Who Is My G-d? Who Is My Partner? Who Am I?
  Breaking Free Chizuk #1708  
In Today's Issue
Editor’s Note: From our mail...
Sayings: Ask yourself: "Who is my G-d? The master of the universe, or flesh, blood, veins and bones?”
Video of the Day: You Need a Partner Who is a Challenge
Testimonials: Sober for months, and counting - thanks to GYE!
Daily Dose of Dov: Dressing our struggle in the Chaluka d'Rabonnon
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Editor’s Note
From our mail...

In response to "4 ways girls get pulled into porn" (#1706), GYE member 'efshar letakain' wrote to us:

"Hi Guard! I really appreciated the article on girls being at risk to porn in today's email blast. I related to every single thing she [the author] said, and it was shocking how accurate she was. She's exactly right about how isolated girls feel and about the kind of content they seek. 

Kol Hakavod on an excellent selection!"

To the article "Recovery can't mean just not acting out" (#1701) by Dov, anonymous GYE member responded as follows:

"It is true that recovery is about living a positive life and 'not acting out' is not enough for living. However, I feel it important that a guy who’s acting out is not truly able to change his attitudes. I have seen it ample times in the rooms of people saying that I cannot maintain a stretch of sobriety but I have gained so much from the program. It may be true but they haven’t really changed. Unfortunately, such statements as 'it is not just about not acting out' can be used as a licence to loosen up on getting technical sobriety. Those in recovery know from experience that simply staying dry does not work. The newcomers and strugglers use such talk to assuage themselves that it’s not so bad to act out, as long as I am implementing things which I have learned in the rooms into my life. For me personally, THERE MUST BE A BOTTOM LINE. I am going to have bad days, days when I slip into anger, resentment and self-pity. Days that I may even scream at wife and kids but I have not lost my sobriety for that. BUT, if I act out, I am basically back to the starting line. I cannot emphasise enough how important not acting out is for me. It keeps me positive even when experiencing challenging days.


What are your thoughts? Email us.

Ask yourself: "Who is my G-d? The master of the universe, or flesh, blood, veins and bones?”
Video of the Day


You Need a Partner Who is a Challenge
Sober for months, and counting - thanks to GYE!
By gyeadmin

I have been involved with GYE and recovery for close to three years now. I have, BH, continuous sobriety for close to 4 months now. I am involved in the phone conferences, have a sponsor and I sponsor others. I talk to recovering guys every day of the week. Have a filter also.

And I go to face to face mtgs.

Thank you for all you have set up to facilitate all of this!

Yitzchok G.

Daily Dose of Dov
Dressing our struggle in the Chaluka d'Rabonnon
By Dov

The reason that I hang on to the idea that the Problem is not a primarily a religious one is partially because that was my experience. So I accept that yours may be very different.

But that's not the only reason. I have also seen so many people prefer to slog through this mess and (unnecessarily) drag their poor families through it as well, all "for the sake of Hashem". Please bear with me. I do not doubt their holiness and the purity of their intentions, as I made the same mistake for years and remember it all too well. I have come to believe that the overwhelming majority of sweet, frum yidden who do have what you might call the "full-blown addiction" to lust, spend precious years or decades struggling with it painfully, as though they were normal; as though they just need to get "good" enough, and they'll stop! They desperately and innocently apply a chulent of basic Torah concepts, pop-psychology, and mussar to their mental, physical and spiritual problem called 'Addiction'. As a result, many develop deep emunah problems after years of falling flat on their faces. We go on hiding our shame ever more deeply, and eventually even drag our wives, children, and sometimes even our community, through absolute gehenom.

Based on this, there is no question in my own mind that the normal rules and attitudes of shmiras haBris, sexuality and tzniyus do not do them much use. I applied them to my struggle - and so did most of the well-meaning Rebbis and psychologists that I saw over the years. It didn't work and only gave me more pain to cover up and run from. I got worse as I got more medakdeik in mitzvos and more active in kiruv (of others).

Who knew there was another, simple option? It all seemed so complex.

When I began accepting the attitudes in "AA": I got sober, my life began to mend and my connection with Hashem became much more relevant and real to me. My yiddishkeit then slowly began to get repaired, and with it, my relations with others began to become more fun and bear fruit. Though I am no tzaddik, the way I learn and keep mitzvos connects me to the Torah that I always knew, better than ever before. Something was missing before sobriety, while I was still engaging in fantasy and sex-with-self (M*). True Bechirah has been increasing in my life, ever since.

So, even though I agree that religious considerations brought the overwhelming majority of us here to GYE, I prefer to believe that some of us know in our hearts that we cannot dress our struggle in the chaluka d'rabonnon forever. Something is destroying our lives, and we can't seem to dislodge it.

One day I finally admitted to myself that even were I to c"v give in to all my desires completely - I still would not find freedom. It would only destroy. It was all taking, no giving, and it left no room for anyone else's life in mine. I came to see that the lust I had would make living any kind of happy life completely impossible. No more could I lie to myself that "I was a failure only as a Jew - but would be fine as a goy". First of all, I could not "be" a goy, and second, I'd destroy my life as a goy, too! I have met many yidden who harbored deep resentment to yiddishkeit over "trapping" them in this bind "cuz what I want to do is ossur, damn it"! They may not speak this out, but the finger-pointing and the pain is secretly there. Is this what Hashem wants?

What a relief when they discover that their problem was never yiddishkeit, at all! It was always and only: themselves! Hashem is "off the hook!"

You may disagree completely - but that's how I see it. Not everybody fits this picture, to be sure. But to those who see they fail on a fairly regular basis, break resolution after resolution, and progressively get worse in their dirty mishega'as over time, I suggest to consider that they may be addicts. And if one is an addict, I suggest considering the 12 steps.

And I couldn't do it myself - not enough honesty that way, I guess.

Do you think you may have a porn addiction?

Do you have a problem with obsessive and compulsive porn use? Have you seriously tried the tools on GYE and feel that you are not getting better? Maybe it’s time to consider joining a 12-Step program.

Porn Anonymous (PA)
If you’re compulsively acting-out with pornography and masturbation we suggest you explore joining Porn Anonymous (PA). If you need help deciding whether to join PA, call Michael at 347-699-2368, or email help@pornanonymous.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit pornanonymous.org (Hebrew: p-a.org.il / Yiddish: pa-yid.org).

Sexaholics Anonymous (SA)
If your compulsive acting-out has progressed beyond the screen (with other people, paid sexual services, etc.) we suggest you explore joining Sexaholics Anonymous (SA). To figure out if SA is for you, call Dov at 917-414-8205, or email Dov at dov@guardyoureyes.org to schedule a time to talk. For more information visit www.sa.org.

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