Recovery Nation

Personal Development Forum
It is currently Sun Nov 17, 2019 6:51 pm

All times are UTC - 5 hours




Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 25 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2
Author Message
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 5:25 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 163
I too had the same light bulb moment last week with my counsellor,and she actually said I may never I
Find the intimacy I need from my husband, and has made me look at why I have been so scared to confront him, why I have enabled him..i realise I have been seeking validation from him my whole marriage,and not getting it,so becoming more and more emotionally needy. I have been terrified of being left and have tried to be what he wanted,totally losing my identity..obviously I never succeeded in getting the validation or intimacy I crave.
I confronted my husband, softly, about our problem and his addiction .. He is in total denial, I then told him how he has damaged me and how my trust is destroyed..his answer was that whatever books I am reading,whoever I am talking to..he has got no addiction problem, then he promised he wouldn't do anything to break my heart..i said he had promised each time and gone ahead..then he said..i haven't done anything, ..its as if he doesn't equate his total avoidance of intimacy ..physical and emotional,and its impact on me, due to his addiction, I am not sure how to break through his denial,but, I feel the genie is out of the bottle, I cant live another twenty years ignoring, enabling and putting my mental health at risk and feeling so bad. But I cant find the strength to talk about separation, I do know it needs a full open discussion..or very least..me laying out all my feelings and how either ..to me, either he has a porn,sex addiction..which I feel he has due to all he has,is doing..or he has a cruel,selfish narcissistic personality
I know I have a problem too, and that in reality I am insatiable for validation, a definate people pleaser, possibly a love addict..as I have lived in a sort of denial, over romanticising my husband, in a sort of dream burying what was really going, my counsellor took me right back..and I confronted so many red flags,events that I had buried .. So much in this fantasy world was i and not facing reality has opened my eyes to how my personality has made all this doubly hard for me to get a grip on.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 5:44 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:30 am
Posts: 95
jenny56, one of the exercises in the Partner workshop gets you to sit down and write out all of the possible options available in the future, the challenges they present and how you might help to alleviate them. Not sure if you've done it yet? It's hard to do, but it helped me to face up to my options and not run away and hide from them. Thinking them through and how I could make each one a bit easier on me and the children took a lot of the fear out of it. I may never go there, but it made separation a little easier to contemplate as an option.

I read the other day that the anxious attachment type is often attracted to the avoidant type, something that's definitely true of me! And realising why I'm so anxious for his approval / affection takes a lot of the steam out of it. I'm still not there yet though.. I still want the intimacy and, deep down, am hoping he'll really engage with me now, but I'm also trying to prepare myself for the fact that he might not.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 6:37 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 163
Not sure I have reached that bit...that is the thing that I tearing me apart...part of me knows I cannot keep denying my needs, and the pain caused by all thus..but I cant face a future alone. No matter how angry I have been, there is always this fear I will end it and not be able to face life without him..but in reality, I fear it is the fantasy of him I am seeing..
Ny counsellor has said to write a list too..what u get from the marriage, what is wrong with it..to see if my fantasy lives up to the reality, I will look towards that exercise and write down things..oddly recently i have stopped grieving over the past and what could have been..and am grieving over what may come...the reality of living like this for years..at my age it seems hard to imagine ending up alone though.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 12:27 pm 
Offline
Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 661
jenny56, beachcomber, and all of us partners - It was so incredibly eye opening and painful to realize that I had been so attached to a dream. An idea, really, of who my husband was and what he could give me. I've been married over 30 years, and sadly, it was at about year 25 that I realized I wasn't longing for something I had and lost with my husband; I was longing for something I never had. Pow. That was a shock. And didn't I feel like the world's biggest idiot. And this was before D-day and my starting trauma therapy.

I now know why I was so naive and self-depriving. Given my early family history, I was programmed for this sort of abusive relationship and for not recognizing the abuse. I have been working for some time now on self-compassion about all of this, and grieving my losses. And, I'm learning to create and implement boundaries in my life, and that's been great!

I also feared being alone, and who doesn't, but my harsh reality is that I have been alone in my marriage the whole time. My husband abandoned me at the hospital one time. I was discharged and sitting in the lobby waiting to have him pick me up. All of this occurred while he was out with a woman with whom he had an inappropriate relationship. I now know I can't depend on my husband, even in a life threatening situation, so I better have back up plans. And, isn't that sad. And, isn't that enraging. So I have learned that I am alone now so why am I so worried about being alone. It's a harsh reality, but there is something in this that is okay. And that something is that I don't have to have such fear of being alone.

After years of deluded marriage counselors believing my husband's lies and telling me how fabulous we were as a couple, I now have an IC and an MC who know the truth. And, they both tell me that my husband currently is not going to be emotionally available for me. And, he may never get there. He needs to work for a long time on healing his wounds in order to become an adult who can interact with me in an authentic, honest, and vulnerable way. He has to learn to be present with me. It may not happen.

It is critical for our addicted partners to get recovery help and come to an awareness that they are addicts. My husband got a recovery program started based on my threat of divorce, but getting that he was an addict...that took about a year. Getting that he had to recover for himself? That took about two years. Being able to be present to hear me is just starting to happen. They delude themselves. My husband believed that he was a man of total integrity, and a warm, good guy. He thought I was the harsh, cold, critical, withholding person in the relationship. He is now just starting to get that he was that cold and cruel person....not me. And that has been overwhelming for him, the reality of who he really was rather than who he pretended to be. His ability to accept who he was, to change to become the man who he wants to be....that is still a work in progress and will take some time. He may never get there.

Where that leaves all of us is to give ourselves the gift of self compassion and time. Time to heal. Time to muddle. Time to learn how to make boundaries. Time to grieve.

With deep compassion,
dnell


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2016 2:05 pm 
Offline

Joined: Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:20 am
Posts: 131
Yes, dnell, the gift of time and compassion.....and I love the idea of "muddling"!!!!! I, too, have been overwhelmed by the realization that I am not mourning something that I've lost in this marriage, but something I never had and question whether it's possible to have with this man! Now that I understand what all his 14 yr old boy behaviors were about, I cannot stop seeing them in our everyday life together!! When he catches me looking at him, he gives me that childish grin like he's covering up something he may have been caught at!
Beachcomber, good for you in honestly looking at and telling him that you are considering a separation. It must have been hard, but facing those options openly. It's in the acceptance of those options that you will find strength, whether you act on them or not!

_________________
It is always OK in the end...if it's not OK, it's not the end!


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2016 1:19 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 163
It is so telling how we all have the same experience,the same emotions..I can now see bow my husband has objectified me into the controlling wife, justifying his actions I am sure, he will constantly say I am in a huff..or he cant do anything to please me..even though I was always laidback,and those occasions he said ..you have the hump again etc, I was hurt,upset or in pain over something he had done or said...thats how he avoided admitting he was hurting me,I am sure by painting me the bad one who caused him to do this or that..he is overly controlling and hard, while his fantasies are total femdom..and chastisement from women, I now see he is very damaged
It has hit me hard too that I waited for over thirty years ..for someone who never existed, I recall a saying..when someone shows you who they are..believe them..outside the sex addiction,my husband has shown me who he is, I went on with my fantasy..but in reality I now realise I was alone too, he wasn't there for the kids a lot if the time, and used work to avoid the emotional support we needed, he has always been emotionally absent, when I needed help desperately with three kids under five,he would say should he just give up work and we could starve..when all I asked was for him to not work every weekends,evenings, and now my kids speak about not asking him for anything as he acts like a martyre, my daughter even told me she thinks he has mental issues , she hears him going ott about trivial matters, and being passive aggressive to me..she even told me I should divorce him, as I deserve to be treated better...that was one catalyst that made me realise he has affected not only me..but our kids. It gave me extra strength to get counselling and jolted me into realising it was me being to sensitive if my kids were picking up on behaviours
its like all my fantasy was ripped apart by my counsellor. I kept deluding myself with excuses and believing his.. Now I see how intimacy avoidant and immature he has always been,I find it hard to see him changing...i will speak to him again, I have some text ready to read out if I cant express it properly, I feel I come across as just being controlling..but its not what I am trying to get across to him, I do know he will not bring anything emotions up..and is hoping I will forget and he can continue, I did say a year ago that I wanted a fresh start in our marriage of honesty etc..after I opened up and confessed spying and felt bad..he agreed a fresh honest start..and then just went back the next day same as ever. My counsellor has shown me I have to change things the status quo is through, I just have to be brave, as I know he will go through his repitour of usual responses, threats and complete blanking to shut me down.


Last edited by jenny56 on Wed Sep 14, 2016 3:30 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2016 5:34 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:30 am
Posts: 95
jenny56 wrote:
I do know he will not bring anything emotions up..and is hoping I will forget and he can continue


This is my husband too. He never brings up any of his emotions and seems to always take the position of being under 'attack' from me, no matter how carefully I word what I have to say. When he comes home this weekend, what he does will be very telling. Will he try to pretend nothing has happened, and I didn't tell him I'm considering separation? Or will he try to talk to me? I honestly can't imagine him doing the latter, but maybe he'll surprise me. I've seen the absolute depths of his avoidance very clearly, so I can't really see him initiating any kind of real conversation.

The effect on my kids is a worry for me too. We've been a household of keeping a lid on things for so long, not really saying how we feel, not getting annoyed or angry - at least when he's around. It's all too controlled and repressed and I see that now. It's not the model I want for my children.

Dnell, thanks for sharing. It sounds like your husband is on a very real journey and that he's making some progress, albeit painfully slowly.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Sep 07, 2016 10:32 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 163
Ok, so husband asked me what was the matter...a few times when I got back from counselling..so out it came, this time I could use counselling as the reason, I told him all my feelings,and about how I gad been asked to make a list of his activities that I couldn't let go of...a long list, my husband said,so I opened up about addiction, and how I couldn't go on for the next twenty years in denial, I made it clear I wasn't going to leave,but that he needed to see what had happened, alas,though he was sorry,he couldn't voice any emotions or open up about what he had done,he acknowledged he had done all the things, I asked if he wanted to open up to me so there would be no secrets ,buy he said there was nothing more, and then just held me, he wasn't angry, but I could see his fear of intimacy,and how he cannot voice anything clearly. I feel counselling will give me courage to open up more, and start setting boundaries, he knows now that I have been in pain all these years and that I am changing,and that I expect him to at least listen to me, I will try my best to get him to see it is in the open now and I am not in denial or letting him carry on without pulling him up, I was relieved he didn't shut me down ir demy anything I said..apart from he still said he wasn't addicted at the end..lol, wierd how he totally didn't equate all the things I told him with addiction, I suppose its the old I can stop anytime I want thing. I feel a little more weight come off my soul,and a bit more strength.


Last edited by jenny56 on Wed Sep 14, 2016 3:32 am, edited 1 time in total.

Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Tue Sep 13, 2016 9:53 am 
Offline

Joined: Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:30 am
Posts: 95
dnell wrote:
Beachcomber - Feels to me very familiar, like a chapter in my husband's recovery: "I only have to be nicer to my wife, not address my addiction" phase.
dnell


Reading back over the replies and this popped out at me dnell. My husband hasn't said a word about the 'bombshell' that I dropped on him about separation. He's just trying to be really nice to me.. he seems to think that'll do the trick. How many times do I have to explain what I need, what's healthy.. aargh. And I can feel myself responding to the niceness, feeling a bit better, but it's all an illusion. That's what I have to keep reminding myself. He's playing a part that he thinks he has to play, instead of really, truly being himself. And I feel a lot of compassion for him, but also very wary. I don't want to get sucked back into what we had before. It's hard work always feeling like you have to protect yourself emotionally with your partner.

So how do I set boundaries around intimacy? How have the rest of you done this?

Thanks again for all the replies and support.


Top
 Profile  
 
PostPosted: Wed Sep 14, 2016 5:04 am 
Offline

Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 163
I have issues with boundaries, looking back I have never had any, felt powerless
I think I may be setting in place boundaries..i installed k9, deleted and got rid of his stash of fetish porn, got rid if his stash of clothes..I still have to think what to do if he gets round that, but I need to not go back to enabling by not saying anything.
I feel a separation may be a boundary consequence if he visits people/escorts to act out. I cannot face that after I have told him what it did to me,after he saw how betrayed I felt. plus I really was in denial of the health implications and risks. I do feel strong enough for that boundary as I feel it would show me there was no hope and that he had no intention of respecting me going forward.
I am hoping continuing counselling will help me get stronger,and get my sense of self back, the perhaps I will work out how to have more boundaries


Top
 Profile  
 
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Post new topic Reply to topic  [ 25 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2

All times are UTC - 5 hours


Who is online

Users browsing this forum: Majestic-12 [Bot] and 5 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
Powered by phpBB® Forum Software © phpBB Group