Day 1

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Slithering out of the cave
Covered in filth
The worm seeks water and light

Plan 8,962: Start telling the truth. So much is in my head and edited. I want to stop the manipulation and coercion.
Oh yeah, less tolerance for abuse and more compassion for myself.

Plan 8,961: Develop my "I Don't Give A Shit" attitude

Comments

I hope 8,961 went into the wastebasket!

I think you _do_ need to pursue your own wants and needs. Otherwise, you won't improve your situation, and you might get to the point of thinking, what is the point of living?

"So much is in my head and edited." I know what you mean, bro! Boy, do I know what you mean! There is so much that I _don't_ say, just to avoid rocking the boat.

Editing

Hey, how about this?
Willard's BC #6
Policy of Radical Honesty: Reveal to your spouse as much information about yourself as you know; your thoughts, feelings, habits, likes, dislikes, personal history, daily activities, and plans for the future

Rocking

If the most important thing in my life is sex with Isadora, I cannot have a voice for all the effort I must put out to get that thing.
You know that 12 Step thing about the wisdom to know the difference. If she doesn't want to do it, my lies of silence aren't going to make it happen. I need the wisdom to give it up and move on.
OK 8,961...Everything changes, I will develop my ability to not get attached to my fantasies of the future
Thank you my friend

Plan 8,963

OK, it's on the agenda. My fear, and belief is; "Agreements" quickly become chores and devolve to Izzy feeling coerced. Perhaps at that point we go to plan 8,964. Willard Harvey's Basic Concept #9 might be applicable here. Policy of Joint Agreement: Never do anything without an enthusiastic agreement between you and your spouse.
http://www.marriagebuilders.com/graphic/mbi3550_summary.html
Much Love to you Ms M

Just keep 'em to 1 minute at first

A 1-minute chore doesn't feel so much like a chore. And then ignore her attitude. It takes a while for them to "work."

The marriage-builder advice is good...but it doesn't take into account that we may actually change under the influence of daily affection. So our "enthusiasm" level can change.

Dodging the Devil

Marnia, thank you for your love and comment on the MB's
I am a great believer in 1 minute chores, thank you
No discussion of agreements yet. Izzy read an article you and Gary wrote in 2004 for Magical Blend magazine, a nice 2 page synopsis of the work. The discovery of the article brought me back here. For Izzy, “Nothing new, except for that part about prolactin.” Later, I asked for an oxytocin boost. As we held each other at the open door, she was looking outside and said the plants needed watering. We got a good laugh at not being focused. So, plan 8,965 is to ask for what I want and be compassionate for what I get.
This morning I came to her bed for a snuggle. Spooning I curl to her back. After a bit, she shifts to her back and I lie on my side and mold to her. This is ok for a bit and then the Devil shows up. “Why doesn’t she touch you? Am I bothering her? I want her to touch me.” Whatever movement there was toward rebalancing is destroyed by my internal dialogue and desire.
Back to #8,965 "be compassionate", not necessarily grateful, but be kind to myself in order not to negate the blessings I have received. This is my current path. Avoid the wanting and whining, chose the goodness that is here for me. That will lead to the rebalancing.
I asked her to touch my chest. She winced and awkwardly stroked me. As the Devil started speaking, “See how she doesn’t even know how to touch you with love?” I thanked her and got up, dodging the Devil.

Don't push

And don't ask for anything other than a snuggle. Focus on sending her loving energy. Remember, you're going for a shift of the energy flow between you, not "what you want right now."

Maybe read this story to get a sense of that energy flow I'm talking about. http://www.reuniting.info/wisdom/von_urban_sex_perfection_and_marital_ha...

It's unlikely you'll feel that from your 1-minute exchanges right off the bat, but pretend that you can. At least it will keep you out of your head mulling over your resentments. Crazy

About "being focused"

"Later, I asked for an oxytocin boost. As we held each other at the open door, she was looking outside and said the plants needed watering. We got a good laugh at not being focused."

When I am having sex with my wife,
she is talking about her work and her coworkers.

(Well, I'll take it. It could be a lot worse, like no sex at all, or sex with much resentment.)

:)

I'm going for no sex at all, kind of.
As I lie with her I move away from the thought of a thrill, turn away from the plan for excitement.
I seek a humanity in me that is loving and giving. I seek to find, in myself, gratitude for the play of light on her skin, the smell of her, the sound of her voice, and to be able to see the colors in her eyes.
I turn my back to resentment, anger, grasping, and entitlement.
Gawd, I am so heavy. Thanks for the chuckle

Von Urban

Reading of Fred and Mary's bliss makes me hungry. Hungry for what I do not have. That hunger, the lack of patience and faith, led me away from this house.

Back to Step One. I am powerless against my desire and my life has become unmanageable.
Step Two: I believe that only a power greater than me can restore me to sanity
Step Three I have made the decision to turn my will and my life over to the care of compassionate touch

Last night she lie naked on top of the twin bed. I, in boxers, took her book from her hand, and lay myself gently on top of her. "What are you doing?" "Saying Goodnight". I was totally aware of all our points of contact, breath moving us, and hearts beating against ribs. She started to squirm, I stole a kiss, and moved to my own bed.

Remember, you're going for a shift of the energy flow between you, not "what you want right now." :)

It's a start

Try a foot massage next time. Let her keep reading if she wants. No pressure. No pushing (causes resentment - especially if she's not at a good stopping point. Wink ). And lots of patience.

It's painful

that when we most need loving attention we're positioned the worst for attracting it.

The trick is to get out of "vampire/vacuum" mode, even though you're really, really needing some nourishing attention for yourself. The things that seem to help center us the most (while we wait for a lover to "catch up") are: exercise, meditation, time in nature, socializing and beneficial stressors like cold showers: http://yourbrainonporn.com/cold-showers

And also understand that you may have a touch of withdrawal yourself, which can make neediness worse. What does withdrawal from porn addiction look like? So be gentle with yourself.

 

Yikes!

cold showers! I understand the intensity of cold can take your mind off other things....moves ya down to the first chakra real quick....body saying, "Can I survive this?"
I am in another town right now and very busy with work (and avoiding work), so I am not being stimulated by her presence. I am only 4 days in and riding on revulsion of my previous actions. So no real test of the Vampire until we meet again on Friday.
I am grateful for your kind attention

How about tepid?

So I've finished a couple of showers with an invigorating coolness. I'm not too excited about this, but I'll roll with it for a bit. Why not?
Love you

I think the alternative method

isn't "tepid," but rather turning it to cold for the last X seconds, as a way to get the benefits.

Are you familiar with "beneficial stressors?" It's a way to get endorphins circulating and people claim the benefits last for hours. See www.gettingstronger.org. We know the man who runs it...in his spare time. He has a fulltime job as a scientist.

Day 13

I've been out of town, away from her for 4 days. My libido is low. Very little fantasy. I've been working with 2 women, lunch and dinner together daily. The elder (my age, who I had a crush on 35 years ago) and I have successfully moved into friendship. The other woman is probably 25 years younger than me and is attractive on all levels. I have been alone in a hotel room at night. All huge triggers for me, and yet I slid through it all without any difficulty. Either I am still riding on the shock and disgust of my previous behavior, or I'm learning something!
We met at Izzy's mother's house. Not as warm a greeting as I would like, but I didn't freak out. She has always been slow to warm after my absences and I'm starting to get that. The Devil says she's cold and insensitive to my needs. Yesterday I was able to say, "Oh yeah, my Izzy is slow to warm after times apart." (It's been more than 13 days since my last orgasm, hmmm....).
We take a walk. We're in flat farm land with the Sutter Buttes rising to the west. The crescent moon hangs close to the brilliant Venus with her Jupiter close by. The oranges and reds of sunset are fading....it's fucking hot and humid. I say, "Come to me," and take her in my arms. She shows up for a moment and I let her go. I roll with it.
We sleep in twin beds (the "Girl's Room") in her childhood home. She stays up late talking to her sisters and I go to bed. I turn on the light when she comes in but we don't speak, I don't really want to be awake. She goes to her bed without kissing me and I comment. She says she's not feeling well and I appreciate her not wanting to share the germs. This morning I wake up with a stiffy like I haven't seen in weeks! Being in proximity to her does this to me. Her presence; the sight, smell, and sound of her is so exciting to me. Just sleeping in the same room with her arouses me.
At 64 years of age and daily using Flomax and statins, I have a choice. A choice I never felt I had as a younger man. I chose not to climb into her bed and hit her up for sex (it's been sooooo long), fantasize about having sex with her, or masturbate. I chose to do some movement meditation in my bed. This is like CranioSacral unwinding and Feldenkrais/Anat Baniel Awareness Through Movement stuff. I enjoyed my erection in that way for about 10 minutes and then got up without waking Isadora. I had a few fantasy flashes of sex with her, but simply noted them and returned to the reality and awareness of my body.
What will today bring?

Awake

She gets up. I rise and we embrace. I ask her to stay a moment longer. I sit back down and she reaches behind me to get something. I can't control myself, I take hold of her thigh and get up to hold her again. She says, "It's too hot" and I reply, "It's been so long"....so much for sobriety. She moves away and I sit down to write.
Love you

Date

2 nights now I've asked for a minute of connection before going to bed, and a few times during the day. I'm being careful to not try to connect when I am in need of her touch. That's usually when she's not available. I feel her distance and I'm hungry for a connection. That's a good time for me to something else.
Everything I say here I share with her first. Today I told her I want to develop a different way of touch that fills us both. I admitted I am often not clear as to my motives when I reach out to her, sex, affection, need, thrill...it's usually a blend of all that and more. As usual she had nothing to add to the conversation.
I'm really trying not to ask anything of her right now. I'm trying to find my giving self expressed through touch. My Izzy has a terrible time committing to anything without feeling trapped. Spontaneity and action as an expression of truth is important to her. I haven't asked for the date to connect. I'm just working on one minute at a time. Finding a way to ask without expectation, to hold without grasping, to stay present and not get caught in fantasy, to stay away from any sense of entitlement.
Love you

You're Confused?

try my life!
Actually, today I feel like progress is being made. I'm holding an awareness of my needing something from her, how that comes up, naming it, voicing it. I'm seeing how it would seem kind of random for me, out of my internal unvoiced need, to grab hold of her and expect a positive response. The Devil says, "She's your wife of 35 years, she should respond in a loving way." Satan get behind me! I digress, before approaching, I'm taking a moment to check the scene out, see where she's at, get clear where I am, what I'm feeling.
She was dressing in the morning, our first meeting of the day. She is so sexy, naked in the morning light. I open my robe and hold her close, "give me the feel of your breasts".....a couple of breaths, "ok, I'm done. Let me shift that energy and channel some love" another couple of breaths. When our thighs touch a lightning bolt of sexual energy bursts through us! She flinches and I pull away. It's good. I have been clear. I gave some love. I didn't hold on looking for more. I didn't judge either of us for what happened.
I was starting to think I should approach her in a certain way to get a predictable response, HA! Sometimes it's sexy, sometimes it's loving, sometimes assuring and who the hell knows what her response might be. The control freak has got to go.
Last night rather than just getting into her bed, or approaching the bed with the attitude of a starving dog or a lord entitled to the favors of his wife, I simply asked, "Would you enjoy my company in your bed?" They key is, I want her to consider her pleasure, not evoke her sense of obligation. "For a little while." I molded myself to her as we talked about the day. I felt a pause, a slight break in the connection. I wished her a goodnight and left. My old self would stay as long as I could, drinking up all the thrill of touching her until she asked me to leave. Maybe this new way she might think, "Oh, he left too soon." (Satan, "Dreamer")
In the afternoon I said, "I want to find a new way of touching that we both enjoy. I'm going to be asking more questions. What we've been doing no longer works. What do you think?" "We should schedule some time for that." I was flabbergasted! delighted! Negotiations broke down when we tried to set a time for a date.
So 1 minute in bed at night isn't an agreement we have but I feel good about the direction we're taking. We're getting some time in, several times a day. I'm looking forward to exploring bonding behaviors.

Entitlement

"Today I told her I want to develop a different way of touch that fills us both." Sounds like a great plan. I hope it works out.

"I admitted I am often not clear as to my motives when I reach out to her, sex, affection, need, thrill...it's usually a blend of all that and more." Why do you feel a need to explain or justify it? Do you feel that any of those motives are wrong?

"My Izzy has a terrible time committing to anything without feeling trapped." Perhaps you could explain that if she agrees to a date, and then does not feel in the mood when the time comes, you would be understanding and willing to accept substitutions - cuddling instead of sex, for example - or an occasional postponement.

"...to stay away from any sense of entitlement." This sounds like more self-editing. It might be better to talk it out.

DO you feel entitled (to sex, hugs, cuddling, I assume you mean)?

ARE you in fact entitled to those things?

My blog post at http://www.reuniting.info/blogs/curiousfellow/sex-starved-marriage-tedxc... might be of interest to you. Our situations are somewhat similar.

I struggle with some of the same things

I believe that many women (maybe even most) suffer from at least some level of "trauma" related to men's expectations of them sexually. I am certain that the proliferation of internet porn hasn't helped. By this, I mean that women generally regard men as sexually aggressive, at least to some degree. Of course, not all women have a problem with this, but some do. In those cases, it will be hard for those women to really trust the man's motives. Maybe in some moments you are truly acting selflessly and not out of a desire to obtain sex from your woman, but that doesn't mean she will correctly perceive your intentions because in other past situations, your motives were not so pure (and maybe she's not even reacting to you, it could have been someone else from her past).

The solution, for me, has been to transform my lust into intimacy. That's what Karezza is all about.

We've been at this now for a while, and it's still a work in progress. I think it will always be a work in progress. It seems that the sex-as-intimacy approach doesn't sustain itself without constant reinforcement through daily bonding. Another way to look at it is that the daily bonding supplies a steady stream of oxytocin which is helping to suppress the more basic instincts regarding procreative sex, and without that, we will habitually revert to "business as usual". At least, this is what happens to me and my wife. While the goal is to be in the K-Zone all the time, we haven't achieved that yet. I'd say we have good stretches that can last 2,3 or even 4 weeks; then we revert for a while. Mainly the issue is time and energy because we are very busy with family and work responsibilities which sometimes get in the way of our bonding time.

I find that when I'm in the K-Zone, I don't feel the same neediness that I do when we're having mating-style sex. I find it much easier to be generous with my touch, my intentions, and to just leave her alone when I sense that's what she wants. I have also found that (at least as far as my woman goes) the best way for me to have a positive influence on her sex drive is to not attempt (in any way) to have any influence over her sex drive. In other words, any form of sexual manipulation, conscious or otherwise, will always backfire and produce the opposite result. You see, we men are much more transparent to our women than we think. They have X-Ray vision and can see our sexual intent a mile away without our even knowing...

To Heart

Yes, to the heart, that's the point isn't it? Many of your statements have great meaning. Thank you
My Isadora has been traumatized by being a beautiful woman. Since puberty, men have been drawn to her body. For 40 years it has been me. She is never sure if the interest is in her or her physique. Add to that being one of five children she didn't get the attention a child needs.
I am talking to her more, stating my intentions as clearly as I am able. That truth telling will be a basis for intimacy.
When my oxytocin is up, I am smarter, kinder, gentler, not hungry and needy, compassionate, and not hunting for a sexual thrill.
I need to remember that this is a work in progress. Frequently I want The Answer, The Way, The Path that always works. HA! that joke is on me. Nothing is always, and it always changes.
"I have also found that (at least as far as my woman goes) the best way for me to have a positive influence on her sex drive is to not attempt (in any way) to have any influence over her sex drive. In other words, any form of sexual manipulation, conscious or otherwise, will always backfire and produce the opposite result." bears repeating

Self Image

I imagine myself a monk, seeking satisfaction in the spiritual life
or an ugly man, not worthy to ask favors of a woman
or the independent frontiersman who, by choice, does not seek out the company of women
I renounce the husband entitled to his wife’s favors
I ask: May I?
What touch would give you pleasure?
I no longer ask: Can you hold me? Can you kiss me longer? Can you act like you like it? Can we schedule some time in bed together?
But, in truth, I am an alcoholic working in a bar, a fat man in a chocolate store….my need is great and my hunger seems insatiable.
So, Bonding Behaviors and focus on feeding myself. BB’s are interesting. I must constantly check the electricity of our touch to breathe and relax. I must constantly acknowledge the thrill (oh that was exciting, now let’s calm down) and focus on relaxing and giving.
Something’s working, today is the second day in a row she has called me to her bed for 10-20 minutes (who’s counting?) of close contact and snuggling

CF & Sender, I'll get back to y'all

Great to hear!

Great to hear!

"...Something’s working, today is the second day in a row she has called me to her bed for 10-20 minutes (who’s counting?) of close contact and snuggling..."