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Spouses/Partners of Sex Addicts - 18

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Lionne posted 12/20/2018 06:59 AM

Yep. Anonymity. Sacred. It enables a safe place. If they were to share, it would absolutely undermine his process of becoming a person of integrity. It would further his habit of lying which I've heard mentioned on the last few pages of our forum. Please don't ask him to share that.
He COULD share some of his step work. But that assumes he's in a good place with it, that he has a handle on it. Each step often behind with musings, stream of consciousness journaling. Until he has cogent answers you really don't want to know the thinking process. And, you know they never stop working the steps, they are constantly repeating the work as they grow, change, and learn more. Likewise IC. That's private unless he chooses to share.
My sanon group has a couple's meeting once a month. There are a bunch of those kinds of meetings around. Ask your ICs. These can be hard to find. Consider starting one yourself.
Dr Magness has a format for a weekly check-in. It's in his book Stop Sex Addiction. Retrouvaille had a communication format that's completed every day and I find that useful but one had to attend their weekend workshop to learn it. It's good and just a little churchy

This recovery is on them. Our recovery is on us. It's a three legged stool, your issues, his issues, later the marriage issues.

Lionne posted 12/20/2018 07:12 AM

Here is the FASTT description by Dr Magness

Determine day and time for the check-in. Make this a standing appointment and
keep it!
2. Check-in is the responsibility of the sex addict to initiate.
3. The purpose of the FASTT Check-In is to keep the partner informed as to recovery
activities, normalize talking about recovery related topics, and allow both partners
to be alert for signs that recovery needs to receive greater priority.
4. Follow FASTT format.
• Feelings check
o What are you feeling at present? If multiple feelings are present, try to get
in touch with each one, naming them out loud to partner.
• Activities in recovery.
o Begin with telling your recovery phase, points goal and points earned.
o These activities include:
§ Everything on your Recovery Points System and your Personal
Recovery Plan
• *Sobriety statement or Slip report (*And if instances of pre-disclosure acting out
are remembered, those details are shared at this time.)
o A statement about your sobriety, such as, “I have been sober since my last
check-in.”
o If there has been a slip, it should be revealed in detail at this time.
• Threats (Both “T’s” are worked at the same time.)
o What threats have you identified since the last check in?
o Example: “For visual threats this week I used the following tool(s)….”
o Example: “For intrusive thoughts this week I used [name tools]”
§ Important: Do not give more details than this about these two
threats! To do so needlessly traumatizes your partner.
o Example: “I was stressed at work this week and used [name tool].”
• Tools you used to respond to each threat.
5. The check-in can also include other items as mutually agreed upon such as a
accountability for time and money, safety plan for travel, etc.
Partner’s Responsibility—Creating a cocoon/zone of safety by:
1. Listening all the way through without interruption.
2. Not asking questions.
3. Thanking him/her and hugging him/her. (If partner still has questions the next
day, she/he can ask.)

DestroyedWife80 posted 12/20/2018 08:51 AM

I am just thankful that: 1. I had the awareness to realize the first two IC did not meet my needs...2. I had the knowledge and drive to search for exactly what I needed in an IC...and 3. I have the funds (barely LOL!!! $$$$) to pay out of pocket for my sessions ($150 a week & in Jan I begin a new insurance plan that covers 60% so that's better, but at 4x a month it adds up!)

Please listen to your gut after 2-3 sessions. If you don't feel that you are meshing and getting real, applicable help...move on.

My first IC was a sex therapist- I thought she'd be a good fit bc of that. She was not. She even said "HE needs to be in here to talk to me." She made numerous calls for me to stop snooping- which I was still in early days of discovery- I would not have learned some of the most damning evidence, which I feel fortunate to have knowledge of now and feel is important in my ultimate decision making, especially since he will provide 0 info.

My second lady seemed like a sweet person and maybe a good MC or a good C for someone who was just looking to overcome codependency. She flat out said "I have no experience with addiction." That was my last day with her.

My current lady is FREAKING AMAZING. She has a way of putting things, ways to re-frame thought processes...I just 'get it'!!!! I have progressed a great deal just in a month of seeing her & I will definitely continue seeing her.

Shocked123 posted 12/20/2018 09:46 AM

Bluetears,
Write to me anytime. I'll share what I used to piece things together. I'm no PI, but I did think of a few things that I am sure he hasn't.
Horrible to think that we have to secretely track our H's.
What a ridiculous way to live,

Destroyed wife,
I have reached out to SA in our area for a CSAT or betray trauma type of therapist. Mine is just not doing it for me anymore.
At $200 an hour, i need to spend my money more wisely than that.

secondtime posted 12/20/2018 13:56 PM

deleted.

I have my answers.

[This message edited by secondtime at 3:07 PM, December 20th (Thursday)]

Lionne posted 12/20/2018 15:05 PM

I was told by my 12 step group to stop monitoring, stop checking, stop snooping. The purpose of that is to allow yourself to disengage, to detach, to realize that you have no control over what they do.
I did anyway. I needed to see where he was if I felt uncomfortable, needed to look at his cell phone to see who he was calling, look at his email, see his spending. To protect myself from further surprises and more trauma, I kept track of him. I don't anymore. And frankly, I found nothing alarming after I found out about the worst of the crap.
It's really individual. If you are watching because you know what you'll do if you find stuff, then if it makes you feel safer, do it. If you find yourself avoiding other activities and obsessing over the snooping, it's clearly not healthy.

Did I post this before? Forgive me, I'm working on less than optimal sleep.

JadeC posted 12/20/2018 18:55 PM

I used to track my husband's phone on his Google account, especially if he was leaving early to go to work. Our CSAT as well as my SAnon group discouraged that. It does nothing to build trust. ( His phone would show that it had been tracked.). I am free to look at his phone if I want to. And we have a filter on our computers. Of course, nothing is fool-proof. But the more we share in check-ins, the more comfortable I am that he is genuinely interested in getting better, and willing to do the work. Plus, I have done so much for him over the years, I was pretty much his mother as well as his wife, and he needs to do this on his own. I still don't completely trust him and my marriage is day by day. But we are making progress. And thats what really matters. These addicts have had their compulsions for so long, it is not going to be "fixed" overnight. Our marriage is never going to be perfect, but I do believe our relationship is becoming more genuine.

Lionne posted 12/21/2018 03:15 AM

I disagree. Each time I looked and found nothing it built trust. It built trust that he was staying sober.
I get that there are many ways he could have circumvented my efforts, but frankly he's not very tech savvy. And I am.
YRMV

secondtime posted 12/21/2018 07:06 AM

But the more we share in check-ins, the more comfortable I am that he is genuinely interested in getting better, and willing to do the work.

This is what I'm looking for.

I'm not looking for hearing about every struggle or about every hot woman that passes by.

I'm not looking for a transcript of what happens with his sponsor or a 12 step group.

I am looking for him to say "Hey...I learned that I.." once a month.

I can't judge on behavior. My husband has really be present in with our lives. But, we also have 4 kids now. It's not like he can sit on his butt and do nothing (literally, he works part time)...while I work two jobs, go to school, and do everything myself. The kids would literally go hungry if he did that. And thankfully, he's never let that happened.

So the only way I know he's getting better is if share with me or we have sex.

I'm happy never having sex with him if I don't feel safe. Even if that means going celibate until i die. He's apparently fine with it, in the name of the terms of a marriage with me.

I'm going to go out on a limb and actually, say..that it's OK for my husband to go out on a limb, once a month and be vulnerable to me. Really, that's what I'm asking for, big picture. It's OK that I ask he meet my needs this way, to build trust. Because right now that's the only way he can.

It's also very clear, it's not going to happen. So, either that means he won't ever feel safe with me, or, this second recovery stint is crap, too. He will never be trustworthy. There's no way for him to build trust, given that he can't/won't share.

We can't divorce right now. I will get fleeced. I will lose half my income to him between alimony and child support. HALF. I won't live in poverty, dragging my kids down, while I'm grieving the loss of my marriage.

But, I guess it's time that I see a lawyer to see about a legal separation. That we can swing in 4 years, when my baby is in school.

I am also hoping that maybe we can keep the house and just rent an apartment for the other party to go to on certain nights. That would be the best for our kids, and our pocketbook.

I need to stop making bad decisions at some point. I'm 43..now. I married DH, I didn't divorce him the first time after I discovered..when it was manageable and only had two kids...I went on and had a third all while he relapsed (I had know idea he relapsed), and I didn't terminate our fourth kid, like I wanted to. All bad decisions. I'm the pair up once in a life type of gal. I wasted that on him.

I think it's reasonable for me to want some peace of my life, and some part of it not to be a waste or laden with mistakes.


[This message edited by secondtime at 7:08 AM, December 21st (Friday)]

JadeC posted 12/21/2018 08:40 AM

Specifically, I meant that tracking his phone on Google(which leaves a notification on his phone that he could see), did nothing to build the truust between the both of us. It just made him paranoid and less willing to share, except he would share with me that he hated the thought of being "spied on.
At some point, they need to feel somewhat safe about opening up to us and making themselves vulnerabe. It took my group and working with my sponsor to help me realize that it was not appropriate to be his accountability partner, especially with the marriage at stake. That is a role better suited to his sponsor and his group.
His last slip was a few months ago. He works overnights and he got home about an hour and a half later than his usual time. When asked, he had an explanation ready. I thought about it for about ten minutes, then went to find him, as my instincts told me that something was off. I told him what he told me sounded flimsy. That's all I said. At this point, he did tell me he'd stopped at a ball field to look at porn on his phone. It took me several secons to absorb this. Then I said "I don't know what to say to that." He apologized profusely. I told him I was disappointed that he lied. I told him he needed to call his sponsor, and walked away. When I shared this with my sponsor, she said I had done the exact right thing and it was a perfect example of working step one. (We admitted we were powerless over sexaholism, that our lives had become unmanagable.) I would highly recommend a 12 Step group to help you through, even if, and maybe even especially if, your partner does not choose to work on recovery. (There are on-line and phone meetings if there are none near you.) I love my group. They are my safe place where I can share anything without being judged. (Sorry that was so long...)

DestroyedWife80 posted 12/22/2018 20:39 PM

Got some time alone with his iPad today- rare occurrence since D'Day.

(Yes, I am still snooping. No I will not stop any time in the foreseeable future.)

This time I was able to fill-in some blanks, pull back the curtain a little more, add some details to my understanding of him & his addiction.

He begins watching porn. Then he escalates- starts cruising Craigslist for men (m4m), propositioning female friends/ex GF's...and I think in the end he 'settles' for an escort or massage parlor. He seems to have difficulty in getting the regular women to accept (the female friends or exGFs) and a hard time lining up a suitable M4M experience- so he turns to a paid person that is more 'reliable' ???

Now I can see the importance of limiting his porn. It's like his gateway behavior.

I used to not see porn as a big deal- and still think it's ok as long as both partners are ok w it AND there are no SA issues. It's like alcohol- some people can have a drink or two and be fine. Alcoholics cannot.

I actually got into his send email history and found his responses to the craigslist ads. It did skeeve me out a lot though seeing his responses. And learning new things he was into.

I learned some more valuable info though and have that set aside for possible later usage.

marji posted 12/23/2018 14:48 PM

Destroyed I apologize if I am just repeating what others have said--I haven't read all the posts-but I think I read that you have been with this person only a couple of years and married only a short time; I had the impression there were no children involved or that you had joint businesses.

I know it can still be hard to separate from someone with whom we've been only a relatively short time and with whom we have no children but Im wondering if you have given serious thought to doing just that. Your H seems to still be an active SA; life is hard enough post discovery with an SA that has stopped acting out and is working seriously to change into a strong, healthy, trustworthy partner. But when that person is still betraying and violating and not working his butt off to change into a proper, wholesome, healthy mate . . . well then what are we doing if we stay?

Absolutely no need to answer here on SI to me or anyone else on any of these questions but I do hope you've posed them to yourself.

It can take many years for an SA to become a proper mate; a good partner. And of course even when they seem to do the hard work, there is no guarantee. I just hope you're looking out for yourself and your own well being and that your new therapist is helping you on that.

DestroyedWife80 posted 12/23/2018 20:23 PM

Marji-

Oh yes, I certainly have! I feel like deep down I know it's a lost cause and losing 'him'- not the SA, but the man that I fell in love with, the man I thought I married... terrifies me.

My counselor said it could take me 6 months-1 year to get to the point I feel strong enough to leave.

There are no children. We did just buy a house together that I stand to lose ~50k from selling now.

I am really, really angry that he basically misled me into marrying him. If I knew 1/2 of what I know now, the things he was doing, I would NEVER have married him!!!

bluetears posted 12/27/2018 21:37 PM

I never thought about reading sex addiction or sexual betrayal or porn problem books ever. But after finding out "stuff" about my WH, I did. There are some books that are very interesting.

One thing I read was about "male mice" and his "new girlfriend mouse".

Here is what I read: Research, No lie, true story.

A male mouse is in a cage and a female is introduced. He does her over and over again until he is so exhausted that he finally lays down and ignores her. That female is taken out and right away another "NEW" female mouse is put in the cage. Immediately, the same male mouse gets up and goes right after the new "female" and does her again and again until he lays down exhausted and close to death this time. Apparently, this test is done several times with the same male mouse and gets the same result.

Sorry, but it kind of made sense to me. I get it! It's the NEW and DIFFERENT that a man needs to reproduce! If you were a Caveman! Ugg Ugg

All I know is I want to give those poor female mice a band aid!

DestroyedWife80 posted 12/28/2018 16:36 PM

Blue tears-

Basically yes, I have definitely seen that type of behavior in men. Some animals also eat their young if they are in a stressful situations

If you research the monogamy habits of humans, they are quite despicable when you look at them from a moral standpoint.

Men essentially pick the best mate they can obtain (best looking, most fertile, most likely to be a good mother) and then have a series of low effort attempts at procreating with essentially any female who they can convince. This is all the while investing the majority of their time/effort/funds into their primary relationship to ensure the most successful future of their offspring with the primary mate.

Women are no better, maybe worse. They aim for the most financially stable male who will prove to invest the most time/effort/resources into their future children. She then seeks out the most alpha 'bad boy' she can, mates with him, knowing that he will never commit time/effort/money into a family...then returns to the stable male and allows him to raise the alpha males children unknowingly.

It really is a fascinating subject, and it explains a lot of patterns of behavior you end up seeing in our society- but like the example of eating ones young, it's NOT an excuse or saying it's 'ok'.

bluetears posted 12/29/2018 20:16 PM

destroyedwife80, Love your response! Let's meet up next week and have a beer or a glass of wine together! Could you imagine that conversation?! Thank you! You made my night!

Shocked123 posted 12/30/2018 09:48 AM

I’m iinclugimg myself out for that beer or wine!
We need to all get together for a “confeeence”, don’t you think?
Hope everyone’s holidays are going well. Wishing you all the best for 2019. I hope we all somehow find peace in our lives.i am grateful to have the lovely members of SI to turn to.
These forums have kept me somwhat sane thieve last 8 months.
Happy Nee Year!

bluetears posted 12/30/2018 20:01 PM

Ha Ha Shocked! Happy New Year to you too. I can't wait to get this last year over with!

[This message edited by bluetears at 4:27 PM, January 1st (Tuesday)]

DestroyedWife80 posted 12/30/2018 21:47 PM

It is so wonderful there is a place like this for us to turn to, give and receive support and to give and receive understanding!!!!

I would love to hang out with you ladies and have some drinks

veryhurt2018 posted 12/31/2018 00:51 AM

Hi Everyone, just thought I’d update you on my life with WH. Wasn’t sure if he was a SA but about 2 weeks ago, I confirmed it. Originally he confessed to 10-12 prostitutes and having Sex with only one. The crazy thing is that I believed him!! Stupid me!!! I ended up finding a deleted email that solicited a prostitute, telling her that “he loved to please her too”. I literally got sick to the point that I almost threw up!! Later that night, after 3 hours in therapy, he confessed to sleeping with about 200 prostitutes including GIVING oral sex (no protection) and he also had an affair with a co-worker!! I’m so sick I just can’t believe this is my husband that I’ve been with for almost 20 years!! He finally admitted he was a SA and he is starting a 12 step program!! Don’t know if we’re going to make it now that this is all out but we’ll see!! Just got back from a great trip to Costa Rica with my who family (mom, dad, my family and my brother’s family) and it was so nice to get out of my “real life”!! My WH came with us and my family acted like nothing new has happened. We are on the plane right now going back to reality!! We’ve both been tested for every STI (twice actually), so I’m very relieved for that). But I can’t stop replaying the image of him sleeping with his co-worker (several times) as well as him GIVING ORAL SEX TO PROSTITUTES!! Makes me physically ill!!! The other thing that I’m extremely mad about is all the lying and gaslighting!! I feel like such a stupid idiot, because the few people I confided in about this told me that there was no way he only slept with 1 prostitute!! I trusted him so much that I believed it!!! WH wants us to stay married so badly but the worst part in all this is that there is NO TRUST!!

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