Thanks for the kind words. I'll try and remind myself... Read a newsletter from a friend whose company is Good Clean Love (she sells "love" products -- non-toxic, free of nasty chemicals and she promotes "healthy intimacy"). Her newsletter was about how we can't possibly accept and forgive others for their "dark" parts, until we've accepted and forgiven our own. Tough to do...but I think she's right.
I never want to offer up a "diagnosis" based on a few lines...but I'm a firm believer that our instincts tend to be pretty accurate, it we pay attention to them. Is he open at all to the possibility of SA? Have you heard of Edward Tick who works with veterans -- he's wonderful.
How did you respond to the affairs? You sound very matter-of-fact, but I can't imagine that they weren't devastating. How are you taking care of yourself?
Hang in there -- you'll learn a lot on this site about self-care. I'm still learning...but many are farther along the path than I.
I hope you can have a good day. Birthdays are not so much fun anymore (I turned 42 this year) - but it is always nice to be remembered and feel extra loved on your birthday.
I also feel your pain on the reunion experience. I had a bizarre 20th a few years ago. I had a really hard time with the visual experience of seeing all these "old" people that I had a few too many. Not quite loaded but pretty close (it did register with me that one woman thought I was a little pathetic after I asked her for the 3rd time what she did for a living).
I think the drinking started after I ran into someone who said "Oh, Feistywoman. It is so good to see you. You must be doing something fabulous." Ah, well, no, I work in a job that I hate, we can barely pay our mortgage, and I have accomplished nothing I thought I would when I left high school --but thanks for asking!
But I also really understand how you feel the next day. I am all about being completely in control of myself--can't handle embarassing myself with my own behavior.
what others might view as a night of letting loose and having fun, I immediately view as disgusting, embarrassing drunken-ness
Probably no one else noticed our behavior - yet we obsess. I can't figure out if that makes me really self-absorbed or really insecure. Probably both.
But hey--it's your birthday. Today you are entitled to a little letting loose if you want it. I'll have a glass of wine tonight and give you a happy birthday toast.
[This message edited by FeistyWoman at 11:25 AM, June 2nd (Monday)]
It is what it is.
Don't worry about still going thru down times. It's when the up times last longer than the down times and the downs get to be less frequent that you know you're healing.
Take care of yourself today and I hope you get spoiled a little bit!
I also agree with eternaloptimist in that it's hard to diagnose with only that limited info-
When I became suspicious about SA, I looked up questionnaires online- This is the one I "took" for my H:
He knew he had a problem, so when I brought it up, he was already willing to take the test himself. We scored it exactly the same and it was pretty conclusive that he definitely has addiction problems.
Good luck with your journey and please continue to post if you have questions- We're all here to learn and help eachother- These people are great and help so much.
Her newsletter was about how we can't possibly accept and forgive others for their "dark" parts, until we've accepted and forgiven our own. Tough to do...but I think she's right.
Wow that sounds so applicable to my life right now. I definitely agree with that sentiment.
Roccodom, I highly recommend using one of the SA tests online to evaluate the behaviors both you and he have experienced. For me, it not only confirmed my suspicion, but also made WH realize that yes he is a SA.
A lot of your story "speaks" to me. My WH is ex air force, which really encourages/fosters the addiction. WH was also cheated on during previous relationships. He's also a compulsive masturbator, which definitely added to issues with our sex life.
MC is telling you in a round about way that your husband is a SA. That is the definition of sex addiction. SAs self medicate with sex. Alcoholics self medicate with alcohol. Same thing.
www.sexhelp.com is a great place to start to learn about SA and I agree with the others who suggested the online quiz.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY EO!!!!
I'm happy you had a breakthrough those are always so freeing.
Is it wonderful or kinda sad that my best friends (certainly the only people I'm honest with) are a bunch of strangers online??
Funny, I feel the same way! I know that there are people who may be able to understand, but I feel that I'm not comfortable talking about this with anyone who isn't going through it themselves... I felt extremely harshly and strongly about infidelity prior to being in this situation... (Not that I don't feel that way now, it's just that I understand why some people stay to work it out. Before, I was always "outta there!")
And the SA issue complicates it so much more... I feel that this is my H's demon to battle and he actually has talked with his best friend about it... I was surprised taht he did, but I think he was looking for some support outside of me also.
Unfortunately his friend didn't really get it and said that he must be SA too, but he didn't think it was a big deal... My H laughed it off, but I feel like he probably was hoping he could really discuss it with someone. He's looked into SA meetings, but I'm not sure yet if he's decided to go... He's breaking down a lot of walls that he's had up for a long time and it's nice to see him really wanting to change this part of his life.
His mom talked to him yesterday and said that he has been much more "peaceful" than she's ever seen him in his whole life- He told her we've been going to therapy and she was really proud of him- He didn't get in to the whole SA thing, but he was really happy she noticed that he's different. He said he feels more peaceful than he ever has- Like a weight has been lifted off of him. He said he struggled for so long and didn't know why and he feels like he can finally come to terms with what it was that was gripping him so tightly-
That has to be a big relief in so many ways...
So, even though we're all strangers here- I have to say a big thank you again to all of you for being here. It makes all of this so much more survivable!
He also suggested WH call a psychiatrist to do a work up. H scored high on the stress/anxiety test, and high-medium on the depression test. H is a bit hesitant to call the psychiatrist because he is afraid of better living through drugs.
Oh and he said he had the overwhelming urge to have random sex with a stranger the whole way to the appointment, but that went away once he got to the office. Makes sense - he was having a panic attack. WH didn't understand why it made sense to me.
So H has another appointment next week. Hopefully the IC will do a bit more counseling and less profile making this time, because I am concerned WH will not want to proceed.
Not micro managing his recovery is a big thing for me to keep in check because of my type A personality. I must say I've surprised myself with how good I've been. I keep reminding myself (and him) that I cannot control or do his recovery for him. He needs to get IC because that is non-negotiable, but he needs to travel on that path alone or it won't work. No matter how much I want him to be well, he needs to want it for himself.
Now I just have to focus more on self-care and loving and taking care of myself first and foremost. Now that is really hard because I've been trained since childhood that I am inconsequential and I don't matter.
Enternaloptimist, I hope you had a nice birthday after all.
My WH started IC about a month ago and he also felt a little uncomfortable with how little talking the IC did at first.
I actually think it is a sign of a good IC --they need to get a lot of information before they can really offer something intelligent on each person's life.
My WH seems to be settling in more now. I am with you and EO on trying not to control. Typically I would be asking a thousand questions after each IC session so I could understand exactly where things stand (i.e. attempt to control them).
It is hard to try to stay somewhat removed from something that has such a huge impact on my life.
Also--what are good ways to stay focused on myself and my own growth?? I don't feel a strong need for my own IC -although I am going to try to go to a COSA or S-Anon meeting.
So - what else does everyone here do to take care of yourself in the midst of all of this??
(I am going on a yoga weekend soon - BY MYSELF - so I guess that counts as one good thing).