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My Recovery Story... Part 1
By Gondor44646
5/24/2008 1:41:57 PM
Hello everybody... I was feeling inspired, so I typed up my recovery story I hope what I have to say will help somebody out there. Sorry... it is EXTREAMLY long... for some reason I just got carried away... couldn't stop thinking of so many things... Also... even know I am not completely done...

Please also forgive me if my words are incorrect...

Gondor...

... it has been a while... soooo there has been a lot that has gone on... lets see... my (bio) dad is evil... he got into trouble... my prayers to my brothers have been answered and my brothers are coming back home!

And I … I … Gondor… I have 19 days going for 20 clear… yeah… wooo… I don’t know why I am not excited, or going crazy. I guess there are still feelings of doubt, I want to be the one doing this, but I CANT… Whenever I rely on myself, I fail. But when I really on my Savior, Jesus Christ, I can get these things like 20 days clear… I notice that there are some pride issues in me; I want to be the perfect one… BUT I AM NOT… I am so far from perfect, and that is ok, all men must come unto Christ, besides there are the interior problems that led to my main problem, the interior problems were the true problems. I will always be working on this, yes I can become completely clean, but I will always be progressing and learning, I should be glad, if there was nothing to work on then there wouldn’t be a purpose… This is my problem… masturbation mainly… but then also pornography… ….. However just recently, things have been changing…The feeling is great though, I don’t have a desire to do this problem anymore, this problem never made since to me… Why would I do this? Why would I touch myself like this?!? I can’t imagine my friends doing this, or anybody else, and of course the world will say it is completely natural and normal, but of course! Natural and normal, and the natural man is an enemy to god and has been since the fall of Adam, and will be forever, and ever unless he yields to the enticing of the Holy Spirit, and becomth a saint through the atonement of Christ. It is a Perversion, it is carnal, it is selfish… and if the world can rationalize everything else then why not this? How can we expect young men to control themselves and not yield to other forms of sin, of they can’t even stop this problem.

This is not the worst problem in the world; it should not cause a young man to become completely depressed and hopeless… like I was. It is a problem that needs to be fixed, it has the ability to slow or stop spiritual progression to some extent, but I should have still been able to function in my life… for 5 years… maybe 6 years now… I was trapped in this problem without even knowing what it was or knowing it was bad… I am so glad that my priesthood leaders talked about it back when I was 13 years old, because of that I was able to feel the spirit and I can remember realizing what I was doing and why it was bad… it was so difficult, but I was able to talk my bishop, at first he seemed to be strict and intimidating, but as I look back to that… that was ok! He wasn’t mean, he was doing the right thing, and I just didn’t fully realize it. I remember getting the pamphlet… To Young Men Only… I was kind of embarrassed at first, but it was great! I never got a full opportunity to talk to my parents about the changes in my body, I really wish they would have talked to me about it, I could have completely dodged the problem all together, or I could have completely stopped it before it destroyed me. The pamphlet helped me see things correctly, I was not lost or doomed because I had this problem, God still and will always love me. … Thank you Boyd K. Packer…

A long list of interior problems were already formed, I couldn’t stop this problem no matter how hard I tried, I was only 13 or 14 years old, it got worse and worse. Everything the prophet said was true, I was unwilling to change, and I didn’t realize how much church really affected my life. … It is not an addiction just because it gets in the way of school or life. That is what the world will say… that it is not a problem as so long as it doesn’t affect school or get in the way of other life activities. … No… It is an addiction because you are not capable of controlling it no matter what you do. Obviously there are some things we are dependent on, such as eating food, but then we should be able to control that too unless it be through an addiction also… well? What if you can control the problem… then why would you indulge in it? What cause does it promote?? Where is the purpose to your action?!? It may simply be the natural carnal desire that is simply against God. Willfully rebelling against God, for the same perversion, and selfishness using your own agency…

I was 16 years old… I am an addict to this problem; I continued to make attempts to control it… I got some success but by now I was convinced that this problem was who I am… Which brought the ultimate distortion in me, the church would never tell me that I was worthless or an animal, the Church tells me I am a son of God, and I have great worth, and I need to go through Jesus Christ to receive help and put off my carnal nature…. But the Devil ((or so on…)) led me to believe that I no longer had a purpose, a worthless animal that was failing at everything and had nothing except to indulge in this problem. I couldn’t possibly brake free from this addiction…. The words of the prophets were still true… My problem continued to get worse, if I was willing to indulge in this then why would I stop there, my defenses were destroyed, and the devil had me right were he wanted me… I started to indulge in Pornography, Sex was never meant to be an evil or corrupt thing, but the Devil knows how to turn something good and make it bad. I was destroyed now… I became severely depressed and even suicidal; I couldn’t imagine myself being a Righteous Husband and a Loving father after viewing that material, it doesn’t matter if we are natural attracted to that garbage, we are to express our sexuality were it is appropriate and good, and we are to control it when we are not allowed to use it. Pornography is evil… I doesn’t matter how old you are… you are never mature enough to handle sin, or anything evil and corrupt. By this time I got a new bishop in my ward, he is young and brand new… I was unsure if I should speak to him right away or wait… being a new bishop I was not sure how he would handle it… but thankful I talked to him and I confessed everything like I had done in the past… at first he was unsure, but he quickly became the best help that I have ever had. He also introduced me to the Addiction Recovery Program…

Comments:

My Recovery Story... Part 2    
"I was getting older… 17 … I couldn’t look at young women without being emerged in depression and guilt, I was trapped, how could I not look or think about them without having evil thoughts, and this was against myself, I didn’t want to hurt them and disrespect them in any way, I couldn’t excuses this as being normal, how can the world say that it is ok for young men to have (( soft-core )) pornography how could it be acceptable for the world to misuse the powers of procreation just because the body says so. I could not tolerate myself, I hated myself, I was willing to indulge in this behavior, and disrespect them on the internet (pornography)… …

All though my life was going down hill and I was failing school, I was still able to gain enough spiritual power, and help to starting going to the Addiction Recovery Program ((focusing on Pornography)) at church… at first they were unsure, I was only 17, but they allowed me to come… besides that… I was the only one there?! That felt kind of odd… being the only person… I am sure they might have been others who needed help. For many months in the addiction recovery I could barley talk about anything, my life had become so distorted that I didn’t even believe there was a way out. I slowly moved through the program, having to restart several times…
1. Admit that I was powerless to overcome my problem, yep! I am powerless…
2. Believe that God has the power to help you, … that was a little difficult… I wasn’t sure if anything could help me…
3. Turn your will to God, … even harder, I couldn’t control everything but I gave all that I could… I finally destroyed my computer, and I gave all of my networking / Internet tools to my bishop… this helped for a little while…
4. Right a searching and fearless written moral inventor of yourself… UG!! … I was stuck… I couldn’t move

I was stuck on Step 4 for a long time, I was perfectionist, and I wanted to do it perfectly or to please others… which doesn’t work?! And was actually part of the problem that needed to be addressed in the inventory, why would I be trying to please others… a deeper analyze reviled to me how I was emotionally hurt by some of my brothers, or my family in general… not on purpose, they didn’t intended to be mean, but I could not ever gain a constructive family that brought me success in my goals… I experienced constant failure in my activates … School… Scouts… Church …Social / friends… there was a constant problem within myself… and because of this I came to believe that I couldn’t believe I could stand up to anything… I couldn’t do my homework no matter how easy it was!? I couldn’t get my Eagle Scout award despite how close I was?!... I couldn’t complete my Duty To God program even though it was part of my recovery… This was false! I have the ability to accomplish all of these things, it is all a combination of interior problems that slowly hurt my life, my problem (masturbation) is the warning sign saying this problem exist because of …. So on and so forth… you need to overcome this problem (masturbation) not only because it is wrong but also because it is a sign of other false ideas that are not of God, which is not helping you… which is also needed to be overcome…

Other significant events happened around that time… simply… I had a counselor who tried convincing me that masturbation was ok and completely normal. I had significant family fights with my brothers who where in rebellion… My (biological) Father (who is an ex-Mormon) (( and owes lots of money for Child support…divorce…ug… )) visited with my brothers and me and told us a bunch of lies and foolish words that go against the church… My brothers rebelled and moved with (bio) Dad. Oh… and my grandma died from cancer… however… I did have one good counselor that I still have today, he isn’t Mormon but he was able to help / guide / supported me anyway…

I still don’t have step 4 completely finished… uhhh… I don’t think I will ever have it 100% done… I think that goes along with the perfection thing… I will always be working… it is never done… However I received the most help, when I or we got another member for the Addiction Recovery… I can’t say too much about whomever with respect towards confidentiality but it is easy enough for me to say that he was able to help me honestly look at myself correctly… he was an addict, but he was able to avoid depression and despair by always knowing that he was a child of God… and he had no doubt that God loved him and wanted to help him. He was able to acknowledge the natural tendencies that our bodies have (((towards pornography))) but understood that we must control and use whatever tendencies we have for nothing but good.

This confused me?? At first his words made me feel uncomfortable, which reviled other interior problems that I have… but as time went on I realized several simple things, I am not my body… we most control our body… Our God has perfect wisdom, he designed our bodies to be a certain way to accomplish his purpose, our bodies will natural persuade us to do certain things good or bad which doesn’t define who we are being the spirit unless we give in using our agency… just because it is a natural tendency it is up to us to use it for good or bad, The devil will focus on the natural use of our bodies being evil or anything corrupt… but God will encourage us to use the natural tendencies for good things. Just because the world shows statistics of masturbation being 90% that doesn’t define who I will be… the world dose not define us… news flash… 100% of everybody will sin… but that doesn’t make it ok… God commands us to not sin… yet he knows that we will all fall short… in other words at no time do we lose our agency to avoid sin, we have the ability to avoid sin every time, it has been said that God gives no commandment unto the children of men save he should prepare a way for them to complete it….. HOWEVER!! … God being perfect in all his knowledge already knows that at some point we are all going to use our agency to willingly sin… that is when Jesus Christ comes in the picture, we must go through the atonement of Jesus Christ or otherwise we can not be forgiven and saved… "
posted at 13:43:46 on May 24, 2008 by Gondor44646
My Recovery Story... Part 3    
"This information goes along side with the fall of Adam… All have become corrupt and all must be restored… All of this information was a surprise to me… for the longest time I thought that I was nothing in my carnal and devilish state for I was without God… and without God… um … you really don’t have much of anything… I also had to accept and acknowledge the certain tendencies of my body…I hated myself because I liked Pornography, or masturbation, but I should not hate myself, It doesn’t have to be apart of me now… it can only be a part of me when I use it correctly in marriage with everything being appropriate and right… My problem is simply something I have allowed myself to do, which is not right, but I don’t have to see myself like this anymore…! … I am not evil for having sexuality, I am not evil just because my body has these desires for young women, the difference is that I must control and use these things for Good … not evil… not selfishness, but selflessness, not aggression, but true love… never wanting anything that would harm… and when I use it for evil I should feel bad! But! That should only cause me to repent of my sins… not to fall into despair and depression which is caused only because I feel I am my body and it is imposable for me to overcome its nature… we must go through the atonement of Christ and put off the natural man and becometh a saint through the atonement.

And this is some of the words that this new member to our Addiction Recovery said that helped me understand myself better, I don’t have to feel bad or defined or lost simply because of my nature, and I can feel clean and pure, and upright… My new counselor also was able to help me…………combined with the information I got from that new member……… and when I say this I still Acknowledge Step 1 being that I am powerless to overcome my addiction………… my counselor helped me understand that there are some things that I can control in areas of my addiction, this only works when you put your will in God and you seek a change of heart… not wanting to return to this problem anymore… as I progressed through the Addiction Recovery program I didn’t want this sin to part of my life anymore… I was unsure if it was possible for me to stop… I couldn’t stop, I couldn’t really on myself, I had to really on Jesus Christ… I was still heavily in my addiction, but there came a point after learning this information… when I was faced with the temptation I asked myself… I can not avoid this problem … or … I am choosing to not avoid this problem … choosing?? Agency?? I know God gave me agency, and I know he will help me use my agency correctly if I fallow his will…………… I am choosing to not avoid this problem………… after acknowledging my power not being enough, and knowing god can help, and putting your will in god, and recognizing yourself and your tendencies, and working on eliminating those interior problems, confessing, and seeking a change of heart, never wanting to return to sin again, something changed in the way that I handle my problem…………. I am choosing to not avoid this problem……… What!? Wait!! … Why?? Because of the experience that I had and all that I learned, I now was simply choosing to not avoid the problem…. The power of addiction is real! While in addiction you our powerless to overcome it by yourself… but as you put your trust in god………… When I was faced with temptation I sat myself down and thought, I can’t control my addiction…. Or … I can choose to indulge in sin or I can read the scriptures. And sure enough! … I read the scriptures?! This only works if you put your trust in God and you are doing everything possible to fallow his will, putting an end to interior problems and you pray and seek for a change of heart that you may not want to return to sin anymore… all sin… not just your addiction… After sitting down and thinking every time I was faced with temptation I realized that now as God helps me I can choose to avoid this sin.

Because of all of this I suddenly got one week of being completely clear from my problem. I took the sacrament… something I didn’t do for a very long time… thinking about sacrament… you don’t have to be 100% perfect however there is a unique difference… you have to have a attitude of repentance, while I was in misery the past years I was unsure about the sacrament, I didn’t believe my problem would ever end, nor was a willing to stop it… if your not willing to repent that is an indication… also again we don’t have to be perfect but you should be able to remain clear every week you take the sacrament… not perfect, but repentant… … and perhaps the bishop can help with understanding that… also prayer, God can let you know when you are ready… … That first week I got clear was amazing?! I never thought I could get through as something as simple as a single week. I know it doesn’t seem like much at all… it’s kind of pathetic, but that alone was a turning point of my addiction, recovery became a reality, and my life started change as it should…

Although I didn’t remain perfect since then I have had bad relapses but, that change of heart still existed, Reading your scriptures, going to seminary in the morning, praying 24/7, emailing my bishop obsessively, and everything… I would get a few days clear…crash… I would get 5 days clear… crash… then I would get a 2nd week clear… crash… and then I would get several non-consecutive weeks clear… crash… and then 10 days clear!! … Crash… crash…. I was stuck on 10 days for a very long time, the temptation was so great, and the difficulty of keeping it out of my thoughts was difficult, I would continue I would stay steadfast…"
posted at 13:44:47 on May 24, 2008 by Gondor44646
My Recovery Story... Part 4    
"I would get to the 10th day however… and just for the record … nocturnal emissions are not a sin… if you are doing all that you can to avoid masturbation your body might natural do this thing… it is difficult to avoid, and you really don’t have much control over this process, nor was it or is you intentions to have it done… because of the lack of agency, and the natural design that God made our bodies, Nocturnal emissions are not a sin… that is kind of like pooping… pooping is not a sin?! … However by the 10th day this thing happened ((nocturnal emission)) and I became so upset and annoyed that it would cause me to fail the next day?! … Nocturnal emission or willfully sinning your attitude has to stay the same, if you sin, let it go ask for forgiveness and move on, don’t let it pull you down to sin again. If you have a nocturnal emission… well… don’t be upset about it… you could actually pray about, I know God can comfort and help you even when Odd situations occur…

Humbly ask God to remove your shortcomings… the things that you can not control… your past!! My past… ug!! Ohh how I have wasted so much of my life in this stupid sin… but I can’t change the past, at one point I was unwilling, and sinning. But this I can promise you that the same attitude ((not wanting to repent)) you have about repentance will be the same in your later years. But when you are willing to repent, it is the same as if you were or could have been willing in your past years… in other words whoever has control of the past is in control of the future, but however is in control of the present is in control of that same past…. What I am trying to say is that it is possible for you to let go of you past mistakes, I wish I never had those past mistakes… but they are there… but now I am willing to make good choices and that attitude was passable in my past… taking this in account I have no right to not forgive myself… who am I to say that the atonement Of Jesus Christ was not enough to forgive me of myself!?!? Let it go… it is no longer you, and it doesn’t have to be you anymore… come and repent and your sins will no longer threaten you… God will not remember them… you might remember… but the pain is no longer there, and you know that you must avoid it.

Perhaps I am still on this step… step 8 and 9… make a list of those you harmed, and make restitution when possible… it is a absolute joke to assume that you do not hurt anybody when you indulge in masturbation / pornography… I am only 18 years old and I am not married but I know that you must be harming your wife when you indulged in this problem… … … especially pornography… nothing more corrupt and unreal has the power to completely destroy a marriage. … The things seen in pornography are unreal and couldn’t possible be expected for the type of behavior in marriage… I don’t think God design this to promote male sexual aggression in or out of marriage… it is not about self-gratification… it is about the true love that Husbands and Wives have for each other… which should only cause them to love, respect and bring each other closer to their goals… but then I don’t really know everything about this… I am not married yet… I hope to stay completely clean for my future wife… and to be worthy of all the temple blessings and a mission… and that eternal marriage … …

… Myself I know I have hurt myself, I even hated myself, and I wanted to commit suicide… I must forgive myself… … … I suppose also my parents, and even my brothers I have harmed, not always because of my addiction but just because of everything… seeking forgiveness will be for anything that you have done to cause harm rather then just your addiction.

And then the maintenance steps… 10 …11… and 12… step 10 … step 10 is kind of like the self-humbling part of life… you can let your power overtake you and become prideful and fall… or you could give thanks to your god for all the blessings and powers that you have and continue to humble yourself to God… I like Step 11…it is a privilege to do God’s will… the problem is though most of the time I completely miss the opportunity or I do not seek to know what God’s will is… Pray and earnestly seek to know what God wants for you and how you can do it… or perhaps believing that you have the power to do it… and then step 12… you know… like right now… yeah… spreading this message of recovery of hope and peace… yeah… its kool…. Ok…

There are still so many things on my mind… I could type forever… I was searching for somebody that could understand… somebody that could help… or even have the courage to say that they never had a problem with masturbation… or to have overcome the sin of masturbation… … Jesus Christ… he was perfect and he overcame all the sins of the world at the same time … ? … However I know we are not perfect, but I still believe and I think it is expected… I believe it is possible for a young man to go through his teenaged years and adolescence without ever having this problem of masturbation… just the same as not drinking beer or not smoking a cigarette… I am not saying perfection… but if a young man is taught in his youth about these things and recognizes the importance of it… believes it is true along with the church and makes sure to avoid it… and to put down curiosity just as somebody would be curies about any other addictive sin… although the statistics are against me, I reserve the right to simply believe it is possible… Jesus Christ proved it … because if it is not possible then we are denied our agency to avoid it… I can physical move my arm… I can tell my body that I am not going to indulge in that… However!! God also reserves the right being completely perfect… he knows that all will sin in one way or another. We all have our individual problems, even if a young man is capable of avoiding this particular sin of masturbation, there will be another problem… because all fall short from the glory of God… … … if you have indulged in this sin of masturbation just remember … your not doomed, your not lost… EVERYBODY needs to go through the atonement and seek forgiveness and repentance. I also must be careful by the words I say, I do not intended to lift myself in pride when I say these things, nor do I judge anybody else for what difference they might think, I must remain completely humble, or I will immediately fall back into my addiction and suffer like I once did…
Wow…shesh it’s only been 20 days clear and I feel like a missionary… I have to remain focused… I have to stay clear… I feel like something overcame me just now… how is it that I can sit here and type 8 pages like this… hmm…

I thank you all… and I hope my words will help somebody that is in need… and also if I did say or do anything incorrectly in what I have typed here then please tell me and forgive me… I hope that what I have said is not incorrect…

That is all… Gondor"
posted at 13:45:43 on May 24, 2008 by Gondor44646
Step 4 - Now complete    
"I'd say that your Step 4 is complete - this is perfect and I thank you so much for your story Gondor - what a trooper you are! It's hard to write about these things, or how it might had come to be...my story, as is everyone's, is endless it seems - but each of us have one and as we reflect on it we can see that we are loved.

20 days is powerful buddy - that's awesome - if you see my blog, I hit 30 today -- an incredible feat all in itself for me. Like a thick chain we are all linked - when together we are unbreakable and can conquer -- when alone, we are very breakable - I'm glad I know you and I appreciate you my young brother!

Power in Purity!"
posted at 15:02:51 on May 24, 2008 by whitewolf
Great First Step    
"In looking over what you've written can you see where you've been powerless over your addiction? Is your life truly unmanageable or are you still clinging to the belief that you can hold it all together? My sponsor had me find 10 things I was powerless over and 10 things that made my life unmanageable. It's funny because that was many years ago and as sick as I was as a newcomer I had a hard time finding even 10 things I was powerless over; yet today I can rattle off a hundred things I'm powerless over. The excercise of Step One is just a start in coming to realize that we are powerless over EVERYTHING! Keep up the good work Gondor and you will come to this liberating realization. For now just keep doing what you're doing but kick the "recovery" up a notch. I know this is all advice you didn't ask for but I kinda like you and hope you won't give up on this process before the miracle. Good luck!"
posted at 20:06:07 on May 27, 2008 by Anonymous


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"[The Savior] is saying to us, "Trust me, learn of me, do what I do. Then, when you walk where I am going," He says, "we can talk about where you are going, and the problems you face and the troubles you have. If you will follow me, I will lead you out of darkness," He promises. "I will give you answers to your prayers. I will give you rest to your souls.""

— Jeffrey R. Holland

General Conference, April 2006