Cali's Journal

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by Cali, Sep 13, 2020.

  1. realness

    realness Active Member

    Cali, I had read parts of your journal before but it was inspiring to read the whole thing today. From lows in Feb you pressed on and it's inspiring. It's a marker for all of us who will stumble and be tempted by the lie that it's all over and we have to just wallow in PMO.

    Have you focused on any smaller, incremental steps of intimacy with your wife? Asking her for a long hug, or a walk, making her a favorite meal or something? She'll notice those things and they'll go a long way. From what you have shared, any deliberate step of intimacy will be sincere and will go a long way in her heart and yours.

    Also, when you mention boredom, I just want to encourage someone like you who's older than me (41), how much it means when the older guys in my life reach out through texts, meeting up for coffee, etc. Some I've met at church, and others I've met at my local Celebrate Recovery.
     
    Saville likes this.
  2. Cali

    Cali Active Member

    I have attempted small steps like hugs and tender kissing, but I need to do more of it. Thank you @realness for the suggestion and reminder that intimacy is not going to happen again all by itself, that I need to do the little things everyday that will make our relationship whole again.
     
    forlorn, Mozenjo and Saville like this.
  3. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I know only too well how impossible it can be to just reach out. One thing that helped me was reading an article on transactional analysis; you might remember a book called "I'm OK, You're OK." One of the things that struck me is we often don't reach out for the very thing we want. I noticed that a part of me wanted to reach out to my wife, to hold her, while another part was holding back. So, I decided to lean into the desire to reach out, instead of the fear of doing so.
     
    Mozenjo likes this.
  4. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    Cali, you're on the right track. I imagine your wife has an emotional shield up that will be hard to get past. Like you say, doing the little things that prove to her that you love her will eventually pay dividends. Not sure if you've read about the concept of "love languages"? I learned about them in marriage counseling: 1. Words of Affirmation, 2. Acts of Service, 3. Receiving Gifts, 4. Quality Time, 5. Physical Touch.
    By now, I'm sure you know what each other's are, at least intuitively. After learning of them, I saw how my wife and I really didn't give each other what we needed emotionally.
    Keep at it. I wish you the best.
    And keep up the awesome work here!!!
     
  5. Cali

    Cali Active Member

    Thanks @Mozenjo I did a preliminary review of the Love Languages and it is pretty clear that my wife and I are quite different in this regard. I need to think more about these languages and do more reading on the subject, but this is definitely going to be very helpful!
     
    Mozenjo likes this.
  6. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    In my opinion, it's more important to know what you each need from each other than to wish the other had the same needs you do. For example, if she's into "acts of service" and you aren't, then you can express that you care about her by doing things she would otherwise do. Could be the dishes, or even putting the toilet seat down. Little things add up, and though it may take awhile for longstanding gripes or ill will to be whittled down, over time it can work. The concept of love languages is really just Relationship 101, or common sense: A win-win where you each get what you need, and also get the satisfaction of giving what your partner needs.
     
    Saville likes this.
  7. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I went at things a bit differently than Moz, but each person must figure out what works for them. I focused on what I needed and stopped worrying about the wife needed/wanted. The reason for this was I actually didn't know what I wanted, so I had to exercise the "want" muscles. If she complained about things that I didn't do I would acknowledge what she said and say something like "oh, yes, of course that would be annoying. I must remember to do (blank). Afterward I would just carry on doing my own thing. As a people pleaser it wasn't healthy for me to address the concerns of other and leave myself floundering. It sounds selfish, but for me, at least, it worked.
     
    Mad Dog likes this.
  8. Mad Dog

    Mad Dog Well-Known Member

    I focus on what I need which is not always easy especially for me. Iam not tyrannical Iam willing to listen but I never forget its about me
     
    Saville likes this.
  9. forlorn

    forlorn Well-Known Member

    Going beyond those small gestures, and sorry if this sounds really obvious but perhaps you need to find a way of communicating your feelings to your partner. i.e., not being afraid of having that awkward conversation with her. But take what I say with a pinch of salt, as I'm in a similar situation to you, so I feel slightly hypocritical offering you advice that I could/should take myself.
     
  10. Cali

    Cali Active Member

    I agree @forlorn, I need to let my wife know what I need out of our relationship. I am not ready to take that step quite yet, but I do see it coming as I continue my reboot. The conversation will be very difficult due to how I behaved the last time we did actually have sex. It was not making love as my actions were influenced by porn with a warped sense of what women like when having sex. It has also been years sense we had sex; as I write this it amazes me we are even still together.

    This addiction has done some serious damage in my life and everyday I see that clearer and it is very depressing, but I need to look forward and continue to reboot. I cannot change the past, but I can try to repair some of the damage.
     
  11. badger

    badger Active Member

    fear of intimacy, that's me. can't talk to my wife about how i feel. the sex act, when i can perform, is just that an act. today i will work on myself to get to the point of even talking to my wife about intimacy. that definitely does not include porn. you are right on Cali, this addiction has done severe damage to my life. it has made me a clown. that is all i can do is just joke with everyone. i am afraid of being me, of being real. sometimes i don't even know who me is. this is what i am working on. hang in there my brother.
     
  12. Saville

    Saville Well-Known Member

    I couldn't agree less. :eek: As you may have gleaned I am absolutely against those kinds of convos with the wife. Here's my reasoning: the elephant has already been living under the carpet for quite some time. Trying to drag the big fella out from under there requires a heroic act by both parties. What always happens is old triggers are pressed, feelings are hurt and become raw, and both husband and wife retreat to their corners. Your wife doesn't want to understand you, Cali, otherwise she would've asked you this already: "Hey, husband, what the fuck is the matter?" Both you and your wife are dysfunctional, not just the relationship. So, that's my first reason for not putting yourself through a useless tête-à-tête.

    Here's the second reason, but the most important one: you will be giving away your power. Remember, this is YOUR journey, not hers. You don't need her permission for sex and you definitely don't need to tell her what you need. Why? Because, if she cared about what you needed you'd be fucking like minks. This is all in my journal, but because it is many, many, pages, here's the short version. Your wife is just someone who shares your house. She's not your ally, your friend, your confidante. The only way in hell a man has of gaining favor with his wife is to assert himself. This means after a short period of wooing (touches, cuddles, smooches) you must get into bed with your wife naked and start having fun. You don't have to bone the first time, or even the second, but the ice must be broken. The rest will follow easily because it's intuitive.

    What will you gain? You will show your wife that you desire her. This is worth more than a million conversations. The past must, and has to, fuck off. What exists is today and then tomorrow. Don't drag your baggage with you and try to claim a new life, it simply doesn't work. The elephant in the room will diminish all by itself because now you will be valuing who you are, and your wife will create a new reality where you are great friends. There is nothing so appealing, so intoxicating, as a man who desires his woman, but also values himself. My mantra at the beginning of all this was: "Me Tarzan, you Jane." For porn addicts there are no subtle shades. When we change the entire world changes - no talking necessary!

    Much love, bro'.
     
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2021
  13. Cali

    Cali Active Member

    Thanks @Saville, this will be way more easy than talking! I also agree with you that if I bring up any of our past history it will not change anything, but instead just open old wounds.

    I cannot image anything else more important that I could give her.
     
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  14. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    That was certainly my experience. My wife and I had many hairy conversations about past hurts and what we needed to do to fix our problems. But we certainly didn't fix them by rehashing the painful experiences. I know some people reading this may be saying, "but if you ignore the problem, how can you expect it not to resurface again?" Which is obviously a valid point. As long as you're not avoiding directly addressing things with her just because it's uncomfortable, but rather because you intuitively know that the some things are better left in the past.

    Yes, letting her know that you want her and still love her is the most important thing.
     
    Saville likes this.
  15. badger

    badger Active Member

    after 43 yrs of marriage. i have learned to pick my battles
     
    Saville likes this.
  16. Cali

    Cali Active Member

    Checking in. I have been reading journals and staying the course. I am very grateful for these 58 days of being PMO free. The urges are way down, but I know just one peak and I will be off on a major binge, so NO peeking!!!!
     
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  17. Mozenjo

    Mozenjo Well-Known Member

    This is awesome. Staying the course indeed! You're inspiring me to do the same. And yes, the most important thing is not to peek. Thanks Cali.
     

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