Life has been busy the last few weeks and I have not had any time to blog. It’s not been easy, but William and I continue to work hard on our relationship and we both feel like we have made some significant progress that last few weeks. As we go along, we have, in effect, separated our issues into two different categories: communication and sex.
There was a comment left on a blog that I follow by an AGP that said (paraphrased) “AGP’s are ill-equipped to deal with relationships. They seem to lack the tools necessary to make relationships work. The inner self focus is not conducive to sustaining a healthy relationship.” William and I would both agree with those statements. With the help of a therapist, we are focusing most of our efforts on our communications, both verbal and non-verbal. The non-verbal miscommunications that continue to occur have been somewhat of a surprise to us. It has become quite obvious that we had a lot more problems than either of us realized prior to September 17th.
As part of our exploration of AGP as a gender identity issue, we have stumbled across the theory that AGP is a sexual addiction. While “gender identity” seems to address the mental aspect of AGP, there does certainly seem to be a sexual addiction component to this. It definitely fits the “problem” behaviors that William has displayed over the last several years. While it seems important at some point to address the “why” behind his needs (gender identity), right now, we are focusing our efforts on more of the “what and how” (sexual addictive behaviors). Treating the symptoms, in effect, rather than the “disease.” (and no, I don’t think this is a disease, it’s just a metaphor.)
The questions asked on tests given to sexual addicts are very telling:
· Do you hide your sexual behaviors from your partner?
· Do you get “high” from sex? Do you find that you need greater variety or energy to achieve the same level of satisfaction?
· Have you ever neglected your partner to pursue your sexual activities?
William can answer “yes” to these questions and more. His choices over the years have actually progressed him to the point of “sexual anorexia.” This is a sort of advanced state of addiction where the addict stops having sex with his/her partner in favor of the sexual addiction and completely describes where our relationship was before September 17th. None of these behaviors are conducive to a successful relationship. While I can accept the cross-dressing and role reversal during sex, I object highly to these other “addictive” behaviors. So our biggest question right now is (since this is not a standard sexual addiction) “how do we define sexual sobriety?”
For now, we have decided that it's up to us how we define sexual sobriety. And so far, we are choosing to define it as sexual behaviors that both of us are okay with. It will never be okay for William to choose to indulge any of his desires in secret. It will never be okay for him to choose his own desires over mine - this needs to be "us" together. And for now, we are choosing to indulge William's fantasies together - as part of our relationship. As far as how this happens, well, it continues to be an experiment for both of us - finding out what works for him as well as for me. Right now, what we are doing together is working for both of us., but William says that part of his excitement is that what we are doing is new and different. We are both a little worried about what will happen when it stops being "new" and he gets the urge to do something more. This is the "addiction" component of this that scares both of us...