New and not sure where to start

Discussion in 'New to NoFap' started by Migueliton, Aug 4, 2020.

  1. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Hello fellow non-fapsters! I am new to this forum and pretty lame at social media-ing in general. Not new to attempting to break free from porn, lust and masturbation, though. And very not new to failing repeatedly at that endeavor. And feeling like a big old loser about it.

    So first off, if anyone has suggestions on getting started, breaking through the initial fear of trying again only to (probably) fail again, find the right kind of accountability/fellowship (both online, and perhaps locally here in Baltimore as well?), and get/give the most out of and to the forum without getting bogged down--any suggestions on all that would be SO very appreciated!!

    A little about me: As a teenager, I had a spiritual awakening and started getting really involved in church, studying the Scriptures, etc. By this time, I'd already discovered masturbation and was tormented with (secret) desire for my male schoolmates. This was in the late 80's, so I felt pretty compelled to keep all this on the down low.

    Anyways I thought that as I grew in my relationship with God, the lust in general, and the screaming desire to connect sexually with other men would just kind of resolve itself. Well, that didn't happen. But damn if I didn't try to make that happen by pursuing all the spiritual disciplines ever more vigilantly. Memorizing of Scripture, fasting, accountability groups, ex-gay groups, you name it. Although no one else was specifically telling me I should feel ashamed, I surely did. Because I had let God down by failing to live holy, God had let me down by failing to help me do so, and also, I was a big fucking loser.

    Thankfully, I did not lose my faith over it, but I eventually gave up trying to "work on" my sexuality. That actually helped, believe it or not. Hookups became less and less of a thing, but porn was always available. My views on being gay and Christian have also changed somewhat, but that is another entire discussion. To cut to the chase, I have just gotten sick of being sick of giving in to porn again and again and spending HOURS on it, sometimes every day. I HAVE to find a way to make a break from using all that as whatever kind of crutch. And I am hoping that perhaps I will find here some tools and perspectives that I missed earlier. Maybe some perspectives that were difficult to see when the whole thing was all about God. And as a side note, it fascinates me that for most things in my life, being able to turn to God is SUCH a huge comfort. Yet, no amount of spiritual stuff seems to have the least impact on my sexual addiction stuff, and that seems so odd to me, since...isn't there such an intimate link between spirituality and sexuality? But either way, if praying more and reading the Bible more isn't helping, then I need to respect the insanity principle and not keep on expecting a different result from the same activity. And I have to believe there is an actual road to success that more than like 2% of people who attempt it actually succeed with.

    Thanks for reading!!!
     
    Johnthesavage and George197938 like this.
  2. diiablo

    diiablo Fapstronaut

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    222 balance of the body, mind and soul.

    This helped me and idk if itll help you, but follow what I mentioned.. its just a balance of multitudes we all deem an escape.

    Go to the gym, focus on a healthy lifestyle, find what balances your head that doesn't need to balance in your hand.

    Eating right, losing habits (drinking, blazing, drugs etc) anything that impures your body will find ways to keep it happening. I am by no means am what I say but focusing on balancing your 222 helps me.. and I hops will defeat my awful addictions
     
    Migueliton likes this.
  3. One Eyed Owl

    One Eyed Owl Fapstronaut

    Welcome to NoFap!!!
     
    diiablo likes this.
  4. diiablo

    diiablo Fapstronaut

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    Back at you brother lets fuck up this habit together
     
    One Eyed Owl likes this.
  5. Lucas01

    Lucas01 Fapstronaut

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    Idk what church you go to, and I don't want to shame you or anything, because it's your choice. But from my experience, some churches (mainly Protestant) are extremely against homosexuality. I believe that if that's what you like, you shouldn't try to fight it and least of all feel ashamed, it's not a bad thing to be gay!

    If your pastor, priest, or religious community/feeling make you feel bad about it, maybe you should try going to another church that's more open, or looking at forums which share your experience and doubts (there are many). Thing is, talk to people that can understand you and help you in your journey.

    Also start doing things that take your Mind off of M and P, like working out, reading (philosophy can help), lifelong interests that you couldn't indulge in previously... Keep your mind and your body active, and away from temptation. Your soul is already taken care of by God, but you need to help Him by living virtuously and not ceding to your impulses.

    Good luck, we've got this together!
     
    diiablo likes this.
  6. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Thank you guys for your replies!! Feeling the NoFap love already! Question: is it better to reply to responses individually (by clicking on the reply arrow in the actual response, which then automatically quotes once again the entire response, but still seems to put my reply at the bottom of the page, rather than grouping it just under the response I am replying to), or just respond as a brand new reply in the thread? Trying to keep things neat and clean here. I'm gonna experiment here a little bit and see what happens.
     
  7. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Thanks, OEO! Very interesting user name, btw. Also, congrats on your 13-day streak, if I am understanding that correctly. I will need to figure out how to add a counter to my profile.
     
    diiablo likes this.
  8. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Diiablo, thank you for these words. I am working on keeping up with a Bikram hot yoga practice several times a week and weights twice a week. I also walk most days. All that stuff helps out IMMENSELY from just not losing my mind. I have also recently discovered intermittent fasting (I do need to reduce my midsection a bit), and this seems so much more intuitive and simple to me than complicated food plans. The book Fast, Feast, Repeat, by Gin Stephens blew my mind on the role of insulin in keeping the body from shifting gears to fat burning mode. Anyway, I digress. Looks like something else that is encouraged here is to do daily journaling on here? Or do I have that wrong. I do journal daily, but keeping track of how I'm doing with NoFap on the forum might help with keeping me in reality.
     
  9. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Lucas, thank you VERY much for your reply and concerns. I grew up in the Catholic church but switched over to more of a holy roller church when I was a teen. I spoke to the pastor about my sexual issues and I don't think he knew what to say, so he just encouraged me that I'm a new creature in Christ, he prayed for me, and that was the last we ever spoke about it. Most of my church experience since then has been in more conservative protestant churches which believe that if you have gay feelings, you just shouldn't act on them. For the most part, nobody was ever unkind to me about it, thank God, and mainly just tried to be there to support me in whatever way I asked. However, it was still intensely frustrating to be told on the one hand that there is no legitimate outlet for my sexual and romantic feelings, and ALSO, there's about zero chance I will have luck finding intimate friendships with other Christian men that can "stand in the gap" because over and over again, the message was given to me loud and clear by my mostly married friends that I had to be way down on their priority list, since they had to keep their marriage first, their children 2nd, their job 3rd, their in laws 4th, their church service 5th, whatever other groups they were participating in 6th, and then, maybe just maybe they might have time and energy for me after all that. I know that probably sounds a bit childish/victim mentality, which is not what I am going for in my life, but I think there is some truth to the fact that the (conservative) church has mostly a negative message for gay Christians. And by the way, if they were really being strict about sexual standards, then they would require the vast majority of straight people to remain celibate as well, since 90%+ of people have had premarital sex with more than one person, which, if you interpret Jesus's words on marriage and divorce strictly, then those folks are disqualified, since they would by marrying, in theory, be committing adultery on whoever they first had sex with.

    Sorry for the mini-article of a response there. For now, I feel safe in my current church, but my views/interpretations on how homosexuality is treated by the Bible have recently been challenged/opened up by some videos and writings of Justin Lee that really made me think. I don't want to be in a hurry with all this, but eventually I may need to consider moving to a different congregation. My biggest concern is that it seems like a lot of Christians who are affirming in their view of homosexuality, also tend to have a rather low view of the Scriptures in general, though that might be changing too. But anyway, I'm starting to get into the weeds here. Thanks again for the encouragement, Lucas!
     
  10. Lucas01

    Lucas01 Fapstronaut

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    That's the way to go brother! It's true that many leave the scriptures to the side (I know a lot of Christians who haven't even read the Bible), but I think that might be changing. Do what you gotta do bro!
     
  11. Masked En?gma

    Masked En?gma Fapstronaut

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    Welcome here, we are all in the same situation here, recovered or not, always trying to not touch our dicks and orgasm for 10 seconds of pleasure, just ask if you need help.We send you a virtual Hug.
     
    Lucas01 likes this.
  12. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Thanks, Atlas, LOL speak the truth, bro! Virtual hug right back at you.
     
  13. diiablo

    diiablo Fapstronaut

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    Yeah bro it really helps to do logs :) look up the reboot logs and its sub categoried into age sections. Id love to read it as we progress brother.
     
  14. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

  15. How do you feel and what are your thoughts on porn use? Maybe you don't believe strongly enough that it's wrong and unhealthy? I only suggest this because it seems you are reconsidering fundamental things in your life like The Faith. I do believe that The Faith will help you, but my struggle started before I found my way into The Church and continues into it, but we have God with us now.

    Personally, I agree with The Church's outlook on homosexuality and this was something difficult for me to accept, having homosexual inclinations as well, but the demands of The Church spoke to the feelings I had always felt. I'm not trying to convince you of this or that, that's not my place, but I do want to really ask you do you really want to give up porn and m? Because you have to really believe that they are wrong, whether it's for secular reasons or otherwise. And more than this, you have to take all of that self-gratification and self-seeking and find someway to give it away! Find someone or something to love, sir! :)
     
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  16. Migueliton

    Migueliton Fapstronaut

    Thanks for writing John. My guilt over sexual curiosity and feeling even that was "wrong and unhealthy" started when I was 7 years old, when my older brother shamed me for innocently touching myself through my pajamas while I was watching cartoons one Saturday morning. I didn't even notice I had been doing it, but I took to heart the message that I was not supposed to pay any attention to that part of my body. Later, at age 9, a friend got the number to a sex hotline where you could dial in an listen to pre-recorded fantasies. I had no idea what I was listening to, only that it was FASCINATING. I called multple times. My parents got the phone bill. My mom shamed me for listening to such disgusting stuff, though I still had no clue what I was even hearing. At age 11, I saw another boy showing off his erection through his sweatpants in English class. He had no shame at all. He was SO proud of himself. (Also, he was 18 months older than me, so he was much further along in his development...) This shattered something inside me. I wanted to feel the way he felt, even though I was so completely confused and unclear about what he was even doing. I went home and looked at my penis as if for the first time. It looked alien to me, and I imagined I was part of some race of men from another planet whose only distinguishing feature was that they had penises (unlike earth men, who were like Ken dolls). This was the first time I discovered what happened if I touched myself and kept on touching myself. And I felt horribly ashamed afterwords (I think like most people do), also without knowing why.

    This started a season of INTENSELY fantasizing about and lusting after other boys. When I masturbated, I often imagined I had the body (and penis) of some other boy I was attracted to. And I felt ashamed for even having sexual desires, for even having erections. And of course for being attracted to my same gender. I did not know of one single male in my life who was also attracted to males. When I had an awakening of faith at age 16, it seemed obvious to me that all these feelings were not the right ones to be having and that somehow I should seek not to act on them, and expect that God would help me with them.

    Sorry this answer is getting so long. I'm also just trying to work through this history again for myself.

    Cutting to the chase, I struggled and fought to be obedient to God with my sexuality---and failed miserably for years. I guess you could say I didn't want it enough? That was always a concept that pissed me off because people would sometimes glibly say things like "Well, do what you want to do, brother!" Or "You will do what you want to do." Thanks so much. I'm over here struggling to do the right thing, feeling like a piece of shit for failing to do so, and these people are telling me that my problem is with what I want. How the f*** do you change that????

    In any case, many developments have happened since then, and bottom line, God has made his presence in my life graciously known throughout it all. There was a period of time where I had to just let go of trying to make myself acceptable. But I have come back to a place where I see how unless I find a way to break through on these issues, my life will never get to where it could. And I also have this sense that "it is time".

    What you say about finding someone or something to love definitely resonates with me. The times in my life where I experienced the greatest freedom from PM (which, ironically, didn't enter my life until almost 2 decades after some of the above mentioned stories), have been when I was either super engaged with my work, or experiencing a strong and intimate connection with another man (not necessarily sexual or romantic). And a big reason for that is that engaging with porn takes so much away from one's ability to be engaged with creative work, or to enjoy relational intimacy. Who wants that?!
     
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