I've just been in denial
I have recently joined this forum. Writing this brings tears to my eyes, because I have never been able to ask for help in this area before. This is the start of breaking an 11 year habit, something that makes me both proud and humble, as well as very, very ashamed. I've always been too embarrassed of my addiction to ever get any help face-to-face, and deep down I've lost the belief that I can make a lasting change in this area.
I saw the website for the first time on shiva asar betammuz, and I was amazed that there was so much help available to me to get out of my crushing addiction, as well as kindhearted people who are building this site and building the participants along with it. It has kindled the hope inside me that I can face down this challenge, overcome it, and eventually destroy it.
I guess, if I'm honest, my main motivation to break the habit is the fear of somebody finding out about it, especially my wife. I'm scared that it will cause me to lose my job, reputation, marriage and children. I'm even scared that she is somehow going to read this post, find out that it's me writing, and get the shock of her life that she is married to a porn addict. The fact that I would consider losing everything I hold dear for the sake of some stupid, cheap thrill, amazes me. I am amazed at my own stupidity. I guess this proves that I'm an addict - I never thought of myself that way until now. I've just been in denial.
Every single Rosh Hashana and Yom Kippur has been filled with regret for my addiction, and yet still nothing has changed yet. I've improved in many different areas, but I actually feel that in this area I've sunk even lower in recent years. I would love this year to be different. - perhaps you guys can help me ensure that it will be?
A few days later, Yesodos writes:
I want everyone to know that I'm fighting here, and I couldn't do it without you all. It's a funny sort of fight now, because I was craving to act out but whilst I'm posting here I feel myself slowly reentering reality, and the fantasy world of the menuvel slowly melts away. This is a very encouraging development. I also know that after counting day after day to get to 90 days, it would be devastating to be back on zero and break my clean streak.
I love the handbooks. I realize now that I am not running away from the Yetzer, but am running towards the loving embrace of my Father in Heaven, who is looking on with pride as He removes the hold of the Yetzer from upon me.
Chazal say, 'I'm poga bcho menuvel ze mochheihu lebais hamidrash - if the Yetzer Hara meets up with you, drag him to the Beis Medrash'. I wonder whether part of the idea behind that is not just that LEARNING is the key to overpowering the yetzer, but perhaps the idea of dragging the Yetzer Hara into the PUBLIC FORUM of a "Torahdik" atmosphere is what does the trick. I'm sure this observation has occurred to everyone else already, but I guess I'm new here so please excuse me! In which case, I have just successfully dragged the yetzer into the Beis Medrash, and chazal's words have been proven true once again. The Yetzer Hara loses another day!
I LOVE GuardYourEyes!!!