This guy is going to be so worth every penny.
I'm right there with you about the CSAT- The best money I've ever spent! The list of IC's we saw before never even approached the effectiveness in dealing with my H as our CSAT does...
I'm so glad you've decided to get some counselling for yourself. It's so important to try to turn the focus towards YOU... even though that is so hard to do right now, it is so important. When I finally "got it", I said to myself- "What am I doing? No one else is going to take care of me. I am responsible for me and only me." I used to think that my H was supposed to "take care of me" and I would do the same... The funny part is, if we don't take care of ourselves first, we have no ability to care for others. (And my H definitely wasn't taking care of himself- and neither was I...) I hope it goes well for you. Give yourself some time to heal from all the shock and stress...
you simply cannot "force" yourself to feel positively? What do you do?
I like NA's advice, though! (And usually I tell myself that they are probably so insecure and that's why they put their "goods" on display so they can continue to get that validation they need.)
I agree that to a point, we all need to hear good things about ourselves... Positive feedback IS important, and in my case, my H (during the A's) was giving everyone else great validation, but I got none! I used to scream at him when we'd get dressed up to go somewhere and I'd tell him how nice he looked and he's just say "Thanks"... but when we'd go out later with our friends (the OW was my "friend")... He'd be so charming and tell everyone how GREAT they looked, etc... I would ask him why he never told me that I looked nice, pretty, etc... He'd always say- "I do all the time!" (Not true)... I think that he was so absorbed in his fantasy life, that he really thought I was crazy- He just couldn't effectively manage them both at the same time. And I was the one who always got the short end of the stick. So, my self-esteem took a hit...
I think that it is normal to want those who we care about to like us and think we are special. (And it is nice to hear it every now and then!)
Why don't you tell him how you are feeling and see what he says? My H has been so much better since he has realized how much he hurt me for so long... (hugs to you!)
He can't give me the one thing that I really need right now. Reassurance that things will be ok
I am going out on a limb here, but I think that if you do get to IC... You will be able to give that reassurance to yourself. You will be ok. Either way. If you take care of yourself, you will be ok. I know you have a lot on your plate and little ones to look after, but if you put yourself first you will do so much better at all of it. And you will be ok.
As for your H being scared, they talk about that a lot with addicts and it really CAN be scary for them- They become addicted by using sex, drugs, alcohol, etc, to "self-soothe" when things get bad... It can be really scary to for them to give that up, especially when it's the only coping skills they've ever known. It's like their brains are wired now to immediately seek that comfort out when they are hurting in some way- That's why therapy and recovery is so hard- It's re-learning life all over again. It's overwhelming for them. (and us!)
I actually called and spoke with his CSAT a couple of weeks ago
Recovery is a life long process that many addicts deny when they begin the process. The first year is breaking through the denial and the second year is mourning the loss. This first 24 month process is filled with challenges from outside and from within. Quitting is easy. living without the "fix" is challenging for both.
I'm not sure how far along your H is, but we are just coming to our 1 year mark after we found out about the SA... I understand your frustration though...
I'm so glad that you are taking those steps towards healing yourself and learning about co-dependency... Sometimes we resist that label so much (I certainly did)- But the more we understand that it's a spectrum, not an absolute- The better and more fulfilling your life will be. I'm glad you are starting to feel more like yourself again. Good luck with the whole process.
I hope you start to feel better soon- Health problems on top of all the other stress just doesn't seem fair, but when it rains, it pours... Sometimes it seems that it all comes crashing down at once. I hope all of your tests come back okay.
too trusting BW and Just Wow have given some great advice... My H only goes every 2 weeks to see his CSAT... (It was better for us money-wise) But the real key is if he's committed to the recovery- That's the real issue. My guess is that you feel like he is not.
Try to trust in the CSAT for a little while and see if you notice any change (Has he told your H that he wants him to go every week?)- It's up to your H to do it, and nothing you can say will change that. As I said before, I talked to my H's CSAT, but it's b/c of concerns I have and I am making him aware of what's happening outside of the sessions- He and my H are responsible for figuring out how to deal with it- I'm just speaking up about what I see. And I really feel that way deep down- I know that I can't control it. Good luck to you. Don't feel like you have to keep quiet if you have a concern, just make sure you can let go of the outcome once the concern is voiced. It's a lot easier said than done!
Just make sure if it is a boudary issue for you that you are able to enforce whatever you are saying... ie: If you don't feel like he is doing what he agreed to, and you won't live with that; then the enforcement of that boundary is leaving him, at least until you feel that he is doing what he said he would.
Too Trusting BW- Great advice, and I'm glad you were able to follow it for yourself... That's what's so great about this forum. We are able to get help from others and give help to others... And most of the time, by giving help, we also get more help for ourselves!
It's a constant re-affirmation of what we need to follow through with in our own lives. And, with that, I thank each and every one of you for helping me every day- Even if you don't realize that you are!
I think you are going the right way. Only a CSAT can determine if he is an SA or not. There are lots of recomendations for resources on here and I know that 7yrsbetrayed has consolidated a lot of it on her profile/journal page and you can access it here:
If you have any questions, we are here for you!
(By the way, THANKS 7, for doing that! It's so much easier than typing out so much stuff over and over again!)
I echo the CSAT recommendation. They are trained to deal with SA specifically and they are so valuable. I hope you can find one in your area, but like JustWow said, you might be able to find one who will do phone consults. It's so worth it.
[This message edited by innerstrength at 10:29 AM, May 2nd (Saturday)]
I don't go to that forum much, but I should, b/c of that exact reason and newbies who might not know about SA...
Thanks for the vent- It can help for us to know about it!
Thank you to those who responded to my post.
I am feeling depressed today. It's 3:30 pm and I just got out of bed. I've already taken an anti-anxiety pill, which has calmed me down a bit, but then makes me feel numb and tired. When I feel better, I will write a longer post to share. In the meantime, I am shamelessly asking those of you on line to tell me I am not alone and someone out there understands what I am going through, that this pain shall pass, that I am not chopped liver, that there is a meaning to all this suffering.
I'm sorry you are having a rough time of it right now, I hope this passes quickly for you.
We all love you, and you are so important to us!
And I really, truly believe there is a reason for the pain & suffering; I am coming thru mine and I don't regret it anymore. And I still have pain (today must be just a bad day, because I am feeling terribly alone too), and I am missing the good side of my SA STBX today. Because I am feeling alone. When I don't feel so alone, my anger and my strength will come back, and I will be okay and stronger again.
Maybe I need to go bang on my new (used) drum set!
Hang in there!
You are not alone, and of all places on earth that you pain is shared and understood it is here in this forum.
Share with us all you want to, we have big shoulders.
But also know your worth is not defined by your SAH's actions. You are a beautiful, caring, compassionate person. And no, you don't deserve any of this. But since you've been dealt it, we're here to help.
((((((((( birdwatch )))))))))
[This message edited by JustWow at 5:53 PM, May 2nd (Saturday)]
edited for typos (I always have to!)
I guess what I'm getting at is that too many people are so ill informed about the disease of sex addiction.
I don't know if I'm not looking in the right spot but...how do you guys (the spouses of the SA) feel about looking at porn at all. I used to enjoy watching it with my WH every now and then but now - I don't know. I don't know what to do. Do I not let him look at it at all? Only a little? Only with me? I've tried having it only look at it with me but...he would sneak it in once in a while and then of course lie about not looking at it. Do I tell him he can't do it at all? Maybe once in a while isn't bad? Do they have to go cold turkey? Man - I've got a lot of reading up to do. Can someone point me in the right direction?
The good news is, we went back for another ultrasound and there is an embryo and we did see a teeny tiny heartbeat.
Bad news, the embryo is measuring almost a full two weeks small (had the ultrasound at 8wks 1 day, but it only measured 6wks 3 days) and apparently my health is not great.
They did a one hour glucose test and I failed. Badly. So diabetes looms. I don't have the results of my fasting level yet. They're trying to figure out if it's "just" gestational diabetes or Type II and how to treat it.
My blood pressure is too high but I suspect there are some things affecting that. One, they never believe me when I insist they need to use a larger cuff (I'm overweight) which will give a much more accurate reading and they stress me out so bad at every appointment that my blood pressure skyrockets.
I also have a really bad bladder infection and started on antibiotics for that.
I look like a pin cushion I've had so much blood drawn. They're also having me do a 24 hour urine collection. Apparently they are concerned about my kidneys.
So, I'm dealing with a lot. In addition to all the medical issues with the pregnancy we are having serious financial difficulties (like we might loose our house) so I'm just not able to devote time to SI like I used to.
I do still try to check in fairly regularly and look for PMs. I try to read and catch up but find I just can't.
I hope everyone is doing well.
ltstartingover--For a sex addict, porn is not recommended at all. If is like giving an alcoholic a "taste" of beer. It starts the addiction process all over.
Sex addicts have a hard time understanding what healthy sexuality is. Their brains have been hard-wired to look at sex basically as a way to fulfill their own needs, as opposed to being something you share with someone else. Porn reinforces this, as it objectifies humans in a sexual way.
A SA needs to rewire their brain to include caring, sharing, and intimacy in sex. So they look at the whole person, and not just a combination of body parts.
That is partly what treatment is about. Generally, your SA will need to see a CSAT; someone that is specialized in dealing with SA, because a regular counselor does not always understand everything involved, and some have even suggested using porn or other ideas that can have a detrimental effect.
7yrs just posted again, and if you click on her profile, go to her journal, and view latest entries, she has a whole wonderful list of resources that can get you started on the right path.
Hope this helps a bit!
I hope you are feeling better this morning- I'm sorry I did not see your post until right now. You are not alone. We are here for you.
P.S. I tried to PM you, but your mailbox is full...
[This message edited by innerstrength at 7:43 AM, May 3rd (Sunday)]
I wanted to also address the porn question that you asked- NA is right about not using porn... Especially if he's lied to you about looking at it. It's a drug to them, just like anything else.
The other point I wanted to address is that in your question you are asking:
Do I not let him look at it at all? .... Do I tell him he can't do it at all?
He needs to get into a recovery program and then HE will know that he's not supposed to look at it at all. You are not responsible for keeping him away from it. You have no control over him. You can give him information to look at, or resources to go to that will reiterate those points, but you cannot "make" him do anything. This is the part of recovery that is so hard for all of us. I'm not picking on you, I promise- I just want to point out where we all want to control what our H's do... We can't.
You can set boundaries for yourself regarding porn, but that is different than trying to control his actions. You are stating what YOUR actions will be following a behavior of his that you do not want in your life or that is detrimental to you or your marriage. He makes the choice whether he actually does it or not.
Sorry to harp on that, but it's one of the things I also had to realize early on, and it has helped me so much with dealing with all of this. I hope it helps you too.
Like NA said, check out those resources on 7yrsbetrayed's journal page. the direct link is:
Sorry you are having so much stress right now... We will be thinking of you and sending good wishes your way. I hope everything turns out ok.
[This message edited by innerstrength at 7:40 AM, May 3rd (Sunday)]
I'm doing things for myself like trying to take time to relax, set an appointment with a personal trainer at the Y to help me lose weight, joined Weight Watchers, etc. And I'm TRYING to detach and not worry about what he's doing or how he's feeling.
But the every day stuff is driving me nuts. On my case about one of the kids throwing away half a granola bar. On my case about crumbs in his den. On my case about laundry piled up. It's like I can't do ANYTHING right. Everything that comes out of his mouth towards me is a critique or insulting in some way. His father acts the same way, so I know that's where he gets it from.
But how in the world do I try to get myself in a healthy place when I'm constantly being reminded of my "failures". (I say that because some things I CAN do better on, but others are just ridiculous).
Not that he is honest about his A I truly believe 99 percent of the time I accused him before I was RIGHT. And I don't think he is just sleeping with OW right now. I think there are at least 2 OW. And that isn't even enough for him he tries to sleep with me still. I told OW he was a SA and she said Yeah I figured and doesnt' care of all his issues..She can have him then ! Im done and he still doesn't get it just because I can't move out right now.
She told him I said he was a SA and he keeps bringing it up to me telling me he isn't an SA. I don't think he has a porn addiction though he just needs to have sex at least twice a day.
My SAH got angry at me last week about a comment I made about cats being unsociable. Really, he was quite annoyed.
We have been married for 11 yrs and I have never liked cats much and that has never bothered him.
Ridiculous isn't it?
As we keep reminding ourselves; "take care of yourself." (Getting tired of that one, yet?)
Remember that he is embarking on a very difficult and unfamiliar path. At times he will blame you for this SA discovery and recovery. My SAH has been doing this since Sept, and just yesterday said that earlier this week he "hated" me for making him do this. He realized that was distorted thinking and was his issue, not me, but it still happens.
You can do try a couple things. One, do not engage when he is like that. Let him know that you will not be engaging in this kind of fruitless unhealthy interaction. Time for a new dance. Let him know that if he would like to talk about what is truly bothering him, come find you.
Go find somewhere to be alone for a minute to bite back all of the responses you used to give.
Remind yourself that those comments and things that he says, do not define you. No matter how many times you hear it.
Then do something for you.
At first as you are doing things for you, (your list is great!) it scares them. For my SAH, he told me a couple weeks ago he admires how I have been the last couple months, and at the same time it terrifies him.
You aren't responsible for reassuring him, you can't promise anything. You can only be honest and take care of your own mental/emotional health.
Do YOU see yourself as a failure if your kid throws out 1/2 a granola bar?
Do YOU see yourself as wretched if somebody leaves crumbs on your couch?
These things are baloney complaints, he is deflecting attention from his major issues and trying to make mountains out of chicken-shit.
If you an clearly see this is what he is doing, and even if he was dead serious upset about this, this is about what HE thinks of YOU, not what YOU think of YOU.
Self-esteem comes from within, not from others. You KNOW you're a loving, caring, wonderful woman. You KNOW it. If he refuses to see that today, tomorrow, or forever, it doesn't make you any less wonderful.
Thanks for the update on how you are doing. I have had you in my thoughts and prayers almost daily, I will keep it up. I'm sure you're worried and stressed right now, I wish we could do more than support you with our thoughts and wishes.
Keep taking good care of you!
I know I can't control him. Any time I did in the past he always found a way around everything I did to prevent him from looking at porn. We have a lot of porn in the house and I think I am going ot have to box it up and put it away and put something on the computer to prevent him from looking at it. I know I shouldn't have to do it - he should want to. And I don't think he looks at it as much as he did but you are right - he can't have a "taste" of it. At least not for now I guess. This is all new to me. I wanted to leave the porn there and trust he'd do the right thing but he can't... I thought maybe if he only looked at porn with me that would give him "his fix"...right now I'm just so confused. I don't know if not looking at porn is something he has to do forever, or just til he feels he has control of it? Then I kinda feel bad if he can't masturabate at all - I mean most of us do it. .... I have a lot of reading up to do.... So confused.
Everyone has given good advice here that I can't add to so I'm just reading the posts to stay caught up.
As for me I am negative for STDs.
Dunno how I feel about my rSASO at the moment.