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My Story: 7 Years Married to a Narcissistic Sex Addict

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determinata posted 7/15/2014 14:50 PM

I've shared my story a lot on the Sex Addict Spouse thread but thought I would start it here as I chronicle my journey of my dissolving marriage and changing life. There are disgusting revelations ahead so please don't read further if you feel you will be offended or too triggered.

My SAWH is ActionsOverWords here on SI.

I have been married to an out of control sex addict for almost years and it has been 6 years of hellish TT, five years of false R.

To start with, this whole damn marriage is my fault because I was so fucking stupid. I met my H in 2006 on Friday the 13th (ha!) and he proposed within 6 weeks. Everyone told me 'Sometimes you just know you met the right one!' and so I said yes to the proposal even though I had doubts because we had differences in terms of politics, class, race. We got married 1 year later and I felt like I knew him well. He reeled me in with his story of triumph over his FOO issues with abuse and neglect. He made it seem as though he had overcome a lot of personal demons and I was proud of him. He had issues with anger--but they weren't directed at me. I felt special. I felt like I could calm him down. I felt that I could help him be the best person he could be. I felt that his love would help heal my own pain from a childhood of emotional neglect with no real father and an alcoholic mother. I was an idiot.

In 2008 I found out he was having an EA with someone he met on CL and that was DD #1. Then a few weeks later it turns out that he kissed this woman in our home. Then a few weeks later I installed a keylogger and learned that he was seeing prostitutes and reviewing them on Best GFE and TER. He swore up and down that he was going to change once I moved out. He started IC and went to Sex Addicts Anon (SAA). We went to MC. We moved in together again, because of money and because I was weak, had very low self esteem and believed he could change. My family supported us reconciling. I did not want to have the social failure of a divorce. We had weekly talks about our relationship and did in-depth work to restore trust, etc. I should have run.

Things were going great, I told myself. Sure, we weren't having sex but that was because "his sex drive was so low due to guilt." And sure he continued to lie about his emotions but we were working on that, too. He was extremely passive aggressive but he attributed that to loving me too much to express negative emotions. Our MC was our biggest cheerleader and lots of people thought we were the happiest couple ever. There were LOTS of nagging doubts in my mind but they were small and getting smaller. We renewed our vows since we'd had an elopement wedding and I thought everything was great.

So I agreed to have a child with my husband and we got pregnant right away. It was during my pregnancy that he began to openly be less tolerant. He was angry at me for being slow and stiff. He took care of my physical needs but I could see that he was straining not to snap at me for cleaning less and having low energy. He was angry but barely repressing that anger. Then under pressure in a tense convo sometime near my 12th week of pregnancy (May/June 2013), he admitted that he was still masturbating to mental images of prostitutes. He claimed he was not seeing these women, "just" masturbating to images in his head. He professed that this was all that was going on and got on antidepressants and Naltrexone to inhibit his libido. But was this all? Of course not.

Around August 2013 he revealed that we weren't having sex because he had untreated genital warts since 2008 and he did not want me to know.
He began seeing a dermatologist for long delayed treatment of his now-extensive warts. I had mere days to decide whether to abort the baby and I decided not to do so, in large part because I felt I would never find anyone better to have children with and that my family would be devastated if I told them I had 'lost' the baby.

I gave birth in late November 2013. I delivered around my 37th week. The night I was laboring at home, my husband insisted that he had to be at work for a mandatory meeting the next day. He did not want to take me to the doctor or the hospital and suggested I take a cab and call him if the baby were really coming. I suspect he wanted to be at work so he could sexualize someone in the workplace but I don't know. Eventually the contractions were too strong and he had to take me to the hospital. He was attentive at first. But when my first labor and delivery nurse was replaced by an attractive dark skinned black woman wearing red lipstick, he became visibly distracted. Her name was Candy and he was fantasizing about having sex with her while I was delivering our son. He said that he could not resist how 'hot' she was and how she had a 'stripper name' and red lips.

When I was released to go home, I was very weak and overwhelmed. The second night, he ejaculated in bed next to me and blamed it on a wet dream despite the fact that I knew he was masturbating. I asked him to sleep on the couch. A day afterwards, he ejaculated on the couch again in a supposed wet dream. He got semen all over a blanket and I found it when I went to straighten up the living room.

In the intervening months, I have since then have found out the following:

Childhood / Early Adulthood (1985 - 2007)
- He believes he was molested by two men around the ages of 3 and 4. He hates his mother (and essentially all women) for "letting" this happen. (I already knew he had been physically, psychologically and mentally abused by his mother, stepfather and other family members.)
- He was inappropriate with a cousin when he was 6 and she was 4. He continued this behavior for 2 years until caught by an aunt.
- He masturbated to thoughts of incest but did not act on them.
- He committed a rash of petty but vicious property crimes as a teenager because of his rage.

Before Our Marriage (before 2007)
- He patronized a prostitute who was transsexual just because although he found this person disgusting, he was "so horny". He felt disgusted by it but then later began to fetishize transsexuals.
- He repeatedly cheated on his former girlfriend with another woman and not only had unprotected sex with his AP but did so without a condom and while the AP was having her period. He then returned home and had sex with his girlfriend.

After Our Marriage (post 2007)
- He has lied to me about everything from his height to his prior job to his cat dying. (He sold the cat. The cat did not die.)
- He repeatedly endangered his last job by looking at Craigslist and Backpage on his work computer. He says this continued until 2012.
- He brought several prostitutes to our home while I was at work.
- He patronized 9-10 prostitutes before 2008 and he claims that he has not seen any since then. One problem: He previously told me that he had seen 3-5, then 5-6. The body count keeps going up and up and up, as does the level of contact. He now admits performing oral sex on prostitutes.
- Until 2012 he was purchasing porn at a corner store near his therapist's office before going to IC.
- He says he used to masturbate 2-3 times per day. He is currently masturbating almost every day.
-He pretends to be progressive and open but is instead a misanthropic racist with typical stereotypes for every group you can think of.
-He is obsessed with Latinas and thinks they are the epitome of sexual "hotness". I am not Latina.
- He currently has 25 - 50+ sexual fantasies per day.
- Some of these fantasies have become bizarre or surreal, (e.g., imagining a woman is a giant vagina).
- Some of these fantasies are violent and include him raping a woman or being raped by a man or a transsexual person.
- Some of these fantasies are consensually homosexual.
- He fetishizes obese women because they remind him of one of his AP.
- He fantasizes about and ranks women constantly, including his own female relatives. He does not control his fantasizing even when he is out with me.
- His sexual fantasies are strongly correlated with anger. He is angry most of his waking hours and represses it.
- He feels very little empathy for anyone or anything. For instance, he hears of a woman being raped and only thinks of how the act of intercourse is "hot." He says he would not act on such fantasies but I don't know what to think.
- Nothing in life feels as important to him as sex, anger and revenge--including me and our child.
- He "loves me and is so, so, so sorry."

I feel as though I had a child with a monster. I don't know what to do. I thought I was married to kind, loving, basically decent but flawed person who was having sex outside of our marriage. Instead, it turns out that my husband is a hateful person who equates sex with anger, control and hatred. I am afraid he could hurt someone. I am not sure what his other, hidden desires might be and am afraid of what will trickle out next. I constantly feel like I want to throw up.

He moved out in March after he tried to secretly record me being angry in order to use it against me with the police or in divorce court. I will never forgive him for that stunt. He adopted the voice of a small child and yelled, 'Stop hurting me! I am not touching you! Don't touch me!' to make it seem as though I was murdering him as I was throwing away old mementos of our sham marriage. It was then I could see how profoundly manipulative and narcissistic he was. He now sees our son almost every day and each day, a different person shows up. Sometimes he's upbeat, sometimes he's not. Usually he's angry or repressing anger because I won't treat him like my husband anymore.
He claims to be remorseful but he seems more regretful to have gotten caught and be without a steady supply of free love, ego kibble and sex. He's resorted to flirting with his coworkers and currently is obsessed with the law intern because her perfume reminds him of sex.

In addition, our baby has some health issues that are concerning. He likely has a genetic syndrome and diagnosis is in progress. Prognosis will likely take years. I regret having my son. I feel guilty for having him and I feel guilty for feeling guilty.

Now my faults--
I won't go to an IC because I don't trust counselors any more. I don't love my husband anymore but don't know how to let go of the relationship because I don't want to be a single mother. I feel hopeless and fantasize that my baby and I could be blotted out in some painless fashion so that we don't have to suffer. I fear my baby growing into a boy and then a man because I now deeply fear men. I eat too much to cope with my pain. I have panic attacks and periods of intense dissociating. I know that means I need help and maybe meds but I can't tell anyone what I've been through. I'm sad. I've been sad for probably the past 18 months and I'm afraid it affected my child in uetero. I want to die but feel trapped in life.

ActionsOverWords is very reasonable on the Internet. Sure, he's conflicted but he's sane. That is not the person that usually is on my doorstep. Neither he nor I have a monopoly on the truth but this, at least, is my part of the story. He has been out of the house for 4 months and has no plans to rejoin the family. He goes to 12 step meetings online; goes to a CSAT we cannot afford and goes to an IC. None of this has made any discernable difference in his fantasizing, masturbating or his interactions with me. The only thing that has helped is me continuing to detach and see him less and less.

I know this is super long but I wanted to start a thread where I puzzle out where to go next. Thanks to anyone who made it all the way to the end.

[This message edited by determinata at 3:03 PM, July 15th (Tuesday)]

knutz posted 7/15/2014 16:15 PM

Listen -- NONE of this is your fault. NONE of it. Sex addicts hide their behavior VERY well. Too well.

You are dealing with an active sex addict. I am married to one too. Mine has been in recovery for 3 1/2 years.

There is NO WAY you can have a relationship with someone that is so blatantly active. I have read his version of things and he has not hit bottom as far as I am concerned.

Have you seen a lawyer? If not, run, don't walk. You can most likely get a free initial consultation, especially in NYC. You need to know your rights in terms of child custody.

If my husband was acting out he would not have access to my kids. He knows it.

It is time to take care of YOU. Is there family or friends that you can turn to? This is too big to keep to yourself. You need to find a CSAT -- they are specifically trained to help you.

I know the feeling of shock, betrayal lonliness and emptiness you feel. Keep posting. You are not alone.

outtanowhere posted 7/15/2014 16:49 PM

I'm so sorry for what you are going thru. I was blind sighted by my SAWH's actions too but, to his credit, he has jumped into his 12 step work and attends 2 SA meetings a week. I'm glad he has figured out that he needs to hold himself to higher standards for himself, our children and our grands but, no amount of him working on himself will ever undo the hurt and pain that I have felt since I discovered his secret life.

I can't imagine going thru such a life altering experience having a small child who demands so much of you mentally and physically. He hears and sees way more than you may realize and his development will be shaped by unhealthy attitudes and behaviors so, try really hard to deal with your emotions in a healthy way.

Prior to dday I had NEVER yelled at my SAWH. I tried to be understanding and truly thought that one day he would open his eyes and see me and know that he would have never found someone who loved him as much as I did. Of course, that only happened as the events of the double life unfolded and there has been more screaming than I care to admit to.

I have no words that will ease your pain. I wish I could find that magic potion that would take it all away and take us all to a better place in time. In the meantime, keep detaching. You are not responsible for him so give yourself permission to let it go. Put all of your energy into making yourself and your baby happy and healthy and don't let his selfish behavior hurt you. For your own mental health you have to completely unplug from him.

Unfortunately, he has not hit his rock bottom yet. I don't know what it's going to take at this point but, you need to be as far away as possible when the impact occurs. He has to do this for himself and, sadly, he hasn't found the right motivation yet. He might fool everybody else..hell, he is probably fooling himself right now but, it won't last forever. I hope you are in a better place when he finally breaks.

confused615 posted 7/15/2014 17:04 PM

Because he is a member, Im going to refrain from saying much. Most of it would be my personal opinion, and probably not helpful.

But I have to chime in and agree with knutz. Your child is at risk. High risk. Your husband sounds very much like Nature Girl's exhusband. I am hoping his visits are completely supervised?

Your story is horrific. You must be an incredibly strong woman to still be standing.

Hugs to you.

Lionne posted 7/15/2014 19:04 PM

I get it. You don't trust counselors, you don't trust men. Yet you are reaching out for help. That's a good thing.

Please find someone IRL to help you. There ARE good ICs, good docs. You clearly are depressed, who wouldn't be? Do it for yourself, your baby. You are absolutely no good to him unless you do.

That internet persona isn't fooling anyone here. It is clear he needs more than we can offer and it is clear he is toxic for now. The concern is you. You cannot do this alone and with the help of faceless internet buddies. This requires face to face intervention.

But we care, we do. Please get help.

determinata posted 7/15/2014 22:29 PM


Thank you for your reply. I'm sorry we find ourselves in similar boats. You are right that it's not my fault. Assuming fault is my feeble way of trying to feel some degree of control over the situation and unfortunately I have no control or even influence over him.

I've not been to an attorney in a long time. But he does not want the baby any more, especially as he may be sick. He sees him less and less and so long as he can portray me as having unreasonably deprived him of his parental rights to friends and family, he doesn't actually care about seeing our child. Whenever he skips a visit or cuts one short, it doesn't bother him at all. His only real interest in our son is narcisstic and pretty shallow. I was once worried about a custody battle but I see now that he's not that committed to feigning interest in being a dad.

You are right that he is an active addict. Do you (or anyone else) have best practices for dealing with an active addict? Do you just not talk to them as much as possible or are there any finer points?

Yes, it's truly astonishing how the addict can get better and even be freed by being found out but it 's never been that way for the BS. For whatever reason it had not occurred to me before that he has not hit rock bottom--I sort of assumed that losing the opportunity to live with his son was bottom.

But it's not. He doesn't love me. He doesn't love DS. He cares too much about HIS childhood 3 decades ago to care about his son's childhood NOW. It must be terrible to live in a world of self-pity, rage, lust and repetition but it's not one he apparently wants to leave.

I appreciate your being circumspect but he knows better than to read my threads so I think you can say anything you'd like. His visits are not completely supervised. He takes DS out in public alone sometimes. He plays with him sometimes when I am in the next room. Right now, I'm comfortable with this arrangement but it's constantly evolving. I'm keeping safety front of mind and right now, I do trust him to take the baby out for a few hours at a time.

I know I need a counselor. Right now, I have no one to leave DS with. We have no money because SAWH's therapy is $100/week; DS is on hypoallergenic formula that is $70/week; we are carrying a mortgage and rent that total $750/WEEK and we are living on SAWH's modest income and our dwindling savings. I haven't bought clothes for a year and won't until I have a job interview. I stopped saving for retirement. I'm just broke. But I also can't bear to see a counselor right now. Can't do it. I feel like if I start talking to someone I'll just come completely undone and I can't. I know it's crazy but it's where I am.

[This message edited by determinata at 10:33 PM, July 15th (Tuesday)]

CheaterMagnet posted 7/16/2014 01:15 AM


I understand every word you typed. I was you for most of my life. This year I finally saw a psychiatrist and his head didn't explode when he heard my story. And I told him the whole story. CSA, Pigfucker, suicide attempts, and now SAWH. And my head didn't explode either. I have meds now that allow me to function and keep the panic at bay.

My life is still a mess, but I feel more equipped to handle it.

Sending you peace and strength.

knutz posted 7/16/2014 08:37 AM

What would I do? I would go dark. I am not sure if your goal is reconciliation or not. If it is -- do a hard 180. No contact unless it concerns finances or your son -- all via email. You cannot have a relationship with a sex addict who is acting out.
The fact that he is telling YOU his fantasies shows how sick he really is. You really need to see an attorney to set up child visitation. He should not be coming over every day. Just seeing him must trigger you.

From what I have read of his FOO issues -- it is going to literally take YEARS of IC for him to get to the heart of his issues. My SAH was also sexually abused as a child, emotionally neglected by his mom, manipulated by his dad, yadda, yadda, yadda. Classic recipe for sex addiction in the future. Until they face how their families let them down, they will never change their behavior. EVER.

One of the reasons I stayed was because I knew deep down my SAH was a good person -- his behaviors were a product of his childhood. I knew (really hoped) that if be faced his demons the man that I fell in love with would come back to me.

Was I right? Kind of. He is a MUCH better human being, husband & father now. BUT -- am I happy? Not really. Four years have gone by and not a day goes by that I don't think about what he did. I trigger everyday. We are not intimate. We are SLOWLY working on it. They say reconciliation takes 2-5. I believe for people in our situations it is more like 5+ years. Know that going in.

I know your financial situation is bad, but you need to see someone face to face. Have you looked into COSA or S-Anon? They are 12-step programs for spouses/partners. They are free. You will find tremendous support there.

Keep posting.

determinata posted 7/16/2014 11:06 AM

I'm so glad that things are better for you now and that you found a counselor and meds that help. And I'm so glad that your suicide attempts failed. I've never attempted suicide but I have made serious preparations to die when I was in a dark place years ago. There are many days lately when I wish I had not made it through that bout of depression because killing myself is off the table now that I have DS. Ah well. It's always easier to see the value of someone else's life than your own when things are bad, isn't it?

I no longer want to reconcile with my husband. The many years of false R, where he was at least still masturbating (and probably doing much more), the years of TT, the years of being exposed to a disease against my will and without my knowledge have killed all my desire to R. I'm not emotionally ready to D either and not sure when I will be.

My ideal relationship with him would be that we cohabitate so DS has both parents present and we have a nonromantic "marriage" where we are able to be friendly, functional and supportive of each other while DS grows up. There are financial advantages and we don't have to go through the embarrassment of divorce. When he's ready to be out on his own, we can D--or not. I'm not interested in being romantically involved with any man so remarriage is not attractive to me. I also no longer care about sex. So the only reason I would want to remarry is so that DS could have a stepfather and that wouldn't be fair to a new husband.

I know that's not realistic but it is what I would want ideally. I have loved and forgiven a lot. And now I am done. I just want to split bills, share childcare duties and be nice to each other. One central problem, I think, is that my husband's narcissism won't even allow him to contemplate anything short of being worshipped and adored, whatever he does. Recently, he and I took baby DS out to a museum for the first time. Baby had a ball and it was a delightful day. But at the end of it, SAWH's general attitude is that he deserves not only brunch and the museum but some loving, cuddling and sex to go with it. He not only told me that he had masturbated thinking about me ( ) but asked me if he could kiss me. No, no and hell no. Can't you accept that and just enjoy what you do have?

I'm glad that you know that your husband is a good person at core and I once believed that about mine. Now I see him as very possibly fucked up beyond all repair. He already has done years of IC, fixating on how lonely, isolated, betrayed, hurt and angry his CA made him feel. Never mind the fact that he had no significant physical injuries from this abuse and can't even be sure that he was molested--he is the most victimized person on the planet. And I should add that one of the things that disgusts me about him is that he thinks it's "hot" that prostitutes tend to be abuse victims and he has repeatedly masturbated to the thought that they are so effed up by their childhoods that they are now selling their bodies. His obsession over his CA and CSA goes nowhere except towards justifying his resentment of the entire world. I understand trauma. But I fail to see how your stepfather possibly or possibly not touching your penis when you are 3 makes it impossible for you to treat your wife with some care and consideration. He's not nearly as angry at his stepfather for possibly molesting him as he is at me for telling him I didn't want to give him oral sex one time in 2007. And that is a serious example.

(Little boy voice) "You told me I could have anything I wanted sexually and I feel, I feel that you just set me up to let me down. I asked you to give me a blowjob and you said no and I just felt so hurt and rejected. I know it's not fair that I felt that way but I am still hurt by that memory."

Meanwhile, he was at that very time already on Craigslist looking for men dressed as women to fuck up the ass.

He's a sociopath, a psychopath--something like that. He's deeply deviant and nothing is going to change that. I don't even think that deviance can be corralled for much longer.

As far as seeing him, I have to see him most days if I want any childcare relief. I am with DS all day and all night since I don't currently work and I have no family within the next 4 states. My friends are far away and busy. I cannot leave the baby with SAWH's family, obvs. So I pretty much have him over so I can take a shower, clean up, etc. while someone tends to the baby. I know it's not sustainable but that is how it is today.

Nature_Girl posted 7/16/2014 11:33 AM

I wish I had a big block of free time to write out a detailed, lengthy response to your plight. I don't have that luxury today, though. Suffice it to say that I have walked in your shoes, I have gone through all the denial & defenses you are presently putting up to try and stay safe. Eventually I realized I needed to protect my children instead of trying to protect my marriage. I realized that I was sacrificing myself AND my children for the sake of the marriage, for the sake of a man who clearly did not love me or the children.

If you want changes in your life, you have to make them. Nothing will get better on it's own. You have to be the change you want in your life. I can tell you this: there is no life with an addict who is actively acting out. Further, there is no safety for your children. Do not continue to tell yourself that you're staying for the sake of the children. It is better to be FROM a broken home than to continue to live in a broken home. Every day you stay with an active addict, particularly one who fantasizes about incest & children, you are taking an unconscionable risk.

Time to make the hard choices and save your children.

painfulpast posted 7/16/2014 11:40 AM

I appreciate your being circumspect but he knows better than to read my threads

Nice thought - but if he is truly a narcissist, he's reading your threads, and every response, and he'll use what others give as responses to 'create' his persona when it suites him.

Please don't think you're 'safe' here if your STBXWH is NPD. This is public. He can read your thoughts here, so he will - if he truly is NPD.

Nature_Girl posted 7/16/2014 11:52 AM

One more thing: Don't think you need to shield the good folks here from the debauchery your WH is engaging in. Believe me when I tell you that I have totally spilled my guts here and shared all of the ugliness that I was living with and that my ex was doing. There's NOTHING you could share here that hasn't already been discussed because the members - either me or others - have already lived it.


You'll be okay. One step at a time. Just try to do ONE thing a day to change your situation.

outtanowhere posted 7/16/2014 11:52 AM

My ideal relationship with him would be that we cohabitate so DS has both parents present and we have a nonromantic "marriage" where we are able to be friendly, functional and supportive of each other while DS grows up.

In a perfect world that might be possible. There is absolutely nothing *normal* about your SAWH. I fear that you are setting yourself for more pain and heartache with this plan. It's impossible to know all the ways it can go to hell but, there are so many potentials. I don't think you can really detach having daily contact with him and, my hunch is that since he still feels like you *need* him, even for help with the baby, it's impossible to tell how that translates to him. He is manipulating you all over the place and, as far as I can see, recovery hasn't crossed his mind. It's just too easy to hang in there and keep fucking with your mind.

I understand how draining it is to be the primary caretaker of your son but, you may find you have more energy once you get away from all this guy's drama. For your own mental health, I hope you can cut him out at least for the foreseeable future. Can you move closer to your family? It makes me so sad that these are times you can never get back with that precious baby and, your man-child is totally robbing you of all the possible joys that come with watching him develop and grow.

Hugs & strength to you today

hathnofury posted 7/16/2014 15:26 PM


Very gently, why would you EVER want to cohabitate with a potential sociopath? I know right now it may seem like a viable option, but I assure you it is not. You need to start making a plan B.

You gotta get to a S-Anon or COSA meeting. Bring the baby. They won't care. Many meetings have childcare, and when there is a crisis an oldtimer would take the baby outside if it is needed so the mama can cry. I think you have told me before you've done phone meetings, and if so that's a great start. But you need IRL people locally to help you. You can find a sister in the same boat who can trade childcare with you to see IC. You can get recs from others on good IC. You might find someone that you can share a home with to alleviate the financial issues.

But first, just go to a meeting. Baby steps! Like NG said, just try to do one thing each day to improve your sitch. You will get there eventually.

SeeingRed posted 7/16/2014 21:27 PM

I went through the same thing. RUN. Do anything you can to keep your children away from him and get them in counseling and keep them in counseling FOREVER.

You cannot fix a narcissist/sociopath/psychopath and neither can a psychiatrist. They lack any ability to recover or be treated. It cannot be done. You have obviously realized as much.

Many so called "sex-addicts" aren't actually, they simply lack empathy and they do whatever, whenever because they want to and have no actual emotional connection to anyone.

RUN. Ask your family/friends to move in with them as far away as possible.

Once you remove yourself/children from their immediate "feed" they will find a new "victim" and will let you and your children go.

Also ((((hugs)))). You are NOT alone.

determinata posted 7/18/2014 00:00 AM

Nature_Girl I know some things about your story and believe me, I take it completely seriously. I am not trying to save my marriage or even cohabitate. It's completely out of the question because he won't or can't control his sexual impulses, anger, lying and general dysfunction enough. If he were stable in some way and a forensic psych thought he were safe to be around a small, male child then I might consider a platonic living situation. But's he's not so it's not even a possibility.

My son is my first priority, which is why my SAWH isn't living with us now--because of the baby, not because of me. If it weren't for my son, I'd probably be on the sex addict rollercoaster right now.

The problem with moving closer to my family is employment or lack thereof. Without getting specific about my hometown, unemployment is very high and has been high relative to the overall economy for a long time now (think decades, not years). Housing is affordable but there's also a crime issue to some extent and a real uptick in heroin and oxy crimes and culture. Even the people I know there who live comfortably are pretty stuck--their homes are worthless because of depopulation and if they lose the job they have, they will be driving long distances to find another. So relative to NYC, where I've been my entire adulthood, it's a huge change and in many ways, a huge step back.

So I'm ambivalent and it's going to take me awhile longer to decide. When I started this pregnancy, I was really happy to be having a child with my husband. So this devolution over the past 13 months still has my head spinning a bit. I know I need to act but I need some more time to figure it out.

Thank you for suggesting I bring the baby to COSA. I think I can manage that. He loves other people, especially women and he's able to be quiet for some length of time. I'm going to try that. As for cohabitating, it's just a dysfunctional fantasy that's not going to really happen but I hear you and respect your advice.

What you articulated is why I suspect that all of his therapies, etc., are largely just an exercise in futility as far as being in a marriage or family is concerned. To be clear--he's NOT diagnosed as NPD of socio or psycho. But I see no evidence that he really considers anyone except himself. I don't doubt that he can stop having extramarital sex but if he does, it will only be for his own selfish and twisted reasons, like deciding sex isn't worth spending cash on.

[This message edited by determinata at 12:05 AM, July 18th (Friday)]

determinata posted 7/18/2014 00:31 AM

So some progress today---
I did a COSA telephone call, which I haven't been on in a month and that felt good.

I worked on revamping my resume. It's up to date but I've had the same format forever and the world is changed so I spent a lot of time on it and it's pretty fucking awesome. I'd hire me. It was hard to do because I've been so feeling so worthless that I feel like no one will ever hire me but the facts don't lie -- I'm accomplished, competent and now I just need to find an employer who is ready for me.

I found a daycare center for DS! It's super affordable (for NYC) and very close. I was stunned when they told me the price. Heaven sent. He can't start until he two and he can't sign up for another month but if I get a job in the range of my old position, we can afford a nanny until he turns 2 since the wait list for most centers is so long. Alleluia.

I started looking for an IC. Having reread my own posts, my go-it-alone strategy is crazy. I'm pouring money into my SAWH's therapy and spending nothing on my own mental health and that's got to stop. So I'm being brave and I left a bunch of messages for consults late today. Let's see who follows up.

All in all, it was a good day.

Lionne posted 7/18/2014 11:46 AM

You sound so much better! I'm glad. You have been on my mind a lot. I picture you as an incredibly smart, beautiful young woman who deserves a rich future free of the sickness that currently inhabits your life. I know it is coming!

Keep posting. We are here for you!

determinata posted 7/22/2014 01:49 AM

I am doing much better, thank you. I feel like I was in a vortex of self destruction for a while that was hard to pull out of. My mind somehow seems clearer now.

Today was tough.

I'm still waiting to hear back from some of the IC's. One did reject me as a client, saying I would need "years of therapy" and she wasn't interested in taking "longterm cases" at this time. I felt stabbed. I didn't call her in hysterics. I just emailed her explaining that I was struggling with depression and anxiety due to a failing marriage and struggles as a first time mom. She called me back and asked if the marriage problems were due to incompatibility or something else. I said it was due to multiple infidelities with sex workers and she all but hung up on me, saying that was too much complexity, though she could refer me to a colleague who might take me on.

I felt so dirty and so stupid. And I shut myself in the bathroom and sobbed with the shower running so the baby wouldn't hear me. And then I realized that I have to not be a victim. I wrote her back, explaining that while I appreciated her candor, she was brusque, unsympathetic and unprofessional. I said that I hope that she would greet future inquiries with more compassion. She wrote back with this one-liner:

Sorry to disappoint you
Sent from my iPhone

No worries, doctor. I wrote reviews for her on ZocDoc and HealthScores and Yelp. Enjoy those 1-stars. I'm moving on.

I then had a tough but productive conversation with SAWH. Not about R, to be clear. He explained a few things that were helpful:

1. He admitted (without me bringing it up) that he is not safe to be around because he has poor boundaries and a lot of the thrill of his acting out is crossing boundaries.

2. He admitted that he is not safe to be around because the only person he consistently feels sorry for is himself. He only has flashes of empathy for others and it is inconsistent.

3. He told me that the Naltrexone isn't doing enough to regulate his libido and he's going, this week, to talk to his psychologist about prescribing Depo Provera (chemical castration).

4. He told me that he is angry at himself for ruining his marriage through years of lying and acting out and that due to his poor character and lack of responsibility, he directs that anger towards me. He apologized and it felt sincere, though it's not like it changes a lot.

What's good about these things is that I believe they are true and they let me know that I cannot have a relationship with this husk of a person. That helps ground my reality.

Feeling a little beaten up by those two conversations, I logged on to Facebook to check on my family and friends, only to find that one of my few HS friends has killed herself. She hung herself and was found by her 10 year old son.

I tell myself that I rally want to die, a lot of days. But what I want is for the pain to stop. What I want is for the horrors to cease. That's what my friend wanted too. I'm just so, so, so sad that she looked for that peace in death. I realize now that I'm never going to abandon my son that way. Never. The unspeakable pain of so many people.

I almost called my SAWH to cry on his shoulder. But he's not my H anymore and he's not my confidant. So I'm going to post and say a prayer for my friend and go to sleep. Sometimes, that's all you have.

knutz posted 7/22/2014 06:50 AM

I am very proud of you. I am glad that you are feeling a little better about things. You are on the right path -- hopefully things will get a little better every day. You are strong.

You will find the right therapist for you. Keep posting here until you do.

I am so sorry about your friend.

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