Age 30s - Accutane and Wife Issues (ED)
Day 29 - Miserable
I am on day 29 of no PMO. I believe I've been addicted to masturbation for 20 years. At the age of 17, I realized I had a problem because I couldn't get erect with my girlfriend. I thought it was a medication I was on, but I really doubt it now. I masturbated once or twice a day and never ever had a problem with that, but have had extreme difficulties with real women including my wife. Basically I feel like the libido is just not there.
There is no woman in the world that could get me excited right now, but if I watched some porn, I might get an erection. I don't feel I ever had a porn problem though. I feel I just had a masturbation habit. Also, I made it to day 50 once with no PMO, and I can't say that my libido was restored, but changes were occuring for sure. Another question is what should be my no PMO goal? 90 days? Help me, I'm really down about this no libido deal.
We haven't had any type of intimacy really in 3 years. We have young kids, and it seems like we never have energy to spend time together.
[One month] I am in my mid-thirties. I’m on day 29 of no PMO. I believe I've been addicted to masturbation for 20 years. At the age of 17, I realized I had a problem because I couldn't get erect with my gf. I thought it was a medication I was on [Accutane], but I really doubt it now. I masturbated once or twice a day and never ever had a problem with that, but have had extreme difficulties with real women including my wife. Basically I feel like the libido is just not there.
(More details) Since the age of 13, I've been a daily masturbator, or in other words, I don't know if I've ever been natural. I do remember when I was 15, I had to quit for 3 days, and I had very very persistent erections. Then at the age of 17, I had my first opportunity with a real woman and couldn't do anything. After that, I just "tested" myself daily and the problems continued for almost 20 more years. So what kind of libido should a mid-30's guy expect??? I'm not a big porn watcher, but if I were to relax and watch some, I might get a erection. Of course, I'm not interested in going in that direction, but that's about the only way I can describe my level of libido. I will say that I've been with my wife in situations on vacation where there was no opportunity for sex, but I did get an erection in her presence, so that's why I have long-term hope. If she were to come in here now and say "let's do it", I doubt I could get erect though, so there is a mixture of a real problem and performance anxiety going on.
An interesting note though is this. I had libido maybe 5 times in the last 15 years. When I would drink crazy amounts of alcohol, I would have a hangover the next morning, but my sexual desire was actually restored and I would have erections that were persistent in the morning. Also, if I went more than 48 hours without any sleep, my libido would return. This happened about 5 times, maybe 10. Is that strange or what? Other than that, there is no woman in the world that could get me excited right now, but if I watched some porn, I might get an erection. I don't feel I ever had a porn problem though. I feel I just had a masturbation habit. Also, I made it to day 50 once with no PMO, and I can't say that my libido was restored, but changes were occurring for sure.
[Day 33] This morning I woke up feeling some definite changes. Erections were present. I also noticed this feeling of manhood in my blood that I've never known in my life. My wife swears that I have more chest hair. So I felt a spurt of libido this morning, and I realize, wow... if this comes back, I've never had a libido to control. It's a funny feeling.
Libido is back to zero. I had one day where I felt something, maybe 4 or a 10 scale. Erections were present. I also noticed this feeling of manhood in my blood that I've never known in my life. My wife swears that I have more chest hair.
Before I started abstaining, I was 0 on a 10 scale. Now I'd say I'm 1 on a 10 scale.
I've fallen into a pretty deep depression. I've begged my wife to just be close to me even with no sex, but she's always too tired and refuses to change anything to allow more time for us. Then she makes it a point to remind me that the last time I begged for her attention, I couldn't perform. Now if I had any libido and any confidence, I could deal with that kind of rejection, but in my current condition, I can't.
The 2nd thing that is causing me depression is I've reverted back to reading forums about side effects of this medication Accutane that I took over 15 years ago. There are some stories there about guys losing their libidos and then I get into this cycle of thinking I'm permanently damaged and I spiral down down down.
My wife and everyone else seem to think it's just the masturbation habit that's caused my problems and I hope they are right. From what I can tell, there are many more people with ED and libido problems from porn and masturbation than from Accutane, so I guess my hope is this abstinence will be the answer.
[Day 47] For the most part, my mental health has been better since abstaining from everything. Yesterday I got seriously depressed, and I'm not sure why. I have been drinking lots of strong coffee and limited amounts of beer.
Even though my post yesterday was pretty negative, I still believe a period of no PMO is a great thing, and I would have never attempted it for so long if it wasn't for this site. I thought 7 days was enough to reset, but I learned that is simply not the case after reading the articles here. I guess there can be some really dark moments in these kind of challenges. My wife did apologize to me, and understands that I'm going through rough times.
Just thought I'd report a spontaneous erection. I was daydreaming at work, and got one. So I'm happy about that.
The only times in the last 15 years when I have responded normally to my wife sexually is when we are close together with no chance for intercourse. We don't sleep in the same bed, but on vacation, we sometimes have to and I notice I respond well with erections, and that's the ONLY time in my life where I feel I functioned normally. To me, that seems to confirm that karezza is well worth trying out.
I got erections like crazy. It's really really strange because I never get erections during waking hours, but if I snuggle with my wife, boom, they are there. In short, I feel I have zero libido, but I can't deny that when I snuggle with my wife, the erections come out of nowhere.
I'm astonished that I can go months at a time without ever feeling horny, without ever getting spontaneous erections, but in a comfortable nonthreatening situation with my wife, I'm sailing at full mast. It's so unexpected and I guess I have to conclude that maybe I'm not as "damaged" as I thought I was.
I am still not having spontaneous erections, so I yesterday I remember getting really down and got in this mode of worrying if my libido is ever going to come back.
Then I simply touched my wife, and instantly got an erection and felt for lack of any other word - horny. I was delighted. So it seems to me at this point, being close to my wife and touching her turns on my switch. It's like I've discovered unknown sexual energy that is in me. Looks like my wife is even up for sex too, but I want to kind of do the Karezza thing first to kind of keep the performance anxiety down.
Day 63 Setback
I was almost a sleep when I felt an intense desire for sex (which is rare for me). So I went and asked my wife if she would be interested. She said ok, but made me wait a while. I was so excited because I just had a constant erection (even difficult to go to the bathroom). Then she came and just told me to make it quick, and let me know she wasn't in the mood, and complained that I scratched her ect... Then I completely lost my desire and nothing happened. After she left I masturbated twice.
The next morning she said she felt bad for me, and said she wished she would have been more into it but she was just tired. So there's still hope there. She and I both think that it's not that I really have a problem (she saw me fully erect when I came and got her), but that I'm just real sensitive mentally.
The good news here, is that my libido seemed to be restored (gosh I wish I would have made it to 90 days though!). I also didn't get too terribly depressed about not being able to perform.
So I guess I will start over again.
I've sunk back into M and even P (which was not a big problem for me in the past). I will admit, it is nice to have the feeling of being aroused and functioning while viewing P, but I know it will only make matters worse and must end soon. I'm trying to convince myself, if I function fine in this situation, there is nothing medically wrong with me, and if I successfully reset myself with the 90 (or maybe more) days of abstinence from PMO, I should be ok.
In short, for some crazy reason, I can't seem to admit that my ED problems stem from the masturbation/fantasy habit. Objectively thinking, the evidence points to that, but I still have these stupid thoughts like (what if I have some rare medical condition that my dr. hasn't detected that is causing low libido and ED problems).
I will say at 62 days, I seemed to be starting to get some libido and erections back.
I am surprised how strong of a grip the addiction has on me. It seems the first 2 or 3 weeks are always the hardest. Hopefully you'll see a blog entry with the title of "Day 1" soon from me.
My real goal is just to have natural relations with my wife. That goal was shattered at the 62 day mark. I guess it hurt me pretty bad emotionally. She made herself available, but clearly gave me the cold shoulder and I couldn't perform knowing that. So I went into panic mode and started worrying (do I have a problem? or is it natural not to be able to perform under those conditions). I spiraled into despair. Honestly, all the progress I made those 62 days is wiped away. I can feel it. For me, I believe even masturbation can mess me up pretty bad because of the fantasy involved. It's like I'm training myself to only function in a fantasy world.
[2 weeks later] Well, it got a little ugly for me. It was back to PMO and alcohol for a week. I was depressed and I'm just now working my way out of it. I started no PMO and no alcohol last Thursday. My real goal is just to have natural relations with my wife. That goal was shattered at the 62-day mark. I guess it hurt me pretty bad emotionally. She made herself available, but clearly gave me the cold shoulder and I couldn't perform knowing that. So I went into panic mode and started worrying (do I have a problem? or is it natural not to be able to perform under those conditions). I spiraled into despair. Honestly, all the progress I made those 62 days is wiped away. I can feel it. For me, I believe even masturbation can mess me up pretty bad because of the fantasy involved. It's like I'm training myself to only function in a fantasy world.
[Six months later – day 60] Real life sex has been very rare, and usually I needed Viagra or something. I've always been able to masturbate (and enjoy it) with no problems.
I once made it to day 63, and on that day had a long standing erection, but things didn't workout with my wife, so I went back to PMO.
So I've been true for 60 days of no PMO, and I do feel a sense of accomplishment that I've been able to control the masturbation habit. I've turned to limited amounts of alcohol and lots of caffeine to get me through this, but I plan on reducing both. I've exercised really well during this time period. I have had some morning erections, but no spontaneous erections. I will say that only on day 60 I looked at a youtube video of a sexy girl dancing with clothes on and did get an erection while I was sitting back relaxed. Interestingly, I wasn't worried at all about slipping back into PMO. The only concern I have is, anytime I get aroused, it usually involves some far out fantasizing, and I don't get aroused easily in real life, so I'm not even going to look at those non-porn videos again for the next 60 days. That's right, my personal goal is 120 days of no PMO.
I guess in the last 20 years I've only felt the "gotta have it" feeling a handful of times. I can generate that feeling by watching the right porn. Note that my problems started long before viewing porn though.
One of the reasons I didn't post during this 2nd attempt at no PMO is I was so depressed I didn't want to discourage anyone. But there are enough testimonies now that even if I'm not successful, the majority are.
[Day 61 no PMO] Feeling pretty good, considering how I usually feel. Lay down on the bed and fantasized about my wife actually, and obtained an erection. I will say today my libido feels 1 on a 10 scale. It's usually 0 on a 10 scale. Something’s going on (I hope). I'll actually be in a situation on day 90 where I'm going to be in the same bed as my wife. Should be interesting.
Just thought I'd post something positive for a change. The last time I had great sex was 2 years ago. I remember clearly it was first thing in the morning, and no ED drugs were necessary. I performed great.
My explanation is this: I wasn't stressed out yet, no performance anxiety, I wasn't awake enough to mope around about my ED problems, and I heard that testosterone levels are highest in the morning.
[Day 63] Another thing that wasn't there in the morning - COFFEE. I am a coffee addict, and I wonder if it's doing something to my libido. Maybe increasing anxiety, or doing something to my blood circulation.
[Day 65] I feel like I have zero libido, and I still need to get over performance anxiety. The good thing is in a few weeks I'll be sharing a bed with my wife for about a week, which is going to be interesting.
[Day 68] My mood is better than in the past. Also, while I was laying down mid-day to rest, I did get a spontaneous erection. There were no sexual thoughts or anything that I know of that caused it. Nice to know there is life down there. My internal health monitoring system still indicates I'm not out of the woods yet, but some type of progress is being made.
[Day 77] A realization. I almost never get spontaneous erections, but they surprisingly come in the presence of my wife if I'm relaxed.
Day 79 can anyone point me to the posts that discuss recovery times lasting longer than 90 days? Someone said they read posts where it could take 6 months. Please direct me to those.
I'm tempted to start calling this no MO instead of no PMO, because I never really had a porn problem.
So I approached my wife about sleeping together in the same room, suggesting twice a month. Immediately she put up all these reasons she doesn't like the room, and basically gave a lot of excuses. Then she went on to say "If we get intimate, you're going to get nervous, you're going to get ED, and then you're going to be back in your masturbation addiction".
Obviously that hurt quite a bit, but I didn't give up. I suggested we try some of these Karezza techniques and just get intimate without the intercourse part, and it just wasn't received well. She summed it all up in a sentence: "I'm done with that stuff" - meaning, "I'm not interested in intimacy with you or anybody else for that matter." I think she really has no libido, and actually likes the fact that I have these ED problems. I'm still not giving up.
Here is my strategy. I've got a 79 day investment in this no PMO business. I've decided to shoot for 180 days, which is why I'd like info on anyone who took this long to recovery. I also intend to drop the caffeine and even though I exercise intensely, I don't do much weight training. So I'm wondering if introducing that into my routine will impact my Androgen systems in some way to get me out of this rut.
In summary, even though I'm in a rut, I know I made the right decision to abstain from PMO, and I never would have tried had I not read the stories on this site. In the past, I thought 4 days no PMO was an accomplishment.
I think deep down, she knows she also has a problem, and doesn't want to deal with it. I take a long-term view of things, and I'm still optimistic. I'm pretty much in love with my wife, so I've got a lot of patience. I'm going to take it slowly and see what happens.
(Later) Even though I'm not popping boners left and right (or up), I am starting to get the sense that the next time my wife and I are naked together, things are going fall (rise) into place. I'm more optimistic now than ever (2 on a 10 scale coming from 0).
I can say that I've considered masturbating on day 90, but I realize that I have no desire to masturbate without fantasy. In fact, I don't believe I've ever done that before, so I that's one reason why I'm shooting for 180 days.
[Day 87] Well I'm on day 87. I woke up with a nice erection this morning. I feel a little more balanced I guess, but I still generally feel sluggish. I'll find out soon what the story is with the libido when I'm with my wife on vacation.
Day 90 - On vacation, sleeping in same bed
In the middle of the night I touched my wife and not only achieved a good erection, but I also got a libido surge that I could feel which is rare for me. This happened a few times. It shocked me because I really didn't feel any libido all day, but when I touched my wife, it appeared out of nowhere.
The opportunity should present itself tonight. I may take a pill just for insurance, but I feel confident that I'm improving.
Day 95 Success
I had success 4 days in a row with no pill. You know, this is the first time I've had intercourse without fantasizing about something else.
Basically focusing on my wife is a turn-on. She actually reports she didn't have any discomfort during these 4 nights which is an improvement.
Every time I basically woke up in the middle of the night, and as soon as I felt her, it was lift-off time. I will say on the the 2nd night (day 93), I was at quarter-mast, but that quickly changed and I actually only lasted 30 seconds which was a surprise.
This morning was after coming home from vacation, and I drank quite a bit last night and couldn't believe I was able, but no problems.
So since I've had 4 straight nights of success, I don't attribute it to the pill I took as insurance the first night.
I believe I'm cured, and I think my problem was a mixture of performance anxiety and masturbation addiction or masturbation patterns.
I actually felt zero life down there on the night before I had intercourse first. It wasn't until I started cuddling with my wife, that life emerged. So if you feel like there is no libido or life down there, it really can spring up out of nowhere. I experienced this years ago as well. After having successes, I'm starting to "feel" my libido a little bit.
Also, I'm not sure what would have happened if I tried during the day time. My successes were at night, when my stress was low, and just fooling around without being fixated on the goal of orgasm.
So I've had 4 nights of sex in a row, and I had the ability to do it twice in a night if I pushed it.
Advice: I can only recommend connecting with a nice woman. I know it's hard to contemplate when you're in doubt of your abilities, but it has to happen that way in my opinion. You MUST get yourself in a situation where you can fool around with a woman with no expectations of intercourse. If you just find a woman to "test", then I believe that leads to failure and an increase in performance anxiety. You gotta keep it light and fun.
Performance anxiety is a really tough thing to beat. Anytime you lie in bed with a woman and you start observing yourself, an erection probably won't happen. I know full well it's not fun to enter into sexual relations worrying about performance. The key is to enter into it not worrying one iota about erection. It's easier said than done, but that's the challenge that many men face. I faced it, and I'm surprised I got through it.
For 20 years I've felt deep down I had some sort of problem. Until I found this site, I thought giving M up for 7 days was "extreme" enough to cure any potential problem associated with it. I would have never dreamed of abstaining for 90 days, and certainly didn't believe for a second it was possible to abstain that long. I credit this site for proposing the idea, and I'm surprised that I really haven't seen the idea anywhere else. After masturbating daily for 20 years, and abstaining for 90 days, it's very possible I will never masturbate again.
As many of you know ED can wreck your life, and it probably is messing up many peoples lives. Hopefully google searches lead more people here to learn about various sexual addictions, and I also think the Karezza techniques are valuable for addressing performance anxiety. It's hard to tell where addiction ends and anxiety begins. I think a combination of the two is involved in a lot of situations.
What frustrated me most about these ED problems, were temptations to see a prostitute. It just wasn't me, and it was turning me into someone I didn't even know.
Well I awoke this morning to my first wet dream ever. I'm in my mid-30's so this came as a surprise. After I had successful intercourse 4 days in a row, I masturbated twice. I find this development strange and surprising.
TWO MONTHS LATER - Undeniable success
I took one of those pills, and then the opportunity didn't present itself until 6 hours later. Well I performed well, and performed well every subsequent night for 4 days with no more pills. Still, I wondered, "Was it the pill? Was it because it was the middle of the night? Was it a real erection or just a nocturnal one...?"
Well a couple of days ago my wife and I had some time alone, and I decided to try with no pills and see what happened. I'm happy to report that I was able to perform in the middle of the day with no problem. The key was I just decided that I wouldn't worry or get nervous. I told myself "just give it a chance and if I have ED, I have some facts to go to the doctor with".
So before I had a little doubt in my mind that maybe it was the pill, maybe it was because it was in the middle of the night etc.., but now it's hard to explain a rock solid performance in the middle of the day with no pill. So even though I don't have spontaneous erections, and generally don't feel horny, I performed fine.
My presciption is to abstain from PMO 90 days, and just relax with a woman. I know it's easier said than done, but it seems to work.