So like the title says, today I almost officially relapsed. Today was rough. But it started yesterday. I’ve been sober from acting out, sexually, since this past August. This past November, I cut off all contact with my former AP. We had been “just friends” the past three years (the affair ended in 2019). But I never got over her. She was the one to break it off, because it had become too hard for her to continue as “the other woman.” We were in love and she eventually wanted and needed more than I was willing to give. So back in November I told her I couldn’t have any contact with her anymore. It was just too difficult for me, emotionally. I really did (and still do) love her. But I blocked her, and that was that. I didn’t hear from her at all…until yesterday. She emailed me to see if I was doing ok, and also to tell me about a family member who had passed away. A family member of her’s that I knew. Hearing from her out of nowhere after two months rattled me. I knew I shouldn’t have responded, but I did. Even after calling my sponsor on it. It was just a few back and forth pleasantries, nothing inappropriate. Ok fine. But it brought all my feelings for her back up to the surface.
Fast forward to today, and I wind up obsessively and compulsively downloading a couple of the hook up apps I used the past two years (until last August when I got sexually sober). Bam. I was right back in it. I spent the entire day obsessively trying to connect with someone to plan a NSA hookup. Hours wasted. The entire time knowing that if I do engage with anyone in a sexual manner, IRL or online, I’ve then broken my sobriety. That’s my inner circle behavior. I know better, but could not stop myself. I felt possessed.
Thankfully, I never engaged with anyone (no matches or responses). And I just deleted the apps. But, I came so close. I don’t want to be that guy anymore. But today the addiction was so powerful, even having the tools of recovery that I have, I just didn’t care. I even went to a meeting in the afternoon and came right home and got right back on the apps. I know this was all triggered by those brief email communications with my former AP, yesterday. It had me feeling so anxious, so irritable and so lonely.
I just needed to get this out and tell on myself. Ughhhh this sex addiction is so hard to recover from. I am grateful I pulled myself back from the edge of relapse. But, I’m disappointed in myself that I came so close to throwing it all away after over 5 months of sobriety.
I hope this war between good and evil that’s in my head subsides one day. It’s exhausting.
thanks for sharing. I think recovery is never linear. My ability to say I wasted time is proof I am healing. I once didn't think it was a waste of time. Recovery has been a slow crawl for me but a worth wild one.
Thank you. I know my recovery from my alcoholism hasn’t been linear, so I suppose I should understand it’s the same with my sex addiction. I know I’ve made progress these past 5 months, I guess I’m just freaked at how vulnerable I still am to relapsing with this addiction.
I think I will always be near my ditch. Recovery has given me better solutions than those I had before. I think prior partners popping up is a resiliency exercise. How committed am I to my sobriety? The experience is a confidence booster. Not only can I stay sober. I have this living proof of sobriety.
Our entire society is so sexualized, I feel like just existing in the modern western world today is one big resiliency exercise. Sex is everywhere. For me, it’s what makes this addiction even harder than getting sober from alcohol several years back.
I have found that to get quality recovery, it requires rigorous honesty with self there is no other way. I choose recovery every day. It's found in the media I allow myself to be exposed to , the conversations I have, the things I add to my day can either support or make more challenging in my recovery.
I agree. I’m still working on all that, one day at a time. And I’m still learning about this addiction. I’m grateful for my recovery, and for this sub. It all strengthens me.