My WH is a SA and he is starting therapy with his IC next week and she said after a few sessions they will move into treatment for the addiction. I'm scared he is going to relapse in the meantime (which addiction or not, this is a dealbreaker for me and he knows it and *seems* to genuinely want to make this work).
I have no idea what to expect. Can anyone shed some light on their experiences with partners who have undergone treatment? Did they relapse? Did they get better? I guess what I'm really looking for is hope... Thanks for any thoughts!
presently working towards...well i don't know anymore...
First of all, sorry you are here. Secondly, is your WH seeing a CSAT? He needs evaluation and treatment from a CSAT. If he was having a heart problem, you would want him to see a cardiologist instead of his family doctor. The same is true when dealing with SA; they need to be seeing a CSAT.
Whether or not he is going to relapse, that depends on how serious he is about wanting to change (and not changing to appease you or to "save" the marriage, because when he gets mad at you he will use that as an excuse to relapse), and what tools he utilizes in his recovery. It is really important for the SA to go to 12 step in addition to seeing a CSAT. They need the social support and accountability of others who can call them out when needed. They need to be able to form new friendships and relationships with people who are also trying to be healthy.
More importantly, you need to focus on you right now. Regardless of whether your WH ends up in recovery or not, you need to work on yourself and seek IRL support. On the first page of this thread there are a lot of resources in terms of reading and support groups. Even if your WH does successfully enter recovery, it is important that you take care of your finances and prepare for the worst. That is reality when dealing with an addict. While there is nothing wrong with having hope, you really need to focus on you and your children first and foremost, not the addict. That is easier said then done in the beginning.
I will def get into the reading you recommended. At this time, I am fully prepared financially and mentally to move on. I really am. I spoke to my pediatrician about a possible referral to a therapist for my oldest son as the baby won't remember any of this. My heart breaks for the oldest as he is so close to his father and I think that will be the hardest thing to endure for both of us (me and my oldest) if his father has to leave.
I think I reached the "I've had enough but as trying to live up to my end of our marriage vows, I'm giving you this opportunity to get help."
I appreciate knowing I am not alone in this struggle. Thanks again for the thoughts and advice!
I'm scared to death of committing to R with my SAFWH for this very reason!
A young girl was trudging along a mountain path, trying to reach her grandmother's house.
It was bitter cold, and the wind cut like a knife.
When she was within sight of her destination, she heard a rustle at her feet.
Looking down, she saw a snake.
Before she could move, the snake spoke to her.
He said, "I am about to die.
It is too cold for me up here, and I am freezing.
There is no food in these mountains, and I am starving.
Please put me under your coat and take me with you."
"No," replied the girl. "I know your kind. You are a rattlesnake.
If I pick you up, you will bite me, and your bite is poisonous."
"No, no," said the snake. "If you help me, you will be my best friend.
I will treat you differently."
The little girl sat down on a rock for a moment to rest and think things over.
She looked at the beautiful markings on the snake and had to admit that it was the most beautiful snake she had ever seen.
Suddenly, she said, "I believe you. I will save you.
All living things deserve to be treated with kindness."
The little girl reached over, put the snake gently under her coat and proceeded toward her grandmother's house.
Within a moment, she felt a sharp pain in her side.
The snake had bitten her.
"How could you do this to me?" she cried.
"You promised that you would not bite me, and I trusted you!"
"You knew what I was when you picked me up," hissed the snake as he slithered away.
SAWH is having trouble changing his other behaviors so why would SA be any easier for him? I would wager that it's more difficult than his other problems. For example, last week, he decided he wasn't going to eat all day. He doesn't think this just might lead to over eating. By night time he's cranky and decides to eat (too much). He says he won't be doing that again as it's counter productive. Today he decides to try again.
I'm trying to detach and not care, but damn it's annoying. But even more troubling is the fact that I'm supposed to believe that he hasn't been acting out sexually in any way. right.
Tonight is his first night at SAA. Interested to see how it goes.
Our Ddays are only a week apart! My SAWH has been to 7 SA meetings so far. He told me it was kind of uncomfortable the first time but he said when it was over he wanted it to keep going. He said he definitely belonged there & each time he goes he comes home with a new understanding of just how out of control he was.
In my reading, I've been affirmed in my beliefs that my SAWH also has avoidance issue. We could never talk about anything for any reason that made him the slightest bit uncomfortable. I always thought it was so weird but alas, is just one piece of his very complex puzzle! I'm actually a little freaked out to find out what other ala carte items go along with this particular menu!
I'm already convinced that if your H goes in with an open mind he will benefit greatly from the other men who have BTDT. I am trying to establish a pattern for us that when he comes home from his SA meeting each week, he tells me about the topic & what he has learned about himself. It has been hard to get in to that routine because we never really talked about anything!
I'm going to my 2nd SAnon meeting tonight. Hopefully there will be more in attendance tonight so I can surround myself with fellow strugglers who know my special pain. To be truthful, I feel so far ahead of the women I met last week as a result of being on SI from the outset. So much good advice & I will always feel a special debt to the ones who opened my eyes & lifted me out of my pit of despair!
I hope the meeting goes well for your H Sadone! Keep the faith & always know that The Force is with you!
In my reading, I've been affirmed in my beliefs that my SAWH also has avoidance issue
I think we are all living different flavors of the same life...
This was the topic at MC this week. So amazing that you brought this up. SAfWH is a master at this. I ask him to do something, he promises he will, he doesn't, I feel betrayed all over again. Why doesn't he do it? He forgot, he didn't get around to it, he didn't quite know how to go about it, blah, blah, blah. MUCH better just to say, "SK, I really don't want to do that," or "I'm trying to figure that out, I WILL get to it," SOMETHING rather than AVOIDING it. MC said it is the hallmark of addiction. Since addicts cater to their primal urges, they seek only to satisfy their immediate pleasure areas of the brain. PLANNING is a higher function, and they just aren't good at that, don't choose to work at that. She said to make promises and keep them, or to be honest and say to oneself, "I'm avoiding this task, why?" is a function of recovery, of the honesty that is required in recovery and in the 12 step process.
One thing that also came out of our session that wasn't necessarily positive, wasn't negative either...it has taken 4 F*CKING YEARS for him to get to this point. To the point where we can even talk about any of this. Where he is even partly insightful or open enough to understand this. 4 YEARS of sobriety and regular attendance at SA, IC and reading whatever I stuck under his nose. I have been waiting. Not only waiting before for a real marriage, before I knew about the acting out, just that something was very wrong, but I have been waiting for these past 4 years for him to wake up and help me fix this marriage. And apparently, he wasn't healed enough to do so, because he was such damaged goods. And during that 4 years, I have become a hardened, unpleasant, shut down, b*tch. Because I am afraid to open up again, afraid to try again, afraid to put myself out there. The effort has always been too hard and futile to boot.
So, I really don't know what I am doing next...He says he isn't giving up.
I am bitter because I am convinced, convinced (!) the people who design the diagnostic surveys and the therapists have some ideas about what factors make sustained recovery more or less possible. I would hazard a guess that grave family of origin issues, escalation in the hierarchy of sexual acting out, co-addictions, certain other psychiatric disorders, length of addiction, past sexual abuse, even age and education may all be factors and that the more there are the less likely recovery is. Yet, notice no one is telling us these metrics. There is a gap between his therapist, my therapist, the marital therapist and the person who I feel owes ME as part of the marriage an honest assessment of the particular SA's prognosis.
To his credit, HE is the one that is now working VERY hard. The question is, is he really capable of "getting" it? He has tons of baggage, has ASD tendencies and has BPD.
[This message edited by scaredyKat at 7:06 PM, May 19th (Sunday)]
My thinking (which is still very new!) is that there are two hurdles for me to remain in the marriage 1) recovery; and 2) we have to rebuild a satisfying marital relationship. Individual SA recovery alone is not enough.
I hear you on the financial hit. My standard of living will definitely change. I understand being afraid of being alone too. It is hard to be alone -- we are social animals. But I have been thinking alot to myself that there is no way for a healthy marital recovery to occur unless I am at the end of the day able to leave and know I have what it takes internally to create a satisfying life on my own. Otherwise rebuilding the marriage is going to be stymied by fear, desperation, and lack of real choice to stay. Anyway, you know much more than me at three weeks in! These are just my own musings at this early juncture.
All of this came to light when I was 55 years old. That's too old to start over. Not that I wasn't used to being alone, I was so used to that! But the financial hits would be more than I was willing to take, considering that I had sacrificed for years, budgeting and saving while he squandered money on whores. Ooops! There's that anger again!
I think (!) I would have made a different decision about staying if I had been younger.
And it's not even about fixing the marriage. I still think that ultimately, this probably can't be fixed. But I can't help but care about him...and about me. No matter what happens, I really think he will always be family. Not in the codependent kind of way. After having a few really dark days, I feel surprisingly detached. He may yet decide not to get better, but that's no longer my problem. I don't want to control everything any more. It's too tiring.
I will turn 57 in just a few months & find myself in that awful position of having to try to make decisions for my future based on the cards I now hold. The business we owned for the past 13 years plummeted in 2008 & right now we are so in debt it is extremely unlikely we will ever be able to make our way out of this hole.
I'm learning that SA's tend to fantasize in many aspects of life. My SAWH is convinced that things will work out for our business however, it doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that it is highly unlikely. He totally avoids dealing with this as well as so many other important aspects of our life.
I'm truly baffled at why I'm still here. I do love him however, it's not the same kind of love & it never will be. Some days it seems so clear that I need to stay the course but others I wonder what in the hell am I doing.
This was not what I envisioned for my life but, since it is my reality I guess I'll keep going...one day at a time. Sometimes 10 minutes at a time.
At our last MC, I vented about how frustrated I was that it has taken so long for SAfWH "recover" and make the effort to work on our marriage. He said a few things that made sense. "I still wasn't a worthwhile person four years ago." (beginning recovery) "It took me a long time to process everything I was learning. I just couldn't take it all in any faster"
Maybe that does explain it. It may help me deal with my frustration a bit, and maybe it will help those of you who are married to SAs attempting to recover.
Anyway, SAfWH worked SO hard all week to prepare a lovely birthday party for me. There were only a few people, just my wonderful family, but he cooked all week, had the yard and the house looking spiffy (he's retired already) Cakes, and bought some thoughtful gifts that included 2 outings for us, a play, a concert and an overnight stay for the night of the concert. A lot of effort went into this birthday and I do appreciate it.
I want to say to him, "Keep it up. Give me a summer of this effort. Show me for 3 months that you are remorseful, show me this kind of amends. Maybe then I will be able to heal." But I can't. Why can't I say this?
He has been my only sexual partner & I've been very proud of the fact I kept myself for him but it only adds to the devastation of realizing it meant nothing to him.
Its so crazy to me that some days I feel so positive about R then days like today I just don't think I have it in me. I guess that's why they say to wait a year huh?
After our daughter died, I imagined my life as a figurine made of very fragile glass. It somehow got knocked over & shattered to pieces. I loved it so much that instead of trashing it, I decided to painstakingly glue it back together. I have it back but, it will never look the same as it did.
Why can't we just line em up & shoot em?
SK - Did you say anything to him? I really liked what you said and might use it!
Outta - Great analogy! My marriage isn't going to be the same but honestly, it was so crappy most of the time, that it isn't all bad for it to change.
As for me, same story, I am also having in certain ways the marriage I always wanted! I mean not the SA obviously but calls, gifts, date night organizing, ongoing expressions of appreciation and love. I am usually able to appreciate the nice gestures, like H went all out on mother's day. I think what is pivotal for me is that my H feels even worse than I do about this entire mess. And that is saying a lot as I feel about a billion shades of miserable. Also, he is putting the same degree of effort into his treatment as he does into special occasion days like mother's day - - otherwise I wouldn't be able to enjoy the special occasion as much because I would be nervous about his treatment commitment, getting more attached to him, etc.
I didn't tell you all but I joined a gym with great classes, a healing therapy pool, etc and have been going every single day. Highly rec!!