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 Post subject: New - Intro - Saying hi
PostPosted: Mon Apr 30, 2018 4:25 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:31 pm
Posts: 71
Hey all,

I am new here, am working through the lessons which I am finding really helpful already. I won't recount my story, its on my healing thread, but I've been on this ride for a while now, while Hubs and I try and learn from our mistakes, poorly I think so far.

I'm trying to focus on my own recovery now. He was gone for the weekend and I determined to do a self care weekend, I worked through quite a few lessons, slept, gardened and generally hung out with myself. I had a really hard time with not being obsessed and ruminating on his process, his slips, not looking for evidence etc. I have a bit of a compulsive personality so this ones going to be hard. If anyone has ideas, I'm open!

Grateful for this....

Aletheia


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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2018 8:43 am 
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Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 656
Hi Aletheia - I snooped right after discovery. I hated it yet I did it. I was desperate to find out the truth. It would have been so healing to have my husband do a full disclosure, but that did not happen and was not going to happen. The lessons helped me with this in that Jon said "they're going to continue to lie."

I had to really focus on trying to do healthy things. That was hard. So then I had to focus on distracting myself from snooping. Honestly, I needed time, education and therapy to help me stop snooping. Ultimately, I needed to learn to trust myself that if something was off with my husband, then it was true. If I feel that way, then I "snoop." But that was a long process.

So early on, I would take myself out of the house if I started to snoop and go to the movies, or the beach, or anything to distract me.

dnell


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PostPosted: Thu May 03, 2018 10:31 am 
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Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 161
I think the snooping,obbsessing is the hardest thing for me to overcome.
I was drawn to find out the truth, somehow telling myself that if I had evidence.I could decide my future with him. I felt I needed to be in control, that I couldn't trust anything anymore and as he wouldn't admit to anything I felt I didn't know him at all and that he could be lieing at every opportunity.
tbh it was just torturing myself, as I never followed through on anything I found out, caught in a conundrum that I was too scared to leave, and too scared to tell him what I had found..because I knew he would become more devious...absolutely no point in the seeing the evidence in black and white for me. I justified it away to the point of being ludicrous, if there wasn't anything to find I wasn't satisfied as I felt he was hiding it somewhere else..it became an addiction..pockets, bags, drawers..phone, computer hacking..I think I ended up doing nothing for myself in a day apart from snoop and obsess over I'm..the turning point came when I pointedly sadi to him..I think I am obsessed with you. from then I realised I would go mad literally if I kept doing it.
once I started turning to looking after myself learning why I accepted his behaviour, why I felt certain feelings..and learnt I am ..or have become co dependant, about trauma bonding, and the obsessional feelings that produces..I could control the urge to snoop..I couldn't control, cant control him apart from making my own boundaries and becoming strong myself..I can only control what I do..I had to learn that for sure.


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PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2018 10:48 pm 
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Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:31 pm
Posts: 71
Feeling better about this lately. The lessons are helping and I've been focused on my feelings when I get overloaded.

The desire to snoop and obsess comes along and I'm working to take a walk outside or just sit and think about how I'm _really_ feeling, what's bringing this on.

Usually the feeling is just plain old fear. Fear of losing it all. This is a very real fear at this point, noticing that, not obsessing gets me to a better place, one of actively working to seek comfort for those real feelings.

I hope y'all are doing well tonight.

Onward and upward....


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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2018 4:14 am 
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Joined: Mon Jan 11, 2016 10:08 am
Posts: 189
Hi Aletheia, welcome to RN though I know only too well that none of us ever wanted or expected to be here. We all need support and the ladies on RN have been there and lived through the experience, so we all understand.

I read through your thread and there are so many similarities between your husband and mine — the feminist ally, the asexuality, the convincing liar, the voyeurism, although in his case it‘s more subtle.

I also went through a period of several months of near-forensic examination of his computers, external drives, phones and even his digital camera memory cards to try and find out exactly what had been going on. I didn’t want to but I had to. If I relied on my husband to disclose his behaviour, I’d never have known the extent of his behaviour. I also uncovered a lot of lies that he fully expected to get away with. Every time I asked him about something I’d discovered he would lie — and very convincingly. If I hadn’t known the truth I would have believed him. Eventually I ran out of things to discover. There was no more evidence to be discovered after a certain point. I knew all along it was an unhealthy behaviour but in those early months what else did I have to go on? His word? I don’t think so.

It’s very interesting that you say your husband was a great supporter of feminism. My husband could recite the feminist bible chapter and verse. It was the ultimate ‘get out of jail free’ card that he played in advance. A penchant for porn and strippers was the last thing I would have expected.

His two-facedness was described to me as a form of “hyper-religiosity”. It took a while for me to get my head around that concept but in the context of porn and sex addiction it begins to make sense. At some point there was this splitting off from his public persona into a secretive space where his addiction could flourish.

As I worked through the later part of the RN program I realised that his introduction to feminism started with his introduction to sex. So bizarrely, he learned about feminism at the same time he learned about sex. I think this period was when this splitting of the personality developed, the foundation for the double life and compartmentalisation that occurs in addiction. At the time I think feminism (as in talking the talk) was a way of getting sex but at some point he realised it was a good smokescreen for his acting out. Who would suspect a guy who supported women’s rights whilst indulging himself on the products of an industry that is ruthlessly exploitative of women’s bodies for profit?

Recovery — as a partner — isn’t very straightforward. Firstly, we did nothing wrong. We are trying to deal with something that was deliberately kept hidden and our partners were able to create a “husband” persona, almost like staging a play for us to believe in. I’m not saying it’s deliberate and planned. It’s probably a subconscious process that adjusts to the subtle power imbalances in the relationship where there is addiction. Secondly, it’s impossible for us to ascertain what exactly has been going on, hence the compulsion to search for any evidence. We know that our partners’ words are not a reliable source of truth. We ask, and then we get lied to. When it becomes impossible to tell the difference between lying and the truth, the need to find objective evidence is understandable.

Eventually this ‘need to know’ will pass. I have reconciled with the idea that I may never know what went on. Not all acting out leaves traces and my husband probably wouldn’t admit to anything else after all this time. I wanted full disclosure but I know that’s not going to happen. I thought I could never live with not knowing, but now I sort of accept it.

In the meantime, take care of YOU.


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PostPosted: Tue May 08, 2018 9:34 am 
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Joined: Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:31 pm
Posts: 71
Thank you for the response, I appreciate it!

On the feminism: this is one aspect of my husband that I have been meditating on a lot and yes, its quite confusing. As you said, its not that he has deliberately built this facade to hide behind, yet he does. I don't think he's even quite aware of how deep it goes, though I have pointed it out to him. In social situations his comments are often pointed and he's intense about topics such as misogyny, and mistreatment of women. He will call out men who are acting or saying things inappropriately. He will get angry and upset about men who mansplain, being the most animated/heated person at the table.

I do believe he has these as a value and believes them, yet his porn use doesn't align with those values and when he's using, one of the first things he does is start mansplaining me, often repeatedly. Its one of my first indications that he's stressed and moving into dangerous territory. If I try and point it out, he stonewalls me ending the conversation as if I'm the one being a problem. Its really weird how two faced it is.

The one that really got me though was his voyeurism. When he was commuting he would take pictures of women on the train. Having spent a good amount of time being harassed by men in public as a women in the US, I can tell you that at least a good portion of them KNEW he was doing it, he was making them feel VERY uncomfortable, but he likely reasoned that he was being sneaky enough. When I look at these pictures, I can see in their body language that they are screaming at him to leave them alone, yet I'm sure he was unable to see that. This point alone drove home some really good lessons for me. 1. That he is able to bypass his own values of feminism so strongly that he sexually harasses women and objectifies them in public and 2. That there were actions well beyond looking at porn on his computer and I need to be on guard for further escalations.

Your point of hyper-religiosity strikes true as well. As I was going through that lesson, I didn't pick up that this might be what is happening. If I had to make a guess, I'd say his shame of objectifying, actually harassing and mistreating women through his porn use and voyeurism is causing him to backlash as a feminist and support women in his "other self".

Anyway, I could likely go on all day. I really appreciate you reaching out, please PM or touch bases if you need anything or want to connect. I'm so grateful for this community!


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