So, this week was a year off of PMOing and there has been a good amount of recovery done. Since then I have been off of Porn and recovery of myself has gone great. I am finally passing classes in college, my work ethic (besides being on-time) has improved greatly and I have been much more open, although that could still use some work.
Aside from one mistake, I have been completely honest with [my fiancee]. My life has turned around so much since I made the choice and realized that I needed help and that I was in fact addicted. Therapy has helped a lot in finding out more about me and my past. I figured out a lot of my past and how I really felt. I learned a lot about psychology through my Fiancée and I have a lot of knowledge pertaining to the psychology of addiction that has helped me figure out the root of the problem. I used to think that my life was fine and that nothing really affected me but man was I wrong. It’s easy to think that everything is fine when you’re pushing down everything that might make you feel the slightest bit down.
Here is my story. I have been an addict for the better part of 11 years or so. I didn’t even realize it until my now Fiancee, but my partner at the time, helped me realize it. When we started dating, she stated that she has had relationships in the past where P was in their lives and it did not work with her body image and anorexia. She told me that it had been in prior relationships and that it would not work if I continued to use it. (She had said that because she noticed an inappropriate picture on my phone) I said that it was fine; I would not use it anymore. I didn’t know I was addicted at the time (or would not admit it to myself) so I actually thought I could go without it. It went well for the first few weeks, and then of course that didn’t last. She noticed the bad accounts I followed on Instagram because she saw the pictures I liked as I scrolled through the feed. She told me how that was pornographic and that she had told me that it was not ok in our relationship before we started going out. I denied that it was a problem and said that every guy does it so it’s ok don’t worry. She caught me with a nude girl saved on my phone next to a picture of her that I saved and she was very hurt. She would cry whenever she saw things like the Instagram pictures and other things because I would deny that they were a problem or that they were bad in general even seeing how much it hurt her.
A month or so later, we were at a gay bar, and with my friend (who is a girl, who told me she had a crush on my partner at the time.) My partner, at that time, had her friend tell her that my friend wanted to kiss her. She was uncomfortable about it, and told my friend, who understood that if she was going to have her first kiss with a girl ,it wouldn’t be in front of an audience. Of course, I was cheering her on to do it. I blamed it on the alcohol the next day. She brought it up while we were walking too much, and said she was curious and had never experimented, and I told her that she could go find my friend and kiss her and even have sex with her, but if she liked it she would have to stop (I would have gotten jealous). She got upset at me and was confused as to why I was okay with her cheating on me. I didn’t think it was cheating (I watched lesbian stuff in the past, which desensitized me and well I objectified that type of relationship between two people). I told her she wasn’t cheating. She said, “Then it’s okay for me to go find your best guy friend and experiment?” Of course I was not happy about that and said that would be cheating. She said it’s the same thing just different gender. At that time I didn’t realize that she was right, I told her to cheat on me. We eventually got past that conversation, but I think she always feels uncomfortable when we hang out with that friend now, kind of a reminder of all that.
She caught me again Christmas Eve when we were sitting next to each other at dinner with my grandparents for the first time. I pulled my phone out and went to the browser and the last thing that was searched was a P site. She broke down from that because I had told her before that I would stop altogether. I had said that I wasn’t watching videos and that there was nothing else that I was hiding after she had found that photo and other times she found things prior to this. Then in the end of January, she found more that I had looked at. She saw that I had looked at two different girls on a specific site. She was on her phone with her mom so she hung up and I told her a friend must have looked it up on my phone. Obviously, that was bull***t and I kept repeating it. And as the idiot, she very much is not; she didn’t buy any of it. She said “just tell me the truth” so I told her and she broke down and left the room. I finally started to realize that I might have a problem but I didn’t quite accept it yet. We both cried together that night, I never cry like that. My emotions have been so repressed that I just thought that nothing really affected me emotionally. After that, I told her that was it and I wasn’t hiding anything else… of course, that’s what I said.
Next, I managed to not watch until March or may and then it was only because I was on Pinterest looking for ideas to paint my nerf guns to go LARPing with. It was a post-apocalyptic LARP series called Dystopia Rising. I put my interests in when I started my account. Some star wars based stuff that was a very realistic pornographic artwork of star wars characters and a nude woman that was painted like Darth Mal but as a female of the species. I, of course, didn’t tell her.
On June 6th, 2016, she came to my office to bring me lunch or coffee. I left the room and she went onto my history because when I came back she was looking at the pages that I had looked at. She was heartbroken again. She closed them trying not to cry and asked how I could do this again. I didn’t have an answer for her. She continued to look through my history as I begged her not to; I promised that nothing was there. She stopped and her dad (my boss) walked in and she tried to pretend everything was ok. She left utterly destroyed and I wasn’t even sure we were still together after that. After work, I picked up flowers for her and a ring she had been looking at. I came home and presented her with the gifts crying and apologizing promising nothing was left. She accepted and we seemed ok, damaged but ok.
The next day she felt the urge to check the history but she didn’t and tried to trust me for once. June 8th, she decided to look at all my history via my Gmail that I had been logged into and it kept history even if I had deleted it. She found out everything I did since the beginning of the relationship. She called me breaking down and was telling me everything that I had done. I left work immediately and came home to her going through all of the history. She shoved some of it in my face and continued to break down. She said things like she wished she was dead and she wished she could self-harm and thought I was a sociopath which is one of her fears from an ex of hers that was. I started to break down too. I said I wished I could die from the pain that I had felt because of the torture I had caused her for so long. So much lying and deceit, I couldn’t live with that. I had never really been honest with her for a whole year. It was extremely difficult coming to terms with that. I was the first person she chose to trust in a long time after having bad experiences with bad people. I had completely betrayed her trust for our entire relationship. We both broke down a lot and I finally realized that I needed help.
To those still struggling, be honest from the get-go, with yourself and with any person you’re with, it makes things a F***ton easier. Honesty, accountability, support, and learning coping skills were the key to my recovery, and I hope that anyone still struggling can learn from this. It’s not worth ruining yourself, your partner’s life, or your relationship over. Keep fighting, it’s worth it!