Planned relapses possible or lifelong normal mode?

Hi all,
I recently thought about how to create a certain nofap-approach that´s optimally working for my life. Since I consider myself too young for having sex regularly ( I am 16 :slight_smile: ) I asked myself if having planned relapses could be a good way for my future, because abstinence for the next years seems unrealistic and I think that this would somehow control my life way too much.

Therefore I wanted to ask all of you, mostly the experienced members, if anyone of you knows about the span of time that has to pass after a relapse to feel the benefits again. Based on this I would like to create a plan that goes like 30 days abstinence one day masturbation without porn or something like this.

Thank you all for participating in this wonderful community. it´s the frendliest forum I´ve founnd in the internet in my whole life :slight_smile:

Greets

EDIT: After searching through the Forum I feel like most of you want to quit at least porn and masturbation forever. Somehow this imagination scares me, but I guess this could be the dopamine receptors that are trying to trick me into relapsing. I am going to stay strong, at least to reach my goal. After that I can still see how to proceed, but first I need to have some data I can base my evaluations on.

What seems an interesting question to me: If I am scared by the imagination of quitting porn and masturbation forever, can I be considere addicted? I would have never considered myself to be addicted, but on the other hand I think, that the fact, that quitting forever feels so hard, shows, that actually I am.

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Welcome to the community brother!

My friend, there’s no need to be afraid of your recovery. There is a 16-year-old on this website who has gone over 2 years without pornography or masturbation; an absolute inspiration for the rest of us. As you advance in your streak, you don’t feel drawn to pornography anymore.

Pornography is not a substitute for sexual activity. They both involve the same body parts, but urges for pornography and your sex drive are not the same thing. When you get past the cravings, you’ll see that you don’t need it in order to be fulfilled.

Planned relapses never work; you’re not the first person to have thought about this. People tend to go against their rules, going from once a month to twice a month, to once a week and then back to full-on addiction. This is a pass/fail class, all or nothing. Besides, if you’re reaching 30 days of recovery, there’s no need to self-sabotage your benefits and go back to day zero, even if it’s just a masturbation session. Your brain has associated masturbation with pornography, so it will ask you, “Why don’t we go for the full experience?” People find themselves right back at pornography.

It’s more than possible for you to remove both addictions from your life. It isn’t controlling to quit; the fact that you’re looking to plan your life around the addiction shows that it’s actually controlling you at the moment.

Pornography, masturbation, you don’t need them. You’ll live a much happier and fulfilling life without them, and you won’t even miss it.

You’re in the right place brother. Continue to share and ask questions. If you have any doubts, let us know.

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I agree with @Forerunner
Take his advice kid.

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I can fully understand you.

This is exactly how I feel. Because of that i think it rarely works to use porn blockers or to say “this is the last time I ever did this”.
If I do that, my head begins to panic. I take one day after another.

The other thing I think is a myth are the benefits after day x. Sure the day after a four hours relapse you feel like shit, but I consider that more of a hangover than anything else.
I had times were I had amazing “benefits” even after one or two days and I had a 50 day streak where I didn’t have any at all.
I feel like the benefits arise from us, living our life again. Spending time outside, having enough time to focus on other areas of life outside of all electronic devices.

I personally wouldn’t go for planned relapsed as forerunner said. Doesn’t really work. In a personal opinion, I would never leave out reasonable sex because I don’t think that it has anything to do with this addiction. I think leaving out porn forever is what every sane person should do. There just doesn’t come any good from it.
I think masturbation is a really difficult topic for which I can’t give you an advice yet. I had a few occasions where I wanted to do it and where I felt that it was detached from the addiction part. These two or three times felt extremely natural. All other times were just crap and useless.

Hope that helps you a bit

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Hey man,

To answer your last question first: yes, the fact that you feel scared when thinking about never watching porn again can hint towards an addition, but doesn’t have to. It also can mean that it is a habit, something that you do regularly and that is part of your life.
It becomes an addiction if it is a habit that is harmful and that you can’t quit even if you know you want to or should.

I for myself am heading towards a life without porn, but not without masturbation. So if you want to stop bit by bit, “planned relapsed” could work to some degree (especially if you can make progress without beating yourself down too much after a relapse. Nobody can stop just like that I guess), but only if you lengthen the distance between your relapses bit by bit.
Also, try to masturbate without porn. If you really are addicted to PMO you might find that it proves to be difficult and that it’s not as much fun. That might also help in getting onto the right mindset to rewire.

Just know on a side note that how you masturbate now is heavily influenced by porn and nothing alike the way you’d masturbate in a healthy way, like @neveragaintw kind of mentioned. So at first masturbating might get you in the mindset of “I need porn for this”. This will change though, I can promise you that by personal experience.

In the end it’s your decision though. You know yourself. You can eveluate best if a planned relapse every now and then might tempt you too much and lead to a relapse cycle or if it may help you.

Cheers and all the best

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I have already found that masturbating with visuals is easier for me, so maybe I am certainly addicted

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