Today marks day 150 of my journey. I have had my ups and downs along the way, with good days and bad days. Some thoughts that are in my head: I look back at the man I was when I reached my lowest point, and I am amazed at how far I’ve come.
I think 2011 was my personal and spiritual low point as a man. My girlfriend of 4.5 years had left me for another man, I was watching porn and masturbating almost every day, and my private feelings oscillated between feeling deeply sad and deeply angry. Most of all, every time I jerked off, I would look in the bathroom mirror and say “I hate myself. Why am I doing this?” I felt like a man with multiple personalities. Publicly, I put on a cheerful front. But privately, I was a terrible mess.
Finding love has changed my life I have been in a steady relationship for one and a half years. My girlfriend and I are not perfect. But she is the first (and only) person to whom I have opened up about my struggles with porn. And rather than being repulsed by me, she said that she would stand by me, as long as I understood that I needed to change. I cannot tell you how important this has been for me. You guys have been very supportive as well, but finally admitting my struggles to a woman was a real turning point for me. It might do the same for you.
It has taken a long time, but I finally feel that my libido is under control Everyone here is different. Some have chosen “hard mode,” and I respect that choice. For me, “standard mode” has worked. My girlfriend and I have developed a healthy and happy love life. I would guess that we probably have sex once a week, sometimes twice. But I no longer feel controlled by intense sexual energies and desires. When I want to have sex, I enjoy it. But I no longer feel the urge to have some kind of sexual experience every day. I finally feel like my mind and body are on the same page.
As I look ahead, I know that my journey is not over. I cannot control the fact that porn will always be there. I control what I do, and how I respond to it. I know that I must keep working at my addiction every day. But I also know that every time I manage to do the right things, porn defines me less and less.
LINK – Reflections on 150 Days
I’m 30. Been doing PMO since I was about 13.
I have been trying to give up porn for the better part of 4 years. It wasn’t until I joined this forum that I began to think about my problem in a more logical, scientific way.
It’s hard to say exactly when you will start experiencing longer streaks. In my opinion, while relapsing stinks, what really matters isn’t the relapse itself – it’s what you LEARN from it. What triggered you to go back to a PMO experience? How can you eliminate that trigger from your life? Pause, reflect, and make small changes. In time, little things can make big things happen.
Everyone on here has different reasons for wanting to quit. My quest for change is motivated by meeting a new woman for whom I care very much. PMO has lurked in the background during my previous relationships – I don’t want that to be the case with this one. My GF knows about my struggles with PMO because I told her, and she’s willing to back me up, provided that I stick to it, and provided that I am honest with her about it.
You can do it. Be open and honest. Learn from your mistakes, and you will grow.