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The Searcher

I love you, dammit

Here we are 10 days into the ‘back together’ adventure.  It’s been good, overall.  J did freak the fuck out on me on Saturday, she had her first gig as a massage therapist and I’d drank way too much on Friday night.  Apparantly I was supposed to wake up and say ‘GOOD LUCK, YOU’RE GOING TO DO GREAT!!!’, instead, all I mustered was a haggard, ‘Ugh…I’m hung over’, complete with a text at noon that said, “Breaker 1 9, I’m hung, over”.

I’m in a good mood nonetheless, and ask her numerous questions after she gets home about the massages, client response, tell her I’m proud of her.  An hour later, she’s laying in to me because my buddy C and I took over the conversation from her and C’s wife the night before (we were drunk, recall, and we talk loud anyway).  She’s upset because I didn’t get her flowers for her first day, didn’t realize it was such a big day, and another complaint or two that I can’t recall.  At this point, I calmly say something along the lines of;

"After hearing that, it makes me feel unappreciated, resentful, actually.  I think you could have come home and said ‘Thank you sooo much for giving me the opportunity to get my LMT, paying my way through school and taking care of my daughter and I while I didn’t work, not to mention getting me my very first gig!’"

She spirals down into the ‘old J’ mode instantly, and this scares the shit out of me. She’s mousy, scared, and taking 45 minutes to explain something that should have taken 45 seconds.  It’s unbearably painful to watch, much less be on the receiving end where everything I say or do is directly related to her self-image.  She’d invited J and C over for dinner again that night, and we were still negotiating this BS when they show up.  They choose to bail to avoid the drama (I was almost choosing the same thing).

It pissed me off so much that J reverted into this ‘I need you to validate me in just the right way, even without me telling you what that way is’ mode.  Fuck that!

In any case, I managed to stay calm throughout it and explained my side again and again.  Eventually, she apologizes and we move on.  Sunday she pulls the same shit again, this time because she feels guilty for Saturday, at least she catches it early this time and apologizes again.

Monday I fell asleep on the massage chair because she got puking-drunk Sunday night.  I come to bed at 5:30am and she says ‘are you mad at me?’  WTF?  This bullshit is why I left!!!  I say ‘now I am’!

In any case, this one turned out to be caused by my getting upset when she’d set a date to make love and broke it in the past (Sunday night she’d said she wanted nooky).  When I explained I wasn’t mad about that at all, then apologized that I got upset after she asked what used to be a codependent question (why did I apologize again?…oh yeah, because I over-reacted).  I hate drama.

So, we move forward, the old J disappeared on Sunday afternoon and the new J is back (for two days now).  I can handle this drama once in a long while, but not 2 out of every 7 days.  We’ll see how it goes from here.

The crazy love roller-coaster

I won’t have much time to detail this post, but wanted to get my thoughts down so I don’t lose track of them.

I turned 40 on Friday.  FORTY!  Holy cow.  I didn’t think I’d live past 30 years old.

I went to dinner with that couple-friend of mine (and J’s) and my good friend H of many years.  We went to Tei Tei in Dallas and by luck (no reservation) were seated at my favorite table in all the world.  It was seriously the best meal I’ve had in my life.

I spent that night at H’s house (a she, by the way), and crashed out on her comforpedic upstairs (with her) in a drunken stuper.  H and I are more like platonic siblings then single compatible adults, but we have a deep empathy for each other that borders on other-worldly.  She’s a great friend, still platonic.  

The next morning, J texts me because she needs to transfer money (she went on a week-long vacation on my dime (she’s not working yet)).  So, I call her back, my mother’s maiden name was required to logon to the (my) account(s).  Sigh.

She asks how my birthday was, where did I spend the night…H’s, where did you sleep, H’s bed (damn, I should learn how to lie, but I can’t).  This is where I stand my ground.  ”We are broken up, and nothing happened anyway, I didn’t even have to explain that I slept upstairs!”  End of conversation, “drive safe on your way home”.

Saturday was St Patty’s day on lower greenville and my buzz from the night before was back by 10am.  I get a text from J saying “are you trying to push me away?”  WTF?  The next text says “cause your words and your actions don’t make sense”.

I choose not to respond and enjoy the day.  That night I can’t sleep and I call J to say “WTF are you thinking?  I was wanting / thinking that maybe we could try to work this out and you pull your whole insecurity thing again?!!”  I explained that when there’s something you need in your life, and your friends (boy or girl) give that to you, especially when it’s missing in your relationship with your SO, you need to feel free to spend time with them, its not ok for your partner to say you can’t see this and that friend.

The next day I felt 99% sure that the best decision was to end the relationship once and for all.  I was heading to get my things from the house and knew J would be there.  On the way I realized that since I did have that 1% doubt, I shouldn’t have slept in the same bed as H, even though nothing happened.  I felt convicted about it, and decided to apologize to J for it, but to still end the relationship as amicably as possible.

When I got home J and I sat on the back porch and talked.  In the middle of a sentance, 30 minutes in, J leans over and kisses me, passionately.  (recall that she her main stance was ‘no sex because you made me depressed’)  The kiss was incredible, earth scorching, ground shaking, weak-in-the-knees inducing.  I said ‘please don’t stop’.

I carried her to the bedroom and we proceeded to have incredible sex.  Awesome sex. Dirty, rowdy, amazing sex.  Twice.

Afterward she said ‘look, don’t feel bad or weird about it, it was my choice, and remember, I seduced you’.

Since then (three days), J has been a completely different person.  She’s self-reliant, self-confident, incredibly sexual, and has been a joy to be around.

I’m completely confused, and yet trepidaciously exited all at once.  How is it possible to go from 99% sure that a breakup is the right thing to moving back in and having sex twice a day?  Is that healthy?  Am I crazy?  Is she faking it?  Is she acting / faking it?

In any case, she’s the coolest girl I’ve ever met right now (over the last 3 days anyway), and our relationship is completely different from what it was in the past.

I’m going to take it one day at a time, with my eyes wide open, and hope this sticks.

2012 - is what we’ll make it

Happy Saturday morning - 3/10/12

I’m writing this from a friend’s house where I’m now ‘living’ for the next three months. J and I are split up.  It was my (very difficult) decision.

To catch up a bit - we found out we were pregnant on Christmas day, and found out we would lose the baby on January 17th.

When we found out we were pregnant J began to cry and freak out (understandably so).  We weren’t trying, in fact, I thought I was shooting blanks (note to self, the pull-out method cannot be trusted, even though its worked for 20 years).  I took the news surprisingly well.  I prayed about it as soon as I learned she was late for her period, and felt a calm peace come upon me.  It was as though God said - here, here is your destiny, you can stop searching and struggling now.  I put my arms around J and said it was going to be all right, in fact it was wonderful news.

After peeing on a stick, it was confirmed (two sticks, actually), that we were pregnant.  We kept our scheduled snowboarding trip to Denver over the new year. J and I talked for hours while sweet Ry slept on the long midnight drive.  I felt as though destiny was present, and God’s plan had finally been revealed to me.

The reason this is critically important to me is that I’ve been truly ambiguous about  our relationship for some time.  My attempt to end the relationship ambiguity with a marriage proposal increased it for me, in fact.  My previous post about our vacation on the heels of the proposal illustrates this clearly.  I’ve often said that I could live happily with just about any reasonably sane woman, particularly after my divorce 10 years ago.  J is reasonably sane, intelligent, and loving, not to mention beautiful.  I felt like life was about to begin.

The few weeks we spent while J was pregnant were challenging, but nice.  A whirlwind of emotions for me were strangely grounded in the knowledge that ‘choice’ had been removed.  I no longer had a choice but to stay in this relationship, with this woman, with this family, and make it the best I possibly could.  With no choice about whether to stay or leave, it was now easy to make choices to make the best of it.

Still, something inside me said, ‘she doesn’t truly know you’.

When we lost the baby, I lost it.  I became withdrawn and aloof.  I think somehow J knew intuitively that she might lose me if we lost the baby.  It’s been a brutally tough month and a half.  I took off for Mardi Gras after J had asserted herself in an unloving way (not a transgression, but nevertheless a straw that broke my back).  After spending two weeks on the road, I came back with more clarity about the relationship.  It needed to be over in its current iteration.  The only question left to be answered was ‘is there enough there to start a new relationship’.

Here’s what I discovered.

Point 1: J, like most women, can be a chameleon.  She can morph and change at will to either fit in to a room / crowd, or temporarily become someone she thinks I want her to become.  A metamorphosis started when she met me.  I think she found a happy, fun, successful man who she was attracted too.  She figured out what I wanted quite easily, I’d described it on my match.com profile and I wear my heart on my sleeve.  She knew I wanted someone ambitious, fearless, fun loving, adventurous, and sexual.  She gave those things to me easily, without effort.  She also hid the real her from me.  I love the real her, as I know her and see her, but  I’m not in love with the real her.

Point 2: I’m a complex, intelligent, driven individual.  I have a serious amount of deep seated psychological issues to work through from my family of origin.  I’m still a bit codependent, and thus tend to attract other codependents.  I have dated someone who ‘got me’ but only once.  I, unfortunately, wasn’t physically attracted to her and it didn’t turn into a relationship.  I desperately want someone who ‘gets me’.  J, does not.

Point 3: I define myself by my positive impact on others, who my friends are, what I do for a living, and what I do for fun.  I don’t hide this fact, and shared that I define my significant other the same way.  When I encouraged her to leave the job she hated and let me support her while she find something she loved to do, she took that encouragement.  In the process she lost her identity.

Point 4: I don’t like dating people who do drugs of any kind.  I know, I know, I like weed once in a while and I drink every day.  I just can’t handle the altered state of marijuana on a consistent basis.  I think it dulls your senses and is harder to control than alcohol.  I do admit, however, that my alcohol consumption needs to be tamed.

Point 5: I love wild sex.  This one’s hard for me to describe, even to myself.  J loves sex as well, but doesn’t have the ability to ‘let go’.  I know this is likely compounded by her ex husband and her date rape, and I feel guilty about even mentioning this as a reason why we are incompatible.  In any case, there’s something different about a person who likes sex, enjoys the intimacy, even a little wild play once in a while and someone who truly can abandon themselves in the moment.  I can’t live without this (scratch that, I CAN live without it, I just don’t want too).

Point 6: I still love J.  Damnit.  There’s nothing I can do to change her and ‘make’ her get me.  I can’t make her want to give up weed, be more ambitious, be less fearful, and abandon herself during sex.  I had to make the call.  Damnit, damnit, damnit.

Final point: I won’t kick you out of my house prior to Ry getting done with third grade, I won’t let you down on the six thousand dollars and I will fully support you until then, if you ‘got’ me you’d know this.  I’ll miss you J.

Matrimony Acrimony

I often write to sort out the thoughts in my head.  This is one of those.

First off, I proposed to J on Friday, 11/11/11.  It was a beautiful dinner, I gave our daughter a pendant and J the ring.  She said yes without hesitation.  It was nice but I was unbelievably nervous.  We went on vacation the next day for 7 days with a couple friend of ours.

J and I fought and were completely emotionally distant during the trip.  Her codependance and dependence on weed were as strong as I’ve seen them (though not as much with me, but with our friends.  She hung out with them and smoked weed with them the first two days.  I brought it up during a sunset cruise our second night in Mexico and incorrectly conveyed that the reason I was upset is because I felt left out.

The truth is, I didn’t feel left out because J and our friends didn’t invite me to smoke with them, I just felt like she chose an alternate reality over one with me.  I admit that I had taken solace that her (and their) statements (that they were not going to smoke while in Mexico, and that they were done smoking weed after they got back) were true.  I was dramatically disappointed by this lack of resolve.

That very night we get back from the sunset cruise and J invites me up to our friends’ room.  Then invites me to smoke out with them.  At that point I bolted, making up an excuse that I needed to make a call or send an email.  Clearly I didn’t communicate what I was expecting either before the trip or that night.

Q: Am I allowed to love J but not like it that she smokes weed?

Q: Am I in the wrong for feeling frustrated when she doesn’t keep her word / promises?  Even if its not a great trespass (smoking weed on vacation, after all, isn’t that big of a big deal to me, I’ve done it several times).

The next day I was very upset, and showed it.  She had a crying fit again, and it set me off - bigtime.  It took me right back to being manipulated as a little kid by my mom’s fits.  I bolted and said I’d meet up with them later in the day.

The following three days were more of the same - lots of drinking by the three of them (I was definitely the odd-man-out), lots of ‘hey, let’s go do this’ by me, which got shot down.  We had planned on zip-lining, shopping in cabo, scuba diving, and snorkeling.  Nada, zip, zilch on those ideas.

Friday, the day before we were to leave for home, J finally asked if I would take her to Cabo, she realized that in trying to ‘please’ the couple-friend of ours, she’d missed out on what she really wanted to do on vacation.  I said certainly, of course, and we jumped in the rental jeep without our couple friend and took off.

It was a nice evening, she conveyed that she knew she’d been codependent and she was sorry about ruining our vacation.  I said I was so proud of her for realizing it and that she didn’t ruin it, let’s just have fun the rest of it (1/2 a day left).

The next day was a whip - our friends had partaken of some harder-core drugs the night before and felt like crap.  At about 1pm (our flight was at 4), J invoked her ‘make sure you don’t piss our friends off’ attitude.  And I simply wanted to enjoy the last few hours of our vacation.  I wasn’t pissing them off, and I didn’t go on vacation to cater to them anyway.

That night, and the next three our four followed our same pattern.  I was seriously unsure about whether our relationship had the potential for quality that I’ve longed for.  We discussed it a few times, and finally had a breakthrough when J admitted she was scared of being engaged as well.

We had four blissful days of loving communication, passion, and twice-a-day vanilla sex.

It went to shit again on Saturday, when I asked J to help me decide how to optimize my office.  Her suggestion quadrupled the work I had in mind, but it was a good suggestion.  I told her I wouldn’t be able to help with the rest of the house - I had to focus on my office, then work, but we proceeded anyway.

She’s been a pissed-off ungrateful bitch since then.  I’ve had another 85-hour week, and I’m exhausted.  I don’t even feel like talking about it anymore, she’s been sick anyway.  I got home, barely had the energy to jerk-off, and was unbelievably grateful that neither she nor our daughter were home.  I feel like I’m trapped on a train hauling-ass toward a bridge that’s out, and no one on the train knows it yet.

Therapist induced marital suicide

So, I was researching on the web to see if my experience was unique, no its not.  Unfortunately I found this article: http://www.smartmarriages.com/hazardous.html

Maddening, isn’t it?

There should be a certification program for therapists that provides specific training and insight into the following areas:

  1. Therapists that specialize in blended families, or in cross-cultural marriages (perhaps even same-sex marriages)
  2. Therapists that specialize in therapy for couples into kink of some sort (BDSM, Swinging, etc)
  3. Therapists that understand rock stars, singers, strippers, and any other alternative lifestyle
  4. Therapists that believe in light or moderate marijuana use as a form of recreation rather than immediately categorizing their patient as a drug addict (I’m sure this will happen before items 2 and 3, particularly in states where legalization has occurred to some level)

In addition, they should have an easier to find and use review website (think Google Maps) for therapists, I’d rate my last therapist a 2.  Here’s the only one I’ve found so far for therapists: http://www.healthgrades.com/provider-directory-compare?new=HGPY01CC324589CB4F038%2CHGPY0F65DE6B0AF44186B%2CHGPY38BE20269C404E9EA%2CHGPY85F9ADC8B79043099&remove=&start=1

I’ll get off my soapbox now.

My therapist is an egomaniac

I know it sounds ludicrous, but I think my therapist is an egomaniac.  The guy has a tremendous amount of knowledge stored in his brain (a trait I admire), but his listening skills are atrocious at times.

I went to my first individual therapy session yesterday (my SO and I have been going to couples therapy with him on and off for over two months).  I opened up with my goals of asking my SO to marry me (I had several other topics in mind, by the way).  He then went on a tyraid for literally 40 minutes (of a 50 minute session) about how I, she, we needed therapy and that we are way worse off than we think we are.

It was an onslaught of almost pure negativity, we had a disease and he had the only cure.  Let me see if I can recall the list: (all these below are his words, by the way, there’s no need to exaggerate)

  1. A snake den, full of vipers and venom, lies deep within both of us
  2. There’s so much shit / baggage, that must be worked out through a year or more of therapy (but only if you really commit to it (at $150 / week / session (that’s $450 / week for her, myself, and couples therapy, coming to $23,000 for the year)) and there’s no hope for a successful marriage without it
  3. I’m a sex addict, an alcoholic, she’s a drug addict, and we’re both addicted to relationships, we’ll have to get away from any friends who encourage these behaviours
  4. I’m a narcissistic egomaniac with tremendous issues left over from my childhood and will not be able to judge whether she’s a good mate for me until all that’s worked through
  5. I need to go to a doctor friend of his for my alcohol addiction, and then join AA, after that I’ll need to join a group that specializes in sex addiction, that’s the only way he’s ever seen it work
  6. I’m combative, and when I clarify anything he says that I said (almost all of it was an incorrect interpretation of my statement / question, by the way) I’m proving that I’m in denial
  7. The first proof of an addiction or a psychological problem is denial, or minimization of the situation / problem, therefore any counter to his instantaneous conclusions prove them to be correct

All in all, an astoundingly under-productive session and a waste of my time and $150.00.

Ugh…anyone know a therapist in the North Dallas area who knows imago therapy and has a clue?

Cheers

A sigh of relief

So it turns out my bonus was being miscalculated for the year, and they’re upping it by more than double what I’ve received so far.  This helps, big time.  I find myself looking at the big picture and breathing easier, however I don’t feel resolved yet.

Hopefully this financial gain will bring the resolution to my stress and depression soon.  With this resolution to financial stress pending, I can now focus on the other issue that’s been weighing on me…my pending proposal to my girlfriend of more than two years.

As I was researching, I found that any time someone is stressed and is also facing a major life decision, they tend to get depressed.  This rings true to me because I purchased an engagement ring for my girlfriend three weeks ago - I’m planning on proposing.  This should be a happy time, right?  Why then, am I so stressed right now?

Thankfully I know that a great deal of my depression is related to the financial bind I’m in.  If it were 100% related to the pending proposal, I’d really freak out.  Perhaps this means that deep down inside I don’t think she’s the right one for me?  Perhaps it means I’m not really in love?

I know she’s great for me, she is helping me rediscover and reconcile the distant but very real unresolved issues/pain from childhood.  She’s an imago match, for sure.  I wish I felt that consistent ‘elated’ in-love feeling, though.  The one I had when I was a teenager and fell in love.  Logic says that that was hormonal, borne out of ignorance and far from the meaning of true love, but the emotion was so powerful, so palpable, that I can recall it to this day.

Over the past decade, I’ve become a student of spirituality, love and psychology.  I believe in limbic resonance, string theory, and have read and studied ‘getting the love you want’.  I should be good at this, one would think.  Even with my newfound self awareness, however, I am not able to reconcile my emotions with logic.  The best I can do is below:

1. This self awareness may be hindering my ability to ‘feel’ emotions, since I’ve learned not to trust them.

2. My divorce (married for 10 years prior) is still prevelant in my mind, and every inkling of similarity between my new girl and my ex sends a shiver of fear to my very core.

In the grand scheme of things, my life isn’t bad.  But damn I’m stressed.

I have a great girlfriend who loves me, her kid who calls me daddy, and a nice place to live that I rent at a decent rate.  Finances, however, are always very tight.

I’m frustrated constantly, and lately have been struggling with depression.  I find myself lonely, even when others are around.  My back hurts constantly, and I’m tired all the time.  My work suffers, I’m not performing at my potential.

Ultimately, I’m embarrassed and ashamed due to my financial situation.  Internally, I blame the assholes who bought my previous company then screwed me out of $250,000, but the thought doesn’t help.  When I think this thought I circle right back around to my own inability to see the likely outcome prior to the sale of the business.

There are times when logic prevails and I enjoy my life, I just wish I could extend these times and shorten the depression cycles.  I feel like a bipolar person, bouncing between depression and elation on a roller coaster made by satan himself.  It’s a bit like being in a bounce house, curled up in a ball, with demons who weigh ten times more than me jumping up and down.  Most of the time, I just want out of the bounce house - not in a suicidal fantasy kind of way, but more in a ‘get me off this ride’ kind of way.  Other times, I get thrown up in the air, and while I’m weightless, I have the ability to look around and enjoy the ride…right up until landing.