I had been going to Coda meetings but I found out about Cosa. Much better for me. The others have been or are where I am. The suggested literature is more relevant. Nothing wrong with Coda at all but it seems to me to deal more with those who are Co Dep with substance addicts than with process addicts.
I'm going to my first COSA meeting tonight
What kills me is how he admits that he probably is one, but won't work on our marriage and is just moving on with someone new. Everyone, keeps telling me that is a gift, but I don't see it that way. I love my H, and feel if he could work on this (after he truly worked on his R) we'd have a great life. Maybe it's denial, but that is not what my heart is telling me.
I just got an email and can tell he sent it from the OW's house. He has just moved on with someone else. He has never been alone. Ever! It makes me so frustrated.
I found lots of old profiles he set up through the years this weekend. I'd found some the first time he cheated, but didn't really know how bad it was.
Sorry this is just a rant/ramble. I hurt so much from all this. I'm disgusted too, and feel so dirty. I read the MASH chapter about being traumatized sexually from this and just balled. I feel so unsafe around all men right now.
I just don't know how to cope with this. Last week I was feeling strong and this week I feel so depressed. I honestly wouldn't be upset if something happened to me. How messed up is that? I just don't have anything to hope or look forward to right now.
I really feel your pain. You situation could be describing mine. My WW is flagrant, and fully in her addiction and denial of it. She was gone Fri morning when I got up at 6:00 AM with her flight bag etc. I havent heard from her since. SHe has her cell phone but I'm not going to call it. I am working on myself instead. Taking inventory and making decisions. I hope you are doing something very positive or very nice for yourself this weekend.
I too found that while I need to go to CODA as I really am very CD (but in recovery I feel), the fellowship of S-Anon targets what I really need to work on right now and my focus is entirely on me these days and my recovery.
Recovery Nation has a tremendous online programme that is free for partners of SAs and the structured Lesson Plan is doing amazing things for me as I work it. I read and learn even more than I have from at least 20+ books to date on addiction and SAs.
Your last post seems like you are heading down a very healthy direction. Power to you!
Your state of mind appears to be very normal, one step ahead and two steps backwards. You DO have something to look forwards to -- you can have a life ahead that does not involve someone else screwing you up. Remember the feeling that you had last week about being strong and how good did that feel? You had the power to make that feeling happen and nothing has changed.
You can choose to learn something from this stage of your life and trust me you have the framework to be a healthy, lovable individual who will send out the vibes to attract one really wonderful person that you deserve to have!
I could go for weeks being positive then something would trigger me and my H is working his recovery hard and ticking all the right boxes. A couple of things recently have occurred but they have not shaken me as they once did and know that it is now almost two years since discovery so I am a slow learner!
One of the things I have to find out about myself is what was it about my partner's addiction that I found so attractive. No, I lived with this man for 7 years without knowing he had an addiction. This I believe I will learn through the recovery steps I am taking for me both in the fellowships of 12 step programmes, Recovery Nation and this amazing place called Surviving Infidelity.
Your experiences and stories have helped me immensely to understand that I am not alone or different or worse off than anyone else.
[This message edited by savvyhippie at 2:11 AM, May 25th (Monday)]
Basically I sat down a couple of days ago to check my email and my WS forgot to log out of one of his secret email accounts and I was able to look at his emails. I was devastated to find out that he had been meeting random people that he met off of CL and porn sites for sex
I confronted him and he denied, denied, denied. Since D-Day he has finally admitted to being with one married couple a year ago, but claims he only messed around with the husband and not the wife (i'm not buying it. I read the email and it sounds like he had sex with the wife too). My WS logged into his email account as soon as he got to work and deleted everything so I wasn't able to print anything out for evidence. Now he's trying to twist things around to make me feel like i'm going crazy, but I know what I read and he's guilty as charged! Even if he did only mess around with the husband as he claims, that is still unacceptable to me and cheating is cheating in my book!
My WS is bi-sexual (obviously), but he says he doesn't have any romantic feelings at all for men and just enjoys the thrill of showing up, getting the sexual gratification, basically saying "Thanks, it was nice knowing you" and walking out and pretending like it never happened.
I know in some sick way he loves me, but he is constantly placing ads and looking at porn and trying to hook up with random strangers for meaningless one night stands
My WS doesn't think he has a problem. At this point I haven't really been able to seriously talk to him because he's been gone this weekend for work, but I really want to push therapy. I think he needs someone who specializes in SA. My WS has a history of lying and being deceitful. He has no remorse about it. He is one of those people that thinks nothing is ever his fault and he has no problem shifting the blame onto someone else. He is probably one of the biggest liars i've ever met and i'm married to him. He is blaming all of this on me. He says that i'm not affectionate enough and that he feels justified in what he did because I don't give him what he needs. I bend over backwards for him, and trust me there is NO amount of affection or attention that can satisfy the man. He has cheated in every single relationship he's ever had. If I leave him, he will eventually cheat on the next girl.
We have 2 young kids and i'm scared. I don't know what to do. My WS wants to just push this under the rug like everything else and pretend it never happened. That's not going to fly with me. I know he will just continue his web of lies and continue to meet up with people behind my back. He wont stop, and quite honestly at this point I don't think he can stop. He can't go without porn. When he had to travel for work, he was even looking at porn sites through his Blackberry
It completely rules his life. Even last night he was trying to convince me to have sex with him and he kept talking about sexy pictures that turn him on. I was so disturbed by it. I mean i'm so mad i'm thinking about leaving the jerk, he just got caught cheating, and all he can talk about is porn and getting off?
There is so much more I can say but I suppose i've talked enough for one night. I am hoping to get some support from other people who are going through something similar. I don't have anyone to talk to about this and i'm too ashamed to tell anyone. Thanks for reading.
He has never been alone.
I'm disgusted too, and feel so dirty
I read the MASH chapter about being traumatized sexually from this and just balled
I honestly wouldn't be upset if something happened to me
I am living proof that you can get thru this and come out the other end stronger and happier.
I felt exactly like that, for years actually, with my STBXH (before I even knew about his addiction, I just knew things weren't right). I gained 30 pounds (eating my issues away, and hiding from my unhappiness), --I thought I was totally in love with my H, and was happy, but looking back, I was just kidding myself. I knew there was something wrong, I just didn't want to face it, on the surface everything seemed okay, and I just ignored the little gnawing feelings (that turned into 30 pounds), and put on a happy face for the world and my family.
I read your profile. D-day for me was in July. I still married him in August How is that for hysterical bonding! I couldn't believe we wouldn't be able to work things out, I thought he was the love of my life, and he said all the right things at that time. (He just didn't mean them).
I had so many mornings I didn't care if I woke up, and with the eating, looking back, I had a plan. I was planning on giving myself a heart attack in the long run. I figured I needed to hang on another 8 years to get dd graduated, then if I had a heart attack, ok. That was fine. So I thought I would slowly kill myself thru food.
I have detached, (with the unwavering support of the incredible people on this site), and was shown how incredibly manipulative and abusive my STBX could be while in his addiction. I would post certain things he would do or say, that would confuse me (because one of the things an addict is very adept at is making others doubt themselves), and the women on here who had already gone thru all this would lay it on straight and call his BS. And my feelings slowly left him. I realized, hey, how dare he treat me this way. I am a good person. I was a good wife. I treated him well. He says nasty things to me, and tries to control me, and tries to make me believe his lies. Bullsh*t to that.
I took small steps at a time. First I started saving a tiny bit of money. Then I got a job resume together. Then I enrolled in college. I refinanced my home. I met with a lawyer. I bought myself a used drum set. I am making new friends.
Step by step I took control back over my life, and I am 25 pounds thinner, happier, my friends tell me the stress is gone from my face, and I am happy to be alive. I don't want to die! I want to live, and am excited by the future!
You can get there, don't give up. Just remember, small steps at a time. Hang in there!
ETA: Oh, it kind of sounds like your H is moving the same path as mine; he would rather move on than face his addiction. Yes. It is a gift. He can't stay with you. You KNOW now (who he really is). You represent truth. And he has to run from the truth. Of course these guys could get better and have a healthy relationship if they chose to. But some do not. Some selfishly choose to nurse their addictions. It is okay with me now if my H and his addiction live happily ever after, because I have a much better future without him.
Keep working your codependency programs!
[This message edited by NaiveAgain at 7:38 AM, May 25th (Monday)]
It actually helped me when I realized that H was SA long before I met him (I just didn't learn about it till 24 years after I met him). You didn't make him this way, he didn't turn ths way because you were inadequate, he was this way a long, long time. And at some point, to him, you were worth the effort of the tremendous charade he needed to pull off to keep you. That he won't try to fix this has more to do with how little he trusts himself to fix it and how little he trusts that he is loveable and how little he trusts in forgiveness. His rejecting recovery is more self-loathing rather than belief that your relationship isn't worth it.
edited for typos (I always have to!)
Welcome to the club within the club no one ever wanted to join.
Get a copy of Mending A Shattered Heart (MASH) as soon as you can, it really is a great resource. She has a detailed section in there about men who act out with other men as part of their addicition. I haven't had to deal with that myself, but there are others here who have. Both the book and they can help you "cope" or wrap your head around that aspect.
I think this early on, you probably need to understand that whatever you know right now is likely the tip of the iceberg. This disease thrives in the SA's ability to secretly act out. My H had a history of some pretty stomach turning m-bating activities that went all the way back to when he was about 10 years old. There was just no way I would have had any idea that people even did the things he did, much less my own H was doing them for years and years.
You didn't cause this in him and you aren't going to be able to cure him of this.
My H, believe it or not, was really a good enough person that I could see that this disease did not define who he is/was. He couldn't see or believe this for a long time.
Until he gets sober and in recovery, it is impossible to R with him, so you need to figure out the best ways to protect yourself from more harm and take care of yourself.
That usually involves detaching - from the illness-first. Once I could do that, it was much simpler to make and enforce healthy boundaries to take care of myself. These two steps do not require his cooperation, these are what you do for you. Here is a link to a good site on boundaries:
Read MASH, post here often.
I'm sorry to be so short, but my 18month old is awake now, and she can really destroy her room in a hurry (think finger-painting in earth-tones). I'll check back in on ya later. It is low here and on the big boards on the weekend. Hang in there, hun.
I don't know if you have read much on this or not, but one of our senior members on this thread, 7yrsbetrayed, has an excellent list of resources put together; if you click on her profile and go under her journal, you will find it (the direct link is also been posted a few pages back, I just don't remember where).
The more research you do on this, the less alone you will feel!
I know in some sick way he loves me
And when I would let him down, by being a normal human with my own feelings, it would throw everything off, because he needed me to be a "certain way", as he is busy living in his sick, addict world right now.
Even last night he was trying to convince me to have sex with him and he kept talking about sexy pictures that turn him on. I was so disturbed by it. I mean i'm so mad i'm thinking about leaving the jerk, he just got caught cheating, and all he can talk about is porn and getting off?
Counseling can be a relationship saver, if your H will go. Mine wouldn't. But many do. There will be others along that can maybe give better advice on how to let your H know you feel he has a problem, and setting boundaries (which you will need to keep yourself safe).
Please take care of yourself. Many of us in this type of situation end up losing ourselves, as we throw all our energy into our partner, and forget who we are. Do some little things to remember who you truly are, it will help strengthen you to deal with this.
Take care, and keep posting, weekends and holidays can be slow here, but there are some wonderful people on these boards that have excellent advice, and have already walked the road you are on.
Your user name says it all. Your husband's addiction is the single most important thing in his life -- not you, not the kids. And that's a recipe for lifelong pain if you don't remove yourself from it.
You need to set some boundaries. Don't get into any discussions about what he did or didn't do, whether it's cheating or not... All that matters is that what he's doing is unacceptable and painful for you and damaging to the family. He can either own up to it and take steps toward recovery or he can continue to deny it and bury his feelings in his addiction. But YOU don't need to help him in either case. Your job is to take care of you and your kids -- to become the healthiest you possible in order to face the pain of a partner's addiction (and all that means) and arm your kids against going down the same path.
You can do this! It's not easy, but neither is living with an addict.
Please, as someone suggested, get yourself a copy of Mending a Shattered Heart, keep posting here and get strong. Start making demands to have your needs met. He can either choose to or not...but you shouldn't compromise what you need to feel safe and loved in order for him to feed an unhealthy addiction.
I thought I was totally in love with my H, and was happy, but looking back, I was just kidding myself. I knew there was something wrong, I just didn't want to face it, on the surface everything seemed okay, and I just ignored the little gnawing feelings (that turned into 30 pounds), and put on a happy face for the world and my family.
This has been one of the most shocking revelations in my recovery; the fact that I do not really love my H and have not for a very long time. Eating was my initial co-addiction. I developed many others and bounced around from one to the other. I still struggle with some of them, but I'm so much more aware and in control for the most part.
H is working really hard to stay sober. The problem is, he is white-knuckling it, and so I suspect he will go back to it, sooner or later. He has now shut down to any conversation about the A or the SA. I suspect that's because his chosen self-treatment is sucking him dry and he simply cannot 'go there' in conversations.
So, like NA, I'm slowly squirreling money away. I know I will have to leave at some point unless H has an epiphany. We are just basically existing in the same house. We get along great and have some nice times together. But there is no intimacy and we are just roommates.
My savings account is building up, getting there slowly, but it is getting there. It may take longer than I'd like to get to the point where I can start all over and survive until a decision for D is made and assets are divided. My IC directed me to make one of the rooms in my house just mine. Decorate it the way you want, etc. So the den is mine. I am shopping this week for a comfortable chair where I can sit and read, journal, etc. My IC feels this will be a good start to learning to live apart.
Thank you for your words of support. This rollarcoaster ride has really taken me down this week. I'm having trouble accepting the powerless part. I keep thinking "If I'd only". It's been eating me up.
My COSA meeting went well. I was a cry fest and felt like my story was the worst. The women were very nice. I'm glad I went. I didn't hear lots of the words because of my crying, but towards the end I didn't feel so alone and felt some peace. Of course, as soon as I got home I was down again.
I just need energy. I want to do fun things and enjoy them. I went to a movie this weekend and did ok. I kinda enjoyed myself. Pray that I hear back about a job this next week. I need something new to occupy my time. I've been watching way too much Lifetime.
I think you're doing better than you're giving yourself credit for. If you're able to enjoy yourself, even a little bit, then the crack that's letting in the light is at least there...and will widen as you work on healing your pain around this.
Cry until your eyes are out of tears, go to as many meetings as you need.
The "if onlys" will keep you mired in fantasy. I spent most of my childhood in that place -- "if only" my mom would stop drinking, "if only" my dad was nicer to her, "if only" I was a better kid.... and on and on. My mom stopped when she hit bottom...and it had nothing to do with anything I or anyone else did. She just got sick of her own life of addiction and wanted out. She would be the first to tell any of us that an addict will give up the addiction when they hit bottom...and that bottom will be different for every addict. But you can NOT control it. Once we recognize that our only task and responsibility is to take care of ourselves is can be quite freeing. Taking care of others -- their behavior, their feelings is exhausting and futile. For some of us, it's all we know...until we learn a healthier way to live.
Hang in there. You're on the path to a happier life...
Further to our pack of checking up only once a week (or once every two weeks in silla's case), I am glad to report that I checked my husband's two email accounts, notebook and cupboards yesterday. All clear
And I did not cheat by checking up before my self-imposed deadline. Having followed this routine for a few months, it's a lot easier now. In addition, you both are now my "accountability partners" so I have to keep my promise
How are you two doing in this regard? Do you have words of wisdom to share with other newer members struggling with obssessive checking-up?
Hang in there. We are making progress.
This makes my crap-o-meter go ballistic.
I've read most of this thread and am hoping to finish soon, and thought maybe I'd make a better introduction then. Thought that in the meantime I could offer something I copied from one of Carnes' books. I've read "Out of the Shadows" and have MaSH and the Reconciliation one on order.
Anyways, just thought this might be helpful to someone here. I copied it out for WH to take to his IC.
Is illicit, stolen or exploitive
Draws on fear for excitement
Re-enacts childhood abuses
Disconnects one from oneself
Creates world of unreality
Is self-destructive and dangerous
Uses conquest or power
Serves to medicate and kill pain
Requires double life
Is grim and joyless
Adds to self-esteem
Has no victims
Uses vulnerability for excitement
Cultivates sense of being adult
Furthers sense of self
Relies on safety
Is mutual and intimate
Takes responsibility for needs
May bring legitimate suffering
Originates in integrity
Integrates most authentic parts of self
Is fun and playful
Accepts the imperfect
Excerpt from Dont Call It Love by Patrick Carnes
[This message edited by 2EffedUp at 2:53 PM, May 25th (Monday)]
[This message edited by 2EffedUp at 2:51 PM, May 25th (Monday)]
You are not alone. All of us here have been affected by SA and are struggling daily. We are here for each other.
Naiveagain and Eternaloptimist have both given you golden advice. You have only discovered your husband's SA recently. The emotional roller-coaster is normal. I am still going through them one year out - though the intensity has lessen (thank god). You have been betrayed and hurt by someone whom you trusted and loved. It is one of the most traumatic experiences in life. You may feel angry, hurt, betrayed, shocked, disbelief, scared, alone, isolated, insecure, unattractive, morally superior, contaminated, lost, numb, exhausted, helpless, hopeless, and many other emotions, sometimes contradictory, sometimes all at the same time. You are not going nuts. You are a human being who is entitled to your feelings. Embrace your feelings - let yourself feel all the emotions. Feelings do not disappear just because you avoid them or bury them.
Right now, it is important to take care of yourself. Lets start from the most basic survival needs - are you eating balanced meals? are you drinking lots of water? are you sleeping well? have you seen your doctor for a full set of STD tests? have you spoken with your doctor about insomnia, anxiety attacks or depression?
You have taken an important first step in self-healing by joining a group. Finding us and posting here is also a postive step. Please also visit Dr. Patrick Carnes' website (you can google his name) and read some of his books. You will find that you are not alone.
Your husband has chosen to stay with OW instead of admitting to a problem and seeking help. Unfortunately, you cannot control him or his recovery. You can only look after yourself. In the meantime, set boundaries with consequences, and make sure you follow through.
You are in our thoughts. You will survive this - sometimes one step forward five steps back, but you will. Post often. We are here for each other.
The roller coaster of this journey is so unpredictable even three years past the D-Day that confirmed that H has a bona fide addiction. I don't love him anymore...I do love him so much...I haven't loved him for a long time...I have loved him since the moment I met him... Sigh!!
I've been waiting for my H to have an epiphany. I'm the one who had one today. I have not found one iota of evidence that H has been acting out in a number of weeks. He confirms this, although he acknowledges there is no way I should trust a liar, which he says he has been in this area most of our marriage.
He told me 'letting go' of the outcome has been of great benefit to him. When I don't, he works at it for ME. He says that does not work. He wants to do it for HIM first, and then us. When it's for me, the pressure is overwhelming and he has to work that much harder to stay on track and sober. When he takes me out of the picture, so to speak, he finds it a bit easier. Despite that he says he struggles every day.
He is praying for the SAA group to start up again in our area. There are no other resources for him. For valid reasons, he cannot go to Celebrate Recovery and I get that. I can't go either. Al-Anon is much more suitable even though I like what Stop said in that it's geared towards living with substance addicts, as opposed to process addicts. (Great revelation for me; thanks, Stop.) But right now, it's all I have.
SAH may be snowing me big time. I am prepared for that revelation. But what today has done for me is brought me back to concentrating on ME. I have slid back into waiting for his recovery to make me whole. It won't. I need to get back on program and taking care of me. By doing that, if he is handing me a load of manure, I'll be more prepared to leave and live. If he isn't lying, I'll be ready to fall in love with him all over again and rebuild together.
Just my ramblings for today. Next week, or even tomorrow, I may be back to where I was this morning.
I'm trying to take care of me. Eating has been hard. I've lost about 15lbs since this all happened and I didn't need to lose any weight. I find myself doing self destructive things. Not horrible, but not great. The not eating and drinking wine too much. I feel like I have to be numb before I can go to sleep.
I need to see a doctor and get the std tests. I've been on ADs before and had a terrible time with them. I have a prescription of zoloft, but I don't want to take it because it makes me feel even crazier. Once I see a doctor I'll talk to them about it.
I keep putting off seeing anyone because I don't have insurance. This is the first time in my life not to be insured. I was already dealing with depression because of my unemployment, but this has sent me into a complete tailspin.
I feel like a failure in every aspect of my life.
Thank you all for your kind responses. They do help empower me. I hope to be able to contribute someday. I don't feel like I'm strong enough to give anyone advice.