Cookies are required for login or registration. Please read and agree to our cookie policy to continue.

Newest Member: JCD7213

I Can Relate :
Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 21

default

stubbornft ( member #49614) posted at 9:53 PM on Friday, March 11th, 2022

MakeMineReal - yes!!!!!! It is really pretty scary once their masks slips. I missed who he said he was. But that wasn’t who he really was. When it was super hard for me I printed and stuck on the wall by my desk (I work from home lol) "ACTIONS NOT WORDS". It did help!

Me: BS 40
Him: WS 51
He cheated with massage parlor sex workers
Dday 01/19/2021

posts: 820   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015   ·   location: TX
id 8722633
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 5:36 AM on Sunday, March 13th, 2022

I can't say I'm 'feeling like myself' because I don't think I ever really knew who I was. The wound is (mostly) healed, the scars will be there forever, but I have found this strong, resilient, pretty-freakin'-awesome person inside that I never knew existed.


MakeMineReal - This! Inspirational. Thank you!

My therapist uses the analogy of a garage: Our garage was always filled with other people's stuff, and our challenge/goal now is to fill it with our stuff. To do that, we need to know who we are and what we want and like, and what we don't want and dislike.

I took a sheet of paper the other day and I wrote "It's My Garage" and hung it in the bulletin board in my office. Under it, I took a sheet of paper and started to record my likes and dislikes - trying to figure out who I am. I thought I was an intelligent competent secure woman, but that either didn't exist or got eaten away in my marriage. Now I get to figure out what Act 3 holds.

As for falling out of love - I think I knew I wasn't in love for a while. It sort of became obvious when I had to buy a card and couldn't bring myself to buy anything love-related. But that bond was still so great, and I do believe it's trauma bonding and the only way to get over that is time and distance. I think I'm 90% of the way there, but I can't wait to be 100%. (I'm open to hearing suggestions for ways to expedite it.)

posts: 318   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8722844
default

MakeMineReal ( new member #62275) posted at 12:59 AM on Monday, March 14th, 2022

BlackRaven, I love the garage analogy! I'm going to use that!

Trauma bonding is definitely a real thing with a pernicious hold on our heart and psyche. Something that's helped me to keep moving forward in my healing is finding new activities and friends, that have no ties to my previous life with the ex. I've taken up tennis (never knew I could be good at it - even on a women's team now!), learned to stand-up paddleboard, play golf occassionally and go to the driving range, and recently started playing pickleball. I never did any of these things, no sports at all, actually, with the ex. This is all mine.... and I love it. New activities have helped me forge a life of my own with my own interests, and with friends that don't know him (thank God...). There's something about pushing through the fear and intimidation to find and sign up for activities, or do something alone for the first time, like going to a museum or taking myself out for a meal, that makes me feel powerful and in charge of my own life. Everything I do for myself, even the little things, increases my self-confidence and self-esteem, both of which he had completely decimated.

We've all had so much taken from us, usually without our knowledge and certainly without our consent. I've always been a pretty reserved person, not sharing my thoughts and feelings, but I feel such a connection with the women on this site; I've learned so much from other posts and hope that I can share something that may help someone else.

I am so grateful for what I've learned about myself, grateful that I'm stronger than I ever imagined I could be, I'm resilient and self-sufficient, and I'm doing a pretty good job at managing on my own. But damn, the price was high....

That said, the bottom line is that I'll take this real life over what I had with him.

"She packed up her potential and all she had learned and headed out to change a few things."

posts: 42   ·   registered: Jan. 15th, 2018
id 8723020
default

DevastatedDee ( member #59873) posted at 9:13 PM on Monday, March 14th, 2022

Something that's helped me to keep moving forward in my healing is finding new activities and friends, that have no ties to my previous life with the ex. I've taken up tennis (never knew I could be good at it - even on a women's team now!), learned to stand-up paddleboard, play golf occassionally and go to the driving range, and recently started playing pickleball. I never did any of these things, no sports at all, actually, with the ex. This is all mine.... and I love it. New activities have helped me forge a life of my own with my own interests, and with friends that don't know him (thank God...). There's something about pushing through the fear and intimidation to find and sign up for activities, or do something alone for the first time, like going to a museum or taking myself out for a meal, that makes me feel powerful and in charge of my own life. Everything I do for myself, even the little things, increases my self-confidence and self-esteem, both of which he had completely decimated.

Yes, ALL that. That's a huge part of the path out of this. Just some thing, any thing, that is something you're into and that is just for you. That, and little things like grabbing a milkshake when you're out if you want one, decorating your home with little things that are just you. If finances are hard, even a thrift shop visit where you find a something that speaks to you is a huge thing. Whatever it is, it's about you. Ever wanted a pet that you couldn't have before because you had to compromise? Get it. Got any issues that you're passionate about? Get involved. Make your life truly yours, from the clothes you wear to the paintings on your walls to the meals you eat at night. This is the time to be self-indulgent and self-interested for your own good.

DDay: 06/07/2017
MH - RA on DDay.
Divorced a serial cheater (prostitutes and lord only knows who and what else).

posts: 4995   ·   registered: Jul. 27th, 2017
id 8723189
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 6:11 AM on Tuesday, March 15th, 2022

MakeMineReal,

I've never been athletic and I've always admired the friendships that people make through sports. Can you possibly share a bit more about how you got into these sports. Had you played before? Did you sign up for lessons? I'm perfectly fine eating in a restaurant or going to a movie or museum by myself, always have been, but the sports thing is hard because there's an expectation of a certain amount of skill. I need a Level 0! If you prefer to message me that's fine.

(and Dee, I need to be careful, two years of milkshakes when I want them ... well, I NEED those sports now.)

Thank you very much,

posts: 318   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8723296
default

DevastatedDee ( member #59873) posted at 7:06 AM on Tuesday, March 15th, 2022

(and Dee, I need to be careful, two years of milkshakes when I want them ... well, I NEED those sports now.)

I can relate. You have my sympathies on that. laugh

DDay: 06/07/2017
MH - RA on DDay.
Divorced a serial cheater (prostitutes and lord only knows who and what else).

posts: 4995   ·   registered: Jul. 27th, 2017
id 8723305
default

MakeMineReal ( new member #62275) posted at 7:20 AM on Wednesday, March 16th, 2022

BlackRaven, I understand how hard it is to step out of your comfort zone with sports - it can seem so competitive and intimidating.

I have attended beginner’s clinics for various sports, offered by the parks and recreation department, community services, or different groups who are trying to recruit new members, usually at a low cost or for free. I had not played tennis since gym class in high school, when they had the students do 6 week units of different sports (I’m 62 now, it’s been awhile!). I moved to another town about twenty minutes away after my divorce, and I got really lucky - a friend talked me into taking the short intro lessons through parks and rec. I loved it, and the coach told me about an over-55 women’s team that was looking for new players. It was way out of my comfort zone to join a team, but I think I was so hungry for connection (but at the same time adverse to dating, and even to men for a long time…), and desperate to feel that I was good at something, that I was willing to give it a try.

There’s an aquatic center at a river in my area that’s run by the local university - they offer kayak, canoe, and stand-up paddle board lessons. A couple friends and I took the beginner class, we each fell into the water several times but it was a lot of fun. The equipment/watercraft can be rented at the aquatic center so I haven’t invested in anything yet. Pickleball is extremely popular in my community - a group of players formed a local pickleball club that offers clinics for a nominal fee. I took the beginner’s clinic and was hooked! That sport is growing like crazy, and if you can play ping pong/table tennis you’d probably do great at it.

I’ve also looked into the various Meetup groups in my area but haven’t tried any yet. There are a lot of options for sports or so many other interests.

It’s been a lot of fun taking clinics with other people who are trying out a new sport, usually they are nervous also! So far I’ve never felt totally out of place or that I didn’t belong there. It can also help to get a friend to sign up with you, so you don’t walk in alone that first time. I think you’ll be surprised at how quickly you get comfortable, and whether you enjoy it and continue or not, you’ve done something new and maybe made some new friends.

Something that has been really helpful for me (once I got through the initial shock of the first d-day, then the tsunami of revelations of what the ex had been doing), is reminding myself often that I’ve survived the most horrific, devastating relationship experience I could imagine, so no matter how I do in trying a new sport or anything else, even if I fail miserably, even if I make a fool of myself, I'll be ok.

[This message edited by MakeMineReal at 9:11 PM, Wednesday, March 16th]

"She packed up her potential and all she had learned and headed out to change a few things."

posts: 42   ·   registered: Jan. 15th, 2018
id 8723507
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 12:23 AM on Thursday, March 17th, 2022

Thanks MakeMineReal,

You have a lot to be proud of! My community isn't very large and I don't think they have resources like that, but I'll start looking for them.

[This message edited by BlackRaven at 12:23 AM, Thursday, March 17th]

posts: 318   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8723664
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 6:00 AM on Monday, March 28th, 2022

ExSAWH has a new serious gf. He was on a dating site within weeks of our final split. Not sure when they met but the story is that within 3 months of being on that site, he'd met someone and their relationship had turned, in his words, 'serious'

He claims he told her every detail of his addictions and acting out, even the prostitutes. Shockingly, he actually seems to be in some sort of recovery. Certainly if he's telling the truth he's a lot more honest with her than he ever was with me. ....

What I keep trying to figure out is what sort of woman knows a guy for three months, finds out he's addicted to sex, drugs, booze and more, cheated throughout his marriage, is diagnosed with BPD, NPD etc, and decides to stay with the guy? I get it's different if you're not the one who had to live through the hell he created, but even so ...

Meanwhile, I keep thinking I'm ready to start dating cause a snuggle would be really nice, but I was actually asked out yesterday by a guy I met hiking a few weeks ago and just don't want to. Not sure if that means I'm not ready in general or if it's just him. He's nice but he's older and there was no attraction on my part.

Anyone dipped a toe in the dating well and have any wisdom to offer? I've never even looked at a site, let alone set up a profile. It all seems so .... scary.

posts: 318   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8726318
default

DevastatedDee ( member #59873) posted at 4:40 PM on Monday, March 28th, 2022

ExSAWH has a new serious gf. He was on a dating site within weeks of our final split. Not sure when they met but the story is that within 3 months of being on that site, he'd met someone and their relationship had turned, in his words, 'serious'

He claims he told her every detail of his addictions and acting out, even the prostitutes. Shockingly, he actually seems to be in some sort of recovery. Certainly if he's telling the truth he's a lot more honest with her than he ever was with me.

Surefire signs that he is not in recovery. If you're serious about being in recovery for alcohol or drugs, you don't date for a year minimum. In recovery for being a sex addicted serial cheater and dating within weeks is NOT even in the ballpark of recovery. He has found a new victim.

DDay: 06/07/2017
MH - RA on DDay.
Divorced a serial cheater (prostitutes and lord only knows who and what else).

posts: 4995   ·   registered: Jul. 27th, 2017
id 8726393
default

stubbornft ( member #49614) posted at 8:03 PM on Tuesday, March 29th, 2022

Surefire signs that he is not in recovery. If you're serious about being in recovery for alcohol or drugs, you don't date for a year minimum. In recovery for being a sex addicted serial cheater and dating within weeks is NOT even in the ballpark of recovery. He has found a new victim.


100%

Who knows what he told her, anyway. And she could be a total mess herself, anyway. Be thankful it's not your man anymore!

I am dating and it's going well. You could try online dating and let people know you want to take things slow. Or wait. Just do what you feel is best for you.

Me: BS 40
Him: WS 51
He cheated with massage parlor sex workers
Dday 01/19/2021

posts: 820   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015   ·   location: TX
id 8726695
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 4:34 AM on Sunday, April 24th, 2022

Hi ladies,

I’ve been doing a lot of FOO work with my therapist. It’s exhausting. Some days like today I just want to sit & read - and that’s hard because I beat myself up for not being productive.

Anyhow, I really came here to share a little tidbit I discovered in my research. It’s from a study last year:

Conclusions: Our findings suggest that social support may be a particularly important buffer against PTSD symptoms when experiencing traumatic betrayal by an intimate partner. Additionally, our results suggest that social support interventions for those experiencing betrayal trauma should focus on reducing negative responses to disclosure and bolstering general satisfaction with social support.

I can’t say if or how much my family’s reaction contributed to my PTSD, but let’s just say they didn’t get it.

[This message edited by BlackRaven at 4:35 AM, Sunday, April 24th]

posts: 318   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8731565
default

Superesse ( member #60731) posted at 3:32 AM on Thursday, April 28th, 2022

Hi BlackRaven, good to hear you are working on healing, something we all need.

I just want to comment on how serious the divide is between (a) being honest with others about how bad things are or were, and (b) the knowledge we've stored, through bitter experience, that such honesty on our part will most likely garner us exactly the opposite of what we truly need or at least want to hear from our friends and family. Why that is, remains a mystery. The other day, I basically almost lost a new lady friend I've made, herself twice divorced, over my sharing one tiny example of the crazy dance I've been involved daily living with, for way too many years! Like....her reaction was to feel sorry for him....yeah. I was stunned, but not surprised, as nobody ever seems to see the grit and determination we tried to give our doomed relationships. Just too easy for them to assume we like to whine, I guess. Ugh. Not too much social support out there, I've found.

I think it is because mental illness in general, and particularly in men, isn't visible to others, so there seems to be an attitude - among women of my generation at least - of giving a nice, church-going guy the benefit of the doubt, every time. Nobody in my world (family, besties) has ever believed me whenever I have tried to open up about my pain with his sick inner workings, and how the heck I ended up in this mess!

I encourage you to keep on sharing, understanding what a huge breach it is we have had to navigate.

[This message edited by Superesse at 3:42 AM, Thursday, April 28th]

posts: 1445   ·   registered: Sep. 22nd, 2017   ·   location: Washington D C area
id 8732410
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 9:11 PM on Sunday, May 8th, 2022

Hi Superesse

I'm sorry that your 'friend' was so shallow. I think a lot of people don't like to have the (fragile) facade of their lives dented by anything they deem unpleasant. It makes them too aware of how much shit there is out there. And not just with infidelity, but a lot of other realities in life too.

I think that's what draws me back to the 12-step meetings - I can cry like a baby in front of them and they just hold space for me. It's a powerful feeling to have that support and acceptance - something I've NEVER gotten from others in my life, not family, not partners, not kids.

I just hold the others far more at arms-length now. It's sad in some ways, but it protects me too.

Also, happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there, (regardless of whether you have two-footed kids, furry four-footed kids, plants whatever...) So many of us were trained to put other's needs first; it's a good time to remember that we are allowed to have our own needs too, and it's not selfish to recognize and honor those needs.

posts: 318   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8734247
Cookies on SurvivingInfidelity.com®

SurvivingInfidelity.com® uses cookies to enhance your visit to our website. This is a requirement for participants to login, post and use other features. Visitors may opt out, but the website will be less functional for you.

v.1.001.20220428 2002-2022 SurvivingInfidelity.com® All Rights Reserved. • Privacy Policy