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#11566 - 10/09/02 05:13 PM colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
I am struggling, suppressing feelings about sex and women and horniness. The area is so gray for me; there aren’t clear boundaries between what is appropriate and not. Nothing is really out of bounds. Some things should be out of bound, shouldn’t they? Nothing really is for me. It might not be my cup of tea, but unless it hurts or smells real bad, any sexual desire expressed between consenting adults doesn’t intrinsically offend me.

This makes for some very uncomfortable moments, because my wife finds a lot of sexual stuff disgusting. She even said last night she thinks that she is starting to hate sex. Then she absolutely harangued me about pornography and the idea of other people being involved in sex (a reference to our early courtship fantasy talk about a ménage a trios). I find sexual stimulus in fantasy and images of naked women, yet I am trying to keep my sexual activity strictly limited to my wife, including looking and getting turned on. But my wife isn’t interested in sex, and berates the idea of some things that I find arousing (as fantasy). I am kinda stuck. This is the kind of Good Boy repression that can lead to acting out. So I am scared. I have to hide my true feelings from my wife because she will get upset with them, but in order to survive I have to purge these feelings by expressing them, even just in words. And I have the self consciousness that she is watching me. Hidden feelings plus guilt and shame equals depression, at best.

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11567 - 10/10/02 03:00 AM Re: colliding views
Broken Offline
Member

Registered: 03/25/01
Posts: 273
Loc: Huntingtun Beach, CA, US
Your wife sounds like she has some problems with sex. No matter how enlightened most of us are, we still are left with the residual conditioning of a sexually repressive society. It is not wrong, it is not bad, and there is nothing to be ashamed of. To feel desire is a natural part of a relationship, you should not feel the need to repress your desire. It is not fair that you feel you must repress your own sexuality to accomidate your wife. Start talking about it, dont let it sit still and grow into an even bigger problem.


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#11568 - 10/10/02 10:30 AM Re: colliding views
JamesMichael Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/24/02
Posts: 134
Dear Cement,

I don't agree with Broken's sentiments. It is good that you realize you have some boundary issues re sex. If you are not already, I suggest you find a good therapist to work on this stuff.

Having said that, I offer the following:

Guys who have been sexually abused frequently have difficulty with hyperarousal...sort of free-range libido. They can make anything sexual.

Relationships are built on mutual respect, not mutual exploitation. If you're expecting your wife to fulfill your fantasies, and she's feeling used, you're doing to her what was done to you. You're not loving her. Why would she want to be sexual with you if it's all about you? What about her? She wants to be held, loved, validated, appreciated, made to feel safe. You're offering sexual gymnastics. This is not to say that sex shouldn't be fun, spontaneous, etc., but primarily I believe it's for the bonding of a relationship. It may be that I come across as somewhat high-minded when I say this, but really, it's rather pre-adolescent for us to expect that our appetites (whatever they may be) should be satisfied because we want, when we want, neverminding if the other doesn't want.

Self-command doesn't always mean sexual repression. It can mean focusing (from the Latin root for "fire") the sexual energy into something bigger than the fast food release many of us have become accustomed to.

You acknowledge that you have boundary concerns with this. What are you reenacting in your fantasies? Are you seeking to control or otherwise undo what you have previously experienced?

These issues are yours, don't make them your wife's by intimating that they're your right to fulfill. You're on a slippery slop, my friend, because the fulfillment of one fantasy, or even the escalation of it, has the same dissociative effects as other addictions. You're living in two worlds (or too many worlds), and you need to be about the business of integrating them into
One.

I encourage you to dig deep into what and who you are. Are your fantasies in charge of you, or are you, if not in charge of them, at least listening to them?

Having written all this, I can say that it's a tall order; it's not easy. I have been there, and unfortunately realize I could be there again in short order.

It takes a lot of courage to put your past in front of you and to stare at it. Try to make connections between what you want to enact and what you experienced in the past.

Respect you wife and the relationship. Your boundary stuff is taxing them both to the limit. Part of being a man, and what we didn't learn (because we were abused and our boundaries were violated)is to establish boundaries.

Again, I hope you are addressing these things with a qualified therapist.

JM


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#11569 - 10/10/02 07:33 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
Thanks for the concern - my wife and I are each in individual therapy and in conjoint therapy.

We are talking, and that is good, but we come from two very divergent points of view, held together by our love for one another, yet constantly afraid the other will leave, or worse, betray.

So, I was sexualized incorrectly, to use the most innocuous term I can (in order to discuss the results as clinically as possible). I am, therefore, hypersexual, able to sexualize almost anything. My lust for pornography, strippers and prostitutes hasn't meshed well with my held philosophy of female empowerment. So, the difficult part for me is...

I would like to be able to put some space between me and this learned sexuality of humiliation and degradation, but it feels almost like an instinct. I need to relearn to abc's of sex, and I have, to some extent. I am VERY fond of cuddling and being held. Nevertheless, even though I have quit smoking, I still crave a cigarette sometimes. And smoking is NOTHING compared to this urge.

I don't know that the urge will ever go away. And even if I never act on it, I feel that I am betraying my wife unless I get rid of it.

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11570 - 10/10/02 07:47 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
oh, I have to give this PS.

I have been free and "clean" of porn, srippers, prostitutes and acting-out for more then four months now, excepting a near miss from last week, documented on this board. Even internal fantasy has slowed to nearly nothing. But the desire lingers.

James Michael, I just reread your post and I realize there may be some issues that I paint with broad strokes. The struggles my wife and I have are philosophical, not practical. Guilt is poison to passion and the guilt I already have (about these horrible THOUGHTS and wants I feel I shouldn't have) mix with my wife's now-stated view that anyone with such desires is a pervert. I end up feeling kinda shitty.

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11571 - 10/11/02 01:28 AM Re: colliding views
Roy Offline
Member

Registered: 08/02/02
Posts: 184
Loc: Los Angeles
Betrayal does not occur in the mind, it is the result of an action. As long as you do not betray your wife by acting in violation of whatever agreements you have regarding sex, you are still in possesion of your integrity. Lots of people have desires like yours, most of whom were probably never abused. I think its great that you are being so honest and forthright in talking about what is really going on in your head. I also thing its great that you have maintained four months of sexual "sobriety" in not acting out. You are still in the early phase of your sexual recovery and these feelings you are having are perfectly normal. In fact, it would be weird if, given your history, you weren't having thoughts and feelings like this. The important thing is to keep talking about it. I quit using speed one year ago this week, and I struggled a lot with cravings during the first six months, especially right around the six month point. Things have gotten a lot easier, but there are still times when I just want it. That will probably always be the case. As long as you don't act out, there is no betyral. So give yourself some credit! Take care.


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#11572 - 10/11/02 02:36 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
I am very grateful to all you guys, especially Roy and Wuame.

I am struggling, and the struggle isn't located where I might expect it.

Get past acting out, and Philosophy awaits me, a bat in its hand. "Defeat me and you will face Boredom's smothering cloak. You will submit, you will give in to the anguish, whether by misstep, misfortune or simple failure."

There is no place to hide. I always hid so well - I could mesmerize myself, hypnotized, sedated and quiet. Everything is so raw...it is right here, and I don't like feeling it. Right now i prefer when I couldn't feel. At least it didn't hurt.

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11573 - 10/11/02 02:58 PM Re: colliding views
Roy Offline
Member

Registered: 08/02/02
Posts: 184
Loc: Los Angeles
Sorry to hear you are hurting so badly. We've all been there, and will be again. Remember that all feelings are temporary and life will get better. That may sound trite, but I know that I need to be reminded of that sometimes when I am suffering. So now its my turn to remind you. \:\)


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#11574 - 10/11/02 08:07 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Wuame
my "doc" is the same one as yours, he gets around ! But he's getting old and tired and his medicine's past its sell by date. He's losing his grip.
Someday soon he'll retire, hopefully to somewhere far away.

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11575 - 10/12/02 11:01 AM Re: colliding views
RecoveringRyan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/11/02
Posts: 28
Loc: new york state
I've been continuing to struggle with my sexual dysfunctions and perverse fantasies and desires. I've found the following passages helpful:

"But as a result of working through his fantasies in analysis and experiencing his early relationship with his father and mother, these fears disappeared along with his other symptoms, and he could begin to develop in a free and healthy way." Alice Miller, For Your Own Good, p202

"He was acting out here the deep humiliation, intimidation, destruction of dignity, loss of power and torment of the little boy he once was."
Alice Miller, For Your Own Good, 223-4

She goes on to say how filled with shame about himself the person is. And this quote from Victims No Longer, by Mike Lew:

"If you get at the root of a problem, the symptoms tend to lessen and disappear.... It doesn't happen magically or overnight, but as they move through their shame, as they continue to rebuild trust and self-esteem, and as they continue to forge healthy friendships and intimacies, their sexual problems begin to diminish." p60

From my earlier studies of my perverted sexual fantasies, I had tried to analyse the fantasies themselves to see what feelings were being expressed in them. For this, I found [Private Thoughts] by Wendy Maltz helpful. I have so far discovered, basically, that I am aroused by hurting people, by causing them pain, to hurt, cry, whatever, and also by anonymous dirty sex, such as with a hooker or a one-night stand in a nightclub. For one thing, in both cases, there are no intimate feelings involved: I don't love them and I'm not concerned with whether they love me. Actually, I'm very concerned with whether they love me, that's why it has to be anonymous so I'd never see them again, anyway, or someone I somehow have control over or guaranteed affection from. Somebody who even if I hurt them or disappoint them or do something that is embarassing for me, I can trust that they will love me, nevertheless. Why am I aroused by hurting people or in anonymous situations?

I think the quotes above have helped me start to get to the roots of these feelings. I'm thinking that wanting to hurt somebody is an expression of anger/hatred/contempt/cruelty, which I have for one of two reasons, or both: when my father was humiliating me and also when I was being sexually abused, it caused me to hate them but I repressed it because I was afraid of them, and now I take it out in fantasy on weaker people whom I don't fear; and/or, when these things were happening and I was being humiliated, I also felt inferior (and ashamed) and I wanted to be like the people who were doing this to me, big and strong and better, as it seemed to me at the time. Either way, this sadism/cruelty/perversion/sickness/anger/hatred/contempt is within me, somehow, from somewhere.

For me it is still a struggle to accept myself as this way, or even if I get over all this, I will always have been this way for years. I am ashamed and horrified by being this way. I suppose two things are helping me become more accepting of myself as the monster that I sometimes feel myself to be. First, just feeling ashamed and horrified over and over again, like any other feeling, consciously, and they start to abate. And second, I need to make the connection between the abuse and the perversion more specific and more directly connected in my mind, ie, I need to keep asking myself, Am I just a sick fuck? or is this the sick contamination of some sick things that were done to me? I guess I really need to believe the second, but even thinking about this is hard.

If what the quotes above say is true, then in order to deal with my fantasies, I have to access my feelings of shame, humiliation, pain, fear, inferiority, low self-esteem, violation/betrayal, nakedness, disgust, self-contempt/hatred and the memories of the childhood trauma that caused these feelings. Sexual recovery, then, would be just like any other part of emotional recovery. One thing that seems to support the case that these emotions are the underlying causes of my sexual problems and my perverse fantasies, is that I definitely feel all of these bad feelings very strongly, in fact, they are most of what I feel. I am very ashamed of myself, feel inferior to the human race, and have very low self-esteem. I am also very contemptuous of others. And I have very little emotional intimacy or trust and I am afraid of rejection. So that connection is somewhat plausible.

I noticed something about my fantasies the other day while masturbating. If I masturbated about somebody whom I considered very sexy but above me, I couldn't get aroused. I felt so inferior to her that I couldn't even think or feel about sex towards her. I know at a deep emotional level that she wouldn't be interested in me and I would be so afraid of fucking things up and being humiliated by her laughing at me, rejecting me and abandoning me, that I couldn't even try to fantasize about her. Then I thought about somebody whose not as sexy, but who I know could become emotionally dependent on me, ie, she could my victim, I could hurt her and she wouldn't reject me, and I feel superior to her. And then I got aroused by the thought of doing all these bad things to her. This is my perversion. I am ashamed and sickened by it, but I've got to face it to cure it. As usual, so people don't get the wrong idea, I feel obligated to mention that I've never hurt anybody. In fact, when I'm actually with somebody, I'm so self-conconscious about my body and my performance, so afraid of rejection and anxious about what they think of me, I feel so disgusting and inferior, that I often become a sexual servant. I think that is the connection: the same feelings that make me an innocent almost asexual servant in real life also underly the feelings that make me a monster in my fantasies. The solution, as I now see it, is to work out my pain, low self-esteem, shame, etc, and be healthier and develop and express and act freely in both situations. Another possible wrong turn here is to try to avoid fantasies entirely. I've been lead down that path by the horror of my fantasies, but I occasionally remember that what I really want is not no fantasies, by exciting loving sexy fantasies.

I guess, right now, at the end of the day, I believe in the correctness of this approach enough to keep at it, but my insecurity makes me continuously doubt whether I'm doing the right/best thing and whether it will work.

Ryan


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#11576 - 10/12/02 01:11 PM Re: colliding views
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
Ryan:

It sounds as tho you are getting to know your problems and their roots very well. Most importantly you are getting to know yourself: how to heal yourself, how to be yourself. Of course you're insecure, but you are on the right track and I know you'll keep at it, especially with that kind of good reading, and good support like here. Way to go!

Wuame

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#11577 - 10/12/02 06:26 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Ryan
I've written often about my own battle with the fantasies that were so at odds with the person I wanted to be, although for a long time I didn't see it like that.
Mine eased off real slow, they still appear make no mistake about that, but they have lost there power. Masturbation now is just a hard physical effort. And it's got to the stage for me where what you describe as the "uanatainable supergirl fantasy" not working for you - now the stranger + blow job fantasy no longer works for me.
Unfortunately neither does anything else, although I'm to scared to indulge other fantasies incase they take on the life and power that the old ones did. And likewise with porn, I just daren't.
I don't need to either, I'm married to a very sexual woman, but I also lack the ..... whatever it is.. to initiate sex. Although I am getting a bit better very slowly.

So I guess I've just about become asexual in the effort to get rid of the fantasies and the acting out that went with them - not to mention all the guilt and shit. Is it too high a price ?
No, I have my sanity and my wife and I are working out ways of getting me over my problems.

I hate the fantasies and their all conquering pervasivness, I had a bad day on Tuesday - the first for months - and it wrecked me.
I can live without that.

We can all live without that shit.

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11578 - 10/12/02 09:53 PM Re: colliding views
ARW Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/29/02
Posts: 161
Loc: LA
what a thread! This has probably been the toughest one for me to read. Cement, your honesty and effort is so comendable, it's awesome. I wish I had that strength. Working on it. Wife and kid are out of town tonight and I sat down at the computer with a (not so) subconsious intention of surfing porn all night. Then I came here instead (thanks for being here) - and found this. I had to drag myself through the posts. I am so stricken with lifelong sexual dysfunction and a compulsive attachment to porn. There is so much wisdom and inspiration in your words. I only hope, as RecoveringRyan put so well, that by accepting my feelings, the dysfunction dissipates. No sign yet, but it's early days for me. I really can't imagine ever being sexually functional or confident. But I forge ahead. And I'm so encouraged by the work going on here.
Thanks again to all you guys.
-Al

_________________________
In every cry of every man,
In every Infant's cry of fear,
In every voice, in every ban,
The mind-forged manacles I hear.
-William Blake

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#11579 - 10/12/02 10:04 PM Re: colliding views
New to this Offline
Member

Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 138
Loc: Mississippi
I can relate to what all of you are expressing. I've been married for 10 years, but I've kept my steady girlfriend of 28 years. My wife could sense it and always had a fear that I would leave her. I finally confessed & explained that my girlfriend was actually my right hand.
Giving up my girlfriend was really hard.

I stopped initiating sex several years ago. If we had sex it was because my wife wanted it. She had begun to hate it and it had become painful. All of that has changed.

When I learned of my abuse(4 weeks ago) I told my wife. Over the next week I told her the details and everything about me connected to my abuse.
My wife has been very understanding. Being honest with her has broken down all of the walls between us. We have grown closer in the last month than in the previous 10 years.

Getting back to my girlfriend, I wanted to give her up and focus all of my sexual energy on my wife. Bless her. Except for 4 nights, we've done it every night or day for 4 weeks. I'm almost over my girlfriend--I've visited once in 4 weeks. I tell my wife when I'm in need, and we talk about it, and the thought of being with her gets me through the crisis.
It may never be perfect, but it is so much better, and just keeps getting better.
I still have a couple of issues to work through. Genital numbness is the worse. Combine that with a little Prozac, and I'm in for a long, hard evening(the crude pun is for Roy).
Communication and honesty have been the keys to getting through this.
The support and encouragement from you guys has been wonderful--I couldn't have done it alone.

_________________________
"Knowledge itself is power" Francis Bacon

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#11580 - 10/13/02 05:45 AM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
This gets deeper and better, you guys are describing just what I feel as well, and New To This - you seem to have made that great leap to actuslly asking or initiating sex with your wife.
I still can't get that bit, I was made to ask for sex with my abusers so I guess I still equate it that way. Even though I realise this it's still the major problem for me. Why can't I, after 28 years of marriage, just get on with it and make the first move ??
Boy, that pisses me off .......

I'm going to try Wuamei's trick and flush this shit. Or perhaps I should do what most of my school reports said - "Could do better if he tried"

Here's to dumping the fantasies and porn ;\)

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11581 - 10/13/02 06:00 AM Re: colliding views
Broken Offline
Member

Registered: 03/25/01
Posts: 273
Loc: Huntingtun Beach, CA, US
you were not very clear on your thoughts towards what you were doing. I misunderstood. If you are obsessing about something, then its not healthy, but sexual desire is a natural thing. All i was saying was that suppressing your sexuality will not help your relationship any.


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#11582 - 10/13/02 11:28 AM Re: colliding views
RecoveringRyan Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 09/11/02
Posts: 28
Loc: new york state
God I need this thread of posts.

Lloydy,

As you know, I have the same problem with not being able to initiate sex. I think for me the problem is that I feel guilty wanting anything, including sex, and I feel ashamed and disgusting in addition, when I would want sex, so I just can't conceive and feel the desire, and I'm so afraid of rejection, ridicule, and abandonment that I can't ask. That's my problem and I had thought it might be yours, too. But then I read your later post about having been made to ask for sex by your abusers and it rang a bell with me. I cannot ask for anything. I can't even tell my grandmother what food I would like when she wants to make me a dinner. I simply can't express my will and desire to/on another person. I think this is because I was so humiliated by my father as a child, when he yelled and laughed at me or punished me for everything I wanted or everything I wanted to do. There is just too much pain and humiliation already inside me from asking for things, that I cannot risk it now. It seems the solution to this is to admit the pain and humiliation and feel it, and eventually not be so afraid of it again in the future, so that I'll be able to risk asking for things and even be able to bear the pain of refusal without dreading it so much that I'm unable to do it. Maybe these thoughts will help you, I don't know, 'cause it's hard to guess what feelings are repressed in somebody else's or even my own unconscious.

I'm definitely as asexual as I can make myself be.

New To This touched (pun intended) on something that I've noticed is a big part of my sexual problems: genital numbness. It is so shaming for me, to admit this and to talk about this. But I have very little sensation in the places where I was touched by my perpetrator, which includes all of my genital areas. I didn't realize this until I did an exercise suggested by Wendy Maltz in the Sexual Healing Journey, which is basically just touching yourself and seeing how it feels and how little or much you feel. So I laid back and touched my penis and I noticed that I didn't really feel that much from just caressing it. I really was quite numb as far as physical sensation goes. I think this contributes to my masturbation/fantasy problem as well as to my occasional sexual dysfunction of not being able to have an orgasm: I can't feel that much through my penis. So, when this is happening, I am less stimulated by sex and have more difficulty having an orgasm, and I need more extreme fantasies to arouse me. Another way of putting it is that while masturbating, much less of the stimulation comes from physical sensation and therefore much more has to come from imaginary fantasy, so these have to be ever more intense. I was surprised how much sensation I was able to feel in my penis after just caressing it gently for a while and focusing on my numbness. I can imagine that this much better level of sensation would make sex that much butter. Also, I remember I was with a girl for a while who had been sexually abused. I eventually figured out that if I massaged her body for a while before sex she would get more aroused. I used to think it was only that she needed more than the usual amount of foreplay, but I've since begun to wonder whether she was numb, too, and would only feel and trust to feel after a comparatively long while of gentle caressing.

The whole touching myself sexual exercise thing seemed kind of corny to me and I was afraid and ashamed to try it. But it worked, I've got to admit. My fear and shame still prevent me from doing it that often though. The image of me lying there in bed alone just touching myself, but not really masturbating, in order to recover sensation in my numb body--well, you can see how ashamed I am.

Ryan


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#11583 - 10/13/02 04:56 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Ryan
we're on the same wavelength here my man.

I too am afraid to ask for anything, and always end any request with a garbled "I'm sorry, I don't want to be a nuisance" etc etc....
I apologise for everything and ask for virtually nothing. If I'm short of loose change in the morning and need a smoke I dread having to ask my wife, and end up doing a grovelling act.
She doesn't stop me having the change if I need or anything like that, I just have a problem asking.

the sexual numbness sounds a bit interesting, perhaps we've beaten them sensless ??
But what's the score with that ? I'd like to know a bit more about it.
And don't feel ashamed of doing something to help yourself. ( just don't get caught ;\) )
If it works, it's right Ryan. Let me know more please.

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11584 - 10/13/02 05:57 PM Re: colliding views
New to this Offline
Member

Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 138
Loc: Mississippi
I re-read this string and realized how screwed up our thoughts about sex became because of our abuse.

Breaking out of my old habits has been really difficult.

I though it might be helpful if I summed up the last month.

I went to a psychiatrist for an evaluation. He really pissed me off because he spent an hour talking about me being sexually repressed. About 30 hours later I remembered the circumstances of my abuse. Four days later, under hypnosis, I remembered the details.

I told my wife when I remembered that I had been abused. When I remembered what happened, I told her the details.

Then came the hard part, telling her all of the things that I had done because of the abuse.
She knew that I had been looking at porn on the net. She thought that I was looking at other women. I had let her think that because it was easier than telling her I was looking at men.
Learning of my abuse let me put my attraction to men in perspective: my first sexual experience was with another boy(even though he forced me, it was still fun). I didn't want to be gay, I was just re-living that first experience--trying to understand perhaps. I flushed that shit.

The hardest thing was telling her that I had acted out a as teenager. I had several encounters of my own choosing just like my abuse.

After telling her all of this, it was really easy to tell her how much I needed her, but I had to flush a lot of shit first.

The secrets I was keeping were a real barrier to being intimate. Being honest about myself and my past allowed me to be honest about my current needs also. I would recommend some honesty. Lets face it, if you're married, how suprised could your wife be at this point. They know or sense more than we give them credit for, but they also know better than to ask.

I'm dealing with the numbness with her help. We've made a game out her making me shiver. She's even learned a new trick(something I would not let her do before). I'm having to retrain myself to feel. The numbness was so bad that I could not relate to a guy doubling over in pain after getting hit in the crotch--I was that numb.

I made some connections between my abuse and my sex life. I was really turned off by French kissing. My wife did that once and I asked her not to do it again. When I remembered my abuse it made sense: it felt about like a limp penis getting hard in my mouth. When I made the connection, I got over it. Now I enjoy those deep probing kisses.

I never talked during sex. That's an easy one to explain--its hard to talk with a dick in your mouth.

About the porn: I could spend hours on the net. I didn't know what I was looking for--I was just looking. As soon as a picture loaded, I clicked on another. I think I shut down a couple of free sites. Now I think that I was looking for my perp, trying to make myself remember my abuse.

So far, every problem has had an explaination.

I don't mean to keep bragging about how much I'm getting, its just that in 10 years we never did it this often. Not counting today (yet) we've done it 25 out of the last 28 days.

A month ago I was no different than you guys in my sexual life. So guys, quit taking matters into your own hands, try some honesty, flush a load of shit and go for it.

Devon

_________________________
"Knowledge itself is power" Francis Bacon

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#11585 - 10/13/02 06:11 PM Re: colliding views
bec Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/02
Posts: 187
Loc: chicagoland area
fellow men:

wow, this post and the replies are fantastic! they really hit home for me and make me think hard about myself and my reliance on porn and masturbation.

wow, i feel a bit overwhelmed by it all! i am reading and writing in a public forum so i am somewhat uneasy. i do not want a child peering over my shoulder and reading any of this. but, i know i truly need to read this.

please keep this line of sharing up men. i truly need it for one. i need to go guys but i will return asap to hopefully read and share more. thanks so much

bec


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#11586 - 10/13/02 07:31 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
I am proud to have opened this thread. I am proud of everyone who is brave enough to write here. I am proud of those who have the courage to read it, and identify with it.

None of us were allowed to develop proper boundaries. Now, as adults, we have to re-learn for ourselves. Frankly, the only people I trust to help me learn those boundaries are you guys.

Man, that last sentence was so hard to write. I had to write the word 'trust' about strangers. Seems absurd, but it isn't. Seems like I should qualify or limit that trust, but you know what? I am not going to. I am just going to enjoy the idea that I have a think tank to help me work through issues.

Peace

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11587 - 10/14/02 05:28 PM Re: colliding views
bec Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/02
Posts: 187
Loc: chicagoland area
men:

i am back and enjoying this post and all replies. i am now at the point where i have not rented any "fresh" porn in 1 year and 4 days. i have not masturbated to porn in i can't remember how long. (i haven't masturbated period.) and, i am wondering if i have a problem.

am i a sex addict? i am struggling with this right now. i have no partner in my life now nor have i ever had one. porn and masturbation has been my only release for the 20 years of my adult life. i do not know if i can live a life without it. am i a sex addict? i don't know. do i feel i can live a healthy life and include porn in it? i do not know. i truly do not know.

when i ask myself why i am not using it my answer is: to not pay the costs. these costs are both financial and emotional. the shame, the deep hurt, the sadness, and i believe i am starting to feel the anger. just starting but, i think it is there just under the surface.

and, i ask myself how long can i go without it? when will i give in and use it again? orgasm is a vital human need. when will my need become too great and i will have to act on it? i do not know men. i do not know.

it just really pisses me off that the people who wounded me to the extent that i am not not able to trust and experience intimacy, those mainly 2 people, my parents, are going on and living their lives.

do we have the right to hold those people responsible for our present day struggles? more importantly, will doing so help me any? really, will it help me today? i think not.

i think the only thing that matters is what the crap are we gonna do about it? that's the only thing that matters. what are we gonna do about it?

are we going to do everything possible to heal and improve our life? or, are we gonna keep on doing what we have been doing and keep getting what we have been getting? this is the most important point. the only point that really matters.

men, i have a lot of work to do and a lot of praying. a lot of work and a lot of praying. wow men, i feel grateful for being honest with all of you. and, grateful you all are there to read this. i think this is all for today.

i hope this post continues to grow. i wanna read more great replies to it. take care men. and, may our Gods bless us and strengthen and heal us all.

bec


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#11588 - 10/14/02 05:37 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
Quote:
am i a sex addict? i don't know. do i feel i can live a healthy life and include porn in it? i do not know. i truly do not know.
Oh man, do I understand this. These words could be mine, they are mine.

What am I allowed? I feel like I need to eliminate these things - porn and masturbation -from my life, yet i feel as though i am burying something by doing that. I am ignoring something i need to confront.

Am I now rationalizing in order to get turned on in a fucked up way? What is the difference between a healthy release and something more sinister?

And I ask this in OUR context, the context of being a survivor. For others it may be different...

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11589 - 10/14/02 06:16 PM Re: colliding views
New to this Offline
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Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 138
Loc: Mississippi
1. Sex is an instinct.
2. It doesn't need to be ignored.
3. Abuse has warped our attitude toward sex.
4. Abuse has warped our sexual expression.
5. Porn and masturbation are symptoms of abuse(for us at least)
6. Porn & masturbation are substitutes for intimacy.

Address the cause, not the symptoms, and the symptoms become easier to deal with.

Personally, my guilt over these issues kept me from being truly intimate.

We men are really dumb at times. Persistent, but dumb. If at first we don't succeed, we try again. We're to dumb to realize when we are trying the wrong thing. Attribute that to the abuse. Huh? I'm wondering what that means too.
Maybe its this: Porn & masturbation provide that release we want, but not the satisfaction we need. So we try harder. As we try harder to be satisfied, we get farther from what we really need.

If man evolved from the "primordial soup" none of this should matter or bother us. That's one reason I believe we were created. The need to become one with a woman is God given.

We're back to instinct & that's where I started. Since I've come full circle, I'll go now.

_________________________
"Knowledge itself is power" Francis Bacon

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#11590 - 10/14/02 06:43 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Quote:
About the porn: I could spend hours on the net. I didn't know what I was looking for--I was just looking. As soon as a picture loaded, I clicked on another.
we never do know what we're looking for, in the instant the picture flashes onto the screen we think it's the ultimate one. But seconds later we move on....and on.....and on.....

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11591 - 10/14/02 06:45 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
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Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Quote:
Frankly, the only people I trust to help me learn those boundaries are you guys.

Man, that last sentence was so hard to write. I had to write the word 'trust' about strangers. Seems absurd, but it isn't. Seems like I should qualify or limit that trust, but you know what? I am not going to.
Way to go Cement !!

Lloydy \:D

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11592 - 10/15/02 03:24 AM Re: colliding views
Roy Offline
Member

Registered: 08/02/02
Posts: 184
Loc: Los Angeles
Cement,

I'll tell you how I look at it, see if this helps. First comes the relationship you have with your wife. If you are communicating well, understanding and supporting your individual and mutual goals and the sex is generally good, then why not supplement things with a jack off session with a good porno now and then. Let's be real here, after you're married and monogamous for a few years, it's normal to desire some variety. Porn and your own fantasies can be an outlet that does not violate any agreements with your partner. So far, so good. We get into trouble, however, if the quest for porn and excessive masturbation starts to interfere with other parts of our life. Does it interfere with the sex and intimacy you share with your wife? Do you avoid obligations, committments, or social activities so you can "do your thing"? Does it interfere with your job or relationships with others?

I think if you, I, we, deal with and feel our feelings directly and honestly, the compulsion to act out sexually in any way will find some level of resolution so that it does not hold power over our lives. We have to be careful, however, because we may always be vulnerable in this area and have to keep a watchful eye on what we are doing. We must be willing to seek help if things start to get out of whack. If the time you spend with your dick in one hand and the remote in the other is sporadic and fairly brief, then you're ok. If you find yourself needing it more, looking forward to it, planning on how to get away with it, then you might be headed for trouble and need to get in touch with what's really going on. In addition, and I think this is a big one, find healthy alternatives for dealing with life stressors, both internal and external.

I say all this because I lived it. There was a time in my life where I would be in bed, lights out, and be absolutely compelled to get up, get dressed, and leave the house at midnight in search of sex at adult bookstores or bars. I would stay out until 3 or 4 in the morning even though I had to be at work for an important meeting at 8 am. I had no control over it whatsoever, like someone was controlling me via remote control. It was awful and I was so ashamed. I eventually combined that addiction with alcohol and drugs, and then pretty much got focused on the drugs with sex as a nice accompaniement. Now that I am in recovery and dealing with my life and feeling my feelings I feel free to pop in a porno and ... . You get the picture. I actually enjoy it more because I finish after an hour or so and get on with my life. It also doesn't happen very often, so I'm free of all the shame and guilt I used to feel that probably used to set me up for the next time. Anyway, it's been working for me for a year.

If you are really worried about it, there are two good programs in southern California that I know of that deal with sexual recovery issues. Del Amo Hospital in Torrance, and the Sexual Recovery Institute in Beverly Hills. Each of these has a website where you can get more information like referrals, books to read, etc. Hope this helps, and keep at it. Sounds like you are doing pretty well and that is good news!


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#11593 - 10/15/02 04:37 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
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MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
For me this is the final frontier, and not even Spock's logic can make sense of it.

I can deal with the abuse fine. What happened to me is consigned to the dustbin of history. I very rarely get flashbacks any more, I can talk about it. Tomorrow I have to work in the street where one of my abusers lives - and I will sleep ok tonight I promise you.

But the fantasy / masturbation thing still lingers on. And the hard part for me is that a normal sex life with my wife is suffering for it.
I don't get the day in - day out fantasy and dwelling on sex I used to get, that's 90% gone now as well.
I haven't looked at online porn for over a year.
But I still feel the need to crank one off most days. And it's bloody hard work !!
The fantasies are shit, and I can't find - no - I don't want new ones, and it makes my arm ache.
It's a bag of shite, but I still have a compulsion towards it.

Do old habits die hard ? is it that simple or am I missing something ?

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11594 - 10/15/02 04:53 PM Re: colliding views
JamesMichael Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/24/02
Posts: 134
Thank you Cement for starting this thread. I've reread my post as well all that followed. I don't know what to say. Here I am in "short order" with a ton of sexual tension, at work, sick daughter and wife at home. There have been many times when I've been totally stressed and would masturbate everyday to get the high. I didn't know it then, but I would actually dissociate and lose touch with everything around me. Everyone's talked about their fantasies and I guess I feel like I want to come clean too. I very much like my dick. I don't have trouble touching it, feeling it; you get the picture. It's taken me awhile to get here, but I'm darn proud of it. A few years ago I began reading some Tantric literature and it gave a new perspective on masturbation, the erect penis "Jade Stem." It has been a challenge to reconceive the sexual tension as something to redirect and feed off of as opposed to something to be relieved of...which is how I dealt with it as an adolescent and young adult. I didn't learn to do anything constructive with the tension. Sexual abuse by my brother(s) and mother preempted any choices of what to do with the tension. When the abuse stopped, the tension got bottled up. The overt abuse by my brother ended when I was eight. The covert abuse by my mother continued until I got married. I experienced my first wet dream when I was thirteen. I remember it today. I was dreaming about a girl I had a crush on at the time. She kissed me, and I came! But the borrowed sweat pants of my second oldest brother were now soiled. I hid them for months in a closet, so ashamed was I. He discovered them and humiliated me. I did not masturbate until I was seventeen years old. I had a wet dream probably every other night since I was thirteen, and just stuffed toilet tissue in my pants in preparation for the eventual spill. I experimented and successfully kept my shorts clean. I took control of the emissions. It became habitual. I realize now that it was to release not just sexual tension, but also anxiety. And then when I was depressed, it made me feel better. I don't recall specifically fantasizing about anything or anyone when I was younger. There was a small magazine photo of a naked lady that I kept under a rock in the backyard that I would visit. But I would just stare at it. Sort of just trying to figure it out. Like, what's this all about. I certainly never actively fantasized about girls or women then or now. They were off-limits. I remember lifting up a little girls dress when I was in second grade, being reprimanded, filled with shame, first communion time, and girls are off limits. I did look at Playboy and Penthouse as a teenager, but that totally conflicted with the good Catholic boy image I had developed. I was gonna be a good boy. Fast forward to my current fantasy world and it's pretty straightforward, just me and a guy masturbating together. I think this is about wanting to be close to men, reenacting abuse, etc. I'd like to explore more of fantasy life that includes women, but I feel like I need permission. Even when I used to act out, etc., it was much more o.k. for me to be with a guy than to do such exploitive stuff with a women. They're to be preserved. Having said all this, I'm realizing my best hard-ons are with my wife, but they're just not frequent enough. Lifestyles of 46 year old men with three children don't accommodate a lot of phallic activity. Which brings me to today. I think I'm o.k. with gay images, fantasies. To me, it's a little homeopathic. A little bit of the thing that ails you can help you. I'm not talking about abuse, exploitation. There is something to being with myself, my Phallos, and pleasing it, being with it, meditating and breathing, and being mindful of its power that is spiritual and not in any way corrupt. Making love with my wife is one thing, being with myself is another. I believe both can be good, correct, and unspoiled. The fantasies might be good for starters, but they can subside to a mindfulness of the energy being drawn from below through your chest and into your head. Feeling, believing, knowing, what you hold in your hand is the important thing. My struggle is using it wisely. I don't want to control my sexual energy, and fantasies into extinction. I don't want to be a eunuch. I want to take what was a misuse of my sexuality, reclaim it, and use it as I believe it will serve me and those I love. I don't want quick release with myself, my wife, or with anyone else...this is not something to be dispensed of. I want to enjoy it and be empowered by it, not shamed and deflated by it. I would like share more of this with my wife. I think it could really be beautiful. I envy those of you who have taken the risks to share your stuff with your wives.

I just wanted to share some of this with you. Some of it's practical and some of it's philosophical.

Thanks for reading.

JM


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#11595 - 10/15/02 08:02 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Wuamei
That hit the spot, but it's late and I need to think properly about what you said.
Catch you tomorrow.
Lloydy ;\)

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11596 - 10/15/02 08:06 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
ok, let me try this..

Wuame - your post today helped me at a difficult moment.

Roy - I want to believe that what works for you will work for me, I am just not quite there yet. Philosophically and intellectually, I feel there has to be a release of sexual energy; it's a guy thing, biological, instinctual, right? I don't know if I am comfortable sorting out the consequences yet. I am still re-learning my sexual behaviors. But man, is it hard to resist a simple, naked girl picture right now.

JM - I have to argue that the sex industry is not always or exclusively exploitative of women. This doesn't excuse the use of sexual images for the purpose of masturbation, but maybe it removes some of the guilt associated. Or do I digress?

Lloydy again hits it on the head. The logic of this all doesn't work. There is no zero sum, e.g., "I jerk off, therefore I cannot perform with a partner," or "I have been clean of all pornography, etc. and haven't masturbated so everything is fine." Neither of those is true...yet some portion of both is true.

I cannot say that I understand any of it. Holding off from masturbation and porn gave me one of the best, most intimate lovemaking sessions I have ever had with my wife. I must also say that, now, just a few days later, I am experiencing a strong desire to women in general, and I cannot distinguish the feelings of horniness, guilt, shame and instinct, and that bothers. me.

I have guilt about this, and the guilt hurts. but without the guilt, might I act out? So the guilt is serving a purpose?

My head is swimming with this, because, rather than to apply logic (another trait we share, the desire to make things work logically, is it our attempt to find pattern in the chaos?), I am trying to blurt out what I am feeling, raw and generally unedited.

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11597 - 10/15/02 08:21 PM Re: colliding views
Cement Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 06/05/02
Posts: 740
Loc: Southern California
Ah, sex and acting out as a drug and its attendant adrenaline rush. I know it well, as we all do. Someone posted about how it numbs the other stresses and pain away.

I have felt that way, too.

At least the surge and retreat of the pain, shame and guilt of acting out was predictable, like the tide. It had a rhythm, it ebbed and flowed, and I knew that rhythm. I could hold my breath at high tide and wait. The waves would recede, and the softening crash would reveal the beach, hard-packed and smooth, new again.

Now I feel like I am standing in the middle of traffic, angry horns bleating all around me, and I can't concentrate enough to know which way to go.

_________________________
And let the darkness fear our light.

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#11598 - 10/15/02 11:40 PM Re: colliding views
New to this Offline
Member

Registered: 09/16/02
Posts: 138
Loc: Mississippi
Cement,

Your own words:
Quote:
I cannot say that I understand any of it. Holding off from masturbation and porn gave me one of the best, most intimate lovemaking sessions I have ever had with my wife.
Your own abuse:
Quote:
Now I feel like I am standing in the middle of traffic, angry horns bleating all around me, and I can't concentrate enough to know which way to go.
Even when we know where we want to be, our abuse takes us back to where we were.

You are on the right path. Don't get lost now.

Devon

_________________________
"Knowledge itself is power" Francis Bacon

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#11599 - 10/16/02 12:37 PM Re: colliding views
Wuamei Offline
Member

Registered: 08/19/02
Posts: 2700
Loc: The left turn I should have ta...
JM wrote: "Sexual abuse by my brother(s) and mother preempted any choices of what to do with the tension. When the abuse stopped, the tension got bottled up."

Damn! Another man incested by his mother! I hurt with you, man. Yeah, it bottled up a lot of tension in me too. I'm finally, slowly but surely, learning how to release it properly in healthy intimacy & sexuality, as well as in, as someone said earlier, "finding better things to do with my hands," like typing this!

Take care JM

Wuame

_________________________
"I can't stand pain. It hurts me."
--Daffy Duck

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#11600 - 10/16/02 01:20 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
The adreniline rush I could create was huge and could last for a few hours. At it's height it was better than cocaine. I ruled my world and became invincible.
I've multiple rolled a 4x4 down a mountainside more than once, and that doesn't come anywhere near the rush, which is a bit odd because a big part of my acting out was the danger element.
I've acted out in the most public places imaginable, and that was a part of the rush.

The increased heart-rate before the acting out and the high were everything to me.
And even now when I know I'm driving in a dangerous situation I cant get that level. Maybe it's because the 4x4 is a specially built machine with a steel cage and full racing harness etc so I know I wont get hurt. I know that failure just means lost points and some stick from the other guys. At worst it's a bit of mechanical damage and a stiff neck !

Getting caught acting out was the biggest risk I ever took, I stood to lose everything - my wife, family and friends. Probably my home and job as well. How much risk did I need ? Lot's of it apparently, because the rush was addictive and I didn't have the tools in place to stop it and deal with the root cause.
Now, although I remember that level of high I don't need or want it anymore. I recognize it for what it was - sheer terror !

But also I wonder if perhaps I'm missing this association of excitement and sex in some way, has sex become boring ?
Is it something as simple as trying to get some different, and acceptable, excitement back into our sex life ? Perhaps I should suggest a moment of unbridled passion in the back of the car the next time we're on the supermarket car park \:D

Or is that illegal ??

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#11601 - 10/17/02 02:33 AM Re: colliding views
Don-NY Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/06/02
Posts: 546
Loc: Long Island, NY
Here's another perspective. Make of it what you will. It makes me angry and sad.

I stopped all acting out that involved other people 16 years ago. I just finally knew that it was destructive. I didn't fully understand why, but I knew.

That was also the end of my sex life as most people would define such. So, if it wasn't for fantasy and masturbation, I would have no sexual activity or release at all, if you can call it that.

Does it ever get out of control? Have I been up until 4 am, when work started at 6, cruising the net, and doing my thing for 6 or 8 or 10 hours?

Yes.

Will that happen again?
Maybe.

Am I a sex addict?
Doubtless.

Do I sexualize everything?
I did. More so the younger I was. But I don't take credit or blame for that. I put it right on the perpetrator who started that train running when I was three. Over all, I've gotten better in this area. Maybe it's middle age.

Do I think some things are off limits?
Well, maybe not in thought. Unless I think it should be for some reason. The limit is in the boundary. I don't have a partner, but I don't think I would share every single thought, sexual or otherwise, that might cross my mind if I did. On the other hand, I have a friend who I can, would, and have told some pretty PERSONAL FANTASY material to. In context, it just made us closer friends. Maybe not the same, because we don't and never have had a physical relationship, but my point is, I knew that talking about it would not be damaging with this person.

Nature?
Hell yes. Hormones and instincts. If I don't "take care of business" for too long, it becomes very, very obvious, and yes, necessary.

Now to Lloydy, you wrote this:
Quote:
The fantasies are shit, and I can't find - no - I don't want new ones
I just think that is the wrong idea. I think it is wiser to replace them with better ones, however you wish to define better. I mean, short of brain dysfunction, we will always have fantasies, dreams, imaginings. I think they can be re-programmed, just as was discussed in the affirmations thread. And the ones that can't be gotten rid of, well, we don't have to act on them; we can learn to distract, divert our attention elsewhere. It can be done.

So the sum total of what I'm saying:
Fantasy and masturbation are neutral things. Neither good or bad in and of themselves.

Fantasies will happen. Observe them for what they tell you about yourself and thought processes. They may be the legacy of SA, or they just may be a true desire. Acknowledge them for whatever they are, if you can. And then, either enjoy them or work to change them to ones you do enjoy. Consider carefully before they are shared with partners. Be sure you know why you are sharing them. It's very common for survivors to do or say things like that in order to get just the reaction we later bemoan. It's a passive agressive move that confirms our own self defined defects. Don't fall into that trap.

And masturbation. If it's a problem, out of control, obsessive, well then work on that. You don't worry about exactly where and who gave you a cold, you do what you must to take care of yourself and fight it. Why do any less for something so much more important?

Sorry if any of this comes across as preachy or impatient. I'm feeling weird lately, but I wanted to put my 2 cents in too.

Later,
Donald

_________________________
If you understand everything, some things are just as they are. If you understand nothing, things are still just as they are.

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#11602 - 10/17/02 01:02 PM Re: colliding views
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Don
I guess you're right there, now it's pointed out clearly. Thanks for that friend.

I suppose what I don't want to replace my old fantasies with is more of the same.
I don't want fantasies that might take me back.

If I can fantasize over a pretty girl, and erotic scene in a movie or even regular sex porn, I wouldn't be bothered. But I just can't get that to kick in.

It's as though I've thrown the baby out with the bathwater - my old fantasies have gone ( mostly ) and the ability to use any fantasy seems to have gone with them.

I KNOW that logic says to me that fantasy is fantasy, it's what goes on inside my head and can't really hurt me.
If I fantasize about sheep shagging - so what ?
As long as I don't get a job as a shepherd nobody gets hurt.
And masturbating, that's the same - who cares if I crank one off in the shower ?

That's the reality - I know it.

I think I'm frightened that it'll come back, if I just let it get a foot in the door and allow it to give me pleasure will I be back out there cruising the toilets ?

No, I don't honestly believe I would - but I just can't convince myself 100 %
I know what it did to me, and the thought of doing it again terrifies me.

Logically, if I learned to do away with it all, I should be able to learn new stuff. Maybe I'm a slow learner. But I'll try, I promise I will.

Lloydy

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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