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Thread: Cheating

  1. Link to Post #181
    Virgin Islands Avalon Member TargeT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    Quote Posted by heretogrow (here)
    I am wondering, does your lady have a sense of humor? Is she funny? Quirky... Off the wall a little? I have that type of personality and I can usually get him to open up more with humor. I don't want to make my relationship sound all bad.
    Yea, absolutely, but also a strong leo so strong emotions usually spin her out of the humor realm to more serious stances.

    I asked her to read this thread the other day to see if it helped her understand my thought proccess (even though I did not feel ready to let her know the full breadth of my considerations) and she may post here or may not (already has an account, just never was interested in participating or lurking) but she is truly a wonderful woman and I hope I haven't painted her as some villan here; we all make bad decisions and at times have acted on impulses we regret. I don't think that exactly fits her situation but I also think it's far more complex than even I have articulated here on this thread... its very hard to explain 6 years of out-of-the-box living I suppose.

    You two should take a vacation down here and ride some horses, hang out on the beach etc maybe you just need to get into a situation of true focus? (I can help you find stuff and it's not overly expensive if you do it right)

    Quote Posted by heretogrow (here)
    When he comes home I could tell him he might want to be a little more warm and fuzzy or else I'll go all Bobbit on him. Then I'll serve hot dogs for dinner!
    I love the plan! who knows what it takes to break through; for me it took a very hard slap to realize what I sort of knew all along.

    I'd make sure they are the nice "foot long" sized hot dogs if you can, for just a little nod to him .
    Last edited by TargeT; 20th May 2018 at 02:38.
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  3. Link to Post #182
    Avalon Member WanderingRogue's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    As I was reading through all of these posts, by TargeT and all of the replies, I have felt so many mixed emotions (sadness, happiness, guilt, anger, love, etc) and thought of so many things to say. Things I wanted to defend myself on, to clarify, to ask forgiveness for....but in the end, I realized that the most important thing I have to say is how INCREDIBLY lucky I am to have someone as kind, loving, honest, open minded, understanding and compassionate as TargeT in my life. I love you Baby Cakes more than can be put into words. Thank you for being every wonderful thing that you are!!

    I do lurk around here on these forums more than anyone knows...lol
    All views and opinions presented in this post are solely representative of my current thoughts and are not necessarily representative of my future thoughts.

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  5. Link to Post #183
    Virgin Islands Avalon Member TargeT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    Your my best friend and since the only real powers I have in the universe are forgiveness and acceptance; I'm going to stand in my own power.

    Sometimes its hard to remember that only those people in our daily lives are really the ones who's opinions really matter to us; the rest is a strange phenomenon best described here:

    Quote
    Taming the Mammoth: Why You Should Stop Caring What Other People Think

    Part 1: Meet Your Mammoth

    The first day I was in second grade, I came to school and noticed that there was a new, very pretty girl in the class—someone who hadn’t been there the previous two years. Her name was Alana and within an hour, she was everything to me.

    When you’re seven, there aren’t really any actionable steps you can take when you’re in love with someone. You’re not even sure what you want from the situation. There’s just this amorphous yearning that’s a part of your life, and that’s that.

    But for me, it became suddenly relevant a few months later, when during recess one day, one of the girls in the class started asking each of the boys, “Who do youuu want to marry?” When she asked me, it was a no-brainer. “Alana.”

    Disaster.

    I was still new to being a human and didn’t realize that the only socially acceptable answer was, “No one.”

    The second I answered, the heinous girl ran toward other students, telling each one, “Tim said he wants to marry Alana!” Each person she told covered their mouth with uncontrollable laughter. I was finished. Life was over.

    The news quickly got back to Alana herself, who stayed as far away from me as possible for days after. If she knew what a restraining order was, she’d have taken one out.

    This horrifying experience taught me a critical life lesson—it can be mortally dangerous to be yourself, and you should exercise extreme social caution at all times.

    Now this sounds like something only a traumatized second grader would think, but the weird thing, and the topic of this post, is that this lesson isn’t just limited to me and my debacle of a childhood—it’s a defining paranoia of the human species. We share a collective insanity that pervades human cultures throughout the world:

    An irrational and unproductive obsession with what other people think of us.

    Evolution does everything for a reason, and to understand the origin of this particular insanity, let’s back up for a minute to 50,000BC in Ethiopia, where your Great2,000 Grandfather lived as part of a small tribe.

    Back then, being part of a tribe was critical to survival. A tribe meant food and protection in a time when neither was easy to come by. So for your Great2,000 Grandfather, almost nothing in the world was more important than being accepted by his fellow tribe members, especially those in positions of authority. Fitting in with those around him and pleasing those above him meant he could stay in the tribe, and about the worst nightmare he could imagine would be people in the tribe starting to whisper about how annoying or unproductive or weird he was—because if enough people disapproved of him, his ranking within the tribe would drop, and if it got really bad, he’d be kicked out altogether and left for dead. He also knew that if he ever embarrassed himself by pursuing a girl in the tribe and being rejected, she’d tell the other girls about it—not only would he have blown his chance with that girl, but he might never have a mate at all now because every girl that would ever be in his life knew about his lame, failed attempt. Being socially accepted was everything.

    Because of this, humans evolved an over-the-top obsession with what others thought of them—a craving for social approval and admiration, and a paralyzing fear of being disliked. Let’s call that obsession a human’s Social Survival Mammoth. It looks something like this:


    Your Great2,000 Grandfather’s Social Survival Mammoth was central to his ability to endure and thrive. It was simple—keep the mammoth well fed with social approval and pay close attention to its overwhelming fears of nonacceptance, and you’ll be fine.

    And that was all well and fine in 50,000BC. And 30,000BC. And 10,000BC. But something funny has happened for humans in the last 10,000 years—their civilization has dramatically changed. Sudden, quick change is something civilization has the ability to do, and the reason that can be awkward is that our evolutionary biology can’t move nearly as fast. So while for most of history, both our social structure and our biology evolved and adjusted at a snail’s pace together, civilization has recently developed the speed capabilities of a hare while our biology has continued snailing along.

    Our bodies and minds are built to live in a tribe in 50,000BC, which leaves modern humans with a number of unfortunate traits, one of which is a fixation with tribal-style social survival in a world where social survival is no longer a real concept. We’re all here in 2014, accompanied by a large, hungry, and easily freaked-out woolly mammoth who still thinks it’s 50,000BC.

    Why else would you try on four outfits and still not be sure what to wear before going out?

    Trying on Shirts








    The mammoth’s nightmares about romantic rejection made your ancestors cautious and savvy, but in today’s world, it just makes you a coward; And don’t even get the mammoth started on the terror of artistic risks:


    The mammoth’s hurricane of fear of social disapproval plays a factor in most parts of most people’s lives. It’s what makes you feel weird about going to a restaurant or a movie alone; it’s what makes parents care a little too much about where their child goes to college; it’s what makes you pass up a career you’d love in favor of a more lucrative career you’re lukewarm about; it’s what makes you get married before you’re ready to a person you’re not in love with.

    And while keeping your highly insecure Social Survival Mammoth feeling calm and safe takes a lot of work, that’s only one half of your responsibilities. The mammoth also needs to be fed regularly and robustly—with praise, approval, and the feeling of being on the right side of any social or moral dichotomy.

    Why else would you be such an image-crafting douchebag on Facebook?

    Or brag when you’re out with friends even though you always regret it later?


    Society has evolved to accommodate this mammoth-feeding frenzy, inventing things like accolades and titles and the concept of prestige in order to keep our mammoths satisfied—and often to incentivize people to do meaningless jobs and live unfulfilling lives they wouldn’t otherwise consider taking part in.

    Above all, mammoths want to fit in—that’s what tribespeople had always needed to do so that’s how they’re programmed. Mammoths look around at society to figure out what they’re supposed to do, and when it becomes clear, they jump right in. Just look at any two college fraternity pictures taken ten years apart:


    Or all those subcultures where every single person has one of the same three socially-acceptable advanced degrees, Sometimes, a mammoth’s focus isn’t on wider society as much as it’s on winning the approval of a Puppet Master in your life. A Puppet Master is a person or group of people whose opinion matters so much to you that they’re essentially running your life. A Puppet Master is often a parent, or maybe your significant other, or sometimes an alpha member of your group of friends. A Puppet Master can be a person you look up to who you don’t know very well—maybe even a celebrity you’ve never met—or a group of people you hold in especially high regard.

    We crave the Puppet Master’s approval more than anyone’s, and we’re so horrified at the thought of upsetting the Puppet Master or feeling their nonacceptance or ridicule that we’ll do anything to avoid it. When we get to this toxic state in our relationship with a Puppet Master, that person’s presence hangs over our entire decision-making process and pulls the strings of our opinions and our moral voice.

    With so much thought and energy dedicated to the mammoth’s needs, you often end up neglecting someone else in your brain, someone all the way at the center—your Authentic Voice.

    Your Authentic Voice, somewhere in there, knows all about you. In contrast to the black-and-white simplicity of the Social Survival Mammoth, your Authentic Voice is complex, sometimes hazy, constantly evolving, and unafraid. Your AV has its own, nuanced moral code, formed by experience, reflection, and its own personal take on compassion and integrity. It knows how you feel deep down about things like money and family and marriage, and it knows which kinds of people, topics of interest, and types of activities you truly enjoy, and which you don’t. Your AV knows that it doesn’t know how your life will or should play out, but it tends to have a strong hunch about the right step to take next.

    And while the mammoth looks only to the outside world in its decision-making process, your Authentic Voice uses the outside world to learn and gather information, but when it’s time for a decision, it has all the tools it needs right there in the core of your brain.

    Your AV is also someone the mammoth tends to ignore entirely. A strong opinion from a confident person in the outside world? The mammoth is all ears. But a passionate plea from your AV is largely dismissed until someone else validates it.

    And since our 50,000-year-old brains are wired to give the mammoth a whole lot of sway in things, your Authentic Voice starts to feel like it’s irrelevant. Which makes it shrink and fade and lose motivation.Eventually, a mammoth-run person can lose touch with their AV entirely.

    In tribal times, AVs often spent their lives in quiet obscurity, and this was largely okay. Life was simple, and conformity was the goal—and the mammoth had conformity covered just fine.

    But in today’s large, complex world of varying cultures and personalities and opportunities and options, losing touch with your AV is dangerous. When you don’t know who you are, the only decision-making mechanism you’re left with is the crude and outdated needs and emotions of your mammoth. When it comes to the most personal questions, instead of digging deep into the foggy center of what you really believe in to find clarity, you’ll look to others for the answers. Who you are becomes some blend of the strongest opinions around you.

    Losing touch with your AV also makes you fragile, because when your identity is built on the approval of others, being criticized or rejected by others really hurts. A bad break-up is painful for everyone, but it stings in a much deeper place for a mammoth-run person than for a person with a strong AV. A strong AV makes a stable core, and after a break-up, that core is still holding firm—but since the acceptance of others is all a mammoth-run person has, being dumped by a person who knows you well is a far more shattering experience.

    Likewise, you know those people who react to being criticized by coming back with a nasty low-blow? Those tend to be severely mammoth-run people, and criticism makes them so mad because mammoths cannot handle criticism.t this point, the mission should be clear—we need to figure out a way to override the wiring of our brain and tame the mammoth. That’s the only way to take our lives back.
    The rest is here.
    Hard times create strong men, Strong men create good times, Good times create weak men, Weak men create hard times.
    Where are you?

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  7. Link to Post #184
    United States Avalon Member Mike's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    Wow, I'm totally blown away by this thread, particularly the latter half. Totally blown away.

    TargeT, huge respect to you for baring your soul here. Gutsy as hell. Wow.

    What happens when cheating occurs, is the mind runs wild! Right? It gets busy breaking down and analyzing every bit of information available to it, and then fills in the rest with imagining all the things that isn't available to it yet, or it imagines isn't available to it. Totally overwhelming.

    You get stuck between wanting to know everything and not wanting to know everything...and then after you've been told everything (supposedly) wondering incessantly if that is indeed everything, or is your significant other still holding stuff back?

    It's an interesting discussion to be having now, for me, having just seen the documentary 'Wormwood'. The son spends his entire life trying to find out if his Dad was murdered by the CIA...and when he does, eventually, he cant say honestly whether he's any better off emotionally or mentally for having gone thru that whole process. There's an implication there that maybe it would have been best to simply let it go.

    Now, logically that might make sense! One could make a sound argument for letting things be, like the example given in Bill's post. But here's the deal: the heart doesn't respond to logic, no matter how sensical or brilliantly expressed. If it did, we'd all recover from heartbreak the instant some idiot told us "there's plenty of fish left in the sea".

    An argument could be made that a union of any kind is more a declaration of insecurity than love. We needto know that this person is committed to us. Or is it our egos that need to know this? It's an interesting question.

    Despite that, and despite monogamy perhaps being biologicllay unnatural, our hearts still desperately seek out a partner, a mate. I mean honestly ..is there really any better feeling in the world than being in love with someone....one person? And having that one person reciprocate that love?

    I could make an intellectual argument for "open" relationships, but I could never make an emotional one. I'd just be lying to myself, because I know what my heart desires. My mind could justify it all day, but I'd be constantly walking around in enormous emotional pain. Granted, not everyone is like me.

    It would seem that a successful relationship is a marriage of the hearts and minds of 2 people, and the delicate balance of needs between those hearts and minds. Even with just 2 people, It's enormously complicated man! For me, a romantic relationship only exists if it has borders, something identifying it as unique and different from the other relationships in one's life. The second it becomes "open", it sort of ceases to exist; it dissolves. Because the very thing that defined it is now gone.

    I was in a brief open relationship, and i was existentially lost LOL! I didn't know what the rules were anymore; I didn't know how to behave; I didn't know what my role was in this person's life anymore. It was really confusing. And as hip and mature and open as we liked to think we were, we quickly realized it was just too damn emotionally complicated.

    If you're not a very emotional person to begin with, perhaps it could be pulled off. But isn't that defeating the purpose? Personally, I want as an intense of an emotional bond as possible with my mate, with all the good and bad that accompanies it. Of course monogamy does provide inevitable issues! But i think open relationships provides many, many more.

    Lastly, I've been the cheater and the cheatee, several times over. No judgements coming from me, at all! I admire you all for opening up and taking this topic on in such a transparent way.
    Last edited by Mike; 25th May 2018 at 22:34.

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  9. Link to Post #185
    Virgin Islands Avalon Member TargeT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    Been doing a lot of studying, American's are ****ed up haha....

    Lots of interesting relationship stuff out there, I've listened to a lot of this smart lady:


    We are going to Orlando for a family vacation, still working on us and I think we are doing awesome.
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    Avalon Member Morbid's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    wow what a thread. Target, i highly value your input here - sharing helps alot & from what i can see you're on the right path. after all we're here for the experience & learning, so try to be in the now & dont let the past affect you in this moment. by extracting what you can from this you'll be better suited for what's to come next! - you'll love it!
    Last edited by Morbid; 3rd June 2018 at 23:52.
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  13. Link to Post #187
    Virgin Islands Avalon Member TargeT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    The more I study it the more wrong I think western society is... we are no where near the traditional model even in our "traditional relationships"

    Monogamy has a definition, and unless you've been with the same person your entire life, we are in violation of the basic definition.

    There are so many pre-consieved notions that are tied into DEEP emotional binds.. but they make little logical sense...

    I am working through this stage now, and I think I see acceptance and support as the best way for all.

    I'm very happy with where we are at right now, despite the recent challenges... I think those challenges are exactly what we've both needed and have made our relationship reach levels that would be unacheivable with out this emphasis and refocus.

    It's bad, but its good... if that makes sense

    I wouldn't have it any other way
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  15. Link to Post #188
    Virgin Islands Avalon Member TargeT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Cheating

    ok, quick update... I guess i feel it's obligitory; though in reality this is probably on no ones mind but me and those involved in my life....

    We are doing very well, this situation has refocused us both; we have decided that we both need to be very strong individuals who choose to be together, not people who depend on each other for happiness (a very healthy take, but harder to achieve than I thought originally).

    We are both far busier than is easily explained, so online counseling is what we opted for to improve communication and working on our relationship... if nothing else we decided that we both want the other in our life & are willing to work through anything to achieve that.

    The details wander on this a bit, but are irrelevant based on the above.... There were a lot of ups and downs until about 2 weeks ago; but now we seem to be on a very solid track where we both understand the current immediate needs of each other; and are willing to start from there and build. Ironically enough we had an almost zero communication relationship for years... this was a very needed change as we are talking about things that should have been discussed with in the first few months of us meeting... haha

    As I tell my kids all the time.....

    If it was easy, it wouldn't be fun...

    Perspective rules all.. rule your perspective!

    Quote Posted by TargeT (here)
    We are going to Orlando for a family vacation,
    btw, this was a terrible idea... haha don't do this if you already have stress in your life

    Keep it simpler
    Last edited by TargeT; 8th July 2018 at 13:15.
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    Default Re: Cheating

    TargeT....So glad you are coming through this! I can totally relate to your "zero communication" for years comment!

    In my first marriage I was bound by the religious rules I had been raised in.....which meant there WAS no communication!....just rules to be complied with! From my own experience I would say it is VERY difficult to "connect" if one hasn't done so from the beginning, so I applaud your effort & may you BOTH find your "groove" & move smoothly along!

    By the way, have you noticed Bob's post on the refinery situation where you are living? Glad Beryl missed you!!

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