Starting again

searching4good

Active Member
Only a very brief post as I'm currently exhausted and 2 hours past when I should have been in bed due to another binge...but having really escalated in the last two weeks with considerable financial outlays on p*rn without having control...I just have to try and start again...

I am 32 and am addicted to p*rn. I recognise that I have so much to give and so much goodness inside of me, that life is short and it will all be wasted if I can't get a handle on this and beat my demons.

This is now my life mission and I have to make it happen.

Thank you for being here and thank you for the accountability.

Looking forward to taking the journey with you.

S
 

searching4good

Active Member
Coming up to the end of my first day on here - I lapsed this morning before work (wfh day) but have resisted this evening, for the first time in a long time. I also have not spend a $ on it today either, which isn't something I can say for many of my recent days.

Watching and spending increasingly go hand in hand for me, and it's the last big binges that have in many ways driven me to do something about it. Watching the stuff is bad enough, but getting to the end of a session where you've not only wasted hours but also sometimes hundreds of dollars... That's become increasingly scary for me. I can see a future where every asset I've built up is squandered - that's a dark, dark hole I cannot find myself in. I fear what that would push me to do.

Not a perfect day clearly but a damn sight better than the one before it. An evening spent doing useful things, including going out for a shop and getting some fresh air. And all this leading to an earlier bedtime and hopefully a better sleep.

We go again tomorrow.

Thank you for keeping me accountable, thank you for caring.
 

searching4good

Active Member
Checking in for the first time in 4 days - 4 days which contained some lapses and finding myself spending again, albeit in smaller amounts.



Today has been a better day, partly because I've headed back home to see the family and therefore away from my normal routines and normal temptations. The urge to watch and spend is so hugely reduced when I'm out of my normal routine which I guess is both encouraging and frustrating. Encouraging because it shows I'm not 'innately' bound to this life forever, but frustrating also because I keep going back to vices even when I know I can do better.



Which I suppose brings me to my routine and what needs to change. I currently live by myself and have done on the whole for the past 6 years. That has without doubt helped to fuel my addictions and removed the 'barrier' of having to hide things from my immediate surroundings. Objectively, if I decide to spend all day watching filth, there's little to stop me.



It's the easy access that is in so many ways a driver of this. A couple of months ago I ended up putting my personal laptop, which is what I 'use' for watching, in a fully submerged bath as a way of removing that temptation. Don't get me wrong, I've watched on other devices, but nothing holds me quite like being sat at my laptop for hours and hours. If I watch with my phone or via an app or something on the TV, it's usually only for minutes at a time. On my laptop, it's rarely not for hours at a time. After the intentional laptop destruction I managed to last about 3 weeks before I lapsed and ended up ordering another one. That then fuelled a real relapse, which has brought me up to present day here and now.



I'm heading back to mine on Monday (another public holiday in the UK for Easter) and I increasingly feel like I have to do the same again with the new laptop. Yes, it's an awful waste of around £3-400, but I also know that I've spent more than that on various forms of p*rn in the last few weeks. I'm capable of spending much much more too. I know deep down that having access to a non-work laptop when living alone is just too much of a temptation for me. At least right now. If I know its sat there, I can only go so long until it wins.



It's probably not a sustainable approach to recovery in the long term - ie to never be around / have a personal laptop, but right now it just feels like I need to give myself every help I can to get some momentum under my belt.



So I suppose this is me trying to give myself some accountability, through writing it down - and through any responses received - that I WILL destroy the laptop when I head back to mine on Monday. Even typing that, I can feel the addict in me trying to justify why I shouldn't... Maybe I just 'lock it away' or 'put it out of sight'...



I suppose I would really welcome any other perspectives on this... Do others feel that they can Co-exist with a personal laptop in that environment, or is my 'gut' right that I need to take the cold turkey route here...
 

searching4good

Active Member
Day 1

After the recent lapses, today has been a good day. Last day at home with the family before I head back to my flat, was spent largely rather lazily in the garden switching between a book and a current affairs magazine. Managed to also get a couple of personal finance-y tasks done as well which I had been putting off. Family time comes with its own stressors but I work on reminding myself that I'll look back on these kind of days and will probably give anything to have just one more.

So there's another incentive there to kick this habit - to be the best version of myself not just for me, but to help honour the time and love that I was fortunate enough to have invested in me whilst growing up, even though in retrospect it probably wasn't always directed in the best of ways. But I realise how lucky I am in that respect compared to many others.

I'm having an early night and will hope to start tomorrow bright and early. Tomorrow is going to be the litmus test - can I get back to mine and resist the urge to fire up my laptop and go back to normal habits... I can feel that the temptation is buried away but ready to resurface if I let it. I am determined not to let it - I have to remind myself how good I will feel if I get to the end of tomorrow having stayed the course. I will do my best to hold onto that.
 

searching4good

Active Member
So today has not been a good day... It turns out that the relapse I feared when I got back to mine happened... And it was a fairly big one... It's a realisation that this thing has got me hard and I am a world away from some of the progress others are making.

I've literally just submerged my laptop in the bath - I have proved time and time again that I just cannot coexist with such ready access to all my demons, at least not yet.

I HAVE to find a way to make it stick this time... I can't keep going through these cycles.

Hopefully being on here and turning up each day, whether it's been a good or bad one, will help with the process.

I guess that's all for now - I've got to keep at this.
 

downhillfromhere

Well-Known Member
I just want to say that even though you are relapsing, it's great you are coming back here to write it out. I think that it's going to help you in the long run. Getting your thoughts down in writing is a great way to really understand yourself.

I know that in my case, quitting P has been in the back of my head for many years, but it's not until recently I have put anything into words - it's all been floating around in my head. And in a state of addiction, I have easily become confused, even completely forgot what I wanted to do when temptation came along. I just slipped right back to the same routine because it felt good then and there, and because it was so easy.

It's not until I watched Gary Wilson's TED talk that things fully clicked for me. Suddenly I understood the effect that watching porn almost every day has had on my life, my personality, my social skills, depression and anxiety. I thought I was replacing a missing physical relationship with a substitute, but I was in fact engaging in regular behavior that was holding me back from even meeting someone I could be intimate with. That was the point things shifted from wanting something to change, to actually knowing what I have to do to make that change for good.

I guess my point is - for me, what made a huge difference was learning a little bit about the science behind the addiction and the consequences it has had on my life. I don't know if you've already seen this, but if not I definitely recommend it:

https://www.yourbrainonporn.com/abo...rys-tedx-talk-the-great-porn-experiment-2012/
 

searching4good

Active Member
I just want to say that even though you are relapsing, it's great you are coming back here to write it out. I think that it's going to help you in the long run. Getting your thoughts down in writing is a great way to really understand yourself.

I know that in my case, quitting P has been in the back of my head for many years, but it's not until recently I have put anything into words - it's all been floating around in my head. And in a state of addiction, I have easily become confused, even completely forgot what I wanted to do when temptation came along. I just slipped right back to the same routine because it felt good then and there, and because it was so easy.

It's not until I watched Gary Wilson's TED talk that things fully clicked for me. Suddenly I understood the effect that watching porn almost every day has had on my life, my personality, my social skills, depression and anxiety. I thought I was replacing a missing physical relationship with a substitute, but I was in fact engaging in regular behavior that was holding me back from even meeting someone I could be intimate with. That was the point things shifted from wanting something to change, to actually knowing what I have to do to make that change for good.

I guess my point is - for me, what made a huge difference was learning a little bit about the science behind the addiction and the consequences it has had on my life. I don't know if you've already seen this, but if not I definitely recommend it:

https://www.yourbrainonporn.com/abo...rys-tedx-talk-the-great-porn-experiment-2012/
Thank you so much downhill, that was so helpful to read and has given me a big boost. I actually watched that TED talk for the first time on Saturday... It was really powerful and has definitely stayed with me. I'm hoping that all these little things can add up to something bigger. It really helps to know that others are in my corner... Which brings me to today's entry.

Day 1

So a strange but on the whole good day. Worked in the office which is always a better option than being at home for me, despite the earlier wake up. Being around colleagues and amidst the hustle of London is just way better for my head and cuts out all temptation.

As always, the challenge for me is closing that front door when I get back. I immediately felt the familiar pull... The difference this time being that my laptop, my normal gateway... Was still floating in the bath after yesterday, and therefore completely out of action.

I definitely had a strong urge to try and get it working and found myself slightly mindlessly browsing a couple of old sites on my phone, but I guess I'm somewhat lucky in that viewing on any other platform from my laptop really doesn't have anywhere near as much pull for me.

I eventually managed to drag myself out of my inertia and headed to the gym for the first time in about 2 and a half months. Far from a brilliant session, but huge progress compared to what's come before, and unsurprisingly it's come from not having that temptation so easily accessible. A sign that I am hopefully capable of turning this around for the better.

Am taking myself into the office again tomorrow and will work towards a similarly positive evening, albeit hopefully without the mindless, although brief, browsing session this time.
 

searching4good

Active Member
Very brief check in for the first time in a week - has not been a good one for me. Back to square one. Tomorrow is a new day and an opportunity to start the rest of my life. I am not going to give up on this.
Another brief check in after a mixed bank holiday weekend. Two very good days followed by a more difficult one today, including a fairly serious relapse. In hindsight it was clearly driven by the various stresses associated with returning to work. I have big meetings and deadlines tomorrow and rather than get a start on them I buried my head in the sand and wrapped myself in that familiar 'comfort blanket' in which hours and hours can go by without having to address the real world. At least, not until the binge is finally over and reality hits even harder.

So frustrating I'm still failing at this and not seemingly making any real progress. Although the fact that I do keep on coming back to here is something I am holding onto. That's different from the months and months beforehand.

Tomorrow is a new day, a new (working) week and new opportunity for a new beginning. I will check in here regardless of what else happens.
 

searching4good

Active Member
Day 1

A brief check in - today has been a good day with no acting out. A day spent in the office and then a beer afterwards with a friend. Busy, stressful day, but energies all directed in the right way. Being around colleagues and the wider world is such a tonic - getting me out of my head and helping to make the idea of being stuck inside for hours and hours succumbing to familiar temptations almost ridiculous. There's a big, amazing world out there... Why would anyone not want to embrace it fully.

The key is holding onto that, and finding a way to keep the feeling front of mind when the going gets tough.

Having an early night as have to get up early to get a mountain of work done ahead of various deadlines. Can't remember the last time I went to bed around 10pm whilst living by myself. Almost excited to see how I sleep and hopefully spring into tomorrow's challenges, which I am more than capable of meeting.

I'll keep putting one foot in front of the other.
 

searching4good

Active Member
Checking in here after a difficult period and multiple relapses. This thing has really got a hold on me and it's got me questioning whether I truly want to quit. Am I ready to give up the sense of comfort, the rush and 'pleasure' that comes with acting out?

As I type that I know I absolutely have to give it up, because it is all completely artificial, fleeting and ultimately so, so damaging. But there is such a sense of loss, of 'missing out' when I do try to turn away from it.

I know that I have got to keep trying though, otherwise my life will, without exaggeration, become forfeit. I can already see how some aspects are falling apart, as I paper over the cracks so nobody else notices. But I've got to keep at it, keep finding ways to overcome, change my routines and patterns. It's getting late here in the UK so I'll leave it there for now, but with tomorrow being a new day, a new week, it's the time to seize things once more.

Keep at it.
 

searching4good

Active Member
Another brief check in - have to be up in 6 hours. Despite a lapse first thing this morning and then playing with fire throughout the day... today has somehow ended well. The last 4 hours have been spent giving the flat a real tidy and deep clean ahead of some works starting tomorrow... The process has been invigorating, and needless to say, not a little metaphorical.

Have had a mountain of stuff to get through... I still do and tomorrow is a monster day... But doesn't it feel good facing up to it, getting your head down and working through it as best as you can. Another check in tomorrow, after an even better day...
 

searching4good

Active Member
Day 1

First day in a couple of weeks I think where I have not lapsed - going to bed with a clean slate, which feels really good.

A big part down to heading into the office and then travelling back to see the parents in the evening, so actually very little time or opportunity to get tempted. That's clearly a big part of my problem normally - too much time by myself in the evenings / af the weekend when I'm not working, and too much opportunity in front of me.

I've got another early start so I'm keeping this very brief but I am trying hard to journal on here regularly, come what may.

Here's to getting to day 2 this time tomorrow - the first time I will have done that in a good while.
 

searching4good

Active Member
It's been far too long since I've been here - the last few months have been more in the hole than out of it.

After a pretty horrendous time with slipping daily and really letting myself go, I can feel that something is finally different. Partly because I've met a really awesome woman and for the first time in my Life, just couldn't get it up. It was like lifeless. I blamed it on booze but in the back of my head I knew it was almost certainly all the pmo that was responsible.

I'm now pretty convinced that I've fallen into some form of PIED and that is genuinely one of the most AWFUL feelings I've ever had. The fact that I have what I think is the most beautiful, incredible woman telling me how much she wants to do all sorts of things with me, and I can't respond because of all the hours I've wasted to PMO.

Anyway, it's now been 5 days and I have had almost no desire to even look at P, let alone M to it. Even when I've had clean stretches to PMO before, the temptation would be so strong and I would often just 'take a peek'. But now the motivation to fix my ability to have an erection with a real life person just completely trumps PMO. it feels like the most obvious thing in the world.

I'm not naïve enough to assume this will last, and I will stay vigilant, but I just needed to check in and get this down... acknowledge it.

5 days completely clean - now the real challenge of getting over likely PIED begins...
 

downhillfromhere

Well-Known Member
Welcome back!

Use this situation for all it's worth! This sounds like a great thing, and you're a lucky guy.

One question though, have you told her about your situation? Staying clean might be easier if you've got some backup and understanding of why you might need to abstain or hold back on having sex for a while. Of course it depends on how you feel about it, just asking.
 

searching4good

Active Member
Welcome back!

Use this situation for all it's worth! This sounds like a great thing, and you're a lucky guy.

One question though, have you told her about your situation? Staying clean might be easier if you've got some backup and understanding of why you might need to abstain or hold back on having sex for a while. Of course it depends on how you feel about it, just asking.
Thanks so much - it means a lot to hear this and to have you support.

So I'm definitely considering it. I don't actually see her for a week or so due to busy diaries so I'm planning to see what actually happens when we meet up and if it's still an issue. This morning for instance was quite a change... I received some quite suggestive messages from her last night, which at the time didn't really do anything for me...but when I woke up I seemed to be not fully back to normal, but in a MUCH better state than I have been for the last couple of weeks. I was quite tempted to MO there and then but decided to hold off. Throughout the day I've been getting intermittent rushes down there and it suddenly feels a lot more alive.

It's really encouraging but I'm mindful that it could be a false dawn and/or there's lots of pitfalls ahead.

More broadly, today has been a good day. I haven't got as much work done as I probably should have done, but I've been really active and have done a lot of 'life' tasks.

I've also been increasingly reflecting on where I am with myself and my confidence, or recent lack thereof. I need to get it down properly when I have more time but there's a dawning realisation that I need to stop seeking validation from others and be more comfortable that, I am enough. Regardless of how I look, or compare with others. Alongside this, I feel like a fire has been lit around becoming less fragile... and rather than being damaged and/or coming out worse from a negative experience... To absorb it and emerge stronger. It's a simple concept in reality but it's really struck a nerve and I'm looking forward to working on it.

Anyway, that's me out for today. It's day 6 complete - another very good day of almost no temptation and some real space for recovery.

This time tomorrow will be day 7 - the first time in so so long that I have gone a full week without even looking at P, even if I didn't fully act on it. That's quite an exciting target.
 

downhillfromhere

Well-Known Member
That sounds good! I like that you're focusing on your self worth and building yourself up. That stuff will be very beneficial in the long run! About meeting up with your girl, I agree with just seeing how it goes. Focus on your attraction to her and if it doesn't work out - then at least you've got an explanation and a possible solution to it.

Just keep staying away from porn, in any case. Good luck! 💪
 

GBS

Well-Known Member
Hi @searching4good . Reading your story, very interesting. The journey you are starting is not easy BUT it is truly life affirming. And for you with a wonderful woman to have sex with, you’ve got it all. Your brain is going to mess with you and you need to be aware of that. Be honest with her and yourself. You will be a new man and you’re going to love that guy. Good luck. Keep going
 
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