Just turned 40! Three years clean from PMO, but the struggle goes ever on.

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by SRL, Jan 3, 2017.

  1. SRL

    SRL Member

    Hello, everyone!

    I just turned the big four-oh, so I figured I better am-scray from the youngsters' forum, make my way up an age bracket, and join all you silver foxes. :)

    As of today, I've been clean from PMO for 1,196 days. I started on September 25 2013. Since then, I've had my ups and downs, but not one relapse. Over the 2016 holiday season, I lapsed back into watched a lot of P, and I've since taken steps to reaffirm my commitment to sobriety.

    You can find my original journal here:
    http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/forum/threads/three-years-clean-renewing-my-commitment-srl.13848/

    Feel free to read as much or as little as you like. As is the case with many of us, my journal is alternately uplifting and humiliating, but I'm proud of every last moment of the last three-plus years.

    As evidenced by my backsliding in 2016, the struggle never ends. There's a crazy, janky, short-circuiting dopamine receptor in my brain, and it craves constant input. My commitment to sobriety includes more than simply abstaining from PMO -- it includes a healthier relationship with dopamine and stimulus. It includes a healthier relationship to online activity. It includes less Facebook, Twitter and Instagram -- because all of those services are replete with triggers.

    It includes more time reading. More time meditating. More time creating art. More time working out, going on hikes, being with my woman -- basically, more time being alive.

    I further fall into the category of fellow who believes that although there's a place for P in a free society, as an industry, it's got a pretty nasty dark side, and it has the capacity to often — though not always — exploit and degrade women (and sometimes men). I know that's a controversial subject, and I welcome discussion on it.

    I'm also a huge fan of this site. It's provided me with a rock-solid support network since I started my reboot. Almost to a person, I found this place to be packed with good-hearted, well-meaning men (and some women) who honestly want to change. I've found this place to be a salve to toxic masculinity and an enclave of well-considered introspection.

    Everyone here has their share of problems, and we only blame one person for 'em: ourselves, which is as it should be.

    Please note, I have two goofy catchphrases I use a lot:

    SRL: Strength, Respect, Love.
    VTM: Valerian Tea Moment — that moment of temptation right before you act on an impulse.

    Anyway, that's me — 2AqutHUq. Feel free to call me 2A. I'll be continuing my journey with all you silver foxes.

    SRL!
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2017
    Outsider. likes this.
  2. 2BFree

    2BFree New Member

    Happy BD. That's a long run to not watch pron.
     
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  3. Rex

    Rex PMO free is the only way it's going to be for me.

    Welcome back to the forum and welcome to 40, it's actually pretty good, you'll find you have wisdom you didn't have a few short years ago! Don't beat yourself up, at least you quickly realized that looking at porn the last 2 weeks was going to lead to P-and-then-MO. At least you didn't MO, that would have put you right back into the full PMO. Congrats on staying away from PMO for 1196 days, that's a long time.

    One of thing I have learned about the PMO addiction, is that loneliness is one of my big triggers. And loneliness hit hard for me during the holidays as it does with many people. I went on a PMO marathon. Keep your head up, you have done 1196 days, keep vigilent and keep busy for the next few days the further you get away from December 2016, without falling from PMO, the safer you'll be and your confidence will return.

    You did the right thing coming back and being honest with yourself that you are getting close to the cliff. You can do it, you can keep it up and stay away from porn.

    Rex
     
    SRL likes this.
  4. SRL

    SRL Member

    My latest challenge is to get back to a solid state of sobriety, staying away from all manner of peeking at P and in general, not acting on VTMs. To this end, I'm making every effort to control my online activities and to be way more mindful.

    This is day seven of no peeking and no VTMs.

    SRL!
     
  5. SRL

    SRL Member

    Thanks! But to be clear, I've been clean from PMO for 1197 days; It was only a week ago that I watched P. I'm trying to get back to a solid state of sobriety. :)

    Also, hello! Thanks for responding. SRL!
     
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  6. SRL

    SRL Member

    Rex, thanks so much for the kind words of support. Well said on all counts. Being hungover is one of my main triggers for peeking at P, as is aimless online activity, among others. :)

    Happy to be in my 40s. Heck, besides the PMO addiction, my 30s were great. I'm looking forward to another wonderful decade on this planet.

    SRL!
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2017
  7. Welcome to elder statesmen club! Seriously, I really think this forum needs at least one OLDER age category as the way it's currently structured I feel like I'm supposed to be one step away from retirement ha. So not the case. Wow, what an awesome run, congrats! We look forward to your input :)
     
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  8. SRL

    SRL Member

    Thank you, sir! And congrats on passing 100 days -- that's no joke! :)

    SRL
     
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  9. GreyHeron

    GreyHeron Member

    Hi 2A

    Welcome to the veterans board. I am currently trying to lock down any opportunities that do not need to be taken. It is so appealing, apparently, to have a little peek but is not pleasant when I switch the computer off to feel the high come crashing down and the feelings of low self worth taunting me for wasting time and letting my wife go to sleep on her own.

    fly well and I hope that we can meet up in formation again
     
    SRL likes this.
  10. SRL

    SRL Member

    Hey, I'm with you, sir -- and hang in there. Stay strong. You hit the nail on the head when you described the high you get. Jesus god, it's a powerful rush, but it's so empty.

    We got this. Hold formation, hold fast.

    SRL
     
  11. ananoman

    ananoman Active Member

    Great to have you here. Yeah my guess is that this is/will be a lifelong struggle. It is just the way we are wired.
     
  12. 2BFree

    2BFree New Member

    I would say that after such a long time and only 1 time I'd consider that still sober. I would be happy with that track record. It would be like if I had been working out for 4 years totally dedicated and then ate McDonalds once. It would have almost no effect on me. Maybe it's a bad comparison but still, I wouldn't even think it a big deal in my own life, personally. Keep up the great work with your dedication.
     
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  13. SRL

    SRL Member

    Very well said. Thank you for the kind words -- and I didn't mean to downplay anything or otherwise undercut where you're coming from. Apologies. Day two is no joke. The first 30 days are the hardest, no question. You got this. :)

    SRL
     
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  14. SRL

    SRL Member

    Thanks so much! I do believe we've crossed paths before. Congrats on passing 1500 days -- what an accomplishment!

    Looks like you and I are in similar boats; long time since we PMO'ed, but we're still struggling with the occasional peek. We got this.

    SRL
     
  15. 40New30

    40New30 Keep going

    Welcome to the over 40 forum :)

    Buddy, I just had a valerian tea moment today myself.

    I am jet lagged and that's all it took to tear down my resolve...didn't relapse, but had a very short peek. Crazy that we can still fall for that shit. I'm glad I can shut it down and never fully relapse at this point, but is that really true? Peeks can easily lead to relapses, we all know that.

    Glad you're here, man.
     
    SRL likes this.
  16. SRL

    SRL Member

    Day eight of no peeking or VTMs is underway. My mini-goal is set for 14 days. I can do this.

    Sending SRL to all!
     
  17. SRL

    SRL Member

    Man, I have SOOOOOOOOO been there. Jesus, being jetlagged feels just like being hungover, which is one of my "soft" states, when I'm most vulnerable. Nice job shutting it down. UGH -- we'll always have this demon, won't we? Oh, well. THANKS, INTERNET. :D

    And congrats on 232 days!!!! That's no joke!!!!!

    SRL
     
  18. Wabi-sabi

    Wabi-sabi Imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete

    This. Other forums I participate in are a case of the guy with the best credit limit wins. . . here we get to talk. (And welcome to this side of the aged divide - I'm 46, which I'd rather be than 26.)

    I too had a moment earlier in the week, tempted by something I saw on Facebook. In an instant my heart rate had doubled and my focus narrowed to just the screen.

    It's interesting that, right now, I have no emotional need to watch porn. I regard triggers as my underlying emotional state, not pictures on a screen - but dots on a computer monitor still have this vast power over me. I guess it's like thinking a drug won't work on you just because you weren't planning to take it.

    A wake-up moment, and I'm stronger for it.
     
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  19. bobjes

    bobjes Active Member

    Hey 2Aq,

    Just a thought. Instead of demonising the Valerian Tea Moments, why not welcome the VTM's? Welcome the moment of temptation as a strong reminder for the journey of self improvement that I am on. The demon becomes my ally that help me stay on the journey I choose. A choice of becoming the best possible me, so much bigger than the initial non PMO journey.

    Welcome brother (-:
     
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  20. SRL

    SRL Member

    That's not a bad way to look at it, sir! I guess we're talking semantics here -- everyone has VTMs, the same way we all have feelings. A VTM is just another feeling -- but the question is how to we *act* on those feelings?

    So I guess a more granular definition of "VTM" wouldn't be the moment itself, but rather the next moment, when you *act* on it. (I think the definition in my sig says as much?)

    But in any event, well said. Thanks for the kind words!

    SRL
     

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