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#218515 - 04/16/08 10:06 AM Re: Couples counseling tonight [Re: MemoryVault]
VLinvictus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 273
Loc: NY
I haven't posted on this thread in a while, largely because recent events have been hard to put into words. In the past couple of sessions, it's not that we've had any tremendous breakthroughs, but still progress is being made.

Last week, we got closer to S understanding that I am not his fantasy ideal partner and that I never will be and I was able to express my feelings that I care about him deeply but do not want to be in a committed monogamous relationship with him. A potential solution to some of the living arrangement problems was advanced surprisingly by S who suggested he could take the 3rd floor bedroom and I could have the ground floor den and we'd share the common areas -- this showed he was thinking about practical solutions.

A telling moment arose when I was able to state clearly and concretely what I like about him -- his caring nature, his sense of humor, his handiness with tools and fixing things and practical common sense -- but he was unable to say what it was uniquely about me as a person that he values and cherishes. He also seems to be making a great deal of progress in adjusting to the idea that life doesn't have to be black and white -- that the choice is not limited to turning back the clock or leaving and never looking back. He's also warming to the notion that we're not talking about changing the relationship: we're talking about acknowledging a change that has already occurred.

Last night was more nebulous as it focused largely on me and my warped inner dialogues -- the "little kid in trouble" programming that interprets everything out of order as evidence that something is wrong and its my fault and its my responsibility to fix it, and how I must suppress my feelings to make everyone else happy. I am conscious that sometimes, I will interpret his words or actions erroneously because they will trigger feelings of being attacked and ridiculed from the past. This does not let him off the hook, though, because if he hadn't ever lashed out at me in his scortched-earth-must-invade-Poland kind of way, I wouldn't have learned these responses in the first place.

What the T wants us to do -- as a necessary part of our living together whatever the makeup of our relationship -- is to express our feelings openly and honestly regardless of what they may be -- and especially regardless of how the other person may react. The flip side is that we also have to allow the other person to have their feelings, even if we don't like them.

This makes grad school look easy.

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#218775 - 04/17/08 04:16 PM Re: Couples counseling tonight [Re: VLinvictus]
Scoutvictim Offline
Guest

Registered: 06/04/07
Posts: 434
Loc: St. Louis, Missouri
PROGRESS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

So, it sounds like a lot is being accomplished. I think I see a light at the end of your tunnel.

\:D

Well look at it this way, you'll have a Doctorate in relationships when you're done.

So... Dr. VLinvictus, keep us posted.

Luv ya,
Carl



_________________________
Shawn and Ben will always be in my heart....

Happiness is like peeing your pants; Everyone can see it, but only YOU feel the warmth.

Peebles, Ohio WOR alumni, Oct. 2007

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#219742 - 04/22/08 04:46 PM Re: Couples counseling tonight [Re: Scoutvictim]
VLinvictus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 273
Loc: NY
Thanks, Carl,

I really appreciate the encouragement. It means more to me than I can say.

Especially when I seem to be going one step forward and two steps back.

Passover was this weekend, so I went to my friend's apartment in Manhattan for the seder as I do every year. Since the seder wouldn't end until long past the last train back north to the godforesaken suburban wasteland I live in, I spent the the night and came back the next morning.

For some reason, S was talking on Saturday about a certain cruising place where guys go for anonymous sex. I somewhat jokingly said he should go, but he said "I can't: I'm in a committed monogamous relationship."

I wanted to say "With whom?" but kept my mouth shut.

Grr. Will this process ever end?

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#220376 - 04/25/08 09:50 AM Re: Couples counseling tonight [Re: VLinvictus]
VLinvictus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 273
Loc: NY
Despite my fever and headache, last night's session was pretty significant.

S said that he does not see us as a couple and does not see us having any future as a couple -- and he's OK with that.

He expressed the same kind of concerns I had about the cruise. At first, when I told him about it, he thought it would be as a couple, to rekindle things. But then he thought about it some more and realized that it would not be.

I'm really impressed with him. He seems to be making much more progress than I thought him capable of. He's sad, of course, and that hurts me. But now the T says I have to work on continuing to separate myself from his feelings. He has a right to be sad, and that doesn't mean that I'm a bad person. Indeed, S even said that I'm not a bad person and this isn't all my fault.

I'm a whore, he sad, but not a bad person. \:\)

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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#220388 - 04/25/08 10:50 AM Re: Couples counseling tonight [Re: VLinvictus]
MemoryVault Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 03/01/07
Posts: 693
Loc: NJ
Wow, Dan --

Last week:
Quote:
S was talking on Saturday about a certain cruising place where guys go for anonymous sex. I somewhat jokingly said he should go, but he said "I can't: I'm in a committed monogamous relationship."


This week:
Quote:
S said that he does not see us as a couple and does not see us having any future as a couple -- and he's OK with that.


That's great. It's even more cool that you're getting what you need, or moving in the direction you need to go, without automatically feeling like a bad person. I remember your poem about wanting things--the voices from your past asking, "You want???"


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#221978 - 05/01/08 04:12 PM Re: Couples counseling tonight [Re: MemoryVault]
VLinvictus Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/05/07
Posts: 273
Loc: NY
So, Tuesday night -- wow. I'm still processing.

S said that he was resentful that it seemed like I rushed onto the bandwagon of separating rather than working on the relationship.

However, the T helped him realize that there is no relationship, really, to work on.

He admitted that that is the case and that he doesn't really find anything uniquely about me that he wants to be in a relationship with: he is just mourning the status of being in a relationship.

I've done my best to reiterate that I do love him even though I'm not in love with him, that I like him and enjoy his company, and that I'm committed to my obligations to the mortgage and the dogs.

So, we've got a lot of work to do and a lot of difficult discussions to have. Our home is to have a one-on-one conversation this week about the sleeping arrangements on the cruise -- whether to have the bed separate or together. I'm scared, and I made sure that there were rules that the conversation would not branch out beyond that. He agreed. We have yet to have the discussion.

We will then need to decide what to do about the sleeping arrangements at home, finances, etc. -- all conversations I really am not ready to have yet.

On the other hand, we are being more honest about the state of things.

However, he's not happy and I don't blame him. I think he's acting out passive-aggressively. I set my alarm for 6:15 AM this morning. When it went off, I thought that I could snooze till 6:30. Whether I screwed up setting the alarm or whether I unconsciously turned it off while sleeping, I don't know; but I woke up at 8:12, which meant I was an hour late for work when my boss had an early morning conference call from Israel I needed to coordinate.

This means, though, that he got up, got dressed, and went out the door without the slightest interest in waking me up. Now, it's my responsibility to make sure I get up and go to work on time, but one would think basic human decency would have demanded he at least nudge me awake.

\:\(

_________________________
We are all in the gutter, but some of us are looking at the stars.
~ Oscar Wilde

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