Night is a time of great temptation for me. Even last night, I began creating fantasies in my mind again. I would "bounce" my mind to somewhere else only to find that I was back in the fantasy again, before I knew it. It was frustrating and discouraging.
But, I am grateful that I made it through the night and grateful that I was able to sleep with my Higher Power watching over me. And I'm grateful that a good night's sleep has given me some sanity and the strength to continue the fight today.
For years, I have struggled with sleeplessness and insomnia, but have found some solutions that have worked for me. I do not offer these as advice but simply want to share what has worked for me.
- I try to sleep in shorts and a t-shirt. Sleeping in anything less (even just going without a shirt) tends to encourage me to lust. It might be a little warm, but being a little warm is better than acting out.
- When I get into bed, I pray for myself and for others. But mostly I pray to go to sleep and make it through the night. And each morning I wake up and pray, thanking my HP for letting me sleep through the night.
- I make sure that I'm tired when I go to bed. I don't go to bed because I'm bored and there is nothing else to do. I go because I'm tired. Sometimes to the point of exhaustion. At the same time, sometimes I do better sleeping on the couch or on the floor. I do not worry about where I sleep, just that I sleep.
- I'm careful about caffeine and watch how much soda I drink after dinner.
- At the suggestion of my therapist, I take about half a mg of melatonin each night. About 20 minutes later, I'm tired but it's out of my system by morning so that I can get up for work.
- I watch old 80's cartoons before bed. They're foolish. They have no plot. The animation is pretty bad. But they last about 20 minutes without commercials. So I take the melatonin, watch a silly cartoon that is in no way triggering, then I roll over and go to sleep. It sounds stupid, but it seems to work for me.
- Music sometimes works too, but only music with no words. If there are words to accompany the music, I end up "singing along" in my head, which keeps me awake. This may distract me from lustful thoughts but doesn't help me to sleep.
Please remember I am not trying to offer advice or dictate what others would do. Please take what you like and leave the rest.