One of the most frequent questions my audience ask whenever I am opportuned to share my sexual addiction story is, “Was there any time you had a relapse?”
The answer is a yes.
I will share just one story with us. The story is not a totally pleasant one, but do I regret my decision? No.
When I broke loose from addiction (or so, I thought) in 2007, I was instructed by God to go liberate people having the same issue that same year. “I have called you before you were born to raise sexually pure leaders, heal ailing families and build healthy homes.” Those were the exact words I heard. I was not totally sure if I was ready, so I kept it to myself. I had broken all my relationships and for a year I had no relationship with sex or any of her relatives. However, I soon entered a relationship and I found myself wanting her body but I knew I loved her. I thought I could do without touching her but nah, we did all kinds except penetration. For one year, we kept smooching, petting, touching ourselves and it seemed I was beginning to relapse. Whenever she left my place, I turned to masturbation and we soon started sexting, especially on days we could not see.
In all of this, I had started Maximum Impact Network, a bimonthly gathering of young people where we taught sexual purity. I felt dirty; I felt like a hypocrite and I told my babe that it was time to end the relationship. It was a mutual agreement but she thought otherwise. First, she felt I had started another relationship and I wasn’t finding her cool again despite giving her reasons the relationship should end. “Babe, I loved you. I still do but the way we are going, we would have sex someday and we would continue to do and you will get pregnant and all our audience won’t trust us again and we would look like hypocrites,” I said to her. As I was saying these words, the images of my God, pastors, mentors, friends, audience were flashing in my head. I did not want to disappoint these people. I believed and still believe so much in integrity and that act negated it.
We broke up and I refused to start any relationship again. But I found myself masturbating constantly and sometimes, I would want to invite her and some of my exes but I was able to restrain myself.
Breaking up with her came along with frustration. I was struggling with my issues and she, on the other hand, was frustrating me. It was one of the most terrible years of my life. I started doubting my assertion about sex being a behavioural issue. I visited churches for deliverance.
I prayed and prayed and prayed until one morning after my daily rituals, I got a message about a Sex Therapy course from a contact on Yahoo messenger. I applied. The course was to train me to become a sex therapist – helping people break free from sexual addiction and helping couples enjoy a healthy sexual life. I practiced all I was taught and within 21 days, a new neural pathway was created in my brain and I was on my journey to total recovery. 21 days, 40 days and 90 days, I was totally free.
My girlfriend, on the other hand, rejected all the help I had to offer. I saw that she had not moved on. I tried to introduce her to psychologists, therapists, etc. but she rejected my entire offer. Up until recently, she didn’t believe I had no relationship with anyone, despite having many ladies around.
See, life is personal. On your way to total freedom from addiction and avoiding relapse, you have to make some decisions that will not go well with people, but it is your life and it is you who knows where the shoe pinches the most. I will share a few things that have helped me.
First, I stopped having intimate relationships with members of the opposite sex. For 3 years, I had no relationship. That meant having no babe to smooch, to have sex with and to do sexting with and as a result, blurred/no pictures to make me start masturbating. I had many babes around who could not hide their feelings for me; I had the ones I loved, too but because I was sincerely seeking for total freedom from addiction, I did not start any relationship. The relationship I had after 3 years was because I was totally free and I was ready for marriage.
Second, I changed my environment. I am an ambivert with the tendencies of an introvert taking a larger percentage of me, so it is difficult for me to initiate friendships. So, for almost 2 years that I lived in my new environment, I had no friend – male or female. I left home for work early in the morning, returned late at night and spent most of my free time researching and making new findings about my profession.
Third, I spoke out. Nothing scares your addiction like communication. I spoke to my sex therapy trainer who I was accountable to then. And he was very patient with me. Anytime, “konji” held me, I would send him a chat and we would engage in a long conversation. Ten minutes into our conversation, “konji” would give himself brain and I would be okay again.
Fourth, I filtered my music and video files. Any song or video with sexual contents were no-go-areas.
Even so, all these were not possible until I first had a mental change. Nothing comes from without; all things come from within. Any change that does not occur first mentally/internally cannot be sustained.
Paul of Tarsus, while addressing the Romans many years ago said, “…be transformed by the renewing of your mind.”
Real and long lasting transformation starts from the mind.
Apostle Matthew, while giving his account of the life of Jesus Christ, quoted Jesus saying, “Blessed are those who are pure in their mind, for they shall see God.”
Recovery, therapy and change are divine. It is only God who gives them and those who are pure in their mind shall see that God brings lasting change. Before you start changing environments and talking to accountability partners, how much work have you done in your mind?
Working on the mind is not an easy job. It takes lots of discipline and determination to take your life back from the captivity of addiction.
“Waste no time trying to change the outside; change the within or the impression; and the without or expression will take care of itself. ”
– Neville Goddard.
One way to trick your mind is changing your focus. What you focus on gets bigger. Take your eyes away from your struggle and focus on the solution. Neville Goddard aptly said, “You will never transcend your present accomplishments through sacrifice and struggle. Your present level of consciousness will only be transcended as you drop the present state and rise to a higher level. You rise to a higher level of consciousness by taking your attention away from your present limitations and placing it upon that which you desire to be.”
Imagination and faith are secrets of creation. Whatever you want to create, imagine it and then believe it is done. Let your focus be on the solution you want instead of the problem and believe that it will be done.
I hope this helps someone.
PS: After trying all these and you still fall back into your once-upon-a-time addiction, please talk to a therapist. Talk to me.
You matter to me…
© Matthew Femi-Adedoyin