Saturday, December 24, 2011

Healing after Discovering He's Been Hooked on Porn

In a way, each woman has a uniquely individual experience when she discovers her man has a pornography addiction. It's based on many factors including how he handles the disclosure or discovery, her beliefs about him, her expectations of their relationship, their sexual history, what other areas of their life together have been like, and her feelings about pornography itself.

Despite the very personal nature of your response, it can be valuable to talk to and hear from others who are having parallel experiences. Healing as an individual and moving on as a couple often requires a massive reorientation in the most intimate realms of life. Checking in with fellow travelers on this journey can help reassure you you're not going crazy, illuminate ways of handling things you hadn't considered before, and instill hope that others have made it through what you're experiencing--in one piece!

In that spirit, let me recommend a video that was recently produced by KSL TV. My colleagues Jeff Ford, LMFT and Geoff Steurer, LMFT arranged the interviews and helped put the content together. Geoff coauthored Love You, Hate the Porn with me and the founding director of LifeSTAR of St. George Utah. Hope you find it helpful.

Support for LDS Wives of Addicts

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

evolution with glass

It has always been a dream of mine to design with glass.

It was during my last two years in a high school drafting class that I started working on a house design that had a glass stair case and a sunken glass living room. ( yes it was the early 70’s when sunken living rooms were all the rage ) .

Photo from Hospitality Design
From October 31, 2011

My high school drafting teacher , Mr. Nolan, didn’t tell me that my glass house design was impractical or unattainable . Instead he encouraged me to continue to design and handed me an application to Harvard’s Graduate School of Design summer program in architecture

Nervous and armed with an immature portfolio I headed off to Harvard in 1976.
In a rather odd turn of events I did not get into the Architecture department as I had hoped , instead I was placed in the Landscape Architecture program.
Inside Gund Hall - my desk was on the second floor about where that jacket is hanging.
From October 31, 2011

Outside view of the GSD
From October 31, 2011

Link to the GSD website

It’s been 35 years later from that first class in L.A.(landscape architecture) and I am still intrigued to design with glass.

Working with recycled broken glass

From San Francisco Garden Show 2008

From San Francisco Garden Show 2008

From San Francisco Garden Show 2008

From San Francisco Garden Show 2008

Thursday, December 8, 2011

A Burle Marx influence.

Twenty some odd years ago I was influenced by the work of Roberto Burle Marx, (1909-1994)
He was Brazil's most influential landscape architect and is internationally recognized as the "creator of the modern garden." Mr. Marx is also recognized for his discovery of many native Brazilan rainforest plants. One of my favorites is Tibouchina , which I often use in my garden designs here in Northern California.
Below is a photo of a garden wall that Mr. Marx designed using discarded and collected building shards.

From Water fountains in the landscape

Below is a garden that I designed for the 1990 S.F. Garden Show. I was inspired by the wall that Mr. Marx had created in his garden in Brazil.
I came across these old photos today while cleaning out a bookshelf.

From Water fountains in the landscape

From Water fountains in the landscape

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

To Kick Your Porn Habit, Learn from Lapses

image: dan /
Hannah writes, "For five years my husband told me every time he messed up with porn. About a year and a half ago I decieded to 'change the rules.' He could tell me if he wanted (and most the time he did), but he didn't have to. It seemed to work for about 8 or 9 months. He actually did really great. But now he harldy ever tells me, but I know he is looking more and more regularly. Should he be telling me? Should he be accountable to me?"

Hannah, since your husband's been actively working to conquer his addiction for 6+ years, and yet still failing regularly, I worry that he may leaving out key elements necessary for building a solid long-term recovery. As helpful as it may be to address one's addiction more openly--to be accountable, as you put it--there's also much more that can--and typically must--be done.

Here's my suggestion to those who struggle: When you falter, in addition to telling someone, take the time to analyze your lapse. Identify a factor or two that played a role and try to come up with a corresponding solution. Keep tinkering, experimenting, until you find an approach that works for you.

Doug had successfully avoided viewing porn for over a year. Then he got a new 4G phone. Waiting to pick up his daughter her karate class, he wandered around the web. Before he knew it, he had crossed the line back into the realm of porn. The rush was back, and so was the guilt. When he got home, it was hard to tell his wife, Shelly. They'd come so far, things between them seemed almost back to normal, and he dreaded what this might do to her confidence in him. He told her anyway.

Shelly swore at Doug and then cried. Then she thanked him for telling her. They brainstormed together. At first Shelly wanted him to ditch the new phone. They discussed what had helped Doug avoid problems on the computer. One key was the monitoring software they'd installed a year and a half ago. "Whenever I'm online I feel like I'm in a fishbowl. I know you'll be getting the report on where I go online. It's not even a temptation to go to adult sites anymore."

"Too bad they don't have monitoring software for phones," Shelly lamented. After a moment they looked up at each other and then both reached for their phones. Within moments they were exploring the pros and cons of different Phone Monitoring Software programs. Since installing FlexiSpy on his phone, Doug has felt as protected with it as he does when he's online at home.

Initially Shelly thought that availability was the primary factor leading to Doug's lapse; hence she wanted to get rid of the phone altogether. Talking together they realized that even if porn is available, it's not a draw unless Doug feels like he can view it in complete secrecy. This allowed them to come up with a fitting solution that wasn't overly restrictive.

Kevin is another individual who built a more solid recovery by taking the time to learn from his failures. He said, “I used to lapse on the road, so whenever I travel my mind reminded me it was time to look at porn.” The human nervous system is designed to take whatever we do regularly and generate an autopilot program for carrying out that sequence independent of conscious choice. Once we’re programmed, an initial domino in the sequence is all it takes to tip over the whole row.

Kevin's solution was to invest some time practicing other mental responses and making them habitual. He integrated the practices describe in my posts The Path from Craving to Freedom and Mentally Practice Your Way Out of Craving. On his next business trip, he deliberately practiced an entirely different line of thinking as soon as he walked into his hotel room. Before he even unpacked his luggage, he took out nine tattered index cards and read them, pausing a few seconds to let each idea sink in:

  • "Don't choose guilt and depression over contentment."
  • "As I get free of this problem Olivia and I feel closer and closer."
  • "Sex is for connecting, not distraction."
  • "That path separates and isolates me."
  • "I have much more power when I turn away."
  • "Think of how hard it is to face Olivia after messing up."
  • "Remember who I am and what I stand for."
  • "That path diminishes love and disconnects us."
  • "Loneliness is hard but I can make it."

Once each day for a week prior to leaving on the trip, he had imagined himself in this very situation and then read the cards to practice. The repetition had helped lay down a new path for his brain to take, an alternative to the old pattern that had become habitual because of past repetition. He has continued this practice whenever he travels, breaking out the cue cards again a week prior to leaving. Despite being on the road extensively this past fall, he only lapsed once, which was a drastic improvement for Kevin.

Don't endlessly beat yourself up over a lapse. But don't merely dismiss it, either, as an inevitable part of the process of recovery from addiction. Instead, do as Doug and Kevin did. Take the time to do an autopsy. Adopt the mentality of a curious, scientifically-minded coroner. It may be a complex interaction of factors that makes us vulnerable to lapse. Thus, coming up with a solution can be a challenge. But it can also be quite an inspired, creative endeavor. (I'll stop short of calling it fun.)

Analyze away. Experiment away. And then please share with us what you discover and the ways you develop and grow along the way. I will be as excited to hear your story as I was to share Doug and Shelly's and Kevin and Olivia's!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Book Review: The Porn Trap, by Wendy Maltz & Larry Maltz

Back in the 1980s, Wendy Maltz and her husband and fellow therapist, Larry, were not that concerned about pornography. Like most in the field, they thought it was essentially harmless. The use of porn was even promoted at professional trainings as a way to help couples reinvigorate their sex lives. Then the authors noted a trend: porn was moving couples away from being sexually intimate with each other. For too many of their clients, porn itself had become the object of desire. They wrote Porn Trap because "We believe you have a right to healthy, love-based sexual expression, and that today's multi-media driven pornography is interfering with that right" (p. 8).

The authors share this gem of a line from the 14th Century Sufi poet, Hafiz:

Learn to recognize the counterfeit coins
that may buy you just a moment of pleasure,
but then drag you for days
like a broken man
behind a farting camel.

The Maltzs' case material was gleaned from interviews with those whose lives have been depleted by porn. "While pornography may promise sexual freedom, it can eventually deliver a form of sexual oppression--robbing people of sexual innocence, sexual self-determination, and the skills to experience healthy relationships based on a loving connection with a real partner" (p. 8). The cases in the book make real the suffering, but also help illuminate the way out. And that's one real value of the book: if you're stuck, you read of others who have been, too, but have made their way out. When you've been stumbling in the dark, such rays of hope are precious.

Here's what I appreciate most about the book: the authors back up their compassion and optimism by providing practical tools. They suggest steps for deciding whether porn is hampering your happiness and relationships, tactics for quitting porn if you decide it is a problem, and in-the-bedroom practices for turning your sex life around so that it can build closeness and fulfillment in place of the separation and depletion that pornography fosters. Wendy Maltz's expertise in healthy sexuality and some great material from her previous books are distilled into the chapter entitled "A New Approach to Sex."

Of the many tools the authors share, I'll highlight a couple I find particularly helpful:

When you feel the gravitational pull of porn, here's something you can do to literally come to your senses. It's an exercise they entitle Shifting Your Attention. "A simple sensory awareness exercise can help you shift your attention away from what you've been thinking about and on to something else in your environment. For example, 'Now I'm aware of the sun coming through the window." Repeat and complete the phrase 'Now I'm aware of...' until you have identified five different things that you see. Continue the exercise stating five different things you are aware of hearing, then five different things you are aware of touching or feeling inside your body. This exercise can help center you sensually in the reality of your present environment and take you farther away from the fantasy world of porn" (p. 195).

This is a theme throughout the book: real life--everything from real events to real emotions to your flesh-and-blood lover--are antidotes to the unreal world of porn. This theme reaches its pinnacle in one of the final skills they cover, Involving Your Heart in Sex, which is needed because porn-informed sex is all about stimulation rather than heartfelt connection. When you are engaged in sexual activity:
  • Take a moment to touch your heart or your partner's heart to activate or stay connected to feelings of caring and love.
  • Take time to smile and make loving eye contact with your partner. 
  • Temporarily shift your awareness from your genital arousal to the attributes you most admire and appreciate about your partner.
  • Take time to verbally express your feelings of affection to your partner.
  • Touch in loving and affectionate ways that you have learned will be valued and appreciated by your partner.
Thank you Wendy and Larry for this invaluable book! Your deep care for those caught in the porn trap shines through. Your work is helping make that group smaller--one person, one couple at a time!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Romusa, Pergi Menjemput Mati

Jika orang Indonesia diminta untuk mengatakan satu faktor yang menjadi pengalaman paling mengerikan selama pendudukan Jepang, mungkin dia akan menjawab ROMUSA. Kata Jepang Romusa yang hebat ini secara harfiah berarti seorang yang melakukan pekerjaan sebagai buruh kasar. Akan tetapi, dalam konteks sejarah Indonesia istilah ini mempunyai pengertian khusus yang mengingatkan rakyat akan pengalaman yang sangat pahit di bawah pemerintahan militer Jepang yang kejam.
Bagi seorang Indonesia, romusa berarti seorang buruh kuli yang dimobilisasikan bagi pekerjaan kasar dibawah kekuasaan Jepang. Mereka pada umumnya petani biasa, yang di luar kehendak mereka, diperintahkan supaya bekerja pada proyek-proyek pembangunan dan pabrik. Jutaan orangJawa dimobilisasikan dengan cara ini dan tidak sedikit diantaranya yang dikirim ke luar negeri. Banyak diantaranya meninggal karena kerja keras dan kondisi kesehatan yang sangat buruk. Banyak yang lainnya, yang cukup beruntung bertahan hidup, menderita akibat penyakit, kekurangan gizi, dan luka-luka. Keluarga mereka, yang mencari nafkahnya dibawa pergi, menderita akibat kemiskinan, dan tanah pertanian sering dibiarkan tak ditanami karena langkanya tenaga kerja. Akhirnya, hal ini yang menyebabkan situasi rendahnya produktifitas pertanian.
Salah satu tujuan pokok pendudukan Jepang di Asia Tenggara adalah untuk memperoleh sumber-sumber ekonomi dan untuk menciptakan suatu landasan pokok ekonomi yang penting demi kelangsungan perang di sana. Untuk mewujudkan tujuannya itu, Jepang menganggap tenaga kerja di Jawa yang berlebihan karena Jawa adalah pulau paling padat penduduknya sebagai sumber daya terpenting di Asia Tenggara. Sejak awal peperangan meletus, penguasa Jepang telah bersungguh-sungguh memobilisasi efektif atas tenaga kerja di Jawa dan memasoknya ke seluruh wilayah Selatan. Pada bulan November 1942, perjanjian ditanda tangani di Shngapura antara Kepala Staf A.L. Barat Daya dan Kepala Staf A.D. Tentara Selatan yang menyangkut pertukaran komoditi dan bahan-bahan. “Tenaga Kerja” pun menjadi komoditi yang dipertukarkan.
Kemanakah para romusa dipekerjakan? berdasarkan kesaksian, romusa dipaksa bekerja tidak hanya didaerah yang berdekatan, tetapi diangkut kemanapun kalau terdapat tuntutan akan tenaga kerja oleh pihak Jepang.
romusha-01bDi Pulau Jawa, Banten merupakan daerah utama penerima romusa, Diantara 17 keresidenan dan 2 kerajaan di Jawa, Banten memiliki kepadatan penduduk yang paling rendah, hanya 129,33 orang/km persegi, sementara rata-rata di Jawa 315,33 orang/km persegi. Para tenaga kerja romusa diperkerjakan pada pembangunan jalur kereta api sepanjang 150 km antara Saketi- Bayah. Jalur ini yang menghubungkan jalur kereta api yang ada antara Labuan dan Jakarta dengan wilayah patai selatan keresidenan dimana terdapat deposit tambang.
Disamping mereka yang dikirim ke Banten, banyak diantaranya yang dikirim ke luar Jawa. Mereka di angkut hampir semua bagian Asia Tenggara dan beberapa bagian wilayah pasifik selatan, tempat dilaksanakannya proyek-proyek strategis. Salah satu proyek besar di Asia Tenggara yang melibatkan Romusa Jawa adalah pembangunan jalan kereta api Burma-Siam yang dimulai bulan Juli 1942 dan berakhir bulan Oktober 1943.
Sebuah usaha yang penting lain untuk memberikan gambaran “mulia” bagi romusa adalah kampanye mengirim Soekarno dan pemimpin terkemuka lainnya selama seminggu sebagai romusa. Kampanye tersebut pertama kali dijalankan pada September 1944 dengan sponsor Jawa Hokokai melalui slogan “Pekan Perjuangan Mati-Matian”. Sebelum kampanye dimulai, media masa mengumumkan bahwa Soekarno akan menjadi romusa, setiap orang yang ingin bergabung dengan pelayanan tenaga kerja ini bersama para pemimpin Hokokai harus mengirim lamaran. Himbauan tersebut dilakukan berulang-ulang, dan sekitar 500 orang menanggapinya. Diantaranya Mr. Sartono, Asikin Natanegara, Ir. Sukiman, Mr. Moh Roem, Mr. Rauf Thayeb, Muhidin, dan Suratno.
Menjelang keberangkatan, Soekarno berpidato dan menjelaskan bahwa tujuan usaha ini ialah untuk menunjukan kepada Jepang bahwa penduduk Jawa telah siap sehidup semati dengan Dai Nippon. Dia berjanji bahwa dia dan rekan-rekannya dal`m rombongan tersebut tidak akan bercukur selama pengabdian mereka sebagai romusa sebagai tanda bukti kepada negara.
Pidato Soekarno itu singkat, padat , namun memikat. Dalam propagandanya didepan corong radio Soekarno berseru :
“Saya seorang Insinyur! Tapi saya, tidak dapat berbuat apa-apa dengan titel saya itu, kalau pekerjaannya tidak ada.”
Soekarno Menjadi Romusa
Soekarno Menjadi Romusa
Hampir setiap hari selama kampanye, media massa selalu melaporkan kegiatan delegasi romusa “terpelajar” ini dengan berita utama. Foto-foto Soekarno yang sedang melakukan pekerjaan kasar berkali-kali muncul di koran dan majalah, dengan pemberitaan bahwa dia tinggal di pondok sederhana dan makan makanan seadanya seperti beras, sayuran dan ikan asin. Dia mengenakan celana pendek dan pita lengan dengan nomor romusa 970, persis seperti romusa biasa. Juga diperlihatkan saat dia mengangkat karung pasir yang digunakan dalam pekerjaan pembangunan. Ketika rombongan kembali ke Statsiun Tanah Abang di Jakarta pada tanggal 10 September 1944, setelah seminggu bekerja, koran-koran kembali melaporkan peristiwa tersebut dengan pemberitaan besar-besaran. Setelah rombongan pertama dipimpin Soekarno kembali ke Jakarta, rombongan kedua diorganisir dibawah prakarsa Otto Iskandardinata. Kelompok ini berangkat pada akhir bulan Oktober 1944, berjumlah 622 romusa terpelajar. Asia Raya 23 Oktober 1944 memberitakan, ada sedikit tenggang waktu antara rombongan pertama dengan kedua untuk menghindari bulan puasa.
Setelah rombongan kedua ini menjalankan tugasnya, romusa terpelajar berskala nasional yang di sponsori oleh Jawa Hokokai tidak lagi diselenggarakan. Meskipun demikian, usaha-usaha serupa tetap dilakukan pada tingkat daerah.

romusa yang selamat
romusa yang selamat
Romusa merupakan luka sejarah yang digoreskan fasis Jepang yang hingga kini masih membekas– khususnya bagi orang-orang yang menjadi romusa “sejati” bukan romusa “terpelajar” atawa romusa “propaganda”, bahkan mungkin bagi keturunannya. Sebagai konsekuensi dari masa pendudukan, lantas perlukah kita bertanya: siapa yang bertanggung jawab dan menyukseskan program romusa ini? Haruskah beban itu ditimpakan kepada Soekarno? bukankah para pemimpin nasional lainnya dan para “terpelajar” juga menyukseskan romusa. Pada posisi ini, Soekarno memang memiliki beban moril yang cukup berat dibanding tokoh-tokoh nasional lainnya. Pasalnya, dialah tokoh tertinggi yang notabene bekerja sama dengan Jepang melakukan kampanye propaganda dalam romusa ini.
Pada akhirnya Soekarno mengakui bahwa dirinya membantu Jepang dalam pengerahan romusa. Pengakuan pahit, namun dengan jantan diungkapkannya.
“Kukatakan aku mengakui, sejumlah kenangan membuat sakit untuk ditulis. Halaman-halaman ini terasa sulit bagiku untuk menulis masa-masa itu tanpa suatu emosi. Bahkan setelah puluhan tahun berlalu, luka-luka itu masih belum sembuh sama sekali. Perbuatan-perbuatan yang harus kulakukan dan penderitaan yang harus kutahan akibat ulah sekelompok pemuda yang tidak mau mengerti, adalah bekas-bekas luka yang akan kubawa sampai ke liang kubur”.
Ribuan orang tak kembali. Mereka gugur di negeri asing– dan negerinya sendiri. Seringkali para romusa itu diperlakukan kejam, seperti di belenggu berdampingan dengan tahanan perang untuk membuat jalan Birma yang terkenal itu. Soekarno mengakui bahwa dia mengetahui keadaan mereka. Mereka diangkut dengan gerbong-gerbong kereta api yang tertutup rapat tanpa udara, dan ribuan dijejalkan sekaligus. Mereka tinggal kulit pembalut tulang. Dan Soekarno tidak bisa menolong mereka. Dalam kenyataannya, Soekarno yang mengirim mereka pergi kerja. Soekarno mengirim mereka berlayar menuju kematian. Soekarno membuat pernyataan-pernyataan untuk mendukung pengerahan romusa. Soekarno diambil gambarnya di dekat Bogor dengan Caping di kepala dan cangkul di tangan untuk menunjukan betapa mudah dan mulianya menjadi seorang romusa. Soekarnolah yang memberikan mereka kepada orang Jepang. Rasanya mengerikan sekali.
Tidak seorangpun suka kepada kebenaran yang menyedihkan.
Referensi : Kontroversi SANG KOLABORATOR, Hendri F Isnaeni, Penerbit Ombak, 2008, Bab : Romusa, Pergi Menjemput Mati Hal 69-80

Terima kasih buat Kopral Cepot

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Teen Bitch Club - Carmen McCarthy

Carmen is a slutty bitch whose goal is to get an amazing orgasm, all the time. So while she's getting fucked she likes to rub her pussy and clit too, so that she can stimulate herself from as many places as she can. Watch her get that orgasm she's always after!
Release date: 2011.03.20 Carmen helps along
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FuckedHard 18 ? Sienna

Sara May ? We Are With You, Cucumber

MP4| 599MB | 00:39:29| 854×480 | May-We are with you cucumber.mp4

Glamour Models Gone Bad - Lilly Thai

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Glamour Models Gone Bad - Leah Luv

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Glamour Models Gone Bad - Lilly Thai

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Glamour Models Gone Bad - Olivia Saint

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Tuesday, November 15, 2011


Apa yg anda pikirkan klo ditanya soal ibadah haji?, pasti macam2 jawabannya, tp tetap dlm 1 arti, yakni ibadah yg hanya dilakukan oleh mereka yg mampu melaksanakan, mampu dlm arti baik fisik serta harta yg lebih.
Indonesia termasuk Negara dgn jemaah haji terbanyak stiap tahunnya, mereka brangkat dgn penuh suka cita serta syukur kpada Allah SWT, saat berangkat mereka diantar oleh kluarga, saudara, tetangga, sahabat, dan teman, begitupun saat mereka kembali stelah melaksanakan ibadah haji, dirumah disambut dan dikerumuni oleh mereka yg ingin mendapatkan berkah atau sekadar ingin dengar cerita, bahkan ada yg datang tuk dpt bagian oleh2.
Disini saya ingin sdikit berbagi cerita kepada anda semua soal haji, saya hanyalah pemuda biasa yg ingin menuangkan sdikit masalah yg mengganjal dihati ini, saya punya tetangga yg sudah haji, punya saudara yg juga sudah haji, dan dikampung saya ini ada lebih dari 15 orang bergelar haji, sering saya dengar bahwa biaya haji tidak murah apalagi yg ikut rombongan ONH Plus jadi intinya berangkat haji itu hanya bagi mreka yg memang punya harta lebih tp ada jg haji yg tanpa biaya alias gratis mreka diberangkatkan oleh sodaranya atau kerabat mungkin juga oleh teman atau sahabat mreka.
Namun alangkah menyedihkan ketika mreka yg bergelar haji masih mempunyai sifat buruk, ada haji yg kikir alias medit, ada yg mrasa dirinya haji trus tiap ke mushola atao mesjid minta tangannya dicium oleh jamaah lain, bahkan ada yg merasa dirinya haji trus sikapnya arogan, jujur saya bukan ahli agama dan ibadah, tp stidaknya saya pnah mendengar bahwa orang yg melaksanakan haji spulangnya perbuatan2 yg dulunya buruk akan mereka rubah menjadi baik, itu yg pernah saya dengar di pengajian mesjid deket tempat tinggal saya.
Mungkin saya ini iri melihat mreka yg bs brangkat haji, bs jadi???. Apalah artinya mreka brangkat haji jk hati mreka masih diliputi sifat buruk, pernah saya hendak meminjam uang untuk membuka usaha kepada salah satu dr mreka yg sudah haji, tp ditolak dgn alas an gak punya uang, aneh????. Mungkin tidak smua orang yg bergelar haji spt itu, tp kbanyakan….
Ya Allah saya minta kepada-Mu berikan saya rejeki yg banyak, mudahkan sgala urusan saya didunia ini dan akhirat nanti, Amien!.
Maaf jk ada dr anda yg membaca ini adalah seorang haji dan menyinggung prasaan anda, saya hanya ingin menuangkan apa yg slama ini mengganjal dihati saya ini.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Why Does My Boyfriend Look at Girls Online?

Rachel's boyfriend Carl never talks about it, but there's evidence on the computer that he spends a lot of time looking at other women's bodies. Today she found evidence in the clothes hamper that those images are satisfying more than his curiosity. This kind of discovery is confusing and disturbing to many women. 

Regular visitors know that this blog explores how porn impacts relationships and what we can do about it. Today I'd like to share some insights from another therapist who works in the field of sexual addiction. 

Todd Frye, Ph.D., runs a sexual addictions provider certification program at MidAmerica Nazarene University. In this video he gets to the heart of the matter: porn addiction is an intimacy disorder. I'm excited to share it with you.

Here are a few of the insights he shares:

"Most people who struggle with intimacy struggle with the capacity to acknowledge what's going on inside of them and share that. Intimacy in Latin is intimus, which means innermost. They don't have the capacity to be reflective enough to know what is going on inside them and share it in a way in which someone else can connect with that, relate to that, and respond to that. [Intimacy] also has components of empathy, the capacity to give comfort, protection, and attunement to someone else....

"They don't learn how to take their pain, their sadness, and their joy to someone else and share it with them and experience it with them so that in turn that person can in turn offer a response that is a natural antidote to how they feel, that's validating and creates connection. They tend to isolate more, they tend to withdraw. The way to lower their anxiety is to isolate themselves and pull away.... 

"Just because I isolate myself, the need to connect with people doesn't die, doesn't just go away. So they position themselves to need something that's non-relational to feed this inability to connect or manage their mood. They use sexual addiction as a way of doing that."

Thanks Dr. Frye, for articulating these truths so well!

Image: graur codrin /

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Revisit the Moment You Got Hooked on Porn

Wyatt's eyes were closed and his face was flush. Watching his eyes flit beneath the lids, I knew his imagination was taking him on a wild and vivid ride back in time. He was going back to that moment when he got hooked on porn.

He could see the 12-year-old he once was. He felt for the kid. He spent most of that summer home alone. Older brother, his usual partner in crime, was off working in the laundromat at the strip mall halfway across town. Dad was at work and it seemed that Mom was always off with little sister helping at dance practice or traveling to competitions. Then Wyatt had the falling out with the gang of buddies in his neighborhood over a kick soccer ball game gone bad. He couldn't believe what poor sports they were. After that, it felt like all of the usual avenues for excitement were shut down. He rode his bike around town for a while, but that got old. Then he started watching a ton of TV.

The pictures in the magazine he found in the grove of trees near his home weren't hard core by today's standards. Wyatt had never tried drugs, but he couldn't imagine a drug unleashing a more potent euphoria than the warm, eager looks of those women. Their inviting, yet concealing poses knocked the breath right out of him. To say that he felt compelled to hide the magazine so that he could come back and look again is too weak a way to put it. His chest was heaving with breath, even his head pounding as he left the grove that day, wondering when he could return.

That is where the adult Wyatt imagined stepping into the path of his much younger self. He escorted him home and into his room, where he'd feel comfortable. He wanted talk to him about what had just happened, share his perspective as someone older and wiser. He wanted to help.

"That was something else, wasn't it?" He asked.

Still dazed, his younger self faintly nodded.

"I want you to know that what just happened inside of you is completely normal. It's not a good thing for women to expose themselves in that way for men's entertainment. It's not good for them or for the men who view it. But the fact that you had such a strong reaction is understandable. God gave you the gift of your sexuality. It's this tremendously potent life force within you, and what you just saw awakened it more powerfully than anything you've ever experienced.

As Wyatt watched him in his mind's eye, it seemed that his younger self was taking this all in.

"Your reaction does not mean you're a bad kid. Nothing of the sort! You're a good kid. In fact, you're a fine young man! Don't let that experience convince you that there's something wrong with you, that you're not a an upstanding, righteous individual. You don't need to feel ashamed that you were drawn by those images and feelings. You could have walked away from the magazine when you saw what it was, and that is the best way to handle it in the future, but it's understanding that you found it so riveting.

"That's one of the problems with pornography. It is riveting. As pleasurable as it can feel, it can also take control of your life. That's one of the reasons it will be better for you to avoid viewing it in the future. And that's one of the main messages I came back to give you: the conclusion you came to, that you have to go back and look some more, you can't pass up that opportunity, is incorrect. You can say no. You're better off avoiding it than indulging. To the degree that you pass on pornography, your life will be better.

"You just concluded that you need more of that in your life. Well, you don't need pornography the way it feels like you do. Part of the reason you don't need it the way it seems to you right now is that this hard time, when it feel like you're alone all the time and it seems like life is passing you by... this time is over. It's not happening anymore. I came here to show you you're not still stuck here. Time passes. Life gets better.

"Let me show you these pictures of how you grew up to become me: Here's you at 13 on the track team. 14 at your cousins' ranch riding horses. 15 practicing football with the high school team. 16 with your beat up red Toyota..." And so on Wyatt went, up to the present day. Then he imagined bringing his younger self into his home as it is now.

His younger self had all kinds of questions: What's it like to drive a truck? Is that really your boat in the driveway? When did you get a dog? As he answered the questions, Wyatt realized that this part of him that was most hooked on porn was not his adults self. It was a part of him that had been oblivious so far to the passage of time. In a way, this made sense: only a part of him who hadn't tasted the toxic fruit of porn in his life would still find it so magical and inviting.

"You don't have to go back there," Wyatt said finally. You don't live back there in that loneliness and addiction anymore. You don't have to live that way, vigilant for an appealing distraction from pain. On the lookout for an escape. You can stay with me and the dog and the boat here.

"If you stay here, and your job is no longer to look for opportunities to look for sexual stimulation, what would you like your new job to be?" Young Wyatt thought about that. "I want to look for other ways to have fun."

That sounded like a good compromise to Wyatt's adult self. He needed more fun in his life.

(The above account is a brief excerpt from a session of therapy technique developed by Peggy Pace called Lifespan Integration. To be effective, the process actually requires multiple "trips" through the client's timeline. If you think Lifespan Integration might help you, here is a directory of therapists who have been trained in the method.)

Image: photostock /

Monday, October 24, 2011

It's Not that She Won't Forgive You

"I feel bad that I can't let it go," Anna said through tears. Then she pressed her palm to her chest. "But there's still this heartache. There's this catch inside me that says, He still doesn't fully understand. He still doesn't get what his porn or his affair have done to me. It feels like, If I forgive him now, before it's 100% clear, I'll be putting myself at risk. I could think we've moved on, moved past it, and then somewhere down the road when he's tempted again, he'll give in. And yet still have no idea how it kills me. I can't afford that. So there's this part of me that won't let it go.

To Jonathan's credit, he just sat there, listening, trying to understand. I've seen husbands apologize and promise and plead. I recall one who'd preach wonderful sermons to his wife about forgiveness, quoting the Bible and Gandhi and Voltaire. Should have saved his breath.

I complimented Anna for opening up and Jonathan on the receptive stance he was taking. I encouraged them to let it continue throughout the week. I gave him a copy of two bullet point lists (You can find one of them in this earlier blog post. The other one is in Chapter 4 of our book). "Use these questions as a guide. They are the kinds of questions that help many women open up and let their feelings known about their partner's sexual acting out."

That week was an eye-opener and heart-softener for Jonathan. And a huge relief for Anna. The discussions they shared were revealing and intimate. In some ways, they felt closer to each than ever before.

Looking back, Jonathan wished they'd gotten to that depth of connection earlier. "Before, I was all about trying to avoid her having hurt feelings. I was constantly vigilant of the triggers that brought up old feelings for Anna. I stopped wearing cologne to work because she asked me about it once and I didn't want her to worry. And yet I discovered that there was nothing I could do to prevent her from having concerns, from having those old wounds reopened. We'd drive through some part of town and she'd be in tears. Can't go there anymore! We'd see a movie and she'd pull away from me. Stupid Hollywood! I was so misguided! Now I've learned that the key is not to walk on eggshells all the time to avoid making her feel bad. I need to be sensitive, sure. But when she does get scared or the wound is reopened again, those times are opportunities! I relish the chance to talk out whatever it is that suddenly made her feel bad. I can let her know I really want to get it. It's a chance for me to let her know my heart goes out to her when she hurts again because of what I've done."

"It's made a huge difference to know that he doesn't view our deep conversations as a chore anymore," Anna nodded. "It's how I heal. And he's the one I want to heal with. It doesn't matter who else cares and is willing to listen. When I hurt the most, I need Jonathan to hear me out."

Jonathan reached out and squeezed Anna's hand. His gesture spoke volumes: "I'm here for you. From now on, I'll always be willing to listen."

As I think back now about Jonathan and Anna, I don't recall her ever again mentioning that it was difficult to forgive him.

Image: graur codrin /

Friday, October 21, 2011

Why Do We Go to Porn When It's TLC We Need?

In my last post I talked about Paul, who tended to go to porn when he felt down. As he learned to reach for support when he was in need, it helped him avoid relapse. Why did Paul even need therapist to help him change that habit? Why didn't he simply recognize on his own that he needed TLC when he felt deflated and seek it out?

Here are three key reasons we go to porn instead of seeking the emotional support we need:

1. We tend to deny everyday emotional bumps and bruises. As we are going about our day and something happens that we feel bad about, we don't typically take a moment to even acknowledge the "ouch." After all, we're men. As one of my clients put it, "As a commanding officer, I have a duty to be strong, or at least appear strong. The army doesn't pay me to be in tune with my upsets and doubts."

We fail to realize that these little buried emotions can linger and fester. Since we don't acknowledge those initial hits, later in the day when we still feel out of sorts, we max not even remember where those bad feelings started. We end up with little more than a vague sense that things feel off today.

2. Porn is a potent narcotic. Since we're not clear about the problem, it's no wonder we can end up pursuing a faulty "solution." The brain is good at going back to a way it has experienced relief before. Sexual fantasy and masturbation become a habit that provides that release.

Even after we discover that pent up feelings are at the root of our relapses, it can be a challenge to give up porn as an easy and reliable source of immediate relief. Our solution may be misguided, but it's also addictive.

3. It feels more manly to be horny than to be needy. Consider Earl, for example. Once we discussed it, he had an easy time seeing the connection between emotion and relapse. He went home and let his wife, Helen, know that he'd be opening up when he felt bad. She was receptive, even eager to connect with him when he is in need. He was convinced that her attitude would pave the way for him to do it in the heat of the moment. And yet in our next session, he described calling her the day before because he was feeling off--sort of lonely--at work. "It was nice to talk with her and I felt better after hanging up, but I never was able to spit out the reason for the call."

As hard as it is to make ourselves vulnerable, we can do it! Once we do, life gets much easier. It's not only that we're more able to stay in the driver's seat of our lives and abstain from porn. As we become more comfortable being real, we become more relaxed overall. And the connection we feel to our partner catapults the joy of that relationship into a whole new territory.

Image: graur codrin /

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

We Go to Porn When We Need TLC

Paul had a hard day at work. His rear end hurt. His eighthour shift at the call center was long and boring. He thought about his buddieswho still worked at the car wash and longed for the good old days. He came homeand slumped over the kitchen table and unloaded all his complaints to his mom.
“Oh, honey,” she cooed. “It’s so hard to make these kindsof transitions. Life’s not nearly as fun as it used to be. I can see how hard itis right now to hold the course, even though you thought it would be the best wayto pay tuition.”
After a couple of minutes, Paul got up from the table,nodded an appreciative look to his mom, and walked downstairs to get ready forhis workout.
Paul has learned to check in about what he’s feeling. Hehas discovered that when he spills his emotions in this way and senses that hismom’s heart is going out to him, he feels some relief. It helps him “reset”emotionally.
When we find ourselves disoriented by unsettling emotion, we are genuinely in need. Fortunately, the human nervoussystem has a way of getting us what we really need when we need it. Ourattention narrows to the one thing our survival seems to depend on. We becomeextremely motivated to seek it. The brain becomes like a pit bull that won’tlet go.
Our genuine survival needs are all that way. We needoxygen, and if  we are ever deprived ofit, the brain makes sure nothing else matters until we get it. We have moreleeway when it comes to sleep and food, but if we’re deprived long enough,eventually we become single-minded and driven until those survival needs aresatisfied.

Our need for compassion and support when we’re strugglingemotionally is just as essential to our well-being. Connection with a loved-oneat such times is our emotional oxygen. Take a deep breath of it, and we ourbrain resets and we can move on with life. When we’re denied it, we can’t easilyturn our focus to other things. We stay narrow-minded, shut down, and functionat a much lower level than usual.

If we can’t acknowledge what we feel, reach out tosomeone close, and sort it out with them, then we fail to reset in the most fittingway. We remain emotionally distraught and cognitively compromised. And,unfortunately, primed for a relapse. The brain is craving relief from thedistress, and porn provides a powerful distraction. But it’s only apseudo-reset, not a genuine solution. Soon the original distress returns, andwith it with the added bite that we let porn into the driver’s seat of our livesagain.

That’s how it used to go for Paul. Fortunately, he takesa better path now when he’s feeling downhearted.

Image: photostock /

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Terrariums. Simple and fun.

Ever wondered how to make a terrarium ?
The folks at POTTED - have a great tutorial that is easy to follow and will offer lots of inspiration.

I vaguely remember making a terrarium back in the 1960’s with my mom. We used a small oval fish tank and colored aquarium gravel. It was probably pretty gaudy looking when we finished but it remains one of those memories where as kids we were encouraged to create arts and crafts without any derogatory judgement.

I tried my hand at making a terrarium a few days ago.
I used a glass domed cheese serving dish , a glass vase and a small glass candle votive holder.
Inside the containers I placed moss, shells, succulents and some willow branches.

It was pretty simple to make and I am inspired to try making a few more for the upcoming gift exchange season.

From terrarium

From terrarium

Monday, October 17, 2011

New ON LINE Garden Lifestyle magazine : LEAF

The debut issue hit the web waved on October 17 2011.
The cover shot is a beautiful photo by Saxon Holt shot of a garden designed by Topher Delaney.

I think it is rather fitting that Topher made the cover issue, She is after all, a female landscape design trailblazer that has done much over the course of her 30 year career in brining to the forefront the field of site specific sculptural landscaping.

and check out page 66 - an outdoor fire sculpture that we designed for a family in Squaw Valley

Friday, October 14, 2011

High Branch, Sweet Fruit: Why the Best Sex is between Committed Partners

Porn ruins real sex. Fortunately, great sex can heal the porn-numbed brain.

It's fun to see the sexual rescusitation of men whose desire had been numbed and deadened by pornography.

First, they had to take a leap of faith. They were willing to bet that connecting with their wife would be more exciting and fulfilling, in the long run, than the thrill of porn.

That's not an easy leap for some men. When they turn from porn, with its top-of-the-scale intensity, sex with a familiar partner with a real body can seem bland. Many men find that they can't even get aroused any more during sex play with their wife. That can be scary and frustrating. It's tempting to fall back on the old standby.

Couples who patiently stay with it and push through that initial difficulty can eventually enjoy the best sex they've ever had.

Here's why: the dopamine rush from porn that deadens our sensitivity is not permanent. The body recovers. When it does, appetites can return to a healthy level. We can begin anew to want our partner deeply. Skin-to-skin contact becomes a thrill again. The warmth of eachother's bodies is immensely gratifying. We get back to where the mere scent of our partner drives us wild.

Make no mistake: this sweet fruit is on a high branch. We can't just be physically and mentally monogamous. We have to connect in a way that is different from the sexuality portrayed in popular media.

Our culture definitely has been pornified. We have come to expect intense arousal followed by intense stimulation followed by intense orgasms.

The best sex proceeds in a more nuanced way than that. It demands that we take the time to connect, express love, touch each other, hold each other. We orient toward this other human being who resides in the body in bed next to us rather than focusing narrowly on our own desires or their body parts. The best sex expands and invites our entire soul in the process rather than contracting down to the fewest ingredients that make up the easiest recipes for pleasure.

Abstain from porn. Hold each other. Speak lovingly to each other. Let your skin and her skin be the interface by which your hearts speak to each other's. Press your skin to hers; hold her skin greedily against yours. Let that most basic pleasure of contact and warmth soothe you. Be patient. Over time, it will excite you again. When it does, don't focus on the goal of the climax. Don't abandon each other chasing after dopamine. Stay with one another on that wondrous plateau of connecting and mutual pleasuring.

Have more sex. Not just more frequency, but more depth, more length, more breadth. Share that togetherness during lovemaking that doesn't come at any other time. Share that exclusivity. Be reminded of that priveleged status that each of you hold in each other's life. Let sex be an expression of all that.

The kind of connection you'll develop is spiritual and emotional, but it's not just those things--it's also chemical. With this kind of lovemaking we bathe each other's brains in oxytocin. Oxytocin bonds us more intensely to one another. It makes my partner more attractive to me. It makes us want each other more. And over time we become more sensitive to each other. Think of that! What a cool process: we are being sensitized! Just the opposite of what dopamine does to us, deadening and desensitizing over time.

So don't give up! Stay together! Dump porn! Have faith in the process! And make more love--not just more often, but more lovingly.

Here's good news: even if erectile dysfunction has been a problem, a limp penis can't stop you from this kind of lovemaking. And don't worry, it's only temporary. Your verility will return.

Your lives together will be better than ever. We see it happen all the time. There are lots of couples in the process of doing it.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Becoming Immune to Cravings

Okay, so maybe immune is too strong a word. But we can get to the point where urges have much less power over us.

Consider Russ: He's a 34 year old married father of three boys. When I started working with him a year and a half ago, he already knew what made him more vulnerable to relapse. From his file I read in the notes of one of our first meetings:

"When I get weighed down with stress, like at work, temptations come more easily to mind. The list of things I need to do keeps growing, and I can't attack tasks fast enough to keep up. I get this feeling in my chest like a band is tightening. I have a harder time breathing and I'm prone to sighing more. That oppressive feeling can linger even when I get home. I may try to play with the kids, but I can't get into it. If Cheryl asks me to do soemthing I think, Why can't she do it? It's like the stress has totally taken the wind out of my sails."

Looking back at my notes from those early sessions, I also find this admission: "Neither Cheryl nor I are good at sharing concerns, feelings, frustrations. It's how we were raised. Both of our families are averse to admitting struggles and talking about how you're really feeling. I remember as a kid when we stayed with my grandfather after his hip surgery to help him while he recuperated. One of his neighbors said, 'Hubert, why are you limping?' He said, 'I'm not limping!' Likewise, I remember walking in one day after school to find my mom in tears. I said, 'What's the matter?' She answered, 'I just need to buck up.'"

Well, that's one family legacy Russ and Cheryl won't be passing on. Here are some excerpts from the notes of my most recent session with him:

"I've been breezin' through the last couple of months. It feels like everything in my recovery is coming together. Initially I thought that our sexual relationship would have to be going well in order for me to feel good, overall, about things. However, we still aren't having sex or touching each other as much as I'd prefer. We tried scheduling sex on a regular basis, but that didn't work well for us. But I just don't get upset about it the way I used to."

"I guess the biggest difference is that Cheryl and I are talking well about hard things. I talk about whether or not I get tempted. If a tempting thought pops in my head, I can share it with her. But most of what we talk about are emotional struggles, hers and mine. Even little things. She opened up to me when she lent out our rice cooker and it came back with the teflon scraped. We're recognizing how important it is to talk feelings out instead of keeping them pent up.

"It was especially helpful this month when I suffered a big disappointment at work. The chief operations officer put me in charge of a really exciting project. I thought, They're finally recognizing my talents and giving me a shot. Unbeknownst to him, some hotshot in another department went to the CEO to turn in his resignation. In an effort to keep him, the president told him he could be in charge of the project that had just been assigned to me. So they brought me into the CEO's office the next day and ripped the rug out from under me.

"I feel such a lack of accomplishment at work. I get so bored. I feel underutilized and so rarely challenged. Then, finally there's a ray of sunshine, and it's quickly snuffed out. I told Cheryl my sob story that night. She let me cry on her shoulder. The next day I talked it out with her again. In fact just about every day that week we had long, heartfelt discussions.

"Funny thing was, on Friday afternoon of that week I went to my parents' house to set the DVR to record a game I didn't want to miss. They have unfiltered internet access and all the satellite channels. A year ago, that would have been the perfect setup for a relapse. It's the end of a long week at work, especially a week like that. But that day, I walked into their house, set the DVR, shrugged off the other possibilities, and then left. I sat down in the driver's seat of my car and thought, Woo hoo! I'm in the driver's seat of my life!"

Sometimes it's hard to work in the field of addiction. But hearing from clients like that Russ about victories like that make it all worth it.

Image: photostock /

Monday, October 10, 2011

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Craving Tenderness

Frank's struggle has spanned half a century. He got into porn before he was even a teenager, and now, at age 63, he still considers it an addiction.

When I started meeting with Frank over a year ago, he succumbed almost daily to temptation. Lately, he sometimes goes weeks between lapses. Despite his improved track record, there are still times when Frank gets swept away by the stiff current of craving.

A couple of weeks ago, Frank had given in to the urge two days before our session. It was a good chance to take a step back and consider what put him in a state where he was more vulnerable.

"I felt bad that day. Carol was coming home from her sister's place in Arizona. I told her to wake me up when she got home. Well, I woke up at about 6:00 p.m. That's the middle of the night for me since I work graveyard. I was surprised to hear the TV on in the other room. I thought, She got home and didn't even bother to wake me up. I was annoyed."

Later that night, in his office at the plastics manufacturing plant, Frank got online and masturbated to pornography.

"Did you talk to Carol about how you felt?" I asked

"Not really," Frank responded. "I asked her why she didn't wake me up, but then I had to run off to work."

"If you had talked to her, what might you have said?"

"I wouldn't have talked to her. I don't want to put that burden on her. Especially after what I did that night when I was feeling bad. I don't want to put the blame for that on her."

"It's not that you'd be blaming her," I insisted, "just opening up to her about important, tender feelings. I role played for him what he might say: 'It was so good when you called from Blanding. I missed you this last week. The house seemed empty and my whole day revolved around you getting home. Then, when I woke up discovered you were home, and concluded you simply hadn't bothered to come wake me up, something collapsed inside. You're so important to me. If I start to feel like I don't matter to you, it feels lousy inside. I can go through the motions of the day, but not whole-heartedly. There's a part of me that keeps feeling wounded and vulnerable."

Although I put more tenderly than Frank would, I could tell by the tears welling in the corner of his eyes that I'd touched a chord.

When Frank and I met again this week, he said "I talked to Carol about opening up to her in that way. She said she'd welcome it. She's been wanting that kind of closeness for years."

That week, when Frank had a bad day, he came home and spilled his guts. "I had all these errands to run, but I sat for the longest time waiting at the doctor's office. Then, when they finally took me back, they had to keep poking me trying to get blood. It took three different nurses and over an hour to finally collect it. Now I'll only get five hours of sleep tonight. It'ts so frustrating."

I could imagine Carol: "Oh, Honey. I'm sorry you had to go through all that. It must have been so frustrating to have everything slow you down as you were trying to get things done and get back here to bed on time."

"I bet you slept better after talking to Carol," I said.

"It sure has felt better," Frank admitted. Then he described the kind of changes in his pornography struggle that  I've come to expect over the years as I've seen couples learn to connect more deeply and emotionally: "Mind doesn't tend to wander to sex as much... urges are easier to dismiss..."

Rock on Frank! Keep it up and before long you'll be firing me. As much as I've grown to love you and enjoy the time we spend together a couple times a month, I will welcome that day and celebrate with you that landmark on your path of recovery!

Image: Ambro /

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The Way Out of Porn Addiction

Greta said, "Stan's been telling me every time he has a pornography relapse, but his rate of lapsing has been the same for a months now. Honesty and openness with me doesn't seem to be helping him kick the habit."

This is one of the most frequent complaints I hear from visitors to this blog and from the women who come up and talk to me after I give a presentation on pornography addiction.

There was still a missing piece in Stan's recovery. He was open about viewing pornography after the fact. That was a great foundation for the work he needed to do next. Stan needed to become more aware of what set him up to relapse, and be more open about it with Greta. For many men, this becomes the heart of their ongoing recovery.

What's Eating At Me?

Most of the time Stan went along doing fine. Sexual temptation didn't even faze him. I encouraged Stan to watch for those times when sex suddenly became supercharged. "Cravings for our addiction are like a divining rod," I said. "They tell us there's something else important going on. Take inventory of what's happening in your life. What have you been going through? Most importantly, how are you feeling about it?"

It didn't take long for Stan to put this idea into practice. He got online to do some homework for his business class during his lunch hour at work. At the bottom of the webpage about a silicon valley company he was researching, there was a link that was mildly sexually provocative. "I felt the pull to click. I tried to dismiss the impulse and move on. But then I was reading a different news feed about the same company on another site, and again I felt lured by a thumbnail of some scantily dressed celebrity. It was frustrating because I'd been doing well for a couple of weeks. I shut down the computer and called Greta. I told her that I was following your suggestion to call when I was struggling. She reminded me that I was supposed to not just open up about temptation, but also spill my guts about what else was going on at the time.

"I told her, 'Homework is a real drag. Here I am eating my peanut butter sandwich so that I can study the entire hour. A couple of guys brought back Mexican takeout, which I can smell from my cubicle. I get feeling pent up in this place when I don't leave at all during my entire shift. And what do I have to look forward to when I get off tonight? Instead of going golfing with you, I get to go sit under the fluorescent lights in the old business school building and listen to a lecture. I want to keep working toward graduating, but do get feeling sorry for myself sometimes in the middle of the sacrifices we're making now."

Greta's was sympathetic. "Oh, honey. I'd rather go golfing with you tonight, too." Both of them were quiet for a moment, but Stan could tell that she was letting her heart go out to him. "Thanks for talking to me about what's going on inside for you," Greta finally said.

"Sure you won't get sick of hearing my sob story?" Stan asked?

"Hey I want to be in this together with you. I feel closer to you when I know what's eating at you. I want you to let me in like that."

Vulnerability Is Harder, But Works Better than Porn

When they told me about their conversation that day, I knew they had launched into a new stage of recovery.

Stan and Greta's transition into openness about emotion had come fairly easily; it's much more difficult for some couples. It's quite an adjustment to develop the habit. It's hard to let out what's eating at us and making us more vulnerable to unwanted urges. However, often, nothing else will help us reset and get back to feeling mentally free. To purge the urge, we first need to spill our guts.

Strong emotion puts us in a regressed state of mind. It's uncomfortable and we want a way out. Outwardly, we may try to--and even appear to--move on with our lives, but our feelings can stay stuck on yuck. We still need a release. This is when the addictive sexual behavior we've been trying to avoid can start to seem so attractive again. Our brain knows it would provide a quick escape from the muck when more reasonable alternatives just don't seem to hit the spot. The other things we try don't give us any traction out of the regressed, vulnerable state into which we've dropped.

Pouring out our heart, expressing vulnerable emotions, is a response that respects and matches the state we're in. More so than trying to snap out of it or distract ourselves by doing something that feels good. Spilling our guts may seem like whining and it may seem immature, but that's just because our vulnerable state calls for the same kind of soothing young children need. We freely give that TLC to them, but we hesitate to seek it as adults or give it to each other. But guess what? We never grow out of our need for empathy, compassion, and understanding. When we feel bad, when we're downhearted, when our spirits are dampened, we need tenderness and caring. As appealing as porn can be at such times, it offers nothing more than momentary distraction.

Image: photostock / (

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Dalbokia land 2011

And now for some XXX porn for your garden lust pleasure.
Garden Porn bring you Dalbokia, also known as Dalbokia land.
A subtropical hillside paradise nestled in the oak studded hills of Marin county CA.

Entering threw the Balinese wood gate sets the emotional tone. Your blood pressure will immediately drop, stress melts away and a feeling of calm embraces the body and mind.
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

Slowly wander down the palm lined path taking in the jewels of the understory plantings. Ruby red aeoniums sparkle next to sapphire blue senecio. Stalks of amber colored grasses beckon you to explore further down the path.
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

Come around to the heart of the garden where friends frolic in the warm healing pool waters
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

After a soothing dip, recline restfully while overlooking the sanitas por aqua.
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

The owner of Dalbokia lends a helping hand to a young explorer discovering koi fish for the first time in his life. Prized moments.
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

Object d' art are found throughout the garden, tucked in foliage, sprouting from tree ferns and growing out of tree trunks.
This peice shown below is by Marcia Donahue
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

A cluster of pots obscures the surface of the driveway,
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

Feeling like exploring the garden, take a stroll threw the thoughtful vignettes and evocative foliage
From Dalbokia land aug. 2011

The owner of Dalbokia land is Davis Dalbok.
He is a highly respected designer of evocative spaces, both inside the home and out doors in the garden.
His large atelier known as " Living Green " is located in the heart of the Design District in San Francisco
A successful buisness man , a perennial party host that makes everyone feel special and a spirital man who with his own hands has has helped many people in poorer South East Asian countries build temples and communities for spirital devotion.