I need to be talked down here. My discussion with the CSAT indicated that it would be a bad idea for either of us to tell his parents. They said my husband was deeply ashamed, he didn't need to be shamed for all time, and once he was in recovery and in a place of strength he might or might not choose to tell them. And I agree with all of that.
However, his parents just arranged to come visit for a weekend. Husband has been extremely depressed following D-Day. They asked if they could talk to me about his depression and treatment and he explained not a good idea as we are having marital problems. So now they are flying in on their capes for my husband's birthday. They most likely assume that I have ditched him in his depression (because they don't know his depression was brought on by acting out with a stripper/prostitute). And that drives me crazy! I would never do that to someone. And how the heck am I supposed to act during this visit and on his birthday celebration? It also burns because I have no family left and my family was not the type to help in a crisis anyway.
Has anyone confronted anything like this? Struggling . . .
[This message edited by cds22 at 11:37 AM, May 8th (Wednesday)]
CDS, I had a similar predicament right after DDay. I had to visit my family and MIL and could not tell them. Told them I had a UTI so they wouldn't think I was really sick or about to leave DH. Chances are his FOO issues had a LOT to do with him becoming SA, so it is best they aren't part of it now.
My M is okay. He's in the stage where he's having trouble going from order 1 to order 2 change, truly embracing the loss of control, addressing hard-core FOO and his really bad and invasive character defect of compulsive dishonesty. I can see such change and growth in him. But I can't say I'm not disappointed he is not much farther along. He had a long fall from grace though, so a longer distance to climb I guess. So we can't really do MC or address stuff like that in earnest until he passes these hurdles. I am past my equivalent hurdles so it is frustrating that I passed him up and am waiting on him to catch up. That it is my choice to wait on him. That I wrote a sentence with a triple negative in this paragraph so clearly I do have other things to address.
But I am happier than I have been in months. I am preparing for a new chapter in my life. I can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. And even if it turns out to be an oncoming train, I can handle it and will be fine. I've been through worse and survived. I am happy to be here and happy to be alive.
[This message edited by hathnofury at 3:40 PM, May 8th (Wednesday)]
I adamantly rejected the codep model of SA. Many of us did. I still got so much support and love from the sisterhood and the knowledge that I wasn't alone in this trauma. Of course, the particular group of women may have a lot to do with my positive experience. I came to understand that I did have some codep traits in the abusive relationship between my SAfWH and myself, but certainly not in the same way as someone with knowledge of the addiction, living with it and putting up with it.
Don't discount the strength that you can get in just being with others who have the same stories. Like SI, you'll take what you need and leave the rest. It isn't a place with a set in stone dogma, it's a place of respite and understanding, where others can relate to your life.
Give it 2-3 visits to see if you can find comfort there.
I went to my first S-ANON meeting tonight. I was terrified, but I went!!
Yay me! :)
Hope everyone is doing well. Will check in tomorrow.
Maybe I should have posted that in the codependent thread. With SA, I certainly gravitate toward the trauma model.
And many spouses are neither. SAs are just that good at hiding and of course master manipulators.
*edit* I just read an article about the difference between true sex addiction and porn addiction. Now I'm wondering if I belong here or not! Maybe he was just a jerk for having a five year long emotional affair. That part really had no part of his porn addiction anyway.
[This message edited by sadone29 at 8:20 AM, May 9th (Thursday)]
It just stated how porn addiction actually harms sexuality and the addict has trouble with real sex, whereas with sex addiction, the person actually has sex and acts out in the real world.
I think I may be the one minimizing in the relationship right now. I keep thinking...he never actually physically acted out. I get stuck thinking that maybe it's not that bad. I keep comparing with others.
You're right about the EA. I hate even calling it that, since there was a sexual component to their connection. But since they never had sex, I don't know what to call it.
I see today that I need to detach again and focus on my own healing.
Going to be busy the next few days, still. Can't wait for school to finish.
I have wondered if it would be helpful to have groups divided into porn only or some gradation of severity of SA. Frankly, my husband and I are both a little worried that a group may give him new ideas such as chat rooms etc or may "normalize" deviant behavior. However, my H's therapist though says that it can be helpful for "porn-only" or lower-level SAs to see what can happen if they don't get their compulsive behavior under control. FWIW, at our treatment place the SA is in IC for a few months and then group is added.
Quick recap, SAWH failed his poly in November, so to address my concerns if the children were safe with him in the home (I had no evidence to suggest they were in danger, I wanted independent verification) they sent him to a guy they send any of their addicts that show possible predator tendencies. This guy does psych evals for the courts of real offenders all the time, knows his stuff. I talked to him as part of the evaluation, and he affirmed he was a low risk to the kids, and told me what red flags to look for in the future.
Anyway, he wrote up a long report and it took forever for my CSAT to get a copy for logistical reasons. We finally got to discuss it today, six months later. My main concern was to get my CSAT's take on the evaluation, see if their were other potential mental health issues that I needed to be aware of. He's never really fit the classic NPD mold but I have always suspected some sort of mental issue.
I found out why God and the universe waited until today for me to hear about this report. I am two days fresh from my DD's IEP evaluation at her elementary school. She is most definitely on the autism spectrum and highly likely Asperger's. She does not fit the classic mold, but if you could imagine Sheldon from Big Bang Theory as a seven year old girl, that's my kid. I heard all sorts of experts tell me about her traits and behaviors and so forth, how it played into ASD/Asperger's and how they could accommodate her in the public schools setting and help her learn skills to manage on her own down the line.
Then today I heard my CSAT read the highlights of the evaluation, with her input and interpretation...and a lot of it was just like the meeting I just had two days ago. The only difference between him and DD is he was shamed greatly as a child, so he was forced into learning shame in spades (DD is not capable of it), his exposure to porn and sexual stuff at an early age, and thirty more years of life experience to learn how to hide not only his addiction but his Asperger's so he can appear "normal". The NPD traits he does have are the ones that overlap with Asperger's, which is why it felt similar but not right. And a bunch of other stuff I won't go into, but more missing pieces of the puzzle.
Anyway, I told my CSAT about what I was seeing/hearing from the report, and she remarked that people on the autism spectrum may require different treatment in some of the areas of SA, which may be part of his struggle. At the very least makes recovery more difficult/challenging. This is not to excuse his behavior or where he is in recovery, but it is another piece of the puzzle I have been missing. There's some specific therapy he could benefit from in addition to what he's doing. And of course I think knowing he is likely ASD/Aspergers will change how I think and approach things with him, and once his CSAT gets wind of this it may for his CSAT as well.
Anyway, how this fits into ME and MY healing is validation I am not crazy. There is a mental health issue in the mix, I knew that boy ain't right as it were. I just have to figure out now how this new info impacts my needs/boundaries/healing/future/etc.
Like I don't have enough to do. Anyway, I suppose it could be worse. And it might be. Whatever, I got this.