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  #31  
Old 04-18-17, 09:28 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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It is just a difficult place I'm in. I crave for sex and romance so much. And I can't act on those cravings. Every time I interact with someone who is attractive and nice it will keep haunting me. Even after four months sober it isn't getting any better and it makes me frustrated and self-pitying. If those sexual feelings would just vanish I would be much better off.

"And I can't act on those cravings" Why not? You can act out all you want.

"Every time I interact with someone who is attractive and nice it will keep haunting me." You don't know that for sure. You have already taken back a big slice of Hermus. You are not the same as you were 10 minutes ago.

"Even after four months sober it isn't getting any better..." Bologna. You are so different and so much better. Where's Your journal. That's you describing with amazing honesty, the progress you are making. The progress you are making now, right now, is incredible. You are feeling intense pain and you are here describing it. That is recovery, Hermus. That is huge progress. You are not going to be suspended in torment forever. You are, right this moment, plodding your way through the impossible.
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  #32  
Old 04-18-17, 09:42 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Not being able to engage in sex and relationships, having to ignore those feelings, it does feel like a punishment to be honest. I just don't know what to do. With the alcohol after a few months of sobriety the cravings diminished. In my SLA they don't. And that makes me think that things will never change.
In SLAA they subside, too. By doing exactly what you are doing, you are feeling your feelings and they have less power over you as a result. A major turning point for me, when I wanted to act out so bad, I couldn't stand it, and, I wanted to get better, too and I was willing to go to any lengths, but I didn't want to call my sponsor to confess where I was at.

I picked up that ..... phone, told him what was up and the intensity to act out vanished. That was 20 years ago.

By sharing where you are at right now, right here, you are letting the air out of the monster that's been choking you. You are way ahead of where I was. Way ahead
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  #33  
Old 04-18-17, 09:48 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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"And I can't act on those cravings" Why not? You can act out all you want.
Because it is what everyone, including you, advises me to do. If I do decide to act out everyone who is important for my recovery will give up on me and most importantly I will give up on myself.

Quote:
"Every time I interact with someone who is attractive and nice it will keep haunting me." You don't know that for sure. You have already taken back a big slice of Hermus. You are not the same as you were 10 minutes ago.
Yes, I have experienced that a lot the past few weeks. I want to be able to engage in contact with women. Avoiding women is even one of my bottom lines, since I know that I have the tendency to during difficult times and that it has unhealthy consequences for me. So I decided to engage with them in a non-sexual way. But every time I get triggered and have to go through the same difficulties all over again.

Quote:
"Even after four months sober it isn't getting any better..." Bologna. You are so different and so much better. Where's Your journal. That's you describing with amazing honesty, the progress you are making. The progress you are making now, right now, is incredible. You are feeling intense pain and you are here describing it. That is recovery, Hermus. That is huge progress. You are not going to be suspended in torment forever. You are, right this moment, plodding your way through the impossible.
Well, if only this pain would feel like I'm getting better. It just hurts and it makes me angry and frustrated. I act irritated to the people who want to help me, including the people on this forum. I will start to procrastinate. All things I know that are not really healthy for me. My spiritual teachers tell me to accept the pain and be compassionate towards it, but somehow that is hard to do at the moment.

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Originally Posted by Letching Gray View Post
In SLAA they subside, too. By doing exactly what you are doing, you are feeling your feelings and they have less power over you as a result. A major turning point for me, when I wanted to act out so bad, I couldn't stand it, and, I wanted to get better, too and I was willing to go to any lengths, but I didn't want to call my sponsor to confess where I was at.

I picked up that ..... phone, told him what was up and the intensity to act out vanished. That was 20 years ago.

By sharing where you are at right now, right here, you are letting the air out of the monster that's been choking you. You are way ahead of where I was. Way ahead
Thanks. I have emailed my sponsor about abstinence today and told him I need help because I don't know what to do with the naturally arising (and in essence healthy) sexual feelings that I have. I don't even really feel like acting out. I just want the feeling of emptiness gone to be honest. Nothing motivates me right now, including the thought of acting out.
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  #34  
Old 04-18-17, 10:02 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Because it is what everyone, including you, advises me to do. If I do decide to act out everyone who is important for my recovery will give up on me and most importantly I will give up on myself.

So what? You can act out. Nobody's got a gun to your head. It is your choice.



Yes, I have experienced that a lot the past few weeks. I want to be able to engage in contact with women. Avoiding women is even one of my bottom lines, since I know that I have the tendency to during difficult times and that it has unhealthy consequences for me. So I decided to engage with them in a non-sexual way. But every time I get triggered and have to go through the same difficulties all over again.

Well, stay the hell away for a while. And, in case you hadn't noticed, you have quite a few, very, very attractive women, right here, who see you bare your soul, who respect the heck out of you.


Well, if only this pain would feel like I'm getting better. It just hurts and it makes me angry and frustrated. I act irritated to the people who want to help me, including the people on this forum. I will start to procrastinate. All things I know that are not really healthy for me. My spiritual teachers tell me to accept the pain and be compassionate towards it, but somehow that is hard to do at the moment.

I know.


Thanks. I have emailed my sponsor about abstinence today and told him I need help because I don't know what to do with the naturally arising (and in essence healthy) sexual feelings that I have. I don't even really feel like acting out. I just want the feeling of emptiness gone to be honest. Nothing motivates me right now, including the thought of acting out.
Congrats Baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You are taking back all that power. It is you. You are gaining Hermus.
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  #35  
Old 04-18-17, 10:20 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Congrats Baby!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

You are taking back all that power. It is you. You are gaining Hermus.
Well. I was feeling much better a week ago, so it is going the wrong way at the moment. I'm not gaining today, but losing. So all that positivity is nice, but not exactly justified. I will somehow need to pull myself out of it.
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  #36  
Old 04-18-17, 11:36 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Not being able to engage in sex and relationships, having to ignore those feelings, it does feel like a punishment to be honest. I just don't know what to do. With the alcohol after a few months of sobriety the cravings diminished. In my SLA they don't. And that makes me think that things will never change.
Ignoring feelings, of any nature, is always a kind of self-punishment.

I would urge you to accept all, reject none, and never judge any feeling you have.

They are an invaluable source of information about our person, our thoughts, our actions, our environment.

So don’t deny your feelings in this regard, indeed, feel them fully and deeply, and listen to what they are trying to tell you.

Consider where they come from, and what purpose they serve. Do they come from you, or do they come from a script you are running—one from parents, one from culture—unknowingly? Is their purpose to satisfy short-term desire, or your long-term well-being and happiness? Is the feeling borne of a way to escape a state of anxiety or shame or low self-regard, or is the feeling an expression of your integral self, a part of you so essential that it cannot be separated from who you are?

Feelings can be a great tool to understanding one’s self, one’s motivations, one’s desires, one’s needs, and which parts of our self we want to nurture, and which parts we would like to change.


Cheers,
Ian
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  #37  
Old 04-18-17, 12:01 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Ignoring feelings, of any nature, is always a kind of self-punishment.

I would urge you to accept all, reject none, and never judge any feeling you have.

They are an invaluable source of information about our person, our thoughts, our actions, our environment.

So don’t deny your feelings in this regard, indeed, feel them fully and deeply, and listen to what they are trying to tell you.

Consider where they come from, and what purpose they serve. Do they come from you, or do they come from a script you are running—one from parents, one from culture—unknowingly? Is their purpose to satisfy short-term desire, or your long-term well-being and happiness? Is the feeling borne of a way to escape a state of anxiety or shame or low self-regard, or is the feeling an expression of your integral self, a part of you so essential that it cannot be separated from who you are?

Feelings can be a great tool to understanding one’s self, one’s motivations, one’s desires, one’s needs, and which parts of our self we want to nurture, and which parts we would like to change.


Cheers,
Ian
That's my problem. If I would listen to my feelings I would go for it every time. My feelings never say no to the chance of booty, unless my feeling that this girl won't have me anyway is stronger.

I'm just getting very conspicuous towards my counsellor as well. I knew last week when I asked the girl out, she wouldn't agree. But I think that she just has the intention to keep me abstinent for as long as possible. That way I won't relapse while in treatment and that's good for their statistics. They will of course want me to date after I'm gone. I'll be on my own to deal with the situation then, but it won't screw their success rate.
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  #38  
Old 04-18-17, 12:39 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

Why are you supposed to be abstinent?

(Not questioning it. Just curious).

For how long are you supposed to be abstinent?

I'm assuming there is some sort of end goal here, something like when you are able to xyz you can have relationships again. What is the end goal? Are there intermediate goals for you to strive for? Do you have a plan? Maybe a fairly specific plan would help.
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  #39  
Old 04-18-17, 02:32 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Well. I was feeling much better a week ago, so it is going the wrong way at the moment. I'm not gaining today, but losing. So all that positivity is nice, but not exactly justified. I will somehow need to pull myself out of it.
Regardless whether or not you feel you are headed in the right or wrong direction, the facts suggest, to me anyway, that you are using what you've learned to work on your sobriety, no?

You will feel better. Feelings come and go. It seems to me, Hermus, from what you have shared here, that your sobriety is very important to you and you are doing the best you can do. That is reason to celebrate, to feel great, IMO.

This beast is tough. I failed so much day in and day out and was hardly aware of it. Just learning what form my addictions took was almost impossible, because I was so deeply immersed in it, it was me. It took so long just to realize that crushing on females was a good chunk of it. Crushing is fine. I choose not to do anything about it a day at a time, and I recognize it for what it is, and believe it or not, I can let it go. That's a piece of this monster I'm just working through 20 years into total commitment to recover.

For me it is a multifaceted virus. There's the "love" component. There's "crushing." There's the sex part, the romance, the desire just to be close, which could lead to sex, self-esteem, fearing if I didn't act then, I'd forever lose my chance. The hatred. The bitterness that is rooted in a mother who didn't want me, didn't like me, and would mock me, who couldn't see anything good in me, who favored my sisters and read to them and hugged them, a mother who unloaded her misery on me and didn't have any interest in listening to me. Her involvement with me entailed screaming, losing her temper (she had a terrifying temper and she was as strong as a bull) and condemning me for being a terrible student, a rotten, spoiled d kid. And a father who relied on me to supply his feelings of masculine adequacy.

Great neediness and longing-- with no where to go. As my life may be very different than yours, we seem to have this gut wrenching addiction to love and sex in common. Working on it since 1996 I can honestly say it does get better, truly, significantly. A new life is part of the reward.

Do you enjoy the SLAA text? I couldn't get enough of it. It was my friend, my companion, my guide, through the maze of the most difficult thing I ever attempted. The stories of others just coming to grips with SLA are so relatable. The founder, who made this topic his master's thesis (I think it was for his masters) struggled like crazy. He didn't know what the heck he was doing, either. He was totally dumbfounded and in over his head, big time. He portrayed his withdrawal experience with such vulnerability and honesty. I could so easily relate to him.
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  #40  
Old 04-18-17, 03:45 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

Tonight I did a meditation and it was really extraordinary. I could see clearly that behind what appeared to me as anger and frustration today, was something very different. We were asked to take a picture that symbolized what was going on. So I imagined myself sitting alone in my room behind my computer and a profound feeling of sadness and loneliness came up. Then during the next stage of the meditation the voice that came into my head very strongly was: "Nobody gives a f about me anyway".

I think that this is a very deep seated belief that explains a lot about my addiction. I have always felt nobody cares about me and have difficulty feeling that others love me. So I need that affirmation from outside of myself in the form of sex and love. Being abstinent is like I'm being cut off from all sources of love that are available. So grateful to have gained that insight. It felt very sad and I almost wanted to cry, but the sadness is a much easier and truer feeling to have compassion towards for myself.
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  #41  
Old 04-18-17, 04:07 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

When you are reared by one or two narcissistic parents, your chance of growing up with intact boundaries, an integral self-image and relationship, healthy means of engagement with others, and awareness thereof is zero.

Yet, we can grow, and change, and become aware, and work to become well in these ways.

Some will do this with less suffering than others, but what takes years to develop is never made right in any fashion that could be called quick.


Cheers,
Ian
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Old 04-18-17, 05:07 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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When you are reared by one or two narcissistic parents, your chance of growing up with intact boundaries, an integral self-image and relationship, healthy means of engagement with others, and awareness thereof is zero.

Yet, we can grow, and change, and become aware, and work to become well in these ways.

Some will do this with less suffering than others, but what takes years to develop is never made right in any fashion that could be called quick.


Cheers,
Ian
It will most definitely be difficult for me as well. I do realize that. I'm wondering whether if one has never developed the capacity to feel loved and to trust on the love of others, that's something one can learn or whether that is just a fundamental insecurity that I have to learn to tolerate. One thing is positive though. The more I come to understand myself, the more capacity to self-compassion I start to develop.

Like they say in my recovery group:

I take refuge in my own recovery.
I take refuge in the truth and the path to recovery.
I take refuge in the community of fellow recovering addicts.

(Slightly edited version of the original for the ban on religious and spiritual discussion on the main forum.)
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Old 04-18-17, 06:56 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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Decided to flip the switch and accept that my sexual feelings are wrong. Always have felt that anyway. If I'm going to keep insisting having those feelings is healthy, and then acting on them is wrong, there is a cognitive dissonance. If I accept they are wrong, then at least it makes sense that acting on them is wrong. So it's going to make prolonged abstinence a lot easier. I then can just decide to meditate or write to make those feelings go away when they arise.
I strongly disagree with this.

IMO your feelings are a priori valid because you feel them. I think the wrong-ness has been purely in your decision-making methods - the step in the process that happens just after the feelings.

If I feel the need for food, that is my undeniable feeling. If I have enough money to get good food, but I decide to steal some instead, then I have made an invalid decision based on a totally valid feeling.

Likewise, if I feel the need for sex but I decide to get sex by unethical or psychologically-harmful means, or if I agree to sex knowing that psychological harm will likely occur later, then that's a right feeling followed by a wrong decision.
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Old 04-18-17, 09:49 PM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

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I'm wondering whether if one has never developed the capacity to feel loved and to trust on the love of others, that's something one can learn or whether that is just a fundamental insecurity that I have to learn to tolerate. One thing is positive though. The more I come to understand myself, the more capacity to self-compassion I start to develop.
I think and feel that it can be learned.

And for you, in particular, I think and feel all the more so because of that one positive thing...it is, after all, the key to everything...and I mean that with everything I am or will ever be.


Namaste,
Ian
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Old 04-19-17, 12:55 AM
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Re: Sex and love addiction part 2

I do think the capacity for real trust is still there in you, and that most likely it will be counterintuitive for you - maybe to the extent that the healthy right way might seem completely wrong and totally foreign.

To trust is to willingly permit another person to have full control of the final outcome, in the context of the type of relationship. (Example: I fully trust my mechanic to control the outcome of my car repairs, but I don't trust him to run my country, and I'm not going to marry him. )

In a trusting loving relationship, both people must give full control of the final outcome of their lives, to each other. Not that they lose their will or never have a disagreement, but that they aren't habitually guarding themselves against their partner. If only one of them trusts, then it's slavery (in the crudest and worst sense). If neither of them does so, it's merely a business arrangement between adversaries.
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