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Insane in the membrane, insane in the brain

by ezy at 10:47 AM on November 17, 2003

Ok, I have officially lost my fucking mind. Why? Iím not even sure I can explain but Iíll try.

Amy and I have been going out for about seven months now and Iím still convinced that she is the woman for me. I have no doubts but I am finding things to be unhappy about. What is up with that? Let me be clearer. Amy has a somewhat promiscuous past, as do I, and I am struggling hard to find a place to put things she has told me about. We were, probably, a little too forthcoming about the details of our pasts to each other when we started hanging out. Neither of us knew that this would become what it has. Now that it has become something serious I wish I didnít know so much. I am having a tough time not thinking about her doing some of the things she did. Whatís even worse than that, I am being a damn hypocrite. I did the same things she did or worse in some respects and I am having trouble with her past? That is ridiculous. Itís the same old double standard that has existed forever. If men are with a lot of women theyíre studs. If women do the same theyíre sluts. I know all of this but I am still having problems with it. I think it stems from my past. I had a period where I didnít respect women at all. I had been hurt by one and that made all of them my enemies, in my screwed up mind. I did things that I am not proud of and the women that let me do these things received no respect from me. I donít want to think of Amy in that way. I donít want to think of her doing the same filthy things I did. Itís the truth though. She did. Arrrrrgh. I donít know why I canít just get past this shit. I love her and want to be with her as long as sheíll have me. I just need to figure out what to do with this information and put it away for good. God I hate myself sometimes. I should be bigger than all of this and she has done nothing to me that I should be thinking of these things anyway. Hell, I didnít even know her when she was running around. Itís probably a good thing. We wouldíve torn each other to pieces. I think it comes down to respect. I donít respect the things she did. But if she was just a friend I would be laughing it up with her and trading stories. Iím so completely fucking confused. Why in the hell canít I just be happy and not fuck things up for myself just this once? I just canít seem to turn off my brain. I have been unintentionally distant from her the last couple of days and she said something about it this morning. I told her I had some things on my mind to sort through and I didnít mean to let it affect her. Thatís true. I would like to bring this up to her but she is already dealing with her past and I donít want to add to the burden. I really just need to get over myself and let the past lie. This is not fair at all. Hereís how big of a freak I am being. Sheís been on Paxil for about two months now while sheís going through therapy for things that happened in her past. This drug has well documented sexual side affects such as losing sex drive and difficulty being able to climax. I know these things but I internalize these symptoms and turn it in to some inadequacy on my end. I know itís not true because everything was fine before she went on this medication. Itís all in my insane freakin brain. I also think ďI bet she didnít have these problems with any of the other guysĒ then I feel ashamed for thinking that way because it has nothing to do with anything. I feel like a damn Neanderthal but Iím just not sure what to do about it yet.

comments (29)

You're right about the past being the past, but I have no idea on how to put it out of your mind. This is where you throw down one of those "love conquers all" clichťs and use that as an anchor. A viewing of 'Chasing Amy' might be appropriate.

Ugh, Paxil Ö I understnd.

by MrBlank at November 17, 2003 11:16 AM

ezy, get over it. every girl i know has done somthing pretty gross in her past. is it who she is today? not really. everything we've done is a tiny part of our current selves. in most cases though, what you are is a reaction to what you've done and not a product. i suspect amy is a reaction to her past, and that's a good thing.

plus, look at it this way....twenty years down the line she won't get curious about the sex she never had, because well...she already had it. the way i see it, you're sitting on one form of an ideal situation: you're with someone who's lived her life to experience a lot, she's over the experimentation (i gather) and now she just wants you.

and if that sounds familiar, that's because it probably also describes you.

by lajo at November 17, 2003 11:19 AM

MrB, you're right, of course. I have been taking that approach and it works until something triggers a thought. Then it's like someone flipping a switch.

Lajo, I know, I know. That's what kills me about this. My feelings about it are totally illogical and unreasonable which is very unlike me. That's what is screwing with me. I don't feel in control of myself. I feel like I'm back in high school and in a jealous rage. Maybe I am feeling this due to being extremely protective of her? I don't know. I just don't want my crazy crap to affect her or make her feel bad about things she already carries guilt over. I just don't know how to stop it. That's all. Maybe I'm just being a bastard?

by Ezy at November 17, 2003 12:27 PM


I know the feeling. The girl I'm involved with has about 1 / 100 of the sexual history I have, but told me about a 4 way thing she did as a teenager. For some reason that bothers me, even though I've had way more promiscious sex, and she's been more or less celibate, when not involved, in the last 10 years (as in me and 1 other in the past 10 years).

Logically I shouldn't be something that bothers me, but it does at times. Of course the gulf between logical and emotional is often large. Hopefully it will diminish with time.

Good luck with that.

by chuckwoolery at November 17, 2003 1:46 PM

Thanks Chuck. That's what I have been hoping, that it will diminish with time. God I just wish I didn't know or knew how to turn off that portion of my brain. I think that the worst part is that this is so out of character for me that I don't know how to handle it. I've never allowed the past actions of any of my other girlfriends bother me to this extent. We all have pasts and we all have done things we aren't proud of. I guess I don't understand the part of me that wants to hold her accountable for her past but, in the same breath, wants her to forgive my mistakes. It just doesn't make any sense.

by Ezy at November 17, 2003 2:46 PM

ezy, watch "true romance". if christian slater can put up with, and totally fall for a beautiful hooker like patricia arquette, then surely you can do the same for a girl with far, far less on her resume.

but if a huge cocaine deal does go down, and you're caught having paranoid fantasies about elvis in the bathroom, well then i think that's where you should stop looking at this movie for advice.

by lajo at November 17, 2003 5:51 PM

oh, also.

the reason these thoughts might never have really interfered before, is maybe because you were never this serious before. take that as a good sign.

and pull yourself together man. jesus.

heh, heh.

by lajo at November 17, 2003 5:54 PM

Yeah Chuck there's no accounting for emotional reactions. My wife's spared me all those sordid details but one. Once she was smooching with a date and got up to get something. When she returned, he'd whipped out something the size of a Coke can. Although nothing became of it, this tale left me feeling inadequate. As it did when I lived with a chick. We kept separate rooms. I didn't have to hear about her escapades, I heard her escapades. So Ezy, I feel for you.

by anna at November 17, 2003 6:15 PM

My experience has been that when I have feelings along the lines of those you describe involving someone else's past, it points directly to insecurities within myself. I don't really feel the need to answer to myself about my sexual past. I've done things that others might judge, but others aren't me, it's my life to live, and no one can really judge my sexual past more so than myself. Thus if I'm comfortable with it (or not), it's all mine. BY THE SAME TOKEN, someone I love deserves all the respect I would give to myself. Their life is theirs to live. They don't have to answer to me any more than they do to themselves. How can I possibly be jealous of them for being a sexual being, or having a life before they met me? Well, in truth, I can't. In a certain sense, I can be happy that they were at one time happy or sexually turned on by others, and it is no threat to me as I want them to experience their life (at the very least I have to accept their autonomy). Just like when you read a book and sympathise with the protagonist, and say they have a good relationship with person one, which ends for some reason, and then they strike up a relationship with person two. No issues arise for you, as you see the world through their eyes, and you accept that they can experience closeness and sexuality with more than one person, just as you know you yourself can. There's a transparency given to you, that may not be true for person 1 or person 2, yet you would discount the boundary because you "understand" the protagonist, and know that what they had with person 1 doesn't detract from what they have with person2. Thus we know we have to accept that others are just like us - capable of life and what it brings.

Besides all that, all you have is the present and forward. The past is unreachable. I understand that there was a guy back in 1392 who felt exactly like you do know. Look what happened to him. You must know the difference between being happy with people, and feeling you are responsible for their happiness (again goes to respect and insecurity).

If none of that makes any sense and you just want the feeligns to go away, try exercise. During one particularly bad relationship spell in which I had a hard time controlling my feelings, I simply had to swim a mile a day. It either wore me out, or gave me enough endorfins to survive, or both.

by chris at November 17, 2003 7:13 PM

thus spoke dalai chris lama.

by lajo at November 17, 2003 7:32 PM

Chris's advice is definitely golden, as always.

Ezy, whatever happened before you met Amy is just information and nothing else. Pretend that any relationship she's ever had with anyone else never happened. Realize that the only relationship that is real is the one that she has with you. It's literally true in any case. You've gotta stay in the present, and not live in a theoretical world, or in the past. Everyone's scarred, everyone's messed up. Everyone has a history; you can't avoid it unless you die the moment you're born! I very much agree with Chris that people only hate others with regard to what they hate about themselves. That's my least favorite piece of advice-- and that's because it's so damn true.

by jean at November 18, 2003 3:12 AM

Can The Chris post here? Amazing.

by anna at November 18, 2003 7:53 AM

Lajo, you are correct. I think that is exactly why I don't want to think about her having a past. I really haven't been to this level of caring before so I'm breaking new ground, for me. It's some scary shit bro.

Chris, that's why this is screwing with me. I have no right to judge anything she did before she met me. I know this and can logically say to myself "You didn't know her then. You were searching for each other and things probably wouldn't have turned out that way if you had met earlier." It's the double standard and, for some reason, I'm living it. I always thought myself above that petty crap but I guess I've found I'm susceptible to it. There's one thing you said I don't fully agree with or I'm not fully understanding what you're saying. I believe we all have to take some responsibility for the happiness of the people you love. I mean, we shouldn't be their only source for it or be the only reason they live but by our actions we directly affect them and their happiness. I agree that we need to be happy with them but we should also do things to make them happy. I do think these feelings are stemming from my past. I don't respect the things I did and probably haven't fully forgiven myself for them. I might be allowing those feelings to spill over to her and that is where I need to focus my energy and put a stop to it.

Amen Jean. See above.

by Ezy at November 18, 2003 10:14 AM

Ezy, take it easy, if you're the one man who could make her willingly take 'active steps' to deal with her past(therapy/medication) and stop her past promiscuity, then I think that's something very significant... I'm on the flipside of the coin with my fiance... we've been living together now since September(hence my absence from BadSam), and since then, I've been looking at my past recklessness and in a way, have been completely blindsided by now looking at the dark things that I did, and thinking,"What the fuck was a thinking?" And it's not easy, because it feels like many of the mistakes of the past are truly incorrigble, yet, my fiance is the only person who was able to make me see these past patterns of foolishness, and that is value added. As for Paxil, the first three months I was on it, yes, I had delayed ejaculation, but since then, and it's been over a year(no change in dosage), the sex is pretty good.

by LOCKHEED at November 18, 2003 1:20 PM

Lock, my man! Good to see you back. I've been doing a lot of "fuck, what were you thinking" the past couple of years. I am beginning to believe that the problem I have might not be as much with Amy as with myself. Maybe if I get to a point where I can forgive my past it will make it much easier to not make an issue of Amys. Hell, maybe I should go on Paxil too. Even things out so to speak.

by Ezy at November 18, 2003 2:08 PM

Geez, sounds like she was a real ho. You should watch a bunch of movies about hookers with hearts of gold, and take your cues from make-believe guys.

by at November 18, 2003 11:50 PM

No name, maybe you should fuck off if you can't even add something remotely helpful or intelligent to this conversation. Moron.

by Ezy at November 19, 2003 9:27 AM

What I'm about to say isn't any different from what most have already said, but maybe it'll help you gain perspective or whatever it is you are in need of right now.

I am going thru a similar yet diferent situation right now. The guy I am falling for head over heals and I are very alike. Sometimes eerily so. We have gone through exact same situations at almost the exact time in our lives, our likes and dislikes are so close to identical you'r swear we were twins seperated at birth (he has gone as far as to say that I am "just like [him], only the female version). The problem I am currently having is this: neither of us have had many serious entanglements. In fact, we are both the other's second person we could be serious about (he has only had 1 serious gf before me and I only had 1 serious bf before him). When we first met he still hadn't gotten over his ex (she dumped him) and one day he told me their whole story, leaving nothing out. Now that we are getting deeply involved, I find that if we have a disagreement I think "yeah, but if I were so-and-so he would probably move heaven and earth to make me happy" or other petty thoughts of that nature. It kills me because he still sees her (he has to, the three of us go to the same community college and they are both musicians majoring in piano education) and at first it was all too much for me (after all, he still had feelings for her). After much soul-searching I realized that I couldn't control what was in the past. Heck, when I first met him I was still hung-up on my ex, so why should it be ok for me but not for him? Continuing with what seems is quickly becoming a tradition with me, I will give you this spanish saying: "Lo que no fue en tu aŮo no te hace daŮo" (roughly translated it says "That which wasn't in your year [time] can do you no harm). I remind myself that he is with me now and that he has shown me that he is over her and interested in me alone. I believe that we can have a wonderful relationship, and that my insecurity is just something I need to put to rest. It helps that he is always there to reassure me, though. I agree with you in not wanting to burden Amy any more than she is already burdening herself, just make sure that this thing bottled up inside you does not manifest itself passive-agressively because then you will surely harm her, you and what you guys have together.

I hope this helps you Ezy, the way you talk about her it's obvious she means the world to you.

by Lucy at November 19, 2003 1:07 PM

Lucy, this woman does mean the world to me. I have never loved anyone else quite like this. I did keep this bottled up for a while and the only time it seemed to manifest itself is when I'd been drinking and then I wouldn't address it directly but harp on other things. Stupid, I know. I think that getting it out, even in this forum, has helped. It's good to know I'm not the only one who feels like this. That helps me not feel like such a damn freak so I can better concentrate on the problem at hand.

As for your situation, both of you were on the rebound? Wow. When Amy and I started she was on the rebound but I wasn't. I can't imagine how tough things would've been if I had also been on the bound. Geez. I'm glad you made it through.

by Ezy at November 19, 2003 4:57 PM

"...always thought myself above that petty crap" Rather I'd say it's basic human emotion, I don't think of it as petty or crap, no one is above it, though some have better ways of dealing with it than others.
Ezy, when I mentioned responsibility for someone else's happiness I think we're on the same page - we have to do everything we can to help make those we love happy. I meant that one must be careful not to fall into the trap of thinking someone else's happiness depends on us such that we become possessive of their happiness (for instance we would become threatened if they should be happy about something that doesn't involve us), which usually leads to an unhealthy dependence whereby too much one's self-esteem or emotional well-being derives from aspects of someone else that we really have no control over. Perhaps the most extreme example is a typical murder suicide scenario, but less extreme examples are of the "I need all of person X's happiness to depend on me" variety.
BTW, thanks everyone for the compliments.

by chris at November 19, 2003 5:57 PM

Chris, I totally understand now and agree 100%. My last relationship was unhealthy in that way. My ex's happinness depended on my being there every second 27/7. She never went out with her friends and would get either mad or depressed when I wanted to go out with mine. She even hated some of the music I listened to if someone else, God forbid a woman, introduced me to it. This amount of clinging left me feeling trapped. I felt so much pressure to make her happy that it drove me away from her and effectively ended things for us. There were other factors, of course, but this was a major one.

by Ezy at November 20, 2003 9:51 AM

Oh. 24/7. Dumbass.

by Ezy at November 20, 2003 4:16 PM

A mind is a terrible thing to lose. Okay, maybe not as bad as losing a rubber inside a girl, but terrible nonethless.

by anna at November 22, 2003 12:02 PM

Amen Anna. That is, definitely, a terrible thing to lose and even more tricky to get it back.

by Ezy at November 24, 2003 9:57 AM

Gar! I am just back from Colombia, and have no time to read this, and I SO want to because I am SO relating to you in a very current way. I've actually planned on posting about it, but would have gotten the exact same comments I bet. Damn irrational thoughts!!

by Linz at November 24, 2003 11:25 AM

Just to express what a dope I can be sometimes, I'd like to mention that if I'd just returned from Columbia, my reintroduction would have included the phrase "I just got back from Columbia, and boy are my nostrils tired."

As for the actual content of this post, which I've (purposefully) yet to comment on, I like to say that if you've been here a while (or gone back into the archives), you know I have no answer to this question. At some point you just have to let it go and forgive someone (for what they've done to you, and even things they've done before they ever met you) if you love them and want to continue your relationship.

by mg at November 24, 2003 11:58 AM

Welcome back Linz!! The evil cartel didn't kidnap you!! Post about it anyway.

MG, that's, kind of, what I'm trying to point out. I know what I should do and how I should handle the situation but it's like the angel and devil on your shoulder, the angel representing logic and the devil representing irrational thought. Sometimes the devil speaks a little louder and you're left to try not to cave in to something you know shouldn't matter but does, for some reason. I think what really surprised me is that these things did bother me and I wasn't prepared for it. They didn't begin bothering me until just recently. I suppose Lajo was right in an earlier comment. I do care more now that I have fallen in love with Amy so that has changed things in my mind. Just being able to get this out and look at how ridiculous those feelings really are in print has helped. I'm hoping time will heal all.

by Ezy at November 24, 2003 12:40 PM

Did you get my e-mail request MG?

by Ezy at November 24, 2003 12:44 PM

I was actually looking for the song Insane on the Membrane, and landed here.... then i got caught up in Ezy's story and all the following threads about his girlfriend, Amy. I know a promiscuous girl named Amy, but the world is full of Amy's and, reading from the all the threads and my own experience, the world is full of promiscuous individuals so I doubt there is a connection. I do however have a couple of comments/replies after reading all of the other replies. 1) I don't think watching movies is a good way to get ideas on how approach a relationship. While they may give you a good idea on a line to use, they are remember..... not true. [my favorite line i like to use, but only if its true, is "You make me want to be a better man" Jack Nickelson from For Better or for Worse.] Ezy, you discounted that thread pretty quickly that made this point. I'll agree that the writer made the point in a rather tactless manner, but I think the point is valid. 2) My other concern is a majority of people's comment about "the past is the past... leave it alone." While that may be true and it might be what you want to hear, we must remember that we are the sum of all of our past experiences. Years ago I had an opportunity to sleep with this girl who was half my age. She was 17 and wanted me, it was hard to say no, but that is what I did. I am now grateful for having made that choice, because although it might have made for a fine memory, I would have to live with the idea that I had done this. As for your gf her promiscuous past, in my opinion, has contributed to who she is, just like the exercising someone did everyday for the last five years contributes to who they are today. The question that you have to ask yourself is two parts: First, can she live with the part of herself that has become who she is as a result of the promiscuity, Two: Can you live with yourself as having chosen a girl such as Amy? 3) My last and final comment refers to you. Reading your original thread tells me that you've got to lighten up on yourself. Your much to hard on you... But telling you that probably won't help. I'm the same way and when someone tells me to lighten up and take it easy on myself, I always agree and give myself a heavy dosage of "what a loser i am geez..... lighten up on yourself...damn it." Good luck on your personal growth.

by mahatma at December 11, 2003 1:04 PM

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