Newest Member: MissKitty

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

default

secondtime ( member #58162) posted at 9:13 PM on Thursday, June 3rd, 2021

No experience with a borderline spouse, but my mom could be borderline. When I was seeing therapists, that was the prevailing arm chair diagnosis.

I don't know, now, actually that she's borderline. It could be that she's a raging codependent, and the outward behaviors are pretty similar.

I don't know that borderline is as bleak as you might think. Meaning, I think there are a good number of folks that undergo treatment because they want to get better.

You just don't hear about them as much.

It just depends on the person.

(No, my mom isn't interested in therapy. But, she's also 75, now, and there's no real compelling reason for her to do so.)

posts: 1034   ·   registered: Apr. 5th, 2017
id 8664800
default

stubbornft ( member #49614) posted at 9:19 PM on Thursday, June 3rd, 2021

Thanks ladies! veryhurt2018 I tried to send you a PM but you are at the limit

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

posts: 806   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015   ·   location: TX
id 8664803
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 7:32 AM on Friday, June 4th, 2021

Blackthorne

Has anyone had experience with borderline personality disorder diagnosis for their SA spouse?

Yes, my SAWH was diagnosed with BPD while in rehab for his SA. I started a thread on general since there are a few of us who have been wanting to get a separate forum for BPD started. You might have a look at it.

There's a documentary called "Back from the Edge" that you can find on Youtube that is a must see.

My WH did an intensive DBT program that was 3 times a week for 12 weeks, and now does it once a week with a group, and the counselor is available for private meetings as well. It's made a huge difference.

Stop Walking on Eggshells: Taking Your Life Back When Someone You Care About Has Borderline Personality Disorder is a book that was recommended to me. I confess I didn't finish it, (I decided to focus on my recovery for now, not his) but the part I read was helpful.

The rehab had my WH read Hard to Love: Understanding and Overcoming Male Borderline Personality Disorder

He's asked me to read it, but I haven't yet.

The National Education Alliance For Borderline Personality Disorder has a website with lots of info.

Feel free to message me if you have specific questions. I may take a few days to get back to you.

[This message edited by BlackRaven at 1:34 AM, June 4th (Friday)]

posts: 283   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8664898
default

Lionne ( member #25560) posted at 5:10 PM on Friday, June 4th, 2021

I have 2 books, Marriage on the zMend and Facing Heartbreak workbook by Stephanie Carnes. Message me if you want them I'll send them via media mail.

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

posts: 8392   ·   registered: Sep. 18th, 2009   ·   location: In my head
id 8665084
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 1:39 AM on Saturday, June 5th, 2021

Lionne,

Was that info about the books for stubbornft?

posts: 283   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8665213
default

Lionne ( member #25560) posted at 2:31 AM on Saturday, June 5th, 2021

First come first served! PM me.

Me-BS-65 in May<BR />HIM-SAFWH-68<BR />I just wanted a normal life.<BR />Normal trauma would have been appreciated.

posts: 8392   ·   registered: Sep. 18th, 2009   ·   location: In my head
id 8665224
default

Superesse ( member #60731) posted at 4:59 AM on Tuesday, June 8th, 2021

Just a "blast from the past" from a long-timer: 24 years ago today, when I was already 46 (and had been divorced from XH#1 for 13 years and survived several relationships that ended) I married a closet sex addict.

Truly believed he was the "last of the good guys"...y'all know the type, right? Big, kind, quiet, Mr. Consistent....Everybody just knew he was a Good Guy. I mean, I'd had my share of Bad Boys, so I tended to believe what everyone kept feeding me, and didn't dig into his history too much, even though we'd dated 4 years before this eventful decision day AND we'd agreed to marry even after I'd called a halt to our CELIBATE dating and we'd gone to weekly "relationship counseling" for 3 months, to figure out why he and I were in Limbo! (Duh! Sex addicts have intimacy fears...nothing had exposed me to this kind of closet SA type, yet my insides were trying to tell me "girl, he isn't that into you!" So then, okay, if that was the case, why wouldn't he stop calling and coming over, for 4 freakin' YEARS?) This was where people who knew us would steer me to ignore those kinds of inner doubts, because 'look at his dedication and generosity' and I couldn't argue that...

But here I am, alone tonight (he is in a spare room, blissfully sleeping) as I mark yet another year of involuntary celibacy and isolation: 19 years of "our" 24 years "married" have been spent this way, believe it or not. I never have gotten used to living with the restrictions and boundaries I had to enforce, just to feel safe in my skin with this kind of person in my daily life. We had 4 happy years before it all unravelled. I do still treasure those early year memories, but nothing can bring it back.

I usually think I've made some kind of peace with all the crap in the (not-so-distant) past, (through forgiveness, a stout Postnup, strong boundaries, all that just-shy-of-divorce stuff) yet I cannot tell you going through life like THIS is an ok solution, either. Like, I'm really not sure I want to find out what another year of this would feel like: the Silver Jubilee, 25 years, when I'd be 71! ( Of course, that assumes we make it through another year like the last one, which is no small assumption!)

Not at all sure what my point is, just wanted to share this milestone with those who I know will understand. Thanks for being here!

[This message edited by Superesse at 11:11 PM, June 7th (Monday)]

posts: 1380   ·   registered: Sep. 22nd, 2017   ·   location: Washington D C area
id 8665767
default

delilah2016 ( member #56481) posted at 8:57 PM on Wednesday, June 9th, 2021

@Superesse good thoughts heading your way

It will be 34 years for me/us in a few weeks. I only had a few months of bliss. A few months after we were married he was too tired a lot at 21 years old. I was a skinny little 21 year old. Just his "type" and I wasn't enough even then. I didn't find out what our "issue" was until 5 1/2 years ago. Once I found out and started looking back all of the signs were there. Big signs, but I didn't see them then. There was no internet, no books. I still don't have specialists within 3 hours of where I live, so I'm certain there would have been absolutely no counselors then that would have understood.

My mom and sister still tell me what a great guy he is. I'm the bitch. But of course, I don't trust either of them enough to tell them anything.

Mine just moved into spare room a few weeks ago when the latest of his online EA's was discovered. Where will I be for my 35th anniversary? I just don't know. He starts therapy again next week..... I'm not ready to give up half of the 401K that we worked so hard to save. He can stay down the hall forever. But who knows if he's ready to leave. He says no, but I'm not budging on the separate bedrooms for a long long long time.....

Anniversaries are a crappy time. It's a time look back at all of the wasted years....

BW - Late 50's
SAWH -addicted to porn since his early teens - Late 50's
Married 30+ years
Adult children
DD #1 Jan 1995 - EA with co worker
DD #2 Nov 2015 - PA with 26 yr old stripper, confirmed LT EA with neighbor
DD #3 May 2021 Online EA

posts: 241   ·   registered: Dec. 19th, 2016
id 8666210
default

Superesse ( member #60731) posted at 2:37 AM on Friday, June 11th, 2021

(((Delilah2016))) You are so right about anniversaries being a time for US to look back at all the wasted years with these impaired men. You also have gone further down this road than I have and at this point, you do have to look at the pragmatic aspects just as you are doing. I don't blame you one bit.

You know what's funny? See if this fits: I honestly don't think mine considers all these years "wasted." Heck, he's one lucky SOB, if you think what most women might have done with him, or to him, by now! He'd most likely be starting all over somewhere else, and telling everybody what a rough deal he got out of life! But nope, he knows that I've been upholding my end of our marriage and that I never did to him what he did to me, so why wouldn't he feel good about growing old together with "Old Faithful" here?! Just would really appreciate if he could verbalize this, but his approach is still to rugsweep all emotional talk.

Maybe this is rationalizing my choice to not D (yet!), but the way it looks to me now - as I am (pinch me!) age 70 - I'd have had some heartbreak, no matter which road I chose. Losses accumulate in life, as author Judith Viorst once wrote. That book was decades ago, but her point was, that midlife is a time for everyone to experience, and hopefully process, all of their cumulative losses. I sure have found out what she was talking about, with the deaths of my mother, younger sister, father, and of course, this marriage. Not even dwelling on the 13 wasted years with SAXH #1!

I hope you might get some needed solace soon, from whatever work your SAWH is doing on himself. Quite often, I see traits in these guys that are not compatible with them being capable of Empathic communication! They are usually too immature to see the other person's perspective. I spent decades fuming about this missing piece of his mind, but now it's like "He's likely got Aspergers, NPD or antisocial personality traits, so just stop expecting that from him." (Not that it helps, much!)

posts: 1380   ·   registered: Sep. 22nd, 2017   ·   location: Washington D C area
id 8666549
default

stubbornft ( member #49614) posted at 7:48 PM on Sunday, June 13th, 2021

What is the difference between a sex addict and a regular ol cheater? No punchline I am genuinely asking lol.

This is a question that is nagging at me lately. My WS is doing all of the right things currently but this is probably a deal breaker for me. Tomorrow is our disclosure. What a stupid life to sit and listen to him read letters to me about being a lying, cheating coward. I’m struggling and angry.

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

posts: 806   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015   ·   location: TX
id 8667177
default

DevastatedDee ( member #59873) posted at 9:55 PM on Sunday, June 13th, 2021

I really don't know, stubbornft. Serial cheaters and sex addicts act identically from what I can tell. They both cheat regardless of what their partner is or isn't doing or what's going on in their lives. They seek out sex partners whether they're prostitutes or random people. They lie, they hide, and they never want a divorce when caught.

I mean, there are non-cheater sex addicts who compulsively masturbate or watch porn excessively. But once you get to the cheating, I really don't know how you'd know the difference. Addiction or not, they wanted sex with numerous people and sought it out behind their spouse's back and did all the lying and gaslighting and bullshit that any cheater does. The problem is the ability to do that and the lack of respect for their partner.

I have no idea whether my XWH was a sex addict or just a serial cheater and it made no functional difference, honestly. It was all the same. Either you're an addict who shuts off empathy or you just don't have sufficent empathy. Either way, deficient in empathy. Either way, odds of that behavior repeating are very high. Odds of him understanding the gravity of what he did to me were very low.

Eh. Angry and frustrated and struggling and all that are exactly how you should feel right now, sadly. It's truly absolutely fucking nuts to have to deal with any of this.

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

posts: 4462   ·   registered: Jul. 27th, 2017
id 8667186
default

secondtime ( member #58162) posted at 5:18 AM on Monday, June 14th, 2021

I suppose you only really know when the behavior really becomes on the far end of the continuum.

When I first found out my husband was an SA, I found a blog written by a recovering SA that was in pretty deep.

His addiction progressed to the point that even though he was heterosexual, the only way he could get high was though having homosexual encounters.

He was married and divorced...and after he had been in recovery for quite some time, he was looking for another relationship with a woman. Never identified as gay.

One women went to some support group meetings found out her husband was an SA when the feds arrived at her house to take computers and what not.

But, I think there's something to be said for those red flags that reveal how broken they are. Not all cheaters avoid emotional intimacy at all costs for 15 or more years. My husband is the fantasy/porn/masturbation type SA. I knew he avoided any sort of emotional intimacy at all costs when we were engaged. That was my red flag, that I really wished I would have paid attention to at 25/26. But, I didn't, because my parents marriage had no emotional intimacy and they were almost married for 30 years and therefore that was all good. I had also known my husband since we were freshman in high school. It was a good 20 years before he started becoming emotionally intimate.

I think the shame is another difference. Do all cheaters feel great shame for a decade or two? My husband has carried his shame with him probably close to 2 decades. It's only really been after 6ish years of sobriety that he's let go of the shame.

There's also a difference between the idea of numbing yourself from feeling anything and convincing yourself you need to get your needs met somewhere else. Numbing yourself implies you are trying to not feel anything. An awareness of your needs, means you are feeling.

I think the problem with trying to use very internal things such as shame as a metric of are you simply a cheater or a SA is that 1) it relies on the SA to come to grips with their internal workings and 2) it's very hard for them to communicate out when they have worked through their shame. When I started finally hearing language from my husband like "I know I screwed up the past. I am sorry I did. I cannot go back and fix it. I can make sure that every day I blah blah" Well, that made me think he'd dealt with his immense shame that he was carrying.

posts: 1034   ·   registered: Apr. 5th, 2017
id 8667253
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 7:11 AM on Monday, June 14th, 2021

stubbornft

I think secondtime states it well.

Addicts are trying to numb something, generally some form of childhood trauma (free by donation until Tuesday is the film "The Wisdom of Trauma' featuring Gabor Mate if you want more on that).

I pulled this off the internet from a website called 'sex and relationship healing.'

Is there a difference between just plain adultery and sexual addiction? Yes, without doubt. An individual can be an adulterer without being a sex addict. Another individual can be a sex addict without engaging in adultery. Yet another person could be both a sex addict and an adulterer. To clarify, the following definitions, provided by Dr. Robert Weiss in his books Out of the Doghouse and Sex Addiction 101, may help.

Adultery (also referred to as infidelity and cheating) is the breaking of trust that occurs when you keep sexual and/or romantic secrets from your primary romantic partner.

Sexual addiction involves (1) preoccupation to the point of obsession with sexual fantasies and behaviors, (2) loss of control over sexual fantasies and behaviors (usually evidenced by failed attempts to quit or cut back), and (3) negative life consequences related to out-of-control sexual fantasies and behaviors.

I hope your disclosure wasn't too traumatic, and that you have the skills to ground and remember that this wasn't about you. Sending healing thoughts your way.

[This message edited by BlackRaven at 1:12 AM, June 14th (Monday)]

posts: 283   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8667263
default

BlackRaven ( member #74607) posted at 7:17 AM on Monday, June 14th, 2021

Next Saturday would have been my 27th wedding anniversary. It's also the 1 year anniversary from DD2, when my husband started the TT that led to the revelation that he's a SA.

We're legally separated and living separately, (my doing) but still in touch (though not this weekend!) Anyone have advice for navigating what I expect will be a difficult day?

posts: 283   ·   registered: Jun. 17th, 2020
id 8667264
default

secondtime ( member #58162) posted at 9:49 PM on Monday, June 14th, 2021

BlackRaven-

Just be good to yourself?

I'm four years out from DDay2, now. It's not even a blip on the radar.

posts: 1034   ·   registered: Apr. 5th, 2017
id 8667378
default

DevastatedDee ( member #59873) posted at 10:04 PM on Monday, June 14th, 2021

Yeah, I totally forgot it was my wedding anniversary yesterday and DDay anniversary on the 8th or 9th, can't remember which anymore.

The sting goes away in time. Just do only things that make you happy today. Just you stuff.

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

posts: 4462   ·   registered: Jul. 27th, 2017
id 8667380
default

stubbornft ( member #49614) posted at 1:00 AM on Tuesday, June 15th, 2021

Thanks so much ladies!! Disclosure was late this afternoon and it went well. He also read his amends letter and recovery plan. Polygraph is scheduled for 6/30. Not feeling much of anything today. I had already drug all the nasty details from him over the past few months, so no bombshells in the disclosure. His IC had him add in his childhood traumas to the disclosure, that was the only time during any of the reading I felt any emotion at all. He did have a rough rough childhood and I feel sorry for 12 year old WH. Not much feeling for 50 year old WH, though. Poly will give me peace to know that I know what happened. But so what? I don't know. Definitely numb lately, he is trying hard but the long drawn out confessions these last few months took their toll. I hope to have more clarity very soon.

Next Saturday would have been my 27th wedding anniversary. It's also the 1 year anniversary from DD2, when my husband started the TT that led to the revelation that he's a SA.

We're legally separated and living separately, (my doing) but still in touch (though not this weekend!) Anyone have advice for navigating what I expect will be a difficult day?

BlackRaven,

Sorry for the double whammy date! That is really rough and I know it will be a tough day for you. Can you plan up the day with things to stay busy? Maybe mani/pedi alone or with a friend and lunch and a movie or long walk? Could you get a hotel room and stay there alone and order really good takeout and watch movies and hang out by the pool?

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

posts: 806   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015   ·   location: TX
id 8667426
default

stubbornft ( member #49614) posted at 6:59 PM on Thursday, June 17th, 2021

Question for those who have gone through a disclosure with therapist. We had a full disclosure on Monday with amends letter and recovery plan. We have a poly 6/30 to confirm the disclosure. I knew everything that was in the disclosure already because I dragged it all out of him between January and now. I know that there are reasons to wait and do the disclosure properly but - that is just not at all how I am set up. Tell me now. And it was interrogations that have caused me to view him differently. I view him as a coward. While I can understand how hard it is to fess up logically - I don't respect him for making me interrogate him to get to the truth.

Anyway we had the disclosure Monday. I was pretty pissed off a day or two before the disclosure. I didn't speak to him much but when I did I was pissed off and made sure he knew it.

Now. Nothing. I feel nothing at all. He didn't check on me Tuesday and I told him he should have. He said he had checked in with me, which is true, but he didn't specially ask about how I was feeling about Monday. Just kind of "how is your day going?". So now he has been checking in about that specifically. But I feel - nothing. Not sad, not mad, not relieved, not hopeful. Nothing.

Is this typical after a full disclosure? It has been DRAMA since January. Pulling information like pulling teeth. Ups and downs. Now, nothing.

[This message edited by stubbornft at 1:11 PM, June 17th (Thursday)]

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

posts: 806   ·   registered: Sep. 14th, 2015   ·   location: TX
id 8668014
default

DevastatedDee ( member #59873) posted at 8:19 PM on Thursday, June 17th, 2021

I didn't have that official disclosure thing. I feel weird about the whole idea, honestly. It's like some weird reality show setup where therapists get to watch someone tell his wife how very fucked up he's been.

But I do relate to having had to drag everything out of him and having to do so much research to find out things. And even when I knew absolutely everything, I found out more when a friend talked to me after I left. So don't expect that you got "everything". There's always more with these guys.

That numbness and lack of respect for him, though..heck yeah. I lost respect for him. I lost love for him. He pretty immediately became in my mind no one I would fight to keep. There also becomes a point where your mind and body just cannot cope with any more drama and you shut down in self-defense. For me, the clarity of seeing him for who he really was ended any chance that he'd ever have had with me.

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

posts: 4462   ·   registered: Jul. 27th, 2017
id 8668025
default

delilah2016 ( member #56481) posted at 12:38 AM on Friday, June 18th, 2021

@superesse

Mine is definitely happy! It's so annoying!! He's happy that he's not being revealed to his family, my family and friends. He does seem genuinely happy to still be married to me, but I have a super hard time believing any of that these days. The last Dday when he hid his ipad in the garage and I found it with pictures of some hoe he found online, he confessed immediately and then he was relieved. I kicked him to the other end of the house and he's as happy as he could be because the burden is off of him and onto me.

His psychiatrist upped his prozac, something he has been fighting for a while now. There have been delays for multiple reasons getting him back to his counselor and I really just don't care. He is trying AGAIN, but it's going to take a LOT for me to ever trust him again after this one. We worked so hard after the last Dday, but he never got all of the way healthy. I knew that and sadly this last Dday didn't surprise me. After doing YouBloom (betrayal trauma class) on Bloom for Women 4 or 5 times (I can't even remember how many times) I know that what he does is on him, and I need to take care of me.

So for now, he's happy, I'm sad and isolating again and we just keep marching on putting on a show for everyone outside of our house.

[This message edited by delilah2016 at 6:41 PM, June 17th (Thursday)]

BW - Late 50's
SAWH -addicted to porn since his early teens - Late 50's
Married 30+ years
Adult children
DD #1 Jan 1995 - EA with co worker
DD #2 Nov 2015 - PA with 26 yr old stripper, confirmed LT EA with neighbor
DD #3 May 2021 Online EA

posts: 241   ·   registered: Dec. 19th, 2016
id 8668075
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.1.000.20210924 2002-2021 SurvivingInfidelity.com® All Rights Reserved. • Privacy Policy