I spoke to MIL last night for an hour. She said she is just sick to her stomach over how he is treating me and especially the kids. She told me their whole family loves me, and are really upset with him. It is really nice to have their support, and realize they know the truth, and not what STBX is telling everyone.
His boss (cousin--close to MIL) told MIL that he doesn't expect STBX to make it in that job much longer, he feels he is cracking.
And MIL told me STBX told her he is making new "friends". Plus told her that since I'm not around anymore, he isn't going to stop his porn, which he says is not a big deal, just a few pictures, blah blah blah.
He also told her he had only watched 3 movies, not the $350 worth that he actually did. She wants a copy of the cable bill, and I am going to send it to her. She needs to know what she is dealing with also. So she can stop being codependent, and helping him. She also told me she is cutting him off financially, because she is not going to finance his addiction anymore.
Maybe he will be hitting bottom pretty soon, but we both feel he will look for another woman who will take him in, and fix his problems for a while.
The saga goes on.... (just not with me as a major player anymore, thank God!)
My brain is a bit addled, is your SO making any attempt at recovery and IC?
I don't have the experience with multiple addictions, that's why I ask. If he was in IC, i would think they might help him with sort of prioritizing his recoveries.
Stupid example, but here it is. When I quit smoking (my addiction ) several yars ago, I knew I needed to stop drinking in order to do this sucessfully. I am by no means a frequent or heavy drinker, but maybe because I am such a lightweight, I know that after 2 drinks, I could be convinced to do some stupid things, including picking up a cigarette. So If I was serious about quiting the smoking, I knew I needed not to drink at all for a long, long time till I had the cig hait kicked.
I guess the other thought I had was that multiple addictions are really common. And H's CSAT told him, ususally as one gets under control, the others get worse. So if an SA goes cold turkey sober on the sex, if he was borderline alcoholic, he may likely go full blown once the other addiction is taken away.
I wish I had some useful advice. I don't know what your boundaries/consequences are. I guess I can offer hugs, and empathy only.
I don't know the healthy response to finding the porn, but I know I would trash it, and tell him so and why.
As far as the abusive behavior, I hear you. And I did what you did, initially, and focused on how much he did it and it was maddening. Detachment is such a useful tool, but a really hard thing to master, I know I haven't mastered it yet.
I used to hear the word and cringe, because I didn't want to detach from my H, I wanted to be closer and in a healthy way.
Someone at my S-Anon group really helped me with this. She said working on self-care and self-responsibility helped her to separate her H's behaviors and actions from her own. She said learning to take 100% responsibility for taking care of herself made her reactions and choices in dealing with her H much more healthy. And as she made more responsible decisions for herself, she felt better, and was able to separate the notion of fixing him and their M, and taking care of herself. And taking care of herself needed to come first so that she could contribute to a healthy relationship from a healthy place, if he ever got there with her.
I probably didn't explain it well, but I will say, once you start taking care of yourself responsibly, it becomes easier to detach - from the problem. Not necessarily from the man, if that makes any sense. It is like his addiction becomes less personal on an emotional level - where you may have always known it on an intellectual level before.
edited for typos (I always have to!)
They are all liars you are all so right. I have trouble trusting what he is doing and where he is but in the long run I have to accept I cannot control him and if he wants to tell me he will and oif he wants to lie he will...
I am feeling brighter this week so can see a way forward for me (us?) last week was a bad one not so positive. I cant decide if my gut feelings are due to my depression or if my depression is due to my gut instinct...
I'm glad I could write something useful for a change! My thoughts are always crystal clear - TO ME! I often don't seem to write them well.
You know your H. You know his history. If you've done your good little SA spouse research, you understand the disease. For me, it helps to kind of put myself in my H's shoes - from childhood on. Once you can empathize and understand how he got to where he is a couple of good things can happen.
First, it makes it really easier to see that this acting out business isn't about you or your inadequacies. He probably had SA, or all of the cards were in place for it to develop - just waiting for the right stressor - since long before you ever met him. You didn't cause this, it isn't about your inadequacies, and you aren't going to be able to fix it. All of that is quite a relief.
The other good thing that happened was, once I could communicate to H how his addiction stemmed from his FOO, that it was no wonder he developed it. It would be more surprising if he hadn't. Not to say that now that we recognize it, he isn't capable of working to overcome it. Seeing that I really, really, really understood him, how he didn't want to be this way, but how he never learned any healthy ways to cope really helped make him feel safer to open up and be willing to be truly honest and vulnerable to me. Not immediately, I will kid you not. Remeber honesty and vulnerability are intimate things and these guys are terrified of them, but slowly he learned to take the steps to open up. It is just amazing the transformation in him in the last year since diagnosis.
Just the other day, he said:
"I'm married to be engaged".
Pretty remarkable growth for an intimay avoider
Seeing that I really, really, really understood him, how he didn't want to be this way, but how he never learned any healthy ways to cope really helped make him feel safer to open up and be willing to be truly honest and vulnerable to me. Not immediately, I will kid you not. Remeber honesty and vulnerability are intimate things and these guys are terrified of them, but slowly he learned to take the steps to open up.
How long did it take for your husband to really open up and be honest?
It probably started in May of 06 when we went to Retrouvaille. But back then, I believed we were dealing w/ a ONS with a co-worker.
Retro helped him learn some tools for even identifying he had feelings, and how to communicate them. But he was still actively in the A (unbeknownst to me, of course), so while those tools were good, he still wasn't biting.
After her H called me in early 07 to tell me the A was still alive and kicking, a lot of fallout happened quickly, and the A finally ended. He became more honest about the A stuff, but again, sloooooowwwwwwwly. And I was tenacious and had a bullshit meter that worked very well. It was soooo confusing, because he really wanted us, but couldn't really trust that we would work if he was honest.
One evening in May '08, we were discussing the A, and I made a comment to him that I was surprised his OW put up w/him as long as she did. She ha a long list of A's and promiscuous behavior, and I told him, in bed, he practically approached me (and her by his accounts of the way to gory details) as tools for his masturbation, and that he really was a pretty unspectacular lover. We weren't fighting, it really was one of the mllions of calm discussions we had trying to get to the bottom of the A.
Well, when I said he approached women as M-bting tools - that set the bel off in his head about all of his prolific acting out activities. Lots, and lots and lots of wierd m-bating stuff I had no idea of.
A funny pair of things happened at the same time the next morning. I was home and somehow decided to research SA, I never had before, not knowing what it was and knowing how little interest my H seemed to have in sex, I really never even considered it before.
H was on a break at work and wrote out this huge voluminous list of all of his acting out behaviors that I didn't know about. He was trying so hard to be honest before, but had bargained with himself that this stuff didn't matter.
When he called to say Hi, I told him about the SA stuff I found. And that I was stunned how it seemed to be written about him. He told me he had some new information to share with me, and he left work early and came home and we went over it.
That was a scary, scary day.
And A good one. We now knew what we were facing, and wouldn't even begin to kid ourselves that we could "fix" this without counseling.
The more we learned together about SA, the more he saw himself, the more I made it safe to be honest, the more it happened.
He's come very, very far.
I am NOT recommending my path to anyone. He has healed tremendously, but I had horible boundaries, or horrible boundary enforcement, all along the way. I did not act in my best interest, and I did not take care of my own mental and physical health like a responsible adult through all of this.
Our end result does look like it is going to be a good one, but there are much wiser ways to get there than the way I went.
do you ever feel whole again after this?
My SO is on recovery for SA & is not an alcoholic but he agreed not to drink when not with me because it makes him more likely to act out.
He drank while out of town & lied about it. He said it's a part of his job to drink with the clients.
It was a boundary I had set & he had agreed to.
I've been seeing a CSAT for IC once a week. SAH is suppose to see his CSAT every week, but that hasn't happened yet but will. Our insurance will only cover a $50 copay per person per session, so we are already up to $100/wk just in IC. Now my IC is begging me to join her Women's Therapy Group, meeting once a week. Another $50.
SAH & I agreed going in that we can't worry about cost. We don't have any debt, and it's something we are just going to have to take on in order to heal. SAH makes over $100k, but we just about live paycheck-to-paycheck. I'm a SAHM.
I HAVE to tell him tonight that I'm going to start this group therapy. C said to TELL him I'm going to do it and he can either watch the kids or we can find a babysitter (which you are talking big bucks to watch 4 small kids).
I'm TERRIFIED. I know I'm not suppose to worry about what he thinks, but I'm afraid he'll be unhappy with me (I know, who cares). He's going to be even more stressed about the cost. And worst of all, Mondays is his busiest day and he usually doesn't get home until late (owns his own business), so I'm not even sure he CAN get home early to watch the kids.
I KNOW this is something I NEED to do for me. I'm just so afraid to stand up to him about it!
Please give me some encouragement!
Perhaps there is some small place you both can cut back, for just a while, to make the financial strain not quite so draining.
But, with 4 kids, a healthy marriage is a necessity. Period. That is what you both want to model for your children, and it is just as important (if not more) than saving up for college. Because college doesn't do any good, if you don't have the emotional stability to hold down a decent job, and have a healthy relationship with someone.
Oh, honey, words just don't cut it.
(((((((((7yrs and family)))))))
Plz take care of yourself
Sorry for your loss.
Please take care of yourself. We're all here if you need a shoulder.
Do you ever feel whole again after all this?
Yes. Absolutely yes.
I know its tough to know it, much less feel it right now, but you ARE whole right now. Today. Yesterday. Tomorrow.
If you know your H's story and can see how you didn't make him this way and you can't unmake him this way, it helps, but it isn't necessary.
I always KNEW I am a good person. And a good wife. And an attractive (enough) woman. I was disappointed for years that my H wouldn't, couldn't, didn't seem to see this in me, but I knew that didn't mean I wasn't. I always felt like I got the short end of the stick in marraige, but I knew I didn't deserve it.
I have always been whole. It is my M that has been "not whole", heck not even half! Maybe a black hole!
That is what is changing now.
Am I healed from the trauma of all this yet? Not quite, I'm getting there. But that doesn't mean I'm not whole, just still stinging some.
You'll get there honey. Take time to work on you, always be true to yourself. We cannot control if or when those who we love might betray us. We can only try our hardest not to betray ourselves.
Thanks for your words of support. My WH told me today that we're done, so I guess I can give up trying to figure things out. He gave me his list of EAs and PAs over the years and then said he didn't think we'd be able to work through all the betrayal. The sad thing is if I saw a real dedication to R & recovery I would have stood by him. This hurts so much.
[This message edited by broken11 at 5:38 PM, May 8th (Friday)]
I am so sorry. Please still come here and let us be here for you. You are a great, strong, wonderful woman. I am sure you are hurting right now, I wish I could help.