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#12 Here’s looking at YOU

Cut Eye

Cut Eye (Photo credit: lindes)

One of the big highs over the last month I suppose was when we made some progress in the bedroom. I’m not sure how many of you would consider what I am about to tell you a ‘high point’. What we do is by no means ‘normal’ but its what works for us in our situation and has progressed and evolved to suit us over time. Of course its still not ideal but you work with what you’ve got don’t you?

Usually we would have intercourse and then I would straddle him and ‘give him a hand’ to him help him finish. It worked but the lack of eye contact made me feel shit. Over time we had removed barriers and things got better but every now and then the insecurities and embarrassment crept back in. – I posted about that here

Well for a while its been difficult, both going through stages of awkwardness, emotions making it either amazing or non existent… Triggers preventing me from wanting to do what we usually do so for a while we had “normal” sex and after he would “do himself” while I lay with him kissing him (and him kissing back) for us that worked. (Again I posted here about it) We both had fun and we both got the release which usually comes from sex. For us – with our history considered it was a mini breakthrough… Knowing he would still climax with me kissing him and touching him… Being there with him in a loving way and not just another hand helping him out.

Well at some point I was laying next to him and just kept thinking how wrong all of this was, THIS was not what I pictured my sex life to be like… my marriage to be like…I felt so irrelevant… So unnecessary… So useless. I could feel my stomach turning and my eyes watering and realised this wasn’t the first time I had felt like this…THIS was turning into a trigger for me. It was at that point that I thought…NO! This needs to stop now. I am NOT going to let myself feel like this, I am NOT going to do this more often than I want to just to stop myself worrying about him sneaking off for a wank if I say no! I will NOT lay here and feel like shit to -in essence- cock block my own husband – I shouldn’t fucking have to! At the end of the day if he WANTS to sneak off for some DIY then he will regardless of whether we went through this 2 days before or 2 hours before…there is nothing I can do about it and really what good is it doing? its not, its giving him a release and every time its making ME feel worse…its letting him have it his way while my confidence slams lower and lower every time he squeezes his eyes shut to block ME out! that is not taking care of myself. I either need to take control of this and protect myself or get the hell out before I get dragged down any further, I can not live this way forever.

I said nothing about it to him and instead vowed to say no more often, to say no unless i was actually in the mood for it, unless i felt confident enough for it…WANTED enough. no kind of game playing involved here by the way, this wasn’t some kind of ‘turn him down to make him want me’ game…this was me growing a pair and putting my foot down. So for the next few nights I said no. I told him I would rather ‘cuddle’ tonight (lol) and in truth it WAS nice just cuddling and talking, it took away that anxiety.

Eventually, I felt stronger again and we did our thing and instantly I felt better for holding off on it, it felt less wrong and more right. Obviously the set up was the same but I was doing it because I wanted to which took away a massive amount of doubt and insecurity. This time the kissing was more passionate too – rather than going through the motions…it was more intense…more enjoyable. Afterwards we lay together and out of nowhere he said

 ‘you did that’

-Not understanding what he meant he explained that he had been thinking about me/us the majority of the time rather than focusing on those intrusive thoughts (that he wont tell me as he’s ashamed of them) Surprised and confused – as before he could only really ‘get off’ if he let those thoughts take over and any ‘normal’ (according to him) thoughts were pushed aside- he explained that the more we have been doing it like this…kissing etc he’s been thinking more and more about us rather than the other stuff.

THAT was amazing to hear, he had offered up that fact without me asking for it, he told me because HE felt good about it…proud i suppose as until this point for him those thought have been all he’s ever had so for him to be able to push past that was a breakthrough for him…and sharing it with me was a breakthrough for US too. It reminded me that while I cant always see – or don’t always realise- the baby steps we are making…HE is making his own and when he is ready he will tell me.

Eyes Wide Open (Gotye song)

Eyes Wide Open (Gotye song) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For a while after that we were feeling positive, our confidence grew and I even ventured back to our original ways without feeling sick about it. One of the things that had kept putting me off was the lack of eye contact so I had almost trained myself to not make eye contact with him during ‘his turn’ – to avoid seeing him squeeze his eyes shut so tightly I suppose :/ But like I’ve said before we all close our eyes when we are in the moment, we all have random/irrelevant thoughts coming in and out of our heads sometimes…the difference being that we don’t always SHARE them and most of us don’t have thoughts that overrule everything else.

Well…recently he’s been keeping his eyes open 🙂 and he can still manage to climax lol. Again, he made a point of telling me (in case I hadn’t noticed) because HE felt good about it and because HE was making progress with his own demons. Of course its not nice to have felt like this before and making eye contact with your wife…or just being able to LOOK at your wife whilst being intimate shouldn’t be a big deal…but for us it is and ultimately its not about the way I look, it’s not ME putting him off. This is a big step for him towards letting go of the things that hold him back, towards letting ME in to his world…

xBx

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Posted by on July 4, 2013 in Honestly...

 

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I know you know I know…

crossed wires

crossed wires (Photo credit: art crimes)

It turns out (I think) that we (my husband and I) had our wires crossed (possibly)… it’s all very confusing.
There IS no big reveal (as far as he is aware) with regards to WHY he is the way he is or thinks the way he thinks – although there’s still the surprise of the fantasy/intrusive thing to come.

As far as he knows (or can remember as he’s blocked most of his childhood out) I know as much as he does about what happened to him. However, when he told me he had been lying to his therapist and trying to throw her off it was in response to a question about whether he had any idea why he is in the “Critical Parent” category of the ego states more than the others. He told her no… But he has made links between that and the little he does remember from his past.

So I don’t know how much she knows – or doesn’t know- but apparently I know the basics, I know the main bits just not the details of the intrusive thoughts or fantasies.
(Does ANY of that make sense to you because I was -and still am- so confused when he tried to clarify…and therefore UNcross our wires.)

Until this…uncrossing…he had not mentioned the phrase ‘critical parent’ to me before…so of course I Googled it…

According to Transactional Analysis (TA), we communicate via three different Ego States (parts of ourselves):
(P)aren’t (Language of values and morals)
(A)dult (Language of logic and rationality)
(C)hild (Language of emotions…my husband is missing this one)
Every person has a trio of P-A-C, and we constantly shift back and forth between them in our interactions (a.k.a. transactions) with others.
The Parent ego state is a set of thoughts, feelings, and behaviours that we learn from our parents (or caretakers). It’s almost like we unconsciously mimic them, incorporating their values, morals, and core beliefs into our outer communication. We express these ideals by being either critical or nurturing.
The Nurturing Parent is soft, loving, and quick to give permission. The Critical Parent is the other side of the coin. When in this state, a person will react as they imagined their parent might have reacted, or they act toward others the way their parents acted toward them. It’s uncanny, but we might use some of the exact same phrases we head from our parents, or strike the same postures, use the same mannerisms or gestures…we become our parents.
The Parent ego state is like a tape recorder full of pre- judged, prejudiced, pre-programmed statements. These “taped” statements can get activated while we are in our Adult or Child and then we can actually hear them as “voices in our heads.” The Parental tapes can feel good or bad depending on which Parent makes them. In other personality theories, the harmful Critical Parent voices are known as the harsh super-ego, negative self-talk, cognitive traps, low self-esteem, punitive protector or catastrophic expectations.

I realise all of the above is based on a theory etc but don’t you agree that its a pretty bloody good one? Its actually quite relieving to read it and ‘get it’ a little more…to understand a little bit about my husbands frame of mind. Of course whatever he talks about during therapy and passes on (in dribs and drabs) to me is what he has understood based on what she (the therapist) has said to him…based on what he has told her… so whatever she has told him about it is obviously going to be focused on what she DOES know about him. (Still with me?)

parent-adult-child

parent-adult-child (Photo credit: paloetic)

Looking at this as a wife… as someone who recognises parts of him that he doesn’t recognise himself…albeit someone who was ‘tricked’ for the past year…things that (to him) wouldn’t seem important enough to tell her are actually so relevant and it does make more sense and I must say I agree with it. He is negative about himself, he does use the critical parent tone more often than not in some aspects, he does have low self esteem and I guess he understands where he gets it from…and while he doesnt show any abusive traits, anything which reflects the things that happened to him…im pretty sure he thinks them – about himself. Perhaps he is haunted by things his abuser said, he has their critical ‘tapes’ recorded and rather than showing them outwardly he replays them to himself and tortures himself daily.

As his wife, as someone who observes him more than ever these days then that would make sense and IF I am right then i really do feel for him. It must be horrible…but I could be wrong…I probably am wrong…there is no doubt that there is more to it than that but for now the critical parent theory makes sense, I believe it and I agree with it. I don’t know whether thats because it gives me hope and therefore I want to believe/agree with it or because it makes sense but either way its another small piece of a very large puzzle that I am happy to have.

I just cant wait for the day he is ready to talk about it…when all of this makes sense and all the questions are answered…but somehow I think i’ll be waiting a while longer for that and a part of me wonders whether understanding it is something I really WANT to be hoping for…be careful what you wish for and all that. Only time will tell

xBx

 

 

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Somebody that I used to know

Make love

Make love (Photo credit: chloeloe)

The night after he surprised me by getting a little frisky (with me)… Skipping all details for your sake he did everything I had suggested in THAT text from the night before (see here for that post) without making it seem like a chore. To be fair he never does that purposely, he always makes an effort but this time he was so affectionate with it…that it was rather believable.

Caught up in the moment it was amazing to forgot everything for a while and just enjoy it… But then came his turn. I saw him glance around for the blindfold and my gut twisted but then I saw him almost shake it off (the habit) with a look of determination. He closed his eyes a few times – as we all do- and as his face changed in an attempt to bring himself back to reality I realised at that moment that these thoughts probably aren’t about busty blondes or naughty nurses, they’re something totally different, something that haunts him… Possibly from his childhood.

Much Later (and out of the bedroom) I told him to stand still while I stood behind him facing away – back to back.

*Deep breath* (his answers are in italics) I asked:
Why won’t you tell me what you think about when we are intimate? – Because it’s not nice.
The fact that you’re thinking about something else isn’t nice? or the thing you think about isn’t nice? – The thing I think about
Is it linked to the “thing” you aren’t ready to talk about? – Yes… I don’t want to talk about this anymore
Ok…Do you cover your eyes in order to shut me out completely because using me as a visual doesn’t do it for you? (laughs in shock) No!
So I do do it for you? – Yes!
And you want to be with me? Yes!
Scale of 1 to 10… 10!  (needy I know)

English: thinking

English: thinking (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Sensing that these questions could go on forever he stopped me and said…
Baby… You are attractive to me, you DO do it for me and of course I want to be with you. I try and stay focused on you, its you that gets me in the mood in the first place and when I’m WITH you I’m thinking about you and focusing on your enjoyment… BUT when it’s my turn as much as I try… these other thoughts pop into my head and take over… Even when we aren’t being intimate, daily, they just get in there. I don’t want them to, but they do.I will tell you what it is… But I need to understand it myself first. The way I see it is I go to therapy… I tell her… She gives me her analysis or whatever and I then tell you… Can you please just let me do it that way? What is it that’s bothering you the most? Is it that you want to understand it or that you just want to KNOW it?

Again, his response surprised me in a good way and again I told him that by telling anyone nothing bad would happen, that it’s a good step and that it’s necessary. I said what’s bothering me is that I am totally unprepared, I have no clue…
‘Imagine I told you I had done something terrible… What would be your first thought?’
‘Murder?’
‘Exactly… ‘
‘Baby I haven’t killed anyone!’
‘Exactly! But you still thought it, you imagined something much worse than what I was thinking so by you telling me it’s something bad sends my mind wandering….It just scares me a little that I don’t know you :/’

He asked if he should leave and I said no.

He asked why and I said because I love you!
…But you don’t know me – Because you won’t let me in!
...Because I don’t want you to know me – Then why did you marry me?
...Because I want you to know the person I want to be… But I now realise i need to figure out who I actually am before I can get there… I will let you in… I will help you understand when I understand it myself.

I told him that whenever he was ready I would here to listen and I would try to understand it…but couldn’t promise anything. I reassured him that I wouldn’t be broadcasting it to my friends OR blogging about it and I mean that. Whatever this thing is.. This demon… It’s his, it’s not for me to tell the world the details of it (unless of course it turns out to be something hilarious like snails shagging) but somehow I don’t think that’s it. So for the record even when I know… I won’t be blogging the details. Sorry to disappoint but I dont think it would be right for me to do that …*sits back and waits for the unfollow spree to commence*

…there’s more to come

xBx

 

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