It is by Design
Thank you for this website, you are saving neshomos.
When I was about 11 years old, I started masturbating. I didn't know anything was wrong with it but eventually, I found out. By then, it had become my stress reliever. Unfortunately, I was unable to share this big black secret with anyone, and it started happening multiple times a day. At the same time, I was the top in my shiur and trying to be an eved Hashem.Today, I am pretty well known in the community and have had a positive effect on many people. I've made a lot of progress in this area as well, and I go through my day now, B'H, without much of a struggle.
The tremendous shame is that I lost out on very important developmental years of my life and could have grown into much more than I am. My potential was far greater than what I look like now - even if the picture is good and one that people may be jealous of. I am not referring to status or kavod - I mean hasmoda and avdus Hashem.
Coulda Been Better
Dear Coulda Been,
I take strong issue with these sentences of yours: "The tremendous shame is that I lost out on very important developmental years of my life and could have grown into much more than I am. My potential was far greater than what I look like now."
This is a common misconception people have, but it borders on Kefirah (blasphemy). There is no such thing as "could have...would have...if only..." The challenges we were given in life are davka what make us into what we need to become. Many people totally miss the point that it was precisely the challenges that they were given, exactly what they went through--not more and not less--that their Neshama needs to work with in order to become the person they are meant to be and to do the tikkun they need to do.