Lost in Space

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12/12/09 Depressed since the 7th, (Monday), descending steeply to really bad Wednesday. Tuesday went to Dances of Universal Peace. Very nice, but Izzy didn't want me to go. When I got back all that stuff about not being supported came up. "If not here, then I need to create it elsewhere." That brought up discussion of leaving and divorce. How am I different than any other man who threatens his wife with "Give me what I want or I'll get it elsewhere." Gnarly. Wednesday she announced she was ready to shower (code for "I am open to you joining me"). Confused, I declined. My ogling her with the "don't touch rule" of a strip club combined with my depression was too much for me to handle. I'm not clear. There is something I'm trying to hold onto. I am not angry or pouting. I feel hollow, not desperate. I am able to feed myself when I am alone or with others. It's problematic when I am with her.
Reading Jewel's "Chasing Down the Dawn" and am inspired toward honesty.
Thursday she left me a message of love.
12/14/09 Lost in Space
Since Thursday, a couple of times/day Isadora has reached out to me.
Monday 1AM Dream: "What's going on here?", our daughter, She Who Has Been Called the Most Sane Amongst Us, challenges me. I was just going to look at a little porn. I was just going to get hard, that's all, maybe just a few strokes. "Nothing" "Don't bullshit me, I know what's what's happening." It felt so good to be hard and back in the thrall of it, and I woke up.
Day, whatever, not yet 30, and it's been a long (long) time since I've asked for anything, initiated anything. The passive aggressive piece has passed thanks to sobriety, tapping, and her response. Prying the tentacles off of the gator, disentangling, has created space for her to find her tenderness and desire to be close. In our 31 years of marriage there has been no space for her to discover those parts of herself. I think talk of divorce was a kick in the butt too.
Sometimes I feel like I am parceling out my response, rewarding her good behavior. I push myself a little to be more loving. I am appalled by the emptiness I feel when she gives a touch or words of love. Have I been too successful in unhooking? I don't know this love that is not longing or grasping. It is so unfamiliar. If she is not The One Who Withholds, who am I? The love is there, it is genuine, but now there is this space in which I may make a choice. The automatic pilot is asleep at the wheel.
Frequently, as I write, the words start to echo and I forget what I wanted to say.
I went to her bed this night. I waited for her to bed down. Waiting is dangerous and I was thankful to have things to do as I waited. My intention was solely to offer love, comfort and healing. In spite of her nakedness, I was able to hold that holy place as I would for a client on my table. Of course, I want more but that is not the motivation for my action. My challenge now is to remain open, loving, and accept the more she is giving me, discover what she has to offer, stop demanding that she give in a way I want. Giving up control leaves me floating in space. I don't know what the fuck is going on.
Float on brothers and sisters.
All praises to mother Marnia, her compassionate heart, open arms, mind of great wisdom, strength of purpose, and dedication to our healing.

Comments

That Resonates With Me

That happens to me too: I sense my wife is reaching out to me the way that I am reaching out to her, but the timing is off. We catch the other at a bad time, or there is an automatic rejection that kills the moment. Good intentions all round, but not always good results. I cajoled her into attending her company Christmas party. She kept saying there wasn't any point, but we got a table with some of her old friends and she ended up having a good time. The younger staff cleared out early and the DJ started playing tunes from the 70's and 80's so we even got up dancing (i.e. I ended up having a good time!)

Hugging helps and when I can get her away from the prime source of her anxiety (our children), she is a different woman. Does it help to get Isadora "away", whatever that equates to in your circumstances?

P.

Poet,

I can only assume that your kids are teenagers...my eldest is still just 11, so no serious trouble yet, but I always get this knowing look from parents of teens that goes something like, "Just you wait!"

11 is so sweet

those 5th graders are smart and so full of themselves. Puberty hits really hard. How do we help them?
My sister adopted a child and the agency required she buy a rocking chair and recommended she spend time holding her son every day until he moves out. It does help to look at the 14 yr old and remember 7 months, 2 years and that magical 11th year.
Having different parenting styles has been very stressful on our marriage. We never did work it out.....getting away and moving on was the best we could manage. Too bad I couldn't find sobriety then. It would have been helpful to be without that "you're holding my drug, give it to me" piece.
Peace

Yep

getting away is good. We went out of town to help our daughter move this weekend. This Monday was a day of sex for me. It felt safe enough for me to be quite the rascal (ogling, coping some feels). It's the first I've asked for anything. The dopamine made quite a spike but I'm handling it ok....so's she. Back to backing off.

Wednesday

Monday's dopamine rushes did lead to a let down. It's all about intention. I've seen the question asked here, "How far can I go sexually and avoid the dopamine hangover?" For me, orgasm isn't the issue. Just getting revved up looking at her with my cycloptic dick and a few minutes of nuzzling her breasts, created fairly significant consequences. We can do (I have a vague memory of doing) some pretty sexual stuff, that when mutual, and of loving intent, is fulfilling.
Holding my sobriety and an attitude of curiosisty has helped, a lot.
Wednesday's going to be OK

Here it is

menopausal hot flashes and a cooking wood stove has m'lady going topless. She strips for the shower and I say, "I gotta grab your ass." I do, pull her close in....done in less than 5 seconds. I holler to her in the shower, "I couldn't help myself." I could, I didn't, I did. Later I say, "I think grabbing you like that might be damaging on some level." She says, "Don't lose any sleep over it." I am indeed a lucky man. Sober? we'll see.

35 days

Thank y'all for your help
[quote Twinkle Twinkle Little Star]Then you show your little light
Twinkle twinkle all the night

Then the traveler in the dark
Thanks you for your tiny spark
He would not see which way to go
If you did not twinkle so[/quote]Much Love

Ho!

You ask me minutes after we made love.
I came to her room to see her lying on her bed (there are definate advantages to menopausal heat). I have been giving just a kiss, not wanting to ask for anything...but she was so lovely....I gave her 40 kisses (poetic license, if you please) from her head to her toes.
What would you like? I ask.
An orgasm would be nice.
There'll be the Devil to pay.
So you say.
It had been 35 days without an orgasm for her as well, and who am I to deny my Isadora? A bit of a frenzy ensued. I stopped and asked for some karezza....we still don't have the knack of it.....so I heated her up and got 'er done. Felt really odd. I didn't come anywhere close to orgasm myself, but sure did enjoy her afterglow.
This is the way it has been since the children were born. The way I get the loving touch I want is through sex.
Saturday, all day, I'm hard with the slightest provocation. But not stoned (for 3 days) like I was the last time I was hot (no O) with her. It's truly all in the head.
Last night I asked for a brief (5 min) tantric meditation. She said yes!!!! [tanz] It didn't go all that well ("I don't feel any 'energy'"...newage overload)....but it wasn't awful. We lay, embraced, under my direction weaving the energies of our chakras. I made it up from reading "Tantric Love : A Nine Step Guide to Transforming Lovers into Soul Mates by Ma Ananda Sarita and Swami Anand Geho". A door has been opened and I am looking forward to educating myself so we can pass though it together.
Much Love

Yippee!

It's day 3 post sex, am I still high? Maybe, surely not stoned like in the past.
Still holding the space, not grasping, not afraid. But each day I have asked for one thing.
Sunday afternoon I taught her to EFT
Monday, again she said "Yes".....5 minutes in yab yum.....just breathing. I was smart and kept my mouth shut about auras, chakras, energy exchange, and how important bonding behaviors are. Hard but not too hot...just rested in each other's arms (with our genitals firmly pressed together, he adds gleefully)
We're rolling...I think I'll tap on my anxiety (3) about upcoming day 4.
Heart Warming to us all

Well All Rightly Then!

Day 4 was the shits....didn't want to look at her, talk to her, be anywhere near her....after 3 hours in the car and some good sushi I mellowed. Day 6 now and looking forward to better days...we know how to do it.

AC,

Karezza...the Final Frontier. These are the voyages of the starship AC. Its five-year mission: to explore strange new worlds; to seek out new life and new relationship strategies; to boldly go where no man has gone before.

Your inspiring journey and personal growth amidst the turbulence of relationship inspires other blokes like myself to jump aboard our own starship and give it a go. At least I am open to it, anyway. I just have to find a female 'shipmate'. :)

Dude...

I think it is going to take 5 years.

45 days no O for me and 9 days for her. She says she's waking up juicy....hmmmm.
Planning the day, I suggested some time in naked contact meditation...no response. Hard to sweep someone off her feet by putting it on a To Do list. Why don't I want to sweep her off her feet? It jacks me up too much....whether I succeed or fail. I find some value in this eveness but wish it was more joyful.

I'm holding on to not asking, well... keeping the asking to a minimum. If in doubt, if attached to a particular response, I keep it to myself. I'm still not sure where this is going. It seems so slow and I want so much. Some perverse thought says I still need it....need to hold the space. Kind of waiting for her but also not waiting. Trying to see it as an opportunity to find what else feeds me.....not a whole lot of fruit on that tree.....Hey! Wait a minute! Great idea! go visit The One Who Delights Us All!

vos amo

Dower

Everything references to her. Where is my joy? The light fog shadowing the green firs, the brilliant green moss on the trunks of great oaks aren't doing it. It's easy, this unrequited love, when she's not around, but I have no work this week. Everything I do is planned with her or in compensation. yuck...time to get busy and stop this mental jack off (2 days now of this). The only, I mean ONLY, thing I want more than to be in her kind regard and in her arms, is my sobriety.

*sigh*

You know things will shift. Are there any things you could do together that you know she'd enjoy? Like a walk in the redwoods? Or a movie you both want to see?

xx--M

Aphro, it makes me sad

Aphro, it makes me sad sometimes watching you try to squelch your desire for your wife, which is beautiful (the desire, that is), even if it hasn't found the proper calibration or resonance with her yet. Women DO need men's desire, and their hard-ons.

Have you taken a look at the work "Intro to Tantra" or "The Bliss of Inner Fire" by Lama Yeshe yet? I think you could benefit. The idea is to USE the desire, so that is may be transformed into the bliss of the wisdom of emptiness.

Blessings to you, friend!
M

I'm working it

We watched Secret Life of Bees...good to get some tears out
I'll be hitting the bookstore today for Lama Yeshe
It does seem weird to try and curb my desire, but shit! I've tried everything else...something about it seems right just because for 30 years I have defined myself through her...maybe its time to talk.
Thanks

I got the books through the

I got the books through the Foundation for the Preservation of Mahayana Buddhism site (they are based in Portland), but I am pretty sure they are published through Wisdom Publications.

Is it possible to have desire for her but not define yourself through her? I imagine after so many years of marriage, it must be pretty hard. Good for you for all the work you've done. I'm not suggesting you're doing anything wrong, simply trying to say there must be something in between indulging in porn and beating yourself up for desiring her. Your own powerful sense of self, purpose, and energy is likely not at either extreme.

Sense of Self

Hotspring,

Some of us have a very strong sense of self. Some of us (e.g. yours truly) not so much. My suspicion is that many who have a strong sense of self are delusional. They don't realize how plastic their mood/viewpoint/feelings really are. My father *thought* he could be an objective, dispassionate observer. He really had no idea how much his feelings affected his view of reality. I too thought that I could be objective, until reality brought me down a peg or two.

Are some men defined by their passion for a woman? I think the answer is sometimes yes, whether that definition is self-inflicted or dopamine based or not :)

Over the past several days, I've been doing a lot of thinking about passion for a woman. Maybe it's the romantic in me, but I think it goes well beyond the dopamine surge. My attraction isn't for ANYONE female, even if they were drop-dead gorgeous. I crave intimacy - a feeling which isn't satisfied with sex or hugging. It's an intellectual thing, I think. I need to talk to someone who understands me at a deep level and who lets me in, in the same the way that I open up to her. I have no idea which part(s) of the brain or which hormones are involved. (Help Marnia!)

I'm not sure why I launched into this except to say that my strongest sense of self may not come from me alone, but may include my role as part of a pair.

Does that make sense? You have done so much more work in this area than I have.

P.

Spacing Out

[quote]Is it possible to have desire for her but not define yourself through her?[/quote]Of course that is the question and I am out of balance. That seems to be my way, to bounce from one extreme to the other. Two months, now, creating space so she may find her passion free of my instigation, and so I may find my joy in other things. To lie with her for 10 minutes can get me stoned for days. My life has been to be high on that or aching to return. I want something different. I too, want intimacy. We are defined in our relation to others.

I can only say

that much of my spiritual path has been a giant boot to the butt to urge me toward willingness to see myself as part of a pair, part of a tribe and part of the oneness of Creation.

And more and more quite rational science is backing up this idea that attachment isn't merely a "childhood development phase," as Freud taught generations of psychologists and psychiatrists. It's a lifelong need for healthy adults. We can't regulate our moods on our own. We need bonding behaviors to maintain our emotional balance and sense of well-being. Those include lots of kinds of affectionate touch, but also eye gazing, and being "heard" and acknowledged. So your longings make sense, Poet.

I just hope there's a way to help your mate deliver those bonding behaviors (you, too, AC). Otherwise, the Coolidge Effect will do its best to drive you elsewhere to find them - for sure. It's just waiting for such opportunities.

Thanks Marnia

I'm asking the I-Ching to guide me as to when to ask for more (ie: scheduled Bonding Behaviors) and the response is to lay low. I'm limiting myself to asking for only 1 thing/day. Today it was for her to listen to an update of my progress and intentions about our relationship. A few minutes sharing what I've been writing here. She busied herself as I talked. I asked for her undivided attention. She sat down, said she knows where I'm at, and asked me what the point of this conversation was. I asked her how it was going for her. "I like that you're not bugging me so much." Apparently I've pried some tenacles loose.
I feel so stupid being affectionate to someone who does not respond or is bothered by my attempts at intimacy. I've pulled out the orgasm piece of my need. BUT this huge deeper need persists and is under everything, always just below the surface. I believe if I can keep it at bay, out of her sight for a little longer, some sort of shift will be possible. GOD I'm not clear about this!
I am affectionate a few times every couple of days when I feel it is really clean, when it is truly a gift with no strings attached. It's not enough for me, but she has no complaints or wants things to be any different.
Blessings