Following is an example of how the dialogue modality works for sex addiction and/or porn addiction. If you’ve worked with me, you know all about this technique we use to help our clients shed light on the mental and emotional parts of themselves that produce sexually compulsive behavior.
Like the characters or actors in a story or movie, every one of us has immature complexes, parts of our thinking, sub-personalities within ourselves that don’t seem to be able to “grow up.” One way we can help these parts of ourselves reach maturity is to find a way to SEE them. Then we can manipulate them toward more mature thoughts and actions. In essence, I get clients to talk to themselves. Men say to me, “If I talk to myself I’ll go crazy.” I say back to them, “No my friend, if you talk to yourself, using this dialogue method, you’ll go sane.” It works, as you will see below.
This is the dialog of a client who was wrestling with what is known as “Euphoric Recall” — the memory (in his case) of a highly charged sexualized moment. By writing these thoughts down, then sending them to me, and receiving feedback he is learning to anchor in the truth of the situation rather than the fantasy. This is helping him drop the old negative sexualized story that sustained his addiction and kept him from true intimacy. We share this with you so you too can drop your old story.
Friday afternoon I was driving with my family to Miami for vacation. I knew I was going to past right by the part of Miami where Callie lives. I had prepared myself for this and figured I had it under control.
However, I noticed that the closer I got to Miami the more my stomach tightened into a knot. I had snuck down to Miami one day during the week to spend time with Callie. This was obviously stupid and looking back on it I see how dim-witted it was to do this.
So I started dialoging with my mind and my Euphoric Recall to figure out what was going on.
CHARLIE: What’s going on mind? I can feel my stomach tightening which is I know is being caused as an emotion due to your thought process, what’s happening?
EUPHORIC RECALL: We’re close to Miami…
CHARLIE: yeah I know
EUPHORIC RECALL: She lives there, it’s such a wonderful place, and we had such a good time with her when we were there.
CHARLIE: Yes, but it was very stupid for me to do that. We cheated on our wife for God’s sake!
EUPHORIC RECALL: Don’t you just wish you could be single, living in Miami, hanging out with her whenever you wanted? Free of responsibility and just feel those feelings?
CHARLIE: Feelings aren’t facts. Yes, Miami is nice, but we have a life here in Virginia.
EUPHORIC RECALL: I know, but its fun to think about and fantasize about.
CHARLIE: For what purpose? What good will it really do?
EUPHORIC RECALL: It just feels good.
CHARLIE: That may be true, but it’s a distraction. It would be robbing my family of my time, attention and energy. What I have right now (with my wife and family) is amazing and great, why fantasize about something that isn’t real, and I know nothing about? A couple of short weeks of infatuation can’t tell you crap. Period! Plus Callie has moved on and gone (which is a good thing).
EUPHORIC RECALL: Well what about these feelings?
CHARLIE: They’re just an escape. You see we aren’t using sexual behavior anymore as an escape. That compulsion is being taken care of. Remember? George at Compulsion Solutions? We’re sober now…except for “you.” You’re trying a different form of escape: Euphoric Recall. The problem is that this is not helpful and can eventually lead us back to sexually compulsive behavior. Remember the dark miserable place we climbed out of? I, We won’t be going back there. Feelings aren’t facts and we need to face our reality, not fight or escape it.
EUPHORIC RECALL: The fantasies are so much better.
CHARLIE: They may seem that way, but, I promise you, life is better lived than you ever dreamed or fantasized. Remember your Essence… what George taught you… what’s ALWAYS true. Ask yourself, “What’s always true?” Let’s come “home” to Self. No more “stories.” No more soap opera. Let’s enjoy life, rather than fantasize about it. Being here NOW is so much better and fulfilling.