Age 36 - Married: addicted to porn for 20 years

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Hope signI have been addicted to porn and masturbation since I was about 16 years old. I’m 36 now, so that’s 20 years in the books. Over the past 3 months I’ve abstained from fapping through the use of a variety of tools including this website, meditation, exercise, as well as prior the knowledge that I’ve gained through SAA and therapy sessions.

This is the first time in those 20 years that I’ve been able to go more than a couple of weeks so it feels rather significant. Something that’s worked for me this time around is not reflecting on past actions, but projecting out and being drawn to the idea that I will feel great and be free of this if I just keep going.

That said, what I’m feeling right now is a fragile peace. I know that this streak could be broken at any time, and I could easily be thrust right back into the funnel of acting out. For example, my wife and kids will be gone the weekend before Christmas and I know that I have to be really, REALLY careful being alone in the house those days.

Even after 3 months sober that probably means disconnecting the internet in order to play it safe. After three months my brain still wants to consider those old behaviors, the major difference that I’ve found is that the chemical push isn’t there so it’s much, much easier to just move on to other thoughts. I don’t feel like I’m being directed or dragged into fapping like the old days.

I’ve also realized some other talked-about benefits including higher self-worth, better communication with people, feeling grounded and less tension and stress in my life. When tension and stress do arise, I’m using different coping methods.

In terms of sex and intimacy, it’s still just a couple times a month with my wife (busy, tired, kids etc) but the intensity is much greater when it happens. I’m still learning to feel emotions and live in the moment… this will be a life-long quest. All to often I still get sucked into mindless internet use (reading forums, news, Facebook etc) when I should be doing more productive things (especially at work). I’m also still working on adding new activities and interests to take the place of 2-hour porn sessions.

All in all I’m really thankful for the progress that I’ve made. I hope I can use some of the wisdom that I’ve accumulated (the hard way) to help other struggling fapstranots and porn addicts.

LINK - Reflections on 90 Days (After 20 Years of Acting Out)

by urbanizm