Wednesday, December 21, 2011


I can't do it. I don't know why. There is an intimacy line I can not seem to cross. Be it something as simple as my therapists hug. I can physically go through the motions but I can't let myself in.

I want to be able to fully give myself to a hug. I want to be able to hold someone for a few moments and feel like there is something that can't be spoken that is passing to and from... through us. Not something physical but something really close. Intimacy. I want to feel it. I imagine true intimacy to be exhilarating.

I have always had an issue with feeling pleasure. When I am with my wife and getting to a point of which I should revel in the feeling of ecstasy, I pull back. I need to stop. I can't let myself go there. Do I feel that I am not deserving of pleasure? Do I feel that giving into pleasure, forces me to face a level of connection I am not comfortable with? A combination of both?

How do I break ground here? I know I can create the intimacy in an outbound communication because I do it with my kids all the time. I hug them for seconds longer than they expect and give them one last squeeze. I massage them and caress their arms. I tell them I love them in so many different ways. Problem is, that is me to them... I need to be able to recieve that from someone else. Not just recieve it but accept it and live it.

I wish I understood this aspect of me so that I can get some semblance of control over it.

Has anyone had success working through intimacy issues? Any recommendations?

Thank you


  1. They say that intimacy is really "INTO-ME-SEE".
    Meaning, when someone showers us with love and affection, how we view ourselves plays a key role in our ability to be fully present in the gesture.

    I think you're right, that whether you think you deserve pleasure or to be loved is potentially a roadblock to your capacity to be in the moment, especially with your wife. They say in 12 step programs that you are as "sick as your secrets". Maybe there's a part of you that wonders, "if these people REALLY knew me-- with all my imperfections, struggles- then would they want to be showering me with this kindness/love?" Because they don't, does that mean you're 'cheating' them?

    It sounds from your posts that you struggle with depressive thoughts....Depression really isolates us from other people and sucks the life out of us. Self-hatred has a way of robbing us of the luxury to be connected to others.

    Re: your wife- It sounds like you grew up in a culture that didn't talk about masturbating, except in the "assur" way, and you probably felt a lot of guilt about your sexuality. Many frum men have a difficult time making the transition from the guilt of ejaculating to the ectasy of the release. And for you I'm sure you sexuality has been a source of guilt many times over, as you weren't only feeling guilty about your behaviors but probably your attractions too.

    It's scary to own feelings and fears, because the avoidance gives us the illusion that we have willed away the distress. But of course it is futile, and it's like giving ourselves the silent treatment-- if we don't talk about it then we won't feel it, right?

    When I started reading your blog, I was intrigued by the amount of energy you put in to being there for the people in your life, even with your struggle with sexuality. But the more I'm reading it, the more I'm seeing less about your sexuality and more about your basic self-acceptance. Of course the two are very connected, but I think your exploration of your self-- who you are as a human being, your desire to love and be loved in return-- is a testament to your incredible journey to improve your availabilty to be present not only for others, but for yourself as well.

  2. wow, are you a theapist? you are on the ball.

  3. Wow, any interest in chatting via email? That was a beautiful post and I would love to hear more of what you have to say. Thanks.

  4. I am a therapist, thanks for the compliment.

    Sorry, but I'd prefer not to communicate via e-mail.

    Have a good shabbos

  5. Alright guys, I'm gonna say my piece, and I know many of you aren't gonna like it. Especially the two people I am gonna criticize.

    WOW - you are no more a therapist than I am the Rambam. You spout an amalgam of pop culture (such as "INTO-ME-SEE", 12-step mush and pseudo-Freudian ideas (fixation with masturbation).

    And Fester, I am beginning to wonder if you are for real. How much of what you say is true and how much the figment of an imagination desparate for sympathy?

    As for your post on "coming out" to your wife? Baloney!!! I know many - and I mean MANY - frum married gays/bisexuals and all would rather kill themselves than tell anyone else, least of all their wives.

    If you want my sympathy, you can have it for free, but please, stop stretching my creduility!

  6. To Anon 12/25 9:03pm

    I obviously can't prove my story to you as I am not about to give you my wifes phone number to verify. I will tell you though that your statement about wanting to kill yourself rather than coming out was true for me for many years. That changed Friday night.

    I am not sure what you think I would stand to gain by making this up. After reading my posts do you think I am that shallow that I would be looking for false sympathy? Why? This is an anonymous blog with 4 individuals who read it who know my identity; my therapist and 3 friends (and as soon as I gather the courage, my wife).

    Please also note that your statement implies that no one ever would come out, period. That is a flawed argument as we both know this not to be true. As an aside since I posted this I have had a number of gay men email me that they went through similar experiences with their wives. I am not the only one.

    Bottom line is that it did happen and it happened beautifully. If I had not been the kind, sensitive and supporting husband I have been to her over the years AND if I didn't think intuitively on some level she can handle it I might not have come out.

    While I am sorry for your bitterness and I can't judge it, you can never take away from me the new life I am now embarking on.

    Feel free to email me directly at if you want to discuss this further.

    1. Wow if I may say you handled that attack gracefully.
      Thank you for the lesson on brilliantly responding to (as they call it) a "hater"