Today is an important day – today is my official two year mark in recovery from addiction to pornography, masturbation and lust.
Today, two years ago, was the start of a new life.
Today, two years ago, I’m not sure I was in real recovery, but it was the last time I have acted out by viewing images online.
I believe that my real recovery date, when I officially started true recovery, was a month or so later as I confessed my biggest mistakes to Becky in a full disclosure.
I don’t remember a more difficult day in all my life. Not only could I not feel, but I had broken the heart of the love of my life.
Today, I’m a different person I feel.
Although I still feel Satan attempts to fire his fiery darts at me from time to time, I feel good that I have tools and understanding now on how to surrender those feelings and situations to God.
What have I learned in the last two years?
If I were to make a list of the things I’ve learned, I’m not sure how long it would be. I’ve learned so many things.
But here is an attempt at a list of the things I’ve learned in recovery (not just sobriety) from sexual addiction.
- Take things one day at a time: don’t look too far back and don’t worry about the future
- The scriptures teach a lot about one day at a time
- Practicing the chin-up process is one way to work on progressive victory over lust
- Negative feelings are the start of the addictive cycle
- The Addition Recovery Relationship: A: Debilitating Negative Emotions leads to B: Lust which leads to C: Sexually acting out
- Attending recovery meetings is helpful, but not the only cure
- It works when I work the steps
- Working the steps with a sponsor is crucial (I recommend ARP Support to help me start a “new normal”)
- I have to live a “new normal”
- The AEIOU’s are so helpful in regaining the trust I’ve lost with my wife
- SAL and studying the White Book is essential in true recovery
- Boundaries, both positive ones and negative ones
- Burying my weapons of war
- The Limbic Brain vs. the Pre-Frontal Cortex
- The ID, Ego and Super-Ego
- How to do a Step 4 Inventory
- Working the 90 day ARP Support program
- Sponsorship and Step 12
- Being vulnerable
- It’s not about me
- I can’t try to play the role of God and control others
- Share my experience, don’t give advice
- Read books about recovery
- Get involved in recovery activities (UCAP, seminars, meetings, etc.)
- A spouse in recovery is a huge blessing too – she needs recovery from betrayal trauma I’ve caused
- My letter to the addict
- The rocking chair assignment
I think this is a pretty thorough list for now.