This is a hard thing to write. I’ve pondered not publishing, but I feel the need to put it out there so it’s not secret anymore. It’s almost therapeutic. Living in my head is a problem for me.
The not-so-obvious, hard-to-admit things on my list:
*Express Happiness and Contentment. I don’t remember how to express happiness to Captain M. Somewhere along the way in our bad years, I turned it off. We were very adversarial, and perhaps I thought showing my happiness at something would be him “winning”. Also, he had a habit of pulling out the “things are always shitty, I’m unhaaaappy” talk right when I thought things were going well, so maybe it was a defense mechanism for that. I know, it’s all a pretty terrible mindset. My problem is that I still act that way most of the time. It’s hard for me to react in a positive way to something when I really do like it. At best, I smirk. When I’m happy about something, I know in my mind that I am, but my mouth won’t form the words. It’s one reason why I write a lot of emails to him, I feel like I can actually express myself through words. And it’s only like this with him… With friends and acquaintances, I have no problem laughing, smiling, giggling, being giddy. I wasn’t really too conscious of this until recently, reading about Intimacy Anorexia. I don’t think I’m anorexic, or at least not the strict definition of it, because I can express unhappiness, frustration, sadness, etc with no problem. I just need to deprogram. It’s hard to change something you’ve been doing for almost a decade. Truth be told, I
probably need to see a professional for this. I have a severe dislike of “counselors” (bad experience a few years ago), so it’d need to be a licensed psychologist. I’m researching this, and I may elaborate more as I figure myself out.
*Flirt and Initiate. Captain M told me a week or two ago that I don’t flirt. And he’s right, for the most part. He initiates all our interaction, and I react (though as seen above, my reactions aren’t always overt), though sometimes I indirectly initiate by showing up in something skimpy. I think this is a combination of the above + my absolute shitty self esteem (see below). Since he said this, I’ve made an effort, but I know it’s not enough. Don’t get me wrong, I’m passionate when I respond to him (at least I think I am?) in the bedroom, it’s just hard for him to see if something he’s doing outside the bedroom is good or bad without me being blunt and telling him so. My body language sucks unless we’re actually having sex.
*Fix My Self Esteem. As I mentioned in the weight section, I’ve always thought I was fat, even when I wasn’t. Now that I have typical mother problems (things aren’t quite situated where they used to be), it’s just exacerbated. Mostly I think “well hell, I wasted my pretty years, I’m fucked.” I sometimes wonder if the “Wife Goggles” idea is something made up to make older women feel better. I know it’s probably not, else it’d have to be some huge conspiracy since it’s been discussed so many places, but I look at myself and don’t see anything worth looking at. This makes it really hard for me to take compliments, especially from Captain M. I’ve gotten better at that though… Previously I’d argue with him about whatever he complimented. You think I look great in these jeans? Bullshit, I’m a fat cow. Aaargh. Now I try to smile and say Thank You. I can’t take a compliment from other people either. I just don’t believe them most of the time.
When I’m naked with him, I go inside myself and pretend that I have a different body. It’s the way I cope with how I see myself. I’m not sure that’s entirely healthy or normal.
I’ve really tried to stop dumping all my self esteem crap on Captain M. I know if I keep harping on the parts of me that are bad, he’s going to start noticing just how bad they are. I know it’s not attractive. I’ve been trying to keep it to myself, but I know I actually need to fix it instead of just putting a bandaid on it by not talking about it.
Once I’m done losing weight and having kids, a tummy tuck and a boob lift will make me feel a lot better. I’m wistfully pondering the future.