Resuming the clean journey

Percival

Member
I'm 43, and I've been looking at girls online since my late teens. A couple of years ago I joined the Reddit NoPorn group, and got up to a year and half without porn, but have been slowly sliding back since then. So it's time to re-introduce some accountability, which was a tremendous help in the past.

I won't dwell on the negatives; I already know them, and I think everyone reading this does too. The positives: despite the slide, I'm even yet not as deep into the really bad kinds of porn as I used to be. And I haven't been going on long binges as, again, I used to do. I've broken free before, for a long time, and I was surprised that it wasn't as hard as I expected: years of porn-use doesn't require an equal number of years of recovery (but staying recovered is the hard part). If I did it once, I can do it again, and posting to an accountability forum was a key part before. So here I am.

I modified my hosts file last week to force DuckDuckGo to always show Safe Search results so I can't easily turn it off. It redirects all DDG searches to use the DDG safe search IP. For the record:

Open Notepad with administrator rights (right-click and choose Run As Administrator). Navigate to C:\Windows\System32\drivers\etc\hosts and add this to the end:

# See https://www.leowkahman.com/2017/09/11/enforce-safe-search-on-google-youtube-bing/
# IP addresses can change; use https://dns.google/ to look them up again

# Google force safe search: forcesafesearch.google.com
::ffff:216.239.38.120 google.com www.google.com
216.239.38.120 google.com www.google.com

# Duckduckgo force safe search
::ffff:20.43.161.151 duckduckgo.com www.duckduckgo.com
40.89.244.237 duckduckgo.com www.duckduckgo.com

# Bing force safe search: strict.bing.com
::ffff:204.79.197.220 bing.com www.bing.com
204.79.197.220 bing.com www.bing.com
 

Percival

Member
Day 2. Didn't look at anything yesterday and felt much better at the end of the day. Unfortunately there is no short-term reward for "not looking" which makes looking always tempting, even if the long-term reward is better.

The first day is relatively easy, as I can remember what I looked at the day before and how bad I felt. Succeeding days get a little harder, as the memory recedes. Which is why I'm posting.
 

SimonM

Member
Welcome! Thanks for the tips on enforcing safe search! Maybe I should look at that. For a while I blocked certain sites on my router... that was good too.

I hope coming here helps you. I was in a similar place once - fairly clean but starting to slip again. I didn't rejoin a forum and things went gradually really bad. I wasted years before finally coming here a few weeks ago...
 

Percival

Member
Thanks! Hope things are getting better for you. I've never been a substance abuser, but I understand now why people who haven't had a drink in 20 years still describe themselves as recovering alcoholics. The temptation is always there, even if diminished.

Technical helps make it harder, but won't stop you. There's always a way around if you try. It does help with incidental exposure, though.
 

Percival

Member
3 days today. Even 3 days is enough distance to remember and think it wasn't that bad. I'm both repulsed at what I spent hours looking at and kinda wishing I could look again. But I haven't.
 

Percival

Member
5 days now. Weekends aren't usually much of a temptation because I'm too busy and am not sitting at a computer much. But I do remember sitting down late last night and thinking---for a moment---that I could look at girls on my phone. And knew I'd have to admit to it here so I didn't.
 

SimonM

Member
That's great Percival! Have a great week without giving in. Having to fess up here also keeps me on the straight and narrow but ultimately we know that we will actually WISH we hadn't given in even if we don't report it here. Our brains are just extremely good at convincing us that this won't be the case... Strength!
 

Percival

Member
6 days now; doesn't sound like much, but it really has been a while since I've gone more than 2 or 3 days without looking at girls, except sometimes by accident.

"Not looking at porn" isn't really good enough for me. Yesterday I happened across the name of an actress I didn't know, so I looked her up and looked at a lot of her pictures. Perfectly clothed and SFW and I'm not going to count it as a relapse, but I need to not do that. Purposely looking up and looking at dozens of pictures---even if she's decently dressed---only hurts and certainly doesn't help, because it'll eventually lead me to wanting more (or less, as the case may be).
 

SimonM

Member
Yeah, for me those edging activities usually tend to be the first indiation that I'll relapse fully within a few days. Stay away from them! :)
 

Percival

Member
I don't think it even occurred to me to look at girls yesterday, certainly not to the point of porn. As I said, it amazes me how (relatively) easy it is to break the habit if you a) commit and b) become accountable. Then once it's broken the habit/compulsion fades away. The temptation does not go away, but it no longer feels unconquerable.
 

Percival

Member
I didn't look at porn yesterday; did get distracted by some sexy things I encountered, and then looked for briefly. By most standards what I looked at was quite innocent, but I'd rather fight the battle there than in the pits of depravity. Which is why I'm admitting that it wasn't a squeaky-clean day yesterday.
 
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