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It's Been a Long Time
By dstanley
8/19/2011 7:10:19 PM
Well, it's been entirely too long since I've posted on here. I've been reading posts and commenting again, but I think it's time I get some of what's going on in my life out here. I'm a mess right now, I'm doing a crappy job of doing what I need to do, so maybe I'll start here.

Some of you will remember, about 2 months ago, after 2.5 years of sobriety from sex (outside of marriage), I invited a man to my house. He spent the night and we had sex. My two kids were home (one more thing I said I'd never do). I ended things with him the next day and haven't had any contact with him since. I had some sobriety off and on and then I slid again and got back on the adult chat rooms. I picked up one guy. He told me he was married, and at the time I didn't even care. He gave me the whole line that they're just roommates and all that. Who knows if it was true. He wasn't really responding to my IMs though at one point, so I got back online and found another guy. He was great (at least in my mind). We would chat every night (which was killing my sleep time). He wasn't pushing to meet up, he was nice to me, etc. I was starting to fall for him. I wanted to date him. He made it clear one night though that he didn't want a dating relationship, he just wanted a friend with benefits, and that he wanted more than just vanilla sex. Well between my counselors, friends and that revelation, I finally got the strength to break it off. I realized I couldn't be what he wanted. That was almost a month ago. I was sober for 3 weeks after breaking things off with him. I was working really hard at prayer, scripture study, going to bed on time, cleaning up my house etc., and then I slipped Sunday night and Monday morning. The first slip Sunday night was devastating. The sister missionaries had just been over to visit. I put my little one to bed (the older one was at his dad's house), and probably less than 5-10 minutes later I was acting out. It all happened so fast. I had been struggling the couple days before with thinking about my chats with Dave (the guy I chatted with every night). Anyways, Sunday night I was bawling. I was so upset with myself. I tried to numb it with more acting out, and then I tried to numb it with Ben & Jerry's (a whole pint - disordered eating is also something I struggle with). I slept briefly in the recliner, and then I was so upset when I tried to go to bed that I acted out again so that I could get to sleep. I've not recovered from all of that since. I'm still filling my head with all of the standard lies. I suck. I'm a failure. I'm never going to get a patriarchal blessing or go to the temple, etc. I find it easy to come here and tell all of you to hang in and that you'll get through this, but I can't seem to believe any of that for myself. I met with my addiction counselor on Wednesday. It was Day 2 and I committed to be on Day 9 when we meet next week. But then I acted out the next morning. I'm spiraling. I take medication for depression. I skipped my meds last night and one of them this morning. I'm not sure why except that I could and I didn't feel like opening the bottles. I wonder if I'm trying to sabotage myself. I've quit doing my dailies. Prayer and scripture study have pretty much gone out the window. I am still letting the missionaries come over tonight. They're so sweet and kind to me. They heard about me not eating, so they come over every Friday night and bring me dinner. It's a little hard though with not being able to tell them what is really going on in my life. I know what I need to do, but I'm tired of working hard and doing the right things and still falling. I think that's what hurts the most about this last slip. I feel like I was doing all the right stuff (I'm sure not perfectly), and I still fell. I know that continuing in my addiction will kill me. Eventually I'm going to pick up the wrong guy and he's going to hurt me physically or give me a disease (if I haven't gotten one already, I still have 4 months before I'll know). I have 2 boys who desparately need me to be around for them. I justify it though and tell myself that the masturbation won't kill me, all the while knowing that I can't keep it to that, and that the sex could kill me. This is so hard. I don't wish addiction on anyone, but I wish everyone could understand how truly difficult it is. My addiction counselor tried to remind me of all I've been through in the last 2.5 years. I got married (and suffered emotional abuse and harrassment from him), got pregnant, got laid off, got divorced, had a baby, lost my dad unexpectedly 2 weeks later (2 weeks before Christmas), got a job, lost the job (they lost their budget), and got a job, all while being a single mom (dealing with two goobe ex husbands), not having the money to pay the mortgage for the last year, struggling with depression, addiction, etc. I even had my former visiting teacher send me an email telling me that I need to give up my 20 month old son for adoption because I'm an awful parent. I write that and I just want to cry (I'm at work, so I can't really). I should feel good because during that time I had 2.5 years sober from sex (other than my husband) even when my first ex tried to seduce me just before my son was born. I also had two almost 8 month runs of sobriety (just before and just after my son was born) separated by just a couple slips. I've been through a ton, and it isn't an excuse to act out, but it also isn't surprising that I have struggled. Until I resolve the underlying issues, I'm going to continue to slip. Sunday it was some emotion from that morning that I had stuffed without even really realizing it, and it all came shooting out as soon as I was alone. I still have a lot of work to do with my emotions. I'm just not good at being patient, and I'm not good at keeping my hopes up. I don't see the successes and think that I can do that again, I see the failures and assume that there will be more. There probably will be, but I have to figure out how to not let that keep me from trying. When things are going good I can see all the good things, but when things are bad like they are now, I can't seem to hold on to those things. I want to give up so badly sometimes, but I know I can't. I know too much to be able to be happy acting out. I don't even usually get to enjoy much if any high when I act out. It just brings me more pain. I know I need to turn things around, and I know what I need to do to do that (scriptures, praying, eating, sleeping, working on my To-Do list, etc.), I just don't know how. How do I find the motivation and strength?

Anyways, it's time for me to go get in traffic and pick up my son from the babysitter's (my mom had two teeth pulled today). That's where I'm at right now. Thanks for reading. :)

D

Comments:

Dear Stanley    
"I know i'm still at the beggining of everything here at the AR, that I don't know much about what to say, or wich encouragement words to use. But i can say that even not have been throught all the same things as you've been, i know how you feel. The first time i realized my problem i was dating a guy and we had a lot of problems with chastity law. it was awful! I loved him, i wanted to do things right, but we just kept slipping. Everytime. I use to feel horrible. It got me into a serious depression mode. I have never seeked for anyones help back then, only the prayer. And sometimes not even that, 'cause i didn't felt pure enough for that. I use to have thoughts of giving up, ending this pain, maybe jump in the ocean and never comes back. Maybe drink a whole bottle of medicines. Just.. die. It was so so hard! Everytime i slip i try to not hurt myself that much again. I know it's wrong, but at least, i try to not pull myself inside of such pool of sadness and pain. I guess that what i'm trying to say is that.. maybe you should focus in one thing at the time.. First try to not fall into depression. Don't be so hard on yourself. Then youll be stronger to do the other things. If you need to talk, we're here for you."
posted at 12:12:08 on August 20, 2011 by yuri
I dont have an answer    
"but I can say that God loves you. Jesus loves you and is willing and waiting to take the burden that you are trying to carry alone. I can relate to how you feel even though I am not in your same situation. When life is really hard, that is when we need God the most, and He is always there. I don't know of anything I could say that you probably haven't heard or someone else has already said, but what I know is that Jesus loves you. He understands what you are going through completely. He wants to heal you, let Him. Whatever your underlying problems are, self-worth, accepting you for who you are, or just simply loving yourself, whatever it is, work on that. All this acting out is merely a symptom of that. All the prayer, scripture, and to do lists in the world won't help you if you don't love yourself and you do deserve to be loved. Learn to love yourself the way He loves you. I guess I say this as much to myself as I do to you or anyone else. Don't give up, He is with you, just let Him help."
posted at 00:34:23 on August 21, 2011 by blindman
Thanks    
"Yuri, I know that I need to be less hard on myself. My counselor tells me that all the time. I haven't figured that one out yet. I guess I just figure that with all the rehab and counseling, etc. I should be able to do better. I should know enough. I guess I just have to keep trying.

Blindman, I think you hit it on the head. I need to fix the underlying stuff. It's just hard to work on that stuff with my counselors when I'm always in crisis mode. I don't think I love myself, at least not the way Jesus does. Maybe that's why I turn to guys when things get bad. I figure if I can get a guy to love me it will all be OK. Problem is that a guy having sex with me has nothing to do with him loving me. Even my second husband didn't really love me. He just wanted a ticket out of Hawaii and a legitimate outlet for his sex addiction. I need to keep working on those things.

By the way, I'm doing a little bit better today. I took all my meds last night and this morning. I prayed and read scriptures last night and today. I ran a bunch of errands and did some laundry. I'm starting to have some hope. I'm supposed to get a blessing tomorrow at church, so hopefully that will help too."
posted at 01:03:14 on August 21, 2011 by dstanley
Depression Sucks. :)    
"Hey D,

I first wanted to say that I appreciate you being so willing to face up to your state in life. Life sucks right now, but I've found that there is a certain strength in standing up in front of the mirror and saying "Life sucks right now, but I am going to do things to make it better." I personally have been diagnosed with ADHD (and I suspect minor depression that has gone undiagnosed). The hard thing about medication for any sort of mental illness is that you feel fine until you forget to take it. I HATE that. I eventually went out and bought a little pill bottle for my keychain that always has a few in there. Even if I take my pill late, I at least know that I'll be able to make it through the day. Probably a more practical piece of advice, but I've found that it helps. :)

Don't hate yourself for being depressed either. If you have been diagnosed and are taking medication, its important to remember that you have a disability. You would never think less of a person for using a hearing aid if they were deaf. I've both personally experienced and studied all sorts of mental illness in University, and it helped me realize that we all have parts of us we just have to deal with. Depression sucks big time, and it can definitely aggrivate our desire for closeness, good feelings, and relief. I find being addicted to masturbation is just as much about feeling good as it is about anything else. I just want to feel relief from all the crappy things in my life (most of which I have brought upon myself). During the times in my life that I have turned to the Saviour for that relief, however, I feel so much better about life. My efforts in bringing piece actually last, and I keep feeling good about things the next day.

Keep your head held high. Be proud that you are strong enough to know how much of an idiot you have been in the past, and take time to see yourself the way the Lord sees you: a daughter of God with limitless potential who is pushing forward no matter what the world throws at her.

Find something to take joy in every day. Your two boys deserve the best you they can get. Have fun with them and make them smile. They'll be your biggest strength."
posted at 16:34:15 on August 21, 2011 by BrainGeek
skyteam here    
"good to hear from you. thx for posting. gives me a better sense of whats going on.
i dont have any words to share other then, people are here to support you + keep you going, like a nascar pit crew team..."
posted at 23:49:20 on August 23, 2011 by skyteamst90
D    
"I just want you to know that I know how you feel, and I pray for you by name. The Savior will help us through this. Keep on going."
posted at 09:08:46 on August 24, 2011 by lawrence
Something that helps me in the toughest of times.    
"This helps me when nothing else does. Our Father in Heaven literally let his own son suffer every pain and sorrow possible. When I am so frustrated after 28 years of what I think is failure, this qoute from the esign gives me the courage to put my trust in the Lord when I am weakest and most affraid. If my Father in Heaven allowed my big brother to suffer that much then I can face the pain he has allowed me to face, for whatever reason HE sees fit. Here is to every day being a new begging!

Our God will deliver us from ridicule and persecution, but if not. … Our God will deliver us from sickness and disease, but if not … . He will deliver us from loneliness, depression, or fear, but if not. … Our God will deliver us from threats, accusations, and insecurity, but if not. … He will deliver us from death or impairment of loved ones, but if not, … we will trust in the Lord.

Our God will see that we receive justice and fairness, but if not. … He will make sure that we are loved and recognized, but if not. … We will receive a perfect companion and righteous and obedient children, but if not, … we will have faith in the Lord Jesus Christ, knowing that if we do all we can do, we will, in His time and in His way, be delivered and receive all that He has."

Elder Simmons"
posted at 13:54:46 on August 31, 2011 by smallnsimple
Healing takes time.    
"I know what it feels like to fail again and again and feel completely worthless. I have been in this process for about 17 years. Although the journey has been painful, I can see now how much I have progressed from where I was 17 years ago. Although I am still not perfect, and much more free of guilt and shame. I am much more spiritual and much less religious. I have much more trust and much greater faith. I am much less judgemental and harsh with myself. I believe in a Savior who is caring and good and merciful. I understand that I will be saved by His merits and not my own. I accept that I am "limited" and that I can't fix myself by myself. I have a greater understanding of my own "self-will," and what it means to surrender it to the Savior. I have realized that I am not God. I cannot control all things, and it makes no sense to try to escape or avoid the inevitable pains of mortality.
I am still not perfect, but I have made great progess and I feel great hope! It is about the journey not the destination. His grace is sufficient! I have a relationship with Jesus Christ and I know he will never give up on us. He is more powerful to redeem than we are to mess up."
posted at 20:36:01 on August 31, 2011 by Anonymous


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"If, through our unrighteous choices, we have lost our footing on that path, we must remember the agency we were given, agency we may choose to exercise again. I speak especially to those overcome by the thick darkness of addiction. If you have fallen into destructive, addictive behaviors, you may feel that you are spiritually in a black hole. As with the real black holes in space, it may seem all but impossible for light to penetrate to where you are. How do you escape? I testify the only way is through the very agency you exercised so valiantly in your premortal life, the agency that the adversary cannot take away without your yielding it to him. "

— Robert D. Hales

General Conference, April 2006