Audience Participation

November 30, 2007



When will I ever learn?

Okay, I’m busily writing what will hopefully be a more eventful chapter in the major storyline.  But I’m running into more dead-ends, here.  Since the professional isn’t stepping up, I’m going to ask input from YOU learned folks.


I submitted some questions that I thought were interesting and worth answering but it must be a busy time of year for various therapists.  So here you go:


#1. I’m in a bit of a rut or a holding pattern in my relationship with my wife.  We’re not getting anywhere.  Will therapy help move us out of that pattern, even if she does not participate?


#2. I know of a local Christian sex counselor who just happens to work through my wife’s church counseling center.  What sort of questions would be good to ask to make sure he’s competent?


#3. What would an initial first visit look like, assuming he is experienced and competent?  What could I expect? (I’m thinking of a solo visit before doing anything jointly, even if Arwyn would be keen to go along with it.)


That’s it.  I know a bunch of you have experience with this, and more of you have suggested it than actually done it.  But now it your chance.  Speak up and fill me in.






November 27, 2007

Okay so we went up a bit over the holidays, but this is not a big huge concern.  I figure I’m allowed to fluctuate around 5 pounds or so, which I’ve always done.  I just need to remain focused on the diet and exercise.  In fact, as I shift my training a bit, I expect some modest weight gain as I develop some muscle mass.  And that’s really where I’m going next.

While my smallish gut still wants to hang around, I notice that it only protrudes the way it does mostly because I have no chest!  And that’s where I really need to focus some effort.  The problem is the same with every other exercise that I’ve done, which is finding something I like.  So I’m trying out a variation on my Stepmania program, which involves doing it with my hands instead of my feet.  Basically, I’m doing a modified push-up until I get enough endurance up to do it regular push-up style.  I notice that I do get a decent upper body workout over a period of several songs at the lower level by virtue of having to change the position of my hands all over the mat.  The biggest pain is that having a computer monitor that suits me for using my feet on the mat doesn’t suit me as well when I’m on the floor.  I like that I have to hold my head up, but my neck gets a bit extended in that position.  I might end up using a laptop when working the upper body.

Progress on the other storyline remains glacial, at best.  After our talk, Arwyn does make an effort to sleep with her head at the head of the bed (still under her own blanket) but will often switch back during the night.  She’s having some sinus problems which results in her snoring loudly but for some reason this doesn’t bother me nearly as much as my snoring bothers her. 

Other updates are in the works, but I figure I’d at least give you a taste. 




Happy Thanksgiving!

November 23, 2007

Up, down, up,
When I up, down, touch the ground
It puts me in the mood
Up, down, touch the ground
In the mood for food
I am stout round, and I have found
Speaking poundage wise
I improve my appetite
When I exercise

I am short, fat and proud of that
And so with all my might
I up, down, and up and down
To my appetite’s delight!

Lyrics and music by Richard M. Sherman and Robert B. Sherman

Or Happy Thursday to those outside the U.S.!  The above is a tribute to a fictional character who I once thought had the right attitude towards weight loss and food.  It’s still cute, but not very healthy.

I’m thankful that I had to actually locate something that I hadn’t used in so long I had completely lost track of where it was.  After sitting in my thinking spot for a bit, I finally remembered where it was, and was able to find….my umbrella!  We actually got a nice rain today, here in Georgia.  We need about another week os showers just like that since we’re still at least 15 inches below on the year.

Forgive me if I don’t personally respond to the avalanche of comments below.  It really was useful to see the various comments and compare different reasons for staying one and not going dark.  I think I fall in the category of blogging as sort of therapeutic.  I would (and do) write anyway.  In fact, there are many time a post never even get published because I don’t have the time to properly edit or finish it out.  But I like the feedback, and even the snarky comments serve their purpose.

I think I have many themes that are fair enough game for blogging material that Arwyn could care less about.  But my relationship with her is the overarching one that has always been the pervasive and constant.  I would be interested to read her side of the story if she ever cared to write it, but she is not a writer.  She’s not much of a talker, either.

We have had a Talk about some issues, but I’m not sure it will result in anything.  That’s one of those unfinished posts that may not see the light of day.  And that is the frustrating thing because we do have these skirmishes but nothing decisive.  Even if it looks decisive, it really isn’t.

So anyone reading this for the past couple years has to be feeling a lot of frustration over that lack of movement.  There’s no plot development here!  As the principal character, I’m certainly feeling a lot of that, even though I have other parts of my life that never do get published.

So I’m going to continue to blog when the mood hits, but I’m really and truly looking to move things along somehow. That’s really what I want: some sort of resolution to this story!

So that’s what I’m going to be working on.  I am going to work on resolving this relationship story line to a point where it isn’t the biggest issue, anymore.  I suppose a disaster could come along and completely turn things upside down– That’s NOT what I’m looking for!  I just tire of the Talking and then Nothing.  That just isn’t working for me.   So I’m taking some small (but significant) steps to see if I can move things along.  I may end up dumping those unpublished posts here once I have some movement on that score, but until then they are just frustrated ventings.

Thanks to all of you for reading and contributing!  I’m thankful for  the dedicated folks who still stick around.



November 19, 2007

And so the adventure continues.  I’m close.  Very, very close to having a BMI considered “normal” for my height.  That Biggest Loser contest I was in was supposed to wrap up last week, but turned out to be a total sham.  Out of 25 people who weighed in, only 4 people paid!  The guy organizing it was too lackadaisical in collecting money.  He just said they good pay whenever as long as they paid before the winner was announced.  I told him that wouldn’t work for the reason it didn’t.  It happened just like I said.  People waited and worked for a few weeks and when it was apparent that someone (me) was making progress and they weren’t, they quit.  So he put the option of continuing until February, but no one else was going to pay into that sucker bet.  I’ve lost almost 40 pounds in 15 weeks!  So in the interest of competition, I resigned from it and told him to keep the money for the next contest, if there is one. 


Just the idea of competition was enough to spur me on enough so now I’ve come far enough it isn’t that big of a deal.  Yeah, I was the clear winner, but I’ve come far enough that I consider the $30 money well spent.  I don’t care about the money or a title.  Everyone knows it, and I shared my stats and story on the company bbs so all could see it.  Maybe it will spur people on, what with this being National Diabetes Awareness Month.


At some point I’ll probably stop posting every little update here.  But then that means I’d have to write about something else!  My hat is off to Finished Last who sort of helped inspire much of this plan.  It was amazingly simple: 1000 calories for meals and 500 for snacks.  I went bonkers for fiber and found a workout activity I liked.  Climbing the 1.3 mile trail at Stone Mountain is a good one, too, for me because I can save a knee or two by taking the sky lift down.  The kids actually like doing that one, too.  Arwyn not so much.  Which is why she got time for herself today while the boys and I went.


I ordered The Passionate Marriage from eBay, since everyone seems to be raving on it and I’ve enjoyed some excerpts shared by 2Amsomewhere.  In the meantime, I notice Arwyn I moving into a somewhat better spot in our relationship.  We’re having more talks and discussions beyond kids and jobs to a point where it’s almost pleasant and enjoyable. 


One point of discussion did come up about her workplace.  She found out that someone she used to work with was actually fired from the job.  She didn’t know that.  She got a bit upset when she found out why.  Apparently this coworker had a MySpace page and was blogging about kids and coworkers using real names.  A parent got hold of it and soon the offender was bounced out.  Arwyn saw this as a serious infringement on her privacy and Googled around looking to see if her name came up.  She felt totally uncomfortable with the idea of her privacy being invaded like that.




She does know I have a blog, and I’ve shown it to her.   A different universe. It’s actually more work related and since I don’t use any real names it’s not likely anyone would I.D. it.  But she still feels a bit insecure about it. 


This blog would totally be uncool with her.  It’s been a total avenue of support for me in so many ways, I can’t imagine NOT having it.  But I’m considering not having it.  Maybe I’ve used it as too much of a crutch.  Maybe I need to get out more in real life. 


I could still retain Unsolicited Advice as I purposefully set that up to NOT be so personally relationship/sex centered. Yeah there’s sexual content there, but it’s not in any way a daily account of my personal life.  There’s some personal history in the WordPress version, but it’s not anything too aversive. 


I think Arwyn’s concerns are somewhat valid.  This hyper-secretiveness is a trait we both sort of share and is at the root of many of our problems.  We keep a lot of stuff from each other and neither probes too deeply lest we end up getting probed ourselves.  But it’s caused problems, obviously.  But perhaps we can move out of that pattern a bit if by just having less stuff to hide.  While I’ve taken reasonable precautions in keeping stuff on the down-low stuff still happens.  Despite the stuff I’ve shared here, I’m still a pretty secretive person.  So I do understand some of where Arwyn is coming from even though her concerns sometimes cross over into full-blown paranoia.  Sometimes it is misplaced, like she refuses to do an encrypted online transaction out of security concerns but has no problems giving her card to the teenage waitress in the restaurant.


Seeing C-Marie give her swan song has me thinking about this place, and the 3 other places linked here with the lights still on.  How long do I keep going? 


I know most of you have felt the urge to close things up on occasion.  What keeps you in business?




Counseling, a Meme and 195.4

November 10, 2007

I’ll just weigh in a day or two early and then go get something to eat!LOL!

2amsomewhere recently did a purpose driven meme and tagged me with it. Actually, I was already on my way over off the link before I saw I’d been tagged. It’s a survey put on by some of his friends at the Schnarch Center about relationships and sex. The purpose of this is to normalize their results and to test it, so there aren’t any results to be gotten, unlike the little quizzes in my “About” page. However it does make a body think about what they think.

In order to make sure that these two instruments are reliable and valid with a large and diverse population, we would greatly appreciate it if you would cut and paste the link on to your website or forward it to your friends. We want a diverse population in terms of ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, age and gender!

So these are 2am’s rules:

  1. Take the survey described above.
  2. Create a blog posting announcing the survey.
  3. Tag seven other bloggers to take the survey by listing them in your post and contacting them by either e-mail or blog comment.

Only one more thing to do, which is #3. Seven seems like a high number to me, but let me see if I can find the 7:

  1. Christian Husband
  2. FTN
  3. Confused Husband
  4. Xi Summit
  5. Tajalude
  6. Hazel
  7. Mu Ling

Hey, that wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be! I’m sort of worried about the results being all skewed and dysfunctional due to the nature of my blogroll, though.

And finally, just wanted to share something I found on Rod Smith’s blog that was enlightening. When Will Counseling work Best? When will it not?… is a pretty fair and balanced treatment of the subject. Lot’s of you have weighed in, and considering the results of my last post I thought a fair treatment of the subject was in order. I think the biggest obstacle at the present time is …well… time. If I was really sick and injured, I would go to see a doctor. But I’d have to really be sick or injured. I’ve got sore ankles and knees and sometimes get the sniffles, but I’m not seeing anyone.

So that must mean that things in my relationship aren’t bad enough. Yet.

Yeah, that pretty much sums things up. I mean if they were all that bad I would more seriously be weighing the therapist/attorney options. But Arwyn has become a better roommate than she was a year ago. There is that much progress, which is better than none at all. The house isn’t all run down when I come home and it is manageable enough that I can help out when needed. It’s easier to cook in a clean kitchen. We are talking better about money. Every month, we are going over her credit card balances and we each write out checks. We probably need to expand that conversation a bit more about other expenses but there is movement. The sex thing is just a big, huge boil that irritates everything else. I’m not confronting her at all because while I’m attracted to her physically I’m not up for the “mercy fuck.” I was hoping my weight loss would help lessen the “mercy” part of it for her, so she might actually want to do it more. Or maybe I haven’t lost enough, yet.


I’m in the process of properly tagging everyone by commenting on their blogs, so if I haven’t gotten to you yet, consider yourself warned!

[Now I know why I don’t do more comments and tags…blogspot word verification SUCKS!  I ALWAYS end up having to type goofy crap out several times!] 


November 5, 2007

That’s not my weight, that is my new, official, waist line!  I bought some new blue jeans on Friday because I needed something to wear on Saturday.  A 34 was taking a big chance, but I went for it.  They are pretty tight, but I wore them all day and felt plenty fine. 


My weight this morning was a nice 193.4.  We went to Stone Mountain for our Saturday adventure and my youngest and I did the walk-up trail.  Nowadays, it’s really the only reason I go, as it seems Arwyn and the kids spend most of the time whining about being hungry or thirsty.  We did do a ton of walking and much of it was done with my youngest on my back.  That really was a good workout!


I’m getting reluctant to follow the relationship story line, because it seems to be a long string of just the same crap.  Which means the comments will be the same sort of stuff.  So just to make it easier, I’ll let you choose from a standard list:


A. Get counseling, now!

B. Find someone else.

C. Move out/separate

D. Confront her directly

E. Ditch her, get a lawyer

F. Communicate more/better

G. Get over it

H. Get some anti-depressants

I. Lock up in the chastity cage

J. Accept her just as she is


I’ll keep adding to the list as we go, but the above are all things I’ve seen before more than once.


This week I’ve been pushing limits just a bit.  In wee hours of the morning, I’ll snake my hands under her blanket/rug  and let my hand wander around.  And she’ll put her hands on mine to get them to stop moving/advancing.  As soon as she shows any sort of resistance, I stop and withdraw and retreat…until the next morning.  So while I might test the boundaries, I’m not overstepping them. I’m just reaching out and trying to keep an open door and open mind.  But she is not really responsive to any physical intimacies. 


For those keeping score at home, we had sex back in March and then before that it was December of 2005.


The last time we had a conversation about the subject, I mentioned that celibacy wasn’t working for me.  She said she didn’t really like it either, which was such a surprise I had no comeback or response.  In several opportunities, she has not once responded with any sort of willingness to put an end to it.  We did actually spend time hugging and kissing and snuggling Monday morning.  I really had to press, but she did kind of respond to that.  But it never went further as she responded only to a point.  And then the rest of the week just sort of went down hill.


I’m just trying to figure it out.  I have a body she’s never seen before, much leaner and well put together.  But this had zero effect on her libido.  I’d think she might at least be curious.  But there’s zero interest in my body by her.  I’ve always been interested in her and she is still as slim as ever.  I wouldn’t think my weight loss would be any threat to her that way. 


There doesn’t seem to be any jealousy factor that I’m aware of at least in the way Desmond spoke of it with his own weight loss.  I just don’t get the impression that she would care if other women looked me.      


Arwyn has recently finished her 12 step group after attending for the past year.  She has apparently been through all 12 steps and is joining a different study group.  She goes on and on about how this has helped her get closer to God and how she wishes I would do it.


The thing is, is that I don’t see it.  While she spends more time at church, I’m not seeing much fruit within our marriage or relationship.  She still sleeps apart under her own blanket/rug facing the foot of the bed.  She still has no interest in sex/intimacy.  She has voiced some concern about this.  However those concerns were addressed in the context of me initiating the conversation.  None of that addresses Steps 8 and 9 in the 12 step protocol.  I’ve been waiting to see whether or not she would, and it hasn’t come to pass at all.  I’ve been a part of 12-step programs before and know how it is supposed to go, but I also know how powerful denial can be.  Go sell crazy somewhere else, I’m all stocked up.  I’m not perfect and might could do some sort of program like that but I’m not in the mood to by this particular bill of goods at the moment. 


Exercise is a wonderful tool for working off depression, anger and frustration.  Those emotions have fueled some pretty heavy workouts this week.