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Reconciliation Post Reply     Print Topic    
User Topic: wh molested as a child...
metamorphisis
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Member # 12041
Default  Posted: 4:05 PM, June 18th (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

My question is, if our WS was molested as a child, is our R different than others? Should we follow the same process? Is there a different route?

Well yes and no IMO. I think the most important process in Reconciliation is getting to the root of the issues and finding out how and why one gave themselves permission to cheat. That's no easy task because it can involve stripping down your personality and beliefs and really examining where they came from. In the case of someone who was molested some really awful and damaging messages took root very early. It can be a monumental task to go back there and examine that and deal with it, maybe for the first time in their lives.
However I believe any WS has to do that hard introspective work to reconcile. It's just that the actual issues will be different.



“We don't see things as they are; we see them as we are.”... Anais Nin

Posts: 44947 | Registered: Sep 2006
2married2quit
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Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 7:21 PM, June 18th (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

sri-
Thank you for answering that and asking your IC.

My WW still has to learn no matter what that she made the WRONG choice, can't RUGSWEEP, and has HAS to be sympathetic to MY feelings. If doing a hard core 180 is what it takes, then so be it. My WW's ability to compartmentalize makes it hard for me since sometimes she looks so happy as if nothing happened and I'm hurting inside. I can't fake it like she can, but she's done it forever.

[This message edited by 2married2quit at 7:23 PM, June 18th (Tuesday)]


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1397 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
2married2quit
♂ Member
Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 3:28 PM, June 19th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I think this just makes R a lot slower and painful.


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1397 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
20WrongsVs1
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Member # 39000
Default  Posted: 5:18 PM, June 19th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Does it make R and the healing journey different? Maybe, but isn't everyone's healing journey different? In a way it might be harder on the BS of a WS who is a CSA survivor, because the BS may feel guilty about being angry with their WS when the damage done to them as a child wasn't the WS's fault.

But whether the root cause of the WS's infidelity was CSA, other abuse, FOO issues, personality disorders...none of those reasons may be WS's "fault," but the choices we made are still our responsibility. So, in that way: the healing journey is the same as anyone else's.

It can be a monumental task to go back there and examine that and deal with it, maybe for the first time in their lives.

Hope this isn't a t/j, but I struggle so much with this. Because if not for my infidelity, I'm not sure I would've ever taken the initiative to start IC. I've known my whole adult life that I have major personality defects, probably caused by the childhood trauma, but I always embraced those characteristics--that's just who I was! Finally I am ready to learn if I can be a "real girl" who is vulnerable, considerate, and capable of being needy. Point being: some good may come out of my As, and that is tough to accept.


fWW: 42
BH: 52
DDay: April 21, 2013
Sweet DS & fierce DD, under 10
"Between stimulus and response there’s a space, in that space lies our power to choose our response, in our response lies our growth and our freedom." V. Frankl

Posts: 1230 | Registered: Apr 2013 | From: Redneck land
catlover50
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Member # 37154
Default  Posted: 7:32 PM, June 19th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

The issue we are having is how to work on both the CSA and the A fallout. It is hard to do both. We tend to go back and forth. I believe that our M will continue to get stronger as he delves more deeply into his past, but it's something only he can control.

My IC has a lot of experience with CSA and she is helping me a lot. She doesn't excuse him but she has a lot of compassion and helps me with even basic marital stuff, talking about his trust issues, how he is uncomfortable expressing his needs (because they were belittled or ignored as a child) etc. She agrees about the brain rewiring and the profound damage done. Talks about how he is emotionally still a damaged child in many ways. It helps me feel empathy.

Interestingly, as another poster mentioned, my H first had sex at 12. He suspects he wanted to prove he wasn't gay, but he also may have not known another way to relate.

His LTA was a bit different in that he didn't feel excited to be with the OW, but felt compelled ( my IC suspects "controlled"), found the sex unsatisfying, the aftermath uncomfortable and felt shame that was then compartmentalized. He never had an emotional attachment but for some reason that he couldn't understand would find himself back there. He mentioned repeatedly that he felt like a "different person" and did things that he felt were out of character. My IC called this disassociation, which can be a consequence of CSA.

Anybody else's WS have these type of interactions?



Dday -9/24/2012
Reconciling

Posts: 1748 | Registered: Oct 2012 | From: northeast
sailorgirl
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Member # 38162
Default  Posted: 8:55 PM, June 19th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Anybody else's WS have these type of interactions?

Yes. It is so hard for me to understand. WH insists that he did not want OW in any way and got nothing out of their relationship but shame, guilt, panic and confusion.

He is so sure that he never wanted the affair to happen, and so adamant that he wanted it to end. Yet, he kept going back to her for 17 months. When I tell him that people just don't do things they really don't want to do, he says broken people do.

I am angry at him for compounding his self esteem problem by throwing away his integrity. How is he supposed to feel good about himself now?

R with a victim of child abuse seems like a journey that will take longer than the 3 to 5 years for infidelity. My most common thought about the affair is, if only we could deal with the issues from WH's childhood without the shadow of adultery over us.


Married 14 years, three amazing kids
H had 17 month EA/PA
D-day 1/5/13
Reconcilling

Posts: 787 | Registered: Jan 2013
catlover50
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Member # 37154
Default  Posted: 9:03 PM, June 19th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

True that, sailorgirl.

My IC says to think in terms of very small steps over years. No pushing.



Dday -9/24/2012
Reconciling

Posts: 1748 | Registered: Oct 2012 | From: northeast
caspers1wish
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Member # 28720
Default  Posted: 11:53 AM, June 20th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Anybody else's WS have these type of interactions?

Yes. It is so hard for me to understand. WH insists that he did not want OW in any way and got nothing out of their relationship but shame, guilt, panic and confusion.

I can so relate wanting to recreate the cycle of shame, guilt, and chaos that the abuse created in my life. There is a deep seeded drive to prove one's unworthiness and an inherent knowledge that we don't deserve love or anything good. Those are the messages we get when we are abused, and those are the messages we seek to fulfill.

He is so sure that he never wanted the affair to happen, and so adamant that he wanted it to end. Yet, he kept going back to her for 17 months. When I tell him that people just don't do things they really don't want to do, he says broken people do.

I feel I've come relatively far in healing from my CSA. I used to feel utterly broken beyond repair. I can say now that I'm whole, I'm ok, I survived, life is pretty good and worth living most of the time. Despite that, there is still that small voice that points out the damage, the wreckage, the ugly scars etched on my soul. I learn to love those scars, love myself, there will always be those days where it's not easy. No matter how much I've dealt with the abuse and worked to heal from it, I'm always going to see the images (I'll spare you the graphics) from the abuse, and can't help but still feel broken just a little bit. It's really hard to explain. It's super horrifying on one hand, on the other hand, I made it, I survived. *Breathe sigh of relief*

I am angry at him for compounding his self esteem problem by throwing away his integrity. How is he supposed to feel good about himself now?

I know this really confused my BH. It makes perfect sense to me. I'm not supposed to feel good about myself, ever. I'm worthless, I'm nothing, and here, let me prove it to you, and myself. It's the self destruction. It's trying to make sense of why the abuse happened to me. "Well duh, I'm a piece of shit, see?" Somehow, it's our fault, the abuse happened because it was something about us, not the effed up abuser. You see that all the time with kids. Children of divorce somehow feel it's their fault their parents split up. Children find innumerable ways to take the blame when anything bad happens. Instead of being shielded from internalizing negative things that inevitably happen in life, children of abuse are put on the front line, exposed, exploited, and cruelly taken advantage of. It's no wonder the view of life looks awfully different from their perspective.

R with a victim of child abuse seems like a journey that will take longer than the 3 to 5 years for infidelity. My most common thought about the affair is, if only we could deal with the issues from WH's childhood without the shadow of adultery over us.

What I noticed is that healing is cyclical. And that means recovery from any trauma, infidelity, abuse. I cycle through ups and downs, I relearn things again and again, and each time, it's like it was new...although, things are beginning to stick, shortening the cycles. And each time, something new will happen. The depressive cycle is shorter, or I'm able to see my life differently, I find forgiveness, I forgive myself, there are days that are peaceful, and then more days like that, triggers become less. It's all steps that overlap each other, repeat, to build upon each other, just a gradual process, but one I can assure you, does get better and easier.

t/j...I'm sorry this post is so bad with grammatical pronoun errors...I find it difficult when discussing CSA to always be possessive about it.


Me - FWW (35)
Him - BH (34)
Kids - Ages 6, 8, 10
Married 13 years, together 18 years.
Last D-Day - November 2008

Posts: 772 | Registered: Jun 2010
unfound
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Member # 12802
Default  Posted: 1:34 PM, June 20th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

mr unfound is a SAb survivor. true that it's not a reason or excuse, almost all SAb survivors will have some sort of behavior manifestations as adults.

the route you take through R will be as individual as you and your H are. granted, he's got a lot on his side to resolve. getting to the root of his behaviors and how to become a healthy person will take a great therapist/counselor specializing in CSA. in our experience it was a slow, painful process in itself, but was worth it.

we were lucky in that our MC happened to work with an IC that specialized in CSA. we agreed that they could share information that pertained to our healing from the affair and rebuilding our M. we did simultaneous MC and individual IC (our MC was my IC). it was a buttload of work and sometimes overwhelming, but it worked for us.

[This message edited by unfound at 1:35 PM, June 20th (Thursday)]


ka-mai
*******************
From time to time, I do consider that I might be mad. Like any self-respecting lunatic, however, I am always quick to dismiss any doubts about my sanity. DK

Posts: 14861 | Registered: Nov 2006 | From: mercury's underboob
Bravenewgirl
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Default  Posted: 1:39 PM, June 20th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

WH was abused by much old male cousin. He never told me, until 10 seconds after OW handed me a letter outing the affair.

It was poor timing to reveal such a devastating secret.

WH has told me that while in IC during the affair, his IC asked him to think about the parallels between the abuse and the A. He said the questions knocked for a loop, because he had never considered that he might be acting out.

Upon reflection, he saw a lot of parallels: the shame, the guilt, the secrecy, the sensual confusion etc.

I think the abuse contributed to his shitty choices, but it does not excuse them in any way. BS trying to R with a SA WS should not require any less of their partners in trying to heal the marriage.


Don't come around here no more
-Tom Petty

Posts: 661 | Registered: Jul 2012 | From: Canada
sailorgirl
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Member # 38162
Default  Posted: 9:52 PM, June 20th (Thursday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

casper,
Your post is so thought provoking and helpful. I'm going to share it with my WH.

There is a deep seeded drive to prove one's unworthiness and an inherent knowledge that we don't deserve love or anything good. Those are the messages we get when we are abused, and those are the messages we seek to fulfill.

WH isn't as eloquent as you are, but he said after the affair started, he felt like "See, I really am rotten. I always knew the day would come when I would screw up so bad and you would realize that you're too good for me." Then, he expected (and still expects) that I would leave him because I couldn't love who he really is deep down.

To me, this makes no sense. I married the perfect man for me--smart, generous, intuitive, strong work ethic, completely loyal, and passionate about me. That is who he is to the core. If he were worthless, why would his marriage, family, career, and life be so good?

I had twelve years of my best friend and lover, until he morphed into this cruel, irrational jerk. He had cheated, He says he felt more worthless than ever, but he treated me like I was worthless. He says he felt insecure, but to me he was arrogant and emotionally abusive. So, yes, he became a POS.

But since he had to become his polar opposite in order to match the voice in his head, why didn't it occur to him that the voice was wrong?

I'm going to keep studying your message. Thank you so much for using your experience to help others!

[This message edited by sailorgirl at 9:56 PM, June 20th (Thursday)]


Married 14 years, three amazing kids
H had 17 month EA/PA
D-day 1/5/13
Reconcilling

Posts: 787 | Registered: Jan 2013
20WrongsVs1
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Member # 39000
Default  Posted: 2:16 PM, June 21st (Friday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Thanks everyone for sharing. This is a thread I can see getting "bumped" to help people in the future.

He mentioned repeatedly that he felt like a "different person" and did things that he felt were out of character. My IC called this disassociation, which can be a consequence of CSA.

Disassociation: the word is new to me, but the sensation is all too familiar. Do you ever feel like you're watching yourself in a movie? Like, you know what you're doing is wrong but it plays out anyway?

Disassociative identity disorder is what they used to call "multiple personality disorder." Few CSA survivors meet that clinical threshold, but many of us fall on the "disassociative spectrum." IMO it helps explain how WSs can truly believe we love our spouses when our actions indicate the opposite. BH has seen me disassociate, seen me snap into a different personality, usually when I drink too much.

Disassociation can explain how waywards disconnect from our feelings of guilt, or how our moral compasses go berserk.

since he had to become his polar opposite in order to match the voice in his head, why didn't it occur to him that the voice was wrong?

Why, oh why? This is what I am working to figure out. My whole life I've escaped frequently to daydreams (a form of disassociation), usually fantasies with a sexual element. My IC says that is me trying to process the CSA trauma. Tragically, I sought to bring that fantasy world to life. Now I realize I justified my As by projecting my feelings of resentment (about the CSA) onto my BH and M. Instead of turning toward BH for help, I turned away from him. Why? Poor coping mechanisms, sure, but ultimately I made a choice.


fWW: 42
BH: 52
DDay: April 21, 2013
Sweet DS & fierce DD, under 10
"Between stimulus and response there’s a space, in that space lies our power to choose our response, in our response lies our growth and our freedom." V. Frankl

Posts: 1230 | Registered: Apr 2013 | From: Redneck land
2married2quit
♂ Member
Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 4:26 PM, June 21st (Friday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Anybody else's WS have these type of interactions?

Yes, my WW very often says she would be like a different person, watching herself act out all these things like it wasn't her. She also did morph into someone else. I still see a shadow of that other women (wife morphed) when she has a bit too many drinks or during sex. It's almost scary to me because what if she turns into this person again?

I've read all the stuff here and some other stuff online and wow, it all makes sense now. Her unhappiness drove her to listen to those voices she was suppressing for so long. She did act out the abuse on someone else. A willing adult who she could control thru flirting and sex.


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1397 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
sri624
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Member # 33956
Default  Posted: 5:01 PM, June 21st (Friday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

you guys...i feel compassion for what happend to my husband...i do....BUT...it still hurts me when i think of all he did, you know? i mean, i am SURE that him being molested as a child did play a role in him becoming an alcoholic.....a cheater...liar....manipulator....you name it...all bad.

but, just like no other "why" really, "helped" me get through this.....this recent news about the molestation has not either. he still knew what he was doing. he was not crazy...or not in control.

no way. he did it and liked it.

and the only reason it stopped is because he got caught, you know?

i have a better understanding of why he is the kind of man he is....what helped shaped him...but he was still a monster.

i am sure most serial killers were abused in some way as kids too....they dont get a pass either.


BS (41):(Former Doormat)
WS (39):(Busted Cheater)
Married: 10 years, 3 kids under 5
DD1: 10/11 PA/EA with pilates instructor/former stripper.
DD2: 10/12 False r, cheating with other women, online dating,Substance abuse issues.
R:Last chance

Posts: 975 | Registered: Nov 2011 | From: Alabama
caspers1wish
♀ Member
Member # 28720
Default  Posted: 7:01 PM, June 21st (Friday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

why didn't it occur to him that the voice was wrong?

For me, to understand why I was the one chosen to be abused, I must have been bad in some way. On top of that, I had to deal with the hate I used to feel for that little girl who was me. I hated her for being helpless, for not fighting back enough, for not running away. I hated her for being dependent on my abuser for love, affection, to feed, clothe, and home me. The worst part that is hardest to face, is that some parts of the abuse weren't that bad, sometimes there was pleasure. That causes so much fucked upped-ness and confusion, it's almost comical. Acknowledging that there was any sort of response or reaction to the abuse that elicited anything other than horror in my mind...well then those voices are right, and far from wrong. It's easy to fall into the pit where I must have liked it, I wanted the abuse in some way. Rationally, I know that's not true, but it certainly gives power to those voices, and for someone who hasn't worked through their past, I can see how they may give in.

but, just like no other "why" really, "helped" me get through this.....this recent news about the molestation has not either. he still knew what he was doing. he was not crazy...or not in control.

no way. he did it and liked it.

You know, I wasn't crazy either, or not in control. I didn't just morph into someone totally new and not myself. All of that destruction was wrought by me, all of me. That darkness was planted long ago, and I've done my fair share of cultivating it and letting it loose. I'm capable of being that dark again, and because I choose to or not. I can choose to listen to my inner demons, or not.

i am sure most serial killers were abused in some way as kids too....they dont get a pass either.

And nor would you stay married to a serial killer either. And I don't say that with snark, I say it with sincere honesty.

I hope that I'm not giving the impression that my abuse excuses my choices or that it warrants "handle with care" special treatment. My history helps explain why I've done what I have. It doesn't mean I'm owed any more compassion or forgiveness or understanding from anyone, including my spouse. I can understand that a molestation revelation is little comfort to a BS.


Me - FWW (35)
Him - BH (34)
Kids - Ages 6, 8, 10
Married 13 years, together 18 years.
Last D-Day - November 2008

Posts: 772 | Registered: Jun 2010
catlover50
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Member # 37154
Default  Posted: 7:36 PM, June 21st (Friday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

I'm going to disagree a bit. I wouldn't say that my H's CSA gives me comfort, in fact it makes me very sad. But it does help me understand and gives me compassion, and I certainly don't think he's a monster. I'm quite proud of how he has managed to survive all these years completely on his own and do as well as he has. He has made some horrible choices, but he is owning them and working hard to overcome his demons.



Dday -9/24/2012
Reconciling

Posts: 1748 | Registered: Oct 2012 | From: northeast
2married2quit
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Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 3:35 PM, June 24th (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

catlover50 - I do agree with you. I still hurt though. I hate what happened, but in a way I can understand or try to understand how broken my WW was prior. Keeping it a secret didn't help. She was a time bomb ready to happen. She needed protection from me and when the need wasn't met 100% (of course I could never satisfy it 100 cause it was out of proportion), she fell out of love and with all the hidden guilt, shame and self loathing it's a recipe for disaster.


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1397 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
sailorgirl
♀ Member
Member # 38162
Default  Posted: 9:59 PM, June 25th (Tuesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Now I realize I justified my As by projecting my feelings of resentment (about the CSA) onto my BH and M.

I think my WH did this, too, but he doesn't recognize it. He showed so much anger and disdain towards me during the A. When I ask he about it, he insists that he wasn't angry at me--just miserable, confused and lashing out.

I'm fairly good at reading feelings. Why would I feel like he was angry at me if he wasn't? I think he did feel angry at me. It was misplaced, but real.

It still comes out if he feels too vulnerable. He pulls away from me in subtle ways, anger creeps into his tone, and he is likely to blame or criticize me.

For me, to understand why I was the one chosen to be abused, I must have been bad in some way. On top of that, I had to deal with the hate I used to feel for that little girl who was me. I hated her for being helpless, for not fighting back enough, for not running away. I hated her for being dependent on my abuser for love, affection, to feed, clothe, and home me.

My WH has all these feelings, but hasn't come to grips with them yet despite 6 months of IC twice a week. I think he's making some progress, but these thought patterns are stubborn.

What I noticed is that healing is cyclical. And that means recovery from any trauma, infidelity, abuse. I cycle through ups and downs, I relearn things again and again, and each time, it's like it was new...although, things are beginning to stick, shortening the cycles.

It so helpful for me to know that what I was seeing WH go through is normal. I do feel like I'm rugsweeping so that he can go through these cycles. I'm not sure what to do about that, but it sends him into a tailspin if he has to face both the abuse and the affair.

[This message edited by sailorgirl at 10:03 PM, June 25th (Tuesday)]


Married 14 years, three amazing kids
H had 17 month EA/PA
D-day 1/5/13
Reconcilling

Posts: 787 | Registered: Jan 2013
2married2quit
♂ Member
Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 8:18 AM, June 26th (Wednesday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

What I noticed is that healing is cyclical. And that means recovery from any trauma, infidelity, abuse. I cycle through ups and downs, I relearn things again and again, and each time, it's like it was new...although, things are beginning to stick, shortening the cycles.

My FWW is not in IC right at the moment and I can see the cycles. She's in the rugsweeping faze again. I hate it, but what am I to do?


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1397 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
2married2quit
♂ Member
Member # 36555
Default  Posted: 12:00 PM, July 1st (Monday), 2013View ProfileEdit MessagePrivate MessageHomepage

Just thought I'd bump this up. Needing answers to my frustration :/


BS - Me 43 WS - Her 41
DDAY - June 2012 (found the texts)
DDAY2 - Next Day (found out who) EA
TT- till 9/2012 (some PA)
Married 20yrs. 2kids
Status: in careful R. Sometimes spinning our wheels

Posts: 1397 | Registered: Aug 2012 | From: USA
Topic Posts: 40
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