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So, we tried some different things and never did follow-up with how they went.

First, 30 days without sex. Prior to the 30 days, he would scrunch up close to me, with his hands caressing me here and there. His arm laid heavily over me. I inevitably would feel like I was sleeping on the edge of our bed and ask him if we could move more to the middle. Sometimes I just wanted to be held gently and tenderly.

The first week of no sex, I noticed not as much affection. I asked about this and he stated he did not realize that was the case. The affection picked-up. During the second week, when holding me at night, I noticed it wasn’t as tightly, his arm wasn’t as heavy around me and he wasn’t as handsy  as prior to this 30-days no sex period.  It was really nice. The affection from him felt more relaxed and gentle and I really did like that a lot.

Since the 30 days are over, I can feel it slipping back. I really don’t know what to do about this because after years of him not initiating, I so want him to be the one to initiate. On the other hand, I also want affection for its own sake. So, yes, during the 30-day no sex period I did feel a difference in affection for its own sake versus affection geared towards sex. We need to work on this conundrum!

Second, “today I recognize. . .” For the last month, once per day, MC comes up with one thing to share with me to recognize the contributions or difficulties I experienced as a result of his being an SOB for so many years. Sometimes they are positive contributions that I made to our family that he had ignored or minimized in the past. Sometimes they are sad, lonely  moments for me that were a result of his selfishness. And, then he will apologize and tell me why it is different today. What he is doing to ensure it is different today. We had, I had, gotten into this horrible pattern of rehashing something, anything at bedtime. I think it is because these things are still on my mind (I have a hard time turning my mind off for sleep) and I needed to know that it was on his too.  So, I made sure it was. Somehow, the “today I recognize” has nipped this in the bud. That’s not to say I don’t respond sometimes with a question. But, more often than not, I just absorb what he is telling me and it somehow calms me.

Third, he is working on sharing immediately any memory that flashes through his mind about his affairs and also about any current situation that in the past he would have sought to act selfishly. I want to know all the tiny little details. I also want to know all the situations today that in the past would’ve been threats, even if they are not today. While he has done a lot to tell me these details, “our story” of this blog was his attempt to give me that, I want all the tiny pieces of the puzzle that may still be out there. For 18.5 years, others (i.e., affair partners) knew more about my marriage than I did. They had windows, where I had walls. I want ceiling-to-floor, wall-to-wall windows. He is trying to fill in any small little blanks that might be left out there. He is working on telling all that comes into his thoughts the minute it is there. Not minimizing anything to himself, not telling himself he would tell me some other time when a-z was just right, but just telling me, whether at home in person or calling from work. He is working on this without me asking, “Any memories to share?” or “Anything happen today to tell me about? “But, I find myself still asking occasionally. This to me is the difference between active vulnerability and passive vulnerability. Active tells immediately, freely, without filters, bias and in spite of any fear. Passive waits for me to ask. He is doing so much better on this. But, it is a work in progress.


3 thoughts on “Housekeeping

  1. Did you implement “sensate focus”? It means no sex (as in genital sex and penetration) but it means learning to know what you like. I adapted a program on this I can send it (in private) if you want it, I have found the existing programs too clinical and too rigid. It was something that would put me off totally!

    I am struggling with what partnership means, What does it means when you husband or wife is a partner for life? Does it means sharing without having to ask?

    I know It does not mean letting the one person go ‘solo” and post facto tell you whatever they want to tell or already have decided. Often colleagues know more and I am not talking about technical or financial issues….To me that is no partnership. When wife and husband are partners they want to share, the funny things, the frustrating things etc. They tell their partner and not their colleagues..the latter is asking for problems.

    What do you think partnership in marriage is?


    Liked by 1 person

    1. E.

      We didn’t try a specific program. We do have some sensuality games, but need to carve out alone time to try them. We would definitely be up for trying your adaption to the sensate program.

      When I think of a lifetime partner, the one core thing I want above all else is honesty. More specifically, I want authentic, honest, sharing of thoughts, feelings, ideas, temptations, funny musings, joys and sorrows, successes and failures, hopes and fears, and everything in between with each other. And, yes, my hope is these things would be shared with each other without having to ask.

      I do find this happens more on our walks. And, sometimes we just enjoy talking about news, politics, science, philosophies, etc. These tend to be the topics when kids join us on our walks or at the dinner table and it is a great joy to see them share their ideas. Ultimately, I think a lifetime partnership, at its core, is also a friendship. And, I do feel like I am getting my friend back. I think, above all else, that is why I am still here.

      TL xx

      Liked by 2 people

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