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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 8:54 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2015 2:51 pm
Posts: 65
Most days I am willing and ready to fight alongside my H. He's shown genuine remorse and willingness to try to recover. That's not to say I'm willing to fight this battle FOR him, just alongside him...for now, while focusing on myself and healing.

But damn, some days I wake up and think "why do I want to fight for someone who has constant urges to go f-ck other people!?" I know its compulsion and his escape but it just sucks sometimes. I love him deeply still, I can still see the man I married, the man I love in there so I still won't give up, but some days its so hard to realize what I'm fighting for. It's so hard to realize that I still am in love with a man who has literally had sex and sexual activity with SO MANY other people, a man who feels he needs to have sex with others as a way to calm his anxiety. Sex with ME should be his escape.

Life isn't fair, I know this, and this isn't me saying I want a separation or time apart, I still enjoy being around my H, I still am not ready to part ways even temporarily, but damn some days its just not fair.

I'll be doing lesson 6 this weekend and it looks like it'll be helpful.

_________________
"Flying like a cannonball, falling to the earth
Heavy as a feather when, you hit the dirt
How am I the lucky one?, I do not deserve
To wait around forever when, you were there first
First you get hurt, then you feel sorry."


-Cold War Kids


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 05, 2015 9:03 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:47 am
Posts: 20
I feel some of your pain thank you for sharing it so eloquently. What you ave written is what sometimes I feel when I'm having a bad day or week and Im sure rings resonance with many out there.

Thank you and stay strong and positive x


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 06, 2015 6:10 pm 
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Partner's Mentor

Joined: Thu Apr 18, 2013 11:38 pm
Posts: 515
Dear needhope,

I'm so glad youre here at recovery nation. I have been in your shoes, when everything is new, chaotic, unsettling, highly confusing. This initial time (and its length and breadth differs for us all) unmoors us.

Need-Hope wrote:
Sex with ME should be his escape.


As you will learn in the workshop, that your husband "needs an escape" is a reflection of an unhealthy, maladaptive life coping mechanism. It reflects many things, one of which is emotional immaturity: the incapacity to manage emotions and adult life challenges in a healthy and balanced way. "Needing escape" through a compulsive ritural is not a mature and healthy behavior, regardless of what he may try to tell you otherwise.

You will also learn what your own values are and how to rebuild them. So, you may find you do not wish for sex with your husband to be about him escaping life with you as the tool/means for that. From my perspective, this makes you essentially an object, who fits a criteria as a means to an end. As you strengthen your values, you may find this isnt in alignment or good for you, and that you want sex with your husband to have a different meaning and value. That you want your worth as a human to be about something beyond an escape tool for your partner.

As you heal and recalibrate your own balance, I wish you oodles of self compassion,reflection, and self kindness.

With compassion,
Meep


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 8:41 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2015 4:40 am
Posts: 67
I want to highlight your whole post and just say "ditto! Yes! Exactly!". I feel the same way. This part though...
Quote:
Sex with ME should be his escape
....been there, done that :t: . I let myself be used as my husband's stress relief tool for years. We actually had an agreement where I would have sex with him every other day. It was a chore, a duty I performed so that he wouldn't go out and cheat on me. I even said that to him. I had pretty much no desire for sex, but I told him I'd do my wifely duty because I didn't want him going elsewhere. It has been one of the very hard things to come to terms with for me since D day. I told him exactly why I was having sex with him, and he took it and used it .....used ME the whole while still using other women. It's an added layer of the betrayal, to use my insecurity against me and at the time, feel no guilt or remorse about it.
My husband now recognizes that using anyone, including me, for sex to reduce his stress is unhealthy. It's one of the values he made for himself, not to use sex with me for stress relief. It's been a battle for both of us in our recovery journey. Trying to break old relational patterns, even when we both recognize them as unhealthy has proven to be difficult. My sex addict and I literally grew up together, so our warped sexual identities and warped values developed right along side each other. Neither of us ever had healthy individual identities. We are both trying to develop healthy values and boundaries from scratch.
So just be aware as you are on this recovery journey, of what either of you are using sex for. I've found I have a tendency to slip back to my old thinking and feel the need to try and "sooth" him when I see his stress level high. Then when he tries to live up to his value and rejects my efforts I get all hurt that he could have sex with other women, and not with me. We end up in this mess of hurt feelings and confusion because he thought he was trying to do the right thing. We are both committed to having sex only be an expression of love between us, but I have been surprised at how much trouble I am having with this distinction. Years of warped conditioning and fear.
I encourage you to develop your own value regarding sex with your husband. I know I do not want to be my husband's stress relief tool. Really identifying that as a value is helping me walk the walk in this mud pit I find myself slogging through.


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 8:41 am 
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Joined: Sat Mar 28, 2015 4:40 am
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Double post


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 11:37 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2015 2:51 pm
Posts: 65
meepmeep wrote:
So, you may find you do not wish for sex with your husband to be about him escaping life with you as the tool/means for that. From my perspective, this makes you essentially an object, who fits a criteria as a means to an end. As you strengthen your values, you may find this isnt in alignment or good for you, and that you want sex with your husband to have a different meaning and value.


You're absolutely right. I guess because I've never felt like an object or an escape tool, I don't even think that way when it comes to sex. My H has always been "present" during sex with me. I've never felt a lack of real intimacy or felt like I was being used, so I guess I shouldn't wish for him to use me as an escape now either. It's just so frustrating going through this range of emotions and its hard to put it all into words sometimes.

_________________
"Flying like a cannonball, falling to the earth
Heavy as a feather when, you hit the dirt
How am I the lucky one?, I do not deserve
To wait around forever when, you were there first
First you get hurt, then you feel sorry."


-Cold War Kids


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PostPosted: Mon Dec 07, 2015 11:50 am 
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Joined: Tue Nov 24, 2015 2:51 pm
Posts: 65
babylex622 wrote:
IMy sex addict and I literally grew up together, so our warped sexual identities and warped values developed right along side each other. Neither of us ever had healthy individual identities. We are both trying to develop healthy values and boundaries from scratch.


I feel that this could be my H and I as well. I've been with him since I was 17, I've had only 3 other sexual partners besides him. But I've always enjoyed sex with him and never felt used, even looking back and knowing what I know now.

babylex622 wrote:
So just be aware as you are on this recovery journey, of what either of you are using sex for.


Another good point.

I don't think my H has really used ME for stress relief in the past. Usually if he's stressed at home, he's not in the mood for sex...with me anyway, which is why he went out and had sex with other people I guess.

I'm not sure if that makes things better or worse in my head, that he was strong enough not to USE ME for sex but felt the need to go f*ck other people when stressed. None of it is easy. Sigh.

Today marks one month that he hasn't gone out and had sex with other people. And yes I'm proud of him for getting help, and yes I hope more than anything that this road to recovery leads us both back to each other in a much healthier marriage. Though I sometimes wonder where MY pat on the back is for going 15 YEARS without having sex with other people and being faithful in my marriage.

It really is a special kind of hell for us partners.

_________________
"Flying like a cannonball, falling to the earth
Heavy as a feather when, you hit the dirt
How am I the lucky one?, I do not deserve
To wait around forever when, you were there first
First you get hurt, then you feel sorry."


-Cold War Kids


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 08, 2015 1:52 pm 
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Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:47 am
Posts: 20
""Though I sometimes wonder where MY pat on the back is for going 15 YEARS without having sex with other people and being faithful in my marriage.

It really is a special kind of hell for us partners."

Recovery seems so hard when we are faced with these kinds of feelings. We are supposed to be proud they've gone without and stayed clean yet we're not giving anywhere as much appraisal for how strong we are for being within that marriage and staying with it to get to a better place.

Sex is a very difficult issue too - we are practising being honest. I didn't feel ever used by my husband and do feel we had intimate sexual times as well as just the biological kind of sex which isn't really intimate but thought that's normal when I thought we were in a normal intimate loving relationship. Now practising being honest is my husband saying to me - I really want sex with you after maybe snuggling or kissing but not doing it as he acknowledges he's only wanting sex for one reason and not really to be close - it's just biological. It works and it's difficult because I want to be intimate and could be but at the same time when this happens I too realise that actually, right now in the position of recovery it's best not to and leave it at just being intimate with kissing. There are other times when it's not been like that and we are able to both be intimate. Very difficult for my husband to say it - but he is doing it at the moment and very difficult for me to accept when I'm wanting more from him. BUT I know we have a long way to go in recovery and that one day if we are both able to make full recoveries things will change and get better. I try to just be gentle with myself and try not to push my recovery and accept I'm on a journey which will entail lots of ups and downs and hope the ups will become more regular and the downs will become less regular

hugs and wishes

LF


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PostPosted: Thu Dec 10, 2015 1:39 pm 
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Joined: Mon Jul 13, 2015 12:43 pm
Posts: 83
Need-Hope wrote:
Though I sometimes wonder where MY pat on the back is for going 15 YEARS without having sex with other people and being faithful in my marriage.


On a nearly daily basis I am amazed on how often and intensely people congratulate addicts on the most minor progress or even just maintaining their current status of unhealthy but hopeful.
I'm sick and tired of seeing enough people to fill a stadium continue to support my partner while I'm treated like a leper for staying.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 12, 2015 10:29 am 
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Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 657
Well, yes, it is maddening, enraging, and frustrating how much our addicted or recovering partners need positive reinforcement. It feels like we are just out there on our own with nobody patting us on the back. These are reasonable feelings. And, there's a lot of truth in it.

Here's my current thinking about all of this that has helped me: my husband really, really does need these constant affirmations. It is part of his healing. He really is a traumatized child. Remember we're dealing with emotional toddlers who have developed a destructive way to comfort themselves. BUT, and this is a really important BUT, early on WE should NOT be the source of these affirmations. They need to get lots and lots of support from people other than us: Recovery Nation, 12 step groups, therapists, etc. To me it feels cruel to look to us for this kind of support early on. I know how much my husband wants constant reassurance from me, and, frankly, he should be the one who reassures me! I'm not the liar; I'm not the betrayer; I'm not the abuser. But, he can't reassure me. He has to become emotionally mature enough to do so.

So our challenge is to find our own support. The partners here are a good source of support. Good therapists can be a source of support. Family and friends, may or may not be a source of support. Living our life away from addiction and recovery is a good way to support ourselves. I know this is easier said than done.

So here is my pat on the back for all of us today: the discovery of our partner's addiction(s) is severely traumatic. We are in immense pain. We have tremendous courage to face this pain. We were honorable with our trust and commitment that was devalued and betrayed. We are courageous in our healing. Every day that we are kind to ourselves is a worthwhile accomplishment.

dnell


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PostPosted: Tue Dec 15, 2015 2:18 pm 
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Joined: Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:21 am
Posts: 112
Thank you so much for these posts! They have been exactly what I have needed to hear myself. My ex decided he couldn't wait anymore because he needed a sex-tool to relieve the stress, and I wasn't going to do it with him. He is now in an unhappy (so he tells me) relationship with a girl from his work, using her to relieve his stress about feeling unhappy about loosing his family. What a viscious cycle! He isn't admitting this right now, he is angry with me and blaming me, and saying he is only with her because I pushed him away and won't accept him. He won't acknowledge the part his addictive mindset has played in his choices. It has hurt me and caused great pain because I have the tendancy to believe him when he says its me, but I have been getting a lot of support from friends and therapists and I am doing alright. I need to get back to my lessons here too. Thank you again all of you who wrote on this thread!! I can't believe how on pointe it was for me, and also the part about how these guys DO need the reassurance and constant support but not from US in the beginning, at least. I felt guilty for not giving him more of that, and redirecting him to seek support elsewhere, because I felt it wasn't something I could do, and it seemed not healthy for him, if he kept looking toward me to be his crutch. So now he has a crutch, (her) but the good thing is, it isn't ME. Thank you all of you!!


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