To MO or not to MO, that is the question

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by JustADude, Feb 3, 2020.

  1. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    I originally posted this in my journal, but I am reposted here to reach a wider audience in the hopes I maximize other's input.

    The past week has been a blur. My car troubles required I clear my schedule and fix our backup car so that it would pass inspection. This needed to happen ASAP because this past weekend we needed to drive the whole family a few hours out of town for a funeral. I finally fixed the car on Wednesday and made love to my wife Wednesday (5 days ago) night. Well, the next morning I woke up aroused. For the prior week I had been asking myself... "I know why I don't want to look at porn anymore, but why am I choosing not to masturbate?" And the answer had been... "Because I am doing an experiment to understand the effects of prolonged abstinence both psychologically and physically." Then I thought... "Well, you just had an O last night, and you will probably have one next week with the wife, your experiment is not going so well". That was excuse enough for me to MO. And I have MO'd about 5 times since then. I am not upset about it, but I am unsure about things.

    Here I sit... confused.

    Things I am confident about:
    1. Porn is bad for me. No more porn.
    2. PMO in the past has always gotten out of control. Too much, too often, for too long, at the expense of my sleep, the expense of my family, etc.

    Things I am unsure about:
    1. MO should be stopped.
    2. MO should be restricted.
    3. MO is bad for my marriage.
    4. MO is bad for my life.

    And... I am not going to stop MOing, unless I have a am sure I want too. My point is this, before I arbitrarily put in effort to stop MOing, I need to first believe it is a worthwhile venture. My ONLY reason for stopping MOing 22 days ago was because I was interested in learning how my mind and body might be different after 90 days without MO. But, if I am still having sex with the wife during those 90 days, that one reason is not compelling, and to be honest that reason was not very compelling in the first place.

    I sit here typing, trying to drum up reasons to quit MOing, trying to compile a list of valid reasons to stop, a list that I can look back to 5 days from now when my mind and body are urging me to MO.

    Thoughts on MOing:
    1. MOing is a gateway drug to porn. This is probably true. Even during these past 5 MO events, the first 1 was easy, the 2nd one was less easy, the 3rd 4th and 5th required more effort to finish. There is a good chance that if I keep this up, my urge to look at porn will go up in order to make it easier for me to reach an O. In contrast to that statement, It is interesting though how little desire I have had over the past 10 days to look at porn.

    2. MOing is a release of sexual energy. If I choose to MO, I am not saving that sexual energy for my wife. This is both a reason to MO and a reason to not MO. Why? Because I find pent up sexual energy to be both a blessing and curse. I love that it helps me remember to dote on my wife all the time, but it also makes rejection by my wife hurt more, it is a double edged sword. I am not sure what to think about this.

    3. In my previous journal from 5 years ago, I ran into the same conundrum. I abstained from PMO for about 15 days, then I questioned my reasoning behind quitting MO, so I allowed myself to MO. Well, I don't know if that helped or hurt, but I ended up PMOing on day 25. To be fair, I was a different person back then, I remember constantly being aroused and constantly thinking about sex and wanting to look at porn. I wonder if MOing will have the same effect.

    4. I wanted to MO right after having sex. Had I not had sex, I think I would not have MOd. I am not sure what to think about that. It is just a data point.

    5. I might find that a valid goal is to limit my MOing to no more often than 4 days. Or something like that. Why? Because I think #1 is true, I think #2 is true, and I think the problems with #1 and #2 go away if MOing is only used as a way to relieve mind numbing built-up sexual tension.

    6. Deep down, MOing 5 times in the past 5 days is too much. I am not sure why I know that, I just do.

    7. Combining my wife's lower libido, her period, and her difficult work schedule, about once a month there will be a 7 to 10 day stretch of no sex. Do I really want abstain from MO for the rest of my life for those 7 to 10 day stretches? If I do, I better darn sure know why I want to do that.

    I would appreciate other people's opinions on this topic. Personally, I think if I had good reasons to quit MOing that I strongly believed in, it would be easier for me to stop.
     
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  2. Faceplanter

    Faceplanter Fapstronaut

    Deciding to stop MO is a completely personal decision and one I worried about as well. A few thoughts.

    The consensus here is that the closer to a hard reboot you get the better. You are exercising your will against porn but also against Os from yourself to some extent. Knowing your triggers and having confidence you can overcome different situations is why abstaining from MO is helpful. For how long is the question perhaps, I would say in a soft reboot the 90days probably is a good mark.

    Why MO is different for everyone is because it does sometimes lead to escalation including porn. If you are going to continue your journey here with MO at the very least you have to be watching yourself closely. You have already mentioned that you felt five times in a week was too many. It wouldn't hurt to try and figure out what a good number is and start yourself with that as a limit or just continue to regularly ponder the question of what circumstances are OK for MO.

    I think it's also important for you to consider your wife's thoughts on MO. If she is okay with it, then no problems. If she has associated it with porn then probably there will be issues. I'm not saying who is right in this case, just that it would need some discussion.

    My own thoughts, after doing a 90-day reboot in hard mode, is that MO is helpful for the chaser effect, and is helpful for times when my wife is not available and waiting doesn't make sense. The caution of course is that sometimes I think she isn't available but she maybe is and I have decided to MO instead. I might MO once a week more that I ideally should with those guidelines but that's close enough for me to not be on any slippery slopes. I am particularly aware of using MO for stress relief as that was how it was used with porn in the past.

    I would contrast this to what I was doing before the reboot, which was using MO but not porn, and using toys to make the MO better. That, for me, led to escalation. It didn't get to the point of using porn again, but was leading to using Psubs, and just too much use of MO in general.
     
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  3. Nicko Stretch

    Nicko Stretch Fapstronaut

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    Why would you give something up that makes you feel high?
    My reasons were because my wife and I decided that sexual activity is something sacred to our relationship, and that fantasising, ogling and MOing do not fit with that. It was a conscious decision to save sex for between my wife and I.
    It was brilliant to break my addiction to getting high from M and O and i have learned so much about why I felt exactly like you do about not wanting to.
    So if I was you I would only stop MO if you are going to replace the high you would get from it with attention and bonding activity with your wife, and learn to harness the additional energy you get from not Oing as much.
    Also you do not need to O, there is no physical need, and you can change your psychological dependance on O if you wish to.
     
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  4. JustADude

    JustADude Fapstronaut

    Great advice Faceplanter and Mr. Stretch.

    Each morning, my correct path forward is more clear. Yes, I need to limit my MO. Should I stop MO completely? I don't know yet. What I do know is that I still don't have a compelling enough reason to stop MO outright.

    The reason I know I need to limit my MOing is simple. I like the positive effects of a little pent up sexual energy. I like that I think about my wife more. I like the notion of redirecting my pent up energy towards my wife. Mostly good will come out of that exercise, very little bad will result.

    I was hoping for more people to chime in, an SO's opinion would be nice.

    Moving forward... nothing is set in stone, I will keep an open mind and adjust my goals and plans as necessary, I will also do my best no to be too hard on myself. I guess I will arbitrarily set a goal of no MOs sooner than 4 days since my last O. At least initially it won't be a strict goal, more of a target I plan to get close too.

    Thank you for your support.
     
  5. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

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    Ok, you said an so’s opinion would b nice. First, have you talked to your wife? She is really the one who matters. Now, before I understood anything about pmo, I had no problem with porn or masturbating. Now, I absolutely do not want my husband doing either, ever. Why? You are pleasuring yourself while thinking of other women, maybe not every time, but sooner or later you will slide down that slope. You are stealing from your wife, she should be your source of sexual connection and pleasure. Say, you know she is going to work so why not m a bit? Instead she surprises you with a dinner and a night at the hotel, but you already m’d 3 times before she got back. Yeah, true story here. You say what if it’s going to b 7-10 days? Ok, so what. You have so little control that you can’t deny yourself for that amount of time? Studies show that people who can practice delayed gratification are far happier than those who can’t. Besides, your an addict right? How bad do you want to quit your addiction? Addict after addict agree that m makes it far harder to stay clean. Why take that chance?
     
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  6. Faceplanter

    Faceplanter Fapstronaut

    That's painting every man with one wide brush. Some men can both stay clean with M and / or not use M in conjunction with lustful (ie other women) fantasy or other stimulus.

    Just be very sure you are in that camp or it's a good way to fail and caution and self restraint are key to making that decision and afterwards. I'm not sure your (OP) plan is cautious enough, to be honest.

    If the your wife is of a similar mind as @Psalm27:1my light then MO is not ok. Not all SOs will see M as "stealing" from them, but you'd best know if where your partner is, not just a "typical" partner.
     
  7. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

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    I agree completely. That’s why I said he should talk to his wife because really she’s the only one who matters. I know plenty of my friends would be happy if their husbands “ took care of himself”, so to speak. I’m obviously not in that camp at all, lol. I also think that for porn addicts masturbating is going to make it very difficult to stay away from porn, however, so does actual sex, ie the chaser. That’s where you really need to be open and honest with your spouse.
     
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  8. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

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    I also want to add that I think a wife who is unwilling to meet her husbands sexual needs, in a healthy relationship is very selfish. Even if the husband has a higher libido, sex can still be enjoyed even if you weren’t in the mood. Barring any health or mental issues.
     
  9. Faceplanter

    Faceplanter Fapstronaut

    LOL, that needs a trigger alert!
     
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  10. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

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    Oh, I’m sorry... just didn’t ant y to think I think the wife has zero responsibilities for n the relationship:)
     

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