Medicate

“It’s just for a little while, until you’re yourself again, until we can control the anger, until you can learn some techniques for helping with your triggers.”

I had just walked out of his office after another outburst at work, and I really wasn’t looking forward to what he had planned with me.

“We will prescribe this, and you can take it side by side with a session of therapy per week.”

I didn’t ask what it was, I didn’t ask what the side effects were, I was just going along with it because I was angry, angry much of the time in my life. I trusted that this, along with therapy, would finally solve the issue of my anger.

My anger had been a problem before. Several times, throughout my career at my first job at my father’s trucking company, I had outbursts. Throwing stuff on the dock, punching a hole in a wall, yelling and screaming at co-workers. I had a handful of confrontations when I was “squeezed” at work, meaning that I was put into a fight or flight situation, and the flight wasn’t an option. This would involve irate customers or carriers and having to speak with them. I wasn’t good at diffusing situations and would absolutely lose it if put into a situation where I had to accept responsibility for a screw up.

So I got hauled to anger management three times between 2007 and 2015. Each time I passed with flying colors, but most of the crap I did wasn’t effective (only because I didn’t practice any of the techniques). I was going just because I had to, not with the goal of getting better.

So I was sitting in the psychologist’s office for my first session, because it was finally time to make a change.

My mother and younger sister had been pushing me to take pills to “help” me with my issues.

So today was the day I was starting this new path. A path to peace, I thought.

It certainly was a path, but the way I felt, the way that the drug affected me, felt like it hollowed me out inside. No passion, spirit, or drive, but more of an auto-pilot option, just to weather life.

One A Day Chases The Blues Away

“It’s going to take a bit for the pills to take effect.”

At this point, I didn’t care, I’d tried everything, anger management wasn’t helping (because I wasn’t working to be better), so I took a pill.

The drug I was prescribed (Zoloft) was called sertraline. It’s purpose is to increase serotonin in the brain, essentially helping with mood, memory and “leveling” you out.

I was having horrendous mood swings, so my psychologist figured that prescribing it (standard with most of his patients) would help regulate me and keep me more “even” headed.

And, it worked. It evened me out, keeping me “sane” (or what I thought was sane) because that’s what everyone around me wanted me to be. Sure there were side effects – one being I had trouble climaxing during sex, but I figured I wasn’t having sex anyway (at the time, I was in a sexless marriage), so I took the pill.

I was struggling with my anger and I sure as hell didn’t want to start punching walls or throwing stuff out on the dock, so I took the pill.

My mother and younger sister were worried about my mental health. They wanted me to be more even headed (which later felt more like me being “complacent” or “obeying”) because they could see the stress of my struggles, so I took the pill.

Everyone around me wanted me to get better and with therapy, I could. So I took the pill…

It’s only a pill a day. It’s easy. It’s quick. It’s painless. Small side effects are nothing compared to the feeling of not feeling.

And I think that very reason is why people do this.

They’re afraid to feel strong emotions, and when they do, they don’t know how to express them. And this was my problem. I wasn’t allowed to have these emotions, because they are “unnatural” (actually perfectly natural) and when I was being unhealthy in expressing them in unhealthy ways. But no one ever told me how to do it, they only told me how to avoid doing it.

So I took the pill….

But what it did to me, how I felt, wasn’t right. It never felt right. All of my life I’d avoided the rollercoaster. But instead of finding out WHY I hated the rollercoasters (the falling feeling, the noise, the fear of the hill), I just avoided it. Why subject myself to that mess? So I took the pill…

It gutted the passion, the thrills, the fear, the joy, the fun of the emotions. It was assumed I couldn’t control myself (which I had shown) but had I really ever tried? So I had a choice to keep taking them and avoid the coaster.

And that’s what I did. I chose safe. I chose to level out my feelings because I didn’t like how they made me feel, as well as everyone around me telling me it wasn’t healthy to feel them.

So it hollowed me out, and even when I was supposed to get angry, passionate, or show emotion in a healthy way, I didn’t (or couldn’t) because it wouldn’t let me. And it affected my relationships, especially with my mother and sister, because I became more pliable again. My wife and I were too far gone, but my even-keeled mind was avoiding anything that required passion, reaction, and emotion. I was a Vulcan, and it sucked because this pill sucked the life out of my at the expense of my emotions.

I had swapped problems. Sure, now I wasn’t having the anger outbursts at work, nor was I having the erratic mood swings, but now, I was a hollowed out man. And as I did more research on the drug I was becoming more and more convinced that this thing I was taking was hurting me more than it was helping.

Cease and Desist

So, in September 2021, I called my doctor. I told her, after much research, that I wanted to ween myself off of this medication. I had found out that it affected my testosterone levels as well, after I had tested at a lower level (but normal to the regular medical community) and was concerned that the low T was affecting everything in my life. And I had her full support. I was a bit scared on what it would do to me.

Would I have the mood swings again? Would I have untapped aggression towards the world? Would I have to warn people that I was off my meds?

Still, I almost wanted that over the feeling I was having. There were times during sex I couldn’t cum, and that feeling alone pushed me to stop these meds. I was tired of not feeling anything, not having those hormones pumping through my body, not being able to have an emotion without an unnatural check on it.

I was tired of being a hollow man.

So, with the wind at my back, I re-lit the pilot light.

And as each day passed without the dose, my mood improved. My blood began to feel electric again. My energy level increased. I started to take my aggression out where it was healthy, the gym and the bag.

I kept even-keeled, even after a month of no meds. I looked for triggers and addressed them. My ability to control my emotions, yet express them in a healthy way, without the constant drug induced “meh”, was getting better with my mind out of the fog.

Two months passed. My mood got better, my energy increased. Whenever I was confronted with tough situations, I stood my ground, stuck my chest out, and weathered it.

I continued to get better. Months 3 and 4 came and went. My worry about relapsing to violent, emotional Tim became less of a concern. My new concerns were wondering why I didn’t do this sooner, what I had missed, and more importantly, what I was going to do with this new found ability to control and emit my emotions in a healthy manner.

The iron helped tremendously. I dropped the pills and picked up the weights. I channeled any raw emotions into the gym. I took situations that I had just drifted through on the medicine and manned the helm to push through them, learning how to navigate those situations with my emotions and sanity intact.

I was ACTIVELY trying to get better and managing my life, as opposed to letting the drug take the wheel so I could sit back and relax.

Doing that forced me to face emotion and deal with it.

We all have to deal with it, we can’t run away from the fight.

Now, at 6 months drug free, I have turned a corner. I continue to work hard everyday to address any raw emotions that bubble over, but instead of medicating myself, I work through and face the issues head on.

The best part? I’ve actually become calmer. I’ve channeled my inner anger, an anger that I thought would come roaring back, to becoming a better father, calmer and more direct boss, and a better, more masculine, more civil son and brother.

I’ve become more even headed that I was when I was on the meds, but without the lack of testosterone and the fear of overflowing emotions. My self control has kicked in. Breathing exercises, along with some quiet meditation as well as taking time for myself has really paid off in terms of my mental health.

I didn’t need the pill, but I thought I needed it.

Everyone was telling me it was the only way to improve my life.

And all it did was take me out of the driver’s seat and just sit in with no control.

In order for me to have control, I had to understand that there was a possibility of a wreck. But if I drove my own life well, and paid attention to how I was driving, being defensive at times while at other times taking advantage of what the road gave me, I would enjoy the drive much more.

There’s a reason cars have high speeds on their speedometers. And it’s not always about driving the limit.

But you have to use the brake, you have to steer away from trouble, and you’ve have to be aware of everything going on so you can get through it.

And you don’t need to drive under the influence of any drug, no matter how many doctors tell you it will “take the edge off” of your life.

Stress is a part of life, and if you have anxiety, no pill is going to help you face those pressures. You have to pit yourself against life and get tougher, not take a pill to give you an excuse or a way out.

There’s one way out of life and that’s in a cedar box.

You must get tough and fight it out, learn to deal with setbacks, and address your emotions face to face, toe to toe with them. Understand your triggers and work them out in other areas.

There are many people that need medication, but the over-medication of society has to stop at some point.

Stop medicating, especially if you use it as a crutch for the issues in your life.

The bitter pill is the only medication you should take, and accept that hardships will surface and overcome them.

Because life isn’t going to stop tossing you around.

You have to become the boat with the strong sails to smooth it out.

The ability to be mentally healthy is inside of you, and no amount of medication is going to change that fact.

Lessons From A Failed Marriage

Photo credit: Huffington Post

“The lesson divorce teaches you isn’t to not get married, it’s to not get divorced.”

The lessons. So many, too many to count. But I’ve managed to boil it down to 20 lessons.

I’m still learning, every day.

But I’ve honed these lessons to make sure that when I get married again, it won’t end in divorce.

Because, as bad as divorce is, it’s worse the second time.

My experiences are lessons that I can share with those willing to understand their own fallacies as well as understanding that they control who they marry, who they sleep with, and who they allow in their lives.

You control it. You have the keys. The system is unfair. It won’t be changing anytime soon, but you still have control. Stop listening to those that tell you that you don’t. Because they didn’t and don’t have control either.

I’m not a relationship expert, I’m a “what not to do in a relationship” expert.

So, without further ado, here’s my list. Enjoy and learn from my mistakes:

Lesson 1 – If You Don’t Know Who You Are and Love Yourself as Such, You Cannot Marry Someone Else Without Encountering Major Issues

I didn’t know who I was. I was trying to be someone I wasn’t. And it showed in the marriage. The baseline, foundational things that you need to be in order to love someone else must be there. Your convictions, beliefs, purpose, and boundaries must be there in order for you to make good on your promise to love, honor, and cherish.

How can you marry someone when you don’t know who the hell you are? If it’s checking a box, it’s wrong. Marriage is for good and you better damn well know who you are, your likes and dislikes before you walk down the aisle. And if she can’t respect any of it, she doesn’t get to be your wife.

Lesson 2 – Stop Escalating and Start Connecting

In the heat of an argument, the best thing you can do is stop letting emotion dictate your response. Her emotion is boiling over and she needs to know you’re there to stop it from completely spilling. She wants to vent, not argue, many times over, because women are emotional creatures. She needs to feel you there for her, your strength, your control over yourself and the situation. Sometimes, she just needs to let emotion take over. Nothing may necessarily be wrong, and if it feels like she’s picking on you, sack up and understand that this is something she does to make sure you are there for her.

She values you as her husband and values that you take the time to connect with her, listen instead of dictate, as well as understanding her and what she’s going through.

Lesson 3 – She Won’t Love You Unconditionally, But She Will Love You

The biggest issue that men have to deal with is that they won’t get love the way they want from a woman. She will not love unconditionally, but neither will you for her. It doesn’t work that way, especially for a man and a woman, as conditions do dictate love. So provide conditions that you are happy with. Men have to provide, it’s what we have to do. The sooner you realize this, the sooner you can have it your way. But she will love you, but you have to give her something to love and adore. You are the key to all of it, be it your own self love and what you’ve built in pursuit of that love, for her to truly love you for who you are and what you stand for.

Lesson 4 – Vet and Vet Often. You Can’t Prepare for Every Eventuality, But You Can Have A Damn Good Idea of Who You’re Marrying

Take as much time as you need. The honeymoon phase in a relationship over, time to start vetting her. Put her in as many situations as you can to see how she handles herself. That will tell you all you need to know about her. You can’t prepare for everything, but you can have her in enough situations to see how she’ll do when the real deal is upon you. This is good, bad and neutral situations. Get experience with her, gain knowledge about her faults, bad habits, and general demeanor. If she greets you with an ultimatum, walk.

Lesson 5 – Neither Person Gets to Dictate Terms

Terms are agreed upon and negotiated.

Both parties understand what they bring and they bring it.

You want contractual obligation? The State wants marriage in those terms, but you aren’t the State, nor are you a monolithic organism. You’re a human being and so is she. If either side starts dictating, the other side needs to walk. There has to be compromise and agreement on principles in the relationship. Know your roles and be comfortable playing them because it’s who you are. Be prepared for quick negotiations or unforeseen disagreements that must be hashed out. But do it together, and in ways that both of you are comfortable with all that each of you are doing.

Lesson 6 – Communicate. You Can’t Read Minds and Your Partner Can’t Either

Talk early and often and your marriage will be solid as a rock. Get to know each other by talking to each other, early and often, over anything and everything. Know where each other stands on things that confront the marriage and overcome them. Communicate how your partner made you feel, good or bad, and face those issues head on, together. You don’t get to not engage, especially when it may be important to her. If it was important to you and she walked off, you’d be pissed.

Lesson 7 – Sex is Critical

No sex is a deathknell for any relationship. If you’re not having sex in your relationship, it’s dead and needs to be revitalized. No sex is a critical problem that many marriages cannot overcome. Because without sex, she’s just a roommate who helps you with the bills. Your intimacy is of the utmost importance in your marriage. Take it from a guy who didn’t have much sex in the dying days of his marriage, you need to be having sex, but also, having fun with your partner. Try new things in the bedroom, be adventurous, and be aggressive towards each other in the bedroom. You both love each other, so show it, dammit.

Lesson 8 – Better People Make Better Marriages

The bitter truth that most people don’t want to hear is that when you and your spouse are striving to be better, it improves your marriage significantly. Because you are a better, healthier person, you can have a good, strong, solid marriage when you and your partner have boundaries, share in triumphs, regroup after setbacks, and have each other’s backs. The proof is in the pudding, for take a sputtering marriage and add two people trying to get better either physically, mentally, spiritually or all three, and see the infusion of that energy revitalize that marriage. I’ve seen it happen so many times with men who weren’t motivated in marriage suddenly turn things around to the point where everyone associated with the marriage is re-energized. Kids, wife, everything starts to level up as the man rebuilds himself.

Lesson 9 – It’s Okay to Be Wrong. Own It, Fix It, and Move On

Yes. It’s okay to be wrong. But you have to do the one thing you don’t want to do. Swallow your pride and own the fuck up. You aren’t infallible, and neither is she. But you are capable of being an adult, and that means taking the heat when you screw up. The heat is the easy part, because you then have to fix your fuckup to ensure it doesn’t happen again. Because you’re a functioning part of this marriage, your humility will be mirrored by her, because when she sees you screwed up, when she does it, she’ll want to show that she’s human too. If she doesn’t, you still take the L and move on. Because you are the lead in this relationship, you will hold yourself to a higher standard. And with that higher standard comes her having to raise her standard as well. You set the tone, regardless of what you do, be it right or wrong. Learn from it and move the fuck on.

We get wrapped up in the State and why they get involved in the institute of marriage. If you don’t want the State involved, you can most certainly choose other options. But as of right now, this moment in time, and for the foreseeable future, your local government is involved. That means that in the eyes of the State, you are in a contractual agreement with your spouse. And depending on the state that the marriage occurs, you may or may not be able to draft a prenuptial agreement. All the more reason for the man to know who the heck he is marrying and the woman to take her time to make sure that this is the real deal. But never, ever does the State get to be involved in the spiritual aspect of your marriage. If you are religious, the church has that on lockdown, and so make sure you aren’t losing the real reasons for marriage in a myriad of tax implications. The state only matters when you get married or when you get divorced. Kick those fuckers out of the bond.

Lesson 11 – Do Things, but Do Them With Meaning and Purpose – Enjoy Each Other on Purpose

The issues I had with our marriage was that my wife was always goading me to do “something” instead of what I was doing, which most of the time was playing video games or watching TV. She wanted me to go experience life with her, and that isn’t an inconvenience. It’s a necessity. Enjoy your spouse by enjoying your life with her. Cherish the things you do (active or passive things) and share that with her, as well as her with you. Try new things with her, be adventurous, solve problems together. This will only strength the bond between both of you. Then, as you do these things, you become better together and start to enjoy more. The snowball gains momentum and gets bigger. Enjoy your marriage by doing things together that you love.

Lesson 12 – Be Her Biggest Cheerleader, and She’ll Be Your Biggest Fan

Support in marriage is one of the biggest deficiencies for men. They are looking for loyalty and a support system, but you have to do the same. She needs to know you’re there for her to support what she wants to do as well. Keep cheering her on what she wants to do, and you will see a woman ready to support her man with anything he’s doing as well. But you gotta show up in her corner, every time.

Lessons 13 – When Your Values Align, You Both Win

When vetting for a woman, pay close attention to her values. If they are radically different from yours, you will have an issue that will be a killer for the marriage. You have to have a partner that is paddling the same way you are, because if you don’t, the boat spins. And you want to move forward and beyond, not stay stagnant. So watch how she conducts herself. Does she hate kids? Then why try to make her a mom?

Does she have liberal values? Then why marry her if you’re a staunch conservative. Does she have issues with her family? Then why try to bring her into yours if she can’t have a healthy attachments to her own kin (save for extraordinary circumstances). You wouldn’t buy a dog person a bunch of cats so stop trying to fit a square peg in a round hole.

Lesson 14 – Your Kids are Neither Conspirators Nor Accessories to Either Parent

They’re kids, and they function best in peaceful settings. Your kids are the souls you are raising. Stop trying to weaponize them against your spouse in the hopes of them proving your right or wrong. It’s not fair to them for you to put them squarely in an adult situation when they are anything but adults. You are acting like a child if you are using kids to exert power over your spouse. These aren’t chess pieces, they’re your flesh and blood and they need parents who are adults.

Lesson 15 – She Doesn’t Owe You Anything, Nor Do You Owe Her

The concept of entitlement should not exist in marriage, especially not one way and not the other. No one owes anyone anything when it comes to marriage, but you both owe it to each other to be present and engaged in the marriage. She doesn’t owe you sex because she’s your wife, and you don’t owe her money to pay off her loans because you’re her husband. You both are giving because you are both getting reciprocated by being this way. Stop hanging expectations on someone with no intention of holding them up.

Lesson 16 – Alone Time is Important; Never Underestimate the Importance of Spending Time Away From Each Other

You need your alone time. You need time to decompress and get yours. Refilling your energy meter is important to every person in your life, because you can pour from an empty cup. If your significant other is trying to monopolize your time, it’s because they don’t value your alone time. You have to be able to get away to get right sometimes, and they have to respect that. As a matter of fact, alone time is essential in a marriage because if you were around your spouse 100% of the time, you’d cease to exist as a person. You both were separate people before you got married, and you remain that way even after. Your alone time is golden to do the things you like to do to relax. And if your partner loves you, they’ll respect that time and take some of their own.

Lesson 17 – The Work Doesn’t Stop When The Honeymoon Ends

Never stop working to be a better person, regardless of marital status. You set the standard and you keep improving each week, each month, and each year. Bring it, and she’ll bring it as well. But you have to keep dating your spouse, you have to keep working to be a better person, and you both will revel in the rewards as you continue to grow as a couple and individually. There should be no let up for either of you after the wedding cake is eaten. Too many folks suffer from “get married and let it all go” syndrome. Don’t be that person. Cherish yourself and your significant other by getting after it every day.

Lesson 18 – You’re A Team, But You’re the Leader

Men lead, women follow. The traditional roles may be the new bad words of the 21st century, but it still holds true. You are the leader, you set the tone, and you protect the clan. You’d better be ready to lead, because she’s counting on you. Just as I have said men are the frame while women are the painting, it falls to you to be the foundation on this marriage. The strength and protection you provide is what she needs in order to do her thing and assist you in yours.

Lesson 19 – How You Handle The Hard Times Will Make The Good Times Better

Hard times make better marriages. How you both overcome obstacles says a lot about the health of your marriage. Blame, guilt, and shame have no place in a marriage, when you can replace them just as easily with strength, fortitude, and perseverance. See the tough times for what they are and work through them, never blaming each other for anything out of the other’s control. You can’t be resentful of someone because something happens to them or someone they love that isn’t in the cards. Even when you or your loved ones make critical mistakes, stop, listen, and connect then fix it. Seeing through these times will strengthen any marriage more than anything.

Lesson 20 – It’s Marriage, It’s Messy, It’s Difficult, But It’s Worth It

Marriage is work, but it’s also a teammate for life that supercharges your life. It’s nitrous in your engine, and when you have a committed and dedicated person to your cause, your goals get that much more attainable. But also, you get to share a life with someone you care about, someone whom cares about you, and together, you dominate and build an empire. That’s a “Ride Or Die” to me, and the most successful people in history have had a significant other who watches their back.

I don’t have to tell you that these lessons will work for everyone all the time, but through my trials and tribulations with my marriage and divorce, I can tell you that doing them will only help you and your spouse grow a stronger, more loving bond.
Be the man that she wants to follow. Be the woman that he wants to protect and nurture.

But do it together, and do it for each other.

I hope that I get married again someday. And following these lessons, I know my second marriage will be my last.

And there won’t be a second divorce.

The Almighty Notch

I was as bad as you can get with women.

Kissed the first girl at 18.

First date at 19.

Lost my virginity at 27.

My social awkwardness and ineptitude shown through every time.

At 22, I took a first date to dinner and then to my new home being built. That was my plan, and she silently seethed as I told her the layout and how I was so proud.

“Take me home, okay?”

Dated a bigger girl just to try and lose my virginity because my friends ragged on me. Got cold feet after taking her to a friends wedding and had another friend do the deed and take her home because I couldn’t bring myself to have sex with her.

Went out with a girl 4 times and we never even kissed, just did awkward things and chatted as friends over dinner until I invited myself to her house and ghosted her before I came over.

Embarrassing fails, then came my ten year marriage and the trials and tribulations with 4 of those years being nearly sexless (1-2 a year) and my continual struggle with women, as I saw it, was the cause.

During and after my separation and my divorce I stopped giving a damn. Broke, depressed and downtrodden, I let any girl with a passable face and a penchant for saying yes in my life, and these broken women made it even more miserable.

But hey, at least I was getting laid?

Then, I discovered the Red Pill, and Pick Up Artistry.

As I got better with, the women got hotter, but also more fucked up.

My definition of success was to “get good with women”. I had no other goals beyond that. I had no aspirations for a healthy relationship because I honestly thought that just be getting good with women, all the other things would take care of themselves. After all, it wasn’t me, it was the women I was meeting, right?

Tried to fake it at first. Faked my way right into the friend zone in LA. Then back to the dead zone for having the temerity of being a player with multiple leads.

But I was having a blast, and enjoying something that had eluded me for my whole life, the experience of dating multiple women.

So, consider it a checkmark on a box that I had set out with long ago.

But it’s not, and will not be for me, considered a success.

Because all it did was bring on more problems, bigger problems. The short term brought me more sex, more women, but in the end, it brought me no closer to a long term relationship. It merely told me that I could have as many short term flings as I wanted, but that I wasn’t going to be loved, nor would I love anyone, because love is weak. Love is for men who have feelings, who have emotions, and who are simps.

And for as much fun as I was having, this was the bottom line. You have to always be hard, emotionless, and use dread game to keep your woman in line, because “all women are like children”, and they need to be in the “presence of someone who can tell them what to do”. “They won’t ever love you the way you want”, nor will they give you the deep, meaningful love you seek.

As I’ve found, PUA and LTR are incompatible terms.

In PUA, you get what you wish for, but you also get dead ends that don’t lead to anywhere good, because it all boils down to playing the game in the shallow end, when really what you need to learn is to swim in the deep end, and then you get to jump off the diving board.

As part of my journey, I’m having to deprogram myself from PUA thinking and it’s been incredibly difficult. With every passing day, I still catch myself using pick up terms, lines of thinking, even trying to be mindful on how I’m communicating to women because many of the ones who I would be willing to have a LTR with are turned off by these statements.

“The NOTCH is the GOAL”

PUA thrives on escalation, quick and extensive, in order to get to the almighty notch.

And it doesn’t matter HOW or WHO you get it with, just that you get those numbers.

And this goes with everything, approaches, either cold or lukewarm, day game, everything, because the bottom line is hasn’t changed, it’s not about getting you comfortable with talking to women, it’s about getting you comfortable talking to women then sleeping with women.

Because it’s really all about the notch.

When you get the notch, you can brag to the community about it, because you’re doing hard things. And they pat you on the back and you go out and do it again and again. But notice when they get the notch, notice how it doesn’t fulfill anything but going out and getting another one.

The beautiful unicorn is the goal, but it isn’t having a relationship with her, it’s about landing her for even a brief moment (she’s not yours, it’s just your turn) and moving on to another one.

If you’ve read “The Game” by Neil Strauss, he got so good at picking up women that it became nothing fulfilling in his life. Only when he started to have feelings for women did he start to understand the consistent dead end of this lifestyle. And by that time, the damage was done. Many PUA’s have had horrible relationships, including Mystery, because they didn’t understand that simping doesn’t die simply because you said it does. They didn’t understand that self mastery and “fake it until you make it” don’t jive in real life. They became personas, never found the real “them” and tried to apply that to all parts of their lives, with horrible results. So now it’s “don’t catch feels” and everything is cool. And it’s led to an absolute mess of a dating scene.

Look, I get it, some guys want this lifestyle and die with a smile on their face after climax. But it isn’t realistic, nor is it sustainable. Which is why many of your gurus are happily married (or at least pretend to be) with one woman. If you can pull of haram game go for it, but a majority of guys just want a ride or die to support them, love them, and be there for them. We can argue all we want about monogamy being a broken concept, but the fact remains that a majority of this world still believes in it, and as a man who didn’t believe after his divorce, I am a believer too.

Quite simply, the long term love of one trumps the fleeting love of many. It’s shallow, empty, short lived and transparent. And it gets old. You’re the dude in the club at 55, with the pony tail, who fucked his way through the city in the early 00’s, and now you’re hoping for that magic to rub off. But all you’re getting are ladies from the retirement bus, because you never bothered to make a life for yourself, a real life, and lose all the other bullshit that worked for a while, but has since stopped. There’s only one Hugh Hefner, and you ain’t it, and even after that, man made it seem as if this was the life, the world that every man wanted, even as Hef bungled his way through different marriages and arrangements.

“But at least he was getting laid by beautiful women.”

Men consistently have trouble getting laid, and this was the deficiency that PUA was supposed to eradicate. But it took the feels from the game, and it took the reason for being and boiled it down to whether she spreads her legs for you on the first date, whether you’re getting that girl in accounting to go down on you after a meeting, or whether that girl you approached on the street is a “good girl” that you have no shot with. It’s a “Dear Penthouse” that men dearly want but can’t get. It tried to quantify EVERYTHING, so that you can just look at the numbers to see what women are doing, how they act, and how a majority of them believe in “monkey branching”. Hypergamy doesn’t care, until you realize that the majority of women who we blame for hypergamy were broken human beings in the first place, with either bad upbringings, domineering or no fathers, and have no interest in taking responsibility for any of it.

And if you dare to believe in monogamy, you’re labeled blue pill and you’re doomed.

However…..

I’ve seen, in person, many men who have good women in their lives, and I see what it can do for them.

With some PUA, dishonesty was a hallmark. “Don’t tell women anything you’re doing” was the go to. Then, it was “you spin multiple plates and tell them up front what you’re doing”, but brutal honesty only works in a progressive, dystopian dating market where everyone’s trying to fuck everyone else.

You may win in the meat market, but you lose in the life partner game.

And I want to win in that game. Because it’s what I want to do.

The Reality

Nothing punched me in the face more than when I was trying to get into a real relationship and the reality of my PUA programming came up.

Women looking for a relationship don’t want to hear that you’re fucking other women and they can just take that to the bank.

And why would they?

I consistently say to men that if they found out a woman they were dating was screwing other dudes, they would be a bit concerned. And yet, many modern women do just this, and get upset when men do it as well. But it’s not ideal whoever does it, and while it shows disastrous double standards in dating, it also shows how detached we all are over sex and healthy long term relationships, and how the lines have blurred for everyone.

But the reality….the reality is much better than what the gurus tell you or want you to believe.

The Notch you get from strange women is much worse that the sex you have in a relationship.

Why? Because in a deep, committed relationship, you and your significant other open up sexually, and sex can be anything you want.

But they don’t want you to know that. Why? Because hate and anger sell. It’s easier to blame others for your lot in life than to take responsibility for yourself.

But more, it’s easier to sell gimmicks to guys who don’t want to do the work.

If you read “The Game”, you saw that in Los Angeles, when hundreds of men tried to get some of that genie in the bottle that was released, women started catching on to the ruse. Men who had used old time favorite pickup stuff like “The Cube” were suddenly being outed by women they were trying to hit on.

IT GETS OLD.

It’s cliché, but it’s true. We see men dropping out of PUA and the old guard weeps not because guys are doing what’s best for them, but because they miss the old days when they were hitting up models and actresses in the streets of the cities they haunted. Guys understand there are useful things in both PUA and the red pill, but it’s not a place they need to stay at for long. Because time doesn’t stop in those worlds, and eventually it becomes old, boring, and less important that a man getting on with his life.

“Get good with women” is and was the only end game, and once you get there, you’re adrift again because you’ve hit the mark and now you have nowhere else to go. You see men who in their prime were the best PUA’s ever, now reduced to shells of men talking about the days of game like a 43 year old over the hill dude talks about his 4 TD passes in the high school state championship.

Men have to have forward motion, they can’t just rely on inertia or momentum, because it ensures they’ll be stuck forever. Some guys can pull it off. But most cannot.

And instead of giving them consistent tools for building and growing a good life, they give them tips and tricks to get to that next phase, and drop them off like a bus stop. And we wonder why many guys are bitter about what’s happened to them.

You have to think past the notch. The best notches come at the hands of a woman who loves, supports, and is there for you. Men, married men that I know, that have taken control of their lives and become patriarchs, are having the best sex in life. Because they have a trusted person whom they break bread with every day, and they have someone who believes in them and what they are doing.

They’re having hot sex after breakfast, instead of hoping the fat girl at the end of the bar at last call is drunk enough to go home with you.

They’re going on amazing trips and doing fun things with their families, instead of getting high at a friend’s house before going out to the club to see if you can pull some girl younger than 35 tonight.

They’re having children, instead of pulling out and hoping that next phone call isn’t the girl you had sex with saying she’s late.

They’re living their lives, moving on and growing in other directions instead of harkening back to the halcyon days of when they had a threesome while high on cocaine.

I choose the group who’s creating more in the present, instead of remembering the good times, and I won’t apologize for it. It’s my choice to move forward and be more than I could have ever imagined, and there are women, many women, out there that I don’t have to dazzle with a card trick or a palm reading to get them to look. I am the game, and many women are eager to play.

Get out of the past, get passed the notch, and get on with your life.

Or be doomed to stay in the same place, in the same world, in the same dull life, forever.

Consistency

For 24 years, I’ve driven the same way to work.

11 miles of the same telephone poles, the same asphalt, the same houses, and the same blades of grass.

Every year, the seasons change the colors, but the objects remain the same.

The wind swept fields, the rainy roads, the sunshine blessed treetops, all of it stands the test of time. I notice many of these things every day, during shorter days, longer nights, dark mornings and sun drenched afternoons, but they all stay the same.

The rainy days are just as grey as they were nearly a quarter of a century ago, when, at 22 years old, I decided to go and work for my dad after college. The job offers were many, all over the country, Chicago, Philly, Houston, but I decided to go home and work for the family business.

I could’ve done anything. I could’ve gone to Argentina to get my major in Spanish. I could’ve gone to a big city and rode out my 20’s in an exciting, albeit, broken world.

I could’ve, should’ve, would’ve, depending on who was asking. So why would a guy fresh out of college decide to work for the family business when he had a chance to make his mark on the world in other ways?

Because sometimes, it’s not about the glory and excitement of new avenues, it’s about the joy and satisfaction that comes from building something up and succeeding through long hours of toil.

As I traverse the multitude of left turns going to work, then the multitude of right turns coming home, it reminds me of the stability that I have had in my life.

It all stays the same, but it’s all wonderful to see for me everyday.

Boring? To you, maybe. To me, it’s the world I’ve helped build and it stands on my untiring effort everyday to chisel a world out of the world just for me.

Legacy is built one brick at a time, over time.

“Show Up”

We crave stability, but we don’t crave what it takes to create or sustain it.

Consistency.

One of my favorite speakers this past year at CME (The Conference of Masculine Excellence) in Las Vegas was Hotep Jesus, who’s number one quote in his presentation was “Show up.”

He specifically talked about being the man who just showed up and made things happen. And when you show up, things happen.

Showing up is the start of consistency and gets you there 100% of the time when you’re present.

Out of these years I’ve been working at my own business, I’ve been absent less than .1% of the time. And it’s because I love my job and know that there are people that count on me daily to “show up”.

Which is how I’ve had to approach my life, especially recently. While I was showing up at work, I wasn’t showing up in my life.

I would be there for everything at work, but in my life, especially when I was married, I wasn’t there for my wife at the time, my kids, or myself.

My fitness cratered and I ballooned to 308 lbs. My wife and I divorced. My kids and I were distant, and I wasn’t showing up, I was merely a ghost, a place holder pretending to be a father, husband and man.

I was practicing consistency at work, but I wasn’t bringing it to my personal life, and it showed.

So, on my 40th birthday, sitting alone at a bar, drunk, I had to make a decision.

Nothing was working out in my personal life, but my career was going well.

I was tired of seeing success in one area and no success in everything else, because I wasn’t SHOWING UP in those other areas. So, I decided, each year, to add these areas to my consistent effort and get my weaknesses handled. I took one – two areas each year, for the last 5 years. My first goal was getting my weight down and getting better with women.

So I got 80 lbs off and I got decent with girls. It was the start of an amazing transformation that is still taking place to this day, in my life.

I found a passion, helping men through my own experiences, so the next year I decided to get my blog going, as well as be on Twitter and IG as a man who was living his journey and sharing his experiences with other men. And I have grown this blog and twitter to over 11k people.

The next year was traveling to meet people that I had met as well as getting out of my shell. I overdid this, traveling so much that I was neglecting time with my kids. But I consistently traveled and got better socially. But I realized I was drinking way too much, so I also decided to get sober, which I have now been for 2.5 years.

In 2020 and 2021, I used the pandemic to get consistent on the home front, getting my home in order and get closer to my kids, I needed to be a better father, but I wasn’t showing up with them as much as I needed to. I’ve been learning to be a better dad as well as understanding that my connection to my kids is extremely important to their health and well being. I’ve been working in the Fraternity of Excellence to get better as a father and a man.

And now, in 2022, I’m dialing my fitness into the next level. My fitness goal has been to always look sexy naked, and with my trainer Phil Foster, I am pushing myself and establishing new consistent boundaries on how I work out and how I look. And, mercifully, after a year, I will be getting my finances in order and will be debt free except the house in a little over a week of this writing. Then I get to pay myself and spend my money on savings, investment, and college for my children.

I’ve also brought my consistency to my relationships. I’m reaching out to old friends I left on hold. I’m learning how be better with women in my work with Dr Taylor Burrowes. Before it was just pickup and sex, now it’s something more I’m looking for. I’m learning to vet these women, consistently and with consistency in my own values, boundaries, and behaviors.

All of this, every aspect of my life, has been addressed. All because I decided to show up. Sure there are important things that take precedence at this moment, but in general, I’m raising the level of my life and as a result, the level of those around me. People can count on me again, because they know I’ll show up.

My meetings, I’m there. My kids, I’m there. My fitness, I’m there. My friends and family, I’m there.

There’s something to be said about knowing someone will always be there.

And, when you can look into the mirror and know that you are bringing it everyday, the most important person that knows you’ll be there is…well….YOU.

But I’ve hired good people to help me get there. When you have the people to help you and you are willing to “show up” and help yourself with their tutelage, the sky’s the limit.

#FirstOfTheMonthChallenge

Going into 2022, I had several resolutions that I had been working on since Sept of 21. Guys have asked me how the hell I can get behind all of these resolutions and, you know, actually “DO THEM” but it’s become so ingrained in my mind that I need to get better everyday that many of these resolutions have become commonplace.

In order to get to your goals, you must “show up”, so I started the First of the Month Challenge to motivate people to take the same steps I took, the same consistent baby steps to get to their goals.

One of the things many people have stated about me is that my consistency is top notch. It hasn’t always been that way, but the way that it started was through my New Year’s Resolutions. So, I took it upon myself to show folks through the first quarter of this year, that 30 days becomes a habit, 60 days becomes a pattern, and 90 days becomes a lifestyle. Whether it’s fitness or something else, it will behoove you to follow through and be consistent in your goals. Just do one thing, one, for that amount of time and watch as you are able to apply that to other aspects of your life.

You’ll become unstoppable because you bothered to “show up.”

The stat that really stood out to me was that after the first month 80% of people quit their resolutions.

And I see it every year. The gym is packed the first two weeks of January, then people leave in droves and it’s back to the usual folks in February.

But, as I’ve seen year after year, there are the 20% that show up when the gym opens or are there when it’s about to close. It’s the 20% that push themselves to be better by “showing up” every day to get to their goals. It’s time to increase that percentage and hold folks accountable for their proclamations. And to hold them accountable, I want to be there with them as they take these steps to break out of their own dead end cycles.

So, if you’re looking for the magic code to be consistent, it’s nothing else but showing up when no one else does.

And it’s certainly not magic, just a sense of personal discipline ingrained in yourself by yourself to forge ahead and get what you truly dream of in life.

The magic of consistency is created by the commonplace activity of attendance.

And being consistent will bring that dream to a reality.

The Box

Photo Credit: Dreamstime

Third game of the young baseball season. Double, standing at second in the bottom of the third inning.

The adrenaline of the young season already pulsing through his veins. He had scholarship offers from three D-1 schools, but this season was going to put him in the elites. The team was eliminated in Semi- State last year, but the championship would be theirs this year.

Single. He comes around easily to score. This was going to be his year.

Bottom of the ninth. He walks. He’s already scored three times, but their bullpen had issues and gave up a two run homer. Game was tied. He’s 264 feet from the sweep.

Bunt drops. He dives for second. Safe. One step closer.

He’s been giving it his all, not just for the offers, but because, he believed, he was the best on this team. And of course he was. Led in most catagiries, defensively good in the outfield, and brought it every game. Great teammate, and this was going to be his year.

Next batter. Shallow single, but not shallow enough. Give him the sign as he rounded third to hold. Fuck that. He picks up steam. He slides focusing on the plate, and the catcher has the ball. Time to collide.

He hits the catcher full speed, ball drops out. Game won. But in the commotion, in the heroic act to win the game, he comes up wincing.

“Probably just a sprain…”, he thinks. Then he feels the sharp pain in his knee. He drops. The team, in their celebration around him clears for the trainer and coaches.

He’s sure it’s not serious. But damn it hurts. He goes for X-rays. Torn ACL, sprained MCL, the blood drains from his face. There it goes, the offers, the state championship, all of it.

This was supposed to be his year.

Sometimes, we’re so focused on checking the box, pushing so hard to get it done, that we destroy everything else around us in this singular focus.

The idea of hitting a goal, at whatever cost necessary, sets us back further on other, more important things.

Instead of losing one thing, we lose everything. In the example above, the best player that the team needed, pushed when he didn’t necessarily have to. And in his push, it cost him and his team the championship. It cost him offers. But most of all, it cost him himself.

Sometimes, playing smart means taking the short term L for the long term W.

Blazes of glory don’t do you any good when you’re dead.

Injuries don’t help you because you can’t play.

We give people shit sometimes for not going 120% all the time, because we think they aren’t trying hard. Whereas, many of them are playing the long game, understanding that it’s difficult to go undefeated if you don’t have your best on the field.

The goal of fixing the light socket doesn’t really matter if the house is burning down around you.

For a long time, at my job, I have two chess pieces in my office. A king and a queen. I knew I had to be a king to get the queen. But for years, and even recently, I’ve been caught up in checking that damn box and getting a woman that I could call mine.

I’ve written so much, so many times about how a woman shouldn’t be your focus, and here I was, making it that, trying to check that damn box, because I thought, after years of frustration, I had finally gotten to the relationship I wanted.

Nothing else mattered, no how she felt, not the timing, not the whole situation. Taking my time wasn’t in the cards, because I had to check that box.

So here I am again. I won a battle, but lost the war. I focused on home plate, but wasn’t concerned with this woman’s reaction to all of it. It wasn’t fair to her. She didn’t get a say. And that wasn’t right.

We, as men, are taught to lead, and they will follow. But we also can’t go off half cocked, shooting from the hip, especially when there are other people involved. It does zero good to build a life with someone by smothering them in your plans, aspirations, and goals without talking to them.

Assumptions are the mother of all fuckups.

If you want a “Ride or Die”, she has to be holding onto you right on the bike, not being dragged behind by a chain.

All because I wanted to check that box.

All because the idea of a significant other overrode all other scenarios. I didn’t make her a teammate, she was a subject, an object that I gave no mind to, all for trying to check that box.

It hurts because it was an unforced error.

It hurts because it could have been prevented.

I was too selfish to see that the plate was blocked, and I was going to get hurt sliding in.

Many of the lessons I’ve talked about in my past posts on this blog have only been given lip service to me and I haven’t truly lived some of them, especially in relationships.

It’s very humbling to have your words used back at you to tell you you haven’t been true to who you say you are. It’s mirror work that needs to happen, and as strong as I am in many aspects of my life, my relationships with women still need a ton of work.

And that starts with me. It starts with applying the lessons I’ve talked about, but apparently haven’t fully grasped.

It’s leading, not dictating. It’s strength, not dominance. It’s empathy, not stubbornness.

It’s confidence, not desperation. It’s abundance, not scarcity. It’s outcome independence, not hanging my hat on a star.

It’s patience, not pushing. It’s understanding, compassion, and humility.

A man who is measured, strong, and content in his life won’t be eager to check a box. He sees home plate and a shallow single, but also sees the hold sign at third. He knows that he’ll still be playing in the next series, win or lose, because he listened instead of busting ahead haphazardly.

I wasn’t ready. I was only ready to check the box. And checking the box doesn’t mean shit if the whole world is burning around it.

It does you no good to be sitting out injured while your team goes on without you when they didn’t have that choice. You made that choice when you rounded third, and you hurt those who depended on you, who loved you, and who believed in you.

But most of all, you hurt yourself. You made choices that you know weren’t right in order to justify checking that fucking box.

This blog has always been a journal for me, taking the lessons in life, the experiences that have shaped me, and applying them and learning from them. But there are still lessons I haven’t learned. Still things I have to apply. Still places where I’ve fallen short, merely pretending to learn while not truly grasping these situations.

This isn’t a simulation. This isn’t a sheet of paper with boxes to check off. This is real life, love, and other people with feelings, goals, desires and aspirations. They matter too, and in the quest to find a quality LTR, they have a say. They’re your teammate. They’re your lover, they’re your friend. They aren’t a mark on a paper, a post on social media, a trophy that you can add to your mantle.

I have work to do. I’m still trying to be the best man I can be, I’m working everyday to put what I preach into practice. But there are still blind spots that I need to address, especially when it comes to relationships.

But as I’ve always said, and recently forgotten: “You can’t have a quality relationship until you love yourself.”

Everything about you has to be sincere, honest, and representative of who you are striving to be.

I’ve forgotten some of that, and those closest to me have made it very clear that this is a pattern I need to correct. And I intend to.

Time will tell.

Uncharted

The lighthouse at Sanibel Island, Florida

When I first started this blog in September of 2018, it was going to be a basic blog on game, approaches, and my progress with conquering one of the biggest challenges of my life, that of being able to be good with women.

It was just a blog.

I was coming off another unsuccessful relationship with a liberal woman, getting into another doomed-to-fail relationship with another liberal woman, and was getting myself red-pilled after enduring two years of post-divorce discovery of who the fuck I was.

I had, two years earlier, divorced my wife of 10 years after enduring a marriage rife with problems. I didn’t know my ass from a hole in the ground, so I grabbed on to whatever I could during that time, including many women who were toxic. I was working hard at my company, drinking with my friends, getting and staying fat, and had zero direction while I floated from relationship to relationship, date to date, day to day, just waiting for something to happen.

This was my life, and I didn’t see a way out except to play by the rules.

But, as we know, rules were meant to be broken. Part of the foundation of myself built on my divorce was the fact that my decision to divorce was made by ME, by only me, and my choice to not be miserable anymore. But it was a journey, as I was starting, that I didn’t have a solid destination. And that’s some scary shit for a man going on 40 who’s basically restarting his life. Add in running my own business, raising two children, and trying to become a patriarch of my family all while not knowing who the hell I was, and you’ve got a recipe for disaster. It’s no wonder many men who divorce have disastrous consequences follow them as they don’t know the hows, whats, or whys on what the hell they need to do to rebuild their lives, so they just grab on to whatever floats by, and it’s usually a water moccasin ready to bite them in the ass.

So as I was dating, I blogged as the Red Pill Dad, dishing my experiences with game, my approaches, my style, and my numbers. They weren’t great, but I figured anything I could do to keep my spirits high as I moved from girl to girl, trying to get better talking to them, would be quality content. So I blogged about it. I blogged about my red pill journey, my failures in relationships, my relationship with my ex-wife, and kept reading, studying, and writing as best I could to keep my mind off of this life I was trying to rebuild.

But then, in Early 2019, I was convinced that the rebuild WAS my life.

The Journey Began

It became more than game. It became a man who was on a journey to find himself, his purpose, his convictions. He spent his life being pulled in different directions by special interests and women who benefited from his work. As I placed myself back firmly in control of my life, I was seeing that the red pill was more than just a piece for getting laid. It was an integral part of taking my life back. Meeting women took a back seat to my voyage to find myself and take my life back, so it was getting more and more about the moral, financial, and personal dilemmas that men face after divorce that was taking up my writing time.

I was working out, on pace to lose 80+ pounds and regain my health. I was raising two children as a single dad. I was running my own business. I was struggling to take my life back from those who deemed it theirs. And it was pissing all of them off. For years I had thought I was wrong to alienate my friends and family from my inner circle because they would always shame me for daring to make my own decisions. So I cut those fuckers loose.

I was evolving.

Even friends online were telling me that my “Red Pill Dad” moniker was not really embracing my writing evolution. So, after a talk with a friend, I changed to “A Father’s Journey”. It was about telling men my story so they could see what I was doing. It was about showing men that life crises can be overcome with a strong back and the willingness to fight every day for who you are.

So I shifted my focus. And it was an amazing journey. I started writing about the aspects of my life that were affected when I started to take control of my life again. Parenthood as a single father, dating, and sex as a single father, life as a business owner, and other subjects began to dominate my feed. I was losing weight, taking back control of my life, all while tweeting and writing about it. My world was changing, and I had to chronicle it. My goal was to show men that regardless of obstacles in their way, their journey continued with them at the helm of it. It was a no-excuse time to take control of their lives. So I wrote and blogged about what they could do, what experiences I had, all while showing them that the fear they felt was certainly palpable, but also, faced and overcome.

As I would later find out in my re-brand, I was becoming a beacon to men out there struggling to take back their lives from the tide of an unfair family law system, a feminist society hell-bent on destroying masculinity, and the proof that there is an amazing life after divorce. Second chances are not given often, and men who fail to take these chances to improve their lot in life physically, mentally, and spiritually are doomed to be nothing more than a casket with onlookers lamenting the “could haves” he missed out on.

Not me. Not in this lifetime, and not on my watch.

So I opened my DM’s and I opened my life.

The off limits portions of the Red Pill Dad were now open for business.

My life was theirs to see. I knew it needed to happen. I knew they needed to see what I was going through, what I was learning, how I was growing and failing, for them to see what they could do to improve their lives.

They needed to not only learn to be alone, but THRIVE at it.

They needed to accept their circumstances, but also create better ones.

They needed to understand the fight for their lives doesn’t stop when the sun goes down and they go to sleep.

They needed to always be making moves to free themselves from a world that only wants them for their work.

For all of their lives up until that point, it wasn’t about them. It was time to make it about them.

My taking back control of my life is what my journey was up until that point. It was about writing to let men know that they actually have a choice on what they can do in their lives. They can learn and improve from their mistakes, but they have to make them first.

And maybe, just maybe, the young men reading my blog can avoid what I did. Maybe they can take the steps needed to take back control. My writings, videos, and shows would be a guide. That was my goal, and it still is to this day.

But the journey has changed. And I’m in very new territory. And I’m embracing the new challenges ahead.

Uncharted Father

As many of you know, I’m writing a book that will detail my life before my marriage ended into the divorce proceedings and eventually to the other side.

As I’ve been writing the book, I’ve been trying with increasing difficulty to come up with a name for my untitled book.

Then in January of 2020, I hit on something.

Every year, I go on a vacation by myself to Southwest Florida, specifically Fort Myers, and one of my favorite places on earth is Sanibel Island, home of a famous lighthouse. I go to that beach every year, and my family for over three decades has been living in the area as a second home. So on a particular day at the beach, I walked by the lighthouse and had an epiphany.

My purpose has been to help men who were in my situation, or any situation for that matter, to be better and overcome the slings and arrows of life’s folly. My purpose has been to be a guide to those men who would look out and see darkness, only to be greeted by a faint light of my help. They could choose to follow it or not, but the light is always there telling them of the impending rocks on the shore.

But it also represents the unknown.

What life there is still left to live is going to be unpredictable, and you as a man must plan accordingly. Being constantly prepared for all that life has to offer, both good, bad, and ugly, is a man’s first job. He has to be a beacon, a watch for anything that comes his way to do him harm or pleasure, and he must adjust to embrace this eventuality.

There will be things that happen that you can’t prepare for but must, there will be places you go that you’ll have no clue how to navigate, and there will be times you have to remember in order to move forward in the present and future. In any case, as a man, you must be prepared.

So, on that January day, I decided that my journey had indeed changed and I was navigating uncharted waters.

In every aspect of my life, I was an “Uncharted Father”.

Everything I had done I had done with very little knowledge, only the action to make things a reality in my life, the time to try to help as many men as I could, and the willingness to make as many mistakes as I could in that pursuit.

Men needed to see my struggles in this new life, and they had, but now, they needed to see my foray into new avenues, relationships, and opportunities. My actions and thoughts during this time as well as my past would be a beacon for men looking to make their lives better.

I’m not going to let these men down.

I’ve seen too many men take their own lives, get divorce raped, fall back into damning habits, and destroy their lives because they didn’t know where to turn, didn’t have a tribe that had their back, nor did they have a place they could look for support and accountability.

So I ran with it. And my symbol (I’m a big believer in symbolism) is the very lighthouse I’ve spent much of my life admiring. It’s a symbol of my goals as a man to continue to shine brightly to my kids, my girlfriend, my family, my friends, my business, and all the other things in life that need my light to survive and thrive. I want to be an inspiration to men everywhere of what they can do to navigate crises in their lives and how to come out on the other side better, stronger, and more determined.

My journey has changed. It’s a whole new ballgame. And it’s time for myself and other men like me to “Blaze Our Own Trail.”

I am The Uncharted Father.

The Lost Art of the Dance

Photo Credit: Unsplash.com

“That is the way it is, we always fall in love because of a detail, a nuance. It is a marker we set up for ourselves in the midst of the confusion, in the infinite space of love. The greatest passions come from such little causes.”

― Georges Rodenbach, The Bells of Bruges

Wanna see how far we’ve fallen in the dating world? Simply look at online dating. It’s turned into a meat market with hookups as the end game for most people.

Here we see, many hopeless individuals, moving from encounter to encounter, thinking the next one will be the one they will finally be with.
Like an episode of Quantum Leap, they keep jumping from person to person, life to life, in hopes they’ll finally be able to say they can “settle down” and stop the merry-go-round.

The dinners, movies, activities that involve a quick interrogation, then potential sex if everyone is game, then ghosting after the sex wasn’t that good, the conversation dried up, the meaning, the skies parting, the light beaming down, all of it doesn’t happen.

And the trudging to the next good thing happens. And most of the time, it doesn’t happen.

Like a horrible game of musical chairs where the seats are covered in rusty nails, they force themselves to sit down because it’s better than not having a chair.

Technology has eliminated the whole point of dating, the dance. The push and pull, the subtlety, the slow burn that makes the sex, the climax, the anticipation of being with someone who’s weaved themselves into your mind.

The world is now about notches, being hot, and having as much sex as you can with no end in sight. And after 20 years of this, women and men, are still no closer to finding the person they want, because they pissed their chances away with a clear lack of dating direction.

“Dating is Hell”

Show me a person who hates to date, and I’ll show you someone who has never been on a REAL date. The nuance, the mystery, the dance has been removed for convenience’s sake, and the dating market has struggled with this very recently. With hook up apps, the dance of dating, the lost art of carrying a conversation, the subtlety of words and meanings meant to do a slow burn and build sexual tension has been replaced with swipe left or right, quick bios, and hit it and quit it.

Pick Up Artistry, which for years was a skill that few possessed but was honed and sharpened by constantly going up to people in public and talking to them, body language mastery, etc, has been replaced by the crapshoot shit show of technological convenience.

In short, everyone has stopped trying. Their physical appearance, their mental approach, their attitudes reflect people that don’t seem to care about meeting others. They put as little effort into themselves as they can, then write a glowing bio on a dating site and use filters to make themselves appear less unattractive, hoping that the person that swipes right for them is also just as uncaring about their own life, and they just fall in together in a depression laden relationship where they both get tired and one or both eventually cheat.

Depressing as fuck, isn’t it?

Because the end game is the relationship.

In the case of dating and interpersonal communications, it was never about the end game, the destination. The relationship was a goal, but you never stopped gaming your significant other. Now, people go through the hell of dating in order to get to the greater hell of a relationship with someone they have no business being with.

So with the glowing reviews of dating as being an introvert’s worst nightmare, and everyone claiming to be introverted, then FINALLY getting through it to be with SOMEONE, ANYONE, they have given up on something in life that should really be fulfilling, fun, and worthwhile.

No one wants to do the work it takes to be a good date anymore. No one wants to put in the time to focus on themselves, on being attractive, on being high quality, because they’d rather piss and moan and swipe, swipe, swipe. Because in the dating lottery, no one gets lucky, they just get frustrated, and they can’t see that they’re doing to themselves.

But also, the act, the dance, has been lost in all of this. COVID didn’t kill personal interactions, it only exposed what we’ve already known. No one wants to do the work, engage in the dating world, and have fun meeting new people.

If they treat it like a chore, then it is one.

Lost Arts

Conversation, words, nuance, body language, building intimacy, polarity, and tension in your interactions.

There’s a reason a woman touches her lip when she talks to you, sees you, and fantasizes about you. Because you have “primed the pump” so to speak with a mystery, an aloofness that only she can see.

The roles aren’t there, the masculine dances and leads the feminine, but now, everyone wants to get fucked.

It’s a mindless, soulless diversion that while can be fun, is generally not as fulfilling as dating and building that tension in a social setting.

The lost arts of interaction have taken their tolls on the dating world, only to be lost to the world, and seeing only the manosphere take up the banner on bringing it back. We need to continue to champion game, because it’s an important aspect in the dance of attraction.

But the dance scares men. Because it involves them being able to confidently interact with a woman. You must enchant her, you must be a mystery, you must build that tension, and men don’t know shit about how to do that. So they swipe, swipe, swipe.

This is why I will always be a proponent of game. The rise of petrified fear of rejection, lack of confidence, technological ease, and reduction of the societal importance of social gatherings continues to hound the dating world and we’re seeing the effects first hand.
You build the attraction. You have to master key interactions with women.

Body language mastery.

All of this is the dance.

The keys to seducing and building tension. Women love it, they just don’t say it out loud. They appreciate a man who works to keep her engaged, playfully using words, implying sexual nuance in daily conversations, and putting small, seductive thoughts in her head.

What men don’t realize is that you can utilize modern dating tech to enhance this ability, but we seldom do that.

Dating technology makes us lazy.

This is why the concepts that the manosphere teaches will never go out of style, regardless of how much technology tries to cancel it out.

The art of the dance, the tension built, the ebb and flow of flirtation, the push, and pull of the interaction, the game, will never go away.

Social interaction will always be an important skill that men need to continue to work on mastering. Your job is to build it and she will cum.

You lead the dance.

Women want to be taken, claimed. They want passion.

Women want to be seduced.

They want a man to make them dream of him and what he’s capable of.

They want a man to use her emotions to make her excited.

She wants exciting.

She wants you to assert your masculinity over her. Engulf her in it. Because she knows your strength. She knows your motives and lets herself go. She wants to fall for you and she wants you to catch her.

She wants to dance.

So learn to dance with her.

Guilt and Shame

“You can twist perception. Reality won’t budge.”

  • Rush – “Show, Don’t Tell”

Show me a man doing what he’s told, and I’ll show you a woman who used either sex, or guilt and shame to accomplish it.

Men, especially men here in 2020, millions of them, are in relationships or marriages where the woman calls the shots.

And the way the women call the shots? It’s the way they always do, utilizing emotional manipulation and withholding sex to achieve their goals.

Men are still, after all is said and done, responsible for their actions, however, they need to be aware that women (a majority) are doing this not because they are some sick, twisted soul, but because they can navigate emotion with great skill and do all of this unknowingly.

Women, regardless of where they are in your life, do this almost daily. We call them “shit tests” here in the manosphere, but we also must realize that this isn’t something that women can control.

While we want to rail against women who purposefully do this (they are called psychopaths or borderline personality disorders), a majority of women do this simply to make sure their man is up to the task.

This also goes for mothers and their sons, sisters to their brothers, aunts, nieces, etc.

Women test men daily, hundreds of times daily at times, to make sure he is who he says he is, believes what he believes, and holds his boundaries and beliefs unflinchingly.

But what we are seeing is what I was under for 10 years of my marriage.

Women can use guilt and shame to attempt to influence a man’s actions.

He must not let that happen.

The Fog

As I stated, I was in this trance for most of my life.

It wasn’t that these women who were in my life were manipulative.

They weren’t. I’m sure they wanted what was best for me.

But what was best for me in THEIR mind was different from what was best for me in mine.

My mother and sister, as well as my wife, tended to push me in directions that I didn’t know I didn’t want to go because I didn’t know any better.

As a man, I had no direction, so these women were trying to

My mother has been through a lot in her life.

She is a champion and is a fantastic mother.

She’s endured child abuse as a kid and survived cancer.

She helped my father raise three kids that weren’t hers as well as 2 that were.

She was a successful financial accountant for a giant corporation for 30 years.

And she is my rock when I needed support.

And she continues to be there for me.

But it wasn’t always on my terms. For a time, it was on hers.

She over-compensated with my child rearing, because of how bad her childhood was, she swore that her kids would have a better life. And we sure did, my parents were and are still very loving and supportive. But with the over-compensation, I was over-protected and relied on my mother for a ton of decisions that I needed to make myself. And that over-reliance on the women in my life spilled over into my sisters and my wife (now ex-wife). I didn’t want to take responsibility for my life, so I decided to let the women of my life drive while I fucked around.

Important decisions about my life were given to the women of my life. And as soon as I let go of the wheel, I was going to places I thought I wanted to go, and looking back now after taking back control of my life 4 years ago, I should’ve taken control sooner.

But many men never wake up, letting their wives / mothers / daughters / sisters take the wheel and drive their lives. And it’s not as if they aren’t good drivers, but men nowadays are more concerned with the “clock in, clock out” world than they are with actually making their lives all that they can, with women as their willing accomplices. But here’s where the break happens…..

News flash: WOMEN DON’T WANT TO BE IN CHARGE OF YOUR LIFE.

I highly doubt my mother, or my sisters, or my now ex-wife wanted to tell me what to do with my life. I was so eager to avoid conflict, take the easy way, not fight for what I believe in, that their advice became a crutch for me to excuse making tough decisions in lew of the path of least resistance.

In short, I didn’t want to live the tougher parts of life. So I conceded that control to women who I felt had my best interests at heart. And in their own way, they did, except their goals and dreams for me never lined up with what I REALLY wanted, hence when the rubble of my marriage and my life was still smoldering, the conflict with the other women of my life came full circle. My life goals were now, after 10 years of marriage and 30 years of female control, diametrically opposed to that of the women in my life.

When you give someone overreaching control of your life, don’t expect to have an easy time getting it back.

It’s not that they want control, it’s the absence of control that you exert that forces women to take the wheel. Like an abandoned ship with no crew, she has to take control or she’ll be dragged down with the wreck.

I don’t blame my mother for any of this. She had a childhood where she was basically abandoned by her father and her mother neglected her. So she had to steer the ship. She had to control her world, and it took her childhood away from her. She didn’t get to be a kid, she’s been an adult her whole life and it didn’t give her a chance to rest and recharge. She didn’t deserve it, which is why when I took back control of my life, my goal was to tell her to put down the hard stuff and let me take it. And the process of that will take time. She needs to be able to relax, and me taking control of my life, though disappointing at first to her, gave her some relief that she didn’t have to take the wheel anymore.

And it gave me relief because I now have control.

The Only Way to Win is Not To Play

So you’re being guilt and shamed by a woman in your life? The best way to overcome and pass this “shit test” is the only way. Don’t play.

Any attempt to guilt and shame you is an attempt to change your mind using manipulation of a certain set of circumstances.

“If you don’t do this for me, I’ll XXXX.”

If someone is giving ultimatums to you, you walk. Ultimatums are a cry for help because these people have lost control of you. You have free will, which is usually a bad thing for a person who’s trying to control your actions with their guilt and shame.

As I say with many confrontations, you don’t avoid them, you turn them down.

Not getting guilt and shamed by someone so desperately trying to is the answer. Walking away from a losing game is not avoiding confrontation as much as it is not wasting your breath on such a confrontation.

You have better things to do, and trying to confront someone who has no interest in changing their behavior wastes your time.

You do you. Let them worry about themselves.

When you finally take control of your life, there will be MANY people who won’t like the direction. My response has always been “if you love me, you’ll support my decisions.”

And most importantly, you can’t be afraid to cut people out of your life, at least temporarily, but worst case, for a long time. Charting your own course, by your own rules, is the healthy option. Unless you are doing unhealthy things like drugs, crime, etc, you have every right to do what you want with your life. But many people see you doing that and it takes away their power over you, and the benefits of that power doing good things for them.

Don’t be afraid to walk and never look back.

Sometimes burning bridges is a good thing.

So back to me. My family life is improving. The women in my life may disagree with my path, opinions, or convictions, but they understand that as a man, I have every right to chart my path.

But with me wrestling back control, I have seen the women on my life, mother, sisters, and ex-wife, understand and accept my chosen path, and now, even support me no matter what.

That’s why I love this new me so much. I have put my flag in the sand and now people can either rally or leave. And the women in my life haven’t left, they’ve only become better allies in my conquest of my world and myself.

And for that, I can’t thank them enough.

I love you, Mom, Debbie, and Shanny. And yes, Jill, even if we’re divorced, I still love you. You ladies have helped me to understand what I really need and are there to support me.

I promise, you won’t be disappointed by the finished Tim.

He’s got this.

The American Woman

Your modern American woman.

When she has all the attention, she never gives it back, she only loses it.

It’s been a while since my last post, so what better way to jump back into the cesspool with a stark and real look at what I’ve seen in the dating apps.

Tinder, especially, is a dumpster fire. As I have always said guys, you can avoid a ton of garbage if you swipe left on any and all dating apps. But they’re there to be convenient. And that alone is why they all suck.

But it gives me a chance to really discuss the state of the modern American woman.

This certainly does not ascertain a blanket sweep of all women, as I’ve met many women who are quite awesome, especially those that I DON’T meet on dating apps, but there is a disturbing trend we are seeing that only continues to get worse.

I do believe in equality, but I don’t believe in equality of outcome. Women most certainly have had to earn rights and still suffer in other countries under brutal regimes. But I also think that women growing up in this modern time have been led to believe that they can act exactly like men. And that is a mistake. And it’s showing when you see women who are ravaged by trying to be something they are not. You can’t make biological differences a factor in equality, because Mother Nature doesn’t play that, and feminists these days certainly don’t believe in equality as much as they believe in revenge for what men did to them all those years ago.

Make no mistake, women have come a long way. They’ve had to fight for rights and privileges that they should naturally have, but did it go to far?

As the COVID-19 epidemic is showing you, feminists are reverting back to “save me” mode and wanting men for what men do, because quite honestly, no one can be a man except a man. That’s biology, not anything new.

But the modern feminist and women in general “have their cake and eat it too” is getting tiresome for this generation. When men step up, they are being lauded as “toxic”. When they fade back, they are told to “man up” or do their jobs. In essence, men can’t win, and feminists want it that way.

Feminism has poisoned several generations of women, with the oldest generation now reaping the crops they sowed so long ago.

Modern Feminism in the Dating Scene

The glory days of Sex in the City and having a career and sleeping with an entire city have now crumbled and you see tired, fading women who didn’t embrace their femininity, they flaunted it, and now they don’t have it to flaunt.

You are seeing women who were rode hard and put away wet. Years of “empowerment” have resulted in tattoos, piercings, obese and worse with these women being told that living just like a man is a great life and you can be sexually promiscuous with tons of men and be just fine.

But as they are finding out, that’s not the case. As Jordan Peterson has stated many times, “Who would want to be a man?”

Men are built biologically to reproduce with as many partners as they can. Now while we certainly don’t do that, women are not built that way, and society saying that they are is empowering? And we see the result. Dating apps filled to the brim with women who took their wild years too wildly and now are a shell of who they were. They were told embracing their femininity is weak and acting like a man would strike a blow to the patriarchy. And you see this behavior seeping into younger generations.

While Tinder is a very small slice of the pie, you consistently see women who are 30-45 that are very damaged. Liberal women galore. “If you like Trump, swipe left.” “I’m a feminist” types that have been on the dating app carousel for ages, hoping to find a guy who puts up with the crap they dish out, and finding there isn’t anyone out there. Swipe left.

And then you have the IG fisher thots, amateurs trying to grow their respective followings of simps IMing them dick pics, swipe left.

Then you have the feminazi’s who have found the error of their ways but are so far gone there’s no hope. Buy cats. Swipe left.

Emotionally damaged women who made the wrong choice and now have addictive behaviors, but refuse to help themselves or work on themselves as they’ve been sold the “be yourself” trash by society. Swipe left.

Dudes pretending to be girls (either digitally or in real life), she-male fiesta hoping to trap a dude by looking attractive enough from the waist up. Swipe left.

Married women looking for that guy who will be the bull in their loveless marriage because their man stopped trying years ago and hey “do you mind if he watches us?” Swipe left.

22 year old with 3 kids who’s ready to “settle down” after three different fathers didn’t know she wasn’t on birth control. Swipe left.

But we know this isn’t the norm, is it? You are seeing a slice of the female pie that only exists online. There is hope for women, I’ve seen it in the women I’ve dated because I’ve put down the phone.

Empowerment Traps

I’ve said many times, society has allowed women to overvalue themselves while pushing men to undervalue themselves. Once again, empowerment was never about equality, it was about putting men in their place for the feminine dominant to come out. But when the dominant feminism came out, the minute a spider shows up, the imperative wants men to kill it so they can continue to rule.

The influencer movement is extremely interesting to me, as it’s turned millions of men into mindless followers hoping for just a taste of that perfect woman who’s far from it. And now, thanks to OnlyFans, thousands of amateur women can now have male followers who pay for homes, cars, and other necessities while she fucks around with the best of the best who she has. It’s hypergamy on steroids and feminism in a nutshell. “Have your cake and eat it too.”

And men not only allow it, but they placate it. Men have been neutered to the point of being willing accomplices to a woman’s sexual strategy. And they aren’t stopping anytime soon.

“Venmo me for nudes!”

Remember, gentlemen, these women described above are garbage. Plain and simple. And they are the product of feminism let out of the barn with no plan on how to deal with it. Even since the advent of birth control and women’s sexual options opening up, any woman with a vagina has an open season on any guy.

But here’s the fail-safe that we are seeing that women didn’t count on. Age.
Many of these women have an expiration date. Women don’t age as well as men, and they can’t understand that the fun they had when they were younger didn’t translate to a kick-ass life when they are older. We are seeing aging hipsters like Sharon Stone, long a screen smoke show, now having to resort to Tinder to find a dude that will put up with her feminism sideshow. The makeup, hair dye, and skin products can only do so much to hide the hideousness inside and underneath, and these women will rightfully grow old and die alone, which is a much bigger fear for women than for men. (Manosphere term is “the wall” as Rollo has dubbed it.)

When women fought for and what women expected were two different things. They want all the fun without the consequences, preferring to blame others for their lots in life, or with feminism, evil men and their patriarchy which by the way, paved the way for women to have the very rights they feel they don’t have.

These women dictate terms as long as their favorable, then tap out when they aren’t, blaming all and everything but themselves.

And when they don’t get their way, they scream “sexism” and move on down the road to deface their bodies in the name of fighting against “the man”. Militancy is not a path for women to go down so they have men with guns to keep other men in line until the men with guns are busy with a bigger threat.

Feminism creates perpetual victimhood with endless demands and bottomless complaints. You can’t satisfy those who refuse concessions.

So, we see this, now, with women struggling with their identities. Society tells them to be empowered and the men they want telling them to be more feminine. It’s a struggle that feminism is winning, sadly, but there is hope. As we see COVID-19 and other factors pushing women to be more feminine, they are starting to see they can attract more bees with honey than vinegar. They’ve been lied to, and for many, it’s too late, but for others, they are resetting their lives before it’s too late. And while I may poke fun at the “born again” crowd, it shows more guts to admit a change in your mindset than blindly plowing forward until death to try to fulfill a blantently untrue narrative.

This part gives me hope. I see many women in my travels who are bucking the feminism clap-trap for a more nuanced approach to femininity. And this makes me smile because I know that the narrative isn’t affecting near as many women as we think.

But we as men need to do our part as well. We have to stop placating this behavior as normal. Silence means acceptance. We have to stop financing women with hopes of intimacy. It’s only making the whole situation worse.

So beware of the new American woman. She’s on a mission to maximize everything she has while she can. But also applaud the women coming out of this realizing the lie and praising masculinity instead of toxifying it.

There’s hope for the American Woman after all.

American woman gonna mess your mind
American woman, she gonna mess your mind
Mm, American woman gonna mess your mind
Mm, American woman gonna mess your mind
Say A
Say M
Say E
Say R
Say I
C
Say A
N, mm
American woman gonna mess your mind
Mm, American woman gonna mess your mind
Uh, American woman gonna mess your mind

Uh!

American woman, stay away from me
American woman, mama, let me be
Don’t come a-hangin’ around my door
I don’t wanna see your face no more
I got more important things to do
Than spend my time growin’ old with you
Now woman, I said stay away
American woman, listen what I say

https://tpc.googlesyndication.com/safeframe/1-0-37/html/container.html
American woman, get away from me
American woman, mama, let me be
Don’t come a-knockin’ around my door
Don’t wanna see your shadow no more
Colored lights can hypnotize
Sparkle someone else’s eyes

Now woman, I said get away
American woman, listen what I say, hey

American woman, said get away
American woman, listen what I say
Don’t come a-hangin’ around my door
Don’t wanna see your face no more
I don’t need your war machines
I don’t need your ghetto scenes
Colored lights can hypnotize
Sparkle someone else’s eyes
Now woman, get away from me
American woman, mama, let me be

Go, gotta get away, gotta get away
Now go go go
I’m gonna leave you, woman
Gonna leave you, woman
Bye-bye
Bye-bye
Bye-bye
Bye-bye
You’re no good for me
I’m no good for you

Gonna look you right in the eye
Tell you what I’m gonna do
You know I’m gonna leave
You know I’m gonna go
You know I’m gonna leave
You know I’m gonna go, woman
I’m gonna leave ya, woman
Goodbye, American woman…

Driven

When I was younger, I used to drive. And I mean drive. When I was in the midst of thought about my purpose, my meaning, and in those years, my unhealthy continued pining for a girlfriend, which I specifically thought was my purpose.

Damn, how far I’ve come.

Those days, living in my two bedroom apartment in Indianapolis, IN, with my two best buds and immediate family as the only outside contact for me, working 14-18 hour days on a cold dock, I had to wonder what the hell my life was going to become.

Dealing with eternal anxiety, with OCD thrown in to boot, I had just struggled through 4 years of college with no clue on how my life was going to go. Terrified to go anywhere, relapsing my senior year of college, still a virgin, I was told to go to work, get a car, get a job, and the wife / kids thing would come into place. I was at an impasse in my life, but really? I wasn’t. I was at an imaginary wall. A point that didn’t even exist but for in my own fucking cranium. I was to grind eternally at work until I was ready to have a family, and then I would find a wife and do the life thing.

Except, I was struggling with finding a girlfriend. My horrible social skills had culminated at that point in my life with just 5 dates, several kisses and an impromptu blowjob for hanging a girl’s vertical blinds. I was 23 years old.

So, in the midst of this “pretend” crisis in my life and it was a “pretend” crisis, because I didn’t see what real crises people were going through. In my shitty little world, it was all about me and my “pretend” crisis, but it led me to a tactic that has helped me sort through the difficult issues of my life, more difficult than this minor bullshit, and it is, driving.

I used to saddle up in the middle of the night, unable to sleep, get into my GMC Truck, and drive. I drove for hours. For a few years, it was on I-465 (the loop) around Indy, then in the boonies around my stomping ground near Greenwood, IN. I would just drive. A full tank of gas would drown out the anxiety. One night, I drove to Fort Wayne and back, a 3 1/2 hour jaunt, and my longest drive was in the middle of the night on a Saturday night to Chicago and back.

I just drove. Why? Because it cleared my mind. It allowed me to make sense of the senseless. And with the growth of my own character, it has become an indispensable asset in my quest to seek truth in my own life as well as take real time to make real decisions that I know need time to simmer.

Alone With Thoughts

What many people don’t understand, especially people who believe that they don’t need it, is that time alone is one of the most valuable things you can possess. With men these days, they barely have enough time to process everything in their lives, let alone taking an hour a day to get the fuck away from it all. Wife, kids, job, family, bills, etc, it all coalesces at their front door and won’t go away. So he copes, deals, and but never fully exorcises those demons. And they don’t go away…

The only way many men could and should cope is by having a healthy amount of alone time.

When I was single in my 20’s, I pined for a woman because I felt very alone. And I was, I didn’t have many friends, and only in 2003 (5 years after graduation from college) did I finally start to understand that that alone time I so foolishly squandered pondering for a girlfriend was and should have been used to get to know myself, travel, explore, and understand what I wanted. I was so focused on getting to the goals set for me by others that I completely forgot to set goals for myself! My life was being lived for others.

So I drove.

Between 1998 and 2003, I easily logged 50,000 miles on my truck just driving. Two – three times a week I would drive. I would drive, and drive, and drive. And it was invaluable to clear my head.

As 2003 ended, when I was lost at the beginning of the year, I had a girlfriend and was headed to marriage in 2005. I was still lost, but I felt that at least I had some kind of direction, even if it was the direction that I truly, deep down, thought I didn’t want to go, at least I had accomplished what my family and others were wanting me to accomplish.

It would be a decade before I finally got the hint that my life needed to change.

As my decision to divorce in 2015 finalized with my official divorce almost 4 years ago, I was again on the road in my Jetta. The drive has been indispensable to me as an effective means of getting my mind right and clearing out so I can make good decisions about my life.

But now, instead of having to make decisions based on what everyone else wanted of me, I now make them for me.

Being Alone and Being Lonely

There are vast differences between the two. Being alone is a vital part of a person who is mentally fit and healthy’s life. It is an important aspect that many millions of people don’t use as an effective way to stem the tide of anxiety and depression. Instead, they hope for a pill to make them all better. And that mentality has us where we are today.

Being lonely was a big part of my life. I wanted to have folks in my life. But make no mistake, being lonely was a “me” issue. It wasn’t anyone else’s fault. You can be alone and be completely happy. And you can be lonely and be terribly unhappy. The tie that binds is the fact that both are completely your issue as well as how your perspective runs. It’s all internal, it’s all manifested in how you are able to process your time by yourself. Many people feel sorry for themselves. Many struggle to take the time to understand that their alone time isn’t a time to pine for what they don’t have. It’s a time to appreciate what they do have, who they are, and how valuable they are to themselves.

Alone time is a REQUIREMENT. You cannot function as a person unless you have time to decompress. Whether it be meditation, breathing, or just 10 minutes of quiet, you have a choice to make yourself a priority in your life, and alone time does just that. As I often say, “You cannot pour from an empty cup.”

So I drive.

The miles of pavement, the lights, the quiet. The stop signs, the horizon, the clouds, the sky. The potholes, the road hazards, the other drivers. The world without physically touching the world. I let my mind wander and contemplate. I need to process my thoughts, my emotions, my world.

So I drive.

Snow, sleet, rain, fog, day, night. Headlights gleaming through the night, or reflecting on the other passing cars. The shadows of buildings, the neon lights of 24 hour joints, the letters on a sign falling down. The places still in business, the places out of business. I have to figure things out, but I have all the time in the world because, as the world goes, I drive through it. Time stops when you’re driving. Night becomes forever. Yellow lines pass into infinity under your tires. I have to figure things out.

So I drive.

You have to let yourself be with yourself, by yourself. People that don’t give you that time are clingy, needy people. There has to be boundaries for you to have this time. There have to be lines people can’t cross where your self care trumps everyone else (and it does). My self care was non-existent for over 20 years. I had to get away from the world to get myself right. I had to escape to have some time to figure things out.

So I drive.

Last night, I was driving in Phoenix, AZ. I decided, with a bit of excitement, to take a lesser route back to Tucson. I wanted to go away and be by myself deep in the Arizona desert. So I got on US 60 and took off east towards Tucson. I was in nothing but desert, with only the mountains and brush for company. I needed to see the desert, the real desert, not the I-10 passing by desert. I got out of my car on several occasions and took pictures, but I noticed one thing….silence.

The desert is so quiet. Many folks would be unnerved by the silence, even being afraid of being out in the middle of nowhere at night in the desert. But not me. I had to think. I knew myself, and I knew that I was okay. I wasn’t concerned about anything but getting my thoughts out and being content with this world. And I smiled, knowing this part of my life, this world I’ve created for myself, is the most contented I have ever been. It’s amazing what a good drive in an amazing world can do for a person.

So, if you find yourself wondering about yourself, wondering about your world, may I recommend a drive. As the song below states, a song I’ve loved since college “The road unwinds towards me, What was there is gone, The road unwinds before me, And I go riding on”.

Take a drive. You’ll be thankful for that time to unwind and be alone. It’s not only therapeutic, but it’s a requirement. Alone time. Try it sometime.

Driven up and down in circles
Skidding down a road of black ice
Staring in and out storm windows
Driven to a fool’s paradise

It’s my turn to drive
But it’s my turn to drive

Driven to the margin of error
Driven to the edge of control
Driven to the margin of terror
Driven to the edge of a deep, dark hole

Driven day and night in circles
Spinning like a whirlwind of leaves
Stealing in and out back alleys
Driven to another den of thieves

It’s my turn to drive
But it’s my turn to drive

Driven to the margin of error
Driven to the edge of control
Driven to the margin of terror
Driven to the edge of a deep, dark hole
Driven in, driven to the edge
Driven out on the thin end of the wedge
Driven off by things I’ve never seen
Driven on by the road to somewhere I’ve never been

Driven on, driven in on the thin end of the wedge
Driven out, driven to the edge
It’s my turn to drive
But it’s my turn to drive

The road unwinds towards me
What was there is gone
The road unwinds before me
And I go riding on

It’s my turn to drive
But it’s my turn to drive

Driven to the margin of error
Driven to the edge of control
Driven to the margin of terror
Driven to the edge of a deep, dark hole
Driven to the edge of a deep, dark hole