Last year I was feeling like divorce was imminent, too. Lots of fear, but I didn't want to think about it. I was just angry about all of the ways HE put us in that position. So I know that sometimes people need to face their fears to get past them. So I spent a morning exploring and really giving into the possibility. I looked up child support laws and calculations. I looked at budgeting. I really thought about surviving with my son in a smaller house, in case support didn't let me keep this one. (I work at home-preschool/daycare, so it would affect so many things)
I still didn't want it.
Still felt like he was selfish ass for not making more of an effort and damaging our marriage.
What I gained though, was the knowledge that I could do it. I would survive.
I thought about all of the women that do it with far worse circumstances.
I still didn't want it. I sure didn't think it was the better option, yet. But I realized that SAH was a part of the M. If he didn't work at this, I couldn't change that. I also knew could not stay married if it didn't change.
I think I am trying to say that you seem to be fueled by your fears. Your fear that it has gone beyond just internet, your fear of divorcing... Go ahead and face those fears.
Your SAH will be the one to lose out if he doesn't face his. You can't control whether he sees that this is all worth it. You can only decide that you are worth taking care of yourself.
WHAT SHOULD I DO??????
You should take a deep breath...and detach. You are taking care of you and that's all you can do at this point. It shouldn't be an option. You didn't choose this, but you are choosing to try and heal the pain it has caused and, incidentally, protect your marriage and family. Please don't feel guilty for this.
Simply keep breathing and try not to predict what he's thinking, what he's going to do, etc. etc. You can't control any of that. Control what you CAN control -- ie. your own actions -- and let go of the rest. Not easy, I know...but possible.
I've been trying to do research all day on two fronts -- what the cost would be to put the kids in daycare two days a week vs. how much I can make in those two days and the cost of daycare full-time, cost of housing, etc -- basically a scenario for if he decides to throw in the towel.
WELL, we have four kids under the age of 6. A REASONABLE daycare for the four of them comes to about $530 a WEEK. That's $25k per year just for childcare. I can only reasonably bring in a salary of $25-35k if I went back to work full time. THAT was kind of scary.
But I also found between child support and alimony I would be due about $4k a month if we D. Looks like if we move into a townhouse (or smaller/cheaper house) and pinch pennies, I can get along with that -- without having to put the kids in daycare. Once they are all in elementary school I'd probably re-evaluate, but for right now I think it can be done, which has alleviated my fears GREATLY.
So we'll see what happens when he comes home tonight. Yes, it's possible he MAY just say he's done, whether or not it's due to finances or just that he doesn't want to be in therapy (since he doesn't even think he has a problem). But at least now I'm calmer because IF he does up and leave us, he'll have to pay enough where we can manage.
Wow! Broken, 2trusting and EO said anything I would have thought of.
Straight math - $150 a session for a CSAT X 52 weeks a year = $7,800. For both of you = $15,600.
That is cheaper than many, many, many folks spend on 2 lawyers for the D process. For either outcome, it is going to be costly.
And like too trusting points out, sometims when we imagine the worst case scenario outcome and figure out how we can manage that, anxiety about things can lessen.
And maybe understanding that you CAN handle the worst case scenario will help you detach as EO says. Know what you need for you, set your boundaries and let go of trying to control the outcome of the storm. Instead, control that you weather it in as healthy a manner as you possibly can.
edited for typos (I always have to!)
My SAH had most of his A activities during work hours AT work, or at lunch. His time was incredibly flexible. So after the As were out, one of things we agreed to, was for him to bring his work computer home. I very rarely even ask to see it. Maybe once every 4 months. I am very well aware that he was very good at deleting before I even knew anything, but it somehow makes me feel better knowing I can.
So a few weeks ago, he just stops bringing it home. Most Mondays he just wouldn't bother, and then more and more days of the week he didn't bring it. I was already struggling with telling him not to bring it, trying to get past that phase. I just couldn't. Then when this starts, with no conversation about it, I started getting uncomfortable. He claims the reasons are normal ones like it is heavy and he just didn't feel like etc. Possible. My issue is that he just stopped bringing it regularly without talking about it with me. It wasn't too heavy for the past year and half?
The same issue is related to lunch/work. He claims to be more open about his work day. He's not. He is going to lunch, coming back and not even letting me know. This was a big issue before finding out about SA diagnosis. So in the past few weeks he talks to me less and less, leaves when he wants etc.
I know I need to not need this! Mostly I am stuck in this wondering WHY the change. I trust myself now to know when things are not right, so am I just convincing myself that I need these things to "know" for sure?
These two behavior changes at around the same time have me worried. Not hugely, but quite uncomfortable.
At the same time I feel crazy expecting these things, the contact, his lunch activity, the computer access etc,
Then I just get so damn angry that I even care now what he does at lunch or work! I never thought about it before.
How do I find the balance?
It's been a long time since I've been on this board but not a week has gone by that I haven't thought of you all and hoped you were continuing to heal.
We just came up on the anniversary of D-day. H has had a couple of porn slip ups but by and large has been working on his recovery. As long as he takes his meds and is aware of his triggers, he's been in control of his temptations.
In the 11 years we've been together, every summer he has done something to hurt me. As a result, I find my panic attacks increasing as we get into summer. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop. I keep waiting to find he's been looking at craigslist or hitting adult friend type sites again. I can't live my life like this. I used to enjoy summer.
I used to have a rule with my WH that he needed to keep his laptop in view. Then one day he moved it to the other side of the room. I felt funny, but didn't push it. Later I found out why. Trust your gut. This sounds like something you need to really talk about. I know our situations aren't the same, but I kept swelching(is that a word?) those feelings and I was right to have them.
[This message edited by broken11 at 7:56 AM, June 10th (Wednesday)]
If I were you, I'd install eBlaster on the laptop without him knowing. You can check it remotely (without his knowledge) and at least be able to alleviate your fears.
What do YOU need to feel safe?
(Man, I feel awkward giving advice when my own life is such a cluster-fuck!)
(Man, I feel awkward giving advice when my own life is such a cluster-fuck!)
Me too!! I think we all need eachother though. Someone at my COSA meeting actually thanked me for some insight I gave them and I thought "how is that possible?!"
I feel the same way, like I have ANY business giving advice. I have learned that I am better about following it if I give it.
On the computer issue; the laptop is actually his work laptop. His personal one I do check maybe once every 3 weeks, cookies etc. I have noticed twice in the past couple months he deleted only part of the temp files. Smooth isn't he? ugh
the last time was about two days before he slipped (should be a stronger word) and viewed porn. That time he told me the second I walked in the house, right after he got off the phone with his sponsor, so in general, I feel that he isn't acting out per se.
I have stayed strong not putting anything on his computer. We have 6 computers in this house, (5 with internet) I have a keylogger on mine, and just put safeeyes on the one my son uses most. The keylogger I put on long before the As came out, for the teenagers.
I feel pretty good with those choices, as he has just in the past two weeks installed covenant eyes with one of the guys from group as accountability. That is huge progress in my eyes, and I had nothing to do with it.
Where I am having trouble is that I think part of my problem is how I feel when I see him having the freedom to go anywhere do anything during work. Part of it is the trauma of all I have learned, part is that I really feel he is withholding right now. I do trust that feeling nowadays.
He could be withholding that he is having contact we have agreed he won't, or that he is engaging in pre-acting out behaviors. He could be holding back some feelings. He could be slipping into the feelings of resisting the "control."
I don't know sometimes how to not get so damn upset and angry so fast. I felt like BW was describing, like I was going crazy this morning.
Thanks for your comments. Yes his boss really is like that & worse. He made the mistake of telling his boss he is a SA & in recovery thinking it would get his boss off his back. His boss is saying all kinds of things constantly trying to get him to drink & act out & break up with me cos I'm in the way. His boss is an active alcoholic/drug addict, SA I'm not sure about.
One of my boundaries is for my SA to look for another job, but not to quit until he has found a new one, as he needs to support his children & X wife.
Another boundary is not to go to that party & I will hold to it. He very well maybe moving out when he returns from his trip. He has talked his boss out of going to the party so far (the party is tonight) but as soon as the boss is drunk enough things could change. He seriously believes his job is in jeopardy so he will have to choose between feeding his children & staying with me. In the past I would have caved in because of that but now I will not. Not because I don't want him to feed his children but because I will not live with him any longer if he has to go to those parties.
The party wont be too risque as it is an advertising agency putting it on with professional women attending but I don't think an SA in early recovery should be there. I also want him to learn to set boundaries with his boss & consider my feelings.
I know his boss could be sued for his behavior but my SO said, & I know this to be true, that it would be hard to prove that is why he was let go. He is being paid as a contractor too.
I thought the webcam was gone after I confronted my wife. WW has treated me with more respect since I confronted her. She totally glossed over what she had been doing on the cam and did not give me transparency. Still, I felt that I had seen some limited progress, and maybe things would turn around naturally over time. I felt like wondering what she might be doing on her computer was not helping me.
Still, she has been up late on the computer. I did not think much of it at first. However this morning I found the cam in a hidden spot (easy to pull out and use) and confronted her about it. I reminded her that basically either the cam goes or I go. At first she was really pissed at me, but when I started mentioning all the things I was prepared to do short of divorce (at this time), she started to backpedal in a major way, got rid of the cam and begged me not to implement my plans (most of my ideas were creative options I came up with to distance myself or withdraw my support from her without actually separating or divorcing, a laundry list of different things).
My assertiveness in this case appears to have been somewhat effective in the very short term. It looks like she did get rid of the cam this time, and she seemed somewhat sorry.. However, no commitment to counseling or agreement that she has “a problem”. This is one of the biggest reasons I am angry with her, even more than anger with her not being intimate with me. Because of this I am going to continue to implement “the 180” with her.
Unfortunately, I think I need to go back to the drawing board and continue to think up creative ways to distance myself from my wife, up to and including divorce someday. To the extent that she “behaves better”, does counseling, or both, I will draw myself closer to her. To the extent she “misbehaves”, I will distance. It feels like a war.
I was daydreaming that she was correct when she said she didn’t have a problem and was not SA (I never specifically accused her of being a Sexual Addict, but described the problems in other ways that she denied). She appears to have failed her first test. I need to draw up more distancing options for the next time she slips.
Unfortunately I am contemplating having to hire a PI someday as an all-around check/inventory of the situation.
Is it possible after the second, third, fourth or fifth time I catch her she will admit she has a problem? Given everything else, I may have left by then.
[This message edited by Ethelred at 5:55 PM, June 9th (Tuesday)]
My STBXH hasn't found his low-point yet, he is happily pursuing his addiction, without me.
multiple A's, 2 LTA's,multiple indescretions...before and throughout our marriage
We did not speak at all last night. No mention or explanation about his comment that he "has a decision to make". I took a bath, read a book, and went to bed....where I stewed all night long. And the rage KICKED IN. I thought of how I've shamelessly pursued him, doing everything I can to "make" him love me and be loyal to me and all the horrible things he's done, how he's constantly been looking outside the marriage, treating me like shit, etc. I AM a good person and I AM worth being treated better than this!!!!
I know unloading my anger on him is NOT a good idea. It is not productive and will cause more problems.
So how do I constructively tell him that right now he makes me sick and I don't want to have anything to do with him for a while? I'm not sure where this is going or how we are going to resolve our problems (continue therapy or D), but I'm TIRED of being at his mercy.
Have you tried to do the 180 that the people on the general board talk about so much? I think it would help if you could find someway to detach a little.
Again, I'm in an awful situation and not one whose seen favorable results with anything I've tried-of course I know now that it's nothing I could have done.
You have a right to be angry and express that, but it sounds like everytime you do your H shuts you out more.
I AM a good person and I AM worth being treated better than this!!!!
You are! Hopefully the 180 will help you focus on you more.
I wish I had better tips for you. This is just a horrible place to be in life and I'm miserable. I hope and pray for the day when I can come here and promise that it gets better because it happened for me.
I AM a good person and I AM worth being treated better than this!!!
The ways I dealt with my rage were:
talking and talking and talking about it. To IC, my mom, my friends, I even called my sister once (who is not a horribly sympathetic person --her world is all black and white, so she just always tries to tell me what to do). I also vented on here out on general (that helped a lot--to actually get support & validtion for your anger), and I exercised, (once I threw the phone, but I don't recommend that!), and my favorite, putting on loud heavy music on my car radio (while in the car alone ), cranking it up and screaming along with the lyrics. I am not a screamer, and it was amazing to me how well getting that noise out of my stomach helped to ease the anger. I would usually end up laughing after a while (because I felt I would look totally insane to others), but it really helped. OH, and I cussed a lot. (I am also not a cusser, and most people that know me would have fallen over in shock to hear me!)
Other things people have used is punching bags, yardwork, housework, writing a letter to your spouse and burning it, etc....)
As far as sharing with your H, you need to wait until you are feeling calm. If you are going for R, you can't go at him with a lot of anger or it will just make him defensive.
I never got to tell my H at all, because he would just hang up on me if I started saying anything he didn't want to hear (he lives 900 miles away from me).
When you are calm, you can say something like, "H, when you......., it really makes me feel ........
It hurt(s) me really bad when ........, because I feel like.......
How he handles it will depend on where he is in his addiction. I don't have any clues on how to handle an addict in full-fledge addiction, as in my H, other than detaching, because there is absolutely nothing I can say to him that would get thru to him.
But someone in recovery, that is thinking with a more "logical" brain, will be more able to handle a give and take type of relationship.
H still doesn't exactly comprehend just how much psychological damage he has inflicted and gets frustrated I'm not over things yet.
- In IC
- Distance myself from wife
What exactly are you guys recommend? I have thought about monitoring more but am now leaning towards ignoring her activity because it's driving me nuts. I don't want to give the ultimatum at this time. I don't want to divorce yet.