Escape Velocity - Orbiters Journal

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Thanks Weetakker & EarthWalker. Both with great points.

Today is DAY 2.

This is the longest I have gone without PMOing since my last post. Mostly it's been multiple times daily. Abstaining yesterday was very difficult but I made it through the day and am, so far, still good.

Around the last time I posted I was escalating to paid OF content. Well that escalated further into paid cam sites which I wound up bingeing, blowing much of my Christmas annual leave money on. I was basically staring down the barrel of not having enough money to pay rent or buy food but thankfully my father and some cousins along with presents chipped in some extra money which has managed to get me through the holidays. Needless to say I felt awful.

I have managed to not escalate further but I was PMOing multiple times a day every day while I was quitting the cam sites and as well as smoking which I restarted around the same time.

Throughout this time there has been much thought & soul-searching about why this is happening, what I actually want out of life and what is it going to take for me to quit.

Knowing how to quit isn't the issue, in theory I know enough about myself, what's happening in my brain and have plenty of strategies to get me through. It definitely has something to do with my attitude & mentality, for whatever reason I am still relying on porn to self soothe.

What I do know is,

* I'm not going to get a gf or partner whilst I continue to do this
* I'm not going to heal my PIED while doing this
* I'm not going to have the energy and drive to push my music & passions while doing this
* I'm not going to be able to sort out my financial situation while doing this
* I'm not going to be a present and positive influence in my father & my friends lives
* I'm not going to move forward from where i'm at this moment

While i'm not naive enough to assume there's any guarantees. There is no space in my life or my mind for anything while porn is in it.

With that said, while all of this is important to remember, I think I need to bring it back to basics.

The more I PMO, the more i'm addicted to it.
The less I PMO, the less i'm addicted to it.

So while things aren't great, every second i'm away from that stuff i'm weakening the addiction. Withdrawals & cravings are the brains reaction to this. This can be overcome as long as I stay focused, positive, keep myself occupied and don't fall into the usual borderline behaviours (three circles chart). Even if I lapse, as long as I don't binge or go all the way, I can recover.

Back to basics.

Wishing you all well.
 
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Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Hey Chris, thanks for dropping in and thanks also for reaching out a couple of months back. As you might've guessed, I dropped off the radar for a bit and lost control of things. It's early days yet but i'm trying to get things back on track. Hope you've been going ok.

It's DAY 4 today. Over the last couple of days I have come down with some sort of respiratory virus or infection which seems to have temporarily ruined my throat & lungs. It's been waking me up throughout the night and i've been having a tough time sleeping or really doing anything productive while i'm awake. It has given me a lot of time to reflect and think about the coming year and where I would like myself to be. This is a double edged sword however as I honestly don't feel in the best of states to handle urges. This is my final week before I have to return to work and it's difficult not to ruminate on both having to go back but also losing the last days of my break to this. I'll have to be mindful of this and make sure it doesn't sabotage my efforts as the week draws to a close.

I think one of the common reasons that I fall back is I often forget the commitment I make to quit porn in the moment and because of that entertain/argue with urges enough to fall back into it. Usually in the moment as i'm relapsing I make a deal to myself something along the lines of 'OK Orbiter...one more time and then we've really gotta get clean' or something like that.

I think that's one of the main reasons why journaling daily at the beginning is so important. Yes there's accountability and yes there's reflections but even if there's 'nothing to report' or 'nothing to say' it's necessary to remind ourselves at such an early stage that we are doing this, why we are doing this and what we have to look forward to on the other side of this addiction.

Wishing you all well.
 

Chris1986

Active Member
Hey Chris, thanks for dropping in and thanks also for reaching out a couple of months back. As you might've guessed, I dropped off the radar for a bit and lost control of things. It's early days yet but i'm trying to get things back on track. Hope you've been going ok.

It's DAY 4 today. Over the last couple of days I have come down with some sort of respiratory virus or infection which seems to have temporarily ruined my throat & lungs. It's been waking me up throughout the night and i've been having a tough time sleeping or really doing anything productive while i'm awake. It has given me a lot of time to reflect and think about the coming year and where I would like myself to be. This is a double edged sword however as I honestly don't feel in the best of states to handle urges. This is my final week before I have to return to work and it's difficult not to ruminate on both having to go back but also losing the last days of my break to this. I'll have to be mindful of this and make sure it doesn't sabotage my efforts as the week draws to a close.

I think one of the common reasons that I fall back is I often forget the commitment I make to quit porn in the moment and because of that entertain/argue with urges enough to fall back into it. Usually in the moment as i'm relapsing I make a deal to myself something along the lines of 'OK Orbiter...one more time and then we've really gotta get clean' or something like that.

I think that's one of the main reasons why journaling daily at the beginning is so important. Yes there's accountability and yes there's reflections but even if there's 'nothing to report' or 'nothing to say' it's necessary to remind ourselves at such an early stage that we are doing this, why we are doing this and what we have to look forward to on the other side of this addiction.

Wishing you all well.
I think even in the act of talking about our feelings or writing them down we sometimes discover things or work out things that we were blind to before, It's a good practice to have but an easy one to fall out off.
Sorry to hear you are ill. I can relate I been ill for a while myself and yeah the coughing certainly has affected my sleep!

Hope you are well. I noticed in your earlier entry you mentioned pushing your music. I write and record my own stuff. If you fancy a music chat feel free to message.
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
I think even in the act of talking about our feelings or writing them down we sometimes discover things or work out things that we were blind to before, It's a good practice to have but an easy one to fall out off.
Sorry to hear you are ill. I can relate I been ill for a while myself and yeah the coughing certainly has affected my sleep!

Hope you are well. I noticed in your earlier entry you mentioned pushing your music. I write and record my own stuff. If you fancy a music chat feel free to message.

It seems like all the best practices are right?

PMO is the epitome of instant gratification and the more we indulge in it, the less able we are to actually commit ourselves to doing things that we actually value...a good example being writing & recording music. Oh and I will keep your offer in mind!

I often feel like my brain is kind of ruined, not only by PMO but things like Youtube, the internet and technology in general. Even beyond this addiction, I think there is a greater battle in which I will have to reassess a lot of this and find a way to take control of my mind & life again back from instant gratification.

The illness is annoying as is the timing. While i'm not one hundred percent, I do feel better and I think i'll try and get out today. I should be resting but i'm really craving some fresh air and time outside the apartment away from the computer.

Anyways, it's DAY 5 and i'm gonna log out and sign off for today.

Wishing everyone here well.
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Day 0 - Almost made it through the week but not quite. I PMOed today twice. The patterns of behaviour were:

* Drinking, being drunk and/or hungover leading to reduced impulse control
* Being overly tired...also leading to reduced impulse control
* Looking at non pornographic media/material related to my fetishes
* Bringing devices to bed
* Excessive amounts of time doing nothing at home alone


I made the commitment and recommitted throughout the week. But I wasn't following through with taking action and productively using the time. Bad old habits sank in and, well here I am.

I also had a catch up with a friend yesterday involving a lot of drinks that cost a lot of money and I really did not enjoy. Another lesson still to learn.

So next time, stay active through the day. Have a plan of things to do, get the morning routine going again and make sure to avoid excessive drinking in the near future.

Wishing you all well.
 

Simon2

Active Member
Gonna be blunt here because you make it so clear. If you truly want to quit the answer is right in front of you.
- stop drinking
- go to bed earlier. Every night.
- don't look at porn. Make your fetishes out of bounds. Just don't even consider anymore that you could look at them.
- leave devices far from bed. Always. No exceptions.
- find something to do at home. Even if it's binging on some tv shows. But exercise or some hobby you love would be best!

I think we often have the answer. Not just you. But we refuse to truly commit go it. Because a part of us doesn't want to quit. We have to kill that part. Give it no oxygen.
 

Escapeandnevercomeback

Respected Member
Gonna be blunt here because you make it so clear. If you truly want to quit the answer is right in front of you.
- stop drinking
- go to bed earlier. Every night.
- don't look at porn. Make your fetishes out of bounds. Just don't even consider anymore that you could look at them.
- leave devices far from bed. Always. No exceptions.
- find something to do at home. Even if it's binging on some tv shows. But exercise or some hobby you love would be best!

I think we often have the answer. Not just you. But we refuse to truly commit go it. Because a part of us doesn't want to quit. We have to kill that part. Give it no oxygen.
I can definitely agree with this. The majority of us have that part inside that doesn't want to quit. People who are absolutely committed to quitting without second thoughts are not the majority. Most of us struggle with the idea that we can't look at porn anymore. But that doesn't mean we can't quit. The resistance to quitting is something that will follow us along but it will fade away eventually when our brains rewire. I also agree with the fact that we need to stop relapsing in the same way. We need to do some tweaks. This addiction works a lot with repetitions, habits, routines etc. I know they are not easy to change but they need to be changed. I also tend to relapse in the same way, I start with the same things. But I've been making an effort to change that. I know you can do it.
 

Phineas 808

Moderator
Staff member
Moderator
Hi Orbiter,

I do believe you want to quit, whether or not that appears in your conscious thoughts in the moment.

All this is, as you know, simply the brain trying to do what it does best, protect you from feeling bad. It's just misguided, because it (the brain) learned a while back that, if I do x and y, I feel better. So the next time we felt bad, we repeated the behavior, and we reinforced the premise that doing thus and so (P, PMO, MO) makes us feel better, and now it's become a habit, and perhaps a habit became an addiction.

If you're like me, more often than not my behaviors felt so unnatural, like this isn't really me, not the true me. Porn always took me farther than what I felt I needed in the moment to self-soothe, or, what I felt I needed no longer did it for me, and hence the escalation...

It is apparent, and following your journal now for years, we both know what it is we 'need to do'- but, and this is good news:

The whole thing is like an old car that we keep tinkering with, thinking we're going to finally make it hum. Or, remember the Karate Kid- Jackie Chan version? The master rebuilds his car (where he suffered a trauma) only to get super-drunk and take a baseball bat to it, and then he starts all over again... That's like our old addiction. We keep tinkering with it, trying to 'fix it', only to relapse in the end, and then we start the 'process' all over again.

Good news! We don't need any of it! Just walk away from it, even with the latest lapses fresh in your mind. Eventually we all come back down to a state of equanimity- that's your baseline, your default healthy, happy and peaceful self. When we feel stressed, tired, rejected, lonely, or are some how cued (triggered), our brain habitually reaches for our 'go-to' drug. That's all. Don't fight it, don't tinker, leave the whole heap behind you. It's gonna take practice, but see yourself as you truly are: healthy, happy and at peace- a completely non-addicted self! This isn't mind-over-matter, this isn't wishful thinking, this is just self-understanding, self-compassion, which we need right now. It's acknowledging the fact that at base, at default, these things aren't you, aren't a part of you- part of your story? Yes, but simply turn the page. Again, Orbiter, it takes practice.

All the 'outer-circle' behaviors, we know what those are. Just see it as your lower-brain trying to self-medicate, and cut it off early, not in a big tug-o-war, but in dismissing the urges. Just know that it's not you, it's not a judgment on you, it's a 'science-of-habit' thing, and to mindfully dismiss the urges, go about the day, and allow yourself to come back down to your equanimous self without all the 'extras' of p-subs, drinking to excess, or flirting with the particular fetishes, or p itself. Even if there's a lapse, just mark it (if it helps), and then go on. There's nothing wrong with you, just wave your hand and clear the smoke of this illusion that we think is our 'addicted self'.

Best, brother!
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Thank you Simon, Escape and Phineas. You all have some very good takes on this.

Rather than respond to them right away i'm going to take some time to reflect further on them.

With that said, it's DAY 1 today. Started the morning getting up at the right time. Did a few minutes meditation and a smaller exercise routine as i'm still not one hundred percent better. Simple habits, take very little time but do so much to change the course of the day.

It's a short entry today as i've got things to take care of, stuff to think about. More to come.

Wishing you all well
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Gonna be blunt here because you make it so clear. If you truly want to quit the answer is right in front of you.
- stop drinking
- go to bed earlier. Every night.
- don't look at porn. Make your fetishes out of bounds. Just don't even consider anymore that you could look at them.
- leave devices far from bed. Always. No exceptions.
- find something to do at home. Even if it's binging on some tv shows. But exercise or some hobby you love would be best!

I think we often have the answer. Not just you. But we refuse to truly commit go it. Because a part of us doesn't want to quit. We have to kill that part. Give it no oxygen.

Addressing the habit change, that's pretty much it isn't it. The drinking is a hard one and I wonder if perhaps one of the reasons I started to drift off near the end of last year was I had kind of come to that realisation that I had to stop if I was to have any meaningful success. Of course if we were to lapse anyway, it's all to easy to say "See?! Even without the drinking I still lapse so it doesn't matter whether I do or don't" and just fall into the same pattern of repeating this stuff again & again. Whatever the reason is, there's no room for it or any of the points addressed. It's either repeat the same mistakes or do something different.

The answer isn't easy but at least in this case it's pretty straightforward. Thanks for dropping by and for the support Simon!

Escape - I agree with your point. Every journey has to start from somewhere and of course there's going to be resistance, we're addicts after all! That ambivalence is no excuse and no reason not to do this though. If we didn't want to quit, we wouldn't be here trying again & again, time after time. Arguing & struggling with that resistance as well I think is counter-productive. We just have to learn to accept that it's there, realise it doesn't matter, dismiss it and keep pushing forward.

I have to go to work now but i'll address your point next time Phineas.

It's Day 2 today.

Wishing you all well.
 

Escapeandnevercomeback

Respected Member
Orbiter, we share this thing, alcohol that makes us relapse. Many promising streaks got killed by getting drunk and literally binging PMO like crazy for 2 days (1 for being drunk and 1 for "soothing" my hangover). But I also understand what you mean by relapsing without alcohol too cause this is what has happened to me this time. I haven't drunk since the beginning of the year and still relapsed. Why? Because I have run into yet another obstacle. If before drinking was what usually made me relapse and not being able to deal with urges, this time I was doing a good job with both. So everything alright, right? Not really. I started being extremely depressed and miserable around day 10, with suicidal thoughts even, I didn't mention this on Reboot Nation but I was at work, night shift, and I was thinking: "What's the point in all this bullshit, man? I could escape if I hanged myself tomorrow." I couldn't find a way to deal with it and I consciously started to jerk off to porn, it wasn't alcohol, it wasn't urges per se, it was my decision because I wanted comfort, I was feeling too miserable and lonely. When you think you had it, there comes another thing to drag you down. "Not today, mothefucker!"
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Hey Escape,

Yeah I definitely get it. I think the thing with the alcohol is that, while it's not the only reason we lapse, or is still very much a big reason and as rough as life can feel without it we're better off full stop. The fears and feelings that sabotage us need to be faced and addressed, not soothed. It's the only way forward.

No time to post this morning but it'd Day 3 here.

Wishing you all well.
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Day 4 here today. Nothing too exciting to report. Some mild stress following returning to work but nothing that's too much to handle.

After last time. I'm making a conscious effort to mimimize the amount of time I am spending on computers/the internet. Especially the aimless browsing. So far, so good.

Wishing you all well
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
The whole thing is like an old car that we keep tinkering with, thinking we're going to finally make it hum. Or, remember the Karate Kid- Jackie Chan version? The master rebuilds his car (where he suffered a trauma) only to get super-drunk and take a baseball bat to it, and then he starts all over again... That's like our old addiction. We keep tinkering with it, trying to 'fix it', only to relapse in the end, and then we start the 'process' all over again.

Or perhaps like an ex-girlfriend or a bad friend that we're convinced can be changed & managed but never does or is. Just have to let it go.

Arguing with an addictive impulse seems so counter-intuitive when you look at it objectively, though it feels like slipping into that state of mind can also be like an auto-pilot response. I don't seem to realise what's going on until it is too late. Hence why this time I am trying to chip away at the habits & rituals that surround this behaviour.

You're right though. Learning to NOT engage, simply dismiss the urges & feelings and move forward is something I struggle with. I think i'm a bit of a problem solver by nature and therefore it feels counter-intuitive on a certain level to let things go. It's something I do need to learn though.
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Day 5 today.

There was point late-ish last night where I was walking home from a show i'd seen, stopped and felt like everything i'd experienced that day was in some way a consequence of my choices as an addict.

I should rewind. Work has presented several issues on return, many of which are unavoidable or not immediately solveable at least. An esteemed colleague of mine who has been with the organisation around the same length that I have is moving on, as have many others. I feel like i'm stuck in this position in part to my own inflexibility and neglect I have shown my working life, not just in this role but over the course of my adult-hood. Many opportunities lost or squandered which all seems to have lead towards me being where I am. Many people who moved on and did so much more for themselves. I am not in a position to change things that the moment for several reasons I won't go into, but I am feeling this more and more each year.

My music and other extra curricular interests are going ok. That said, the busier I am addressing things like preparing releases and booking shows, I feel like I am constantly reminded of the friendships that I let slide, the opportunities that I took and the endless rationalisations and excuses not to take chances or properly follow through with any of my undertakings. The resources in terms of people & connections I can call on are very low and there is a lot of ground for me to make up.

Regarding last night. I went out to a show with a friend after work. It was a good time and a great night. Admittedly I did drink but did not go beyond 3 pints so I didn't total myself or put myself into hangover territory.

All that aside, once the show was over and I was outside. My friend briefly left for the bathroom. I was sitting next to two very attractive british women who were hanging out with a couple of guys. The guys were clearly trying to get lucky but the women didn't seem to interested. They went to the bathroom and I could overhear them talking about leaving while the guys were gone. All of a sudden, one of them comes over to me, introduces herself and immediately starts chatting. She was very close, inches away from my face much of the time. Laughing a bit too hard at my bad jokes, praising me a little too much at my awful pool playing. Finding ways to bridge the physical space between us. I could write a whole page on the tell tale signs she was giving me. Her friend left, she stayed. Everything was basically just handed to me, all I did was be there.

It was all so perfect and easy, but all I could feel was total anxiety and ambivalence about what I should do. A lot of fears and feelings from old rejections came up, I started worrying about my PIED, about disappointing her, about humiliating myself. Over the course of the night I could tell she was starting to get impatient and was probably wondering why I was holding back so much despite her making it all so obvious.

In the end, she started chatting to a group of people who were watching us play. She went out for a cigarette with one of the guys. I waited around for awhile...awhile passed and they weren't coming back. My friends had left. I thought about going out there but decided against it and quietly exited the bar. I knew the opportunity had passed.

A very similar situation also happened to me two weeks prior. This one seemed to hit home harder for some reason though.

This is what a life managed with self-soothing, rationalisations, escaping reality and fake empty pleasures does to a person. It brings you to a point where you not only struggle to find the ability to manage your life & your problems but also pick up more problems that hold you back even further.

There's no clip, picture or story that is worth this. No pornstar or camgirl. Experiences like this really put in perspective how little porn actually stacks up to real life.

As I continued my walk home, I felt worse & worse which only strengthened my resolve to stay away from this stuff.

It'd be naive for me to call it a 'turning point' but it was definitely a much needed wake up call.

If I am ever in this situation again and it doesn't work out, I hope it's never because of this.

Wishing you all well.
 

Blondie

Respected Member
Hey @Orbiter, I know this feeling all too well. Through most of my thirties I was stuck in a shity job that I hated, and watched everyone come and go and do what they wanted (usually because they had an education and I did not) thus leaving me to pick up all the bullshit afterwards. It was heartbreaking to say the least and sometimes I just wanted to give up and say screw it. I had so many thoughts of "I should have done this or that" as I'm sure you know all about. At that time there much porn use, because well I had to numb the pain somehow and that's the only way I knew how. However, I did manage to make a pledge to myself about five years ago, that I would never do porn again. And although it hasn't been a complete perfect five year streak, I have had many great streaks and much more time on my hands to get my life back in order. I'm back in college now and doing well, and yes, I just turned forty. It's still easy to get stuck in the past somedays and say "I should have or I would have done this" etc., however, none of that ever fixes our problems. I know, I know, much easier said than done, but it is the truth. I don't know how old you are (I'm too lazy to look lol) but it's never too late to put in the effort, not only with life but with women too.

I'm in a relationship now, but I've definitely had my struggles with the ladies. Back in the day, I was so scared of being "rejected" that I would literally do nothing, even when they came on to me like in your story you shared. I swear, a girl could have offered to suck my dick and I would have made some excuse that she didn't like me. Sometimes I look back on those stories and just shake me head in disgust. What a fool I was! I read this quote somewhere and it stuck with me, it went something like this. The only woman in this world who can reject you is your mother, besides that, they're just girls, nothing more. I like this because it's true, although I would add a real partner or a wife too. Nevertheless, we don't know these women that we want, but yet we give them so much power it's ridiculous. They could be real bitches, terrible people even, or yes, maybe just having a bad day, but yet us men hand them our self confidence on a platter to step on. I think porn has much to do with this thought pattern. Porn puts women on a pedestal, women we don't even know, but yet here we are, spending hours like we actually know these girls that we will never actually meet in real life. This is not healthy, because it bleeds into our real life, where now we do the same for all women. I know for myself, I eventually got to the point, that I was so tired of never making a move (yes, some nights there were tears), that I eventually said "Fuck it" I going to figure this out even it kills me. At that point I decided, I would rather get a "rejection" and walk away with a smile on my face knowing I did my manly duty, than to walk away with my tail between my legs never knowing if I would have ever had a chance.

And as far as the fear of not knowing if your dick will work or not, I get it, I've been there too, that was a terrible night. However, that's why the good lord gave us ten fingers, one for each orgasm :cool:

Best to you brother!
 
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Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Hey Blondie,

Thanks for the very thoughtful post & advice. Lots to think about and take onboard for sure.

Otherwise, nothing to report so far today. Feeling unusually exhausted after this week and am hoping today can be a somewhat quiet day where I can get some rest & relaxation in.

The only caveat is to stay vigilant and not relax in the usual way that results in PMO a few hours later.

Wishing you all well.

P.S - Day 6
 
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Orbiter

Well-Known Member
...to Day 0

PMOed once a few hours ago. Too early to be this idle on the computer for this long.

* Using the computer on the couch and in bed late at night or when excessively tired
* Excessive amounts of time doing nothing at home alone on weekends
* Mindless computer use & internet browsing on the couch


I'm not happy about it. I can't sit here and ruminate on it though. If this only happens once this week, i've already improved on the last so i'm pushing forward.
 

Orbiter

Well-Known Member
Day 1 today. Nothing much to report so far. Got out of the apartment yesterday almost straight after posting which I think prevented any risk of 'chaser' behaviour.

No urges, only very little euphoric recall or urge to revisit. Yesterday just feels like a mistake really.

I'm not too worried about the coming week but i'm clearly going to have to put more of an effort into staying active, occupied and away from temptation over the next weekend.

Wishing you all well.
 
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