“Hi, my name is Peter, and I am a dating app addict” I said.
“Hi, Peter” The group says.
“I have two weeks clean, I deleted my profiles permanently, my drugs of choice were Happn, Hinge, OKCupid, Bumble, Tinder. Towards the end it became unmanagable, I couldn’t get any school work done. I couldn’t see a girl as human, they were more just a product in a shopping mall. I grew restless, angry and lashed out at them for asking me job-interview type questions on dates where I was questioned for my commitment and probed for income level in subtle ways.”
It became so constraining in that it took something, love, that should develop organically and in a non-forced way and turned into some chore, or slavish contract offer. “Love” and the message it sends these days, brings to mind a concept in the average zombie that is similar or the same to the way that sugar, coffee, cigarettes, and alcohol are portrayed in advertising. Our idea of “Love” cannot be separated from the constant onslaught of subliminal and overt messages in commercials and media. It is fairy tale level status at this point. What a nervy accusation Peter, how dare you are imply that my decision to marry and enter a monogamous relationship has been influenced by popular culture and that popular culture is nothing more than a machine that programs humans to have certain appetites that then drive the profit engine of corporations. What a sham. Oh, Valentines day Facebook post, congrats, you’re born alone and you die alone. Orgasms function as a sort -of drug. I wonder how many guys get married, because, Well, I don’t know, she’s hot, the sex is good, Yeah, she’s neurotic and controlling, but I don’t think I can do any better, what the hell, let’s do this! OR well, my parents like her sooo I’m not gona do any better than this.
Of course I know I was on the app for the constant validation it delivered with each “like” or “match”. I could have some empathy for the girls I met on these apps. Many seemed slightly flustered and frantic about finding a guy before they turned 30, to participate in this oppressive cultural norm of child rearing, monogamy and the nuclear family. You could sit it out though! I might! You could think it over and make an informed decision for yourself instead of marching mindlessly into the Hitler Youth Mommy brigade! Instead of raising another fucking robot who you just start on the electronic media tit at age 3 with a 12 inch iPad screen in his face because you are sick of listening to him cry. You’d be doing the earth a favor, the US, although only about 10% of the world’s population, we use 70% of the earth’s resources. And the tiny little issue of overpopulation, global warming and catastrophes being on the rise the last few years, as I write this hundreds of thousands of acres of forests burn in California. Is the earth telling us something? Maybe take a beat before bringing another hall-of-fame-level resource consumer into this world, a smidgen of little thought, remember this? Level-headedness and reason, it seems to be a long and distant hazy memory from a lost generation. Or consider other people before having 7 kids just because you NEEDED to have a boy and you were only getting girls.
The impetus for my swearing off of these apps, was a date this Saturday, maybe the 100th or something over my long career of comically bad dating app dates, over the years of its type. I felt like a product on the shelf, we operated in the framework of her bubble and she only saw me through the lens of the bubble. So I knew within 10 minutes of being there that this wasn’t going to be worth my while or her’s. Yet I sat there and played the part for a while, and was a good obedient, part of a male who has Western and hearty individualistic career aspirations. I’m not being liked or spent time with because of my innate qualities or goodness, but merely because I fit into the role of her script she has written for her life. There are plenty of guys that have similar scripts that amount to the fairy tale of love-as-a-drug, that believe that a woman is going to solve their problems. A woman will make me happy like 10 shots of vodka at the bar will make me happy. I was a serial co-dependent, I will make anything outside myself, my higher power if given the chance.
When she ordering her second drink, I said to myself, STOP HER! STOP HER! Say it won’t be necessary and you are getting very tired and should be getting home. Don’t be a willing participant in the contest for which person is more afraid to hurt the other person’s feelings. She has absolutely no interest in you, she is saving face, and playing out the charade.
Later after we let the date go on for 2 hours longer than it should have because I was bored and I was secretly hoping she wanted to see me again even though I didn’t even like her. She said, “I’ll keep in touch!” She kept her hands in her pockets and maintained a safe distance, making it clear there would be no hug of any kind. I sensed the veiled, implicit dismissal that said Fuck off, but play the part so I can not have to confront my emptiness. Happy human shopping!!! She affected a sociopathically wide smile that seemed fixed like a puppet’s. I found it difficult being around her anal, corporate robot personality. I gathered she was a person who had internalized and come to believe what popular media and movies has taught her all of her life. It seemed more like a job interview than anything. Are careers what define us here in America? Is that all that matters? The taxes I pay to the government elites who don’t give a shit about me? SERVE THE MACHINE! DO YOUR PART! REVERE OUR GOD AND WORSHIP THE MONEY IDOLS OR THE HERD WILL SHAME YOU!
I wasted 2 hours because I was that bored and desperate and we were both too pathetic to hurt the other person’s feeling so we played the charade. I should try acting, the way I embrace these roles and facades, sometimes my whole life feels like an act, well it is because this skin is a mask and deludes us into thinking this weak flesh is our essence. Never again, never again will I have that spineless, cringe-worthy date where I waste my time pretending to be around someone who cares more about appearances than actually spending time with a real person. Maybe women in the future will be able to create a virtual reality robot in the future, or a person who passes for actually human like the ones in the show Westworld. He can even function as a sex robot, she can configure her custom man like she custom fits her leather boots at Nordstrom! Then she doesn’t have to bother with the sifting and searching and interviewing men. Vice versa also, men will be able to purchase and craft a women with all the qualities, they need, sex abilities, Never again will I waste my time on these transactional, pathetic, dating-as-shopping apps. The apps are a meat market, yes, I spelled that right, as in flesh shopping mall, body test driving, not a “meet” market. I like how your face and external features look, I want to take you for a test drive.
Celibacy has helped with this, I think the drug-like effect of orgasm contributes to linking positive reinforcement and soothing of inner anxiety but for me, casual sex mostly leads to more addictive and compulsive behavior. I am now in “hard mode” or “monk mode.” I have not had an orgasm for 73 days. How now do I relate to a woman? If not to manipulate them as a tool to inflate my ego or blame them for my unhappiness? Now she is more of an equal. Someone who doensn’t have a material, and fleeting pleasure to offer me via her body. Do we exchange ideas now? When there is no underlying hum of sexual motivations? Has my masculinity been diminished at the expense of increasing my humanity? My empathy for all people, male or female? 95% of guys are addicted to porn. If they are not they at least they are working with a polluted software brain with mental images of sexual fetishes etc being played out.
In 2+ months, 73 days without an orgasm, I think I have felt less depressed, generally lighter, more free of shame, more invigorated than I have in a while. This started on the coat tails of returning from a psilocybin retreat. Celibacy is the most powerful antidepressant I have ever experienced, like returning to an earlier, simpler time in life where I wasn’t on a rollercoaster of chasing pleasure, getting pleasure, then chasing more pleasure again, ad infinitum. I used to relish this kind of chess match idea of relating to a woman and trying to “pick her up.” I like being a “good guy” to attractive women, what is this? It is new and exciting to treat all people as equals and to not manipulate certain ones that have different sex organs and breasts. Where are the studies on this, FDA? I can only see the horseshit you try to pass off as “efficacious” at only 10% more effective than placebo.
Have I now been called to do the inner work that is below and beyond my attachment and grasping at sexual pleasure? Detoxifying my mind of the harmful images that objectify women and also objectify myself in the process, am I just a flesh body meant to keep humping for thousands upon thousands of orgasms? Is it possible my relationship with sex and orgasm has been one absent of any spirit? Simply draining the sexual, life force in my body by chasing the momentary, fleeting, physical pleasure? Would I be happier swearing it off forever? So I don’t get thrown back in the hole more wanting, more needing the hit of pleasure when my brain gets the injection and flooding of dopamine. So I wonder if it will take a few years to actually become a master over my body and preserving in a disciplined way my sexual energy? 2 years? 5 years? How advanced would I need to get to not be derailed by a single orgasm, even with a girl who I actually liked? Derailed, as in having real sex once, then running straight back to masturbation and porn. I’m basically still the rat slurping from the sugar lever and cocaine lever in the pleasure/reward experiments. Need to deprogram from the collective hallucination that is American Culture that in every corner and facet of it, institutions, religion, government, media, sports, movies, holidays says: Buy my shit, jerk off to this Victoria’s Secret catalogue you slave, give me 40% of your paycheck to finance child murder in 3rd world countries, bitch. The children aren’t going to be dismembered and blown into pieces by themselves, that’s why we have to buy fancy drones with your tax dollars, duhhh!!
I am interested in developing a relationship with my sexuality outside of what mainstream culture and advertising would have me believe, that I need a romantic “soul mate” and all that bullshit. No, I need to do the inner work to become acquainted with an inner part of myself because my entire life has been an alienation from self with the help of oppressive cultural norms and sex-laden messages in advertising. This world of work and entertainment is designed to make me believe I need things in the external world to be happy. What will you have when you have lost your breath and are counting the seconds to death? Will that moment be the same moment as this one really, each breath is brand new, this everlasting and continuous death and rebirth with each present moment? What will run through my head when I have a heart attack in a nursing home or when the plane is in free fall? The amount of women I had sex with? The amount of orgasms I had? My status, my power and achievement? Or the people I have touched and sacrificed for?
What have the American soldiers fought for so valiantly ? An inscription on a grave, a label, a willingness to strive for a title, a role, and be a willing participant in the USA’s quest for world economic and military domination? Yes, you’re right, Dick Cheney had the empathy and best interest of the thousands of soldiers that died while he made billions off it. Always expect the best in people, so nice and polite we are, we are such good slaves in this society. NICE CHEERY GOOD OBEDIENT AMERICANS we are!!!- Hey Jen, rough weekend, it’s so cold out! The market is rebounding well today, ok back to my cubicle (cell) for the grind! I live my life for 2 days of freedom on the weekend where I get fucked out of my skull on coke and alcohol…. Can’t blame the dude!!
I see this celibacy as detoxing from a lifetime of bombardment of sexual images and porn. Sex is so just distracting, it drains vital energy from my body. When I abstain, I have quicker access to the divine, my body feels more energy and in meditation I feel more vibration and intuition. I have always felt susceptible, after sex, to feeling used as a piece of flesh and then feeling the girl’s body was used also, maybe I was on to something with this intuition. Porn ingrains in men this drug-like association with orgasm. The artificial and voyeuristic nature of it, wires neural pathways to be stimulated when the LED blue light comes on, they type in the website etc… It will take a while for many to re-condition the mind for natural and unaided arousal.
Sex can be a deeply unitive, transformative, ecstatic experience, with a very special person when both of you are spiritually fit and ready to be vulnerable and intimate with someone. Maybe it is not just a religious idea that has been hijacked and demonized as barbaric and oppressive to the women’s movement, etc, which is all true. But it is just a self-respect thing and a spiritual thing, like you are much more in touch with your vital life force and spirit when you don’t just live in the hedonistic palace of orgasms all day every day. Religion aside, I have to see commercials for Plan B on television now? They commodify sex on television yet a women can’t sell her body via prostitution? Only the corporations’ drugs are legal! Can’t forget that… only the mass media can have the final say on what morality is!
There is now a more optimized and efficient way for you to kill your baby after your one-night stand! Get in now for a prime sale!! I respect a women’s right to choose but come on, your not God, no one can claim to know if the life has begun or not at conception. Trying to claim certainty in that debate is like claiming to know how old the universe is or if there was a big bang or if the universe simply always existed. No corner of the human experience is immune to being commodified. It helps when the beautiful, illustrious forest in the populace’s mental landscape has been lobotomized and replaced with corporate apartments where the rent prices have been jacked up and rats run on treadmills all day long, chasing after the money, sugar, the magical beauty potion just out of arm’s reach, with pictures of a scantily clad Kate Upton are on the wall.
Celibacy takes the power dynamic out of this dance of courtship. I am going towards the goal of seeing each person’s humanity and realizing that we are all deteriorating flesh, like the beautiful sunset is getting away from me and I have to grasp and savor the beauty. In the snap of my fingers, the supermodel has wrinkles and has become frumpy, 20 years later. Mostly I am angry at myself for being an impactful and significant participant in this way our society rewards outer beauty and ignores inner beauty. To think of all the girls who grow up with low self-esteem, never being able to compete with the impossibly beautiful and slim women on the television and apps and blah blah bullshit and then when they grow up they encounter men like me. I am not a helpless bystander, my actions have a paper trail and being in the presence of others is a responsibility, to carry the message of truth, to spread the love, even when I am open the verge of combustion.
Well I do live in the wealthiest, most vain, materialist, spiritually bankrupt country on earth, well, oh well golly gee I should be thankful though and salute the stars and stripes or else what did our soldiers die for overseas in the last 50 years? Fabricated lies propagated to ensure monopolies on oil and ensure U.S. economic domination worldwide? No “war” with U.S. involvement was necessary for Americans safety or survival after World War 2. It was money, power, and control. Respect the Flag man!!! The flag!!! My daddy died for that flag. It satisfied something in your daddy to go to war, maybe he just liked killing people, or he liked the respect the uniform garnered him, or he had no choice and was in a draft which I understand. Or he was just from a poor background and it made economic sense. Not every soldier who died in an American uniform could be a selfless hero, statistically, there had to be many average, mediocre people that died in our wars over the centuries. I can’t claim to know what it is like to put myself in the line of gunfire. But I can have an opinion in this country that I don’t like American soldiers dying senselessly. See how Colin Kaepernick feels about having an opinion of substance.
Some soldiers are just unlucky, who knows, maybe the guy joined up because the thought of putting a bullet in someone’s head and watching his brain explode got him hard. Or he literally had homocidal tendencies, what better way than legally sanctioned and allowable taking of human life? Oh, we aren’t allowed to disrespect our revered killers in this CIVILIZED society. Following the orders of out of touch American governments to kill poor and destitute farmers on demand is noble and honorable and their intentions are pure!! HEIL! HEIL! HEIL!
My grandfather fought in World War 2. But we know at least half of Americans barely had high school level intellect and were sold enlistment in the Army, Navy, Marines, like they were sold a fancy car. We know the military spends hundreds of millions of dollars a year on marketing and advertising. May as well be rats licking the cocaine and sugar levers the way America force feeds advertising to people starting at age 2.
Have I just been delineating the “hot girls” as the only ones worthy of my attention because I am afraid I have nothing to actually relate to women about and that I have a boring personality? That I have nothing to exchange with them on a human level, independent of my vanity and entitlement? That I have elevated myself above other humans on this arbitrary skin mask contest. Here begins a process of deprogramming an entire life of listening to societies’ labels and propelling them forward. Your voice is heard. Decency is never wasted. The smile, the kind comment to the stranger in passing, these are the small victories I savor, because what do I have besides that? I always have a large well of shameful memories, thoughts of the people that don’t like me, waiting there in the back of my mind, but I soldier on.
This breath, this second, its already gone and its already here again, but it won’t be forever, one day I lose my breath, one moment, just like this moment. What will go through my mind if the end came right now sitting on this couch,would I think of women I manipulated in order to have sex with them, or would I just have this sensation, breath, and the present moment, the inevitable confrontation with my actions throughout my life?