Worried about consequences. What do you think?

Discussion in 'Porn Addiction' started by sweetnyc, Nov 28, 2017.

Are my anxieties unfounded?

  1. No — this is a real problem, and you're right to worry.

    4 vote(s)
  2. No — your anxieties make sense, but the likelihood is that you're fine.

    3 vote(s)
  3. Yes — you're totally fine, so relax and focus on your recovery.

    4 vote(s)
  1. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    I joined NoFap today, and I'm pretty confident that rebooting is the solution to about 90% of the things plaguing me right now. But one remains, and that's my nagging anxiety about the consequences of what I've already done.

    I've had a lot of cam sex/phone sex/text sex with random strangers on the internet. I've sent people photos of my naked body, at first all without my face to identify me but then, with some partners, I included my face. I filmed my PMO and sent it to complete strangers, none of whom knew my name but with my face and voice clear enough that anyone who knew me would recognize me. I never knew any of these men well enough that I could track them down now, much less trust that my photos will remain private to them.

    Even if I reboot successfully, find the peace I'm seeking, heal my relationships and move forward happily in my life, I am terrified that someday, somehow, those photos and videos will find me and ruin my life. I doubt that I'll someday be a high-powered politician or celeb, but it's possible! And I feel like I won't aim for my highest accomplishments because it will make me vulnerable to attack from people who, somehow, will figure out that they have this leverage over me.

    Are these anxieties unreasonable? Am I worrying about nothing? Some of the thoughts I use to placate myself are:
    - Realistically, these men are not saving this content. They'll move on to other women, photos, and porn and my stuff will get deleted and forgotten.
    - If, for some reason, someone was able to connect me to this stuff decades down the line, I'd be able to reasonably admit to the fact that I was/am a sex addict, and I sought help and found recovery. In theory, by that point I'd be so far into my recovery that I'd be surrounded by healthy relationships and happiness that would protect me from harm from my past.
    What do you think?
  2. Yanis

    Yanis Fapstronaut

    Just relax. You are a young lady and in the past you liked to show your beautiful body. I know there a lot of girls acting like that and I never would make any judgement about them. The older you get the more you realize that these experiences are irrelevant for your life. There is only one reality: the moment called NOW. Now focus on what you really want: true happiness. And stop worrying about stuff in the past. It's nothing than wasting time. Good luck for your NO PMO journey.
  3. Sure, all that might happen. Or it might not. Really just time will tell for sure. There is no use in worrying. Because if it all is going to come out then the fact that you worry about it is not going to stop it anyways, so why bother to worry. And if it will never come out then you will just waste your time worrying when you didn't had to, so why do it. So you see how worrying is not constructive? So stop it.

    Like the gay hippie above said, focus on now. The fact right now is that at this present moment everything is fine. You are just creating bad memories and frightening projections of future in your head. It's all just in your head! Go do something that that will put your focus from overthinking about past and future to present situation instead. Like go clean your room, read a book, call a friend, etc. Anything distracting. And in long term just realize futility of worrying. It's not constructive, it's a waste of time.

    Why be embarrassed about it to begin with? Sex is natural, everybody does it, we are sexual beings. Internet is natural, everybody does it, we are digital beings these days too. So it's only normal that in this day and age part of our sexual relationships will move into digital environment. Things like that work as weapons only if you let them. If you want to be famous leader you can do it two ways; you can put on a fake, perfect, little mask and make people love you for it, not for who you truly are, and then go home to your dark skeletons. Or you can expose all of your demons from very start and have people look up to you even more. Like Terry Crews speaking about his porn addiction and sexual assault. Does not make him any less powerful and respected, if anything even more so.
    sweetnyc and Hitto like this.
  4. wudong

    wudong Fapstronaut

    Brother, I know you are in a difficult situation, but you know, there is no way to change things in the past, but we can seize the present moment and change ourselves a little bit. Come on!

    ——From a Chinese boy
    sweetnyc likes this.
  5. First up, congratulations on finding this place and beginning a reboot. You'll find a lot a lot of support here.

    Second, you have no control over the future of photos and videos you sent to others. That sounds terrifying, but it also means that the best thing for you to do is to leave it where it is - in the past. I would guess the odds you being 'outed' are pretty low.

    Third, as posters above have said, you haven't done anything wrong. You engaged in private, lawful activity. The worst you can be accused of is poor decision making giving strangers material you don't want out of your control.

    Fourth, just catching an undertone here, but it sounds like you do have an addiction. Yes, that does explain your behaviour. But it also means you need to take the reboot seriously to get on top of your addiction, or you risk continuing with behaviour that you obviously aren't proud of.

    I hope that's helpful. Things really aren't as bad as they might seem. I'm sure that a reboot, and this forum, can help you live a life you can be proud of. There's no judgement here, we all have our demons and know that we are, or can be, decent people.
    sakeen and sweetnyc like this.
  6. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    This is really, really helpful. Thank you! I have sort of two buckets of things I'm struggling with here — the stuff I KNOW has to stop, and then the stuff I'm still grappling with (do I need to stop MO forever or can I find a healthy relationship with it? How do my relationships factor into all this? What about my other vices? etc.). Hearing the reinforcement that the only way to continue to abstain from bucket one and to work on figuring out bucket two is by continuing to be here is very helpful. So I appreciate it!
    Deleted Account and sakeen like this.
  7. GG2002

    GG2002 Fapstronaut

    Hi just reading your post I see a very anxious thought pattern. I am blessed to be the type of person that rarely worries as I think it’s a waste of time but that also means I can spot anxiety well as to me it’s not a rational thought process. So can I ask do you suffer from anxiety? Are you being treated? Do you think you numb anxiety with pmo?
    Second most women and men have sent naked pictures to a boyfriend or girlfriend with their faces. Many more have set headless naked shots to strangers. Why do you think snap chat is so popular? Heck I got more D pics on tinder and online dating than a gal can count.

    I’m a well educated professional and you know what I would do if someone revenged porned me? I’d sue them under one of the many laws in the US that now allow me to, because I’m also a lawyer. You want to run for office someday no worries our First Lady has posed for playboy!

    I don’t mean to sound funny but sometimes if you actually think through the irrational thoughts rationally it helps to feel better. But bottom line you can’t change your past. And worrying won’t change your future!
    sakeen likes this.
  8. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    Oh my gosh, this is so encouraging! I am a well-educated professional and sometimes I get so caught up about my addiction and try to deny it because there's this stigma that says that well-educated, professional people should be above all this. But that's not true! Education and career have nothing to do with the fact that we're all just people and we're all vulnerable to the same pitfalls, and the stigma surrounding porn addiction is classist, and it's really helpful to see other women here who can help me reinforce that fact to myself.

    And yes, I definitely have an anxiety disorder. I take a daily medication for major depressive and generalized anxiety, and I have a benzo for when I have panic attacks. But I definitely need to be back in weekly talk therapy, and I've been putting off getting a new therapist for a very long time. I think I am going to commit to myself to getting one tomorrow, and use this thread to hold myself accountable.

    As for sounding funny — I actually am a stand-up comedian, so humor on this topic is so much more welcome than you'd realize. I feel about a foot tall on here being earnest and vulnerable when in my regular life I am snarky and impenetrable, so it really helps to see people with similar personalities struggling with the same things I do. Thank you!
    sakeen and GG2002 like this.
  9. Yes, what we do has consequences. We are all here because we have been fucked by the consequences of our decision to masturbate excessively while binging on porn. You have done this extra stuff which has the added consequence of putting your future security and peace in the hands of other sex-crazed addicts. What will they do with the bullets you gave them to fire? Who knows? I guess you will just have to live with that nagging doubt in your mind. What else can you do? It seems from the other replies here that burying your head in the sand is an option. :rolleyes: But that doesn't seem a good idea to me. :oops:
  10. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    You don't seem to be suggesting any good ideas, though. Whereas the other posters are at least encouraging me to use my mental energies not on my anxiety, but on my efforts to recover.
  11. I apologise for not being more clear.

    Your thread is: Worried about the consequences. What do you think? I feel I have shared my thinking. In the words of your poll^ This is a real problem, and you're right to worry. As for recovery, yes this is a porn recovery community so I encourage you to stop immediately and review matters after several months of no-relapse progress has been made. :)
  12. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    To add a clarifier to my original post: I am under no impression that there's a way to get out of this without consequences. I'm a grown woman and I understand that my actions have impact. I'm not here to be scolded.

    The anxiety that I've carried around with me thus far — that in and of itself is a consequence. Ideally, I'd like for it to be the only consequence. I'd like to get a grip on my addictions now, overcome that consequence, and move on solidly with my life. Many of the posters so far have confirmed for me that that is a positive and plausible route forward, and I felt much better after reading those responses.

    My question is whether these other, more public consequences that I have this plaguing anxiety about are valid enough to justify how much energy I dedicate to worrying about them. Obviously I know that it's possible that I'll be outed — that's why I posted to begin with. And obviously I am already working toward conquering my PMO — again, not what I asked about. I wanted to know whether my anxiety about these things catching up to me decades down the line was out of proportion to the likelihood that those things actually happen. Responses about the futility of worrying as an activity (which is not the same as "sticking my head in the sand," to be clear), the reality that I didn't do anything legally wrong, the unlikelihood that any of this would actually happen — those are helpful. Just confirming for me that what I did was bad (something I already knew) is not helpful, and if anything, it reads a bit condescending.

    I'm disappointed to be seeing this sort of unnecessarily negative response on day one here, as it will definitely factor into whether I am able to stick around in this community for the long haul.

    Bit of a bummer note to be ending day one on, but I'm really pleased to have met so many positive, encouraging, constructive people here today! Thanks all for getting me started on the right foot.
    sakeen likes this.
  13. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    A note: if you have anyone in your life who struggles with anxiety, this is not the way to help them cope.
    Deleted Account and Yanis like this.
  14. Well, don't ask a question where you have identified the answer you want to hear in advance and are not willing to listen to a range of views. There are negative consequences in life, acknowledging that is not "unnecessary". Just think it over nyc.
  15. sweetnyc

    sweetnyc Fapstronaut

    Again, it's overwhelmingly condescending to imply that I'm not thinking over the things that I'm saying and responding to before posting them.

    Yes, I acknowledged that there are negative consequences in my original post. My question was what consequences are reasonable to worry about and what aren't worth worrying about. Simply saying "Who knows? You sure did put a bullet in their hands" and walking away doesn't give me any new information or provide a helpful solution for coping with this issue. It's essentially fearmongering.

    I'm open to hearing all responses that are helpful and constructive, even if they aren't the best case scenario. Your responses were not helpful, actionable, or constructive.

    With respect, it's clear to me that our perspectives are different enough that you are not going to be a positive or helpful influence on my journey to recovery and I'd like to ask that we go our separate ways. I don't feel that either of us will gain anything further from this interaction and I'd like to respect your recovery as well as mine by helping us both avoid negative interactions that could serve as triggers. Blessings and light on your path forward.

    Yanis likes this.
  16. I basically confirmed one of the responses YOU offered: No — this is a real problem, and you're right to worry. Yet, you have decided that I am incapable of being, "a positive or helpful influence on my journey to recovery and I'd like to ask that we go our separate ways." o_O Hmm, a damning indictment indeed! Such are the consequences of an honest opinion.
  17. Yanis

    Yanis Fapstronaut

    I agree. We are here to encourage each other. Problems are in your mind, solutions are in your heart. Listen to your heart, don’t look back and enjoy each moment of your life. You came into this world to be happy, not to worry about anything. RELAX AND ENJOY.
    sweetnyc, GG2002 and sakeen like this.
  18. Runtilmylegsdropoff

    Runtilmylegsdropoff Fapstronaut

    If you do end up becoming a Politician, you just might get a free pass if you're Democrat.
  19. DemonSemen

    DemonSemen Fapstronaut

    I think this is one of the unfortunate effects of sex addiction. We engage in risky behavior that could later hurt us. The internet makes things permanent.

    Your fears are not unfounded. Someday these things could come back to haunt you. But you can’t do anything about it. If someone confronts you simply be honest and tell them: “I was at a low point in my sex addiction and engaged in risky behavior.” All you can do is own it.

    And get better. The only way to make amends is to get better. Fac the problem, learn from your mistakes.
    sweetnyc, sakeen and Tryingto like this.
  20. sakeen

    sakeen Fapstronaut

    Wow. Ok @sweetnyc this mirrors my own experiences and anxieties a lot so I'll try to address some of what you said:

    1. "I am terrified that someday...those photos and videos will find me and ruin my life"

    I have also (against better judgement) had lots of cam/phone sex with random girls, shared nudes, and eventually nudes with my face. I've also filmed myself and spoken in those videos and I'm easily identifiable if that stuff is leaked. This has made me experience anxiety about it appearing in the future. I work in a sensitive role (embarrassingly sensitive...) and something like this could 'ruin' me. If I let it. Here is how I reasoned with my anxiety to calm myself down and adopt a healthier perspective:

    a) I acknowledged that what I did was a mistake. It went against my moral code and the standards I set for myself. I repented for it, and made a promise to myself that I would never do it again, to the best of my ability.

    b) I then took steps to back up that promise: joining nofap, removing any erotic material from my environment, blocking porn on my devices, and writing the future I wanted in my life and how engaging in these actions can hinder that future I want for myself (happy healthy family, fulfilling career, feeling good in body and mind, having a clear conscience).

    c) I forgave myself. I acknowledged I was at a lower maturity level. I acknowledged that my new identity is one of greater discipline against lust/impulse and of greater drive towards the higher values in life. I know that beating myself about this more than is necessary is not conducive to good self-esteem and faith in myself to change. I chose to adopt a healthier growth mindset, instead of one focussed on the mistakes of the past. I'm creating a newer version of myself.

    d) I practised faith. I believe firmly that most people are not malicious...the likelihood of those people saving then sharing damaging material of me is low. Even if I become 'famous', it would take a truly sick person to hurt someone like that. So on the whole, probability of damage is low. But, this means I am not going to tempt fate and take the risk again.

    e) I am (trying) to practise humility. I know that the actions I did were due to weakness and not strength, and as humans we are prone to falling. It's just the human condition. But I know that with support from others (e.g. on this forum) I can be stronger than before. But I accept that I need help and recovery (so I don't repeat my actions) doesn't have to be a solo mission. I have also decided that with my next partner, if she asks, I will be honest about what I did and show her that I am taking every step not be that guy again.

    2) You said: "If, for some reason, someone was able to connect me to this stuff decades down the line, I'd be able to reasonably admit to the fact that I was/am a sex addict, and I sought help and found recovery"

    This is the best thing you can do. It shows incredible strength of character and maturity to own up to mistakes of the past, and demonstrate how you have evolved from that point. No one can demean you or hurt you (unless you let them). People are forgiving because we all go through trials and failings. No one is immune to the problem of living! Anyone who calls you out and tries to shame you is dishonest, weak and has no empathy or humility. You're better than that type of person, and people will see it.

    I guess in summary, don't let the past destroy your peace of mind. You are a human being. You grow, you become stronger and wiser. That's all you have to do, and as long as you acknowledge and make peace with your mistakes of the past, you can rest easy in your mind and conscience.
    Last edited: Nov 29, 2017

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