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ex-porn addict struggling with past.

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Hi,

 

I'd like to start off by saying I used to be a heavy porn addict in my teens and early 20s, in my mid-late 20s I fell into a deep depression caused by a sudden barrage of the memories of how far my addiction went.

My addiction went very far, to the point where I sometimes (although rarely) found myself in places that could have got me in trouble and seriously hurt my friends and family. All of my addiction was cured many years ago and even though I sometimes watch porn now it's at a level that many would consider very soft, I am very confident that I will never, ever, fall down that road again.

 

What really troubles me is the complex mix of shameful feelings and depression I get, on occasion even now. I have had extensive therapy, I know I don't suffer form any paraphilia, I know my actions are the results of an addiction and I taken responsibility to change my behavior.

 

For the most part I am over it, over the years I have worked very hard to turn my life around, as mentioned I cured my addiction, I went to college and studied to get into a career that I love.

However, whenever something good happens or sometime when I'm enjoying myself with friends or family I get bombarded with thoughts like "you don't deserve this after what you have done" and "If your friends knew they would hate you, you are not worthy of them".

These thoughts then spiral into thoughts like "you will never have a relationship because of this secret past you have to keep or risk harming yourself and your family".

 

my therapist advises that confessing all the dirty details if my past would not help, and that keeping my past a secret and moving on is the best choice for my own well being. I aggree with this, I am not the same person as that stupid young adult and don't feel that being ultra candid would be anything but harm people.

This doesn't stop the feeling from coming up from time to time. I do often feel that a meaningful relationship will be impossible for me, every time I do meet a girl I like my mind goes back to the negative intrusive thoughts and  I get very anxious and disheartened.

 

I just want to move on with my life, my past stupid coping methods are long gone, the major depression is gone and for the most part I'm ok, but there are still aspects of my life that are still held back and it's really disheartening, I feel like this is as good as it will get now.

 

I know I screwd up, I know the mistakes I made and have taken responsibility.  I guess the burden of keeping this secret weighs me down sometime (though thankfully not as much as it used to). I really just want to move on fully if that's even possible.

Thank you for reading.

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Thank you,


For the most part I have forgiven myself and really these feelings arise when something good (or stressful) happens.

I had an interview recently for a job I really want, before that I was fine but I think the stress of it brought back my old depressive thinking. I do feel better than yesterday when I wrote this but some feelings do linger.

I know that these memories will never truly go however I suppose my goal is to get over the painful emotional response that arises and just let them fade into obscurity with the other shameful and embarrassing memories.

 

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