I thought it was an interesting thing for him to say for a lot of reasons. For one thing, what will happen as he gets older? Will he accept these changes and embrace them, or will he begin to feel self-conscious and will his boundaries fall? Only way to know that is to be around to see it and see how he (and we, if he'll have my support) handle it.
The other thing is, is he saying something about his self-esteem? I always tell him that he was hot before I met him; he talks about the long hair and mustache and sideburns he used to sport. But there are so many other wonderful things about him that have nothing to do with his looks. Yet his looks seems to be something he considers a lot. It's just very strange to see that in someone, that he talks so much about his looks, and acts like he owes it to our relationship that he 'cleaned up'. I may have supported him, but he did these changes himself - so many changes, from building a stable home, to quitting alcohol, to going back to school, not just shaving and cutting his hair, and so many things he always was and had before all this. I hope he can recognize it. We try to remind him.
It's almost like he fears that if he cheats again, he'll lose all this stability. I believe in him. If he were to, goodness forbid, or if we didn't make it, I know he would find stability again. He just needs to believe in himself.
Just an interesting thing he says that makes me wonder.
Personalities differ and some things we may not consider that important are, to others, a priority.
I would not be feeling warm, safe and cozy if my husband's appearance was a huge priority, if he didn't dig deeper to understand the root of the infidelity since it still sounds like you get the credit for thriving and "looking good". I would still feel that is shaky ground, what does he need to do on the inside that keeps him faithful to you?
I think he needs some IC to dig into this outward appearance reliance. It is not all there is. You know that, which means you don't feel too secure about things yet.
I can relate to that.
I think that for Mr Silver, his physical appearance ties into gaining control of his life because he used to be homeless. While he does also mean his cuteness, I think he means getting to wear clean clothes, have good hygiene, look respectable. He loves to buy or have new clothes, probably because it means a luxury he didn't always have... Maybe it makes him feel more normal. When he said it the last time, before that, he'd been talking about how he felt to wear a tie (I'd helped him tie it) and how when he was little it was a clip-on (he's been wearing ties out lately), and I'd asked him, "Did anyone say anything nice about your tie? Because you look very handsome." I usually ask that if he's proud of a certain outfit, as a way to show that I think he looks good.
It did seem shallow for a long time, but the more he talks about it, the more it becomes apparent he does mean cleaning up holistically, and he's still thinking back to his homeless years and how far he's come. Maybe one of his greatest fears is becoming homeless again. I've been in some tough places in my life, but I don't think I can truly imagine what it must be like to have nothing, to be completely on your own, homeless, and the few people you know don't have your best intentions at heart. He must be very strong. It's amazing he survived all that.
For a while I did see it through the betrayed lens, TG. I used to be paranoid that he wanted to look so good to get other girls to notice him (and there was a time where this was true). But it seems like it's for himself now.
[This message edited by silverhopes at 1:15 PM, August 22nd (Thursday)]