Ending the Zigzag – Hopefully


so last post was on the 18th of July that I am still not sober. I got back from my holiday and I still wasn’t willing to get back to sobriety. I started attending meetings, making phone calls and just dealing back with life as I did before my vacation. with one exception. I kept masturbating and I kept talking to gay guys on a gay hookup app. I kind of wanted to keep the person that emerged during the short period of recovery and still get out there and get a hit. (haven’t I repeated this like a million times by now? also haven’t I already realized that it was IMPOSSIBLE?) yet I kept trying.

Lucky I was back to where I spent most of my recovery time. attending meetings and talking to enough addicts got me to slowly realize the insanity of my thoughts. also one thing that was the final straw, I have been talking to the members of the fellowship in Egypt on recover, they go read the literature and come back to ask questions given that I am older in the program. I struggled so much with feeling like a big hypocrite every time I attempted to explain to them concepts that I refuse to apply in my life. I couldn’t share the awareness off and act as if I never knew recovery.

and here we go again. I stopped masturbating over a week ago and I finally deleted my hook up profile and un-installed the app completely 3 days ago. it is withdrawal all over again. but this time is different from my “back to Sobriety” posts as I have a lot more of the tools of the program available to me. I am also back on track with my prayers.

will make this one a short one, thanks for reading. hopefully I will still be sober with the next post.

 

I can’t figure it out – (my acting out plan)


if you’ve already read the mess that is me you’d know by now that my sobriety is heavily questionable. I didn’t have a written down bottom-line list and my sobriety definition was basically around nothing of sexual nature outside my relationship with my wife, which rules out masturbation. certainly rules out flirting with a taxi driver or responding to an ad on Craigslist.

I wrote a long list in my previous post about what I am going through but let’s get one thing very clear. I am struggling because I am losing my conscious contact with a power greater than myself. I haven’t been praying. and I am snapping back into self-reliance.

after the first few ejaculations I wasn’t really that welling to remain sober. I was zigzagging between serenity and insanity. I would really like to go act out. I might as well. but I am struggling.

I can’t work out how to act out and still be productive at work, present with my kids, restful and looking after myself with proper sleep. I can’t figure how to go meet someone for sex and treat them as a person not a bag of meat to rob myself against. I can’t figure out how to go embrace another and completely shot out every bit of emotions associated with this act AND at the same time not cause them any hurt or not be selfish. I can’t figure out how to act out and remain rigorously honest. I can’t figure how to keep the level of wholeness and integration I gathered and treasured over the last few months however little it might be.

I met a man through that hooking up app.. we didn’t touch. well we shook hands for greetings, but that was it. he sat a distance away and I was telling him my recovery story and how I have been struggling lately. I had another chat with another guy from the app and we spent a night chatting about sex addiction, its impact and the wonders of recovery. Yet if the chance to be in bed with either of them presented itself I probably would have had this same conversation fully naked in their arms. how hypocritical. I have been deluding myself into a false sense of control it is insane yet I keep doing it. guess what, powerlessness and unmanageability because I am a sex and love addict. I am even typing this as I exchange messages on the app. CRAZY. I do want to get back to the program, sobriety, my sponsees, etc. but I also want to go off with some random stranger.

for all the times I ejaculated, I had a momentary sense of calm that got me thinking of how this would have been if someone else was in the room and I say Hell NO I can’t do this, run to my phone, clear the cash, uninstall the app then two hours later I am installing it back. GRRRR

by the time I post my next blog entry I am not sure what state I will be at or how the quality of my recovery will be. please say a prayer for me

 

The mess that is me


Just ten days ago I was sober for 11 months. that is probably not the case anymore.

I came to Egypt on a visit with my 5-year-old and my 3-year-old, leaving my wife and baby back where we live. I arrived with my two kids after a nearly 30-hour journey on the 14th of June. I was beat. my sister got married on the 20th of June. that was the primary reason I came down. today is the 2nd of July.

I will put down in bullet points some of the things I have been experiencing, feeling and doing. not in any particular order.

  • there is a ten-hour time difference so jet lag was rough on me and the kids. I had little sleep
  • because of the messy schedule (mine and the kids) and living in a house where my sister is planning her wedding. I got distracted from saying my prayers.
  • my parents and my sister were all sickly and exhaustingly creating dramas and thriving on it.
  • Egypt was hot, dusty to a level that needed adjusting to.
  • my stuff was cluttered out of a suitcase I felt so unsettled
  • my sister was my first child, I pretty much raise her, it was unbelievable to watch her as a bride! I was overcome with emotions.
  • I didn’t have much time to spend with my sister cause before the wedding she was busy preparing and after the wedding she was, well, married and then she left the country with her husband 4 days later.
  • I have been working since the 23rd of June, from midnight till whenever (anywhere between 7 am and mid-day)
  • I haven’t been able to make out reach calls to other addicts.
  • I haven’t been able to keep the SLAA Egypt Skpye meeting going due to lack of privacy, kids’ demand and poor connectivity.
  • I was only able to attend the NZ Skype meeting twice and not even fully.
  • I wasn’t able to talk to my sponsor for the first 10 days for the trip
  • given my working hours I have been functioning on 1 to 4 hours of sleep every day and not even at one go.
  • work was very busy and full on.
  • I have been checking out ads on personal websites
  • I have installed and uninstalled a proximity app for gay hook-up nearly five six times
  • I have been emailing random strangers and even talking to them on the phone (nothing sexual or explicit) but they are of those sits/apps
  • I have ejaculated a few times some are involuntary as a result of a prolonged state of arousal and some is self-pleasuring.
  • I am off my Low Carb diet and eating sugars like crazy.
  • I am still not saying my prayers consistently

hmmm I will write something else in another blog post shortly

 

My Sober Dreams


Since I started working the program of recovery I had periods where I didn’t have any sexual intimacy due to long gaps between sex with my wife. when that happened I had a fair amount of wet dreams. my wet dreams were all homosexual in nature. it was always bizarre to go through that. I often woke up feeling strange, almost uncertain, have I lost my sobriety? did this happen for real or was I truly asleep? then when it all settled, the blur is gone and I realize I was asleep then I have to deal with the mess in the middle of the night. Lucky my wife never ask me “what were you doing in the shower at 3 am”. I am pretty sure she noticed that I am wearing different PG pants from the ones I wore when I got to bed.

a couple of months ago I had my first Sober Dream. I was back in my home town in my parent’s house, we had a large gathering of guests and while I was alone in one of the rooms someone walked in on me and started to make advances on me. I gently pushed him away and started talking to him about Sex addiction and about the fellowship. I woke up feeling pretty good.

Last night I had another dream. there is a SLAA member that I connect with (I find him good looking but never fantasized about him, also he is straight). we were sharing a bed, don’t know why, but then he moved closer getting a bit “too close” seductively inviting. in the dream I jumped out of bed and objected to what he was about to do. I also got up happy. I sure won’t outreach to that SLAA member about my dream hehehe 🙂

 

I came out to my mother


My mom is visiting us for the last few months. This is the first time mom and I are in the same place since I started my recovery. regardless of proximity recovery had a huge impact on my relationship with my mom, it is getting progressively better every day. Now with her being with me and my family it is making it even easier for that relationship to improve.

It is relevant to share that my father is also a sex addict (not sure if I shared that in other posts). I only recognized this only after I came to SLAA. I started talking to my mom about the addiction without mentioning that I am an addict and when she came to visit me I took her to S-Anon (for families and friends of Sexholics). I have been going with her on weekly basis and translate to her and translate her shares to the group. which also helped her find her recovery from my dad’s betrayals. but as a result I was so fearful to tell my mom that I am also an addict. I didn’t want her to consider that I am siding my dad because I am like him. so I kept it a secret.

When I made amends to my mom as part of my Step 9, I apologized for the harm and the character defects but I didn’t mention anything about my recovery or being in SLAA. that also went alright.

I really wanted to tell my mom about me being in the Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous Fellowship. I wasn’t sure how, I wasn’t sure what the impact would be. Yesterday, before I left for work, I told her “there is something I want to talk to you about”. she asked “what?”, I said “later, I am going to work now”. she said “you’ll leave me worried now, just tell me what it is about”. so anyway I sat next to her and told her that I am also a sex and love addict, and it might be hereditary. (not necessarily genetically but through being brought up by a sex addict). she said “I thought you might be, because I researched and there are so many cases where children of sex addicts are sex addicts” and then she went on to assure me that she is not upset. she was proud of me that I am working the steps and that I am focusing on my recovery. 🙂

This morning, also before I get on my way to work, we started talking. the conversation was heading in a direction that wouldn’t make sense if she doesn’t know I am gay. so I had two options if I want to remain rigorously honest, either stop the conversation or come out. I decided to come out. I told her “okay there is something else I need to tell you that might be a shock”, “I am gay”. then I went on to tell her the full story, my ex-boyfriend, my challenge with my marriage, the therapy journey, the support group I wanted to start, and eventually, SLAA.

The minutes that followed were probably the most significant in my life, even more so than that time I held my son for the first time. my mom looked at me and said “I am not shocked, on the contrary, this solved so many puzzles for me and answered a lot of question marks. I always felt that you were very secretive and I never understood what is it you are hiding and why, you felt so distant. now I know why. now I feel like I have my Son. (tears gushed out every time I reach this part when I shared this story today). She hugged me and told me she loved me. I felt so loved, so accepted, so whole and so complete.

my relationship with my mom was instrumental in me feeling “not good enough”. I was often compared with other children in terms of how they perform in school, how tidy they are, how obedient to their parents etc. I always felt that whatever I did won’t be enough, and at some point I resentfully came to terms with this and stopped trying. now with everything that she knows about me, she said “I LOVE YOU” and that she is proud of me.

Thank God for Recovery

I am a Sex and Love Addict


Now that I think about it, sex and sexuality have always been something on my mind. I was chatting with a SLA from the US and he was talking about addiction as a permanent disease, saying “this is it, we can’t go back to that point before we became sex addicts”. When I think about that statement it makes me wonder, even if that is what I wanted, or if that was even possible, I don’t know if such point existed in my life. I don’t recall a time in my life where I didn’t obsess over body parts, sensual thoughts, etc. Could that mean I was born an addict? Or was there something in an earlier part of my childhood prior to my registered memory that affected me in that regard? Is it that I can’t remember it because of how early it happened? or because I blocked it out? I guess I might never know and that doesn’t really matter. I discovered over the years that finding out the reason for why something happened isn’t always a factor in how it might turn out in the future. (This isn’t a general rule though but it applies very well here).

 

Over the years sexuality was a confusing matter, but then eventually I came to grips with the fact that I have homosexual attractions, yet I always wanted to marry and have kids. Forget about the drive behind that desire, the end result is I am married and I have two children. I guess in many ways I coped with my sexual orientation by surrounding myself with female friends and a set of platonic gay friends. It helped me be who I am and express part of me that needed to be expressed. (Not necessarily sexually)

 

Over the years, the number of such friends rapidly changed and my wife and I became surrounded by other married couples with children. The “natural” segregation in many of the gatherings with such friends was, men in one corner and women in the other. I found myself stuck among a group of heterosexual men that I couldn’t relate to, couldn’t be part of their conversations nor am I the least bit intrigued by their interests. Also something about the group of men I hung out with, I missed any sort of intimate connection. A connection that I had with my gay friends and female friends that are no longer around me. I suffered mostly in silence, mostly unaware of the source of suffering, and then the suffering steadily took its toll on my marriage.

 

A year ago I was training to be a counsellor and as part of that I got access to a therapist. We led a journey of search and explorations in various aspects of my personality, sexuality, marriage, career, childhood and much more. Through that search I came to the faulty conclusion that the suffering is because of my inability to express elements of my personality pertaining to my sexual orientation. So I decided to reach out to other men who are in similar circumstances to mine. Married or committed to a female partner and dealing with homosexual attractions. The idea was to start a support group for such men. I decided to educate myself in preparation for this support group. I talked to a number of people, support organisations for Gay and Married men in various countries, research departments for religious organisations that dealt with similar matters and of course therapists. One of the therapists I talked to suggested I look into 12 steps groups there might be something I could learn from them.

 

That suggestion was easily 7 months old when I went to an AA meeting for the first time. In the AA meeting I found out about SLAA. SLAA had meetings in town and two weeks later I went to the first one. I was very nervous. When I heard the sharing of some of the members I was stunned at how much I related, I was sitting among a bunch of heterosexual men and I related to their experience. And the penny dropped, my suffering had nothing to do with my orientation. I am a Sex and Love Addict.