Age 20 - An array of benefits (ED)
I just completed Day 90 and I feel incredible! I want to thank you all for your information and guidance. I want to share the positive impact [r/NoFap] has had on my present, as succinctly as I can. How I got here: I was dissatisfied with my erectile dysfunction that struck the majority of the blue-moon occasions which I have attempted to have sex in recent years.
This past November, in one of our three-hour chats, my friend S briefly mentioned something about watching pornography, an activity I had taken part in for more than eight years, and the rewiring of your brain. "90 days without that garbage will redo your brain," he quipped. I was curious. I weeded out porn and masturbation from my life to test myself; the compulsion dwindled to weekly use. I felt the same with and without it, then. I still loved watching porn; I convinced myself to keep at the routine. It provided me with something. A month later, I attempted to have sex for the first time since being aware of what S had told me; unsurprisingly, per usual, I could not get aroused at all. I spent the remainder of that night puzzled: why did my mind want to deprive my body of pleasure? I curiously scoured the internet. A wealth of information appeared in the browser. I absorbed the topical knowledge, but a result for YourBrainOnPorn was the most comprehensive regarding porn-induced erectile dysfunction. I never heard of this phenomenon. I watched "The Great Porn Experiment", and was instantly changed. Gary Wilson (whose name intrigued me to due to his sharing it with a funky musician's) spoke consistent truth: I found myself in each sentence. The science yielded convictive tears. I reflected on…
My life with porn: I am a college sophomore. Ever since Spring Break 2004 when I was a fifth-grader and my parents nastily divorced, pornography was an important part of my life. I was immediately obsessed. High-speed internet, "today's internet porn" that Gary Wilson describes in his lecture's conclusion, had taken off not too long ago; tabs, tabs, tabs clouded my browser. The internet grew; my tastes changed. The activity manifested itself in the most inappropriate settings: My sister's room? My buddy's closet? My best friend's aunt's living room? My grandparents' house? There was an attached rush since I have never been caught handed. Thus, no one knew about what I did when I was not around, which added value to the vice's allure.
My thrilling search for products of the highest quality bloomed amidst the internet-porn industry's bubbling—more appropriately, its erection. In discussions with my best friends, they all openly discussed their preference for available amateur porn. On the contrary I enjoyed the content offered by premium sites Bangbros, Brazzers—to whatever I could find account information. Gathering functioning passes to these quality sweets made my month; their eminent disappearance ruined it. The unreal image of large asses and huge penises was my primary representation of sex. I was not sexually active with the outside. I would not succeed with women I lackadaisically pursued; I had not had a girlfriend, my first and only, since 2009.
I allowed my umbilical porn tie to dominate me. More recently, the conversations with my senior buddy S provided me with the bread crumbs of transformation. Through our talks, I identified with S: his past introversion, his exposure to pick-up artistry, his ability to laugh, his addiction to porn, and his desire to better his self. I admired him, and myself thus, for these traits. I heavily weighted S’s aforementioned fact: how my usage could figure into this. I toyed with the idea to gauge my response; however, increasing stress from studies was an excuse for keeping at the routine. After finishing a paper that took an entire weekend to write, I watched porn for the last time in an attempt to wind down. Winter break was eminent; I could freely decompress. Here, an unrealized sexual encounter occurred. I remembered S's words; I did the research. Ultimately, for my self-improvement, I made the boldest decision I could. I found my way onto r/NoFap and claimed my badge. December 19, 2012: after eight-and-a-half years, I embarked on…
My life without porn: (To preface, my life has been changing in spurts since December 2011 when I came to the realization that I need other people. In my youth, I felt that anything could be accomplished through myself without assistance. This perpetuated a loneliness mistaken for solitude, other negative qualities; ultimately, my addiction to porn/fap. In May 2012 I was rejected by the girl I crushed on after making my infatuation explicit; I was terrified of rejection for my entire life. This was the first time I did something like this. I felt great afterward, regardless: being rejected was much more satisfying than remaining uncertain! Two months later, I was able to love myself when I looked in the mirror.
I finally erected the self-confidence I needed to persevere. (These two events influenced my this.) My relationship with my parents improved, especially my father. Despite a loving relationship, I never voiced my desires and dissatisfactions toward him—or anyone in my life! I finally spoke to him as an adult—honest—and our relationship has been great since.
The next semester, interactions became much more lucid. I still fap’d and poured so much energy into pornographic thrills. Unmet potential—in myself, others—perturbs me ineffably. Again, my buddy S briefed me on the benefits of a life without fap. This is, along with Gary Wilson's lecture, the impetus for my biggest milestone.) My decision thrilled me. I informed those closest to me of my plans; various friends of excess scoffed, putting fap/porn on its absurd pedestal. Some applauded my will. My parents supported me. I spread the gospel to my friends whom I knew delved in porn. Just because they made it clear they watched porn does not mean they watched it with the (ir)regularity I did. I assumed that everyone else fapping partook in the volume of porn I had! I wore the spirit of NoFap on my sleeve. It was most efficient for me to do so.
The effects of NoFap are true; zeniths in self-confidence, drive, passion, clearheadedness, among other intangibles are optimally reached. These are self-fulfilling; they need to be. I never experienced the magnitude of these qualities until now. From an early age, I allowed porn to sculpt me into a bookish recluse who socially failed. Any shortcoming in my life could be generated into a fap excuse; this ultimately squandered my impulse to do anything—fap was my release. Now, I decided against release, in my traditional sense. The energy—oh, the energy!—I applied toward my excursions was now used elsewhere. A list of what I have accomplished over this 90-day period:
- Travelled to Kyrgyzstan. (It looks a little something like this.) I recorded over an hour's worth of golden material. I am compiling it into a short film at snail's pace due to other priorities. It is beautiful. This trip revitalized my desire to travel, especially with a camcorder in hand. The sense of being an other wherever is exhilarating. I got accepted to Taglit-Birthright Israel in May—a free ticket to/from Israel!—and will travel to other neighboring countries. I am ecstatic.
- Totaled my car. I tapped an ambulance's back wheel.
- r/NoPoo. No more dandruff.
- Had one of my first wet dreams. I estimate having three before NoFap. I had a total of three during this period; most recent, this week. Disappointedly, I am certain that one was influenced by the remnants of pornographic images in my unconscious. (Does this violate r/pornfree? Seriously!) I woke up with morning wood a few times. It never happened much before, so let it be noteworthy.
- Stopped smoking. I began smoking in August 2010; a carton would last me three weeks. I lost interest during last October, but have cut off completely since. Once you kick one addiction, it is simple to kick the rest! Now, I am addicted to not being addicted to things.
- Listened to 231 albums. For me, this is a gigantic figure and might be the biggest reward of my NoFap. I have so much music on my iPod from eight years of collecting music: currently, 13,108 songs / 1,364 albums have lived to see today. I listened to a fraction of that collection throughout the near-decade; there are albums on myPod that have been there for these years and are gone untouched. I enjoy having a response to the music: +/-. The immense jazz and electronic/ambient selections I have were incredibly suitable for the workload of my curriculum. The wavering qualities of the music amplified my challenging literature. I recommend: Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians; Charles Mingus's The Black Saint and the Sinner Lady; a lot of Fela Kuti; Michael Jackson's Thriller; Pat Metheny Group's [The Falcon and the Snowman] and Still Life (Talking). I have to make time for more hip-hop!
- Recorded this.
- Dropped my phone in the sink. I upgraded to a smartphone, but I keep it in my pocket as much as possible. Sitting on the phone, albeit socially acceptable, is analogous to fapping. It is keeping you from noticing the world around you!
- Read seven books. I used to be a voracious reader, and then fapping overtook. I recommend two from these 90 days. The Autobiography of Malcolm X is one of the most gripping tales bounded; at the book's finish, I could not help but sympathize with Malcolm. His later outlooks have been influential, allowing me to empathize with more people. No More Mr. Nice Guy! by Robert A. Glover is a great read for a lot of us at NoFap because we possess a lot of the characteristics he divulges—the characteristics which lead us to heavy fappage in the first place. Sigmund Freud's Beyond the Pleasure Principle was a peculiar read. I am currently reading a William Blake compilation and beginning The Tao of Badass today.
- Kissed two girls I knew from when I was in high school; I never made any advances toward them then but had always wanted to. Though they did not reciprocated, I felt comfortable in putting myself out like that which my high-school self was completely against. (Before, I had kissed eight girls, showered with four.) I also got two phone numbers today! I feel more comfortable around women. Whenever I have approach anxiety, I find a way to constructively get rid of it by going ahead: approaching. I am less anxious for the next time. I am becoming more understanding. Occasional dips into the lairs of r/seduction + r/askseddit + etc. have been beneficial. Also, it is not that women began noticing me. I began noticing them noticing me. It is (and it turns out that I am) a sight for sore eyes! Smile more in the streets.
- Watched 35 movies. The figure is relatively low considering I am an English major with a film concentration; however, I am content with this due to my aforementioned intake of books and music. Federico Fellini's Amarcord, Chris Marker's Sans soleil, Luis Buñuel's That Obscure Object of Desire, and The Marx Brothers' Duck Soup were my favorites of this period.
- Cemented my musical group and played my first show. I have found someone in my (college) town—we are from the same city in South Florida, coincidentally—with whom I can bounce ideas. It is a great feeling for me because I have never seriously collaborated with someone, musically, outside of improvisations. Conceiving lush music, with another, is beyond rewarding for me. Currently writing, he and I will record material in the summer. It will be glorious.
- Drank no milkshakes. I used to pound three to four weekly. I crave sugary things more often than before. I often ignore these drives, and continue going about my activities.
- Cleared my history twice. Let this speak for itself….
- Started yoga. A friend teaches at my gym. It is a beautiful way to start a Saturday. I feel great after! I also resumed my daily push-up routine with good results.
- Developed more fruitful relationships with men. After the age 10, I was raised in a household with a constant woman figure, with no men—sans young, little me. My mother taught me how to be a man; not my father. In the end, there was something missing from my equation. Much how Glover describes in No Mr. Nice Guy!, women cannot show men how to be men—men must do that. The man who portrays himself as the man that a woman wants him to be ends up setting himself up for disappointments. (This clearly influenced my minimal sexual past and my behaviors toward women: my empathy for them was staunch due to the victimization my mother portrayed during her messy divorce and depression. It is complicated, but not that much….) I have definitely benefitted from my new bonds and the camaraderie of those theretofore have been revitalized, too; including that with my father. I feel awesome about this. It has allowed me to view myself and women much more healthily.There are plenty of things I have not listed. Everything provided in this massive body of text ought to leave you with the impression that r/NoFap has made a positive difference that I could not have predicted when I first claimed my badge. I have not tested to see if my ED is no more, but that is an afterthought right now. Most importantly, I hope I convinced those on the fence—those coming from the same dark and parasitic pornographic hole I have—about whether to commit themselves to a life of fapping or of no-fapping…. Realize that only your self and your mind will push you toward this curious voyage. Your body will not. My body pleads for a menthol Pall Mall, a smooth vanilla/banana milkshake, an invasive erection, and hi-res tube porn—all at once! My mind knows that these things get in the way of my ultimate happiness. Do not yield to temptation; do not be primitive. Rise. I am beyond thankful for r/NoFap. I am so proud to see humans coming together on reddit and the internet for improving the self and others. It is the strength and mission of you all that has reinforced my steadfast dedication to the constant bettering of my self. I am looking forward to what the next 90 days brings, and the next 90 days, etc. I know with utmost certainty.