Hath ~ I've been following your posts. Honey, much strength to you. No advise, just hugs and more hugs. You are in my thoughts and prayers.
Missy ~ STBX wife of an attorney here. My SAWH is a litigator who gets paid to argue for a living. He is in private practice. Looking back, I see now he could not stand to take orders, or criticism, from superiors. I cannot say the group are liars as a whole, but they surely are adept at bending the truth to serve the client.
Ironically, he is a former prosecutor aka "the good guys". I found cheating and lying was far more prevalent in that group, than any subsequent firm he joined as a "defender".
I do not know if all lawyers make shitty husbands (I know some happy couples), but they seem very prone to flattery and ego stroking. My STBX has done zero to save our marriage. He is too busy "defending" himself and painting himself the victim. I am exhausted by his gamesmanship.
Hope, sweetie, and all who post here. Sending you continued strength and love...
Hath - My doctor wants me to try other measures first before starting meds. She says she does not want to medicate "grief". She has prescribed me Ambien for sleep though. I am on modified duty at work until end of this year. I am trying to exercise and engage myself in other activities. But I can't get over the fact that the person I trusted the most can do this horrific thing to our family.
I am struggling with this situation right now. Please help me see clearly.
2 weeks ago, My husband and I had some arguments at night. That night he went on craigslist to find an apartment for him just in case if he needed to move out. I don't know for sure what he saw on CL because he says he opened it in incognito window in google chrome where history can not be stored. He did not tell all these to me but I had to ask him and then he told me.
This was a very severe trigger for me because it all started with CL. I was on the floor crying. Then I told him that him going on computer late at night makes me really uncomfortable so please don't do that. You can do it when everybody is awake but just to make me feel safe please don't do it at night. He agreed on that.
Last Sunday, around at 4 AM I went to his bedroom and I saw him with his laptop. He said he was watching TV shows on netflix because he was not able to sleep. We have a direct streaming on TV but he chose laptop after I requested him not to do that.
He said he did not remember that. I have been having really bad time after this incident.
I have asked him to move out if he wants to keep hurting me like this.
I brought this thing up to my IC and our MC. They both thought what he did was not right. One of them even said that it is just like an alcoholic seating alone with lots of alcohol. He is not drinking it but there is a possibility that he would.
Then he mentioned it to his IC and her response was
No other regular therapist would understand this situation. As a sexual addiction therapist, her take on this situation would be that we need to setup certain boundaries. Deciding that he will not access computer at all is probably not the right thing. When you feel frustrated and bogged down, it should be OK for you to do what you feel will help you over come the period of guilt and depression. It can be watching TV shows or browsing websites. In fact, it would be better if you were able to show / prove that you do not go to such websites anymore.
Now my head is spinning. I thought what we agreed upon was reasonable but his IC saying just the opposite thing. I can not continue to live like this in fear. If you want to restore this M , then you should be doing everything to rebuild the trust but he is doing just the opposite by walking on a fine line.
I don't know what to do. Am I over reacting? I am thinking about talking directly to his IC and clarify this.
There is another woman in my group therapy that has a similar story to mine, more than average serious case. Her husband is not allowed internet access on his phone, at work, and can only use it at home while supervised. That is what makes her feel safe, and obviously that is the best course of action for anyone in early recovery. But he has a job that he can do that. Another woman in my group whose husband's online porn addiction has gotten him fired from jobs has Net Nanny on her computer at home, that is what makes her feel safe. Now she can feel safe when he uses it when she is not there, and she doesn't have to worry about walking in on him looking at porn AGAIN.
My SAWH has to use the internet at work for his job. Presumably he would never risk inappropriate internet activity at work since it is always monitored, but you never know. He has to carry a work-provided Blackberry with him at all times because he works for different clients all over the globe in different time zones, and it has internet access. Then of course because of this he also has to use the internet/computer at home to answer off-hour emails and phone calls. Cutting internet off him completely is not an option.
In the beginning, he just never used the home computer unless I was in the room. I needed that to feel safe. He would show me his internet history on his phone. And I fully admit I keylogged the computer and put spyware on his phone, which may or may not be legal where you live, without his knowledge. He has since switched phones so it is not tracked any more. I have since realized if he is going to fall down that rabbit hole, he can easily go buy a prepaid smartphone to do his acting out. Quite honestly that could happen even if he had no internet access at home or work at all. But I needed to get to that point in my recovery to accept that before I could stop having some sort of hard proof he was behaving to feel safe.
There's three components to this. First, he should remove as much as much temptation and opportunity as he can for the addict in early recovery, because you want to set him up to succeed. That doesn't necessarily involve a total internet ban, but it can. Second, you need boundaries to make you feel safe. They need to be quantitative and not subject to different interpretations. Third, you need to feel like he is honoring your boundaries and making efforts toward his recovery and your healing. That means he taking initiative to follow your boundaries and then some, and you acknowledging that and appreciating that, reinforcing your feeling of safety and rewarding his efforts. Of course also you confront him when he doesn't. And you keep doing all three of these components until you both feel like you don't need to any more.
I don't know if any of this makes sense. But it is what I understand from my experience and observing others in similar predicaments.
He reassured me that he has told everything to his CSAT. I made him give that to me in writing. He is going to arrange a conference call with the therapist and then hopefully I will have better understanding.
He is saying that he has realized that it was a mistake to go on computer at night and he is never going to do it again. I don't know what to believe. I feel that if he can not follow through on a simple thing like this than how can he be committed to his recovery.
I will post again after I talk to his therapist.
As a spouse of a SA it is imperative that you cling tightly to what you know is true & real. How do you know if an addict is lying? If he's talking, he's lying. Plain & simple. If it's not a flat-out, bald-faced lie, it's a prevarication, obfuscation, fabrication, truth-bending, twisting of the facts.
Don't believe a word your SA says or writes. Not one word. You will see truth & reality in his actions alone.
IMHO it is critical to get the HIPPA consent form so whenever you have any doubts about what he says, you can call and talk to the therapist whenever you feel like you need verification.
After learning about this characteristic of a SA, I feel scared and hopeless. Can they ever change this? I feel I can never win this battle so it's not even worth trying.
He then called me crying asking if we could talk one last time. I said yes and had my mom drive me to the restaurant we were going to meet at. He sat down and went over a few more things about the divorce papers and then proceeded to ask me if there was anything I needed to tell him and when I was going to stop bsing him. I told him I didnít come here for this and was trying to be nice because he was crying. He said not knowing is not fair and he deserves respect. I was like the same respect you had given me the last 7 years. He then told me that he was getting to the bottom of my bs story tonight. His friend carpools with my friend (the one that stopped by my house on Tuesday night). I guess my friend pretty much got verbally attacked the entire time he was in the car with my SAWHís friend. Obviously, there was nothing to learn, but my SAWH is still not satisfied and set up a meeting with my friend on Saturday. I feel so bad that he drug people into this.
I considered my SAWHís friend and his family my friend and he definitely drug my name through the mud with him. Making me look like I was lying and cheating and thatís why our marriage ended. I asked him if he told his friend about his past and everything heís done to me. He said no. He wants everyone to think heís the victim in this and I told him so. I said you won buddy and Iím done being nice. I hope people figure out who you truly are. He got up and walked out.
He then messaged me and said Iím sorry, I didnít want it to go down like that but my heart is broken and I truly believe youíre hiding something, can I call you? I said NO, leave me alone. He hasnít messaged me since. I guess I am so upset because he is basically threatening a friend of mine and a fellow employee of ours that if heís my friend or ever becomes anything more, he wonít go anywhere in this department. Itís so sad and so sick.
** thank you nature girl for that link about NPD... It was crazy how spot on it was**
I feel so bad that he drug people into this.
Mine would do this type of thing to cause me to further isolate from everyone.
He sounds very manipulative. Crying for himself one minute, then attacking the next. It puts you on quite a roller-coaster. I finally got it that I could never predict what was coming next. I just sort of stay braced, for whatever it is. It's stressful, even now after the divorce. It was really hard during the divorce process.
Hang in there!!
---edited to correct grammar
[This message edited by Compartmented at 6:21 PM, December 7th (Friday)]
** thank you nature girl for that link about NPD... It was crazy how spot on it was**
You're welcome, and I'm sorry it fit. It's a special kind of hell when your hubby is a SA and NPD. On the bright side, forewarned is forearmed. Read up on it & get an idea what your future will be like.
It is scary. I think some can change. Mine wouldn't even try, so I don't know what SA looks like in recovery. The thing is, it isn't hopeless. Whether he is going to go into recovery or not, or is going to try and will either succeed or not....any of these situations leave you needing to take care of yourself, so it is freeing in that way. Even if it doesn't feel that way at all. You need to heal from the trauma. He can't do that for you. You need to learn about boundaries and set yours. He's in your life and what he does definitely affects you, but his actions don't determine what you need to do. You need to take care of yourself....learn self-care activities that are meaningful to you and hang on to them for dear life, whether he recovers or not.
I was in the depths of despair upon learning of my X's cheating. Then more of the truth came trickling out, which hurt me even more. I got more and more frantic, trying to get some control in my life. Eventually I started going to 12-step programs and also began serious therapy to heal from the emotional trauma.
I made a list of self-care activities and printed it out, so I could have something to turn to when freaking out. Some things on there were: meditate, SI, get outside, go for a brisk walk, therapy, Al-Anon and S-Anon, call a friend, journal, garden. It was very hard to do some of these things, when I just wanted the horrible pain to stop, and gardening didn't exactly DO that.
I'm so sorry you have had to find your way here. We know how you feel. There's great support here.
Hath, Missy and NG you guys were spot on.
He did modify the truth. I spoke to his therapist on phone last evening. She said that he presented it as a self imposed boundary not mutually agreed upon boundary She agreed with me that he did not keep his word. She even emailed my husband about the discussion we had so i did not have to argue with my husband that he said something else in the therapy session. I did not have energy to argue either. His therapist also suggested that I keep patience since we just started seeing CSATs. She also pointed out that at least he is willing to recover. (but my problem is he says "Yes" to everything and does only what he wants to do)
After reading you posts I realize that this is how it's going to be and I will have to keep verifying things with his therapist.
As far as filter in computer is concern, He works with computer and he can work his way around if he wants to . He can be very sneaky.
I started reading "out of the shadow . (Thanks NG). I think I am beginning to understand what a monstrous thing this is. I question myself that do I want that for my entire life if I stay with him? The book talks about how powerless they are over their addiction but he still thinks that he has will power to stop it since he saw his family suffered so much. He has even completed first 3 steps with his sponsor. I see contradictions everywhere.
Compartmented- Thank you for valuable advise. It seems like an excellent idea to have a list handy so you can refer it quickly. I used to be a planner. I like things in order and the thing i hated the most in uncertainty. Right now life seems at its best for being chaotic.
Lastin-Thanks honey. I feel a lot for you. Your husband has some guts. How can he shift the blame to you? It sounds like he is not able to accept his problems. You deserve better Lastin.