Wednesday, September 23, 2015

This Bites

During a recent session with our family therapist I was attending alone, the therapist ask me for what I would want as an ideal life.

What kind of question is that? What are the rules? I mean, do the laws of physics apply? If we're going to deal with the realm of possibilities, it would be that I would be unmarried, childless, and doing work for which I have much sincere enthusiasm. I can describe specifics but I won't, for the sake of privacy. This isn't to say I don't love my kids. I do. I love them a lot. They are the best thing about being married. I enjoy them, at least when they aren't physically attacking each other or me. It is that I don't think I am being the best father I could be for them. I think they're getting a raw deal between the combination of their mother and their father. But I can't do anything now about who their mother is, or what medications she couldn't go without while she was pregnant with them. And to be a better father than I am now, I'd have to drop work, and then we'd be without the money and benefits that are so desperately needed.



But yes, if I could  go back in time I would prevent myself from marrying my wife and having kids with her, and possibly from marrying anyone and having kids at all. In all likelihood, I'm going to be financially struggling for at least the next twenty years or so.

Now, if you would have told me before I married that I would have the income I do now, a wife, and the kids and that I would be financially struggling, I would have wondered how in the world that could be possible. I would think my income should enough to be comfortable. But then there are things like, even with insurance, spending multiple thousands of dollars on my wife's teeth. This is foreign to me, because I've never even had a cavity. I don't think there is any original tooth material in her head. Her dental costs is one of the things I should have confirmed before marrying her. This goes back to needing someone healthy. You might think this is a petty concern, but it seriously limits our quality of life. The money we are spending on medical (including dental) and therapy expenses significantly impacts our lives.

An ideal life for me would be for me to be:

1) Earning a living doing things about which I'm enthusiastic.
2) Hanging out with my friends at places and events related to our mutual interests.
3) Enjoying much time home alone with my hobbies.

I would be able to make decisions by myself. I wouldn't be spending time arguing or apologizing for who-knows-what. Chores and errands would get done without anyone telling me to do them and there would be a lot fewer of them - just like when I was unmarried.

But I can't have that life, especially not meeting the obligations I've taken on. I'm a husband and father, and even if I were an ex-husband I'd still have my obligations, and then my kids would have a broken home.

Ideally, even if I would be married with children, it would be with someone who was actually healthy and hadn't deceived me.

When we get down to staying within reality that doesn't involve going back in time, "ideal" would be reduced to simply having frequent, enthusiastic lovemaking with my wife. I don't think the therapist would have appreciated it if I had told her that, ideally, I'd spend most of my waking home hours taking turns with my wife giving and receiving oral sex. My wife recently described a plan for us to get on a literal schedule (attention unmarried me: you, too, can pledge half of your earnings for this life) to make love three times per week. It never took off, because of illness and menstruation and any other little thing. It's simply not a priority for her, and it ends up mostly being me doing things to please her, her resisting actually going over the edge, and then her stopping me before I'm done with foreplay to have intercourse, which will mean the end of it.

Sure, life is a lot better for me than for people in most the world. It would be even better if I had chosen another path.

That reminds me. Check out these pages:

Give Me One Good Reason a Man Should Marry
 
Should You Get Married?

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