Meeting my needs better

I've had enough of the damage this has caused in my life and those around me. It's seeped into my life in so many harmful ways to a point where this isn't my own issue anymore. For example, just about every monogamous relationship I've had, has ended due to this issue. And my last partner didn't even know the extent of it. In fact, she enabled it. I'm turning 30 this year and I've honestly had enough. I'm gonna work on the trauma driving this and commit myself to the recovery process. I've got this. I'm also gonna keep a track of my patterns and note down my insights along the way. I had an intensity around meeting my need for effectiveness in my old posts. I had a desire for optimization. This time I'm gonna keep things loose and let things flow out of the open space. I'll allow fleeting thoughts in more and just write what I'm thinking. Right now I'm questioning having a period of complete abstinence or not. It's surprisingly tempting for the first time in my life. The reason I say so is that my porn addiction is evolving to an interest in acting out with casual sex and escorts . Casual sex might even be fine, but I know deep down I'm using it as another source of dopamine or quick reward, as opposed to patiently earning the rewards and enforcing my effort. I'm gonna center this approach around universal human needs this time, because I've realized how fundamental this concept is. I'm also interested in eastern philosophy and consciousness, so that will no doubt come up a lot too.


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Welcome! From another fellow struggler, I wish you the best. Realizing that loosing all these relationships for the same reason has to be hard, but you are using it for good, motivation to stand up. I have heard very good things from doing meditation and being mindful and conscious, sound worth giving it a try.
Thank you for your encouraging words and your advice. I'm very grateful because I do want a lot more support at the moment.

Today I acted out in ways that are usual for me:
  1. Use of dating apps and chats with women as dopamine and self-regulation. Seeking sex. This isn't meeting my need to be respectful to others, or honest. I think if I'm more honest about my intentions, I'm using it as a strategy as opposed to respecting their full humanity and dignity - a few of them enable my behaviors, at least that's what I'm labeling it right now, but it's more on me
  2. Desire to see sexual professionals
  3. Browsing for hardcore content on one of my go-to apps.
I've been addressing how I talk to myself lately and I'm trying to frame things in terms of what needs I was trying to meet, as opposed to judgements. I'm trying to allow a more natural flow of emotion and letting myself feel whatever I truly feel. I'm not afraid to cry in public or be sincere anymore. I'm not responsible for other's judgements of that or their emotional responses to it. I've been journalling a lot and using AI to help me glean insights from the text. It's been amazingly beneficial and makes it much more actionable and clear for me. It's almost better than therapy which is something I'm deeply considering doing. I mean, if I was about to be willing to pay an escort, I might as well put that money towards something that helps me at a more fundamental level!

I wrote a letter to my ex and almost sent it. But it was therapeutic as well. I'm glad I didn't send it in the end.

I got myself some new headphones so I can listen to recovery related podcasts too.

I listened to a bit of the adult children of emotionally immature parents book too and already it reminded me that my feelings and needs are the core thing to address this year. Being able to feel and articulate my emotions and the needs they are attached to will help me recover from trauma and connect better, and more authentically with others. I'm excited for how much I'm gonna grow this year.

One thing I've always struggled with is my appearance and I've already made so much progress with how I frame that, even just in a few days. So that's good, because it's always been a massive issue for me.
I'm in pain but I can't feel it. Deep down, it's there. I bury it. I intellectualize it. I smother it with porn and orgasms, and dating apps, and external validation. I binge on sugar. I neglect all my needs just to meet one: Safety. But it's not keeping me safe at all. I'm getting harmed by all this content and all the years of desensitization. I binged a lot today. I've been seeking real life encounters and been successful at finding willing people, but in the process I've been looking at content, receiving theirs and being triggered. I'm also not questioning my behaviors and motives. I need more time to process my recent breakup


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I feel your pain, I do exactly the same things, and I have been living this way for years, just like you. Good job on recognizing allot of the weakening factors in this fight. We will continue to struggle, this is not a straight line journey. But we cannot surrender.
Thanks for your vulnerable sharing. It helps me feel support.

I have connected with one of those people I mentioned but I'm prioritizing honesty and connection. I'm making sure our humanity comes first.

She is a sex worker but we are dating. I've decided that I'm poly and ENM and that this is a good opportunity for me (in a country where sex work is celebrated) to be with someone who holds values of non-judgement and to grow and heal through being in the space she gives me. I've formed a very special connection with her and think her knowledge will be valuable to me. I'm learning a lot about myself and my preferences and the importance of community, companionship and generosity. I need to talk to her in more depth about me desire to avoid porn as my main strategy of sexual expression, and to replace it with intimacy and humanizing women. Treating her as a whole person was so new to her, see needed to cry to the point of euphoria. My presence and understanding, seeing her as more than some object, was healing for her and reminded me deeply on my own end about how much sex should really be the icing on the cake of deep human connection and deep respect. Even in the most casual of encounters, it's a human being you're encountering. It's not some robot. We have to see the human beings with feelings and needs when we watch these videos and consider how much of what they are doing is a strategy to meet needs that may not truly be serving them, or us as the wider audience.

Anyway I think I will keep my dating app account and explore connection, but be more conscious about how I'm using them. Rewiring to real sex and replacing porn with natural rewards is a good strategy in my opinion. Others may have different strategies like monogamy but over the years I've come to see that holding one person responsible for how we feel and those needs I' mentioned, isn't effective, realistic or healthy. Monogamy is only one of several options and romantic love has so much patriarchal influence, like the earliest ideas of how to take ownership of women to maintain some form of power and control and keep competition away.

I haven't been checking in here as much as I would like to but I do have a larger intention of focusing on the roots of what drives me to porn in the first place. Abstinence is not recovery at all. Abstinence is harm reduction within RECOVERY. Recovery is finding the individual beneath again, and reinventing or creating a healthy self and a life where porn doesn't naturally fit anymore
I like to take unconventional paths as long as I've deeply considered them. Why? Mainly because after years of seeing the same results, nothing will change if you don't fundamentally change something. So that's how I approach recovery and the things I've mentioned above. I didn't view anything you would consider full porn today but I definitely saw artificial content, including in phone ads. There is a program on a site called Recovery Nation that I would really like to work through. I've made a very slow start on that and exploring it but haven't fully gotten into it just yet. I've also made some progress in quitting coffee and hope to continue this progress
I have been engaging in more casual relationships but in an ethical and loving way. It's been meeting my needs well. I'm unable to gain erections at the moment. Porn and psychological aspects are a big part but I also still have a long-running pelvic-floor issue. I'm dating a new person on Sunday. I think my main hangup, for a long time, is my appearance. Being scared of rejection of my face and body are big ones. I look good, for example, in my dating pics but in real life look significantly different.

I've been regularly attending a zen sangha and trying to contribute. I dissociate a bit in large social settings and need to consciously remain present and contributing

Having people to talk to and being tired all the time has lessened my porn use

I've gone almost 3 weeks without coffee by tapering off caffeine and replacing it