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Sexual Abuse Survivors/Spouses - Part 3

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devotedman posted 11/7/2017 10:38 AM

As a mad-hatter...

Can someone explain this to me as if I am a 10 year old? I see this everywhere and don't know what it means.

A person who is both a BS and a WS in the same relationship wears both hats, thus, a madhatter.

hopefulkate posted 11/7/2017 11:45 AM

So what I'm trying to get across is that what appears to be OCD, and other behaviors, are _responses_ to CSA. They might not be separate things that respond well to treatments for OCD _because_ the root-cause, CSA, isn't being dealt with.

I hope that hopefulkate chimes in here in response to what I just wrote. She's got some perspectives about this very subject, I think.

I think what is fascinating is that the same region of the brain that "causes" or perhaps, is responsible for the depression hormones/synapsis, is also the site for adhd, ocd, and lots of other acronyms.

When the brain is flooded with emotion, this part of the brain will try to work and manage the pain, but because emotional trauma IS physical trauma, this region is often missing some pieces, or over uses others too quickly, and thus learns to compensate creates things that LOOK like ADHD, OCD, etc etc.

My sister presents as bi-polar. When in fact she is simply presenting so many trauma induced reactions that her behavior mimics this disease. Bi-polar is genetic and a born issue. Trauma is not. Thus far, bi-polar can be managed and controlled, but not cured. Trauma can be both managed AND cured.

No judgments here on either, but it is a VERY important distinction when choosing a therapy.

The DID piece is even more fascinating as it includes the whole brain, but from a...different vantage point. Silverhopes, if you have memory blocks, feel like you have ever been watching your life like it was a movie, feel like you are etherial rather than in your own body, then it might be something to think about. Not everyone dissociates - wait, actually we all do - daydreaming is the first step on the spectrum - but not everyone dissociates to the point that MrKate and some others do. In healing, if you are not working with your whole mind, it is just a lot harder.

Thanks for the thanks, Lavender! Glad to help!

I will say that today I woke up, thought, maybe I should take me happy pills as I am feeling not so good...no, I don't need them anymore I am fine!...then boom, trigger city and mind movies et al....ugh. Still. Fuck this shit.

I did what i had to do, got home, got the baby down, had a good cry and took to writing. The flare up is now over, but if ANYONE ever says the PISD does not exist, I will throat punch them.

That is all.

Except I think my IC said it yesterday hence my huge trigger so i texted her today to let her know she was wrong. What an odd relationship we have...

Actually, I triggered when I was trying to give myself compassion and say it is ok that mrkate had this experience, and how big of me to be able to ....MOVIES! ANGER! PAIN!....ok brain i get it. Ego...in check! Healing...not done!

I need a nap lol

[This message edited by hopefulkate at 11:53 AM, November 7th (Tuesday)]

Lavender0916 posted 11/7/2017 14:59 PM

DM Thank you finally for that definition. I never knew. All is clear.

HopefulKate,

I will say that today I woke up, thought, maybe I should take me happy pills as I am feeling not so good...no, I don't need them anymore I am fine!...then boom, trigger city and mind movies et al....ugh. Still. Fuck this shit.

No worries, I woke up the same way. I wish I had happy pills. Mind me asking a summary of your mind movie? I wish I could talk to my brain, but honestly my chest just hurts and I get immobile. So hard to concentrate and I need to work all day today. It is only Tuesday and my IC appt is Friday. I realize now I need to see her weekly. I will find an empty conference room and cry. It helps with some of the release. I either need a psychiatrist or if my doctor can prescribe something.

HopefulKate can you spell out PISD for me? I think I got 3 of the 4. What is the "I"? Thanks!

BlackLab19 posted 11/7/2017 18:29 PM

From my thread in Reconciliation, wondering what the perspective is from this group considering WH is a CSA survivor:

I think you either need to accept that this is simply who he is, or not accept it and move on with your life.

That's it in a nutshell...

Wondering if there are others who have chosen this path and still found peace and happiness?

I know he is broken and his childhood would have broken anyone.

I believe he doesn't set out to hurt me, I am just the collateral damage caused by his inability to cope. He is better than before, he has made progress, but he slips and he is human. Just struggling between acceptance of that and whether I can find peace for me in my lack of safety.

Really conflicted and struggling with this.

Lavender0916 posted 11/7/2017 23:22 PM

Wondering if there are others who have chosen this path and still found peace and happiness?

BlackLab19, I am in the exact same boat you are. Limbo sucks. Can they get better? YES. If they want to make the time and effort. Plus, if they have an IC that has a specialty in CSA. The question is, do you want to go along for the ride? You will read recovery stories in this thread and you will read ones that have not.

The theme for partners of CSA is what are you willing to put up with? Some made their decisions that the pain was too much to bear to stay and very happy with their choice.

Other thing you will read from partners is to shift the focus on the CSA to YOU! Who are you? What do you want? I personally hate these questions right now. My deal with my own IC, since we are still early in the foggy game of attempted recovery is I had a list of 5 things. My #1 thing was "regular" therapy. As long as he was in therapy, I could actually overlook breaking NC right now, may not be the case 6 months from now. What keeps me going is remembering "WHO" he was before all this. Yea we had the same "couples with CSA issues, but could somehow manage it. Had I known then what I know now; Stopping IC would not have been an option. My WH did well in therapy. He liked going. Then when my youngest DD was born, it was like he started on a the spiral down-he stopped.

He started a new IC in August after I said we were through. Was going regularly and I really started to see change. Small, but I saw it. Then WH hated his job and found a new one. So IC stopped. I see the steps back. Since then, i would see 2 steps forward; one step back; then 1 step forward, 2 steps back. It is dizzying. He tells me they email and once his new schedule gets regular will figure that out.

I am personally going to give it my all. So if it does not work out, I can say I have no doubts. Despite the roller coaster of pain. Sadly going through a painful ride right now. My IC appointment is Friday. Just not strong enough myself to make any big changes.

devotedman posted 11/8/2017 07:26 AM

BlackLab19,

Just as your WH really needs to see an IC who is trained in CSA for the correct treatment, _you_ need to talk to people and/or an IC who are similarly familiar with CSA and trauma treatment.

The attitude of an awful lot of people is that an A is a choice. They're correct in many ways. The problem with applying a simple "Don't make that choice" label to a CSA survivor is that the CSA survivor is a special kind of fucked-up. Through their brain being wired badly in childhood they often don't know how to make any other choice. It is a special kind of sad.

Right off the bat I'll say what I've said to everyone on here, if you simply can't take it and decide not to stay married to your CSA-addled WH, well, I'm the first one to support you going. If you decide to stay (for now) and try to make it work with your WH then I'll support that decision equally as much.

Speaking for me I can tell you that my childhood was very confusing. I was trained, as many CSA victim children are, that you must, you _must_, lie about the abuse occurring. You must never speak of it to anyone. NEVER.

Back in Part 2 of this thread, which is sadly gone, I made a list of behaviors that are pretty common for CSA survivors. I separated the list into two parts, what I had experience with, and what I hadn't. It was a fairly long post, and I'll try to recreate it later.

The thing is, these are screwy thoughts and behaviors that we were trained to have. We don't have regular coping mechanisms. We look through the lens of a really fucked-up childhood of training at the world and we see it differently than you.

So the advice of ICs who are not trained in CSA-related therapy is simply not good for us. Just like treating symptoms instead of an illness is not good for you. The suggestions of most folks about dealing with an A simply don't apply, or shouldn't be applied blindly. The other folks mean really well, and they have _you_ at heart, but they are unfamiliar with CSA and how it affects one.

I hope that this helps and I'll be glad to talk more about it. It is a heavy subject, though, and might trigger you. You get to decide.

spazzy posted 11/8/2017 09:19 AM

I don't really know where to start, so I apologize if I'm kind of all over the place. I only managed to kind of get my thoughts together a couple of nights ago while intoxicated, but I think it still makes sense now that I'm sober.

I'm a CSA survivor. I was 5 years old when my cousin molested me. He's slightly older than me, so sometimes I almost feel like that summer didn't really "count". But other times I see evidence of how fucked up it left me, and it just makes me confused.

My parents had dropped me off at my aunt's house for a weekend, or at least that was the impression I was under. I ended up staying there for the entire summer, and there are a few things I vividly recall during that time. My cousin making me do things that I was terribly uncomfortable with and scared to do, and me calling my mother and begging and crying for her to take me home every night.

I finally got to go home when my aunt caught my cousin on top of me, and even that didn't really bring me relief. There was a family meeting (and I'm Puerto Rican, so at least 15 of my aunts and uncles were in attendance). They didn't bother to ask what happened, how it happened. They assumed we were experimenting, and the verdict over our behavior was that if we did it again, we would be beaten with the belt and our heads would be shaved.

That same cousin tried to start things up again when I was 11, but this time I told him that if he touched me again, I would tell my mother.

When I was 13, we had moved from NYC to KS, and my godbrother was coming to visit for a few weeks. One of the things we liked to do was go to the pool since, unlike NYC, there were apartment complexes that had pools within walking distance. Ours was literally across the street, and so we would go there on a daily basis. This was also the time when my figure really developed, but it was also something I personally wasn't super aware of. It wasn't until my mother pointed out that she could see a lot of cleavage when I wore my bathing suit that I started to wear some kind of tank top or shirt in the pool.

And of course, the one time I forgot to wear a tank top over my swimsuit was when my family decided to leave the pool, but my godbrother and myself weren't ready. I was older than him and deemed responsible enough to watch the both of us and get home safely afterwards.

We had been playing a game where he would get on my back and I'd flip us underwater in the deep end. With it just being the two of us at the pool, he decided that it was the perfect opportunity to basically hump me while I was flipping us.

I didn't see it coming, and I panicked - violently - underwater. He pretended that nothing happened, and so did I. But I made sure to not be alone with him for the rest of his time with us.

I think those experiences are what made me stay with my ex-bf for so long. When we had started dating, things were pretty good. I was very happy. My ex-bf was also the only man I had ever been with sexually. He was also a sex abuse survivor, and so we had bonded over that, and I guess I just assumed at the time that he because he knew what it was like that he wouldn't do something of a similar effect to me.

Looking back now, I feel ashamed for staying with him so long. There were warning signs to get out, and I ignored them or thought I was being silly. There was one occasion where we were about to have sex, and he grabbed the condom. I turned over, we had sex, and then afterwards he admits that he didn't put the condom on. There were times when he was almost angry and resentful about him taking care of my needs, and he would physically hurt me in the process. I remember being sore for days.

It all came to a boiling point when I wanted to introduce him to a friend of mine who also happened to be an ex-bf. But he was an ex-bf in the fact that yes, we dated, but they were library dates. We went to the library, did hw, and he was my first kiss on the lips. That was the full extent of that relationship: sweet puppy love that fizzled out very quickly.

He had said he was alright with it, and so I invited my friend over to ex-bf's apartment. I had turned 21 a few months previous, and so I had pretty much zero alcohol tolerance. I remember the beginning of the night where we were hanging out, all of us were laughing and having a good time, and it seemed like things were going great.

The only other thing that I remember is waking up sore and hungover the next morning. My ex-bf was all too pleased to tell me that he had taken the liberty of having sex with me so that my friend knew that I was "his". I don't remember any of it.

It was a deep betrayal, and I wish I could say that I smartened up and left him after that. His roommate, C, had been quick to point out that he had basically raped me, but I had always been very hesitant to label it as such. I had given blanket permission to wake me up with sex, and so I guess I just assumed that he didn't really think that me asleep vs me black-out drunk and passed out was different. I don't know if that argument is weak, but that was just my thoughts at the time.

So fast-forward to now. Ex-bf's roommate, C, is now mine and WS's roommate. I was very close to C prior to him moving in with us, and before I even met WS. I am very comfortable with him because I know that he is not romantically or sexually interested in me, and vice versa. We have a very deep platonic bond.

WS is uncomfortable with this. He had wondered if C and I had ever slept together - we haven't, nor will we. C is just one of the very few men in my life that I am close to, and that hasn't hurt me. He is safe. WS used to be safe, too. And although WS wouldn't hurt me physically, not on purpose, he shattered me in a way I hadn't seen coming. Not from him.

WS's depression reared back up recently, and he has confided in me that he is uncomfortable once more with C's behavior towards me. Such as how we lay on the couch (typically, I have my feet thrown over whoever is on the couch with me), or that he always seems to be tickling me, etc. I can understand why.

I'm a little lost as to what to do about it, though. He says he doesn't want to change me because of what his depression is making him feel right now. C and I have always had this dynamic since before I met WS. And a couple of nights ago, I was really feeling down and stressed out, and so C and I got drunk and watched Disney movies while WS was at work. We stayed up until 4, watching Disney and talking.

Is it wrong to have such a deep platonic relationship with another man? I'm not interested in him in that way, he's not interested in me in that way. He's just safe, you know? He's never made a pass at me, and he has always seemed to care about my best interests. When I discovered the A, I was a complete wreck. He let me talk and cry, we got McDonald's, and then he stayed in my room with me watching Fantasia until I fell asleep.

Sorry for the super long post. This is just one of the things we were talking about when we were drinking, and it really stuck with me. Any feedback on my situation would be helpful.

devotedman posted 11/8/2017 10:14 AM

spazzy, I am going to keep this short because I must leave now -but- I wanted to get some comments in. Yes, that is an example of the unhealthy "but" that makes it okay to do whatever I want to do.

I am a CSA survivor from early childhood. My first memories are sexual in nature. I am going to say this next with no judgment for _you_ and admitting that I had similar problems for a long time.

Your boundaries are crap.

IMHO, you are way too close to this other adult man. I get it, I understand, and I wanted to also say that portions of the abused's maturity levels are often "frozen" in time at the age that the abuse started. So, I get it. You are capable of being a trusting-ish child with this friend. It is possible to have absolutely no romantic emotional feelings for him.

However, and consider this question from the point of view you had before your ws became a ws, would you want your ws to be sitting on the couch with his legs on the lap of another woman? Would you think it was okay for him to stay up drinking until 4AM or so with another woman?

There is a book, "Not 'Just Friends'", by Dr. Shirley Glass that deals heavily with the question of boundaries and affairs. I am not saying that you are having any sort of A whatsoever. What I am saying is that the CSA that you were subjected to has warped your boundaries into a strange shape. It certainly warped mine.

So, I get it. Please go on Amazon or a similar site and get that book and read it. Read about boundaries. Read about the walls that need to be up between friends of whatever sex you are attracted to. Read about the difference between walls, windows, and doors that you open into your life for other people.

I do honestly wish the best for you and for you and your relationship with your WS.

Signing off for now.

spazzy posted 11/8/2017 10:46 AM

However, and consider this question from the point of view you had before your ws became a ws, would you want your ws to be sitting on the couch with his legs on the lap of another woman? Would you think it was okay for him to stay up drinking until 4AM or so with another woman?

Prior to the A, WS had several female friends that he'd hang out with at our apartment while I was at work, and I had no problem with it. I had trusted that he knew what lines could not be crossed. If he had a friend like C, who was female and they had a deep friendship prior to me coming into the picture, no, I wouldn't have a problem with it. I have several friendships that are like this. Mostly with women, and a couple with men. I guess I just see it as friendships only.

WS has good childhood friends from his hometown in NC that when he went out there to visit, he was drinking with. Girls and guys. If he were with any of the girls drinking alone, prior to the A, I would not have a problem with it.

There is a book, "Not 'Just Friends'", by Dr. Shirley Glass that deals heavily with the question of boundaries and affairs. I am not saying that you are having any sort of A whatsoever. What I am saying is that the CSA that you were subjected to has warped your boundaries into a strange shape. It certainly warped mine.

I already purchased this book, but I have not yet read it. I can see how my boundaries could be warped because of what happened.

Read about the walls that need to be up between friends of whatever sex you are attracted to. Read about the difference between walls, windows, and doors that you open into your life for other people.

I guess that's something a little difficult for me. I am pansexual, and I am not necessarily attracted to anyone because of their gender. I am more attracted to their personality, with the sex of that person not really meaning much to me.

WS has no problem with my girlfriends, even though I have a few that I'm very close to and have acted the same with them as I have with C (and he does know that I am pansexual). It is literally only C that he has a problem with.

I do honestly wish the best for you and for you and your relationship with your WS.

Thank you. I guess I'll be cracking open that book and taking a read. I honestly have trouble seeing my boundaries as being crappy. I guess I just have this mindset that although there are attractive people, and some of my friends are attractive as well, I'm just not interested in sex. I am not interested in developing an emotional romantic relationship. In my head, I am quite firmly taken.

But I don't know, maybe that's potential wayward behavior? I'll read. Thanks for the input.

hopefulkate posted 11/8/2017 11:52 AM

Prior to WH's A, I would have agreed that these relationships are fine.

Now I know better. Just my two cents.


Lavender and silverhopes - checking in - how are you all today?

Blacklab - I have read many stories of success. I have read many stories of partners needing to save themselves and leave their survivor. Not all survivors are able to face their past and make the real and hard changes that are necessary. We all have different levels of patience and tolerance. Your story will be your story.

There are those in real life, and some on these boards, who would not continue to R in my situation.

And there are others on this board whose situation is one that I could not handle. MrKate would be out on his ass or dead...who knows...I just know that I have my own limits based on my own past and my own needs. But if they can find compassion and space in their heart and life to let their WS's heal in their own time, then that is amazing and beautiful.

I already view the gift of R to be one based on love, grace, and God. Especially with regards to reenactment A's. Perhaps, only with respect to reenactment A's - for my own level of grace to be extended. Hopefully I won't have to challenge that, but who knows.

The key to it all is to determine for yourself, what are your boundaries, what are your needs/wants/expectations? What can you do for you, what do you want in life, and can this other person provide that. (Or...meet you at that healthy place of love which is mutual giving and not needed them....I hope that makes sense. These concepts are new to me so while I *feel* them, articulating healthy love is still a struggle.)

BlackLab19 posted 11/8/2017 17:20 PM

Thank you Lavender0916, devotedman and hopefulkate for responding and for giving me some hope. I don't have enough time right now for a bigger response but I really appreciate your time and insight and support. I am glad this place exists on SI because much of the well intentioned advice on other threads is very 'black and white', but I feel like the situation with my CSA WH is much more grey than that. He too was taught to lie and that the truth would bring dire consequences.

spazzy you are very brave and strong to share your story and I hope it is the start of much healing for you. My WH is only starting to share his story... I didn't know much of it til recently because it was so painful for him and he just couldn't cope. IC has helped. I also highly recommend Not just friends...we both read it and I think it does help both partners a great deal.

spazzy posted 11/8/2017 19:00 PM

spazzy you are very brave and strong to share your story and I hope it is the start of much healing for you. My WH is only starting to share his story... I didn't know much of it til recently because it was so painful for him and he just couldn't cope. IC has helped. I also highly recommend Not just friends...we both read it and I think it does help both partners a great deal.

Thank you. I have started reading Not Just Friends today. I took the quiz, and my results were that my friendship with C was just that - a friendship. Having read the first four chapters so far, I'd say C fits in the category of "friends of the M". But I'll continue to read this book and see what other insight it has.

It is difficult to speak with people about this. I don't always know how to articulate what I'm feeling and it's just painful. It's embarrassing, it's humiliating. I told WS when we were friends because I felt it was something he needed to know prior to being involved with me. Other people I had told previously made it seem like it wasn't really a big deal, which didn't help me at all. It's left me with this mentality that it's been 20 years - I should be over this by now.

WS wants to help, but he doesn't know how. Counselling would help, but I just feel incredibly apprehensive about doing that. There's not really anybody to talk to. I don't really want to burden any of my friends with the weight of my shame.

Lavender0916 posted 11/9/2017 15:46 PM

Spazzy,
((HUG)) - so brave to tell all your stories. Very proud of you.
Friendships of opposite sex right now to me are a no-no. The irony is one of my H's female friends doesn't even talk to him anymore because of the A. Her and I became really good friends. Sadly she knows the AP from working with my H a while back.

I am in a downward spiral as well with the black and white of the other forums. I started reading "Surviving an Affair" from the healing library. Thought I would get some good stuff in it to help with our issues. It's only made me more depressed and anxious. Plus a friend of mine at work *needed* to have the *hard* talk with me about how I should kick WH out since he is constantly hurting me and living it large on my expense. That I will be nothing of a person. JOY - Good seeing you!

I read how the writer talks about the love banks and that it's empty and how the slightest deviance can trigger the A right back even though recovery is trying to be had. They go into detail about "secret relationships" That high is impossible to get over.

Then I go back to DM,

The problem with applying a simple "Don't make that choice" label to a CSA survivor is that the CSA survivor is a special kind of fucked-up. Through their brain being wired badly in childhood they often don't know how to make any other choice. It is a special kind of sad

I think back to the text's I found between my WH and AP. How most were initiated by her, how she talked my WH into taking care of her mother while she was on trips, how she would manipulate him sexually(sexting), and use him to get jobs(both are bartenders). Then I noticed the female friends he had throughout the years and they are JUST LIKE HIS MOTHER!! Including his ex-wife. How they could talk so mean to him and he would take it. Say they had a "soft" side. He would do so much for them...more than with me sometimes before I would stand up for myself

Black and white - He is 57, he is a big boy and deal with this consequence, i.e. shown the door

Grey or is it Gray...?
My WH is "trying" for lack of better word. He knows he has a mount Everest of issues, particularly trying to figure out what love is...I knew seeing his mom would open a big can of worms. Then the phone appeared, the job at the same location as AP, and finally a break from IC("until my new job schedule is finalized"). Coincidence? I think not. All of us Partners can see the boy or girl who desperately wants to be loved. Is this just a storm? How many do I want to go through? Am I making excuses? My IC is tomorrow. More to come.

madhattermarilyn posted 11/9/2017 17:30 PM

Not experiencing sexual abuse in my marriage...but 10 years ago I was victim to a form of it. I was assaulted by a friend of a friend who knowingly had HIV. He was full aware of his status too, hooked up with me (admittedly very handsome guy), then did a nonconsensual sex act that put me at much higher rate of HIV transmission than standard sex. Thankfully, I dodged the HIV bullet and miraculously stayed clean. However, I was scared stiff for years of the possibility that my HIV test results had been false negatives.

I should have reported him to law enforcement...in the state it occurred, mandatory minimum sentence for what he did ranged from 7-15yrs. At the time though all I cared about was avoiding HIV and moving on with my life. I rugswept for years and felt I had no one to talk to, mostly because of the circumstances that led up to the nonconsensual act and deception. I never sought therapy but perhaps that's one situation where it may have helped me (unlike infidelity marriage counseling, which was a total waste of time and money for the most part).

This experience taught me to change my promiscuous, sexually liberal ways. I became a wannabe Stepped wife, seeking a man to settle down with and make babies with. Unfortunately, guys no longer had an interest in me when I gave off these clingy desperate vibes. I think my good girl persona and new lowered esteem is what led to a string of guys either stringing me along, or disrespecting me in our relationship (e.g., cheating). Ironically, I experienced less disrespect when I didn't want commitment. I was still disrespected in other, very different ways sometimes, but not nearly to the extent that I was when I threw myself at the pipedream vision that I had to get married and pop out babies. It all started as a side effect of the sexual assault.

[This message edited by madhattermarilyn at 5:34 PM, November 9th (Thursday)]

hopefulkate posted 11/9/2017 20:27 PM

I think you just answered you question, right in your post!

Welcome, a great group of folks are here to listen and support you as you decide where to next.

I think you are right in that an event like that would color your future without dealing with it, and a counselor trained in sexual abuse and ptsd can help a lot.

Take care, read, reflect, and find your worth. It's there, and it is big.

Lavender0916 posted 11/12/2017 11:20 AM

Welcome MadhatterMarilyn to our cozy group. You will find no judgments here. Whatever the type of sexual abuse you will find all flavors here. Plus the partners trying to understand all of it and the impact later in life.

You will find good resources here. I personally am going through something similar of losing "who I am" and being someone I am not. All brought on by a guy (WH) who had an A.

I think I have my "network" of folks when I drop the bomb on WH tonight. That I matter, that I won't be hurt anymore and I know about his constant contact with AP(Via secret 2nd cell phone). Remind him that in order for recovery to work weekly IC, NC, and transparency are a MUST! Codependency sux....

devotedman posted 11/12/2017 12:01 PM

Good luck, Lavender0916. I am wishing you the best.

You quoted me as saying:

The problem with applying a simple "Don't make that choice" label to a CSA survivor is that the CSA survivor is a special kind of fucked-up. Through their brain being wired badly in childhood they often don't know how to make any other choice. It is a special kind of sad

What didn't get quoted is the other thing that I say in here, that I'm the first to support leaving _or_ staying. Either way is a mess of its own. D is hard -but- you start your healing and detaching immediately. Staying until they're fully in with R is hard, too, and you open yourself to new hurts. The 180 can help there -but- it is for detaching, and if you do it then detaching is going to happen.

My above quote, especially the end, "It is a special kind of sad," reminds me of the book Old Yeller. They loved the dog but the dog got rabies. Guess what the outcome was? A good example of a special kind of sad.

So, Lavender0916, do not set yourself up to be a martyr. Do not hang onto the _hope_ that they will change. If you choose to stay and see what happens then please set some sort of time limits on some sort of behavior change. Like, at 6 months he should be at X point. At 9 he should be at Y and at 12 he should be at Z. If not, vamoose.

Another thing to consider is that he is probably trying to re-create the only environment that he ever knew. You said, above, that all of the women in his life were like his mother. I know how that goes. I also know that people can try to change those around them to re-create the environment that they are used to.

Again, good luck.

Lavender0916 posted 11/13/2017 17:25 PM

So it wasn't a bomb per se. It was actually a gentle loving message to please stop hurting me. I know about the 2nd cell phone. I wrote it down so I would not forget "loving" details.

In return, I got "we should divorce." Not what I expected actually. WH reason, does not want to live the rest of his life with me questioning every move. Having to search his stuff all the time. etc. Tell me that I will never be happy or satisfied. Claiming he is doing all he can to make it better.

The tension resided and we both shared how we are each other's best friend. How we love each other. Nothing was decided as to where to sleep etc. Not sure if it was ok to just snuggle and watch Stranger Things, however I did. WH said he would continue meeting with his IC until he was ready for MC. They have a "plan". Then WH was very cold last night and crawled into bed. I kissed him on the forehead this morning but no response. Just a txt today that our DS is ill and staying home.

DS asked if I was Ok, I did not know what that meant. WH is off today and tomorrow. I was inclined to txt him today but resisted the urge. What would I say?

Folks here are saying to do the 180. Staying or leaving? I just don't know. We did not get that far. I am not ready for D. This just sucks and it hurts.

Luckily I can leave work soon. Will try and get some rest tonight.

devotedman posted 11/14/2017 06:49 AM

I'm sorry, Lavender0916. He doesn't get it.

He cheated, he destroyed your trust in him, and he's either not realizing or not accepting that your hypervigilance is a result of that. He does not want to live with his consequences. He got caught again and now he's throwing in the towel.

The big question now, Lavender0916, is how do you react to this? Do you back down and let him live the life that he's used to with no changes? I warn you, doing that will twist you into weird shapes as you find out about new cheating down the line. You'll likely start second guessing everything and it will drive you bonkers.

Personally, I would advise against that path.

Or, do you acknowledge that you love him and that sometimes we love people that aren't healthy for us? Do you recognize that he can make his own decisions, you can make yours, and the two are just not compatible?

At this time and with what you've said I'd recommend The 180. Start detaching from him and let him see what that looks and feels like.

I've been where he is, mentally. I've had to decide whether to protect the broken view of the world that I was given as a kid or to cast it off and see that the world is not really like I thought that it was. It is a big, scary, hard decision.

I wish both of you the best.

Lavender0916 posted 11/14/2017 17:15 PM

First off I want to say, I-FEEL-DIFFERENT.

I have done some intense crying for the last 3-4 days. I have finally stopped resisting the tears. I have let it all out. Release!

I am reading up on the 180. Should of done that a LONG time ago. So far exchanges have been about the kids and his "proof of where he has been pictures"
It actually felt good to detach. His actions on him.

Consequences yes! (BTW, when I meant he was cold the other night it was just that. I had the heater on and he was shaking -like a child) He kept his distance last night. It was nice actually. I think I am starting to get mad?!?

He told me he threw away the phone and if I find another it is not his.... (whatever) tired of all this. Proof? Cancelled plan maybe? Giving me Vertigo!

No next time. My heart matters!! My courage meter is a little low from Sunday night so building it back up to come up with the consequences. 180 definitely.

I have an amazing support group. Thank you all!! <3 <3 <3


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