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Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 20

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DevastatedDee posted 8/26/2019 14:59 PM

Standing ovation, Lionne. I chose who he portrayed himself to be, not who he really was. He didn't show me that, so I never had a chance to reject it. I expect that's the case for most of us.

I didn't go "ooh, you're really fucked up, I can totally fix that" because he didn't portray himself as really fucked up. He got to know me and made himself into exactly what I was looking for. Addicts are exceptional at that.

marji posted 8/26/2019 16:40 PM

Ashes. Im seeing that you are in New England and I'm surprised to see your saying that post=nups are worthless in where you are.

I thought is was only a few states where they are not in any way valid and none are in New England: Nebraska, Ohio, Oklahoma and Wyoming. But I know the laws are changeable and maybe the New England states have rather recently ruled them invalid? Just my idle curiosity at work here.

DashboardMadonna posted 8/28/2019 02:01 AM


So funny, I have thought my husband is my mother, also.

As a result of eggshells, I have acquired a sick obsession with reading about human behavior. Like a bad hobby. As a result, I know my thought patterns are everywhere. Still processing the latest trauma, I reckon.

I dont assume others do the same or wrong if they dont agree/different...and of course, I dont believe people deserve or did something to cause it...I just psychoanalyze everything...Its literally how I process things, before they are sifted through an internalized moral code...defense mechanism. No secret, I ramble and have ADD.

I did the same with medical crap, that started at about 12, due to my mother's illness...I guess its empath crap, but I dont like to advertise that much. I feel the sign that says "doormat" (joke) on my forehead is enough. It is almost always a direct result of abuse and people seem to smell it.

I think that's the big one I need to figure out in therapy. I tend to attract negative types, to the point that I refuse to instigate conversations/friendships with the outside world. The last "friend" turned out to be psycho (like my brother) in that she had a total melt-down on social media, while admitting she hates and runs over cats....

Seriously, what are the odds that I keep coming across this? Are sickos becoming more prevalent? That has to be it. Is it my perfume? I am extremely reserved, but I am going to get to the bottom of where I may be signaling. I dont have a "kind face" or smile uncontrollably... I have often thought about this and wished I had a therapist (a personal Carl Jung) watch me interact with people. Maybe it's something subtle like crossing my legs....no clue. I am not at all receptive of conversation. I am sure I come off as a snob, as a defense mechanism. Hmmmm could be the challenge that they are familiar with.

I know it's something I throw out there and it's a huge reason I would never date....too much risk. With every negative relation I find myself baffled by their angle... I am like "theres one I didnt see coming" (usually relating to something a stranger says)... "I am going to add this to my internalized analytics "dashboard" of forensic psychology"...

It's the initial meeting...something draws them in...of course, later it's about paying attention to the red flags, but instead I gave benefit to the doubt... I need to stop doing that....BUT it seems like everyone I come across is a red flag. Lol

Anyone have experience with this/insight?...its like the plague.

[This message edited by DashboardMadonna at 2:56 AM, August 28th (Wednesday)]

Superesse posted 8/28/2019 07:16 AM

DashboardMadonna, I don't have those answers, but when someone does, I'll be right there, listening! Really, there are a lot of disturbed people out there; something like 10-15% of the General Population is thought to have a diagnosable mental health issue. And that doesn't include "the blues."

Maybe it is where you live? J/k

crazyblindsided posted 8/28/2019 13:41 PM

I chose who he portrayed himself to be, not who he really was. He didn't show me that, so I never had a chance to reject it. I expect that's the case for most of us.

Amen! It's been 16 years since I've seen that stranger lol.

Lionne posted 8/28/2019 14:36 PM

It's a conundrum, for sure. I'm the fixer, always have been in all parts of my life. I'm EXPECTED to be able to handle difficulties, trauma, illness, etc. I've aligned with a lot of people who lean. It's exhausting. A revelation happened when a principal of mine, after me telling her about the many difficult children in my class (6 out of 28 kids in a first grade class had significant behavior issues stemming from neglectful and abusive homes) said to me, "If anyone can handle it, you can." Useless. And left me feeling inadequate because I was NOT handling it, so something must be wrong with me, right?
I firmly believe that my husband unconsciously wanted me to find out and "fix" him when he left that telltale bank statement in a place I'd find it.
One of our experiences with therapy was with a clinician who asked us to role play a family situation. I immediately jumped up to volunteer for the fixer part, I expressed my disbelief that this was WHY I married a sex addict. It's hard to do that unless I was somehow clairvoyant and prescient.
I don't think he "chose" me in that sense. But he clearly capitalized on my weaknesses, unconsciously, he's just not smart enough about people to have planned it out.

Ifeelalone posted 8/28/2019 17:45 PM

I'm a fixer too. After my husband's diarrhea of the mouth disclosure he asked me what we should do- I said "you can stop fucking people"... just checking in- but I follow daily and enjoy everyone's perspectives.

DashboardMadonna posted 8/29/2019 10:38 AM


I dont believe he chose me either, the resentment was there from the beginning... I was young and dumb. One of his "close" friends told me he wanted to break up with me before I was pregnant. That friend later adviced me to get an abortion, supposedly out of concern for me because of how he is.

Obviously I dont regret my son, I found out later that I have endometriosis and I probably wouldn't have been able to have children by my mid to late 20s.

I'm similar to you, in that I was trained (brainwashed) and guilted, by my parents to care for my bitter mother. I feel as though I even put her before my son in some ways.

I tried going back to college a few times, but my learning disabilities have hindered me greatly. I have the math capabilities (dyscalculia)of a 3rd or 4th grader...it sucks...I also have ADD, but I have learned to use the hyper-focus to advantage. I even suspect that I am on spectrum, but that's another story entirely.


yeah no kidding! Mine gave me the stereotypical line "they meant nothing"....
I'm like yeah, it meant something. It was important enough, that you felt the need to hide it, I order to preserve another life. It disgusted me, that he would say that about other women and in that moment, I knew he was just another dickhead that objectifies women...warm bodies...creeps me the fuck out.

[This message edited by DashboardMadonna at 10:47 AM, August 29th (Thursday)]

Somber posted 8/29/2019 19:54 PM

I had a slip up.

Yep my WH has been love bombing me, booked us a trip, staring at me constantly, trying to be close and I had a slip up without sex. I donít even feel guilty or ashamed about it. I already forgave myself for breaking this boundary I thought I had. Iím more concerned about what message I gave him...now we are going away and I imagine he will have expectations...I feel confused and indifferent mostly. Is he really trying to make up for all his wrongdoings as he claims? Trying to prove his love, worth or effort? Is he finally putting forth effort to R? Or is he trying to get a fix? Or trying to go back to a status quo by elaborate means to keep me?

In a normal relationship intimacy would be normal, a relationship in R intimacy would be progress, a relationship with a SA who has yet to do any SA recovery intimacy is??? I have no idea what is normal in this situation. Itís not a normal situation!! I teeter totter between planning to leave and getting stuck on hopium to stay.

[This message edited by Somber at 8:15 PM, August 29th (Thursday)]

DashboardMadonna posted 8/29/2019 23:13 PM


I understand what you're saying. They are master manipulators...that's an understatement.

Ugh...I did the same a couple of weeks ago,but with the sex...I did shit backward...gahhh...it was pretty tragic. We did it twice in about as many days, with the second time ending with my wanting to peel my skin off. Just so disgusted and mortified that I allow him to make me feel so insecure.

Of course he couldn't get it up for the holy mother, on day two... made me feel sick and like an idiot. Funny, I am completely repulsed by him...not even attracted to him any longer. Follwowing this last go-around with his antics, I tap out. Funny how that works. My my my...how the tables have turned. you beat dog enough, it will eventually turn on you.

There was no love bombing (never is) by this character, if there were, I would see right through it. I was just dumb (as always) and attention starved. It made me feel worse...like a POS for allowing myself to stay entangled in someone so horrible. Its beginning to feel masochistic.

That reminds me I want to see sleeping with the enemy...all these years and never saw it.

[This message edited by DashboardMadonna at 12:09 AM, August 30th (Friday)]

Somber posted 8/30/2019 06:10 AM

Thanks dashboardMadonna. First I want to say that you are way too hard on yourself!!! You are not a POS or an idiot. Iím sorry you are deeply painfully suffering. I hope you are making an exit plan. We all need one just in case!!! I talked about myself so negatively at once and then someone asked me if I had a habit of self abuse. It shocked me to think of it that way, we donít need to abuse ourselves any further than they have. In fact, we may be showing them a minimal level of abuse we are willing to accept by our own negative self talk.
You are beautiful, caring, kind, thoughtful, strong, smart and much much better than you think!

They are master manipulators...that's an understatement

Just as you said, they are master manipulators!! We need to forgive ourselves for believing their intentions are good.
That brings me back to how confused I am...at what point do you ever know their intentions are true?
Love bombing term came from reading about narcissism. Is that what is happening or does he finally get it? The flattery, kind gestures, sweetness, plans for the future, big trip planned...is this genuine? I am failing to be able to recognize what is real or not.

Lionne posted 8/30/2019 07:58 AM

I am failing to be able to recognize what is real or not.

It's real. For that minute. They sincerely want to change, really do love us, within the warped ability they have to love.

For me, it helps to put into the context of substance abuse. A drunk really means it when he says that's the last drink. But that isn't enough to make it true, that is, unless they are getting support from outside. My husband went there very real withdraw symptoms when summer came and he no longer had easy access to his fix. Not a dangerous physical withdraw but a very real psychological change.

Love bombimg is a special kind of hell, infusing hopium into us. It's why watchful detachment is key.

Lionne posted 8/30/2019 08:01 AM

I have to add something. My husband did hide his dysfunction. He really KNEW he was a piece of shit (his words) and thought that if anyone knew the real him they'd stone him to death, or at least, shun him.

Sick. But understandable from a psychological pov.

[This message edited by Lionne at 2:11 PM, August 30th (Friday)]

DevastatedDee posted 8/30/2019 08:33 AM

It's real. For that minute. They sincerely want to change, really do love us, within the warped ability they have to love.

I think that's true. I think they are just shallow. Flitting from one feeling to the next without any deep convictions to hold them to any kind of real change.

Marie1793 posted 8/30/2019 08:49 AM

Found a podcast on Spotify.
xxx Afflictions and Porn Addictions
Betrayal Trauma with theapist Sandy Joy

I was thinking of signing up on the website btr.org (betrayal trauma recovery)

Anyone used that? Thank you very much for responses.

Somber posted 8/30/2019 10:54 AM

Thanks girls! I agree that it is real for that moment too. But I also fear being manipulated. My WH used to do nice things for me as a distraction to his infidelities. Itís so hard to trust his intentions now.

Love bombimg is a special kind of hell, infusing hopium into us. It's why watchful detachment is key.

It kind of is...I donít know what behaviour to trust. I am paying more attention to actions versus words but right now the actions are kind and loving. I just donít know to believe it.

Watchful detachment??? Not heard of that before...a spin on detachment...what do you mean?

Somber posted 8/30/2019 10:56 AM

Iíve not used that site or seen that podcast but anything that will help and provide support must have something good to
take away. Let me know what you think of it...

ashestophoenix posted 8/30/2019 12:02 PM

Mariel, I think that site is excellent. I've found it to be very helpful and very healing.

If we are staying for whatever reason, I find detached watchfulness is what I need to do. But I get how hard it is to have sex, or go on a date, or do something with them and wonder if it is real or not. My therapist gave me some good advice: think of it as an experiment. I'll find out what I thought of it and it doesn't commit me to anything. It's just an experiment.

I think my SAH led such a compartmentalized life that the non-addict wanted to be a good guy, a good husband, a loving husband. He actually believed he was since he made up all sorts of stories to justify his addiction. I don't doubt that is what he wanted. But the way I see it is he wanted to be SEEN as that; he actually didn't want to ACT that way. He had a disconnect between the image he wanted to portray and understanding his behavior is what counted. Because the addict part of him is a selfish little boy who is all "me, me, me; now, now, now."

So, today, after five years of recovery and therapy, I believe my husband when he says he wants to be a good husband, he wants to be loving. He's just not very good at behaving in ways that would make that happen.


ashestophoenix posted 8/30/2019 12:08 PM

Marji, in my state, my lawyer advised me, any judge in a divorce proceeding can throw out a pre-nuptial agreement. He/she has the power to do that. There is even less protection with a post-nup. My lawyer warned me there is a big throw of the dice about what judge you get.

Like you, I'm in total control of the joint finances with my husband. He is only a slight pain in the sit down about it. The weird thing is he trusts me completely to handle our joint financial life. He doesn't trust me about other things, though. Go figure. I don't waste time on it but my life is immensely easier with me in charge of the money. His is too, actually, and I think he knows it.


Lionne posted 8/30/2019 14:22 PM

Watchful detachment.

I mean watch and wait, observe their actions over time. And detach yourself from any challenges they have. YOU aren't responsible for his good/bad mood/behavior, you'll pretend to be an observer of behavior and not react emotionally to his hell.

Of course, much easier to say than do. I am okay until triggered, mostly by his (now occasional) rages. I ignore the day to day issues he has, lost keys, forgotten appts., driving into a pole because he just didn't see it (yes that happened)

I'm still not comfortable planning another trip with him, we usually take several each year, due to his temper tantrum in July. He keeps mentioning various destinations, do I want him to plan it all,(no, not ever, we'd wind up with all sorts of screwups) His anger then sent me right back to trauma mode, I'd love to find an competent EMDR practitioner around here. I am watchfully detached. Maybe we'll travel, maybe I'LL travel.

Part of his current insecurity is that our 40th anniversary is coming up. A major dday occurred just as we were married 30 years. The revelation of his relapse prevents me from claiming I've healed a lot. I've certainly changed, not always for the better, but I'm better able to protect myself. On 30 he went all out, several pieces of jewelry, flowers, etc. I'm NOT celebrating 40. We are hosting a luncheon for the people at Meeting who gave us a wedding long ago, but that's in gratitude for THEM.

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