Age 19 - (ED & DE) Decreased depression, Improved motivation
Comments: This young man (m1610) posted several comments in July, 2011 on YBOP. However, it wasn't until he found Reddit-NoFap around January, 2012, that he finally made progress. His first YBOP post is followed by his NoFap report.
I've always had problems getting and maintaining erection as well as having problems with delayed ejaculation. I've always watched porn, tried to give it up before and wasn't able to. I recently came across this site and decided porn must be the reason for my problems so decided to give it up again.
I also recently came across 'prone masturbating' and realised this is something I do. I did it from a young age and only did it this way until I was about 14 when I discovered the 'proper' technique. After this I would do it both ways, sometimes just on my bed or other times when I'm sitting at my desk using my hands. I would mainly use a strange technique with my left hand (I'm right handed) where I would rub it but then sometimes did it the normal way. I would always ejaculate the normal way.
I'm not sure if my problem is porn or prone. I've gone a few days with out porn now and in all honesty it hasn't been that hard, although I do crave it a bit. It isn't easy, but compared to trying to give up masturbating it's very easy.
I gave into masturbating last night. I made sure I did it the normal way and I got a full on erection the whole time which isn't usual for me. I'm not sure if I should carry on trying to go the 8 weeks without masturbating or not, because it's incredibly difficult and it's not something I want to do if I don't have to. I will never prone masturbate again and that's not that hard for me, even if it will take some adjusting to. What do you think I should do?
I never really did the whole 'nofap' thing; really I was just trying to reboot after years of crippling porn addiction. I was trying to do this a long time before I had ever been on reddit, let alone this specific subreddit. I wasn't after anything other than to get rid of my erectile dysfunction, delayed ejaculation and general lack of interest in real sex.
I would spend hours a day watching porn. It was usually the first thing I did when I woke up unless I had school or something, and if I did have school it would be the first thing I did when I got home. Yet I still didn't see this as a problem. It was only when about a year ago I discovered YBOP and realised my ED and DE was almost certainly due to excessive porn use that I thought about giving it up.
I never did this because of lack of confidence with girls, not that confidence was particularly great for me, or to help work out or anything other than my sexual problems. I wasn't out for a placebo effect at all.
I didn't expect anything to happen, really, except for me to have sex for the first time in my life without using viagra and to actually be able to ejaculate from something that didn't involve any self-stimulation.
I've certainly noticed massive erectile improvements, as expected. I haven't been with a girl in ages so I can't say if the delayed ejaculation has improved. I can only hope it has. As expected, I've found myself more attracted to real life girls, which is really just a bonus.
I had thought nothing much else had happened, apart from what I was rebooting for and expecting, but today I thought about just how much my life has changed in this period of time. Maybe giving up porn has made a more profound change in my life than I thought, and something that can't be the placebo effect if you don't expect it to happen.
I was 19 when I first came across YBOP last year. I was on a gap year and had a place at a good university (which given my grades I was lucky to get). But to some extent my life was a bit of a mess. I've already explained about my sexual problems, which generally meant relationships were a 'no' unless I could find a girl whom I could completely open up to who would in turn accept me, which isn't someone you come across often. (At 19 before you can become close with a girl you're expected to have sex with them. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, it just means if you have secret sexual dysfunction you're rarely going to become close with a girl in that way).
I had other issues too. I found it difficult to achieve anything, as little tasks made me incredibly stressed. I was depressed often and would cut myself. My attempts to give up porn and masturbation were mostly failures.
When I got to university I began suffering from insomnia, often falling asleep at 7 in the morning and waking up in the early evening when it was already getting dark. I missed most of my lectures at first. My days consisted of me doing very little, and doing work when I had something due in, but certainly not to the best of my ability.
I had installed K9 web protection, which I couldn't break past (as much as I tried) which meant I barely watched porn, but still worked out I could download it if I wanted. Then when I was home I would sneak on to my Dad's laptop to watch it. I was still masturbating most days.
It was in January that I came across this subreddit, and that's when everything changed. Just being able to read other's experiences and sharing your own with others showing you support gave me the kick up the arse I needed. I haven't watched porn since, and though I have still masturbated at times, I've managed to go long periods without it, and my general habit has diminished massively. As I said, I was never in this for nofap, more just porn rebooting, so I am pleased with my masturbation abstaining efforts on the whole.
Soon afterwards, I felt a new desire to be more organised in life and achieve what I wanted. When I was younger I was considered highly intelligent and seemed to know more about the world than my peers, but this certainly wasn't the case anymore. Even though I still thought my brain could handle information quite well and could have a good insight into things, my knowledge hadn't grown much in the last few years because I never read any books anymore and barely kept up to date with the news.
I found myself getting up at reasonable hours, going to most of my lectures, starting essays weeks before they were due in, trying to learn more in my spare time, meditating and generally being organised in my life, having a to-do list that I stuck to. I still get depressed at times, but unlike before I can feel myself trying to be happy, which actually makes a huge difference compared with wallowing in your own misery. I think I'm generally becoming happier as time goes by.
I can still be lazy and not achieve everything I want to, but I can feel the old me coming back. I think the time when I was more on the ball in life was before I was sucked in to the porn world, although I don't think there's enough evidence to say this caused my decline. At first I didn't think these improvements were as a result of nofap, but now I see such a direct correlation, and it can't be the placebo effect as I wasn't expecting anything to happen.
I think it's quite likely this has happened as a result of breaking out of a crippling addiction more than just not masturbating. But like other people have said (and this too was never something I looked out for) when you masturbate after a long period of abstaining it feels like energy has been sucked out of you, and even now that I feel I've largely rebooted I will continue to try and go at least 4 days at a time without masturbating because I feel it does me no favours to do it regularly. I just feel happier not doing it.
TL;DR I gave up porn and masturbating to recover from an addiction that had given me ED and DE. I didn't expect anything else, but my life has become so much better with more drive. I've recently realised a connection between the time I started nofap and these changes happening. I don't think it can be placebo because I never expected these changes.
July, 2015 UPDATE
So I recently had the sex for the first time aged 23 (well I had sex aged 19 using viagra but felt no sensation and came no where close to orgasm so I don't know if that counts) and was expecting a lot of relapse feelings due to orgasming and all the dopamine being released, seeing as I always feel shit after masturbating or even if I've received oral sex or something.
But although there were some relapse symptoms I've also felt great since, like my experience of life has been different, like I might feel after a long period of abstinence as I can feel my dopamine levels increasing. I know I've done loads of rewiring just through having sex a couple of times because now sex interests me so much more than it used to, so much more than anything online, and before the idea of an encounter with a girl needed to be some weird taboo thing to turn me on but now just the thought of being intimate with a pretty girl excites me a lot. My whole perception of these things has changed so much, which I imagined it might have.
But then I didn't expect to feel better in social situations, to feel more creative or less obsessive compulsive symptoms. I can't help but feel this experience has somehow increased my dopamine levels in a positive way. I can only postulate that by rewiring my brain in this way I've taken it away from it's addiction state and opened it up to new things, taking me away from the hyperstimulation of porn and to something more natural, and if it's wired differently that means new synapses which might mean the ones where the number of dopamine receptors have been downgraded have been replaced? Obviously not entirely but to a certain extent as I can feel I have more recovery to do.
Is there any truth to this or is there perhaps any explanation? Or maybe it's just a mystery like much of this addiction still is! I'm sure it's not a placebo because I wasn't expecting to feel good ha.