I just got my DCIL book today and I'm halfway through MASH... We have our first MC session tomorrow... Send me some strength! I'll let you guys know how it goes...
What do you think of MASH? Is it helpful so far?
I found it so incredibly validating.
All those things resonated with me. I've said it before but I'll say it again, that book has been more help to me than any other so far.
I've been saying for months now that I felt that I'm having more issues with PTSD than with codependency. Am I codependent? Of course. Everyone is a little. I'm probably more than some but I find that those issues are mostly with my family of origin. I've been doing ok with FWH in terms of the codep issues...what is hanging us up is my PTSD and his refusal to own up to his part in it and support MY recovery.
He continued to download porn while we were S...when we would hit a roadblock and he would think that he wasnt going to get to come home. He told me at that time that he didnt have internet access...turns out that he piggybacked onto other tenants wireless access. Now,he has ammended his story...well I had it occassionally. I found 192 mpegs downloaded when doing a file recovery and another 37 previously imbedded in a windows file. Who knows what else there may have been.
I allowed him to come home,partly based on the premise that he wasnt using it. Now,hes home...he did..ane lied to me. IC and MC say that we need to wipe slate clean,plan a future...and if it happens again then deal with it appropriately.
I feel as if its a path he/we need to go down NOW...addictive behaviour is addictive behaviour and it has always been my understanding that one must address the root of the addiction to recover. FWH mother was an alcoholic and had serial affairs. FWH is also battling some alcohol issues and seems to be doing very well in managing that. Has not addressed the increasing use of porn only to say "well,we werent having sex...it was my substitute and it was stress relief." He hasnt been online since he has been home.
Any advice,input? More and more I believe this became an addiction.
[This message edited by somanytears at 12:49 PM, May 22nd (Thursday)]
Two young adult kids 27 and 22
Current status:31 years...sigh.
Your husband needs a new therapist. Preferably a CSAT. It's obvious that she doesn't understand SA. Or if he chose her, he chose someone who would give him permission to continue to act out. Of course you can't force him to get into recovery, so it's frustrating.
You need to set boundaries and consequences to keep you safe. This is a very difficult and confusing task. All the women in my spouses of SA support group struggle with it. That's why it's so hard to advise you online. So, my advice is for you to find a good therapist who has experience with spouses of SAs who can help you with your recovery (it is a recovery!) from codependency. If you're married to a SA you're a codep, there are levels of it but we all are to some degree and learning about boundaries is your first step toward recovery.
How much research have you done on SA? Do you need resources? Do you have any questions?
Wow, we are so much alike. I could have written a lot of what you wrote except about your mother. I'm so deeply sorry for your loss and even more sorry that her loss is now linked to your h's SA.
I lost my aunt whom I was very close to the day before I finally got evidence that my FWH had actually slept with other women. I don't remember her funeral. I realized it this year on the DDay anniversary. I remember going to my parents house to leave for it. I remember being in their van coming home and waiting frantically to be back in cell range to check emails. But I have no memory of the services. I sometimes forget that she's gone. I keep thinking I'm going to see her or that I should call her. I'm so hurt that he robbed me of being able to greive for her at the time.
I still wake up -- almost a year later -- with this horrible sense of foreboding that I can't shake. I lay there in the dark trying to calm myself down, but I really struggle.
That's why MASH has helped so much. It was invaluable to read that the focus is on the SA and the spouse is neglected. It was good to know that I'm not alone in that.
Are you in counseling for your codependency? Is a professional helping you with setting boundaries and consequences?
Is your SA in treatment?
Firstly, sorry for the delay in replying. I haven't been on here much lately.
We are having counselling. We struggled to find a therapist who had experience with SA, but we've been seeing her now for a few weeks, both individually and together. I plan to talk to her about getting help with boundaries next week. I've also joined Recovery Nation and am working through the lesson, slowly but surely.
WS initially threw himself wholeheartedly into seeking help. Not only going to IC but attending SA meetings, and joining Recovery Nation himself. The counsellor recommended he journal his thoughts and feelings and he did that too. But for the last two weeks he has stopped going to SA meetings. He stopped using Recovery Nation, saying it was too based on religion and he wasn't going to get any help unless he paid for private online counselling. Actually I think it was because one of the coaches questioned his commitment to recovery as he hadn't put much work in. The slightest hint of criticism and he was out of there, and that's pretty much how he treated SI too. He hasn't journalled for over a week now.
I am very aware that he has to put the work in for himself, not for me. But if I don't see him doing it, it feels like he thinks he doesn't need to and that hurts. He says he IS working at it, with weekly IC. He says he has resisted the draw to online porn and hasn't slipped at all. But still.....
I have to admit I'm really struggling here. I thought we were doing really well, having worked hard after the initial D day, the truth trickles etc. I thought we had turned the corner and I was really blind sided by the discovery of the online porn, the planned meeting for oral sex with a strange man etc throughout what I now know was false R. It's nearly two months since I found this out, and my life is just one big unknown at the moment.
I need help. Haven't posted much lately -things have been going pretty well.
So WH went out tonight with some work friends (2 guys and a woman, I think).
He left a nice message checking in around 5:30 -said he would call around 8:00. He called at 8:20--said they were going to stay there until 9:30.
It is now 10:40 and he is still not home.
He has been doing (almost) all of the right things (still no 2nd meeting).
What is the non-co-dependent way to react?
When I found out about my husband, I made a list of conditions that he had to abide by if he wanted to continue being married to me.
This list included such things as asking me first if he wanted to go out and if I allowed him, he had to be home by whatever time I decided was reasonable. I figured, I had never put any boundaries on him in the past, never stopped him from going out and he had made bad decisions. So like a child, he has to live by my rules until he can earn back some trust (although I will never completely trust him again.) I am taking a zero-tolerance stance on all of this. He has agreed to my conditions (in fact, I think he is happy to have them) so if he breaks any, the deal's off. Hard line, maybe? But that is where we are at in our recovery right now and so far so good.
Have you discussed with him what you need in order to help rebuild the trust? I think he needs to understand that calling and getting home when he says he will are very important.
Not sure if this is the non-codependent way to react but it is what I feel is the right thing to do for me and I am not co-dependent.
Despite claiming to be unhappy, they're really only happy if they're cheating on someone. They can't bear to be single. And they're the ones who should be single.
Instead, we are. One way or another, we are.
[This message edited by Marcia at 3:37 AM, May 23rd (Friday)]
People: Read up on the 180!
Oh, and I'm boycotting Nike forever ;)
The sad thing is, if you let them go, and you probably should, they will just find other unsuspecting partners to cheat on.
I believe their behaviour will continue and probably escalate but they may just make the decision to change their lives and genuinely do everything possible to recover. This was the case for Michael Leahy, author of 'Porn Nation' after his wife divorced him.
Despite claiming to be unhappy, they're really only happy if they're cheating on someone.
I don't believe this to be the case at all as far as my husband is concerned. The books and case studies on sex addiction tell of the utter despair that addicts feel, caught in the addiction cycle and the feelings of helplessness at not being able to control it. While I feel so much rage toward my husband for knowing that he must have some problem and not seeking help for it, I also sometimes feel sorry for him that he had experienced so much pain in his childhood that he had to resort to such behaviour to sooth himself. His family situation meant that he never learnt to deal with his feelings in a healthy way.
You still need to heal from this. You still need to get into recovery for your codependency. (I hate the label but that's what it's called whether or not we agree with the term)
You should read the book we're all referring to as "MASH" It's "Mending a Shattered Heart" by Stefanie Carnes. I think you will really find it helpful and validating. Your counselors did you a horrible disservice by sweeping your feelings under the rug and denying the opportunity to heal. This book doesn't do that at all.
As to why you found yourself involved with another liar...it's because you do attract a type of person. So do I. So do all spouses/partners of addicts (addicts in general, not just SAs). It's usually based on issues from our families. Family of origin issues. I've got loads. Codependency being the worst of it.
The only way to stop the pattern is to work on you. Find a good counselor with lots of experience treating spouses/ex-spouses of sex addicts. You should be able to find one through http://www.iitap.com/find_csat.cfm
We were just discussing this in my support group a couple of weeks ago. One woman is divorcing and so very scared. She doesn't want to be with another addict or compulsive. She was asking how to not CHOOSE another one and I pointed out that it's not so much that we choose them as we ATTRACT them. If we get healthy through counseling and doing our work we won't be so attractive to them anymore. The counselor agreed. He also said that with that health will come the ability to spot the red flags sooner.
Take care of yourself. You deserve it. PM me anytime.
What do you think of MASH? Is it helpful so far?
I do! It has been great- I've been reading it every night a chapter at a time so I can absorb the information. It has really been ringing true for me and it helps me to realize that I'm not crazy for feeling so crazy!
The MC session went surprisingly well and we got into a lot more than I thought we would be able to delve into in 50 minutes... We actually went over the time alotted and she stayed late with us (we were her last clients for the day). I am still not convinced she is what we will ultimately need to get through all of the SA stuff, but she is definitely helping to get through a lot of issues that my husband has been battling... She seems to be very insightful and understanding. I will continue to go to the sessions with him and if I get the vibe that we are stuck or we need some more input, we will definitely go see a CSAT... (I'm pretty sure we will anyway, but I have a feeling this is going to be a very long process and we are both prepared to take the right steps to get as much help as we can)
I am waiting to read all my books I have gotten- I've amassed quite a library now... And continue to learn as much as I can to get through this journey... It's a scary journey, so thanks to all of you for your support. I really appreciate it.
For the first time in over a year, I have hope for my marriage. I've never seen my H put so much effort into getting sober. It's been a week since h last looked at porn and it's also been that long since the last time he masturbated. I never thought I'd see the day that would happen.
That's wonderful! I'm very happy for you both. He is doing well.
I just wanted to let you know what may happen down the road a bit. My FWH and I weren't warned and it was very scary and confusing for both of us, so we now try to make sure that people newly on the path know about the hazards coming up.
Once your FWH has been completely sober (no MB at all) for about 3 to 6 weeks you can expect that he'll go through withdrawal. It's worse for some than others. My FWHs was bad. The worst part was that he wasn't warned about it and didn't know at the time what it was so he couldn't tell me. I had no idea either so it was really scary for me. In our case, he became very agitated. He was very quick to anger (rage). Those are the things I observed. I'm IMing with my FWH and I just asked him to describe it from his perspective. Here's the chat:
How would you describe withdrawal to someone you were trying to warn about it?
it's kind of like how you see cocaine withdrawal described it differs a bit from person to person, but I experienced panic attacks, wild mood swings, anxiety, and sometimes felt like my hands were shaking, even though they weren't. I remember strong feelings of paranoia or something like it, too. Here's a link to a site that has a page dedicated to sex addiction and the withdrawal page is linked from it.
the hardest part was the intense panic I felt, and the only way I could seem to cope with it was rage. my heart would race and I'd start breathing faster
Because you couldn't use your "drug"
yep. all the feelings I kept suppressed came on all at once and I didn't know how to handle them without it
It was very overwhelming, I know. Thanks for that, I'll pass the info on.
I'm glad your MC is going well. But you said something that concerns me.
I will continue to go to the sessions with him and if I get the vibe that we are stuck or we need some more input, we will definitely go see a CSAT... (I'm pretty sure we will anyway, but I have a feeling this is going to be a very long process and we are both prepared to take the right steps to get as much help as we can)
It sounds like you've only got one leg right now.
Hello everyone. I've finally worked up the courage to post my story. Please see my profile. Thank you
Welcome ever_after... Glad you decided to join us. (And sad that you, too, had to find yourself here) I read your post and am so sorry that you had to go through what you went through. I am glad that you are working through everything and I think that maybe you will get to a place where you can love and trust again... (I'm hoping to get to that place myself- I think one day I'll get there again)
There is a lot of wisdom on this board and you sound like you have been doing your research also- (I'm trying to read and understand everything I can get my hands on to help me through this) Take advantage of everyone's experiences and hopefully we can all help eachother-
I thank you for looking out for us- and thanks to your husband also for being so candid about his recovery... I'll definitely be passing that on to my H.
Thanks again so much for your guidance- I'm sure I'll need to be pointed in the correct direction a few 100 more times...
Thanks for taking the time to do it...