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Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 20

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secondtime posted 11/26/2019 02:58 AM

So. My husband has told me not to take his addiction personally.

I mean, on one level, I understand that he didn't say "Oh...I'm realllly going to stick it to Second Time. And this is how I'm going to do it."

The reality is he'd behave the same way with anyone else.

But. I am not anyone else. So I find no comfort in that.

My husband is "just" a porn and masturbation addict.

The level of addiction is meaningless. At round one, my husband used the "Well, I'm not as bad as Sammy over there...his behavior is landing him in jail for a long time."

Now, he realizes. He's an addict. And he's no better off than any other addict in the room, just because his MO is porn and compulsive masturbation.

I also think your IC is full of crap. Telling the same story over and over again is not the same as not allowing your spouse to make informed decisions about their lives. My husband took away my ability to make informed decisions of who I was marrying as well as informed decisions about our family size.

My husband is not God. He doesn't play one on tv. He had no right to do these things to me. My husband had no right to take away my ability to make fully informed decisions about my own life.

How is that remotely equitable to putting up with some extra snoring?

Sure. My husband does a lot around the house. He's present with the kids. He makes my life easier in a lot of ways.

This doesn't give him a pass for not allowing me to be able to make fully informed decisions about my life.

It doesn't excuse his choices.

Neither does his addiction.

My husband says he loves me. I totally don't feel it. And I tell him as much pretty much all the time.

I think until my husband really starts loving himself, he's not really capable of loving me.

As long as he's capable of lying to himself, he'll lie to me.

My boundary as always not been about the behaviors, but how they were handled.

My boundary was don't lie to me.

And he broke that boundary.

Amusingly enough, we got into another fight. He chose to do something without consulting me, and it had to do with something that I had mostly taken care of, and largely discussed with him a few weeks before.

My husband doesn't seem to understand the days of not telling me things are over. I asked him why he didn't stop and think to run his thoughts/feelings by me before he just went ahead to undo all the work I did. He doesn't know why. Of course, he apologized. But, no answer to "why."

Other things came out, too. That he's just not interested in doing things that show me I'm important. I work two jobs. Job #2 can be variable. However, he chooses not to put my general availability for job #2 in his calendar. Now, he's able to put a shit ton of college sports schedules in his calendar, the kids' school schedule in his calendar, and some of the kids' activities in his calendar.

I asked why my schedule wasn't important enough to make it in his calendar. He actually said to me "Can I add it with the click of one button." Of course not. All the other calendars he can.

He's been working on the amends step for 9 months, and still hasn't made amends to me. It's too hard for him right now, for whatever reason. I asked him to take care of one specific thing in the house. I've been waiting over a year for that. It got hard, he stopped pushing.

So, the message is, he'll only tend to my needs if it's easy/convenient for him. And he doesn't see that I'm looking for some effort from him to go beyond what's easy for him.

It's just another data point he's got a while to go.

We're in our 40s, and we have sex once every 6-8 weeks. That's about how often I feel safe. I don't care.

With every fight we have, I get closer to contemplating talking to lawyers, to see how bad alimony might be. This last time, I really did think perhaps we should look at a trial separation.

I keep telling him I'm afraid time is running out. And I'm going to be done. I don't understand why he doesn't believe me. I'm generally very right about myself.


demolishedinside posted 11/26/2019 03:46 AM

Iím sorry, second time. They never believe us. For mine, I think it was that Iíd always been there. I always supported him. In post dday conversations, he once told me he justified cheating by saying Iíd never leave. I canít tell you the level of rage that still brings up in me. I guess Iím proving him wrong. He should have listened.

ashestophoenix posted 11/26/2019 07:14 AM

secondtime, I could have written your post word for word. There is one exception: after a period of hysterical bonding, I don't have sex at all with my husband. I just don't desire him. After years of rejection, he initiates with "I want an orgasm." Ugh. Still feels like an immature addict.

I also hear that my husband loves me but I don't believe it either. What I should really say, is I don't FEEL it. I feel his need, but not his love. I always felt the need. The good news is his neediness is decreasing and his kindness is increasing. But his self centeredness and immaturity prevent him from truly being loving.

I think you hit the nail on the head with:

I think until my husband really starts loving himself, he's not really capable of loving me.

I'm now 62. My husband is 76. Wish he had done this work 40 years ago. But here I am today. I'm sad that I don't have a loving, healthy marriage. I actually do get what my MC says is the goal: two people who could truly understand the impact and hurt of this addiction, and could provide love and compassion to heal. But that would take so much more work and time for my husband, who hates to work and as a lifelong addict needs immediate gratification.

I've come to learn that I need to continue to focus on me, my life, and healing. I wish my husband well on his continued journey to maturity and health. Sometimes I can be with him and we are almost friends. But he is still too self absorbed to be a good friend. I see small acts that show he can get beyond himself, but they are very small.

But I will cook for Thanksgiving and enjoy it. I have some travel plans coming up for work and to see old friends that I am trying to reconnect with. I'm focused on my life.

ashestophoenix

secondtime posted 11/26/2019 09:33 AM

My DH has a ton of shame surrounding everything.

I mean, OK, feel like shit, but dust yourself off and move on.

He isn't there yet. I think that's going to be his undoing.

So when he started slipping..like once a year or twice a year, he told me that he felt like he couldn't tell anyone. He felt bad, like he let me down, himself down, etc.

It was the shame that brought him back to active addiction.

Now, of course he says this time, it's different. When he knows he's getting close to slipping or slips, he'll say something.

I don't think so. He's still got all this shame inside of him. That part isn't fixed. I don't think the 12 step tradition is so magical that it's going to overcome his shame. Infact, it hasn't done anything to alleviate it in 2+years.

I think the shame will paralyze him and he'll chose to lie again.

But, I am better about tending to things that really need my attention..

[This message edited by secondtime at 9:33 AM, November 26th (Tuesday)]

Superesse posted 11/26/2019 11:25 AM

secondtime

My husband doesn't seem to understand the days of not telling me things are over.

I, too was reading this and nodding my head!

ashestophoenix
After years of rejection, he initiates with "I want an orgasm."

Ugh! It doesn't GET much more entitled than that, does it?

What I am seeing here, besides their stunning inability to "see" you in their inner worlds, is they are a lot like my SAWH: basically L.A.Z.Y. They continue to choose going through their lives "in the back seat," letting somebody else drive the R bus, or anything THEY don't want to get too exercized about. Mine is the same way, and for too long I reacted to that passivity as my call to take action. Not anymore.

Stupid example: He said he was looking forward to Thanksgiving dinner HERE, with a needy family I'd invited last week, so last Friday, we went grocery shopping for that feast, and he bought us a 22 pound turkey. Then the family I invited cancelled, so on Sunday, I put that Monster Bird back in the freezer as turkey leftovers - and leftover leftovers - for just 2 of us, was just too sad for me. (And he couldn't come up with anyone to invite, instead. All up to me.)

Since 3 people I called back said they will come here for dessert Thursday afternoon, things still need to happen around here! But it is mid-day Tuesday, this house HE lives in as my guest remains in disarray, and a huge bookcase he bought last week remains parked where he left it, in the middle of my living room! (It was too tall to go up the stairs to take to his "office.")

For some reason, I still haven't gotten motivated to pick up vacuum, pots & pans, and start "making it all happen!" I notice he's totally comfortable "as is." His position is the same as always, for every holiday event of our 22 year marriage: "It's all going to be up to Momma to put this together, somehow." He just hopes I will pull it together to make a wonderful day he can enjoy.

Sound familiar? (Thanksgiving Vent over!)

crazyblindsided posted 11/26/2019 12:00 PM

(((secondtime)))

I keep telling him I'm afraid time is running out. And I'm going to be done. I don't understand why he doesn't believe me. I'm generally very right about myself.

Yep my clock was ticking as well and time did run out. Eventually I just shut down completely.

Now that we are IHS he has started doing all the things around the house that I have asked to get done these last 5 years. As if this will change my mind.

My STBX confuses working on the M with working at his job. He thinks that if he goes to work and hands me his paycheck that he is working REALLY hard on the M that I haven't seen all that he has done.

What he won't do is self-introspection... EVER! and that is what killed it for me.

He has taken the blame by saying he has "fucked everything up" but has never shown me he is willing to look at himself further than saying "I will take the blame for everything."

He has been all words and no action.

This IHS actually seems easier for him than it is for me. He appears happy like he could care less.

Superesse posted 11/26/2019 14:17 PM

crazyblindsided, exactly my life since about 2002...

There's not enough push coming from them to make those profound inner changes after betrayal.

Right after D-Day 1, my SAWH claimed he wanted to "fix us," committed to intensive MC/IC and did a lot of reading. Immediately, he had to confront his incestuous childhood abuse and emotional neglect, which at first he angrily denied, then gradually he started to open up about.

At some point though, he just stopped working on his "whys." He was getting too close to the stage where he'd need to acknowledge:

the real personality damage he suffered from his abuse
how his FOO had shaped his beliefs about gender roles
how he chose to cope in his own adult life and
how his choices wrecked another person's life.

That's a lot to face! So instead of taking those critical steps, he clung tighter to his FOO "fiction" and turned his energy to fixing what he knew he could fix: cars! He would have liked all the ugly truth to just go away.

And that's been his posture for over 16 years since he stopped "trying" to do the deeper work. 5 years ago came D-Day 2 with his arrest for soliciting. Lessons not learned must be repeated for us all, myself included.

I now tend to think it's unrealistic to expect people like my SAWH will someday shuck off the powerful gendered expectations they absorbed in their toddler years with their pre-verbal brains, seat of emotions, where "thinking" doesn't reside, just acting out "scripts" learned by association. Very much like a rat in a maze.

For quite a few people, it is likely easier to change mates than to rewrite their own family history or rewire their own heads.


Lionne posted 11/26/2019 21:37 PM

How is that remotely equitable to putting up with some extra snoring?

It isn't, of course, I was being glib. And my brain isn't working at optimal level. I don't think my IC was as glib either, really. I didn't express her words well.

Would life be easier, more enjoyable, more fulfilling as a single woman? IDK. But I am on the lookout to answer that as needed. I don't do alone well. I can learn if I need to.

I think he DOES love me, in his flawed, immature way, and with the caveat that I don't think addicts know what love really is. I also have a fair amount of admiration for him, he has accepted that this is all on him. I believe there is a deep seated resentment for me that has roots in his relationship with his controlling mother. Thanks Freud. I believe this, but dealing with it is way beyond my paygrade.

When I hear "it wasn't about you" I want to scream and throw things. It sure wasn't. We cease to exist when they are acting out. He LITERALLY used to surf for porn on the computer while lying next to me in bed. At one point I "joked" that the damn computer got more attention in bed than I did. I was that clueless.

Selfish bastards.

DevastatedDee posted 11/27/2019 13:44 PM

When I hear "it wasn't about you" I want to scream and throw things.

Right?!?! It damned sure SHOULD have been about us! It's like they're saying "Well, you didn't matter at all, actually. It had nothing to do with you because I didn't give a shit about you."

And that's kinda the truth, which is why I also wanted to scream and throw things (may have actually done so a time or two, lol).

Lionne posted 11/27/2019 15:09 PM

Well, you didn't matter at all, actually. It had nothing to do with you because I didn't give a shit about you

Well, I disagree with the bold section of this.

We can't and shouldn't ignore the fact that most addicts, especially sex addicts, cannot maintain an real, intimate relationship. I think that they desperately want a real relationship but it scares the shit out of them. Many SAs, my H for sure, think that marriage will "fix" them, that they will no longer compulsively masturbate, no longer keep seeking that next high, that marriage will make them normal. Most have significant shame about their addictive behaviors. I think WE, real life, strong women, with our own needs and hangups, intimidate them even further when we demonstrate that we are real. It's so much easier to play the big shot while online, or in a dark strip club, or in a furtive relationship based on mutual lies. I think they admire and envy us for our autonomy, and just can't deal.
The challenge for us is to regain, or maintain that strength and belief in ourselves after being in these abusive marriages.

DashboardMadonna posted 11/27/2019 18:41 PM

Hi everyone...just checking in...I'm following.

I dont feel I have anything worthwhile to add...

I think in terms of relationships, it's what better serves them. They resent intimacy, and therefore, make us the enemy. We are pawns in a game and I just plain tap out. Cheaters, in general, have a way rationalizing to themselves....you better believe they blame (blamed) you as means to rationalize their actions. They throw us into the role of mother and resent us because they believe we are to blame for their downfall. There is a huge level of envy behind what they do.

I just have accept that fact, so I can move foward. If I stay, I have no doubt I will kill myself...whether it be pills with booze...or indirectly through booze and my liver....which ever comes first... I have to find some way to love myself, where I have never experienced that from others... hard pill to swallow...harrr harr.

I cant deal with the fucking on-going rejection and I god damn refuse to play victim any longer, while being lead to believe that I dont matter. The anger has just became more sadness...while I try to describe this to a councelor, I get to relive it again...it sucks.

While I understand the reasoning behind staying (life etc.), I really hope you can find the strength within yourselves to reconsider at some point...you are worth more and it need off this rollercoaster.
I came to the conclusion, that I have always been alone...I know lonely...these people are toxic... do you really want to change their diapers, if you somehow manage to outlive them? Or worse they inadvertently (its deliberate, let's real) kill you?

I had to greyrock my sick (in every sense of the word) mother... she deliberately became bound to her wheelchair following my fathers death, as a means of control and have people feel sorry for her...as a means to keep me subservient.
My father was an overt mean drunk...I stopped him from committing suicide a couple a different times. It is what these people do. They fucking love drama.
Most of us, are living out the legacy that our parents assigned us, it isnt an accident...we were given roles. I was the scapegoat, meditating caregiver...I was designed as a means to serve others. We were programmed to ignore red flags and tolerate abuse...its sick.

When they feel you slipping from their clutches, they create drama. When I caught the husband all the drama of his childhood miraculously unfolded....on discovery of more whores, I kicked my husband out, he acquired a DUI...its what they do... if they havent killed you; in old age, they become increasingly needy...they follow a script.

[This message edited by DashboardMadonna at 7:15 PM, November 27th (Wednesday)]

Lionne posted 11/27/2019 21:13 PM

You are right, of course. Most of us married with the expectation that we'd grow old, need care and attention, never sure who's need what. And it's hard to be selfless when you've been in our situation. Personally, I'm hiring help, spending my children's inheritance of it comes to that.

The reality is that he'll probably have increasingly worse cognition issues and I'll have physical issues (and I firmly believe my life of stress has contributed to that) No crystal ball, of course.

My recent dexascan indicates I'm losing bone at an alarming rate. I KNOW what kind of pain this leads to in advanced osteoporosis. Staying may be me being selfish.

Dash, Crazy, you have so much stress! Please find some things that bring you happiness.

skeetermooch posted 12/2/2019 00:01 AM

So, I want to say hello to everyone.
I recently found out my husband has been seeing escorts, going to massage parlors, hook up sites, using cam sites and phone sex lines for the duration of our two year marriage.

He's also been asking young, trashy women out for dinner and/or drinks. He meets these women through his work - it's with a marginalized population, who look up to him because he's in a position of authority, educated and well-off.

He's been in IC since August. We've done a few MC sessions together but I started getting panic attacks before and during sessions so I stopped going. I go to my own IC.

I kicked him out about 3 weeks ago. I haven't gone NC - I've started and stopped numerous times but the subsequent anxiety is unbearable. Having some connection makes it easier for me to deal with the anxiety. I guess you could say I'm weaning off of my addiction to the relationship.

So, for now I'm reading about all of this, trying to keep busy with friends, work and adding in activities. I feel a bit stronger and I love him less and less each day but my recovery is erratic - very, very good hours or days and very, very challenging hours and days.

While I don't want to get older alone, nor can I see dating again, I definitely do not ever want to experience another Dday and it's aftermath. This has been the single most traumatic experience of my life. It has brought me to my knees.

I wouldn't have expected to feel so gutted but I was utterly blindsided.

I don't believe this is fixable for my husband and I don't think I can go along for the ride. He's desperate to come back home but he's just getting meaner and more entitled. He name calls, he yells, he makes demands - I really don't know where he gets the idea that he's in the driver's seat after what he's done.

Anyway - that's me - two steps forward one step back

DevastatedDee posted 12/2/2019 12:26 PM

Skeetermooch, I can promise you that no contact will make you feel so much better. It's hard at first, but you will heal faster without hearing his nonsense. I'm sure you've had tears, rage and charm from him sometimes even in the same day.

Whether it's fixable or not, it's not your responsibility to hang out while he figures out how to be a decent person. You'll not regret leaving.

NoMoreRugSweepin posted 12/5/2019 09:15 AM

Skeetermooch, its hard even when they know they fucked up and are trying. I would not tolerate being name called and belittled when he is the one that caused the pain.


I told WS last night that I am not strong enough to do it anymore. My heart is so broken. So much damage has been done. His trickle truth and inability to fess up to contacting the AP again back in August have just eaten me up.

I know he is trying but I just can't risk this hurt again. I'm never going to have enough trust to feel like I can relax again when this addiction is so easy to hide and I refuse to have to spy on my partner to think they are loyal. I loved him with everything I had and now its too late, too much damage was done.

DevastatedDee posted 12/5/2019 16:46 PM

I completely understand that feeling. None of us signed up to play these games.

crazyblindsided posted 12/5/2019 17:27 PM

Cheaters, in general, have a way rationalizing to themselves....you better believe they blame (blamed) you as means to rationalize their actions. They throw us into the role of mother and resent us because they believe we are to blame for their downfall. There is a huge level of envy behind what they do.

I just have accept that fact, so I can move foward. If I stay, I have no doubt I will kill myself...whether it be pills with booze...or indirectly through booze and my liver....which ever comes first... I have to find some way to love myself, where I have never experienced that from others... hard pill to swallow...harrr harr.

I cant deal with the fucking on-going rejection and I god damn refuse to play victim any longer, while being lead to believe that I dont matter. The anger has just became more sadness...while I try to describe this to a councelor, I get to relive it again...it sucks.

Word for word except my narcissistic parent is my dad. I have issues with rejection and abandonment. I still am trying to find my self-worth. Sadly this separation is bringing out the worst of my childhood trauma,.

[This message edited by crazyblindsided at 5:40 PM, December 5th (Thursday)]

bluetears posted 12/8/2019 21:12 PM

WHY DO YOU STAY?
I have my reason but would really like to know why the rest of you do. If you feel like sharing.

ashestophoenix posted 12/9/2019 17:28 PM

bluetears - I stay because:

1) Health insurance access - I have a chronic, incurable illness and health insurance coverage is more important to me than a marriage. I'm covered under my husband's employer retirement plan, and it's outstanding insurance. The minute I divorce, I am booted out of the plan. COBRA payments would be astronomical.

2) Financial reasons - I consulted with several divorce attorney's and I would actually have to pay my husband alimony. And I would have to give up half my assets WHILE losing my health insurance coverage. My attorneys told me "you'll get screwed". I'm 62 so I don't have time to make up for the loss of money.

3) My husband's recovery - My husband actually is working on recovery and creating a partnership. It's very slow and he has a long way to go, but he has made some dramatic changes. I believe he is mostly sober, but he has very little relational skills. In addition to his work on recovering from addiction, he is in individual therapy and his current therapist is doing very good work with him. I'm clear, for whatever reasons he has, he wants to make this work.

3) My own healing - I've come a long way in healing, but I'm not done yet. I can't conceive of dating at this point. I've constructed a life that works for me for now while I continue my individual therapy.

I can change my mind anytime. I have a divorce attorney on retainer, I have the funds saved up to pay for a divorce in my own bank account, and I have separated much of our finances.

ashestophoenix

ChoosingHope posted 12/9/2019 18:31 PM

Hi everyone,
I'm popping by too. It's been eight years since D-Day and separation. Five years since divorce. (I had previous D-Days before the final one, of course.)

Just an update. I was young enough to leave my marriage, and my family helped me in 2011 - with money, support, etc. My ex was also diagnosed with NPD, which makes him a little unusual around here. He's basically a sociopath. The SA was more of a symptom of that than straight sexual compulsion.

Anyhow, life has gotten better and better though the years, but I just thought I would share the latest on what "Genius" has done. I have happily and seriously dated two men since the divorce, both of them amazing, honest, and healthy. Then Genius found out about the second one last summer ....

And now Genius is DATING HIS WIFE. To summarize, my SA ex-husband is dating my significant other's ex-wife, who thinks he's great. Just dandy. Does not see anything unusual about him! My SO tried to warn her, but Genius is also very litigious, so he treaded carefully. But still, his ex turned around when warned, laughed at us, said we were jealous, and told Genius that we said "he was a bad guy." So unfortunately, she's going to have to figure it out herself now. (And after dating her a month, he's apparently back on Match, trolling around and ready to cheat on her - UGH.)

I feel targeted by him and humiliated. We live in a large city - there is no reason for him to have found her and targeted her right after he learned I was dating her husband. It's really sort of frightening. I feel like I'll never really be free from Genius.

Reflecting on all of this so many years after the separation, I really believe that my ex is more of a sociopath than a sex addict. The child custody evaluator wrote "Sociopath" over the front of his notes about Genius - after evaluating him for six months. So, for those of you who are on the fence about your SAH's and how they treat you, please google NPD and sociopathy.

Sex addicts can get better (though I've never really been the biggest believer of this). However, NPDs and sociopaths never get better. There is no cure for these conditions.

If you think your spouse might fall into one of these categories, please learn more about them as you move forward and make decisions!!!! And feel free to PM me. I don't check often, but I will respond! Good luck, everyone. And please wish me luck as I head into year 25 of this humiliating crap. I met my ex when I was just 23 years old. And he's still up to no good.

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