20, Confused and Stuck In A Repetitive Pattern

Discussion in 'Self Improvement' started by TheMightyPenguin, Feb 18, 2020.

  1. TheMightyPenguin

    TheMightyPenguin Fapstronaut

    Note: This is going to be somewhat of a long one (so sorry for that), but mostly I'm reaching out for advice. If you don't want to read the long wall of text, you can skip to the last three paragraphs for the core points.

    I got something pretty good going - a 6 month streak sober from PMO starting from January to June of last year - but now I've fallen from that. I've been trying to get something good and to keep it going for what I just realised is 8 months. I feel like I've been caught up in a loop of confusion, shame and regret trying to figure out why I need to give up porn and whether I've become complacent in the process.

    I started to try and stay sober with greater volition 2 years ago by trying to get over my intrusive thoughts. At that time, I had an onset of some pretty disturbing mental stuff attributed by porn that I had never really dealt with for 18 years up to that point. It was a wake up call to what it was doing to me and so I remained adamant enough to pursue and accomplish individual 3 month and 6 month streaks between 2018 and 2019.

    With enough time, I found myself more capable of handling what entered and left my mind largely due to the 6 month streak I accomplished. I felt like I had more control over my psyche and was barely bothered by the disturbing thoughts. But because I concentrated my efforts on my mental state, I guess I didn't really give enough resources to the physical aspects of the process by developing the discipline to control my urges. I was bound to relapse.

    It was a movie that I deliberately put on, and by the title and premise of It, a part of me must have known it would have incredibly suggestive material. Every aspect about it screamed that It shouldn't be something I should watch.

    When I think back to that moment, I try to figure out why I didn't stop myself earlier despite what I knew. Maybe I felt over-confident, or maybe their was a part of me that felt uneasy at the fact that I have to give things up to fight this thing, and so I chose to prove to myself that my motivation was unflinching and my determination infallible by testing myself. I 'relapsed' that summer, and I've been struggling to get anything good ever since.

    I've lost a massive attraction to porn in that time, yet I find that I still feed the activity. I felt a lot like this last year - that is, the lack of interest in porn - yet I never had as much trouble.

    I felt like I found a solution to what noticeably felt like the biggest problem with the activity to me. It's because of this, that I've started to believe that I'm losing a sense of reason to keep sober and ultimately figure out my motivation on why I want to give up Porn. I feel like I've found myself back where I started before I really committed to sobriety, but with larger regret.

    I guess what I mean Is that I know I have to give it up, but I feel like I need a visceral reason to do so, and so I become complacent because I don't have one. Instead of denying myself this type of pleasure, a part of my mind starts to dwell on the clips I didn't click on and the other starts to dwell on my lack of attraction or satisfaction to and from porn. All in all, I start to think about it more. The anxiety builds up so much so, that I even start to see falsely restorative qualities in not holding out.

    What I mean by this is that the process of trying to stay sober occupies a lot of my mental energy, so much so that It can stress me out. 'Relapsing' relieves a lot of that anxiety and so even If I'm not attracted to porn, I end up starting the whole process again. It becomes a routine I'm subject and familiar to, and so although I'm not comfortable with It, I feel like their is a part of me that doesn't fear a relapse as much anymore and so I have even less reason to hold back.

    I then end up writing posts like this because I get a massive sense of clarity but It's accompanied with immense fatigue and depression. So I write posts like this because a) I don't want to feel alone with the feeling and b) maybe my mind will now be clear enough, that I'll finally crack the code on what I needed all along to motivate me - but I always doubt I'll come across it.

    Core Points

    I'm introverted, don't go out much and I haven't exercised for almost half a decade now. I don't like partying or going drinking. I enjoy watching movies, but I do this so regularly in the comfort of my own presence in my room or at cinemas, It doesn't feel like a special outdoor activity to do.

    Every-time I take this into account, I have a hard time figuring out what I can do In an outside environment that brings me satisfaction similar (if not more so) to what I typically do in solitude - play video games, watch TV or movies and read books. However, each time I think about this, I come to the solution that I need to be creatively fulfilled, and to me that's writing, learning to draw and making video games, but I always feel hampered by university studies and start to feel like I have no other option.

    All in all, I feel like maybe Porn has transitioned into being an anxiolytic for me to keep my stress at bay, but a part of me believes it's always been like that or that I might have an underlying problem in anxiety and/or depression. So in order to improve myself I'm inclined to obviously take up the gym and see a therapist, but generally, I just wanted to ask for any advice on dealing with a lack of motivation, combating anxiety and managing urges. I think If i can wrap my head around these things, I'd have a far better chance.
    goodnice 2.0 likes this.
  2. goodnice 2.0

    goodnice 2.0 Fapstronaut

    check your PM, i have advice for you, if you’re willing to make big changes
  3. graduation

    graduation New Fapstronaut

    ive heard the opposite of addiction is connection. sounds like ur in uni, probably some clubs or volunteering opportunities. I've met some pretty cool people doing both of those things even if the activities themselves were not that fun. Just consider it part of the sacrifice. Unless it is a fun activity anyway, then lucky you! I hate working out but sports make it more fun for me. Also I've fallen victim to the cycle many times as well. Sometimes I feel hopeless. Can I really change? Should I really try to fight who I am? The answer is yes. and I have to. For me some of the most motivating things against cyclic behaviour are stories covering someone's entire life. Basically each individual cycle it may seem like you go nowhere. Sometimes you make small improvements. When you are old like 70 though do you want any regrets? At a certain point you won't be allowed to start the cycle over again. One day you will decided to quit but it will be too late, your life has already been decided. You've already made your mistakes and lived your life. You can't start the streak over again because you are 60 have no sex drive, no desire to look at porn or masturbate, which seems like a blessing but is really hell because those were drives, sources of energy, a challenge you were capable of tackling, those forces you could master. you could tame them and use them to help you build you make you a hero to at least one person, yourself. But you didn't you failed yourself for the last time. 3 strikes you're out. Now you're 60 and you can't change as well. You can't focus long enough to learn new things. Your health quickly fades and you will probably die alone. Or! You could always keep trying. A saint is a sinner who keeps trying. We are all flawed. Addiction is permanent. A sober person always risks their whole life if they ever have one drink, one line of coke. The desire for a drink or a line never goes away completely. Its gone most days but every now and then you wish you could have one drink but you can't. It's ruined forever because you couldn't control your freaking reward circuitry while you could. Now you you're young you're lucky hopefully you are only addicted to porn and not other things. But as you become addicted to one thing and let it control you other addictions become much easier. Addiction to food, gambling, instant gratification in all forms, can involve being mean to people, always thinking you are right and not having an open mind, and suddenly you are a terrible person. Fight the porn, fight the addictions and wake up.
    sorry for the rant. kinda wrote this for me too
  4. lolos

    lolos Fapstronaut

    Honestly bro, couldn't really be bothered reading your post properly but I saw a few things like you are introverted, and judging by the size of your post you think too much. My advice is start lifting weights seriously and get out of your house more. Join some clubs at your university, go buy a coffee and talk to the barista, go for walks, go for runs, pick up skateboarding, go for a swim at the beach, visit your family, anything that gets you out of the four walls of your room.

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