You didn't sound flippant at all, so no worries. I didn't realize that you were in the UK. What a bummer for you. I wish that the UK had the same resources that we do in the states. I think you are right in setting boundaries and taking care of YOU. Hugs.
I feel so much sadness when I read your posts.
but damn, is it even possible to live with an active SA and not go crazy. I've become a personality like him, living in duplicate worlds, the one that I show to the outside world, and the secret one, where my life is total Hell on earth.
I cannot prove he acting out. It is truly just a gut feeling. But it's killing me just the same.
I know there are some of you out there in SI who feel trapped because you are older and in a long term relationship and financially have to stay. How do you cope day to day???
I hate my WH and that feeling is eating me alive. I also hate who I have become.
No, I don't think one can live with an active addict long term and NOT feel crazy! I remember how crazy I felt on my last d-day. I spent so much energy and focus for 16 years of our marriage in trying to catch him, with that feeling that he was acting out, but most of the time he was such a good liar and knew how to cover his tracks so well. That is crazy making.
I realize that I am in a far different place than you. Have you ever met with a lawyer to discuss division of assets? I know that you fear the financial aspects of separation and being alone, but honestly, is this private hell of yours any better? I wish I would have left before our last d-day. I know it is hypocritical of me to even say this to you. It is always easier to say "leave" to someone else. I am just very sad for you. Your WH doesn't seem to want to recover or do anything about it.
Hugs, and take care of YOU.
I understand that feeling of not being able to talk to anyone about it, and keeping it bottled up. I did that for years, too. I had the double life. The perfect one everyone saw on the outside and the miserable, lonely one at home.
Until I got on this site I never really thought there was hope for someone who is an SA.. do they ever really get cured or do they just go deeper underground?
There is hope. I usually say cautious optimism. It is not an easy road. The SA has to hit their rock bottom, and that is different for everyone. The addict has to want to change for themselves, not to save the marriage. The addict has to be willing to do all the HARD work, and it is hard and time consuming, requiring change in almost all aspects of their lives. Sustaining a change like this long term requires an intense commitment.
Does your WH see SA as a problem in his life? Is he willing to address it with a CSAT, 12 step group, workbooks, and any other resources available? If he is, there is hope. The rewards can be terrific, too. Things are the best they have ever been for my H and I, but it has been a rocky and difficult road. We are slowly making progress.
Are you reading and learning for YOU? Self-care is SO important. We have to learn to break out of the craziness and take care of ourselves.
Sorry you find yourself here. I wish you luck on your journey of healing.
When you are dealing with SA, remember you are really dealing with 2 issues (well, really many more, but i will highlight just the 2 for now ) First you are dealing with SA and all of those issues. But there is also the betrayal of the infidelity. Part of the reason I love being here instead of a just SA site, is that there are aspects of dealing with infidelity that are part of the "normal" betrayal experience. One of the things that I have read about here frequently, and experienced, was sex to "take back my man". That feeling that you want back what you once had, to be back in control of that. I don't necessarily call that a "charater defect" but rather part of the infidelity experience. That said, we deal best with SA when we understand our motives of behavior as well as that of our spouses.
Since my H and I have been down the SA recovery road more than once, not having sex is okay (plus we are both on antidepresants and you know what they do ). We have been focusing being intimate - holding hands, a quick kiss while making dinner, honest conversation, hugs, etc. That's always what has been most important to me anyways. When the time is right, I expect this intimacy will continue to grow back into a physical relationship as well. This is really one area where trusting your gut, taking time, talking with your partner, going slow really makes a big difference.
I really wish our culture wasn't so adolesent about talking about sex. It would certainly help us understand what "normal" is and when it's time to worry about addiction.
I think it scares me most of all is that I really don't think my H has what it takes to do the work. Sad..but that is my feeling.
He has been so avoidant (is there such a word? LOL)his whole life.
He is only opening up to some details of his childhood that have affected him greatly recently. I knew about alot but the new stuff is tough and he couldn't look at me while he told me.
I am not sure I can do this. There is sex every where! I mean, it is like food...you need it and it is readily available.
I just don't know if I have it in me as well to handle this.
I hear when it is said, I don't know if I want to know cause then what? I think the same thing at times but what if he gets an STD and brings it home.
I am being denied my sexuality and needs. Don't I deserve the truth so I can decide how I want to live the rest of my life?
I am concerned about the kids as well. They are all adults but Yes, this must be affecting them to some extent. They don't know what but they know something is going on between us.
I know H is scared...I can see it but he is stubborn and so scared I know he will deny and hide more. I am not going to go years of checking up on him. I will do what is necessary for now to find out that I can and use that to help me navigate my decisions for me.
UUGGG...I want to cry! I want to scream...I am so sad and lonely right now. I am lost.
I will make that call tho and see if I can get a handle on myself.
Keep the2x4's coming if need be..thanks
What you are living right now is the worst part. And as scary and as difficult as it is, you need to confront your H with what you know. To minimize the crazymaking, I would stop monitoring where his going and when. You already have all the proof you need. My guess is you will just find more of the same.
I think it would be a great idea to see a CSAT for you. And I would definately do that before you confront your H. You may find that your CSAT would assist you in the confrontation. If a CSAT is not available in your area, try finding a therapist that specializes in addictions. (there are no CSAT in our area and we are going to a certified addiction counselor... he is great)
I agree with TMY that your H addiction has impacted every member of your family. I don't agree with the "family disease" however. I think that it is more similiar to when a family member has a serious illness. We don't call cancer a "family disease" although it can have devistating, longterm impacts on family members just like SA. That's just my opinion... Since you are the sane one, you do need to do what you can to minimize the impact on the kids... try to keep things as normal as possible. Be present when you are with them and focus on enjoying them and meeting their needs. You H is an adult and can take care of himself.
Also remember that sex addiction is not seriously recognized by most. Your husband may not even know that such an illness exists. My h and I were talking about that last night. he didn't even know one could be a sex and love addict until I handed him "out of the shadows" by Carnes.
I saw it was my job to share with my H what I had learned about SA and why I thought he was an addict. After that point, it was up to him to get treatment. Luckily, he saw himself immediately and was willing to get treatment. Even now, after almost exactly 10 years, he is just now finally taking his addiction seriously and taking advantage of all the help that is available.
Please know that there are many of us.... please know that you are not alone and you will get through this.
From what my h has shared, being a SA is scary. It is also shameful, degrading, life threatening, relationship robbing, health robbing, financially devistating..... What recovery gives the addict is hope and a path to wellness. you can not control if your H will seek treatment. That will be his decision. He may surprise you and find he doesn't want to live this way and he is willing to embrace the path to sanity.
Since your children are grown, consider letting them in to the secret. Addictions get better by shining a light. In our family, there are no more secrets.... the only way we are truly worthy of love is to be our real, honest selves with one another. My kids have learned a lot, and it has not all been bad...
PM me if you want to talk...
is it even possible to live with an active SA and not go crazy
How do you cope day to day???
Hi WatchingU- I’m living with an active SA. My story’s in my profile. How have I managed not to go crazy? For me it has been a near thing, but what saves me is regular therapy, both an IC and a CSAT, weekly support group meetings and regular journaling. I no longer see the CSAT, but I make sure I don’t miss my regular weekly appointments. I make sure I don’t miss more than once in a row. Detachment is crucial for me. I won’t make it without detaching. Detaching is a learned skill; it takes a while to learn and maintain. I’ve only been able to do this with the help of my therapists. As for day to day, I say my prayers, call my sponsor and practice strong self care. It took me a while to get the hang of all of this, I can assure you. The biggest thing that keeps me sane is moving forward with my plans and focusing on myself one day at a time.
Hi cheetahbump! I’m glad you’ve found us way down here in ICR. It does sound grim, I have to say. We’re here to help you, though, all you have to do is ask.
am not sure I can do this. ..I just don't know if I have it in me as well to handle this.
You can and should take your time, cheetah. Don’t feel like you have to rush. I urge you strongly to find an IC, a CSAT if possible. SAs are master manipulators and gaslighters, definitely see a therapist to help guide your thinking process.
Since your children are grown, consider letting them in to the secret. Addictions get better by shining a light. In our family, there are no more secrets.... the only way we are truly worthy of love is to be our real, honest selves with one another.
This is absolutely true in my house too. No hiding, no avoiding the subject, no ‘forgetting’. If they ask me, I tell them the truth. As much as I feel is appropriate. Secrecy is fuel for addictions.
Hugs to all~ Sabina
edited for formatting and clarity
[This message edited by SabinatheOwl at 9:39 PM, July 28th (Thursday)]
"Live a life not an apology." Edward R.Murrow
"I can be changed by what happens to me but I refuse to be reduced by it."
Finally, SAWH asked me why I was so calm and quiet and I replied, “We don’t have the money to bring the note up to date and they won’t return the car even if we did. I figured I should keep looking for a job. I know you can take the commuter bus up to work and back. I don’t figure I’m much help by running around and yelling.” He didn’t have anything to say after that. Later he went down to the dealer and came home with the jalopy, telling me, “I brought your car home.” LOL Funny isn’t he?! Then he said, “Here are the keys. You need to go and make some copies.” This man is wonderful, eh?
I’m feeling ok, though. I’ve figured out the local and commuter buses and I squirreled away enough money for the transit system that I can get to where I need to go at least until next payday. By which time he should be ‘away at camp’ and I can get some peace and quiet. Finally. I want to get a massage while he's gone.
SabintheOwl - I bet your new car is going to be the best loved on the block! Stick with it - you're getting closer every day.
Thing is, I'm not quite sure why I'm waiting. Our recognition of his addiction has simply been the turning point. I don't have too many problems with the SA aspect of our M (now that he's sober). My problem is that I've woken up to the fact that my H is lazy. I was so busy being a codependent and working hard to feel wanted that I neglected to notice that our elderly way of life wasn't because I wasn't trying hard enough, it's because I was doing it all on my own. (No disrespect to any OAPs - I know many that are far more active than me.) I'm getting older every day and I don't want to waste any more time! There's too much out there I want to be experiencing.
Plus, I've just found out that I can't D for adultery after 6 months - it has to be unreasonable behaviour. I wonder if this will make any difference to a division of property. I need to get me to a lawyer
This is a big trigger for me.
My FWH is 54 years old and has always liked to look at porn (magazines, DVDs, on-line sometimes).
Supposedly he's not into the chat rooms... or sex phone calls..
We've talked about it our entire married life (27 years)... and I kind of threw my arms up about it... until the As were revealed.
I truly believe he's not into hard porn, child porn, or anything real kinky. He says he just likes it.. and when he's horny, he likes to look at it....
He doesn't got to strip clubs.. no prostitutes...just in his own home (or in his hotel room if he's on work travel).
I always felt like him looking at porn - took away the specialness of our sex life...
In my unexpert opinion.... I think his porn needs contributed to him seekng out As...
His first OW was a sex partner (for over 2 years)... She was a coworker, she was married, and they had no emotional attachments really..
Then the second OW came along.. and it went to a PA fast and then very emotional..
And during those years, I felt like our sex life was different.. and I thought it was the porn.... and I felt like just another one of his "porn" girls.
Now, we are doing pretty good in R... but I found out he's looking at porn again on line...
He admits it and he says he was just horny.... we had sex last night.. and now I feel like shit... because I feel like I was just an extension of his porn... not me.
I don't know.... I'm not sure what I can realistic expect.
Is there a normal when it comes to porn
This first came to light about 18 months ago, but was probably going on for some years but I was just too dumb to catch on. He promised me he would give it up, but he is doing it again now. Again it took me a while to catch on, as I trusted him when he said he would give it up, but after some suspicious behaviour by him (staying up into the early hours, no sex, indifference/arrogance towards me), I went to the extreme of putting webwatcher on his computer, so I know exactly what he is looking at. Teen, fetish, abuse etc.
I felt I had been punched in the stomach, I was grief stricken. How could the man I have given everything to treat me this way.
However, 2 weeks later and I am beginning to feel sorry for him, and do you know what don't even fancy him any more. Why would I want to sleep with such a pervert?
I'm going to leave it for a few weeks and then confront him, and probably ask him to get the hell out of my life. I can't be bothered to try and get him sober, he isn't worth it. I however am worth more than this, and I am going all out to get the life I deserve.
You are well within your rights to leave your H and make a new life for yourself. No one will blame you or question your wisdom. You know yourself better than anyone else. It's good that you are going away for a while. It will give you the perspective you need to make the right decision.
If it helps, it does appear that you H is a porn/sex addict. The fact that he couldn't stop when you asked, the fact that he is risking arrest by visiting teen porn sites, is pretty conclusive evidence that his is in trouble.
Your confrontation may be his only hope to get well. He will need to hear that he is an addict, that you know it and that there is help if he chooses to take it. You are under no obligation to do any more than that. If you are ready, help him pack his things and move him out.
For a while my H chose his addiction over me and the kids. We lived apart for 7 months. Only when i was sure that he was embracing his recovery (that time) did I let him come home.
Staying with a sex addict is very difficult, even when it is the path that you chose. We have had our ups and down including may false recoveries, and relapses and most recently, his lose of job because of his addicition. It has not been easy, far from it. But for me, I know that the man I married and love is trapped inside this addiction. I have faith that he will see his way out. He is now in the strongest recovery and I see my real husband more and more each day.
But that is my journey... and you must find your own. Regardless of what you choose, you have my full support.
You will be in my thoughts.
[This message edited by sager at 3:15 PM, July 31st (Sunday)]
However, 2 weeks later and I am beginning to feel sorry for him, and do you know what don't even fancy him any more. Why would I want to sleep with such a pervert?
Hi Whitelady. I, too, feel sorry for my SAWH, but I realize that I am simply grieving a man that I thought I had married, not the man that he truly is. Wanting to be physically intimate is a normal reaction...you want to be with the man you thought you had...not the man that he has turned out to be. And it's very difficult when loneliness becomes part of the grieving process.
So, don't beat yourself up over these thoughts. You're just grieving and longing for the man that you thought you had.
Hang in there...that's all we can do. Many hugs to you.
This process could take 2 years or more. SA is still trying to be controlling. We get along about the kids. Jeez if I didn't want to have a partner in life we could just go like this til the kids are out.
As you all know – sex addiction is an intimacy disorder – he was sexually abused as a child and emotionally neglected by his mom. He was never taught how to feel any real emotion.
Here is my question to all of you: He just does not show me the kind of remorse that I want. He has said he is sorry a million times. But THAT IS IT. I have told him several times over the past several months how I need to be wooed, I need to be cherished, I need to see some type of emotion other than shame and anger. His shame is sooo big – whenever I confront him about it –whether we are in MC or home – he shuts down, then ignores me for days.
He disclosed last week in MC that he is working on his 10th step – then the day after, it dawned on me: What happened to the 9th step??? Wasn’t he supposed to make amends (unless it would hurt someone)? He NEVER spoke to me about the 9th step. Now my mind is racing – thinking he did not speak to me about it because he had more to disclose that would hurt me.
I just don’t know how to talk to him about this without blowing up. Those of you whose spouses have been through the 9th step – did they formally make amends to you?
I just feel so lost, alone and rejected right now. I miss the life I had. I miss the husband I thought I had.
hope you are all having a gentle day.
I have a question related to disclosure. My WS has been in therapy for about 2 months now, both one-to-one and group. I met his therapist for an hour's session recently, before his diagnosis. I was v angry - I seem to be able to manage when I don't think of it. I guess I need some help. I am finding it hard to be supportive of his journey - he's turning it around and is on a huge improvement kick all round him and I am eating and drinking like there's no tomorrow and have lost all my joy in life. There is no fun, it's all just (big) pants etc. I know I need to kick this but am stuck.
We get on fine, best friends, apart from the small detail of his SA he's my soul mate, but we haven't been physical for 5 months now, my libido's run away. The therapist suggested a way forward for our relationship would be a disclosure session together. I am now on I think version 3 of the truth? It may well be the final version, he's stuck to it since February.
My question is - do ye think this would be beneficial? We did see a nice counselor that we would both go back to (he in fact suggested my WS needed to deal with his addiction before we dealt with our relationship, something I had been saying since the beginning but it obv needed someone else to say it), but do you think that I should not shy away from the disclosure stuff etc? Part of me thinks this is his sh*t to sort out, and it makes me angry, rant rant, woe woe etc.. :(
I have lived a life almost identical to yours - same number of years, 12-step program, with the exception that I do not have children.
I have no words of wisdom, but I share in your pain every day - feeling alone, unloved, not cherished or valued, and am now grieving all of my "good" years spent with a man that I never really knew or thought I had.
I will never understand why I had to experience so much pain in my life when all I ever really wanted was to love and be loved. I'm sure you feel the same way too.
You are not alone....