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One night stands....

topic posted Sat, February 26, 2011 - 6:29 AM by  Unsubscribed
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OK - time to admit more pathetic facts about me. A friend of mine (another limerent) asked me about one night stands last night, and a light kind of went on.

Like my friend, I have never had a one night stand. In fact, I have really never learned the art of sex for recreation's sake - it's always kind of mattered to me who the partner was, and I had to feel like we liked each other. I could never walk up to a woman and just say "hey, let's go!" - something that came quite easily to other friends of mine. I'm not that likable now - but I was even less likable in my younger years. As a result, I have had few sex partners over the course of my life. Dated many more at least, but my "close ratio" (a sales term) was very low. If I was on a quota, I'd have been fired. Fast.

Anyway, I have never been able to stop viewing this as a personal failure. I guess in the age of AIDS, having fewer notches on one's belt is something of an advantage, but for someone who was generally careful, that's not much consolation. I am not sure whether this is characteristic of limerents in general, but it's worth asking whether there's any resonance with this out there.

Is limerence (and the "missing thing" my therapist kept suggesting there was) a simple side effect of not having "sown one's wild oats"? If that's the case, I think I will set myself on fire.

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  • Re: One night stands....

    Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:29 AM
    ' I could never walk up to a woman and just say "hey, let's go!" '

    This is the point: You have to *ask*!
    I have had myself so few women in my life I dare not tell you how few, I am *extremely* clumsy with women, unable to conduct the most innocent flirtation and yet I have had a one night stand.
    Long ago in my twenties (sigh...) I fancied a colleague and asked her to a date (or somewhat like).
    We went directly from the restaurant to the bedroom, no fuss.

    So I don't think the idea of missing "one night stands" is significant per se.
    • Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:33 AM
      That's right. If you want to experience recreational sex, just ask for it. Many women will say yes. Many women would much rather be asked outright than subjected to the "slippery slope" technique.
      • Unsu...
         

        Re: One night stands....

        Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:52 AM
        > Many women will say yes. Many women would much rather be asked outright than subjected to the "slippery slope" technique.

        I suspect these women would rather be asked outright by someone who is not me.

        I'm reminded of the scene in Tootsie (I can't find the clip), where, after Jessica Lange tells Dustin Hoffman (while in drag as Dorothy) that she would love it if a man would just come up to her and tell her something to the effect of a direct request for sex. Later in the movie, Dustin Hoffman, now as Dorothy's male alter-ego, asks Jessica Lange that exact same question and gets a drink thrown in his face.

        Those are my expectations.
        • Re: One night stands....

          Sat, February 26, 2011 - 8:09 AM
          "I suspect these women would rather be asked outright by someone who is not me."

          This is your pathology talking.

          In any case, women want to be asked, but that does not mean they always want to answer yes. Sometimes we want to be asked directly and say no directly. That way we get it over with in an instant, rather than waste hours in subtle maneuvers. In a non-recreational context I have been asked directly and said yes.
          • Re: One night stands....

            Sat, February 26, 2011 - 8:17 AM
            "In any case, women want to be asked, but that does not mean they always want to answer yes."

            We know that, "validation only", pretty nasty of you...
            (my LO is especially prone to that, she "scores" a lot of hits)
  • Re: One night stands....

    Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:30 AM
    This is such a "guy" question. Few women ever worry about it. Like many women in my particular culture, I have received many invitations to have recreational sex. I declined them all. I learned to resent men who pretended they were after more than recreational sex. For me, sex is not recreational, and I prefer men who feel the same way and are honest and open about that. I want intimacy, and like many women for me enjoyment of sex requires that significant emotional intimacy already be present.

    Auggie, in light of your feelings about sex, I have to think what is missing in your life is real intimacy with your wife. How can you keep such important secrets from her, yet imagine all is well between her and you?
    • Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:43 AM
      'This is such a "guy" question.'

      Yes, yes, yes, this is a *guy* question and this is one of the *many* points that women don't understand about men.
      (no doubt that there are many points that men don't understand about women)
      You have no idea what "scoring" means, and it's not a matter of recreational or otherwise.
      • RD
        RD
        offline 34

        Re: One night stands....

        Tue, March 1, 2011 - 6:46 AM
        "You have no idea what "scoring" means, and it's not a matter of recreational or otherwise. "

        I'm really curious about what "scoring" means. What is the draw, the drive, the meaning?
        • Re: One night stands....

          Tue, March 1, 2011 - 9:42 AM
          "What is the draw, the drive, the meaning?"

          It is more than for sex alone it is for *status* and status brings more sex, a self reinforcing loop.
          Or status collapse if you fall on the wrong side (like me), there is also the pick-up-artists with an inflated status:
          thequestfor50.wordpress.com/page/2/
          • RD
            RD
            offline 34

            Re: One night stands....

            Tue, March 1, 2011 - 11:56 AM
            How can a private act increase status?

            One could always speak falsely about scores - does that raise status too?

            Or perhaps a guy just looks/acts the part of a high scorer while in fact he is/does/chooses not to.

            Isn't there an easier self-reinforcing act a guy can develop to increase status in his own eyes?

            Maybe I'm too female to get it :)
    • Unsu...
       

      Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:47 AM
      > Auggie, in light of your feelings about sex, I have to think what is missing in your life is real intimacy with your wife.
      > How can you keep such important secrets from her, yet imagine all is well between her and you?

      It is a "guy" question because I am a guy.

      However, the friend who brought the topic up to me in the first place is *not* a guy. So maybe it is not a guy question after all.

      There are very few secrets I keep from my wife. So far, the only one I can put my finger on is the one about how I have felt about my LO. My wife even knows about the existence of my LO. My wife knows my entire history. My wife knows that I think my track record is pathetic. The other secrets I can think of revolved around surprise parties and things of similar ilk.

      So, I'm lost about what you mean by "real intimacy". I've been married for over sixteen years. The number of things my wife DOESN'T already know about me is very, very short. I have been there at my wife's best moments and worst moments, and she has been at all of mine (with the exception of one). There are things we all "don't know that we don't know"....

      What am I missing, Una?
      • Re: One night stands....

        Sat, February 26, 2011 - 8:02 AM
        Auggie, does she really know how pathetic you see yourself to be? Why can't you tell her the truth about your LO? All of it. (I know your stated noble reason; I think it is bullshit.) Why are you so sure she will reject you for it? Does she really know how miserable you are, in your career and your hobbies and your community? Does she really know the real you, or do you show her a pretend you that merely resembles the real you in some respects?

        As for scoring, recreational or not, I do get that men and women all want validation, affirmation, intimacy. Recreational or not, sex is always physical intimacy. I think the difference between men and women in this respect is simply the vulnerability quotient.
        • Unsu...
           

          Re: One night stands....

          Sat, February 26, 2011 - 8:10 AM
          > Does she really know how miserable you are, in your career and your hobbies and your community? Does she really know the real you...

          Yes, yes and yes. That is why she is supportive of some of my recent changes in hobbies, because there is a significant financial commitment that goes with it. As far as the career goes, I am working on that, but changes of that sort take time - I really do not know what my next step needs to be careerwise, and I want clarity on that before I take it.

          > Why are you so sure she will reject you for it?

          Because I am intimate enough with her to know that she will be extremely pissed off? Not being flip, Una, but do I need to subject her and me to that?
          • Re: One night stands....

            Sat, February 26, 2011 - 8:12 AM
            "Because I am intimate enough with her to know that she will be extremely pissed off? Not being flip, Una, but do I need to subject her and me to that?"

            Those are questions you need to answer for yourself, Auggie. Really answer, not dismiss.
  • Re: One night stands....

    Sat, February 26, 2011 - 7:58 AM
    >>>>>"Is limerence a simple side effect of not having "sown one's wild oats"? "

    I think we can safely dismiss this theory.
    • Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 8:23 AM
      Auggie asked: "Is limerence a simple side effect of not having "sown one's wild oats"? "

      Chrysalis answered: "I think we can safely dismiss this theory."

      Yup. Limerents who have sown their oats far and wide easily disprove this theory.

      Correlation does not imply causation, yet it is so tempting and easy to think it does. This is a common theme in musings by Christian men about lust and adultery. They often see themselves as being "over sexed", as being in effect more potent than "less Godly" men because they have not spent their seed, and they see this as a virtue/burden of having been raised to a high standard of behavior.

      en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corr..._causation

      www.scribd.com/doc/299378...e-With-Lust
  • Re: One night stands....

    Sat, February 26, 2011 - 11:11 AM
    I can't believe I dare to answer this question... but since it made me so uncomfortable, I guess I should give it a try.

    Yes, I have had one night stands... probably close to 200 or so. I'm not sure why... but some possible reasons that I've come up with are:

    1. it was a game of conquest at times
    2. it was me trying to make up for getting married when I was 17 and feeling like I'd never sewn my "wild oats"
    3. it was me trying to prove I was attractive or worthy of a man's attention, since I was denied this during childhood
    4. I didn't understand the difference between sexual and emotional intimacy
    5. I have no boundries and fall on my back if someone as much as kisses me
    6. I just really, really like sex
    7. It is a band-aid for my insecurities as a woman

    The crazy thing is, I was honest about all of this with my LO back in December... and it still makes me wonder if that is why he decided to go NC. I wouldn't think so, because he admitted to me that in ONE YEAR he was with 335 women when he was out on tour... but he was counting oral and i wasn't and my count is over a lifetime not one single year. Still, I think that me being honest about this might have literally... "BLEW HIM AWAY!!"

    ok... Fire away... I can't wait to get slammed with the reality hammer!!!

    Yup... Still Crazy!!
    Patsy
    • Unsu...
       

      Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 11:30 AM
      Patsy,

      No judgment here at all. Thanks for your honesty!

      Una,

      Was not looking for causality - only correlation. Looks like (based on a VERY low N) there is none.
    • Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 12:43 PM
      No judgment from me either, Patsy. I could so easily have taken the same road; many women with a history like mine do. The autonomic arousal I suffered for much of the past year generally presented as sexual arousal. Sexual arousal that was insatiable. It is enough to make many people promiscuous, seeking relief. At times I thought I would go insane, or already was insane. Have you experienced arousal like that?

      The Wikipedia article en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypersexuality sort of explains it, and mentions several causes. Although not mentioned, PTSD is a common cause.
      • Re: One night stands....

        Sat, February 26, 2011 - 4:01 PM
        "At times I thought I would go insane, or already was insane. Have you experienced arousal like that?"

        To some degree I believe I have experienced arousal at this level. However, 95% of my experiences were after my divorce from husband #1 and prior to my meeting husband #2 (about 10 years or so). After being married again for a few years... all, and I mean ALL of my sexual desire was lost. I even talked with my doctor about it, because it seemed so strange to me not to have the desire any longer.

        Strangely, when LO came back into my life a year and a half ago, that fire inside of me came back to life in full force!!! And while, I don't seem to have any "feelings of attachment" for anyone besides LO (and of course SO), I surely have been able to lay down with several other men during my limerence for him. Again, I think I am trying to prove to something to myself... not sure what, but I am certain this is not the healthy way to go about it. At least not if I intend on keeping SO in my life... it's just not fair to him. I would never accept this behavior from a man!!!! Not even LO.

        Thanks you guys for not judging me... I'm hard enough on myself as it is!
        • Re: One night stands....

          Sat, February 26, 2011 - 4:35 PM
          This autonomic hyperarousal likely involves a chemical imbalance and the chemical imbalance in turn often has a psychological origin. That does not mean a mental illness; the literature says this is very common in trauma survivors. The trauma need not be anything sexual, and the perception of sexual arousal is just that, a perception. It can also be perceived as fear, or a combination of sexual desire and fear, in which case the survivor may find themselves having panic attacks from increasingly more diverse and smaller triggers. This is called kindling. Hyperarousal isn't necessarily a direct response to a person or relationship in your life, and in my case I think it has to do mostly with my coming out of depression. Although my arousal was triggered the first time by my LO, in all fairness I have to say his "trigger" quotient is slight, and over time all kinds of things became triggers. Sometimes, just thinking uncomfortable thoughts while reading or writing here produces a surge in arousal. This is kindling. This is part of what makes hyperarousal so destructive; people suffering from it and unaware of what it is often think mistakenly that it is in response to a person in their vicinity and behave accordingly. The person need not even be a trigger; the trauma survivor can be triggered by some object in the environment, and mistake a bystander for, say, a hostile enemy soldier.
          • RD
            RD
            offline 34

            Re: One night stands....

            Sun, February 27, 2011 - 6:19 PM
            Una, I really think you'd like to read Erotic Mind, if you haven't.

            I had often wondered if arousal wasn't just one more path of least resistance: I feel xxx tough emotion and instead of deal with it directly I deal indirectly with the discomfort via arousal.

            Or maybe arousal is, at that moment, the only true thing the body CAN feel even if it isn't an "appropriate" response to some stimuli. And it is an unbalancing and frightening feeling to not feel in your body, so you feel what ever is possible.


            • Re: One night stands....

              Sun, February 27, 2011 - 7:29 PM
              The style of psychotherapy known as internal family systems uses the concept that everyone has psychological parts that have different jobs. From en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Inte...tems_Model : "Firefighters are parts that emerge when exiles break out and demand attention. These parts work to distract a person's attention from the hurt or shame experienced by the exile by engaging in impulsive behaviors like eating too much, drinking too much alcohol, taking drugs, fighting, or having inappropriate sex. They can also distract from the pain by causing a person to focus excessively on more subtle activities such as overworking, over-medicating, etc."
          • Re: One night stands....

            Thu, April 19, 2012 - 1:15 AM
            "The trauma need not be anything sexual, and the perception of sexual arousal is just that, a perception. It can also be perceived as fear, or a combination of sexual desire and fear, in which case the survivor may find themselves having panic attacks from increasingly more diverse and smaller triggers."

            Una,

            I realize this is from awhile back, but this is an incredibly helpful thread, and a very thoughtful post in an incredibly helpful thread. I have been trying to figure out this aspect of my limerence for a long time. Hypersexuality has occurred simultaneous with my limerent episodes since long before puberty, and has consequently been somewhat loosely associated with my LO's. Yet I rarely identified my LO's as the objects of that desire.

            I have been come to a realization, too, that fear (of the old-fashioned trauma variety) triggered in my relationship with my current SO has invariably provoked limerent thoughts that then get associated with hypersexual feelings. Going back to my pre-adolescent feelings of limerence and hypersexuality, I can likewise chronologically correlate them with periods of increased violence at home.

            I can't add to the thoughts on this thread, as I think they are very well covered already. I did find it incredibly helpful though. And as this topic has not appeared in the last few months, I thought it might be helpful to others to revive it, at least temporarily.

            Thank you again.
            • Unsu...
               

              Re: One night stands....

              Thu, April 19, 2012 - 3:44 AM
              Oh I had that, it was unspeakably horrible. Never before.
              It was as if those feelings had somehow become inextricably linked with anxiety, so if i got anxious about anything at all it increased the arousal. Mostly the anxiety was around LO, but I remember being at work and being incapable of anything, which in turn made me more anxious, which in turn etc etc etc. At the time i actually thought there was something medically/physiologically wrong with me, maybe hormonal. However, as soon as I went NC (the first time) with LO, that particular misery steadily abated. (There was a different pain then) So although there may have been physiological issues, I would say it was mainly an emotional reaction to him, or the situation. When I resumed contact with him it was never quite as bad though I did (do) still have obsessive thoughts/desire for him. I have never met someone I found so physically attractive, and with whom I was so physically compatible. And although I do want to move away from this because the "bad" did far outweigh the "good" and it was in any event (like theft in a multistorey carpark - couldnt resist) wrong on every level, I do feel a great sense of loss.
      • RD
        RD
        offline 34

        Re: One night stands....

        Sun, February 27, 2011 - 6:07 PM
        Wow, I thought hypersexuality was just part of limerence. Interesting. I'll have to think more on that.
        • Re: One night stands....

          Mon, February 28, 2011 - 11:23 AM
          This got me to remembering the movie Black Snake Moan. While not the greatest movie or very delicate on the subject, it involves hypersexuality of an abuse victim. I was hoping they would resolve more in the movie, but I still enjoyed it overall. I think it captures the raw, painful, twisting, aggressive compulsion feeling.
  • Re: One night stands....

    Sat, February 26, 2011 - 5:50 PM
    Hi Auggie,

    Thank you for bringing up this topic.

    Yes, time for me to be very honest as well. I also think my lack of any experience and the realisation that at 43 it is not going to be long before the pleasures of attention will inevitably diminish has something to do with my limerence.

    I think my limerence hit me when my LO expressed very explicit desires that got my imagination going... for the past year. Sigh.

    I actually do think that if I have ever had more sexual partners (my first and only one has been my SO of 25 years although you can't tell from the way I dress and act), I would not be so damn curious about what LO said. The grass doesn't really look greener but somehow I am so excited about checking it... So far, as you guys know, I have resisted it. Six months ago LO said he only wants that. And since then he tried again twice. I can't tell you the level of discipline it takes me to get over this mad desire in me to try... But is my limerence going to go if I do it? Previous posts on LO and sex seemed to suggest the opposite.

    Auggie, at least it makes two of us here who have very, very similar experience. I, just like you, have a very deep intimacy with SO emotionally and physically. And the only thing for the past 25 years that he does not know is that I am attracted to LO.

    Una, I admire your comments always but I still have not been able to understand exactly how telling my SO that I am having this terrible imaginary thing going in my head will in any way make my relationship with my SO better. He knows ALL about my insecurity, my lack of self-esteem, my co-dependency, my need for validation... All those things that made me vulnerable to limerence. He, like Auggie's wife, knows even about LO's existence. The only thing he does not know is that I think of that person much too often.

    And I, like you, ladies, have experienced extreme hypersexuality ever since this thing started. I was always interested to learn and improve our sex life with my SO and we are at a great stage. However, I have to admit that in the last year SO's and mine life was re-charged dramatically in a positive way ever since limerence hit me. I guess we deserve to have one good thing coming out of this monstrous condition...
    • Re: One night stands....

      Sat, February 26, 2011 - 6:25 PM
      Why am I so keen on full disclosure to SO? I am actually more keen on full disclosure itself than on making it to SO. SO generally will be the one who knows you best, who may be most likely to see what you can't see. If you have a therapist to whom you are able to disclose fully and you get somewhere that way, good enough.

      I kept my limerence to myself for ... 9 months? At first (can you believe this?) I thought nothing of it. Denial, big time. Then I started to be aware and bothered. I even told my husband that LO was somehow creeping me out, months before I admitted to the sexual arousal and that my dis-ease had developed into an infatuation. I started using alcohol (the most effective self-medication known for PTSD), mostly as a sleep aid. I think if I had started disclosing sooner I would not have suffered as long or as much as I did. I thought what was going on with LO was unconnected to anything else, until I started disclosing. Then, listening to myself, I made the connection.
      • Re: One night stands....

        Sun, February 27, 2011 - 6:02 AM
        Una,

        You have been through so much. And you have such a deep self-awareness and resolution that you are inspiring.

        I completely agree with you - disclosure is a step to recovery. I did disclose fully to my therapist a month after I figured out that the intensity of my thoughts about LO is something that needs to be addressed. I, like you, also thought that what was going on with LO was not connected to anything else. Once I started talking with the therapist, a lot of things were named and recognized - my upbringing, my personality (the giver), my co-dependence, my need to have people and to constantly seek validation from the outside world. I also recognized something the people here on the tribe have been so helpful with - to understand that it is addiction. And that the only way to deal with it like we deal with other things - cigarettes, alcohol. One day at a time.
        I just wish the intensity of the waves was getting lower more quickly.
        Your reflections helped you to understand the need to treat your PTSD. It is essential. I am sure that there will be a moment on the path of recovery when you will be so strong and will put this behind you. Perhaps together with the LO.
      • Re: One night stands....

        Sun, February 27, 2011 - 6:56 AM
        "I kept my limerence to myself for ... 9 months? At first (can you believe this?) I thought nothing of it. Denial, big time. Then I started to be aware and bothered. I even told my husband that LO was somehow creeping me out, months before I admitted to the sexual arousal and that my dis-ease had developed into an infatuation. I started using alcohol (the most effective self-medication known for PTSD), mostly as a sleep aid. I think if I had started disclosing sooner I would not have suffered as long or as much as I did. I thought what was going on with LO was unconnected to anything else, until I started disclosing. Then, listening to myself, I made the connection."

        I did much of the same. I was in major denial and had several months of escalation with my LO which I insisted to myself were "just friendly" especially on his end, until it became too much for me to handle. I told friends and my SO that LO was behaving in ways that made me uncomfortable, not admitting the attraction/infatuation part on my end. (Which, to be slightly on topic, was immediately and almost solely sexual in the beginning, but waned and is just about entirely gone.) For a lot of this time, I was drinking a lot to calm my nerves. I felt out of control so I stopped drinking for the most part and began avoiding my LO (which I feel guilty for and want to make amends about).

        I was terrified my SO would call me out on my behavior with my LO, but it didn't happen. He also dismissed my concerns and explained them away as normal, I was making a mountain out of a molehill. This did not help my denial. I kept, and still sometimes keep, trying to ferret out what I've perceived as faulty, there must be another explanation that can dispel this entire thing in my mind. But the more honest I am with myself, the harder that is to agree with.

        I've been keeping journals and try to get perspective here and it has revealed a lot of what I was missing. I do agree we need to go out of ourselves to find answers, and it would probably be better for me if I could confront my trust issues by disclosing. But that is a very tall order.
    • Re: One night stands....

      Sun, February 27, 2011 - 12:17 AM
      "And I, like you, ladies, have experienced extreme hypersexuality ever since this thing started."

      That sounds like a "reverse" instance of this:
      tribes.tribe.net/limerence...73a94a6401
      • Re: One night stands....

        Sun, February 27, 2011 - 5:54 AM
        It is really common to experience increased sexual energy while falling in love, being limerent, etc. It is part of that wonderful new relationship energy. However, this sexual hyperarousal we're talking about is beyond that. It can go far beyond the point of being in any way pleasurable, and even become aversive. It can occur in the absence of any new relationship. It is a common symptom also of the manic phase in bipolar disorder, where it has nothing to do with anything.
  • Re: One night stands....

    Sun, February 27, 2011 - 12:59 PM
    On reflection, concerning Auggie's original question here, I have to say that I hear people express more regret about having casual sex than about not having casual sex.

    Keep digging, Auggie. You'll find it eventually.
    • Re: One night stands....

      Mon, February 28, 2011 - 1:20 AM
      'On reflection, concerning Auggie's original question here, I have to say that I hear people express more regret about having casual sex than about not having casual sex.'

      It's an interesting point that, and not just for limerents. Personally I'm not averse to casual sex but I certainly did stop doing it as much when I realised that it wasn't actually making me feel all that great. The relationship between limerence and promiscuity is an interesting one for me as well. I did have a phase when I put it about quite a lot, several years ago. I'd met someone in a gay club on the first night I'd been out in ages, and I had a very intense and powerful limerent reaction which lasted more than a year. That was partly why I started going out so much - I'd see him out most Friday nights - but I was making new friends and enjoying myself as well. I started having a lot of casual sex as well. It was easy to end up doing so: half the people in the clubs were on the look-out for sex and at that time I was young, pretty, and increasingly confident and flirtatious. Up to a point I was trying to fill the gap that LO had created, although I will admit that the realisation (for the first time in my life) that I was actually attractive and sexy and able to put myself about a bit was an ego boost of sorts. Eventually I concluded, as mentioned above, that having a lot of casual sex wasn't actually filling the gap after all and wasn't really what I wanted to do, and my promiscuous phase tailed off thereafter. Since then, however, limerence has on occasion made me actively averse to casual sex, and less confident and flirtatious than I used to be. Perhaps a slightly diminished sex drive is partly a product of getting older, but I think successive bouts of limerence have played some part in it too.
      • Re: One night stands....

        Mon, February 28, 2011 - 9:31 AM
        "Up to a point I was trying to fill the gap that LO had created, although I will admit that the realisation (for the first time in my life) that I was actually attractive and sexy and able to put myself about a bit was an ego boost of sorts."

        Martin, I understand this and have experienced the same.

        "having a lot of casual sex wasn't actually filling the gap after all and wasn't really what I wanted to do, and my promiscuous phase tailed off thereafter."

        I think this is where I am now.

        "Since then, however, limerence has on occasion made me actively averse to casual sex, and less confident and flirtatious than I used to be."

        This is interesting to me as I am moving in this direction as well. Why do you feel less confident and flirtatious? I don't want to loose that part, but that is probably just my ego screaming for attention! And since I'm not getting my regular dose of attention from LO, my ego is being starved (which may not be a bad thing).
        • Re: One night stands....

          Mon, February 28, 2011 - 12:30 PM
          'Patsy

          'This is interesting to me as I am moving in this direction as well. Why do you feel less confident and flirtatious?'

          Well, the potted version is that I ended up having the best part of two years' enforced celibacy because just as my promiscuous phase was tailing off I changed jobs and started working ludicrous hours which meant that I barely met anyone. By the time opportunities started to arise again I'd rather lost the old confidence and I've never really regained it. I'm older, balder and less of a 'pretty boy' than I was when I was in my early twenties as well...
          • Re: One night stands....

            Mon, February 28, 2011 - 12:50 PM
            That is interesting Martin, I bet you are very handsome, flaws and all! We were all better in our 20's... but I wouldn't trade my experiences or knowledge I've gained for that hard body, or un-wrinkled eyes, or even the natural haircolor!!!

            It's funny we get so caught up in the physical aspects of ourself (and sometimes our LO's) but it seems to me that what truely attracts us is generally something more simple, like a genuine smile or sweet eyes, or a soft touch. Something much more abstract. Yet, we tend to focus on how we look to be the most important thing to others, when I don't really think that is true.

            Even my LO is not the man he was 20 years ago, he is older, greyer, heavier and a bit more cynical... and none of these things bother me. When he smiles at me, or looks at me I just melt. It's funny, the first time I saw him after reconnecting 20 years later... the first question he asked me was, "do you still think I'm cute". I said Yes... but it was a huge stretch, because he wasn't even remotely similar to how I remembered him physically. But that goofy crooked smile, wow, it was still right there and made me as crazy as I've ever been over him!!!

            Don't you figure we also have some of these other aspects that can attract people? Not saying that physical attraction is not important, just that when we feel that connection, we tend to look past physical traits and be far more forgiving.
    • Unsu...
       

      Re: One night stands....

      Mon, February 28, 2011 - 6:30 AM
      Una,

      On your recommendation (to the group), I bought and am reading "Radical Honesty". After about 60 pages, I can certainly see where you are coming from on this topic. The miraculous changes that occur in the lives of some of his subjects - the recession of pain, the return of orgasms, etc. etc., he attributes to simply "telling the truth". You said something about correlation not being causality the other day.... Perhaps the mind body connection is stronger than I think? We'll see.

      I find one similarity between "Radical Honesty" and "The Power Of Now" interesting - in the sense that it focuses on "being" vs. identifying too closely with the roles we create for ourselves...

      By "it", I assume you mean "what's missing", or did I miss that? :-) (That was a serious question)

      A/
      • Re: One night stands....

        Mon, February 28, 2011 - 6:52 AM
        By "it" I meant where you are stuck. If you keep digging, eventually you will find where you are stuck. Maybe nothing is missing, though; maybe you are simply carrying around some heavy burdens you could do without. What about that thought you had, that your LOs are just window dressing? Window dressing on what?
        • Unsu...
           

          Re: One night stands....

          Mon, February 28, 2011 - 7:29 AM
          Una,

          I know you probably asked this rhetorically, but I figured that I'd respond for completeness.

          Window dressing in the sense that those relationships are just old and dead and never worked out. Everyone has those - never had to go to a therapist for those. The conditions for all of them were similar and simple: Auggie sees girl, Auggie attracted to girl, Auggie too nervous to talk to girl at first, so he procrastinates and gets limerent, Auggie finally works up courage and tries to get to know girl, girl (usually) not interested in Auggie, Auggie gets depressed, Auggie recovers and moves on, Auggie does the same thing over and over again. Painful at the time, but neither unique nor interesting.

          A/
          • Re: One night stands....

            Mon, February 28, 2011 - 2:10 PM
            Window dressing on what. You had a "Holy crap" moment, but the window dressing is not news. I think you may find some value in recreating that moment. Maybe read the article again, and stay with the feeling. See what the "Holy crap" is about.
            • Unsu...
               

              Re: One night stands....

              Mon, February 28, 2011 - 2:54 PM
              Una,

              The previous limerences were window dressing on the architectural nightmare that was my most recent struggle with limerence. Things NEVER got that badly out of hand for me in the past. Ever.

              To which article are you referring?

              What was my "Holy Crap" moment?

              I scanned back through the thread for the answers to these two questions but did not see them. Sorry.

              A/
  • Re: One night stands....

    Mon, February 28, 2011 - 12:51 PM
    Auggie, I can definitely relate to this. Though I'm still young I have the same regrets because I married early. This is made worse by the fact that I'm not that unattractive. There were women interested in me, but I was too childish and stupid and i ignored most of them because they were not up to my fairly high physical standards at that time. I must have been their LO in some of the cases and I find it darkly funny now that I'm limerent myself. Talk about karmic revenge...

    Now, looking back, i want to slap myself hard for all the opportunities I had, but because of immaturity and a total lack of social common sense I missed. Many times I suspected that I suffer from some mild form of autism, because I always had a hard time picking up the little signals in my interaction with women. Only after years it hit me what they actually meant or wanted or in one case she told me after a decade that what I took as a resounding No was actually a Yes.

    All these memories haunt me from time to time and in my darkest moments of limerence I blamed my SO for taking this away from me. I think it might have had something to do with my limerence as well. I cope by telling myself that through one woman you can get to know all women. Thinking into casual or recreational sex I don't think that I missed that much and all those past women wanted probably something more than just casual sex. I also grew up in a fairly conservative culture where sex wasn't that casual as it is nowadays. I can rationalize all I want but the fact is I would have liked to experience it all on my own and draw my all conclusions.
    • Unsu...
       

      Re: One night stands....

      Mon, February 28, 2011 - 1:27 PM
      "I can rationalize all I want but the fact is I would have liked to experience it all on my own and draw

      my all conclusions."

      Xavi, you hit it on the head. Nothing personal against anyone here, but comments about "lots of casual sex not filling the gap" come across to me as the same thing as someone complaining because they are in too high of a tax bracket. There were times that I think lots of casual sex would have filled the gap just perfectly.

      It's really not a noble aspiration for one to have, but I feel like a failure for not having cracked that code. And, we come back to that again - I think that is what LO triggered - some kind of affirmation that there is something that attracted her without me overtly trying to attract her. Some people want to make the world a better place for mankind. All I ever wanted was to get laid by a wider variety of women. There has to be an upside to not having done that. I'd like to either find that, or figure out how to get past that, because it ain't gonna happen in this lifetime.

      Admirable? No. Honest? Yes.

      www.youtube.com/watch

      A/
      • Re: One night stands....

        Mon, February 28, 2011 - 2:19 PM
        Auggie, are you saying you are dying to try casual sex, no strings attached? If you had the nerve would you ask your wife for permission? Or keep it from her?
        • Unsu...
           

          Re: One night stands....

          Mon, February 28, 2011 - 2:49 PM
          Una,

          No, I'm not saying that I am dying to try casual sex NOW. I am saying is that I am pissed at myself for not having figured out how to do what came so easily to others when I was of the age where it was appropriate to have done so. At this point, I think it is too late - it would be very difficult for me to handle the "no strings attached" thing. I'd love to have gotten to that point - where a hookup could be simply that - a hookup. No emotional firestorms. I just don't think I am emotionally equipped to handle that. If it went well, I'd want more. It would take me a long time to not be a "head case" after a casual sexual encounter. I think that comes with the experience I missed out on. Things would get complicated quickly.

          This is not the kind of thing I would do now and hide from my wife. If I wanted to actually do something and I thought it was the kind of thing she'd go for, I'd be forthright about it. But, I wouldn't try to do it and hide it now - somehow, that would backfire miserably.

          It is probably a good conversation to have with her over a drink one night - not asking to actually do it, but just discussing that it is a box I've left unchecked, so to speak, in the checklist of "Things I Should Have Done As A Red-Blooded American Male". Since she knows my entire history, sad as it is, it would be a comical discussion for her, as she was pretty sexually accomplished before we met. Anyway, I expect that after that discussion, she will be so disgusted with how pathetic I am for feeling this way that she will lose whatever respect she might have had for me.

          A/
    • Re: One night stands....

      Mon, February 28, 2011 - 5:09 PM
      "[I] ignored most of them because they were not up to my fairly high physical standards [...]."

      This isn't really all that significant, but my problem is that I am not that attractive, and I have very high physical standards, which is why I'm skeptical that I'll ever find someone. I mean, the only person that I now that has ever been attracted to me is the gay guy that is limerent for me right now, and I don't go that way. Nature is so unfair...
      • Re: One night stands....

        Tue, March 1, 2011 - 6:47 AM
        "I'm skeptical that I'll ever find someone. "

        Good, Taylor, good, a realistic appraisal, so...
        Why Tatiana would be the exception?
        • Re: One night stands....

          Tue, March 1, 2011 - 8:21 PM
          "Why Tatiana would be the exception?"

          She isn't an exception. I'm just saying I might as well try, since I'm in love with her so much. I'm going to stay in love with her if and until my feelings naturally die out. I don't see the point in 'looking' for anyone else anyway, since I'm skeptical I'll find someone anyway.
  • Re: One night stands....

    Thu, March 3, 2011 - 1:47 PM
    Auggie, check out this old thread:

    "Outcomes of Limerent Experience while Married"
    tribes.tribe.net/limerence...8584324cce

    It is about discovering how sexually unsatisfying your marriage is or has become. I read it months ago and thought, nah, that's not my problem. But lately I have been thinking again. It may be time for some more radical honesty with my husband.
    • Unsu...
       

      Re: One night stands....

      Thu, March 3, 2011 - 5:23 PM
      Thank you, Una. I will check it out. This tribe comes with a lot of reading homework, doesn't it? :-)
    • Re: One night stands....

      Fri, March 4, 2011 - 12:42 AM
      Though I have and have had my own burden of sexual insatisfaction I found this thread *terrifying*, how can people withstand such frustrations even *after* they found out the happy possibilities and how can their partners be so lame, uneducated and mean?
      • Unsu...
         

        Re: One night stands....

        Fri, March 4, 2011 - 5:08 AM
        OF,

        Please clarify.
        • Re: One night stands....

          Fri, March 4, 2011 - 6:03 AM
          What I mean are quotes like this:
          "Alas, no. Without going into a lot of detail, we have an intense emotional relationship that is built (and it had to be re-built) on complete trust."
          .../...
          "But eros is completely absent from the relationship. I find her utterly uninteresting in bed, and though she would like to make love sometimes, I am unable to fake it. "
          From Leaf (unsubscribed)
          tribes.tribe.net/limerence...1408439bcc

          Or this:
          "So, I let it go and for a while could just enjoy the cuddling part. But the cuddling stopped too after a while. There was nothing loving about it. My sex drive went into hibernation. From time to time I'd gently and subtly ask for more time/quality but with no results. I slowly, over about 10 years, went from being ok with it, to doing it "for him", to tolerating it, to getting it over with so he'd leave me alone and stop nagging, to detesting it and feeling used (this is where I started avoiding all kissing - just get it freaking over with!), and then destesting him for using me... and the last straw was after it was over thinking to myself that I'll drink bleach before I do that again with him. I realized just how badly I had betrayed myself for letting this go on for so long. "
          .../..
          " I usually don't feel physically ill regarding sex with him anymore - but I say no lots. I don't ever want to do it. And when I do, it seems like every time I open my eyes I get the momentary feeling of horror that I'm doing it with the "wrong" man. And then I feel guilty - about not wanting him, or enjoying him, and wishing he was someone else. It's not fair to him either."
          From RD:
          tribes.tribe.net/limerence...92bbee612a

          These are two cases where it's physically deeply unsatisfying (IMHO *because* of the "wrong partner") and where they stick to the frustrating situation because of other emotional bonding which do not appear healthy (to me) at all (even guilt in the case of RD).
          • RD
            RD
            offline 34

            Re: One night stands....

            Mon, March 7, 2011 - 5:47 AM
            I'd forgotten that I had written all that out :( It is all still true. But if you think unwinding from a fantasy limerent relationship is hard, try unwinding yourself from a real and long relationship. Hope dies hard and apparently strands of committment are tough to kill off too.
            • Re: One night stands....

              Mon, March 7, 2011 - 6:25 AM
              "try unwinding yourself from a real and long relationship"

              Yup. I agree with Brad Blanton's take on ending a marriage: separation and divorce are not the absence of an old relationship, but are new relationships.
  • Re: One night stands....

    Fri, March 4, 2011 - 5:42 AM
    This web page relates to one theme of this thread: hotchristianmarriage.com/arous...n-men/ . Its focus is the ego boost a man gets when he knows he is desired by a hot woman. Never mind the fact that the page hopelessly conflates intimacy and sexual desire!
    • Re: One night stands....

      Fri, March 4, 2011 - 6:09 AM
      "Never mind the fact that the page hopelessly conflates intimacy and sexual desire!"

      Of course these are not the same but since the ego boosting comes from *desire* what could be the "desire of intimacy"?
      (I don't know of any such thing)
    • RD
      RD
      offline 34

      Re: One night stands....

      Mon, March 7, 2011 - 5:43 AM
      Interesting....

      Those are exactly the sentiments of my husband.
      • Re: One night stands....

        Mon, March 7, 2011 - 6:22 AM
        "Those are exactly the sentiments of my husband."

        Which are those?
        • RD
          RD
          offline 34

          Re: One night stands....

          Mon, March 7, 2011 - 7:15 AM
          The hot christian sex article sentiments - the need for one's wife to find you desirable and the power in that.
          • Re: One night stands....

            Thu, May 12, 2011 - 7:30 AM
            Let's revive this thread.

            RD remarked that in order to feel emotionally intimate with her, her husband first needs to feel that she desires him. Ie, he needs sex with her to be exciting. I expect that like many (most?) women, RD needs emotional intimacy to come before sexual desire. This is a classic chicken-and-egg problem.
            • RD
              RD
              offline 34

              Re: One night stands....

              Thu, May 12, 2011 - 9:35 AM
              I think the equation can be made pretty simple: trust = lust :)

              Ok, maybe it's not that simple... I don't lust after all people I trust. So maybe I should reverse it: No trust = no lust

              Trust is primary - without it actionable desire tanks. Without trust there can there be any intimacy? (The word intimacy makes me chuckle - LO used that word once in one of his mini-marriage lectures to me. Yeah, he was a true marriage expert... :) )

              Though this is a pretty good summary of my marriage issues on this topic:
              "her husband first needs to feel that she desires him. Ie, he needs sex with her to be exciting. I expect that like many (most?) women, RD needs emotional intimacy to come before sexual desire."

              I do not desire him even remotely. I haven't in at least 10 years. He "thinks" I do or assumes it. But his body knows better. :(
              • Re: One night stands....

                Thu, May 12, 2011 - 9:46 AM



                No Trust = No Lust

                This is very true. My first boyfriend who had been my best friend during childhood has been in contact which is really weird (not spoken for 25 years after we broke up). I am quite happy to be in contact with him - but there is absolutely no lust (and he is in great shape), mainly because I would never trust him again (he is also the archetype in personality for LO, so led to a brief upsurge in limerence for LO). When we get together for a coffee (along with some other mutual friends) I will be taking a fire extinguisher just in case there are any embers. (to be honest he is such an archetypical assclown that this is not going to happen anytime soon)

                Now definately to work
                • Re: One night stands....

                  Thu, May 12, 2011 - 10:11 AM
                  Re "no trust = no lust", I confess to being very confused on this point. I don't trust LO, in that I hardly know him and I know not to do the blind trust thing with someone I hardly know. And although I do crave him in some way, now it isn't exactly sexual desire. On the other hand, at times I have experienced sexual desire for (or at least arousal in the presence of) someone with whom I neither have nor want emotional intimacy. That includes LO, at the outset, and I was not in the least interested in acting on the feeling or even in getting to know him better.

                  Are desire and arousal one and the same? Some people seem to think so, others not.
                  • This is the maximum depth. Additional responses will not be threaded.

                    Re: One night stands....

                    Thu, May 12, 2011 - 3:57 PM
                    <I don't trust LO, in that I hardly know him and I know not to do the blind trust thing with someone I hardly know.>

                    Are you differentiating between internal and external LO? Because internal LO you've known all your life.
                    • Re: One night stands....

                      Sun, May 15, 2011 - 5:55 PM
                      Una wrote:
                      I don't trust LO, in that I hardly know him and I know not to do the blind trust thing with someone I hardly know.

                      Crysalis wrote:
                      Are you differentiating between internal and external LO? Because internal LO you've known all your life.

                      At this point I don't trust either one. External LO because I hardly know him. Internal LO because I am now aware that the internal LO may be a projection of someone who hurt me.
                      • Re: One night stands....

                        Sun, May 15, 2011 - 10:28 PM
                        "Internal LO because I am now aware that the internal LO may be a projection of someone who hurt me. "

                        That is interesting as I have come to the conclusion that internal LO is probably a projection of my first boyfriend (teenage years) who damaged me, not physically but mentally. (in terms of trust). A while ago I realised that his personality in some ways reminded me of B1 (boyfriend1), but this weekend I came to the conclusion that this was one of the reasons he makes me feel vunerable (and why years ago I could never have trusted him on a certain level). It also explains why after a long conversation with him, and external LO winning the battle in terms of prominence in my mind, the limerence kind of fades to a nice fuzz (similar sensation to when I talk to other close friends).
                        • Re: One night stands....

                          Thu, April 19, 2012 - 5:47 AM
                          Weird looking back on what we wrote so long ago but thanks Lauren2 for bring this thread to life.

                          The other day I came to the exact same realisation as below - I was aware of coming to that conclusion before but could not recollect where I had written about it.

                          At first I thought "well you have not moved on one iota" but actually it was a different sort of conclusion. A year ago (11 months) it was a left hand brain rational analyisis - this time I "saw" it in a right hand brain holistic sense so I am hoping this signifies some sort of improvement.
            • Re: One night stands....

              Thu, May 12, 2011 - 9:40 AM

              I think in a long term relationship, Una, the emotional intimacy does need to be present (thinking about it, when I disclosed to SO and previous to this, we managed to regain the emotional intimacy that then led to the improvement in the physicality of it all)

              With LO - there are moments when I don't care two figs about the emotional intimacy (though actually thinking about it we have established this, and there is reciprocity, which has dampened the limerence but not killed it as I can't actually meet up with him) - but I guess this is all to do with my own commitment hangups too. I think it is perfectly normal for women to have the sexual desire without the desire for all the emotional intimacy (I guess in my experience the emotional intimacy follows from the sexual desire, at least at the beginning stages of a relationship - I think what happens is that as women we tend to be "culturized" into thinking all the emotional stuff should be present before the physicality.

              All my 3 long term relationships have started with a physical relationship that morphed into a long term relationship fairly naturally (I am including LO in this as after nearly a year of contact, not sure how to define it but it is a "relationship" of sorts I suppose, trying to convince myself). But I suspect I am not typical of the majority of women.

              Ramblling a bit as rushing out to work...(I was thinking about this thread yesterday)
              • Re: One night stands....

                Thu, May 12, 2011 - 4:49 PM
                My relationship with my SO was initially physical. I didn't really feel that I wanted a relationship, but he was a friend who was, I hate to say it, convenient and not threatening. Trust worthy, sweet. The attachment/intimacy came after. This is also how I felt with my ex and LO. At the start I'm not serious about it at all, I just feel comfortable enough with them to indulge in physicality. As that progresses (or doesn't!) the emotional attachment starts really setting in. I wanted absolutely nothing to do with my LO for three years, and even into limerence I was moody about having to deal with him, yet the beginning of the feelings were very sexual (and disturbing to me). Once I was able to step back and pull away on a physical level, I was struck with the fact that I had become deeply emotionally tangled up in it.

                I've been thinking over this and it is very strange how I was always incredibly resistant/rejecting of my LO, long before any attraction occurred to me. I realized in the last few days that it probably heavily impacts his behavior with me, since he is so used to my resistance. I have never had so much trouble with this with anyone else I've ever known, I just did not WANT to know him.
  • Unsu...
     

    Re: One night stands....

    Fri, March 4, 2011 - 9:12 AM
    You seem like you're deep in a state of defeat Auggie. Alot of what you say here seems like it comes from a sense of defeat, so not feeling terribly good about yourself at the moment. I understand that, but that doesn't mean it's good to stay like this.

    How can you even question if it's an important prerequisite that you know someone and like her and feel an affinity before being intimate physically? IMO that is the healthiest approach to sex. It's the ones who seek out meaningless sexual encounters with people they don't know and don't give a rat's ass about, over and over, thinking they are achieving something worthwhile. The ones who chase meaningless sexual encounters for the sake of it are the biggest losers IMO. They are the clueless ones, the ones who don't get it. And I can assure you living like this for any length of time does not make that person immune to discontent in marriage/serious relationships, or to these kinds of intense infatuations, like limerence. People with histories of promiscuity probably are as much or possibly more prone to emotional upheavals like limerence than those with limited sexual history.

    You are way too down on yourself Auggie. It doesn't matter at all how many sex partners a guy has had. That says nothing about the person's worth or "success". For the record, the average man is likely to have had far less sex partners than the average woman of the same age (roughly). There's only one reason for that: men are 100x more likely to settle for a sexual interlude with a woman even without caring or attachment than woman are. Not to say there are no promiscuous woman (hahaha!) or woman who don't pursue meaningless sex with no strings. I'm just saying there are way more women than men who will turn away opportunities for purely sex with no emotional attachment than there are men who do so. It's just the way the species is wired.

    The sad thing for me here is hearing you sort of knocking yourself for having had only a few sex partners before marriage, as if that's something to be embarrassed about, or to devalue your worth as a human being. It is not a "failure". If anything I would say your past attitude regarding sex, that it must be combined with emotional attachment, is the triumphant and enviable one. You get it (or at least you got it at an earlier phase of your life). The fact that you've spent years with one partner and there's still alot of love there, mutually, shows what a success you are in that department. In spite of all you've suffered this past year, you acknowledge you still love your wife and you don't wish to break up the marriage. You don't want to hurt your wife. And she obviously loves you and is committed to you. That is something to be proud of and rejoice in, not to put yourself down because you haven't had many partners in sex before your wife. It's obvious you're not feeling too good about yourself right now. I would bet alot of that has to do with your limerence. In spite of what you claim to the contrary, I have a hunch you feel "rejected" by your LO, and it's taken a big chunk off your ego and self-esteem. You are in a very low place right now in your self-worth. You are demoralized and feel defeated. I'm no therapist or expert in psychology, but it sounds like depression to me. In depression I don't think there are remedies in extra-marital affairs, or "scoring" sex partners. All that is plastering over the much deeper gap that lies underneath. It's not repairing anything. I really think you need to tackle the depression before you do anything else. I'm glad to hear you're looking for another therapist. Maybe you could find one who specializes in treating depression. i don't see your life getting better while you are so down on yourself, and feeling so defeated and unworthy.

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