Thursday, April 24, 2008

true intimacy...

My mom told me once that husbands and wifes should be able to go to the bathroom in front of each other or let each other know if they had bad breath or other physical faux pauxs.

For years I honestly thought my mom was crazy.

I can't imagine using the toilet in front of my husband or he in front of me. In fact, I don't even want him in the next room. I'm positive he feels the same way.

I have gotten to the point where I can tell him he needs a mint or to wipe his nose, etc. But he still isn't comfortable pointing these things out to me.

Yes, I realize that this seems trivial and that, perhaps, in most marriages, this isn't an issue.

The point I'm trying to make is that there is a distinct lack of openness, honesty and intimacy in my marriage. Why and how to fix it are questions I can't answer. I have begun to be more open with him, but it doesn't seem to be spurring him to open up more to me.

But I know now that this kind of intimacy is possible, because it exists between my lover and I. Not only is there complete openness between us mentally, emotionally and spiritually, but physically we are beautifully intimate and compatible.

I mentioned that my husband and I are not comfortable being naked with each other. The lights are dimmed before he completely undresses and sex is always done in the dark.

Not so, with my lover and I. We want light when we make love, so that we can look in each other's eyes and watch our bodies move together.

My husband and I never talk while having sex.

My lover and I talk the whole time. And we talk about anything and everything. We don't just whisper sweet-nothings. We make each other laugh. We goad each other. We challenge each other.

My husband's eyes are closed in bed, or even when he's just kissing me.

My lover's eyes are wide open.

In fact, this was my first clue that love-making with my lover would be completely different.

The first time he kissed me, I realized he was kissing me with his eyes open. As he moved his hands over me, he kept looking me straight in the eye, asking questions about how to please me best, admitting that he needed my guidance.

I expressed my wonder at the fact he kept his eyes open while kissing and touching me. In return, he expressed wonder that anyone would keep their eyes shut while being with me. He wants to look at me. He thinks I'm beautiful and loves to watch me being pleasured.

My lover tells me regularly that I'm beautiful or sexy.

I'm pretty sure that I wouldn't run out of fingers if I counted up the number of times my husband has praised my physical beauty, in the bedroom or out of it. And remember, we've been married for over 10 years.

Does he think these things? Probably. But he admits that he's not comfortable expressing these thoughts.


Why is there such ease and intimacy between my lover and I, but years of marriage has brought my husband and I no closer? And it's not as if I haven't been trying over the years. I've aggresively sought intimacy, but I think I've realized that it can't be forced. It definitely takes two willing souls.

So, now that I've experienced the joys and pleasures of emotional, spiritual and physical intimacy, I ask myself one question.

Will I continue to settle for less in my marriage?

I look at my children and realize I don't have a choice. Their happiness must come before my own.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

my lover...

Let me begin by saying that I never intended to have a lover.

And, yes, I know that adultery is wrong, so don't bother reminding me in any comments you leave.

In fact, my lover and I are both completely aware of our sins.

Yet, neither of us feel a bit of remorse or guilt.

It's hard to feel guilty about being with your soul-mate.

I mentioned in my last entry, that I had begun to realize that there was a lack of intimacy with my husband. Not just physical, but emotional and spiritual as well. We connected intellectually and could talk for hours. But we did not know how to share our dreams and our fears. We could not pray together or worship in abandon together. And we were never comfortable being naked together.

I often wondered about Adam and Eve. Did they truly romp though the Garden in the nude? How could they not be self-conscious about it?

Though I saw glimpses of intimacy in the marriages of friends, it was never enough to give me the full picture of what was missing in my marriage. I knew something wasn't right, but I didn't know how to fix it.

And now that I know what's wrong, I don't know that it can be fixed.

Because now I know what it's like to be truly intimate with someone- to lay yourself bare and become completely vulnerable. The intimacy between my lover and I was spontaneous. I learned quickly that I could trust my whole heart to him, and he knows the same of me.

The intimacy happened naturally. I wasn't looking for it, because I didn't know it could exist outside the pages of a good romance novel (and by good, I mean along the lines of the connection between Anne and Frederick in Persuasion, not the tawdry trash currently published as romance novels).

When we first became lovers, it was with the understanding that it was just about finding physical pleasure. We were already very good friends and he was aware of the troubles in my marriage. He could not offer a solution for the other problems, but he could take me to his bed and give me immense satisfaction.

One thing we decided from the beginning was to keep the lines of communication open. If either of our feelings started to change- if we began to become more emotionally involved- we would reevaluate the situation. I had no desire to end my marriage. I do not want my children to grow up without mom and dad together. My lover agreed.

We were just friends meeting mutual needs and we believed we could keep it from becoming more.

We were fools.

We started sharing our love and affection for each other almost from the beginning. We were best friends, after all, so naturally, we loved and cared for each other and expressed it frequently. But we were careful to distinguish "love" from "in love". I didn't want to be in love with him, because I knew it could mean certain doom for my marriage. I didn't want him to be in love with me, because I knew our relationship would end one day (after all, he would have to get married eventually- he couldn't stay with a married woman indefinitely) and I didn't want him hurt.

The day I realized I had fallen in love with him was the first day that I kept a secret from him. His potential reaction stayed my tongue. I thought long and hard about the ramifications of sharing my discovery, but in the end, I realized that to keep it from him was a betrayal of our intimacy.

So, I told him. His reaction? Surprise and an honest admission that he didn't know if he could say the same in return. Since I truly wasn't trying to force that kind of response from him, I was satisfied with his answer.

But I would be lying if I didn't admit that I was thrilled beyond measure when he told me three days later that he was also in love with me.

Knowing what real intimacy is like, I can't imagine sharing it with my husband. I can't see how we will ever connect on the level I need. I feel doomed to a marriage of insipidness and mediocrity.

But since the happiness and well-being of my children is more important to me than my own happiness, doomed I remain.

Monday, April 21, 2008


I have a secret.

I am a wanton wife.

Unfortunately, my husband does not appreciate that fact. He would much rather have a typical frigid wife who sullenly responds to his sexual advances once a week.

What he has is a sensual woman, very comfortable with her sexuality, who would enjoy exploring the many facets of love-making on a daily basis.

When we first married, over 10 years ago, I was surprised by his lack of interest in sex. I didn't think, at first, that I was the problem. While at work or school, I was regularly hit on. I had a pretty face and a great body. I always spurned the advances of other men, but I couldn't understand why the man who did have regular access to my body simply wasn't interested.

As the years passed, I slowly began to believe that I wasn't attractive or desirable. I think, deep down, I knew it wasn't true. I had kept my figure, despite having a couple of children, and most people guessed that I was far younger than I was, but his continual rejection was wearing on my self-esteem. It wasn't unusual for me to cry myself to sleep, wondering what was wrong with me.

Perhaps there was another reason my husband wasn't interested in making love. Was he turned off by my personality? Did he have needs that were not being met? Could I become a better wife? Would this, in turn, inspire him to be a better husband?

So, I began a journey of self-improvement. I read every book I could find regarding marriage and personal growth.

The result?

More friends than I've ever had before. Increasing success in my chosen endeavours. A closeness with Christ never before reached. A better relationship with my children.

More men hitting on me than ever before.

But nothing changed in my marriage. He still wasn't interested in taking me to bed more than once every 10 days or so, and usually only at my prompting. And the other issues in our marriage seemed to be greater than ever. (You didn't think sex was our only problem, did you?) I realized something disturbing. Sex wasn't the only thing missing in my marriage. There was no emotional intimacy either.

Please don't think that I was hiding any of this from him. I openly communicated and he knew explicitly what I wanted/needed. He regularly promised to do better, but any improvement was short lived.

To be honest, I was growing desperate.

Making things worse was the fact that I couldn't really talk to anyone about it. My problem wasn't exactly common in our circle of friends. If there was any talk of sex, it was usually the wives complaining about their randy husbands. And I certainly couldn't discuss my sexual proclivities with our uptight, ultra-conservative christian friends.

How do you tell your son's Sunday School teacher that you wanted to be tied up and spanked by your husband? That sex toys are a wife's best friend? That you would love to "play doctor"?

You don't.

So, my wantonness remained a secret.

Fortunately, I've become involved in some activities lately that have led to some more liberally-minded acquaintances.

I now have two friends that know my secret.

The first one has simply listened and been supportive. He has "been there, done that" in his previous marriages, so he's sympathetic.

The second has become my lover.

More later...