Realizing the New Me

Discussion in 'Ages 40+' started by TryingHard2Change, May 8, 2018.

  1. [Entry #1]

    "Background / Intro"

    This is my second journal .. my first journal is located at this link -- it chronicles my finding NoFap and changing/evolving from Nov 26, 2017 - May 6, 2018. If you want to hear my complete story which started with my DDay on June 1, 2017 .. please start there. (quickest recap possible: married for 21 years; 6 kids; porn addict for the entirety of our marriage; currently doing an in-house separation; marriage restoration/reconciliation very much still up in the air)

    This is my new journal / this is a new beginning. I didn't relapse / I didn't fall back into my 20+ year addiction of PM'ing .. this new beginning is about a shift in focus => realizing the new me

    ..

    I took great thought at what I wanted to name my new journal. And this phrase came to me "Realizing the New Me" -- it sounds so basic, ordinary, maybe even plain. But, if you lookup the definition of the simple word realize:
    =====================
    1. become fully aware of something as a fact; understand clearly
    2. cause something desired or anticipated to happen
    3. give actual or physical form to
    =====================

    All three of these definitions fit in their own way:
    * I want to be fully aware of the new person I am / the new person I am becoming
    * I SSSOOO desire the new me to be already here, present [I know it is not]
    * I want to embody this new me, fully and completely

    ..

    Whereas my previous journal gravitated towards the ups and downs of my marriage relationship (mostly downs) -- this journal is going to focus more on me, my slow and steady growth, my journey of fully realizing the new me.

    As of writing this journal, I have been PMO-free for 168 days -- an amazing feat, yet I still feel dazed and confused .. I feel unsure about so many things. My focus has been on my broken marriage. And as much as I want to fix that -- I have to start with myself. Simply being abstinent from PM'ing is not enough; simply reading and helping others on NoFap is not enough. I need to fully come into my own / fully realize the new me --- the independent me ... not the married-husband-in-a-broken-marriage me.

    DON'T GET ME WRONG => I am not abandoning my marriage / my husbandry. Rather, I am focusing on being a man / a husband my wife wants to be married to.

    ..

    I think that is a good enough Intro for right now. I have other thoughts as to format and content breakout. As well as short, medium and long-term goals. But I'll explain those in journal entries the next few days.

    Onward and upward!
     
  2. Kenzi

    Kenzi Fapstronaut

    Yessss!!!
    First one here!!!
    *fist pumping action* :)
     
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  3. Jneilson75

    Jneilson75 Fapstronaut

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    I like this direction you are taking. It is optimistic and forward looking. I wish you all the best as you continue your journey.
     
  4. BetrayedMermaid

    BetrayedMermaid Fapstronaut

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    I’m very much looking forward to your entries of becoming the new you! I’m literally excited for you! I think it’s such a good step- your focus on creating YOU!
     
  5. Brooklyn Jerry69

    Brooklyn Jerry69 Fapstronaut

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    You sure have shown you are determined to beat this addiction, it soil be done.
     
  6. Question w/o Answers

    Question w/o Answers Fapstronaut

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    Be at peace, brother. You are, in so many ways, already there.
     
  7. Torn

    Torn Fapstronaut

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    I always appreciate your contributions, support, and sharing here. Following!
     
  8. vxlccm

    vxlccm Fapstronaut

    You've done a great job finding your way thus far. A very well-documented journey no less. I've spoken about something before, and this isn't to negate everything else, just to add to what's on your horizon. Realizations about your new self will have a whole new meaning after 365. I promise.
     
  9. [Entry #2]

    "Structure & Goals"

    How do I want to structure my new journal? I see many different styles of journals / discrete sections of checklists or fill-in-the-blanks. I'm not sure exactly how I want to do it. What is it I am trying to accomplish with my journal??

    My previous journal was just like a diary of the going-on's that day / that week. I want more structure than that. But, I also want to capture any major events or important things occurring--I want to capture REAL LIFE, which is often not very structured, along with implementing some structured content.

    ..

    Another important part of this new journal, I think, is GOALS. I want clearly defined goals .. I want to be able to see myself reaching for and obtaining various goals over the course of this new journal.

    Goals should be discrete.
    Goals should have a timeline or a deadline.
    Goals can be short or medium or long-term.

    ..

    In terms of coming up with goals--I'm going to "brainstorm live" below .. first, I am going to write down just a bunch of random goals / some of them will be more like random ideas. I'll break them up into Daily, Weekly, Monthly goals .. and then some which will have a target date set (TBD later).

    ======================================
    GOAL BRAINSTORMING
    [Daily Goals]
    * read the Bible / pray for my wife and family
    * workout (at least 5 times per week)

    [Weekly Goals]
    * meet with a mentor or CSAT therapist
    * take one of the kids out on a one-on-one date
    * write in my NoFap journal (at least 3 times per week)

    [Monthly Goals]
    * complete 1 new book about recovery

    [Goals With a Target Date--TBD later]
    * get a motorcycle license
    * join (re-join) the music/sound ministry at church
    ======================================

    Wow, I thought I would end up with more than that! :) ... I am going to continue to think about random goals / ideas to add to this list. I'm still not sure how it will impact each journal entry--I'll figure that out.

    The one section I _do_ want to have each entry is something about real life. So, here goes.

    ..

    REAL LIFE
    I know I started this journal trying to focus on me--and not my broken marriage--but this just happened last night: my wife and I were having our 10 minute talk/get-together at the end of the evening. My wife tells me that our 8-year old daughter, as she was getting tucked in, asked her the following:
    "What is different about you and dad? I remember when you two would kiss each other, and I would play around and get in between you two and try to make you stop kissing. Why don't you and dad kiss anymore?"

    My wife gave our daughter some non-answer answer. But that definitely impacted my wife..not a ton, but some. My wife suggested that I/we ask our CSAT therapist what her thoughts are about what we tell our two little kids (age 8 and 10) / how much detail we go into / how much do we talk about the now versus the future [versus the past] / etc.

    Honestly, I'm really glad that our 8-year old asked that question to my wife. It kind of forces a question about us that my wife is trying really, really hard not to think about / not to take on.

    Also, during our 10 minute conversation last night, my wife talked about how crazy busy her life is right now...she has all of this big major things on her plate:
    * her masters degree
    * her job
    * her budding career and building that out
    * our wrecked marriage
    * being a mom
    * her dad and his new health issues
    * her aging mom who lives with us
    * my wife's own personal recovery

    She said, very simply and straightforwardly, that she is not able to do ALL of those things well. She said that she feels like she has been a really absent mother recently [which is sadly true]. She said if our marriage were healthy, then a lot of those things (like her job, her masters, her career) would not be so burdensome--they would all be more like a hobby. But given the unknown state and future of our marriage, it just makes those job/work-related things so much more important [in case we end up divorced was her implication].

    She also said that maybe she should focus more on our failing marriage..maybe that will help with the kid/mom thing?

    I asked my wife how could I help? What things can I take off of her plate? And she thought about it .. and said "Nothing really." All 8 of those bullets above..they are all things my wife has to do--I cannot really help or do them for her. I will continue to be available to help with the kids (pickup/dropoff, be with after school, etc.); make dinners; cleanup around the house; etc. And I know that helps A LOT...it just keeps the house running.

    Anyway, while my wife was talking about all of that .. I was at peace. I just listened. I feel bad for my wife and how burdensome she feels. I am glad that there is ZERO tension between us. And I think my wife somewhat enjoys talking to me / telling me 'about her problems'..even though my PM'ing / our failing marriage is one of the big ones.

    ..

    On the personal front: I completed a Complete Sexual History document that I gave to my CSAT therapist. I see her tomorrow night. This is all prep for what will be the Full Disclosure to my wife .. happening the first week in June or so.
     
    Last edited: May 9, 2018
  10. jyvais

    jyvais Fapstronaut

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    following, thanks for sharing!
     
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  11. Jneilson75

    Jneilson75 Fapstronaut

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    You just listened? You didn’t blurt out all the solutions to her problems right then and there?

    You are Superman.
     
  12. [Entry #3]

    "Tell-all to my CSAT therapist"

    On the Goals front..I'm going to start on Monday with my weekly / monthly / quarterly goals. "Weekly" will be defined as a Mon-Sun week. I am still playing around with formatting to squeeze as much stuff in -- we'll see how that all pans out.

    REAL LIFE
    I met with my CSAT therapist last night .. our 1-hour session went for 90 minutes .. I talked so much, that I had multiple glasses of water and actually had to stop to pee in the middle! (that was a first)

    I told my CSAT therapist a lot. In preparation for my Full Disclosure to my wife (which will be happening the first week in June), I wrote out a full sexual history. Last night, I talked through some of the important/impactful items. I talked out something that happened when I was 8 years old .. I never thought too much of it as a traumatic event--it was with my best friend and his older brother (age 10 or 11)--I always chalked it up to little kids being curious. But, I also never told anyone..even my wife doesn't know..and just talking about it, out loud, was a little bit unnerving. It definitely was an acute memory that I have always had.

    I also disclosed some other stuff to my therapist.

    My therapist asked why I haven't shared these things before. And I told her that I wasn't hiding anything .. there just wasn't a context to bring it up. I knew that I wanted to and had to open up and share these things with my therapist, and ultimately my wife, before I would ever want to do real reconciliation. That is why I was pushing for Full Disclosure with my wife back in March. But the timing never came together. (we are doing it first week in June..that is the next break for my wife's quarterly masters classes)

    My therapist and I also recognized that I just had one meeting with her right after January 1, 2018[the day I found her online and reached out] .. then back to Europe .. back to the States on February 2nd .. but then the weekly Men's Meeting started up. And those meetings have been GREAT! I always walked way learning a lot / feeling challenged and supported by the therapist and the group of men.

    But that weekly Men's Meeting became most of my therapy. And while it did great things for me .. it didn't dive deep individually/personally. (this past Monday was the last weekly Men's Meeting)

    SSOO..I will be meeting with the CSAT therapist weekly now; last night was a good first step in disclosing and talking through a lot of things.

    ..

    Last night, my wife told me that she hates her life -- and honestly, I don't blame her. She is battling some major depression; she says it takes all her energy just to get out of bed each day. Our 10-minute talk last night lasted for about 30 minutes, and my wife opened up to me a bit about this stuff....I didn't say much....and at the end, she thanked me for our conversation (which she hasn't done since we started our 10-minute talks).

    This weekend is Mother's Day. My wife said that she doesn't want to do anything for Mother's Day .. to which, I nodded and said, "Yes we will do something." I took the kids out last weekend to get mom a little something; I got her a certificate for a massage. Last night, she said the perfect gift for Mother's Day would be to have 2-3 hours by herself. So, this morning, I broke down and said, "A surprise is a surprise no matter when you get it..right?" And I told her about her gift certificate for the massage....and I told her to call today and make an appointment for this Sunday and take as many hours there and before/after as she needs. I just asked that we can go out to eat as a family...for lunch or dinner or something.
     
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  13. [Entry #4]

    "Dude, RELAX!"

    REAL LIFE
    It's only been about 9 hours since my last journal entry .. but what a day! (Good or Bad - what do you think?)

    ..

    Bad -> then Good

    ..

    I think it was about 74 degrees out today, which in my book is just about the most perfect day, ever (in 2018). It kind of rained yesterday, so the pollen was mostly cleared out of the air. The sun was shining; the temperature felt just perfect.

    Unfortunately I had to work. But I was working from home..and it's a Friday..so work was light. But my mood was not calm / not relaxed. My mind races .. often these days. Thinking about life / broken marriage / kids who are wondering what happened to mom and dad / my wife--my fun-loving, life-of-the-party wife who is so sad and depressed. It's hard sometimes not to sit back and think about how devastating my failures are to everyone I love.

    But, then I think to myself, "Dude RELAX!" Do what you can today / now..to make everyone around you happier. Whatever that looks like...don't be anxious about past failures; look to today to make the most with what I still have.

    That attitude adjustment .. that change in perspective: going from sullied introspection .. to outward care for others --- it's the difference between wanting to jump under the covers and sleep all day and deciding to go outside, bring the trash cans back from the side of the road; realizing we need more propane for the grill, so I go get some more; and then picking up some veggies and meat to prepare and cook on the grill to surprise my wife and kids. <=== THAT is how you start Mother's Day weekend!
    [​IMG]
     
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  14. hope4healing

    hope4healing Fapstronaut

    I hope it's a great one for all of you. Did she make the appt for Sunday?
     
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  15. Jneilson75

    Jneilson75 Fapstronaut

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    Big time. That is a big step in the path of forgiving yourself and moving past it.
     
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  16. Yes..actually, I checked in with her via text mid-afternoon, just coordinating kid-pickup / I asked her if she made the appointment / she said she didn't get a chance to yet / I offered to call for her / she said Ok.

    So I called..and they were able to reserve a slot for 2:45 PM (she wanted afternoon!) So, hopefully she'll take 2-3+ hours on Sunday, enjoy some relaxing, downtime. (She got home today around 7:00PM..after schoolworking all day / then had to go to FedEx which took like an hour longer than she anticipated. She is very drained right now.)
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2018
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  17. Question w/o Answers

    Question w/o Answers Fapstronaut

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    Great job on the grill.
    But... Seriously, your wife's major depression, if it is diagnosed by a health professional, may be the elephant in the room.
    Sometimes it has everything to do with you, but sometimes not.
     
  18. I don't think it is "diagnosable depression" (whatever that means) ... it's simply life-sucks-and-my-husband-has-been-lying-to-me-for-20-years depression.

    ..

    Today, we are moving around bedrooms. My wife and our 8-year old daughter are moving into our mater bedroom now that our renter/boarder has fully moved out!! So everyone is in a relatively good mood this morning.
     
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  19. hope4healing

    hope4healing Fapstronaut

    It's almost certainly 'betrayal trauma.' Many of the symptoms are the same/similar to depression, but there are obviously some differences, too. It is normal or even expected for her to be experiencing betrayal trauma at this point. I'm sure @TryingHard2Change is already aware of this, though, as he's been educating himself very well about all the aspects of this issue.
     
  20. EyesWideOpen

    EyesWideOpen Fapstronaut

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    I know exactly how she feels. I'm right there with her.
     

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