Gotta Do It

I have hedged, hammered and hawed all over this for too long. I’ve been avoiding for too long. Y’all have been good about pointing that out, and while I’ve been receptive in some areas, I often deflect some of the most obvious suggestions and measures that might move me forward.

It’s about being in the proper space developmentally in order to do what needs to be done. I’ve covered some significant distance these past few months doing independent study with a little help from my blog friends. Y’all do what you can and I SO appreciate it! So now I need to advance more and I’m feeling stuck. It’s time to get that local therapist’s number programmed into my cell and make the call for some professional coaching on how to proceed. I’ve talked about it before, and will keep talking about it until I get it done. Then I’ll talk about it some more.

Yesterday, as I was walking out of the house (and writing yesterday’s post in my head) it occurred to me that I’m about tapped out. I’ve probably been out of my league for quite some time but getting up to speed on Schnarch’s approach might help save some time in the long run. Hopefully this guy will be up on it. It’s hard to imagine a marriage or sex therapist who wouldn’t but that’s sometimes the way things go out here in the sticks.

The recent comments by someone identifying herself as Kathy also made me aware that I need to go deeper to acquire more tools and resources. The average layperson has a basic assortment of tools at their disposal in order to take on various relationship and psychological issues. Thanks to self-hep books and the internet, more people are accessing more information but it is often not very good information. Many of the options and suggestions new readers bring in tend to be of a more shallow nature. For instance, for the woman who is married to a guy who doesn’t want sex; how often have you heard, “You need to wear sexy lingerie and spice it up!” If you’re a guy in the same position, we always hear, “You need to do more around the house and take more time with the kids and give her more time to herself!” Other offers involve being more considerate, being less selfish, doing something for yourself, find a hobby, get a pet, talk it out, practice better communication skills, be more affectionate in a nonsexual way, speak the proper love language, nonsexual date nights, buy more gifts, take the pressure off, fix yourself, be less judgmental, more empathetic listening, sensory nonsexual exercises, more physical exercise, eat healthier, lose weight, penis enhancement, breast augmentation, Viagra, wild oats, wild yams, ginseng…

I’m sure I’m missing some.

It’s not that these are bad suggestions. Most of them are pretty good and can serve a purpose. But after a few years and trying several variations of these, it might be time to drill deeper. The standard plays don’t always work and then it might be time to go for something different. No guarantees there, as my chastity play clearly illustrates, but it did represent a pretty good effort in creativity and thinking outside the box. I got some useful information there that may yet prove to be useful down the road. In fact, I need to process that from a more Schnarchian paradigm to see what comes up. The most important thing is to keep at it and to keep driving for progress, such as it is. Writing and blogging has been an invaluable tool to help me process so I need to keep investing the time into doing that, even if never makes the blog.


9 Responses to Gotta Do It

  1. aphron says:

    Good luck to you. I hope it helps. Will Arwyn be open to joint counseling?

  2. FTN says:

    Just don’t forget… Arwyn is a fragile, stunted and vulnerable flower.

    Sorry, I had trouble typing that without laughing just a bit.

    You could have made the appointment with the counselor in half the time it took you to write this entry. Come on, buck up and make the call! THEN the fun will begin!

  3. Rosie says:

    The perspective of a third person, who can watch the two of you interact (or Avoid) should really help. Really.

  4. Dave says:

    The list you rattle off, I guess my first thought on all the internet/selfhelp books/tv doc/magazine type stuff, is how easily the authors or whomever, make it seem that their particular method will work for everyone- even though they have no idea of your particulars.

    A professional that will learn about you, and Arwyn if she’s willing, is probably a good idea at this point.

    Good luck!

  5. traderdad says:

    Don’t be surprised if your therapist has never heard of Schnarch or his approach. When my marital counselor recommended the book to my wife and I, it was with the caveat that it may or may not be helpful. But he made it clear that it was definitely an approach outside the mainstream of marital counseling. I believe it still is. If the therapist has never heard of him, there is always the possibility that the therapist would be open to reading the book and incorporating the approach in what they do for you and Arwyn.

    I also would like to third Rosie’s comment. And knowledgeable person can be very helpful in observing how two people interact.

  6. Therese says:

    I hope that the counselor can help you delve a bit deeper than you have been able to up until now. That said, you have really done some awesome work on your own.

    Is the therapy just for you or are you thinking that you’ll try to go together?

  7. Digger Jones says:

    I do need to address the issue of Arwyn and I and counseling. I’m thinking I want to go it alone to start off with and then see what Arwyn thinks. We’ve talked about it before and she was thinking that it might be a good idea to start separately. I know how she’s played the avoid and delay game before in saying she wants to wait for some certain specific thing or event before working. Then something else comes up. I’m not waiting for her or whatever circumstances she wants to hold out for. Waiting for a prerequisite might mean waiting forever. That’s why waiting for full disclosure, full trust, full acceptance or anything else is a sham. It will never happen so it has to start when its ready and not when it’s the “perfect” time. So the therapist may never see us together and that’s okay, too.

  8. Emily says:

    I think if you are going to see a therapist and want a Schnarch-type approach, you will need to discuss all that with your prospective candidates and be very clear about it. It would be very frustrating to hear the therapist say “yes, yes, we can do that” and then find they really don’t have the background and expertise for it.

    I hope you don’t get too frustrated by Arwyn’s ongoing behaviour (and your own). It’s one thing to recognise a problem and discuss a problem and its a whole other thing to fix a problem – and especially any problem that involves deep, long term personal change. Real change is hard work and there is a lot of two steps forward one step back. It must be even worse when two people are trying to change.

    One thing I would be tempted to try. Rather than come up with your own ideas about what intimacy looks like (eg, “we would be comfortable being naked around each other”) and trying to push that, maybe ask Arwyn what a more intimate marriage would look like to her. What would you both be doing differently? Try to be clear with each other about how it would look to you from both your perspectives and see the common ground but also the differences.

    And then try to both commit to one small change that is common ground and really implement it, then another small change, etc.

    Personally, I find it much easier to make changes a small piece at a time. Its natural to long for a quick transformation, but it just isn’t my experience that it (a) really happens and (b) really sticks.

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