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TOPIC: Dov Quotes 41636 Views

Re: Dov "Quotes" 03 Jan 2012 15:04 #129880

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Are There "Levels" of Addiction?

dov wrote on 30 Aug 2011 23:23:

No, I do not believe in levels of addiction, as I hear them described by some people. I believe that addiction is like pregnancy. A woman is no more pregnant an hour after conception than she is at her ninth month. If I use lust and cannot stop, then it does not really matter to me whether my compulsive behavior is exposing myself, having regular sex with prostitutes, etc.......or if it is secretly stealing a few minutes searching for the perfect porn images at my sister's computer when she is not home. If it is making me miserable and my life unmanageable, then I am a sick man.

If I have secrets, then I am sick. Period.

The only question is when I have had enough - or when you have had enough. It is so easy for soem people to act as if "no one else can understand their pain" - but I do not believe it. When I cruised around nightly for scenes of prostitution (I was not ready then to actually use them, but lusted after watching the action and seeing pretty women on the street and in cafe's and drove around frequently for that purpose [hoping that moshiach would not come "right while I was driving around like this idiot I am!"]), my life was already not mine. I was out of control. If any of you would have been watching me get into my car after the family fell asleep, and drive around, you would have scratched your heads, maybe thrown up. It was just plain idiotic. But I was absolutely convinced that doing that was in my very best interest - nay, that I needed it!

To me, that is just as crazy as the guy (was me) in the shower who really feels like he needs to masturbate there. That it is bad, ossur, whatever - but if he keeps doing it anyhow, ends up doing it over and over....he is obviously only doing it because deep down inside, his gut is convinced that having sex with himself (what masturbation really is) is in his very best interest. That he needs it. That Hashem does not really understand.

That's sick in the head, no? But that's what we do as addicts.

So who is sicker? Niether fellow, I say. I see the 'progression of the disease to worse behaviors' as just new boredom with the old stuff - but the need driving it all is exactly the same!

So Guard calls it "hitting bottom while still on top". Because he is such an oheiv Yisroel, he is hoping that at least some people will see they are on the same street to destruction - before they have to lose their jobs, make chillul Hashems, lose their marriage and families, or even die. He is hoping that some people will open their eyes and see that they are already losers - they have already lost, and have no hope at all in just "trying harder". They need G-d as does one with cancer. It's over and only a miracle can help them. Fortunately, that happens all the time. Just read the stories in the back of AA, or "recovery Continues" frok SA. We who have given up do get sober and we do get healthier. It works if you work it.

So I think that R' Guard hopes that maybe, for a change, those who need to will finally open up to other people and to themselves (that's the only 'admission fee' to recovery), and reach for G-d for real (that's the only solution).

And just being really frum is neither of these, for the guy who is already an addict. For he had all the frum tools while he was learning how to get so screwed up in the first place. He needs special help, which is available - if he knows that he is as powerless as the guy who is arrested with hookers. The hooker guy may go right back out there (and I know many guys with peyos who have) - but I have met many who have 'only' messed around with porn and masturbation, who have given up and gotten the help they need. Some people are low-bottom drunks, but many are high-botttom ones. Not everyone needs to go through as deep a living gehinnom. But there is no easy way out. 

So if by "levels of addiction" you mean people with a low-bottom or a high-bottom, I am with you 100%. But both are just as sick in the head and unmanageable. Otherwise I make no sense of it, at all.

In dog training, they say that "if your dog has not yet learned that he must come when called, then you do not have a dog." He will get lost, hit by a car, or bite other people and have to get put down. It is the smart dog owners who go through the simple but not easy work of training their dog to return when called even before they have to learn it the really hard way.

I am not saying what cannot work for you - just sharing my experience. If you want it, take it. 
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 03 Jan 2012 15:14 #129882

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Who is an Addict?  Do I Need the 12 Steps?

dov wrote on 04 Sep 2011 12:29:

Whoa...to try and answer something for Obermottel and Gibbor, no I'd never suggest SA in a blanket sort of way to any guys who are having a hard time stopping the fantasy/porn/masturbation/'teshuvah'/withdrawal/fantasy merry-go-round. I sincerely believe that everybody is different and that there are truly a lot of guys out there who simply need a warm, loving approach to trying harder.

The porn industry is huge, huge. It can't possibly be powered all by addicts. Look in the dictionary for "addict" and you will typically find that it is a psychological or physiological dependence on something that damages a person's life in some way, and causes trauma when ceased. It is also described as "progressive and chronic" by the American Society of Addiction Medicine. Therefore they call it a 'disease'. I and some other people have a disease. The way I see it, it's just plain silly to say that basically all the guys out there who like the way porn makes them feel, are ill. Mistaken, yes, but mentally ill? I think not. That would seem to me nothing more than a giant cop-out, or a great way to make a lot of money selling a lot of "Johnson's snake-oil for addicts like all of you!". Surely most people must simply try harder and fight for their morality! And I believe that most of the long-term chronic losers at that are probably addicts....like me and others I know. A good frum guy probably should resist a ton before arriving at the surrender point of an addict. But to say that lust addiction is different in this respect from say, drinking, cuz this is a tremendous aveiro? That's silly. It is not the aveiro/evil itself that finally gets guys like us into real recovery, but rather it is the painful unmanageability we see in ourselves and our excruciating glimpse of our own powerlessness that finally bottoms us out - not the drinking, sexing or drugging behavior itself. Hey, I could have gone on for quite some time masturbating, using sex phone calls, and meeting women - but my own pain is what I could not handle any more. I insist that pain itself was the greatest gift Hashem could give me. Dayeinu, it would have been enough for eternal gratitude, even without recovery.

So I guess any decent frum guy should end up going into the Program under 'duress' and jumping up and down screaming, "No! I can and must beat this! I can, I can, I can!"....all the way into the arms of their sober recovering friends who know they can't do it either - but are sober by Hashem's Chessed today.

I also cannot accept that the tools the Torah and Chaza"l gave us to fight the Yetzer Hora are so imperfect that they do not work at all for some people. It makes more sense to understand that the the losers at applying Torah are sick people. Torah does not typically work very well for cancer and diabetes - and it does not typically work very well for addiction. Any idiot can see that.

But as has been discovered here on GYE and elsewhere, saying this causes some decent, Torah-loving people to become completely unglued. Though they themselves are still not clean which they admit is pretty bad, actually coming out and admitting that it's not working for them or for some others is just the last straw! (I know that sounds crazy, but that's what I have seen over and over). Too threatening....can't be. Nu. If you want to get all cooked in that maclokess, look elsewhere on GYE. And those who have found sobriety and long term success using the same Torah tools we all know and love are few and far between. They need to stay here and keep sharing their exact methods of success. Often they do not. I feel strongly that they would actually serve the oilam better by shutting up until they themselves are sober for six months or so. And when they share their success, they also admit the exact nature of their sexual acting out and describe their failure and weakness, their struggle and their pain. Experience is the key here, not wisdom. Wise and frum people who are still masturbating their brains out are unfortunately a dime a dozen. Get sober, then share how it worked, otherwise the remonstrations and exhortations may just be really frum-sounding poison. Maybe not. I suspect it's OK for normals, but more likely poison for addicts. Finally, I feel strongly that anybody granted long term success in this problem - whether addict or not - aught to feel they need to actually meet with others in trouble in order to share their success, even if it means sacrificing a bit of their feeling of personal safety. Addicts in recovery do this all the time. In fact, it is the 12th step. Why should a 'Torah-method' be OK to share behind a fake name and only virtually. Too few pure mussarnicks here have done this, and I say yyasher kochacho to the braver ones. B"H, I do it all the time with those who believe they are addicts.
 
Now, back to the issue.

If believing that I am, in fact, a very sick man were just a way for me to keep on playing with myself and porning out, then I agree with the naysayers who insist that it's a cop-out to say "I am a sick man." But that is not at all what we 12 step people do with the label!

Because I and those in 12 steps see themselves as sick people, we get the medicine we need! In other words, the type who never get that lump checked out for they know they'd never be able to deal with it, usually drop dead after it's too late. You do not even hear much about them for they do not last very long. Hence the horrifying news stories of sexual abuse and arrests with porn, hookers, etc., even among our rabbis, R"l (like some of us right here!).

The ones who feel a lump and get it checked out are the ones that get treatment. Does anyone say that admitting that one has cancer or diabetes (both absolutely chronic, progressive, and fatal disease) is a cop out?! NO way. And the earlier the better. Yes, there are hypochondriacs - but if the true signs of the illness are there, then there is treatment.

But the treatment - in my own case, the steps - is not for sissies. So we who desperately want to live, we get clean and live life as mentchen as a result of out own hard work - at surrendering. Surrendering our right to have sex with ourselves, surrendering our right to use others for sex, and to demand sex from our wives; giving up our deep belief that we have the right or ability to successfully use porn. We get help from others to stop feeding our disease. Turning to others is itself part of admitting we are powerless - that we do not possess the ability to successfully control and enjoy it. Plugging into lust only and always makes our lives more unmanageable - if we are addicts.

There is no escape from personal responsibility, least of all in the steps! On the contrary - it is usually the ones who refuse to give up their romance with beating this thing 'for the glory of G-d', who are still in the bathroom on their knees masturbating to their precious porn! But their advice, chizzuk, and encouragement keeps right on coming and with great force sometimes...

Nu. As I wrote above, I believe that such advice is probably fine for some people, but probably not for addicts.

So, is anything more clear now? I'm up real late tonight and figured I'd just finish this post that has been waiting for a few days. Hope it made some sense to you two amigos...

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Re: Dov "Quotes" 04 Jan 2012 22:36 #130077

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I'm Going to Change Starting Today... For Real

dov wrote on 04 Jan 2012 22:21:

Very true.

But for me in all those years of countless masturbations and desperate, dry-mouthed porn-searching, I always took nechomah from "I'll start from today! Hey, even those Breslovers say that! It feels great to be clean from today! The past is irrelevant! Here I go!!"

...Plop.

Plop-plop-plop....oy...... 

If "starting fresh" is not accompanied by any real action that is different, then everything will stay the same. It's not 'a start', at all! Instead, it is just a cop-out to feel better. Blech. Useless. Poor me never got me anywhere, and it still doesn't. The emess is as Chaza"l say:  "kol mi (me!) sh'ein bo deyah, asur lerachem olov!" - especially if that one is me!

Real change hurts - or it is not real change. It is mechayev - otherwise it is just a show of willpower (more shtuss, for 'willpower' never worked before!) If I am the one making the neder, or rewarding myself, or punishing myself, then the fox is guarding the hen-house. It's goofy. May work for some - but if it doesn't work for me, I know that it's not that I need to try harder - it means that the entire thing is garbage! I obviously cannot be my own mechayev!

That is why rehab rarely happens alone. Joining with other people face to face and admitting it all to safe people is the only way for so many. It is really the only thing we have not done! The ikkar problem for us is that we hide!

The porn and zera levatola are actually tofeil - our common standby of hiding and lying and disconnection is ikkar!

                     
**************************


So, start today! Definitely start from today. But starting today does not happen in the attitude - that is just more land-of-make-believe. Like the porn is.

The only real starting is in taking new, meaningful actions. Not promises, not hopes, not talk. Different actions.

As I heard a wife of an addict say once, "If nothing really changes, then nothing will really change."
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 09 Jan 2012 15:43 #130370

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Keep Your Mind on a Short Leash

dov wrote on 09 Jan 2012 15:26:

I have a piece of paper in my wallet. It is well-worn and in front of my credit card so it is seen frequently.

It reads:

Hashem, please help me:

1) admit why and for exactly what purpose I am going wherever I am going before I go there,

2) to think periodically "am I staying true to me purpose now, in what I am doing?"

3) admit gratitude for having the opportunity to do whatever it is that I am busy with and ask You for Your help to do a decent job at it.

This is simple, relaxing, not intense at all - if it is, then it is just the same drivel I always used to strain myself with: trying to be frum or good enough to deserve His protection and care.

That doesn't work cuz, guess what I discovered?:

I will never, ever be deserving of His protection and care. Yup. Never. And I find it hard to believe that anyone I know can ever be good enough to deserve it - and probably never has, either. Thinking that I could, is just plain gayvoh, and docheik raglei Shechinah. We love to pretend we will deserve it a bit, if we only try hard enough or do just teshuvah well enough...but we always eventually fail. Then deep in out hearts we blame G-d Himself, though we turn it on us, of course. More pain, so eventually, more lusting! Especially for us perfectionistic (that is: prideful) addicts. All our lives we have abused yiddishkeit to make it turn us into resho'im in our own demanding eyes. And it was not frumkeit, nor yir'ash Shomayim all along - it was just gayvoh and immature expectation.

So I use my card and say the words. That way the teenage committee in my head eventually shuts up, cuz I am actually more busy doing what I am doing that doing what we all do best:  stray thinking.

A mentor advised me to keep my brain on a short leash, once. My sponsor and program buddies reminded me to stop thinking so much a hundred or so times, over the years. Now I do both those things, still. After a year or two of gentle work at this, we are shocked to discover we have changed a bit and really stray-think a lot less.

The relaxation is palpable. Life is much easier and more comfortable this way.

Someone asked the Kotzker (I think): "Rebbe, what should I be ready to give my life for?" He answered, "Whatever you are busy doing right now, this very minute."

No tricks, gimmicks, just repeated and unnatural work at proper focus. It is worth a year or two of 'work' to have a much better life. And the best part is we are working basically for ourselves, not another person!
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 10 Jan 2012 16:09 #130451

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Rock Bottom - Stop Trying to do it "My Way"(from daily dose)

We need His help to care about ourselves enough to be trusted with His gifts. Rock bottom is the point that the heart - the need to have it all my way - finally breaks. Leiv Nishbar - not self-flagellating, not self-anything, but empty of expectation and "my way" - just empty and given up to Hashem - that's a cup that can be filled with His gifts.

One thing jumping at me in your posts is that it seems to me that you keep putting self-judgment on a pedestal. "I don't feel good about myself," "I brought this all onto myself," "the tests were not strong enough, hence me still standing." Really, what is the relevance of all this? What business is it of yours whether you are considered a tzaddik or a rasha? Really. I understand if I had nothing better to do, it might be a nice way to pass the time. Or perhaps, if I were basically in control of myself and doing no chato'im, a study of my madreiga might be nice for growth purposes... but I am not 'there'. And if you are posting here and will still have big struggles for the foreseeable future, you may not be 'there', either.

I mean nothing negative by any of this - heck, I don't even know who you are! But what you seem to be a bit preoccupied with seems to be exactly what I was preoccupied with all the years that I was so busy using (and fighting) my lust use in addiction. The only reason I share it with you is that for me, getting free involves living (thinking, talking, behaving) a bit differently than we did when we were still acting out our lust in addiction.

As long as people think they can remain basically the same - just get rid of the acting out with lust behavior - they never seem to get any better... and they go on and on pitifully wondering, "why?" My sexuality was and is not my main problem. It's the stupid way my mind works that is the real issue. And that takes work, time, and work.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 11 Jan 2012 16:00 #130568

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Acting Out is the Solution, NOT the Problem

dov wrote on 11 Jan 2012 01:45:

strugglingandstrivngBT wrote on 04 Jan 2012 02:12:

I speak for myself when I say that porn and masturbation are not my problem-they are a result of my problem.  What exactly my problem is, I'm not sure. guess I gotta figure that out.


So. The alcoholics say like you:

"Our alcoholism is but a symptom of our disease, and not the disease itself."

So, one more angle on your post:

Treatment centers all basically use one tool. They keep the drug away from the customer (patient) for a long time. After a day or two, it's not so bad, and the patient usually is irritated at the demeaning insulting insinuation that the "no alcohol in here" policy makes: that he can't get along without booze.

"Hah. Silly fools. I'll show them."

After a week, it's really irritating. The patient begins to feel his white knuckles hurting. He innocently blames it on the food irritating his stomach. After all, beer is missing from breakfast...

After the second week, he may use one or more of a few tactics, because this is really getting serious - he (just like we) truly, honestly believes in the depth of his gut that he cannot survive without a drink. And why do so many guys keep saying, "I have never gone more than x days."

Why do they (we) keep relapsing after "x days" passes? Because we actually, honestly believe in our gut that we need to have a feeding of porn, sexual excitement, or orgasm, or...or...or...or what? Will we die? What is it? It's hard to say. The bottom line is that no matter how well we know "b'veiur klal chovas ho'odom b'Olamo" by heart from Mesillas Yeshorim, the (sad) truth is that we still really believe that we simply cannot do without it.

So what does the rehab center do about it?

Nothing, really. They just keep prevent the addict from getting any bit of his drug. As long as they do that, the scary, scary truth will have to eventually get vomited right out:

That alcohol was never really his problem in the first place!

He is afraid of people, afraid of the alone-ness of his own self, afraid of his own death, afraid of success, afraid of failure - that he is terrified of G-d. He can't love or be loved, for fear of getting attached and losing those people. Or because he cannot possibly be loved. He hates certain people to death, so he believes he is hate-able. He is filled with pride and really believes that life is essentially unfair - even though he knows the words "gam zu letovah" very well! He, like most of us - essentially believes that G-d screwed up, and continues to, daily in his life - it is not fair, at all. Deep inside, he sees that he really believes as most of us addicts do, "If only people (and G-d) listened to me and my directions, then my life would finally be as it should....but no, they all have to be stubborn!"

Or they say they will not pay for the treatment. Or they say they will have a heart attack.

Or they say that as they have not drunk a drop of liquor in two weeks, they are cured!!

Whatever.

Taking away the masturbation, the porn use, the active and exciting fantasy in our heads....forces the real things we were running from to come to the surface. It is often a bit ugly. To be painfully aware of the things that make the life we have unacceptable on life's terms - it's not really the masturbation that makes it unmanageable, after all. Actually, the lusting is the coping mechanism: I as an addict have learned to use lust to make my life acceptable.   

It stinks..but there are the steps to help, and the experience strength and hope of many other hopeless but sober and growing addicts for those who want to be part of a 12 step chevra. Or there is therapy, or whatever works...who knows till it works. I just took the road more traveled, cuz my preferred, safe, and comfortable private road was too bloody already. After years of loneliness in the bitter struggle.

Hashem has harbei shlucim to breing refua'h to a sick mind.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 11 Jan 2012 16:17 #130569

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Not a dov quote, but very good from the chizzuk email.

Learning Surrender


I heard from someone who is sober for many years in SA, that for the first 7 years he sat in SA meetings and didn't gain anything from the groups. He was "too smart" for the program, and it didn't make its way into his heart. Finally, at wits end, he decided to just nulify his da'as and do whatever he was told. He said to the group and to his sponsor, "just tell me what to do, and I'll do it". Suddenly he began to truly internalize the program - and he is sober since then!

The 12-Steps are about "surrender"; recognizing we can't do it ourselves and being willing to let go of our "self" so that a Higher Power can do it for us. How do we let Hashem do it for us? By letting go of our "selves".

This same person told me, that today, he doesn't do anything on his own will. He listens to what his sponsor tells him, what his friends tell him, what his wife tells him, and even what his CHILDREN tell him. He asks - and he listens... He no longer relies on himself to run his life.

By doing this, we learn how to let HASHEM pilot our lives.

This is the core of recovery.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 11 Jan 2012 16:18 #130570

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Letting go of our Da'as - From Daily Dose


Most nisyonos require (as the ba'al haTanya and many others say) a bit of suspension of our Da'as. We seem to lose our brains at the point of nisayon - and are left to proceed on what feels like blind heart, alone. I cannot count the times I went without the lust temptation for what felt like no rational reason whatsoever! When I have a lust temptation - at the actual moment of true choice - it boils down to me feeling that I really need this crap. It truly seems to be in my best interest and there is no logical answer I seem to be able to grasp onto. The mussar is all slippery in my hands. But when I "overcome", it is usually by me just figuring that there were so many thousands of times that I went with the lust 'just because', and that it was now my turn to suspend my judgment of what's better for me and go without it - just because.

In other words, sometimes, all the hundreds of meetings, thousands of hours of step-work, and thousands of shares in meetings I have made, all boil down to a moment of letting go of my judgment and accepting Hashem's judgment instead of mine. And doing without what feels like it'd be soooo nice.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 12 Jan 2012 18:12 #130701

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The Steps are About Honesty and Dependance on G-d

dov wrote on 12 Jan 2012 18:03:

Suggestion:

Stay clean. If you have a problem with that, like you think it is really unfair, silly, or evil, then say it. Open up about what you really believe about it. And if the only problem with it that you have is that it is hard for you, then get help and support to stay the course.

But that is just the ticket in, and probably not the help that you really need.

The help and change will start and grow after staying clean gets very hard...actually maybe impossible for you. If you stay the course, then it will be time for you to start writing down and then opening up with others and with G-d about what really makes life, people, or G-d annoying and/or stupid, to you. And that is what Hashem wants more than anything else. Chosamo shel HKB"H (is) emess.

BTW the steps are all about that, and nothing else. They are just a recipe for honesty and dependence upon your G-d, rather than just being 'good' or 'religious'. We've all had lots of those things, yet we are still here in this mess! Writing and openness are different. If nothing changes, then nothing changes.

Just a serving suggestion for life, for you. Take it. leave it, whatever you like. Nothing to lose by writing these things out and admitting them.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 16 Jan 2012 21:15 #130945

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Make the Call (from daily dose)


Someone asks:

I'm kind of at a loss who to pick to call, I feel it needs to be someone who knows fully about my addiction, I have to be able to explain exactly what's bothering me at that time and what my issues are and then the guy has to be someone who can talk me around it all and make me see sense and bring me back to reality. Someone who I will trust and believe and listen to.



Dov Replies:


As far as me and most of my recovery buddies are concerned, making the call is not about getting really good advice. It is mainly about shedding light on my secret and removing the 'protective net' I cast on all my lusting. The main 'protective net' is secrecy. It is the main way I manipulate the circumstances to ensure that things will go my way - that is, the way of my lust. Letting that secrecy go is the most real step we can take toward actually letting go of our lust and our acting out.

Just ask the guys who have a horrifying time making that call before they act out - they'll admit it feels just impossible to make that call... I wonder why the stakes are so high.

Of course, there are those fellows who regularly make that call, and act out each time anyway. But that's the topic of another discussion. Most addicts who I know are not like that.

That's why the 1st step reads "We came to admit..." the 'devil' is in the admitting. So the more honestly, openly, and frequently we do it, the freer we generally get. That's the magic of real, live, meetings. It kicks the faker's backside. And we are all fakers, showing the entire world a pretty face while hiding our ugly one. That is ego-driven manipulation and eventually needs to be jettisoned in order that any progress be made.

So we do not really need to be talked down and convinced no to act out... We need to admit the truth about ourselves to another understanding person (of course in order to understand, that person must also be a recovering pervert). If that person truly understands and believes that we have an illness, he will listen and empathize; share a similar situation he had; put a hand on our shoulder and remind us that Hashem will make it OK and take the pain of not having that pleasure away. Faith is what we need, and sometimes we can only get it from other addicts, not from Rabbanim, shrinks, or anyone else.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 18 Jan 2012 15:56 #131070

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Do You Want to Stop?

dov wrote on 18 Jan 2012 04:54:

1- For this guy it's 'healthy' - it is good for him and his life, he says.

2- For this guy it is evil, a real problem because it's assur.

3- For another guy it is too bad, but a freebie because he is an adidct.

Gevalt, is this a buffet?

I thought people were coming here to get a problem solved, not to write a new hagadah shel pesach.

This is all dumb philosophizing. Truth is beyond us, and when it is before us, we do not listen anyhow, so it's irrelevant. What is relevant is what is this doing to me and why we take a vacation from it - yet always predictably come back to the porn, the unzipping the pants, and the masturbating ourselves. It is pathetic, but nu - is it a problem for you, or for me, or is it not? That is the only question. Do you want to stop? Not does the Torah want to stop - you won't listen just as you never have! But just like all the many goyim I know is sexual recovery from porn and mastubation: do they want to stop - do you? It is the only question. And no one can make your mind up for you. Either you are finished, had enough fake sex and orgasms...or you want some more.

The door to recovery is open. But it takes a motivation that cannot be supplied by anyone, even G-d. Ein hadovor tolui ella bee. That is not referring to stopping - just to quitting, giving it up for now, for today.

Too sleepy gotta go, head spinning from medication now, good night, chabibi,

Though you often sound like one who just wants excuses to porn out better, I still Love you a lot,

- Dov
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 23 Jan 2012 20:55 #131443

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What Real Steps Are You Taking?

dov wrote on 22 Jan 2012 06:23:

What framework are you developing in order to bring some real change into your life? Any new real friends (besides virtual ones who don't know you and do not have any real shaychus to you beyond these posts)? How much time are you actually spending in your day today in order to learn something new about recovery?

Are the steps you are taking all basically comfortable? If so, they are a waste, for sure. Comfort is a sure sign of the fox watching the hen house.

Hatzlocha. It's not that much fun, but it beats masturbating my life away, hands down!
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 23 Jan 2012 21:07 #131444

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Don't Tell Your Wife About All the Wacky Stuff That Goes on in Your Head!

dov wrote on 23 Jan 2012 03:56:

Do not - please, please, do not use your wife for that purpose. It is a gave error for these reasons:

1- she cannot understand it, really, though she may say she can...she just so badly wants to, but it perplexes and pains her with no refu'ah;

2- she cannot share back any personal experience at all, for her feminine sexuality is obviously different;

3- she is too close and personally affected to you to be objective and helpful;

4- it is excruciating and damaging to her - so it is cruel;

5- it is often the secret desire and hope of a husband to tell his wife all about his struggles in order to motivate her - either with fear, or with telling her dirty stuff - to make her more sexually available to him.
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 23 Jan 2012 21:13 #131446

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This post from eye.nonymous is also relevant to telling the wife.

www.guardyoureyes.org/forum/index.php?topic=4870.msg131371#msg131371
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Re: Dov "Quotes" 24 Jan 2012 19:45 #131567

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We do NOT Beat the Y"H - We Surrender (from daily dose)


Ahron wrote:

Help - I just started to look at shmutz and by some miracle, I was disgusted by it.... I think I'm going to take a nap. I gotta get away! Yesterdays chizuk is helping me nowI think.


DesperateJew responds:

Ahron, you did well. You caught yourself, and stopped!

I'm not sure what you meant that you got disgusted and I surely hope you don't mean with yourself! You, by virtue of being capable of overpowering 'the smart one', can not be disgusting in Hashem's eyes.

Take it easy, and keep it up!



Dov Responds:

Dear DesperateJew,

The following is purely my own opinion and I do not speak for anyone else, and certainly not for GYE:

It is not my practice to criticize, particularly when it is so obvious, as in your comments, that you mean only to be helpful. However I feel it is important to point out that (unless I misread your comments) you are implying to Ahron that he caught himself, and that he is being capable of overpowering the YH. I see your message as one of encouragement. I have a problem with this that I feel I need to share with you. If you can bear with me, I'd appreciate it.

Reading his words, I see a fellow who seems ready to give Hashem all the credit for the victory - not himself (he says "by some miracle"). He also gives credit to his buddies for the chizzuk - rather than declaring his new-found power to 'overcome' the YH.

I am sorry if this rubs you the wrong way but everybody is entitled to an opinion, and I want to share mine: I have seen the well-meaning comments some folks give others to "believe in yourself and pat yourself on the back for the clean days you have amassed!", or to be grateful that "you are/were able to beat the YH".

While it seems to be very nice to build up people's self confidence, I have never witnessed this perspective prove helpful to anyone I know, in the long-run. And to my mind, the damage done by the ga'avah that "I can make it" would be the nail in my coffin. I speak about addicts, now. When any addict I have met gets fooled that he or she actually has the power to "beat this thing": yatza scharo b'hefseido. I cannot recall anyone with this attitude staying sober for very long. My guess is that the 'pressure builds up' after a while... and where is their power then? I wonder. It seems an enigma to them: "Well, if I had the power then,why don't I have it now?! If He could help me then, why isn't Hashem helping me now? Is He weaker? Does he not like me as much? Is it because of my aveiros that I do not deserve His help?" This entire self-preoccupied way of thinking leads to painful frustration, and even to excruciating emunah problems. I have seen it happen here and elsewhere.

Parroting the words, "Well, of course we mean that it is 'with Hashem's help'! That's obvious... we are all frum yidden and ma'aminim b'nei ma'aminim here, aren't we?!" is not enough, in my opinion. Actually, I believe that it is meaningless.

We parroted these words all these years - and never stopped. Has being on GYE for a few weeks or months magically given us real emunah? We weren't really frum then, but we are really frum now? I doubt it. Inspiration will only help us stay clean as long as the inspiration lasts. To me (and other addicts), leaning on the crutch of chizuk and frantically fanning the flames of chizuk each day, is just delaying the inevitable - waiting for the other shoe to drop. At least that is how it'd be for me. This is not a game in many cases. In my case and that of many others, it is a battle to save our minds, our marriages, custody of our children, and our jobs, not a matter of only being happy or 'good people'.

We need to do things very differently than we were doing them before, if we expect to have a very different result. For the addicts among us, I suggest admitting that we have lost the battle and becoming satisfied with remaining 'losers' until further notice. That is, we remain guaranteed to lose as long as we insist upon going about life our way. Addicts who use the 12 steps often discover that they need to surrender to Hashem and do His Will, or they will lose again. That is the 3rd step - and all the ensuing steps are about getting closer to that surrender. BTW, the kavonoh in "Echod" is exactly that: Dying for Him - and then "v'ohavta" is about giving up our plans and control of all our ambitions and desires in this life - bad and good; our very right to live; and surrendering all our talents, money, and priorities - all to Hashem.

Addicts who take the third step, set out to accomplish at least some surrender of their egos to Hashem - to save their lives. Cuz this self-abandonment to Hashem is AAs only answer to what you call the Yetzer Hara - self destruction. It seems that AA goes with the 'nuclear option' for problems like addiction. But like I said - if we are to get a different result, we need to go about our lives differently. I do not see "being more frum" as significantly different, that's all. We need a radical change in Derech Eretz - in the underlayment for Torah, rather than "more," or "better" Torah - on a time-bomb foundation of insanity.

And BTW, this idea is why I first posted on GYE. If I just pass this along to a few of my frustrated fellow yidden, all the late nights posting will be worthwhile!

I respect your opinion should you feel very differently than I do, and I know that what works for me will not always work for many other people.
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