It is one thing to make addictive choices when you have no hope for fulfillment or supportive companionship. At its' core, addictive behaviors are used to cope with loss or neglict. Recovery is a simple concept really:
1). Discontinue the addictive behavior
2). Follow a suggested sequence of actions
3). Address your core issues.
Concept One is simple to comprehend for an alcohlic or gambler - Not necessarily easy but it is simple. Don't drint or gamble.......Don't think about it and if necessary don't be around it.
But when the addictive behavior is sexual it is not quite as simple. Furthermore, when the core issue is also sexual this concept is anything but simple. For more years than I care to admit, pornography and masturbation were my "drug of choice". It was a behavior learned from my father. By the time I was in my first adult relationship this behavior was a firmly established ritual in my life. Along with alcohol, this was a way for me to escape what I did not want to face. As this first adult relationship became a marriage, porn and self-induced orgasm was how I coped with the lack of sexual relations.
I was the addicted (defective) one and my wife was the healthy one. My sexual needs and desires were obviously unhealthy and wrong since they were mine - the defective one. Hers were the correct ones since she was the healthy one. My sexual sobriety was measured by her view of healthy sexuality
* Having sex two, three or four times a year was normal and "healthy"
* I thought about and wanted sex "all the time" because I was an addict
* Porngraphy and masturbation were unhealthy and the sign of an addict
After my affair in late 1999-early 2000 I started to attend SAA meetings. One key difference from AA was that the goal was not abstenance from all sexual behavior but abstenance of addictive sexual behaviors that interfere with healthy sexual interaction.
This is a topic that is on my mind a lot these days. In this journey away from the darkness of loneliness and addiction, I find that often am not sure what is sexually healthy or is not. My baseline of knowledge is measured by what is 'not' healthy not what is. I know my belief of what is healthy is significantly different than the one I was measured by previous. But the boundaries around what is healthy is still a work in progress.
Why all the rambling nonsense above? Because above all else healthy sexuality is based on honesty. Honesty with myself and honesty with Babushka. If an activity is something I cannot share about with Babushka - that is my new baseline of healthy or unhealthy.
Get Busy Livin' or Get Busy Dyin'
Old habits die hard indeed