I sit here both depressed and optimistic. Depressed because it's been over a year since I discovered YBOP and understood that my problems with ED and DE are caused by my PMO habits. Depressed because I made huge and quick progress last summer but then stalled out for about a year...with relapses, excuses, etc. Depressed because I looked at my old posts on reddit's nofap forum and see the details of my success in the summer of 2012 and my original enthusiasm and energy to overcome my problem. Depressed because I know this works but I started half-assing in October or November of 2012. Since that time, I've had periods of perfection (no porn / no masturbation) broken by relapses and the occasional binge. Optimistic because I've recommitted to tackling this issue. Optimistic because I've gone 29 days perfectly...no porn / no masturbation / no sexy pictures (and 7 days no orgasm...I've been having sex and O with my wife, but the last week has been her time of month and we haven't done anything). Optimistic because it hasn't been that hard this time around. Optimistic because my posts from last summer have reinvigorated me...have reestablished my long term vision with respect to this issue. Optimistic because I want PMO out of my life. Optimistic because, not withstanding my relapses, my ED is significantly better than it was in May 2012 when I first understood what I was doing to myself. Optimistic because my DE went away in the first few weeks of no PMO last year and it remains absent. Optimistic because I've made two signficant changes this time around. First, I started meditating and I think (though I'm not sure) that it's been helpful. I'm not a big fan of touch-y / feel-y dialogue, so it's a bit of an experiment for me. I focus on meditation allowing me to control my thoughts, feelings, and physical sensations more completely and deliberately than I could otherwise. Second, I am writing this journal. I finally understood the importance of writing a journal when I reviewed the posts I made to reddit/nofap last year. Reviewing them over the last couple of days, though a bit depressing, gave me strength. It reminded me of how quickly this can work...of the control I have over ED and my overall happiness if I simply commit. I view this journal not only as a tool for the present, but as a tool for the future should I relapse or otherwise become less committed. It will remind my future self of the ups and downs of this journey...and, more importantly, the ultimate success of exerting will over actions. So, though I am happy for others to read this journal, make comments, and ask questions, the fact is it is written for my benefit as a private diary rather than as public testimony. To that end, there will be plenty here of no interest to anyone but me. In the beginning: I began experiencing ED sometime in the early 2000s concurrent with the combination of working from home and cheap high speed internet access. I started fapping to porn. A lot. I never made the connection. I tried Viagra and other ED meds with great success. Eventually, my ED became severe and DE reared its ugly head. DE got so bad that I'd often have to finish manually following PIV. Within five years, ED meds weren't working well and within seven they were almost entirely ineffective. I saw doctors, ran tests, etc. Thousands spent. Everyone shrugged their shoulders and said, "All is well physically. It must be psychological. Maybe stress. Maybe anxiety. Here, try some more ED meds...double the dose and see if that helps." At the same time, I had some marriage problems that caused me to feel more isolated emotionally and made porn even more enjoyable as a fantasy get-away / stress reliever / boredom tool. In the fall of 2010, I attacked the marriage problems head on...but, honestly, not much changed on her part. Just enough to get me off her back. Definitely not enough to make for a happy marriage and, after 12 months, I decided I had better ways to spend my life if things weren't changing in meaningful ways. Another showdown in the fall of 2011 had more impact as I was clear about my next steps and it was no joke. We've been on an upward trajectory since. Though not perfect, I'm certainly happier and I believe my wife is, too. We've both made a lot of changes. I mention marriage issues as a reminder to myself that avoiding relationship problems can make it easier to hide in the fantasy of porn...and resolving relationship problems can make it easier to avoid porn (e.g. if one wants to spend the time and energy on the relationship instead of a stress relief session spanking it in front of the computer monitor). After reading through YBOP in May 2012, I committed to no PMO. I did it for 9 days "hard mode" before telling my wife about it. Though embarrassed to disclose these things, I was honest (though I left out a lot of the details...and told her I wanted to focus only on the big picture without getting into frequency, porn preferences, etc). She was understanding and supportive. FROM MY REDDIT/NOFAP REPORTS LAST SUMMER (2012): 7 days: the first week "hard mode" was not difficult. I was excited to have found what I figured would be my "cure" though I felt dumb that I hadn't figured it out earlier. 9 days: I told my wife and we agreed on a game plan: Sex--abstain from sex for 30 days then allow O from PIV only if I can do it without ED drugs, no direct stimulation of my penis during sex except during penetration, I'm available to give her orgasm if I can't get it up...but she said she'd abstain entirely with me for 30 days. PMO--eliminate porn forever, masturbate only once my ED was gone and only infrequently. 17 days: I caved and we had sex. It was my doing, not hers. Though I missed my 30 day abstinence goal, I don't think it was a bad thing. PIV was the only direct stimulation, I maintained 80-100% hardness with no drugs (80-90% while PIV), orgasmed PIV. I didn't pound like a jack hammer; I focused on staying in the moment / avoiding fantasy--basically focused on her and on how things felt; no DE issue; it felt better than sex had for a long time....and better than PMO. It was the first time I'd been able to have PIV sex without ED meds in +/- 7 years. 29 days: I relapsed at +/- 21 days for edging in the shower. Flatline at this point (8 days after relapse). 68 days (4 weeks since last relapse to M): I noted I'd had two resets at this point for M. Avoiding P was relatively easy....avoiding M was proving difficult. Highlights at this point: --I could have PIV with no meds and no cock ring. Not always 100% hard, but hard enough for penetration and I typically got harder once inserted. --Sensitivity dramatically improved. DE completely gone as a result. I didn't have the orgasm control (e.g. the ability to control exactly when I would achieve orgasm) that I had in my teens and twenties, but I developed significant control especially compared to just a few months prior when I had no control. Timing now mostly up to me. --Morning wood +/-70% of the time up from 0% for years. Sometimes it'd last 15-20 minutes. Distracting but nice. --Sex after drinking is now possible with the help of ED meds. I had sex after four beers and one Cialis...an absolute impossibility a few months earlier. --Wife again reaching O from PIV. A very big deal. Prior to ED / DE, this would happen 85-90% of the time. Fell to 10-15%. Now at +/-70%, though sample size is still small. --My O's are significantly better even though I've been having sex several times a week--so it's not like I'm saving up. --Typically get 100% hard during foreplay and it lasts for 10-15 min...then falls off a lot by the time I penetrate...then picks up again once inside. 104 days (60 days since last badge reset): Morning wood now +/-90% of mornings; started taking 1/2 dose of ED meds and found I basically performed like I did in my early twenties with this relatively small amount of medication. Still varies w/o meds, though continuing to get better...typically hard during most of foreplay, soft entry, harder (but not 100%) during PIV. Reached O via cowgirl and doggy--something I hadn't been able to do for years (even with medication). DE still gone. Sensitivity is great. 186 days: I posted that my recovery seems to have stalled out. Though I didn't document clearly, I believe I'd developed a mild edging/masturbation habit at this point. Not once per day, but more than once per week...though I'm not 100% sure because I didn't write it down. And I believe I was occasionally viewing very soft porn (e.g. sexy videos on YouTube), but not M'ing to it. Longest Streak: Based on my chains.cc log adjusted for when I actually started nofap (about a week before I started my chains.cc log), my longest streak last summer was 81 days no P; 62 days no M; 16 days no sex; and 16 days no O (I didn't log no O, but I'm confident it's the same as no sex given my strategy at the time). It's possible I had longer streaks in the fall of 2012 but I stopped logging in August. If so, I can't imagine I went much longer. For reference, I'll use these documented numbers as my current record streaks. EVENTS SINCE I STOPPED POSTING REPORTS ON REDDIT/NOFAP 186 days to recent (mid Nov 2012 to Aug 12, 2013): I lost my way a bit but not entirely. I generally stayed away from PMO, but I edged more frequently. It started in the shower. Then I began edging to soft videos (e.g. no nudity)...then topless...and hard core on a few occasions. And I recently found myself cruising NSFW reddits without masturbating...just looking at pictures of "my type." None of this was constant...more like periods of perfection punctuated by periods of weakness. Sometimes the weakness would be short-duration binges and sometimes they'd last a few weeks before I got back on track. Fortunately, the damage was limited mostly to stalling my progress rather than setting me back entirely. So, though I think I was in a little better shape a year ago, the difference is not huge. If I'd stuck with the program of no PMO, I'm sure I'd be significantly better today than my current state (wrt ED). 8/12/13-9/9/13: In early August, I started re-reading YBOP, reddit/nofap, and YBRebal. On 8/12/13, I decided to recommit to no PMO. I was happy I'd made progress, felt I'd regressed maybe 10-15% with respect to that progress, and I was tired of it. I also began to fear that I might lose more of the progress I'd made...the thought of which made me feel ill. I'm a couple of days shy of one month since recommitting and things are going well...almost perfectly. The good: I haven't looked at a single image of porn, I've avoided looking at pretty pictures you might run into in day to day living, and I haven't masturbated. In addition, I'm meditating most days...it's hard on the weekends when the kids are home from school. I've now gone 7 days without orgasm because it's that time of month. I might drag that out even further. I'm undecided on this issue. I really enjoy sex and orgasm. But I really want to make meaningful progress on what remains of my ED. Thus far, I've had sex and O 11 times since I recommitted on 8/12...basically every other day not counting this past week. Overall, though I've had some PMO temptations, I've avoided any truly close calls and it's been relatively easy. I've maintained my positive outlook and my frame of complete control over my actions. The counter on reddit/nofap helps as does chains.cc. I just signed up here today to start my journal and get a counter. The bad: I need to get control of my fantasies. I never completely conquered them last time around. I'm definitely able to avoid fantasizing about porn images, etc....it's mostly attractive women from real life. My latest tactic when I find my brain wandering this direction is to insert my wife rather than some hottie I met or saw. The fantasies are usually while dosing off to sleep or just waking up and don't necessarily involve sex--often just suggestive or intimate situations, conversations, etc. Today: Today has been a bit rough. It's not that I've really been close to viewing porn or masturbating, but I feel a very very strong desire for a release. Honestly, my nuts feel like they're going to burst...it's physically uncomfortable and I know an O would solve that problem. In part because of the discomfort and and in part because of the fact that I'm in this position simply due to past weakness, I'm a bit down. It doesn't help that I woke up with a minor cold and I've had a headache/congestion all day! So--that's it. Thanks to YBOP and Gary Wilson, this site, and reddit/nofap. The information I've gained has been invaluable and life changing. Though it was in my power to be done with this months ago, the fact is that the past is the past...we only have the present and the future. I'm determined to seize every day.