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Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 21

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skeetermooch posted 10/14/2020 14:35 PM

I don't know if anniversary grief is part of it, may be. But he was never "husband" in the way he pledged, so I don't know. I know I never dwell on the anniversary of my first marriage...

True - I actually have never been an anniversary person. This is only our third anniversary - 2 out of 3 were post dday so yeah, not a special day for me at all. Apparently, the cheater is still able to get misty recalling the promise of our union - for me it was over before it got started in many ways.

I don't drive myself psycho thinking about it. Easier said than done to be mindful and all that. But, I have a life to live, and I need to do that the best that I can. I need to be a good employee, a good mother, a good student (I'm in grad school).. Fixating on what my husband may or may not being doing doesn't support those needs. Actually, when I do fixate, I end up behind, upset, unproductive, etc. And I don't like feeling like that, and I don't like dealing with the consequences when I've focused on my husband instead of myself.

Hats off to you Second Time. It took so much energy for me to not focus on my STBX when we lived together because he was constantly triggering me with his shady behavior. Now, it's grieving and I would like to shuttle those emotions in much the same way but I suppose I have to walk through them. But I agree focusing elsewhere is the key to being happier and more productive. Now, I have to figure out the focus.

crazyblindsided posted 10/14/2020 14:49 PM

Yes, I can absolutely see my idiot STBX showing up a year from now to report he's had 12 seconds of sobriety and thinks he deserves another chance. They are oddly in it for the long haul once dumped while they couldn't commit at all when married.

It is mind blowing to me how they can be like this and infuriating at the same time. I am REALLY looking forward to my STBX getting a girlfriend, not that it will stop his contact since he likes triangulating things

skeetermooch posted 10/14/2020 16:37 PM

Superesse, my ex cheater bf, who I was with for eight years prior to STBX - yes, I know how to pick them - stalked me for 2-3 years after I dumped him. Hang up calls, parking at the end of my street and watching me, following me, smashing windows, slashing tires, creating fake accounts online to troll me - bizarre. He had eight years to get his shit together and instead just got worse, but man the minute I ended it - with tons of warning - he made me his full-time job.

He didn't seem half as crazy as he acted, nor half as crazy as my STBX but I guess he was/is. I still get hang up calls every single morning from fake, internet based phone numbers.

Superesse posted 10/14/2020 21:37 PM

Skeeter, one more thing we have in common, psycho XBFs!? Was that one perhaps in some kind of tech or LEO where he had any permissions that ordinary citizens couldn't access? Because I think the guy I broke off with had some kind of access through his DOD contacts (he was into selling to them, so who knows). I always figured he had "ways" to hide the phone tracing, when even the phone company couldn't help me out. I always thought the law could trace calls, but for some reason they never could pin it down...drip, drip, drip....

You're the first person I ever talked to who had that happen...yeah, we sure have a lot in common... :(

What did you get to do today that made you feel better? I picked some more tomatoes off dead vines that are slowly turning ripe. Gosh I gots me some tomatoes....

skeetermooch posted 10/14/2020 22:22 PM

My ex bf was a commercial real estate appraiser. The calls don't bother me nearly as much as all the other crap he did. I was seriously thinking of leaving town for 6-12 months in the hopes he'd get over it. I even rented a house in another part of town and stayed there for awhile, until he found me. He must have followed me there in a rental car or something. That's another factor in why I hooked up with the current cheater - he made me feel safe. Ha ha ha. He inflicted more trauma than the last one.

Today I had to run all over hell's half acre with my son mostly, but I managed to drop off my ballot, buy some really substantial outdoor lights, which I hung under my patio, and I started a fire - the first proper fire I've ever started on my own. I've been obsessed with Alaskan bush shows and I had this urge to see if I could start a fire. Success. TV isn't entirely useless Now, I can burn all of the wood I pruned off of the trees. The peach wood burned really nicely and the mesquite made great kindling.

So, that was my wedding anniversary. I was contemplating attending an online SA partners' meeting but I got home a little late and I wanted to eat and burn wood instead.

Superesse posted 10/14/2020 22:42 PM

More informal "data" that leaving one asshole tends to set us up for the next asshole..at least it did in my life...worth a book, I'd venture.

But no, the fire you started this evening was the perfect activity: you tackled a new skill and had success, and are busy taking care of yourself!! Perfect way to celebrate a new turn in life. Even if it's not some big fat "new beginning" it's the Newly Healing Skeeter.

skeetermooch posted 10/15/2020 00:11 AM

leaving one asshole tends to set us up for the next asshole

I dated normal people until my second husband - a full blown narc. Not a cheater but a fucking nightmare the likes of which I didn't know existed. I was single for five years - it took me a good four of those to fully recover. Then I met a charming, fun, successful...CHEATER. Never had I dated one of these not-so-rare specimens. I pick me danced for 8 years before my legs wore out, only to land in the waiting arms of the worst human I've ever had the misfortune of knowing - the current STBX - a cluster B, anti-social, SA from hell.

So, yes, a very valid theory, Superesse! Until you know these people you think the worst thing that can happen in a relationship is you aren't compatible or they won't commit or something. I never imagined that I could fall for an abuser, that wasn't even a remote possibility - that happened to other people who ignored glaring warning signs - not smart, educated, independent women like me. Even after the first two nuts, I think I saw them as anomalies - bad luck - unlikely to happen again. And here I am.

Today was good - productive. It's funny because normally I hire people to do a lot of the things I'm doing, but it feels good. I may break down and get the landscapers back at some point because it's still so hot - 100 or so today. If it would just cool the heck off, I could accomplish so much more.

How's your sun room coming?

Superesse posted 10/15/2020 10:47 AM

Send me some of that hot weather, Skeeter!

It's nice here today but calling for cold tomorrow. Sunporch progress grinds along at a snails pace. Went to Lowe's yesterday while riding in the truck with him, he needed some steel brushes for his car business he runs out of my barn, and I bought one piece of lumber and a box of 4 inch screws to finish securing the plywood decking. I had the weird experience of asking the clerk to ring up "our" small purchases separately because I don't want him volunteering to buy stuff for my house! Keeping things legally separate without making a big to-do about it. I noticed how he stood behind me as I paid for it myself. Such a change.

Later on back at home, I noticed there were no more sodas that we both drink. And said so. He replied instantly "You know where they are sold...." Ummm Hmmmm. Ok. He who shops, pays....Got it.

So far, I have had an informal arrangement whereby I "let" him go grocery shopping, since I fix a lot of meals at home now. He always paid all the bills. And even though I could, I haven't wanted to start dividing up every purchase to run the house while I"m still allowing him to hang out, part-time, just not nights.

IHS crazy going on 18 years, sure sucks. But after all these years, I'm finding it difficult to go through this divorce prep stuff without a little time to adjust. I woke up terrified at 2 am this morning from a nightmare that he suddenly left for his home country, to see his dying father (could happen) and I needed to immediately regroup every aspect of my life. Dreams like that seem to say I'm still not 100% ready to support myself, or so it feels. But also serve to remind me where reality is for me. I am not in a solid situation.

Hey, Skeeter, As far as my theory about the domino effect of assholes...may be B.S., but after that psycho XBF of the hang up calls, and another one who had different issues but both were such charming and funny fellows, I gave up trusting guys who presented themselves so well. This man was shy and awkward, and I know I compared him to Mr. Suave and Co., and compared to what I'd learned about Mr. Suave and Co., I was overly-inclined to give this man the benefit of the doubt, I think because he seemed so different, he couldn't be the type, right? Maybe there are lots of types!

The problem with my thinking was I just looked at their presentation, without also digging into what it was about me that was missing so many red flags. Why was I so gullible? I can tell you one thing I did discover: perpetrators are attracted to women who have been hurt! So how the heck to not project that hurt, is the dilemma.

Another thing is that the more self-sufficient a woman appears, the more they seem able to justify using us. Makes life so confusing...

DevastatedDee posted 10/15/2020 10:58 AM

Another thing is that the more self-sufficient a woman appears, the more they seem able to justify using us. Makes life so confusing...

That for sure seems to ring true. Since I could handle...life, I guess...he was surprised at how I completely lost my ability to function after DDay. Another clue that I wasn't seen as an actual human being.

Superesse posted 10/15/2020 11:01 AM

Users and personality disordered don't see other people in the way normal people do.

Superesse posted 10/15/2020 12:29 PM

Oh and progress has ground to a halt on my sunporch...Day 2 of the corn harvest next field from the house here, all of 70 feet from my kitchen door....wind has been blowing all the dust and dirt straight this way. The farmer has a man chopping up the dry corn stalks so he can plant winter wheat. Those mower blades send up clouds of clay dirt, contaminated with old orchard chemicals like arsenate of lead, yes indeedy....

I'm sooo getting the migratory urge....

skeetermooch posted 10/15/2020 14:18 PM

Since I could handle...life, I guess...he was surprised at how I completely lost my ability to function after DDay. Another clue that I wasn't seen as an actual human being.

the more self-sufficient a woman appears, the more they seem able to justify using us.

Yes!! To this day, I'm positive my STBX doesn't believe I was traumatized by what he did. He truly thinks I'm totally over it. My STBX feels a lot of jealousy around this idea that I've got it all together and somehow won't be hurt by losing my marriage. It's definitely a kind of dehumanization.

Superesse - the toxins from the farmer sound terrible!!! One thing that helped me a little was listing my fears around getting divorced so that I could actually see what was real, what wasn't, how I might handle various outcomes - helped me figure out what I needed to be able to leave without unmanageable anxiety. I kept checking back on my list as I made progress through the various items. I also think it's possible to decide you can't leave - then maybe you can work on how to structure the IHS so you're comfortable with it. It could be the ambivalence is the hardest part now.

DevastatedDee posted 10/15/2020 14:55 PM

One thing that helped me a little was listing my fears around getting divorced so that I could actually see what was real, what wasn't, how I might handle various outcomes - helped me figure out what I needed to be able to leave without unmanageable anxiety. I kept checking back on my list as I made progress through the various items. I also think it's possible to decide you can't leave - then maybe you can work on how to structure the IHS so you're comfortable with it. It could be the ambivalence is the hardest part now.

That is way more mature than I was, lol. I just charged my way through with my hair on fire with rage and decided that I would figure it the fuck out but that I had to leave no matter what. Step 1 was get the house and then figure out how in the hell to pay for everything later. I managed.
It took a part-time job and selling my classic car, but I managed. I think it's easier if you leave while you're still riding that anger high and well before fucked up becomes normal.

[This message edited by DevastatedDee at 2:56 PM, October 15th (Thursday)]

Superesse posted 10/15/2020 15:23 PM

Thanks, Skeeter, I know you know all about what it feels like.

Lists of fears for me are hard to define, or incomplete. I only just started on my SSI in May, so without a detailed budget history - a rainy day project started months ago! - I can't predict how well I'd manage on my own...too many years with zero income has left me with a form of Stockholm Syndrome, and I am sure of that since every little bill I pay is triggering some small fear of 'soon running out of money to live on.' It isn't logical, but life can so often hit us with unexpected expenses....I lived above my means too many years and so did he. Just scary.

Maybe too, my survival fear comes from my unforgotten but ancient history of having lost the country home I designed and built with my 1st husband in 1981: after 3 years of my stupendous, unpaid labor, to drive away from that lovely home with only the clothes on my back, with all my furniture in a storage locker, ugh! But worse, it took me 7 years working full time before I felt established enough at a job to fly out, rent a big box truck and haul my old house full of stuff halfway across the country. With no help! (Men's jaws have dropped when I told them that story...one guy once said to me that he felt like he had "bb's" for balls, compared to me!)

But yes, it all left an impression...Like the Great Depression for our grandparents, we never really forget the feelings of homelessness - or for that matter, the fear we experienced having been booted out of the nest at age 18 by parental divorce/bankruptcy, as also happened with me.

But even money isn't the biggest bugaboo. The nightmares I've woken up from at 3 in the morning seem to be about being ALL ALONE, and then they come true as I lay there wide awake, realizing really, "who ya gonna call?" For me, there is n.o.b.o.d.y. if he isn't available, other than calling 911. (At my age, you start realizing the immediacy of the need for assistance, more than earlier in life, too.) Yet I read how others have gotten through this, so I think it's possibly just more fear talking to me. Seems worse at night, like we've all said. I am just grateful my old dog is snoring under the bed, and my younger dog is in her nearby crate asleep, because I need to let them keep their sleep schedules undisturbed, which means I won't let myself get up and roam about.

Today the farmer had his combine and tractor trailer parked right at my fence by the kitchen door. When we got back from town, my SAWH marched over to the fence, just to see how the huge green machine he recently calibrated is working that crop...oh yes, he also fixes all the farmer's machinery, for money the farmer gladly pays him. SAWH grew up on a farm, and knows how to fix everything mechanical. Those good old boys positively need him around; they all would freak out if he left. Me, they wouldn't miss much, I know! I wonder if that community reality, for the place I call home, isn't part of what keeps me soooo frozen with regards to him....

Dee, you said a mouthful:

I think it's easier if you leave while you're still riding that anger high and well before fucked up becomes normal

[This message edited by Superesse at 3:36 PM, October 15th (Thursday)]

skeetermooch posted 10/15/2020 22:30 PM

I totally get it Superesse. Your concerns are real. We get older and we legitimately know we're going to need someone at some point and when we've got no one that's scary.

Maybe just think through the options money-wise. I have been very resistant to moves and downsizing a few times in my life only to find myself spectacularly relieved and happy once I transition. So there's that. You also don't need to decide anything today or this week or this month. If he's living in his trailer and not bothering you much, take the time to work on fixes for your fears. A lot of us women end up outliving our mates and our families. Downsizing, getting away from the toxic farming crap could actually increase your happiness. Living somewhere walkable with lots of people and activity might be really enjoyable.

I wish I could ride off of anger. For whatever reason it's often in short supply. I don't stay mad long. Scared, I could stay there for years ;/

Right now, I'm just taking it one day at a time. I'm in my house. My income has been halved but I'm paying the bills. I gotta trust it's all going to work out.

We can figure this out. Enjoy the doggies and let your brain have a little break if you can.

Somber posted 10/16/2020 10:40 AM

I think it's easier if you leave while you're still riding that anger high and well before fucked up becomes normal

^^^ so true!

Iím in the fucked up is normal and it seems like limbo torture. I kinda wish I left when I was angry because now leaving seems more difficult. There is a complacent normalcy to our day to day and itís not a horrible way to live overall. There is a sharing of household jobs, child care, shared family time that feels normal, holidays spent with ease, etc. Itís a decent roommate most days...perhaps Iím being too positive or in denial but Iím managing to live my fíd up normal for now.

The limbo torture comes from my inability to heal from the damage done, the large wall built between us that I refuse to let down, the ptsd symptoms that haunt my mind daily and affect my mood, the lack of authentic happiness and of course my resentment towards him, the inability to ever feel loved or practice love with my spouse, the lack of trust and his poorly controlled addictions causing me anxiety of the what ifís...

Iíve been avoiding SI overall as itís very painful, perhaps triggering, perhaps forces me into reality when I am much better versed in denial and/or ignorance. Sometimes I donít know what I need.
I do sincerely wish you all well and happiness ❤️

skeetermooch posted 10/16/2020 14:04 PM

Somber,
Denial isn't the worst thing. I'm not sure we all need to be chasing optimal happiness at all times - it's a trap of western pop-psychology thinking. Of course being tormented isn't a good option either. Maybe letting go of some of the expectations of marriage isn't so terrible. I would've gladly lived in denial if my situation had allowed it - my STBX just wanted me healed and fawning all over him while he was still acting out and was emotional abusive otherwise - so, he didn't leave me any options. But I could've dealt with a roommate/companion - maybe that would've had to have been the way we started - because going from the dream of a real marriage to that would be challenging.

BlackRaven posted 10/16/2020 21:57 PM

I don't know what is wrong with me.

I am up against a work deadline and can't concentrate to get it done.

My house is a mess. I considering running the dishwasher a fairly major accomplishment. I get out every day to walk the dog, but I'm not eating properly (I've lost 15+ pounds since dday1 in April, and I don't have much to spare.) Lately, I'm exhausted by 9 pm.

The loss of appetite has been constant, but the fatigue is new.
And I really need to get this work done or I'm in big trouble. I already missed one deadline.

I'm trying to do regular 12 step meetings. I've been seeing my trauma therapist (though this week it will be 10 days between appointments), My psychiatrist prescribed an antidepressant but I didn't want to try it till after this project is done in case it causes any side effects.

Any suggestions?

[This message edited by BlackRaven at 9:58 PM, October 16th (Friday)]

skeetermooch posted 10/17/2020 00:47 AM

You're likely emotionally exhausted. Get extra sleep, push super nutritious foods even if you aren't hungry and give your brain some breaks from thinking about anything - read dumb fiction, watch comedies, meditate, etc. You're going to need more rest and downtime than usual and you may need to really force yourself to eat a bit more. It's totally normal. We can do all the right things to heal but we can't escape the effects of the trauma.

skeetermooch posted 10/17/2020 00:50 AM

Just want to celebrate my really great night. I invited a group of five folks over to do a new moon ritual tonight. We ate Thai food, drank a little wine and sat around a fire talking about our intentions for the month. Then one of my guests played guitar and we sang songs. Such a lovely evening. Feels like my new life is off to a good start.

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