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 Post subject: Exercise 42
PostPosted: Mon Dec 31, 2018 8:07 pm 
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#1: Consider the following situations and share what your response would be in each:

Your partner is contacted by an old romantic partner that they haven't seen in many years. Not wanting to keep any secrets from you, they tell you exactly when the person will be in town and would like your permission to catch-up over dinner.

I would tell him that I appreciate the fact he has told me of this possible liaison, but would ask him not to meet up with this person as doing so may make me feel paranoid, given his past behaviours. If he really wishes to see this person I would suggest he invites her to our home for dinner.

You come home early from work and find your partner masturbating to porn on the Internet. Upon seeing you, they quickly close down the computer and lie about what they were doing.

Firstly, I would ask him not to lie to me, tell him it was obvious what he was doing. Secondly, I would ask him to either tell me or show me what porn he had been looking at - this is because a certain "brand" of porn has been a particularly destructive force in our relationship. Thirdly, I would ask him to tell me what had triggered this need to look at porn and masturbate. Given that our communication levels with each other have greatly increased since D Day, I would hope that we could talk it out and resolve it.

You suspect that your partner is lying to you about where they were, but you have no proof.

I would tell him of my suspicions. Given he has promised to be open with me, I would expect the truth. If however, he fails to convince me I would begin to look for solid proof.

You find yourself feeling frisky and so you make a few sexual overtures towards your partner that are quickly brushed off. You are feeling hurt and rejected.

I would immediately tell him that I felt hurt and rejected and ask him why he was not interested in my advances. If there was good reasons, eg stressed about work, illness, then I would simply give him a hug and ask how I could support him. If he gives no reason or gives a reason that is obviously an excuse or a lie, then I would attempt to dig deeper, find out if he had been acting up etc.

After discovering that your partner had been involved in many affairs over the course of your marriage, you experience the urge to ask your partner if he had an affair while you were pregnant some eight years ago.

I would never ignore an urge - I would sit him down, tell him it was important for my mental wellbeing to know the honest truth, and ask the question.


Last edited by BrighidsPain on Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:08 pm 
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Location: UK
1. Over the past 7 days where did the pleasure and joy in my life come from?

1. Sharing quality time with my H, rediscovering each other.
2. Taking my grandaughters to the movies and watching the joy on their faces
3. Dressing up and feeling good about myself
4. Booking a holiday with my H

2. Over the past 7 days was there any major negativity in terms of emotional drains or time consumption?

Family time left me a little drained and craving some alone time. I got this eventually!

3. Looking at the pleasurable parts of my life, along with the negative parts, was my management adequate?

Yes!

4. Is there anything on the immediate horizon that I need to take into account for effective management of life management skills?

Not that I am aware of.

1. Over the past 7 days have I managed to eat healthily?

Nope! It's the festive season!

2. Over the past 7 days have I managed to boost my own self esteem?

Yes, but today I feel like a blob.

General review :

I am more up than down of late. Flashbacks and mind movies still come, with and without triggers, but I am finding that I deal with them better and better as time goes on. It doesn't make them hurt any less, doesn't make the any less significant, it's just easier for me to deal with them, put them away, move on until the next time. I feel less anger toward my H now - many reasons for this : his new found honesty and openness, his working hard at recovery, our mutual love rekindled. Do I forgive him for his behaviours? No I do not, I am just finding it easier to deal with they way he has acted. I try to take logical approaches, rather than deeply emotional ones. Can I ever truly forgive him? I really don't know. I can accept what has happened and make the choice to move on, look to the future instead of dwelling in the past, perhaps that is the best I can do.


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 Post subject: Exercise 43
PostPosted: Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:51 pm 
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Location: UK
A. Make a list of values/goals relating to your existing relationship (or future relationship) that you can use to help guide you. Ensure that you limit this list to what is absolutely necessary in establishing/maintaining the relationship.

B. For each value listed, what boundaries do you have in place that will ensure that this value remains protected?


C. For each goal, what will be your initial response at the first sign of action contrary to that goal?


1. Complete and honest communications.

Boundary - Never forget that this is absolutely essential to our relationship staying healthy. There is no room for secrets or witholding information. There is no room for omitting information or being selective about what is imparted.

Response/action - If he is witholding information from me, not telling the truth about how he is feeling or how he has been reacting to things then our relationship is no longer on a solid footing. I will impress upon him how important this is and remind him of promises he has made. If he cannot keep these promises then there is no relationship.

2. Fidelity and monogamy.

Boundary - There is no space in our relationship for any third party sexual encounter of any kind.

Response/action - There is only one action to the violation of this boundary and that would be immediate termination of the relationship. I will not be put through that again.

3. Pornography usage.

Boundary - There is no need for him to use pornography and masturbate. This is disrespectful and hurtful to me and to our relationship.

Response/action - If he has the urge to do this then I expect him to tell me prior to completing the action. Form this point we can guide through what is causing the urges and deal with it. If he fails to tell me prior to the completing the action I will want him to explain fully why he felt so strongly the desire to once more betray me. At this point it is likely that I shall emotionally withdraw from him, but remain supportive with his continuing recovery. If it is the case that he has been using porn and masturbating and fails to tell me anything, instead me finding out myself, it is likely that this will finish the relationship.

4.Trust.

Boundary - he must continue to prove to me that he is to be trusted. This involves adhereing to the 3 prior points above, by continuing with the RN workshop, by attending weekly SAA meetings, by responding to my feelings and fears.

Response/action - If he puts less effort into the workshop, becomes sloppy about attending the SAA meetings, slips on the 3 prior points, or I feel that he is less interested in me and my feelings and more interested in once more residing in his own warped head, then I will withdraw emotionally from him and of course respond as per points above.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 09, 2019 7:21 pm 
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I know I was only meant to detail this for 4 weeks, but will continue as I find it helpful.

1. Over the past 7 days where did the pleasure and joy in my life come from?

1. Shopping for house items with my H
2. Spending time with my grandchildren
3. Beginning my online educational course
4. Spending time, reconnecting, intimacy with my H


2. Over the past 7 days was there any major negativity in terms of emotional drains or time consumption?

1. Daughter not coping well, possibly has post natal depression.
2. Some trickle truth from H - forced out by me, not given willingly. I really do wish he would understand fully that finding out things in dribs and drabs is NOT good for MY healing process. Just because he thinks something is unimportant, does not mean to say I will. I would far rather too much than too little - that's how I deal with things, I process the info, I deal with it, I move on. I detest this two steps forward three steps back scenario!

3. Looking at the pleasurable parts of my life, along with the negative parts, was my management adequate?

I would say it was. I do not (generally) feel overly stressed or anxious or unable to cope.

4. Is there anything on the immediate horizon that I need to take into account for effective management of life management skills?

At this time, I would say no, but I am not so naive to think that nothing is going to crop up, be it a deeper slip into depression for my daughter, or my H acting out.

1. Over the past 7 days have I managed to eat healthily?

Healthier than I have been in previous weeks, but not perfect!

2. Over the past 7 days have I managed to boost my own self esteem?

Not especially. Sometimes I look in the mirror and am content with what I see, other times I just hate what is reflected back. I hate getting old, hate the effect it is having on my physical self.

General review:

More good days than bad. I still have visions in my head detailing my H's behaviours, I am still finding triggers, some of them ridiculous, I still have flashbacks to D Day and my known world falling apart. I still hurt, I still feel soooooooooooo betrayed, I still feel homicidally angry on occasion, more in respect of the prostitutes than my husband, which I know, is a little nonsensical. What I do find however, is my ability to deal with all the aforementioned is so much easier than I ever would have thought it would be. And that is something very positive.


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 16, 2019 7:08 pm 
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Location: UK
1. Over the past 7 days where did the pleasure and joy in my life come from?

1. Spending time with my grandchildren
2. Shopping trip with my daughter
3. Sexual encounter with my H

2. Over the past 7 days was there any major negativity in terms of emotional drains or time consumption?

1. Much more "mind movies" and flashbacks than of late
2. Worrying over an upcoming medical assessement

3. Looking at the pleasurable parts of my life, along with the negative parts, was my management adequate?

Not really.

4. Is there anything on the immediate horizon that I need to take into account for effective management of life management skills?

All noted above.

1. Over the past 7 days have I managed to eat healthily?

Not particularly.

2. Over the past 7 days have I managed to boost my own self esteem?

No.

General overview :

The seven day period began well but has quickly declined. I had a feeling that this was all going too smoothly so in a way it has come as no big surprise. I have had so many "mind movies" about my H's behaviours that I have lost count, and flashbacks that seem to be coming more often than not. I have been trying so very hard to deal with them as they appear but it all began to become just too much for me and was affecting my ability to sleep and to concentrate. It all came to a head last night - my H and I had been out for some food and the entire time in the restuarant I felt like I just wanted to cry. This eventually transformed into anger, something I was unable to express in any way due to being in a public place. On the way home we stopped at a place by the river and this sadness and anger and hurt came to the surface and I am extremely ashamed to say I struck my H. I violated my own boundaries. There is never any excuse for violence, never. I was out of control. I truly wanted to just die at that point - his past behaviours, my inability to control my emotions at that moment - everything just makes me ashamed. I felt disgust towards him, he repulsed me, I hated him - hated that he chose to do what he did and with who he did instead of choosing me. Hated him for the damage he has done to me and to our relationship. Hated the way he has made me feel about myself. And no amount of "it's not him it's his addiction" was going to make me feel better.

We went home, we calmly talked it out. I am trying so very hard to get back to being in complete control but these fucking "head movies" won't leave me alone. So many times today, same crap popping up. I see him looking at me, so sad and so ashamed at what he has done to me, and the compassionate part of me says I don't want to keep on making him feel like that. And I most certainly don't want to feel like this. Today I spent time making a video, went shopping with my daughter - my mind was kept busy and this helped a little keeping the pictures away, but not entirely. Watching TV tonight, an excellent programme, but unfortunately multiple triggers in it, head screwed again.

I feel very lonely in my head. Nobody can make me feel better but me, but right now I am at a loss as to how I can do this. It's like his past behaviours are mocking me, trying to undo all the good work I have done on myself so far. I worry about being pushed over the edge - I have had mental health issues in the past and so am well aware of the warning signs and the consequences and this is not a place I want to be at.

I know he is working so hard to deal with his problems. I know he wants to completely turn his life around and be content with our relationship and our life together. But the damage done is just so severe that it is really hard for me to see the light at the end of the tunnel right now.


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