Where I am now - Rebooting, Dating, Social Anxiety, taking my life back

Discussion in 'Dating during a Reboot' started by joewillwin, Nov 16, 2019.

  1. joewillwin

    joewillwin New Fapstronaut

    This is my first thread here and my first day on the official NoFap site.
    So I am officially at about 14 days, which is now my longest streak in my five+ year battle with PMO. I'm 19, and a first-year in college.
    I spent the first week or so this semester seriously retaining, mostly because I was so distracted and stressed out about starting college, I didn't really have time to fap.
    I thought I was finally going to quit forever.
    About a week and a half into the semester, I relapsed. Hard. Since then, I had struggled almost daily(just like I had in high school.) And my highest streak for a few months was about 3-4 days. I felt pathetic, ashamed, and it only compounded symptoms I already had associated with social anxiety, depressive history, ADHD, OCD, etc.
    PMO wasn't just destroying my mental health though. I tried to keep going out and having fun with my newfound friends, but my dopamine centers had been so screwed that I couldn't fully enjoy or be present in my time with my friends. Additionally, I realized that my study habits were absolute garbage, and mostly due to my increased brain fog and inability to focus.
    After a few months in college, I experienced several, seriously traumatic personal crises unrelated to my addiction. This made everything a thousand times worse. I had hit this new low and found myself stressed and needing to escape almost every day.
    Slowly, I realized that this was not only (obviously) not solving any of my problems, but seriously inhibiting my ability to respond to them in healthy and proactive ways.
    Fast forward, I am 14 days clean with the exception of occasional glances at triggering material and/or edging, which I am also cutting out.
    Tonight, I had my first real "date" in months, with someone I had known for quite some time and had grown fond of. And I really, really like this person. I went back to their place after dinner to hang out, but I almost instinctively knew nothing sexual would come of it. I was hopeful, but I knew from prior research that arousal so soon after a rough break from PM was unlikely. Nevertheless, I had a great time with this person, but I am extremely freaked out and nervous about the potential of having sex again (it has been about a year for me, but no I am not a virgin) and things being awkward or just not working out. I know it should take some time before my mind and body is rewired enough to take that step, but I would like to think I can work hard enough to advance it, and to hopefully spark a genuine, meaningful relationship with this person.
    Dating aside - I am willing to take my life back. I was content with just casually avoiding porn as best I can, but now I see it will take much more serious work than that to rewire and restructure my brain and make the most of every day - not waste it.
    I am hoping someone here can help me to find the right resources and methods of making a healthy recovery. If any of you have struggled with dating while in recovery/rebooting, please let me know what helped you in that process. I am open to all ideas. Thanks, guys.
  2. neil07

    neil07 Fapstronaut

    Great post, and thank you for sharing your experience. I too have just started to date someone and they are really nice and caring with a heart of gold but I am aware that any form of sex could be the downfall as it will still have the same effect on your body as watching porn, I would abstract from any sexual interaction and build a special bond and build up a confidence in each other first. I didn't know who I was until I gave up porn and ejaculation for 6 months, I felt normal for the first time in my life, and realized just how messed up my brain was. Take care and I hope this reply will help in some way

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