I noticed while logging on this morning that I've been a member for about 3 and a half years. I haven't participated as much here, other than intermittent bursts, and I think I first acknowledged that I had a porn addiction about 10 years ago. So, while I've had the addiction for much longer, maybe 18 years?, I've been struggling with it since I've realized I had it.
I've had four or five periods of trying to rebalance my brain from porn and I think this is the first I've really observed myself going through the process. I am still having days where I feel like doing absolutely nothing and others where I feel great. The past couple of days I've noticed the 'hunting' tendency trying to crop up but have caught it. I'm not beating myself up about it. Reminding myself that such things will pop up, that it is okay and that I can overcome it helps. It also amazes me how the mind can hold onto porn flashbacks for so long.
I'm now at day 14. I've been experiencing the common ups and downs. There were a couple of days at the end of last week where I felt great, but for the past couple of days I've felt pretty blah. I haven't felt sexual stimulation coming from within yet. There have been a couple of times where I've been flipping through the channels and felt nervous from the sexual content and changed to something else. The first time I initially became a little out of sorts as I could hear myself saying 'this is how it starts', 'it'll be downhill from here'.
I've been feeling in a rather grey mood for the past several days, which I actually don't mind. I suppose that may be an ironic side effect of feeling grey. I also think it may be a natural devise that counters the need for a constant stream of dopamine. I started porn rather young and I expect to be in this for the long haul. I saw on somebody else's blog post a mention of a radio interview where a guy had his worse detox reactions three months in and I believe he said he didn't feel like he fully recovered until nine months.
Yesterday I told a family member who already knew about my addiction that I had relapsed. Writing about it here helped too; it seems that bringing it into the light for others helps get over the initial urges. It seems there are different points in the cycle where the impulses are the strongest, and just getting over the first hump usually involved sharing the struggle with others. Keeping it concealed just allows it to grow.
I've had many relapses in the past and several periods of being free from porn that have lasted 2-3 months. Porn seems to sneak into view subtly but noticeable. Finding porn online, even with blockers is such an easy thing now and it seems like developing an internal 'porn blocker' may be of more use than the external ones. In one of my early successes I just got rid of my internet access completely for a period, but I can't do that now since I've started an online business.
Last week started out pretty good. I didn't really feel many lows, except at the start and recently. The past couple of days I've noticed lots of negative emotions popping up, mainly resentment and entitlement. I rarely feel these emotions, so they were noticable. The emotions were only loosly connected to whatever external object, so I think there is something else they're connected to. I don't know if that is wishful thinking on my part, because I feel pretty petty otherwise.