Mid-life crisis?

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Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby ConstantCloud » 18 August 2021, 19:34

Hello, new here. I’m searching for advice. I’m confused about what to do with the rest of my life. I’ve been with my husband for 20 years, married for the majority of that time. He is a good guy for the most part (definitely a functioning alcoholic who likes it that way). He helped raise my child all the way thru college. Our child is back home post graduation because of COVID. I’ve retired due to a health scare, but have gone into remission it seems (not cancer). My sister recently passed away at 58. My mother died at 51. Both of cancer. I’m in my mid 50’s and I can’t help but think my time is very limited. So here’s the thing… I am obsessed with what has always been missing in my husband’s and my life together: good sex. In the beginning I thought I was going to fix it. That gave way to indifference to sex. We’d go months without it. I just got lazy even trying anymore. And along the way it became something we couldn’t even talk about. Regular therapy led nowhere but a near divorce about 7 years back, which I probably should have pursued. He is against an open relationship (my recent suggestion) and Sex therapy is a no go. We attempted contact with a sex therapist, but I already knew from 5 minutes in that I wasn’t going to get what I wanted out of it. The therapist was talking about threesomes and toys. But I want passionate love making, and I know my husband isn’t capable of it. We’ve never come close. Our sex has all the emotion of a bad porno. And his attempts to try anything new have been disastrous. Limp dicks all around. It’d be funny if it were a movie about someone else. I really don’t see him that way anymore. He’s like a brother now: Someone I love deeply, but don’t want to have sex with. My own personal therapy has not gone well (Kaiser). So as I contemplate whatever time I have left on Earth I am obsessed with what I’ve never had: a great sex life. I feel tremendous guilt even thinking about leaving, and now I have the added pressure of our 24 yr old son living at home indefinitely. My husband has been there for me, and I’m nothing if not loyal. I refuse to cheat on him. But I am aching for something more before it’s too late. I’m lost. I need advice.
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Re: Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby pozboro » 18 August 2021, 21:13

I long for a emotionally and financially rewarding career but ...

Don't really know what to tell you. At some point you either have to decide to find happiness and contentment with what you have or to move on and try to build a new life elsewhere. You didn't state your age, but it sounds like you're also in your 50s. I know one thing for certain, I'm in my 50s and my prospects for a relationship or even hookup aren't very strong. Some years back I decided it wasn't worth the energy pining for something I didn't have and instead I decided to enjoy what I do have.

You've made efforts to address the concerns so there's no faulting you there. It's really easy to focus on what we don't have, especially given the way our culture constantly reinforces what we should have in our lives, what we deserve, etc, but that's mostly BS.

Maybe consider an investigation into Buddhist philosophy. No, I'm not trying to talk you into chanting, meditation, or shaving your head to stand around with a begging bowl, but take a look at https://www.bbc.co.uk/religion/religion ... hs_1.shtml . Your background will influence your ability to relate to these concepts. I certainly couldn't relate to them for a long time, so don't feel alone in that. After you read, let me know your thoughts.

Will also be interesting to see what others have to say. Good luck either way! :)
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Re: Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby ConstantCloud » 18 August 2021, 21:41

Thank you for the thoughtful reply pozboro. Your link page has been “archived.” Not sure what to look for in the archive. I definitely understand the difficulties of an older gay man finding what I’m looking for, which is a factor in my reluctance to leave a loving relationship.
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Re: Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby pozboro » 19 August 2021, 00:48

You were still able to see the page's content, right? I ask since I can see it on my desktop browser, but maybe if someone reads it from a mobile device, it doesn't show? (The world's complex and it's hard to know.)

I'll assume you can still see the content - the reason why I shared it is the discussion of the Four Noble Truths which might be paraphrased as life is suffering, suffering comes from desire, elimination of desire brings an end to suffering. Clearly I'm NOT offering you a path to "find hot sex here," but I would ask, after careful consideration of all the positive and negative things in your present life, would you be willing to trade all that for the possibility that you might be able to quench your desire for hot sex?

When it comes to great big life decisions it's very easy for some unseen entity to tell you what to do but in a case like this, I'm not able to do that. It's your life, you need to weigh the options, and then find a path forward that brings you contentment. If you are reluctant to leave for a possibility - and don't get me wrong, hot sex is out there, but it might be literally or figuratively expensive - then my best suggestion is to change your view on what you desire and the life you currently have.

I'm pretty confident that there's another man out there that has plenty of hot sex and no emotional intimacy. He believes he'd be happy with what you have because you have what he desires. Would swapping lives mean you and this imagined individual would both be happier? That's the philosophical dilemma.

So basically, this is the choice I see before you: 1) leave and seek that which you desire, OR 2) stay and rationalize "cheating" to address the desire, or 3) discard the desire and work to be happy with what you have been blessed with. Does that pretty much sum things up or do you see other options I'm missing?
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Re: Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby ConstantCloud » 19 August 2021, 18:37

Thanks Pozboro. I could see the content but was thrown by the “archived” heading. Buddhism is intriguing but almost makes me think it is living life at arm’s distance. The idea of less suffering is appealing but seems to come at the price of less pursuit of enjoyment, which seems counter to human nature. Kinda like being on anti-depressants; it makes you happier staying in place. But I get where you were going with it. It is certainly a way to accept a certain life if you can’t live a different one you desire (either realistically or not), desire being the cause of suffering…. Because even if I did change my life and got ridiculously happy, my desires would change again. I see the appeal.
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Re: Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby Jzone » 20 August 2021, 04:33

Welcome, Constant. You are in a tough position. In any case, I suggest your son will be fine no matter what you do. You have done your best and helped him reach adulthood. You really don't owe him more, but giving him what you can as the most fulfilled person you can be is probably the best you can do moving forward.

I really don't know what to say about your relationship with your husband. I think it would be great if he would agree to an open relationship so you can remain together as friends/partners and also pursue a satisfying sexual relationship elsewhere. It sounds like that won't likely happen. That said, you need to decide what is most important to you — continuing this relationship as-is or ending it and exploring. I can't advise you on which is best for you. Best of luck.
just an everyday boy — doing everyday things
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Re: Mid-life crisis?

Unread postby pozboro » 20 August 2021, 05:04

ConstantCloud wrote:Thanks Pozboro. I could see the content but was thrown by the “archived” heading. Buddhism is intriguing but almost makes me think it is living life at arm’s distance. The idea of less suffering is appealing but seems to come at the price of less pursuit of enjoyment, which seems counter to human nature. Kinda like being on anti-depressants; it makes you happier staying in place. But I get where you were going with it. It is certainly a way to accept a certain life if you can’t live a different one you desire (either realistically or not), desire being the cause of suffering…. Because even if I did change my life and got ridiculously happy, my desires would change again. I see the appeal.


It's always interesting how those from Western schools of thought feel that Buddhism somehow opposes joy, happiness, etc, but I get it from my own initial reactions and worldview.

No one is saying, "be miserable." On the contrary, the idea is to find joy in the positive things surrounding one. So whereas Christian theology teaches, "sacrifice now and reap rewards later, in the afterlife," Buddhism suggests it's all about the here and now and taking pleasure in simple things we often take for granted. (One caveat, there are many different Buddhist interpretations much like there are many different ways to be a Christian or Muslim, so depending on who one listens to or reads will color the interpretation.)

However, you get the general drift of my meaning. ;)
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