Next week will be 11 months without porn consumption. Last month I posted on Reddit about some insights I got thanks to healthy recovery. Check it out if you are interested: https://www.reddit.com/r/pornfree/comments/mtkk2p/10_months_the_journey_is_worthy/
Next month I’ll post the “One Year Post” that will be a review of my personal recovery journey, some tips to those who are getting stuck in the first 30 days, benefits of healthy recovery, and I’ll atend FAQS that may appear to you.
On these post, I’d like to reinforce the importance of a healthy long-term recovery, not only porn abstinence. If you have been addicted to porn and sexual artificial stimulation for a long time, then quitting porn will be only the first (and also most important) step of a healthy life-style.
It’s a common mistake of beginners. At the beginning, 5 years ago, I was obsessed with NoFap. I got the famous “superpowers” for a while (actually, superpowers are only inner skills that we express to others), until I experienced our friendly “flatline”.
I got stucked in my journey, I was seen no sustancial improvement, so the next logic step I followed was Pornfree. Then here I learned the basics of healthy recovery, still became difficult to keep a long streak.
After a couple of years, and after months of emotional suffering, I realised that my pornfree mindset was not working. I had to go one big step further… not only I had to quit porn, but especially porn substitutes (compulsive use of date apps, Instagram, Google Image Search).
The big change, though, was therapy. At that moment, I realised I needed professional support. I couldn’t make a healthy change alone. During six months (one session per week, then every 15 days) I earned coping skills to manage deep emotions I used to hide, such as isolation, anxiety, shame, guilt, boredom, etc.
Then, after a while and months of self-care effort, I began to enjoy myself and the environment. Neediness to please others disappeared gradually. I was (and I am) satisfied with who am I, with my strenghts and weaknesses. My life standards have come back to reality.
Once reached this point, life perspectives goes to another level: you enjoy again the small pleasures, small talk with friends and others becomes much more exciting, your attitude towards reality becomes more positive, you become mentally strong by facing real-life issues, you go back to the present moment more often.
Healthy recovery cannot be enough described with words. It’s a feeling of well-being and self-satisfaction that needs to be lived in order to know its real meaning.
Stress, suffering, pain, anxiety… are still there, off course. However, those feelings come from addressing real important problems, not from escaping reality by jerking to fake “hot” women on a screen and that you’ll probably never see them again.
That, to me, is the real recovery. That point when you can smoothly enjoy small pleasures (eating pizza, drinking coffee, hiking on nature, exercising, reading, socializing, even masturbation) without feelings of guilt, shame and self-punishment on your mind. That point when you reconnect with your inner self, and you accept yourself the way you are and with your personal style without pleasing others so you get “accepted” by society. That point when you dedicate your time and your effort to daily important issues (for example, building long-term relationships, work, study, house tasks, trips, exploring, investigation, hobbies, etc.) and you don’t get distracted by superfluous stuff that don’t make you feel “full” of joy and inner happiness.
I want to leave some things to the one year post, but it’s key to realise that porn compulsive consumption is not the cause of your “misery”; it’s the symptom of a deeper emotional problem that needs to be addressed ASAP by professional counseling and/or by the support of close relatives/partner/friends.
When you reach the point that: if you want real change, you have to really be willing to leave the “harem” (harem is the cave with your super fake models and her rounded butts, her tits, her positions, etc. It’s the isolation of leaving reality and instead fullfill your addiction with porn and its substitutes)… then by daily small effort and self-care you’ll start to notice a big improvement on your daily quality of life. Enjoyment will be back again naturally after some months.
To end up, I’d like to give you a couple of tips that have worked to me when I was at the beginning of therapy:
1) List of priorities: choose what’s important to you and what’s not so important, and stick to it. Off course you can change the priorities when necessary, but try to follow them by its importance. Taking time with friends, family or your partner if you have may be significant to you; or maybe you are at a stage on your life that you want to develop piano skills, or maybe you want to take time to improve your job skills. According to your real “raw” priorities, build your life actions.
2) Limit IG, social network and dating apps: if you are here, probably it’s because you are dealing with sexual issues or sexual negative conditioning. So, the same as an alcoholic needs to reduce alcohol on his/her place, or going less to pubs; to porn-addicted users compulsive binge-watching, peeking and edging might stop your progress. So I recommend you to use those apps with care, only when you feel wellbeing.
3) Healthy masturbation: the fap schedule is not that important. What it matters is how you masturbate. My therapist told me that healthy fapping should be based on feelings of wellbeing, and must not be compulsive to escape from “negative emotions”. Healthy masturbation, instead, should be focused on physical exciting pleasure that might take 15-30 minutes or longer to “finish”. Afterwards, feelings of guilt and shame doesn’t exist because you have felt satisfaction and pleasure on the process of jerking.
Ask me anything you would like to know about recovery. I’m glad when I answer your questions, because I’ve been on the misery, the shitty days, the hardships… I empathize with those that are struggling hardly with themselves, and that want real long-term improvement.
To those… HEALTHY RECOVERY IS A REALITY. It especially takes time, smart direction (chosing priorities) and commitment to enjoy the progress. Because once you know how to address the addiction, then genuine joy starts to come often…