I want to share a few thoughts that will hopefully inspire you as a lot of posts are of the "help I've relapsed" variety which is totally cool and one of the great things about this site. But it also gives the impression that most/everyone relapsed and that may make it more difficult for you NOT to relapse.
So here is some balance to that, some success to inspire you (success so far anyway.)
No PMO for about a month, maybe 5 weeks. I haven't counted and I don't worry about it.
To be fair, not sure I had the issues that some people here have with video porn as I was never very attached to video porn and maybe that makes it easier for me.
I could also MO just with fantasy if my ipad wasn't charged. The fantasy came from my reading erotica and never seemed healthy to me.
In other words, it brought a feeling of shame although eventually I grew used to the shame and didn't think about it much.
My fantasies involved spanking and domination themes and I felt shame. I tried to rid my masturbation fantasies of these themes and stop reading porn stories but kept coming back to both.
Over the years, I noticed that a sh*tload of other people are into the same thing. That made me feel a lot better and I grew reconciled to it. I think it was slowly escalating (don't these things always escalate?) and the stories that let me get off were increasingly a bit weird. It was a slow escalation though.
And all along, there was that shame about it and a feeling of unease.
Now, let me shift to another nagging feeling, another sense of unease and even hidden shame, which was making love to my wife.
I felt for a long time that yes, she would have an orgasm now and again, and I would give her good oral sex and occasionally she would orgasm with vaginal penetration...but that it was really much "better" for me than her.
Lots of times, the majority, she would not experience an orgasm. She has told me recently that she would have sex with me out of a sense of obligation and love quite often even though she didn't feel like it.
She really is a remarkable person. Imagine having sex with someone even though you don't want to, all out of love. Wow! But that makes me a little ashamed too.
So now I've introduced this dynamic into our relationship that we are both getting used to. We have a long way to go. My purpose is to do loving Karezza hopefully every day, but we'll see, so that it pleases her as much as it pleases me. But we'll see how it goes.
I am not in the least tempted to return to this foreplay/5 minutes of intercourse/squirt and we're done type sex. I only want to make love.
I don't have a problem with not masturbating at least so far because first, I have this amazing woman that I can be with. She has agreed to a cuddle bunny session at night and in the morning, and she is really into that as am I and it is incredible even without PIV which happens quite often.
I have to make sure she really wants the PIV though and isn't just going along. Speaking to her about this isn't always easy for her although it's easy for me and I have to be sensitive to that.
I think if you are single, you simply must figure out a way to get a cuddle buddy. It's weird in our world, but really what's weird is living by yourself without regular skin to skin contact with others. You are missing a lot of nourishment that humans need and if you have that you are very likely to escape your addiction much more easily.
Here is what I have done:
1. Kept busy
2. Avoided all porn stories completely and totally. I have changed my on line habits quite a lot and have even stopped reading stupid news sites and upsetting blogs about today's events. I am working on a better life where I read/consume more nourishing things than that.
3. Avoid reading even a few posts on this site if I sense they are getting into trigger land.
4. The "Red X" technique is helpful in stamping out fantasies that come from viewing/reading porn.
5. If fantasies strike me spontaneously like when I see a pretty woman or bathing beauty I let them play out and they pass. I am not sure they are really enjoyable in any sense but I don't attach importance to them. I've fantasized about sex with everything and everybody and every object in the world in the past, and this is how my mind works and it really isn't me and nothing I can do about it so I just let it play out.
6. No touching my penis unless it's for hygiene or urination purposes. I plan to do a bit of solo cultivation using Mantak Chia's book as a guide but that is several months in the future. I think there are arguments for caressing yourself all over, including your genitals, but for me at this point that might lead to masturbation which I want to completely avoid so I don't even start.
7. No testing. This is easier for me as I do have a regular partner but no testing erections, seeing if my penis is still operating. I understand the desire to do this but it is usually a rationale that leads to a relapse quite obviously.
I have felt a lot more buoyant and self confident. I don't have that feeling of shame that I had before under the surface. There are hormonal changes that I feel are so positive that it's almost a new me. I feel much happier most of the time although I was happy before.
Ill effects? Not sure I've had any. Some blue balls at the beginning but not anymore. Some emotional ups and downs that were fairly roller coaster-ish but that seems to be better. Wouldn't be surprised if there are more of those.
A few days ago I was just so sleepy and tired all day. Didn't know what that was about but it could be related. The next day was better.
I am also not spilling my semen every day or so and that I think is very positive from a male energy perspective. I have generally felt more focused and found work easier.
Now I am seeing other people and how they look and behave, especially men, and I wonder what their porn habit is and whether this is a huge problem for them. I wonder it about my son. I know it is a huge problem for a friend of mine. But you can't do much about that beyond discussing it (didn't go well with my son although my friend heard it and now he can do with it what he wants to).
Hope this has been helpful.