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You are right to comment that fear is the greatest hindrance in trying to figure out what I want and how to change. I just have to accept my fear but move forward anyways. like Matt commented. I read the article. I like how he said he had these fears that something bad might happen. That has been my main fear too; just expecting the worst. I think it really is a form of self protection. An excuse not to do it. Because the truth is we have NO control whatsoever of what will happen. What will be will be.
Thank for sharing with me!
Peace and Love,
Thank you for the kind welcome back! I appreciate the cyber embrace : ). I do love lists. It helps me sort out my scattered thoughts. I am slowly realizing that I don’t have to follow each thought though. I was especially touched by point number three. I remember a time when light flowed through me effortlessly. My presence of ease and calm made others feel that way too. For some reason, after I have become more self aware, it has been harder for me to be more free like that. I think I began to think obsessively or at least became more aware of my thinking (I used think three times in one sentence…lol). The self awareness sort of mutated into self consciousness. I began to constantly question every move I made, every motive, everything that I did. On the quest to heal and to become much more spiritual, I became too rigid. As a child, I grew up both catholic and evangelist. Both of which are fear based and judgment based religions. I keep bringing this into my spiritual practice. So I try my best to be compassionate and kind to myself but I keep acting like a sargent. I also keep trying to find exact rules to follow to attain enlightenment, although logically I know rules don’t exist. It isn’t about some magic formula or trying to even obtain a goal. It is like you said just simply being what I already am. You are so right to comment on trying to prove that I am strong enough to be lovable. Being jobless (luckily it was voluntary) has made me realize just how attached I am to what I do and how I used doing to create an identity for myself. Doing nothing has been pretty tough because I have nothing to distract me from me. I do trust that all will be well. I just have to learn to be patient and to let things simply be. I put too much pressure and expectations on myself. Thank you so much for your insight Matt! How are things for you? I hope all is well!
Sending Much Love,
Phool in Love = Brave heart in love,
Loving someone else is very brave. I really do believe in the phrase it is better to have loved than not have loved at all. In my humble opinion, your choosing to view her as a victim has two causes:
1. To avoid pain
2. Gender Roles
You loved her and more than likely still do. You were planning a future with her and never imagined she would do something like this to hurt you. You view her as a victim because to think of her as anything else would have painful implications. If you viewed her as someone willing to sabotage her relationship, then you may feel that you would have to let go of the love you have for her. The love you have for her may even transform into hateful or negative feelings, thus you keep looking at her as a victim so that you can still have some good feelings towards her. Instead, you direct those negative feelings to her colleague. It is far easier to feel negatively towards him because you didn’t have a close connection with him or feelings for him. Letting go is hard. I agree with Lee in allowing yourself to feel the pain, hurt, sorrow and anger of loss and betrayal. Just know that you don’t have to act on it or don’t have to create stories about the pain such as “I am a phool in love or how stupid was I. Or she betrayed me because I wasn’t good enough, etc”. It is sad to say but people always choose their own course of action regardless of what other people do. So her cheating truly has nothing to do with you. Ultimately, it was her choice.
Secondly, women are generally viewed as victims. We are viewed as saints, basically good, etc. However, men are viewed differently. Women are innocent until proven guilty. Men are guilty until proven innocent. Man has to strive for goodness and women already have it. I always thought that was funny because if Eve bit the apple, then shouldn’t women be viewed as sinners. Think about it. We say the sins of our fathers, not the sins of our mothers. When women do commit bad deeds, we find reasoning for it. For example, the snake tempted Eve. Again Eve fell victim to temptation. Women are victims, men are perpetrators. What happens when a man is a victim? This is a very lopsided, erroneous view of women. It creates lots of suffering for both men and women. Women strive to be good, even perfect. Repress anger or aggression then it becomes depression. More women than men are depressed. We are constantly trying to be the good girl even though we may not always have good feelings. So then an internal conflict is created. A split within ourselves. We are “supposed to be good” but we find flaws within ourselves. Instead of seeing it as natural, even beautiful, we become hostile towards our own selves. Critical of ourselves and of others. I truly find men to be a lot more forgiving and accepting than women. Maybe because men are expected to be flawed they are more understanding. Remember Adam wasn’t whole, he was missing a rib, he was flawed. Furthermore, if like me, you didn’t have a good, saintly, nurturing mother, you don’t really talk about this because it is taboo. Dads are sort of expected to be mediocre, absent or just flat out bad. However, when a mother is bad, children internalize this as there must have been something wrong with me. I know that male gender roles are also detrimental to men as well and men repress a lot too. In the end, we are all human. Male or female we are all capable of hurting or healing.
I am sorry for the pain she has caused you. I hope you will find healing and learn to trust again. Here is an article on TB about a man in your similar situation: http://tinybuddha.com/blog/forgiving-the-unforgivable-and-ending-your-own-suffering/. He talks about forgiving infidelity. He did this after 10 years so know that you let go of things at your own pace. You may also be surprised to discover that your heart may be ready to let go but your mind isn’t. I realized that when I have been mistreated, after being upset, my heart felt like letting go but my mind said no because I felt weak. I can tell you that you aren’t weak. I am TREMENDOUSLY proud of you for the response you gave to her. You responded sincerely, truthfully and you didn’t react. This doesn’t make you a sappy loser. Just for the record, from a women’s perspective your response will drive her crazy. She will be thinking “wow, he took that easier than I imagined. Maybe he didn’t really desire me that bad. Does he not care that I was with another man?” I hate to admit it but because of romance movies and novels, a lot of us women get excited when men give us an emotionally charged reaction. But this is just so that we know he has feelings for us, even if they are negative ones. Your cool, calm and collected response will make her insecure for a while. I would chase the guys that ignored me and ignore the guys that chased me. As wise as I am now, I hate to look back when I played these dumb, sensational, drama filled mind games. These are games of the mind not the heart.
As Matt said, there are plenty of women who are faithful. Furthermore, its sounds like you are on our own path to growth so just focus on you. Don’t stunt your own growth by being worried about hers.
ZenhenAugust 27, 2013 at 11:22 am in reply to: To stay or leave an emotionally unfulfilled relationship? #41275
5) Don’t be afraid of making the same mistakes, you won’t. You’ll make new ones. Ha ha!
This brought the biggest smile to my face! I cracked up so hard. Hearing this actually brought great relief! I don’t have a problem with mistakes just the same ones.
The post was long because I just felt like it was all a mess. I didn’t really know where to start. This really brought a lot of clarity and greater understanding of my situation. I really appreciate the insight, especially about the sex drive. I never thought of it as something that would remain even after the shame fades. I am slowly learning to embrace the drive and also my need for emotional connection and intimacy. These things don’t make me weak.
I am glad that your wife was able to open up. Deep down that is what I hope for him, even if it is not with me. I also know how it feels to not let anyone in. It is just sad to see someone closed off because he is not only closed off to me but to himself. I will present this to him. I hope he wants to step up. I know we both need to do what it takes to nurture a healthy relationship and there are things I need to let go of and things I need to let in too.
Btw thanks for introducing me to Ajahn Brahm. I have listened to three talks by him and have been so uplifted. I really appreciate it!
With Love and Gratitude,
This too shall pass. Just remember that and breathe a sigh of relief knowing that nothing is permanent. If people didn’t walk out of your life, voluntarily or otherwise, there wouldn’t be room for new people who could add to the pages in your book. Also think of things as a transformation. Summer becomes fall, fall becomes winter, etc. Change is only natural. Death is only natural. Both aren’t endings but transformations and both are constant and guaranteed. This can cause you some anxiety if you allow it to but it can also bring you great peace, tranquility and relief. If we viewed each moment as temporary, we wouldn’t take them for granted.
Also you may have some abandonment issues, which causes this fear of people leaving. Maybe someone wasn’t there for you or someone who should have been there left. Know that we were born alone and die alone. We are more than capable of being alone and standing on our own once we develop the inner strength. One can be alone and one can be lonely. Alone is wonderful. Lonely isn’t so much. One can be lonely in a crowd, one can be lonely among family, one can be lonely next to a lover. If loneliness is really your issue, then try to figure out why you feel lonely. The most beautiful thing is learning to be alone; learning that you alone are enough and also learning to be with others without needing to have them. Many times when we are with others, we are too busy preoccupied with our own self, our own thoughts, our own worries, needs, etc. Then when we are alone we feel lonely and long for the other. So when we are here, we really want to be there and when we are there, we want to be here. Maybe this fear of being alone has to do with you avoiding yourself. I struggled with this and forced myself to be alone. At first it was hard but I soon realized I enjoy my own company. Meditation is a good way to be comfortable with being alone.
I didn’t mean to be so blunt about death and lonesomeness. We fear these things and it causes a lot of unnecessary suffering. When we accept them as natural and essential then we can find freedom to be; freedom to be with ourselves and with others.
- This reply was modified 10 years, 3 months ago by Zenhen.
That makes me feel better! I really enjoy playing it at night right before bed. It helps me sleeps more soundly. I just couldn’t really do it. I will try the text prayer and also just try repeating it even if its through gritted teeth ; )
I am sorry for your struggles! It is good to know that I am not alone. I checked out the book on Amazon and it has great ratings. I think I will buy it. I will also google Sharon Salzberg to see if that helps any.
I like the way you frame your thoughts so you don’t allow them to get entangled with your identity. I think I really need to do some heavy mental work to be more mindful and focus on the thoughts that I am allowing in.
Acceptance is key. I was fighting it so much. I kept going to the doctor’s office hoping to find a cure for the physical aliments like fatigue and loss of appetite. I also keep saying, oh I am just in a funk, it will pass. Now I have finally just accepted that I am experiencing depression, it’s not a fleeting feeling, and it is unpleasant but it’s what I am going through right now. I am trying to be present to my suffering without being consumed by it as much as possible.
Thanks for your insight! I hope you recover soon too!
I definitely feel a lack of energy. What is strange is that I try to do things that will give me more energy, but I feel depleted afterwards. Usually, I feel very hyper after working out but lately I just feel more tired. I even did a 5k obstacle course race last weekend called Rugged Maniac. I thought it would give me the boost I needed. As I was crawling under bob-wire and sliding around in mud, I still felt pretty low. It was like Eeyore doing a race. I was successful and didn’t have trouble doing it but was so depressed. It was kinda funny and made me laugh. At least I can still be objective enough to laugh at myself.
I did blood work to check everything and I am low on Vitamin D and some digestive enzymes but nothing too significant to be a clear cause of the energy depletion. I think I just have to keep doing it, even if I don’t feel like it. I keep waiting for the moment I will feel like it but for now I just got to keep moving.
I will check out that talk on youtube tonight!
Thanks for your help!
Thanks for the film recommendation. I didn’t realize vimeo had full movies available. I watched the beginning. Seems interesting.
Thanks and I am glad that am not the only who struggles with certain meditations. I really appreciate your input!
It makes sense to me why you would dress baggy, without makeup… trying to deny, avoid and hide the sensual and beautiful body you’re in. If sensuality and sexuality brings pain, of course. However, you’re strong now! You can put a knee in the balls of an aggressor, and just because someone finds you beautiful doesn’t mean you have to open for them. You have choices now that you didn’t before, and its OK and safe for you to embrace your curves and features.”
Thanks so much for this. It is rather a matter of safety. And the sensuality and sexuality do bring pain. I need to understand that I am no longer helpless or powerless. This healing process is also about regaining my power. You are right, I don’t have to give in to everybody. I really need to learn this. I am getting better at it. I realized I felt that I wouldn’t be loved or liked otherwise. Part of beginning to love myself means having choices and creating boundaries. I won’t make ill choices based on desperation for love because I’m building self love.
“The penetration, the opening of your body to him is actually a small part of a greater surrender. ”
I really enjoyed your perspective on surrender and relaxing not just the body, but the mind and heart too. I like how these tickies or soft sensual vibrations are about waking up the senses and the body. I never preferred soft and slow, it felt boring. Now I see it was mainly my discomfort with intimacy and when you take your time, your forced to be present more. I do hope to experience the union you speak of and to discover what lies beyond orgasm. Now that I think of it, orgasms can be simply mechanical. It is not the end all and be all of sex. I also want to shift sexuality to sensuality.
I really hope I can find that union of heart, mind and soul with my partner, if not with another. I worry sometimes that I won’t find a good partner. I think that I need to do a lot of self work before I can have a partner. However, I have found that with issues like this, I can only work on it with a partner. How do I work on trusting without someone to trust, or on surrendering without someone to surrender to. So many times I want out of relationships but at the same time I have experienced such growth from them, even if they don’t last.
Thanks once again and have a great weekend!
The attack is a result of a stage called the emergency stage. It is quite normal. Here is a link explaining the different stages you may experience: http://www.archmil.org/offices/sexual-abuse-prevention/stages-healing.htm.
Thanks for your well wishes. I wish the best for you too!
I heard this song tonight on the radio…it reminded me a bit of our pain:
I did read your reply. Thank you very much for it. I have been letting it marinate for a while. I started thinking of my current sexual relationship and my past sexual relationships. The best sex I have ever had was with an abuse victim. He was raped by his step father and molested by his mother. Every time we made love it was as if we were healing each other. Without words, we just understood the undercurrents and knew how to work around the fragility. The sex was divine and because of him I became interested in sexual spiritual healing. However, it ended with us because he was an alcoholic and also he was 13 years my senior and I was barely 19. So looking back at my sex history, I feel like its never really been “normal”. I attracted plenty of people with fetishes or with sexual dysfunction or who feared emotional intimacy.
Until the other night with my boyfriend, I had felt that the abuse affected me emotionally but not sexually. Now that I look back, I am a bit sexual dysfunctional myself. I think I had lots of sex just to prove that I was okay. Engaging in it almost compulsively, then being very disappointed when I didn’t find god in an orgasm or love wrapped in a condom. I would go through periods of absolute promiscuity or complete celibacy. Also I started thinking about my body language. You mentioned in your reply that maybe he prefers the anal sex because when it is him doing the penetrating, I am adverse to it on an energetic level. I thought to myself but I want to be penetrated and I am not adverse to it. But then I started thinking about my body language. What was my body saying at the moment of penetration? Many guys always complimented me by saying “wow, you are so tight”. Now that I think about it, really I was just tensing up. I started focusing on what it was I felt right before a guy would go in. My stomach tenses up and my legs start to close a little bit, my hand is always placed on his hips kinda of pushing away a bit and I scoot up away from him. In the beginning it is always hard to get all the way in and they all say you are so tight. I didn’t realize this was tension. One guy actually told me to keep my legs open and this turned me on. It was like he gave me permission to feel it, to enjoy it, told me it’s okay to be open, to receive. My previous partner, the one who was abused too, would tell me that I was holding back and resisting. I truly didn’t think I was. I was having orgasms thus I thought I was fine.
Also my mind would be lost in fantasy. I would fantasize about having sex in public for some reason, in front of everyone. Now I realize this probably has to do with feeling shameful about sex and wanting to be okay with having open sexual desires that don’t have to be kept secret. The other thing I would fantasize about would be my partner having gay sex, while I watched. I would imagine another man being with us and all of us engaging together. Not like a gang bang but a bisexual threesome. I actually had the fantasy come to fruition and it only lasted 15 minutes because I was disgusted. It didn’t turn me on. Now, in retrospect, I think I was just fantasizing about the men engaging with each other and being penetrated because I was the one who really wanted to engage freely with a man. I believed that only men could express themselves sexually in a free way. The men also seemed less intimidating if they were penetrated.
I don’t really know. I just know I have some strange sex issues that I am figuring out. I am abstaining at the moment not due to fear like in the past but because I just want to figure some things out. When I do engage again, I want it to be fun, carefree, fantasy free, playful and most of all loving. I did service my boyfriend orally yesterday. This is something that is hard for me and I never liked to do it because it was something I was forced to do when I was being abused. When I did do it, I sometimes would feel disgusted, other times like a servant or other times like I was just trying to gain validation. Yesterday, I did it simply because I wanted to and did it out of love for him. At first, it felt a bit weird but I consciously made an effort to stay in the present moment and focus on him and on the physical sensations. I kept my eyes open, we locked gazes and whispered our love to each other. It was very beautiful and a big step for me. Afterwards, I started feeling a little angry and some shame. But I reminded myself that I am not angry about the present moment but the past. I put the anger where it belonged. I reminded myself that it’s not shameful to be sexual, have desire for another and to express it in a loving way. I didn’t let him touch me or try to please me and I was okay with that. I am going slow. I can see now and understand how I shut the energy down. How I never really allowed myself to receive, thus causing some tension in the lovemaking process.
I can also relate to you wanting to kill your masculinity. I hated my femininity for a long time. I saw being feminine as being a victim. My mother was raped and she was a victim of domestic violence. Being Latina, women are seen as weak and as second class. Being feminine meant putting others first, sacrifice and not getting a say. So I didn’t want to express my femininity because that meant I was carrying a license to be abused and hurt. I was called a tomboy and people could not understand this because they claimed I was too pretty to be so butch. My mother even accused me of being gay. I hated my body for a long time. I have a classic hour glass figure, pinup girl type body. I blamed my sexual curves for the abuse and dressed in loose clothing. I still don’t wear makeup today at the age of 27. I put it on only for special occasions. I am slowly trying to dress sexier without feeling awkward. It took me a long time to accept my femininity. It took redefining what it meant. It is still hard for me. Sometimes I do still think to be a woman means to submit. But I am finding my own definition. Once I reconcile this masculine/feminine split and find a balance, I am sure that engaging sexually with men will come easier.
I am so glad that you are sharing your light and experiences with us. I am also glad you stated it too is difficult for you. I started this thread and am grateful for all the feedback but sometimes it is hard to reply. However, it has been sooooooooo helpful and healing to share with you and others. It is funny how I would often read your replies before I created this thread and felt connected to you. I never thought I could learn this much from you and connect with you like this. Even though, we don’t know each other, I feel you have helped me so much. I am so glad that you found yourself and found love for yourself and your wife. I am inspired by your love for each other. I hope to build a mindful and loving relationship like that one day.
Take Care and sending you my love and light,
No worries Danger!
I didn’t mean to write with girls of the opposite sex..obviously the girls are the opposite sex…lol! See girls aren’t perfect…we make mistakes too ; )