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Question #2

 Question #2

trying to figure out why you stay with your partner, when things are so obviously not going well.
What's up with that?

I’ve been thinking about that a lot lately. Here is a top ten list, in no particular order:

1. I get a lot of my identity from my relationship. For example, if you asked who Patrick Kellogg was, I’d say that I’m kinky bear who is an algorithm analyst for the department of defense. I have a huge house, too many hobbies to count, and I’m in a 14 year relationship. If I lose my boyfriend, I’d probably have to sell the house. If I lose my job, which is a distinct possibility with layoffs planned soon, then I will have mostly lost everything that reminds me of myself. And that’s terrifying.

2. Down deep, I’m embarrassed at being gay. So, I like to be able to say, “I may be a cocksucker, but at least I’m in a long-term relationship. How’s *your* first marriage going?” It’s a big fuck you to Newt Gingrich and John McCain. By being in a monogamous partnership, I can pretend that I’m normal, and not a horrible promiscuous hedonist like gay people are portrayed as in the media.

3. I’m a faithful dog. When I say for better or for worse, for ever and ever, I mean it. Not only do I move in with a guy after the first date… I am too codependent to ever leave.

4. I’m a drama queen. I love arguing and talking and processing all the anger and issues that my boyfriend and I are having. After all, it’s all about me, and how I feel about stuff.

5. My mom and my partner are extremely close. They are each other’s best friends. If I broke up with Michael, it would devastate my mom. And I’d be hearing about my ex for years from both sides of the family.

6. It’s love. My partner is still the hottest bear in Denver. He is an amazingly kind man, and resistant to the catty sarcasm found so much in the gay world. He is decent, talented, and hard working. And he loves me very much in return. Too bad about the sex.

7. After seven years, things get weird. This is common in any long-term relationship, even cliché. The sex goes away, and small faults get amplified over time. What was a little argument ten years ago has now grown into a huge dysfunction. Let that be a warning to you.

8. Everything else in our relationship is great: money, family, travel, hobbies. We only have one argument, and while it’s a doozy, I don’t think it’s insurmountable. It’s just sex, and I would feel stupid to break up over something like an orgasm. I still hope my boyfriend would give me permission to meet guys by myself, travel to leather events alone, and have sex once a month. If I ask politely.

9. How would we ever divide up our stuff after 14 years? We have a huge 7 bedroom 5 bath mansion near Cheesman park in Denver. And every room is packed with knickknacks we have picked up on our trips. Right now is a terrible time to sell a house, and I’d probably lose a couple hundred thousand if I got out now.

10. I’m not sure I could survive a breakup. The minutia overwhelms me: packing, finding a new place, changing addresses. I fear that I would retreat into depression or worse.

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Are you happy in this relationship?

Being happy is a weird goal. If all I wanted was to be happy, I'd be tripping my balls off right now on Ecstasy. Life is about more. My partner gives me a lot of things: security, love, fun times. We just got this hang-up about sex..

I don't see security here. I see fear. I don't see love here. I see resentment. If there are fun times, you haven't posted about them, so I don't see those either. It sounds to me that you are using material comfort to keep you from being true to your innermost self.

That was me, btw. I didn't realise I wasn't logged on.

Yipes. This is way too familiar to me as well. And for a lot of the same reasons. I figure, if everything about the relationship makes you happy except the sex, it's easier to find sex with others than to find someone who makes you happy.

I'd agree, except that my partner is really jealous and doesn't like me having sex with other guys. I thought that would be a good solution too, but it's not working.

Does he say that you can't have sex with other guys, or does he say you can but that he doesn't like it? I had the same problem. It ended up being the case that while he didn't like me hooking up with other guys, he liked it better than me being unhappy. I just read too much into it with my own guilt.

Wow....sounds like you've devoted a lot of thought to this.

Yes. Hours and hours and hours and hours and...

(Deleted comment)
I fought for years to say I wasn't codependent, but I'm starting to think I am. Evidence? At my very first gay party (a houseful of bears), I fell in love with the first guy to talk to me. I dated him for three weeks after he took my virginity before he dumped me... I didn't understand that I was a one-night stand. Then, I met my current partner at my first dungeon party. So that's my track record = came out at 23, fell in love at 24 and stayed withe the guy for the next 14 years. That's pretty codependent!

Methinks you need to find yourself, lame as it sounds. You define yourself with things and other people.

'I'm such and such subfetish"

'I'm with the hottest bear there is'

'I have a mansion'

So what, who are YOU? That's the part you don't seem to know.

p.s. yeah, ouch on losing a couple hundred grand.

True. What I should do is be single for a while and figure out who I am. What I would probably do after breaking up is find other boyfriend within 24 hours.

My last BF was like that. In fact, he'd be sick enough to have courted another one within the last week or 2 of the relationship and basically swap them them out.

He's 35 and still in the same spot. Get together, foist his lifeplan on them (kids, house, white picket fence, need theser things to define me within 1.5 years because I have no substance of my own), and then be looking for the next one in a year or so.

HE did a lot of retail therapy, had grand epiphanies on a weekly basis (things you should know by 15 years old, emotionally) and is basically filling his life with THINGS tyo make up for the fact that he's not really a person.. just a conglomeration of half-baked plans and status boyfriends. He'd even take on the manner of dress and musical tastes of his current beau. He was a chameleon that had to BE something because he was nothing inside.

Don't be that person. You are not your things, but what's inside your head when you're alone probably scares you.

Be alone. That's the solution. Be alone until you can share who you are with someone else and not rely on posessions to describe yourself.

I think it all sounds like a great relationship. I am also optimistic in thinking that even if you can't work out the sex right now, that doesn't mean it will stay like that. Sometimes people feel so absolute about something, then they wake up one morning and feel different. Humans are like that. It could happen this year, next or the year after, then your partner will wonder why he ever felt so strongly about it.

1) you are not your friends, your stuff, your job, or any of those other things. those are things that come of you being you.

2) you're not in a monogamous relationship. you're in a relationship that 1 side wants to be monogamous, and the other doesn't. fuck the world, who cares what newt or mccain thinks, it's YOUR life, and it's up to YOU to define what "normal" is. I mean, really, look at you so-called "normal" people. they get convicted on kiddie-porn charges and get teenage girls preggers. so, screw "normal"

3) Even the stupidest dog will either bite the asshole who's kicking him, or run away at the first opportunity. So, be at least as smart as a dog, run away, or bite his foot off.

4) it can be all about you for years, and you'll be miserable, and not be able to make anything more than superficial relationships with anybody else. or you can say "fuck this", and actually DO something, instead of standing there wringing your hands and talking about it.

5) Your mother is YOUR mother. So what if she's friends with your partner, you were her son LONG before he was your partner. She's a big girl, if she can't see that what you're in is making you miserable, then well, alienate her for a few months and then either she'll come to her senses, or you'll discover tha you don't need her validation to do anything.

6) Love is a many faceted thing. I still love my first guy. We've not lived with each other in 10+ years, but I still love him, and would do just about anything for him. Same for the 2nd. The 3rd is the current, and he makes me crazy, but I make him crazy right back, so, it works, for us.

7) 7 years, huh. Me and mine met 10 years ago last month, we've been living together slightly less than that, and yes, things have changed, over the years, but we knew, starting out, that sex wasn't something we needed, and that other people were always going to play a part in our lives.

8) marriages have broken over less. like, people get divorced over the fact that 1 puts the TP on the roll backwards. or pushes the toothpaste tube the wrong way. what the HELL makes you think "sex" isn't a damn good reason to say "this isn't working, and since you're unable to change, I have to move on"

9) stuff is stuff. stuff is replaceable. the 1 thing in the world you can't get back is time. the more you waste being unhappy with your life, the less you'll have when you finally break free. So how to split the stuff... if he really loves you, he'll not fight you on the how to split things up. and if he doesn't, then do you really want all that "stuff" to remind you of what you thought you had?

10) it's easy. you pack 1 bag, take whatever you MUST have to survive (prescriptions, clothes, computer) and go. just go. move into a motel if you have to, but none of those things is a valid reason for staying. yes, it CAN be hard. it doesn't have to be. ask me. I know. When I was 18 I moved out of my parents house, and never moved back. I talked to my first boyfriend on the phone and online for a few weeks, and then packed up my car, and moved half way across the country. did I leave stuff behind, yes. did it matter? no. stuff can be replaced.

and re: being happy. no, you wouldn't be happy if you were high all the time, and you damn well know it. an idiot might be happy, but you're too smart for that. you'd be high, and you'd know that it wasn't real. and yes, it's ALL about being happy. Not happy with your job, get a new one. not happy with your house, get a new one. not happy with your relationship, GET A NEW ONE. yes, you can remodel your house buy new stuff, go see a therapist, but eventually you say "this house just won't work" and "this stuff has to go" and "this relationship has to change"

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