Think it through – it’s a good relapse prevention strategy for sex addicts. If you can follow the trail down to the sometimes that’s enough to keep your rational brain in control long enough to make a call and get some help before you act out. I got this worksheet in treatment and I actually use it. If you want a blank copy, you can use the links on the right and download it from my box.net account.
The problem with thinking is that it rarely happens when you need it to happen – you’ve got to practice. The counselor that ran the relapse prevention classes in treatment said it was important to do recovery fire drills. He told us that we needed to go over our relapse prevention strategies until they were unconscious. Actually, he was kind of a pain in the ass. But he was right. Maybe my sobriety has something to do with the fact that I’m doing the stuff they suggested. That advice sure cost a lot, kind of stupid to pay for expert advice and then ignore it.
Relapse prevention is a continuous process. In my recovery – I can’t tell you how many times I sat down at the computer to just check email and ended up finding myself hours later surfing porn. I’d sit there bleary eyed and feeling like utter shit wondering what the hell was wrong with me. I promised myself I wouldn’t do it again. It was baffling. In fact, you could say it was cunning, baffling, and powerful.
Looking back, it’s hard for me to believe I didn’t see the connection between checking email and surfing porn, but until I had to sit down in rehab and follow the trail backward, I really didn’t see it. I thought surfing porn started with sitting down at the computer horny. But usually, I was just bored and felt kind of blah and needed to check my email. Once I was at the computer, I’d already lost control, I just didn’t realize it.
Now, I’ve practiced thinking through my addictive trail so often that a red flag pops up when “I’m just going to check my email” pops into my head.