Catholic FAQ


Latest Threads
newest posts



Go Back   Catholic Answers Forums > Forums > Apologetics > Moral Theology
 

Welcome to Catholic Answers Forums, the largest Catholic Community on the Web.

Here you can join over 400,000 members from around the world discussing all things Catholic. Membership is open to all, Catholic and non-Catholic alike, who seek the Truth with Charity.

To gain full access, you must register for a FREE account. Registered members are able to:
  • Submit questions about the faith to experts from Catholic Answers
  • Participate in all forum discussions
  • Communicate privately with Catholics from around the world
  • Plus join a prayer group, read with the Book Club, and much more.
Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free. So join our community today!

Have a question about registration or your account log-in? Just contact our Support Hotline.

Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Search Thread Display
  #1  
Old Jun 20, '12, 12:32 am
pigzig pigzig is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: April 23, 2012
Posts: 18
Default Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

I've been masturbating since I was 14, the longest I have managed to go is about 2 weeks. I have no idea how people give it up. As soon as I knew how to do it I was doing it regularly. Even when I don't do it I get obsessed and have weird fantasies to an extent that it's just as bad as masturbating anyway(whoever looks at a woman has already committed adultery, etc).
How do people seriously give it up? I have had people give tips like 'try to keep your mind off it' however it doesn't work for me and at best it is a temporary solution. I live by myself and can masturbate just about any time of the day(and have on many occasions). I feel like there is no way out of it.

The only solution I can think of is to get married as soon as possible so I can have my wife sate my desires instead. But I am only 22 and don't have anyone special yet.
  #2  
Old Jun 20, '12, 1:03 am
djeter djeter is offline
Regular Member
Book Club Member
 
Join Date: February 14, 2009
Posts: 1,422
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pigzig View Post
I've been masturbating since I was 14, the longest I have managed to go is about 2 weeks. I have no idea how people give it up. As soon as I knew how to do it I was doing it regularly. Even when I don't do it I get obsessed and have weird fantasies to an extent that it's just as bad as masturbating anyway(whoever looks at a woman has already committed adultery, etc).
How do people seriously give it up? I have had people give tips like 'try to keep your mind off it' however it doesn't work for me and at best it is a temporary solution. I live by myself and can masturbate just about any time of the day(and have on many occasions). I feel like there is no way out of it.

The only solution I can think of is to get married as soon as possible so I can have my wife sate my desires instead. But I am only 22 and don't have anyone special yet.
You're dealing with a symptom and first you should understand the underlying disease so as to get a better understanding of what you are dealing with.

Roger Scruton will give you an overall view of Persons And Sexual Desire and how pornography and masturbation distorts sexual desire. This is critical to grasp, particularly if you ever want to make love to a woman sometime in your future. The alternative you are working on is called lust:
Love is whisper, Lust is a roar,
Love is content, Lust wants more,
Love is offered, Lust just takes,
Love mends the hearts that Lust breaks
Then the scale of the problem is in these two posts by Pamela Paul Once you comprehend some of that you might be ready to deal with the consequences of not stopping. Getting married to stop your obsessive/compulsive behavior is one of the dumbest things you could do.

Quote:
The process of masturbatory conditioning is inexorable and does not spontaneously remiss. The course of this illness may be slow and is nearly always hidden from view. It is usually a secret part of the man’s life, and like a cancer, it keeps growing and spreading. It rarely ever reverses itself, and it is also very difficult to treat and heal. Denial on the part of the male addict and refusal to confront the problem are typical and predictable, and this almost always leads to marital or couple disharmony, sometimes divorce and sometimes the breaking up of other intimate relationships.

Dr. Doidge notes,”Pornographers promise healthy pleasure and a release from sexual tension, but what they often deliver is addiction, and an eventual decrease in pleasure. Paradoxically, the male patients I worked with often craved pornography but didn’t like it.” In the book Pornified, Pamela Paul gives numerous examples of this, and describes one person who decided to limit his pornography use, not from a moralist or guilt-based perspective, but out of a desire to again experience pleasure in actual physical relationships with women.
See also another Scruton essay on the Five Myths about Sex. You can't solve your problem unless you understand it first. If you are a serious Catholic start with those readings.

Quote:
I have no idea how people give it up
They give it up because they have to. That's how addictions work: guilt and shame are often justified, and what they demand of us is not therapy, in order to remove them, but right conduct, in order to avoid them.

Most guys your age aren't even asking the questions. Use your faith to find the answers and prayer to make the solutions work for you. God bless. You're a very impressive young man.


dj
__________________
"To the young, the early dead, the baffled, the defeated, I don’t think we can be tender enough."
Henry James
http://payingattentiontothesky.com/

Last edited by djeter; Jun 20, '12 at 1:17 am.
  #3  
Old Jun 20, '12, 3:10 am
MaryLouItalia MaryLouItalia is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: June 19, 2012
Posts: 46
Religion: Born catholic,1stpentecostal aft. ref. baptist,now back home
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Also if I am a woman, I can understand very well your problem.
I know, it's not easy stay away from porn and similar things but, with God's help, you can make it. First of all stay away from all the sources where you can find sexual contents (magazines, tv series, also your pc). The first few days are really difficult, but everyday your mind will heal and you will think with less frequency of sex and related things. Read the Holy Bible, pray our Lord to give you the strength to refrain from this SIN, go to the Mass, go out for a walk, read, fill your life with other interests and be chaste will not be impossible.
The healing process will not be immediate, but I assure you that you can do it.
Please, don't get married only because you want have sex. Remember that the sex you see in the porn industry, is absolutely fake, there's no pleasure in it, and serves only to drug men's mind and turns women into simple pieces of meat, not human beings designed to be loved and respected by their men

ps: I'm almost 33 y.o. and single
  #4  
Old Jun 20, '12, 3:33 am
dsully dsully is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: March 29, 2012
Posts: 349
Religion: Easter Vigil - April 19, 2014
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Pigzig,

My situation was like yours. I started in adolescence and found it impossible to stop until four or five years ago, when I was 27. If it makes you feel any better, I wasn't even convicted about masturbation until I was 24.

For me, the solution has been continual prayer and a desire to be holy like the Lord. Also helpful have been putting up safeguards on my computer to protect me from porn (I use Covenant Eyes) and living with roommates.

I do slip up from time to time, but the frequency is far, far less than it used to be, praise God. When I do slip up, I make it a point to confess my sin and receive God's grace.

The most difficult time for me is at night. I try to go to be early (before 11:00 pm) to avoid greater amounts of temptation. Lots of time there is a great struggle with lust, but I have learned to unite my suffering to Christ, so that I know it serves a redemptive purpose.

You may also find value in reading some of the monastic writers of the Church, who did battle with lust on a daily battle.

Finally, remember that Jesus knows and understands your struggle. He took on human flesh and knows what it means to be tempted, though without sin. Rest in Him.

I will have to remember to pray for you, brother.

Dan

P.S. Praise God you have taken the first step by humbling yourself and bringing up the issue.
  #5  
Old Jun 20, '12, 4:09 am
JRKH's Avatar
JRKH JRKH is offline
Forum Elder
 
Join Date: September 14, 2007
Posts: 21,583
Religion: Catholic Revert
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Pigzig,

Let me first say that marriage is not a "solution" to this problem. It might help a bit but....

That said - I cannot offer a great deal of advice except that which helped me.

In addition to all of the things that "dsully" mentions above, I developed a "visual prayer"...After all, if we can "visualize" toward lust - why not "visualize" away from it...
So I prayed, "Father, take me to the foot of the cross", and then began thinking, visualizing myself there. Gazing on the scene of teh one who died for my sins.
Hot, dry, dusty day.
The foot of the cross buried in the ground.
The wood of the cross stained black from blood and sweat.
The feet of our Lord.
Filthy and stained and dripping blood and sweat.
I did this - I put Him there - Not alone - but I helped.
Every time I sin, it is increases His pain.
If I refrain, it eases His pain.
Feel the heat of that day, the dryness of the air.
How thirsty He is.....
.....and so on....

I could not proceed to sin with this image before me...

P.S. While I have not personally seen the movie...Perhaps watching the "Passion of the Christ" would help you in this...

Peace
James
__________________
.... if I have all faith so as to move mountians but have not love, I am nothing. - (1Cor 13:2)


The Best book on Spirituality that I ever Read: "The Fulfillment of All Desire"

Oh my God , I will continue
to perform, all my actions
for the love of Thee
Amen.
  #6  
Old Jun 20, '12, 5:49 am
Inquiringperson Inquiringperson is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: March 11, 2011
Posts: 990
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pigzig View Post
I've been masturbating since I was 14, the longest I have managed to go is about 2 weeks. I have no idea how people give it up. As soon as I knew how to do it I was doing it regularly. Even when I don't do it I get obsessed and have weird fantasies to an extent that it's just as bad as masturbating anyway(whoever looks at a woman has already committed adultery, etc).
How do people seriously give it up? I have had people give tips like 'try to keep your mind off it' however it doesn't work for me and at best it is a temporary solution. I live by myself and can masturbate just about any time of the day(and have on many occasions). I feel like there is no way out of it.

The only solution I can think of is to get married as soon as possible so I can have my wife sate my desires instead. But I am only 22 and don't have anyone special yet.
Carry something blessed with you. (exp: Holy Water or a Rosary). I could never commit a mortal sin when these things were in my pocket.
  #7  
Old Jun 20, '12, 6:30 am
dimentichisimai's Avatar
dimentichisimai dimentichisimai is offline
New Member
 
Join Date: June 6, 2012
Posts: 54
Religion: Catholic of the Roman Rite
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

You've gotta tame your passions through prayer and acts of the will. Every time you:
  • Have an impure thought
  • Are tempted to check-out a girl
  • Sit down at your computer and get the urge
Stop what you're doing and do something else. Say a little prayer too. Avert your eyes if you see an attractive woman that you want to lust after.

By turning away just before the impurity sets in, you'll start breaking the habit that you've developed. It's not easy, you'll have many relapses, and it can take years. But if I did it, anybody can. Almost a year clean.

Trust in God and work hard.
  #8  
Old Jun 20, '12, 6:32 am
karoleck karoleck is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: October 16, 2009
Posts: 1,891
Religion: Catholic
Smile Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Inquiringperson View Post
Carry something blessed with you. (exp: Holy Water or a Rosary). I could never commit a mortal sin when these things were in my pocket.
I think that what you suggest is good,prayer & sacramentals are helpful.I think that this problem needs a holistic approach--natural & supernatural means--something like these rules of life to live in chastity ,whether it be single or in a married state.

1 Rely on God's help rather than your own human recourses.
2 Humble turning to prayer & invoking the protection of The Immaculate & Pure Heart of Mary.
3Wisely practise mortification and custody of the senses.
4Avoid whatever is harmful and dangerous to chastity(be it person,place or thing).
5 Use the natural means to maintain physical health and emotional stability.
6Avoid excessive fatigue and nervous exhaustion
7Avoid idleness
8Have the necessary rest & relaxation that is required.
9Foster good friendships,deeply human & supernatural that contribute to emotional security.
10Practise the rules of prudence and Christ like reserve and reverence that genuine charity demands in your friendships.

O Most Pure Heart Of Mary,make me pure in body and in mind and in heart.Amen(prayed 3 times)
  #9  
Old Jun 20, '12, 7:22 am
losh14 losh14 is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: January 30, 2009
Posts: 2,073
Religion: Evangelical Catholic
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

I struggle as well, and have for nearly 15 years. This is a terrible thorn that so many young men (and perhaps old men as well) suffer from.

There are two paths you have to walk simultaneously. Spiritually, you must focus on Christ, and when you go to the Eucharist, offer your habitual sin on the Cross. Give it up as often as you think of it. Remember that the Enemy will flee you as often as you rebuke him, and I will confirm that he returns often. Lust is a superhighway to destroy the heart, and easy to catch one unawares, especially when muscle memory has set in. When the desires creep up again, call attention to them, rebuke them, and think of the Christ on the Cross, of His pain and His Blood, and let that destroy your urges.

The physical path is one to help treat the symptoms of this spiritual disease. Distraction helps greatly. Learn to recognize when you're "running hot" - you'll know what I mean - and attack it aggressively. I've found that keeping a jar of vinegar handy helps. When the urge arises, take a sniff of it, it kills desire fairly quickly. Or take a teaspoon of hot sauce - by the time your mouth cools off, the flesh will have too. Take a walk if it is daytime, do pushups if it is nighttime - masturbation is so often where men store up extra energy, so that expelling the energy expels the need.

Lastly, avoid occasions to sin. Do you find yourself more vulnerable when drinking? Stop drinking. Is it worse when you are tired? Go to bed earlier, with a Rosary around each hand if need be. Is it worse when you are lonely? Call your friends often. Do you feel tempted watching TV? Unplug your set.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pigzig View Post
Even when I don't do it I get obsessed and have weird fantasies to an extent that it's just as bad as masturbating anyway(whoever looks at a woman has already committed adultery, etc).
Fantasies are like feral cats - stop feeding them and they soon stop coming around. They're noisiest when you first stop, demanding attention. Again, rebuke them and they will hush up.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pigzig View Post
I live by myself and can masturbate just about any time of the day(and have on many occasions). I feel like there is no way out of it.
Intentionally avoid being alone. If you read at home a lot, go to Starbucks or the library instead and hang out for two, three, four hours if need be. Make a point of not being alone.

Quote:
Originally Posted by pigzig View Post
The only solution I can think of is to get married as soon as possible so I can have my wife sate my desires instead. But I am only 22 and don't have anyone special yet.
I can tell you're a virgin - and I'm proud of you. Masturbation isn't about sating a sexual desire, but about meeting a muscular need. That doesn't take away the gravity of the sin, but don't be surprised if you still feel the urge to masturbate even if your wife makes love to you daily.

Even if she sates you, when kids arrive and life gets complicated, sex becomes less often. You need to be able to cope without it for months, even a year or more. When your wife becomes pregnant, she may be sick every day and night for two or three months, and as the baby grows and her body becomes recognizably pregnant she may not want you to touch her (whether from discomfort or feeling unattractive), and after the birth she may have no interest in you sexually, with her energy depleted by nursing the baby every two hours and all the concerns that go along with being a new mother.
  #10  
Old Jun 20, '12, 7:28 am
losh14 losh14 is offline
Regular Member
 
Join Date: January 30, 2009
Posts: 2,073
Religion: Evangelical Catholic
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Most Holy Spirit
Font of True Love
Set my heart alight for You

I pray, redirect this burning for lust
to a fervent fire that cleanses me
of any remnant of this filthy matter

As Phineas drove his spear through profane adultery
Please impale my sin, Lord
and let me cling to the Cross instead

Amen.
  #11  
Old Jun 20, '12, 7:37 am
lily20 lily20 is offline
Junior Member
 
Join Date: March 21, 2011
Posts: 279
Religion: Catholic
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

I read a booklet on chastity the other day which helped me, because it instilled in my mind the gift of sexuality, and made it virtuous not dirty guilty pleasure like we are trained.

I forget the name of the booklet but it's one designed for teens.

Also I have struggled with this. It becomes a habit/addiction like a drug/alchohol. It's sex addiction although no one will ever admit it. A form of self-satisfying/escaping reality.

I have decided to stop now after reading the booklet. Also, i feel it is disrespectful to God, my spouse, Virgin Mary, and my body.

Be forgiving and patient It is still taking me years to stop. It's a drug. Try to slowly back off. seeing small results in your daily life can then fuel you to continue. just a thought. prayers and may God bless you.

Lily
  #12  
Old Jun 20, '12, 11:35 am
Julian Peters Julian Peters is offline
Moderator
 
Join Date: May 18, 2004
Posts: 2,364
Default Re: Masturbation - seriously, how do I stop?

Please see the following threads for additional insight and advice:
__________________

O grant that in life's eventide,
Thy light may e'er with us abide...
Closed Thread

Go Back   Catholic Answers Forums > Forums > Apologetics > Moral Theology

Bookmarks

Thread Tools Search Thread
Search Thread:

Advanced Search
Display

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump



Prayer Intentions

Most Active Groups
8043Meet and talk,talk talk
Last by: HillsongUnited
4828CAF Prayer Warriors Support Group
Last by: tawny
4294Devotion to the Sorrowful Mother
Last by: James_OPL
4027OCD/Scrupulosity Group
Last by: fencersmother
3812SOLITUDE
Last by: beth40n2
3376Let's empty Purgatory
Last by: James_OPL
3184Catholic Vegetarians & Vegans
Last by: libralion
3150Poems and Reflections
Last by: PathWalker
2961For seniors and shut- ins
Last by: tammany
2701Petitions Before the Blessed Sacrament
Last by: Amiciel



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 2:39 am.

Home RSS Feeds - Home - Archive - Top

Copyright © 2004-2013, Catholic Answers.