Right sized needs, wrong size life


So I am one week sober! YES, Again. I realized that I was just one week sober 11 days ago. but hey, Progress, not Perfection. I feel that I am making progress.

Today was an interesting one. I almost had an ego driven argument with my father because he is so wrapped up in his reality and with no awareness whatsoever to the world outside his brain. I am the kind that asks clearly for what I want. I am happy to consider something other than what i communicated but it has to come in the form of feedback or communicated somehow. what my dad does on regular basis is completely ignore what I say, then does what he thinks would please me. IT WOULD FREAKING PLEASE ME IF YOU DO WHAT I SAY!! simple right? but hey, what he did was something I needed and it benefits me, just not following my process GRRRRR damn ego!!

then my Ex takes charge of planning a catch up between my friend and I. Totally highjacking my sunday night plan and expecting me to be grateful. i stuck to my plan and ingored her attempt to please me. it borthered me so much. why is everyone trying to please me according to their brain, why don’t they just say “hey, i want to do something nice, would that be it?” and LET ME THE HELL BE IN CONTROL OF MY LIFE.

yes yes i hear myself talking. but you get it though, don’t you. it bugs the hell out of me when people make assumptions and operate on the basis that they are true. I make assumptions all the time, I am human, but i think that i try to validate my assumptions and find the source of truth. oh well, I am sure i cut myself more slack in that regard than I do others.

Anyway. the final strike happened at the end of the day. I came out to my father. his reaction was just bleak. it went like this

Me: have you heard of Homosexuality?
Father: YEs
me: okay I am homosexual
Father: is that why you are breaking up with your wife?
me: no, She knew before I married her
Father: OKay, May God be with you and guide you.

REALLY? that’s it? I was really expecting more. but then again he is probably wrapped up in his head with a million and one thoughts and nothing to connect him to the world outside

thanks for reading 🙂 be well.

A power greater than myself


23 days sober, and 6 days in full withdrawal. WOOHOO.

I slept well last night and slept in, didn’t wake up in the middle of the night and only got up at 7:30 am. it was good to have that amount of rest. I said hello to my host who had not gone on their trip yet, had coffee and chatted for a bit. I got a text from my wife stating that she had a really disrupted night and she needs me to come over to help with the kids for a couple of hours so she can catch up on her sleep. I said yes. the place I am staying at is 10 minutes away from home.

I went home, played with the kids for a bit while she rested. it was fun. she woke up refreshed and rested and was grateful for my help. soon after I got back to my friend’s place. my host was at the final bits of packing and they left shortly after.

I spent a bit of time on my PC looking for the NA Step working guide. I am working the steps now through the NA step questions. it is awesome. I had finished step one I think about a week ago. today I started Step two “Came to believe that a power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity” I answered the first couple of questions and it was a very helpful reminder that while this sucks, I can’t do it, someone else can.

I had a short nap, had a friend come over for a catch up and a bit of a walk, I had a shower, caught up with another friend over a phone call and then had my coaching session.

In my coaching session we spoke about my plan to come out. my coach was very loving and supportive. she will help me through the process. I have started making it known to people.

I got back home, checked on the dog, then drove out to grab a meal (drive through) and got home, watched a few videos on vulnerability by Rene Brown. powerful stuff.

I am going to bed sober. need to say my prayers. 🙂

Back to Sobriety – Day3


Withdrawal still sucks. or maybe it is the environment. maybe there is way too many gay sex addictس who are hot and available everywhere. I thought the only thing preventing me from acting out with another man was the fact that it takes preparation, planning that is a bit more difficult than watching porn or masturbating. I was wrong. the only thing preventing me from acting out with another man will forever be my contact with my higher power, and right now, that contact is weak.

4th day in a row saying my prayers now, I am awake during the day and asleep at night. which means, I am asleep when it is isolating and alone and there are candidates everywhere and I am awake where I’ve got company and have my kids to look after and my parents to distract me and all sorts of this and that to be done. this is all good.

Yesterday I went with my kids and my mom, my cousin and aunties to the mall. A nice large happy gathering. then we all needed to do a toilette break. I took my two kids to the men’s toilette and as we went into a booth the cleaner went in to sanitize it for us before we use it. (yes such modern shopping malls in Egypt have cleaners at all times, they clean the toilette after every use) I was happy with that because I am always weary of having my little girl use the men’s toilette for obvious reasons. so anyway, we closed the door and all took turns to do our business. I got some change handy to tip the cleaner. on the way out I noticed that his pants zip was undone, I handed him the tip and whispered that his flyer is open. The flyer wasn’t open by accident. he took the tip and touched my hand for half a second too long while a lingering look stared me in the face. it was a very clear invitation.

I had my two kids, what did I do? went out, handed them to my mom so I can go again to the bathroom. I went in, he was cleaning the booth we were using, I walked in and closed the door, pretending that I just needed to pee. while he is in the booth. we exchanged very few words about the fact that he won’t do anything because he is fasting (he somehow finds it okay to plan his acting out while fasting but not do it till after he breaks the fast, not judging, I remember such insanity) but anyway that worked for me. I was probably going to do something crazy in that booth putting myself at a huge amount of not calculated risk (scandal, Jail, you name it, or just the risk of acting out while trying to get back to sobriety). I was Zigzagging so rapidly between resisting the temptation and responding to the invitation. he offered his phone number and I attempted to record it, and we almost got caught so I failed. And guess what the joke is? I attempted to bring up recovery.

I got out of the toilette partially aroused, head spinning, completely not present. the guy was really good looking. I loved him, I wanted to save him, while being naked in his arms in the process. I had my kids waiting outside and a whole gang of family members. I was completely not me. I CAN’T WORK IT OUT. SERIOUSLY!! I thought I was a great parent before I came to recovery, then through the work of the program, I realized what my kids have been missing out on. I was able through working the steps, and through reliance on God to slowly but steadily offer them back the father they deserve, the father I wanted to be. Now I see it clearly. I can’t act out and be that father. I REALLY WANT TO BE ABLE TO THOUGH.

I was shaken for a good hour afterwards, then was able to keep my focus on my kids and the family gathering until my son needed to go to the toilette again. I did try to go to another toilette in the mall, and I asked for direction but you guessed it, I found myself in the same place with the guy there waiting for me to hand me his number. this time it was after the fasting hours have ended. he is still at work and I have my son in my hand. I took my son to pee, the guy gestured that he gave me the wrong phone number (the one I failed to record) and I smiled saying, alright give me the correct one. I didn’t stop or pause as I said that, I was walking with the same pace with my son towards the sink to wash his hands, then dried him and walked away. as if at that point my legs knew where to take me and what the next right step was (pee, wash hands, get out, Simple) but my head still wanted to split out of me and maybe memorize the number by heart using speed memory muscles I don’t even possess. I was shaken again for a bit, I was angry for having my kids and the family. I was angry for having an awareness that stands against what I want to do so bad.

I know why I am a sex addict, I know a little bit about what my addiction could get me into, but I certainly don’t know the full extent of what I could get myself into if I don’t work the program.

Just today I found out about a guy from the fellowship that was named and shamed on the front page of the largest national paper in New Zealand for his acting out. That could be me. The headline would read: “Gay mans has sex in public toilette with a cleaner while having his two kids.”

I will keep posting and please keep reading. I am getting a lot of love and support from friends and people in the fellowship. Even as I tweet the risk I am going through I get a text seconds later from someone who saw my tweet and want to help me remain safe. I have every reason to be grateful despite the trying times.

 

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

 

Step 12: We tried to carry this message


Step 12: We tried to carry this message to sex and love addicts and to practice these principles in all areas of our lives.

You might already know from my earlier posts that I was a phone counsellor and my plan was to work on my counselling skills so I can help others and eventually open my own counselling practice.

Shortly after I came to SLAA I was able to clearly see that counselling as profession is no longer what I am going to do. To refresh your memories I had at that point of early recovery decided to stop working as a phone counsellor and I also said goodbye to therapy. I knew at that moment that what I needed to do was to focus on my recovery. I haven’t lost sight of my desire to help others but I knew that it will have to take a different form from what I had originally imagined.

I found a sponsor, set my sobriety date and started working the steps. Recovery story is really fun, I am enjoying working on my recovery and I love how my sponsor helped me work the program. One of the things my sponsor always stressed was his view on sponsoring others. His criteria is that an addict need to be sober no less than six months and is well into his 9th step before attempting to Sponsor others.

I was really eager to sponsor others to help them work the program, but I adopted my sponsor’s view or criteria for becoming a sponsor. So I waited. When I was close to six month sober and by then I had started my step9 and made progress on it. During one of the face to face meetings I raised my hand when the chairperson asked “for those who are willing to sponsor to raise their hands” and on that day I was approached by my first sponsee. I had met him for the first time at that meeting. We talked and I agreed to be his sponsor. And we started working together.

Given that this was the first time I sponsor someone through this program I decided to focus on the one sponee and not raise my hand again. And I did that for a few weeks till I got a better feeling of how my relationship with this sponsee goes, and how much time commitment it requires of me.

A few weeks later, in one day during outreach calls with other fellow addicts I was told almost the exact phrase “I would like you to be my sponsor but you are not available”. While I stopped raising my hand, I had never actually told anyone that I am not available. I answered to these two members that I am in fact available. And then my sponsees increased from 1 to 3. I felt that it was appropriate based on the progress of my recovery as well as the time required of me with my first sponsee.

I started working with my three sponsees and continued to make progress. I made sure I always remind my sponsees of the same thing my sponsor reminded me off. That I am not doing them a favour, I am working on my recovery by doing my step 12.

Then again weeks later I was having a conversation with another member from the fellowship. He had a sponsor but wasn’t making progress and he communicated that if I wasn’t so busy he would have asked me to be his sponsor. We talked about it a bit more, and agreed on a rhythm for our interaction and the sponsorship started.

Finally I got a phone call from another fellow addict who newly returned to the fellowship wondering if I can be his sponsor. That last one took a bit of thinking from me, I need to pray about my motive because he is gay. I needed to purify my motive and make sure that I am not putting myself or him at risk as a result of this relationship.

I will post almost nothing about my sponsees but I do plan to blog about the lessons I get from working with them.

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