One thing I’ve found difficult the past several months is explaining how I feel about the relationship with Meredith and what I learned from it. Inside I can feel an enormous change, and I know I need to better define what that is to my wife. In our discussions it’s been very difficult to explain. She doesn’t understand. When we met with the counselor it was a little better, but even then I could tell there were huge areas I wasn’t clearly describing.
Describing complex feeling, desires, passions, and kinks was never my strong suit. I’ve never had to describe them before. They were just there. I knew them. I understood them. Now it feels like I’m trying to translate a book from a language I barely know.
When I was with Meredith we did discuss these feelings a lot. Too much actually. We are on such a similar wave length that it was easy. I could use my own language and she understood and vice versa. When I tried to explain things to my wife Meredith was always really good at helping me turn my thoughts into words. Meredith’s world is feelings, and she is very adept at unpacking them verbally. I thought perhaps I had learned from her or maybe I wasn’t that bad at it. Without her around now, though, it is clearly a struggle.
Everyday I think about this. How to describe what I’m feeling to my wife. They are the constant private conversations in my head. Yet I’m never able to voice them to her. It always comes out wrong or even when I nail it she still doesn’t understand. It’s very difficult.
One analogy I thought of this weekend I will share with you. When discussing desires with Meredith or my wife the conversations are usually small and numerous. Over time we have thousands of conversations or interactions in and around the arena of our desire for each other. It is how we learn about each other, and what we find exciting.
I picture each of us as magnets where one side repels and one side attracts. Each little part of a conversation either slightly repels or slightly attracts. As you travel through time you would bounce around between the two but generally fall into a groove or direction.
With my wife we settled into a pattern where I could never get too close. We keep bouncing around on the desire conversation with me fairly in the middle. I will ask for something or we will try something new and I’ll feel the attraction move up. Then she will tell me it wasn’t for her or in general show dissatisfaction and it will move back down. We have been in that dance for years. I kept hanging on to those moments of increase thinking they would keep building into greater and greater attraction thereby meeting my desires. But they never did.
With Meredith it was very different. We were both EXTREMELY hesitant to have any conversations about desire. I mean we were both married, wanted only to be friends, and had kinks that we were ashamed of. The conversations were slow and cautious. But they kept moving toward attraction. Each tiny little step forward never had a repellent aspect to pull us back toward the middle. Up, up, up we went! Had we both been single we would’ve been having mind blowing sex daily with lots of experimentation and a really wonderful cerebral relationship as well.
How then do I explain this magnet theory to my wife and possibly counselor. The gist is that there is no one single conversation that will change our sex life. There are millions of little daily interactions, and we don’t seem to connect in that space. Overall my wife does not desire what I desire and will constantly pull me up and then push me back down. Keeping me square in the middle.
Earlier I spoke of the shame of our kinky desires. It’s very true. Meredith and I both had that and eventually talked about it quite a bit. Our spouses sure didn’t help us to feel normal. In fact they indirectly fed the shame with their pureness, frequently rejecting the things we felt the most shame over. They don’t understand what that does to us.
Why then, you ask, did you both stayed married for so long to someone who made you feel that way? Well that is a very difficult question to answer and one in which hindsight provides a much clearer picture. The short answer is that we didn’t know. We both felt very insecure and ashamed for our desires. We found a partner who embodied all the things we felt a good person should be. They did not have our shameful desires, and that was what we felt we needed. Clearly we were outcasts for feeling the way we did, and we needed to suppress our desires and be more like our spouses.
It must be similar to being bisexual, and feeling ashamed of it. You find normal straight people very attractive so you just hide this other part of yourself. Society makes it very clear that it is undesirable behavior.
Then one day something happens which changes you forever. Perhaps you have an experience with a same sex partner. Or a long discussion with another bisexual friend and you realize that you don’t need to be ashamed. You can live your life. You can be you. Except you formed a life around the old you.
That is where it feels that I am. My life is formed and now I have uncovered this truth about me that changes everything I thought about relationships.