PMO recovery, Week 2

Submitted by buckethead on
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I’m really tempted to say that psychologically at least, this has been one of the hardest week ever. Following the first week, I still had those cravings and fantasies coming in my head.

I changed my work habits (I’m working for an IT company, I’m on the Web all the time) and literally cut all the crap out of my “routine” which consisted – when not working - in distracting myself by looking at Facebook or Websites that might contains suggestive ads. One problem less.

Also, I find it particularly hard not to look at women when going out for lunch. I guess I should avoid every possible stimuli but that is extremely hard. I don’t know where the limit lies between “avoiding dopamine rushes” and “not looking at women”, really. I prefer to be careful though, I’m still in the early stages, so, for the moment, I’m just saying no to everything, no distinction.

So it looked a lot like week 1 actually. Until day 10. On that day, I reached an unexpected low point. I had an argument with a friend of mine, and I took his criticism too hard, starting to doubt myself, and slowly slipping in depressive mood. Then, totally unexpected, the HOCD stroke back.
While I was doubting, I saw a photo of a man’s chest on a random newspaper, and starting to doubt even more: “oh really, I’m at such a low point, see I’m looking at this guy here… I might even be gay, I really don’t know who I am anymore” and such other happy thoughts. Which, looking back a few days later, just makes literally no sense. And really, that is the danger of HOCD; it’s like a devil of sorts, lurking around, striking when you are in doubt. The worse thing is that I was feeling so low that I was tempted to masturbate *to compensate*. A balanced person doesn’t do that for those reasons. I didn’t masturbate in the end, but I am grateful for this episode; I now understand how the pattern works for me (doubt -> hocd strikes -> binge). It’s the “doubt” part I have to fight, so that it doesn’t escalate any further.

My PMO recovery process is indeed revealing a more tortured part of me than I expected; however, I am strongly determined to continue and until today (day 14), I haven’t fell back on PMO at all. The low mood episode has me wondering how much I can take.

But there are some positives: indeed, I did not relapse. And I slowly notice that during lunch, I can appreciate the women I see. I said I wanted to avoid looking at them but really, I am not blind. The new thing here is that I find them all beautiful. And I mean all of them. I’m not that picky anymore, and truly can recognize something attractive in every woman I see. Still refraining from looking too much.

These are the positives; but for me, the questions of fantasies remain; I still chase them out of my head but they are there. I am wondering: could this destroy my recovery attempts? PMO I can quit, this is not the problem for me, but fantasies…can my brain recover if they keep coming? I really have to find a solution for this or my attempts might be for nothing. Also, reading stories of other people in the same situation made me realize that a lot of them reach a flatline situation. For me, no such thing. This adds to the worries, it’s like my brain full of fantasies is not giving up. Am I doing this recovery right?  


Yep, I have fought the hocd,

Yep, I have fought the hocd, it is crushing sometimes, but I feel that it is getting better, obsessed for about a month and a half, 5 hours a day. Last couple of days have been a turning point,the doubting thoughts exist sometimes, but am working on the Schwartz method, which helps. Anxiety, depression, mood swings, weird dreams that are fed by hocd. I have about 35 days in from no porn although have had sex with the gf. My story is a little different but have struggled with Ed and delayed ejaculation before I quit. Lately, these issues have no longer worried me, I don't fantasize often, overall been tough emotionally but I have never questioned whether it is a correct descision. Stay on it!!

Please do

appreciate the beauty of women. Just do your best not to "store us up for later use" in terms of fantasizing, or putting us in porn fantasies. Appreciate and move on...just as you would a sunrise.

Sorry things are rough. Yes, my deep suspicion is that the HOCD is just a trigger thought your brain uses when it's low on dopamine and it wants a "fix." If it can make you anxious, you jump on the porn. Et voila!

You read this section, right?

Yes, I did read this section

Yes, I did read this section and it matches what I was experiencing.
About the appreciation of women: I really like your comparison with the sunrise, it's very clear to me explained that way. I'll try to use that image every day, thanks !