Saturday, January 06, 2007

Whither Analysis?

Tears and fears and feeling proud
To say "I love you" right out loud
Dreams and schemes and circus crowds
I've looked at life that way

But now old friends are acting strange
They shake their heads, they say I've changed
Well something's lost, but something's gained
In living every day

I've looked at life from both sides now
From win and lose and still somehow
It's life's illusions I recall
I really don't know life at all

-- Joni Mitchell, "Both Sides Now" [1], Miles of Aisles

Cat joins in on the discussion:
I am dizzy from so much analysis. I am sure I will be the ditz in the room but I need to understand something. After all the work, the therapist, the charts...2am are you saying that you are not any closer to having the marriage you want?

I hate to agree with someone in a comment trail on a subject so important. But I have to agree with Sassy. The divide does sound next to impassable.

It just astounds me for you to spend so much of your life unhappy. Investing so much work in a relationship you can't get what you need from. When do you get to have what you need? I mean life isn't forever (forgive the cliche but seriously)...

Good question. The driving force behind the analysis in this blog is my nature (I'm an INTJ). I get fulfillment from wrapping my mind around complicated ideas and searching for deeper truths. Some might argue that it can be a pathological desire at times. ;-)

When I started this blog, I was very much in the mindset that my wife was the one who needed fixing. I started from the assumption that my wife was abnormal and if I could just get her to see the light and realize just how much I was angry and hurting, she'd change.

Something happened along the way...

The first thing was a bunch of negative feedback from women who had read my venting on PForum and on this blog. As much as they irritated me at the time, I started to see the merit in what they were trying to get through to me.

Second, I started reading some books and essays that changed the way I looked at relationships. Links to the author's websites can be found in the blog's sidebar.

The combined effect of these things made me realize that I needed to back off on my wife and work on myself. I had to let go of the goal of "frequent engaged sex" and pursue the goal of self growth. Moreover, I had to be willing to risk losing the marriage if I wanted to achieve a deeper level of intimacy.

I started self confronting, and when I wasn't able to push myself through by myself, I turned to the help of an individual therapist who knew something about the kind of therapy route I was taking.

In the process, I am getting a better sense of how I got here and where I want to go. If I didn't do the analysis, I would run the risk of jumping from an unhappy marriage to unhappy singlehood or perhaps another unsatisfying relationship.

That's especially important because I went through most of my life trying avoid the appearance of having needs and then expecting others to take care of them. As I learn who I am, the path that will fulfill my needs will become clearer. That is where I really want to go.

[1] -- The song better known from its rendition by Judy Collins on Wildflowers.
blog comments powered by Disqus