Sad to be back...

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by anewhope, Nov 1, 2018.

  1. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    ...but determined.

    So after a long period of success, like a testosterone-addled idiot I have relapsed. I allowed October to be Cocktober and (ab)used what is between my legs, instead of using what is between my ears. It feels depressing to be not only back at the foot of the mountain, but in danger of getting dragged down into the swamp.

    So it is time to dust myself off and make a fresh start.

    Goodbye Cocktober, hello NO-vember, Cease-ember and Banuary.

    ANH
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2018
  2. phuck-porn!

    phuck-porn! Fapstronaut

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    Hello ANH! I am sorry for yourr recent hard time.

    A selfish piece of me is glad to hear you though- I always appreciated you and your posts.

    Here's to better days ahead!!!
     
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  3. TryingToHeal

    TryingToHeal Fapstronaut

    Glad to see you, but not for the reason!
     
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  4. EyesWideOpen

    EyesWideOpen Fapstronaut

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    Missed you! Sad for the reason, but so happy to see you! We are all here cheering you on.
     
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  5. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    Already feel better and more confident thanks to the support of my old friends here. Thanks one and all.

    ANH
     
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  6. Good to see you get back up, dust yourself off and keep going.
     
  7. kropo82

    kropo82 Fapstronaut

    Wow. I felt sure you were gone for good. I wish you had made it, but I also hope I have the courage to come here and tell everyone if I ever relapse. I look forward to reading more of your amazing posts
     
  8. Blacky's

    Blacky's Fapstronaut

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    How long was your streak ?
     
  9. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    Well over a year.
    ANH
     
  10. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    This place is great! Already feeling much better; more like my true self and with my tracker nearing a week.
    Thank you all.:emoji_expressionless:

    ANH
     
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  11. EyesWideOpen

    EyesWideOpen Fapstronaut

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    How is your (not so new now) job going?
     
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  12. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    Very well. 6 months in now. Feeling settled in. Good bunch of people. Good balance of stress v challenge.

    On the other hand, I think that it was being back at work that led me to relapse. My success last year coincided with my year's sabaattical during which I developed lots of positive new habits. Returning to the world of work let me slip back into negative old habits.

    I am disappointed in myself, but the support of this community has already helped strengthen my resolve and get me back on the straight and narrow.

    ANH
     
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  13. Queen_Of_Hearts_13

    Queen_Of_Hearts_13 Fapstronaut

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    At least you are Aware, that is one of the first steps to changing behaviors. So now that you know that it's a trigger place, what can you do to combat it? What coping skills? etc.

    I am sad that you're back because you relapsed, but glad you're back because you did have a lot of wisdom and a lot to offer the community
     
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  14. TryingToHeal

    TryingToHeal Fapstronaut

    You're someone I really respect in this journey, so I'm curious, do you think there is any advice you could give to other PAs (or SOs of PAs for them) on how not to relapse? Like was there anything that would have kept you from going there, now looking back?
    So glad you're back here and feeling stronger now!
     
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  15. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    Hi Anna

    There is nothing triggering about the workplace itself. (I narrowly missed out on the post of receptionist at the supermodel agency :))
    I think it is that subconsciously I am drawn to porn as a response to increased stress, as a form of escapism. While I do enjoy my job, there is some level of stress associated with it, as there is with most jobs. I have mild psoriosis which always gets worse when I am stressed. Last year it practically disappeared, but now it has flared up again.

    So I think work creates a mental state in me in which I am more likely to give in to temptation. However, I am confident I can combat it through the support of this group and through remembering the tricks and techniques that helped me last time was here.

    Also, a very big plus is that my wife and I are getting on very well at the moment both in and out of the bedroom. We feel very close and happy. Another incentive for me not to screw it up by being an idiot.

    So all in all, life is good if I can just keep my mind out of the gutter and my hand out of my trousers!!

    ANH
     
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  16. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    Not quitting NoFap when I did. (I was premature and finished too soon :rolleyes: ).
    Recognising that I am vulnerable when tired and stressed and avoiding being alone with a computer at those times.
    Not losing focus on my wife and our relationship.
    Taking the long walks that both reduce my stress and remove me from temptation.

    ANH
     
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  17. TryingToHeal

    TryingToHeal Fapstronaut

    Thank you :)
     
  18. anewhope

    anewhope Fapstronaut

    As I get (even) older, my mind seems constantly to be making connections, links. It is something the human brain is extraordinarily good at.

    In my new place of work, I regularly see 5 different people who remind me strongly of people from my past. When I go for a walk and encounter a rare bird such as a little owl, it reminds me of all the other times I've seen one, such as in Tewkesbury, when I was with my late, much missed mother. Music, smells, foods, objects all seem to come attached with many more associations than they did when I was younger. Obviously, one builds a bigger bank of experiences as you age, but everything being so strongly interconnected seems new to me. But it seems the human brain is very good at building these associations.

    So why do I bring this up? Because I think this is one of the ways in which porn can become a really difficult habit to break. If you've been an addict and watched a lot of porn, you've stored away in your subconscious thousands of linked images, videos and stories; and the habit of PMO'ing to them reinforces them and makes them stronger memories. This highly interconnected web of erotica is difficult to eradicate and remains just under the surface, even if you are determined to quit. All it takes is a real world trigger, such as the sight of a girl in a pair of black boots and your brain will start retrieving related images. Your brain will recall some of the porn you have stored away. It may arouse you, it may make you recall the pleasure you gave yourself that you associate with those images. It is very easy from this point to get sucked back in, for your brain to trace its way along the links to find something that you find particularly difficult to resist. It tells you how much you liked that particular video and that you can't quite remember all the detail. Wouldn't it be good to see it just once more? If you give in and watch something, then you are doubly screwed. First, you freshen up all your images and the links between them, making even stronger pathways in your brain to entrap you next time. And secondly the porn sites themselves are riddled with 'if you liked that, then we are sure you'll like this.' so you are tempted into building yourself an even bigger spider's web of connected material. And the worst of it is, the brain is so good at this indexing process, that the trigger that catapults you into the spider's web can be entirely non-sexual - a pizza delivery driver, the Eifel tower, a submarine full of seamen, three carelessly arranged party balloons. For each of us the list will be different but almost endless.

    So what is the solution? Staying away from porn completely for good. Not allowing yourself to dwell on remembered images and fantasies. Filling your days with new exciting activities to build new associations to try to make them more vivid than the porn. I am sure that it can be done, but I have come to conculsion that it will take years and it is a fight that you can never be sure is won. I relapsed after over a year. Even in ten years' time, my brain will still be capable of getting triggered by something random and connecting me back to my personal web of smut.

    Sorry if that is not a very uplifting thought, but to me, that seems to be what we addicts are up against.

    Any thoughts?

    ANH
     
    Last edited: Nov 25, 2018
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  19. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

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    I agree with the sentiment, but I avoid any suggestion that this is my life sentence as an addict. That path leads to self pity and surrender

    Every human faces temptation that they must resist for their own good. If I were to remove addiction from my psyche I would still face temptation. Uncovering my addiction is amongst the best things to have ever happened to me - it has given me the strength to believe, indeed know, that I can face down temptation and I can change. I wouldn’t have given myself the credit to do that before. And it has given me the impetus to work on bettering myself, and to be excited about that process
     
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  20. Jennica

    Jennica Fapstronaut

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    I agree and that why you can’t “cure” an addiction. It’s there for life, it’s replacing addiction habits with mindfulness and awareness of it all, the accountability and all the other stuff that goes a long with it. It gets easier as time goes on, it can fade as it is weekend but addiction is always there in the shadows. 1 year, 5 years or even 30.

    I have a really good friend 20 years AA, just a few months ago he was so stressed from work and money he stated for the first time in years he had strong urges to drink. In the 12+ years with his wife it was the first she ever heard him make those statements. He was able to communicate that to his wife and a few trusted friends and move through it. He didn’t give in but his addiction reared it’s ugly head. He still says he is recovering alcoholic, not recovered.
     
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