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Sexual Abuse Survivors/Spouses - Part 3

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hopefulkate posted 1/10/2017 08:24 AM

That took a lot of strength to write! I'm so sorry you have seen so much pain. I think it's a great idea to take it to counseling and start breaking it all down again. Will you be moving again soon?

I agree, I think your betrayal is drinking too much and putting yourself in a less than safe posititon, I don't think that sounds like infidelity. It sounds like date rape, and that is NOT your fault.

Good luck today with counseling. My guess is that you are carrying a large weight of guilt for things that are not your fault. Take care and post when you need to.

devotedman posted 1/10/2017 08:28 AM

derealizingme:

Wayward Side is a protected forum. What is said there cannot be discussed elsewhere. I've read your story there and wish that I could make comments on it but, sadly, I cannot.

That's complicated a little (just a little, I think) by the fact that there is another guideline here against copying whole posts from one forum into another, so re-posting your exact story from there to here is out, at least temporarily.

May I suggest this? If you're looking at the I Can Relate forum list of threads each is started by SI Staff. The Mods read that PM Inbox. Click on one of the SI Staff and see if you can send a PM to one of them asking if you can repost your story here.

Alternatively, you can go into General and make a new thread entitled Mod, Please? and inside it just ask for one of them to PM you as you have a question.

Then ask them how to handle re-posting your story in this forum so that we can help you in here.

I want to inform you of one thing - people without a CSA background, like hopefulkate when she first started posting here and post others outside this thread, don't understand that CSA is a game-changer. The 'normal' reasons that waywards do what they do do not apply, or not in the same ways, when CSA is involved. CSA is often the real 'root' of _all_ of the behaviors and people do not always understand that very, very important fact. I'm going to tell you something: I understand. The spouses of CSA survivors have often discovered one common thing - CSA survivors can't help it. Ok, technically and exactly said, they could, but the reasons are buried so very deep, often tied in with deep-seated "desire to survive", that the chance that the CSA survivor will get appropriate help beforehand is miniscule. Thus, I can say that CSA survivor spouses often end up giving the CSA survivor almost a 'pass' on the bad behaviors if the CSA survivor will just seek appropriate help.

In my book, CSA survivor spouses who decide to stick around should be automatically nominated for Sainthood and those who choose to leave are blameless and I'd equally as happily offer support to either. CSA is a game-changer and a CSA survivors are a hell of a project to take on.

In the second posting of this thread I listed a bunch of resources that apply specifically to Sexual Abuse and Childhood Sexual Abuse. The 'how to pick a therapist' one from the .gov site I thought particularly good.

There are parallels between your story and mine, and between yours and YouMeI, and between yours and all other CSA survivors around.

Fistbump to you, derealizingme, sister in adversity }{

(BTW, I do the fistbump thing because a lot of us in this forum have trouble with touching - fistbumps are pretty safe-feeling because the hand is closed, not open and grabby, and the sentiment is there.)

Skan posted 1/10/2017 09:57 AM

Hello everyone. I've been lurking here every since I started talking to Kate privately, and I thought that it was time for me to introduce myself. Especially when I saw YouMe and derealizing me start posting.

I'll be around, but for now, YouMe, derealizingme, and Kate, I invite you to go to General and take a look at the Out of the Closet post that I just made. I have had that post written and ready to go for about 6-8 months, but there was no agreement on when to post it. Knew I was going to post it, because we were all in agreement about that, just didn't know when. I will say that the three of you were the final push to get it done.

I'll talk to you all later. (((hugs)))

derealizingMe posted 1/10/2017 22:42 PM

I got the ok to paste my post in the I can relate.... I have a difficult time relating to people so music is a big part of my life. I spent a good majority of my life self medicating with music and learned to use it as a tool. I'm listening to this one as I type, because even with the cloak of anonymity in the wild wild web I have major trust issues. As Gomer Pyle would say: 'Well Surprise, surprise, surprise.':

I will try my best not to ramble on and keep it male-friendly (short, precise, and to the point). So, here is my story/background:

alcohol/drug abuser xBF during early HS yrs. Confessed to me after starting treatment that he had just been using me (for sex). I was beyond devastated and in shock, he was my best friend and I very much loved him.

exwH - 9 yrs older, verbal and physically violent. He ended up spending some time in jail after assaulting ex#3 (I was #2 but was unaware of #1 for several years). Together from summer before HS Senior yr until -well, its complicated, but apx late '92 for official D.
3 kids, been adults for awhile now.

exWF - 8yrs my junior. He fell in love w/COW and left, I had nervous breakdown. I dragged my feet when committing to a wedding date, it was "my fault" he had A. 1999-2005 apx

BH - Oct 2007 - current (M=2009) 5yrs my Sr. Reminds me of RDjr - he's my Iron Man :) Has 3kids fm his exWW of 17?yrs

Me - FUBARD. Well ok, I'm exaggerating. Just need a lot of work (which I am on board to do!), CSA Survivor, Rape Survivor x2 (+.5?), Physical/mental Abuse survivor, misdiagnosed as Bi-polar now changed to PTSD/Anxiety/Major Depression, may be sex addict, codependent, DID etc etc.

Whew, that wore me out right there! Who do I send the co-pay to? Or maybe this is where I leave a cliff hangar and say 'to be continued until next time..."

In all seriousness, I thought I had my shit together before I met H after connecting with a really good therapist. Unfortunately we never got to the root of the real issues but she did give me some really good tools to work with. I would have continued to go to her had I not moved. And of all the therapists I had been to, she restored my faith in the process.

It's kind of hard to find a starting point since one part of history relates to another and it is all relevant, so please bear with me if I jump from one to another and then back again full circle. And maybe you can recognize a couple of dysfunctional patterns here (I try to add more fun and less dys).

To try to heal from the various abuses of my exWH, I used unconventional methods. I got involved with a couple in an open marriage and become good friends with the both of them. I experimented, almost immediately figured out that I was not bi but the wife and I turned out to be pretty good friends and she would often let me "borrow" her H. They were safe, I felt safe, and I thought this is how a marriage should be since they were open and best friends. They took me to my first big Singers Party and from there I got involved in the BDSM community. I did that mostly because I thought it would help me get over my fear of being abused - and it did! It really did help me become more assertive in many aspects and my career life took off (I had tried traditional therapy and it was not as helpful). I also had a lot of fun being single and the LAST thing on my mind was to be tied down. If it was a married couple, I always got to know the wife as well and I knew my boundaries.

Work took me to another state so I embarked on another journey and another quest to find a local group for my escapades. I did, and I remembered that I had met a Dom in my home state that lived not too far away so I reached out to see if he was still available. We hit it off and I spent a few weekends at his place when the kids were visiting their Dad.... until, he raped me. I dont want to go into details, is there a need to go into details here because my downfall is that sometimes I think I have to explain simply because of the fact that I cannot wrap my head around it. Anyways, I was so confused and didnt think I would be believed because of the history of our relationship and hell, this was the 2nd time I was raped so I started to think WTF is wrong with ME??? Had I known that he had a history of SA, maybe I would have filed a report (but then again it was easier to chalk it up as a life lesson and let it go). I left the BDSM scene and never looked back except some mild kink (and I do mean mild).

Met exWF soon after, no longer Swinging after going to a couple of parties together. He came from a good, unbroken family who had a lot of friends and a big social circle. I had issues with being older than him - especially with 3 kids! My hangup, and I was emotionally unavailable and he was still too much of a kid. I suspected him of cheating but I was so busy with work that I didnt investigate, and just looked him straight in the eyes and said "Not in MY bed!" Work moved me again, and I offered him an out because I was going with or without him and it was a long ways from his home. He decided to go with, we got engaged, I could never bring myself to set a date (after all I was married to my work!), he had an EA turned PA with an even older COW. I had a breakdown when he decided he didnt want to go to counseling and everything was "my fault". **I miss his parents and sister more than I will ever miss him** Shortly after, work sells and starts layoffs. I didnt want to move to HQ since there was no guarantee of term of employment so opted for the severance. Moved to another town not too far away, had a few friends there (though all male) and one let me rent out a room for me and the youngest still in school until I could find a place of my own.

Met H. He was not like the others I usually find myself attracted to. He was all Air and Fire (Zodiac reference) but I immediately felt at ease with him. There was not the immediate "I want to jump your bones now" (on my end) but there was chemistry. He was like a mystery and I like mysteries! I always tease him and told him he broke me because I broke a lot of rules when I started dating him -for example: no dating men with children still at home, nothing serious, no crazy exes, etc. I learned he had been married for several years and they shared custody. He also said they had a working relationship for the kids sake - I liked that! It was refreshing and I was willing to see where this could go. Things were going really good and soon I was meeting his kids and family. They welcomed me and were excited since I was the first GF he had brought home after the D. I was soon blinded to the reality of the world around me. First concern: the kids had no boundaries, they would be all over you and rather aggressive. I dismissed it as them being anxious meeting me and I wanted to understand their angst. Second concern: DD was crying when I encouraged her to play some more xbox with H's son (SS and SD had a large age gap from older brother and they were still at home). She wouldnt tell me anything and I really thought she was anxious from so many people around. I didnt find out til some time later what had really upset her. Third concern: H overlooked a lot of questionable behaviour from his kids, but I passed it off as him not wanting to make a scene, perhaps.

I'm rambling, arent I? Ok, fast fwd a bit from there: I witness a couple of unnerving incidents between SD and SS while H is at work (I was asked to watch kids). It triggered me, I immediately call H and tell him what I saw. He handled it pretty good, handled me good too. He calls exW who calls me, tt kids, tells me I'm making it up they said it never happened. I strongly suggest family therapy to H (and exW), thinking the kids are acting out on anger due to blended family issues. H agrees (I did mention I was less likely to stay around otherwise), exW told me to mind my own business. H doesnt back down and we all go. exW continues to bully, H doesnt want to 'stir the crazy pot'. Kids believe I hate them, I'm the reason Mom & Dad arent together etc (ummm, he was divorced way before we met!). exW went as far as to go to the counselor office to give them a piece of her mind - SS/SD are terrified to talk.
Somewhere down the road, exW gets po'd and refuses to let kids over on H's time. She calls me and tells me a "H and I have been screwin around behind your back, just thought you should know". (Deep breath). Ok. So.... vindictive exW making it up? As I told H, there was at least one time that I know where he put himself in a 'doesnt look good' situation with her. She had just kicked out her H#2 and wanted him to change her locks, she didnt feel safe. I told him to go, not realizing that she really could have called their adult son, or her brother that lived in town. The kicker - he had also got her a hotel room for the night because she "was really scared". He told me about it when he got home, he was gone for some time after all. When she made the claim, it triggered my memory of that incident as well as the time we were starting to see more of each other and he had told me that exW wanted to know if I would be interested in a 3some (WTF)?!?!?! Oh, and also his porn addiction didnt help the equation. I confessed to him much later that I couldnt say that I believed him (it was much easier to not believe her) and I had no proof other than her word which meant nothing. I also told him that I thought hard about it, because we were engaged to be married, and I decided that it wasnt enough to stop me from marrying the man that I loved. We married that week so she couldnt drag him to court for violating the morality clause (she didnt have an issue with me living with him when I was available to babysit when they were at work).

FF File for custody, long drawn out case based on abuse, some sexualization of SD, her drug addiction, blah blah blah. H barely received custody.

FF SS nearly 18, cops attitude that he can do what he wants, immune to house rules, moves out shortly after 18bday. Less stress in household. apx 6mo later, SD confides in me the abuse inflicted on her by SS (I suspected, but thought I was being hyper-alert). SS arrested, exW was told by H, exW blames SD and takes SS's word over hers (I'm made scapegoat by SS claiming it was my idea), exW & her parents hire SS attorney (instead of paying her court ordered half of medical expenses and insurance), atty gets trial delayed several times and eventually SD state of mind so bad therapist doesnt think she can take stand so low ball the plea to drop rape charge to sexual assault and he gets 10yrs probation.

On my end: I pick up others moods and SD would trigger me. My flashbacks got worse. I was seriously looking at leaving before SS moved out because of the stress but I kept telling myself 'not much longer, they'll be out'. While H was making progress with being more present, I was sliding down a hole of despair. A combination of his porn addiction, which made me question my attractiveness and H's desire for me, and some of his previous history that was surfacing in more or different details (TT) My only female friend, who I consider a soul sister, lives miles away and was going through some medical issues.

H says he caught his exW cheating on him twice, she planned and executed. He admitted that towards the end of the marriage he was emotionally checked out and started to see another woman. What I had forgotten, or it did not sink in, was that his affair w/OW lasted for 4years. He caught her cheating on him when he parked outside her apt. Now, some TT was that he was still living with exW and sharing the same bed, the OW was also married and the apartment was "theirs". I remembered at one point, I had asked him if exW ever suspected him of cheating and he had replied 'yes, but she never found anything, I was always a step ahead'. So, recently this all starts to hit me/triggers and flashbacks galore! I wasnt accusing him of being unfaithful to me, but I did start to question as to how would I possibly know if he was when he was never caught by exW? He admitted to sexualizing just about every single woman he meets, porn is always up on computer, has sex video of OW in his collection of DVDs. Why am I not enough? How does he not think that his affair was not an affair????? I sat down with him while he told his kids that he never cheated on their Mom and never raped her!!!!! (um, yes, yes she did tell them that). How can I believe what is true and what isnt???

H and I start socializing with some of his male friends. I, for some off the wall reason, connect with one of them. This is the time when H and I had been talking about an open marriage like my friends from back home. I was able to proceed with his knowledge and transparency was a must.... he's always had my pw and I had never been unfaithful- it never even crossed my mind! H had his own F friend, who was in a poly marriage, and he would associate with from time to time. I'm not the jealous type and if he wanted to hook up with someone, all I asked was for safety and I wasnt so sure I was comfortable about knowing, or knowing details. After being betrayed in the past by others, sleeping around just didnt bother me. Anyways, I did not handle his jealousy very well. The OM never hit on me and I told H that he wasnt interested - the friend prided himself on always being faithful to his ex and forgiving her for 2 affairs. OM is also afraid of H in a healthy way, and respects their friendship. I took it too far though when I caught H going through my phone while I was in the shower. Any time H wanted to see the conversation I'd hand him my phone. I wasnt hiding. But this triggered me. I got angry and my self preservation kicked in - 'oh, you want to be like my exH and control me, I'll show you!' So I started deleting random text msgs telling OM I couldnt wait to see him again, emotional kibbles, etc. (H always ok'd it when I would see him and was always welcome to come with!). And then I had a really bad trigger /flashback from H. He smelled like beer. H said he saw the fear in my eyes.... hell, I dont even remember what he was doing - hugging me? kissing me? idk. The next day after work I am texting OM and telling him what happened, I'm panicking telling him why I was so scared but that I have to tell H (that was the one thing with OM is that I was learning to be more open with H all while starting to tell OM less and less). I had a deep secret that I had kept for over 24yrs. Without going into much detail, when my exH and I were separated he reminded me that he would kill me if I screwed around. At that point I was tired of him and I really think I just didnt care anymore and welcomed death. I hooked up with someone I had a crush on. the next weekend, exH shows up at my apt drunk, kids are with his sister, he starts stuff, I call cops, they tell me he just needs to sleep it off and that he promised he wouldnt cause anymore problems - basically they talked me into letting him stay there or he would have to go to jail (I had no phn at the time so he couldnt call someone to get him from my place). Fine, he can sleep on the couch. I wake up, he's raping me. few weeks later, I'm pregnant and I dont know who the father is (I was on pill). I filed for D after that, get protection order, but did not report to police (afterall, I let him stay there, right?! Did I remember to lock the bedroom door? Did I even close the door? He doesnt remember a thing, says it didnt happen...)

FF The more I get to know OM the less I like him, He's an alcoholic and refuses to get help getting over his exW. I constantly have to hear how much of a saint he was for forgiving her (please do not misunderstand, I do get that now, but I still think he was really unwilling to see his part in the decline of their M). OM offers to throw Halloween party at his house w/ us cohosting. H keeps putting off getting together to help clean. Tick tock goes the clock, H gets sent out of town on business, too late to cancel party, I go over to clean (and H knows). 1 Sunday and 2 after works for a couple of hours, H not liking it and doesnt want me to go over, I agree can wait til Fri. Gave list of to-dos to OM. Fri night, jack done my anxiety ramped up, really want to call off party. Got some girly things done and decided to suprise H by getting nipples pierced (he kept asking me to) and I was missing him so much!
OM spent week off drinking instead of to-dos. Told H I was done, doin the party and done with it after that. Sat: party. I'm really stressed, so much to do not enough time. Get done what I could, so tired barely ate in the last 2 days. Sat party starts and I kick back a couple of shots to loosen up. Normally, I get drink fast and sober up fast so staying drunk was not normal. (And I rarely drink, I'm a light weight).
Lost count of #of shots and mixed drink. OM passes out, didnt see him most of party. Friend asks if I want to hang at his (and wifes) place with a group. I knew I was too drunk to drive and I promised H I would not stay @ OM's. We leave, I leave without shoes (seriously?!), phn dead, who's car am I in anyways? We get there, some guy mildly hitting on me - I know I said I was married a few times earlier at the party and I was missing H - if he put his hand on my arm or leg I would pick it up and move it. Why am I not sobering up? Tired, feeling like I'm half asleep.
I watch friend, his wife and a few others leave, they're taking some home and would be back shortly. Next thing I know, I am standing at a door w/male, I ask him what he's doing and he says finding an empty room.... I think? was it in my head? am I dreaming? hey, where'd my pants go? shirt still on, bra still on, no lights... no, dont kiss me down there...ok, he stopped, wait, do I want you in me? hey, this aint real someone's going at me like a jack hammer - hey, this hurts! Whats - wait - is this real?! This aint real. oh wait, there I am! you're losing your erection? oh, ok, suck on it, ok....what? huh? losing it again? wait, where'd I go? It's dark in here (getting on hands and knees to crawl) Oh! there's the jackhammer again, (weird feeling of being body slammed back into my body) I think I'm going to be sick.... He's laughing, oh, this is funny, ok *laughs too*, finds pants and puts them on, goes to bathroom and throws up, wipes away tears - is that tears? Goes out to common room, strange guy and female. Guys pissed we were in his room. Female tells me to come out to patio where my newly acquired ONS is to join them, dont be embarrassed she says. Hey, whats his name? Whats your name- ok, good, she knows her name, whats your friends name? ummmm, errr, female gets name and introduces us (still doesnt remember next day). I want to leave, cant leave no shoes. no car. car at OM's house. cant drive anyway, would never make it home (live out of town). friend and wife return, friend is a bit surprised at news (I wouldnt go out with him when I was single because I thought he was too young) things settle down, guess I'll rest, gotta sober up, I want to go home. *Wake up, everyone still asleep except strange man (roommate) - could you possible take me to my car? I have no shoes... gives me a ride to OM's house, I start cleaning party mess, OM wakes up - yes, just got back went to afterparty, just tidying up a bit. Do I tell him? no, no, dont say anything. omg what am I going to tell H? I cant lie to him? go home and go to bed. find phn, shoes, keys, drive home (I think I am still drunk) - I'm ok, I didnt stay at OM's like I promised! Fuck, did this really happen? Skype H, dont tell him, you dont know for sure what happened and you cant tell him you dont remember! I scrubbed myself raw with vinegar and hydrogen peroxide. barely sleep, go back to friends apt and try to make sense of things. Had to ask for ONS's name. Ask him for advice, he said no good comes from lying but my choice. I agree, knew I couldnt lie to H anyways, just didnt know how to tell him. I told H later that day.

FF H found ONS, tells me his age. Barely 20, harsh things said, but deserving. I dont even remember what he looks like.

Still have nightmares. Still dont know WHY.

A long ways to go to get to recovery.

"Friend, friend can you see me
Walking here in the mist
Have you wandered as i have
In the silence deep as death

Have you as I have
Walked in the mist
Strayed from the beaten path
Near the mountain edge
Do you know this loneliness

Friend, friend do you understand me
Do you know any secret path
Have you wandered as I have
in the endless uncertainty"
EivÝr - Õ Tokuni (removed link)

[This message edited by derealizingMe at 5:44 PM, January 11th (Wednesday)]

devotedman posted 1/11/2017 06:42 AM

derealizingme, it is six-thirty AM here and I have to drop my car off at the shop so this has to be brief.

First, thank you for posting. I know how hard it is. When I started posting my story here I had talked it over with some counselors and had always told my longer-term partners, but it was very hard to post it in a roomful of almost strangers and in a place that I wanted to hang around in. I found a lot of acceptance, and lot of caring, and a lot of understanding.

That's why I didn't post, cut, and run. That would have been easy and I could have justified it to myself quite easily. Still, easy doesn't turn the tree into firewood, eh?

I wanted to acknowledge how hard it is to open up about things.

And, while I do want to address other things in your post I want to agree with hopefulkate, that your last experience sounds like date or acquaitance rape. A drunk person, in my book anyway, cannot give consent.

A fist bump to you, sister in adversity }{

One more thing: links are supposed to be approved by the mods prior to posting the link. Yes, that would apply to the youtube music links, too. Yeah, not like other boards but the rules make a good deal of sense (eventually) for this one.

Oh, one more thing - Welcome! I'm sorry that you have need of a place like this one, but glad you found us. Pull up a chair and stay a while.

YouMeI posted 1/11/2017 12:34 PM

I don't feel like a survivor. I don't feel strong. I feel like crap. I feel like my abusers were right. I feel like they should have picked me because I am weak and fragile. I feel like a project. A project that will never be anything other then a project.

When all the "Me's" didn't talk as much and DID was at it's strongest. I could shift. I could get hurt as an adult and just shift to the next man or child up. Now I am "integrated" and we are all "here". We are all here to share the pain and broken hearts together. There is no running just the experience of 4 hearts in pain at the same time. My brain hurts all the time.

I use to dream about suicide, on some levels I tried it but even though it didn't take my life from me it took my being. And although I don't feel suicide today, I feel that is under the surface. I feel that it is part of me. I feel like it has a hold of me...or part of me...or one of me...

There are 4 "Me's" that make up YouMeI...We all act differently whether internally or externally give any situation. But we all feel united on some topics. The one I am feeling right now is the feeling of being a burden.

Nobody has made me feel this way, but I can't help but look in the mirror and think "damn you gave up on you, why shouldn't anyone else"

Since DD which was almost 2 years ago I have gone to therapy almost once every single week.

Because I do believe the first thing you can do to help your spouse feel safe is to make yourself safe.

I will be safe, I will be present, I will be everything I thought I could be.

But right now...We are scared.

Skan posted 1/11/2017 19:31 PM

YouMe, how could you not be scared? I really mean that, how could you NOT? Capitals are only for emphasis, I'm not shouting. This is a whole new world for you. Before, you could split the pain off for someone to handle whose ďjob,Ē as it were, was to handle it. Someone who was uniquely crafted, in a way, TO handle that feeling, situation, circumstance. In the way-back machine, it was not uncommon for a child of royalty of various types, to have a companion of the same age, to be their playmate, servant, intimate, and also, whipping boy. When the royal child did something wrong, both were scolded and lectured, but the lower-class child was who got whipped. It was hoped that the royal child learned empathy through love of the child who was getting punished, however he only experienced it second hand. And until he experienced it himself, he really had no idea of the pain and suffering that the other child experienced. Now, youíre getting the whole enchilada. I would say that itís very normal to be frightened at the experience. Have you ever seen a video of a deaf child who got a cochlear implant hear for the first time? Quite often they burst into tears and have to be comforted, because this new experience is outside of anything they have experienced before in their lives.

Frankly, my brother, it takes a great deal of strength to survive the shatteringly abnormal crap abuse that people can do to each other. Abusers are the cowards. They abuse those who are weaker, smaller, and with less experience simply because they know that if they tried that crap with a 6í5, 275lb man, theyíd get their asses handed back to them. And their goal is to keep you feeling weaker, smaller, and less capable then them no matter how big you really get, so they donít get their asses handed back to them. Thatís a trigger they implanted into you. Itís deeply rooted and getting it un-rooted can feel like a small death. It may not be a trigger that you want, but pulling it out by the roots hurts. But sometimes, pain, healthy pain, can lead to freedom, if one only has the will and the grit to keep walking thru the pain.

Keep walking thru the pain. You, all of you, donít have to do it alone. Thereís some amazing people here who will be glad to walk by your side and keep you company. Keep posting for support, amigo.

derealizingMe posted 1/11/2017 19:49 PM

devotedman - Thanks for educating me about the links. wont happen again.

YouMe - I have yet to tell my therapist or H that I had contemplated suicide almost as soon as I got home, and again after telling H. I didnt do it after I got home because it was daylight and I didnt want anyone to hear or find me.
I was hallucinating after telling H but it seemed very real. I imagined a man in all black from head to toe enter the bedroom. H's gun is on his side of the bed in the nightstand and as I attempted to race across the bed, he/it blocked access to the drawer of the nightstand. I was too scared to do anything but back away and hide under the blanket, crying myself to sleep. (a reminder that H was out of town on business)

It was a weak moment - I had never felt suicidal like that in decades (from when I was w/exH). I have, however, had suicidal ideation off and on.

(deep breath) First, I am sorry my story was so long and jumbled. I really did try to keep it together and not let the anxiety take over. Second, I see at least one inaccuracy in the story I told. I said I returned to friend's apt to ask who the ONS guy was. While my intentions were so, I was fortunate enough not to have to ask his name as friend mentioned it in conversation. Another error was skipping the part where friend's roommate and his female friend enter the apt - which is right about the time I started feeling sick and more alert to what was happening. He came to the door and told us to get out of his room.

I told H the ultra condensed version. Short and to the point, no extras. I was still trying to make sense of the whole thing - I still am. I did bring up the scrubbing to therapist on Tues. I hadnt scrubbed since R#2. I told him about it with a little more detail than the first time but with less chaos than the post. I had mentioned to him on the previous visit if I was trying to have an exit affair, but it didnt make sense. This time, I asked him if it was rape because how could it be rape if I dont remember and it wasnt like I was passed out, my body was going through the motions (like autopilot). I felt betrayed, but I was the one who betrayed my own ethics. Yes, I felt violation, but arent I the one who violated myself because I dont remember saying no, but I dont remember consenting.

Ok, I had to take a minute. I had recalled something during the therapy session at the end. I remember saying no when he was giving me oral. I remember panicking and saying no when he tried to .... go anal. except, I think I said 'no, no! not there!' was that consent to go elsewhere? was I encouraging him to screw me by talking dirty, or was my body responding in kind while I was struggling internally? How could this possibly be rape, especially if he was drink too? I think he was drunk. He couldnt maintain an erection, I vaguely remember that. And the only reason I remember that was because it triggered my self esteem issues of being inadequate. I dont remember either of us kissing or fondling, and I would like to think that if I was going to have sex with someone I would want the whole experience, and I would want it to be fun and exciting.

Would I have had sex with him if I had been sober? absolutely not! I already feel like a sex offender because he is a child in my eyes. The same age as SS!

Was I flirting and just got carried away? I asked one of the attendees and she indicated that she did not see me flirting with anyone or vice versa. I also asked her how drunk I was and she said she didnt know because she was pretty toasted herself, but I seemed to be in a good mood & having fun yet sad because H wasnt there. She had left before the afterparty came about.

I know I have a young child-like teen trapped inside of me. I also have the over protective one who hates to see others being abused or taken advantage of and will stand up for others and at times Us. Theres also the enabler, and the seductress. My favorite is the child, who sees all the magic, beauty, and awe in people and things. They do not come out very often though.

Am I betraying my H if I do not tell him all of this? Or at least the more detailed version of what happened? I've ran it through my head and I think the condensed version is easier to deal with. I am afraid that he will be even angrier with me and I do not want to cry rape when I have doubt and confusion.

Song of the day: Releasing the Demons/Godsmack
"What do you see in the dark
when the demons come for you..."

derealizingMe posted 1/11/2017 20:21 PM

HopelessKate asked me a while back:

Curiosity question - you don't have to answer - would your alters like to meet your husband, or let him officially meet him?

I think I do not understand the question. Havent they already met when they pop up? I dont have names for them so I dont know how I would do this? Even without names, I have done the 'that's the part of me that...."

I wish I could talk with H about this and feel safe. When I say feel safe, I mean to be worry free about hurting him, or to inflict any emotional pain or conflict. Does that make sense? Maybe I am not giving him enough credit. As Skan has posted, it is also very difficult for the spouse.... so shouldnt I protect him as much as I can?


PS I get the whole not wanting to touch thing. I do the fist bumps or air hugs. We joke about it as a family because my kids are the same way, unfortunately. Skids are opposite, even the SD has not seemed to be anti-touch/hugs after all she's been through.... is this due to her age/hormones?

hopefulkate posted 1/11/2017 22:00 PM

As the spouse on the other side, the more I know the less I hurt.

Understanding the DID (and his past) and the reasons behind it has made all the difference for me. Anything in the past related to it can be understood now. And it's not, because I'm an awful unlovable person. (How I felt prior, and from my own foo something l still wrestle with.)

If you think your husband is safe to come out to, so to speak, I would encourage you to sit down and explain it all. Safe means, he will learn about DID if he feels he needs to in order to understand and not use it against you, just as anything admitted can be used against you. Does that make sense?

Only you(s) can get to the bottom of what happened, though it doesn't sound exactly consensual. Give your husband the chance to help you sort through it too. All the details, the vigorous cleaning....those are all important details if he's ready to hear.

as to him meeting everyone, I think formal introductions are nice. (Not that everyone may be up for it!). But from my chair, it was very nice and humbling to meet everyone. My thoughts are with you!

derealizingMe posted 1/12/2017 06:26 AM

hopelessKate (and/or anyone else), do you have any good online reading material to help me break this to H gently?

SD17 has been diagnosed w/DID and her therapist explained it to both us awhile back, which helped me come to terms w/my own since the only knowledge I had about it was a movie from the 70s? And it was portrayed Hollywood style of course.

hopefulkate posted 1/12/2017 09:51 AM

It's time I really sit and put this stuff (my research) together. My goal will be to get this done later tonight.

And obviously I have to not respond to YouMeI because that's weird. So, I'm pretending I don't see those posts. How have others done that here? Anyway....had to address the elephant. (That's kinda my thing.)

derealizingMe posted 1/12/2017 18:55 PM

Thank you, hopelesskate. I briefly brought up the subject w/H via text. I asked him if he ever noticed the other "parts" of her, and then asked if he ever noticed them in me. He passed them off as moods.
I hope he and I will be able to talk tonight. He's on a business trip but not not be back for another week or two.

I'm trying to find a way to talk with him on an intellectual level since he is a Gemini. oops, that's my whimsy side coming out (just get her to talk about zodiac signs, tarot, dream interpretation, etc etc - she wont shut up). Anyways, that Gem can be very skeptical. I had an argument in my head with them, 2 of them begging to leave it alone and let it be, we can run away where nobody knows. The child claims this is all her fault, the whimsy says it was all in the cards, I just didnt check w/her, the seductress says she missed the party so dont even look at her, and the protector - well, seems to be awol atm.

theakronborg posted 1/12/2017 19:17 PM

This is my first post in this forum, so please be patient as I try to explain myself in this new way.

Thus, I can say that CSA survivor spouses often end up giving the CSA survivor almost a 'pass' on the bad behaviors if the CSA survivor will just seek appropriate help.

As the BS of a CSA survivor, i found this interesting, especially in light of another post I just wrote about understanding the "Why" of their actions. CSA may explain the deeper WHY, but am I being too hard on WH if I still don't think that makes what he did ok. Wasn't it still a choice? And I get caught up in wondering how he could not see the first time he cheated as a wake up that something else was going on? (He sought out hookers about 8 times over 18 years).

I feel like I have known for years that there was something "blocking" WH from being a whole person. I found out the day after DDay what it was. Sometimes it just surprises me that he couldn't see it himself. It is so hard to be understanding and so hurt at the same time!!

hopefulkate posted 1/12/2017 22:29 PM

Welcome theakronborg! I must say that while I am saddened to hear the number of struggles we all seem to share, I am ...gladdened??...by the open dialogue that has been started lately!

First, as the BS - however you feel is ok. Please hear me. HOWEVER YOU FEEL and WHATEVER YOU NEED is ok! The CSA part, depending on so many factors, determines their ability to give you what you need. (Doesn't all FOO?)

And depending on YOU, and what makes you YOU, will determine what you need and how you feel. Me, personally, I am pretty needy. Sometimes he can help, and sometimes he can't. THERE IS NOTHING WRONG WITH YOU IF THIS IS YOUR DEAL BREAKER- REGARDLESS OF THE WHY. I think most here on either side agrees with that statement!

capitals for emphasis, not yelling. Unless you like yelling, then yell away!

************

Choice. My WH is in a debate over in the wayward side about this right now. Personally, I have always LOVED choice theory. We are but a sum of our choices, and our todays and tomorrows are filled with the choices we make RIGHT NOW and will make tomorrow.

Throw in trauma, like CSA, and the concept of choice gets a bit foggy. Up until the point of breaking, assuming all memories exist - they don't always (more fogginess) - there is a choice to get help. Real help for the real problem. Get too deep into depression, go manic...free will, morals (aka choice) is no longer an accessible part of the brain. But I will get to that.

**********

I also want to clarify something - that is totally getting lost here, as it does from time to time in a place of emotional turmoil - the difference between understanding the reason WHY and an excuse.

Giving cheating a pass. Well, all BS's here would probably agree. HELL NO!

Taking time to understand the driving factors behind human behavior (aka the *why*) and having a WS wake up and get help to stop the behavior MAY be reason for the BS to say, let's try R.

Big difference. Semantics to some. But, to me, it is the difference between night and day. I don't forgive my husband SIMPLY because he had a rough childhood. Sorry, but he is an adult now.

No, I forgive my husband FOR ME. To let go of the pain of the betrayal BECAUSE after reading and learning and seeing his remorse and work...FOR ME, I can understand how this happened. I can understand why this happened.

I sure as hell don't LIKE that this happened. And all the crap that all BS's go through, I go through. There is just a few more layers to dig through to get to the why, the how...and the guilt of both the survivor and care giver. And the Pain. Pain clouds so much...

*******************

I promised derealizing me I would put some sources together. Tonight got away from me. A later dinner, but with baby off to bed and the kids on electronics, my H and I had time to talk. But I didn't just talk to him, I talked to all of him. To be honest, I got a little confused as to how many people I talked to tonight, but i think the number was actually just two, describing two more. Anyway...time escapes me sometimes.

I will get to this. I need to do it for me as much as I want to do it for others. I think it will be painful so I am avoiding it. ah good...named it. Now i have to do it.

Take care, and I hope some of this helped a little?

theakronborg posted 1/13/2017 09:39 AM

Thank you Kate ! You found a way to get through my muddled post to the heart of how I feel. I was nervous about my post and how it might appear. I take your words to heart and will probably paste your post into the place where I put the things I read that really help me. It's become a book by now!!
Sometimes I wonder why we don't talk more about the role CSA played in his decisions. He is in IC and exploring that and I try to give him his space. In some ways I think it doesn't matter because it is how he copes moving forward that will determine if we R. But you're right on in saying that knowing that CSA played a role did give me more courage to stay.

devotedman posted 1/13/2017 11:05 AM

I'm composing a different post to other folks and replies, but I wanted to address the 'pass' misconception. I did say, "almost a 'pass' ". And that's what I meant, almost something like a 'pass' because...

CSA robs us of our choices at the time of perpetration. It also fucks mightily with the sense of self. And it introduces the victim to acts and concepts that they have absolutely no framework to handle.

If it goes on for a longer time (mine was, oh, 4 or earlier to 16 or 18-ish) then you really start to internalize the messages. And as you are subjected to repeated sexual stimulation the body can end up doing what the body does with sexual stimulation, which is start to respond positively to that.

You get used to the lying and hiding and minimizing and disbelief from others. You get used to being used, beaten, abused, put down, you internalize that you are a plaything for others and you just live that way because your parent taught it to you. It is your _normal_.

Sort of like looking both ways before you cross a street is drilled into you until it becomes automatic, or like stomping the brake even when it isn't a good, well considered thing to do.

The CSA victim/survivor (mixing the two because not suiciding even if you don't heal is a form of surviving it) is basically trained to get their ego kibbles, their self-worth, from serving (or servicing) others sexually. They can end up lying because that is their normal, hiding and lying and giving lip service to 'those things are bad'. Because the perpetrator lied and hid and hurt and passed those values along while destroying self-worth we can pick those up as our lessons on what life looks like.

For me, those things felt wrong even though I'd been 'taught' that that was how one lived.

For those of us that _don't_ suicide life is a big ball of hurt forcibly hidden just under the skin. We often lie about our pain like we often lied about being abused and used horribly. We de-value our internal feelings because we were taught to do that. We were actively taught and coerced to _not_ seek help and we carry that forward. But, without _learning_, we don't know how to handle these things constructively or healthily. The big, blazing ball of pain is too big, too burning, too bright to look upon and so we avoid it while hurting from it.

This is, BTW, all a 'why' and not an excuse. There is no excuse, but there _is_ a reason. These are my 'why-s' for troubles opening up sometimes. For avoiding some of the hard talks for a while. I won't willfully deceive but, oh, but - sometimes I take a while to figure out exactly how I'm feeling and then a bit more time to figure out how to talk about it.

As hopefulkate said above, once these old traumas kick in the unhealthy result, whatever its form, is almost "on rails". There almost isn't a choice -because- the traumatized parts of a person, whether emotion or reason or response, stop maturing at the time of the abuse. Thus, the abused is reacting like a 6-year old reacts. Which is exactly how hopefulkate's YouMeI reacted. Without meaning to hurt, or to cake-eat, or to blameshift (beyond perhaps a 6-year-old's blameshifting).

To my knowledge I never split. _I_ was there and am here, soaking up all of the pain, memories, and effects. _I_ feel the low self-esteem, _I_ well, feel everything. Sometimes I wish that I didn't. Sometimes, not knowing would be something of a relief.

Back on subject - so once the CSA victim/survivor's spouse really internalizes what it is like to be a CSA victim/survivor, once they intellectually know (because relating is so very far, poles apart) how the CSA victim/survivor reacted in order to survive childhood, well, a lot of people feel empathy for the CSA victim/survivor.

Another brief aside, the CSA victim/survivor isn't always the WS. There are a whole lot of possible responses to CSA experience and acting out inappropriately sexually is only one of them. Suicide, self-harm, self-hate, rebellion, splitting (DID), repressed memories, minimizing (oh, friend minimizing, I know it well), all of those unhealthy behaviors present. One common thread, though, is that our relationships are fucked up.

It takes me awhile sometimes to write these things out. I Squirrel! a bit (like now), I have my easing tools at hand - cigarettes, coffee, time, and tears, and my face is screwing itself around a bit.

So whether the CSA-WS's BS decides to stick around, or even whether a no-cheating CSA victim/survivor's spouse decides to stick around, they often - if they're healthy themselves - feel empathy, regret, those normal, healthy emotions for another hurting individual. _That_, extended a bit, is the "almost 'pass' " of which I was speaking. Understanding, or the attempt, is something the CSA afflicted person finds so unusual, so unexpected.

If the CSA vic/surv spouse decides to stay, well, that is a gift beyond measure and one that we often don't feel that we deserve and sometimes don't know how to handle. And all of the fear and pain and shame is still there, and it can prevent the CSA vic/surv from getting appropriate help.

In any case, the _real_ damage is so deep, the behaviors so (sometimes) uncontrollable, and the understanding of the CSA vic/surv spouse so, I dunno, gracious?, that the spouse can find it in themselves to realize that, for the CSA vic/surv, there might not have been something so clearly a choice as there was, I'm at a loss again, a grasp at survival?

Then there's the fact that it is currently thought by some that some of the Personality Disorders can, sometimes, stem from or be enhanced by, childhood abuse.

So, not a 'pass' in the sense of 'go do anything or anyone that you want for free!', but a 'pass' in the sense of, more, um... 'I understand that you were hurting and that it really had nothing at all to do with _me_, it was all of your screwed up experiences driving you.'

Which sounds like a Get Out Of Jail Free Card a bit and I don't mean it that way at all.

Questions? Comments? Please feel free and I'll try to clarify whilst I mull over responses to other recent posts. I recognize some of myself in some of us, here, and it is a bit... emotional? for me.

theakronborg posted 1/13/2017 15:18 PM

Thank you DevotedMan, that was helpful. I think that is what your first remark got me to thinking about - that it isn't a pass to go do anything, but is a "pass" in the sense of recognizing that there may have been some factors that truly were (or became) out of control - and knowing about it definitely helped me not fall too far into the trap of blaming myself (I did get there to some extent) and even more so, really engaged my empathy.

Now, I mostly feel bad that I cannot support him as much with his healing as I might have done before I knew about the cheating. I just don't have the brain space. It's like we've switched places. Before (though I didn't know it), much of his emotional/mental energy/brain space was wrapped up in keeping the secret of his abuse. Now he says he feels like a all that brain space has opened up for him, and he can use that space in new, positive ways. But now MY brain space is occupied with what he did and I don't have nearly the mental/emotional energy I used to. Like his "block" before, it impacts everything --- the ability to work, be there for our kids, have friends, and especially be there for the other spouse.

2frayedsouls posted 1/13/2017 16:40 PM

theakronborg:

Now, I mostly feel bad that I cannot support him as much with his healing as I might have done before I knew about the cheating. I just don't have the brain space. It's like we've switched places. Before (though I didn't know it), much of his emotional/mental energy/brain space was wrapped up in keeping the secret of his abuse. Now he says he feels like a all that brain space has opened up for him, and he can use that space in new, positive ways. But now MY brain space is occupied with what he did and I don't have nearly the mental/emotional energy I used to. Like his "block" before, it impacts everything --- the ability to work, be there for our kids, have friends, and especially be there for the other spouse.

^^ I feel this as well. When I think of all the years my husband had to carry those secrets and feel that shame and blame my heart breaks for him. It must have been so lonely and confusing. I want to support his healing and freedom from the bondage of those thoughts/feelings as much as possible. I try as much as I can, but since finding out about the cheating I am a tattered mess as well...so we take turns holding one another up....and sometimes we just fall apart together...depends on the day...but at almost two years out most days are better.

YouMeI: I think Skan said it beautifully to you, but I want to reiterate...2 years seems like a long time, but in the big scheme of things, it is a short time to learn different coping skills for the level of trauma that has taken place in your life. You have survived many dark days my friend. Your strength has been in your numbers (I like how Skan refers to the committee). Now that you are integrating, and feeling rather than distancing, please do remind yourself that you are loved beyond measure by your wife and children, that you have incredible courage (Would a weakling face this weekly in IC for two years? It would be far easier to walk away from the pain rather than face it as you have been doing. Instead, you have shown your commitment doing the work consistently.) Whenever my own husband is feeling defeated and devoured by the "less than" thoughts or the black cloud as we call it, it helps him to really look at our kids. When he can compare himself to their ages/stages and look back at what he was trying to deal with at that same age/stage, it provokes some righteous anger at his abusers, which empowers him. Don't believe their lies YouMeI. You are so much more than that.

derealizingMe: I hope you connect well with this IC. Friend, you have carried the weight of all that trauma far too long. I have no advice to give other than that you've already been given here. Just wanted to let you know that I am in your corner pulling for you. I think about my thread-mates often throughout the day. We are kind of our own messed up little family. :)

hopefulkate posted 1/13/2017 21:23 PM

SOURCES that helped me:

Hi All. I triggered hard today. It surprised me. Something I thought I had 'reclaimed', or desensitized from hit me hard. BUT, when sad, do something you don't want to do anyway right?? YMI said, "or bring yourself up first?" No! My crazy way is right!

Anyway....I went to my notes. They are both hard and healing all at once. I have so much that I have found, but I used snipit mostly, so my source info is not always available. Frustrating because I am an analyst/researcher - rookie mistakes friends. Rookie mistakes...

There is a list of sources on the first page of this thread, thanks to DevotedMan. (Thanks DM!) But to add to that I like:

1. I want to re-emphasize the book, "The Body Keeps the Score." Bessel van der Kolk (I really need to read his new one.) It is a relatively easy read that address how trauma impacts both the brain and behavior. Very, very helpful.

2. "Treating the Adult Survivor or Childhood Sexual Abuse." Jodie Davies I don't remember reading this - it was a year ago at least, but my healing folder has more pages from this than any other source. It explains behavior, and uses anecdotal stories. While I don't remember reading it, the things I kept I do remember, if that makes sense. (the stories are hard to read at times, warning.)

(#2 AND #3) TRULY helped me see what happened and WHY.)

3. The Haunted Self. (Full title: The Haunted Self: Structural Dissociation and the Treatment of Chronic Traumatization) Onno van der Hart Ph.D.

THIS. This is the resource for understanding disassociation. I found a number of sources online, academic papers, first person recounts, but this is a great resource - though academically written. Go slow...and go in parts. I tried to marathon this the other day to remember and the stories are hard to read. Took me a few hours to recover.

4. Dissociative Identity Sourcebook - by Deborah Bray Haddock . Recommended to me by a fellow supporter, though I have not read this yet.

5. Betrayal Trauma. I just saw snippits of this book when my H's IC sent him home with hw or things to think about. I liked what little I saw.

6. Ghosts in the Bedroom - I think this is on the first list? This is an account by a supporter role that helps identify what could be behavior resulting from CSA. Admittedly, I have not read this, as I read Sexual Healing - also good, and perhaps there is only so much time to spend on this??? (I've maxed out I'm sure! )

Can I put links here? I feel like that is a no go...but I can PM them? There are sites that I have found to be helpful, some more scientific than anecdotal, some all anecdotal...

And I can't suggest people PM right? Sorry...I'm exhausted and lazy

I have a site that has a large number of people who disassociate and choose not to integrate into one and how they are happy and living full lives.

I have a site that is first person recounts of people with DID having affairs and trying to explain to their spouses that it "wasn't them", but having to do all the work a WS should, while at the same time feeling violated and betrayed themselves.

I hope it's ok to describe sites!

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