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 Post subject: Re: updating feelings
PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 6:05 am 
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Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 577
lafleure, I hear you. I'm about at four years post multiple d-days and I can't say that I'm totally healed. I can say I am immensely better.

On trusting our guts. Jon's lessons really helped me on this as has therapy. We must trust our instincts. Our instincts were right. We knew something was off, but we didn't know what, and we assumed and trusted our partners to be honest with us and wanted to address issues. It wasn't our instincts that were the problem; it was our partners dishonesty. The secrets, lies and gaslighting. The reality of just how much my partner lied and kept secrets and gaslighted/manipulated me was important for me to understand. It's painful and enraging, this harsh reality, but it released me from feeling stupid. I wasn't stupid. I was trusting. Isn't that a good thing in a committed relationship? What I didn't know was that my husband wasn't in a committed relationship with me. Looking back now at my past and knowing what I know now about sex/love/porn addiction, it seems obvious that I should have realized that was the issue. But I didn't know anything about this addiction. Why would I have known?

Having doubts now is completely realistic. I can say that I don't think my husband is overly acting out or fantasizing as much as he used to. Is it not at all? I doubt it. Do I think he would be honest with me about it? No. He'd be more honest than he used to be, but I don't believe he's as honest as he could be. Could I be wrong? Maybe. But here's the thing about doubt. My husband's words are cheap. It's a sad thing to say, but true. His behavior, that is what I have to look at. Is he reliable? Does he do what he says he is going to do? Is he authentic? Does he initiate meaningful conversation? Is he angry all the time? Does he try to control me? Does he try to shut me up? Does he act warm and loving? And, is this consistent. Jon teaches us to look for healthy behavior, and in particular, look for our partners to initiate spontaneous, meaningful conversation. I can count on one hand the times my husband has done this in the last four years. He thinks he does that all the time.

I also go through periods of hating men. I don't want to do this. I was in a parking lot the other day and saw a man sitting in his truck staring at a woman walking into the store. And she wasn't a Victorias Secret model. And that stare...that hard look, that predatory look, that "taking". In that moment I hated this man. It's a painful reality, this objectification. But the men I work with, I can be friends with some of them. Do I trust men enough to think of them as intimate partners? There's a tough one. And there's our work.

I find I have to continue to be gentle with myself. I continue therapy. I continue to focus on me and my life. I've come a long way in my healing. I still have a ways to go. I will always be scarred. But that doesn't mean I can't have a fulfilling life.

With deep compassion,
dnell


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 Post subject: Re: updating feelings
PostPosted: Sat Oct 21, 2017 6:05 am 
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Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 577
lafleure, I hear you. I'm about at four years post multiple d-days and I can't say that I'm totally healed. I can say I am immensely better.

On trusting our guts. Jon's lessons really helped me on this as has therapy. We must trust our instincts. Our instincts were right. We knew something was off, but we didn't know what, and we assumed and trusted our partners to be honest with us and wanted to address issues. It wasn't our instincts that were the problem; it was our partners dishonesty. The secrets, lies and gaslighting. The reality of just how much my partner lied and kept secrets and gaslighted/manipulated me was important for me to understand. It's painful and enraging, this harsh reality, but it released me from feeling stupid. I wasn't stupid. I was trusting. Isn't that a good thing in a committed relationship? What I didn't know was that my husband wasn't in a committed relationship with me. Looking back now at my past and knowing what I know now about sex/love/porn addiction, it seems obvious that I should have realized that was the issue. But I didn't know anything about this addiction. Why would I have known?

Having doubts now is completely realistic. I can say that I don't think my husband is overly acting out or fantasizing as much as he used to. Is it not at all? I doubt it. Do I think he would be honest with me about it? No. He'd be more honest than he used to be, but I don't believe he's as honest as he could be. Could I be wrong? Maybe. But here's the thing about doubt. My husband's words are cheap. It's a sad thing to say, but true. His behavior, that is what I have to look at. Is he reliable? Does he do what he says he is going to do? Is he authentic? Does he initiate meaningful conversation? Is he angry all the time? Does he try to control me? Does he try to shut me up? Does he act warm and loving? And, is this consistent. Jon teaches us to look for healthy behavior, and in particular, look for our partners to initiate spontaneous, meaningful conversation. I can count on one hand the times my husband has done this in the last four years. He thinks he does that all the time.

I also go through periods of hating men. I don't want to do this. I was in a parking lot the other day and saw a man sitting in his truck staring at a woman walking into the store. And she wasn't a Victorias Secret model. And that stare...that hard look, that predatory look, that "taking". In that moment I hated this man. It's a painful reality, this objectification. But the men I work with, I can be friends with some of them. Do I trust men enough to think of them as intimate partners? There's a tough one. And there's our work.

I find I have to continue to be gentle with myself. I continue therapy. I continue to focus on me and my life. I've come a long way in my healing. I still have a ways to go. I will always be scarred. But that doesn't mean I can't have a fulfilling life.

With deep compassion,
dnell


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 Post subject: Re: updating feelings
PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:19 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:47 am
Posts: 20
Had some lows and highs but things seem to be moving forward a bit. My husband 2 years on still regularly attends his 12 steps and says it helps him not feel alone. He's dealing with a lot of shame and guilt now as he's realised the hurt he has caused and damage to his life and me he caused by acting out. He often is more depressed and he's also with his own therapy learning to tell me what upsets him and annoys him and starting to recognise his own feelings and ride with it.

We are connecting in a healthier way, slowly but it's getting better. I'm still very insecure at times and fearful of being hurt as my trust of men is very little. I'm learning and slowly moving forward myself, spending time thinking more about what I want.

We are both working towards going off travelling for a year or so and taking time out and renting out our home. We both want the same things for the future and for us which is a positive thing.

I still get very low days and it's still ups and downs as I learn to move on and love myself again and do nice things for myself.

My couple therapy is coming to an end and my husband with continue with his and his 12 step. I think it's now time for me to consider therapy maybe for myself as we're coming to an end in couple therapy and working towards finishing it.

Will keep you updated with how it goes.

love, peace and Hugs x


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 Post subject: Re: updating feelings
PostPosted: Thu Dec 07, 2017 12:23 pm 
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Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 577
Hi lafleure - I hear you and I feel your pain. I get what you are saying.

It takes a while for us to heal. I think it takes longer than for our partners to recover. Jon said something in the lessons I really appreciated: he said, our healing path is not clear.

I let go of a timeline for myself and my therapist has helped me with that as well. I find I have to continue to be gentle with myself.

I have found that some of my issues are best dealt with in individual therapy, and some in marriage counseling.

Remember the restoration of trust takes a LONG time. It's not easy. Not only do I have trust issues with my husband, but the damage to my self esteem was greater than I had known. It had been occurring throughout our marriage, but then with discovery, and after that the real awareness of what happened...that does a number on us.

dnell


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 Post subject: Re: updating feelings
PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:30 am 
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Joined: Tue Oct 06, 2015 9:47 am
Posts: 20
Thank you Dnell for your kind response.

The damage it has done to me has been terrible too. It shattered my life and now I'm slowly picking up the pieces. My self-esteem is so low still and I know this is what I need to work on myself.

My husband has moments when he isn't able himself to support me when I have my downs as it brings on the feelings of shame and guilt for him but he too is learning and I'd say half the time he is dealing with it and the other half of the times when I go completely down he gets defensive because he afterwards says he can't bare to see the pain he has caused me and knows that I'm the way I am now because of what he did.

Things are as I've said moving forward slowly and I think you're right I need to be kind to myself and not push myself too much.

I hope things are going well for you and will post again soon

xx


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