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Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 18

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DogsnBooks posted 8/16/2018 10:08 AM

It is a very lonely place to be, married to a sex addict. If you could afford your own IC, while he gets assessed and into some therapy, that would be better that MC.

Well thatís the rub, isnít it? Because we need to find MULTIPLE qualified therapists and yet canít even find ONE.

A qualified therapist to work with WH and recovery (and you know, an official diagnosis would be great).

A second qualified therapist to work with me and this healing process, because honestly Iím drowning on my own. But I donít want to go to just some random therapist who has no knowledge of SA and betrayal trauma.

And ideally, a third qualified therapist to be our MC.

And yet I canít find even one ... I donít know what to do.

Superesse posted 8/16/2018 10:38 AM

Dogs, I can feel the anger percolating between the words you wrote, and I really empathize! It feels like a no-win situation, I understand. I assume you also have seen a different kind of professional, a family law attorney, to find out what your legal situation is, worst-case? I know it is hard to deal with all of this, but I just noticed how very early in your life it is; I was 51 and in my second marriage 4 years, when I found out about all the prostitutes MY husband screwed, after he had led me to believe for the 4 years we dated that he was a virgin?! (And I couldn't really believe him, but he denied ever having had a previous girlfriend....I guess that wasn't a total lie!)

The crazy part is how this splits us, emotionally. Part of us knows we ought to give up hope, and part of us wants to hang in with hope and work on it. We are always advised that "marriage is hard work," but this type of sex and character problem isn't what they meant by "work" we had to do! And it isn't something you can fix for him.

When I had that "I don't know what to do next" feeling, I made a phone call for just a "one hour legal consult" with a family law practitioner, to learn what I needed to do to protect myself financially, from that moment forward. It cost $150. and gave me some peace of mind. Mostly, needed to feel like I had some choices, after my husband had taken my life away from me, without warning. Hope you can find something to help you.

ashestophoenix posted 8/16/2018 12:00 PM

Dogs, I have way too much experience with therapists, with most of it being harmful. Regular old MC's can NOT handle SA and the trauma to the partner. In my view, neither my husband nor I was remotely ready for MC without individual work.

Ideally, you should NOT be involved in your husband's recovery efforts nor finding his recovery resources. He needs to do that himself. Twelve step groups are free. He can go online if he can't find any in the area. Reading books on the subject, while not free, is not expensive.

For you, I don't believe you need a CSAT, I believe you need a trauma therapist. I found one who is really helping me, but it took a while. You can also go to S-Anon or any Anon meeting even online. I also recommend learning "loving kindness" meditation, you can get this online, and practicing it. It's also free.

With compassion,

Voodoogirl posted 8/17/2018 13:37 PM

I havenít posted in so long and I wouldnít do it like this if it wasnít absolutely necessary. That being said does anyone have any experience with Drs Bercaw sexual Reintegration therapy?! I need insight really badly please help.

marji posted 8/17/2018 18:34 PM

HiVoodoo--just wondering what the urgency. No, I have not heard of these people before but they seem to have decent credentials from a reputable institution if indeed they do. How did you come across them? Have you read their books?

Wondering if you and your H are working with any therapists or attending 12 step groups since this couple seems to be focused on SA issues and if you are then have the people in the groups recommended these people. I tend to generally trust personal recommendations.

Can't imagine there'd be any harm in reading what they have to say though making a large monetary investment in any of these recovery programs might warrant further investigation.

[This message edited by marji at 6:35 PM, August 17th (Friday)]

Voodoogirl posted 8/17/2018 23:09 PM

Marji sorry it came off the way it did. We are working with our CSAT that has us going through the process we havenít invested any money or anything other than the cost of the book of course. I was more wanting someone with experience with the process itself so I could get some insight into my own feelings and reactions to the process. It is kind of a moot point now because I decided I wasnít ready and we will try again some other time.

marji posted 8/18/2018 12:21 PM

Hmm, Voodoo, now you have me curious. Have to admit I was a bit impressed by their educational background because I so rarely see anything similar for other counselors and authors who write about SA. After three years next week Im still not ready for any sexual regenerating (think I've made progress in regenerating my laundry folding skills and dish washing skills) and seriously doubt I will be in the future but just might want to read what they have to say.

Thank you for mentioning another SA repair source--maybe it should be added to the bibliography on Page 1 here if it's on already.

Nevertome posted 8/19/2018 07:18 AM

I am very interested in hearing from anyone on their experience with a couples intensive. Has anyone been to the Drs. Bercaw intensive or The Meadows couples program?

veryhurt2018 posted 8/20/2018 14:12 PM

Hi Nevertome,I've never experienced those two intensive therapies, but my WS and I are in an intensive program where you go to couples therapy, individual therapy and group therapy (he for SA's and me for the spouses of SA's). It's a lot of therapy and a lot of money but I feel like it's getting us through this nightmare that I'm calling "life" right now.

I've never been on this thread before, just read a lot and definitely belong here. Very thankful everyone's posts. My WS basically used prostitutes quite a lot, and when I caught him, he admitted that it was getting worse over time. For WS, he had been cheating on me for 8 years, and right now he's still blaming me because I didn't give him enough sex. Even though I know I'm not the one to blame, it's very hard to hear that as many times as he's said it. We had a very loving and wonderful relationship before May 9th of this year. Now my world has come crashing down and I'm just trying to recover. Ugh!!

[This message edited by veryhurt2018 at 6:57 PM, August 29th (Wednesday)]

marji posted 8/20/2018 15:35 PM

VH Sounds like you and your H are working toward recovery by working with ICs and groups but I am very puzzled by reading that your H is still blaming you and your sex life for his using prostitutes for 8 years.

The frequency and or kind of sex a man is getting at home does not an SA make. SA is symptomatic of deep psychological problems. SA is a psychological disorder, the source of which is deeply rooted in personality. The mate of the SA is not the one who caused the disorder and the SA's therapists and support groups should be helping the SA to realize that.

I know there are many different types of therapies and therapists and different types of support groups that try to help individuals and couples with SA problems but the ones I am familiar with work with the SA to realize internal problems--that the sex at home has nothing to do with his ability to lie, to exploit, to violate the relationship, his partner, the prostitutes and, maybe most importantly, himself.

The ICs I know want the SA to turn inward; to learn about himself, his past; to understand his flaws, and to change; they do all they can to discourage the addict's propensity to blame the the spouse, the partner, the "stress" of work, whatever's out there, and to take responsibility. So I am wondering how your H could still be acting in such a destructive and dishonest way as to be blaming you--or even thinking about what he was doing in such a simplistic and irresponsible way.

Do all the therapists know that he is doing this? Have you made clear to your MC that your H is blaming you? that he's still understanding his deceit, his violation, his betrayal as "not enough sex at home???"

SAs are very often emotional anorexics. They have serious deficiencies in their ability to connect emotionally; to experience empathy, to fully enjoy emotional attachments and true intimacy with a life partner. They are often, if not typically, at the emotionally developed level of an infant. And similar to infants or very young children, they deny responsibility and fail to consciously and strenuously work to change. But again, you've been in this for only short time, perhaps he will come to realize you were not the problem.

Surely, the sooner he comes to realize that you and his sex life with you were not the problem, the sooner he can start to work on himself and if for some reason, no one but you and he know that he is laying the blame on you and not taking responsibility, it would be very important to make that known.

[This message edited by marji at 3:38 PM, August 20th (Monday)]

Superesse posted 8/20/2018 16:41 PM



I am printing that one off to frame.


ashestophoenix posted 8/20/2018 20:03 PM

Marji, great post. VH, my husband systematically shut down any attempt to discuss our sexual problems in an adult, loving way. I could never figure this out until after d-day and then when I sadly learned all about this wretched addiction, it made a horrible kind of sense. He was protecting his addiction at all costs. I was NOTHING compared to his addiction, which was what he was deeply bonded to.

So post d-day, he was even a bigger mess and meaner and angrier than usual (which had progressed to being nearly all the time, the jerk), and I got double barrels full of blame for his acting out: not hot enough, not anything enough, and even drilled down to criticism of each part of my body. It was disgusting and cruel. That had to stop. My MC worked on stopping this. I had to stop being shocked and silenced by his nastiness and make boundaries. This took me a while, which I find so terribly sad. My IC helped me with this.

So, I'm very familiar with the blaming. My husband would rather die than take responsibility for anything like a mistake. It's ridiculous. So he blamed me throughout the marriage.

It's not about us being inadequate. Ever. We weren't and aren't even though they make us feel that way. Let's say for a minute they weren't "getting enough": I can think of LOTS of choices about addressing this other than hiring prostitutes. In my marriage, my husband's sexual and emotional anorexia ran the show. None of this was my fault.

I'm angry for you, for me, and for all the partners who are blamed by these self-centered, immature addicts.

Even though I have compassion that the origin of my husband's addiction was early trauma, it still does not remove his responsibility for his choices. Nor does it diminish in any way the harm he has done to me.

I so agree with Marji. The treatment team you have all need to know he is still blaming you. Note if you are afraid or ashamed to say this. This is what has been done to you.

With deep compassion,

[This message edited by ashestophoenix at 8:06 PM, August 20th (Monday)]

sami1234 posted 8/21/2018 07:56 AM

Even though I know I'm now the one to blame,

Veryhurt: this is totally false. I see others have addressed this with you and they are on point. Please know that nothing you did or didn't do caused him to do these things. Period.

If you are in a recovery that tells you this, it is not healthy. There are always problems, issues, difficulties in any M, there are many choices we can make as ADULTS to find ways to address these difficulties with our partners. Was he communicating his needs/desires to you in a way that you felt was compassionate toward you and your needs? That's what should be happening in a healthy relationship. I am sorry you are going through this.

my husband systematically shut down any attempt to discuss our sexual problems in an adult, loving way.

Ashes: this was my experience as well. Very hurtful. He was a child, he says he has grown up. We shall see.

DogsnBooks posted 8/21/2018 20:15 PM

Well everyone, it might be over for me.

Just found out that apparently in the throughs of his addiction, WH shared naked/basically porn pictures and videos of me (which he pressured me into making at the time, btw) with one of his friends.

I feel so fucking violated. I just kicked him out and he's spending the night at his brother's.

[This message edited by DogsnBooks at 8:18 PM, August 21st (Tuesday)]

secondtime posted 8/21/2018 23:34 PM

I'm so sorry Dogs.

sami1234 posted 8/22/2018 08:16 AM

Dogs I am so sorry to hear this. Such a violation. Let us know what you decide. I am curious as to how you found this out.

Feel stuck in a rut. Saw IC yesterday. At this point I feel like roommate/FWB and wonder if it ever gets better. Thinking about going back to MC (haven't in months) but keep remembering that WH, while we were kidding around, said he thought our MC wanted to have sex with him. I mean seriously, is this how he thinks? Scary. Yes, she's attractive. How am I supposed to process that one? I have no idea what is ever in this guy's head. Like maybe he thinks everyone is just wanting to have sex with him? Delusional. Even so why would he say it? Geez. Messed up.

JadeC posted 8/22/2018 09:14 AM

VeryHurt-DO NOT accept the blame for your husband's actions! He made that choice. There are so many different choices he could have made, and they should have included you.
Dogs-I am so sorry and so angry for you. Honestly, for me, that is a line crossed that would be the tipping point for me.
Sami-My husband and I had MC years ago, when all I knew about was the porn. He told me he thought our therapist was "smokin' hot". I had trouble opening up to her after that.
It never ceases to amaze me how these guys',minds work, but I guess it should.

ashestophoenix posted 8/23/2018 07:54 AM

Dogs, so, so sorry.

Jade, "smokin' hot". Honestly. How self centered and cruel, and deluded, these addicts can be.


JadeC posted 8/24/2018 11:59 AM

I know, right?
She had some photos of herself and her (very) handsome husband in her office, and he still thought that was an appropriate comment to make to his wife (me).
I have since found my voice and told him how that comment and comments like that made/make me feel, and he has apologized and doesn't do that anymore.

ashestophoenix posted 8/24/2018 13:23 PM

Jade - I also say something now and my husband has stopped most of the cruel remarks. He can still be cruel, though, and our MC is really working on this.

But, you know, you can't unring the bell. So many of these incredibly insensitive things my husband said to me, and sometimes the sneering contempt he used to say it, I can't ever forget them. They truly scar.


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