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Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419028
02/01/17 07:06 PM
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Orchid2 Online
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She is being manipulative and I'm not sure why that is ok. Glad you said no (as long as you had valid reasons).

You know why my WST didn't tell me stuff? One of his reasons was that 'I would not agree or say no.' So he made major purchases (purchase a work truck that I had to finance, went on trips with other people and spent my $$$$ without asking or consulting me, etc.

After a while that gets old......... maybe now I'll be able to save some $$$. wink

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Orchid2] #419042
02/02/17 02:41 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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We are both manipulative. She tries to manipulate me to spend money. I try to manipulate her to stay married to me.

So ironic. When I used to tell her how I felt about her and was sincere and meant every word, she did not believe me and thought I was lying to try to get into her pants. Now that I am not trying to get into her pants she believes what I say to her even though now I am saying it even when I don't actually feel it - because that is the type of husband I want to be and I want her to stay with me so I say the things I know I should say whether I feel them or not. The truth got me scorn and the little white lies get me hugs and kisses and smiles and what appears from the outside to be real love and appreciation on her part.

That is part of why I feel bad about myself - I don't share my inner truth with her. And that is why I will never share my truth with her. When I did in the past I got punished and now that I lie I get rewarded. Funny world we live in.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419052
02/02/17 04:28 PM
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Originally Posted By: holdingontoit
...The truth got me scorn and the little white lies get me hugs and kisses and smiles and what appears from the outside to be real love and appreciation on her part.

That is part of why I feel bad about myself - I don't share my inner truth with her. And that is why I will never share my truth with her. When I did in the past I got punished and now that I lie I get rewarded. Funny world we live in.


So let me see if I get that. Your reward is a charade? Truly?
That's the sum and substance of your reward?

Hold, you are selling yourself way short.
You are worthy of so much more than a mere shallow charade.
And even that you have to work for constantly.

You are Silas. And she is your corporal mortification.
You'd make a great early Christian...

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: TC_Manhattan] #419064
02/02/17 08:05 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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TC: No, I think the love and appreciation on her part are genuine. That is the irony. She could not bring herself to love me without hesitation back when I was trying to have sex with her. She held back because fully loving me would have put pressure on her to have sex with me and feeling obliged to have sex triggers her PTSD.

Now that we don't have sex, she can relax and allow herself to love me fully. Of course, now that we don't have sex, I have to hold back emotionally. Opening myself to her fully would rekindle my sexual desire for her. And these days, the thought of allowing myself to desire her sexually triggers my PTSD.

I keep telling you, we are perfectly matched! This is so much like an O Henry story.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419070
02/02/17 08:40 PM
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Is there care in this R, enough to sustain the dysfunction?

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Orchid2] #419072
02/02/17 08:49 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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Orchid: Yes, there is lots of care. I got a nice hug and a couple of sweet kisses on the cheek this morning. That is 3 more signs of Affection in one day than I got on most days back when we were doing MC or ST. Then it was a cold war. Now it is warm and pleasant. I like warm and pleasant. If the only way to get to warm and pleasant is to refrain from sex, so be it.

I am not interested in spending even 1 day back in cold war in the hope that we might find a way to have both caring touches and sex. I am choosing to continue to get caring touches. That is my goal. I do what I can for Mrs. H so she continues to be motivated to stay with me and provide caring touches.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419074
02/02/17 08:53 PM
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Care is more than a hug or a kiss.

True care shows action that the needs of the other is given fair consideration and enacted upon. It does not work well when it is one-sided between 2 consenting adults.

jmo,
Orchid

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Orchid2] #419077
02/02/17 11:16 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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We both care. We both try to love the other person the way they want to be loved. We both fall short in our capacity of providing what the other needs. I am convinced that she loves me dearly. Much more than she did when we first got married. Much more than she did while we were doing MC. I think my being faithful and attentive and complimentary to her despite the scars and the changes to the shape and size and texture of her body have impressed her. I think when you are a very beautiful and sexy lady and get lots of male attention and kinda take it for granted and then you get older and then you get cancer and then your hair falls out and your skin gets thin and scaly and you look in the mirror and you don't like what you see but your husband tells you that you are beautiful to him and he wolf whistles every time he sees you naked, that you feel loved in a way that you didn't feel years ago.

I think she used to hold back on caring for me out of fear that if she was pleasant and affectionate that I would pressure her for sex. And she was correct. I would have. Now I don't. She loves me more for that. And she tries in her way to care for me. And she would even be willing to have sex with me more often if I initiated more often. Who knows, she might even be willing to have sex with me once a week on a regular basis. That was my "holy grail" during MC and ST.

I don't begrudge her the level of care she provides because I am not trying to obtain more care from her. I don't want it. I want to be the one who provides more care for her than she provides for me. I want to be the one who is making the greater sacrifice for the relationship. I want to be the one who cares less and thus has more power. And as long as I mostly refuse to have sex with her, I am. So I will continue refusing. Because I care about the power more than I care about the sex or being happy or being open and honest or any other aspect of our relationship.

Early in our marriage, she refused to let me care for her because she did not want to "owe" me. I used to complain that she would not give me any credit for anything I did for her. It seemed she cared more about not feeling obliged to have sex with me than she cared about whether either of us was happy to be married to the other. I told her that marriage should be about giving the other person everything you have to give and being open to allowing the other person to be generous and caring.

Now I am the person refusing to let her care for me. And I see that I was wrong and she was correct. It is much more satisfying to be the person who refuses to give the other spouse credit for anything they try to do for you. Lonely. But you are much less vulnerable. When I allowed myself to pressure her for sex, she could not afford to be vulnerable to me. I was not safe for her to be open with. Since she continues to pressure me financially, I refuse to allow myself to be emotionally vulnerable to her. I do not view her as safe for me to be open with.

Perfect match. O Henry. Irony. Tables turned. Tragedy. Farce. All of life rolled into one tiny insignificant marriage. Shakespeare would have a field day with us.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419078
02/02/17 11:25 PM
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Originally Posted By: holdingontoit
I want to be the one who cares less and thus has more power. And as long as I mostly refuse to have sex with her, I am. So I will continue refusing. Because I care about the power more than I care about the sex or being happy or being open and honest or any other aspect of our relationship.


So this is your life script in a nutshell..

Tis all about power, not love.
Sounds like the joker in the White House.
How scary and sad.. shocked

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: TC_Manhattan] #419105
02/03/17 06:49 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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I tried going for love uber alles at the start of our marriage and for many years after. I got burned big time. I realize that Mrs. H might actually be trustworthy now in matters of the heart. I am too fearful to see if that is the case. She as a former rape victim was too afraid to trust me at the start of our marriage. By the time she learned to trust me, I lost faith in myself.

Not scary. But very sad.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419119
02/03/17 10:45 PM
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Hey, Hold...

I get that this is your balance...what you evolved over several years to combat your torment. I'm okay with your trade offs, with this self-treaty.

Thing is, doesn't it leave out your wife? Do you believe compliance is agreement?

And how would this be a tragedy if it is what you want? Tragedy for you, for her or the marriage?


The Paradoxical Commandments

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Recovered 10 years
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Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: LovingAnyway] #419129
02/04/17 02:48 AM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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She made the ground rules for our marriage. Each person for themselves. I argued for years that I wanted a joint / mutual marriage. She told me I was foolish and weak. In the end she convinced me of the virtues of her position. If she now feels she was in error, I feel no guilt in telling her it is too late to change her mind.

I was compliant in the absence of sex for decades. Her body, her choice. She said no, I accepted that. Do you think my compliance was agreement? Again, she made the ground rules. Compliance is acceptance. Desire or agreement is not relevant. If you aren't getting what you want from the marriage, that is your own fault. Your spouse is under no obligation to provide anything just because you desire it.

The tragedy is that she may now be willing to provide what I dreamed of and longed for and desperately desired for so many years. Unfortunately, by the time she became willing to provide what I spent so many years begging for, I no longer want it. In fact, I take pleasure in spurning it. That is the tragedy. If she had decided to provide it sooner, we both would have been immensely happy. As it is, she is sufficiently but not overwhelmingly happy, and I am a total mess.

Tragedy for me, and her, and the marriage. I don't want this in the abstract. This is not the marriage I prayed for when I was single or in the early years of our marriage. This is the marriage I prefer over the alternatives I view as available.

This is the risk minimization marriage. Not the satisfaction maximizing marriage. Tragedy that we will never know the satisfaction maximizing marriage because I am too weak and too fearful to move from where we are to where we might arrive. The road ahead has hairpin turns on the edge of steep cliffs. I would rather stay here in the dark shadow at the valley floor rather than climb the steep path up to the mountain top. The view there might be spectacular. But I am too afraid to fall off the cliff to take even one step along the path upward.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419194
02/05/17 03:58 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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The previous post is very dark. In reality, my day to day marriage is very pleasant. As I have said, Mrs. H is more loving and affectionate than at any point in the past. I enjoy our marriage today far more than at any time in the past. If I have to sacrifice Sexual Fulfillment for the current level of Affection, at this point it is a trade I willingly make.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419209
02/05/17 06:26 PM
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I wish your fears were not holding you back. frown

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Orchid2] #419231
02/06/17 02:05 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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Why? I have the power to forgive her for making me choose between 2 important needs. She doesn't do it out of cruelty. She does it for the same reason I make so many foolish choices: pain and fear. If I were wise, I would forgive myself and forgive her and move on. I choose to stay trapped. The prison is within my own mind. I am comfortable here.

There is no way of knowing for sure that my being "brave" would lead to a better place. Or that, even if it did, that getting there would not involve much pain and damage to Mrs. H, our kids, etc. Don't wish for me to be brave. Wish for me to be wise and to forgive. Where I am now is quite beautiful in the grand scheme of things. Wish or pray for me to appreciate it more.

Here is one thing I appreciated yesterday. Mrs. H was getting ready for work early in the morning. she was wearing a short robe which hung open. She started talking about work or the kids or something in her life that she wanted to share with me. After a few sentences, I interrupted her to say: "you are sitting in front of me in a short robe that is falling open to reveal everything. You do understand that I am unable to hear a word you are saying, right?" She smiled and maybe giggled and pulled her robe closed and said I am silly and strted her story over. I see that as a positive interaction. She was only slightly annoyed but also pleased that I still care when her robe falls open. Earlier in our marriage she would not have smiled and she would have been very annoyed that I wasn't paying attention. And probably more annoyed that I found her naked body distracting. She didn't want me to be distracted by her body. Now she likes it.

To me, that is a huge improvement in our marriage. That is a way that I can now be me, the real me, the man that I am. I don't have to hide who I am. Hopefully I can appreciate more about where we are today and let go of where we were before. But as my name says, I have trouble letting go.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419232
02/06/17 02:12 PM
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Originally Posted By: holdingontoit
If I were wise, I would forgive myself and forgive her and move on.

NO - you would forgive your self and her and move forward.
You dont need to move on but forward is a must.

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Rich57] #419234
02/06/17 02:22 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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Yes, that is what I meant. Forward. Not leave her. Forgive both of us and appreciate what we have together.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419421
02/10/17 03:55 PM
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Great day with Mrs H while snowed in yesterday. She was warm and friendly and affectionate. Let me kiss her. She usually turns her head to the side to avoid it. We are getting along so much better these days.

She gave indications she would have been open to sex. I deflected. I do not want to go there.

I need to keep repeating that this is what I always wanted (besides the lack of sex, and the lack of sex is my choice) so I should revel in how she treats me and drop the resentment. So hard to drop it. Need new tape in my head.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419422
02/10/17 04:36 PM
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Lots of built up resentment to let go of would definitely be difficult.

Ever thought of having the mindset that you have an entirely new marriage/relationship with a different woman since your wife's cancer scare? The previous marriage before that no longer exists?

Or does this mindset create too much anxiety due to the need to succeed in the bedroom?

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419509
02/14/17 03:32 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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Best start to a Valentine's Day in years. Surprised Mrs. H with presents and flowers and cards hidden around the house. She seemed very appreciative.

I have what I always wanted. Time to stop allowing resentment from past hurts to ruin everything.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419510
02/14/17 03:38 PM
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Are you truthfully going to allow the resentment to stop? I'd love to see you follow through with it. How appropriate it could be for it to occur on Valentine's Day night!

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Oblivious2678] #419544
02/15/17 02:47 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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Who knows the future. I am open to letting go of the resentment. That has not been the case in 12 years.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: holdingontoit] #419551
02/15/17 03:21 PM
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Good for you sir. High risk, high reward, but I think in your case, the risk has been diminished considerably.

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Oblivious2678] #419561
02/16/17 12:19 AM
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Virtual hugs for you, Hold. It's a big choice, but you have the tenacity to accomplish anything you set your mind to!

Re: Am I still a doormat? [Re: Blair] #419986
03/06/17 06:17 PM
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holdingontoit Offline OP
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We have been getting along very well. Mrs. H far more affectionate. Far more appreciative of my good points. Far more accepting of my weaknesses. I enjoy our time together more than ever before. Starting to feel glad I waited this out rather than foolish for wasting so many years.


Solutions? There are none. There are decisions.
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