Thursday, February 26, 2009

New Pain For Today

I feel something new today. A different kind of pain than I've been dealing with recently. I actually just went back over my own blog messages to see if I've been "here" lately; and I haven't. But I've been here before. It's Mr #2. #1 has gotten the most air play lately. Mainly because he just won't go away. But honestly, he is the affair that I have the least problem getting over. In fact, each of the major times that something has come up (i.e. I found text messages or emails), I was 90% over it in a day. What has made it linger on is that my wife keeps hiding things from me with regards to him. Or just hiding things in general, which makes me think she's trying to hide details about him. I thought about it this morning, and it's really all that hiding crap that hurts the most in relationship to Mr #1. Otherwise, I'm not all that hurt about what went on between them. I think it crossed a line, but not very far. The only piece of unfinished business that I feel with respect to that affair is that she still won't admit that she crossed that line; even a little bit. Which bothers me, because it makes me think that she may cross it again one day, and we'll have to start all over. Even my therapist (who totally seems to be on my wife's side, which sucks…where's my therapy?!?) admitted that she was on a "slippery slope." I think that's a good way to put it. She didn't cross the line far, but once you're over a little bit, it doesn't seem like it would be too hard to keep going. And that's what I worry about. But not too much. I'm trying to lighten up on my "controlling" of her. Which I think is more in her head than in reality. Her "list" included things I wasn't even doing. Nor could I resolve…how can I prove I'm not checking her phone or Facebook account? Anyway, moving on from that one. I'm hoping that chapter is nearly closed. As long as she doesn't do something stupid again (like get a second cell phone).

So that means it's Mr #2. The affair that turned sexual. It just hurts so bad that she did that. First, that she could think that it was okay. She justified it to herself that it was no different than me looking at porn. But it's SO much different. It's with another person that you know, work with, and was talking to for about 2 hours a day. Anyway, it's not just that she did such a thing, but that it is a side of her I've never seen. It would be one thing if she did that sort of thing with me; or even if she were not willing to do it with me. But she's not. It's like he unlocked some sexual drive in her that I can't find. And that fucking hurts. My therapist said I need more self confidence. No shit. I knew my self esteem in the ways of sexual prowess have always been low. I didn't have much sexual experience before my wife. And many of the few experiences I had were bad. And then add to it that my wife never seemed interested in sex for many years now. So then she comes along and opens up sexually with some other guy. So my already low self esteem got pretty much rubbed into the dirt. And I'm supposed to work on that. Yeah, that will be easy.

This all got stirred up at therapy yesterday. I wish we would have talked about this subject more, but we ended up focusing on Mr #1 and those issues. Mostly my wife's issues with my "controlling" and "spying". I'm sure she walked away happy because her emotions were validated by the therapist. But I was left with "get over it." When Mr #2 came up. God, I can't even write any more to describe this because it hurts. It hurts to even say this. But here I go. We were on the subject of me needing more self esteem, and that women prefer to be the do-ees rather than the do-ers sexually. And my wife jumped in with, "yes, that's how it was with Mr. #2, that he described doing things to her." Holy shit that hurt to hear. First, I wouldn't want to hear that again even knowing that's what they talked about. But on top of that, I had not heard that before. What she told me they talked about while masturbating was describing what they themselves were doing. Now I have a whole new perspective. I can just imagine the dirty shit this guy said he was doing to my wife while she masturbated. My heart is racing now and my hands are shaking.

I gotta move on a little bit before I really melt down. Anyway, that's how I've been since after therapy yesterday when this shit got stirred up in my head. I can't help but feel pain thinking about what went on between them. And I don't know how to deal with it; other than time. But I'm sick of feeling like this and don't want to just wait it out. When I talked to my wife about what I was feeling, it was more like venting, and I know it wasn't useful. I don't know what I want her to say to help me. Maybe an apology? I'm not sure what I want. I don't even know if an "I'm sorry" would help. I know that part of me wants a full disclosure of details of exactly what they talked about. But I’m not sure if that's morbid curiosity or if it would actually help me. My book (Not Just Friends) encourages talking through all the details. But I know my wife doesn't put any stock in that book; especially since my therapist directly disagreed with it yesterday. At least knowing details would help me from obsessing over not knowing them. Or imagining things that are probably worse than reality. I really don't know. I don't know if she'd really tell me everything anyway.

On the subject of our therapist, that's another thing; I'm wondering if this guy is really going to help us much. I think he's a pretty good guy, but I also have a feeling that his experience is patching up marriages that have lost the love through other means: Not through affairs. The things I read in that book sound much better directed at my situation than some of the stuff that comes from him. I don't know; I guess I'll just wait and see. I'm also thinking that I've yet to get any real help from him. So that's another strike. We have a "seminar" this weekend, and another appointment next week. I think I'll wait through those and then evaluate whether I want to keep seeing him or not. Right now, I'm leaning towards no.

I think that sums it up for now. At least I'm a little busier at work lately so my brain has less time to dwell on this crap. I shouldn't have wasted my lunch time on this; but oh well.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Better...But Not Great

It's been a couple of days since I've written, so obviously things haven't been too bad. On Sunday (or rather Saturday night), I still couldn’t sleep after my blog posting, so I wrote her a letter trying to explain what I feel. She read it the next morning, and said it was good, and we tried to talk about it a bit; but I still wasn't happy. We ended up talking more about the fact that I'm still very untrusting and afraid that she's going to try contacting Mr. Affair #1.

Later in the day, she must not have heard me coming, because I walked by her on the computer, and she was reading a website about divorce. Argh! Earlier in the day I had told her that my attitude was coming around; that I no longer thought our problems were unsolvable, so I wasn't really thinking about divorce any more. But apparently she is. I wanted to just let it go because I know how she would take the invasion of privacy of me seeing what she was reading about. But I couldn't let it go and brought it up. And of course, she reacted to the invasion of privacy, and actually let loose with a list (literally—a written list) of things I'm doing that are driving her crazy. Mainly things like checking her phone, checking her email, checking up on her when she's away from the house. All the paranoid crap I've been driven to because of the fact that she won't stop her contact with Mr #1! However, I admit I could also see her point of view; and that I would probably be going nuts if the situation were reversed, so I promised to try and cool it as much as possible. Not that I would stop; because I can't. And I don't think I should have to until she earns it (a comment which also pisses her off, but seriously, she should have to earn it!). But I promised to try, and I have been.

Later that day she went and talked with her mom and filled her in on a few more details, but not all of them. Actually, as far as she's told her mom, there's really only Mr #1. No mention of Mr #2. Which in my heart is the one that hurts most (#2), but #1 gets the most air time lately because he won't go away. Or rather, she won't let him go. Anyway, I was interested in her mom's side, since I know she would want what's best for "us." I trust her to be more objective and not purely side with my wife. And she did have a good perspective, that my paranoia is to be expected, but that I should probably back off. And I already agreed to that, so done. We ended up talking some more, and came to a good point, and ended up having a good night. We even got in to bed together if you know what I mean. It was a very good night. However, one thing we skipped talking about—on purpose—was that "lust" conversation. It made me feel good that she's the one who brought up sex later that night, but I know there is still unresolved stuff on that issue. But I wanted to stay on the "good" track, so I just wanted to avoid discussing it at all.

Monday went smoothly. A couple times during the day thoughts of Mr #2 came up a few times, and I just tried to block them out before it brought me down. Playing music in the car at full volume is a pretty useful trick. Or just thinking hard about something else. But it bothered me that it kept creeping into my head. In the end, the day went well. A definite thumbs up day.

Now today. I'm not being successful at all at blocking Mr #2 or our "lust" problems out of my head. Which is definitely bringing me down. In the words of MC Frontalot, "I don't want to be down." But I feel I'm slipping today and can't get a grip. I'm also wondering if I should even mention anything to my wife. I know she would want to know, and we've said to each other multiple times that we shouldn’t bottle up our feelings. However, she looks at me different when I'm having a bad time with things, and it makes her pull away. Which is the exact opposite of what I need. So I'm thinking of just trying my best to put on a happy face when I get home so I can have a "good" night.

What's weighing most on my mind is the combination of those two things above: What she did with Mr #2 and the lack of "lust" in our relationship. The two of those don't add up to me. She acted like there was still "lust" or at least sexual excitement in her heart with him. But she can't with me? What's up with that? That just plain hurts. Hurts, hurts, hurts. And the masturbation thing too: She's masturbating 3 times a week but she can't get excited about sex with her husband?! Again…hurts, hurts, hurts. What is wrong with me or us that she can't express those types of feelings with me!?! Fine, if she needs to orgasm to relieve stress, and the best way to do that is masturbate…fine. I don't mind. Seriously. But why can she talk with some other guy when she does it to make it more exciting, but not with me? What the fuck! That alone would improve my whole perspective; if she involved me in that. I'd feel like there was some sexual excitement in our relationship, and that there's not something she's willing to do with someone else but not with me.

That's the slippery slope I'm sliding down today. I gotta stop thinking about it before I get down too far. I'm hoping at therapy tomorrow we actually get a chance to discuss some useful things. So far in 3 weeks we've done nothing particularly useful. Maybe that was necessary "getting to know us" time for him, but we need help with our problems! I hope this is the week the help starts coming. We'll see.

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Getting No Where

Well I finally tried to finish our "lust" conversation. To see if there's really a chance at putting any back in our relationship. Looks like the answer is no. I got the same speech I've gotten a million times; she just not that interested.

There's a million things going through my head now; I don't even know where to start. There's the hurt that there appears to have been more sexual excitement between her and Mr. Affair #2 than there is between us. And my frustration that she doesn't even want to talk about this. And then finally the despair in what do I do if this doesn't get any better. I don't think I can continue a life in a sex-less marriage. I love her, and I'm in love with her. But I can't take it if I don't get any "lust" in return. And besides, I don't think we could even make it work. I'd eventually slip back to being the "uninterested" or "unaffectionate" partner that she cheated on.

Part of me wants to elaborate on the above points. Another part of me just wants to bury my head in the sand and try to forget. I wish I could sleep. I'm tired; I could use the sleep. But I can't sleep now.

General Anxiety

The last day has been pretty good. Last night I hung out with a buddy from work which was a nice break. What sucks is that when I got home, I crawled into bed thinking it's been a good day, I should sleep soundly. And for some unknown reason, a random thought popped into my head. That my wife could still be communicating with Mr. Affair #1 via her work email. I don't know why I thought of such a thing at that time, but I did; and then couldn't get it out of my head. I ended up having to take sleeping pills to get to sleep. Then today, I feel the same sort of general anxiety. There's nothing specific I'm worried about, but it just feels like someone else is bound to be coming. Over the last couple months, it seems like some new thing comes up on nearly a weekly basis. So it seems like it's just about time again for something to hit me. I know my wife can see it in my face that something is wrong. But I hate to say anything. And what would I say anyway? I'm worried she's going to do something dumb again because she can't seem to stop doing dumb things that hurt our relationship? I guess that's the truth, but it would likely piss her off; and I don't need another fight. Or even for her to be upset. She's been happy today which makes me feel better. She rubbed my head in bed last night and held my hand in the car today; and those kinds of things make me feel good. So I'd like her to stay in a good mood. So I'll likely just shut up. Hopefully this will go away. And god do I hope she finally stops doing stupid shit.

Friday, February 20, 2009

Nothing Bad, So I'm Rambling

I've realized that this blog may end up seeming a bit emotionally one-sided. When I'm in bad moods, I'm motivated to put pen to paper (or electrons to silicon…whatever) and write my feelings down. But when I'm in a better mood, I'm less motivated. So I could easily tend to forget to write about the good times. And it's been fairly good times since yesterday. Yesterday started off feeling shitty and full of gloom, but my wife and I traded some emails during the day and I got feeling better. I apologized for some of the shitty things I've done lately. Like cursing at her (I really don't like that I did that, but it happens in the heat of the moment). I also promised not to do it any more. I hope I can keep that promise. Not just for her, but for me. Again, I don't like doing it, but when I'm that pissed, it's the only kind of word that seems to do my emotions justice. And cancelling her credit cards when I found out about the secret phone. And I did feel a bit like I may have instigated the fights on Wednesday night. Or at least not done my best to curtail them.

I'm glad I did that (apologized) because it helped us both feel better; and that's certainly a good thing. However, I sometimes feel resentful when I have to do that. It seems like I'm often the one who ends up apologizing in order to get out of a deadlock when we argue. I admit that sometimes I'm the one who should apologize. But other times, it seems like it should be her. Or it is a pure deadlock that someone has to be the bigger person. And it always seems like it has to be me. It's something I recognized for a long time in our relationship. She almost never apologizes for our arguments. Litterally almost never. And I always do. And I'm noticing that a lot again lately. Like I always have to be the bigger person to end the deadlocks. I wish she would do that sometimes. Or at least say, "I'm sorry too." I don't receive a lot of apologies. And the ones I do get are usually dissatisfying ones. Maybe she should read 'apologizing effectively':

Anyway, so I've mostly been feeling better. At least on the "good" side of the line. Maybe not far onto the good side, but it's better than being on the other side. I was thinking this morning why I'm not farther on the good side. When we're not fighting, things feel fairly normal again. But I think that's part of the problem. We have both said that we weren't happy with what was normal before. I really do wonder if we will both get what we want out of this marriage in the long run. And what is frustrating is that I feel I'm doing everything I can to give her what she wants, and I'll do more if she wants it. But I don't see the same efforts in return. And I know that it will take time to really get everything fixed, but I don't either see an effort or assurances that she'll make an effort. If she said something like, "Yes, I'd like to improve our sex life. I just need more time." That would be fine. But she doesn't even say that. If I had hope that we would get to a happy ending, that would help not having it right away. But I think I'm a bit shy on hope too.

I think I talked myself into it being okay, and not feeling too much despair. I know before all of this happened, she said to me at times that she wished I paid more attention to her. She'd point out things like I spend all my time on the computer and none with her. But often when she said these things, I'd think, "you're the same way." She wouldn't necessarily come sit down with me to watch TV. Or try to do things to spend time with me. She seemed equally selfish with her time. So I figured if she doesn't bother, why should I? So I'm guessing she felt the same way about keeping our sex life healthy: if he's not trying, why should I? So I can see how we got into the mess we were in. But now that I'm trying, I am expecting to see some effort on her part.

I also know that before all of this, I considered an affair myself. I never went looking for one, and an opportunity never presented itself to me. So nothing ever happened. But the thought crossed my mind. I've wondered to myself if I would ever go through with it. I know that now, I couldn't do it. I think I've been vaccinated against having an affair myself because of this. I couldn't do it knowing the pain it would cause. I'm not sure what I would have done if presented with the opportunity previously. I hope I wouldn't have gone through with it, but I can't truly guarantee it.

I don't know why I'm even bringing this up. I guess maybe just to make the point that we were both unhappy with the "before". I just hope we can get better now. Well, I think we have to, or we're doomed. I don't think I can go back to exactly the way it was before. I was living with it, but I think this mess has been a big wake up call. And I don't think I can go back to just living with it again. If I spent all my time to make her happy and got nothing in return, I would resent it. If I let it slip completely back to not giving her the attention she wants, I would be very worried this would all happen again. And I couldn't go through this again.

Also, thinking about the fact that I considered an affair, and I now know I couldn't do it, makes me also empathise a little bit with what my wife is probably feeling now. I would feel so guilty for bringing this on us. I know she feels guilty, but I really don't know to what extent. She doesn't talk about it much. I do wish she would open up to me more often. I've considered sending her some of my blog entries. (She knows I have this blog, but doesn't know the address. And I think it would be tough to find by searching for it) Actually, I did the other day. I don't think I'll be sending this one; actually I'm quite sure I won't. But at the same time, I think I would want to know the deepest details of what she's thinking about. So why not share mine with her? I don't know. I guess I'm afraid of how she'd react to some of these things. Like what if she knew I considered an affair too? Would it make her feel less guilt about her own mistake? Or would it make her pissed off at me and try to turn the tables? I don't know.

Well, for an entry I thought was going to be brief, I sure rambled on for quite a while. Better call it quits for now.

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Despair. Maybe.

I don't know what the heck I feel this morning. Despair felt like the word of the day until just a minute ago. I felt despair that the lust would never come back to our marriage; which is unacceptable from my point of view. And then despair that Mr. Affair #1 will never go away. He just keeps coming up! I don't want to have to think about him any more. I can't believe she can't give me that. It's to the point now that the repeated attempts to maintain her relationship with him hurt more than the initial conversations that started it all. I don't even care if he truly is "just a friend" or not at this point. It also hurt that she seems to begrudge the fact that I'm doing things to try to fix myself. She was mad that I'm blogging about it, and talking on message boards, and reading books. But what's stopping her from doing that!?

The only thing that turned pure despair into "maybe" was that I finally received the lost initial response to my email yesterday. It was a much more satisfying response than the re-write she sent later. At least in this one she said that she feels the same way; which is more encouraging than "slow down." It made me feel better; but not great. I still worry that the "lust" issue will never be resolved to my satisfaction. I wish we would have talked about it last night, but we were too busy fighting about stupid crap. Seems like the story of my life lately.

And I hate how nuts I've become. I never thought my emotions would swing so much hinged on a few words here and there. I wish I knew how to stop that. I've found things that help a little, but still not enough. Argh! I just want to scream sometimes.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Shitty Day

What a shitty day today has been. Started with my post this morning about getting turned down for sex. I felt all pissy about that, and wrote my wife a long e-mail telling her how I feel, and that I want to get the "lust" back into our relationship and that I hope she does too. All I really wanted for an answer was, "yes, I want to fix that too, so we'll work on it." What I got was "pump the brakes, don't go crazy." Jesus.

Then we had our meeting with our marriage counselor today. It's only our third meeting, and he's still basically giving us lessons in psychology. No help there. One of the things he mentioned was that women tend to project their father onto their husbands. When we got home, she accused me of being just like her father; of monitoring what she does and treating her like a daughter. I got really pissy about that saying that its only 2 days since she tried to go behind my back and get a cell phone to talk to Mr. Affair #1! WTF!

Then, I got a book in the mail today that I was hoping to help deal with this. It's called "Not Just Friends." I've been told it's a very good book. Anyway, she read a quiz near the front about whether a relationship is really "just friends" or not. She was so f-ing smug that she got a 2, which means just friends. Of course, she took it with only one of the two people in mind. The other person scored her a 3 or 4; and since they were different questions, the sum of the two was well into the more than friends range. Which she didn't accept as fair. Now we're fighting about this. In fact, she just came in here a second ago and got all up in arms that I'm blogging this. Screw it. I'm so pissed now; and so is she. I hate this. Like I said....a shitty day.