Just what exactly constitutes a relapse?

For Fapstronauts who are disciples of Christ

  1. singleforever

    singleforever Fapstronaut

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    This is one of those things that has been messing with my head a good bit.
    Is a relapse just the thought of porn? Or is it the act of watching Porn or is it both PM, or all three PMO?

    I mean it is written “if you look at a women with lust you have already committed adultery.” So in that sense thinking about it, I don’t mean just seeing a women and liking what I see, I mean really thinking about P is that a relapse as well? After all thinking about something sometimes and more often than not, Leads to that very thing.
    It is rather hard not to see the effect of the porn industry all over, billboards, TV, Movies with sex scenes that are just more graphic than they really need to be. It is everywhere now a days.
    So with all that how is it not possible to have a thought relapse? I would have to reset the counter everyday, and then some, some days!

    Or am I really over thinking this like normal.
    I tend to over analyze things, I can’t see the forest because there are to many trees. And can’t see the trees because there are to many branches.

    So what say you? Just how technical are you? What is wrong, but OK?
    Just where is your line in the sand?
     
  2. Augustine_Hippo

    Augustine_Hippo Fapstronaut

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    Hey :)

    I'm new here but I think what constitutes a relapse would differ for everyone. For me personally, having lustful thoughts is not enough to constitute a relapse. As you say there are sexual images literally everywhere these days so to avoid it completely is very difficult.

    The verse you quote, Matthew 5:28 is actually insightful. For example in Ellicott's bible commentary he writes "To lust after her.—The intent is more strongly marked in the Greek than in the English. It is not the passing glance, not even the momentary impulse of desire, but the continued gaze by which the impulse is deliberately cherished till it becomes a passion".

    So from this, we can conclude a passing lustful thought should definitely not constitute a relapse. However if you were to follow through with the thought, well we all know where that will lead.

    Anyway, I hoped that helped.
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
  3. singleforever

    singleforever Fapstronaut

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    That is why I made the distinction between the two. "I don’t mean just seeing a women and liking what I see, I mean really thinking about P is that a relapse as well? After all thinking about something sometimes and more often than not, Leads to that very thing."

    At what point do we consider it a relapse? When the thought starts to get stuck in your head, or only after it has been acted upon.
     
  4. Tao Jones

    Tao Jones Fapstronaut

    The first look often cannot be stopped, but the second look is always a choice.
    The first impulse of attraction is instinctual, but the nurturing and cultivating of that desire is always purposeful.

    It is not in the attraction where sin enters -- it is in trying to turn that attraction and desire into something that will satisfy us deeply. Because it cannot do so, this is idolatry. It is making something into a god which can never fulfill or comfort the way that only God can.

    You can read the posts linked in my signature below to see how I have made this same journey -- from no P, to no MO, to no P-subs, to no sexual thinking of any kind apart from the physical presence of my wife. It is a journey and it does take time! But today I would say that sexual fantasizing is just as destructive as viewing P, and I would be equally reluctant to do either. Both will keep you in captivity to the false god of lust.

    We must learn to make our minds strong in Christ. We *can* control our thinking, but it does require consistent effort over time (i.e., practice! discipline!). The FREEdom process has been a helpful tool to me in this regard:

    https://docs.google.com/document/d/1zqVL11JjWICOHCRUDmqXr9TNC_gpb6yhRF1hKp-fxcc/edit

    I am praying for you and cheering you on your own journey toward Christ-likeness!
     
    Last edited: Oct 30, 2019
    Augustine_Hippo likes this.
  5. Augustine_Hippo

    Augustine_Hippo Fapstronaut

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    For me, it would be when acted upon. A thought that gets stuck in my head can last for sometime but if I overcome it (even if it lasted a long time) then I wouldn't count that as relapse. I think others will differ on this but that's just my opinion on what constitutes a relapse for me personally.
     

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