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Cold Fish

Why do I feel so cold to yiddishkeit when I'm slowly overcoming my addiction?

GYE Corp. Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Four days ago I came across this website through a Jpost article about GYE after reading some erotica etc, and I was about to go to bed. I literally stayed up from midnight to five in the morning looking at this sight amazed at the genius of it and how Hashem gave the koach for someone to start it. Since then, I only had some small urges on the third day and I'm clean for 4 days.

I was so embarrassed today when I noticed that I left this site opened on my wife's computer. She read my postings, but she said she was very happy to read it because she never really realized what I was going through.

Another issue I am dealing with is why I feel so cold to yiddishkeit right now. I read the chizuk emails and the blog and while they help me with porn etc, I feel no connection to the part about davening to Hashem or surrendering to Hashem like Dov and so many others write. I always thought this filth had a direct correlation to my religious connection, but while I am being so good with keeping away from the dirt for the past 4 days, I still feel nothing with regards to yiddishkeit.

Just writing out the honest thoughts of a cold fish.


Elya K (our 12-Step phone conference moderator) answers P.N:

Dear P.N,

This is a spiritual malady, so if you're still looking at porn - even occasionally - you automatically separate your neshama from G-d. Otherwise, HE would allow us to look at it and masturbate, etc.

You can still be an alcoholic and only drink occasionally. I don't know if you're addicted or not, but you can find out. Take this SA test here to see if you are addicted to lust, or take the 40 question test on SLAA here to find out if you are addicted to "sex and love".

Often this is a disease of connection. We isolate ourselves because we have a hole in our souls that we are trying to fill. We've often experienced trauma, shame, guilt etc. since childhood, and these are areas we need to work on with a CERTIFIED SEXUAL ADDICTION COUNSELOR. Others are Clueless. I accomplished more in 2 years with mine than in 25 years going from psychologist to psychiatrist, social workers, etc. You wouldn't go to a dermatologist to do brain surgery, would you? I hope not.

You should be thrilled your wife found you trying to get some help instead of finding you looking at porn. She sounds very understanding, and for that you are blessed with an Eishes Chayil. But that is no excuse to rationalize looking at this stuff, even occasionally. This is an insidious disease that gets worse if we don't stop. Soon one thing will not be thrilling enough, and we start to look for new, more dangerous ways to act out.

We are constantly yearning for someone or something to fill this hole. So if my wife is not available, I will look elsewhere. That's not exactly a great formula for a marriage. The Torah dictates the laws of separation to us so we can form an intimate relationship with our wife EVEN WHEN she is a Niddah, and that is by talking, sharing, etc. without sex. Because sex is indeed optional, and should not be the center of our universe, even though we think it is. So using our wives for sex because we're lusting, instead of because we love them and MUTUALLY want to be together, is tantamount to manipulating our own wives for sex. Not a good idea.

Once you're sober for a while, at least 90 days, your spirituality will start to come back and you'll begin to feel closer. Hashem only shines HIS goodness upon us when we're a clean vessel worthy of acceptance of HIS goodness. But when we're stuck in the mud, it covers up our holy souls.

Feel free to call the hotline anytime to talk. Tel: 901-685-3256.

Be well, Elya.