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  1. Has anyone been to SLAA? If so how did you find it? What actually goes on in their meetings? Are the meetings weird? I'm thinking about going to one when I can. Originally my thought was to go to see a counsellor and he/she recommends that I go attend the meetings then I will but maybe it will be better to go SLAA first since I can't afford a counsellor at the moment and SLAA is free. I suppose one resistance to the meets is I'm not good in groups and would much rather one on one counselling. Also, my local meeting are mixed sexes and I don't how I'd feel about that.
     
  2. Tryingto

    Tryingto Fapstronaut

    I've been to both SLAA and SAA and can offer great encouragement!

    The meetings are 12 Step modelled, which took some getting used to. As did the 'mixed gender' piece. Eventually, I found my peace - and even appreciation - of both these facts. And the benefits have been considerable.

    When I first went there, this addiction had been going in one direction for more than thirty years. I was so despairing anything would ever change. Today I still struggle with temptation and relapse, but am I acting out every day? No! Am I acting out for hours on end? No! Do I have stretches in which I feel truly sober and healthy and sane? Yes! A great many factors helped me get here and SLAA was one of them!

    Best of luck...
     
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  3. So what exactly goes on in the meetings? Do you just talk about how you avoided porn during the week or something?
     
  4. HybridOwl

    HybridOwl Fapstronaut

    I went to SLAA meetings intermittently for about a year in 2014 and managed to get to step 4.

    What I will say is that doing the step 1 (basically admitting to self that life has become unmanageable by writing an essay about all my acting out) and then reading it in a public space was one of the most terrifying things I've ever done.

    SLAA caters to all kinds of sex and love addicts, and in my meetings a lot of the guys (and occasionally a woman or two - the attendance was sporadic) would talk about acting out in codependent relationships and paying for sex etc. There were some who went a bit beyond that and had been through some jail time. Nonetheless there were a fair few "porn-only" addicts, mostly the younger guys in their 20's.

    The meetings were 2 hours long if I remember correctly and structured around reading a passage from the "Big Book" (either the Alcoholics Anonymous book or the SLAA book - surprisingly the AA book sometimes worked better). We'd take turn reading a passage at a time and then people would randomly chip in with how they related to it. Then we might have a group sharing session where we either use cue cards or just go into it spontaneously by saying "My name is [insert name] and I'm a sex (and love, if applicable) addict" and then basically share how our week went. It then went to any sobriety milestones people had reached and chips were handed out (this happened rarely).

    Occasionally an entire meeting was dedicated to someone reading out their Step 1.

    I found that I had my second-longest sobriety streak (2 months-ish) during that year, however what I will say is going to this meeting did four main things for me:
    1. It gave me confidence to talk about my addiction in public
    2. It made me realise how important a higher power can be to recovery
    3. It made me realise how far sex addiction can escalate
    4. It made me spot codependent patterns in my own past

    The third point actually derailed my life a little bit as I started to underestimate my porn addiction in the face of the crazy stuff some of the other guys did. I strangely felt jealous that their addictions seemed more difficult or epic in nature as they used one woman after another, although I now see that this was a foolish point of view to have for several reasons.

    Due to being a bit alienated by the emphasis on those other forms of sexual addictions and the "love" addiction in particular which was a foreign language at the time (although I now see the patterns of wanted to be "Liked" in my own life as a strange parallel to that) I ended up drifting away from it after a year. It ended with a harsh relapse that I partly blamed on stories from the meetings giving me inspiration for.

    Nonetheless I still think there is a lot of wisdom in 12-steps and if a porn-only group started up in my local area I would seriously consider joining it.
     
  5. Tryingto

    Tryingto Fapstronaut

    @HybridOwl gives a pretty good summation of a 'meeting template' above and I would agree with many of the comments offered in that post. One thing I would add is, in addition to airing one's dirty laundry, the meetings also provide a context for companionship - people who hear the worst you've done and still like you! Wow!
     

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