Age 32 - Married (ED), one year report
My story: This is my first time joining a forum that deals with pornography addiction. This is also my first time posting anything about my addiction anywhere so here it goes. I'm 32 years old, married with two small daughters. My first exposure to porn was around 5 or 6 years old thanks to my step father and his brothers. I wanted to watch Ghostbusters which my uncle said he had recorded on video. The movie however was sandwiched between some other odd movies that seemed bizarre to a 5 year old mind.
In the past you had to fast forward the VHS tape while the images were on screen in order to know where you wanted to go. I remember seeing naked men and ladies all over each other. The ladies were putting the mens penises in their mouths, which seemed super gross to me. Then the men would, as far as I could tell, pee on the ladies faces. I was dumbfounded and asked the men in the room "is that man peeing on that lady?" to which I got a swift "shut the hell up!"
I had figured out that this must be whats called "the nasty". I also remember seeing naked lady pictures in the janitors room of some of my step fathers friends. When I would look I was promptly told to stare at the floor. My own mother had the habit of walking around in the nude during my childhood and even up to my teenage years. What a woman looked like in the nude, and even some details about sex, were no mystery to me by the time puberty hit.
At twelve years old was when I began to masturbate to porn. I was curious and growing ever horny like any other kid that age, but because I knew that porn existed I felt like the best way to experience sex at my age was with porn. It started with watching the scrambled pay per view channels on my TV when home alone. Sure I couldn't see what was going on, but all the female moaning was enough to send my 12 year old mind sky rocketing.
After a while though the sounds just didn't do it for me. I needed to see the real deal. I don't know what it was, but one day while home alone I searched my apartment like an FBI agent, just knowing deep down that my step father has to have a porn tape of his own. Sure enough I found it, a true blue hard core porn movie. Seeing all the no holds barred penetration and body parts was jarring at first. I held one eye open while watching it, partially disgusted and aroused at the same time.
Long story short, the arrival of the internet in my home was like winning a lifetime supply of trees that grow money. During my teenage years and some of my early twenties I didn't see my porn use as an issue. I mean at the time porn was just one of the vices that my friends and I had. I was on a fast track to becoming another statistical black male, either dead or in jail. I mean my parents were divorced, my mother ended up addicted to crack, my step father was a crack addict. My mother eventually broke free of crack addiction by the time I was 12, but the damage was done and my step father never broke his habit but still lived with us. I drank alcohol, and smoked weed. I hung out with drug dealers, hustlers, pimps, murderers, thieves, gang bangers. I worried my mother to no end, this is why I say I saw porn as the least of my issues.
It wasn't until I gave my life to Jesus after spending a weekend in prison that I began to see how big a problem porn was for me. Fast forward to the present, after many failed attempts to give up porn I decided to give it a go again in Feb and have been abstaining ever since. Here is what 8 months feels like for me. The urges that once felt like a moose I couldn't get out my house now feel like small roaches I can squish. This doesn't mean things are easy, while I'm strong enough to fight the roaches I now feel like my house is infested with them. Like no matter how many I kill, ten thousand more return. Its no longer an issue of weakness against the urges, but endurance. I once thought that normal was having the power to fight my cravings, but now I feel like I'm locked in perpetual battle with myself. And this battle is absorbing everything in my life. Will the war ever be over? Will I ever be able to lay my weapons down and go home to a free life?
Link to post - 8 months of no PMO, can I ever stop fighting?
I never thought I would get this far but I've gone 1 year without wrestling the cyclops. Last I time I did that I was 11 years old.
The reason I didn't type PMO is because I had a set back last October where I looked at some porn comics. I don't make a big deal out of it because I still feel like I've made tremendous progress. So here are some things I've noticed that have changed.
- No more ED. My wife said that she noticed that I had no problem getting hard and keeping it hard during sex now. I also don't ejaculate too soon or too late anymore.
- I chase her. I also notice that I actually initiate sex more often than before. However, I also don't hound her for sex either. I know that sounds strange but sex is more organic now. I have this attitude where I feel like I can live without it. There isn't this yearning burning feeling where I feel like if she doesn't give it to me I'll have to get it somewhere else.
- No more trigger panics. I used to get so worked up if I was in the supermarket and a chick who was heavy up top or juicy in the bottom walked in front of me. I felt like the world was out to get me and that I would have to stay indoors forever. Yeah I'm totally cool now. Cant pinpoint when it happened but at some point I just stopped caring. Big boobs, pretty face, so what.
- I crave porn like I crave cake. Which is to say my cravings are manageable. They still hit but not as nearly as the unstoppable force they used to be. With a little prayer and determination I can say no to my cravings like I say no to that last slice of cake.
I probably have more improvements I can't think of right now but feel free to ask questions.
Question: How bad was your ED?
That's difficult for me to answer because during the time I didn't realize that I had ED or was willing to admit it. I blamed any erectile problems on my wife because I thought if only she would perform like a porn star I wouldn't have these problems. I asked her what difference did she notice in me during sex since I felt she would be more honest about what was happening than I could be. She reported that it was difficult for me to get hard sometimes and when I did I would lose it about half way through. Sometimes I would ejaculate too early or wouldn't ejaculate at all. I do remember losing interest in having sex with her because she couldn't stack up against the women of the web. I hope that answers your question.
The following is not part of his reboot story, but nonetheless interesting.
This case has been made before at senate hearings and Christian forums and usually gets poo pooed as way too alarmist. The main argument I've heard as to why internet porn is worse than drugs and alcohol is that unlike substances that can be purged from your body, porn images never leave your mind. However, I believe that internet porn is worse for better reasons than "it gives you bad memories". So without further ado here are my reasons why I think internet porn is worse than drugs or alcohol.
1. TOTAL ANONYMITY. When a drug addict gets hit with an unstoppable craving there are several things he must do to get his fix that the internet porn addict doesn't have to do. The drug addict must actually leave his residence and purchase his drugs or alcohol from a seller. This means that in order to get his fix somebody has to see him going for it in public. There's a risk of public exposure that the alcoholic and drug addict face that the internet porn addict does not. Notice I said internet porn addict. Porn on VHS or DVD or in magazines isn't the same as todays porn because you still had to go out into the public and buy it. When the addict is ready to kick his habit, the shameful march to the dealer, the risk of public exposure becomes a safeguard. Even buying porn with a credit card has a risk of public exposure that todays internet porn just doesn't have.
2. MONEY. Speaking of buying, your habit is only as bad as your income is good when it comes to drugs or alcohol. In extreme cases drug addicts have been known to sell their own families into slavery just to get that next hit. Internet porn however is 100% free. Sure there are some paid sites out there, but with all the tube sites and torrents only an idiot would pay money to watch porn these days. Some of us may feel we have more self control of our habits than a drug addict because we don't commit crimes to get our fix. But, imagine if the government made porn illegal, and expunged all porn from the internet. How many of us would sell our mothers furniture to see just one more scene when that craving you cant say no to hits you?
3. ACCES. Not only does the drug addict or alcoholic have to have a face to face encounter to get their fix, he also has a limited number of suppliers. He is always one police crackdown, or delivery truck breakdown away from huffing glue, or drinking bathtub gin. The internet porn addict however has an unlimited supply of his drug of choice due to the ubiquitous nature of the internet itself. Internet porn never sells out, never needs an ID (checking yes or no if you're over 18 is a joke), and you never have to leave the house to get it. Unlike the meth addict, the internet porn addicts drug dealer lives in his house and has an unlimited, free supply of his drug, oh and he's invisible. And you wonder why you keep relapsing.
4. NO SMELL. While the stench of unwashed genitals may permeate the room of an internet porn addict that stench isn't always an indicator of porn use. Alcoholics, certain drug users, even cigarette smokers substance gives off a distinct smell that is undeniably from their product. Which means that to get their hit without anyone noticing they have either do it with other addicts of their ilk or climb under a bridge or something. Internet porn addicts can abuse their drug in the comfort of their homes without worrying about it telling on them with a smell. You may feel like you go through great trouble to hide your porn use. But, the difference is that when you're done you don't have to pop a mint, spray air freshener, or wash the stench of porn off your clothes. There is no scent that internet porn use gives off that lets people know without a shadow of a doubt that you fell off the wagon again. How many of us have cycled through internet porn on our smartphones while our wives or girlfriends lie right next to us in bed, oblivious to what we were doing. Thats a luxury the drug and alcohol addict will never have.
5. NO PHYSIOLOGICAL TRACES. Now I know some of you who suffer from porn induced ED may be screaming "off with his head! " at this point but hear me out. Unlike drugs and alcohol, porn cannot be found in your blood or urine. Whereas the drug and alcohol abuser has a fear of losing his job or car due to his habit, the internet porn user, unless he's actually caught watching it during work hours, never has to worry about this. Erratic driving can be caused by any number of reasons. The driver may be tired, or fist fighting his passenger, or trying to text while driving. But, when the police pull him over, test him, and see he has a BAC over the legal limit the buck stops. You may suffer from porn induced ED, but tell me what test can your doctor conduct where he'll come back and say "well son it looks like you have porn in your body". Absolutely none. Imagine what your life would be like if porn could be traced in your urine or on your breath.
6. NO DISFIGUREMENT. Not all drug and alcohol abusers look like drug and alcohol abusers. But if an emaciated 26 year old with missing teeth and sunken eyes told you he was a meth addict, chances are you wouldn't be surprised. Long time use of drugs and alcohol is known changing how its user looks. How many prom queens who hit the skids have you seen that shocked you with how terrible they looked compared to how they used to look. Now think about how many internet porn users have the same story. Can you even pick an internet porn user in a crowd? Having your good looks stolen from you is another safeguard the drug user has to help him kick his habit that the internet porn user does not.
7. FEAR OF DEATH BY OVER CONSUMPTION. Unlike the drug or alcohol addict, you can binge on internet porn to your hearts content and never have to worry about dying from an overdose. I mean a person who drinks too much water will die faster than a porn addict on an all day binge. Fear of death is an excellent motivator to kick the habit that the drug and alcohol user has that the porn user will never have. Sure some have commited suicide or some have died in car crashes from watching porn as they drive, but those are more indirect causes of death. Nobody will ever say "hey did you here about Johnny? He died from watching too many big breasted girls on his computer. Such a shame".
8. NO ONE KNOWS YOUR HIGH. Its been said that the dopamine rush you get from internet porn is comparable to meth or cocain use. But the meth or coke addict has a period of time when he is obviously buzzed from using his drug. Which means that the internet porn user can get almost or as high, and still drive a forklift, teach a class, or have a normal conversation without getting weird looks. Sure you may get depressed or moody, but those can be attributed to any number of things. A drunk man can never claim his drunkeness is due to not getting enough sleep, or because he though about something sad.
So thats all I got. What is the conclusion of all this? Stop being so hard on your self. You are dealing with an addiction that doesn't have any of the safeguards to stop you from going overboard like drugs or alcohol do. While you can get encouragement from an ex drug addict on how to beat addiction, keep in mind that you are dealing way more than he had to. As internet porn addicts we have to implement these natural safeguards artificially. And even then it's not the same. So keep fighting, keep trying, and stop thinking so down of yourself.