I realized this morning that today marks a full year of life without masturbation or pornography, and in way of celebration I’ve decided to share my story.
Like everyone else, I was masturbating regularly by age 10, and when we got our first internet hookup a few years later it didn’t take me long to discover the porn sites. Even then I remember knowing that I was heading down an unhealthy road, and I promised myself I’d stop someday when I got into a real sexual relationship. Little did I know it would take me 17 years to begin making a real, concerted effort to quit, and 20 years to achieve satisfactory results.
The effects of porn that I experienced have been well documented by others. Sexual frustration all through my 20’s, low self-worth, the feeling that I must be asexual or that there was something wrong with my body. One early relationship was almost certainly ruined after the disappointing `first time’.
At 28 I finally had the embarrassing sexual experience to end all others. She was beautiful, and I’d been rock-hard the whole time we were making out, but then when the clothes came off there was just nothing. Totally limp. She was upset and thought it must be her, that she wasn’t attractive enough, but I reassured her it was just me being nervous. We tried again the next day, and the next, but it was hopeless. I even remember sitting at home with some porn pulled up trying to `practice’ an erection for the evening, with obviously no luck.
We broke off dating by mutual agreement the next day, and I entered a deep depression. I went for a long walk with the intention of visiting a local clinic to ask about Viagra or something, and unexpectedly received a ride from a serene 80-something old man dressed in his Sunday best who talked a lot about the Holy Spirit and invited me to church. No, it’s not a conversion story! But something about the talk made me think about my daily habit of masturbating to porn every night before bed.
I skipped the clinic and walked home, googled the subject, and had the great AHA! moment when I found YourBrainOnPorn and all the nofap stories on reddit. That was August 2011 and life has transitioned since then into something so much more wonderful than I could ever have predicted.
Some observations. Nofap does NOT solve all your problems. What it does is put you in a place to recognize them for what they are, and start fighting them. A week in I began noticing I had much more energy and interest for life. Things had more color, people had more personality, and girls were more interesting and attractive.
Four or five months later (having had mixed success, a couple of 20-day runs on hard mode) I found myself actually initiating conversation with girls in coffee shops and bars, something I had never imagined. My self-confidence has gone up exponentially.
I began a serious relationship in February 2012 (age 28) with the first great love of my life, and for the first time ever I experienced a healthy sexual relationship. It was transforming. We ended up being on different life tracks, though, and during the low moments I occasionally reverted to porn. When that relationship ended I relapsed for about a week before realizing that I couldn’t live with myself if I went back to my old ways.
So on May 7th a year ago I decided to quit once and for all. In June I met the woman of my dreams, and we just got married last month! I shared my porn story with her early in our relationship, and I highly recommend doing this, as I now have an amazing cheerleader to share my stories of temptation and triumph with.
Anyways, that’s my story.
As I side note, for all the guys (and girls) fighting on hard mode, it IS possible. My personal best without sexual release is 69 days (haha, it’s just the way it worked out), but I’ve gotten over 40 days several times. The temptation becomes a constant companion, but you CAN do it, especially if you remember how much it sucks to start the count over. I tried to put all my extra energy into projects, exercise, and establishing an active dating life (where there truly is no motivation like sexual deprivation).
As a side note, my DREAMS became extraordinarily vivid and sometimes lucid after a week or two of nofap.
Good luck to everyone. Keep fighting the good fight.
LINK – One Year