My story of porn addiction - girlfriend leaving? - asking for advice

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by try_harder, Apr 12, 2020.

  1. try_harder

    try_harder New Fapstronaut

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    Hi fellow Fapstronauts,

    I'm new to the forum and already spent quite some time on reading articles and stories of others.
    I'm writing this because I want to share my own story and ask for advice and encouragement. I hope I can also provide some of you with hope because porn addiction always influenced but never really ruined my life.

    Why I'm here
    Long story short: I have a new girlfriend but PMO and even masturbating just with fantasy is more pleasurable for me then having a good time with her. I'm sure this is due to persistent porn use over the last years. I'm 27 now and decided to try a reboot.
    Sounds straightforward, right? But it's more complex, so here you go with a little more detail.

    Porn use
    I started watching porn at 16 or 17 (not sure). As most of us, I started with "soft" porn. For whatever reason I always was into masturbating women. At some point (19 yo or something) I discovered squirting. I had never heard or experienced of it but guess what, I liked it and got into it. Watching porn of that sort on a regular basis intensified this fetish and after some time I needed more intensity. I feel ashamed of it but I got into peeing women, mostly still in context of a woman masturbating. I never liked that hardcore crazy porn with multiple women or that sort of thing. To this day I prefer a single woman who really has a good time and enjoys what she does. I find little to no arousal from professional "fake porn" where the women act like enjoying it but don't really do.
    So all in all, I have been living with this fetish for about 9 years now, which is quite long I would say.
    I was always conscious about the negative effects of porn and I guess that's why I feel ashamed of it. I also feel weak for not being able to quit porn. Not many people know about it and clearly it's not easy for me to write about it.
    Over the last 10 years the longest streak of total abstinence was 11 days I believe. The longest streak without porn might be a little longer than that but all in all I watched porn consistently. I'm not the guy who binge watches for hours. More likely I PMOed anywhere from once a day to every few days.
    Although I know exactly that it's bad for me in the long term AND I feel bad right after it I'm not able to hold me off of it. There are days where I manage to shift my focus onto other things and keep my hands still. But after a few days I can't help it and "relapse". Pretty much the definition of an addiction, right?

    Negative effects
    During my first relationship at the age of 17 I had not yet developed a strong fetish. Nonetheless I noticed negative effects of PMO. Little did I know about the "Death Grip" back then but it affected me. The sex felt "mechanical" and not as intense as it should. At this point I was already desensitized to a certain degree.
    Over the last years I had long streaks of being single and few relationships but at no point in time I managed to abstain from porn. During the relationships it was a mix of sex, PMO and masturbating with fantasy. Luckily, I only had little to no issues with PIED. But because of the desensitisation I had "issues" with DE. All in all I could deal with that because it made me last long during intercourse (which obviously was not a totally bad thing for my partner) and I was still able to orgasm, but mostly only if I fantasized about the things I really liked - namely my fetish.

    When it got worse (or better - you be the judge)
    From 2016 to 2019 I was in relationship that made the whole situation better in the short term but worse in the long run. Guess what happened? I was with a girl that fulfilled my fetish and even mostly enjoyed that. Although the sex was pleasurable for both of us, during this time I still used porn on a regular basis. Why? Because I really craved for the intense visual stimulus (WATCHING porn) that was only partly possible during intercourse. Needless to say: the three years with this girl intensified my fetish. For different reasons the relationship ended last year. My ex girlfriend was with another guy shortly after we split up. As you can imagine, this really f***d me up. Another guy was no getting what I was craving for so badly and it drove me mad. I found myself drowning in emotional pain, self-pity, desperation and to some point depression for several weeks, even months. I had a hard time dealing with the split-up for multiple reasons. I can now say that the loss of a girl that fulfilled my (porn-induced?) fetish played a big roll in the process of getting over it. It was a tough time but I made my way through it. I can now say that I feel pretty good.

    The Now
    Last year I got to know a girl that I really enjoy spending time with. At the time of getting to know each other we both were in a relationship. A few months after my split-up she also ended her relationship. Long story short, we went from being friends while each of us had a partner to F+ to being a couple since a few weeks.
    All in all I could be a happy man, right? But right now, my porn addiction badly backfires on me. Since she doesn't fulfill my fetish, PMO and even masturbating with fantasy (and memory...) is much more pleasurable than f***ing her. Crazy, isn't it? All in all I'm not even really looking forward to having sex with her. Mostly, I prefer to masturbate. I only have smaller issues with PIED, so at least I'm able to (mostly...) satisfy her. But for me it's just not really pleasurable. And guess what - she noticed that and asked me what was wrong. I feel ashamed of it and it really wasn't easy but I told her my story. As expected this really made her insecure about the sex and the relationship as a whole that still is in an early stage. Although it puts pressure on her and made her feel bad, I'm sure it was the best to be honest.

    My goals
    In the last few months I managed to reduce my porn usage to about 5x per month. I still don't notice any change neither in the intensity nor my dependency on the fetish.
    My ultimate goals are to finally
    - find a way to completely abstain from porn
    - not masturbate for a total of 90 days
    - find out if the fetish is porn-induced
    - find a way to have pleasurable sex without porn or any "fetish-related" fantasy
    - all in all be able to have a fulfilling relationship in every manner

    What's next?
    At this very moment I don't know if my new girlfriend will leave me or will decide to stick to me. The only thing I can do, is to try and work on myself and reach my goals. I'm also planning to talk to her and
    A. either tell her that I'm currently not able to give her what she deserves (ergo split up) and need to work on myself by myself
    B. or tell her that I want to work on myself and that I would like her to back me up during this process.

    Would you suggest a hard mode reboot (option A above) or a normal mode reboot (option B), where I completely abstain from masturbation and porn but still have sex (on condition that my girlfriend does not leave me)?
    And apart from that: Do you guys have any tricks on abstaining from PMO? On so many days the urge to do it simply was so f***ing strong that no matter what my sane mind told me, I couldn't resist. What do you do in these situations?

    If you read until here, thank you very much for taking the time.
     
    kropo82 likes this.
  2. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

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    Hard mode would be best, but I don’t understand why doing that means you have to break up? Why not continue the relationship without any sexual side? If she is willing, many couples do this.
     
    oneotwo and kropo82 like this.
  3. twoeggsonmyplate

    twoeggsonmyplate Fapstronaut

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    you like music? Whenever the urge strikes I play my favorite music, LOUD. I try to imagine my favorite artists and how they'd spend their"alone time". Probably not doing Pmo. My vote is hard mode, yeah it's hard and sometimes I have to lock the computer in the basement but you have got to do what ever it takes. Because even if, the worse thing happens and you break up (been there) it will happen again. Also as an aside, and I don't mean to be too personal but from my own experience with PE, being good at oral will help a lot with bedroom issues until your body can reboot. Good luck dude!
     
    itsallme likes this.
  4. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    I completely understand this feeling.

    One thing that has helped me is knowing that the intense cravings are always temporary. For me, days 2,3, and 4 after my last O are the WORST. But, if I remind myself that if I can make it a couple more days, that the strong urges will dissipate, then I feel more hopeful about the light at the end of the tunnel. And... that is usually the case, even strong urges further into recovery, the urge can get really strong, but will die out after a couple of days. Lots of people call this a 'flatline'.

    Another thing to do, make a list of enjoyable yet positive things you can do in your free time. Then, give yourself permission to do those things the next time you are feeling the urge. I have a list of about 30 things I can reference (practice guitar, practice piano, learn on Khan Academy, coding, watch netflix, read a book, workout, just do some pushups, take a walk, play a board game with friends, bake bread, yoga, meditate, journal, listen to music).

    The hardest time for me is when I feel the urge and I am either super tired or I am unable to sleep. I turn on the bluelight filter on my phone at 7pm and I have read a few website on 'how to go to sleep more easily'. I still struggle with this, but things have gotten much better. I find it easier to fall asleep when I am not actually trying to fall asleep, weird right?!
     
    try_harder and Psalm27:1my light like this.
  5. try_harder

    try_harder New Fapstronaut

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    Thank you for the replies.
    Our relationship is at an early stage. I told her about my problems and I could understand if she didn't want to deal with it because it puts a strain on the relationship. But apparently she wants to go through this with me and support me. We decided to start in normal mode for 30 days, so I if the urge is too strong I can still avoid PMO but release the pressure. If in 30 days I feel that this helped me a lot we will continue in this mode for the next 60 days. If I don't notice significant improvements we will switch to hard mode. For now, the main focus is to avoid PMO and M in general.

    For me the first few days are quite easy. But after 7-10 days usually came to peak that made me relapse. I can't tell you what happens after 10+ days because I've never been there. I'm courious to find that out. Thanks for the encouragement!

    I think I'll create a list with "Go-Tos" that I can use when my brain tries to trick me into old habits. Music will definitely be a point on my list.
     
  6. Charfonglee

    Charfonglee Fapstronaut

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    Try hard mode or edging in sex, that has worked for me, purposefully Dont ejaculate for multiple sex secessions, what you don’t understand is that abstaining from sex and porn will instantly make your sex life way better. It may take a few weeks, but it saved my sex and made it way better than any other porn or masturbation stimulation. Literally the best thing I have ever felt. I feel only due to not watching porn and not masturbating. You have to quit!
     
  7. try_harder

    try_harder New Fapstronaut

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    I'm trying my best. Right now (after 10 days without PMO but sex once) I experience a mixture of a flatline and the Chaser Effect. Sounds like a contradiction but after having a good time with my girlfriend 2 days ago, the urge to PMO or M in general is very strong, but the desire for actual sex is very low. So at this point the effect is like the opposite of what I want to accomplish.

    But I'm curious about what happens in the near future. In the last 10 years I never abstained from masturbation longer than 11 days, so let's find out...
     
    JamesTheSquirrel likes this.

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