The majority of the articles, tools, and meditations on this site have focused on finding better habit patterns for transforming our addictive behaviors. These are all important things, but something I have waited a long time to write about is healing and withdrawal, mainly because I did not have the kind of foresight I do now to really express it and give clear guidance.
An addiction recovery process is not without a healing process, because the sickness runs so deep. Tied to it are all kinds of possible emotional and physical abuses from our past, some so long ago that we can no long remember them. Or maybe we never experienced any past trauma at all, but still one must go through the painful experience of regaining our sensitivity for life. Everyone’s recovery will be different, and we will all have varying degrees of withdrawal and healing that come up. Some people report having great difficulty quitting while others struggle for years, even though they both have very negative effects from abusing their bodies aided by porn obsession.
The most important thing I want to underline here is, it’s OK to take time to heal, to take time to process, to take time to introspect, to take long walks alone, and most importantly to let those painful feelings in and take care of them like a mother would a child.
From my experience, the withdrawals and healing process have stretched some 4 years now and still going. Year after year, a little more gets processed and the withdrawals get a little easier to manage. The withdrawals and healing would come in waves, one after the other. Withdrawals by comparison were always a bit more intense and required a different response then the healing phase. In the early years the physical withdrawals were almost unmanageable, and the best thing was to use logic to talk myself out of it, remind myself that this too will pass [mp3 link], or something more physical like exercise. Other times it was an emotional halo feeling, a lose, or overwhelming grief, and the only thing I could do is sit with it, let it speak and listen to what it had to say. Sometime I would cry, and I knew that was perfectly OK too. Healing and processing takes many forms, and different lengths of time. The problem is, there is no one method, and everyone has varying degrees of help from them.
The bottom line is, healing is a life long process, I don’t really expect ever to be done, that is not the point. The point is to continue giving yourself the space and time to process. To be alone and let yourself just be as you are now, even if that is a very painful place. Know that how you are feeling really is OK, and that you will continue to heal as long as you have compassion for yourself.
I wish you all peace and love in your recovery.