I am sorry about the Playboy situation. Your husband is unremorseful about breaking the boundary, refuses to recognize it is a problem, and belittles you for being upset. I think it is important for you to recognize that your husband is likely not in recovery yet as a sex addict. Since your D Day was 6 months ago or more, it may be time for your husband to receive IC and any other types of therapy that are appropriate, if he has not done so.
You should take care of yourself. Since your husband refuses to recognize there is a problem and to commit to recovery (and lip service does not count), you may wish to consider your options. That does not mean you have to make any big decisions - it is not recommended that any big decisions be made within a year of D Day anyways. However, in considering your options, preferrably with your IC, you will be re-focusing on yourself.
As to your husband's low sex drive towards you, it has nothing to do with you. Even Uma Thurma got cheated on by her ex-husband Ethan Hawk. The culprit is his sexual addiction. And since your husband is still not in recovery, any talk with him will likely lead his being defensive or his blaming you.
My situation is very similar, so you are not alone. When Mr. B was in the midst of his affairs, we would not have sex for months, but he would pleasure me regularly. Now that he is in recovery, he explained that when he was having these affairs, he was so ashamed of himself that he thought he did not deserve to have sex with me. And he felt so guilty that he thought "the least he could do" was to pleasure me "selflessly".
Finally, you said,
The Playboy was separaged from my list of questions by a few papers. I mean damn. You had to look at the list to get to the damn magazine.
You are not alone in your exasperation. Right after D Day, I thought I would put a picture of both of us as the background on the computer. I thought, may be that would make Mr. B think twice about having cybersex. However, I thought how futile that would have been. He brought one of the OWs into our house, with all kinds of pictures of me, us, and even Mr. B's elderly parents in the living room! If THAT did not make Mr. B stop and think, a little picture of us on the computer will certainly not stop him. My point is, I hear you, girl friend. But if he wants to act out, he will act out.
I never know if my posts help, but I do hope it offers you some comfort in knowing you are not alone and you are being thought of.
[This message edited by birdwatch at 1:30 PM, December 18th (Thursday)]
Almost everyday I'm more and more sure he's an SA. He sounds so much like so many SO's mentioned here.
We had tried counseling, but that didn't work out well at all. Frankly, I'm a little afraid to go again b/c of that experience.
Exasperated is definitely what I'm feeling right now. I'm real close to just chunking all his mags even the stash he won't admit he has (found that by accident,too). He keeps lying about that stash,too, which is conveniently located near the toilet and not far from some vaseline. I feel like those people who know alcoholics and try to pour their alcohol down the drain.
Re:the note, what really makes me mad is that he's the one who put the note there. Grrrrr!!!
I remember when he said something like, "Why don't you abuse me? I'm used to being abused." The last gf was a drug addict who was physically abusive towards him. Is he trying to make some kind of self-fulfilling prophecy? I never could have imagined I'd get so mad at him. The magazine was the straw that broke the camels back. I also told him that he would NEVER EVER see me naked again. I was livid.
"If he wants to act out again, he will. I won't be able to stop him. If he wants to revert to old ways of relating to me, he will. I can't control him.
I am trusting in myself and a power greater than myself that I will be shown that he is acting out. He knows what the consequences will be if he makes that choice and there will be no second chances. It is totally his choice and there is nothing for me to do but live my life in the meantime."
Huge *hugs* to all who may be struggling...and to those who found their way through it to the other side.
The partners of SA's I know that work on themselves are the ones that really see change in their lives. REAL CHANGE & SERENITY. Your post hit that home. My H. can't BELIEVE how much I've changed!
My H. goes to SA & actually likes it now! I can't WAIT until he gets more into the steps (he's much slower...heh.)
I REALLY wish more ladies would post their positives & progress in THIS thread, also...as we need to see some light as well as vent...:)
Again, thank you ALL for being here! xoxoxoxoxoxox
I was reading about you taking the break from checking up on H. Really cool idea. I have truly found that God will show me what I need to know. And i ask him to show me whatever it is I need to know.
I do NOT check the cell phone records (this last time he just bought a cheap-o one anyway). He has his own business, so money transactions are insane--couldn't keep up w/ that if i wanted to. I know women who make their H's take cell pics of the place they say they are at--just to check if they are telling the truth. One will go crazy & waste fecking precious time doing this sort of thing...& yes, I've been there sorta & obsessed, etc.
BUT. If the SA wants to act out, they just bloody WILL. They won't keep sober cuz WE put up 372 obstacles to hinder them. Yes, we need to heed our intuition & ask some ?'s, etc., but then just write things down in a journal better--things that make you go: Hmmm...that didn't sound right. And wait. And keep logging in your thoughts. IF H. does end up acting out, you WILL eventually find out & see the pattern. You Will. I know you said you didn't have the inklings that he was doing anything...but now w/a bit more history to dissect, & by keeping a journal, I bet you'll start to become more aware of things being off.
'Tis all maddening, I know. I KNOW I couldn't deal w/ this crap without the help I've gotten from S-Anon & 12 Steps. No way. No how.
This last time I busted H.(see sig. line)I called his cell & AMAZINGLY, although he was still talking to someone, the line went through for Me TO HEAR his entire conversation w/ a massage parlor girl. He was trying to set up an appoint. on his reg. cell cuz he prob. forgot to charge his cheap-o one--dumb-arse...:) WILD, eh? Now, what are the chances of that--me being connected to his conversation?
Coincidence? I think NOT. I'd been begging God to SHOW ME what-was-up for the 2 days prior...praying fervently about it...
I learned that he'd started acting out again & that they were indeed, new girls, not girlfriends, etc.
Shocking, but so much better for ME to be SHOWN the TRUTH, ya know?
Hope that helps a bit...
Am off to go to S-Anon! Woot!
[This message edited by ScribblingMum at 8:07 PM, December 18th (Thursday)]
I know he's acting out most of the time, and he doesn't really care what I think sooo (sorry that kinda came outta no where I'm still )
Who here has had a complete disclosure from their spouse?
I'm a Christian and I think I'm going to start dping what you're doing.
I'm not worried about my H now, he's been clean for several months but as I posted on my previous post, I'm worried about slip ups once he comes back home and has more time on his hand. You know what they say, "an idle mind is the devil's workshop..."
I haven't had much reason to be paranoid but I want to have a good Chrismat with my H so I believe that it's best that I do as you do and pray that God shows me what I need to know.
It sounds like your husband is a victim of abuse. According to literature, a sizeable number of SAs have been victims of abuse. Your husband need help to deal with the abuse, then the SA. I am sorry it appears you have not had a good experience with IC. However, don't give up.
Unfortunately, until and unless your husband gets help, your reconciliation is illusory. Nothing will change. Please take care of yourself.
My experiment of not checking up has been extended for a third week. I am settling in on checking his emails once a week. That may sound like a lot, but it is a drastic reduction from even two weeks ago.
During this experiment, more emotions emerge. I would not say the emotions are "positive" in themselves, but I am becoming more aware of my emotions.
I asked my counsellor what to do with all these feelings, which make me feel overwhelmed. She told me a story. There was once a expert who studied ants. Someone told him her house was infested with ants and they were swarming her basement. She asked this expert what to do. The expert said, "Watch the ants! They are interesting!"
My counsellor explains that when I feel strong emotions, I should follow the advice of the ants expert. I should observe and feel the emotions. So I feel angry. How do I know I am angry? What specifically am I angry about? Where in my body do I feel this anger (e.g. does it make my heart beat faster)? Did any object, event or person trigger this anger? Do I experience anger triggered by different things differently? Etc. etc.
I was sceptical at first - what does it even mean, to feel how you feel? But when I tried that, it actually calmed me down and made me re-focus on myself. I feel like I am getting to know myself.
Do give it a try yourself next time.
Hugs and kisses to you all!
By the way, you are not the first person who asked me about my name (birdwatch). I am not a bird watcher, and know nothing about birds. I made that name up (don't even remember how I came to choose it) 10 odd years ago for an email address to give out to retailers and people who "demand" an email address from me. I just kept on using the name. Sorry the story is not more exotic :-)
I am not sure how often I will be checking this site during the holidays, and I wish everyone much health and peace in 2009. I am thinking of all of you over the holiday season.
[This message edited by birdwatch at 12:57 PM, December 19th (Friday)]
The other thing I should share is that my H. doesn't even go on the internet anymore except for banking & weather. Period ('cept for when I showed him Recovery Nation). He doesn't have a laptop either, although his cell gets internet.
He's a contractor & NEEDS to get on the e-mail & website track for business reasons, but he never has--very computer dense. So, I don't worry about his internet activity. I'm SURE if he'd have had more normal access to it in a company job, etc., he would've gone into Sa-type activities on the computer. So, this was a blessing.
He NEVER looked at porn or mags in any form since the 1st D-Day. But w/ that ripped away, he jumped to the in-person massage shit when he heard another guy share about how easy it was...
It doesn't make sense, even to my H. BOTH of us agree that he doesn't need the internet any more than absolutely necessary. I wouldn't be comfortable w/ him having a facebook, etc.
I think an agreement for random checking once in a while to help build trust is fine. But, I still don't check my H's phone...nor have I asked for his password to voicemail. What about the SA guys that leave private messages? THAT wouldn't be cool for me to intrude upon.
I don't know...it's tough. But like I have witnessed, we'll be shown what we need to be shown.
What I did was buy a lined/dated date book to use as a journal/recorder of things I felt funny about...& to write positive steps forward in. It is ONLY for our SA journey--mostly concerning how i'm feeling about incidents that come up. I forget stuff if it isn't dated/written down. I note STD testing--everything.
I don't write every week, but I'd like to do it more often.
Anyway, so glad we can all share our baby steps & Yipeeeees! here...:)
We just started marriage counseling w/ my indiv. counselor & this is our homework.I think this is one of the few books i haven't read...:)
So today it was still ugly. I had to pick him up from the airport then we went to IHOP. I was so mad I could hardly look at him the whole time.
I really could not be around him tonite. We get back, and he tells me he's not going to throw it away. I had it sitting on his desk, and he just puts it back in.
He said he bought the magazine in July, as if that makes it any better. So he was looking up hookers and he went out and bought a mag,too.
I told him that was the straw that broke the camel's back. I told him I was mad about everything, but this time he had really done it. I asked why he did it if he knew it would upset me. He refused to anser, at least tonite.
He makes me feel like I'm the crazy one! He was like its just one Playboy I can't believe you're mad. What he did it so inappropriate for what he put me thru this whole year.
He doesn't think that I think he loves me.
I don't think I've ever been this mad at him. Ever.
I'm just tired of being blamed for the problems. Whenever their have been problems in our sex life, it has always been my fault. I wasn't stimulating enough. Now I've been told I'm too stimulating. I was this, I was that.
I told him since he was tired of my body, I was going to wear less revealing clothes, and he was fine with that. I told him that the gown I had just bought didn't show any of my curves and neither did the pants. He actually likes the wardrobe change. I've never had a guy be pleased that I was wearing more clothes. I've never had a guy who wanted me to dress less sexy. I also told him I was going to go out and buy muumuus, I mean I wouldn't want to offend or disgust him.
O and since he's having such a difficult time parting with his precious Playboy, I will most definitely assume that he is masturbating to it. Yep!
I'm now registered at Recovery Nation
[This message edited by lovedontlivehere at 9:53 PM, December 19th (Friday)]
He maintains that he loves me, but not like I ever doubted that. He does treat me good most of the time, but what he's been doing this whole year has been disrespectful.
He admitted that me being scantily clad or what not doesn't do anything for him. (But he likes naked hos and Playboy ?!?! ) He was honest about that much. He likes the idea of me wearing baggier clothes, but he said I didn't have to wear muumuus. OK that's a first for me never had a guy suggest I wear baggier clothes.
I think he's really taking advantage of the fact that I have never had boundaries in my life...I mean seriously, very few women would put up with what I've been dealing with this year.
He still doesn't see the big deal about buying the Playboy. I even tried to explain that it's the context of everything that has been happening. Still doesn't get it.
I wrote him a very long letter that he will never see. I feel so much better.
sorry for what you are dealing with. It helps to know you DO have choices. Truly. Do you WANT to continue living this way--being treated this way? That saying, "If nothing changes, nothing changes" is soooo true.
His irrational thinking will make you crazy if you don't learn to detach from it & set some boundaries.
Part of my boundaries are: No pornography in my house in ANY form or fashion--period. No active addiction.
Also, that H. must be in Recovery...or attempting to pursue it...counseling/Recovery Nation/12 Step SA...
IF your H. refuses to admit he has a problem, there's nothing you can do EXCEPT to implement your boundaries & WHAT YOU are willing to live with.
Maybe start writing them out for practice & sharing them here w/ us will help...
Believe it or not, even an addict will NOT respect you for you allowing him to treat you in such a crappy way...
Can you go to S-Anon for support/work on you?
I'd also really take a look at why you think you might want to dress in a provocative manner, in general. He is telling you it does nothing for him...plus/but, it sounds like he doesn't want any other men to see you in an alluring way.
Regardless, I think you need to honor yourself & know it isn't a healthy way to get the kind of attention you need/deserve. does that make sense?
**I** myself dressed w/ lots of low-cut tops after I 1st found out about disclosure...it is a normal reaction...but I've since stopped & saw my behavior for what it was--a confused way to express pain 7 the need to be validated...
Thanks for your responses. There is no S-anon or cosa in my area. I am planning to go to Al-anon, and I did join recovery nation. I admit, reading through that site was pretty rough for me!
I definitely have issues with boundaries. I don't think I've ever had boundaries with people esp. those close to me in my life. I have one big boundary so far. I was thinking something like this-if he continues to look up porn, then we are going back to a counselor. I'm not sure if it would work b/c if he's not into changing then he'll only go thru the motions if I drag him to a counselor.
I really feel like he doesn't respect me.
What you say about dressing sexy makes sense. I don't really dress sexy in public, but my partner has issues with my dressing sexy around the house.
I snooped last night. I asked him if I could get on his PC, and he started acting cranky.
I get on, and on one of the tabs on his Internet Explorer said "orgy." I couldn't resist. He was even in the members area. He told me he got rid of his memberships to those kinds of sites.
He also left his temporary folder up.
I looked at his folder today, and I got the answers I had been hoping for. Turns out he was looking at porn during the time of my miscarriage, in fact, one day later. The bulk of the files were from this year, most of them started a week before my miscarriage.
He created a new folder 6 days afterwards.
I'm not surprised because it seemed like our sex life was going downhill during my pregnancy, like he was scared to touch me. I have been speaking to a wife of an SA from another site, and she side having kids was the biggest trigger for her husband.
I finally finish Don't Call it Love-it may be my favorite so far. I'm looking forward to Sexual Anorexia arriving soon.
He was viewing porn 2 days ago right after I got on to him for the Playboy. Then he viewed more the next day. I'm trying to tell myself he didn't do that to retaliate.
Yesterday I think he thought I was going to tear him yet another new one. I didn't. I probably would have if I hadn't written him that letter (although he'll never see it). I'm more exasperated than angry at this point. When I got out of his office he was asleep-I think he does that when he thinks he's about to get it.
I'm still surprised how mad I got. I didn't even want to look at him. He thought I was going to break up with him.
[This message edited by lovedontlivehere at 7:04 PM, December 21st (Sunday)]
Oh my dear, how awaful.
You know your husband is in denial and does not recognize there is a problem. He is blaming you for his behaviour. He is unremorseful. He is not supportive or respectful. He belittles you and is frankly emotional abusive. He does not see a need to change, let alone the commitment to change. He is not committed to the marriage or to you.
Since you can almost be certain that he is still acting out, is there any point for you to continue to check up? It struck me that you KNOW (without even having to check up) that he has simply not stopped acting out and he is not even pretending to hide it anymore. You have to ask yourself, why are you still checking up and torturing yourself?
Gosh, I feel so badly for you. May be you need to stop checking-up for your own sake. You have got to look after yourself. You deserve love and respect and you must believe that yourself. It sounds like you are simply in this vicious cycle and merry-go-around of heartache and torture, and this checking-up is doing no one any good.
I am thinking of you. Look after yourself.
[This message edited by birdwatch at 1:11 PM, December 22nd (Monday)]
I really felt like I needed the answers, esp regarding his January and February useage. I'm not surprised, and I find what he did very tasteless.
He actually wanted to have sex with me yesterday. He watches porn b4 he goes out of town. I went with it, but I was in another place mentally. I felt like I was watching from a distance instead of participating.
You know what? I don't think I've ever gotten much foreplay from him-that is so classic from guys who are really into porn. I get a little kissing but that's it. In the words right out of Don't Call it Love I get the 3 min song not the symphony. He can look at escorts or porn for hours, but I get like 15 min of sex. I don't mind quickies, but I don't want that every single time. And he still won't do what I've been asking for since March. I feel like it's just all about HIM.
I've ordered In the Shadows of the Net along with a few other books. Pretty soon I'll have a library of SA and codependency books. I went to Cosa and found literature about 12 steps for coaddicts. I really wish there were Cosa groups in my area.
Like birdwatch, I likely won't be logged on too much to this site. But I'll be thinking of everyone and hoping your holidays are a step in the right direction.
I agree that the constant asking "why" isn't likely to get you answers. If a partner isn't in recovery, his total agenda is to keep blaming you -- otherwise, he just might have to take a long look at himself and that, to an SA, is terrifying. It is crazy-making so it's no wonder that many of us here have felt or are feeling it. They key, like birdwatch and her counsellor so imaginatively pointed out, is to be aware of the feelings without being overwhelmed by them. It's similar to what Eckhart Tolle describes in his book: You are not your feelings. You are the being who's aware of your feelings. Step outside of yourself and watch yourself with compassion. You are simply love/God/higher experiencing life as "you".
It's pretty woo-hoo stuff, but once you truly absorb what he's saying, you'll feel a calm that -- for me anyway -- has been rare in my life. An acceptance that I am worthwhile simply because I am. I don't have to "do" anything, I simply have to be.
My holiday wish for all of us here is that we can get to a place where all we ever have to do is be. We don't have to dazzle or perform or do the jazz-hands that most of us are so accustomed to doing to earn love and respect. We simply have to be who we are. Which frees us up to allow others to be who they are. Doesn't mean we have to accept mistreatment or disrespect -- quite the contrary. It just means we can stop trying to get people to love us. We can love ourselves...and that will be enough.
Okay, I'm off my navel-gazing soapbox.
Time to put this weary body to bed.
Thanks for the pearls of wisdom, via Eckhart Tolle, that you passed on. I find that his practices of letting go of the past the best thing for me. I am pleased to see someone else does too.
Basically, I just wanted to wish all a Merry Christmas and thank each of your for your support.
May each of you be blessed - and have a moment of peace!
Much love, OLB