After decades of trying to get and stay free from unwanted sexual behaviors, I finally met a man that taught me “Why I did What I did, and How not to do it Again.” But after years of sobriety, I was still not experiencing that close, intimate, emotionally connected relationship with my wife that I’d heard about. And neither was she with me. So, what was missing? The missing piece was my inability to be totally honest, transparent, humble, and vulnerable with her.
Our conversations often ended with more conflict than when it started. Naturally, I would try to avoid those conversations at all costs. I didn’t FEEL safe…… I FEFT attacked, criticized, judged, accused, and shamed. I typically went into Survival mode when she needed to talk and receive emotional support…… I would Defend, Minimize, and Self-Protect. As a result, she was not getting what she needed…..the acknowledgment and validation for the pain, hurt, and trauma I had put her through all those decades.
So here I was, withholding, shutting down, and stonewalling her because of my insecurities and feelings, leaving her devoid of emotional connection with me. How could I ever expect to have the kind of relationship I dreamed of? How could she be totally giving to the relationship?
I know for me until I was able to NOT focus on how I was feeling, I wasn’t able to hear, much less understand, what my wife was saying and needing from me. Why? Because I was focused on me and how to self-protect and defend myself……..hence I was making it all about me. I firmly believe that until I was able to overcome my own trauma cycle, I wasn’t able to give her the empathy she so desperately deserved and needed.
Ever since I started being able to stay present, connected, honest, humble, and vulnerable with her, our relationship took on a new dimension, and we started experiencing a deeper, emotionally connected, intimate relationship.
My background is in the military and business. I am a United States Military Academy @ West Point Graduate and owned and operated a commercial excavation company for 40 years. In the Army, I was a Combat Engineer Platoon Leader, Executive Officer, and Company Commander. As a business owner and operator, I led a diversified 180 man excavation, mining, and transportation company.
United States Military Academy, West Point, New York
Engineer Officer Basic Course, Ft Belvoir, Virginia
Ranger School, Ft Benning, Georgia
Airborne School, Ft Benning, Georgia
Certified Professional Coach, Certified Life Coach Institute