Shame is Killing me.

Discussion in 'Porn Addiction' started by 011214, Mar 6, 2014.

  1. 011214

    011214 Fapstronaut

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    It's been two months now since I've looked at porn or fantasized about sex. I grew up in a conservative Christian context and though it's been years since I've subscribed to the ideas I grew up with, I'm overwhelmed by shame. It's killing me.

    I've been brutally honest with myself for the last two months and as things have come up, things I've remembered, I've been overwhelmed by shame. My partner demands to know everything and I've told her, even things from years ago, before we knew each other. I feel more and more self-loathing all the time. I begin to feel ashamed just by going through my day. If I'm brushing my teeth, I feel ashamed. If I tie my shoes, I feel ashamed. If I look at anyone, regardless of whether they're young or old, male or female, attractive or not, I feel ashamed.

    I've always thought of myself generally as a good guy, but I'm questioning my value as a person to dangerous degrees. I'm crying all the time. I'm wrecked. I need release but no matter how many gruesome details I confess there always seems to be more. I don't know how to forgive myself. From what I understand, my use of porn was not really that extreme or outlandish, but the feelings I have toward myself are pretty brutal.

    I'm going to therapy, groups, talking with friends and family, reading endlessly. I never thought of porn as being my life, but now it has become my life, not viewing it but acknowledging the destructiveness it has had in my life and overcoming the pull it has always had on me. I'm trying to face my past without minimizing anything, but instead I feel like things are being blown way out of proportion. If a close friend told me the things I'm now acknowledging that I've done, if he was even half as repentant as I am, I would embrace him and assure him that he was still worthy of love. I can't seem to express the same thing to myself. I look at myself and want to be violent.

    If anyone has any thoughts on Self-love and forgiveness, of overcoming shame, I would greatly appreciate it. I don't know how to move forward. I feel haunted.
     
  2. gettingreal

    gettingreal Fapstronaut

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    makuse, no one is perfect, no one expects you to be perfect, and your imperfections are the very thing that makes you real to other people, makes you completely lovable. If you need to go back and say you're sorry to anyone, do that tonight, do it now. Find them on facebook and send them a message, call them, write them a letter. For anyone you can't apologize to, find someone new in your life you can help. You're alive, you're here, and someone out there needs you to love them right this very second. when you find that other people love you for who you are, you'll come around and join them. You can do this ... and in fact, I need your support in my own struggles. I'm only 4 days into a noFap attempt, and it's not easy. Hang in there and be good to yourself.
     
  3. Mark

    Mark Distinguished Fapstronaut

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  4. LegoT

    LegoT Fapstronaut

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    I can understand where you're coming from. I think a lot of it is knowing how to forgive yourself. Nobody is perfect but dwelling on mistakes we've made doesn't solve anything. Take the mistakes you've made and use them to improve yourself. Learn from your mistakes.

    Another thing that really helps when I'm felling down or being hard on myself is to serve others in some way. This gets my mind off of my own problems while trying to help others with theirs. You'll be amazed at how good you feel about yourself when you can see ways that you've benefited other people's lives. It doesn't have to be anything super extravagant, but look for ways in your daily life to help people. Take some time to listen to a friend in need. Bring them a meal, make something for someone...anything! Plus, it is a good productive distraction from PMO habits and tendencies. :D
     
  5. Clive

    Clive Fapstronaut

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    Makuse, welcome to the forum! That's awesome you found it.

    I can relate to your post. I use to feel very much like you did. That ways years ago now, and I feel I have overcome those destructive thought processes. It can be hard though. You literally have to let it go. Different strategies may work best for different people, but it will roughly come down to learning how to forgive yourself and learning how to overcome faulty thought patterns.

    If you want to chat more privately then message me!

    Glad to have you on board.
     
  6. ZenTechAli

    ZenTechAli New Fapstronaut

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    I'd recommend reading John Bradshaw's "Healing the Shame That Binds Us".
     
  7. cbrguy

    cbrguy Fapstronaut

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    Let go of the shame. It won't help you. Just draw a line under your past experiences. What happened in the past, you were a different person, you are now a new man on the road to recovery. We have all been through the same stuff. There really is no sense in being unduly harsh on yourself. Focus on the positive. When you feel the shame, imagine a big STOP sign in your head and focus on that when you have guilty feelings etc. That is a CBT technique for negative thoughts, which can involve guilt etc. Allow yourself to heal, become and better person as a result of your experiences but abpve all love yourself... just not physically lol... no PMO love!
     
  8. chrisdep

    chrisdep Fapstronaut

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    Take a listen to these radio programs of January 8th, 9th & 13th on Maintaining Sexual Purity.

    Check out Fred Stoeker's website for some other good resources.

    Shame in our lives stems from the fact that we know we have crossed the line in a moral issue that remains unresolved. Forgiving ourselves is the first step and then getting clean with God is the next step that helps us get on track with living out that internal forgiveness, as ultimately the power to overcome comes from him.

    I apologize that my answer is somewhat trite as there are so many other factors that go into one's situation which are deep and complex which this forum doesn't give us the luxury of exploring. Feel free to send me a private message if you'd like to have a more in depth conversation. All the best to you in your pilgrimage - there will be some hard times, but it's worth it in the end!
     
  9. Clive

    Clive Fapstronaut

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    Another good read for addressing more of the faulty thought patterns you may be experiencing is "Feeling Good: The New Mood Therapy" by David Burns.
     
  10. 011214

    011214 Fapstronaut

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    Thanks everyone for your responses. It's been a challenging road, but it's an incredible gift to know that I'm not alone. Shame compels me to withdraw, to deny others the opportunity to show me love that I feel I don't deserve. Withdrawal leads me to the very behavior that has aggravated the shame all my life. By intentionally connecting with others and receiving love, shame wastes away. Thanks again. I'm sure I'll have more to share on this in the future.
     
    Last edited: May 15, 2014

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