I used to think that if I went too long without having sex, I would die. Surprisingly, it’s been months and I’m just fine. In fact, I feel pretty clear-headed. It’s been healthy for me to take a break from sex and I’m going to keep this break going for some time.
I’ve had periods where I’ve had frequent sex.
Before this break, I was having a ton of sex. Like, more than any other period in my life. It got to the point that it was really over-the-top. I was sleeping with many people that I dated, and there were a ton of them. You get the point. Basically, I was going from this to absolutely nothing.
I’ve had breaks in the past.
I did have a break a few years ago — it was about 18 months. I did break my commitment once during that time period and slept with someone. On the whole, though, I had refrained from sex. I didn’t die then either (obviously).
This break is unique.
I’m participating in a 12-step program for sex and love addicts. I’m following the directions of a sponsor in that program, which means she suggested no dating or sex right now. This break is different from my last one because I’m also abstaining from all sorts of other behaviors like answering exes who reach out and creeping on their social media. It’s similar to a whole cleanse!
It’s been a few months.
There was a point (or maybe a few points) in my life where I honestly thought I couldn’t go a week without being emotionally and/or sexually involved with someone. Here I am, though, a few months into abstinence from sex and dating and I’m not dead.
I plan on doing it for at least a few more months.
I’ve made it this far — three whole months! — and I think I can make it more. I definitely aspire to keep this up for at least a few more months, maybe even a whole year. Imagine the growth and progress that can happen in that amount of time?!
I thought I wouldn’t be able to do it.
When I embarked on this journey, I had little confidence in my ability to stick it out. I thought I wouldn’t last for more than a few weeks. After all, I had been having sex like a maniac right before. I didn’t have much faith, but here I am doing the damn thing.
I’ve even been thriving.
I’ve been spending more time with my friends and I’ve had much more time for hobbies. Not to mention all the space that’s opened up in my head because I’m not worrying about if the person I’m sleeping with likes me or not. I just feel like I have so much more space in general in my life because my mind and body aren’t consumed with another person.
It has been challenging at times though, I won’t lie.
If I said everything has been sunshine and rainbows I’d be full of it. The truth of the matter is that this has been damn hard at times. There are situations where I run into someone I’m attracted to and I want to break my sex and dating sabbatical. I want to just do whatever the heck I want. I know this isn’t healthy, though, so I’m sticking to the plan.
I highly recommend a break.
I know that to many people, it sounds difficult (though I’m sure there are weirdos who wouldn’t mind taking a break). To me, though, it’s been totally worth it. I highly recommend taking one if it’s possible and makes sense. It’s a great time for self-reflection and to figure out what you really want and what you’re doing.
I’m learning some good lessons about myself.
Like, I’m learning how much I depend on other people to feel okay in my own skin. This isn’t okay! So, I’m working on being more comfortable by myself. To do this, I’m sitting with the discomfort and working through it. I’m also realizing that I’m a whole lot more resilient than I give myself credit for. This is a beautiful thing to learn about myself.
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