Scaredykat, I'd love to know more about these opportunities for video &/or just audio chatting. I was thinking that I feel in such good company here. It sounds so much more appealing than searching out for yet another means of support.
Thanks for being willing to do the research. I am a techno dummy!
I'm also up for trying the online video/audio chat. Whether or not I could take part would depend on if I could sequester myself away from prying ears and eyes at the required time.
That' my favorite way to talk with my girls! I'm getting pumped!
Video wise, Google Hangouts are easiest.
[This message edited by windowsnotwalls at 8:12 AM, June 21st (Friday)]
If you all don't mind another question and this one is rather personal and of the TMI variety. Has anyone ever heard of anyone, in group or group therapy, resuming a normal, consistently fulfilling sex life after this????
My H and I have been intimate recently (at my choice and with IC's OK after his abstinence period ended) and sometimes it is great and sometimes it is a complete disaster. The disaster times include me crying, me feeling huge anxiety and wanting to avoid anything that mentally summons "lap dance" to my mind, more insecurity about my body than I have ever had, certain sex acts that were performed on stripper are now out for me for at least a long while . . . it used to be so spontaneous and joyful and now it is not.
I am so sad that we have lost this too. Is this what my medium and long-term sex life is going to look like? :(
[This message edited by cds22 at 10:39 AM, June 21st (Friday)]
It's tough isn't it? I contemplated being intimate with H, but there's just no way for me to do that right now. He can't maintain SA's standard of sobriety for more than a few days at a time. A few days ago, he made a sexual comment about a part of my body he knows I'm self conscious about. In his eyes, it was probably a compliment, but it left me feeling even more unsafe and frankly, really disrespected.
I'm probably in a different situation since sex has rarely been spontaneous or joyful for me. My first sexual experience was very messed up and I guess could be labelled an assault. I never told anyone and last night my IC told me that I need to do extensive trauma work. So I'm looking forward to that, though it also terrifies me.
I think you should always do what feels right for you at the time. If intimacy is too much for you right now, your H can wait! I know it's another big loss to deal with, and you have to be kind to yourself first and foremost.
Now it is a different story. (I have to add that I'm not sure whether this is due to hormone fluctuations due to approaching menopause, or because of the situation being married to a fSA. For the last few months I have had little or no interest in sex. When we have sex it is usually because I feel I should. The thought of having sex causes me great anxiety now. I feel totally empty afterwards, and often have silent tears rolling down my cheeks. I keep thinking about all the people he had sex with over the years before he was found out, and it has killed all my desire for him. About a month ago I told SAfWH that sex was causing me to feel pressured and anxious so we would not be having any until further notice. I am almost two years from DDay now and I really don't know if or when my feelings will ever return. I'm not sure that things will ever be "normal" again.
I would call our recently resumed sex life uneven. Sometimes it has been great and felt very special. But if something enters my head, triggers me I suppose, then it becomes really sad for me very quick. On the other hand, it hard for me to go months and months without sex. Frankly, we have done enough long periods of abstaining from sex in the last two years of our marriage and it is something I have come to realize I need, regularly, in a relationship!
My H has been completely sober and full force in recovery for three months now. We have been std tested three ways to sunday including consultations with a head of an infectious disease departments -- and in my case, it appears to have been the oral sex only and very limited disease risk. And still it is crazy worrisome! Like you, I would not feel able to consider intimacy if he wasn't sober an in recovery. I think it is wise of you to wait.
I am so sorry to hear about your assault. That is horrible that that happened to you. That joy and safety should never, ever have been taken from you. Twice! Maybe a small silver lining to this entire sh*tfest is that we get the opportunity to heal things in ourselves. We all deserve that part of our lives to be a source of joy.
ETA: Notmetoo, I just saw your post. I am so sorry to read this. I don't have the experience to know if maybe MC would help? It is very hard if trust and intimacy is not there, or in my case not always there, for sex to be good.
I wonder if we all can get a bulk rate discount on vibrators. (wink)
[This message edited by cds22 at 12:04 PM, June 21st (Friday)]
I've been married to my SAWH for almost 4 years (2nd marriage) blended family. He was diagnosed after his previous divorce and went through alot of meetings/group therapy..he disclosed everything to me before our marriage after Dday #1. So we just had Dday #2 where I found out he had been white-knuckling it for years and finally succumbed within the past year. Previously, he sexted strangers online, co workers, aquaintences etc...and met up for sex. This past dday I think it has all been online - I was able to read the full history of all the chats which was very painful. We start IC/MC hopefully next week (we've never done that before) and he is doing the SA group meetings every week, which is also a different therapy than he did before. They apparently have more stringent requirements than his previous group and are more interactive with calls and other meetings between each other for support. Last night, after his meeting, for the very first time ever in his life, he volunteered information to me that I did not know about and hadn't caught him at.
So although I new before I was married to a SA, I have been in denial for years and realize we can't continue the way we have been. I'm crazy across the board about feelings right now...one minute I hate him and never want to see him again..one minute I can't imagine one second without him. I both appreciate and encourage him going to get his own help without my involvement and at the same time hate that he has to even go to meetings and miss other things because he is an addict. I feel like I am a rollercoaster right now. I have never taken any medication for anything, but I feel like I might need some help this time.
I'm so glad I found this place!
Have to run!
It's so crazy isn't it? Just a week from d-day I had the strangest, intense, sexual urges. I felt like a horny teenager! It was one of the most frustrating things I had to deal with at that time because, while I was so very hurt, repulsed and traumatized by what just happened those urges were fierce!
SA had not been mentioned yet & of course he had not fessed up to the degree of his acting out. He told me at first it was just one hooker that he had seen twice so I did some rationalizing of my own & as soon as our STD testing results came in I completely succumbed to it. We have always had a crazy sexual chemistry & since the sex was almost nonexistent for me for months, I indulged myself in the wonderful phenomenon of HB sex.
Then as the truth began to surface about the number of women involved in his acting out, things got way more complicated. Days of sobbing & an endless search for reasonable answers to a very unreasonable crisis.
H has taken full responsibility for the train wreck he has caused. Very involved in working the steps to recovery, texting & calling other members to encourage them on in their daily struggles. He is transparent & seems to have finally shown up to this marriage. We have had more conversation in the last 4 months than we have had in a good 10 years & that in itself makes me want to try again for another day.
What it all amounts to is that the awful past cannot be undone which is what we want. I have never been a risk taker & really don't want to start now but, the way I see it, I'm going to have to roll the dice, every day, from now on and, as long as I can see him stretching & growing, I can live with that. I have been pretty successful in replacing those awful, very harmful mind movies with excitement & a little intrigue for the man H wants to be. I just try to look at him as the man I've been looking for all this time & I'm excited to be exploring new things with him. I always hesitate to put things like this out there because as we all know as I say this today, tomorrow may bring on a whole new wave of reality that will cause me to crash back down to the bottom but, for now, it keeps me where I think I need to be, today.
Menopause wore me out and unfortunately was occurring at the height of H's SA escalation. I thought the problems were my fault because I knew I was way off my normal but, wanted to ride it out because I didn't want to take the
risks of hormone replacement therapy (HRT). After becoming very close to a psychotic break I opted to wear a very low dose, time released hormone patch on my abdomen. My quality of life returned just in time for d-day. It scares me to think of how I would have dealt with this under previous conditions.
[This message edited by outtanowhere at 9:07 AM, June 22nd (Saturday)]
I used to enjoy sex. I used to enjoy the intimacy of it. I don't dare set myself up for that again...
Missy - "big surprise, I have a book recommendation"
outta - really helpful, positive post - thank you.
Kat - I am so sorry for the trauma your SAWH put you through. His vileness is a reflection of him, not you. Big hugs to you and if your post was helpful to you by getting it out, then it was helpful.
Just wanted to post an update. I filed for D from my SAWH. He has been crying; wrote me a letter how he is willing to do anything to save our M. This, after he wasted a year of my time doing nothing while I was getting my ducks in a row. I am still going forward with the D and I have told him that he can do what he wants. Time and his actions will tell if he is serious about R and recovery.
Yes, protecting yourself from such vile abuse is so necessary.
I know with my H, he couldn't 'perform' either. He had this sick need for me to see him as some sex god, but in the end, he would have to leave me behind while he finished himself off (sorry if tmi). So romantic and intimate
Numb - Hope it all goes well for you in the D process. Your SAWH may decide for recovery. It took actual divorce for my SAWH to go to drug rehab. It is hard to know what they will really do, the mind of an addict is such a mystery. At least you are making a positive choice for YOU.
SK - That is just sad. (((hugs))) No one should be treated that way. My SAWH was unable to be intimate for most of our marriage. He blamed me by saying that I was too intimidating. They come up with silly excuses that have nothing to do with us. They are all about them!
Outta - I do pellet therapy! What a world of difference. I sleep, no migraines, my skin doesn't feel dry anymore, my energy level is back and so is my libido! Happy HRT is working for you too.
UMBL - Sorry you are here! Please read the first page of the thread. It is full of info. If you are staring with an IC, please find a CSAT (certified sex addict therapist). The book recommendations are really important for recovery. 12 step meetings for both of you, are both recommended.
Sadone - Trauma work is really important. The trauma from the SA piles onto any previous trauma. Really sorry for your sexual assault history. It is far too common among spouses of SAs. I was also sexually assaulted as a teenager. I always minimized it because it wasn't actual intercourse.
CDS - Hope you check out that book! Mind movies are brutal. I had a few but they subsided pretty quickly. If I see a stripper or hooker on tv, it can still trigger me. We just don't have sex at that point! We have gotten where sex is intimate now. That has been up and down through the recovery process. My CSAT just pounds into me 2-5 years recovery and we look to be taking the whole 5 years!
Hope I didn't miss anyone. Have my meeting tonight. Think they may be starting an ISA (Infidelity Survivors Anonymous) here. It follows the trauma model and 12 step support for spouses of SAs.
((((Numb)))) Just read your thread in S&D. I am so sorry. Yeah, I don't see anything changing. I am going to concur with others that if he actually goes to a CSAT, he will lie and not do anything he is supposed to be doing, and if he actually goes to STD testing, it will be in an anonymous clinic without really explaining why he needs extensive testing (nothing like you going to your OB and your experience) and he won't get the full range of tests needed and may even try to claim being clean without showing you the real results. I'm not just just saying this because it happened to me, I'm saying this because it is just straight out of the SAWH handbook, it is what they do. There is nothing special about this path, except the inordinate pain it causes YOU.
I would continue to file and proceed as planned. Don't take that he's going to the CSAT as progress. When he's going weekly, going to meetings 2x+ weekly, and actually showing real changes should you even consider he *might* be making progress. My SAWH has been going to IC and 12step for a year and I have only seen nominal progress. I wish like you I had been more proactive about getting my ducks in a row sooner. If I had, I'd either be rid of him or he would have been much further along than he is now. You are doing the right thing! Put yourself first!
Missy - sounds like you and your H are doing great! You're an inspiration to the rest of us! Also, your sharing to SK about you being too intimidating to your SAWH struck a cord with me; I always put too much "pressure" on my SAWH and that's why he claimed that we never had sex. And you're right: their excuses are all about them, NOT us! And your comment about childhood sexual abuse being common in SA spouses and you minimizing it resonates with me as well because I am a survivor or CSA and I minimized it because it was with another child and it was consensual; I always thought we were just "experimenting." But, I now realize that she showed me pornography when I had never had any exposure to sex or pornography and that was wrong and CSA. Mine wasn't intercourse either, but it still has the same effect.
hath - sorry you are sick. Sending healing thoughts your way. Thanks for posting even when you are sick and swamped! I am still proceeding with D and I have told SAWH that he can do whatever he wants. I have done enough therapy that I am to a place where I am ok whether he chooses recovery or not. I was so nervous before I filed, what his reaction would be, etc., but now I feel really good! I know it will be a rollercoaster and his anger will show up soon, but I will deal with whatever comes.
We couldn't get an appt with the therapist until July 2nd - we are going first together and then decide how to proceed from there for both of our needs. The CSAT (only one in two counties) is not available for more patients so we are seeing a recommended therapist for addiction recovery. In the meantime I have been reading so much from the first page.
I have struggled so much with what is reality vs what is not...I mean how do you go about your daily life with your SAWH - talking about kids, baseball games, grocery needs, dinner with friends and laundry when all this ugliness and profound sadness is lying just beneath the surface and comes out when you two are alone. Which part of life is real, which is lies...I'm so upside down and bassackward right now! It doesn't feel right that he gets to experience our wonderful family togetherness and a glass of wine watching the boys throw baseballs on the backporch when he has caused such damage!
He's 20 days sober...I should be grateful for that right? that he's doing everything he should be doing? and then I say...how the heck did this become my life and re-read all the nasty chats that he made while he was at work.
Do you all go to 12 step meetings too? I never thought about that...which one do I go to or can I go to any of them? I have never done that before... I had planned to just do the therapist.