On the way...

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 17 - No PMO:

It's mid-week already and I am feeling positive. A few more days until Friday. I got a lot planned this weekend with friends and also looking forward to being 3 weeks free. I already feel less stressed but my BDD symptoms do flare up from time to time. Luckily they are mostly manageable. I have a strong feeling that I will not relapse at all this year, so long as I stay vigilant. I've already proven to myself on a number of occasions the past 3 weeks that I can bring myself back, even when I have made that decision to relapse. Exercising has been greatly beneficial this time, but also meditation, which I have not alluded to much on this journal.

Like many of you here, mindfulness meditation has helped me a lot, not only with keeping me aware of my thoughts, but I feel as though my 'powers of inhibition' are more 'refined'. I feel like I am more in control. So essentially I have lived experience with the scientifically-backed notion that regular mindfulness practice strengthens the Pre-Frontal Cortex (the seat of executive function and planning in the brain). I'll probably touch more on this over the next few days. I'm super exhausted after a long day. Time to sleep before I start typing nonsense...
 
Keep it up, you're doing great! I also like to go into No Nut November with a streak already. I find it's a particularly motivating month since a bunch of my friends and a lot of the internet is trying it too. Some of my longest streaks have been around NNN.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 18 – No PMO:

This one came a bit late unfortunately as I was busy yesterday. So glad I made it to day 18 without porn or masturbation. Statistically the chances for relapse (by getting strong urges that lead to relapse) drop significantly after day 18, and I have higher chances of making it to 30 days. Yesterday (25 Oct) was somewhat difficult in terms of my BDD. I had an attack during the course of the day and it stuck with me until I went to the gym, after which I felt slightly better. I normally don’t care a lot about my physical appearance (especially my face), but with BDD, it becomes a focal point of my day. I spend too much time obsessing about my perceived flaws and how I would be good-looking if ‘only I had a different feature/trait’.

Of course, I know that’s not true and it’s mostly in my head. I feel good about myself when I am not going through so much stress during the day, but as soon as I go through a stressful situation, I find myself obsessing again. I lately get triggered easily as well. It seems that leaving PMO behind me is only the start of this journey to fix myself.

PMO has caused so much damage to myself and the people around me. I must build my mental resilience to be able to make it through the rough days without breaking down. I also have to make amends with my wife, who is the biggest victim of my actions. I don’t even know how I will begin to fix our sex life again. She is (understandably) traumatized by my constant lying, lack of libido, changed personality, the times she caught me watching. I know I am still in the early stages of recovery. I don’t even have enough libido to initiate the rewiring process.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 19 - No PMO:

Today I didn't experience any serious urges but still had to endure that empty feeling, that something is missing (I got this expression from the EasyPeasy Way to quit porn). My brain also keeps replaying porn scenes in my head and I have this compulsive thought to stare at every woman in the street. I know it's normal to want to appreciate beauty, but I know when I start obsessing with it, it's usually a sign that my brain wants that dopamine fix. I really hope this ends soon because I really don't enjoy the earlier part of this journey (the first 30 days), and have no intention of going through this again. I can't tell the future, so I am not sure that I will not relapse by day 30, but given that I have almost made it 3 weeks, I will have to be extra cautious to maintain this streak.

A quick meditation update: Unfortunately I stopped mindfulness meditation for a while now and so I am planning to get back on it, because it makes a difference when you're able to catch your mind start to wander. I usually do anywhere from 5 minutes to 2 hours in one day, depending on what kind of schedule I'm following at any given moment. I treat mindfulness meditation more as a sport, a muscle you have to exercise, so I don't look at it from a spiritual angle in any way. I don't do it to attain 'enlightenment' or to discover anything deeper about my mind, but I purely do it to help me stay present and help me beat my porn addiction. So for me, mindfulness meditation is the means and not the end. I understand different people view it in different ways and I fully appreciate that. But I guess for this stage of my life, mindfulness is meant to serve those two purposes.

Meditation is a game changer and is one of the most powerful tools to eliminate urges. I learned the hard way that it doesn't work on its own to eliminate urges though, but it must be accompanied by a discipline of trigger avoidance, positive distractions (like exercise), and consistency. You may have heard that meditation pays its dividends quite late (2-4 weeks after consistent practice for me) and I can fully attest to that. I didn't get 'results' immediately, and by results I mean the ability to become conscious of my thoughts. I do however get a sense of calmness after every session, and that is something you start to notice immediately. I suggest to anyone who hasn't given it a serious attempt to consider it, you've got nothing to lose. I'm thinking to start meditating 30 minutes per day starting tomorrow for the next 90 days, to help cement my reboot.

We'll see how that goes...
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 20 – No PMO:

Finally made it to 20 days. I am really proud that I am 2/3 of the way to 30 days. Despite that, I almost followed through with the decision to relapse earlier today. I was home alone for a few hours and I had the house to myself. The thought of getting my fix to ‘calm my nerves’ kept growing in my head until I decided that I will probably relapse. I was only stopped when my missus unexpectedly returned home. I was annoyed but deep down inside I guess I was thankful that she saved me from a relapse. I decided to keep myself busy instead now that I am not going to throw away my streak. I was still frustrated but I was able to control my urges until I completely forgot about it. Urges come and go, and all you have to do is wait them out, I just wish I could remember this in the moment. I guess I am prone to relapsing these days because of my stressful environment. I keep telling myself that I should be extra vigilant these days, but I always find myself lost in thoughts about porn and clips that I had seen in the past. I really hate it but that’s probably my starving cumbrain on its deathbed, so I shouldn’t complain.

I am more proud that I didn’t end up relapsing today than my making it to 20 days (while I didn’t touch myself or watch anything at all, I was admittedly negotiating with myself and mentally losing the fight before my wife came home). I’m also glad that (hopefully) I will start No Nut November with a 23 day-streak, if all goes well. I don’t really care much for the challenge and frankly I really dislike the meme culture around NNN, but in a way NNN is a gateway for the younger generation to get acquainted with the porn-free lifestyle, which is why I respect the idea.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Keep crushing it!!

I too have found meditation to be hugely beneficial in my healing process over the years and think it's an invaluable tool as I continue to heal.
It absolutely is! Thanks for stopping by my journal - I really appreciate it.

I am still struggling to build a consistent meditation habit but I think it's become a priority now that I am 3 weeks in and hoping to cement my streak.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Keep it up, you're doing great! I also like to go into No Nut November with a streak already. I find it's a particularly motivating month since a bunch of my friends and a lot of the internet is trying it too. Some of my longest streaks have been around NNN.
Thanks! There is a sense of community that creates the motivation to stay clean during the month. I criticized the internet culture surrounding NNN on my journal today because it is being reduced to this 'dumb challenge you do when you're bored' kinda thing in some circles. I also hate in the past how certain p*** sites post these snide comments/ads on their websites when you fail NNN. Like they make fun of you and go like: 'don't worry, we're here for you...' or some crap. I really hated that.

That being said, it does introduce the younger generation and I think porn-free forums and pages should try to be more vocal during November about the dangers of p***.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 21 – No PMO:

Made it to 3 weeks. I am honestly feeling relieved (but not complacent) as I think I just passed the danger zone when I am most prone to relapsing (day 9 – 18). I have only made it to 3 weeks a handful of times over the past few years, and only 2 times before this year. I mentioned on an earlier entry that I did make it to 60+ days earlier in the year and again to 30 days in August. So this makes today’s achievement the third time this year. I do still have a good chance of relapse, but it has been significantly reduced now that I passed the first real test of my resilience.

Now that this month is coming to an end, I will prepare in advance for November. This time I am planning to take part in No Nut November, albeit not by design as I do have my reservations about the challenge. I am starting to feel very good about this attempt, and I seriously hope that it is the last attempt I will ever have to make. I have honestly actively been trying to quit porn for more than 10 years now. It is not that I have been addicted for that time, it’s that I knew I was a confirmed addict and have been making positive attempts to quit for that long. This is longer than many people have even been watching porn. Enough is enough. I am either on this journey or I’m not. I reached a stage in my life where I have suffered all the detriments that come from this addiction. I have severe PIED (that I can’t even get it up to porn anymore), severe dependence, escalation to (very) extreme genres, hypo-frontality, fatigue, constant shame, brain fog, self-esteem issues, depression (in the form of BDD), and I wake up every day hoping that I just lose the urge to watch porn, or that I would have never PMO’d in my life.

I can’t change the past, but I can influence the future. I am proud of the current trajectory I am in with leaving porn behind me. For the first time I am exercising daily and maintaining good habits. But the biggest difference between this time and previous times is this journal. It really helps to get my thoughts out there. And I am really glad that a few people might come across an entry or two. I feel a sense of support which I do not take for granted. I think the main reason this streak is going well (although too early to tell now), is that the journaling has been tremendously helpful.

Well, I haven’t got much to add to this. I’m meeting a few friends today and I am looking forward for the coming week. By next Saturday, I should be closing in on one month and ready to finish off this year on a high note. I can’t imagine a better gift I can give for my future self than 85 days PMO free by the start of 2023. On to the next one…
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 22 - No PMO:

I want to quickly report on today given that it was mostly uneventful. I spent the day with a few of my friends, just chilling and doing a few activities like bowling. Not gonna lie, I am still suffering because of my BDD symptoms, which is a constant thought that runs in the background of my head. It keeps me from reaching my full potential. The positive news is that the intensity of those symptoms has slightly decreased from a couple of weeks ago. Also, the idea that I don't watch porn is becoming normalized in my head. I really like getting to this stage of my journey. It feels like my mind gives up on trying to convince me to relapse, so I stop getting those images in my head. When I get to this stage it's usually smooth-sailing, and I can go days without even thinking of porn. But the PMO monster lays dormant in my head, waiting for the opportune moment when my guard is down to strike hard and bring me to my knees.

As much as I despise the way the porn monster had kept me down for so many years, I genuinely respect how tenacious and patient it can be. I read once on Jack Trimpey's AVRT book (Rational Recovery, definitely recommend you check it out!) that the addictive voice in your head can be gentle, cunniving, calm, harsh, commanding, endearing, patient, caring, hostile, desperate, or anything if it means it can get to its one and sole goal: to get you to use. I found that this absolutely applies to my situation. The porn monster in my head will sometimes be persistent; plays me constant porn clips I've seen in the past. If I don't give in, it would use a different tactic, by 'playing along' with me that being porn-free is great and all that, but will wait till that one moment that I let my guard down, and strike so fast that before I know it, I'm sat behind a computer screen ready to throw away two months of progress. But now I know every trick it's got up its sleeve. I studied its method and my own failures. It's my turn and I am ready.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 23 - No PMO:

I missed the update yesterday so I'm writing the entry for day 23 and will follow it up with today's entry later in the day. Yesterday was a bit rough in terms of my mental health. My BDD got really bad to the point where I couldn't focus on my day job. My brain fog was beginning to clear up last week, but I feel that now it's come back worse than before. Also, I could sense that I am getting hit with stronger urges that kept increasing in intensity over the course of the day. I do feel that I will make it to 30 days, which is a really good place to be.

Time is flying by so quickly and before we know it, November will be over, and then it's preparing for 2023. If I just focus on wrapping up the work I have to do this year, by the time December rolls, I would be two months porn free. I need to keep reminding myself of how high I can fly once I rid myself of this addiction. I read hundreds of successful reboot accounts on this forum, YBOP, Your Brain Rebalanced, r/NoFap, r/Pornfree, and many other sites. I can confidently say that this is the place where I want to be next year. I know the road is long, and this is why I am prepared to go the distance this time.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 24 - No PMO:

It feels good to start a new month with a good streak. That's how I feel about this month. Although today was a bit challenging in terms of urges. I even thought I was going to relapse at one point during the day. Fortunately I didn't, which is why I'm reporting another PMO free day. I couldn't get back on the habit of meditating, although I did mention it in a few entries the past few days that I was going to restart the habit. I'm not sure why I keep delaying, especially since I'm very comfortable with meditation. Anyways, I'll give it another try tomorrow and see if I can get back on it.

This day is nearly over, so in a few hours I will be 5 days away from my goal of 30 days. That is not an insignificant thing. I have only been able to make it to 30 days THREE times since 2018. That's abysmal. Especially considering the effort I put into fighting my porn addiction. I have spent hundreds of dollars (and hundreds of hours) trying to beat this addiction. I read books, spoke to therapists, listened to podcasts, completed courses, learned new skills (like meditation), exercised, formed new habits, got on strict schedules, and many other things, all in the hopes of beating this addiction once and for all. I want to get to a stage of my life where I would get the thought of watching porn, and it would repulse me to the point of revulsion. I've been in that state before so I know how good freedom tastes. My life's core mission now is to beat this addiction. There is nothing in my life that I value more than being completely free.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 25 - No PMO:

Today marks another tough day. I was depressed and anxious for most of the day. I'm not sure what the reason is, but I'm hoping that things start looking up soon. I'm still happy I made it 25 days without PMO. The first month after quitting is always the toughest, then it gradually starts to get better until 2 months in, when I start to feel like 'myself' again.

For some reason, I always get these unexplainable bouts of anger around day 50. Maybe it's because my testosterone is peaking (bro-science warning)? I get really pissed at every little thing that it gets in the way of my daily life, and it also puts me in unfavourable situations with my family/friends because I'm normally a pretty chill dude. Luckily, it only lasts a few days at most and then I start feeling gradually better. My mental health drastically improves after 60 days. It has been many, many years since I've hit 90 days. So I can't give an accurate estimation of how things are like. The longest streak I've had lasted around 5 months, and that was almost 10 years ago. I remember very clearly how my mental state was at that time. I was so relaxed and my social anxiety all but disappeared. I felt in control for the first time in a long time. Over the next few years it would gradually start to get more challenging to achieve long streaks. I personally blame hypofrontality that resulted from continued use and broken promises, although I was never formally diagnosed. Not even sure if you get diagnosed for stuff like that, but I fit the stereotype of the junkie who can't quit even when everything around them is crumbling because of their insistance to continue.

I don't mind that my depression, anxiety, or BDD symptoms are still going strong. It sucks, but I fully expect them to continue for a while before things start improving. I'm only recording how I feel here to track my improvement over time as I continue journalling. I am still hopeful that someday I'll be better.
 

seano

Member
The reboot process takes 90 days, you could be feeling down as a natural result of your brain detoxing from porn use.
Stay the course! Like you said, in the past you've started feeling better after the 2-3 month mark. Keep pushing through
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 26 - No PMO:

Another PMO free day. Yesterday I had a dream that I relapsed. I woke up still wondering if it was a dream or real life because of how vivid it was. Looks like this stuff is really lodged in my subconscious. I'm having a continuous urge to use porn now perhaps because of that dream. Not gonna lie, things are difficult right now, especially because of the brain fog, which is affecting my performance at work. Also doesn't help that my boss is a gigantic douche...all the more reason to try and start working on my own business, which I hope would be possible if I leave behind the porn trap forever. Life feels difficult at times and today is one of those days.

However, I do not in the least miss porn in any way. Don't be discouraged about quitting porn that you will have to endure all those symptoms. It's not guaranteed that you'll get any aggressive symptoms at all. I was able to quit in the past for weeks without getting any symptoms besides the odd urges here and there. Maybe I'm getting older and my body is growing resistance to change, and this is why I have a constant dip in my mood these days. I am glad still that I made it this far, and I'm confident that I will continue this journey forever. I just wish this day would end quickly so I can go home and take some time off.
 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Day 27 – No PMO:

I was really surprised that I had another relapse dream today, which makes it 2 nights in a row. This time was even more vivid than yesterday’s, where I followed my entire ‘fapping ritual’ up until the point where I relapsed. I woke up to get ready for work and was of course relieved that it was just a dream. I even checked to see if it was a full-on wet dream or if I was dry down there. So far I have not had any kind of release in all 27 days, so I expect I might be getting a wet dream soon if those dreams continue. Those dreams are also a sign of sexual frustration. I’m not getting intimate with my wife (although we should probably start trying again), but the problem is that I am not sexually attracted to her when I am so fixated on porn. My cumbrain just wants that dopamine flush from novelty, and if feels like it is rejecting intimate connection. I really messed up my sexual reward system.

Today was a bit weird. I was on edge and mildly horny the entire day, up until I got off work, where I got really intense urges to watch porn. I was observing the rationalizations going on in my head: ‘I can do 27 days again, it’s not that big a deal’, ‘sure would feel good after a nice fap session’, you know, all that crap. It didn’t help that my relapse dream was very vivid, so it kept replaying in my head. About an hour after work, I started thinking that because tomorrow is Saturday, I can have a late night session when my wife is asleep and not have to worry about work. Not gonna lie, the thought was growing in my head and I could feel my heart racing at the thought. Then I decided to go for a quick run and hit the gym. I put my shoes on and by the time I left the house, I started to feel urge slowly dying. By the time I came back home 90 minutes later the urge had completely disappeared and I’m sat writing down today’s entry whilst feeling optimistic about hitting 30 days soon!

Today was a good day.
 

swimmer97

Member
Day 27 – No PMO:

I was really surprised that I had another relapse dream today, which makes it 2 nights in a row. This time was even more vivid than yesterday’s, where I followed my entire ‘fapping ritual’ up until the point where I relapsed. I woke up to get ready for work and was of course relieved that it was just a dream. I even checked to see if it was a full-on wet dream or if I was dry down there. So far I have not had any kind of release in all 27 days, so I expect I might be getting a wet dream soon if those dreams continue. Those dreams are also a sign of sexual frustration. I’m not getting intimate with my wife (although we should probably start trying again), but the problem is that I am not sexually attracted to her when I am so fixated on porn. My cumbrain just wants that dopamine flush from novelty, and if feels like it is rejecting intimate connection. I really messed up my sexual reward system.

Today was a bit weird. I was on edge and mildly horny the entire day, up until I got off work, where I got really intense urges to watch porn. I was observing the rationalizations going on in my head: ‘I can do 27 days again, it’s not that big a deal’, ‘sure would feel good after a nice fap session’, you know, all that crap. It didn’t help that my relapse dream was very vivid, so it kept replaying in my head. About an hour after work, I started thinking that because tomorrow is Saturday, I can have a late night session when my wife is asleep and not have to worry about work. Not gonna lie, the thought was growing in my head and I could feel my heart racing at the thought. Then I decided to go for a quick run and hit the gym. I put my shoes on and by the time I left the house, I started to feel urge slowly dying. By the time I came back home 90 minutes later the urge had completely disappeared and I’m sat writing down today’s entry whilst feeling optimistic about hitting 30 days soon!

Today was a good day.
You are the man. GZ on overcoming this urge and going for a run. Trust me your on the right path. Before you brain gives up on your porn addicred brain pathways its strenghtens them from day 7 to around week 4 of your reebot. So its normal that this can be the toughest time that you are going through right now.

Please see Source: At time: 1:07:10

 

Sir_Cooms

Member
Yep, my addictive voice will play the same tricks lol. Glad I'm not alone! We are stronger than the "porn monster" 💪
Keep it up
Absolutely! Learning to recognize how your cumbrain plays those rationalizations in your head is a big win. After I read Jack Trimpey's book on AVRT, I started building up the habit of recognizing that the thought for what it really is. This is a YouTube crash course on the Addictive Voice Recognition Technique (AVRT):
.

When I first listened to this audio a few months back, I was still skeptical of how efficient it really is. It wasn't until I read his book that I resonated with much of what's being said. I don't agree with the entire content, but out of all the books I read on addiction and addiction recovery, this book is definitely one of the best.
 
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