I've been a member since 2014, and I have completely lost my way...

Discussion in 'Rebooting - Porn Addiction Recovery' started by seth, Apr 22, 2018.

  1. seth

    seth Fapstronaut

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    I made an account in college, in 2014 and was fully on board. Right off the bat, I hit a 90 day streak. Life was awesome. Then I relapsed and learned about porn substitutes. I grew from that and tried it again. And I relapsed and then tried again. And again. And again. And. again...

    Now don't get me wrong, these are not 5 day streaks. These are 90 day streaks, 120 day streaks. 30 day streaks. Some times hard mode, most times allowing M. I have done this over and over again.

    I have reflected every time. I have tried different techniques. I have become increasingly open about this addiction with many of my friends (as I try to enlighten them).

    And then in March, 2017, I purchased Ever Accountable and this suddenly became so much easier. I did not watch porn for SEVEN FUCKING MONTHS. It was amazing. I found the secret key, the magic bullet. While I did relapse, I noticed something about my relapses. The time in between streaks was getting shorter and shorter. For instance, right after my 7 month streak, I binged on porn for 2 weeks. The next relapse was only 1 week long. Soon I was hitting a place, where I was only 2 days between streaks. It was like as I was relapsing, I knew I would get right back to cutting it out of my life. Sometimes I knew I would add back my accountability partners in 3 days.

    And that brings me to the year of 2018. I added a new accountability partner. And I felt a negative spin. I would hit a 30ish day streak and then just remove my accountability partners. I did this 3 times except a negative trend was growing. My relapse period was getting longer and longer. My streaks were getting shorter and shorter. I stopped posting on this forum.

    Then four weeks ago I relapsed, with no intention of getting back on track. Part of me had given up. I'm not sure why. And it's gotten worse. I PMO'd in the bathroom at work, which disgusted me. I did it once and was like I cannot believe I just did that. Then a week later I did it again. I'm a high school teacher and it just weirds me out that I'm stooping to that level. But it got worse! When I was alone in my classroom I started watching some porn. I usually get to school super early, and have complete privacy in my classroom, so I would do a bit of work, then watch some porn for 5 minutes (no MO). Last week, I was doing this and I decided to PMO in the bathroom again, when I realized I could just PMO right in the classroom. I had the privacy to do so. And I fucking did it. A bit of shame =(

    I've tried visualizing what would happen if I somehow got caught. And it would literally fuck a lot of my life up. But I still have done it a few times. And I finally worked up the courage and determination to at least "confess" on this forum to get it off my chest.

    ~~~

    Can the fapstraunauts give some support and guide a lost person? I know this isn't the worst thing ever, but I miss cutting it out of my life. I don't feel like my life changes too much when I am PMO'ing, but I know I need to cut it out. Many thanks for all your support.
     
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  2. ShotDunyun

    ShotDunyun Fapstronaut

    I can relate to your story, I also went Seven months without porn un 2016, but somehow ended up fapping every week in 2017 and twice a week in 2018. Though I've never PMOed in public, I can say that my tastes in porn got worse, nothing too extreme, but worse. Our brains are always trying to find antes excuse to make porn look good, as its something normal, but we know its not. Im trying to leave it as well, but its damn hard. What I always recommend Is to have a plan, just in case the urges come hard on you
     
    seth likes this.
  3. GentlemanLlama

    GentlemanLlama Fapstronaut

    Hey, I'm pretty new to this and have managed to relapse twice since committing about 4 weeks ago. You hitting a streak of 7 months clean is such an inspiration to me, genuinely.

    My first thought on reading your post was; what is the role porn and masturbation are playing in your life? Not just "it's and addiction that now feels like it is getting out of hand", but why you think you do it? Then moving on from that question, I'm curious what has changed for you in the time things have started to get worse again? Are there any factors that link answer a to answer b?

    I'm sure this is stuff you have thought of before, but I wonder if you've lost sight of that right now? Sounds like it's a great opportunity for you to re-evaluate...
     
  4. seth

    seth Fapstronaut

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    I appreciate your insight because I do need some review of what I learned when I was new to this. I'm a first year teacher in a difficult school, so porn is definitely serving as an escape from the work-related stresses. I think I feel calmer when I PMO, but it's kind of like being in a faze. I don't notice a real difference in my day to day life. When I was hitting that 7 month streak, I was in a less stressful position.

    Kind of need to re-evaluate why I want porn away from my life. There's lots of negative factors, but they don't feel compelling at all when I'm facing an urge.
     
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  5. GentlemanLlama

    GentlemanLlama Fapstronaut

    I can certainly relate to using PMO as a means of regulating yourself in times of stress. The first year in any new situation can be challenging, let alone for a job like what you have; I imagine it can feel quite overwhelming and isolating at times. Are you an NQT? Or is the new school a step up in challenges from where you are used to being?

    What I'm learning to do is accept that the stress will happen and that it is out of your control, but what I can control is my response. Much easier said than done, granted, and my experience has been far from smooth so far. Maybe it would be helpful to visualise yourself in school in September. It's a nice day, one of those "too warm for September" days that we all secretly love. You're alone in your classroom and know you have security there, no one is going to bother you for at least 30 mins. You feel the urge, but instead of PMO'ing you do something else to help you feel a bit more in control of things again. What does this look like? Where do you go? How do you feel after doing it?
     
  6. Headspace

    Headspace Fapstronaut

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    Smeagol has to get over Gollum. That's the only option, and deep down you know it. Rather than fighting against it, it is more about letting go from thinking you need it. You know everything you need to know. What you need to do is to quit lying to yourself.

    I can relate to you, I've been on NoFap since 2015, did an epic 240 days at first and many 30+ streaks since. When I returned from Norway to Germany in march and was thrown into the isolation of my city apartment, not having any structure in my day, I did exceptionally bad. But since I created THIS thread I've been rising again (may be have a look at it). I can't make promises about the future (nor do I need to because the decision not to fap has to be done in the present), but I think I am doing well in NoFap terms at the moment.
     
  7. Thanks for having the courage to share your story. To be honest, that is pretty scary stuff. The good thing is that you seem to be fully aware that it has become an uncontrollable situation that is not healthy. You are going down a path that can potentially land you in some major trouble. A large part of this addiction is novelty; hence your escalation from masturbating in the bathroom at work to masturbating to porn in your classroom. I fear what you may do when masturbating to porn in your classroom gets old. You have a history of doing better when you are accountable. Have you ever gone to a SLAA meeting? I think you should consider it, as well as perhaps talking to a therapist. Anyways, just wanted to let you know that I am here for you. You can message me whenever you want.
     
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  8. Summer Son

    Summer Son Fapstronaut

    If you look at my posts, you can see a lot of similarities. My first try to quit is about 2011. Yes, I was 13 and I knew porn was the problem. Because when I comparised before PMO and after PMO I saw the results I was in. I had more concentration problems, unsocial, my grades got low, low self-esteem etc, depressed etc. I grew up porn too. My first exposures about 8 or 9 I can't really remember the correct time and when I found internet porn at age 11, it literally changed my life negatively and drastically. I PMO'ed everywhere. I have an attempt to quit about 2014 Summer and I made 5 months. All the life was awesome, how did I return back into depression and losted myself I can't even know. I was look like communicate with theirs, my all social skills, leadership potential, high grades was gone. How did I relapse after 150 days you know? I watched ALL NIGHT PORN without sleep and went to the school. Girls was asking me, what happened to you?

    My first serious attempts to quit was about 2013. I tried everything, believe me. I have spoken with my friends and parents they didn't understand me by the way, I had write to myself an open letters, I hanged nofap emergency pictures in my room, destroyed mobile phones and other devices, tended to something they can be helpful. A lot of them didn't work. I masturbated everywhere. My room, bathroom, sitting room, other people's houses, street and city toilets, school's WCs, even with a lot of people I did it because I had a smartphone.

    I still remember how my longest period was in my 16.

    PMO is bad for you, believe me. It can't decrease your stress, you maybe thought escape the stress with pornography but real life goes on. Everytime you watch porn, it damages more your brain and with longtime your all body. Porn can't help you for anything it just worsen you.

    Think about your life in your free time. I was thinking about it in cafes with all materials I could find. Maybe it works for you. Read everything about pornography addiction and understand how addiction works. You are stronger than it. Best wishes!
     
    Elix likes this.
  9. outwithold

    outwithold Fapstronaut

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    I applaud your open and honest thread!
    It shows massive bravery and a massive push to want to deal with your issues.

    And in many way I hear you, its easy to find yourself suddenly act out behaviours that are massively risky!

    But firstly and obviously you cant undo what has been done and luckily enough you haven't been caught so thank your lucky stars in reality...
    But it sounds like your wanting to get help and 100% seriously take heed brother and get some proper help to deal with this as your luck will run out and what your talking of isnt to be taken lightly at all as you know.

    Be proactive and get to some sex addiction meetings and if you have the means get to a sex therapist to discuss more specific to you what is going on in your head surrounding this.. and I would say get to a counsellor also to talk about anything else in your life that is causing you problems etc.

    Move forward from this brother and all the best.
     
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  10. SnakeAndApple

    SnakeAndApple Fapstronaut

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    Wow dude, that must have taken some courage to write your post. Good on you for being so honest about what's been happening. I'm sure you'll need this level of courage honesty to properly deal with what's going on from here.

    I think too that it is a good thing for you to visualise what could happen if you were caught. Because this is really serious. I agree with the above poster that I think you should take advantage of the clarity that you have right now and your current motivation to muster all the resources you have available to you. Can you just take some time off? If you can, I think you should.

    I'm not a teacher, but I work in social service, and I imagine the consequences of being found out having done PMO in my office would be similarly ruinous to me professionally and personally. You've probably considered this, but I imagine the school monitors web traffic across school computers. If you were dismissed for this, what would your likelihood of being rehired elsewhere be? Would if affect your ability to remain registered as a teacher? There are kids involved man, implicitly or otherwise. It's the type of thing that media would get all over if they found out. The consequences are so significant, it makes me wonder whether you have unconsciously thought of these things - How are you finding your job? Could this be in some part self sabotage?

    Does your school pay for free counselling sessions with an outside agency? I'm not necessarily thinking that you should talk with them about the porn, but can you speak about your stress? If I were you I would take this as a huge sign that things are not right, and that you need to make urgent steps to change what is going on so that you can keep your job and career. Perhaps you do need to ask yourself if you are in the right job right now, and if not, take some action to gracefully leave your job with your employment history (and future job prospects) intact.

    Really wish you well brother. Keep us posted on what you do.
     
  11. seth

    seth Fapstronaut

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    Guys thank you so much.

    This was kind of the wake-up call I needed. I have still been PMO'ing (nearly everyday) and a few more times at my school since I last posted. I have imagined getting caught and how bad that would be, but I think I ignored it because I find it extremely unlikely that that would happen. But holy shit - what am I thinking? I noticed the very last time I PMO'd in my classroom how normal it felt - it felt as if I was in my bedroom.

    So from this day forward, I am never going to PMO at my school again. I know myself well, and I can assure you that I won't. I was only doing it because it felt normal and it took me until reading these posts to realize how ridiculous it is.

    ~~

    But as far as my regular addiction goes, I need some guidance on where to go from here. Right now, I feel very motivated to quit P, but I can't rely on motivation. What tends to happen is I get really motivated and really anti-PMO. I start a streak and login into nofap.com every day. And then, it becomes a routine, and at some point I get a strong urge and I submit to the urge. That urge might be a few weeks or several months.

    My proposed solution is to build some routine for myself.
    • For starters, I can try to commit a minimum of a half hour every Saturday to logging into Nofap.com and/or some form of research (re)learning about the addiction. It's probably important to stay in touch with this community throughout the journey, not just at the beginning.
    • Additionally, I think I need to get a tracker. Not a streak tracker, but an excel sheet where I log all of my urges and all of my PMO sessions (even if I've broken a streak).
    • I AM talking to a (free) therapist provided by my program. I've mentioned porn once a month ago, and I don't know if he knows too much about it, but I think it's probably important to discuss.
    • Lastly, I need to get some new partners for Ever Accountable. I'm thinking of adding my old accountability partner, but two of my close friends as well. One of these friends is my roommate and I think it's important for it to be someone I interact with everyday (interesting side note, why I don't really want my gf to be my accountability partner).
    Please offer some feedback.
     
  12. seth

    seth Fapstronaut

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    I haven't watched since that last post, and I've been updating my PMO tracker. However, I've felt like shit the last couple of days. Took me the entire first day to realize WHY.

    This has been a rough week, even though nothing has actually happened. Just feeling negative.
     
  13. outwithold

    outwithold Fapstronaut

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    Regardless of what your saying and all the things your putting in place which I dont in reality know is true or not..
    I have to say It sort of sounds like you think you have a porn addiction.. and if you can keep from that you will be fine....
    but when I read your thread it seems more like thats just a part of your developing addiction... and that developing addiction now includes perverse and very risky sexual behaviours...
    From what I know of myself I expect mentally you will be suffering pretty badly and that wont just be withdrawal.. that will also be realisation of how far this addiction has gone and how out of control its is and fundamentally you are.
    As a result of this pain I know I have tried to make myself believe Im 'REALLY' going to sort this out this time and will go to more and more effort to make myself and others believe this..
    It gave me a sort of temporary lift when doing this.
    But as ive learnt a lot more and bare in mind Im 100% not cured or right at the top of my game by any means Ive realised the truth
    of my problems and also realised I had to admit certain things to myself or I simply would and will keep trying to kid myself and make myself and others believe Im now in the driving seat and have sorted it all!

    Until I began admitting to myself in a truly honest way my addictions used to at best move on to something id make myself believe was more acceptable or less problematic. But In reality I was lying to myself and In truth I was getting nowhere and the true extent of my addictions were always lurking and before long I would be back in it... up to my nostrils.

    As I say I dont know you or your nature so this post may not apply to you and I wish you well and pray you move forward from all this healthily but as a fellow addict I felt a need to post it..
     
  14. seth

    seth Fapstronaut

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    I didn't quite understand your point. Could you re-explain that? (Also, light criticism: can you include some punctuation? lol. Kind of hard to understand with it)

    Otherwise, this has been a good week. Last two days, I got over that negativity vibe, and am feeling much more positive. I am continuing to track my urges and it's gone well.
     
  15. Awakening123

    Awakening123 Fapstronaut

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    Hey seth, I remember talking to you long time back. I started nofap way back in 2010 and it has always been a struggle since. The sad conclusion I came after all these years is that there is no cure. All of us want a cure to this addiction and not worry about it anymore in future but sadly this may not happen to most of us. When you were in 7 months of no porn, did you feel you were no more an addict and that you were completely cured?

    It is very common to go on a binging relapses after a healthy streak like yours which was 7 months. The chaser can be so strong that one could struggle for not just months but also 1+ years. Since you have been constantly watching porn every now and then, it will be difficult to get back to a healthy streak you had before. Your mind is rationalizing that watching porn for 5 min is better than watching it for hours but this is a very cunning trick of the mind. Even a glimpse of porn is enough to light up the addict part of the brain and it can go downhill from there very quickly. This is why it is important to quit cold turkey and do whatever it takes to make sure this happens. This may include downloading porn blockers (even if you hate them). Porn blockers may not stop you 100% but they can help you consume less porn.

    If your goal was just staying porn free, how often did you masturbate during your 7 month streak? Fapping too often can make staying away from porn difficult. It requires tremendous mental discipline in our lives to combat this addiction. You must have heard how certain people are more likely to get addicted due to their genes and it can be extremely difficult to get out of the addiction. Mental discipline doesn't mean will power. What you expereicne right after a relapse is a burst of will power that says things like "This was the last time ever" or "I will win this time" or "I am tired of this shit; can't wait to get out" etc etc. These bursts of will power will not take you long.

    Meditation is one of the best tools to develop mental discipline. There are certain concentration meditation that can help build mental power. Other things that you must have heard often here like working out, taking walks in nature, socializing, writing a journal, reading books etc can also help. I would say start with meditation apps on your phone like headspace, calm, insight timer etc. Sit for at least 20 minutes every day if you can (without smartphone and simply being aware of your breath). r/meditation is a great place for resources and questions and advices. In the beginning, it may feel like meditation isn't working or it is just not for me but it is a tremendous and powerful tool to make your mind strong enough to resist not only porn urges but also other negative feelings like anger, fear etc. There was a study which said that meditation reduces the size of amygdala (the pain center in our brain) by just 20 min of meditation everyday for a few months.

    Meditation will help you notice the thoughts that arise within you. This means you will be able to identify porn thoughts and urges as soon as they arise and when this happens, you will have a choice to not entertain these thoughts for long. Normally, we all try to stop ourselves from taking the last step which is searching or clicking on porn but this is often late to stop because the fire has already started. Kinda like stopping a huge snowball which is just about to crash. You could have stopped it as soon as it started rolling when it wasn't big. So meditation will help you not just with this addiction but other aspects of life.

    Often times, it is the negative thinking and feelings/emotions that make us seek temporary pleasure to forget pain caused by these feelings/emotions. If all of us were happy, no one would even think about porn. It is the emotional/mental pain that keeps this addiction alive. Meditation will make you happy and hence you just won't feel the need for any pleasure (be it porn, food or whatever) in life.

    I wish you the best!
     
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  16. outwithold

    outwithold Fapstronaut

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    God bless you Seth.
    I was merely pointing out that once you start to find a sex addiction morphing to a worse behaviour it must be viewed very seriously.
    I don't believe personally that you will be doing enough to address the issues and behaviours that you have experienced with a NOFAP streak.. But maybe I'm being presumptuous.

    Id say you need to disclose the most recent behaviour to your therapist and openly run through it.
    I say this as you sort of describe suddenly finding yourself in the classroom watching porn masturbating like it wasn't really you or the porn made you do it.. But for me I would say you knew exactly what you were doing and in truth that would be the opinion of your employers and the police I'm afraid.
    But brother its only a suggestion though and my take on it. So do as you see fit.
    I just hope you really deal with your situation seriously and thoroughly, and don't take a brief positive lift as being sign you are cured.

    God bless you.
     
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  17. seth

    seth Fapstronaut

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    @outwithold Thanks for your reply. I agree it is serious and I am going to flush it out with my therapist, when I see him next week. It definitely was a conscious decision and I have no delusions of it "not really being me". I just didn't think much of it, until writing this post.

    ==
    @Awakening123
    I certainly remember talking with you a while back. Thank you so much for writing that post. When I had that 7 month streak, I guess I felt I was cured, because porn was such a non-issue in my life. I didn't think about it. It was easy to let go of urges. I tried to M around two-three times a week, but I believe after six months, it got out of hand. I was Ming to resist PMO urges and I think there was a small snowball rolling by that point. I don't like porn blockers, but I did have Ever Accountable which effectively acted as a porn blocker for me. Everything was tracked and shared with an accountability partner. Worked like magic. But by 7 months I didn't really care about my accountability partner seeing, because she's very non-judgmental. Going forward, I am going to ask my roommate to be my accountability partner, because I think it makes a big difference seeing the person daily, opposed to a person who lives far away who you can ignore their calls and texts.

    I feel I do a lot of things regularly (and have been for the last two years) for my mental health. I bike everyday. I have a good sleep schedule. I briefly journal everyday. I have a good social network. I am in a healthy relationship. I eat healthy. I try to read every night before going to sleep. I actively try new hobbies (learning math on Khan academy, rock climbing, biking, playing and making board games, coaching baseball, etc). There's a lot in my life that I've worked towards and am happy about. But I will start meditating. I think it's excellent advice and my impression is that it is too valuable to not include in my life.

    I really like the quote in your signature. Kind of summarizes what you were saying. Thanks again.
     
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  18. outwithold

    outwithold Fapstronaut

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    Sounds like you are on the right track Seth. I think you can accept this with help, it will take time and will always be an uncomfortable memory in the future as we cant get shot of our past.. BUT we can get a better understanding of why we've lived the lives we have, why we've hurt ourselves and ultimately we can learn to deal with our inner issues positively.
    I guess your aware that the therapist won't be able to heal you but you can talk and work through it all so you can heal yourself.
     
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  19. u376

    u376 Fapstronaut

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    i first masturbated in march 2009............at time that i used to fap roughly after 15 days..then in 2010..because of busy schedule i hardly masturbated 5 times in complete one year....that time is still one of the best moments of my life
    then from 22 march 2011 i again slipped in that rabbit hole..........which continued till 5 decemmber 2017............so i can understand your experience and pain
     
  20. SnakeAndApple

    SnakeAndApple Fapstronaut

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    Gah, I've only just started, and this feels bleak to me. I don't see this thing for me as an addiction to live with, but rather a negative habit pattern that has held me back from the richness of life.

    I hope that in not flapping all the time, investing myself in deeper relationships with my life, the lives of my friends and particularly in an intimate partner can better channel my energy and essence. I don't feel there's anything wrong with horniness, I mean it's the most important urge we have in life.

    My journey is about redefining the value of myself and my experiences. Applying sacrifice now of crude demeaning pleasures for meaningful sex and hopefully love. And when I have a partner then too, I will need to exercise restraint not to form sex merely as relief or indulgence. But hells yeah I want to be having good sex.

    For me this is not about overcoming addiction. I want transformation.
     
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