Thursday, October 27, 2011

Three years on...

It's amazing to me that it's been three years since I took my vow of celibacy.

Life has changed so much in that relatively short time.

For a year I trained myself -- cold turkey -- out of my libido.

Then Sue and I reconnected a bit and talked about it. We had several long conversations. Well, they didn't feel hugely long to me, but by Sue's standards, they would have been marathons!

The upshot is that Sue felt the best way forward was to try to "prime the pump." She still had no libido, but she wanted to reawaken it. So we discussed that we would... be intimate... every couple of weeks.

What a disaster!

She clearly did NOT want to be there. And if she didn't want to be there, I didn't want to be there, either. And I most certainly did not want her to be there when she didn't want to.

It felt terrible!

But she bit the bullet and insisted that this was what she wanted to do. She wanted to be intimate without any libido in the hopes that the physical intimacy would re-spark her amorous feelings.

She tried the classic, "lie back and think of England" thing.

I was reminded also of the old joke:
Q: what does the young bride say during sex?
A: "faster, faster!!!"
Q: What does the mistress say during sex?
A: "Slower, slower...."
Q: What does the wife with no libido say during sex?
A: "White! I think I'll paint the ceiling white!!!"

She wanted to do this, despite her lack of libido. She made that abundantly clear. And yet I still felt a bit of a rapist. She was so clearly, so very, very clearly not present in her body, in the moment, with me.

It felt so... exploitative. And not the least bit enjoyable. For either of us.

This went on for about seven months before we finally gave up.

We tried having her give me back rubs for awhile, as a more low key way of making a physical connection. (She wouldn't have her back be rubbed. She had no desire to be massaged or touched at all.... whether back, foot, hand, scalp or wherever.)

Well, that didn't last long. It was a bit forced.

Strike that. It was VERY forced.

I guess she liked the idea intellectually, but emotionally she dragged her metaphorical feet to the "task".

So that fell by the wayside after two or three massages.


So, there we are in May or June 2010, back to celibacy, back to a complete lack of physical intimacy.

It dragged on and on and on.

And I'm used to it now. It's no longer a huge deal for me. I don't expect sex with her, I don't anticipate it, I don't even hope for it.

It's simply not on the cards.

And that means I no longer get rejected, and I no longer feel hurt. I no longer lust after her. We have become more and more like roommates.

And so it has been from then to now.

There is more to say: about how she told me, quite bluntly, a year ago that she wanted us to split up; about how I still have a libido, even if neither the same sense of frustration nor of hope; about how our difficult children are getting easier; about how I upgraded my professional status and my car (two things she was very keen on me doing), and how it "went down like a cup of cold sick".

I could go on and on and on.

And, like it or not, gentle reader, I shall! ;)

I have reread almost all of what I wrote in 2008 and 2009, and I am amazed at how much I have forgotten: Thoughts that I had had; incidents that had occurred; patterns that were entrenched even then.

This last point -- the entrenched patterns -- is a serious wake up call for me.

We had a series of major natural disasters in our town over the last year, turning life a bit upside down. (Can you be just a bit upside down?!?)

And I find that I have been retreating mantras that were near identical to forgotten mantras from three years ago.

Three years ago, it was: "Ok, you can do it. Just ten more months, and then things will be better. Ok, you can do it. Just six more months, and then things will be better. Ok, you can do it, just three more weeks and things will be better."

It was like waiting for Godot!

And what strikes me now is that I am waiting in much the same way. "Ok," I think, "just wait til the first anniversary of the last natural disaster. We've all been affected. We all need to clear our heads. After that, things will be better."

In the immortal words of Yogi Berra: "It's like Deja Vu all over again!"

So, for me, this is no longer a blog about sex, celibacy, intimacy and lost libido. For the moment, at least, all of that is so far off the chart as to be irrelevant.

Now I am thinking about things like: loneliness and love; our children; whether she will ever snap out of the depression she seems to have fallen into; whether I can do anything to help; and how I can best look after myself through all this mess.

Ok, it's late. I'm tired. More on this another time.