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Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 20

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skeetermooch posted 8/19/2020 13:03 PM

Black Raven,

In my experience with two SAs in a row and taking part in some of their therapy - neither was even remotely fully disclosing what they had done, were doing or their FOO stories. I got sucked into sharing, thinking pulling back the curtain would force them to do the real work. I was astounded by how after months of therapy their therapists didn't know the half of it. Spoiler alert: my disclosures accomplished nothing except to further minimize my trauma.

It's all about his addiction, how he got it, what triggers it - blah blah blah. No time spent on the fact that they are abusers with victims and they need to learn empathy and to stop causing harm - immediately!

We as victims are now enlisted to be their live-in support team. What has been asked of me is never-ending - listen to him process his therapy session, listen to what I did to trigger him, what I can do in the future to ensure he won't be triggered, attend MC sessions entirely spent on his pain (I don't do this anymore), hide my trauma because it makes him feel shame and guilt, which trigger acting out, resume sex and affection and feign complete trust when he hasn't even stopped the behavior entirely, never bring up cheating, heal on my own.

I'm told in so many ways that my pain doesn't matter because I'm not the addict. The addict is all that matters. You either martyr yourself to the cause of rehabbing him or you're a monster who doesn't love him.

If disclosing this stuff didn't cause you pain, sure, do it but I don't see why you should suffer more trauma. When he's ready, if ever, he will readily spill everything to his therapists because he wants recovery that badly.

BlackRaven posted 8/19/2020 13:52 PM

"Sounds very much like your SAWH is "stonewalling" the therapists in his "Rehab" and they are seeking a way to break through his "denial" or outright refusal to work on his issues. (Just my experience, based on the year of counseling I suffered through for MY SAWH's issues!)"

No - he only just arrived so it's too soon for stonewalling. It's part of their normal intake, though I'm surprised it wasn't sent to me before he went in so that I wasn't on their timeline getting it done.

Since DD1, when he was still supporting his FOO, I think he's made some true progress in understanding the dysfunction of his family and his childhood trauma, and coming to the realization and acceptance that he's an SA. Some great insights, but I still keep waiting for the shoe to drop. What else will come out about this person that I supposedly knew?

They also sent me a list of books and videos. Is anyone familiar with these:

Mending a Shattered Heart and Facing Heartbreak by Dr. Stefanie Carnes. 2nd Edition (prioritize reading Boundaries and Self-care chapters)

Deceived: Facing the Trauma of Sexual Betrayal by Claudia Black PhD.

Intimate Treason: Healing the Trauma for Partners Confronting Sex Addiction by Claudia Black PhD.

I don't think I can post the video links here, so if anyone is interested PM me.

Thank you all for your support, and sharing your experiences. I don't have to tell you how painful it is for me right now.

[This message edited by BlackRaven at 1:55 PM, August 19th (Wednesday)]

DevastatedDee posted 8/19/2020 15:52 PM

It's all about his addiction, how he got it, what triggers it - blah blah blah. No time spent on the fact that they are abusers with victims and they need to learn empathy and to stop causing harm - immediately!

We as victims are now enlisted to be their live-in support team. What has been asked of me is never-ending - listen to him process his therapy session, listen to what I did to trigger him, what I can do in the future to ensure he won't be triggered, attend MC sessions entirely spent on his pain (I don't do this anymore), hide my trauma because it makes him feel shame and guilt, which trigger acting out, resume sex and affection and feign complete trust when he hasn't even stopped the behavior entirely, never bring up cheating, heal on my own.

I'm told in so many ways that my pain doesn't matter because I'm not the addict. The addict is all that matters. You either martyr yourself to the cause of rehabbing him or you're a monster who doesn't love him.

Yes. When dealing with an addict, the addict is the patient. You are that inconvenient collateral damage (best walk softly so he doesn't relapse). The selfishness of addiction and selfishness of recovery are extremely hard to swallow for the victims of the abuse. To say that it is unfair and unjust is putting it VERY mildly.

veryhurt2018 posted 8/19/2020 15:58 PM

BlackRaven, Thanks for the info on the books. I have read #1 and #3, but haven't heard of #2, Deceived: Facing the Trauma of Sexual Betrayal by Claudia Black PhD. I just looked it up on Amazon and it got really poor reviews saying that the book blames the spouse for the SA. Please be careful if you read this book. I was going to buy it but after reading the reviews, I don't want to read it. As for the other two books, Mending a Shattered Heart was very helpful and informative. I read it a few times as there is a lot of information in it. The other one was informative but not as much so as the Stefanie Carnes book.

I'd love to know the video recommendations so I will PM you.

Lifeexploded posted 8/19/2020 20:56 PM

My ex sawh said that he's not a sex addict because our counselor who diagnosed him as such wasn't technically finished with her CSAT certification when she made that diagnosis, so it isn't valid. I mean, let's not split hairs or anything.

I just thought I'd give y'all a laugh.

skeetermooch posted 8/20/2020 11:47 AM

LE, that is a good laugh. These guys love getting off on technicalities, don't they? My SAWH insists we call it sexual compulsion because he's not an addict! He flips out at the term sex addiction and insists his situation is unique, even though he's text book.

They are rare, misunderstood snowflakes.

[This message edited by skeetermooch at 11:48 AM, August 20th (Thursday)]

DevastatedDee posted 8/20/2020 11:54 AM

They are rare, misunderstood snowflakes.

Terminally unique. Yes indeed.

crazyblindsided posted 8/20/2020 12:22 PM

Why do they flip out on this terminology. When I first told my STBX that he is a sex addict, he got really mad at me. Then he moved out of the bedroom and stopped having sex altogether. Then he stonewalled me and gave me silent treatment for months until I said no more and asked for a separation. About a month ago he told me he couldn't be a sex addict because he hasn't had sex in a year

BlackRaven posted 8/20/2020 19:54 PM

I guess I'm "lucky" in that regard. (Now there's a word I never expected to post on this site.)

My WH took an online SA quiz and was borderline, but did a couple of SA online meetings, and slowly began to see things that fit. He accepted it for a while, then started to push back against the label because he didn't see hookers or go for massages or spend hours watching porn.

But a few days before he left for rehab, I asked him what his behavior had been like before we married. That night, I got an email from him (we're separated) in which he said he'd basically had an epiphany and when he thought about his behavior from high school and college, he could see that what he thought at the time was normal guy stuff, was done for unhealthy reasons, and that he truly was an SA.

Still, in the end, they're just labels and they don't mean squat without them addressing the behavior and whatever shit they carry that led them down that path. And a piece of me wonders what he'll do in rehab when other guys share stories that are more sordid than his - if he'll push back against the label again. In the end, it doesn't matter cause that's all his side of the street. All I'm concerned with is what the product is that comes out of rehab and whether I'll ever be able to heal and trust again.

skeetermooch posted 8/21/2020 17:05 PM

My WH definitely uses more extreme cases to prove he's not a SA. He's not hooking up with men in parks or whatever, so he can't be an addict.

Hopefully, your husband comes back ready to face things and tackle the problem.

HeHadADoubleLife posted 8/21/2020 23:04 PM

Ahhhh yes, the ďAt least I donít ______Ē mentality.

My XH also refused to acknowledge that heís a sex addict since his stuff was all centered around porn/masturbation/stealing my underwear.

It was the specific use of the word sex that he would use to deflect. I was like ok you may not technically be addicted to actual PIV ďsexĒ but youíre sure as hell addicted to these very specific items and actions of a sexual nature. I felt like I had to use just the right semantics to corner him into agreeing that it was an issue - as if mutilating my belongings wasnít enough!

His favorite was ďAt least itís not another woman! You should be flattered itís your underwear. Itís because Iím so attracted to you!Ē

Didnít bother to mention the little escort habit he was hiding from me...

But he was right, heís totally not a sex addict

[This message edited by HeHadADoubleLife at 11:07 PM, August 21st (Friday)]

skeetermooch posted 8/23/2020 12:44 PM

I felt like I had to use just the right semantics to corner him into agreeing that it was an issue

Yes!!

Mine will deny and minimize because my wording wasn't to his liking. He also denies and minimizes if I don't precisely guess or know what he was doing - like I say phone sex and it was web cam - therefore he's guiltless and I'm a paranoid jealous psycho with issues unrelated to his actions.

He also says it's not really sexual because he partakes of his porn addictions often without masturbating and he doesn't always orgasm with his hookers. And, yes, I should be happy he's not trying to start another relationship - it's just transactional sex, not love. He forgets all the young colleagues he's asked out for meals, drinks and coffee and texted in the wee hours, fishing to start an affair.

What slimy weasels.

skeetermooch posted 8/23/2020 22:59 PM

Well, everyone - I did it. I kicked him out - he's gone and it's over.

I found out he went to a hotel yesterday and today when I was out. He packed all of his stuff and went back to his apartment - for good.

I'm not feeling withdrawals at all yet. Sad though.

Why - why try to reconcile when you're still knee deep in acting out???

Think good thoughts for me - that I can get through this with less torment than when I tried it back in November. Winter was absolute torment - I was a basket case. I don't want that again. I can't do that again.

BlackRaven posted 8/23/2020 23:51 PM

Skeetermooch

Just want to send you some virtual support. Iím new here but PM me if I can be of any help.

Superesse posted 8/24/2020 08:17 AM

Skeetermooch, I was pulling for you last time you set your boundary, and I'm doubly supporting you saying NO MORE, now! They don't change because we give them "chances." In fact I am not sure they change, ever.

HeHadADoubleLife posted 8/24/2020 09:33 AM

Why - why try to reconcile when you're still knee deep in acting out???
Simple answer? Because he thinks he can get away with it.

So prove him wrong! Change those locks, keep NC, and show him that he absolutely can't get away with this bullshit!

Stay strong Skeeter! You've got this!

DevastatedDee posted 8/24/2020 10:05 AM

Yay, girl! Good for you! You've got this. Whenever you feel sad, tell yourself that you're a badass goddess queen who rid her home of a pestilence. He would have absolutely continued to use you and screw around on you until he got tired of it and left or even worse, never left. This is how you love yourself. I know you're going to feel lonely sometimes. Lonely is better than being abused with infidelity and lies. You can find better quality people to fill your time with.

Superesse posted 8/24/2020 10:09 AM

Good morning again, Skeeter, hope you are fired up and "washing that man right out of your hair," as the old song used to go... (I'm 69 years young, and that song was old when I was a kid!)

Seriously, you know what I often feel would help me get up and grab my life back? Cleaning my house, tossing all the accumulated junk, especially anything that is linked to "him!" Try it, if you haven't already...imagine you are having a special guest arrive, and you want the place to be its BEST for that special person (and spoiler alert: that guest can be YOU!)

I have been where you recently said you have been: struggling against the hopeless feeling, even today (with another D-Day 3 weeks ago, yeppers...I lost count) and I think "getting our own space in order" might be one of the best and easiest therapies for their crappy effects on our life - a well-lived life is as they say, the best revenge....

(((Skeetermooch)))

skeetermooch posted 8/24/2020 11:03 AM

Thank you everyone for the much needed and appreciated words of encouragement. I'm going to need them!

Yes, D ridding my home of pestilence is very apt. He took up so much space energetically, as well as physically - his crap permeated what was once my sanctuary and safe zone, not to mention my head and heart.

HHADL - I am going to prove him wrong, that weasel. He was so confident that he'd get away with this, that his excuse for being at the cheap hotel - he was reading in his car in the parking lot! He left a lovely home he had all to himself those days, to drive over twenty minutes to a motel parking lot, to sit in his vehicle in 106 degree heat to read. He must have been hella sure I was a sucker for life to think that lie was going to fly.

He was so lazy about covering up, that it makes me think he just didn't care if he got caught. Perhaps he could see the writing on the wall and knew it was only a matter of time until he had to find a new person to con, or a more fun person to con. Let's face it traumatized women are really a buzz kill.

Superesse - I agree with you on cleaning and purging. In the last few weeks, I started on the closets. In the less than twenty-four hours since I kicked him out, I've found myself imagining things I want to change to reclaim my space. Maybe I'll use home projects to keep me busy. I know staying busy is essential right now. My biggest enemy is the way I tend to freeze and wallow - I can do that for months. It's going to be a challenge in this pandemic not to go there.

This is surreal - what kind of lunatic cheats and during reconciliation cheats some more - without even covering their tracks??

Superesse posted 8/24/2020 12:51 PM

Skeeter, you are not the only one with 2 SAWHs. Me too, sadly. Not sure why we choose these types...

My first H was a closet porn collector in the era before there was internet. Over 13 yearsof marriage, every few years I would stumble onto his filthy stash of magazines buried under clothes in my dresser drawer, for example...or under the mittens and scarves I'd stored away during the summer months. And he cheated, at least once...but that porn in the house, ugh! I never knew when it would be another AhHa moment. Gross....

We need to clean these people's twisted lifestyle choices OUT of our homes!

My sister once told me she went through the same "purging" while she was still married to her sick SA, but as we know, it never stops them - they need to get their own place! 3 weeks ago, mine got told to sleep in the RV because 6 years ago, after being arrested for soliciting, he deeded me the house and knew the day I ever found more of his double-life BS would be the last night he would sleep in MY house. So, did knowing that I had the legal right to evict him stop him from buying a secret iPhone and going back to his behaviors? Nope.

After I busted him (I wasn't even mad, just sorry he now had to leave - that very day) I noticed he never felt a bit of genuine remorse, never even missed a beat. Just moved right out to our 5th wheel camper, turned on the RV's A/C so he could sleep comfortably, and continues to clutter up my house, at the moment...

Not sure I would have survived this latest D-Day during those pandemic shutdown months this spring when I also was hospitalized, and here I had come to think he really cared! Maybe because we were FORCED to shelter in place TOGETHER? Whew....woulda killed me, I think.

Anyway, good going on those closets...wanna come over and help me do mine, when you get caught up? Staying busy is so important, and even if it is just little things, we need to bring ourselves back into LIFE every day!

[This message edited by Superesse at 1:11 PM, August 24th (Monday)]

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