Wednesday, July 19, 2017

Open Marriage Watch, Week Four: A Game of Inches

I entered this week's counseling session knowing that, with DW on her period, she might be more emotional than normal, and not necessarily in a good way. Typically, when she gets emotional during her period, she can be explosive in anger, inconsolable in sadness, and overall totally irrational. I felt glad to see that she didn't go there after all.

DW wanted to go straight into talk about sex, which, while it seemed like a good sign, was full of potential pitfalls.  We began by recounting for the therapist that we'd spent some quality naked time in bed, and that she'd jacked me off on one of those occasions. DW seemed pleased with that, and in general, I was too. But, as my headline states, this is a game of inches. We are moving forward at a snail's pace, at least in my mind. And I am still initiating all of it.  Well, almost all of it. This morning, she invited me into the shower, after she'd gotten cleaned up. But by the time I was ready to join her she was turning off the water.  I misjudged her routine and thought that after she cleaned up she'd linger in there, but she didn't see me so she just ended her shower.  I apologized and offered a rain check. Probably later this week.

I had a couple of missteps during this session, particularly at one point where I was trying to explain my context around finding a solution to our incompatibility problem. I don't believe that DW can get on my page sexually, and that she's unaware that she's asexual.  However, I'm more than willing to go down the path of experimentation to test that belief, and I'm more than willing to be wrong, and to admit it. Win-win, right? But when DW told me that she feared she wouldn't be able to provide me the same things sexually that Mel could, I saw that as my opportunity to offer my context, But I then fumbled my words. "I don't really think you can," I said in reply. This came from the place of not believing that DW would ever be sexually adventurous enough to give me a rim job, or go down on another woman, or let another woman go down on her, or consent to being fucked by another man in front of me (these are all things that I would insist would be part of my sexual experience going forward, with or without DW). This response invited all sorts of questions, both from DW and the therapist, and it felt a little like emotional mortar shells raining down on me.  DW still plays, over and over in her mind, pictures and imaginary video of Mel and me in bed, happily fucking our brains out. And whatever she can picture is true, of course, and then some. Mel and I had a fantastic sexual connection, and had it gone on for an extended period of time, I think it would have replaced the one I'd had with C/Hayden, which is still the best ever. I was able to clarify, however, and said that I had concerns over whether DW would, as we progressed, overcome her own self-imposed sexual boundaries and really try to enjoy the journey, and that if she did overcome them and discover her sexuality was truly not that adventurous, she would not be able to handle it emotionally if I satisfied my needs with another woman.

She validated my concerns almost immediately when she said that she believed that Mel was beginning to have feelings for me at the time she discovered my involvement with her. She based that on the fact that I'd paid for Mel to Uber to and from work one day when her car had broken down. This, to her, was a sign that Mel had started to see me as some sort of a rescuer. "She could have asked a co-worker to get back home, but instead she went back to you.  You'd set a boundary with her that was supposed to be strictly sexual, and when you didn't say no to it. She was probably starting to fall for you." "I understand how you can see it that way," I said, "but the reality is far less charged than that. She asked for a favor, she offered to pay me back, and I agreed. And she would have, had we continued to see each other." I know that didn't go over well, either.  The truth was that Mel did have feelings for me.  She called me the best lover she'd ever had, and that our connection went beyond the sexual. I definitely had feelings for her too, but like nearly all the others before her, they would never have amounted to anything because I'm in love with DW.  In the end they never got to be fleshed out, so it doesn't really matter.  The boundary held.

DW maintained that the arrangement should have been a purely sexual one. "Again," I said, "understood. But the truth of this arrangement -- and I suppose any arrangement that I would be involved in -- is that she and I were on friendly terms. That made the sex more fun for both of us."  This seemed to alarm DW because it never occurred to her that any extramarital sexual partner I had would become a friend.  In future conversations, I'll have to clarify that anything less than that would feel like the transactional sex one would have with a prostitute, and that's not my preference in an extramarital partner.  Her concerns about this seemed to be amplified somewhat, so I now see what needs to happen next. She needs an education about what an extramarital relationship looks like, and to be asked whether she prefers me to risk arrest and infections with prostitutes who can fuck multiple partners per day. She needs to see that men aren't that different from women in that they want to care about the partners they're fucking. I know it's possible that a man can find a prostitute to see on a  regular basis who gets him off consistently, and that over time a connection can develop, but even in those cases the clock's always ticking, and there will nearly always have been some other dick inside her before I see her. In reality, men like it when they like the women they're fucking, and it enhances the enjoyment of the sex.  Boundaries can be set to limit the advancement of any emotional connection, including limiting the involvement to no more than a few months before moving onto someone else.

I realize in writing this post that it seems like I'm again playing the end before I go through the process. It's extremely hard for me not to do that, knowing what I know about DW after nearly 20 years together. Let me spell it out again, for anyone who hasn't read this entire blog:
  • No intercourse since January 2015
  • No going down on her since July 2014
  • No blow job from her since 2006!
  • Her not liking to have her breasts touched, fondled, sucked, or kissed since 2005
  • Her not liking erotica of any kind, from literature to porn to Cinemax
  • Her never having masturbated to orgasm in her life
  • Her saying in 2009 that she didn't care if she ever had sex again
  • Her saying in 2012 that she mostly had sex with me because the relationship needed it, not because she wanted it.
  • Her saying two weeks ago that her first awareness of her sexuality came at age 18 when she had sex for the first time, more than 30 years ago.
On that last point, DW said in the session that she had interpreted the therapist's question about her sexual awakening to mean actually having intercourse.  So I posed the question in a different way, asking, "When did you first become aware of sexual feelings in your body or mind?" She said it was when she'd first seriously kissed a boy, at age eleven. But the truth is that she never fully indulged those feelings for whatever reason.  I'll need to ask more about that in the future.

One other major moment during the session came near the end. The therapist asked me if, should DW make a sincere effort to expand her sexual vocabulary, but couldn't for some reason get comfortable with all I wanted to do, I would agree to compromise and accept what DW had to offer sexually as enough. This was one of those moments where she, on DW's behalf it seemed, was testing my terms and whether they were rock-solid. My answer was very plain: "I'm excited to go on this journey with my wife and see where it leads. But I'm not going to compromise on my sexuality. This is a term. I'm not going to agree to limit myself because in my heart, in the context of a trusting long-term relationship, like the one ours is becoming by the way, anything and everything should be available. We should try anything, do anything, and at least talk about everything.  I'm not suggesting we have to do something wild, something adventurous, every time. I don't need to have a threesome every week, OK?  But those things should be available sometimes."  DW nodded her head and said, "That's fair."

I have nearly fully laid the groundwork for the possibility that, if DW can't or won't be able to get on the same page as me, I get to seek fulfillment in other ways, with other partners. Time will tell if she can find peace with the knowledge that her husband would be fucking someone else.  A yes means she trusts me and we survive; a no means she doesn't trust me and we don't survive.  It's that black-and-white.


Clarence Beaujoint said...

I do not find It fair That because your needs have changed over time you now expect her to fulfill them. She changed too and is willing to go back the way it was but you are not... It might be hard for her to deal with it but just tell That she isnt enough anymore. Is It not harder to make her believe That if she has sex with you It Will be fine when you know you Will always need more ? It could drive both if you crazy...
No sex for months is inhuman already, when you're married It becomes a duty, if she doesnt feel like she can fulfill your needs, but doesnt want a divorce, she should be fine with closing her eyes on your behaviour with other women from time to time...
Sorry my english isnt perfect :)

Downtown LASD said...

Thank you for your comments, Clarence. I'll be posting a response in a bit.

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