21 days, 34, some Ed and anxiety

Submitted by mwa on
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I just posted some of my story on the addicts page, but wanted to share the symptoms I've been facing as well.

I'm 34, had some struggles with ED, not real severe, but any at all is plenty as far as I'm concerned. I've always felt shy, socially anxious, and uncomfortable in my own skin, especially around women. Still, I usually manage to get one, but I settle far too quickly and have ended up in some very bad relationships.

Addictions have always been a part of my life. Alcohol, nicotine, drugs here and there, coffee, exercise, and, come to find out, PMO.

One problem with addictions is that people tend to view ending them as a panacea. Not only does the addiction take over a large part of their life, the thought of ending it does as well. At first, although it can be hell, the symptoms of withdrawal remind us of what we are doing, and in a way it's easier to muscle through.

Then it's over, and you are back to normal, without the addiction but with everything else life has to throw at you. It's a letdown to realize that maybe what you worked so hard to quit didn't quite cause as many issues as you thought it did.

That's my worry with this path I'm treading. I'm trying to remind myself that this will not solve everything. There is always work to be done.

I think this is the longest I have ever gone without a release, either through M or sex. Here are my symptoms during the first 3 weeks of abstinence:

1. HALT, in a big way. Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired. Not so much angry, but emotional.
2. Cravings for sugar, especially the first 1-2 weeks. Subsiding now, a little.
3. Lack of focus. This is finally subsiding some. The first 2+ weeks I couldn't do much besides read this site and watch movies.
4. Lots of people say they could exercise more, for me this has gone to the crapper. It's extremely hard to motivate myself to exercise. Again, this is subsiding.
5. Cravings for other addictive substances- smoking, drinking. I drank myself silly over New Years weekend and paid for it dearly. My emotional state cannot handle being hung over at this point. Saw my ex. Terrible.
6. A strange energy. Sort of a sustained ball of something that I feel in the chest. It's not necessarily helping me get things done, but I do feel less down.
7. A subtle, slight increase in confidence and interest in people.
8. Not sure what to expect about flatlining. Maybe I'm there now, but I've not felt much fluctuation in libido. After about the 3rd day I noticed morning wood, which has been fairly constant since, and after a week I started waking up to erections. Since many of the above symptoms have subsided I think I may be in a flatline phase now.
9. Penis sensitivity slightly up.
10. I'm noticing that I don't feel as picky toward the opposite sex. Even bigger girls are looking interesting. Why not?
11. No daytime erections yet, spontaneous or otherwise. Man I hope this happens for some reason. In the past I couldn't even get it up at strip clubs.
12. Lonely. Yeah.

All in all, this is more difficult than I expected. Not insurmountable, but more white knuckle will-power than I thought it would be. There are lots of little, subtle things going on that re-enforce just how powerful orgasm is to our system.

You sure hit the nail on the

You sure hit the nail on the head about expectations while quitting an addiction. It seems like the magic pill before going through withdrawal, and then on the other side of withdrawal, our normal lives are left there, and we have some extra clarity and energy with which to live them. That's about it. Overcoming porn addiction may not solve everything, but it sure seems like a huge first step in the right direction in the love life arena.

Exercise is tough to do beforehand, and feels great afterward. I'm glad I was already in a daily habit before starting this journey. I bet if you actually get yourself to the gym, you'll find that you can exercise more once you're there. I've noticed it, more motivation, longer workouts, faster healing. That ball of energy is literally your stored up sexual energy, and you're feeling it in the heart area (people could feel it all over the place, but most likely between the root and heart). I feel it too, growing a little bit every day.

Hopefully the difficult period is ending soon for you at the 21 day mark. Thanks for stopping in for the update.

Thanks Bort, it's nice to

Thanks Bort, it's nice to hear of someone else feeling that core of energy. It feels almost manic at times. I see why Marnia recommends a cuddle buddy.

Day 26 now. I am trying to let go of the expectation of things getting easier. The last few days have been tough, big surge in libido and fantasizing about a co-worker. Maybe that's why?

You are right about exercising. I've been going to yoga classes and once I'm there I get into it. These dark winter days make it hard to get there.