The Orgasm Reboot: A New Approach [CONTROVERSIAL]

Discussion in 'Pornography Addiction' started by TheUnderdog, Sep 8, 2012.

  1. TheUnderdog

    TheUnderdog Active Member Staff Member

    It's been more than 6 months since I created this forum and I'm sure everyone has noticed the same thing as me:

    The success rate is currently very low.

    Plenty of guys have reduced their porn use dramatically, but very few have been able to finally "break free".

    By "breaking free" I mean get to a point where porn is no longer an option in their lives. A point where porn is a thing of the past and they can be able to go months without it. This is what we all ultimately aim for.

    The current recommended approach is this:

    Reboot your brain by going 90-120 days without any sexual stimulation.

    That is the ideal scenario and supposedly the fastest way to recover.

    But, how realistic is it?

    The forum has around 1300 members and there are only 13 members in the Hall of Fame. That's a 1% success rate.

    Let's give it the benefit of the doubt and suppose that there are actually 40 members who have been able to go more than 100 straight days without porn, making it a 3% success rate at best.

    I still believe this is extremely low.

    Here's what happens most of the time:

    A guy starts a journal and decides he's going to try a reboot. He has a counter for PMO (which usually means masturbating to porn, but can also mean complete abstinence). He reaches 10-15 days or whatever and relapses. Then he starts again. Sometimes he gets discouraged and binges until he feels depleted. This cycle repeats itself over and over again and it can go on like this for months or even years.

    Romantic made a great thread about it: http://www.yourbrainrebalanced.com/index.php?topic=1530.0

    I never understood why he got attacked so much for it. He was really onto something there.

    People around here become obsessed way too much with the "orgasm-free" reboot.

    The main problem lies with the "all or nothing" mentality that you either quit both porn and masturbation or quit none.

    This inevitably leads to: If I'm going to relapse, I might as well relapse to porn.

    To which I respond with:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=31g0YE61PLQ

    Absolute nonsense.

    There's nothing wrong with trying to quit masturbation forever, but let's not forget that porn is our #1 enemy here.

    I am aware that there are people who have done it. I'm not saying it's impossible.

    What I want to do here is increase the success rate of people quitting porn.

    The idea is to keep porn separate from masturbation.

    Avoid at all costs the trap of thinking "If I'm going to fap, I might as well fap to porn".

    If you've been trying to quit for months without success, then I highly suggest using a SPREADSHEET.

    Here you have a ready-made spreadsheet for the whole year 2014:

    https://docs.google.com/spreadsheet/ccc?key=0AvdmZGYxQFHQdHl5aVpZZXMtRU5HOG1MNnVkOC1LaHc&usp=sharing

    You can either download it to your computer or add it to your signature.

    Just enter the number of times you fap in each column. The cells will add themselves and change colors automatically.

    Personally, I recommend replacing your counter with the spreadsheet, but if you want to use both that's also fine.

    A good rule of thumb is to try to keep your total orgasms per month to 5 or less (ideally zero).

    -

    Here's how you can incorporate it in your signature:

    Step #1: Log in to your Google account.

    Step #2: Open the spreadsheet here.

    Step #3: Go to File->Make a Copy and give it a name

    Step #4: Go to Share in the upper right corner and change it from 'Private' to 'Anyone with a link'.

    Step #5: Add the following code to your forum signature (make sure you replace 'SPREADSHEET_LINK' with your actual spreadsheet link):

    Code:
    Take a look at my [b]PMO Spreadsheet[/b]: [url=SPREADSHEET_LINK]Click Here[/URL]
    That's it!

    :)

    Anytime you need to update your spreadsheet just log in to Google Docs and open it.

    Simple as that.
     
  2. the_engine

    the_engine New Member

    I don't know how much of this I agree with, but I can say that having sex during my reboot has helped tremendously. It hasn't slowed my reboot down at all, and if it has, I don't care. I think it has made it that much easier. I had sex about 8 days into my reboot, and it was phenomenal.

    As you say, what happens to so many dudes is that they feel the urge to ejaculate, and then they feel guilty about it. So they go ahead and do it, and then they feel like failures, which leads to a relapse and they say "Fuck it, I might as well look at porn!" and they're back to square one.

    Men are not meant to be celibate, at least not in this culture, and neither are they meant to abstain from orgasm. Ejaculating is perfectly natural. Ejaculating to porn is not.

    Of course, the big problem here is the huge difference between sex and masturbation. Treating them the same is a mistake, I think (not saying you're doing this) but that's what has ended up happening in some of these circumstances.

    I think the whole "No MO!" part started from people's inability to MO without fantasizing. And indeed, if you can't finish without thinking about a porn scene, or a facebook pic, or some other damn thing, I think you should not be MOing! Healthy masturbation is, to me, a simple act of release. You should be deriving physical pleasure from the act itself, and your response (eventual ejaculation) should be the result of a physical stimulus, and not your brain slipping back into the crack of your addiction.

    Of course, as Gary has pointed out, cutting out the dopamine rush is what helps to fix your noggin. You should be aware of this, and if you know you can't masturbate without fantasizing, DON'T DO IT. Because that's where the rush is coming from.

    In my case I am incredibly lucky to have a fiance who is understanding. And even though we are having sex, it is infrequent (once every 3-4 days) and I never try to force the act. We are physically intimate and affectionate for days at a time, and then when I really feel like having sex -- like mega fucking horny -- we get to it, and it is great. No fantasizing, no nothing. Except for the odd twinge, I have had no desire to go looking at porn. She's away for the weekend at a wedding, and so far I have had no desire to crack open my browser and be naughty. In fact, I'm waiting for her to get home so I can ravage her. Of course, I realize that not everybody has a sexual partner, and this is where the problem comes in. What's a 20 year old virgin to do?

    It may be that the best, fastest way to recovery is to abstain completely. But if that is not realistic, don't force it. It's better to succeed slowly than to fail quickly.
     
  3. InsideOut

    InsideOut Guest

    Rule of 95%. A few winners and a crowd of failures.

    Not for all, I want to say. In my case, as well as in someone's else too (probably) the main problem is overall desensitisation, including porn, fantasies and fapping altogether. I can't believe that moving pictures on the screen can be the cause alone, but the ability to bring myself unlimited amount of pleasure in short time at every moment is certainly able to screw with reward system. As the proof I have my recent relapses — it all was fantasy, but I was inhibited and depressed afterwards the same way as with the porn binges. But your mileage may vary, I'm not to generalise or critique, just another point of view.

    In all the other items I'm completely agree with you. I think I should write down this post somewhere :) And readjust my criteria.
     
  4. TheUnderdog

    TheUnderdog Active Member Staff Member

    Have a double counter (one for P and one for M) and taper off masturbation, until you get to a point where you never watch porn and almost never masturbate.
     
  5. InsideOut

    InsideOut Guest

    I guess it'll be more like "binge counter". To have a more complex approach. I don't think of eliminating masturbation unless I find someone to be with, as I mentioned, but excessive use of it should be gone.
     
  6. Carpe diem

    Carpe diem New Member

    This is a brilliant post!! Could not agree more underdog - everything you said from start to finish I fully agree with.

    I relapsed today and plan to restart my reboot with no porn ever, no masturbation for as long as possible, after a few weeks I will aim for as much sex as possible (probably wont be much lol) and eventualy masturbation with a once a week limit (when not having sex)
     
  7. bucks3402

    bucks3402 Active Member

    Underdog, I essentially did an Orgasm Reboot. Lasted 58 days, including losing my damn virginity in the process.

    Eventually I did relapse - which I believe was from wanting to self-medicate rather than addiction urges (those two concepts can tie-in together, I know).

    Even though I also advocate this type of reboot, it's VERY important not to over-fantasize or binge masturbate as that will lead to porn relapse.
     
  8. I think its a great idea, especially for those struggling. The main culprit is pornography, not masturbation. Masturbation exponentially increases the rush and attractiveness of porn, but in isolation ( not thinking about porn ) is not the problem. Before coming across P, I masturbated like the rest of the male population my age and had no problems with the ladies. The approach described above addresses the main culprit in isolated sexual practice for single guys, namely the all or nothing approach.
    I believe the approach described needs some structure. For instance, for the first month, explicitly state the frequency ( every two weeks, for example) and amount of time and amount of sessions on that date. So it could be 1 month, No P, masturbate every 2 weeks, on Sunday night, limit to 1 session less than 15 min. No fantasy, pure physical sensation. Modifications to structure would then be made at the end of the planned out month.
     
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  10. Gary Wilson

    Gary Wilson Active Member

    This is great thread. We need more guys experimenting with any and all the variations - AND report back as to what works and what doesn't.

    Just to clarify the rebooting page on YBOP does not say that. In fact, it suggests fooling around, sexual intercourse and even orgasms for some guys. From the YBOP rebooting page -
    http://yourbrainonporn.com/node/79

    What is "allowed", and encouraged, is contact with a real-life partner. In fact, rewiring to the real deal may be a necessary step for some guys. Kissing, touching, fooling around are all "allowed. For some guys, even intercourse with orgasm is beneficial (note - some men, especially those with porn-induced ED employ gentle intercourse without orgasm). Erections are great, but should not be forced through vigorous stimulation. If they happen, they happen.

    I have one very strong request for posters, those gathering info, those trying this, those reading posts: Please differentiate between men who have ED and men that don't.

    I say on the rebooting page "if all you are trying to do is quit porn - then quit porn. But if you have ED.....blah, blah, blah. In other words, in many places as possible, I try to differentiate the recommendations for those with porn-induced ED.

    Just to let you know we have also addressed slow rebooters (ED only) on this page and suggest that they may need to start masturbating if they don't have a partner. Longer may no be better - though it has for some guys....so confusing isn't it. See - Started on Internet porn and my reboot (Erectile Dysfunction) is taking too long http://www.yourbrainonporn.com/started-internet-porn-and-my-reboot-erectile-dysfunction-taking-too-long
     
  11. JDoe

    JDoe No amount of pixels is ever gonna love you back...

    Excellent thread - and I think UnderDog nailed it in the original post.

    I also agree with what the_engine said about "I think the whole "No MO!" part started from people's inability to MO without fantasizing." Running porn inside your head is not a whole lot different from running it on the computer screen. You are still fantasizing about something super-stimulating - and the brain simply doesn't know the difference between that fantasy vs. reality. Just like when viewing porn.
    I tried, on one of my reboot attempts, doing MO without P (even though I was still visualising the P inside my head). Guess what? ED came back...just as though I had been actually using porn. The only logical explanation I can come up with for this is what I have just described.
    When I eliminated MO completely (and P, visual or imagined), I started getting better.

    Also, I still have fairly regular sex with my wife during reboot (every 3-4 days). I do think this may have slowed my prgress a bit - but that it has made the "need for release" that I think most men experience a non-issue for me. So it would be unfair of me to judge what a man who is unable to have occasional Os is going through. I would imagine that to be semi-torturous...even though it would probably rapidly speed up his rate of recovery.

    I think, as in everything else in life, this is about finding a balance: a place where you are heading in a positive direction (still recovering), yet not torturing yourself so badly that relapse becomes an inevitability. The steps UnderDog outlined make perfect sense to me in this regard.
     
  12. zman

    zman New Member

    May I add my endorsement to this approach as well. I like it (perhaps because that it pretty much what I have been doing from the start). It's realistic and more importantly it addresses my main problem = PMO, not M (so long as it's limited) or O (I love being with my wife as often as possible).
     
  13. bucks3402

    bucks3402 Active Member

    As someone who had a fairly successful orgasm reboot (before it was cool haha) let me emphasize that avoiding "porn" should include any and all visual stimulation.

    Soft-core, bikini pictures, even clothed women. Take ANYTHING visual off the table. M'ing to even the tamest of pictures or videos will escalate back to porn every time.
     
  14. Netherlife

    Netherlife Guest

    I'm inclined to disagree with you, not on principle but on the mindset. The big problem here is that you are thinking about recovery as a very short term process. It has been 4 months for me since I learned about ybop and began this journey...but I have no intention of giving up or quitting. I don't think its that easy to quit masturbation. It shouldn't be that easy. And just because a person has made it into the hall of fame does not mean that they have beaten their addiction.

    I have hung around the /r/nofap IRC and the reddit page for 3 months (I have moved here, since it is a safer and warmer environment...reddit has its fair share of trolls). During my time there I have noticed a bit of a pattern. There are those that make it to 90 days with no masturbation and no pornography from the first try, and then they relapse and have an extremely difficult time building that streak again. I'm talking about people who go from making it to 90+ days to being incapable of doing one week. I've seen so many posts asking "what is going on, I did 90 days but I can't get back up... its become impossibly difficult".

    The other group of people are those that relapse often. They keep trying, and they have good months and bad months. Some times they make it a month, other times they relapse after 7-10 days. Slowly and surely, these people do get to 90 days. It takes some of them months to do it...others it takes years to do it, but they eventually do manage it. From my experience with nofap, I managed 15 days during my first real streak (after one false start). After I relapsed, I made it to 7 days. Then slowly that number went down to 3 and 4, and managed to grow back to 7 occasionally. This continued for about two months. For two months I just could not stop myself. It was like my brain would just shut off. And then suddenly in July I make it to 22 days. And then I make it to 12 days, and then 13 days, and then 5 days and now I just relapsed today at 9 days. Recovery is not linear. Gradually I will make it to 90 days. Slow and steady wins this race. You have to change the way your brain functions. This is a gradual process. Either way, regardless of whether or not you build a long streak or don't...you have to go through this process. If you make it to 90 days during your very first few attempts, you will have trouble if you relapse. This is a very common theme on /r/nofap.

    Here is where the problem comes in though. When your urges are pounding you hard, you don't want to be thinking "oh I'll just give in to my urges, it won't reset my streak". You're just setting yourself up for failure. You're basically justifying giving up. I have come to realize that there is indeed a breaking point...a point where you just can't go any further. A point where your mind just turns off and you masturbate, but the concept of giving up should NEVER enter your rational mind. If you are not ready yet, you will relapse. Your emotional brain will overpower your rational brain and you will lose the battle. But do not help this process by thinking that its ok to relapse. There is no need to. Its going to happen anyway. When you are ready, you will be able to hit that 90 day mark. Your rational mind will prevail over your desires. That does not happen automatically, and it certainly won't happen any faster if you tell yourself its ok to give up.

    No my friends, I do not think that there should be a tolerance for masturbation or porn. Keep those thoughts for your emotional mind. They are the very thoughts and actions that we are trying to defeat. I guarantee you this: if you stick with this, if you never give up...no matter how many times you relapse...you will make it past 90 days. It is a guarantee. Do not limit yourself. Limits are meant to be broken.


    -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Slightly off topic, but still relevant is the concept of sexual energy. I have not written it in my journal yet, but ever since I started this journey I have begun to live an incredible life. When I first started, I did not know anything. I did not know how deep this rabbit hole goes. All I knew is that I had escalated, and I had ED. I also knew I had HOCD and I wanted to know if I was really gay or straight. I wanted my mind to tell me the truth. I wanted to know if my sexual preferences and fetishes were really my own. Was I really this disgusting person, or was it the porn? Well, Anyone who has done this for a while knows the answer to those questions.

    However, what I did not expect was that on day 5 of my journey, I had woken up feeling this new found sense of energy. Up until this point in my life, I always felt dead. I always felt tired. I never had any energy for anything. My room looked like a tornado went through it. I couldn't even lift a shirt. Chores, studying, and everything life had to offer was extremely difficult for me to do. I was not living life. I was incapable of it. But on day 5, I woke up feeling INCREDIBLE. Underdog, you have a DBZ picture as your avatar so you might appreciate this video:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bc7cpTBi3_I

    This was basically me. Little did I know, since that day my life would never be the same. I had not only had inherited the energy to live my life, but I had learned to love life. All aspects of life. A year ago, I would go to bed at 4 in the morning and wake up at 3 pm. Today, I go to bed at 10 pm and wake up at 4:30 in the morning to go to the gym. After that I take a cold shower and have a healthy breakfast. My eating habits have changed. My body has changed. My interests have changed. My mind has changed. My emotions are deeper and more complex than they could ever have been. There is not enough time in the day for the amount of things that I want to do. I enjoy the little things so much more. Everything is beautiful. I have this natural attraction to women, this magnetic unstoppable force. Nature is beautiful to me. Simple foods taste amazing. On my good days, I feel more alive than I have ever felt. It is often overwhelming. I simply cannot believe, after 24 years on this green earth that one can feel this way. My social anxiety is gone. My panic attacks are gone. I've got more confidence, I can talk to people...I am no longer afraid of living.

    I have to say that I think that while porn is the number one enemy here, sexual energy is not meant to end up in a tissue. It is such a massive power source. It can be channeled to do incredible things. I live an incredible life because of that energy. I love every moment of my life, even the times when I have the urges. It is the urge that forces me to live the way I live. The urge to masturbate forces me to go out and live my life. The options here are that simple. You either A) relapse, or B) leave the house and live your life. And that is amazing. Nofap / NO PMO has forced me into the world. It has forced me to face my problems head on. And I learned to love it. I can't live without it. They say that the urges never go away. They simple diminish in intensity. That is exactly what I want to happen. I do not want them to go away. Urges can be channeled. You don't have to sit there and take it. You can leave, you can go out...live your life, channel that energy into anything. There is a plethora of things that you can do with your life. And the most amazing thing is that its all interesting to me. My semester in college recently started, and I found myself sneaking into classes that I did not register for...simply to sit through the lectures. This is coming from a person with a 2.3 GPA, who used to cut weeks upon weeks of class to play video games and watch porn.

    I've realized that once you take away that instant gratification layer...life becomes so much more pleasant. I am never bored anymore. Ever. I simply do not have time to be bored. I can't feel bored even if I wanted to. To me, boredom has become a symptom of brain imbalances. There should never be any reason to feel bored. Ever.

    My point being is that you've got to use those urges to masturbate...use that energy...harness it and you can do anything. There are no limits. There are days when I have the most insane urges, and no matter what I do I can't seem to shake them. These usually come a few days after a relapse...but I tell myself these words: "If I can get through this today, I won't have to feel it tomorrow...tomorrow will be an incredible day if I can get through today". And its usually true. By resisting my urges, I harness that energy and the days afterwards are usually pretty incredible. I feel like a god amongst men. I radiate life.

    This is why I don't want to put limitations on abstinence. The urges feed me with the fuel that I need to keep living an incredible life. This is why the hardest times for me are not actually the times when I have urges, but those calm periods when I do not have them. I have no drive to push me forward. However, urges can be debilitating, and that is why it is worth it to get past 90 days of no masturbation. While the urges will still be there past 90 days, they will be significantly weaker. I hope they will be enough to push me out into the world, but not debilitating enough to make me fall on my knees and shake involuntarily.

    It is worth it to harness this sexual energy. If you defeat masturbation, you defeat porn as well. You become a master over your body, and your urges. I believe that is the fundamental key to happiness in this life.
     
  15. JDoe

    JDoe No amount of pixels is ever gonna love you back...

    Netherlife, though I may have a slightly different opinion about the first half of your post - the second half was just AWESOME!!! Beautifully put mate. Thanks you for taking the time to put that down for others to read and be inspired by. You said it beautifully. BRAVO!
     
  16. the_engine

    the_engine New Member

    There's nothing wrong with masturbation. History shows us it is a perfectly natural human function. The problem lies in how porn changes our brains' response to sexual stimuli. That's why both masturbation and sex are affected by heavy porn use (at least, in those people with ED).

    Saying you will never masturbate again is just dumb. Because you probably will. And I do think that those of us who have the privilege of being in a sexual relationship need to consider that there are horny 20 year olds that have sexual urges. Telling them to just abstain from that gratification simply doesn't work. Ask the Catholic Church if you don't believe me, they've been trying it for centuries.

    The focus should be on breaking the mental connection between porn and orgasm. Once that is done, you can have a healthy sex life that includes a normal amount of whacking it (once every couple of weeks?) Sure, overdoing it is a problem, and everyone knows what I mean -- death grip insensitivity, otherwise known as white knuckle syndrome. But I'm thinking that if you are going to masturbate, it's the kind that's going to last 30 seconds because you're all backed up. I think that is perfectly natural. Masturbating constantly to satisfy your body's desire for sex is a bad idea.

    Like most things in life, all-or-nothing approaches seldom work. Even with the porn part, we have to carry this idea to its conclusion. Do the guys on this site really think they will never look at a chick in a bikini? Never look at the ass plastered all over TV? Of course you will, whether inadvertently or not. You can abstain from hard core pornography, sure, and I think that should be everyone's goal if they are trying to fix themselves and their ED. But to claim you will never ever look at another sexually suggestive image again? Like I said, not going to happen.

    Total honesty is required here. In the words of Al Swearengen, if you kid yourself about your behavior you'll never learn a fucking thing.
     
  17. TheUnderdog

    TheUnderdog Active Member Staff Member

    The problem is that many single men around here want to quit BOTH porn and masturbation forever.

    For most single guys this is just a completely unrealistic goal. It implies abstaining from orgasm for an indefinite amount of time. It could be three months or it could be a whole year.

    It's only realistic if you're a guy who has no problems getting laid.

    It's very easy for me to say "I'm going to wake up every single day at 5:00am to do yoga for the next 100 days straight without exception". But, is it realistic? No matter how many Rocky Balboa training montages I watch on YouTube, it is highly likely that I will sleep late one day.

    What I propose is to put quitting porn as the #1 priority and quitting masturbation as the #2 priority.

    If you REALLY want to quit masturbation, then have a double counter, one for P and one for M.

    This way if you're going to relapse it will make you think twice about using porn.

    Nobody wants to reset both counters.

    ;)
     
  18. JDoe

    JDoe No amount of pixels is ever gonna love you back...

    Fully agreed with your entire post...but just wanted to say you get 10,000 'cool points' from me for quoting the great and almighty St. Swenjin! ;)
     
  19. TheUnderdog

    TheUnderdog Active Member Staff Member

    Great post man!!!!! Especially the bolded part.
     
  20. Netherlife

    Netherlife Guest

    My goal is to be self sustained by wet dreams. I don't want to be free of the urge to masturbate. As I stated above, it is that urge that guides me. Without it, I have no incentive to live the life I lead. That level of control is achievable. It requires a great amount of dedication, but as I stated...I am not looking for a quick fix for this problem. I have MO'd since I was 7 years old and PMO'd since I was 11, I'm not going to lie to myself by saying that I'm going to abstain from MO and PMO for 90 days and I'll be cured. Things just don't work that way. That being said, I have set some boundaries for myself. If I manage to stay away from MO / PMO for 90 days, I will begin to actively pursue women. No sooner than that. I need to be in control over my urges. I don't want to trade one addiction over for the other. I do not want to treat women like an object to cure myself of my urges.

    Another problem I think is that we're focused too much on the streak. What does it really matter if you've gone for 3 days or 300 days? You can still relapse. What matters is today. Now. This very moment. That is all that really counts here. Getting through this moment. It doesn't matter how much you've done or how much you've set out to do if you can't get over the now.

    You may say that I have unattainable goals, but I don't limit myself to three months or a year. I will do whatever it takes to get to my goal.

    Finally, why wet dreams? Well, I'm not opposed to the notion of the orgasm. I'm opposed to the concept of instant gratification. There is something fundamentally wrong with this. Instant gratification is what basically broke my life in half. By telling myself that pleasure is all that matters, by allowing myself to be ruled by instantaneous pleasure I robbed myself of the moments that make me feel truly alive. Why wake up at 4:30 in the morning when I could sleep? Why go to the gym, when I can gorge myself on junk food? Why care about my sexual health when I can PMO? Why go to class when I can play video games all day? Why care about the future, if I can feel pleasure now?

    The answer is simple. By forcing myself out of bed every morning (at 4:30 AM)to go to the gym, I am doing something incredible. I am experiencing life. I get to feel the pleasure of effort. Of putting effort into something. I feel alive.

    When I go through that set that leaves my body shaking, I feel incredible once its over. I get to feel proud of my accomplishments, and proud of my body. I hold my head up high when I leave the gym. I feel alive.

    I feel the same way with cold showers? Why take cold showers if I can relax in a nice hot shower? Why put myself through that unneccesary discomfort? Well, that unneccesary discomfort is what makes me feel human. The joy I feel, the incredible burst of adrenaline...and life...it feels incredible. I feel alive after these showers.

    Why go outside when you can spend your days marveling at all the artificial wonders that the internet has to offer? Why bother with the outside world when you can find out what your friends are doing on facebook and twitter? Isn't that what real joy is? Look at the convenience of instant gratification! When I go on long walks, and take the time to smell the flowers, notice the birds and the trees. When I feel the cool breeze gently caressing my skin, I feel alive.

    Similarly, when I am running through my neighborhood to get home on a rainy day, and I am soaked from head to toe...I feel alive.

    When I put in the effort to complete an assignment, when I focus on my task and do not waver to any temptation until it is done. The feeling when the work is finished, is worth more to me than anything in this world. I feel alive.

    Why read books, when you can watch TV. Why put the effort into reading? Into imagining your own worlds when that act can be done for you by a television? When I read books and immerse myself in knowledge, when I use my own mind and my own thoughts...I feel alive.

    All of these things would never give me nearly as much pleasure if I had given into instant gratification. Because in the mind of an addict, why put yourself through this effort to feel alive when you could just masturbate. When you could just masturbate... isn't that the saddest thing you've ever heard? Instead of living your life. Instead of putting yourself out there and really living... you're masturbating...you're pleasuring yourself for no effort. Instead of going out there to feel life...to know what it is like to feel truly alive...you're draining yourself of the very essence that gives you that life. You're giving up the joys of effort for a lie. And that to me is the ultimate tragedy of this addiction.

    Forget erectile dysfunction. Forget the HOCD and the escalation. The biggest crime that masturbation and porn have committed against my life is that they blinded me to the true pleasures of life. They led me to believe in the artificial, instantaneous pleasures. There was a time when I thought that nothing was more pleasant than playing world of warcraft. That there was nothing more joyful than sitting down and watching an entire season of dexter in one sitting. That there was nothing more I could do with my life aside from sitting around and pleasuring myself endlessly. That all effort, all work...was pointless if pleasure was not the reward. That every action that I took depended upon two factors: The rate at which pleasure is derived from the action, and the amount of pleasure received. That is the ultimate offense. That is the one I cannot and will not forgive.

    You're fighting an enemy that does not win by fighting harder than you. It wins by convincing you that fighting is not worth the effort.
     

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