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I posted a thread a couple of months ago asking how to heal from porn. Since then, I have joined a 12-step recovery program for my addiction. However, my addiction has caused my relationship with my girlfriend to completely crumple. We broke up about a month ago, with my addiction and its effects on my brain being the primary reason for it. 

I have been in a constant state of despair since then. By the grace of God, I have remained in the 12-step program, but I feel as if no one understands what I am going through. I have become distant from my friends and family. I try to get myself to do things with them, but I cannot bring myself to be mentally present. I have trouble getting out of bed and motivating myself to do much of anything. I am unable to find joy. I have basically stopped all hobbies I had before the breakup. Prayer has become very difficult since all I can think about is what went wrong and my ex-girlfriend and I still attend the same TLM parish. 

I thought I was doing everything I needed to do to correct things. I started going to the program and committed myself to getting better, but she still left. I have begun to understand why my current condition makes a healthy relationship impossible, but there is still so much I do not understand and it's very frustrating not to have total clarity. I cannot even begin to imagine the pain I have caused her and that thought keeps me up every single night. In the conversations we have had since, she keeps insisting that there is hope for my recovery, but the fact that she left me has made me define myself around my sin. I feel like a monster. It's unbearable. 

I hate moping around and I am tired of living in despair. How do I find hope? 
Confession, confession, and confession. It’s more powerful than any exorcism. Pray the rosary as much as you can. This demon is obnoxious, mentally invasive, and persistent, but it can be beaten. I struggled with the same burden for many years, and even though it’s gotten better the battle continues. Remember too that when you begin to make progress in the right direction, you will be attacked all the more ferociously by the enemy. Take it as a sign that things are going right and power through. Lastly, find a good workout routine and stick to it, even if it’s just some push-ups in the morning when you get up. Exercise is a good outlet for your masculine energy and will give you more mental clarity to get you out of your funk. Keep fighting brother, God wants us all to be warriors. Get up when you fall down and keep going. Praying for you.
(05-01-2022, 06:21 PM)friendly.neighborhood.papist Wrote: [ -> ]Confession, confession, and confession. It’s more powerful than any exorcism. Pray the rosary as much as you can. This demon is obnoxious, mentally invasive, and persistent, but it can be beaten.
What he said ^^ .  Confession + prayer + patience + gentleness to yourself---all over, and over, and over, and over again.  This is not something most people defeat in a month or two.  Sometimes it takes many years.  But do not fall into despair--that's just what the demons love.  Stick with your 12-step program.  You will fall down any number of times.  Just get up again, dust yourself off, go to confession.  And repeat.

The sin is monstrous.  YOU are not.

My priest once mentioned to me that there are many, many more men who come to the confessional who struggle with this than those who do not.

Prayers for you and all who suffer from this and all other addictions!

God bless you.
(05-01-2022, 05:52 PM)dillionmesh Wrote: [ -> ](snip)

I thought I was doing everything I needed to do to correct things. I started going to the program and committed myself to getting better, but she still left. (snip)

You may be looking at it wrong. Females have a very limited amount of time to get on with marrying and having babies; she may have all the confidence in the world that you'll overcome your problem, but can't afford to spend time waiting for you to do so. 

Quote:I hate moping around and I am tired of living in despair. How do I find hope?
Keep doing the right things, receive the Sacraments, stay prayed-up, and prepare yourself to meet the right person at the right time, if marriage is God's will for you. Know, too, that lots of people -- both male and female -- are under the scourge of porn; you're in no way alone. But you've been made aware of how bad the problem can be, so praise God for that and keep moving forward.
I just want you to know that freedom is possible and God can and does heal more things than we give Him credit for. 

Keep up the good fight and never back down. They can knock you down a thousand times and it means nothing if you get back up.
Everyone here has given great advice, so I just want to say that I will be praying for you. You will get through this. 

I have been addicted to sexual sins for my whole life. My husband knows this. Even after three years of marriage and two kids, I still struggle. The difference now is that I do not let it define me. You are not your sin. You are not a monster. Satan will try to convince you otherwise to make you give up. Don’t let him do this. 

I will also second what Vox said. Your girlfriend is probably worried that she has limited time to find someone to make babies with. As a woman I will tell you that once we are in “find a husband” mode, we tend to get very impatient. Try not to take it personally. If God wants you to be married, He will take care of it. You will not “miss” your vocation. 

Porn addiction is extremely common. You are definitely not alone. You have all of us here at Fisheaters praying for you and here for you. Peace.
The 12 step group model is a great help! I found some peace in stopping by a local Evangelical 12 step program for help and fellowship in breaking my porn habit. Also, make lots of friends, when you are down sometimes reaching out to a friend can provide relief and comfort of the heart for feelings of despair. At the end of the day most of us are seeking love and intimacy; we just go about it wrong.
One thing I might add is that you have to see whether there is some voluntary occasion for the sin, that is, whether you are exposing yourself to danger without a sufficient cause. For example, I wouldn't carry an unmonitored smart phone with internet access, because that would be unneccessary for me, and I know I would easily fall into sin. Some people don't actually need internet access at all, and if internet access is a near occasion of mortal sin to them, they may be obliged to get rid of the devices. I tend to deceive myself, pretending that something is necessary when in fact it is not, although other people have the opposite problem. It's best to talk to someone else about that, I would talk to my confessor.
Maybe this is too obvious, but I haven't seen it mentioned yet: on top of what everyone else has mentioned, endeavor to remain recollected at all times. Monitor your thoughts. Pray for any graces you may need to help you do this. Soon you will be able to detect impure stirrings of the mind and will and banish them long before they become insurmountable. Be merciless. Give these little thoughts or desires no concession. "Maybe I'll just look, just a little..." No.  Call upon the Precious Blood to cleanse you of these stirrings and immediately set your mind on something else. It helps to keep images of Our Blessed Mother around, as desktop images or phone backgrounds, etc. 

Also, fasting is a good way to rein in all the bodily passions. 

Peace of Christ to you brother, you will win this fight by the Grace of God.
You are exhibiting some signs of depression (not wanting to get out of bed, loss of interest in activities, etc.).  It could be situational depression, also known as adjustment disorder with depressed mood, brought on by your breakup.  If it does not lift, you may want to get professional help.
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