Rejection Vent

March 24, 2006

I just need to vent…some more.

More will be written at the "home" site, since I have yet to make a complete and absolute change, yet. But I'm still going to write here, since I can.

Basically, and apparently, having my eyes on my wife makes her skin crawl or something. she can't stand to have me look at her while she is naked. This is so disheartening. It makes me crazy to think about it, and about a future filled with bleak hopelessness and lonliness. She doesn't love me. Else why would she scuttle away instead of letting me get just the tiniest bit of pleasure from something so small, so tiny, so harmless. Instead of starting the morning with a warm embrace and a kiss, it started off with cold, hard, ruthless rejection.

Fucking bitch.

I sacrifice, I work hard, I earn the money, I buy the groceries, I cook the food that she eats. And in return…she washes my underwear. And rejects me. On a rare occasion where I might be able to get a bit of intimacy, I come away feeling dirty, like a molester or a rapist. I feel like a criminal for wanting to love on my wife.

I'm tired of trying. I'm tired of putting my best out there to have it trampled on. The rejection is SO painful. Rejection is always painful, no matter where it comes from or when it comes. But so much moreso when it comes from the one who knows you best. The one who was supposed to be a soulmate. The one who vowed in front of God and everyone to forsake all others. She has forsaken me.

Should a person feel so lonely when they are married? Is this the normal state of things, to feel hungry, starving and alone? Is this a cold, hard truth of marriage?

Too much. It hurts too much. It's hard to get any work done with this sort of pain burning out my guts.

D.


Making up for lost time…

March 21, 2006

FTN’s kid post inspired me to add my tidbit. But read his first. It’s funnier and more entertaining.

My oldest (7 y.o.) has a hard time waking up for the bus, which arrives at 6:40 a.m. He drags, and resists and will do anything to stay in bed and stay asleep. It’s like he simply can NOT keep his eyes open.

But come the weekend or any school break…

He simply MUST be up at 5:30 a.m. It never fails. I ask him why he can’t sleep in once in awhile and he just gives me a look as if I’m the one who is crazy.

Failure to get up with him has resulted in:

– Him getting his brother up, which involves considerable yelling and screaming
– An entire bunch of peeled bananas piled in the center of the living room.
– Him feeding the fish an entire container of fissh food
– Finger painting with food…usually grape jelly. on the carpet.
-Drinking maple syrup
-Eating cold pizza. Actually that’s not so bad, as I’ve done that a time or two.

The one time he slept in until 8:00 a.m., we were so nervous we couldn’t sleep! We had to keep checking on him to make sure he was still breathing!

D.


The Date

March 21, 2006

Saturday night, we had a date. A real hire-the-babysitter date. We were supposed to get together with 3 other couples but they all bailed. So we decided to go it alone. We went to The Outback and shared a bloomin onion.

But I was not feeling it. For one thing, I was coming down with some sort of sinus bug. So I wasn't feeling the energy to get into a major discussion. Arwyn noted that I wasn't too talkative, but didn't offer up a lot. We did talk about kids and stuff. But no hitting on any hot issues. We walked around to the mall until it closed, spending most of the time at the bookstore.

No sex, either, needless to say. We held hands and hugged and kissed once. But neither of us was feeling it. By the time I got the babysitter home and got back, it was well after 11 and me getting sick, I was just tired. But I'm also thinking some extra endorphins wouldn't hurt in my recovery. The lack thereof has left me more vulnerable to the sort of chronic illness that Arwyn is prone to.

Add to my therapy objective list: Deal with rejection more productively and buffer against depression. The whole crash n' burn thing takes its toll.

I'm thinking that I would like one of those massages like DH got last week.

D.


More on Therapy

March 16, 2006

Add one more objective to my list: Evaluate appropriate forms of negotiation. It sort of goes along with the whole communication bit.

I want to thank a couple of fellow bloggers for giving a bit of insight into the world of therapy. Walter has been giving some insight into the world of marital therapy. His story reveals a few pitfalls of the process, namely when his wife either scurries away in denial, contradicts Walter or outright lies to the therapists, maintaining a defensive posture.

But I want to spend a bit more time covering Confused Husband's experience as his account is just a bit more detailed. I have mixed feelings about his latest session, specifically this business of asking why his parents weren't taking care of him and his sister. On one hand, I see what the therapist was trying to do. He was trying to shift Confused's thinking from a self-destructive pattern of blaming himself for what happened to his sister. This is not a bad thing. However, therapists oriented towards a psychodynamic perspective are all too quick to dig and delve into family background, history and dysfunction. Some background is important; such has familial history of depression, abuse, substance abuse and family conflict. Confused doesn't sound like his parents have these sort of issues. But therapists seem to prefer this general line the shifts blame from an individual to their parents. And this is a tact that would send me looking else where.

The problem with dwelling on and spending time with issues the parent has is that it directs precious time and resources away from where the real problem may be. For instance, if I have allergies, doing genetic testing may help determine the source of the problem and the likelihood of passing it on, but it does little to help my present condition. And genetic counseling and testing is expensive, so in my world of limited time and money, it takes both away from treating the real condition. Delving into the past over and over is not the most critical component of meaningful therapy. Confused's therapist would have been better served by going after his thoughts with refutation, rather than shifting the blame to his parents.

Confused's basic thought is: "I should have been there to protect my sister."

Question #1: Is this true? Should you really have been there to protect your sister?

Given his reaction to the therapist, I'd guess Confused would stick to this.

Question #2: Do you know with absolute certainty that you should have been there to protect your sister? At this point, sticking to that statement defies reality. Because if it really should be, it would be. We could go into this more by asking whether or not ALL brothers take care of their sisters. But we have a couple more questions to answer, whether or not Confused gives up his thought which seems to have become a bit of a religion for him. He's still entitled to whatever thoughts he wants.

Question #3: How does it make you feel when you think "I should have been there to protect my sister"?

The answer to this may yield something useful, plus it leads into the next question. The reason why Confused has such a hard time with this might have something to do with the guilt, the hurt and a feeling he's betrayed his sister.

Question #4: How do you think you would feel if you could NOT have this thought? What would it be like to be free of the belief that you should have been there for your sister? How would you feel?

At this point, Confused might see some benefits of giving up this belief that is causing the bad feelings described in question #3. But he may still feel the pull of that thought trying to take him captive. The final step is to turn the statement around and then put those through the same process.

Instead of "I should have been there to protect me sister" try "I should not have been there to protect my sister."

Is that second statement as true or more true than the original? Clearly, one is more grounded in reality than the other. How does the second statement make you feel?

Let's try to turn it around one more time:

"I should have been there to protect me."

Is that statement as true or more true than the original?

Notice that I am not blaming anyone for anything, here. I'm requiring very little, except to look at and explore reality and search for the truth. Confused can free himself of the guilt if he can come to understand that his thoughts are grounded in the belief system of a much younger person, not a grown and rational man. I am not digging into the past, except where it impacts how he is feeling today. Feelings usually follow beliefs. Feelings can either lead behavior or follow behavior.

Cognitive therapy takes some skill from a therapist to guide a body through refuting their own irrational beliefs. It does require having enough marbles to be able to evaluate yourself and your own thinking. But teenagers are able to do it successfully and even younger children can be guided through a simpler version of this. Another hallmark of this is an acceptance of the reality of the person as they feel it at the time. Inquiry gently opens the way to discovering truths more consistent with the way things really are, rather than what we think they should be.

This is not Freud's psychotherapy.

D.


On Therapy

March 14, 2006

"My therapist, he's no bargain! When he told me I was crazy, I told him that I'd like a second opinion. He said 'Alright, you're ugly too!' And then he made me lay on the couch, face down." – Rodney Dangerfield

Alright, let's go ahead and deal with the therapy issue for a bit. When you are sick, you go to a doctor who looks at you, runs a test or two and then prescribes some drugs to treat the symptoms. When you aren't sick, you may still go in for a check-up. You pee in a cup, maybe get stuck with a needle to give some blood, the doctor probes your orifices and asks you if you have any concerns or problems since the last visit. Most medical problems are kind of obvious. Your leg is broken, you have an axe in your chest, your nose is runny or your heart rate is abnormal. X-rays, blood tests and other diagnostic equipment can yield fairly conclusive data used for diagnosis and treatment.

For mental health, this is not the case. There is no blood test, x-ray or MRI that can detect problems in thinking, emotional adjustment, social adjustment or coping skills. Psychology is considered a "soft science" in that there are few (almost none) direct measurements that can be made in order to determine an illness or a cause. That's not to say it has no value, it's just that the treatment is going to be more difficult.

There's more involved with going to a therapist than simply talking or having a general bitch session. Heck, I can do that here with all of you, my invisible internet friends, and I get a pretty decent amount of feedback. In fact, you are all pretty generous in supplying your thoughts. It also has to be more than seeking some sort of medication. I think one phone call to my doctor would accomplish that with a lot less bother.

Intervention should be based on some type of assessment. Every relationship assessment I've ever taken has produced results that showed my marriage was in trouble. Dr. Phil includes a bunch of assessments in Relationship Rescue and I reviewed many of those I did in 2002. The results still hold, 4 years later. These are nonvalidated assessments, of course, but they give a nice, general snapshot. After answering 20-30 questions in each area, you would score it. Then Dr. Phil would say, "If you scored more than 60% on this test, your marriage could be in serious trouble." I always scored 80% or greater. I always was the exceptional test taker.

So I'm beginning to think about therapy and what I might want to accomplish. I'm not going to pay someone just to listen to me bitch and moan, and then offer reassuring words. However, I will concede there being some value in getting an objective and professional perspective.

A rough outline of some possible goals:

1. Generally assess the health of my marriage with some instrument approaching validity. While every relationship is unique, it is useful to know where we are at in comparison to a "norm." This is merely an indicator as to how far off we are. Too far below the norm means that we have to devote extraordinary effort towards the marriage for improvement.

2. Gain perspective on my own maladaptive attitudes and behaviors. Yes, I'm very introspective, and you all provide good feedback. But hearing from someone who has seen other dysfunctions can help pinpoint specific issues and possible interventions; interventions that have some history of success.

3. Identify and work out any interventions towards marriage improvement.

4. Identify and work out an exit strategy should #3 fail. While I remain dedicated and loyal, Arwyn is not. Or doesn't appear to be. I need to be realistic about this, and explore these options.

5. Gain perspective on Arwyn's attitudes and behaviors. It would be good if she participated in this process, but if I decide to go, I am prepared to go at it alone.

6. Determine realistic and fair exit criteria…not exit from the marriage, but exit from therapy. Many forms of psychotherapy take years and years with few measurable results other than a fat wallet for the therapist. I understand that this may take time, but there needs to be steady progress, even if it is slow. Setbacks are allowed, but the trendline must have an upward slope.

7. Determine what realistic expectations in my marriagemight be, and learn how to enforce them. Perhaps gain strategies for not being a push over, if it turns out that is what I am.

This is a list that is in progress.

So to answer part of FTN’s question, therapy has NEVER been off the table. But it’s not something I go into lightly. I’m a thoughtful, deliberate person who is not prone to do things like this impulsively. And, I’ll go ahead and offer up the fact that there is no small amount of reservation in embarking on what could turn out to be the last gasp. In this way, it is a bit like surgery, where getting cut open exposes one to a host of new ills. And in the hands of someone who is less than skilled, it can be worse than seeing if things stabilize on their own. Therefore, I’m exceedingly picky. I’m fairly open with you folks, but am otherwise a VERY private person. I’m guarded all the time. My marriage was my shot at opening up to a real live person. And I sort of blew that, and am paying for poor choices. My head is my best and most sacred piece of real estate I possess, short of my eternal soul. Forgive me for being reluctant to let someone freely wander about. You all get some access to it, but I have some control over how much you get to see. It is exceedingly limited. Opening up is hard, and I’m not going to give up my defenses so easily.

D.


Forsaking All Others

March 13, 2006

03/13/2006

Monday

Another update post is below this one

This could just be a backlash from stuff that the chastity cage suppressed, which is part of the risk with this. However, considering the tone and content of my last post before release, it was leaking out, anyway. What I'm doing here is extending that post and venting. I need to vent, sometimes. This is a good place to vent, but I'll apologize ahead to any readers I might offend with this screed. It's just eating at me, and I'm not going to be free of it until it gets out.

The topic is "Forsaking All Others." A favorite pet of LL apologists is pointing out that there is nothing within the marriage vows that guarantees or mandates sex. They go on to say that no one ever dies from not having sex, and it is not a requirement of life, like food, water and air. Withholding sex is not the same as withholding food.

But what does "forsaking all others" really mean? Does it mean you can't be friends with others? Does it mean you can't give food, aid and comfort to the homeless? Does it mean you can't have other relationships? Just exactly what is being forsaken in those marriage vows? Just one thing: sex. Only in the sexual context does the vow "Forsaking all others" make any sense at all.

So if I'm forsaking "all others" this necessarily means "all others except…" Except whom? If I'm a spokesperson for a particular cereal company, say Captain Crunch, and promise to "Forsake All Others" does that mean I quit eating Captain Crunch, too? If I work for a law firm that promises to "Forsake All Other" clients, does that mean I can ethically quit serving the client I made the promise to and for? I suppose the argument could be made in both instances that I could retire, and forsake everyone altogether. But then, what about those who I made the agreement with? If I promise to represent one client and forsake all others, and then retire from serving ANY clients, does that mean the one I made the promise with is stuck without representation until I die? Because this is essentially the case that Arwyn and her cohorts (both male and female) are making. She can argue that she is forsaking all others, but she is forsaking me, too. She isn't forsaking all others, she is forsaking ALL. Marriage is a contract of exclusivity. Each person promises exclusive rights to one another. Exclusive rights to what? Money? Time? Attention? Because surely there are other demands on us for all of these things. Again, it only makes sense within the context of sexual intimacy. I suppose one could make an argument about emotional intimacy, but what exactly does THAT mean? Parsing out sex is difficult enough in a post-Bill Clinton era. Something like "emotional intimacy" would be even harder to define, since you can not even see it.

The reason this comes to mind, is because lately I'm feeling forsaken. Left alone. Abandoned. Especially when it comes to physical intimacy. The remedy for feeling sexually alone would be hooking up with someone. But of course, hooking up with someone besides my wife is adultery and a violation of that "Forsaking All Others" vow. So my choice seems to be crossing the line and violating that vow, or remaining forsaken, myself. I could guilt my wife into putting out, like Dewdrop's husband does, but then I feel like a rapist.

I suppose one remedy might be to put those feelings aside and get to the point where I don't care how Arwyn feels about it. This doesn't seem like a very healthy course of action, to me. Certainly, not very loving.

I'm in the process of developing some potential objectives and goals that I might work on with a therapist if/when the time comes. I'm not even banking on Arwyn going at all. Better if she does, but I'm setting up my own personal benchmarks.

But I'll post those in a later post. Of course, suggestions are welcome.

D.


Update

March 13, 2006

03/12/2006

Sunday

Well, that was fun! We will do this again, sometime. The cage does bite a bit into my sack and so some healing is in order, too. I'll be ready to go again shortly.

Chastity cage, butt plug, using my body as an amusement park…all of these have been sexually exciting but fall short of real intimacy. They are substitutes with little substance. So I need to do some mental work to get my mind in the proper place for this new sexuality to take hold.

Thanks (again) to everyone who participated by commenting and voting. I'd score this a successful initial outing. Hopefully, you all had some fun with it. I think we've taken something strange and bizarre to a strange and bizarre new level! There are not many chastity blogs out there, and to my knowledge this is the first time a readership has had as much input as you all have had. There was some concern about having a vote and then turning around and having another one. Basically, once I start the voting, I do intend on keeping an active poll up most of the time, even though it might be 3 or so days in advance of a potential release date. Or maybe I could have a vote on a vote, although that kind of makes things more complex than they have to be. I'm always up for suggestions for improvements.

Now for the release release:

While I didn't activate the Timelock this time, I did have the combination stored in a file from a couple of months back. I retrieved this and then got out one key. Bonehead that I am, I didn't put it back before closing the keysafe so it is still out. I'll need to return it before I go back in.

Once I unlocked the lock, there was some difficulty removing the padlock from the locking post. It was in there tight, and my impending erection was making it even tighter! I finally got the thing out and was able to remove the cage. Aaaahhhhh! I was finally able to fully stretch out and that felt good. I took off my A-ring, and noticed my tape job was disintegrating. With the cuff style ring, I use water proof tape to keep the metal hinge from digging into me. They've made some improvements to the rings since I bought these, but I have yet to upgrade.

Shower time was the right time.

And I think I might spare you all the remainder of the graphic play by play for the sake of modesty.

Now I have something else on my mind that deserves a post of its own.

D.