Struggling with masturbation and I don't know what to do anymore

And may the peace of Christ be with you also!

For what it’s worth, as a now married man with four kids, I do feel great sympathy for teenagers growing up in the present day environment - in which inappropriate stimulation is almost unavoidable.

I know God understands all, and I do believe He is more merciful than I can imagine.

Nevertheless, if ever there was a diabolical tool to trap us in sin, it’s pornography! Because not only is the addiction painful, the actual nature of pornography is sinful - I used to try to imagine the pain that the women on screen must be going through. I used to try to imagine the Blessed Mother. But when overcome by lust, I needed that fear of excluding myself from God’s will to fully understand. Even then, we still need to flee from temptation when it is so strong that all intellectual reason fails. Eventually it does become much easier, when the presence of God becomes a habit and the norm in our lives.

In addition to the helpful advice put forth, I would recommend befriending St. Philomena. She was a martyr for purity; she knows how precious this grace is, and she is more than happy to help those who seek her intercession.

By fighting valiantly against these temptations, you will procure great glory for God, and you will gain a greater appreciation for purity and its fruits.

There is a story of a holy religious, Mother Mary Dominique Moes, who had been assailed by violent temptations against purity for a considerable period of time. Our Lord spoke to her these consoling words:

“Your merits will be extraordinarily increased by these infernal struggles, and God will be glorified beyond measure. Offer these terrible interior sufferings to My Heavenly Father in reparation for the many sins that are committed of this kind. If men were not so deeply plunged in this vice, you would not have so much to suffer from unclean spirits. However painful the combat may be, remain wholly in peace; not the least dust of it shall dwell upon either your body or your soul.”

“Without its companions, namely fasting and temperance, charity soon grows weary of its effort.”

  • St. John Chrysostom

“He who remembers having invoked the name of Mary in an impure temptation, may be sure that he did not yield to it.”
– St. Alphonsus Liguori

You are in my prayers.

And it is certainly valued! Your concern for contemporary teenagers is a sure sign of a good father :thumbsup:

Hopefully your personal experience helps Aquilina with what God sees as only a few dead hairs in the vast beauty of the rest of her soul.

I think it prudent to point out that sometimes a pornography addiction grows out of masturbation, rather than the other way around. In that case blocking all pornography is cutting only a big branch off, rather than digging up the root.

Practically speaking, I recommend smelling foul scents. Pornography might condition us to tolerate foul visual images, and even foul audio, but technology hasn’t developed yet for pornography to dull our noses :eek: Terrible smells are the Achilles’ Heel of the sexual appetite.

Christi pax,

Lucretius

This is a topic that is near and dear to my heart as I struggle with it too at times.

I have found that a special devotion to Mary and Joseph has been incredibly helpful. Another good piece of advice is that the best way to break a bad habit is to replace it with a good habit. Also, try leaving your bedroom door open more and or spending less time alone in your room. Put up a crucifix and ask Jesus to give you strength. Sometimes the crucifix acts as a reminder. Identify your triggers: it might be boredom, exhaustion, pressure, lack of sleep, etc. Take steps to avoid these triggers, and find a better way to deal with them.

Please do not be too hard on yourself. Yes, you are making mistakes, but you are regretting them, and taking the proper steps to fix them. That is huge! Take it one step at a time. Its Holy Week, so focus on the Passion of our Lord. He had to struggle to take every step, and he sometimes fell for our sins. Struggle to take each step with him in begging for mercy for your sins. Shame is a natural part of sin. It means your heart yearns for something better. Lust and pleasure especially of this kind are very strong temptations. Do not lose hope and fight the good fight! We know that through Christ all things are possible. So stand up, embrace your cross, and keep going! You can do this!

Keep struggling. Be patient.

Satan’s lie is this: “you cannot master this sin, you are a worthless sinner and God could not possible love you”.
That is a lie. This is the vicious cycle of lust. Without being able to experience God’s love you will go looking for it in other places like self gratification.

The fundamental truth about yourself is that God loves you, all the time, without exception, without condition. You must hold this truth close, especially when you are downcast with your sins.

It is very important to devote your life to service of others. Connecting with others will help take your focus off your own problems and put it on others, where it should be. This takes practice and can be uncomfortable. But it’s worth it.

Be patient. Trust God.

I know I’ll probably get ripped to shreds for saying this, but the sex drive can be greatly lowered with certain medication that a doctor can prescribe.

Maybe so, but medication will not usually lead to self mastery.
Self mastery is hard work.
And that is the point at which we want to arrive.

I actually find this idea to be a fascinating ethnical question for another thread.

We are taught that we should manipulate our environment in order to avoid things that might tempt us, that is, to actively avoid occasions of sin.

However, what if we could use a drug to keep concupiscence in line with our will? Would it be a good thing?

Christi pax,

Lucretius

I do not believe so, as drugs alter the will. Or the ability to follow the will, however you want to say it.

Indeed that IS fascinating…hmm…:shrug:

But then again, isn’t altering the will the entire goal?

I think not. The will can’t be changed by drugs directly, but only indirectly, through emotions.

I think some problems with using drugs like this is that it ignores strengthening the Heart, and it makes one enslaved to the drug for control, as the self control ends up being external and ultimately out of your control, while discipline keeps the control internal and able to withstand external threats to it.

Contraception can be seen as an attempt to remove the negative consequences of sexual perversion, so that even though people indulge in sexual perversion, the consequences are frustrated. So, the individual doesn’t control concupiscence, but society as a whole can…and use technology to make fantasy into reality.

Christi pax,

Lucretius

yes but the will has to be free

Trust Jesus. Be patient. Forgive yourself. Accept the new light that you asked your mom for. Walk in it. Be patient with her. Forgive her when necessary. Know that God is patient. Forgiving. Kind. Helpful.

Praying for you…

I will send you a friend request. I always pray for all my friends on here every day.

I believe suggesting drugs to a 16 year old is a little irresponsible

I believe the subject who is considering drug therapy to stop a sinful behavior is showing his true desire to better himself. I think that says a lot about the subjects heart and true desire…

My suggestion would be to resist any drug treatment idea’s, talk to a counselor and pray. Never give up! God knows your heart and truly appreciates your efforts to be the person he wants you to be.

What does age have to do with it? I wish I had this drug when I was 16. Maybe God wants her to struggle with an ultra intense libido, but maybe God allowed this drug to be produced to help tame these desires in people like the OP. I honestly do not know for sure one way or another, but I think it’s a viable option that the OP may wish to take.

Find a regular confessor (same Priest) who can know you and advise you.

Do not give up - repent and turn again to the Lord if that happens.

Let us remember Jesus of Nazareth is The Lamb and the Good Shepherd …

"Jesus is called the Lamb: He is the Lamb who takes away the sin of the world. Someone might think: but how can a lamb, which is so weak, a weak little lamb, how can it take away so many sins, so much wickedness? With Love. With his meekness. Jesus never ceased being a lamb: meek, good, full of love, close to the little ones, close to the poor. He was there, among the people, healing everyone, teaching, praying. Jesus, so weak, like a lamb. However, he had the strength to take all our sins upon himself, all of them.

“But, Father, you don’t know my life: I have a sin that…, I can’t even carry it with a truck…”.

Many times, when we examine our conscience, we find some there that are truly bad! But he carries them. He came for this: to forgive, to make peace in the world, but first in the heart. Perhaps each one of us feels troubled in his heart, perhaps he experiences darkness in his heart, perhaps he feels a little sad over a fault… He has come to take away all of this, He gives us peace, he forgives everything. “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away sin”: he takes away sin, it’s root and all! This is salvation Jesus brings about by his love and his meekness. And in listening to what John the Baptist says, who bears witness to Jesus as the Saviour, our confidence in Jesus should grow. Many times we trust a doctor: it is good, because the doctor is there to cure us; we trust in a person: brothers and sisters can help us. It is good to have this human trust among ourselves. But we forget about trust in the Lord: this is the key to success in life. Trust in the Lord, let us trust in the Lord! “Lord, look at my life: I’m in the dark, I have this struggle, I have this sin…”; everything we have: “Look at this: I trust in you!”. And this is a risk we must take: to trust in Him, and He never disappoints."

~Pope Francis

vatican.va/holy_father/francesco/homilies/2014/documents/papa-francesco_20140119_omelia-parrocchia-sacro-cuore-gesu_en.html

"Jesus is the “Good Shepherd” who goes in search of lost sheep, who knows his sheep and lays down his life for them (cf. Mt 18:12-14; Lk 15:4-7; Jn 10:2-4, 11-18). He is the way, the right path that leads us to life (cf. Jn 14:6), the light that illuminates the dark valley and overcomes all our fears (cf. Jn 1:9; 8:12; 9:5; 12:46).

He is the generous host who welcomes us and rescues us from our enemies, preparing for us the table of his body and his blood (cf. Mt 26:26-29; Mk 14:22-25); Lk 22:19-20) and the definitive table of the messianic banquet in Heaven (cf. Lk 14:15ff; Rev 3:20; 19:9). He is the Royal Shepherd, king in docility and in forgiveness, enthroned on the glorious wood of the cross (cf. Jn 3:13-15; 12:32; 17:4-5)."

~Pope Benedict XVI

vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/audiences/2011/documents/hf_ben-xvi_aud_20111005_en.html

"I invite all Christians, everywhere, at this very moment, to a renewed personal encounter with Jesus Christ, or at least an openness to letting him encounter them; I ask all of you to do this unfailingly each day. No one should think that this invitation is not meant for him or her, since “no one is excluded from the joy brought by the Lord”.[1] The Lord does not disappoint those who take this risk; whenever we take a step towards Jesus, we come to realize that he is already there, waiting for us with open arms.

Now is the time to say to Jesus: “Lord, I have let myself be deceived; in a thousand ways I have shunned your love, yet here I am once more, to renew my covenant with you. I need you. Save me once again, Lord, take me once more into your redeeming embrace”. How good it feels to come back to him whenever we are lost!

Let me say this once more: God never tires of forgiving us; we are the ones who tire of seeking his mercy.

Christ, who told us to forgive one another “seventy times seven” (Mt 18:22) has given us his example: he has forgiven us seventy times seven. Time and time again he bears us on his shoulders.

No one can strip us of the dignity bestowed upon us by this boundless and unfailing love. With a tenderness which never disappoints, but is always capable of restoring our joy, he makes it possible for us to lift up our heads and to start anew. Let us not flee from the resurrection of Jesus, let us never give up, come what will. May nothing inspire more than his life, which impels us onwards!"

~ Pope Francis

APOSTOLIC EXHORTATION
EVANGELII GAUDIUM

w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/en/apost_exhortations/documents/papa-francesco_esortazione-ap_20131124_evangelii-gaudium.html#I.%E2%80%82A_joy_ever_new,_a_joy_which_is_shared

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