The Benefits Of Taking A Walk

How was your walk?

It was good. Helpful. Thank you for the suggestion.

Sure. I felt like getting out, walking around, getting some sun could help you.

It did.

Still in a bad mood?

Its not so bad now. I am ok. I walked. Listened to a podcast from a guy by the name of Duncan Trussell. I found a soccer ball.

You found a soccer ball?

Yes. That is what I said.

Sorry. Sometimes I do not hear so well.

Yes. I found a soccer ball. I bounced it as I walked. I threw it up in the air and caught it. And I kicked it really hard several times.

That must of been nice.

What?

Kicking it.

Oh yeah. It felt great to just kick the shit out of a soccer ball. It was fun. I kicked it as hard as I could. Didn’t go very far and I may have pulled or sprained a muscle in my leg. Been awhile since I kicked a soccer ball.

Ouch.

Yeah. But it was worth it. Fun to just play around with a soccer ball like I used to do when I was a kid. I don’t think I play around enough.

You don’t really play at all.

Yeah. This is true. I don’t play much. But sometimes when I go for walks and am alone and free, I play around more. This is why walking is good for me. It gives me the space, time and freedom to just play around if I want.

Explore.

Yeah. I just explore, walk around and play.

That’s nice. It is good for you to do this.

I think so. I like play. It’s good. I feel ok now. Still don’t want to have to go to work and have all these deep, dull and long conversations with people, but I feel better now.

Good. You will get through the day. Just stay present. Don’t identify too much with your ego. When you notice that you are thinking too much, just return your attention back to your breathing. Notice sounds that you are hearing. Feel sensations in your body and let the thoughts go. Just try and be present with what is. Not in the future and not in the past. Just right here.

Yes. That is what I will do. That is what I am doing. I might smoke a little weed to take the edge off.

That is fine. Maybe not the best idea, but if it helps go ahead. Just don’t get too high. You don’t want to be too high while doing psychotherapy with other people.

No I won’t. I never do. Just helps lighten the load and cheer up the mood. When I am slightly high it makes it a little easier to engage and be interested in other people. Makes my job less heavy.

Ok. We can discuss this later. May not be a good long term solution. Just go easy. Try and have fun and play around as you go through the day. Don’t get too sucked into the human condition. Just stay present. Take it easy.

Yeah. I will do so. Talk to you later.

Sounds good.

 

Bad Mood

Why are you so pissed off?

I don’t know. I just woke up feeling this way.

It has to be the result of something.

I had a hard time sleeping last night. My wife had a friend over and they were talking late into the night. That was annoying. I am glad she had a friend over and was being social but it made it difficult for me to get to sleep.

You think this is why you are in a bad mood?

Maybe. I am also trying to quit drinking.

You quit drinking?

Yes. I just don’t want to drink anymore. At least not for a long time.

Why? You don’t drink that much?

No, I don’t drink that much but booze always makes me feel like shit in the end and I am tired of feeling like I am doing something that is not good for me. As much as I like drinking beer or gin, I always feel poisoned in the end. So I want to give it up for health reasons.

I see.

But I have had a tough time sleeping since giving it up. I think I may be going through some alcohol withdraws.

It is possible. You were drinking regularly for awhile, so this could be one part of it. I also know you have been worried about not making enough money at your job.

Yes this also. I am also annoyed that I don’t enjoy my job but have to do it because I need the money. I want to be able to like my job. I am trying. But every time I return home after being at work all day I am so relieved not to be at work anymore. I have a feeling that my dislike of my work is causing my business to suffer.

Could be.

Also, I lead a large meditation group last night. Over fifty people. I talked a lot in the group. I talked the entire time. I talked about the value of living in the moment. I talked about why worry is such a useless emotion. I talked about how we are all going to be worm food in a matter of moments, days, weeks or years. I talked about how we should all just enjoy our lives now. How this is the most important thing. I used words like “fuck” and “bullshit” a lot. I talked a lot. People just looked at me. A room filled with wide eyes, looking right at me but no one said anything. I was just talking and everyone was just staring at me. It was awkward. I do not like to talk a lot. I do not like it when people are just looking at me. I don’t know what they are thinking. I wish someone would say something.

So you felt uncomfortable about the group. Maybe you feel like you did a bad job. Like you said too much?

Yes. I keep telling myself that I am not going to talk much. I will lead a guided mindfulness meditation, talk maybe just a bit and then let other people talk about their experience. If no one wants to say anything, then I will end the group early.

Why don’t you do this?

I don’t know! I always ended up talking too much! I want people to have a good experience. I want people to get something out of coming to the group. I want people to like me!

You want people to like you.

Yes. There. I said it. I don’t like it. I don’t want to care about whether people like me or not. I don’t want to have to work so hard to get people to want to keep coming back to the group. It is bullshit.

So you are pissed off that last nights group did not go like you wanted it to.

Yes. I went against what I know is best for me. Once again I worked too hard and said too much. Pisses me off. Also, I think I did not really want to lead the group. I am burnt out. Been doing it for three years. I’ve had enough. Was tough for me to get into. I was tired. I stumbled a bit at the beginning. This felt awkward. I do not like to mess up or feel incompetent in public. I think I felt this way a bit in the beginning of the group. Took me a bit to get into it.

I see. Well it is in the past now. Let it go. I am sure you did fine. Any other reason you are in a bad mood?

I have to go to work today. I don’t really know what I am going to do with my life. How am I going to break through and find a way to live the kind of life I want to live? On Friday I have to be interviewed by a news station. I do not want to do it. I do not want to talk any more about mindfulness. But I need the publicity. It could improve my business. So I have to smile and pretend like I really am interested in talking about mindfulness. Talking about mindfulness bores me. Listening to others talk about their problems all day bores me. I just don’t want to do it anymore but I must do it because I need to earn a living.

I see.

I am pissed off. I want to get high, have crazy debauched sex, drink, masturbate to porn.

None of this will help.

I know. That is why I am not going to do it.

Go for a walk.

Go for a walk?

Yes. Go for a walk. Bring your headphones. Listen to music you want to listen to. Just go for a walk.

A walk?

Yes. Go for a walk now. Right now. It will help. Get out of your head MR. MEDITATION TEACHER.

Haha. Jerk. Ok. I guess I will go for a walk.

Yes. Do it.

Ok. I am going to go for a walk now.

Ok. Go.

How To Not Watch Pornography

So you want to watch porn?

Yes!

So why don’t you just go ahead and watch some?

Because I said I was not going to watch it anymore. At least not for awhile.

Why?

Because it is just not good for me. Doesn’t make me feel good about myself.

Really? You watch harmless porn. Nothing out of line or too shocking. Why does it have to be such a big deal?

Because I just don’t want to watch it. I do not like being dependent on it. Someone else is making a lot of money off my dependency. Don’t like that. Also, someone else is planting images in my brain that are causing me to want more and more. That is not a good thing.

It’s not that big of a deal.

Are you here to help me or to encourage me to watch more porn?

Help, of course. Look, I know you had a long, stressful day. I know that porn is a way that you can occasionally blow off some steam. You only watch it for ten minutes or so, so I don’t think it is such a big deal. But I understand your concern.

It would be nice to watch a little porn right now. I love to see sexy naked women doing sexually scandalous things. It is so enjoyable. But at the same time, it decreases my interest in being sexual with my wife. I become more sexually independent and I don’t think this is a good thing when in a relationship. I think porn also causes me to lust after other women more rather than just making the best of the beautiful woman that I am married to.

Yeah, I can see how it would cause you to lust after other women and want to have various kinds of sexual experiences.

Yes. It causes me to become more interested in other women. This can’t be good.

I think it is normal. Natural. But it is true, to make a relationship work sexually, will require some effort. If you are meeting your own sexual needs watching porn, it will make it more difficult to make the effort with your wife.

Yes. I see this. But man I love watching naked women do sexually scandalous things. So much fun. But maybe this is not a good thing. Maybe this is actually potentially harmful to my marriage.

It could be.

Yes.

If you were having more sex with your wife, then watching porn would not be such a big deal. But because you are not being that sexual with your wife, I actually think it is wise to abstain from porn for awhile. Have more sex with your wife. When you masturbate do it to your imagination. Think of her. Create your own sexual imagery. Have sexual experiences with her and then use these experiences to masturbate. This could benefit your relationship.

Yes, I know. I know. Not as easy as just masturbating to porn but I know I need to do it at least until I can get my sexual interest in her back on track. Not watching porn will force me to do more sexual things with her. Plus- there is nothing noble or flattering about sitting in front of a computer screen with your pants half down, masturbating to pornographic videos on a screen.

It is rather pathetic. A sorry display of human sexuality.

Yes.

Would masturbating by myself, while imagining sexual things be more noble?

I think so. I think you would feel less shame and less self-disgust as a result.

Yes, I would probably feel better about myself.

So, if you need to go blow off some steam, go think about your wife and masturbate. But no porn for you.

Ok. Fair enough. This was helpful. Thanks.

No porn.

Ok. Got it.

Use your imagination.

Will do.

Good.

 

MY DISTURBED BRAIN (fear and loathing)

Why do you say this?

What?

That your brain is distrubed.

Because it is.

Why?

It is almost always working against me.

How?

Well……..Last night I woke up in the middle of the night with my brain racing. It was churning at a high speed. So many vertiginous thoughts happening one after the next.

Vertiginous. Thats a good word.

Pulled it out from nowhere.

Good job. Your mind can’t be that disturbed to think up words like that.

Defenestration.

Thats a good one also.

My favorite word.

Lets get back on track. So you woke up in the middle of the night with a brain running wild?

Yes. And it kept me up all night. Thought after thought after thought after thought.

This is weird since you are such an advocate for staying present and not getting caught up in thought.

I know. I tried all of my meditation techniques but they did not really work. May have made a subtle difference but did not work much. I realized that my brain is really disturbed. It just is continually sneaking off into the past and the future. It is always judging and worrying about what could happen in the future. It is continually resenting people and things that happened in the past. My brain causes me a great deal of worry, fear, anger, resentment and on and on. It seems to sabotage my well-being and contentment in the present moment.

Why do you think this?

It is just always what it is doing! It is messed up. I don’t want to drink. It starts to tell me how I should just have a few drinks. I don’t want to watch porn. It starts to remind me how great and fun watching porn is. It seems my brain is programed to work against me!

Hmm. Seems like your brain continually thinks of things in the future. You brain is preoccupied with what future event could be like. It has a very difficult time just staying right here, right now.

Yes. And not just that. I can not trust my brain. It is not rational. For example, yesterday I did not want to go to work. I often do not want to go to work. I think that I dislike my job. I loath it. Then I go to work and come home from work and realize that that was not so bad. Now I have some money. I think that I should be more grateful for the job I have. I should be more interested in it. Then I realize that I do not have as many clients as I would like. Various clients keep canceling on me. I am working less than I need to. So I wake up in the middle of the night worried about money. Worried about not being able to get enough clients. Worried that I will have to find a different job. Worried that I am not making enough money. Angry that clients are canceling on me.

Sounds like madness.

It is! One minute I loath going to work. Then I am terrified of not having enough work. I panic because I feel like my business is falling apart.

You would think you would be happy that you do not have to work as much right now!

I know! But I am not! I am worried about it. I have bills to pay! And then why do I always loathe going to work but after work I feel like I should have more gratitude and that I am so lucky to have the job I do? It is just craziness.

Sounds like you are very confused.

Obviously.

What is a better word for confusion?

Vertigo.

Yes. You have psychological vertigo.

Thanks. But can’t you provide me with any deeper insights than that?

All I can really do is agree with you that your brain is disturbed. I think you are correct. You may even have a slight mental illness. You need to meditate regularly. You need to get a good nights sleep. But most importantly my friend…..

Are we friends?

Yes, I think we are. I am just the wiser and more insightful part of you.

Ok.

Most importantly, you need to stay present. In this moment, right now, you are fine. You have a roof over your head, you have some work, you have your health, you have food. You are doing ok right now. Do not get too far ahead of yourself. I realize that you are making less money right now and that can feel scary, but you are ok. Let the past and the future go. You can worry, worry, stress about what the future is going to look like but you really do not have much control over how the future will play out. You don’t know that there will not be a major earthquake in twenty minutes that wipes everything out. Worrying about the future is useless. Your disturbed brain will project worst case scenarios into the future. It is like throwing a pebble into the ocean- you have no real clue where it will land. Don’t listen to your brain. Enjoy your life right now. Stay present. Practice what you preach.

Yes. I agree. It is just very difficult. Seems my brain sneaks off into the future or past without my permission. It causes my entire nervous system to freak out. Do you think this has anything with being Jewish?

I do. I think us Jews have a predisposition to unnecessarily freak out and see gloom and doom on the horizon.

Our brains are wired to worry.

Yes. But please. No Porn. No booze. Smoke a little weed if you want. Stay present. Really work on just being here right now and reminding yourself that everything is fine right now.

Moment by moment.

Yes, that is it. Take life moment by moment. Time for me to take off.

Where is it that you go when you are not here?

Far away from your disturbed brain. It ain’t much fun being in there when it is acting up.

I understand.

 

I Don’t Want To Go To Work!

Are you feeling down?

I am feeling frustrated, irritated, aggravated and yes, I suppose I feel down.

Do you know exactly why?

Of course. Didn’t you read the title of this piece?

Yes. I just want to hear you say it.

I dont want to go to work!

Why? That is ridiculous. What is wrong with going to work?

I just don’t want to do it. Something deep in me is revolted by the idea. It is like a yucky feeling in the pit of my stomach. I don’t know why it is there.

Hmmm. Interesting. You should feel happy about going to work. You are fortunate to have a job. You are even more fortunate to have a job where you can help other people and make good money doing it. You have your own office. No shitty boss to deal with. You only work three days a week in your office. It is kind of an ideal situation.

I know. It is. That is why I feel like I should be happy about it. I am continually telling myself to snap out of it. I should be thrilled to have the job that I do. But still there is this yucky feeling in the pit of my stomach. I feel like, in a few hours, I have to go do something that I really do not want to do.

Why?

Good question. I know it is simplistic but I just don’t like doing it. Its not want I want to do with my life. There are things about it that feel great. Like I said, I can help others and they pay me well for this assistance. I get a good amount of gratitude and appreciation from others for helping them out. It is good that I can be of service in this way. My work also comes with a fair amount of social status and cultural legitimacy. These things can be nice but I don’t care that much about it.

And as a result of all of this, you are able to afford a comfortable lifestyle for you and your wife.

Yes. This is a big benefit.

And you only have to work three days a week!

I know. I could not tolerate working a five day week. I was miserable all the time. I was on the verge of jumping off a cliff. So my wife agreed that I would work three days a week and see if that helped.

Has it?

Yes. It has. Now I only feel pain three days a week. Makes a difference.

What do you want?

This is a question I have been asking myself for almost three decades. The answer is not easy to find. I want my work to feel fun. I want it to be enjoyable. I want it to feel like something I do not mind doing. I don’t want to feel this yuck feeling in my gut every time I have to go to work. It sucks.

What is that old saying? “Make sure that you love what you are good at doing because once people are willing to pay you to do it, you will have to do it….” Something like that. You are really good at doing something that people are willing to pay you a lot of money to do, but you do not love it.

No. I do not love it at all. I am not sure I even like it. I am ok with letting people work their problems out on their own. I do not feel this huge need to be the one to help people work their problems out. I just don’t care that much. I am not a big fan of other people. I think people can be a pain in the ass. I am ok leaving this being-in-service-to-other-people-job for someone else to do.

But you are the one doing it.

Yes. I have ended up doing something that I do not really want to be doing. I am an introvert. Having to work with people all day, three days a week in this way, is painful. I do not believe that the only way we can be happy is through helping others. I think that is a bunch of crap. Maybe if you are an extrovert this is true but the quickest path to unhappiness for an introvert is to work with other people.

Why sooooo painful?

I have to hear about all their problems. I have to listen and pretend like I am interested. I have to really force myself to care. Seven people, seven hours a day. It hurts. It gives me anxiety. I am terribly uncomfortable when I am sitting their listening to people talk about their lives. I try to listen deeply and pretend like I am fine. Inside, I can not wait until the session is over.

Sounds like the opposite of fun.

It is. But it pays me well. It allows me to be economically independent. So I try to do the best I can. I give it everything I got. It is kind of like saying, “Ok, fuck it. I am just going to jump off this tall cliff. I will do what I have to do to survive. I am all in.” And then when I am out, I really enjoy being out. But I dread having to do it all over again.

Sounds tough. I think this is what most middle class people in the Western world deal with. Most people are in your situation.

Yes. We live quiet lives of desperation.

So what can you do about your situation?

I try and make the best of it. I try not to think about it too much even though this yucky feeling in my gut is always there on days I have to work. I really dread it. But I try and write, read, listen to music, exercise, go for walks before, during and after work. It helps a bit. I really don’t know what else to do right now. I own a house. I have debt and bills. I have a comfortable lifestyle to pay for. I don’t want to give these things up. I love my lifestyle in a way. I just don’t know what else I could do to afford all of this. I can’t just quit my job and start writing and making art full time. This will not work. I need something else to earn an income, but have no idea what.

You are stuck.

I am stuck.

Stuck.

I have always been stuck. I am not so sure I know what it is like not to be stuck. I feel like I was raised by stuck people. I was taught how to be stuck. To live a stuck life. I really don’t know how to be unstuck.

I think being unstuck is the result of a lot of luck and some talent. You have the talent, but in a way you just have not been lucky.

I know! And I am bitter about it! And now I have to go do something that I really do not want to do!

But maybe, just maybe, no matter what you did for money you would not want to do it. You hate traveling. You hate leaving your home. If you were making a living as an artist and writer you would probably have to travel a good amount.

This is true. Maybe. I don’t really know. I would not be happy about traveling. Maybe it is a no win situation. Maybe work is just painful. No matter what you do, work is pain. There is just no way around it. You will always have to do shit you do not want to do.

Maybe. I don’t know. That might be the case for you.

Maybe so. I just wish I did not have to feel this yuck in the pit of my stomach. I once made a deal with a Buddha statue. I said that I would promise to spread the word about meditation and Buddhist philosophical teachings if in exchange the statue helped me to become a successful writer. Every day I walked by that statue to remind it about our deal. I have lived up to my side of the deal. I teach meditation classes to large groups of people every week. I talk about the benefits of mediation with my clients. I am doing what I said I would do but the statue is yet to come through on its side of the deal!

I am not sure a Buddha statue has the ability to make a deal like that with a human.

It was a really large statue.

Still, I think you are being a bit desperate here.

I am desperate. I need some fucking help!

So desperate that you are talking with Buddha statues?

Yes!

Jeeze. That is bad.

I know! I really don’t know what to do here. I am forty-five years old and I can’t seem to figure this one out. I try to meditate, to accept my situation, to make peace with things as they are- but still!!! There is this angry, yucky feeling in the pit of my stomach. I am being forced every week, for three entire days to do something I don’t want to do. Then I spend two days in recovery.

Learn to love it.

Shut up with your self-help crap.

Learn to love it. You are incarcerated. You are not getting out any time soon. Learn to love your incarceration.

Oh hell. Really? This is what I am trying to do. In my own way I am trying to learn to love it. I try every day. I accept it. Embrace it. Lean into it. But it hurts!

Well, you have to go get ready for work now. You have to go listen to people talk about their problems with you. You have to try and be really interested.

I really do not want to go.

I know. But you just have to jump in. Don’t think about it anymore. Just jump. When you get out try and enjoy being out. When you are in, just breathe, swim along and wait until it is time to get out. Just deal with it. Like carrying a heavy load.

Yup. I just have to deal with it. I just have to tolerate it. No easy answers coming anytime soon. I just have to carry it and make the best of it. It is what it is. This is my life right now.

Yup.

Ok. Well thanks for talking with me about this. The yucky feeling in the pit of my stomach has gone down a bit.

Good to know. Go do what you must do. Jump. Oh. And during your break, take some of your hard earned money and go buy yourself a record. That helps ease the pain a bit.

My entire record collection is a collection built out of pain. But good idea. I will do it.

 

How To Be A Famous Blogger

No one reads your blog right now. No one.

You may be being a bit hyperbolic here. But if that is what you think, ok.

Don’t you care?

Maybe a bit but not really. I write for myself. This blog is for me to figure things out within myself.

I see. But wouldn’t you like more readers?

Sure.

Admit it. You would love this blog to blow up and rescue you from having to work your day job as a therapist.

Maybe. It would be nice. But its not going to happen.

It could.

How?

Become one of those self-improvement/self-help gurus. Write about how to better yourself. Write motivational stuff.

Everyone does this. Besides, that is not what I want to do. I know it is helpful for people but I do not want to do that kind of writing. It is kind-of-silly-and-not-very-interesting. These kinds of writers have sold themselves short in a way. But I am glad that they are able to help others. I just don’t really think of it as writing.

Don’t you think you are being a bit pretentious?

Me?

You.

I just have standards. I care about the craft of writing. I don’t want to cheapen it and be a self-help, blogging guru. Not how I want to write.

How do you want to write?

Creatively. I want to write literature. Make art.

I see. You think of yourself as an artist. Lucky you. You realize most people who read blogs will not care about this. They just don’t get it. Their brains can not make sense of it. It is not sell-able. Literature is not created on blogs.

I have hope that maybe a few will get it.

But this will get you nowhere! Don’t you think you are selling yourself short? Art doesn’t pay, especially when you are doing it through a blog and not putting any effort into advertising. Common man, smarten up. Think about your financial future. Do some kind of self-help-writing-thing, you can earn a living doing this. And do your art on the side.

Thats just not what it is about for me. More power to those who do it, but not for me. History will forget them. I want to write stuff that will not be forgotten. That will be appreciated a hundred years from now.

You really think any one will care about what you write on this blog a hundred years from now? Common man. People will be reading the stuff that is popular. Not this.

Maybe. I think the work that I am doing may have some lasting value. I am documenting the inner life of one man. That has got to be worth something.

I see. Well good luck with that. You certainly won’t get many readers doing this.

That is ok. Like I said, my primary reason for doing this blog is to work things out within myself.

A blog as a kind of self-therapy?

Yes, that is a good way of looking at it. This is therapy with myself. If no one else reads it, that is ok. I still get something out of it.

But you have no one viewing your site. No one following you. Your blog is a ghost on the internet. Is it really worth it? If you just wrote some motivational-self-help-stuff you will have many more readers.

Yes, this true. I would have more readers. But many writers and artists were unknown in their lifetime. It is the way it goes. It is ok. I almost think that the less people who read what I write, the better off I am.

Bullshit! You know that is bullshit.

Look I don’t like it when you talk to me like that. Its not very nice.

I am just saying that I think you are afraid of being successful. This approach that you take towards blogging is just a result of fear.

Not really. I just want to do it because I enjoy it. Because it means something to me. As long as I feel like I have integrity with this art form, it feels good doing it. If no one reads it- so be it.

I still think you should start a motivational, self-help blog.

I know you do. Thanks for your advice but I am just not interested in that. It is dull and boring. Uninteresting. I am ok with letting others figure their lives out for themselves. I don’t need to get in on the Gold Rush that seems to be going on with self-help blogging. It would be selling myself short.

So you are doing all of this for art?

Yes. This is art.

Art?

Art.

And you are willing to make no money and have no readers?

If need be, sure.

Ok man. Whatever floats your boat. But I think you are full of shit. Every time you check your stats and you see that no one is reading or following you, you get down. You feel like quitting. I know it bothers you.

I think we are done for now.

You sure? Did I hit a nerve?

Maybe. But I think we are done.

You are nuts.

We are done.

Porn, Weed, Wine

Why are we talking about this?

I don’t really want to talk about anything right now. I just want to sleep and rest. I don’t have much energy in me.

Why?

Drank a bottle of wine last night, smoked some weed and was up late.

Sounds fun.

That is the thing. It wasn’t much fun. Feel like I was just passing the time. Spending too much money. My wife and I went to a bar in downtown LA. We had dinner. We went to a sex party. Dinner was nice but I could have done without the rest. When drinking and smoking weed I just feel like I am wasting time.

Why?

I am just hanging out, having stupid conversations. I just don’t like the way the whole thing feels. Feel like I am running away from boredom but the end result is that I feel like I am just wasting time. Plus, as much as I like the buzz, I never like how I feel when consuming wine. Feels yucky. I’m much happier without booze in my body.

You don’t drink that much.

Compared to a lot of drunks I don’t. But I have a dependency. I can’t help but drink regularly. It is how I relax. It is how I deal with my anxiety and get some relief. It is how I have a bit of fun. I need my wine to do this for me. I look forward to it. But I do not feel good about being dependent on something that I know is not good for me.

Are you dependent on weed?

No. I don’t smoke much. But I could become dependent real fast. If I start smoking weed regularly, I will need it everyday. Morning, noon and night. I could become dependent on weed quickly but I feel that at the moment I am not dependent on weed.

So why don’t you just use the weed recreationally and give up the wine?

I could. May not be a bad idea. But when I smoke weed, I am a lot more tired and out of it. I become more forgetful and am not as sharp. As a reader and writer I don’t like how it feels to be so mentally incapacitated. I feel like I should be taking supplements that help with clarity and focus. Weed doesn’t help with this. Just makes me feel more out of it. Unfortunately.

Why unfortunately?

I like weed and wine. I think these sorts of drugs are good. They open the mind. They take away the boredom. Sometimes they greatly reduce the anxiety. Weed and wine help me shed my inhibitions. Sometimes I just feel like a better person when using weed and wine. I don’t do any of these substances excessively. But that is not what I am worried about. It is the dependency that I do not like. Spending my entire day waiting to have the glass of wine or smoke weed, I don’t want to live like this.

I see. How was the sex party?

Not a lot of fun. Everyone there was really fat and under-educated. It was pretty sleazy. It was so bad that my wife was considering having sex with an older white man just because he looked like a child molester. She thought it could be kinky to have a degenerate sexual experience with this kind of person. This is how bad things were. When you are at a sex party and there is no one attractive there, you start to think up strange things in your mind so that you can rationalize having a sexual experience with someone whom you would never be attracted to normally.

Sounds creepy.

It was. We got out of there without any damage done. My wife went in the hot tub nude. Many men enjoyed looking at her body. She enjoyed being looked at. I sat in a chair and smoked weed. I looked around at all the fat people. I watched my wife talk with other naked people in the hot tub. I looked up at the night sky. I was bored and frustrated that no one attractive was there.

Why do you go to these sex parties?

To have fun. To have an interesting sexual experience. To challenge myself to be less sexually inhibited. To spice up my sex life with my wife.

Is it healthy?

I think it is. It is a way to keep my sex life interesting. My wife enjoys doing more out of the box sexual things. I enjoy it also- so why not?

Do you think your enjoyment of these kinds of transgressive sexual experiences is the result of watching porn?

Do you mean, do I think I have a sex addiction?

Sure.

I guess I do. Very moderate. Was certainly a lot worse when I was younger. Strip clubs, prostitutes every weekend. I have not been in a strip club in over ten years (even though I would not mind going). I watch porn for maybe ten minutes once or twice a week. I like to watch naked women doing sexual things. Nothing demented. I can see how watching porn perpetuates my desire or longing for these out of the box sexual experiences. Porn probably plays into my sexual fantasies and makes me long for kinky sexual experiences with various slutty women. I greatly appreciate beautiful, slutty women.

So in a sense, when you watch porn you are not being a husband to your wife?

What?

You heard me.

I don’t know if I would go that far, but maybe. Maybe it makes me less sexually interested in her. Maybe it makes intimacy with someone I love more challenging. I have a hard time seeing my wife as an object for my sexual fantasies. It is harder to get into it with her. She is beautiful and very sexually skilled but I have a hard time engaging with her in this way. Seems much easier when I do not know the woman. I am much more sexual when the experiences are random and I don’t really know the person.

This is probably because of porn. This is what porn teaches you.

It is possible. Very possible.

So you might want to consider giving up the porn and wine for a bit. Sounds like porn and wine just perpetuate your lack of well-being. Weed does not seem like such a problem for you. I can understand how you may not like the fatigue and lack of clarity that comes with smoking weed. But maybe you can indulge in weed once in a while but give up the porn and wine?

Porn and wine. My two favorite things! What would my life be like without them! Gosh sounds dull.

Ironically things would probably feel a lot better. You would probably be more productive and healthier. Maybe even happier.

It is possible. Ok, I will give up the wine and porn for 6 months. I am not going to stop having out of the box sexual experiences with my wife, but I will stop filling up on sexual fantasies supplied by porn. I do love looking at naked women though. It will be tough to give that up but maybe it will compel me to look at my wife naked more often.

6 months. Ok. Sounds like a good thing. Give it a shot. You can still masturbate, but just do it in your bathroom sink. Use your imagination rather than a computer screen.

True. Watching porn always feels shitty in the end. I try not to think about it, but if I am honest with myself, it feels bad. Jacking off with my pants down in front of a computer screen filled with random naked women doing sexual things, never feels good. It just gives me a momentray thrill. A break from the banality of my life.

I think we have said enough here. I think you know what to do.

6 months. No wine or porn. Maybe I will stop weed as well. Complete sobriety. Or maybe I will use weed moderately?

Go take a nap. Sleep on it. See what you think in an hour or so. We can talk more about this later.

Sounds good.