After going passed 100 days of abstinence, what advice can I give at this point?1. Don’t dwell on this crap. Don’t think about it. Don’t give too much place to it mentally.
2. If memories assail you, change the channel. If mental pictures pop into your head, don’t get all crazy trying to directly fight it, you’ll only fuel the fire. Rather, put your mind on something else. Sing your favorite rock song, imagine doing the dishes (yeah!), or think of a puppy! Lol… anything else. Just don’t take it down the wrong road of, “Oh no, I better not think of this, this is so wrong, I hate this, I better not do this- this, this, this!” See how you’re still thinking about it, even though supposedly you’re fighting against it?
3. If your mind goes into a sexual fantasy, about a real or imaginary woman, get to the bottom of it. What am I feeling that I all of a sudden need to alter my mood in this way? Did someone insult me? reject me? Do I feel neglected? Did I think in some negative downer way?
4. If a woman is beautiful, acknowledge it- it’s natural- it’s okay. Then, just don’t dwell on it. You’re a strong man now, not the weakling who’s chasing after every skirt, or lust after every woman as if she were a piece of red meat. You’re not a dog, trying to sniff every she-dog who comes by. You’re in control.
5. Be careful how you identify yourself. “Hi, I’m Joe, and I’m an alcoholic.” Oh, really? You haven’t drank for 5 years now, how are you still an alcoholic? Then when life comes and kicks you when you’re down, guess what you’ll turn to for comfort? No. You are not your addiction! And neither am I!
6. See yourself sober. Imagine yourself, how great life will be with that crap in the rear view mirror! Imagine yourself saying, No, in various situations. See yourself actually hating what you once loved.
7. If you’re a man (or woman) of faith, pray- but not the pathetic, “God help me to not do this!” prayers, but rather pray, “God, I say ‘no’ to this crap! Help me to stand in your strength”- or something like that. Prayers that take into account the victorious winner that you are, not that person who’s always on the verge…
Be thankful, celebrate the smallest of victories, smile, don’t hold onto anger, forgive people who piss you off, and above all- know that you are loved more than you could ever possibly imagine.
LINK – Advice After 100 Days!
BY – Leon
INITIAL POST – The End of All Flesh
Hello, all. This journal entry serves as an introduction to this forum.
While this journey toward freedom started for me back on July 17th, 2003, when it was divulged (to my wife of now 20 years) that I had been periodically visiting porno bookstores, my fight goes further back when as a Christian I entered a sexual addiction of sorts back in the summer of 1993. Being a part of a cult-like and spiritually abusive church didn’t help matters any, as the hyper moralization of sexuality, mixed with my loveless upbringing, and finding pornography on the play ground as a 4th or 5th grader, all mixed together to bring me into a place of addiction. Also, as a teenager, there was a major traumatic event which I’m not always comfortable sharing that played a driving role also.
The specifics of this addiction may unfold as I’m comfortable to do so, but so as to avoid unnecessary attention or undo ‘triggers’- I’ll be sparing in the details.
I’ve been struggling with what has been [mostly] an addiction to softcore pornography (though with the occasional hardcore), including ‘m’ and ‘edging’, since 1993, with this struggle being revealed since 2003. I’ve tried accountability, and certain “recovery” type of groups (under a Christian ministry), since.
What’s really helpful to me right now is understanding God’s grace, as these sexual issues have been highly moralized under ‘law’ (“…thou shalt not”)- yet instead, this grace to me says, “I’m loved and forgiven of all my sins, no matter what- all my sins which were when Christ died on the cross for me, were all yet future.” This means that as far as God’s concerned, I’m utterly and completely forgiven, and not only that- but I’m righteous (in right-standing with God), holy and sanctified (set apart).
Without trying to be purposefully ‘religious’, the above was so important as toxic shame and a legalistic mentality were what was driving these addictions and obsessions.
My personal best (so far, and subject to change!) occurred back in the months of August-September 2013, which was 52 days without ‘acting out’ (yet with episodes of ‘edging’). —-> Now passed this personal best, 80 + days!
Currently, I’m past my third goal without acting out! And I’m on my way (over 50%!) to reaching my fourth (and overall) goal of being 120 days without! This is abstinence, without white-knuckling it. I’m not constantly trying to “hold myself back” from jumping into the abyss. When I put it out of my mind, I do my best. If I’m tempted, I change my focus to other things- quoting scriptures if need be, or turning to prayer, etc… But, it’s important for me to not struggle directly with it- as if one can grab a wild cat by the ears. It’s best to just “run” (or flee) as the Bible informs us.
My over all plan is 120 days without acting out, and from there, to just live life free of it:
2 sets of 20 days, and 2 sets of 40 days:
1. 20 days w/out acting out —> complete! 2. 20 days w/out acting out —> complete! 3. 40 days w/out acting out —> complete! (but with challenges toward the end)
4. 40 days w/out acting out = 120 days w/out acting out.
This number represents the ‘end of all flesh’ and the beginning of life in the Spirit (see Gen 6:3, 13; Acts 1:15; 2:1-4).
Though I’m new in this forum, I’ve received a lot of healing in my life so far, and hope to be of encouragement to others on the same journey, whether they’re believers or not, we’re all human and we all need healing from our brokenness in this area, as these sexual hangups are more symptomatic of deeper issues.
Peace and love to all.