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Journey of life
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A platform of recovery for Jews who find themselves struggling with addictions to pornography, masturbation or other sexual problems. Post anonymously about your struggles without fear of anyone finding out who you are. Ask questions, post answers and be inspired! Get tips and guidance from the experts who moderate this forum, as well as from fellow strugglers.

TOPIC: Journey of life 54790 Views

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 06:15 #327983

  • i-man
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So long as we are fighting and winning we have a problem. Some of us are ok with such a life, and can survive 120 years like this

would you please care to elaborate on this isnt this always a fight regardless of how recovered as
well as non addicts ?

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 09:00 #327994

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Yerushalmi wrote on 08 Mar 2018 23:08:


If anything, this supports my belief that I'm just holding my breath. Clearly I'm doing something wrong.

NOT TRUE!!!!!!!
You are growing stronger by the day! You are in fact so strong, that the yetzer decided to up the ante to the next level! You found yourself at an event that triggered an extreme ta'aveh. 30 days ago, you would not have hesitated to give in. But now, the new you, the stronger you, FOUGHT IT OFF FOR AN ENTIRE NIGHT!!!
Why do you keep thinking that you are holding your breath? Each end every time that you are triggered, but do nothing IS A VICTORY IN IT OF ITSELF! You won today's fight, end of story! Now you are faced with tomorrow's fight. Remind yourself that you are now a fighter! If you won once, you can win again!!
Hatzlacha!

very well said,5 stars!

לב  טהור   ברא   לי   אלקים , ורוח  נכון    חדש  בקרבי

  to all my friends who heeded my request  to be so generous and give me a negative karma  for the sake of me acquiring       
                                                . humility ,i humbly  thank you                                                                                                 

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 09:29 #327996

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Right on Markz ! I propose a toast "TO LIFE, L'CHAIM". I think this is the meaning of "Let go and let God". I never understood that actually, how can you fight and in the same time let go.

All the best to you lifebound. Actually you have a great nickname!

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 12:12 #328000

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Actually it depends on each person. But in general "If you won you can win again" essentially = "if you fight you can fight again" which essentially = "holding my breath".

I beg to differ. The point of life is to overcome challenges and grow. There is never appoint in life where we are unchallenged! Chazal said אין אפוטרופוס לעריות, they forbade yichud, they made special harchakos for when one's wife is a nidah, and we all know what the Mishnah in Avos says about talking to women. This is a particularly difficult challenge that we all face.
If I am faced with a challenge today, and I overcame it, I WON. Each day we face new challenges, and each day that we win is a victory. 90 days isn't just a delay tactic, it is a string of 90 victories! Probably more, we can face numerous challenges in one day. If someone kept clean for 25 days, be proud of the long string of victories. Realize what you have accomplished, and be proud of the accomplishment! Some people will call this one day at a time. it doesn't matter what you call it. Just understand that I have a nissayon right here, right now. What happened yesterday, what may happen tomorrow, is totally irrelevant to the nissayon that is right in front of me.

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 12:37 #328005

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Yerushalmi wrote on 09 Mar 2018 12:12:










Actually it depends on each person. But in general "If you won you can win again" essentially = "if you fight you can fight again" which essentially = "holding my breath".

I beg to differ. The point of life is to overcome challenges and grow. There is never appoint in life where we are unchallenged! Chazal said אין אפוטרופוס לעריות, they forbade yichud, they made special harchakos for when one's wife is a nidah, and we all know what the Mishnah in Avos says about talking to women. This is a particularly difficult challenge that we all face.
If I am faced with a challenge today, and I overcame it, I WON. Each day we face new challenges, and each day that we win is a victory. 90 days isn't just a delay tactic, it is a string of 90 victories! Probably more, we can face numerous challenges in one day. If someone kept clean for 25 days, be proud of the long string of victories. Realize what you have accomplished, and be proud of the accomplishment! Some people will call this one day at a time. it doesn't matter what you call it. Just understand that I have a nissayon right here, right now. What happened yesterday, what may happen tomorrow, is totally irrelevant to the nissayon that is right in front of me.

This is still called white-knuckling in my dictionary, which was my point - please re-read my entire post including the first quoted parts

I believe that there are many in gye who do have a lower scale addiction (I wouldn't call it non-addict) where they are stuck in a cycle and the body needs training to learn that they can live w/o any sex drug - and 90 day white knuckling alone with chopsticks, chatroom, even calling gye friends daily etc can help them "break free"
There are many others on Gye that tried all these mentioned tools and are still struggling mightily for years

Either way, if someone recognizes they are white knuckling,  give him a high 5 for admitting it ​​​​
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Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 12:40 #328006

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The life of a yoyo can be a fabulous one....Many rides, lifts, twirls, swings and the euphoria of soarin' or winnin'. Sadly, it's life is also filled with falls, knots, twists and spiralin' downwards. No reason to get sad- that is its point of life.

If a person is satisfied livin' his/her life that way, that is fine. If not, like I and many other people here chose, then they should find themselves a tool of recovery where they can actually live.

You don't have to. If you just wanna score more runs than the bad guy, that's also ok. Even if the evil lust scores more than you, that might also work for you, for there are so many victories along the way. Not for me though.

In general, I believe that people would have much greater affect on others by saying what worked (or didn't) for them.

God speed!
My email: thenewme613@hotmail.com
My threads:
GYE Handbook | Gibbor's Insights | GYE FAQ - Thanks Skep and DMS123456789 White Book | Big Book (Alcoholics Anonymous)

If one gives up at the first sign of a struggle, he is really not ready to be successful."
"Tryin' and doin' are two different thin's - tryin' is hopin'; doin' is succeedin'.
"The right thin' to do and the hard thin' to do are usually the same."


Disclaimer: I am not a cheerleader; B"H, there are many on the site. I am here to change myself, and with God's help, by some mistake, I might even help change others.

MY POSTS ARE NOT WRITTEN AS A MODERATOR UNLESS EXPLICITLY STATED.

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 16:24 #328010

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Thanks everyone for your insight.

At the risk of sounding ungrateful, I feel like I'm not on the same page as some of you who have kindly replied in the last couple days. 
@Yerushalmi, you keep focusing on the fact that TODAY was a victory, celebrate that and NOTHING else. Be proud of today's accomplishment, tomorrow may be a new battle but don't worry! After all, "you won once, you can win again!"
So first of all to reiterate, my concern the past few days has not been that I'm using the future as an excuse to act out. I am talking about the now, as you keep advocating. Right NOW, TODAY, I feel a buildup of lust and urges that has accumulated over the last 25 days. Don't get me wrong, I'm very proud of the fact that I made it to this point! But telling me that it's NOT TRUE that I'm holding my breath is a bold assertion which I don't think is correct.

@iampowerless, see above. Also, the idea that "looking for tools is just anxiety and bluff" makes no sense to me. How are you ever supposed to get anywhere in life if you can't recognize that what you're doing isn't working and you need to adapt your tools?

As Markz and cordnoy said, I can't live life like this anymore. I am powerless over lust. I may not be completely powerless over masturbation, but lusting has only gotten worse since I started the 90 days. Lusting leads to stronger urges = holding my breath and white knuckling = eventually gonna pop. I don't know if that makes me a lustaholic or sexaholic or addict or addict-lite or non-addict, I'm trying to let go of the labels for now. What I do know is that I'm sick sick sick of it and cannot go through the rest of my life like that. That's not living. If this doesn't apply to you, great, more power to you. But this is my situation as I see it.

Hope this clarifies things.

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 17:58 #328012

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@Lifebound i hear you!

"@iampowerless, Also, the idea that "looking for tools is just anxiety and bluff" makes no sense to me. How are you ever supposed to get anywhere in life if you can't recognize that what you're doing isn't working and you need to adapt your tools?"
let me explain what i meant to say of course you should be constantly looking for tools and how to adapt your tools in order to get anywhere in life i agree with you on that 100% and i'm glad you are looking for tools, but to me it seems like you are overhyping your search for tools a little too much (in situations where the stress you are going through is normal. TOOLS CAN'T TAKE AWAY THE NORMAL PAIN OF THE PROCESS OF GETTING SOBER) you see right now instead of looking at the positive and being happy with your 25 days clean. you are getting a panic attack about the fact that you feel "TODAY, I feel a buildup of lust and urges that has accumulated over the last 25 days" i believe that feeling is anxiety because in reality you will not pop in therapy what you are feeling is called "riding the waves" which means once the wave goes extremely high like you are feeling right now eventually it will come down like all waves do without you doing anything to make it come down. so you don't need a tool to make it go down. Hashem makes it go down by itself so this popping business is anxiety i'm sure it's true that you are feeling this way i'm not telling you you aren't feeling this way but the wave will go down by itself no tools needed. So i know the waves are painful but it's very important to learn to "ride the waves" as sadly there is no tool that i'm aware of that truly cures the wave! Hope that clarifies a little bit!

And if you don't agree with me feel free to disagree this back and forth will make you extremely more self aware and so far the best tool i've learned for this struggle is Self awareness!!!

 Have a Great and Clean Shabbos!
:kissing_heart:Your Dear Friend Yankel!
Important quote from Cordnoy
"The need is a perceived one. There has not been one reported case on these pages of a death occurrin' on account of not fulfillin' that need

“I avoid looking forward or backward, and try to keep looking upward.” 

"My recovery must come first so that everything I love in life doesn’t have to come last."

My Story
                       

Yankel's Daily Inspirational Quotes
Last Edit: 09 Mar 2018 17:59 by Iampowerless.

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 18:30 #328013

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I think both are correct. There are short-term and long-term goals, or what in the military would be called tactics and strategy. Winning the battle being fought right now, as well as planning how to bring the overall war to a conclusion. So I think in the heat of a struggle we need to concentrate only on right now, overcoming/delaying/surrendering the urges, getting past the immediate threat. At the same time we need to find tools to learn how to live life with serenity and not have the triggers turn into urges that need to be fought.
!אנא עבדא דקודשא בריך הוא

וּבְיָדְךָ כֹּחַ וּגְבוּרָה וּבְיָדְךָ לְגַדֵּל וּלְחַזֵּק לַכֹּל

And every day that you want to waste, that you want to waste, you can
And every day that you want to wake up, that you want to wake, you can
And every day that you want to change, that you want to change, yeah
I'll help you see it through...



My story: guardyoureyes.com/forum/19-Introduce-Yourself/111583-hello-my-friends

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 18:58 #328015

iampowerless wrote on 09 Mar 2018 17:58:
@Lifebound i hear you!

what you are feeling is called "riding the waves" which means once the wave goes extremely high like you are feeling right now.........i know the waves are painful but it's very important to learn to "ride the waves" as sadly there is no tool that i'm aware of that truly cures the wave! Hope that clarifies a little bit!

............u extremely more self aware and so far the best tool i've learned for this struggle is Self awareness!!!


My dear Yankel, Thanks for your insight!  I hear what you're saying.....and respect the progress you've made in recovery. I too have become very self-aware after years of therapy,and live SA meetings.
Yes sometimes we need to just ride the waves especially when experiencing  withdrawal from our drug or other painful situations.

Tools I have used include:
1) asking Hashem in my own words for the strength to deal with the situation(s)
2) Connecting  (either phone conversation or face-to-face) with other program brothers especially those with strong  and solid recovery.

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 19:13 #328017

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Hey buddies, just popped onto this forum after taking a couple day break, needed to live away from the escape into anonymity for a bit.

Just reading through this forum, it is quite clear that there is a very big divide in style and approach.

There’s the Chizuk, push harder, you are amazing, a fighter, a winner, a tzaddik, just close your eyes and stay clean wow you are so strong approach.

And then, excuse my harsh language, there is an actual approach, with a goal of healing, letting go, and coming to live life without a constant urge to fight. 

Lifebound, lemme tell you something, from what it seems to me, you have your head on straight. I can’t promise you that you won’t fall. I can’t promis you that you are now so much stronger than you were 26 days ago. I can’t tell you that you are now the biggest tzaddik ever. I can’t tell you that every day of not falling means so much. (because even though to Hashem, a day of not sinning is undoubtedly precious, my personal view is that this is not a mentality that makes much of a difference to us living people, whos goal should be to reach an emotionally healthy state where we can live life without urges to sin. So if I don’t sin today, woohoo, so I’ll sin tomorrow. As long as I haven’t healed, I’m still a sinner.)

But what I can tell you is, that you have made tremendous tremendous strides in your view and perspective of this whole issue, because to me it seems like you have begun to identify with the goal of developing an actual life-saving approach, and it might take some time, but with such a goal, you will make it. (I’m still journeying )
Keep working at it, and remember to look at the big picture. You are here to heal. If you fall, that picture doesn’t change at all, because once you have shifted your goals, you will keep searching for that gateway to recovery, and I’m sure you can find it soon. That call to Relief might be a big turning point though  
Feel free to be in touch

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 19:16 #328019

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I do not mean to polarize all those with the aforementioned Chizuk approach, I’m sure this works for many, and for me it can be encouaraging also, so let’s still be friends?
Just wanted to share my personal perspective.

Re: My sorry state... 09 Mar 2018 19:45 #328023

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@hakol don't worry i'm still your friend. Hahaha!
but let me clarify i don't believe that there are 2 different approaches. I believe a real healthy recovery needs both parts! 
And just like you pointed out just plain chizuk without tools is worthless
Also constantly looking for tools as though there is a magic tool to be used for every feeling and mood is also worthless. Because something's don't have tools to get better. We just need to learn to accept/let go. 

again i don't believe that there is a disagreement i believe a proper recovery needs both aspects!

 Good Shabbos Love Yankel (don't worry i'm still your friend!!!)
Important quote from Cordnoy
"The need is a perceived one. There has not been one reported case on these pages of a death occurrin' on account of not fulfillin' that need

“I avoid looking forward or backward, and try to keep looking upward.” 

"My recovery must come first so that everything I love in life doesn’t have to come last."

My Story
                       

Yankel's Daily Inspirational Quotes

Re: My sorry state... 10 Mar 2018 22:57 #328038

  • Yerushalmi
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Lifebound,
Let me explain what I meant.
I have been struggling with masturbation for 24 years. I have also been viewing inappropriate material online, but for less years. Back when I started masturbating, there was simply less available online. I began keeping track of how often I did it, around 10 years ago. Since 2007, I have masturbated approximately 2,300 times. Some here may view that as a lot, some may view it as a little. 
I discovered this site, quite by accident, around 2 months ago. By then I was ready to change, and was sick of myself, sick of what I was doing, and feeling very down about myself. I committed to the 90 days, and lasted 18. I started again, but lasted again only 18 days. I committed a 3rd time, and so far I am closing in on 31 days. (The site lists my streak as 29, I entered in the wrong date when I started again.) Thus time it is very different. I am in touch via email with some people on this group, and I update them regularly about my progress. 
Over the years, I have slowly come to the following conclusions. (To anybody here who feels differently, this isn't personal [especially since this is anonymous!], these are just my own observations about life, and about what works for me.) 
1) I am in charge of my own life, and I am responsible for any decisions that I make, and I am responsible for my actions or inactions. If my father locked me in a closet when I was little, and my mother ignored me for years, and my elementary school rabbeim abused me, (This is just an example, none of this happened!) I am still responsible for the choices that I make. I can not go on acting out, and blaming my poor choices on my parents, on my upbringing, on my spouse, or on my kids. I can choose to do the right thing, or I can choose to do the wrong thing, but the choice is mine, entirely. 
2) Many times I would feel down and depressed about different things. Something a parent may have said to me, a bill that is due and I can't pay, a disagreement with my spouse, my son being thrown out of his school (all true examples), can all cause me to feel "in the dumps" for a while. Depression makes it difficult to choose the right choices, but the choices are still mine to make. I can still choose to sleep late or to get up on time for minyan, I can still choose to masturbate or not to, even when any of the above happens. 
3) I can change the way I look at myself. In the past I was someone who gave in to his lusts, or at best fought them half heartedly. I now look at myself as a fighter. I am the type of person who doesn't give in. I tell myself "I don't need this type of fix". I will now fight the good fight. Even if I don't win every battle, I am now a fighter!
4) If I really want to quit, I have to give up on some things. For years, I would start to fight, but I would still view stuff online. I would still "play around down there" with my hands, and hope to stop myself before anything comes out. Of course with such acting out, failure was only a matter of time. And fail I did, repeatedly. I have only recently realized that I can't "have my cake and eat it too." I can't view myself as fighting if I give my opponent the best weapons! I have to let go, entirely. I tightened up my filter, to avoid even more materials (Explicit material was blocked a while ago.). For the past 2 weeks, (with one let down a week ago), I have not touched "down there" at all. This idea has helped me tremendously! The more doors, windows, cracks that I seal up, the less the yetzer can get in. 
5) Hashem loves me, and wants me to succeed. I daven to HIM asking for help all the time. I have seen many times that HE comes through for me. The most obvious example, is  finding this site. I wasn't looking for anything like it, I simply clicked on a link that I wasn't even sure what it was, and here I was. My filter was on a whitelist, and it shouldn't have even gotten through at all, but it did!
6) I do not believe that there is such a thing as a lust free life. Chazal made numerous takanos for this, including yichud, restrictions for when one's wife is a nidah, שניות לעריות, idle chatter with women are all examples. They knew that lust can always be right around the corner, and sometimes the smallest incident can trigger us immensely! Chazal describe the titanic battle that בועז fought, the night that Rus came to him in the granary. He was approaching 80, yet he still had to fight his yetzer. פלטי בן ליש was praised for likewise fighting off his yetzer. For avoiding the advances of Mrs. Potiphar, Yosef was called Yosef Hatzadik. Yakov praised himself by saying that Ruevain was ראשית עוני (see Rashi). EVERYONE faces challenges in these areas, and no one is immune. I do not think anyone can say that they have no difficulties in this area. The best tactic that we have, is to avoid the triggers as best as we can.

To get back to Lifebound.
I think that there will always be challenges in these areas. I do not think that there is a magic pill, tool, psychotherapist's trick that will make the nisayon go away. By all means, go to therapy, it will help you understand yourself better. Better self awareness, however, is just a weapon in your arsenal. It can help you understand how you think, and what may trigger you. At the end of the day, the choices are still yours, and only yours to make. Will you act out, or will you not? No therapist can make that decision for you. 

For myself, once I let go of the ta'aveh, things got much easier. Once I got rid of as many triggers as I could, the fight got much easier. I choose not to view it as holding my breath waiting for the inevitable. I choose to view it as, there will be another fight around the corner. I expect it, get over that, and try to focus on the fight in front of me right now. That's what I meant by not holding your breath. I choose not to look it at that way, and that makes the fight easier for me.

I still have downers, and I still feel despondent sometime. I send  emails to my friends here, and they encourage me, I try to be mechazaik myself. I try and focus on some of the good that Hashem bestows on me, and that also helps me. Knowing that HE is on my side and looking out for me. 

At the end of the day, you have to do what works for you. If everything I said here is totally useless to you, then simply disregard it. No hard feelings. I am just writing my opinions, and what worked for me, and if someone else can glean something new, great, if not, then not.

All the best to you! FEEL GREAT about your accomplishment! Keep fighting! Keep asking HIM for help!

Re: My sorry state... 11 Mar 2018 03:47 #328046

  • lifebound
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Thank you for all the clarification, I re-read my last post and realized it was a little blunt, I hope no one was offended or anything...even if I don't agree or feel that it isn't applicable to me, the varied perspectives are super helpful to learn what worked for others, and as a result develop self-awareness and clarity in what works for myself. So keep em coming, and in the words of Hakol, let's still be friends?

I'll try to respond to all the specific points later, but I think we're all agreeing more or less that there are two aspects here, whether you call it short-term vs long-term, tactics vs strategy, chizuk vs tools, etc. Apparently for some it works more to focus on one or the other, but both are needed in some capacity for effective recovery. For myself at this point, it's hard to just focus on the chizuk side when I'm convinced that what I'm doing isn't "true" recovery. On the contrary: assuming I'm right that I'm just holding my breath, it would be negligent not to take a step back to look at the bigger picture.

On the other hand, it's not impossible that I've got it wrong. Those of you advocating that it's just anxiety, ride the waves, or what have you, may be right that I should shut up, stop whining and just white-knuckle through it and it will get better. Guess I'm the only one that can make that decision 
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