward,
  16. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Day 45
    My girlfriend is coming in 2 hours. Thank Gd.
    I've felt really weak with her gone. It's like being back to square one.
    I need to keep vigilant.
  17. gettingthere

    gettingthere New Member

    Day 48 and still counting!

    I had a great weekend with gf so I'm not going to give up the O. But the PM part are very dangerous and insidious so I'm attempting to give them up for good.
    It helps me to read your guys comments and get some support. Even though I haven't relapsed I feel I still need to be vigilant and keep this site in my arsenal to fight the PMO addiction.

    I don't want to feel cut off from people and even though this site is anonymous, I feel connected and less vulnerable. It is just a baby step do be even typing this but I'm taking it so that I can take the next baby step and, hopefully, the next...
  18. darkknight3313

    darkknight3313 New Member

    Yeah this site helps a ton. I find reading those who have relapsed again and again are great reminders why I need to stay on course. I don't know if I would've been able to make it this far without this site.
  19. pjokay

    pjokay New Member

    Wow, only just a week away from the 8 weeks mark. Even if your wanting to go further a big milestone. Well done, keep going!
  20. Trev

    Trev New Member

    Hi gettingthere, I can emphasis as this has been a big issue for me. I recommend reading the articles on this site by Dr Sarah Ulman

    In particular, 'Sex addiction and and the science of forgiveness' to quote:

    It was Dr Ullman's articles that got me motivated to start rebooting after I realised that my addiction had effectively made me morally bankrupt and that it was a progressive condition that would only get worse. I few months after reading the material on her site, I found Your Brain on Porn and then this forum.

    Both her articles and the ones on YBOP are such powerful stuff when combined with the accountability of this forum.

    Hope it helps.

    Keep going!

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