Why I Stay

One of the most frequent questions I’m asked as the wife of a sex addict is “Why do you stay?”

I tried to google reasons why women stay, and all I could find (in addition to hundreds of posts on “How to Divorce Him,” “How to Kick Him to the Curb,” and “Moving on with your Life”) were articles how desperately sick and unhealthy women are who simply will not divorce their sex addict husbands-

So …..why do I stay?

It’s interesting that the question is always phrased as a WHY and not a HOW. I truly believe that armed with the proper information and the willingness to take action, it’s just as powerful to know HOW to stay in a marriage with a sex addict than WHY. I’ll save the “how” for other parts of this blog though, and stick to the question at hand.

DISCLAIMER: I am not in any way shape or form advocating LIVING in a home or interacting verbally, sexually, or physically with an addict who is PHYSICALLY abusive or SEXUALLY exposing you to harm. I have separated from my husband several times. If the situation is unsafe, LEAVE.

This is my story. This is my reality, my reasoning, my relationship with God. This is not to imply that I am better or worse than anyone, or that the decision to stay or leave the relationship is black & white.

What I am suggesting based on my experience is giving prayerful consideration to keeping those divorce papers unsigned, focusing on yourself, and praying for your partner. Staying with an addict does NOT mean living with or putting up with insane behaviors/abuse.

Your story and your relationship with Higher Power belong to you. This one is mine. It is a story of choosing to trudge- limp- & crawl through the mess and to never give up.

Here’s why I stay:

21 REASON WHY I STAY MARRIED TO A SEX ADDICT

  1. I have faith that God is always at work in my life, and is faithful to heal and restore
  2. If I married an addict there’s a reason why. If I leave I don’t get to discover why.
  3. If I don’t discover what brought me to love an addict, I am going to repeat the cycle over and over again
  4. If I am going to do the hard work of recovery, I want to do it with the person that I walked through hell with
  5. I do not think there is any situation too grave to be healed or any heart to broken to be restored
  6. I get to learn how to love unconditionally and practice the art of forgiveness daily
  7. Being married to an addict forces me to turn to a higher power and not to another person to tell me I am ok
  8. Staying married to an addict turns the volume down on the buzz and static of life and amplifies that simple joys that truly matter
  9. I get to be a witness to miracles every single day
  10. I get to halt the destructive cycle of addiction and codependency and not pass the trait on to my children
  11. I get to learn what true intimacy is (and is not) and how to apply the principles to all of my relationships
  12. I have been brought to an amazing circle of strong, intelligent, and beautiful women who are committed to standing and fighting for themselves and their relationships
  13. Marriage is not about a journey towards happiness it is about a journey towards holiness (this one is a bitch but it’s true)
  14. Staying married to an addict forces me to work a recovery program that ultimately spills into ALL areas of my life (which is a good thing)
  15. I get to live out the promises of faith in a higher power, and show all the people who quote the Bible and tell me I have “grounds to leave” that recovery is possible
  16. Divorce causes untold amounts of pain and suffering that does not cease once the papers are signed. Sex addiction brings enough pain of it’s own. Whether I stay or whether I go, I still will have a mountain of pain to walk through. I’d prefer to walk through one hell, and not two.
  17. I stay married because I never learned what it really means to be in a relationship based on intimacy, and not just on sexuality
  18. I stay married because if I leave, I can pretend that my cycle of love addiction and co-dependency does not exist. If it does not exist to me, then I can never heal.
  19. I stay married because I’ve seen the program work
  20. I stay married because it is possible to recover together
  21. I stay married because I can. I own my life choices, I apologize to no one, and I choose to love and stay married to my sex addict husband. I am not desperate, needy, or weak, but a strong and confident woman who CHOOSES life in my marriage and not death. In the absence of popular support or understanding, I stand with my sex addict husband and will never give up.

583 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Tom
    Oct 21, 2011 @ 15:22:14

    Every time i read this, i cry. Thank you for pioneering with your heart in this way.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Oct 30, 2011 @ 04:59:35

      Thanks Tom :) D is heading back to rehab tomorrow to deal with a pretty major relapse (that’s why he hasn’t had a chance to get back to you….) but we are both still praying for you!

      Reply

    • e
      May 13, 2014 @ 17:40:42

      I just wanted to share:

      I created this blog for people who want to read stories of hope of those that recovered from sex/porn addiction.

      This is a space for people who HAVE stayed together and are happy after sex addiction has entered their lives. If you fit that category, please email me your story. I will post it to the blog for others to read and see that there is hope.

      http://hopeforcouples.blogspot.com/

      Reply

      • Joe
        Jul 16, 2014 @ 08:24:36

        I’m not sure the right person will see this, but I am giving it a shot anyways. My name is Joe, and I believe my wife is a sex addict. We have been together for 17 years and we have both cheated on each other. However, my last physical encounter with a woman was in 07 and her’s was in April 2014. Before that is was in August 2012. After I found out about her last affair she has told me about a few other affairs that I had no idea about. Anyways, we have both decided to work through this, so I was hoping to get some information about it. I am hopeful for the most part, and after reading your blog I am inspired. If you have any information that can help our marriage survive please let me know. My email is mr.jcline@gmail.com. Thank you and God bless…

      • dbiscuit
        Jul 16, 2014 @ 14:26:12

        Hi there…thanks for your comment. I would encourage you to find a therapist who specializes in sex addiction, and check out resources from S-Anon (for partners of sex addicts) and COSA (also for partners of sex addicts.) The book “Mending a Shattered Heart” by Stefanie Carnes is also a good place to start. A relationship therapist who specializes in Imago therapy would be useful…the book that Imago therapy is based on is called “Getting the Love you Want” by Harville Hendrix.

  2. Nicole
    Oct 29, 2011 @ 20:19:54

    amen

    Reply

  3. Tom
    Jan 13, 2012 @ 10:43:15

    You are both legends. Im sorry to hear D’s relapse, It must be so painful for the both of you. Keep going.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Jan 14, 2012 @ 18:45:30

      Thanks Tom. So sorry to hear about the divorce. Ditto to you- and kudos on the no-internet in the new flat. D is home from rehab…I passed your email along to him. We both appreciate you and support you.

      Reply

  4. john
    Feb 26, 2012 @ 07:48:40

    Wow your husband is a lucky man to have you and the support that is needed for his and your recovery. I could only wish my wife could be there me our marriage like that but I have destroyed that trust and her self esteem I wish the both of you good luck and God Bless you for standing by your man

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Feb 26, 2012 @ 23:41:38

      Thanks for your kind note. One of the hardest lessons of this journey was learning that I was just as much of a mess as my husband. God has been exceedingly kind and continues to heal and restore us. It takes time though. Praying that you and your wife will find a way to healing and back to each other!

      Reply

  5. Larry
    Apr 16, 2012 @ 01:16:07

    What about a female sex addict. My wife is a sex addict and she is in complete denial. I know that she has been with many diffrent men including her brother in law and some of what I used to call my friends. Even when presented with evidence she says she has done nothing wrong. And even got her family against me and all the sudden they tell me satin has fooled me into believing what I’ve seen with my own eyes. I love my wife and I want to be strong and stay with her. But its getting harder the more she lies and deceives me. I am calling on God to bring the truth out in the open because we cannot heal this marriage until she takes responsibly for her actions. I really could use some advice I just don’t know what to do anymore. Please help! Thank you.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 16, 2012 @ 16:34:03

      Thanks for commenting. First of all, let me say I am sorry for the pain that you must be going through. Dealing with sex addiction is horrifying (to say the least) and for men it is probably even more difficult, since resources are generally geared towards women. The best advice i ever received was this: Take care of YOURSELF first. As painful as it is (believe me i know!) to watch your loved one destroy themselves, there is nothing you can to do prevent or “cure” her from her addiction. For me, when I started taking care of myself and my relationship with God, my husband began to see the changes in me and was inspired to make changes for himself. Is that fair? Maybe not. “Should” the sex addicts “have” to take care of themselves FIRST and acknowledge the pain they have caused us? Perhaps. But the only power you have is the power to pray, to seek God, and to take care of yourself. Start learning about sex addiction (anything by Patrick Carnes is phenomenal, find a COSA (co-sex addicts) or S-ANON group near you (most groups have an open meeting where both men and women can attend), if therapy is an option i’d encourage you to start (find one who specializes in co-dependency or sex addiction), and check out all the resources at http://www.themeadows.org (my husband spent 6 months there and I did a workshop there and the information is phenomenal). Keep praying. Find people who can understand this and support you. Many of my friends, church family, etc. simply did not have the information available to help me through this, and provided well-meaning but damaging advice. Hope this helps.

      Reply

    • sol
      May 16, 2014 @ 23:12:48

      I read ur comment about ur wife being the addict and 1 major part of ur share is very important for me to hear more since I can relate so if u can get back to me I would appreciate

      Reply

  6. pam calloway
    Apr 23, 2012 @ 23:21:15

    I am sorry. but i think staying with abusive addicted man can really be much much worse than divorcing them. staying can expand the cycle of abuse indfeinitely! that is, if the man is not committed to recovery. It is very bad for the children the household etc and incredibly destructive to you, the wife. divorce is painful for sure. and you can always reconcile down the road if he finally chooses recovery, even after divorce. but as long as we keep leaving and going back, there is no finality. there is no consequence for the sexual risks taken and betrayal. so the addict continues on. the addict has nothing to lose. He “knows” he won’t lose you.

    i respect the decision to stay. and understand it. but this is not one size fits all. sometimes we must divorce the sin/behavior. which means divoricing the addict. we love the man. we hate the behavior. and sometimes, we need to do more than leave dangerous situations, we need to divorce it, permanently. divorce hurts like hell. but our children will learn there are consequences to bad behavior. and they will respect a mother who does not tolerate abuse. I just don’t see any way to show non tolerance for abuse, sexual/ physical or addiction, but to eventually divorce. i just don’t see what leaving for awhile does. at some point, we have to make the call. are we going back? or are we staying away? what is the difference when living seperately than divorcing? other than you have nothing legal to protect yourself. and addict’s lie and manipulate. it can’t be based on the trust system. there is very little of that here. going without a legal agreement of some kind, is just down right dangerous for many people.

    I too believe that God can heal any hurt, any heart. and we do need to forgive. but forgiveness is different than discipline.

    if a person murders a family member? can we rely on God to help us forgive and heal our loss? yes. Does that person need to do time in prison? YES YES AND YES. they need to go because they are dangerous. they need consequences and discipline for the crime they committed.

    without consequences for the addict, up to and including divorce, there can be no recovery for them, or ourselves. some of us have no real options left but divorce. some have given chance after chance, only for the addiction to escalate and further danger and abuse to come her way. just sayin’, with love, there is no one size fits all when it comes to sex addiction. and it is pain, whether staying or going. but every woman has the right to choose what is best for her safety and saftey of her children. even, including, a divorce from the dangerous behaving husband. may he learn a thing or two.

    Reply

  7. dbiscuit
    Apr 24, 2012 @ 04:51:04

    I totally agree that staying in an abusive situation with someone who is actively pursuing his/her addiction is not healthy for the spouse and a dangerous environment to raise children in. I feel very blessed that for my situation, my husband chose recovery. I realize not every situation is the same, and not every addicted person chooses recovery. Every spouse of an addict must make the difficult decision of whether to stay or whether to go. That decision is personal, and really is between you and God. Thank you for your comment. It was a good reminder to me to keep my heart humble and be very very careful to give God all the credit for my path and not stand on my own merit.

    Reply

  8. Bernadette
    May 17, 2012 @ 06:58:01

    I’m new on this site and I am supporting a sexaholic husband. As difficult as it was, it was when I understood the reality of the addiction being a true manifestation of mental illness, and that there is no fault (responsibility, yes), I was able to dignify the disease, not the disease of addiction, but mental illness and all of it’s components.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      May 17, 2012 @ 14:45:17

      thanks for your comment and for sharing from your journey. welcome to this site :) and if you ever need additional ideas for resources please feel free to contact me! while yes, sex addiction is a mental illness and not a ‘morality’ issue, it is still a pretty scary thing to deal with and as a partner the best thing i have found to do is to take care of myself first so i can be the healthiest support i can be!

      Reply

  9. Michelle
    Jul 16, 2012 @ 01:47:13

    I believe that you can stay and also put consequences in place. A mid-marriage contract with a 60/40 asset split makes sense. It protects you and motivates your spouse. You put down what behavior activates this agreement. Lapsing and looking at porn might not put the agreement in motion. Touching or contacting another for sexual reasons may. In my experience a lie detector test done by a seasoned trained expert works. If he refuses to take the test then contract activates. I was told that a certified court/criminal polygraph expert is the best. Computer tracking programs would work for proof or photographs or videos. All of this is agreed to by both of you. To make it stick in most states, you must have an attorney represent each partner before it is binding. However, a partner can sign a waiver saying that one attorney is fine. I have been in this marriage for a long time. Pain and suffering compensation seems in order. If you don’t have a lot of assets then use child support or spousal support. Right or wrong, money motivates folks, especially men. Be ready to drop the hammer and get a legal separation or divorce. However, some couples stay married with the assets legally and forever split like that. I have seen medical doctors do this…put assets in spouses name to protect them…and still stay married. No I am not in any legal professional but I at 63 I have learned from other’s “trials”… in every sense of the word. I understand it is an addiction but I also believe in consequences for some behaviors. It is like an alcoholic that falls of the wagon and drinks. Not good but if that alcoholic is drunk and gets in a car and hits someone, then the stakes change. Is this just a senior talking or is there anyone else that can add to this?

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Jul 16, 2012 @ 02:16:25

      Hi there- thanks for your comment and for stopping by my blog! For me personally, my experience with lie detector tests was not a positive one in any sense. Our guy had 25 years training and was an FBI investigator. Again, speaking for me and myself only, I found that relying on lie detector tests and other forms of tracking gave me a false sense of control over the addiction, and a lack of trust in my own instincts and intuition. I have found that when i feel as though something is off, it usually is. Again though- I think that every partner of a sex addict has her/his own path and I respect you for taking the steps you need to protect yourself! I realize that as a 32 year old with no children, my experience is not going to be the same as yours, so hopefully others who are in similar scenarios will chime in to give you feedback!

      Reply

    • Nancy
      Apr 23, 2014 @ 04:30:26

      I just found this blog and Michelle I too am in my 60′s and would like to talk with you. Can I email you or will you email me at Mom23kitties@gmail.com I am riding this rollercoaster ride and every time a get a little hope it get shattered almost immediately.I believe its very damaging to stay in a relationship that is constant betrayal, it abusive. I have no idea what my rights are and would love to talk with you if thats ok please email me. Thanks.

      Reply

  10. Michelle
    Jul 16, 2012 @ 14:37:40

    Maybe I am one of the few that gets “hit out of the blue”. Aside from an affair many years ago, there were no signs. We have been married and good friends for 30 years. My only clue was when he said he did not want to go with his guy group on their annual 5 day golf trip to Reno. He would not tell me why. Yes, I knew something was up but I had no idea the magnitude of it. That lie detector test told me those men visited “legal houses of prostitution” every evening. All 16 men did this and had been doing it for 10 years. Right along with them he got into porn that they would send to each other on their cell phones. It was the lie detector professional that said to my husband “you are a sex addict…here is the top contact in our area for help…told us he tests husbands and wives on a regular schedule to make sure recovery is the priority. That guy was heaven sent. He flies back to Washington D.C. For the Fed testing and around the country for various trials. Maybe we just got lucky?

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Jul 16, 2012 @ 19:35:50

      hey michelle- thanks for commenting and for sharing your experience! WOW, sounds like you had a really positive experience with the lie detector test! I’m so glad you shared, because it just highlights that every single walk for a partner of a sex addict is so completely and totally different. For us, we prob won’t attempt that avenue again, but my prayer that seems to pop up the most is, “God, please bring us to the people and resources that we need to get where You want us to be, and keep us protect from the kooky ones that will not be helpful.” LOL i started praying that after the last several “helpers” we saw.

      Reply

  11. Emily
    Aug 09, 2012 @ 14:04:29

    Choosing to place your future happiness and the future happiness of your children in the hands of a sex addict isn’t allowing God or a higher power to guide you at all. Have you ever read the poem Mender of Broken Things? Having faith in God means being willing to let go, not stick around trying to fix it. I know this isn’t what you want to hear. And the choice of whether to stay is one only you can make. Have you tried getting counselling through your local Woman Abuse program? Sex addicts are not nice people. I hope one day you decide to choose a partner who shares your values and loyalty in marriage, which sex addicts don’t do. Peace.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Aug 09, 2012 @ 16:51:31

      thanks for your comment and for stopping by my blog! It’s always interesting to hear the perspectives of other people and hear how they choose to navigate the murky waters of addiction and recovery. We all are different. Just to clarify, I have not placed my happiness or the happiness of my future children in the hands of a sex addict. I have placed them in the hands of a loving God. Having faith does indeed mean being willing to let go. It means being willing to let go of the fantasy idea of a perfect marriage, perfect life, and the fantasy of secured happiness in the hands of a perfect man. I have been in counseling for many years and so has my husband. We work individually on our own trauma, and together with a marriage therapist. I respectfully disagree with your comment “sex addicts are not nice people.” That is a very generalized statement about a huge population. Many sex addicts are not nice people. Many sex addicts are wonderful, kind, compassionate people who, because of trauma inflicted on them via sexual abuse, neglect, etc., found their sexuality warped. Of course, we all have a responsibility to choose how we respond to the sins committed against us. I know many good, brave, strong men who are battling to undo the wiring that their choices and the choices of others have done to them. I do not believe God looks at His children and applies the label “not nice people” to all of them.

      Reply

  12. Lisa Grahn
    Aug 20, 2012 @ 12:55:56

    I have been married to an addict for 22 years and struggling to stay with my spouse who is addicted to sex. I have been led down the path of lies and deceit with him on a weekly if not daily basis. We have finally came to a head here while I sit in Florida taking care of my grand daughter. I have just learned (last night) that he bought a prepaid phone, placed ads on CL and all in the last two weeks of my planned trip away from home.
    I have told him that he must seek counseling or we are through. I can’t live like this., I can’t eat or sleep or even bring myself to smile without forcing it.
    I really applaud your courage and strength and hope that I can find my own inner strength for what I have to do.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Aug 20, 2012 @ 14:55:33

      Thanks for your comment. I’m so sorry for the pain you are going through, and am praying that your precious husband has his eyes opened and that his heart becomes willing and able to seek change. Praying that good people surround you who can help both of you. Praying that you find the inner strength and wisdom to do what you need to do to take care of yourself.

      Reply

  13. claire
    Aug 29, 2012 @ 06:42:53

    It’s 1:30 a.m. and once again I am combing the web hunting for answers. I have been dealing with a sex addict husband for the four years we’ve been married. I didn’t know for sure he was an addict until about two years ago. In the past year it has come to a crossroads for me. I did my best to set boundaries…and failed to keep some of them. Recently, however, (after he acted out in a major way), I told him that there would be no more sex until he got tested and was participating in some form of recovery. He did choose to see a Christian sex addiction counselor…and has kept three appointments. However, he continues to act out. I have confronted him on two of the occassions…but wimped out on the others. Honestly…just too emotionally tired to do it.
    I have come to the realization, like you, that I have some deep co-dependency issues. I need help. I am tired of the emotional roller coaster and living like roomates. I have been advised to leave short term. I finally got the courage to start making applications to jobs that provide housing as well. So far, nothing.
    My questions for you or anyone who is struggling with this:
    1. Should I leave when he is making some kind of attempt to recover…albeit a counseling appointment once every three weeks.
    2. If I leave…how long do I stay away and what, if any, conditions do I return?
    3. My husband is not in any support group and does not have a sponsor…is that a must have for me to stay?
    4. If or when I leave…do I go far away or stay close by?
    5. Do I communicate with him while away?
    6. How do you know if they are truly in recovery?
    7. Can you give me any advice on whether I am making the right decision to leave or not?
    Finally…there are no COSA’s or S-Anon groups in my area. I am also having a hard time finding a 12 step or Celebrate Recovery group. Any suggestions?
    Thanks for any guidance you can give.
    Claire

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Aug 30, 2012 @ 17:13:52

      Hi Claire- thanks for stopping by and commenting. I am so sorry for the gut wrenching pain i imagine you must be going through. Please know first of all that you are not alone and that there are resources to help you, people to light your way, and a God who loves you, your hubby, and your marriage. Congrats on recognizing your own need for healing. It is so hard to be able to admit that we (the partners) have issues when it is so easy to concentrate on the chaos that our beloved addicts are stirring up. The first thing I can assure you regarding the sex addiction is that you did not Cause it, you cannot Control it, and you cannot Cure it. The question of whether to stay or whether to leave is something that no one can tell you. That decision needs to come from within yourself and your relationship with your Higher Power. I will suggest considering to take things one day at a time, and to not make any major decisions about divorce for at least a year. As far as the details of separating, all I can say is that both my husband and I firmly believe in the healing that can come from a separation if done with intention, with clear goals and objectives, and effort on behalf of both people to really put recovery and health as #1. I see a therapist, so does my husband, and we see a marriage therapist. For my husband, that meant giving up his job, moving to a new city, and restructuring his entire life. He also had to check into residential rehab. For me, making sure I was safe and taking care of myself and my sanity and physical health meant leaving the home on two occasions. The first time I moved across the country, the second time across the city that we lived in. I truly believe of your other questions will be answered if you continue to seek out help and support. You mentioned that there are no COSA or S-ANON groups near you. Do you have an Al-anon group? The addiction is different but the issues are a lot alike, and that might be a good group to check out. You can also plug in to online COSA or S-anon meetings online or on the phone, and can request a sponsor from either online or phone meetings who can work with you one on one. I also suggest getting the book Mending a Shattered Heart by Stefanie Carnes. In my opinion, it is the best resource for women who are at the beginning of this long and scary journey. My prayers are with you and your husband. I pray you will find the right people, the right resources, the right decisions, and that your precious husband would have a willingness to turn and choose life and recovery. Please feel free to email me if you ever need to vent or ask questions at marriedsexaddicts@gmail.com

      Reply

  14. Terri
    Sep 24, 2012 @ 13:44:50

    Thankyou so much for your beautiful comments..I ran across this at a perfect time, as they say, everything happens for a reason. My husband just gave me some devastating disclosure and I have been on my knees ever since. I have reached out too my SANON group for the first time in years because the pain was so bad, even then I was still looking for signs too leave even putting the guilt on myself. Again thankyou and hope too hear back as your experience strength and hope has brightened my day.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Sep 24, 2012 @ 15:51:45

      thanks for your comment. i’m so encouraged when i get feedback from people that stumble upon this blog….it’s so helpful to know that i’m not crazy and that i’m not alone! will be praying for you and your husband today…

      Reply

  15. Dreamer
    Sep 26, 2012 @ 23:54:19

    I was touched to the core by your sharing reasons for staying. I am on the same boat you are and seriously considered separation. However I found that the worry and anxiety of separation was making me physically sick and I felt I was heading to a path of self destruction. My husband has been in counseling for~ 2 yrs but he keeps relapsing and I think he’s not ready to let it go. In my opinion the stronghold is too strong. The addiction is advanced enough that we can’t have intercourse because it doesn’t excite him. I married a virgin so I still don’t know what sex really is still. This issue is jeopardizing my chances to be a mom.

    So why do I stay? I stay because even though my husband is not aggressively recovering like Id like him to, he has grown emotionally and we are able communicate and be more real. He knows he’s addicted and that is wrong, there’s no denying there. Secondly, we have come a long way in other areas and are able to work together as a pretty good team. I don’t feel ready to give that up. Thirdly, we agreed to some boundaries, such as no physical acting out of his porn/fantasies with other ppl. For me if he acted out with a person, that would be a different ballgame and so far I believe that hasn’t happened.

    Am I enabling bad behavior? I don’t know. I think Ive seen progress although it certainly is not near the oneness I desire. However I feel this is all I can handle right now physically and emotionally. I joined a recovery group for partners of sex addicts and trying to be accountable for myself while I heal and take this opportunity to learn and become a better person. Is struggle daily but Ive chosen to surrender to the One who can make sense of this mess: Jesus Christ. I take it one day at a time.

    This is a painful road indeed… but like you said Im learning about myself. My latest discovery is that my entire life has been shame-based. Ive struggled with depression due to this but since I decided to play a higher focus on Jesus and my own healing, Im sleeping better. I am totally at the mercy of the One who promises He will never leave me nor forsake me. I am broken but He always listens to the broken hearted. I guess I am in good hands. I don’t feel very confident but I do have faith at least the size of a mustard seed.

    Thanks so much for sharing.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Sep 27, 2012 @ 00:44:18

      hey dreamer- thanks for your kind words!!! i really appreciate the feedback, and will keep you and your husband in prayers. One website that really taught me the hows and the whys of standing in the gap for my husband was “Rejoice Marriage Ministries” ….http://rejoiceministries.org/devotion.php i’m so glad you are involved with a support group…although i know every situation is different, i can say from my vantage point that it has been worth every painful step of the way…blessings to you for healing and restoration….

      Reply

      • Dreamer
        Sep 29, 2012 @ 00:49:52

        Thank you for bravely pouring your heart in this blog. Its a relief to feel there is a woman out there who feels at peace with accepting her less than ideal circumstances and take a quite courageous and risky stand. I will be praying for you and your husband as well.

        This is a painful road whether staying or leaving the sex addict. Perhaps its one way in which we can meet personally God. Without Him this would be a hopeless and bitter road. The fact that we are still a functioning member of society despite this is a testament that God is real!

      • dbiscuit
        Sep 30, 2012 @ 16:04:46

        amen to that :) I hate to acknowledge that this horrible disease paved my path to finding and knowing God, but i can honestly say that i would not know Him, allow Him to love me, or be able to trust Him without first walking this road.

    • Broken
      Jan 04, 2013 @ 18:46:38

      Hi Dreamer,
      I don’t know if you will see my response, however, I felt compelled to respond when I realized how alarmingly similar our situations are. I also was a virgin when we married, as was my husband. Much has come out during the past year about various forms of abuse he endured as a child(all forms). He has battled porn addiction as a result of a very skewed idea of love/sex resulting from sexual abuse by a sibling. As you mentioned, sex does not excite him… he doesn’t really even like the idea of it. I am in the same boat; wondering if we will ever have a family…something I desire.

      As for me, I am trying to stay in a constant state of praying continually! He has just moved out after my futile attempts to find less extreme measures before the extreme of separation. He has tried counseling, however, after 4 sessions he realized the therapist was not a good fit for him. My prayers are the he will seek recovery in any form at this point. I really was hoping we could walk down this road of recovery together, however he is not allowing this with the separation. Is this God asking for me to let go and allow him to intervene??

      You, along with all who have responded, are in my prayers! This is heartbreaking and heartwrenching to say the least. God knows the suffering and is here, though my faith is small as well at this point.

      Reply

  16. Cold in Canada
    Oct 04, 2012 @ 15:13:45

    Thank you for your site and everyon’s postings. I have had a number of traumas in my life but the discovery of my husbands sexaholism hit me the hardest, I lost myself. After battling 4 long years, my husband is sober and attending meetings, but I am the problem now. My husband had used as many men as female prostitutes and had even invited men to my home through Craiglist while I was out for the evening. Today, the thought of touching him or he touching me creeps me out more than anything, I can’t get the picture of his acting out, out of my head. Instead, I scream at him, and now we’re finally going to break up, because of me. Part of it, is that he lied about why his first wife left him, and so I married him 15 years ago, and now I can’t get over the lie, and believe the marriage was a sham right from the start, as he never quit using, until now. Please, I hope anyone has words of inspiration for me, I have lost everyone and in my city there are no good support groups.

    Bless you all
    Cold in Canada

    Reply

  17. Dreamer
    Oct 05, 2012 @ 23:44:39

    Hello Cold in Canada,

    Im glad you came across this blog. Ive found this blog to be very healing. As you can see you are not alone. My heart is with you for the pain you are feeling.

    I think you shouldn’t be too hard on yourself. Ive been in my battle for 5 years, I can’t imagine 14 yrs of this. Your trust has been broken and I think that needs whatever time you need to heal.

    If your husband can’t handle your pain and you are both miserable perhaps this separation is what you need to properly heal. I would advice a planned trial separation with the help of a therapist if you are both willing to work in the marriage. I personally think that after everything you’ve put off with, your husband should at least give you the time to heal the right way. I read somewhere that one of the signs of a truly recovered husband is his humility in accepting his wifes hurt and having the patience to let her heal.

    Either way I encourage you to focus on your healing. Ive struggled with the same feelings in my marriage where I struggled with feelings of guilt for not recovering quickly enough. My personal self discovery is that I realized grieving was part of the process of healing. Pushing myself to be happy on the outside without dealing with the inside only perpetuated the shame-based relationship I helped develop. If separation is the best way for you to achieve it, then go ahead and stand strong. You are worth it. To love is to let go. You will be a better person no matter what direction the marriage takes.

    I am personally comitted to heal the right way, grieve my losses, accept what I can’t change, while setting the boundaries Im wiling to live with. Recovery groups have been quite helpful. If you want you can check out sexaddict.com, they have phone counseling and recovery groups. So far Ive ben able to stay in my marriage but Im no longer hiding my feelings, Im just learning to not let them control me.

    I hope this helps. Ive found this blog so far to be a safe place to share my feelings a be a partner of my healing. God bless you and I will be praying for you.

    Reply

  18. Jennifer
    Nov 02, 2012 @ 09:10:51

    Just came across this blog tonight. Last night, my husband of almost 8 years informed me the years of therapy, group meetings, etc have done nothing to change his perception of his addiction and he still feels he wants both our family and anonymous sex. Recently, he and his therapist have been discussing how his addiction began and he feels like it’s unhealthy for our kids to live in a home where he acts out and we fight about it. He is hoping the shock of me actually leaving and the pain of not seeing us daily will be enough of a catalyst for him to actually dedicate himself 100% to his recovery. I feel like I’m being thrown out and abandoned. Is it possible a separation in our situation could help? Or is this just a way for him to get to act on his addiction under the guise of “we’re separated”? I’m SO confused, hurt, and lost. I don’t want my children to EVER develop this addiction or marry someone with it, but I don’t know what will help. He says if things stay the same as they are right now, he sees himself slipping to the point of sleeping with someone else again. For the last year, it’s been texts and porn only. I don’t understand how I can still desperately love someone so much that has done so many unspeakable things and broken my heart so often. Help! I feel like no matter what, I’m going to be the one to suffer most for his problem.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Nov 02, 2012 @ 16:11:47

      thanks for writing. I am so sorry for the pain you must be in – i can imagine you must be terrified, angry, hurt, shocked, sad…everything all at once. I can only share with you from my own experience, strength, & hope- so i will say that for us, the separation absolutely saved our marriage. I was simply not able to stay sane amidst active sex addiction, and he would simply not give up the addiction as long as i was there in the home. We separated three times. In retrospect, he has told me that once we separated, he went through a very brief phase of WAHOO! I can be a free sex addict! That lasted about a second. Then he began to spiral down in shame and guilt. The thing with sex addiction, is that if it is really sex addiction, the addict does not get much pleasure out of doing it. My husband has said that me leaving took all of the focus and energy off of fighting with me and lying, and once he was left with only himself to look at and deal with he realized just how jacked up his life had become. That was when he finally got serious about recovery. Everything prior to that was half-assed efforts that never lasted very long. our separations were very planned, very intentional, and had very clear boundaries. We also have worked with great therapists who have helped us navigate. Really, though, i have to give the credit to prayer and God doing some major work on us. When i finally slowed down enough to listen to my own inner voice, I realized how much the addiction had been affecting me, and realized that the only way forward was to back off for a bit before coming back together. Now, I can honestly say that our marriage is stronger than it was before. Not perfect, but stronger. If you have a COSA or S-Anon group near you i’d definitely encourage you to check it out. Also the book “Mending a SHattered Heart” by Stefanie Carnes. Please feel free to email me if you need more info or have questions!

      Reply

  19. Cold in Canada
    Nov 02, 2012 @ 16:53:01

    Jennifer,
    I found out that my husband of 11 years was using prostitutes, peep shows (having oral sex with men) and using Craigslist to hookup for “quick” blow jobs, even inviting anonymous men to our home while I was at a class. He’s been dabbling in recovery, SA meetings, some personal therapy, but no matter what, sober or acting out, they’re mostly the same people they have always been. I don’t think you’re madly in love with this man, I believe you may not think you’re worth any more than what he’s offering, and that you’re probably desperate and afraid. I’ve been there sweetheart, and I’ll tell you the truth, if you forget about him for awhile, figure out whay you’re so desperate, it might just not matter any longer who he has sex with. It happened to me, when I “surrendered” to the fact that there was absolutely nothing I could do about this, I woke up one morning and just didn’t care anymore, and life by yourself happy is way better than fear with a disordered and dangerous person. Oh yes, your children are being taught daily how to live with an addict. Please, trust, you are a wonderful person and deserve so much more!
    Cold in Canada

    Reply

    • linda
      Jan 04, 2013 @ 05:44:53

      Well said, they never recover, and I do not think they really want to, they only do enoug to keep you hanging and hoping, and by the way, they only marry us in the first place to cover up their pervertedness, and to appear to look normal, they do not love us, they do not know how, they love only themselves!

      Reply

      • Donna
        Aug 23, 2013 @ 07:34:37

        Hello Linda,Well said i wish i could give you a hug ! Yes there is very little recovery if any for them.And if we stay it is a life of uncertainty and pain and no one can honestly say otherwise.They will not stay in any sort of recovery for long if at all. They play at it to keep us where we are.This life is short and the pain of living with this is like no other.Time passes please don’t look back at the wasted years. If you don’t have children don’t think of starting a family or the pain is just passed down. I have sat in enough COSA S-anon Alanon meetings to know this is the case.I wish every one peace in their lives but that will only come when you have escaped from this evil called sex addiction.

      • Donna
        Aug 24, 2013 @ 10:04:03

        Hi Linda, I would love to email you,Do you know how this could be arranged if you would agree to this. I have just never met anyone with your views.I love reading all you write thank you for being here.

      • Donna
        Aug 24, 2013 @ 21:34:11

        Hi Linda,Could you create an email account we could connect on,I have been trying to do this for over half an hour! x

  20. Dreamer
    Nov 03, 2012 @ 17:08:01

    Hi Jennifer,

    Thank you for opening up! I agree with dbiscuit and Cold in Canada. I think you should proceed with the separation. I’m sure you’re hurting much more than I can imagine. It seems to me your husband is being honest and I do agree that this is an unhealthy lifestyle for both you and your children. You deserve better. I think you need to place yourself and your children first.

    In my personal journey, I came to the conclusion that I was making my marriage an idol. Somehow pursuing oneness and purity was most important to me. While those are ideal and good things, I realized I couldn’t control my husband and his choices. But I could control mine. I had to place God first and surrender the marriage to him. I asked him to show me the path. I realized through this journey that my life has been shamed based with co-dependent tendencies. God has been faithful. I did consider separation, but God showed me through my personal journey that my husband is recovering (although not as quickly as I would like) and I’m willing to stay and wait BUT I had established boundaries that I’m willing to live with.

    Hope this helps and God bless you!! You’ll be in my prayers tonight!

    Reply

  21. K
    Nov 16, 2012 @ 20:01:30

    I found your blog searching the internet looking for a reason to not leave my husband. I am printing your list and keepng it with me… it made me cry because I relate to just about all of them and don’t want to give up. What programs are you referring to for yourself? I haven’t found any support for spouses in my area, just the addict. :(

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Nov 16, 2012 @ 22:04:54

      thanks for your comment! you can check COSA or S-anon- both have websites, and if there are no in-person meetings they have online and phone meetings. I’ve done them, and while in-person is ideal, phone/email is better than nothing! I would also recommend finding a good therapist in your area who has a good understanding of trauma. Please feel free to email me if you need more information or have questions!

      Reply

  22. The Other Woman
    Dec 18, 2012 @ 04:47:01

    As “the other woman” who has been on the other side of the “addiction”, I can tell you all that you are foolish to stay. Addiction is the excuse your husbands now give because they know you will stay with them. They can have their cake and eat it too. They aren’t addicted; they are horny men whose wives ALLOW them to play. And their encounters aren’t always about sex. They tell you it was just sex and just once or twice, when in reality most of them are probably carrying out long, intense LOVE affairs with someone who is a lot more exciting than the doormat they have waiting at home.

    Again, you are foolish to stay. Get out now while you’re still young. If not, I’m sure “God” will be there for you when you contract an incurable STD while supporting your husband.

    One more thing, you are not helping your children by showing them its okay to settle for less than what they deserve.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Dec 18, 2012 @ 05:00:47

      thanks for your comment and for stopping by to visit my blog :)

      Reply

    • Moving forward!!!!
      Jan 11, 2013 @ 21:36:32

      Number one!! Labeling yourself the other woman really!! What does that say about you!!! My soon to be ex husband had multiple affairs!! Each time he would found a Lonely and desperate woman!!! He would reach out only when he wasn’t getting attention or when his work, kids and life itself got to be to much!!!! He found it with the other women(who had no friends and lacked self Confidence) and prostiutes (male female trangenders)!!! Now I only stayed bc I have two very young kids and I believed he wanted to get better!!! I went to meetings and therapy for him. He brought me there so I can see that he wanted to be better!!! Now when the sex addict is off his meds, he completely checks out!!! Now when the other woman stays after knowing he is married Why is that!! Because you are just as sick!!! What are you getting by getting on here and posting that??? Really, your still the other woman if you were anything more then why are you not the one lying in his bed??? And what stds is that , the one he is picking up from you then going home and getting in bed with his wife and making LOVE to her while telling her how much he LOVES her and that’s why he is there!!!! Yes wait I Bet he said they don’t have sex!!!! Oh ok and that’s just as bad as knowing!!!! And I love how you write its not helping the children!! Haha really because that guy your sleeping with is the same guy who is Mr. Perfect to his family!!! Yes and how often do you see Mr. Perfect the guy who shows you love!! How often does he take you in public around friends and family??? Now you posting on here just Confirms your just as hurt by this!!!! I was never a doormat!!!! He Always went for the Unattractive ones!!! I asked him just this week and he Responded they have low self Esteem!!! You can always Guarantee they would believe whatever you told them!!! We are no longer together because I never believed him!!! He had a program to work meds to take and if he stopped he was out!!! He is mostlikey staying with her but guess what he is still paying my bills!!!! I hear everyone of you very loudly and it’s sad that we deal with this!!!! I am still in shock that this is my life!!! I am in my early thirties and found out in my mid twenties!!! We have good times and bad!!! But I am hoping this is it!! Just like most sex addicts he is a wonderful guy!! Loved by all!!! So when he does the meetings, therapy and meds it’s hard to leave bc they are so deeply damaged and hurt!!! Number one we can’t change them, they must want to change!!!! And for the other woman your just as damaged and hurt!!! Maybe u should check out the sa page!!!!!

      Reply

      • dbiscuit
        Jan 11, 2013 @ 22:05:55

        I really appreciate you taking the time to comment. My hope for every SA and partner of an SA is that they can objectively look at the data of their lives, step back and evaluate, and become responders rather than reactors. To say all women who stay are “doormats” or that all women who sleep with married men are “sick” is reductionistic and does not really paint a complete picture of who we are. That being said, I have to wonder why someone who willingly sleeps with married men would be on a blog that aims to provide support for wives/partners of sex addicts….? It is easy for me to point at all the women who have slept with my husband (many of whom were good “friends”) and say that they are horrible human beings. It is easy for the women who were manipulated by my husband (who told them he “loved” them) to look at me and call me a fool for staying. There’s nothing easy about addiction and nothing easy about recovery. It’s a hell of a lot harder to look at people in their totality. For me, one of the ways I am able to have grace for my husband and to choose to stay (in addition to his demonstrated commitment to recovery) is to see him in his entirety, and to become willing to let myself be seen.

      • Julie
        Feb 26, 2013 @ 17:35:03

        Very well said and stated Moving Forward. Everyone’s situation is different. Don’t judge, just be there for the person going through this hard and difficult road. If you don’t mind me asking you Moving Forward, what meds is your husband on? Thank you for posting.

  23. Dreamer
    Dec 22, 2012 @ 04:23:53

    I respectfully disagree that all of us who stay we are doormats. Many of us have set boundaries and confronted our husbands. We don’t live in denial; we just choose to give grace, the kind of grace Jesus gave when He died in the cross for our sins. Many of our husbands are in recovery as a condition for us staying.

    A doormat is someone who sets no boundaries and sees self as a victim. We don’t see ourselves as victims; we stay out of choice. Each situation is different and I understand that leaving right away is the best choice for some of us. But we have the right to choose and I find that liberating and empowering.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Dec 22, 2012 @ 16:36:29

      well said dreamer…i couldn’t agree with you more! Part of this journey has been the empowerment that comes with choice. It takes a village to heal a sexual addict and a broken marriage, but healing happens. i’m not grandstanding and saying that things are perfect or that they will never be scary again, but as for today we are together and that is a beautiful thing.

      Reply

  24. linda
    Jan 04, 2013 @ 05:37:35

    I left my sex addict husband nearly 5 months ago, was it painfull? yes, do I miss him?, yes, but it was more painfull watching him everyday, pining away for other women, and not acknowledging the one he had right in front of him, I gave him one year, after I found out, and he has yet to divulge the extent of his behavior, has never ever apologized, and truly feels no remorse for his actions. We were married 18 years, and when I reflect back on it now, I see all the warning signs I missed, had I known anything of sex addiction, I may have clued in sooner. A very sad situation these immature men put innocent people into. There is no cure for this ladies, management is all there is, and that is only if and when the addict wants to recover more than his next meal, mine perhaps wanted recovery, but would do nothing to help himself. Leaving, as hard as it was, truly was the right option, I felt so incredibly inadequate around him, my self esteem was in the gutter, I still have a mound of healing to go, but one day at a time!

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Jan 04, 2013 @ 05:47:38

      thanks for your comment!! One day at a time indeed…praying that grace continues to follow you as you journey forward :)

      Reply

    • Dreamer
      Jan 04, 2013 @ 14:28:14

      Hi Linda,

      Kudos to you for setting boundaries and sticking to them even when it’s painful. I think you’ve done the right thing. We need to observe behavior,not words. From what you describe his behavior is not that of a repented man in recovery and YES you deserve better.

      I admire your courage and just know that there are other women who understand and stand there in spirit with you. God bless you!

      Reply

  25. Dreamer
    Jan 12, 2013 @ 03:28:45

    Hello Broken,

    Thank you so much for your prayers. It was healing for me to read your post and meet someone else who married a virgin like me. I can say I know exactly the pain that you feel.

    Even though your husband moved out and Im sure it hurts deeply, I think it’s better to let him go and place him in the hands of Almighty God. He needs to come to terms with the abuse and addiction on his own, that is not your job. Trust me, for the longest time I felt it was up to me to change him and convince my husband, but true change started only when he arrived at those conclusion on his own.

    One analogy that comes to mind is a lily plant in my house. I saw it wither until al leaves where dead… and then I saw a tiny green leaf sprouting. Now the plant boasts beautiful green leaves. I learned that some times we need to hit rock bottom to be brought back to life. Maybe that’s what your husband needs. In my journey I also learned that some of my personality traits needed fixing, such as passive-aggressive tendencies, low self esteem, inability of speaking out my negative feelings. Once it clicked I couldn’t change my husband, I started focusing on myself.

    Im glad that you are sticking to prayer. Ive been doing a devotional on living the surrendered life and one thing I learned is that during times of deep sorrow and wait, to take that opportunity to get closer to Christ. I have found it transforming to join a support group where I can process and speak my feelings out.

    I am still with my husband. We still have sexual problems. We are still seeing a marriage counselor now for about 2 years. I witnessed a hint of hope last session when he shared for the first time happiness not lust inspired our most recent sexual interactions. I felt so grateful to the Lord for that. God granted me my Christmas wish and we attempted intercourse on Christmas eve. I cried afterwards with gratitude to my Lord.

    Its hard to share these hopeful thoughts after so much dissapointment, but from the core of my heart I feel inspired to believe and hope. This journey took me down the road of anger and bitterness and I don’t want to stay there. A lot of that is up to me.

    Reply

  26. dbiscuit
    Jan 12, 2013 @ 16:51:38

    Hey Dreamer- your reply really moved me. thank you for being so vulnerable and honest. I remember the first two years of our relationship I couldn’t have sex without it being INCREDIBLY physically painful (residual effect from my own childhood trauma and from my body shutting down in response to the addiction). One of the most beautiful things about recovery has been the ability to have sex without physical pain, crying in shame, or fear. It’s a slowwwwwww process but one day at a time….

    Reply

  27. Dreamer
    Jan 12, 2013 @ 17:23:00

    Thank you for the words of encouragement biscuit. I hope we get there.

    Reply

  28. sandi
    Feb 06, 2013 @ 14:31:37

    I am dealing with a husband who is an addict, married almost 18 years. He spent several of those years on massage parlors, porn, prostitutes, etc. Back in 2009 we went to counseling because I was ready for divorce, this was the first time I had become aware of how bad. Before that I thought it was just porn but found out he had cheated on me countless times. Our pastor advised hm to promise me he’d go through a recovery program and face accountability with him. In order to help me rebuild trust again I was to write down 5 non-negotiable items. There were items that he even repeated back to us, that were understood by him and I, an absolute guaranteed break up should he commit again, especially in secret. Obviously I wrote down porn, cheating any kind (prostitutes, spas, etc.) So last week I find out he’s been accessing porn on his phone for the past year. And of course as usual he downplayed it until I kept showing more and more evidence.
    I’ve come to realize he is a habitual liar and manipulator.
    This is a man who claims he is madly in love with me. I do not with hold anything in the bedroom. A man who tells me he couldn’t live without me and is still very much attracted to my physically.
    But here is how I see it…..I can never be that risk, that sneak, that rush of a new stranger, that new high of a different woman that he seeks every time. I’m the same everyday. I will never be enough because this man does not want a monogamous relationship and his actions show it.
    He has traded what is real and good for what is fake and shameful. He could have had the love and respect of a good wife & three beautiful teenage daughters but instead he’s chosen to be a filthy John who will never be truly satisfied. For this reason I pity him.

    Reply

  29. Dreamer
    Feb 18, 2013 @ 04:00:04

    Hello Sandi,

    I very much feel your pain. I am so sorry that he has chosen the road of deception and lies instead of accountability and honesty. This is not about you being enough for him or not. This is about the fact that he is a sex addict; he’s hooked and has chosen a sinful life.

    I want to commend you for your gigantic effort of working on this relationship by seeking help even after all the cheating and betrayal even early on. I applaud you for selecting the 5 boundaries. All that shows you have gone above and beyond by showing sacrificial love.

    Porn addiction is not easy to overcome and can take a long while; however, that does not justify your husband’s behavior in doing this behind your back. Frankly, the fact that he denies the phone porn bothers me more than the porn itself! He broke your trust and you’re in your right to demand that trust be earned.

    I don’t know you but I prayed for you. This is so hard after building a life with this person for 18 years. I trust that God will lead you as to what to do next. He listens and cares for the brokenhearted. Continue standing up for yourself, sister. You are not alone.

    Now that he has broken one of the boundaries, a consequence must be put in place. I advice going back to the counselor you were seeing. I have found it useful to join women recovery groups for partners of sex addicts to address your own healing.

    God bless you and I pray that you feel His embrace during this painful time.

    Reply

  30. Bernadette
    Feb 21, 2013 @ 17:28:34

    Hello everyone!
    Such dilemas, circumstances so bizarre and unbearable, the addiction with the most shame and fear. I sometimes cannot believe one can prevail nonetheless. However, it’s prevelance can be shaky at best! I’m 61 and this is my second marriage, around 16 years. As with most marriages. it started off fine, lots of fun, sharing, sex! Then he literally stopped having sex with me in 2005, saying there was something wrong and that he needed to see a doctor(rage though, was evident earlier on). He became completely faithful to his addiction. Prositutes, and smoking crack with them, massage parolurs, peep shows with men, bathouses with men, porn, and when I caught him, he was advertising in Craig’s List for men to come to my home while I was at a class (imagine if the 3 hour class had been cancelled and I turned around to go home!) or to meet up at their homes during the day. In his ads, he also said that if they clicked, maybe they could arrange more trysts! The whole story took four years to come out, the information in dribs and drabs, as may be your case, each additional piece of information more horrible than the last. I went to such a dark place. We started living apart however, but had to stay in touch daily as a result of our business. It was an extrememly painful relationship. He was very angry and shocked at getting caught, although becrying quitting and promising never to do it again wanting to get back together.That was September 2010. He continued to act out until the end of February 2011. I had found out about prostitues in 2008. Initially I railed at the term “co addict” it made me quite angry and defensive, full circle though, I cannot say I was anything else. I saw how I was enabling him, I saw how I was stalling his recovery and mine and made the decision to just stop. Four of the hardest years of my life. In that time, I have held my gound, I have not begged, sold myself out. I let him go to heal himself and take responsibility. He ultimately joined SA (sober for two years now), has provided me with a polygraph (his choice) a completely clean STI check and attends SA twice a week, he has completed and presented his 1st. step, he is slowly learning who his true self is. He show me he loves me. In that time, I learned to love myself, my independence and enjoy my life again. He now want to redevelop pysical intimacy with me, and the thought makes my skin crawl (I was not like that before) I am avoiding any physical contact with him, I don’t know what to think, really, and hope someone has a thought to share. Other than that, believe me when I say, it truly gets better and it was never your fault.
    xoxoxo
    Cold in Canada

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Feb 26, 2013 @ 17:39:29

      i can relate to the difficulty of re-establishing intimacy. when he first got out of treatment i thought we’d never have sex again! we did do a 7 month abstinence agreement (by mutual consent) so we could develop our new relationship without making sex the main “food group.” Gradually, we have started being able to enjoy sex with each other again. It does happen…just takes a lot of work. Still a difficult thing, and honestly we still don’t have sex as often as i’m sure he would like (or as often as I’d like!) but one day at a time….definitely continues to get better if there’s work put into it from both ends….he takes celexa and i take wellbutrin. wellbutrin is an antidepressant that boosts libido. celexa is an antidepressant that suppresses libido. between those two meds we are able to meet in the middle. thanks for your comment!

      Reply

  31. linda
    Feb 21, 2013 @ 20:45:23

    And you may cold for a long time! Have you studied the “narcism”, that goes right along with these immature asses? i SUGGEST YOU LOOK IT UP, AND STUDY IT, PRIOR TO ANY INTiMACY WITH THIS CHARACTER, AS THEY ARE PROFESSIONAL at dragging you back into their web, and as soon as he knows he has you hooked again, back to it he will go. Best of luck to you, hugs

    Reply

  32. Julie
    Feb 26, 2013 @ 18:05:55

    WOW! Thank you all for sharing your in put. You are brave and courageous women to share your stories. I recently found out that my husband has low level 1 SA. We started going to therapy and he has changed dramatically for the better. I wonder if this is a facade. I have set a lot of boundaries and he has followed them. Is this too good to be true and he is manipulating again or is it the real deal. Our therapist feels he has a very high success rate at defeating it. I’m not a doormat and he knows it.
    Thanks

    Reply

    • linda
      Feb 26, 2013 @ 20:02:21

      Just think bout the success rate 5%

      Reply

      • Gloria
        Sep 24, 2013 @ 19:59:06

        Dear Linda
        I just found this site today and started to read the posts and all the replies and yours is the one that really says it like it is. You have no pity or sympathy for men that can do this to their wives and have absolutely no remorse or regret in hurting us just anger and arrogance that they got caught. They might say they do or make promises that they will never hurt us again but in the end it is all fake. I wish I could talk to you and some of the other wives in person. It’s so hard never meeting and becoming friends with other wives going through this as they are the only real friendships that I could truly open up to. Good luck on your new life without him, you deserve better.

  33. Sherri
    Mar 30, 2013 @ 22:00:06

    I really think you can learn why you married a sex addict by leaving and going into therapy yourself. That’s what I plan on doing. I will be with no one until I can be healthy and trust myself to pick someone else who is healthy. If that isn’t possible, then I’d rather be alone for the rest of my life. That’s how terrible this is. I do understand that it’s all a very personal decision. Good luck to you. :)

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 01, 2013 @ 02:42:27

      thanks for your comment! i absolutely agree that you can definitely learn the ‘whys’ and ‘hows’ by leaving and getting into therapy yourself. if that’s your plan, then i wish you nothing but peace & healing and grace for the journey! it is such a personal and complicated decision whether to stay or go…that’s why i titled the post ‘why i stay’ vs ‘why everyone should stay’ :) and you’re right- it’s absolutely a terrible situation to be in no matter which way you approach it. thanks for sharing your experience, strength, & hope.

      Reply

  34. helen
    Apr 03, 2013 @ 20:08:19

    Julie.
    My situation sounds the same as yours we are 16 months into recovery . He knows I’m a strong women and I believe he is working hard, the problem we have now is trust and I seem to investigate everything he says and does as I fear being made a fool of, he knows if my investigations find any discrepancies this is the end. I have the same issues with is he a truth teller or a manipulator, the only thing I can think of is if they do lie now we know what we are looking for.

    P.S I was not co-dependent and had no idea what he was up to. .keep going until its not worth it and I’m sure we would know.

    Reply

  35. Do I Wait?
    Apr 04, 2013 @ 15:18:59

    3 1/2 weeks ago I discovered my husband had an affair with a lady from my son’s baseball team. She was a predator and dressed in mini skirts and high heels to a ballpark! I had to push and push for him to admit it although I had tons of information and proof. After he finally broke down—he still never admitted it verbally—but it was clear he had sex and a relationship with her for over 4 months. I asked him that same night if there was anyone else and he adamantly stated “NO!” I told him I had found e-mails and pictures of himself for online dating sites. He stated that there was one time that he contacted a girl from the dating sites and had phone sex. One time! I immediately got us a sex addiction/marriage counselor—one of the best in the area. We went within 2 days and the therapist stated how important it was to be transparent, open and honest at this time or it will forever damage me and cause another complete collapse. He said “i understand and there was no there was no one else.” We seemed to be making progress in therapy–he was willing to go to individual and couple sessions. We even began to have amazing desire and compassion again, like we did when we first met 19 years ago. Then this past Sunday, he asked if he could go to a MLB game with his buddies and I got defensive thinking he started to have an attitude of “Honey, I’m back.”, while I was still suffering tremendously inside. Something still didn’t sit right with the “one time” phone sex thing so I asked him to look at the phone records with me. He immediately seemed anxious, short, and different. I discovered he had talked to a girl in NY over 15 times and found at least a dozen more phone sex contacts. Despite all the online chat room become live phone sex, I discovered ANOTHER AFFAIR with someone he works with that took place for 10 months prior to the woman he met at the baseball field. He met her in California on a “business trip” one time last May, says they had sex “two times.” and then they continued to talk and sometimes have phone sex or facetime sex. I am sooooooooo devastated I can’t eat, sleep, or focus on anything. I have two small children and can barely get lunches packed.
    We just saw our counselor and we have discussed inpatient rehab for his now diagnosable sex addiction. He is willing to go and has done a lot to convince me that he wants to stay with me. Why does he continue to lie? How do you ever trust him again? I am afraid after he gets through intensive therapy that A LOT more will reveal itself! I have read on many many websites that there is ALWAYS more…..this terrifies me! Is this true?
    I can’t thank you enough for this positive website as there are too many confusing negative ones that say I should just pack my bags now. The truth is, I still love him, although at the moment I have NO feelings towards him and feel used when I had sex with him the past few weeks. He is a good father and our two little ones will be forever changed if I make a fight or flight decision to leave now.
    The therapist said to hang in there until he commits himself to inpt. rehab which he is planning to attend in 6 weeks and see him through the next phase of his recovery. The statistics of 5% scares the heck out of me.
    Please shed some light……….

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 04, 2013 @ 15:27:15

      thanks for your comment. i’m so sorry for all the pain i imagine you must be in. While i am not you, and have no idea what this is like for you, i can definitely relate to the situation and the feelings. If your hubs is willing to inpatient and you have the financial resources to do it, I definitely recommend that and can honestly say that my husband’s willingness to do in-patient was what enabled him to get and stay sober. Does everybody “need” rehab? of course not. can people get sober without it? yup. but if you have the means, and he is willing, i say go ASAP. There are only a handful of places in the country that specialize in sex addiction- mine spent 6 months at The Meadows of Wickenburg in Arizona. I can’t say enough good things about the place. They do a 6 week treatment program, with one of those weeks being ‘family week’ where you get to go and in a safe and structured environment be able to work through some of the big issues. after the 6 weeks they offer several options for after care- my hubs went through the 6 week treatment and the a few months in the Dakota house aftercare program for sex addicts, then relapsed and went back for 3 more months at the Mellody House for trauma treatment. He has now been clean and sober more than a year. for me, new things definitely came up that i wasn’t prepared for. at the same time, the horror at the “new” discoveries ultimately resulted in immense relief. after so many years of feeling suspicious and crazy, it was such a relief to know that a) i wasn’t crazy, and b) i could handle any truth that he had to give me, including the revelation that he had been sleeping with my best friend- in our home- in our bed while i was at work, and that he was having anonymous sexual encounters (unprotected) with men and women. you are strong, and you have made it this far. get YOURSELF the support you need (recommend COSA or S-Anon groups) and please feel free to drop me a line anytime.

      Reply

  36. helen
    Apr 05, 2013 @ 18:25:00

    to,do I wait !
    The best advise I have been given is to do nothing for a year and watch what happens and then you can make a choice. My husband disclosed all his affairs over a period of six months and it was horrific because just when I thought I had it all he would disclose more. He was advised to tell all but now tells me he was afraid of what would happen, I know that was selfish but they don’t think like us. He has told me he lived in fantasy/bubble world and thought he was not harming anyone! He said until he hit ‘rock bottom’ he did not see reality. we are 16 months down the line and some things are better and in some ways I see a better man than the one before but I still have concerns, like you about the 5% recovery rate and I have problems with the truth and trust in the relationship,i feel some of this stems from the staggered disclosure.

    Reply

  37. helen
    Apr 07, 2013 @ 10:45:00

    Can anyone throw some light on a situation I have with my recovering addict, we struggle with trust, but he doesn’t seem to be able to get to grips that trust is built with truth and honesty. I can relay a conversation back to him and explain how it is not helping with trust and truth and he says hes spent so many years being a liar and ducking and diving he almost does not know how to give a direct or consistent answers, this is now driving me mad.
    Has anyone experienced this and how did you manage this ?

    Reply

  38. Cold in Canada
    Apr 07, 2013 @ 15:40:22

    Here’s some of my thoughts; firstly, damaged brain= mental illness, mental illness=addictions, mental illness + addictions=seriously damaged brain. Faulty wiring is what my recovering addict is dealing with. I realized that taking one behavior pattern out of a whole system didn’t change his true nature, which is a seriously mentally ill individual. As your partner said, it doesn’t naturally occur to him to be honest! He’s telling the truth. In one of the SA books entitled Recovery Continues, a segment is devoted to the effects of the shock of discovery, and in retrospect, although shocked to my knees, I’m sure he suffered considerably more, that alone takes time and help to recover from for both, hard to accept, but both are mortally wounded. Anyway, please give yourself a break, you can’t fix him, you’re not his mother, it really is not your fault, go out and have a good time! Don’t get mired in the obsession of “why”, you’ll drive yourself mad and will never get an answer. Don’t let this is be the hill you want to die on.
    Take care!
    Cold in Canada

    Reply

  39. dbiscuit
    Apr 07, 2013 @ 15:43:04

    “I realized that taking one behavior pattern out of a whole system didn’t change his true nature, which is a seriously mentally ill individual” ….LOVE this Cold in Canada. so true and perfectly worded. I wish i had known this at the beginning, because i was obsessed with “making sure” his behavior stopped. Once we started looking at the entire system (and how i interacted with the system) we started to get healthier.

    Reply

  40. helen
    Apr 07, 2013 @ 17:50:47

    thanks for that. he has been working so hard to change his ways and this is our most recent hurdle ! Just to let you know i do look after myself and have fun, probably more than he can unfortunately,but hopefully we will get there.
    I do enjoys this site as others seem to condemn anyone who tries to save their marriage. love to all who ever has to experience this sad situation.

    Reply

  41. helen
    Apr 10, 2013 @ 10:14:22

    hi, I have another question,my husband is in recovery and appears to be doing well and there are times when I think I am and we both are as a couple, then suddenly from nowhere I become this angry women like something evil and he takes it. He says its the painful truth and he cant deny it, when I say terrible things.
    Does this happen to anyone else ? after I’m drained and sad at what I have done and how I have reacted as I can honestly say I’m truly hurtful and hateful towards him when it happens.

    Reply

  42. April
    Apr 10, 2013 @ 12:25:57

    I feel like all I do is look for answers, understanding and peace. My story is similiar to others, though perhaps not as traumatic. I’ve known my fiance for 16 years. We have been best friends for most of those years. Both of us divorced with kids. As his friend, I’ve known everything about him. Including his issues with porn and his abusive childhood. So..when we both realized we fell in love with each other, I thought that those issues weren’t going to be apart of our life together because we “loved” each other.

    Two years ago, after we have been dating for 3 years I found sexting on his cell phone. I confronted him, he said he was sick and was going to get help. I left him for two months. He began seeing a therapist and than eventually our lives continued. I chose to just move on from it and continue our lives together. We lived seperately..miles apart and saw eachother about 2 to 3 times a week. During this time, his life was shattering. Money problems, unemployment, unresolved issues with his family, etc. The one good thing was us. We were friends, we talked…our goal was to merge our famiies.

    Last August I found out I was pregnant. 38 years old and pregnant with my 4th child. Him in his mid 40′s now expecting his 3rd child..We were both freaked out. We were not yet living together and had yet to even consider it. I was so focused on myself and my children and what the future would hold, I was blind to the triggers and signs that I knew were there. He proposed to me on December 24th. He actually took the time and made me a ring. It is a beautiful ring that symbolizes us and our soon to be 6 children. It was wonderful. So..we found a wonderful house that fits us all and started our life together.

    After living together for a month, I saw on his computer a chat from a few months ago with a “woman”. I confronted him and everything came out. He had been “acting out” for over 10 months. His acting out is online porn, online chatting and phone sex. He has never been with another woman. At least I have that. But, to me, talking with another woman and reaping the benefits from it is cheating. It has been almost two months since “D” day. This time around I’m different. He is different. He immediately began a 12 step program, sought the couselling of a “sex addict” therapist, put accountability programs on all computers and phones, offered complete disclosure and has shown me that he is trying. I myself have sought counselling, attend a 12 step and know more about “sex addiction” than a professional!

    I’m due to have our baby any day now. I have told him that I will not marry him at this time. I have set my boundaries and am strong enough to follow through with them should he relapse. We talk every night and are building our intimacy. It is like we are starting all over again. Thankfully, at the end of the day when the world shattered, we still had that friendship that was there from 16 years ago. So we live day by day, pray, have hope and faith, and live each day to the fullest. Is it easy? Not at all! I have my moments and I am fearful most of the time. But, whether or not him and I will have a happily ever after is unknown. What I do know is that I will have a man in my life, perhaps just as a friend, but a man who I care about and love, who is good and loves his children. I will be accepting of whatever path the Good Lord puts in front of me.

    Reply

  43. linda
    Apr 11, 2013 @ 11:49:25

    Good luck to you, how can you be sure you got a full disclosure, almost every case I know about, full disclosure was never given at one time, it was over a long period of time.. I am positive, I never got a full disclosure! Be mindfull, these men are professional munipulators!

    Reply

    • Jbry
      Apr 11, 2013 @ 12:53:18

      Staggered disclosure seems to be the norm. My husband said he was never sure what piece of information would be the last straw, so he would hide the “really bad” stuff- as if it wasn’t all bad. We noticed over a 6 month period though, anything he didnt tell me about usually either lured him back or popped up. It took a while for him to understand to stop, he had to say it. And I think it took a while for him to believe I wasn’t going to pack up and leave. Mines still in recovery- they always are- but to stay with him I think takes more out of you than leaving would. I’m not saying you didn’t get the full disclosure, but be prepared that most likely you didn’t.
      I also recommend you have a game plan for what happens if and when he relapses. On a side note, one thing that seemed to help my husband is setting an alarm on his phone. Twice a day, when he wakes up and in the evening when he’d normally settle onto the computer, an alarm goes off that says “you are sober for your family and your God. This is what you fight for each day”. It helps keep motivation at the front of his mind.

      Good luck. This is a difficult road no matter how “severe” the addiction and I wouldn’t wish it on an enemy.

      Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 16, 2013 @ 17:01:06

      totally agree. it took probably a year and a half for the full story to come out…in horrible pieces here and pieces there….one thing that helped me was to tell myself that anything i need to know will be revealed to me when i need to know it if i practice self-care and maintain serenity on my side of the street.

      Reply

    • Gloria
      Sep 25, 2013 @ 14:56:29

      So very true!

      Reply

  44. helen
    Apr 11, 2013 @ 16:51:13

    Please tell me why you wrote ‘ and when he relapses’
    I don’t think I could face that.
    To me relapse means full blown acting out and a slip means porn or masturbation.please comment

    My husband was shocked by his diagnosis and has worked hard and changed everything in his life etc.Ii know they can be very manipulative ( i have experienced it) but am I wrong to believe this man now he seems to be doing everything to change.

    Reply

  45. helen
    Apr 11, 2013 @ 17:14:57

    Sorry just had to come back, I have been there with you all and I’m not co-dependent and not a foolish women and know what they are , I am also a professional women who could support herself. My husband was a perfect husband he loved us all and would do anything for us, yes I know he did the worst thing in the world to us and caused the most immense heartache, but I feel these men are doomed everywhere I search for help support etc there is only negativity. what about the percentage that do make it ? I am not trying to be difficult but what hope is there for us if we continually make our own lives filled with doom, and what about science and new treatments/prevention’s if we do not have any hope or encouragement we all may as well pack are bags and go now.

    Reply

  46. Dcranford
    Apr 11, 2013 @ 18:22:57

    I am very new to this. Even though i lnew mu boyfriend was an addict before we got serious because of his honesty in the beginning he was in recovery for many months before i saw what the addiction really was. I chose to stay. Not out of desperation need or weakness but because I truly love him. I am criticized for the decision I’ve made but I am glad to see that there are others like me out there. You are a strong woman. Keep it up. Thanks for the inspiration you have given this newcomer. :-)

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 16, 2013 @ 16:59:40

      grace for your journey! i would never wish this “partners of sex addicts” life on anyone, but i’ve found an amazing group of strong women through this experience. welcome to the club :)

      Reply

  47. Moving forward!!!!
    Apr 12, 2013 @ 01:03:53

    I just received your email and I wanted to respond. I don’t normally reply and just read them but as a mother of two boys I wanted to share. I have been with my sa and he had been lying about recovery every step of the way. He pays a lot of money for help but deep down I know the truth. I am a young girl and have been with him for 15 years!!! He recently filed for divorce but he won’t leave. He will never leave me!!! It is me who needs to make the change!!! And I found someone to help me with that but I can’t leave bc I am trying so hard to fix him for my kids!! We have a great life!!! Minus the addictions bc it’s never just one!!! There’s so much more under them that only years after talking to women in the program that comes to surface!!! I talked to a friend this week who only knows a small amount of what’s really going on and her advice was to me to run!!! Run as fast as you can!!! I started talking to a guy friend who is going through a divorce and I like him alot but I am putting him to the back bc I love my family not my husbands addiction but my family!!! So reading that this is only a boyfriend I want to tell you to run!!! Run as fast as you can!!! I am a very strong willed person but its hard when they are your kids father!!! They have problems that takes years to over come!!!!

    Reply

    • helen
      Apr 19, 2013 @ 08:37:23

      its time and your the only that can make the choices at the end of the day. some say time apart does good. I know in my situation after disclosure I asked him to leave and he did he knew it was terrible what he had done to his wife and kids and at this point he hit’ rock bottom’, he thought he had lost us all. This pushed him into recovery, but I know its not the same for every individual. Good luck.
      P.S we still have a long way to go.
      x

      Reply

  48. helen
    Apr 14, 2013 @ 12:26:06

    I’m having a day where I want us to separate, do any of you have these?
    Their strange wired brains are the issue. We have just been to church and I saw him looking at a blonde in church, when I said I saw you looking he said he wasn’t, I assured him I wasn’t blind, we then had, he felt accused ! so said he wasn’t, we then got in the car and he said he was looking but not in a way I thought however the damage was done, he had lied. I’ve tried to explain what damage this does but they are really self absorbed. We are 16 months post discovery and I don’t think there is much left of me to deal with any more of his sh**.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 16, 2013 @ 16:58:31

      i absolutely have days like that too! sometimes we do “planned separations” where we take a few days off from the strains of everyday life. not a license to act out, but a chance to step back and get some breathing room, get space for self care, etc. the lies are too hard to live with, so when he is struggling with that then we separate until we both can get back to a state of sanity. i wish they would understand that the lies are worse than the behaviors, but unfortunately it comes as a package deal…

      Reply

  49. helen
    Apr 16, 2013 @ 21:09:02

    do they ever stop lying ? Mine is going back to the shrink to talk about his lies and lying as its now really getting to me. Its odd as I don’t feel or believe he is acting out, I just think he has spent his whole life telling lies he doesn’t know how to tell the truth.

    Reply

  50. helen
    Apr 17, 2013 @ 17:29:50

    hi d, just looking at your reply on the 16th again,I wonder why they lie when they are recovering ? is it fear what the could loose? is it deception ? or do they just not know how to tell the truth ? My sa thinks he is telling the truth, when I ask a question that requires a direct answer that could be difficult for him we go round in circles until we get there and he believes this is the truth, even though a yes or no would have been enough, I guess it years of deflection and distortion so they aren’t found out.

    Reply

  51. helen
    Apr 19, 2013 @ 08:48:20

    oh what a roller coaster we ride !
    x

    Reply

  52. helen
    Apr 23, 2013 @ 21:15:23

    Can anyone tell me if there in a position yet that they feel safe and secure with their partner

    Reply

  53. Cold in Canada
    Apr 23, 2013 @ 22:05:58

    I don’t believe so, however you can probably count on yourself, security with an addict/mentally ill person would be an illusion, because there is no cure. What you can do, is be secure with that. My sober husband (2+ years (?), SA for the same) in an angry rage informed me that he has been scouring dating websites looking for me, as he believes that I must be cheating! Doesn’t sound like the truth to me!! Do you know how much that upset me? Not too damn much. Take care, and enjoy yourself! Life is far too short to worry about where somebody’s putting it, and when you think about it that way, why would you care? Because you love him?

    Reply

  54. helen
    Apr 24, 2013 @ 16:40:13

    I do care because I don’t want to be where I was about 16 months ago and I fear for my health. I have given him the opportunity to recovery and have said it will be completely over if carries on ! The terrible situation is you cannot believe what they say but have to await !!!

    Reply

  55. helen
    Apr 24, 2013 @ 16:50:49

    cold in Canada, I forgot to add that I do feel for you as I don’t know if I could cope with that, what a strong women you must be.

    Reply

  56. Cold in Canada
    Apr 25, 2013 @ 02:38:48

    Helen,

    I wish we could speak as opposed to typing. I fear you misunderstand me, I am not suffering at any level, it’s because I moved out of fantasyland and accepted the reality of mental illness/addiction. I don’t spend one second of my time agonizing over what my sa may be doing or not, unless, YOU are having sex with an active addict, then I’d worry. Just because someone caught someone, or someone slipped up, it sure doesn’t mean solid mental health and honesty is going to start the next day, it’s a very, very long process, and partners HAVE to let go and get on with their own lives, REGARDLESS, make yourself safe in as best a fashion as you can and quit watching the bugger!

    Take care!

    Reply

  57. helen
    Apr 25, 2013 @ 19:59:06

    Hi Cold in Canada, I didn’t mean to sound patronizing, sorry if I did, its just terrible we have to live with all this and it is so confusing. I don’t know if I’m hard or unrealistic but my career is in health and I do understand a bit about addictions
    ( but never thought I would be trying to cope with it) and I think that’s why I write about not being able to cope/deal with certain actions. I’ve still got a long way to go mentally myself never mind my sa.

    Thank you all for communications it feels good to talk and express, I do think your right ‘cold in Canada’ sometimes writing doesn’t always come across as it should and chatting would be better. I’m just grateful though we communicate like this.
    x

    Reply

  58. Andrea
    Apr 28, 2013 @ 00:21:50

    I just stumbled upon this website today. My sa and I have been married 5 1/2 years. He’s had issues with porn and affairs with women with both know (for the most part). His last major acting out was in 2010 (that I knew of). He donated a kidney to my father in 2011 and we went through 3 rounds of fertility treatments ( I didn’t know he was a sa at this time). January 2012, we began the adoption process with a young birth mom. Our daughter was due in June. About a month or so into this adoption (I’m still under the ruse that everything is finally great) I am told about another affair with his assistant managers wife. This affair went on all through the InVitro rounds and the kidney donation. This woman has done any and everything she can to ruing our lives from making up lies to his company and getting him stripped of his promotion (I know this wouldn’t have happened if not for his actions) to creating an alter ego on fb and sending our birth mom and some of her friends/family and us and our friends/family a message about what horrible people we are and how he screws anything that walks and I’m just a sad, fat excuse for a wife. Our birth mom knew us pretty well at the point this was done. We explained to her that we were in counseling and didn’t know where our marriage was headed. We respected her decision if she wanted to choose another family, although it would be heartbreaking. She stuck it out with us. My sa got involved with a CSAT for personal counseling and also went through a SA recovery group ($$$) at the counseling center. I didn’t do anything except hold on to anger and deal with this crazy woman and all her stunts. The first week our daughter was home, I had to call the police on her 3 times. Anyway, my husband completed the 6 month program from July of last year to January of this year. During this time, he also went to SA meetings and continued individual counseling. Nonetheless, I couldn’t stand being around him and asked him to leave. He moved out the day after Christmas. A good bit of the time, he spent at our home. He would come over and stay til 9 or so at night, then go home. We would talk or facetime but I still had SO much anger. It wasn’t until about a month a go that I started coming around to the idea of getting help for me and slowly been letting go of the anger. He has continued counseling but only once a month. He also hasn’t been to a meeting since the intensive therapy group ended in January. I’ve seen small improvements in some areas, while I’ve seen him back off a lot of other areas. Now that I’ve started researching all this, I’ve really begun to understand the disconnect/illness of it all and I’ve also seen some codependencies in myself. I thought we had come to a mutual understanding that I would begin individual therapy for myself while he continues his, and that we would also begin marital therapy. Shortly after agreeing to this, he was acting out of sorts for a couple of days and I asked him who she is. He told me he met this girl that’s a teller at a bank next to his work. We talked about a few other things and then took a break. About a week later, we addressed our marriage, our daughter and our future path. At this time he told me that this new girl makes him feel really good and he hasn’t felt that way in a very long time and he’s not sure he’s willing to give that up and that I was only willing to work on this now because of the other girl. I was in crazy mode for a couple of days when I finally called in to a COSA meeting. The next evening I went to my first SA-ANON meeting. I cried at both for the first time in a very long time. Somehow that helped a little. Since then, I’ve only communicated with him about our almost 11 month old daughter and bills. I’ve been reading a lot of books (and material) related to SA and their partners (spouses) and am trying to put my faith in the Man upstairs. Taking it one day at a time. I don’t know where this will lead. I want our family to be together and I believe our daughter should have a chance at having a her parents together, but only if it can be a happy, healthy family. I know I can’t control his current actions, but it’s still hard to accept. I don’t know why it shocks me that he is openly having a relationship with this new woman, but it does. He’s even babysat her daughter a couple of times. He doesn’t come to the house anymore to spend time with us. He see’s his daughter twice a week for a few hours and then ever other weekend. Thats it. He’s completely overcome by this sh*& again and I’m just at a loss. I’m doing my best to take care of myself and my daughter first, but it blows my mind that he’d “let go” of her daughter so quickly. Can anyone shed some light on what I need to do? I’ve thought about seeking an attorney to do a temporary hearing for the remainder of our separation (minimum 8 months) stating we are not allowed to see other people or there will be x, y, and z consequences, but then I feel like that’s just me trying to control the situation. Being honest with myself, I suppose it’s somewhat about that, but it also has A LOT to do with me not wanting him to bring this other woman or her daughter around my daughter right now when he has her. He says he hasn’t and he would never do that, but I can’t believe him. Please help!!

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Apr 29, 2013 @ 11:51:57

      Andrea, interesting story and sorry that you had to go through this. My wife has had to deal with this in me. Healing can happen. I thank God she had stayed with me through the truely hellish times. Today we have a strong marriage. I’d like to invite you to my blog (deadtosinaliveinchrist.com) if you choose to gain some insight. As a sex addict myself, I think it is safe to say most of us hate what we have done.

      I am reading a really good book to “Wired for Intimacy” written by a Christian Brain Researcher. In that book he tells how the brain in men work and how hard this addiction is. Not as an excuse but as a way to understand the neurological pathways we have built because of our own actions. By understanding how the brain works, it gives us help to retrain our brains.

      Last, I want to be holy for God, but I also want to be holy for my bride.

      Chris

      Reply

      • Donna
        Aug 23, 2013 @ 10:49:11

        You say you are not in a twelve step program.I find this fact interesting .Is it because you can’t kidd the kidders?

      • Chris Painter
        Aug 25, 2013 @ 00:41:26

        I used to go but I don’t anymore. It is not that I can’t kid the kidders. I do not think those who embrace the 12 step sexaholics anonymous program are kidders first of all. I think they are serious about sobriety. As for me it is not what I needed to be free. Not every program works for all people and that program did not fit me. I needed an even more personal interaction from several trusted Godly men. I have those men permission to monitor my Internet usage through my computers, phone and iPad using x3watch software. Hopefully this answers your question.

  59. helen
    Apr 28, 2013 @ 19:44:29

    GOSH, I feel for you what a difficult situation you are in, may the man upstairs shine down on you. As we have all heard many times you are the only one that can make decisions, but give yourself time, seek help,support and take one day at a time. My best support has been a sexual psychotherapist.
    I know this all seems so difficult to do but do try and think about your beautiful daughter.

    They are sick (mentally ill) individuals and they cant always see that .
    God bless

    Reply

  60. Chris Painter
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 13:11:09

    I am blessed that my wife chose to stay with me too. We have a good marriage now thanks to hard work from both of us and especially the ability to forgive each other. I thank God he put it in her heart to not give up when it could have been easy to leave. Have you ever heard of a book called Wired for Intimacy by William Struthers? If not it is worth a look especially for you in the therapy world. I think this blog will be worthy of following.

    In Christ,

    Chris

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Apr 29, 2013 @ 14:03:37

      Hi Chris,
      Thank you for your input. It is always helpful to have the perspective from the other side of the street. We would like to invite you to email us a guest post anytime you would like to be included on our website, and if we use it we’d gladly direct people over to your blog! -DB

      Reply

  61. Cold in Canada
    Apr 29, 2013 @ 17:35:18

    To Chris,

    Interesting comment, do you mind if I ask what your wife needed forgiveness for, how long you have been sober and do you attend SA meetings? I appreciate your consideration of these ?
    Thanks

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Apr 29, 2013 @ 23:24:39

      My wife needed forgiveness from me because when we got married, that very day, she shut down sexually because of the shame of us having sex before marriage. That shame was the result of a promise that she made with God. However, she never told me this until way later in our marriage. All I knew was that my new wife, no longer was interested in having sex. Though she would have sex with me, I could tell that she would rather not that is a show stopper for me. Before marriage we were very sexually expressive and adventurous. Again, after the wedding the brakes were on.

      All of that to say that an already sex addicted man who had been enjoying his future wife, was immediately frustrated beyond description. Now for the most important part of this background. She is not my excuse for my behavior. I chose and sometimes chose again to look at porn. Every time I reap what I sow so to speak. Her behavior during that time was her choice.

      How long have I been sober, a week. I am still fighting. I go a long time and start to have confidence but then something triggers me and before any image is before my eyes, I am drunk with lust. Still no excuse but that is the truth. I am desperate to be free. I have several accountability partners, software on my computer and still, there are times when I just can’t say no. Even when I know that they will be calling me out asking me what the heck I am doing. I hate this sin. It is not manly. It kills mens souls.

      To your last question. Do I attend SA meetings? I have in the past, but currently do not attend. I have been considering going back though. When I first started going, I wasn’t really wanting to give up on porn. But I felt like I had to. That was back when my wife discovered my problem and how amazingly deep in I was. I have come so far from where I was then.

      I wish that I could say to you and anyone who reads my blog that I miraculously found freedom and that I never lust but for me at this moment would simply be a lie. Perhaps maybe and only by the grace of God will he grant me that wish.

      Hopefully by stepping out and trying to help men and women through my experiences, even before I am completely sober, I can become sober. There is something very powerful in fellowship. This is an epic battle and I intend to win with God’s strength.

      There is a book that I think anyone who is affected by sex addictions, whether the addict themselves or family members, should read. The title is Wired for Intimacy by William Struthers who is a neurologist. He explains how the brain works in men chemically and how interacting with pornography actually affects the brain in men exactly the same way that heroine and cocain does.

      Seeking freedom,

      Chris

      Reply

  62. billy
    May 01, 2013 @ 18:29:31

    oh dear !

    Reply

  63. helen
    May 01, 2013 @ 18:31:27

    There for the grace of god go my husband and I.

    Reply

  64. helen
    May 01, 2013 @ 19:41:46

    Chris, you talk about healing and recovery with a weeks sobriety !
    Please enlighten me.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 05, 2013 @ 01:05:48

      Helen,

      As I began to answer your last question, I thought it would be easy to explain. It isn’t easy however and below I give it my best shot. Perhaps this quick summary gets to the main point of it all. This sin hurts. It hurts me, it hurts my wife. Men don’t actually like porn the way many think we do. It is hell. It is never satisfying like our beautiful wives are. It leaves an empty shell of a man (that is what I was). It brings shame upon my head. If left unchecked it will literally kill you. I almost committed suicide (twice) because of all the pain it caused me, my family, and kids. I wanted to end the pain and to ease the pain for my wife by leaving the world for her.

      The only way I am here today is because I want to be something much different. I want to live in purity and I believe that I am on track to do just that.

      I talk about heeling and recovery, even with a slip up last week, because this recovery is a process. You cannot just flip a switch after 15 years of porn, and masterbation, and quit and never struggle with it again. It alters your mind physically and chemically. Anyone who says otherwise is either lying about it, never struggled with this atrocious cancer, or never took the time to do proper research about it. Instead people want to demonize the people who struggle with it.

      Your Husbands Brain on Porn is just like a Brain on Drugs

      This is like the struggle to eat healthy and work out for some people. You know it is the right thing to do, but for some reason you are too weak to do it consistently. Or perhaps you eat one delectable piece of dark chocholate and say that will be your last one. But on the table is a bowl of them, and so you have one more, and one more. Afterward you feel guilty and shameful for not being able to control yourself, not to mention how it affects the body. That is what porn is like, except porn acts on your body just like Herioin and Cocain.

      I’ve gone long periods with out looking at porn and masterbating but then in a weak moment, I threw all that away. But I picked myself back up again and keep going towards the goal of freedom.

      The most important part of all of this, Helen, is communication and love. You must be willing to hear about his struggles by allowing him to come to you and share them with you. That is very hard. It was for my wife until she stopped associating what I was doing as an act against her personally. It is the one major weakness that I have that Satan is exploiting. Since I have been here on this blog and writing my own, these attacks have come raining down.

      If your husband really is sorry (not just that he got caught) and wants to change and is actively taking steps toward that end, then he is doing his part. Your part in the relationship is forgiveness, which is WAY hard to do. It took my wife four years to finally forgive me. The day that she forgave me, EVERYTHING changed for us. Not just a forgiveness of the past, but also for the future. She was once again my safe place to fall. I could share my struggles with her, and she was understanding and not angry. When I say understanding, I don’t mean accepting my behavior, but rather acknowledging that I had a weak moment and failed to win one of many battles in this war.

      I have tried my best to explain how I can talk with authority about healing and recovery even though I struggle. It is because this has been a BIG BATTLE for me the past ten years (since I began working this out).

      I sincerely hope that this helps, even just a little. I am willing to talk more, answer more questions if you need to. I may even try to get my wife to talk to you if you like. She is the one who had to forgive me so she can help you understand better from a wife’s perspective.

      God Bless

      Reply

      • dbiscuit
        May 05, 2013 @ 01:41:18

        Hi Chris,
        Thank you for a really honest and vulnerable explanation of what life is like from your side of the street. I agree that recovery is a process and not a destination, and that if a marriage is going to work that as partners we need to practice acceptance & forgiveness (which like you said is NOT the same as tolerance) with healthy boundaries. That is a HARD realization to come to, and it sounds like you and your wife are working it out together, which like you said, is a battle. Thank you for sharing your experience, strength, & hope

  65. Cold in Canada
    May 01, 2013 @ 20:16:26

    I’m with Helen, could use a little enlightenment myself, that’s why I asked those ?

    Reply

  66. helen
    May 04, 2013 @ 20:19:49

    Can anyone give me ideas how to cope with anger. it is less frequent theses days however, when I do get angry with me sa he/ we know about it and its not doing any of us any good . I find I get angry if something triggers me, unfortunately I cant always spot the trigger coming. Does anyone know when this stops.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 05, 2013 @ 01:36:51

      Helen,

      What is very, very interesting about your question on how to deal with the anger is how you describe the triggers and the fact that you don’t always see them coming.

      That is exactly like it is with sexual temptation. There are triggers. Because of complacency, I don’t always see them coming.

      Red flags for me are when I a lonely, hungry or tired. When more than one of these are present, the possibility of something, anything setting me off is enormous. It may not be porn that I go to but all of the images that still populate my mind. Then the downward spiral begins. That is when I have to talk to my accountability partner. If I don’t, say by-by to my mind for a while.

      Reply

    • linda
      May 05, 2013 @ 16:02:52

      Yes, get out, leave, deal with the anger you have, go through the grieving process, and when the anger is gone, it will not return, staying will just keep hurting, over and over again!

      Reply

      • Chris Painter
        May 05, 2013 @ 16:25:52

        Bad advice Linda. What are the statistics for divorce? And then remarriage? You are suggesting giving up one problem for a whole set of more problems. You see, some of us made a promise and want to keep it. For better or worse. At times it is worse, but the four years it took for us to get through hell were WORTH IT! Now we help each other through hard times.

        Why do women just want to quite when it gets hard? Is there anyone with strength anymore? Do we lose the concept that we should help those who are weak?

        Of course these are my values based on Christianity and don’t match the secular world.

        Love is stronger, but only if you can love.

  67. linda
    May 05, 2013 @ 15:59:24

    Hungary, tired or lonely, wow, guess your wife will need to keep her eyes open, we all get tired, hungary, and or lonely, it does not mean we are so special, or so, entitled, that we need these met asap. What about your wife, she has needs as well. Sex Addiction, I truly am coming to believe, is just a label given out, to cover up for a far more serious condition, MENTAL ILLNESS. All this is so sad, and so sick, these empty, heartless people, causing so much hurt in the life of their spouses, and children. Just who the he…. do they think they are!

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 05, 2013 @ 16:21:01

      Linda,

      I appreciate you engaging in this discussion. It also hurts that you would label me as heartless. My wife loves me with passion and knows that I am anything but heartless. I am in all other ways a very, very good husband. I have a huge heart and I love deeply. To your first point, my wife is in no way responsible for feeding me or making sure I sleep properly. Loneliness comes with my job since I travel for a living as a pilot. Those things are my responsibility. That is the first mistake wives make when dealing with sex addiction, feeling like there is something they need to do to fix their man or kick them to the curb. People who label men like me the way that you just did are suffering from issues possibly as deep as my issue. My wife will admit in a second that there are some major things that are flaws in her that have a negative impact on our relationship and she would never call me sick or empty hearted and I would never do that to her.

      I take care of my wife’s needs, and she takes care of my needs. It is give and take.

      I am only entitled to the consequences of MY own actions. I am entitled to hunger when I don’t feed my self, fatigue when I do not rest, and loneliness when I choose not to connect in any way I can with my wife and children when I am on the road .

      As far as sex addiction, believe what you want but it is a mental disorder. It chemically reprograms your brain. Is it an excuse for bad behavior? ABSOLUTELY NOT. I do not subscribe to the idea that his is just who I am. That is why I seek help from trusted friends, councilors and my wife.

      I am ashamed of people who label me and men before they look at themselves and realize that the hurt they just expressed to dislike, heaped it upon another person.

      Reply

    • DB
      May 05, 2013 @ 16:49:45

      Just wanted to chime in here to gently remind everyone of the traditions/steps: we keep the focus on ourselves, we do not scold, preach, judge, or give advice, & we focus on our own feelings, experience, etc. thank you all for a spirited discussion and for being part of keeping this community safe for both the addicts & the partners.

      Reply

      • helen
        May 05, 2013 @ 18:48:38

        Having never done any 12 step work did not know this.

      • dbiscuit
        May 05, 2013 @ 19:21:10

        grace to you too helen! like i said to chris, i believe in the good and the capacity of all of us to heal, and everyone’s journey looks totally different. if there was a linear way from “sick” to “healthy” I definitely know I’d be the first one on that path! Sex addiction is much more messy and ambiguous. I’d encourage you to check out COSA or S-Anon literature if you are curious about 12 step work, but a good rule of thumb is to try to focus on your experience and your feelings in response to how the acting out behaviors impact you using “I” words, & not necessarily attribute meaning or judgment or even give much focus to the behaviors (though of course the behaviors matter and 100% effects us as partners!) I have sat in 12 step meetings where all we did was “vent” about the behaviors of the addict and how “sick” they were. These meetings never made me feel better- in fact, it made me feel worse! The meetings where i was able to get my mind OFF the addict’s story and focus on my own was the place where my healing journey was able to truly begin.

      • Chris Painter
        May 05, 2013 @ 19:08:18

        Sorry, DId not mean to scald or preach. Just make aware that calling some one heartless was not very nice. I realize everyone has a different story. Perhaps I am rare among SA’s

      • dbiscuit
        May 05, 2013 @ 19:16:02

        grace grace to you chris… and everyone else here. We are all hurting or we wouldn’t be here, and we are all interested in healing and recovery or we wouldn’t be here. I put this blog together to give myself and everyone who wants to join a safe space to explore, to ask questions, to vent with healthy boundaries (using “I” statements in response to different things and to focus on our emotions in reaction to the behaviors of ourselves and others), and to just be able to exist in a world where the journey of both the SA and the partners are largely invalidated.

  68. helen
    May 05, 2013 @ 18:24:49

    Hi Linda, what ever my outcome I want to address my anger and not shelve it. Why should I ? If I stay or go I would feel I had no closure, if not dealt with.
    Regards
    Helen

    Reply

    • linda
      May 05, 2013 @ 18:51:31

      Helen: Trust me, the anger will subside, but you must do a lot of work and soul searching. Firstly, you must study all that you can, as long as you need to, to forgive him, and by no means does that mean to forget, or let him continue hurting you, and making you angry.Most of these guys are “narcistic”, I urge you to study up on that, it explains them very well. When I tell you, I never, ever thought I would recover, is sadly an under statement, I thought I would die, of heartache and anger. You see, these men were drawn to us for a reason, we are co-dependent women, that is another area to study up on. Another suggestion, is to go alnon, I did, it was incredible, there you learn to live and let live, we cannot change these addicts, they must do the work themselves, we can support thier work, but often, we end up being the ones that do the most work, and for what, to try and change them, useless, as we cannot change another person.One more suggestion is to study the “grief” process, because in reality, we are grieving, the loss of a dream, a marraige,our lives wih these men were only fantasies, of what we thought we had, therefore, we must do the grieving!!! I thought, I would never make it, but I did, and I am stronger,wiser and much happier now! Good, good luck to you Helen!

      Reply

      • helen
        May 06, 2013 @ 17:14:38

        Hi Linda, I have done a lot of research in this subject, not through choice unfortunately,I also work in the health industry so do have a bit of a background which gives me some insight. My sa does not treat me in a bad way and he knows what the situation is and what will happen if he chooses to make those decisions so in some ways I still feel control in my life, however when I spoke about anger it is from what he has done in the past to us all and sometimes I just get a sudden outburst and wondered if this happened to anyone else in this way.

  69. linda
    May 05, 2013 @ 18:33:34

    Bad advice…. I think not, I stayed with my SA, I offered my empathy, my support, whatever he needed, but, no, he was too “stuck” in the sickness to accept. He married me knowing he was sick, and for 19 years lead a double life, his only regret was getting found out. Chris, you may know how to love, and I hope you do, but if this is so, it is not the norm for this disorder, it is known as an intimacy disorder….there are parts of the brain in most sa men, that never developed properly, and I assure you, mine was one of them. And yes, to the comment, we all have issues, me included, but when any issues are taken outside the marriage to fix, they become more broken. I am a christian, and it was with an ordained minister/ therapist, that the decision was made to leave…. I have a heartful of empathy for my ex-husband, as I know for sure, it is a sickness, not a choice, therefore with a lot of painful work, I was able to leave him, let him be, as he is, without hatred in my heart for him!

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 05, 2013 @ 19:20:23

      Linda,

      First of all I must apologize. I do not know your particular situation. I know that for us, divorce isn’t an option. We love each other. But maybe where our situation is different is that while I slip up from time to time, I am always working to avoid temptation and the fall. I get back up and get back in the game. I would not expect her to stay if I refused to stop looking without remorse and work to change.

      My wife has chosen to forgive past and future slips because she knows my heart and see’s the change that has come through my work in healing.

      I was just a bit sensitive to the “heartless” comment. Sorry about that. I think it is dangerous ground to label a group of anyone.

      Reply

      • dbiscuit
        May 05, 2013 @ 19:35:57

        :)

      • helen
        May 06, 2013 @ 17:07:26

        Chris, what a strong lady you must have. I read this and know I would be unable to deal with slips and my sa is aware of this. He knows that if there are any future slips we must part. I was never aware of my husbands addiction until one day he confessed and we have been working on recovery ever since but he knows what my conditions are.

      • Chris Painter
        May 06, 2013 @ 23:15:40

        I understand and am glad that my wife would not leave me if I have a moment of weakness and look at porn one day. She doesn’t condone it but at the same time neither do I. When I fall, which is seldom, I work through the steps and with my accountability group. She and I would miss so much life together if those were her conditions.

        But again, she sees this as something I do to myself, not something directed at her. And 98% of the time I am clean and do not look at porn.

        Just wondering if you know how pervasive this problem is in America? 50% of men struggle with it.

        What does this say to you? This question is meant in the most respectful of ways, not in jest. An honest question for you and the women out there.

        I’m brave and bold about this because it destroys lives. Every time I fail, I learn and get stronger. The other thing is the absolutely cannot be done alone. There has to be support in recovery. I am lucky to have a wife who loves me and is just as passionate as I am in Being completely free. What is nice is that I was able to come to here about two weeks ago and tell her that I failed and looked at porn instead of fearing that she would leave me, she was my safe place. My confidant. My friend when I was in distress. Because of that, I bounce back quickly and with great strength because my wife supports me.

        Thoughts?0

    • Chris Painter
      May 05, 2013 @ 19:25:38

      Linda,

      I also think that women should be careful giving advise to other women on forums like this on whether or not to leave their spouse. We are too far removed from personal relationships out here to give such advice. That kind of advice should be reserved for personal, one-to-one council (This is just my opinion though).

      If my wife would have listened to the advice from many of the women who are angry out there, we both would have missed some amazing times together.

      I meant no animosity towards you here on this forum. Just trying to communicate my thoughts.

      Reply

    • helen
      May 06, 2013 @ 17:04:27

      Linda, I think if my sa had not shown he wanted to recover and was willing to do anything I would feel the same, it is all so difficult.

      Reply

  70. helen
    May 05, 2013 @ 18:43:51

    Hi Linda, I read this with great empathy and have to say I still do not know if my situation will work out completely. I know that there is only a 5% recovery which is unfortunately low,but I do feel if they hit ‘rock bottom’ they may stand more of a chance. If you have seen ‘rock bottom’ you will know it, but I also know this is no guarantee and i think the best we can do is judge our individual situation.
    wishing you all the best for the future
    Helen

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 05, 2013 @ 19:33:22

      Helen, I am interested in the statistic you posted. Where did you get that information? I ask because I like to look at as much information as possible about this addiction. It helps me process through the recovery.

      Reply

      • helen
        May 06, 2013 @ 17:01:29

        hi Chris the information was given to us by our psychologist and if you read on the net its states about 5% along with alcohol recovery rate.

      • Chris Painter
        May 06, 2013 @ 23:29:57

        I think there is a reason for this statistic. Men are afraid to get help. The standards are so high not to fail for some of the reasons you state regarding your conditions. We are asked to become perfect at avoiding temptation. There are double standards with that. We are asked not to fail and be perfect with one if the most difficult things in this life to deal with, yet most of us know that no one is perfect.

        We also live in a society that uses sex images to sell everything from shoes to the lipstick many women here put on everyday. That seems ok. Our society is pushing us in every direction to be sexually open but then when it draws us in, we become the bad guys. We are unimaginably overwhelmed. TV, Radio, mainstream Hollywood movies, billboards, women’s magazines at the checkout counter with women laid bare with nearly nothing on with captions on how to do this or that sexually with your lover. The list goes on and on.

        I desperately want women to understand that men are in real trouble in ways women often don’t or can’t understand because we are wired chemically different in our brains in the way the we respond to images.

        We need your help!!!! We love you and need your love in our weakest moments in our lives.

        Here is the biggest secret many men won’t ever say: We are very vulnerable in relationships even though we often don’t show it. We are trained not to in our society.

        Thoughts?

      • Rachel S.
        Oct 01, 2013 @ 19:47:08

        Thank you for sharing your story with us. I had a chance to check out your site. Thank you for being honest. I know it’s not easy at all. This situation for me was very stressful. Not being around my partner now is better for me. I can’t see him in his addiction. It’s just too painful. I wish you the best of luck in your recovery. My partner refuses to get help. So I can’t do anything else but work on me. It hurts so much

      • Chris Painter
        Oct 01, 2013 @ 23:22:42

        Rachel,

        That’s too bad that he doesn’t want to get out of this mess.

        Glad you liked my site. Right now I’m trying to figure out where to go next with it. I don’t really want to focus all my energy on the addiction because quite frankly it is depressing. That being said, I do want to share my experience and hopefully have conversations with people seeking help from one who has been addicted. I want to focus more on who God is, and less on what I am. That, I think, is the core of why I became a sex addict in the first place, focusing on the wrong things. I found something, porn and masterbation, to fill the void, cover the pain, but it was the wrong prescription. God is the only one who can make us whole and not left wanting more.

        Thanks for your reply,

        God Bless

  71. helen
    May 05, 2013 @ 18:45:37

    Chris, I will reply shortly but have to rush off tonight and would like to reread all your responses before replying.
    Helen

    Reply

  72. linda
    May 05, 2013 @ 19:58:32

    5% is the recovery rate I was told as well, but in reality, there is no recovery rate, only management of the triggers

    Reply

  73. linda
    May 05, 2013 @ 20:04:16

    Every siutuation is different, for sure, but the basics elements are the same, my SA could not admit, just how sick he had become, and as Dr. Phil, says, you cannot fix a problem, until, you first admit you have one, and the seriousness of that problem. I have empathy and understanding for him, as I know for sure, I would not want to have this addiction, nor would I ever look forward to the grand scale of work, there would be ahead to get well again!

    Reply

  74. linda
    May 05, 2013 @ 20:05:17

    Each of us have two wolves inside, and the one that survives is the one we feed!

    Reply

  75. helen
    May 06, 2013 @ 17:20:32

    Hi db, unfortunately we have no local groups and when I did find one over 100 miles trip , I came away feeling worse and doomed im sure its not like that for everyone but they didn’t work for me. I know my sa has told me that some of his support groups are better than others. Fortunately I do have a good sexual psychotherapist I/we work with.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      May 07, 2013 @ 03:03:00

      i’m glad you found a good therapist to work with- that’s awesome! would also recommend online COSA or S-Anon groups if the ‘in person’ one didn’t help. I’ve sat in some pretty crappy meetings and some amazing ones- there was a phone one i attended for awhile that was super helpful. but i hear you…hard to find a good support group….lol like trying to find a good pair of jeans!

      Reply

  76. Cold in Canada
    May 06, 2013 @ 23:48:08

    My Deepest Respects to Everyone!

    How is this happening, these ridiculous conversations? At the end of the day, everyone is right, it’s all about what you choose; can, could, should, would, hope….. bear,…….. that the payoff is equal to the input, God notwithstanding. Chris, get sober, you’ll buy some credibility that way, it’s a start, you don’t like labels? Maybe you shouldn’t say things like “I hate my sin”, and “If only I knew about my wife.” Linda, I hear you, you made a good choice, Helen, I’m pulling for you, but take your head out of the sand. Think about it, only a saint can love a sinner and most of us are neither and don’t have a clue what to do with something like this, and nobody has an answer.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 07, 2013 @ 02:31:52

      Cold in Canada,

      I was sober. For a long time. Then I fell. So I guess I am not worthy of helping people who struggle because I cannot be perfect. Not here anyway. Apparently perfection is the only path to credibility. Everyone falls. Everyone. It is how you proceed that matters.

      God bless everyone, I fear that I stepped too far into the lions den here. For anyone who thinks they can live without sinning themselves or thinks forgiveness must be earned, then I guess I have nothing left to offer here. I feel like I have been pushed into a corner here because of my honesty. I am saying what at least 50% of men in the United States will never be honest about and this is exactly why.

      Reply

    • helen
      May 07, 2013 @ 15:35:35

      Hi Cold in Canada, I’m not sure what you mean by ‘burying my head in the sand’ as I have sort help for myself have plan’ b ‘if my sa does not recover, have sorted my finances, pursued my career, cared for my kids, I feel far from delusional and as I work in health feel I have a relative understanding. I have asked questions here because I hurt and I’m human they are questions you could only ask people that have been there. It is not a subject you can just drop into everyday conversion it can be very isolating and that is why I ask others to see how they have coped ,is it normal ? what can be done ? etc. I know no one has all the answers about life let alone what we have experienced but I thought here was a place where I could ask and share.

      Please remember all our situations are different but equally as traumatic.

      Reply

      • Jbry
        May 07, 2013 @ 15:42:25

        I came to this site as a way to gain the support I desired in addition to Al-Anon, counseling and numerous books I was reading. I enjoyed sharing my thoughts in a community that understood how hard this was. Recently, this has divulged into arguments and negativity. Neither of which do I desire in my life. I have enough difficulty without constantly reading arguments. If things cannot return to where they were, I will have I leave and lose a site that has been very comforting to me through my husband’s recovery. Please try ladies to focus on being uplifting, encouraging and speaking of our own journeys. I for one love my husband dearly and am glad I stayed. This blog was one of the only reasons I had the courage to do so. Every day is a battle, but as they say, the journey of a thousand miles begins with one step. Sobriety is one day at a time. Lets not get sidetracked with arguments and animosity.

      • dbiscuit
        May 07, 2013 @ 15:50:35

        Thanks jbry for your comment and for your kind words about this site. I too do not need additional negativity or arguments, which is why i created this blog. The heart and intention of this site is to encourage women who have decided to make the generally unpopular and unsupported decision to stay. There are plenty of websites geared towards animosity and venting, & i have no interest in being one of them. I have asked several times for people to keep comments focused on ourselves and our experience, rather than judging/shaming/blaming/etc. Of course, as I have learned in recovery, I cannot control anyone or change anyone- I can only make my requests known and let go of the outcome. I suppose that ignoring negativity is one way to practice this principle!

  77. Chris Painter
    May 07, 2013 @ 02:49:12

    I feel overrun here. I have tried to be honest. To say what many men who really struggle will not say. I did this because I thought I could help others see it from my perspective. Can anyone help me out here. Am I in the wrong place?

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      May 07, 2013 @ 03:00:33

      once again wanted to chime in.

      I built this space so people could share their experiences, and take what they could from hearing about other’s experience. it’s a free space, so i am not going to moderate or delete anyone’s comments here (at least not today!). i will say though that i feel sad when i see that conversations shift from being “I” focused to being “you” focused. This is not a space where i want blame, shame, or deflection to be encouraged. I respect everyone who has the courage to put themselves out there honestly, even if i am not in the same place or do not see life from the same lens. I will also say that before i post anything, i try to ask myself “What is my intention, what is this really about, and who is this really about?” My hope is that all of use here can take what is useful and leave what is not. Much love to everyone tonight…

      Reply

  78. linda
    May 07, 2013 @ 11:50:01

    Chris, I am going to reply whether you like my opinion or not! I think that if your wife gets the proper help she needs, she will indeed leave you. When, as you said, you were sober for awhile, YOU made the CHOICE, to use porn again, and you may see that your wife supports you now, but, I can assure you, she will grow tired of this immature behavior.I sure did! You have never once mentioned the intimacy issues that all these SA men/women have. Do you really think it is fair to expect your wife to just keep forgiving you, and supporting you? It is very sad to me, that addictions come before people, I know that the drug of choice for all addicts comes ahead of everything else in their lives. SAD…

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 07, 2013 @ 16:23:35

      Linda,

      Everyone is entitled to their opinion and yours does not offend me. My wife and I love each other and we talk a lot. This morning we discussed your post over breakfast. She disagrees with you. She knows that I am a good man. Once in a great while I slip. Her words: “I will not throw away my marriage because you had a weak moment.”

      I had a very long run of sobriety. Then I slipped a little over a week ago now and looked at porn for about an hour and felt sick afterwords. I called my wife and told her that I had slipped and we talked about it. I can do that now because after four years of her not forgiving me, she finally did. Our marriage works now because it is based in love and not fear. She will love me and be there when I am weak, whether in this addiction or dying in the hospital. She does not believe in quitting because it is hard. I do not live in fear of failing because we have made a commitment to be strong through all seasons of this marriage. In this respect, I think we relate more to the author of this amazing blog.

      She will not leave because she knows that I am doing the mature thing by seeking help from her, my accountability partners and many other places. I also had to have a discussion with my accountability partner that day because if I look at porn on my computer, smartphone or iPad, he gets a text immediately from the software I have installed (x3watch) and we have a conversation (this happens very seldom because I don’t fall very often and its getting farther between falls every time). It isn’t one I looked forward to that day either. But I am humble and I am man enough to say when I am wrong. I am man enough to be here trying to share life on the other side of the street too. I am even man enough here to put my real name out there, Chris Painter a man who struggles and wants to live free. I am disappointed when I fall but not ashamed that I am working every day to live in purity.

      I realize now after being on this forum though that it is not my place to change anybody’s heart. I have been completely humbled here with respect to that so let me apologize for trying.

      My role is to just tell my story and how my bride and I work. I can’t convince anyone, but if someone asks, I will tell the truth about my circumstances. After all, it was the truth that set me free before it is the thing that keeps me free going forward. If I keep secrets, I can’t heel and I thank the Lord that my wife wants me to confide in her. I am thankful that she is my safe landing spot and not my enemy. Because of that, I have gone from being completely absorbed by this addiction and being a liar, to being a man on a mission to purity and a truth teller.

      Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 07, 2013 @ 16:49:51

      Linda,

      It is hard to talk about all the issues that comes with this addictions in one or even several posts. But I agree with you that there are deep intimacy issues that come from it. I had big problems with intimacy until I began working through this. Now my wife and I are able to experience a deep level of intimacy with each other.

      Do I think it is fair for her to keep forgiving me? I don’t think fairness is the word I would use. She chose to forgive me, so fairness isn’t in the equation. I never demanded it. I certainly do not deserve the grace she has showered me with but I am thankful for it and it gives me all the more reason to fight this fight.

      Reply

  79. helen
    May 07, 2013 @ 15:43:19

    Dear all, remember some individuals/couples do onto recover and lead better lives.
    Have hope in your hearts.
    x
    P.S this is in Stephanie Carns ‘ Mending shattered hearts’- good read

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 07, 2013 @ 16:26:10

      Helen,

      Perfect statement. Some people don’t heal and recover and sometimes when the SA wants to heal, the spouse can’t overcome. But I do think that if both want healing, both will find it but they both must be willing to dig in together. We dug in and our life keeps getting better everyday. We went from four years of hell to these glorious years!

      Reply

  80. helen
    May 07, 2013 @ 16:03:32

    I too came here thinking what a wonderful site as I had gone on others which lead me to believe there was no hope for me and my husband and I was a fool. My husband has been in recovery for about 18 months and I believe he is truly doing well as for me that’s another story so that’s why I came looking for support. I believe one of the things on this site that first caught my eye was the reasons for staying and the one that got me was,’ I want to recover with the person I walked through hell with’. I’m sure we can all identify with that.

    I would also like to say that we should all take care of ourselves and assess our situations individually.

    Addicts do terrible things that hurt us but if they are willing to change their lives and ways they they should be given a chance.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 07, 2013 @ 16:35:16

      Helen,

      There is hope. My wife at first, like many ladies here, was very hurt and really didn’t know what to do. She was not equipped to deal with it. We separated (never discussed divorce though) so that I could work through this. It wasn’t long that we came back together and that is when we dug in. It took her four years to forgive me. But how amazing things are now! This morning while while she was getting ready to leave for work she told me that when I do fall she doesn’t see it as a personal attack on her anymore. It is an attack on our marriage. Something that we work on fighting together.

      Reply

  81. dbiscuit
    May 07, 2013 @ 16:06:11

    well said.

    Reply

  82. linda
    May 07, 2013 @ 19:27:47

    Chris, I do hope what you say is true, and if so, good luck to you and your wife. You are not the norm with this addiction. Most men choose the addiction over their families!

    Reply

  83. linda
    May 07, 2013 @ 19:29:24

    Stephanie Carnes is now divorced from sex addicted husband!

    Reply

    • helen
      May 08, 2013 @ 06:05:40

      Linda, divorce could happen to anyone with or without addiction, I don’t know her personal story. On the other hand I have read were couples have recovered but something is no longer there so they decide to divorce, not always that the addict will /have gone back to their addiction.I can understand that one too as it does seem to take away the magic from a marriage. I truly understand why people part if the addict will not attempt to get well.

      I have wondered what I would like my partner to do, if I had been the addict.

      Reply

  84. Cold in Canada
    May 07, 2013 @ 21:18:44

    I feel a number of recent responses were directed at me, maybe not, however, I will have to agree with Linda, real recovery is so rare, maybe I’m just jealous of Chris’s wife. If he “slips” he’s masturbating to porn, if my SA “slips”, he may be picking up aids at a peep show from men. When, (2 years ago) an AA “slipped”, he crashed into and killed my best friend’s 32 year old son, when my sister’s NA nephew “slipped”, he overdosed and died. It is too difficult to be cavalier about “slips”. Helen, I apologize, your SA confessed, I’m sure there is a completely different mind set around confession versus discovery and I may be assuming, but I’m hoping that everyone has an ironclad “slip, relapse” plan in place that is understood by both parties and that both parties are committed to acting on it, knowing that it may really mean divorce. I remember Dr. Laura’s 3 A’s, the only true grounds for divorce, true deal breakers: abuse, adultery and addictions. This illness is them all. I have often wished my husband had hit me, it would have hurt so much less. I just believe that it’s lovely to say we’re all human and make mistakes, but the truth of the matter is that for most of us, there are some mistakes that there is no coming back from. We all build our own prison walls, I just don’t want mine crashing down around me as a result of a “slip”.

    Reply

    • Michele Lavin-Bernstein
      May 07, 2013 @ 21:27:12

      Wow, very well said!! I am trying to divorce my sa and it’s not easy. I am half in and half out because of our two children. Everyone’s input negative and good help. Thank you

      Sent from my iPhone

      Reply

  85. linda
    May 07, 2013 @ 21:33:31

    Just a little fact, to put out there: Sex addiction is the cheapest and easiest addiction to feed, as you can be homeless and living on the street, and the mind is so full of these fantasies, the addict can and will feed of these for long periods of time. Cold in Canada, you are very correct, some mistakes are irreversible, but the problem is one-time, yeah, we could call that a mistake, but not when the activity is repeated over and over again. That is a choice these guys are making, yes, a choice, they are narcistic, they and their needs and wants come ahead of all others at any expense to their families!

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 09, 2013 @ 21:40:54

      Linda,

      I can tell you that I am not narcissistic and most sex addicts are not. We have self esteem issues. That is the opposite of narcissism. Many of us find that when we come out of the clouds so to speak that we have an even deeper negative self image which further moves away from possible narcissism. Are some SA’s narcissists? Probably, but I am willing to bet that they are few.

      It is the easiest disease, addiction or whatever you want to call it to feed but in terms of cost after the fact, the costs are devastating and not just to our wives or husbands (there are many women who are sex addicts too).

      I’d like to put something out there for everyone to think on to understand how this is wrecking our world:

      Median age for the first use of pornography: boys: 11-13 girls: 12-14
      Your Children & Pornography: A guide for Parents, Tom Buford. Tommera Press, 2001

      For every 10 men in church, 5 are struggling with pornography

      According to 2004 IFR research, U.S. porn revenue exceeds the combined revenues of ABC, CBS, and NBC (6.2 billion). Porn revenue is larger than all combined revenues of all professional football, baseball and basketball franchises. The pornography industry, according to conservative estimates, brings in $57 billion per year, of which the United States is responsible for $12 billion.
      Internet Pornography and Loneliness: An Association? Vincent Cyrus Yoder, Thomas B. Virden III, and Kiran Amin. Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity, Volume 12.1, 2005.

      One out of every six women grapples with addiction to pornography
      Internet Pornography and Loneliness: An Association? Vincent Cyrus Yoder, Thomas B. Virden III, and Kiran Amin. Sexual Addiction & Compulsivity, Volume 12.1, 2005.

      The most common ways people have accidentally reached pornographic content on the Web are pop-up windows (55%), misrepresented links (52%), misspelled URLs (48%) and auto links within emails (23%)

      43% of all internet users view pornography. 1 out of 3 are female

      15-17 year olds having multiple hard-core exposure – 80%
      8-16 year olds having viewed porn online – 90% (most while doing homework)

      Source: http://www.familysafemedia.com/pornography_statistics.html

      The reason why I am providing these statistics is not to show that it is ok, but to show that this is a huge problem. One that is ensnaring kids from an early age. I became addicted to this stuff when I was about 12 or so. So I think it would be safe to say that this is not just bad men doing bad things. It is innocent children, like I was, being caught in this trap. Are children or teens addicted to porn narcissistic? I would argue that they are not. And I would also like to say that if you have teenage boys and girls, they may be becoming sex addicts right under your nose. My mother never knew and she was an amazing mom who thought she knew all my tricks.

      I would like to encourage everyone here to look up these statistics and realize that the problem extends beyond your significant other. For me it started way before I was ever married, when I was a child.

      Reply

  86. helen
    May 09, 2013 @ 18:58:56

    Linda, I’m not sure its the cheapest and easiest to feed, it ‘costs’ financially, spiritually, emotionally, psychologically etc etc. yes I guess some are narcissistic but if you research how/why they become narcissistic you may see/feel slightly different.

    Its all about if they are willing to recovery, work at it and show remorse.

    I do agree that it is a selfish disease and I think a lot of recovering addicts see that themselves.

    I do hear everyone’s hurt in these emails and I know we all understand one another and feel.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 09, 2013 @ 21:48:21

      Helen,

      I agree!

      For so long I could not understand why it was that despite my best efforts, I still fail sometimes. I know many here are not Christians or even spiritual, but for those that are believers I offer this:

      “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.” Romans 7:15

      This is not an excuse but an explanation of how sin captures us and enslaves us but the hope is that we can overcome. That is my Hope!!!!!

      Reply

  87. Chris Painter
    May 10, 2013 @ 02:20:16

    http://www.xxxchurch.com

    Here is a great resource for some of you if you are so inclined to look there. It has been a great resource of inspiration for me. There you will see men, women and teens hurting. Not because they know someone who is addicted, but because they are addicted and do not want to be.

    These people want to be free, but it is not as simple as just quitting otherwise it would not be called an addiction. Read and listen to the hurt of those of us who suffer as the addict. I read their stories and it makes me emotional because I can relate to the pain of doing what you hate.

    Reply

  88. helen
    May 10, 2013 @ 18:00:30

    I do hate my sa’s disease like I guess most of you do out there. I have traveled the rocky road that most of us have and have hated every minute,however, my sa has worked hard for months/ second year now and I have to have great admiration for that ( may not have felt like this at the beginning) as he has an addiction and I have no idea what that is like, for the addict that is. The very sad thing is he has been a wonderful husband beside his addiction ( double life situation) and was fantastic to us until it started to progress/happened.He confessed and life crumbled for all, living in the aftermath is very hard.

    I hope that future generations in this situation will receive better acceptance, treatments, prevention’s and cures and not have such a socially non acceptable condition to deal with

    We have been to hell and back and I have found out things about my sa that I never knew even after 30 years, which would have been his route courses to this addiction.

    I have supported him, but have managed to be strong for me and my children and made it clear that we would not be an item should he not recover. I still do not know how this will work out but that’s life I guess. I’m not sure why I felt the need to write this, apart from trying to give hope and not give up straight away.

    Reply

  89. Curably Crazy
    May 10, 2013 @ 20:20:25

    Good day all. Let me apologize in advance for the length of this comment. I came upon this site through conversations with my wife, who found it in her search for some understanding of what went wrong in our marriage and what went wrong with me. I am an SA and have perpetrated inordinate amounts of betrayal, trauma, and damage to my wife, our relationship and our marriage through and as a result of my addiction.
    I’ve been sexually sober and committed to sobriety, and my wife, for more than two years now; but as yet have been unable to resume sexual relations with her. I have read through most of the postings since the beginning of this blog and feel deeply the pain of the partners of the SA’s, especially (after years of anger, rage, denial and minimalization) as I feel and relate it to my wife’s suffering and journey. My sobriety and duration, surprisingly or not, coincides with my acceptance that I am an SA – even though it was still almost 6 months later that I started attending a 12 step program and even then, quite reluctantly. I have learned that sobriety does not necessarily equal recovery; as the roots of addiction run much deeper than the sexual manifestations.
    I can only speak for myself, but intimacy and sex were not connected in my early training, and my sexualization had nothing to do with intimacy, love, empathy or caring. Coupled with all the other violence, neglect, alcoholism, infidelity and emotional abuse ad nauseam; I learned through example and necessity the ability to disconnect from the real world (it felt pretty unreal at times) and create my own world were I seemed to have some level of control. The stage was set very early for disconnected, anonymous or secret sex. I am, or rather was that “narcissistic ass” I recall being mentioned in one of the previous discussions. In my delusion, I was somehow able to justify that somehow because the sex was anonymous and there was no intimacy, kissing or commitment involved, it really didn’t violate vows, because my heart wasn’t involved. I wasn’t connected or grounded at any level to the damage I was perpetrating and didn’t appreciate the fact that my heart was involved in a negative way, by not being involved. I grew up surrounded by lies such as these and had no empathy or compassion nor even really understood the level of pain a partner would feel if I were found out. Then I was.
    I was out of control; I truly understand the progressive nature of this illness, I have crossed numerous moral boundaries throughout my life and as each one was crossed the appropriate justifications of entitlement, denial of importance and commitment that it was the last time are made.
    Sobriety doesn’t equal recovery as I said before, but in my mind now, it’s a requirement. My wife has been steadfastly on my side through all of this chaos of shock and betrayal, the years of rage, denial, repentance and relapse, prior to my acceptance of my being SA, and my last two years of fidelity. I couldn’t ask my wife to suffer and forgive through another slip so I am not asking for forgiveness or understanding for past and future “slips”, only the past “slips”. There has to be some point where we and our higher power, however you define Him, Her, or It, decide that slips are choices that can’t be made. I have served up enough self humiliation; self pity, and wallowed in enough shame and guilt to last me into and through another lifetime.
    I continue to attend my 12 step meeting, not so much because I think I need to, but in case I need to. I can draw strength from the members with 20 years of sobriety, as well as from the member that has a hard time maintaining a week. The 20 yr. people talk about their strengths and commitments, the one week sober talk about their weaknesses and excuses and don’t usually offer advice because, they do understand that, you can’t transmit what you don’t have. I have an agreement with MY God, to keep me straight, not one to help my wife or myself understand slips. I will continue to maintain my fidelity to my wife, myself, and our marriage and strive to rebuild the trust I kept smashing to bits in my insanity. I continue to somehow feel lesser because of how I shattered my wife’s perception of me and feel something akin to shame, beyond that, over my perceptions of my image in her eyes. I hope we can eventually both crawl over that and move on to a happy, content and even glorious future.
    As to comments I have read about SA’s not being narcissistic, I can only speak for myself but I don’t believe Narcissistic traits and negative self image are necessarily strangers. You can, I believe, have and exhibit narcissistic traits without bearing the label of a full blown narcissist, much the same as that having a Huge Ego goes hand in hand with low self-esteem. This is a disease of variables and may not be curable, but can definitely be forced into remission for the rest of its life. The answers aren’t to post a bunch of supporting statistics of how societal mores are going to hell in a hand basket (that’s self evident), but rather embrace the fact that if we act out knowing what we know now, it is a choice. Until we accept that God gave us free will and that “slipping” is just a form of exercising that free will, then “slips” will be inevitable. We can’t hold God to task because we forgot to pray, eat enough, dress warmly enough, or take care. Credibility comes from results, not failed promises, as I so well know. Just because my neighbours yard is full of dandelions doesn’t mean my yard has to be.
    I got the following from wikipedia seems like a lot of characteristics common to SA’s I know
    Curably Crazy
    David Thomas, businessman and consultant, in his popular book on power-hungry narcissists suggests that narcissists typically display most, and sometimes all, of the following traits:[5]
    • An obvious self-focus in interpersonal exchanges
    • Problems in sustaining satisfying relationships
    • A lack of psychological awareness (see insight in psychology and psychiatry, egosyntonic)
    • Difficulty with empathy
    • Problems distinguishing the self from others (see narcissism and boundaries)
    • Hypersensitivity to any insults or imagined insults (see criticism and narcissists, narcissistic rage and narcissistic injury)
    • Vulnerability to shame rather than guilt
    • Haughty body language
    • Flattery towards people who admire and affirm them (narcissistic supply)
    • Detesting those who do not admire them (narcissistic abuse)
    • Using other people without considering the cost of doing so
    • Pretending to be more important than they really are
    • Bragging (subtly but persistently) and exaggerating their achievements
    • Claiming to be an “expert” at many things
    • Inability to view the world from the perspective of other people
    • Denial of remorse and gratitude
    Hotchkiss identified what she called the seven deadly sins of narcissism:[6]
    1. Shamelessness: Shame is the feeling that lurks beneath all unhealthy narcissism, and the inability to process shame in healthy ways.
    2. Magical thinking: Narcissists see themselves as perfect, using distortion and illusion known as magical thinking. They also use projection to dump shame onto others.
    3. Arrogance: A narcissist who is feeling deflated may reinflate by diminishing, debasing, or degrading somebody else.
    4. Envy: A narcissist may secure a sense of superiority in the face of another person’s ability by using contempt to minimize the other person.
    5. Entitlement: Narcissists hold unreasonable expectations of particularly favorable treatment and automatic compliance because they consider themselves special. Failure to comply is considered an attack on their superiority, and the perpetrator is considered an “awkward” or “difficult” person. Defiance of their will is a narcissistic injury that can trigger narcissistic rage.
    6. Exploitation: Can take many forms but always involves the exploitation of others without regard for their feelings or interests. Often the other is in a subservient position where resistance would be difficult or even impossible. Sometimes the subservience is not so much real as assumed.
    7. Bad boundaries: Narcissists do not recognize that they have boundaries and that others are separate and are not extensions of themselves. Others either exist to meet their needs or may as well not exist at all. Those who provide narcissistic supply to the narcissist are treated as if they are part of the narcissist and are expected to live up to those expectations. In the mind of a narcissist there is no boundary between self and other.

    Narcissism is a term that originated with Narcissus in Greek mythology who fell in love with his own image reflected in a pool of water. Currently it is used to describe a person characterised by egotism, vanity, pride, or selfishness
    The term narcissism comes from the Greek myth of Narcissus, a handsome Greek youth who rejected the desperate advances of the nymph Echo. These advances eventually led Narcissus to fall in love with his own reflection in a pool of water. Unable to consummate his love, Narcissus “lay gazing enraptured into the pool, hour after hour,” and finally changed into a flower that bears his name, the narcissus.[1]
    The concept of excessive selfishness has been recognized throughout history. In ancient Greece the concept was understood as hubris. It is only in recent times that it has been defined in psychological terms.
    • In 1752 Jean-Jacques Rousseau’s play Narcissus: or the Self-Admirer was performed in Paris.
    • In 1898 Havelock Ellis, an English sexologist, used the term “narcissus-like” in reference to excessive masturbation, whereby the person becomes his or her own sex object.[2]
    • In 1899, Paul Näcke was the first person to use the term “narcissism” in a study of sexual perversions.
    • Otto Rank in 1911 published the first psychoanalytical paper specifically concerned with narcissism, linking it to vanity and self-admiration.[2]
    • Sigmund Freud published a paper exclusively devoted to narcissism in 1914 called On Narcissism: An Introduction.[3]
    • In 1923, Martin Buber published an essay “Ich und Du” (I and Thou), in which he pointed out that our narcissism often leads us to relate to others as objects instead of as equals.
    • Since 2000, on psychological tests designed to detect narcissism, the scores of residents of the United States have continually increased. Psychologists have suggested a link to social networking.[4]
    Again sorry for the long post, hope some of what I said is valid to someone.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 10, 2013 @ 23:40:17

      I appreciate your reply. I have come to the realization that we are all coming from very different perspectives. Personally, I am not narcissistic and my wife agrees. Never have been, but from reading your post it seems there are some who are.

      You are in a stronger place than I am apparently because while I have experienced almost a year of sobriety, I recently slipped. But I am doing well now and every time I gain momentum in becoming fully sober. I have come so very far from where I began. Again we all come from different backgrounds here.

      I wanted to explain why I posted the stats on the porn problem. It was not to explain that my behavior is normal or even ok. Rather it was to show that we have a problem that people who do not deal with this addiction directly don’t know much about. That our children are becoming addicts and we must raise awareness to stop this cycle. That was my intent.

      Reply

      • helen
        May 14, 2013 @ 16:25:26

        Hi Chris and all, I just wanted to add something about narcissism as I find it interesting and the connection with sex addiction. When I looked back I think my husband did have narcissistic traits. The strange thing is when he started to recover they seemed to disappear and I’m not sure a true narcissistic person would be able to do that. I’m interested in others experiences and opinions on this one.

  90. linda
    May 10, 2013 @ 23:50:14

    Curably Crazy, finally a man, with a problem, that admits the extent of the problem,kudos buddy! It is only common sense that narccism is a major flaw in these addicts, they want what they want, when they want it, and do not care who they hurt to get it, they feel so entitled, that their wife and kids pain is not even a consideration(perhaps only when they are found out, and threatened to get well or loose them) I do understand that this is a true sickness, and I have great amounts of empathy for anyone suffering from it, as I have for my ex-husband. I do not hate him, I came to a point where I said, you are who you are, and what you are, and I have no right to demand you to change and get well. Live and let live! But, I have the right to move onto a healthier way of living. and so it was, I packed up my kid, and my cats and left. Was this an easy decision, NO, was it a quick decision, NO, I went to therapy for 2 years, so that I could understand and heal the parts of me that allowed me to stay in this type of relationship! Yes, spouses, as tough as it is to hear, we have issues, or we would never ever live this way! My ex could never do what Curably Crazy has just done, ADMIT, that the addiction was bigger than him! Hats off to you my friend, as Honesty, is what will eventually set you free!

    Reply

  91. linda
    May 10, 2013 @ 23:56:42

    Chris, you are 100% correct about the porn, there is a tidal wave gonna hit , and no one is properly prepared to deal with it, prevention is key! There is an avenue you should go for, speak out, LOUDLY, try and get every young guy you can to listen to you! Do some public speaking, make your addiction work for you, not against you, just an idea!

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      May 11, 2013 @ 12:31:31

      Linda,

      That is what I am doing! Here and other places. I fly for the airlines and I have already been able to share my story to many pilots who either have a problem or know someone who does. The more I talk to people the more apparent it becomes that this is not something that is talked about.

      Thanks for the suggestion, but I am already doing it.

      Reply

  92. helen
    May 11, 2013 @ 08:47:22

    My/our therapist is doing lots of educational work on prevention around the uk and internationally and has even asked us to work with him ( big step to take) and also I noticed on the news the other day that schools are to introduce porn awareness so that’s good news. Whats sad about these sa’s is had their impressible years/ care givers been different they may not be narcissistic or sex addicts plus develop other addictions. I/we pray that our children will never be the same.

    P.S I have to say not all addicts are narcissistic did some work with my sa and psychologist, some have low self worth,strange outlook about women due to there parenting experiences etc,

    Reply

  93. linda
    May 11, 2013 @ 17:21:25

    Helen, Narcicists have extremely low self esteem, they just present as be grandiose, underneath all the “mightiness” of a narcicist,they have very low self worth, that is why they need all the attention, they feed off that attention to make themselves feel grand, at the expense of everyone around them!

    Reply

  94. linda
    May 11, 2013 @ 17:23:56

    Kudos, push yourself, go bigger, do some public speaking!!!!! Fill that void in some young guys life with good advice!

    Reply

  95. Chris Painter
    May 11, 2013 @ 18:08:10

    I’m not sure if this will post correctly so my appologies if it doesn’t. Dbiscuit, delete it if it doesn’t or you don’t want this type of thing here. This is what I have been trying to describe as where my wife and I are.

    [blip.tv http://blip.tv/play/hPVBg4aOGQI?p=1 width="550" height="443"]

    Reply

    • helen
      May 11, 2013 @ 21:39:09

      Chris, I did watch most of this video,on the whole it was good, however if your sa engaged in much more than porn then it does not give the support/ reality of what you are about to deal with.

      I would have given anything at the beginning of disclosure for my sa to have just indulged in porn.Although I know that’s where it begins and then escalates. If only sa’s were able to see the hurt and pain they cause, I know that sounds strange but what a partner feels is immense but I guess you are aware of.

      Reply

      • Chris Painter
        May 11, 2013 @ 21:42:00

        I understand. It’s a good bit of hope though for those who were impacted by porn alone and he is willing to be honest and open with her and she is willing to work. But I know what you are saying too. I don’t have that perspective personally.

  96. helen
    May 11, 2013 @ 21:23:48

    saw this and thought it was interesting.

    Narcissists tend to have high self-esteem. However, narcissism is not the same thing as self-esteem; people who have high self-esteem are often humble, whereas narcissists rarely are. It was once thought that narcissists have high self-esteem on the surface, but deep down they are insecure. However, the latest evidence indicates that narcissists are actually secure or grandiose at both levels.

    Reply

  97. shirmiesheila
    May 11, 2013 @ 22:00:09

    I really am desperate for answers and direction. My husband and I are both in AA and I recently discovered he has been messaging women of all types ages etc from various online networks and on his phone. It appears that he has tried to hook up with many of them and though I have no evidence of it and he denies it I am certain that he has been having sex with some of them. One woman in particular he has been having a long distance emottional affair with though they’ve never met. My husband and I have only been together 18 months though we’ve known each other sine we were young, we grew up in the same neighborhood. I am trying to impliment the 12 steps of AA in my life right now on this subject but I feel very alone and tired and scared. I really need a friend right now who can offer hope and tools. Please help if you can.

    Reply

    • helen
      May 19, 2013 @ 14:47:17

      In my experience, sorry to say, if there has been texting, attempting hook ups etc there is something a miss. Strangely when my husband was doing this for some strange reason I thought he was just a friendly chap now nearly two years post confession of sex addiction I cant believe I did not think it was strange for my husband to be doing this with other women, I think they manage to convince us that they are just friendly chaps etc. There is no way now I would ever put up with that and he knows it. I would suggest that you get yourself some help,is your hubby willing ? get refereed to sexual psychotherapist they can help. Don’t let it continue ts heart breaking and its also common for a addict to have more than one addiction and from my experiences alcohol and sex seem to go together, I have heard that some sex addicts have to be drunk to carry their sexual act out.

      Wishing you all the best, its difficult.
      x

      Reply

  98. Julia
    May 14, 2013 @ 00:45:11

    Glad I came here and read through all the comments, I needed to see where SA’s are coming from and how I can sort through the muck of being a spouse of an SA. I’ve been dealing with it off and on over a 20 year period but until recently I didn’t understand the depth of the illness. Since it hasn’t stopped (the porn addiction) and continues on a regular basis I had to believe that it had nothing to do with me and from all of your comments I now see that, so thank you for your honesty and for helping one more person and put them on the road to healing or at least understanding. I’m so glad you were here.

    Reply

  99. linda
    May 15, 2013 @ 02:54:07

    The narcicist only gets better at hiding his traits for awhile, he will manipulate for a long time, by acting just as you want him too, he is hiding his ways as he must have known you were at the end wuth him!

    Reply

  100. helen
    May 15, 2013 @ 17:49:03

    How can I explain my sa was a terrible/horrible person when he was acting out, he has been in recovery nearly two years and does not show the horrible traits he had. I don’t think he is manipulating now, I think it is hes a different person, a recovering addict, it can happen,even if chances slight.He knows the alternative if he becomes that person he was. Hes been given a second chance and its now over to him.!

    P.S. I never knew about his addiction until the day he confessed, he knows I would have never stayed if I knew and he was unable to stop, maybe that’s why his confession came, could have been afraid he was getting close to being found out and he knew what would happen.Once confession came he hit rock bottom went willingly to therapy and couldn’t believe it was him and he was shocked with the diagnosis and has work hard ever since but still its not easy.It does show there is mental illness when they are shocked what there doing is not normal, if you know what I mean.

    Reply

  101. Irine
    May 28, 2013 @ 14:20:24

    Hi,
    I just found out my husband is a sex addict and I am totally devastated. He has recognised that he has a problem and is looking into getting some professional help. I dont know if believe him or not… I feel very lost right now. Nothing matters any more. I have a 16 months old baby and his loving father is going out there trying to find female company to pleased him!. I really want to help him but how to if you are the one who really need the help?. I hope this can be fixed and we can move on with our lifes. We moved back from London a few months ago, living right now in the north of spain where i dont think there are many professional help for this type of therapies. How he can recovered ?
    Thanks very much for this blog and all the comments have really helped to feel a bit better in those very difficult moments of my life!!

    Reply

  102. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 06:33:59

    Chris, I think it is very commendable that you are sharing your story. You should be proud. It’s not easy facing your own demons, especially when other people want to shoot you down because of their own hurt.

    Reply

  103. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 06:45:27

    I have a question for you all. How about people who practice polyamory? I suppose that is consensual multiple-partnerships? How do you think this differs from sex addiction?

    Reply

  104. helen
    May 30, 2013 @ 14:37:50

    Hi I’ve just had several days of feeling low,angry and wanting to kick my husband out !!! We have been in recovery for nearly two years and he appears to be doing everything he needs to/should, so is this normal for me to experience this. when do these feelings go away? do they ever?

    P.S I know I blog a lot but I have no one to ask ( who’s been there), only here.

    Reply

    • Joy
      May 30, 2013 @ 19:43:29

      Helen, I feel the same way some days, it is important to feel and work through your anger, as it is 100% natural and healthy. Right now I am at the place whereby if I can break the cycle for my kids, so that they do not suffer with this affliction than I am happy and I have done my job. It is very easy to be angry but if you realize that sexual addiction is an attachment disorder and a way to fulfill numb feelings that an adult has learned to surpress his/her entire life, you start to feel some empathy and realize that the journey of healing is so important. I think anger/bitterness, all of those things are part of the journey. I am focusing now on things I am grateful for, like honesty, some start of transparency and knowing that my partner might fail and have slip ups but along this journey I am hoping that my kids will learn when they are older that feeling our feelings fully is ok, it is healthy, it is the only way we can really heal, and that they don’t have to follow the same path of self-destruction as their father and grandfather have.

      Reply

    • Dreamer
      May 31, 2013 @ 04:21:27

      Hi Helen,

      I just wanted to validate your feelings. I’ve felt the same way many times. What kept me grounded was observing behaviors more than feelings. I agree with Joy, it is important to speak out your feelings in a safe place such as here.

      Reply

  105. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 20:20:52

    Helen, I also found this talk and book helpful – more helpful than the co-dependent model. However…….it’s also easy to get stuck in the victim/powerless mode. I like how she talks about how she talks about controlling ourselves, our environment, because we can never control our partner. http://marriedtoasexaddict.com/interviews-2/ The book is called “Your Sexually Addicted Spouse” by Barbara Steffens.

    Reply

  106. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 20:38:51

    Sorry for posting so much. But I also feel that there is a way to separate the love you feel from your partner from the hate you feel for the addict. I have read on other forums that many women (especially mothers) feel that although they are on this healing journey with their SA partner, if they were to do this again, they would NOT start a relationship with them/or stay had they known earlier (say prior to having children). But I also don’t think there is such a thing as “normal” – as a mother I have learned that as a culture we all have deep childhood wounds and our nuclear families are not the healthiest ways of raising children. We evolved as a human species to be raised in a community and the stress of modern families can lead to really detached ways of parenting (punitive discipline, focus on separation such as time outs, etc) that don’t give kids the ability to really process and feel their emotions, I think that can play out in a lot of “abnormal” behaviour. That’s not an excuse for someone hurting, putting at risk, or lying to someone, but it’s just a sign that we have to find ways to break that pattern, so we have to be really conscious in our parenting. I feel a lot of sadness for a SA because they are trying to fulfill their attachment needs in ways that they can never be met. There is a really good book on adult attachment and relationships called “Hold me Tight” that talks about attachment disorders and how they play out in adult relationships, including the extreme cases of addictions. That book has also given me a lot of perspective on my own role in this – that I have my own attachment wounds from childhood that led me to this relationship with my partner and he has his attachment wounds and unfortunately he acts out his in destructive ways but I think calling someone pathological is not really helpful because it doesn’t help the person heal, anymore than enabling their behavior and hiding their behavior really helps them heal. They are on their own healing journey and must be held accountable but I think giving our empathy and mourning and healing from our childhood wounds is a better path than just blaming, feeling like a victim and hating people who have these and other addictions. There is an interesting prison model in Norway I think that seeks to heal and make prisoners accountable and responsible rather than isolating and punishing them and they have a very high recovery rate even for murderers. I think that by not forgiving and not extending our empathy prevents us from healing too. Having empathy and forgiving someone is not saying what they are doing is ok, it is not enabling them. Forgiveness is for me and my own healing journey. Empathy says, I know you are suffering and I can have a place of love for you in my heart, but I’m not going to join you in your self-destruction. Sex addicts do suffer a lot of loss and that is sad. Eventually we all have to make the choice of where our own paths are, and say good bye if we need to. I’m not there yet, so I choose instead to control what I can in my environment to keep myself and my kids safe, and I choose to send love instead of hate to my partner, but I’m not going to join him in his addiction by controlling him or obsessing over him anymore, it’s just not my path to healing. If he heals it is for himself first, and he knows if he does not heal he will suffer a lot of losses, that’s not a threat, that is just the nature of this disease and he knows that, so I am able to let go of my anger because I know that ultimately this is his journey, I can only be grateful for what I am learning about myself and how I am able to heal myself, and if we end up on the same path of healing, great, if not, he knows that when the time is right I will let this joint path go, as I am on my own path. So I suppose only time will tell if we end up on the same path of healing or not. Here is an article on the Norway prison I was talking about: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/home/moslive/article-1384308/Norways-controversial-cushy-prison-experiment–catch-UK.html

    Reply

  107. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 20:41:21

    Here is that book I was referring to: http://www.holdmetight.net/

    Reply

  108. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 20:46:11

    I also don’t really bye into the narcissistic personality models. Our brains are very flexible and latest research in neuroscience (I especially love the research done by child psychologist Daniel Siegle) show just how plastic our brains are, we are always learning there is always a way to grow, there is no such thing as “old dog can’t learn new tricks.” Sure there are narcissistic people – but they were not born that way nor are they doomed to be that way forever, though many are, many never grow and heal, but that is their journey, not ours.

    Reply

  109. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 20:55:19

    I also highly recommend this book: http://drdansiegel.com/books/mindsight/2/

    Reply

  110. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 21:00:11

    Reply

  111. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 21:01:33

    Reply

  112. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 21:08:52

    I also think this book does a great job at explaining how we are born healthy, but can develop abnormal psychological tendencies, such as sexual addiction: http://drdansiegel.com/?page=books&sub=the_developing_mind “Using a wealth of illustrative examples from clinical practice and everyday life, Siegel traces the interplay of human and neural connections in early childhood and beyond. The book reveals how difficulties with attachment to caregivers can result in problems with memory, self-organization, and emotional regulation. Implications for adult states of mind, emotional competence, and the ability to cope with stress are considered, as are links to such clinical problems as dissociation and depression. Siegel offers compelling insights into how therapeutic and personal relationships can promote healing and integration as the mind continues to develop throughout the lifespan. The second edition provides expanded discussions of neuroplasticity, epigenetics, mindfulness, the neural correlates of consciousness.”

    Reply

  113. Joy
    May 30, 2013 @ 21:10:13

    Opps, meant to say: ” how we are born healthy, but can develop abnormal pathological tendencies.”

    Reply

  114. helen
    Jun 01, 2013 @ 19:32:30

    Thanks for the replies and the information on books its also very useful.
    Sometimes its just a great release to come and express here as there are not many safe havens for us.

    You know most of my great friends have no idea of what has happened to us and this causes me great sadness as I feel I have deceived them but I am afraid of their reactions.
    I might have run a mile if one of my friends had come and told me their husband was a sex addict. They know he had a break down and we nearly split and he disclosed terrible things about his childhood. Some know more but it is hard living like this and I am afraid of what people may think of him as individual as understandings are poor, as mine was until it came to my door.
    x

    Reply

  115. Joy
    Jun 02, 2013 @ 00:17:18

    Hi Helen, well I think you will figure out who your true friends are, those ones will not turn the other way and will support you both.

    Reply

  116. Joy
    Jun 02, 2013 @ 00:31:43

    I don’t think there is any shame in having mental health problems and baggage from our childhoods, the shame is when we bury it and ignore it, but if we own up to it and grow and become better people for it, I think that is very admirable and people who are your true good friends will realize that!

    Reply

  117. Faithful
    Jun 04, 2013 @ 20:16:55

    just found this site (took the time to read all the comments, Sorry for lurking) Chris thank you for being transparent and telling us your point of view. I just found out at the end of march that my husband was having an affair through a chat site and skyped sexed with her a couple of times (Thinking she was 16, I don’t think she is as I saw some of their chat and he asked for a picture and she sent him one… she apologized for looking older but said she was that age because that is what he was looking for. He is 43 btw) he disclosed later that he was also talking to another person and was planning on meeting her at a hotel for sex while on a business trip and that she never showed up so he got online with this other girl and that was the first time they skyped. He told her he lived with his ex and that it was going to be over soon (I had no idea) She asked him things like was I pretty and he said no not really. She asked if he still loved me and that it was ok if he did. He told her only a little because I gave birth to his kids (we have 2 a boy and a girl) At one point he told her that he looked up the prices of airline tickets to go see her, we are in Iowa she is in Cali. she kinda freaked out and said no, she wanted to come to Iowa. He asked her if he could send her a gift and she said no, that her parents would find out yet she also said that her mother was in a mental ward and her dad was a drug lord… but then she would say that they took her Ipod away. lots of things she said didn’t add up. He has since taken skype off his computer and closed the fake accounts he was using to contact her. I feel like I am going crazy, I can’t eat, I get little to no to restless sleep. he has started going to SA. he works a part time job and we barley make ends meet let alone get counselling. I don’t work so I can be here for the kids, they are now 12 and 10. I have been reading the book Your sexually addicted spouse, I have gotten to chapter 7 but stated it over again so I can keep notes. I like that she takes the stand that I am not a co addict or co dependent. in 07 my husband had a very bad car accident and when I was caring for him through it I was not labeled co dependent. How is one trauma different then another… trauma is trauma. I am realizing that I have many symptoms of PTSD. I have no support group or anyone I feel I can confide in. I feel despair to the point of wanting to kill myself so he can be free all the way to feeling numb and then to the point of feeling nothing. I feel as if I can not function to even take care of myself let alone even make a sandwich for my kids. I did not know he had this problem when we were married 14 years ago. He has had a problem with porn, masturbating, and he had a affair with a coworker when I was 5 1/2 months pregnant with our 2nd child at Christmas time. at the time our pastor told us not to tell anyone because what would people think of him if he left… or if we worked it out and he stayed. so I bottled it up and didn’t tell anyone. I just don’t know what to do, I can’t wave a magic wand and make myself 16 again (nor would I want to) he blames it on he is just a very passionate guy, but that is not the side I see. when we were dating he would write me notes all the time (even on napkins) he pursued me, now I feel like him just talking to me is forced and he really doesn’t want to waste his energy. (we are both Christians) I have always forgave him because it is who I am, I have never cheated on him and I mean my vows… better for worse, rich or poor, sickness and health. all I keep feeling is I just wanted to be loved. He says he still loves me but he can’t answer if he is in love with me because he feels he wants to just shut down. Sunday he said he was done with everything… Christianity and that he would just sign the kids over to me and be done with everything. Part of me (ok a lot of me) feels he just wants to be free to mess around anytime he wanted. He told me he wanted to have sex with a lot of people not just have a monogamous relationship with me.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Jun 04, 2013 @ 20:22:23

      faithful- you sound like you must be in a tremendous amount of pain. The MOST important thing i can stress is that if you are feeling suicidal then IMMEDIATELY call 911 or go to the hospital. Even if the thoughts are fleeting, put a safety plan in place. PLEASE tell a trusted friend about these feelings.

      Reply

  118. helen
    Jun 05, 2013 @ 16:47:02

    Faithful, hang on in there, will he get help ? can you geet help? when I read your story there are many things similar but when we are going through this we feel no one else could have ever suffered this. Remember look after yourself and your kids.
    My husband was a horriable man until he got help but things can move forward.
    best of look and god bless you.

    Reply

  119. helen
    Jun 05, 2013 @ 17:36:51

    I may be over stepping the mark ( No I think I am ) here but I do feel the pain for faithful and I woluld like to ask Chris if he can offer faithful any words of wisdom or support from the angle of the other side. I am sorry to ask this of you Chris but I just feel it may help. Sometimes my husband has tried to explian to me what it is like to be the addict/offender,his words, not mine. Please forgive if I do offend but my early days I had no one and nothing.

    Reply

  120. helen
    Jun 06, 2013 @ 17:59:16

    Im here again , has anyone ever been here as much as me ? I would be interested to know. I am having another bad day, Ive not visited my therapist for months you know how it is trying to make it on my own. Ive had an incident with my husband where the information he has given me has not matched with previous information and hes saying, Im trying to forget my past so if the information is not accurate thats because im trying to move on. It has been nearly two years and he is male ,although Im findinng this hard to belive. I would be intrested in others views.

    Reply

  121. Julia
    Jun 07, 2013 @ 08:11:56

    It’s very hard to keep the secret of the life we lead behind closed doors, the private nature of it, not wanting it to become exposed for fear of how it will change everything. Life itself would be turned upside down. My husband looks at porn on the internet and masturbates to it, don’t know if this is it, or if there is more to it, but it’s just what I’ve found. I’ve confronted him about it, but he seemed to think it was no big deal. I told him it was to me and he said I was overreacting as usual, making it bigger than it is. So, I conceded, maybe because I was so shocked to find it, I was really emotional about it. So, I let it calm down, then I watched for signs…I really, really want to trust that he won’t still go back to doing that, but he is. Maybe I was just blind to it and all the years we’ve been married it’s been going on, but I see a change in his behavior towards me and how he generalizes in the words he uses …like for example he stated “how he loves women’s bodies”…in the throws of passion…My blood turned cold in an instant…
    It’s so hard to think that it isn’t partly my fault, but I am changing because of it, hardened, untrusting, bitter too, the worst thing and I hate it. I’ve done everything in the world to be pleasing, helpful, offering everything within reason and anything whenever he wanted and still there is this thing that hangs over us.
    You’ve changed me too, helping me to see it is a mental illness, that it isn’t my fault, it changes the way I see the sinful act and allows me to try and live in the moments that are good and sweet and pure, it’s hard, but I’m working through it slowly. I’ve had moments where I just wanted to escape and forget it ever happens under my roof, crying spells, and speeches rehearsed of how I would talk to him about all of this…and yet I’m still learning about it…so I wait until I have full understanding. It’s good that I can feel free to tell you how it affects me and in some part let you know you are not alone… I am reading through a book that was recommended and have gone to research COSA and find out what it’s all about. All of this is helping me, and I appreciate your knowledge here, and acceptance of confession of this sinful act and the ripples it creates. Thank you for being here, once again,

    Reply

  122. linda
    Jun 07, 2013 @ 20:11:03

    Julia,
    You can study till the cows come home, it is not going to change anything, he will never quit, I done just what you are doing, while it is not a waste of your time, (as you will discover what makes these sickos tick), he will never change, he may try, or pretend to, but the recovery rate is nil. Some experts say 5%, I, however cannot agree, I think “MANAGING THE BEHAVIOR” is as good as it will ever be. Think about it, you have a spouse that has to “manage”, not wanting other women, 24 hours a day, 365 days a year! Where is your worth? Your self esteem will be in the gutter, as I suspect it may already be, or you would not entertain staying with this man. It’s the same as a sociopaths, we may have empathy for their illness, but would not choose to live with one, less marry one! I caution you, never for one moment forget this, these SA’s are Narcistic, and only care about themselves! You are a mere pawn in their game! Best of luck to you!

    Reply

    • helen
      Jun 10, 2013 @ 20:30:58

      Linda, this does seem a little harsh my therapist has always said learning/researching gives you a better understanding and equips you to deal with the situation and able to make individual decisions about our futures. We have all experienced terrible things from our addict partners but we are not in a position to say another person will never recover, not every situation is the same and a multitude of factors have to be taken into consideration.
      Julia/Linda both stay strong its not easy.

      Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Jun 13, 2013 @ 04:48:18

      My uncle quit and he was one of the many inspirations that is causing me to fight this. I am going to win and I am doing it with truth and love. No hate. Negativity breeds the same. Enough said.

      Reply

  123. Joy
    Jun 09, 2013 @ 08:47:51

    I think that keeping a secret is being co-dependent. Health and healing do not thrive in secrecy and double lives. You need to find safe people to open up to and share with, and you need to let someone in your life know what you are going through, it will help keep you sane and it will help give you perspective.

    Reply

  124. Joy
    Jun 09, 2013 @ 08:54:28

    Here is healing to you all! We all change our perspectives. Linda, I can see you are bitter, and you have every right to be. But……in the end, in your bitterness you are letting someone else control you. I think there is freedom in letting go of attachment, of hate, of control, of labels, etc. People can and do change, but that doesn’t mean all people want to change. In the end, whether they change or not has nothing to do with anyone else, but only themselves. So yes, Linda, you are 100% right in saying that a SA will not change for his wife/children, etc but if the SA is motivated to have a better life for himself, I do believe people have a chance to grow and change, that is what we are alive for. Maybe in a few years your perspective might shift: http://marriedtoasexaddict.com/more-from-joann-why-do-i-stay-with-a-sex-addict/

    Reply

  125. Joy
    Jun 09, 2013 @ 09:11:29

    I also don’t think SA for the most part are puppet masters focused on manipulation and control. I think they are lost, hurt people looking for self-affirmation, love, acceptance in the wrong places because they never experienced unconditional love and acceptance in their childhoods……sure many people never experienced that and they don’t become SA or other kind of addicts or sociopaths…but, we all deal with trauma in different ways and we all heal in unique ways too. I think it is a sad commentary on human nature to say some people are just simply doomed to never heal and grow. We all have the capacity and potential to become stronger, healthier, more loving and accepting, kind versions of ourselves. But if someone is not able to change, I think that shows that they have not hit a point yet where their self-destructive behaviour reaches a threshold where they can say, ENOUGH. It’s like with anything in life, we continue on the same pathway until we are able to learn the lesson(s) we were meant to live. Sure, for many that will 0never happen in this life time, but for some it will. It’s hard not to take things personally, not to feel victimized, it’s hard not to feel powerless and not to feel like the carpet has been swept from under you and you have to rebuild your life. That’s part of our growth and our life lessons. You have to let go of wanting someone to change, if they change, they change and it has nothing to do with you. I think this is stated in that book too (Spouse of a Sex Addict), that in the end recovery is about taking your power back by focusing on your life. If the SA stays in your life and grows with you, so be it, if not, and you part ways sooner or later, than so be it……But that’s the difficulty, focusing on ourselves and our lives knowing that the reality, dreams, goals we had, were really an illusion because they were not with the person we thought, the person we wanted our husband to be was an illusion. The only way to break free, I think, is to let go of any conceived notion of control, focus on ourselves, our children, our own lives. If the SA starts to change because he is fed up and realizes what he is losing as a result of his addiction, then there is hope

    Reply

  126. helen
    Jun 09, 2013 @ 20:06:50

    julia, its not an easy raod we travel however their can be recovery for both and togerther and I feel when you get there life can be better than it was before.

    Reply

  127. helen
    Jun 10, 2013 @ 15:48:49

    Hi, I just wanted to say something in light of the last few comments. I can honestly say that this has been one of the worst things that has ever happened to me in my life and I’ve had a few near misses with my own destiny, however, I feel I am slowly recovering although still get bad days but I now know what ever happens to me and my husband I am glad I have gone through this process of trying because
    1 I have always loved him
    2.He loved me ( I know that sounds strange because of what he has done)
    3 We had children together and no one can replace what we have made together
    4 Hes a sick man, who was never shown love, respect, morals, standards, guided, instead he was abused in every form throughout his impressionable years.
    5 He is showing signs of recovery and I’m sure he could not keep up a lie for a great length of time, as the addict I knew would have lost his cool and done what he wanted too by now.
    6 Lastly it has changed me and I know clearly what I want and what I expect from this relationship and he knows my feelings too and if for what ever reason if he does not keep to this I am not longer in a state of shock wondering what to do I know my path and would feel comfortable and strong if I have to walk it. So what I am trying to say is the recovery process has not been all in vain even if he was not willing to recover as it has given me time to develop and repair.

    I can say no two peoples situation will ever be the same and no two people would deal with it the same but we are all here for a bit of support and a sounding board.

    Reply

  128. J
    Jun 10, 2013 @ 23:55:12

    Thank you for this.

    Reply

  129. Julia
    Jun 11, 2013 @ 07:31:44

    I’m just learning about this illness, thus, I’m not saying anything to anyone until I have something to say. I don’t know how it starts, I don’t know why it continues, I don’t know so much about it that I just don’t have much to say about it. I’m still in the feeling stages and the numbing stage is quickly behind along with anger, bitterness and then trying to deal.
    Honestly, when I said my marriage vows I meant them, for better and for worse…and in sickness and in health. I find comfort in those words, and I feel confident in honoring them. Sure there’s going to be bad days where my heart hurts and I can’t stop the tears or the bitterness, but I will try and that’s what I’m called to do. I took those vows before God and it is God I’m accountable to, regardless of how I feel, I will honor them. I love my spouse and I’m willing to work on this together with him and pray to God for His help and strength.
    Also, I’m not perfect there was a time when he helped me through my garbage and stayed, when he had every right to leave, now I’m helping him through his garbage, isn’t that what we are to do for one another.
    There was a great saying in the movie “Meet Joe Black” where Quince said about his wife Allison, “she knows the worst thing about me and it’s okay”
    that always stuck with me. I’ll leave it at that.
    I’ll continue to learn and equip myself and gain what I need with the Lord’s help.
    Please don’t be too hard on the ones who are just learning about their situation and are trying to cope…I agree with Linda, each situation is different.
    Still, in every comment here, I am thankful for the points of view you all give, it helps me.

    Reply

    • helen
      Jun 12, 2013 @ 20:24:48

      Julia, read, read and read, the best I read was by Stephanie Carnes, shattered hearts. I have read lots but this to me is the most positive. i have seen a sexual psychotherapist or almost two years, I /we have also put our faith in God.

      Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Jun 12, 2013 @ 22:59:16

      Julia,

      I admire your resolve to your vows. I am resolute to maintain mine and my wife shares your view as well.

      You said you are in the learning phase on this issue. If you would like a little insight into this world and how it starts take a look at this:

      http://deadtosinaliveinchrist.com/2013/05/07/a-little-boy-ensnared/

      This is safe. It is another man’s story but it matches mine to a T.

      This is my story written shortly after I fell to temptation one night after trying so hard to resist.

      http://deadtosinaliveinchrist.com/2012/11/30/tormented-heart-and-the-narrow-pathway-home/

      It is hell to me because I know what God says about it. I feel like Paul in Romans 7:14-16

      “We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good.”

      I can tell you that despite what some may try to tell you, there are men like me who struggle with this who are compassionate, loving, GOOD husbands who care and ARE trying hard to live free from this sin.

      I pray that you find healing. Feel free to have your husband contact me on my site if he needs to talk to another man about his struggle. If you would like, my wife would be willing to speak to you over the phone as well. She has been where you are.

      In Christ

      Reply

  130. helen
    Jun 12, 2013 @ 17:08:07

    hi all, Im currently feeling good about life in general I have a good career, good friends and know I can always support myself. My children are communicating well and my sa seems to be in recovery. I do fear something could go wrong but pray it doesnt. I just wondered if others have got to this stage and what words of wisdom they could offer me.

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Jun 12, 2013 @ 22:45:29

      I can tell you that there is always a possibility that something could go wrong. However, my wife and I work through this together. Because of her love and forgiveness, she is now my safe place to land. If I struggle, I can confide in her. That has made a world of difference for us. I have hard days, days of extreme temptation, but since we work together, I am no longer on a lonely island with this addiction. Loneliness is a trigger of mine and since I am no longer alone in this, because of her help and attitude towards helping me, We are getting stronger everyday.

      Reply

      • helen
        Jun 14, 2013 @ 20:33:31

        Chris, I do not wish to sound rude but your reply talks about you confiding in your wife,your safe palce to land, the forgivness you have received, your lonelyness being addressed by your wife. So please tell me who provides your wife’s safe place,addresses her lonelyness etc etc Your wife’s needs are just as important. Without greatly offending I really do feel even recovering addicts find it hard to think of others, their needs still seem to be upmost.

        I do not provide needs for my husband in this way and feel that could be co-dependant tendancies for me although I was never seen as codependant when we went to therapy. I work on my own life, my own needs and then on our material needs. My hsband works on his addiction through 12 step friends/therapist, god and finding himself in an independant way knowing his path has nothing to do with me.
        Maybe I do not understand the concept that you guys experience but I am sure you guys would find it hard to feel what we have.

  131. linda
    Jun 13, 2013 @ 12:50:30

    I feel the need to tell you all about my ex-husband, in short, I know on this site I sound bitter, and I guess perhaps I am, but I do have great empathy for my ex, I would not want to have this affliction, that is for sure. My biggest issue is, not being told by him, he married me with this huge secret, I had told him how I felt about pornography, and cheating, he darn well knew my morales were high. That is what bothers me the most, he lied, was in denial, whatever we call it, he stole 20 years of my life!!!!!!! These men say they love their spouse, but sex addiction is an intimacy disorder, so how do they love?, they really do not know how! I do know my husband loved me as much as he was able, as much as he knew how! He is one of the more lost souls I have ever met, and yes, I may be bitter, but I do not hate him, I love him, but I have learned , we CANNOT change another person, no matter how hard we try. Therefore I was left with no choice for my own sanity but to leave! We do not help addicts , until they become accountable for their choices!

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Jun 13, 2013 @ 13:28:46

      Linda, I think it is unfair to make such a broad statement. I am one who loves very deeply. I am one of “those men”. Your case may indeed be unchangeable but to tell everyone here that based on your one experience that all the rest of “us” are unable to love is not fair. Others have had a much different experiences than you have. It is not fair to tell me that I really don’t know how to love because I struggle with this.

      My wife and I try to love each other like Jesus loves us. She does some pretty annoying things and has some issues too that affect our marriage. As do I. But what makes our marriage great is we don’t focus on what the other isn’t doing or has done wrong. We focus on loving each other and forgiving each other when we do something against the other. We focus on serving each other. For us it erases the possibility of bitterness. Especially when we realize that we both have character defects.

      Those defects in character is what is beautiful in our relationship. We love each other through them and we do not quit, we work to refine ourselves everyday. That is what my Lord does for me.

      Reply

    • Dreamer
      Jun 15, 2013 @ 16:45:03

      Hello Linda,

      I wanted to validate your decision to leave. Unfortunately that is what it takes for some SA to hit rock bottom. You are correct, you can not change him and at the end the decision to stay or leave is up to you and what you can tolerate for your life.

      My situation was similar to yours. I dated my husband for 13 yrs before we married. He knew I hated porn. I caught him several times and he swore he would quit. It wasnt until after we married that all hell broke loose and I learned this was an addiction. I feel like you do often like time was stolen from me. I have lost so much to this addiction including the possibility of not having children bc he cant have sexual intercourse as it makes him uncomfortable and unpleasurable. I married a virgin so I have no idea what that feels like. Ive gone through periods of bitterness and anger. For sure this feels so unfair.

      I chose to stay because my husband chose recovery. Our sexuality is still broken but our
      intimacy is improving. I know a lady at my recovery group who chose to separate and as a result her husband is turning around. I know others who are not.

      The path of this disease is difficult. I hold on to the truth that God loves me and has a plan greater than all of this. Have you heard the song Beautiful from Mercy Me? God has a plan for your life too. I agree with a previous post. For as long as we stay in bitterness someone else will have power over us. With or without our husbands we are princesses of the God Most High. I keep my eyes and let hopes on my Lord Jesus. I am empowered to choose my path and so are you

      I want to encourage you to fight bitterness and embrace hope. Recovery groups and one on one counseling sessions have been helpful for me.

      Reply

    • Donna
      Aug 23, 2013 @ 10:11:22

      Linda you are not bitter,you are correct. I wish i could email you. After 23 years i have found someone who feels the same as me! x

      Reply

      • linda
        Aug 24, 2013 @ 13:48:50

        Hi Donna,

        I have no problem talking with you, it helps us, when we help others! If you want to post your e-mail, that is the only way that I know for us to connect, other than on this site.

    • Donna
      Aug 23, 2013 @ 10:13:23

      Linda please see my reply below.I must have pressed the wrong thing! x

      Reply

  132. linda
    Jun 13, 2013 @ 13:47:07

    Chris: Got a question for you, has a therapist, or a SA group explained to you, that sex addiction is an intimacy disorder? Is my therapist wrong? If you do not have intimacy, then how do you love? This question is not meant to be unfair to you, I am just asking you, as my husband never gave me any answers…

    Reply

    • Chris Painter
      Jun 13, 2013 @ 16:58:10

      Thank you for asking me this question and giving me the opportunity to answer it. I do not think this is an intimacy disorder. It is a behavior that when one is actively engaging in sexually promiscuous behavior does has negative effects on intimacy. I certainly experienced this myself as I was unable to really love my wife and cherish her.

      This excerpt is straight from the Setxahoulics Anonymous book:

      “Our habit made true intimacy impossible. We could never know real union with another because we were addicted to the unreal. We went for the ‘chemistry,’ the connection that had the magic, because it by-passed intimacy and true union. Fantasy corrupted the real; lust killed love.”

      This was the excerpt in describing the problem of lust. So from that standpoint what you say is correct, if we are acting out and feeding this addiction then I would agree with you. But this is also true for any addiction whether it is sex addiction, addiction to porn, drugs, alcohol, you name it. If it consumes you and your thoughts then it will kill intimacy because that behavior takes its place.

      However, as with anyone who is in recovery, we have learned how to become truly intimate again. First by connecting to God and learning what love and intimacy really is, then by using that love we get from God and sharing that with our spouse, children and all other relationships we have.

      Step three of the twelve step program outlined in this book says this:

      “We discovered that the root of our problem is conscious separation from the Source of our lives; the solution is conscious union with that Source. Thus, coming to the end of ourselves in surrender brought us to the place where we could finally let God have a personal place in our lives. Practicing Step Three is like the opening of a door which to all appearances is still closed and locked. All we need is a key, and the decision to swing the door open. There is only one key, and it is called willingness.”

      This is where I disagree with your point that those of us that say we are SA’s (One in recovery mind you) cannot really love and show intimacy. I can have true intimacy and it is because I come back to God every time I have thoughts that are impure. Through that connection and reconciliation with Him, I can and do love my wife deeply and passionately (and I am not talking about sex).

      So in conclusion I say this. If your partner is unwilling and is not working the steps necessary to be clean, then yes, their behavior will inhibit their ability to have true intimacy. But it is a decision. A decision that by its very nature causes separation from everything external to us. If your parter is willing and is working the steps to remain clean, which is a decision, then by the very nature of that action he/she is brining themselves back into reality and therefore can experience true intimacy.

      That is where my wife and I have been for years now. I on occasion have had a weak moment and looked at something that I should not. However, where it is different is that I pull my head out of my $#$ quickly and turn to God and her and we win! I almost never fall into the pit anymore and with God’s grace I will never fall again. But because I am open to discuss my struggle with my wife, we actually experience I higher form of intimacy than many couples here, I would suspect, because we know each other more deeply. She knows my struggles and I know her’s because we communicate freely without reprisal.

      I know my wife fully. Which means to know and be known fully. That is true intimacy.

      I hope that this answered your question.

      As a side note. I do respect therapists/councilors, as they did help me through my problems. However, they all have differing opinions about what things are. So I used what I could from them but some of their answers I could not accept. If we would have listened to the first one, then my wife and I would have never experienced these amazing years together and my children would be without a good father.

      Respectfully fo course.

      In Christ

      Reply

  133. helen
    Jun 17, 2013 @ 18:59:45

    Ive been feeling good and positive but today yes something got into my head and made me doubt/triggered me into negative thoughts. Im still not good at dealing with triggers. What about others how do you deal with triggers

    Reply

  134. Joy
    Jun 19, 2013 @ 22:39:01

    You might all like this talk: http://www.youtube.com/embed/wSF82AwSDiU
    This is a good site too, by the same speaker: http://yourbrainonporn.com/understanding_porn_addiction

    Reply

  135. helen
    Jun 20, 2013 @ 20:28:24

    Hi all, I have a question for you all. My husband has been in recovery for nearly two years and appears to be doing well. He has now stopped going to meetings and occasionally does talk to others, I’m not sure if this is good or bad, what do you think? He tells me he knows who and what is there for him but we need to move forward and not be reliant on these sessions completely in our lives ! Our therapist did say something along similar lines but it does make me feel cautious. In fact our therapist said we could move forward and he may recovery to the extent that he will forget he was ever an addict.

    Reply

    • linda
      Jun 20, 2013 @ 23:52:54

      Forget he was ever an addict, what kind of tip did he give the therapist? That is a load of garbage, once an addict, always an addict, albeit in recovery, perhaps! Bet you will never say the same, you will most likely never forget!
      Good Luck Helen!

      Reply

  136. helen
    Jun 21, 2013 @ 14:33:09

    Linda, I think you may have misunderstood what I was trying to explain. I think the therapist was trying to say that recovery could be so successful that it would not be an every day issue in our lives. I have to say in no way is my husband or myself foolish to his condition and I know he nor myself will ever forget what has happened to us.
    In reality Linda there are many things in my life besides sex addiction I will never forget good and bad but then would I want to as they make me the person I am.
    Life goes on, and its for living.
    Helen

    My original question is still open for views about reducing calls and meetings etc being a good or bad thing, does anyone have personal experience.Our therapist said dipping in and out was not a bad thing as sometimes addictions to this support network can develop.

    I would be interested in views.

    Reply

  137. jennifer
    Jun 23, 2013 @ 03:06:28

    I am moved by this. My boyfriend is a sex addict. My friends have told me to leave him and let him deal with this problem on his own. I love him and believe he is the love of my life. I choose to stay with him to help us both through this painful journey and to help him recover. Thank you for sharing what keeps you going. Things like this keep me going.

    Reply

  138. helen
    Jun 24, 2013 @ 18:21:11

    Jennifer, take good care of yourself and make sure you both get the help you need and deserve.

    Reply

  139. namraht
    Jun 27, 2013 @ 10:10:34

    Going through the same issues with my husband, finding it hard as a woman to understand the way a male is wired and struggling to have faith that things will ever change. The pain is terribly lonely to deal with, my husband has battled with addictions and only after 15 years have I realized he is an addict, his “drug” of choice has changed, but the lingering one is the hardest to deal with. I consider leaving yet our young children mean the world to me, I am unaware of support groups in our area and the few churches we have sought help at, have not helped us. I have seen huge improvements in my husbands behaviour, but I am always blind-sided by his betrayal and lies and even after receiving dreams and premonitions, find myself naieve and gullible to his lies. If we didn’t have kids I would think leaving would be best, my dream of happy families seems to be just a dream most days. How sad so many of us are going through the same things and so isolating being such a shameful situation, it feels like i’m living a lie and simply don’t want people around to have to hide the fact our marriage is a terrible mess. I am not an unattractive woman, but my husband makes me feel ugly and my self esteem low, lucky for guys they don’t have post-baby bodies to attract newer, younger females, sad but true.

    Reply

  140. helen
    Jun 28, 2013 @ 17:51:21

    does your husband seek help and more to the point do you. you can be referred by your doctor to a therapist that deals with sexual addiction, it has helped me. There is a positive in what you write as you say he has made improvements. Keep yourself safe.

    Reply

  141. Deanna
    Jun 29, 2013 @ 05:09:47

    It has taken me days to get through all these comments, but I had to finish them. I found out 4 years into our marriage that my husband was an SA, lots of porn and chatting. He did a “workshop” at pine grove almost 5 years ago which helped. But after a couple years of sobriety, he gradually let go of all his SA contacts. I watched in horror these last few months as he threw himself off the wagon. I saw it. I pointed it out. I was pushed away to the point, I almost packed up the kids and left. I was convinced he hated me. Turns out he was just in the throws of an online cyber sex affair. I found proof on May 30th. He tried to hang himself May 31st..all this time has been consumed with keeping him safe and not suicidal and not feeling so much self hate.

    C’mon, are you freaking kidding me?! You email pictures of your penis to some whore while she emails you pictures of her nasty self and YOU are depressed? Man up. I’m so mad. When I start to talk about my feelings, he shows remorse and sadness but then easily moves into – yep, you were right. I was falling and pushed you away. Yep, you were right, I’m the one to blame for it all. Yep, you were right, your suspicions and instincts were spot on even though I lied and told you otherwise. HEs just so cavalier about it all.

    How on earth do I make it through the day to day?? I told him I want 6 months of therapy for us to work through feelings before any marriage decisions are made. But I feel like I am turning into that doormat woman who “stands by her man” at the cost of her respect. But how can I let go of all my dreams? I gave him over half my life, I’ll be 39 in 6 months. I nearly died giving birth to his children (seriously, I was in the hospital for weeks). He chose an online whore over me. Bottom line. He chose her over me and our 2 small children. She broke it off with him 3 days before I found a picture of his penis on his phone…the same phone our 4 year old uses.

    We’ll be married 12 years this September…we have. 2 and a 4 year old. I’m a stay at home mom. I’m screwed. Even if I wanted to leave, i have no where to go. I have no job. My children are my job. We both decided that years ago…back when I thought he loved me.

    Reply

  142. linda
    Jun 29, 2013 @ 10:03:15

    You wrote he was “just” in the throws of an online affair…?? wow.. I feel so bad for you, I have been there, the very same place you are, a child to care for, no job, and no money, and a severely broken heart, I felt defeated, angry, sick, and any other of these horrible emotions you can imagine..it was awful, but I am here, alive and well, and healing, you will need a therapist a.s.a.p.!!! I cannot stress that enough, just for you, not for you both, you cannot fix your marriage, or even attempt to, until you fix yourself.. and once you start to fix you, and when you start to recover (which will take a year or more), then if you still want to , go to therapy together. When I did all this, and started to recover, then we went to therapy together. He was in such denial, it was incredible! He would only admit to what he knew I knew, but I had a few surprises up my sleeve, that I saved just for the therapy session. In the end,(and it was difficult), I was able to get the courage up to just leave him. That was 10 months ago, best decision I ever made!!!!!!!!! I also went to a co-dependency councillor, this is crucial as well. I was able to learn that the universe would look out for me and my child, and I was right, I do not make much money, but we manage just fine. Best of luck to you, I know for now it may feel like this is just the most horrible thing that could have ever happened to you, but it truly is not, this is a lesson, to be learned from, there is something God wants you to learn. In totality, from the day I discovered what I was married to,( for 18 years), was 2.5 years ago. You will not only survive, you will thrive, and so will your dear children, heal yourself for them firstly, and then for you, not for him, for he does not deserve you or them. You see, it is my belief a leopard “cannot” change their stripes, and neither can a pervert. As the old saying goes, change nothing and nothing changes!

    Reply

  143. helen
    Jun 29, 2013 @ 15:58:25

    Linda , I have to say I think to use the word ‘pervert’ is uncalled for, yes these men have done terrible things that have destroyed ‘ US’ and as you say you are the other side now,but these men are desperately mentally ill. If we all take this type of opinion about this condition then treatment, prevention and cure will never happen andwe may as well live in the dark ages.

    Reply

  144. helen
    Jun 29, 2013 @ 16:03:42

    Linda, the hardest thing about this is you are the one that has to make your choices and there is no right or wrong, you have to do what you feel comfortable with maybe you should take a little time to collect your thoughts.

    My husband and myself did have joint therapy, I know this is not done very often and our therapist said it works for some but not others,but for us so far it seems to be positive.

    Take care

    Reply

  145. helen
    Jun 29, 2013 @ 20:06:55

    last entry for deanna ,sorry.
    Helen

    Reply

  146. Deanna
    Jun 29, 2013 @ 21:07:47

    Something else I’d like to ask, that I have yet to come across in reading…what about your mother-in-laws?? Our spouses have this addiction because of their childhood, because of the love they lacked or the abuse they suffered. My MIL has yet (almost 5 years he was sober) to look up SA and see what her son is/has. She does however want to watch our girls all the time. Are you kidding me?! You let your son get raped, over and over because YOU didn’t bother getting a babysitter and then YOU wouldn’t listen to his cries for help and then YOU taught him how to lie and keep lying all through his childhood. No, you may not watch my children. You suck as a parent. How do you handle the in-laws? She is quite possibly more delusional than my husband…and he doesn’t get my protectiveness. He thinks his mother “did the best she could, given the circumstances”. That kills me. Maybe he’ll change his thought process on that once he gets into therapy further this time.

    And also, we’re just typing on the end of someone’s blog post. Is there an online community we can congregate in somewhere? Clearly us spouses need support from one another, where do we get it?

    Reply

  147. dbiscuit
    Jun 30, 2013 @ 03:39:05

    hey there- i built this site to be a safe place for partners/spouses/etc. of sex addicts to share their experiences- it really encourages me to see everyone on here who has some hope to offer other partners. Please feel free to continue to post as you feel led. you all inspire ME as i too navigate this scary, unknown, & bizarre journey…

    Reply

    • Deanna
      Jun 30, 2013 @ 16:35:41

      Ahh, I wasn’t sure if your post was just being taken over, or if it was cool with you :) I used to belong to a “group” online where you could talk in forums and hold discussions, and you had to be a member so the general online world couldn’t read your thoughts. Thank you for opening your blog up to us though.

      Reply

      • dbiscuit
        Jun 30, 2013 @ 16:48:28

        yup! there are members only online forums for partners of sex addicts (COSA has one), but i wanted to put a public forum for people that aren’t A) 100% sure what they are dealing with and need to read the experiences of others or B) not ready to be part of a group. Lots of tools out there for us, and I definitely encourage everyone to use EVERYTHING and ANYTHING that can be supportive. For me, the cocktail of help that we used: 12 step groups, a few (read: VERY few) safe friends that know our story and support both of us, a therapist, a marriage therapist, prayer & fasting, changing cities and jobs, becoming a student of addiction and codependence (reading everything and doing all the workbooks/workshops/etc. we could) and for D, 3 trips to residential rehab. Everyone is different, and every relationship is different. Take what’s useful and leave the rest :) Keep going you can do this!

  148. linda
    Jun 30, 2013 @ 10:15:54

    Helen, I agree they have mental illness. But so do murderers, they are still murderers. The behavior of these men is perverted, no matter what the cause, of the mental illness. And yes, I hate the word pervert, but until we see things clearly, and as they are, we cannot heal. Good luck Helen!

    Reply

  149. helen
    Jun 30, 2013 @ 14:32:03

    The behavior of these men is brokenness from abuse, in the most vile ways. They have no self worth, no self esteem and have come from dysfunctional homes. My SA was physically, sexually and emotionally abused all his childhood. If we listened to that on the news today we would disgusted and want the perpetrator locked up,unfortunately we met those children and married them.

    I do hope if it had have been me to have SA my partner would have given me a chance. ‘There for the grace of god go I’.

    I think there might be a difference between a murders psychological profile and a sex addicts profile, I think sexual psychologists and criminal psychologist would answer that one for us. Don’t forget one in three have mental health issues and that could be any of us or our loved ones. unfortunately there still seems to be a stigma attached to mental health.

    I post here to get inspiration from others and hope I can return the favor, even though I know we don’t all have the same situations.I believe that most of us have the same desired outcome if at all possible and that would be to rescue and recover our marriages or we would have left by now.

    In reply to Deanna, once my husband had significant therapy he never saw his family again, he suddenly realized that was the deep seated cause of his problems and that did hurt him and cause anger also.He told me that if you live in a dysfunctional way and are abused as a child you are not aware that its dysfunctional and you think everyone lives like you. Unfortunately I would have hoped he might have realized a bit when he met me but he said he thought I needed to lighten up and get a life, funny as he says he would give anything now to be more like me.

    As for my MIL she never liked me (I wonder why) made my life difficult and never wanted any involvement with my kids, thank god. I am relieved she is no longer in my/ our lives as I think that would be a bigger demon than SA to deal with. LOL

    Reply

  150. Jenn
    Jul 02, 2013 @ 23:14:01

    Thank you for sharing your journey with us. I too am smack in the middle of this SA tornado. I call it a tornado because it is just that- a disaster. I chose to end my marriage with my husband now after 18 years or marriage and 22 years together. I have stood by my husband, forgiven and tried to forget all with the misunderstanding that he felt was sorry for what he has done. I thought I was so ahead of the game of snooping, spying and catching him from all angles from office flirtations, porn, to several physical affairs. My husband unfortunately was not sorry anymore and felt it was still my fault why he needed to seek attention from all of these people. It makes me so sad to see he has chosen another woman over us. I think about my decision DAILY. I wonder if he was sorry, if he misses his family, even me. I get so angry with myself for even wondering how he feels about us when I should focus on healing myself and my 3 daughters. I feel as if I have lived a lie for the past 22 years. I discovered recently there have been over 20 sexual affairs and the pornography has just increased to several hard drives. I know now that there was nothing I could do to stop this or even avoid this. The problem lies within him. So I guess I chose to heal myself from being codependent on him. I know I am doing the right thing for me. Thanks again for sharing I finding so much of your blog all too familiar. My question to you is how and when did your husband see he was the one that needed help?
    Jenn

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Jul 03, 2013 @ 17:45:11

      hi jenn- thanks for your comment! it is DEFINITELY a tornado. My husband did not realize he needed help until i left him. With me still living in the house and actively being part of the marriage, it was too easy for us to do the back-and-forth dance of me finding things, him apologizing, him saying a lot of nonsense, then me forgiving him, then starting the cycle again. when i left my husband, he was left with only himself. he told me that his “aha” moment came on his way home from an anonymous sexual encounter in a park. driving home, he told me he realized how jacked up he let his own life become, and that even though he was “free” and could do whatever he want (since i had left), he realized the SA life was not what he wanted. we separated a total of three times over the past 6 years. i believe separating played a huge part in saving our marriage.

      Reply

  151. Megyn
    Jul 03, 2013 @ 01:41:12

    Just found your blog, I will read through it more. But i just got out of a relationship (year and a half) with a recovering alcoholic, current sex addict and numerous other addictions. I finally got professional help, I have been tormented, verbally abused, and manipulated for a year and half. I made choices and kept going back because I wanted to believe what this guy was saying was true. I realize now, I was only an object to fill a void, I was an addiction, he did not love me. I cannot imagine staying in that situation, as my therapist (who only works with people in 12 step programs) said why would you stay in an abusive demeaning situation? Unless of course I am an addict my self? I am of course uncovering the truth to all this, working on my self, working in my own 12 step program, but I can’t imagine needing to stay in such a horrible situation to see my self and my baggage clearly. My higher power and who I was surrendering to before were completely against my values system, it was a relationship. Now my surrender is to a higher power, where by I allow my self to truly love and respect myself, Just as my higher power does.

    Reply

  152. helen
    Jul 03, 2013 @ 18:19:02

    Jenn, when my husband heard me tell our children dad and I were separating he knew it was over as he knows I would never emotionally destroy my children. He hit rock bottom and sort help and we are nearly two years down the line now, although its not been easy.
    My husband has told me there would have been nothing I could have said or done to make him stop before this as he says when your in full blown addiction the only person you think about is yourself.

    Keep going
    Helen

    Reply

  153. Jenn
    Jul 03, 2013 @ 23:48:42

    Helen thanks for sharing that. You know I did the same thing 3 years ago and it helped, but he still does not see it as an addiction. We moved to another state and he got another job and sadly his behavior continued. This is when I realized he had an addiction. I guess everything happens for a reason because when I told my children about the seperation they were not as shocked and I could honestly say I was also able to handle the separation a bit easier because in someway I knew I would end up down this road. One thing I did do was not tell him I told the girls, so he could tell them himself that he wasnt moving with us. Needless to say, they cried and were saddened to hear it come from him, ,but my youngest said “it’s just like what happened the last time” she was referring to 3 years back. That broke my heart because it was TRUE! That is when I realized I tried my absolute best to save this marriage and I had to make a choice to not accept this way of life for my girls and myself. It just breaks my heart that this is NOT his rock bottom. He acts like he is free and single and seems to be enjoying this separation. I actually was confused whether this was a midlife crisis or truly an SA. Either way he has no remorse whatsoever! Meanwhile, I am attending counseling sessions with my girls. We cry, we hold each other, and basically carry on.
    At first I was so angry I told his entire family and my friends because I felt I needed to let this out. I wanted someone to bear witness to my nightmare. I also wanted to share my side because of course he tells everyone he was just seeking love and attention because he wasn’t getting enough from me. I even told the girl (lover) from his job all his dirty laundry too just so she can see she was just a piece of ass to him and how I got an STD too because of this. I also feel like I shared because I wanted to make sure I would never go back. I don’t regret it because I think some of his family members are truly supportive of my decision and would like him to seek help. The one thing that I could say that is good is he did pay for my moving expenses and has been giving me money for child support. I don’t trust this would last so I made sure to apply for child support. He got very angry at me for doing that but I has to protect myself. I am already starting the divorce paperwork and that bomb will soon go off. Inside I feel like I still want him to come apologize and get us out of this nightmare, but he isn’t the man I thought I knew. In the end I know what I need to do and hopefully one day we could be friends as we coparent. I pray that my girls will never meet a man like him nor ever go through this nightmare.

    Reply

  154. Dreamer
    Jul 04, 2013 @ 17:13:33

    Jenn I just feel like telling you that I feel very proud of you. You are respecting yourself and your girls. You are giving tough love and setting boundaries for your sanity and health and your girls. God bless you for your courage and although your heart is broken rest assured that God is closest to the brokenhearted. I’ll be praying for you. You will arise better than ever from this.

    Reply

  155. helen
    Jul 04, 2013 @ 19:10:38

    Jenn, what a strong mum. God love you.
    I hope one day he recovers for the girls at least, for my husband when the therapist asked him questions and then said you are ‘an addict’ it seemed to have a bigger impact than anyone else telling him. I admire your strength and if my husband did not show any signs that he wanted to change I would not be with him. I can also say its not an easy thing to stay even if they show signs of recovery, I’m sure i will always have doubts so you could be in a better position than the rest of us, just give yourself time.

    Reply

  156. helen
    Jul 07, 2013 @ 19:07:50

    To those of you who are still working at it I wondered if you could give me any tips/help/hints about rebuilding trust. I know this wont be easy but I cant seem to let go of the lies and the deception my SA was able to carry out and its not letting me move forwards. My SA wants us to go to marriage counselling and talk about trust issues but I’ve just been feeling a bit over whelmed the last few days and don’t know which way to turn.

    Reply

  157. linda
    Jul 07, 2013 @ 19:27:03

    I recommend the counselling, we went, and it was worthy, I did leave my SA, but it was not because of trust issues. Trusting them without a mountain of counselling and change would be stupid! Your intuition is telling you NOT to trust him, listen to it !

    Reply

  158. helen
    Jul 10, 2013 @ 16:51:51

    Hi, I have found something on my computer called app.mamconduit, I’m not sure if its nothing or should I have concerns !!! I don’t want to make accusations!!! I have searched the net but didn’t get a lot of info. Sorry if it sounds stupid but computers/ internet are not my thing.

    Reply

  159. linda
    Jul 10, 2013 @ 19:08:52

    It is a toolbar, could cause a virus

    Reply

  160. helen
    Jul 14, 2013 @ 18:20:05

    When do you get to the point its not in your head every day ? My SA says he feels the same on a daily basis, he feels shame, embarrassment and remorse, I think I still feel shock most of the time that this is me and my life as I had no idea and he never showed me anything but love, It sure can play with your head. I ask this as I’m not sure we are doing everything that we should be to recover. It will be two years on sept 11th, ironic my own mega disaster date.

    Reply

  161. helen
    Jul 16, 2013 @ 16:11:25

    I want to ask you guys what you would do if your friend had told you that here husband had been in chat rooms, dating sites and had been sending images and receiving images from other women, looks at porn and is a workaholic. I know what you are thinking but what do I do ? I watch her being slowly destroyed and worn out and can remember that crazy time. How can I help her, I know its not as easy as saying what I think it is, as I could destroy our friendship and what if I was completely wrong.

    Reply

    • linda
      Jul 16, 2013 @ 17:45:45

      WRONG, I THINK YOU ALREADY KNOW WHAT HE IS! At the very least he is cheating her, she’s sees it and knows it, and is in denial, she will wake up, with or without you telling her!

      Reply

      • helen
        Jul 16, 2013 @ 18:22:06

        Linda, I’m not sure if it is always denial. I can remember my own situation I thought something was wrong but could not put my finger on it, I didn’t always read the warning signs ( which I have learnt the hard way) as my husband was the perfect husband on appearance and I say on appearance, it makes you think your crazy for having suspicions. I now know I would see it different but if you don’t have any cause to disbelieve why should you. To me denial would be your husband telling you clearly what he is doing such as’I’m having sex with other women and don’t intend to stop’ and then you do nothing about it would be denial.

        I think hes told her all the usual, ‘all men view porn’, ‘only looked at dating’,’ not interested’ etc etc etc why should you mistrust, disbelieve,condemn if your not aware of any such addiction. I believed my husband until it all happened, we had had 30 years of being together two children , hard times, happy times, holidays,love and then hit by terrible trauma. Although the sad thing for us now is I don’t have that freedom, happiness and trust for my husband or my fella human. I hope this will all change one day.

  162. improve sexual organs
    Jul 18, 2013 @ 06:10:50

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  163. Curably Crazy
    Jul 18, 2013 @ 22:55:42

    What is this about? On this site?

    Reply

  164. Liz
    Jul 20, 2013 @ 19:51:42

    i am so thankful i woke up and realized they will never ever change. and even if they would……trust and respect is gone. im free of this hell at last. everyone has their own limits at what they can handle and their own reasons for staying in destructive relationships. but its not worth it. its very harmful. potentially soul destroying.

    Reply

  165. helen
    Jul 23, 2013 @ 17:08:39

    hi

    Reply

  166. helen
    Jul 23, 2013 @ 17:10:44

    having problems with my computer that’s why you got a random hi !

    Can any of you advise me on post traumatic stress disorder because I think it has become my middle name.

    Reply

  167. Fearful
    Aug 10, 2013 @ 03:07:36

    I just feel like I cannot breathe. I talked him into going to a therapist and he has his first appointment on Sunday. I am very nervous because what if the therapist tells him that we should not be together. We have been together for 6 years and were going to get married in a couple of months, which we will not be at this moment. Will therapy mean that he gets himself right and we will not be us anymore and he will not want this relationship?

    Reply

  168. helen
    Aug 13, 2013 @ 17:37:17

    Has anyone seen new research into sex addiction and if the condition really is a condition

    Reply

  169. helen
    Aug 13, 2013 @ 17:42:05

    Fearful, I have tried to reply to you but have had problems. Please take you time and get some help for yourself, remember you husband has to want to recover. Im sure no therapist would tell someone what to do but let them know their options.
    Take care

    Reply

  170. linda
    Aug 13, 2013 @ 23:38:41

    I have, and yes, it is a real condition!

    Reply

  171. helen
    Aug 14, 2013 @ 07:17:23

    Linda, I have only briefly read it and it caused me some confusion that’s why I asked others because how I read it is they don’t believe its real and what we know as SA could be just old plain philandering,which sort of confused me big time. I am going to see my therapist soon I will ask how valuable he feels this current research is and ask him to give me a bit more information.

    Reply

  172. helen
    Aug 14, 2013 @ 07:24:26

    Hi all this situation with my SA has left me with PTSD and I have terrible hypervigulance always on the look out for any potential problems, I guess its like a self preservation. I dont know if Im going crazy but I watch my SA and he still does not seem to be able to give direct answers and sometimes there is deviation in his stories I know because of whats happened Im on the look out for any kind of deception but has anyone else had issues like this with a recovering SA. I have thought years of lies and deception and minimizing and manipulation cant be easy to change just like like that.

    Thoughts please

    Reply

  173. helen
    Aug 16, 2013 @ 18:01:40

    I have a husband in recovery and he seems to display this but for some reasons I cant and don’t want it.I once loved him very deeply. I know I only stayed at the beginning because of my kids. What do I do my husband wants me to get more help as I’ve had very little. I feel very desperate and feel like I am destroying myself, please help. My youngest son is in the middle of his a levels and wants to study medicine and I feel that if I call it a day it will destroy is future.

    Reply

  174. Winter
    Aug 17, 2013 @ 01:19:51

    hello, to the person who wrote this blog, if you don’t mind would you give me your personal email so that I may share my story with you & maybe get some sound advise from you, if you would please? Thank you, I really need help

    Reply

  175. Lost
    Aug 19, 2013 @ 16:52:09

    I am recently separated from my husband. We were married for almost 15 years and he said that he is leaving for another woman. But this woman is married with 2 kids and it not interested in leaving her husband anytime soon. My husband has had an addiction to porn and “inappropriate” friendships with very very needy women for years. He swears that he never has sexual relations with anyone, but I really do not know what to believe. He seems to be living in a fantasy world right now. He spent every waking minute on the computer and would always hide everything he did on the computer from me. I found a lot of dirty conversations with strange women on Facebook and MySpace etc. and I just felt like all I ever did was watch every move he made. He would have weird text messages to women and just strange behavior. And it’s funny, I always thought that he had some sort of problem but not until now do I realize that he has some sort of sex addiction. I am really glad that I found this page because many of your stories sound so similar to mine. My husband and I never had children which I guess is one plus since children won’t affected. He doesn’t see that he has a problem and just says that he does this stuff because of my snooping…which I know is a cop out just to make him feel better. I hope I can gain some insight from this blog because right now I just feel lost.

    Reply

  176. Jenn
    Aug 24, 2013 @ 01:43:12

    I too have gone through this horrible experience and although my brain tells me that my seperation is the best decision, my heart constantly wishes my husband could admit he has a SA. Reading your post today put it all so perfectly into the right perspective. Life is short and I have suffered 18 years in a marriage of constant insecurity. So thanks to you I KNOW I am on the right track to healing ME and I can only pray for my husband’s situation. Thank you for helping me see light!

    Reply

  177. helen
    Aug 24, 2013 @ 18:37:09

    Lost please find yourself some help.

    Reply

  178. helen
    Aug 24, 2013 @ 19:07:51

    I have recently had some angry and hurt emails come into my email account from this site d believe me I have every bit of empthy for those who suffer and experience this sitution. What I would like to say is please dont become to opinionated as everysone’s situation is unique and individuals have to make their own mindes up as to whether they stay or not, as they are the ones who live with that for the rest of their lives.Some do go into recovery and some dont but the individual has to deal with this. I also feel that this site was realy for those who were after support in recovery hence the title ‘Why I stay’.
    Im no saint and struggle with this as much as as most but my husband is attemping to recover, so that just shows its not always negative. Only this week I have seen our ‘shrink’ and I still have a long way to go but as he has said to me , my husband is trying to change his world around and yes I could go now, but what would that do?? cause myself more pain and isolation and upset my children and distroy what family there is left . I guess what Im trying to say is there can be hope and for those where recovery does not happen please get help as yuour anger will not let you move n. God bless

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Aug 25, 2013 @ 18:11:55

      Hi Helen- I don’t know how i missed this comment but wanted to say thank you. Yes, I wrote this blog and specifically this post (“why i stay”) for women who are choosing a similar path (of the many paths) forward. Thanks :)

      Reply

  179. linda
    Aug 24, 2013 @ 22:25:48

    Donna,
    I will not publicly post mine, as I am hearing lots of people are getting unwanted e-mails from this site. However, if you want to post yours, I will contact you through it.
    Linda

    Reply

  180. recovery girl
    Sep 09, 2013 @ 15:52:58

    Ive been having days were I feel this never happened to us, how weird is that. Is that dangerous or is it healing. We have been in recovery two years now.

    Reply

  181. Nadine
    Sep 10, 2013 @ 02:14:06

    I’ve been married to the same man longer than being unmarried. His selfish addiction steals from me. Not only am I completely unsatisfied -I am alone emotionally, sexually, I get zero attention or affection or nurturing. It’s simply easier for him to have sex with his mistress named ‘internettia’ than me. Suggesting -waiting and waiting for something that has never even come close to happening… Him wanting & focusing on me, is like wasting my life on a man who could care less about my satisfaction. So while most of these reasons are hopeful… hopeful never comes- & now I’m old grey and to old to enjoy sex. What does that prove.? I’d be like Charlie Brown waiting for the Great Pumpkin. I would rather feel alone because I genuinely am alone than feel just as alone and married!

    Reply

  182. Rachel S.
    Sep 10, 2013 @ 04:45:38

    I found out last July my boyfriend of 14 years was cheating. For some strange reason I thought we could work it out. I finally put everything together this past June. I figured out that he was an addict. I begged him to get help. He just said it’s over between us. I have moved on and you need to do the same. The following week he doesn’t want me to leave. I feel so angry and confused by everything. In July I joined a group for partners of addicts. I also started going to a 12 step program a few weeks ago. So far it’s helping me be more open. I am being honest about my mistakes in this relationship. It’s so hard to see my partner this way. Now I am seeing him acting out. He is so cold to me. No morals or values whatsoever. I started packing my things. I don’t think I can stay with him anymore. I feel alone and ashamed by his addiction. He already moved on with a few people. He wants me out now. He doesn’t feel he has any problems.
    Last week I got angry at him. He kept on blaming me for his problems. I punched him in the stomach really hard. He finally made a move to call a therapist after that. Honestly I don’t think I can forget what he did. I did forgive him for being an addict. I don’t think I want to be with him. I don’t trust him anymore. I am starting to hate him. I don’t think he will recover from this. I am just sick of it all. Sick of staying up and worrying about him. Sick of him lying to me. Sick of his bs. I was lucky not to catch anything this time around. I got all my STD and HIV testing. Thank God everything came back negative.

    I wanted to share my story with you guys. Any advice on how to cope with this. Is this really the end of your relationship? I just feel empty and alone now. I don’t think I can be around this man anymore. I feel like who will want me now :-(

    Reply

  183. recovery girl
    Sep 10, 2013 @ 17:15:41

    I feel deeply for you , we have all been there, just make sure you get the right help for you and hopefully this will give you he power and knowledge to make your decision. Remember you are the one that can only make the final decision.
    Dont rush decisions give yourself time.Another thing that helped me was to educate myself about the condition and also about what effect it has on us partners.

    Dont worry to much about who will want you right now just look after yourself as you dont want to go from the frying pan into the fire, if you know what I mean.

    Did you say if he was willing to get help?

    Reply

    • Rachel S.
      Oct 01, 2013 @ 18:51:48

      Thank you for writing that to me. I am going to therapy, 12 step meetings and partner meetings now. I am also doing hypnosis too. I am taking everyday one step at a time. I also making sure to stay away from other blogs. I have noticed a lot of angry people. I can understand what they are feeling. I need to do what is best for me. I need a place that will not judge me. I did move into my own home. I am starting to feel better. I don’t have nightmares and stomach pain. Your right I should not rush anything. I need to focus on my own recovery. Also not worrying about someone wanting me. I am going to start going to other meetings. Learning about healthy relationships and more partner meetings. Also going out and being more physically active. For right now I really needed to move out. Seeing my partner acting out and not coming home. That really hurt me so much. I could not be around him any longer. It made me see that I need to make changes within myself. I can’t help him right now. I was so hurt he did not want to seek help. I wanted him to get help. No, he is not attending any meetings or seeking professional help. So I am doing this alone. I am in two supporting groups for recovery. I don’t feel alone anymore. I can call or email someone if I need to talk. Also having this blog is amazing too. Sorry it took me so long to write you back. Now I have it set to notify me when people write new comments. Thank you and good luck

      Reply

      • recovery girl
        Oct 02, 2013 @ 16:24:25

        Hi Rachel,

        just reading some of your comments and I think you are right about some blogs, at the beginning of this journey they used to make me feel worse ( not this one I have to say) and my psychologist advised I avoided them due to the negativity and anger. I have to say I have felt anger myself many times but that does seem to be getting better and I’m pleased as the only person it was destroying was me.

        Keep going.

      • dbiscuit
        Oct 02, 2013 @ 18:35:59

        I’m glad this blog has been a resource for you! Thank you for sharing :)

  184. recovery girl
    Sep 14, 2013 @ 18:36:35

    Just thought I wanted to share with your all, we have recently been to see our therapist ( who specialises in sex addiction) and he has said he really believes the recovery rate is higher than 5% ( good news) although he has nothing to prove this ( shame) he feels with the subject being taboo and very little research done ( as of yet) we are not getting the correct figures. Anyway as he said to us if it is only 5% who recovers whose to say were not that 5 % :).

    Were now two years down the line and things may not be perfect ( but whose life is) were feeling positive and if it did fail I am in stronger place than I was two years ago which feels good to me and he knows that !

    Keep going everyone
    x

    Reply

  185. recovery girl
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 06:56:42

    Gloria, we all now how we feel the hurt from these men/women and what terrible things they do.I have to say from reading your last comment they are not all arrogant and have no regrets for what they have done and want to continue that way of life, some turn there lives around and have better ones.

    I know the pain to well but if you have someone who completely turns their life around then they deserve a chance, as I have said before it could have been me with the addiction and hopefully he would have stood by me. I know things will never quite be the same but is anyones life perfect.
    If people believe perfect life is out there then they setting themselves up for a fall. or a delusional addiction!

    Work on the positives not the negatives or you will never be set free with or without the addict.
    x

    Reply

  186. Gloria
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 13:49:16

    Dear Recovery Girl,
    You are so lucky to have a husband that is serious about recovery and I wish you and him all the best and that you can have a happy life together. I don’t know your story and you certainly don’t know mine so please don’t give me advice on how I should feel or that I’m setting myself up for a fall by being negative. I see the truth of the matter of being married to a sex addict as it has been in my life not yours (I am sincerely happy for you). I have very many positives in my life that I am grateful for. I don’t dwell on my marriage situation all the time as I like to have fun doing many other things and won’t let what he does take that away from me. But I do see in reading the other posts that many women have husbands like mine that say one thing and then do another. Anyway good luck to you both, I really hope you beat the odds and it works out for you both.

    Reply

  187. M. Denise W.
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 17:08:02

    This is my first time posting. I found out about my husbands addiction to strip clubs and escorts about 4 months ago. This went on for a least the last 10 years. We have been married 34 years. He was always a little distant but so good at deception I had no idea. His first experience at sex was with a prostitute that his alcoholic father sent him to for oral sex, at the age of 18. Seems that has now been his addiction, oral sex with prostitutes. He says he always felt like 2 people a good one and a bad one. At times he would go into a sort of trance and could not stop til he got his fix. He says he hated it and couldn’t wait to get away from the prostitute once he was done. He says he didn’t like it really, but couldn’t stop himself. Now that he realizes he is a sex addict he is working very hard to fix himself and us. He is involved with our Church now. Goes to 12 step meetings, 2 times a week. He goes to a therapist once a week and we go to a marriage counselor together, once a week. I cried and cried for the first 3 months. The pain is no longer as deep but it is still there. For now I stay because I love him and my family…so I am willing to try. And also because I see how hard he is trying to get better and see his pain and his remorse. He is like a different person now. Helping around the house, sharing his emotions, holding me when I cry and sometimes crying with me. I can see the sorrow in his eyes when he sees how much pain he has caused me.Though I have told him that even one trip to an escort or strip club and that is it for me! I will not live like that. I deserve better. I have access to his cell phone records, e-mail and we no longer have the internet at home. Can I say for certain that I will stay if he stays sober…no I can’t. I just live one day at a time asking God to guide me and help me make the right choices for me.

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Sep 29, 2013 @ 16:11:04

      I like many others feel your pain, your story sounds familiar. We have now been in recovery for two years and my husband showed the same traits , remorseful and couldn’t believe the hurt and pain he had caused. I know it is amazing that their brains function in that way and they cant see it until meltdown/ rock bottom.

      I do feel for them in many ways, as for your husbands experience that he had at 18 is terrible and you could never imagine that for one of your own.

      Things have improved for us in many ways and I would not want the man I had before, hes kind, not angry, wants to help and be part of his family. Don’t get me wrong I also still have bad days and have been told it takes about three to five years before full recovery.

      Reply

  188. recovery girl
    Sep 25, 2013 @ 18:53:54

    Gloria,

    Please read what I wrote again it was not a personal attack on you, I have experienced a sex addict husband too, they were generalised statements.I am no different than anyone else who visits this site and would never dream of telling anyone what to do with there lives. I was trying to give you hope by saying they are not all arrogant, non repenting individuals and life can turn around and some do recover, as all we seem to hear is the negative and never the positive. I know there has been times in my life I would have loved to see someone saying something positive about these terrible situations we’ve all experienced.

    I had no intention offend
    RC

    Reply

  189. linda
    Sep 26, 2013 @ 02:41:42

    Thank you Gloria,
    I have no sympathy, nor pity, however, I do have empathy, I would not ever want to have a character trait in myself that could allow me to hurt my loved ones in this way! That is all the empathy I can muster. I assure every woman out there who has been hurt and deceived by these men, that if what ails them is a “true” sex addiction, realize this, once an addict, always an addict, the best an addict does is manage symptoms, manage triggers, etc., it never, ever goes away! I for one, could not live with a husband who was continually craving other women, and fighting this battle everyday! How much energy would he have left for work, his kids, his wife?

    Reply

  190. recovery girl
    Sep 28, 2013 @ 19:09:55

    I’m not being facetious but would be interested in any evidence based research that highlights that ‘once an addict always an addict’ and that ‘they can never stop the craving for others’ and the’ best they can do is manage triggers’, as this is not the advise I’ve been given.

    Reply

  191. linda
    Sep 28, 2013 @ 21:53:14

    Look up what addiction is, a disease, not curable, you are always in recovery, never recovered, it is a disease you manage, not cure, you are “on the wagon”, and can fall off it anytime at all.

    Reply

  192. recovery girl
    Sep 29, 2013 @ 15:49:47

    Unfortunately the majority of evidenced based research is done on many other addictions, not sex .Sadly this does not give us the evidence we need to understand sex addiction fully. Lets hope there is more research done in the future to prevent the torment of future generations.

    Reply

  193. M. Denise W.
    Oct 01, 2013 @ 17:24:29

    Thank you recovery girl…for you insight. It is so hard to find positive feedback on our addicted husbands. My husband did hit rock bottom when he was found out. We(my 30 year old son and I) had to put him in the hospital overnight because he was so despondent. His (and my) whole world came crashing down and he was so upset with himself for not finding a way to stop his addiction. I know most do NOT have sympathy for these men. But in my opinion, most of them were brought up with so much neglect and/or abuse. They were not mentally strong enough to handle it and there minds go to this crazy place. My husband’s father was an abusive alcoholic who scared the life at of all his children when he would come home after drinking. Two of my husband’s brothers ended up addicted to drugs, the other one is an alcoholic…I got the sex addict. It is so hard for my mind to comprehend all this sometimes. I think it is because I lived a very different but also an abusive life . For now I just pray to God to lead me down the path he wants me to walk, I continue to go for counseling. I still struggle daily….I do believe that these addicts CAN change if they REALLY want to. I am seeing it! Whether or not that is enough for me…only time will tell!

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Oct 02, 2013 @ 15:51:31

      keep going I believe recovery can happen. do you have any support for yourself ?

      Reply

      • M. Denise W.
        Oct 03, 2013 @ 14:37:09

        Hi recovery girl, I do go to counseling once a week and talk with my pastor from time to time. I was going to some COSA meetings and other 12 step programs but it was so depressing. So many had no hope and talked about their spouses continuing to act out. So I stopped going. I do go back and forth between trying to work things out with my spouse and then thinking I just can’t. I just can’t. To imagine him being with all those prostitutes for so many years and never seeking help…just hurts so much. Especially when he claims to love me so much. He says when he was acting out he didn’t think about me, the consequences of his actions, our kids, the money or diseases. He just saw these woman as objects and wanted to get off…but not with me… He says he saw me as pure and not like them and he felt dirty…He says he didn’t realize he was sick . He couldn’t figure out what was wrong with him. When he was not acting out and that trance was broken he would promise himself he would stop, but he just couldn’t. He was to afraid to tell anyone cause he was sure I would leave him and take the kids with me.He is sober now and like a different man. So remorseful and trying so hard to help me through my pain….He listens to what the therapist says I need ,as the injured spouse. He is trying so hard to heal my pain…but sometimes I just feel like it is to late and I just can’t be with him anymore. I have my own business and the kids are all out on their own.Even though he squander so much money. (tens of thousands) on the whores I could still support myself . I am really trying to figure out what is best for me…Not him…He lost the right for me to even consider his feelings…they are now irrelevant in my decision.

  194. dbiscuit
    Oct 01, 2013 @ 18:00:39

    Amen Denise :)

    Reply

  195. recovery girl
    Oct 03, 2013 @ 16:16:13

    M Denise,

    My situation is so similar and some of the things you say that your husband said and now feels is mirror image to mine.

    I was unable to commit to 12 step groups as I travelled hundreds of miles then to only find I was thoroughly depressed once I had been, I discussed this with my therapist and he said not to worry they don’t suit all. For a while I felt very lost searching for support in different areas.
    I found here and also my church of benefit to me as I have no family to go to. I only had a couple of friends that knew the full story and they were fab although I know they found it hard.

    Don’t rush things give yourself time, I read Stephanie Carns ,’ Shattered hearts’, which was also brilliant for me and even in there she says give yourself a year before you make any big decisions and I’m glad I did.

    Two years on and things have become so different for us ( hes a changed man) but there is a sadness we both feel because this entered our lives and sometimes I feel anger towards his family because of what they did. We still have a few family problems which is hard as they tell people he would be a better man without me and I have caused all the problems.We have moved to try and cut the ties as they cant see there is anything wrong with them and their beliefs.My in-laws have recently got a family friend to send my husband an email asking him to make more of a commitment to his parents, no concerns for his mental health, just theirs, or no mention of me or our children, not that I would want that for my family anyway. Its just very difficult as we have fought this demon only to be sent another selfish abusive one to battle.

    Keep going. I only spoke with my husband this morning about the above and he discussed it in a calm, mature and compassionate way, two or more years previous he would have been angry, hostile etc etc and unable to deal with it.

    Reply

  196. recovery girl
    Oct 03, 2013 @ 17:23:10

    M. Denise, those thoughts you have about what he has done is normal, my life felt like a roller coaster for a long time. One minute I hated him for the years of deception, putting my health at risk, neglecting us, risking our home, risking his income etc etc and the next I felt terrible with everything that he disclosed about his childhood.The feelings you are expressing are all normal, I sometimes think whether I had a sex addict husband or not no one knows if they will be together forever anyway. For me know I can clearly see how hard he has worked at trying to restore our lives and change himself. Our thepist has said to me when alone that he knows what it is like for us the’ victim’ but he has assured me to be a sex addicts world is no pot of roses.

    Reply

  197. M. Denise W.
    Oct 04, 2013 @ 15:29:29

    Thank you recovering girl for your encouragement. I know for now the Lord is really trying to help him and I. We have been attending Bible study (something he never would have done) on a regular basis…I really feel like God is speaking to me when we go to the Bible study,( because of the things we end up discussing there) about my pain and my need to forgive him. Not just for him but for my own self….so I can walk the path God has chosen for me. BUT IT IS SO HARD. I am trying, I really am. My husband continues to struggle with what he has done. He really is a different person now. Accepting responsibility, opening up in therapy (something he never would have done). Holding me and staying present when I hurt.( He use to just shut down and walk away). He says because it was so hard to face what he had done. He hears what the therapist is telling him he needs to do to heal my heart and he is following through on ALL counts!
    I really believe that he was a gentle soul brought up in such a bad environment in a home of many siblings with an alcoholic father who was never present. His father had NO respect for woman and his mother was so overburdened with the children and the home. She had no time to nurture them They owned a bar and my husband worked in it from a young age …He witness many things a child should not have to see.. Including his dad allowing bachelor parties in the back hall with prostitutes. All the men in the bar couldn’t wait to get oral sex from the whores, and spoke openly about it. He had lots of issues about himself and being rejected my girls. When his father realized he was a gentle, shy soul he decided to make a man out of him by sending him to a prostitute at 18 for oral sex… His story is really a sad one. A part of his soul was so lost. For that my heart goes out to him. But I still feel that he knows right from wrong and should have tried to get help. So yes…it is a roller coast that I am on right now and just wish it would slow down cause I’m getting dizzy….

    Reply

  198. recovery girl
    Oct 04, 2013 @ 16:51:53

    M. Denise, I have asked my husband many times about knowing the rights from wrongs and why would you still carry on. He has said you live a life that’s not reality but fantasy and there are no consequences in that world and no one will ever know so no one gets hurt !! I know we cant believe anyone could think like that but I believe they do.
    I think its what SAA call ‘the bubble’, he said until the bubble burst and he hit rock bottom was the first time he saw what he had done.

    Reply

  199. M. Denise W.
    Oct 04, 2013 @ 18:22:57

    That is amazing to hear you say…cause my husband has said more then once that now that it is “real” he knows it was wrong and he will do whatever it takes to stop. I say but it was always real.. He says it didn’t feel like it was. But now that it is “out “he sees how real it is and the destruction he has caused. He also says he lived in that bubble from time to time than would act out…..he would get this unmanageable urge to look at escorts on backpages and then he couldn’t stop. He was in this trance and he would continue looking till he acted out. I said don’t you realize that some of these girls are in bad situations, they are doing it for the money..and news flash they don’t give a crap about you…just your $$$$$..and how bout the girls that are young enough to be your daughter, how would you feel if some older man paid your daughter to have oral sex with them. He says his mind wouldn’t go there…he didn’t think about that stuff…until after the trance was broken and then he felt so bad he swore he wouldn’t do it again…but then the next trance comes a few weeks later and he does it all over again…so bizarre…and hard for my mind to grasp…really. Our therapist says that for some addicts once their secret world is out….they CAN recover….that the secrecy helps them continue not to face reality and what they are doing….He tells me that once the trance was broken he could NOT wait to get away from these girls…and after he always felt so dirty…which is one of the reason he could not be sexual with me often…he felt so dirty….

    Reply

  200. recovery girl
    Oct 04, 2013 @ 18:40:52

    bizarrely my husband said he felt safe when he got home after the deed was done and like it never happened.

    Reply

    • linda
      Oct 04, 2013 @ 21:56:12

      My oh my, some of you out there are priceless , come back and read your posts, after you wake up, hopefully before you catch a STD

      Reply

  201. Mdenisew w
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 00:22:23

    Just because I chose grace, forgiveness, hope and God does’t make me any more right or wrong then anyone else here. Because I led a difficult life also. I know how hard life can be. Lucky for me I was able to handle it mentally .But that does not mean everyone can. I think it is for everyone to figure out the path that God has chosen for them. I make no excuse for my choices…because in the end I am the one that has to live with them? All I wish for each woman here is that they find peace and happiness how ever they can. Cause sometimes it almost feels impossible.

    Reply

  202. recovery girl
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 15:18:40

    Linda, Im sorry you feel like that but everyones situation is different. Unfortunately Linda I thought here was a safe place where sarcasm and criticism did not occur, I don’t believe people here have passed such judgment on your decisions/ comments, in fact I think people have admired your strength, have a little respect for others.
    Here is designed for those who want to stay and yes some don’t recover and some do , they have very mixed up lives/ childhoods and are trying to explain to their partners that weird world they were once in.

    Reply

    • linda
      Oct 05, 2013 @ 18:21:48

      My comments are not meant to be sarcastic, they are real, I know from my experience,
      and it really did not matter at all, whether my husband chose recovery or not, when you can step away from the chaos and the madness, and work on yourself, and look back in, you will see. If you choose, to just stay in the madness, then, you may never see it for what it is. In the end, if you do the work of discovering what attracted you to him, then you will understand it all. Also, I will say, the “acting out”, is really not the most damaging of all the issues, it is the personality issues that are attached!

      Reply

      • Rachel S.
        Oct 05, 2013 @ 19:34:58

        I agree with you Linda. The personality issues with my former partner were the worst. One day he would be so nice. The next week he was cold and mean. Always telling me I need to lose weight. Or saying he wants me to leave. He does not understand what I am still doing here. So I understand why I attracted this man in my life. I am working towards being me again. Of course a better version of myself. I am not beating myself up about it. This was part of my history. I still have time to have a great life. I have learned so much about myself. I am growing stronger because of this discovery of sex addiction. I am not taking anything for granted. I am also learning to trust myself again. I am making sure to have a life and get to know me. Also build this amazing relationship with God. Thank you :-)

      • M. Denise W.
        Oct 07, 2013 @ 14:09:40

        Rachel S. I understand why you would feel the way you do, if I was treated that way I would chose to leave. My situation is different. My husband never said mean things to me. He was actually a very good father, coached sports, went to all activities, played with his children all the time. Never raised his voice or hand to them…really an amazing father and an amazing Poppop. Somewhat distant as a husband at times….but a kind man, and a good provider financially. He is trying so hard to make amends for the pain he has caused me. It is so hard for those of us who’s partners choose recovery because most don’t recover. Therefore I feel there is much negativity towards those of us that truly feel our husbands are changing. I am so grateful to GOD that I have one of them! I am working with a counselor to find out what I need to do to make the best choices for me, and perhaps in the end it will be to leave..only time will tell!

  203. recovery girl
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 16:06:52

    I believe in recovery and where I am today in this process.

    Two years ago my husband came home and confessed he had been having an affair then over several months he told me more and more, affairs, porn, masterbation, lies, deseption etc. I too have felt the terrible pain we all feel. My life fell apart and I believed I could not stay,I had never even heard of sex addiction until then. I sort help as the devastation was incredible. He hit rock bottom and sort help. This process has been terrible to get where we are today, i’ve hated him, been hurt, lost weight , been ill, isolated,searched for help, reasons etc. I feel I have finally found some peace but it was not like that at the beginning. I set boundaries worked on myself and left him to prove himself. I have been fortunate in the respect that I have a good job and education so I always felt I was able to support myself and children should I need to.

    Well today he’s in recovery and I am. Hes worked so hard to prove himself and is caring, considerate, calm and would do anything for his family, a far cry from the man before. I know what his label is but I’m not giving up on him yet, the people that should have thought that are the ones that let him down and contributed to his torment. He knows the score if he chooses the wrong path, so I do feel in control.

    The professional help we have had has been wonderful and positive and encouraging our therapist believes that the longer he is sober the better the prognosis, he also believes that the 5% recovery rate is much higher but very little research work is done in this area so does not have the evidence to prove this.

    When I look back prior sex addiction I believed I had a fair marriage ( I know that’s hard to believe) although there was something I didn’t feel comfortable about but could never put my finger on it. He was not a terrible husband even then really he was a sick man who had not been given the right skills for life.

    Today for us both there is a sadness we are here an he wishes he could have seen what he was but as bizarre as it may sound our lives are much better than before.

    What I want to say is there is hope and recovery and I believe in it, I think God gave me great strength,good job he did! :)

    Reply

  204. Dreamer
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 18:02:32

    Thank you Recovery girl for your encouraging words. The way I see it is that life is much greater than even our marriages and if there is something to be learned from this heartache, so let it be so that we can become better women for the sake of the beautiful purpose God has created us for. In my personal journey, I have also chosen to stay and one beautiful thing I’m learning is to let my joy be based on the special provision of God’s unconditional love for me. God is now first, not my my marriage and not my husband. I do all things for my Savior. He has taught me to confess, forgive and bless my husband in spite of all he has done to me. Boundaries are also essential to all of this. In the last couple of weeks I have experienced a joy that comes from deep within my soul. It is the joy of the Lord in the middle of not the best of circumstances.

    If you haven’t already, I suggest that you have your husband be tested for STDs, HIVs, etc. especially if his acting out included physical contact with other people. In my case, there was no physical cheating that I am aware of, but a quite deep porn addiction that has devastated our sexual life and possibly having children.

    God bless and may God continue to guide your path towards purity and wholeness :-)

    Reply

  205. M. Denise W.
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 18:04:25

    Just because some of us choose Grace, Hope, (possible) Forgiveness
    and God, does not make us anymore right or wrong then anyone else here. I make no excuses to anyone for my choices for I am the one who has to live with them. I also lived an abusive life growing up, but God made me a strong person and I made it through. I think others are not that lucky. For those that wish to try and works things out with your SA do….don’t let anyone try to tell you otherwise..it is your life. My husband is also a different person now and is doing remarkably well…..some do NOT want help and may not get better. Mine does and is…Does that mean we will stay together…. I don’t know…for us it has only been about 5 months since my world caved in. I now have my eyes wide open…and just one slip will be it for me…that is my choice. All I wish for everyone in this forum is peace and happiness..however you can find it..no judgments here. Thank you Recovery girl for all the HOPE you have given me, I am forever grateful!!!!!!

    Reply

  206. recovery girl
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 18:19:09

    M. Denise, I did get to forgiveness,never thought I would but I got there. That doesn’t mean I will forget but time heals.

    Couldn’t have seen myself being able to say either of those things a couple of years ago.

    Reply

  207. linda
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 18:34:39

    Denise, You are into it 5 months, I will explain myself a bit deeper to you, I did what you did, and I do not regret it, as I learned so much about myself, I also learned a lot about my spouse, the SA was really not the problem in the end, although upon discovery, I nearly died from the pain. The sex addiction was a mere symptom, of a personality disorder, to which I could never help him get over. These men are ill, and I say this with respect, not anger, I forgave my husband, totally, and I choose to stay in contact with him (minimally), I would not wish this for any human being, I have great empathy for my spouse, I just came to know, I could not fix him, and it was not my job to stay and be in pain. There should be no anger towards any of us spouses, anger only tells me, they are not in a good place, with the decisions they are making. As is life, this is all a process, and from your posts Denise, I think you are in a good place, with much needed boundaries in place! good luck

    Reply

  208. linda
    Oct 05, 2013 @ 22:21:59

    Rachel, good or you! I say these women will look a year from now, at the posts they put up, and will not recognise that it was them that posted them. That is what is happening to me now, I feel like an outsider looking in at myself and my life. It is a great place to be…I have come so far, I cannot even believe it is me…but the work must continue, my intuition is even returning..
    Good Luck to you!

    Reply

  209. M. Denise W.
    Oct 06, 2013 @ 15:22:51

    Linda thanks for sharing…my hearts goes out to you. I know how hard this is. I know these men are sick… I know I cannot fix my Spouse, only he and the Lord can do that. I do believe that in my SA’s case the Lord is healing him…My pain is getting less each day as I try to focus on myself and God…I am so grateful for the choices my husband is making. Today I watched in church as my Husband is now an Usher ( the Pastor knows all about his illness)…Something I never would have imagined. And the Lord helped me feel such Joy and gratitude for all He is giving me…Finally some relief and peace…Today I am thankful to God. :)

    Reply

  210. recovery girl
    Oct 06, 2013 @ 17:27:34

    Today has been good for me too as my family and I went and had a family portrait , even the dog. :) This would have been impossible a few months ago as I would not have been able to smile and prior to sex addiction my husband would have not done this with us. It was a lovely day laughter fun and love.

    He heals all.
    x

    Reply

  211. recovery girl
    Oct 07, 2013 @ 17:20:54

    Hi everyone, I know some have personality disorders and that is a terrible thing to endure but I don’t think all do. It would be interesting research as I believe my SA’s family members suffer disorders but not him, I have wondered why or how.
    x

    Reply

    • linda
      Oct 19, 2013 @ 19:28:42

      You are thinking his family has personality problems and he does not? This is possible but not likely. There is a pathology to family addictions and personalities in families!

      Reply

  212. recovery girl
    Oct 09, 2013 @ 18:42:18

    I’ve been triggered today ! God this recovery can be hard sometimes. My husband feels he should share every incident/situation he is put in with work or life in general, which involve the opposite sex, by this he means if hes in a situation that would have been potentially ‘opportunity’ before or something he knows I would not like, he feels he should share this so there are no secrets. For example he may be put in a situation where he has to work with a woman alone, he does his utmost not to do this for upsetting me but should this situation occur in an emergency he tells me. I’m finding this difficult to deal with and wonder if he needs to check in with me so often as I’m not sure what it does for me. Im not sure it is reassuring me as he thinks or keeping me in this victim role for longer.

    Reply

  213. recovery girl
    Oct 10, 2013 @ 19:44:24

    Thought this was interesting.

    Dependent personality disorder

    A person with a dependent personality disorder feels they have no ability to be independent. They may show an excessive need for others to look after them and are ‘clingy’. Other symptoms include:
    finding it difficult to make decisions without other people’s guidance
    needing others to take responsibility over what should be their own important life choices
    not being able to express disagreement with other people
    finding it difficult to start new activities due to a lack of confidence
    going to extremes to obtain support and comfort
    feeling helpless and uncomfortable when alone
    urgently needing to start a new relationship once a previous relationship comes to an end
    having an unrealistic and constant fear they will be left alone to fend for themselves

    Reply

  214. Rachel S.
    Oct 16, 2013 @ 06:41:08

    Hey everyone,

    I have been working late for the past few days. I have not been able to attend a meeting. I am feeling like I need to let it all out. I went to Barnes and Nobles over the weekend. This man approached me and give me his number. I did not want to be rude about it. He told me to call him on Sunday. It’s already Wednesday and I have yet to call him.

    My emotions are all over the place. I do feel attracted to men still. I don’t feel ready to date anyone yet. I thought I was ready. When he gave me his number. It made me think so negative. I was thinking omg he is a sex addict? That’s how I see people now sometimes. It’s so difficult to take everything in. He seems like a nice guy. How do you tell someone all this? I am going to call and tell him sorry. I just can’t do this right now. I don’t want any pressure from anyone. I want to continue with my therapy and meetings. I want to enjoy my new life. I am still working on my self esteem right now. I am taking this one day at a time.

    Another thing I want to get off my chest. I am working towards getting over my anger. I was so angry with my partner for a long time. In 2009 my father was killed by his girlfriend. I never felt like I had time to morn him. Now I have to deal with recovery for my ex’s addiction. Also deal with my issues of sexual abuse. Also having a father who drank a lot. I feel like it’s been so tough. I am making my way though. I never thought I could make it this far. I never thought I could be strong.

    I can say that I don’t miss my old life. That life was filled with sad moments. I was always sad and crying for the past 4 years. Now it’s a lot better for me. I have maybe one day out of the week for tears. The rest are filled with smiles and laughter. I have joined a great group for partners of sex addicts. I have also joined a second group of women. These women are in recovery for sex and love addiction. I am having great success in both groups. I am able to under sex addiction a lot better. It is helping my ego let go of my rage. Let go of the hate that I feel. It’s not going to help me to feel like this anymore. I have to let go of the judgment and move on. It helps me have compassion for my ex. I pray that he will get help. I make sure to help myself first.

    Thank you for listening and any feedback is welcome.

    God Bless

    Rachel S,

    Reply

  215. recovery girl
    Oct 16, 2013 @ 16:14:37

    You sound like your making decisions which is never easy as are heads can be all over the place,so that in it self has to be positive.

    I know when I have bad days its not always easy to see things clearly.
    Good Luck

    Reply

  216. recovery girl
    Oct 19, 2013 @ 13:05:28

    Im here again :) . We have been doing well but…. when we have intimate times and he is trying to make it even more special ( and there are great improvements believe me) I find myself suddenly being triggered and start thinking are we doing this and that because hes fantasising etc I know that sounds strange and maybe I’m not explaining myself very well. The thing is sex was so terrible before and I didn’t come into his head before, or my needs considered.Its like I’m almost looking for problems even if there aren’t any. Do any of you feel like this or had similar experiences.

    Reply

    • linda
      Oct 19, 2013 @ 19:23:38

      You are 100% entitled to, and totally justified in feeling the way you do, because your SA is living in a fantasy world, when you research this addiction, it clearly states this fact. Most cannot perform with their spouses at all, unless they go into that state of fantasy! I was, where you are, and felt the same, however, I did not question my feelings, I knew I was right! As time went on, it got worse, to the point where I quit all intimate relations with him. I separated from him, over a year ago, it was the most painful decision, but now I can say, it was the right one! Good Luck!

      Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Oct 21, 2013 @ 15:00:32

      I know how you feel Recovery girl. I do believe if your SA is still in his addiction that he is in a fantasy world. If he is in recovery he may not be in that fantasy world. I know intimacy for me and my husband is wonderful. I DON’T believe he is thinking of others. He does NOT want that life ….He couldn’t get out…It is an Addiction…just like drugs (my therapist tells me). He is working so hard to overcome his troubled past and I believe he is succeeding. Not ALL SA’s continue to be in their own world…. some want and long for recovery. My therapist and marriage counselor tell me that my husband loves me very much and can and is getting better! I see it everyday…It is truly an amazing transformation to watch. His faith in God, his hope in us, the love, respect and caring that he shows me every minute of every single day and his fight to right the wrongs he has done….truly amazing. I say give him a chance….let your guard down when you are intimate…believe in you and him and God…..only you know if your souls are truly connecting…..don’t ever forget that GOD can move mountains!

      Reply

  217. recovery girl
    Oct 21, 2013 @ 18:22:54

    Thanks for that reply, i just have days when I have doubts and things trigger me even though I know he is working hard for us. I guess it is a fear I have about letting go. He has worked so hard to prove himself but the hurt he caused has left me with these sort of intrusive thoughts. May be its time to let go and see what happens. I dont want to paint him black as he has worked so hard to prove himself, I guess its now time to work on me. Thanks for your kind words.

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Oct 22, 2013 @ 16:30:06

      It’s amazing how our thoughts are so similar Recovery Girl :) …I will continue to be aware of everything that is happening, but realize if I want to try and make this work I have to really TRY…otherwise what’s the point I might as well just leave now…but I want to make sure I have no regrets if I leave…and if I do leave I will cut all ties with him and start a new life…so I want to see where this road leads before I do. If I decide to take the other fork in the road I don’t ever want to look back!

      Reply

  218. linda
    Oct 22, 2013 @ 21:04:52

    M.Denise W. I did just what you are doing, giving it the hardest try I could, I wanted no regrets, either way, and. It was worth it, I feel that if I had given it that effort, I would have regretted my decision. I have had brief, what if’s since leaving, so I get my list out, look it over, and I then know staying was not an option. God wants us to be pure, and clean! These sex addicts have so many issues, I have great empathy for my husband, as I know, he did want this to be his way of life, but through therapy, and alanon, I learned, he is not my job to fix, and as much as I wanted to help him, he was the one that had to do it! We cannot fix them, and my husbands level of trying to get well, was to retreat to denial, he felt he could get better all on his own, he’d always say, I will just quit it, and as we know addiction is never that simple! Now that I have been apart from him for 1.2 years, I have come so far in my own recovery, that I would not ever wish that this had never happened! All things happen for a reason, upon discovery, I thought this was the craziest statement I had ever heard, not in a million years, could I have imagined agreeing with the theory, but now I do! It was God’s way of telling me, you here for a reason. Now, I work at a crisis center for domestic violence. I make very little money, but somehow the universe is looking out for me, cause myself and my son are doing AOK! Good luck to you Denise, and may God guide you! Ask him, and he will walk you through it all!
    Suggestion: Study up a bit on relationship addiction, I for one, had this main question, How could I accept this behavior, and still stay? The answer was I was addicted to him! By the way, none of this work will be easy, it is a commitment to yourself, to get well, with or without your husband!

    Reply

  219. M. Denise W.
    Oct 23, 2013 @ 16:43:52

    Thanks for your thoughts Linda. My story is a lil different. My husband has been going to 12 step meetings 2x’s a week since this came to light. He also goes to therapy 1x a week and marriage counseling. I also go to counseling 1x a week with a therapist who has been dealing with sex addition for 30 years. My husband has taken responsibility for what he has done. We now go to church every Sunday. He is now an usher there. We also go to Bible study once a week. He admits that God was never really part of his life. He now embraces all things about God. I realize that my husband has/had lots of issues but he is really working hard on them. I KNOW I cannot fix him…he and God can only fix him…and they are both trying. I also would NEVER accept this behavior going forward. As I have said before, I have my eyes wide open now….and the boundaries are clearly set. As my therapist and his therapist (I have been to his therapist with him) have said…in the past his addiction was NOT a choice, rather a sickness . He wasn’t able to control it and didn’t know how to stop it. He didn’t know he was addicted only that he felt like 2 people and was afraid to come forward for fear he would lose his family ( so he says). But now both therapist say it has become a choice (once they are aware they are sick). So if he chooses to step over that line, even once, I am done. I am sooooooooo done…And I have made that really, really clear. I will close my business (temporarily) , take all the money I have been saving (which is a substantial amount…and I am out of here…I have told him not to even come looking for me cause I won’t even speak to him.. I will go on to a new life. Linda, I am glad that you were strong enough to do what you needed to do for you and your son. I know how hard ALL of this is no matter whether we chose to stay or go… God Bless you and help you through this crisis in your life!

    Reply

  220. M. Denise W.
    Oct 25, 2013 @ 16:27:33

    Hi Everyone, I want share something that I think is interesting. I was talking with my therapist yesterday who is a woman. She has been dealing with sex addiction for 30 plus years. She deals with some addicts and some partners of addicts. I asked her about the theory that SA’s are in a fantasy world when they are intimate with their partners. She says only SA’s who have a hard time performing need a fantasy world. Any RECOVERING Addict who loves their partner does NOT need a fantasy world to perform and does NOT go into a fantasy world when they are intimate. She also assured me that the SA is a sick person who was not mentally strong enough to fight the abuses in their life. She called it “the perfect storm” where A mix of factors ( that may include neglect/abuse/loneliness/a feeling of incompetence, feeling like you are not good enough) come together in this persons life to make them an SA.

    Reply

    • linda
      Oct 26, 2013 @ 15:28:19

      With respect Denise, I would encourage you to ask your therapist, to look at the statistics, of young adult male sex addicts, that cannot perform with real , in the flesh women. I do agree on some of the reasons she suggests as to how they become addicts, For sure, they are sick, and mentally weak. I will add my thoughts to this as well, some are like this because they have been extremely spoiled, and never taught consequences, never taught self control, and some more are narcissistic, again, they become narcs, usually from abuse, but sometimes, by being spoiled. One other point is this: Sex addiction esculates, and these men do get to the point that they cannot perform with real women! Trust me, I do “know”, this !

      Reply

      • recovery girl
        Nov 01, 2013 @ 18:59:05

        do you mean never given the correct parenting?

      • recovery girl
        Nov 02, 2013 @ 09:07:34

        I also think what the therapist in the previous comments was saying when they are in recovery they don’t fantasise but if they’re not in recovery they will fantasise so that would account for the young men you refer to,will have not yet reached any form of recovery.

        They can be very young when they start this addiction and not be even be aware this is not normal, it depends on what values, morals and nurturing your given in your early years.

  221. M. Denise W.
    Oct 29, 2013 @ 15:50:48

    But Linda your SA did NOT choose REAL recovery …we know they cannot recover on their own…Choosing REAL recovery is what makes the difference. I see it…I’m living it. I believe that some DO recover…..I don’t know what the future holds for me…or what path I will be on in the end or even if I will stay in my relationship…..but I do believe that some can and DO recover….

    Reply

  222. linda
    Oct 30, 2013 @ 04:03:18

    Very true Denise, mine did not choose real recovery . I cannot know for 100% sure what would have happened, if he had.

    Reply

  223. recovery girl
    Nov 01, 2013 @ 00:21:14

    Hi all, interesting conversation. You know what I do think sex addicts have similarities but are not clones. The fantasy bit I feel did happen with my SA especially when his condition started to escalate but when he chose recovery fantasy was no longer there and I could tell this by his actions and intimacy. From my personal experience I know my SA was abused in many forms by narcissistic people, interestingly hes not narcissistic but broken from abuse, being belittled and made to feel inadequate etc. also I believe there are those that do have narcissistic traits themselves and unless they want to recover they don’t. All I can say is whether we stay or go in these situations there is no easy way to deal with this.

    We have just been on our first holiday this week since it all happened and it has not been easy, i’ve felt uneasy on the beach about other women, although he does not seem as uneasy as me. I do feel the issues I have to deal with are mine now and he has/is doing everything possible to improve our life but you know what I have said to him the hurt and difficulties I experience is still hard for me and I know this means a rocky road or move on. To move on would be sad as he has worked so hard but the problems now lie with me.

    Reply

    • linda
      Nov 01, 2013 @ 05:03:18

      To all you spouses: I would like, to suggest, that you study sex and porn addiction, and pay close attention to the section, that talks about how sex addiction changes the frontal lobe in the brain, and what results from these changes. I am not going to go into it all on here, as depending on where you are all at in your recovery from this abuse, your opinion will be different than mine. Just a suggestion! For me the studying of this affliction was the single most important thing I did, as it took the “personal” insult to my self esteem, out of the equation, it also allowed me to gain some empathy for my spouse.

      Reply

  224. recovery girl
    Nov 01, 2013 @ 10:04:21

    Hi Linda,

    I think most of us have either found out information on our partner’s condition
    ( they tend to seek intelligent, strong individuals) either by misfortune or advise and I emphasize word partner’s as each case is individual, the reasons, causes, theories, history etc. etc. I have read information on frontal lobe connection but Im not sure what you are implying with the above statement.I too like you took a personal bashing in this just like many others here but im sure in time we will recover.Yes, I still have bad days and wonder why, how, what happened etc

    I do think you see sex addiction very different than others by your own individual experience. This is not meant as criticism as the one thing we all have in common is this terrible situation has affected us all.If my SA had not chosen recovery I would not see any positives in this situation just negatives, however if we only saw the negatives in other medical conditions there would be no progress in the world and we just may as well all give up. There will be change but it takes time and the nature of his condition does not bring people forward to obtain help, so I guess ‘we ‘ and our partners are pioneering the way, what a thought ! :)

    In general there is very little accreditied EVIDENCED based research done on sex addiction, as of yet.
    There are lots of theories and gurus out there but good hard research and evidence is whats needed and there is a long way to go yet,as we know this condition is still in turmoil as being classed as a real condition, in the medical world.

    Reply

  225. M. Denise W.
    Nov 01, 2013 @ 15:29:17

    I thought this was an interesting article which talks about recovery for sex addiction:
    Regarding healing, Dr Victor Cline says,

    I have found that there are four major factors that most predict success in recovery. First, the individual must be personally motivated to be free of his addiction and possess a willingness to do whatever it takes to achieve success. . . . You can never force a person to get well if he doesn’t want to. . . . Second, it is necessary to create a safe environment, which drastically reduces access to porn and other sexual triggers. . . . Third, he should affiliate with a twelve-step support group. . . . Fourth, the individual needs to select a counselor/therapist who has had special training and success in treating sexual addictions.

    Reply

  226. recovery girl
    Nov 01, 2013 @ 16:48:12

    True. The biggest I think is their wanting to recover.
    We have also been fortunate with our therapist, although he has said my husbands biggest fortune and drive is me, I would have to agree with that.Lol :)

    Reply

  227. Rachel S.
    Nov 05, 2013 @ 20:57:10

    Hello everyone,

    Today I need to vent omg. I received an email from my ex partner. He told me he was seeing a sex addiction therapist for three weeks. I would have been so happy if this happened before. Just seeing his email address in my inbox made me cry. It prove to me that I need to take this recovery slow. I can’t rush or force anything right now. I really need to focus on myself. I am happy that he went to get help. I don’t know what this means now. This was last week on Tuesday. I spoke about it during my 12 step meeting. I could not get the words out. All I did was cry like a baby. I was finally able to write him back today. I said I am happy for you. I think it’s best we don’t speak anymore. I need to focus on myself only. God Bless.

    I don’t feel bad about saying those things. What made me angry is what he said. He blames me for his addiction. He said it started because I wasn’t there for him. When my father died I was not there for him. It makes me so angry behind words. He said I hurt him more then anyone. He said I judge him for his acting out. He said I need to get over it. If I forgave him he would not sleep with other people. My father was a sex addict too. He was killed by his girlfriend for cheating on her. I needed my partner to help me with my grief. He was acting out and I was alone.

    I have to work on my recovery everyday. I have to let go of my old life. Nothing else I can do about him. Of course this hurts so much. I wish the pain could go away.

    Thank you

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Nov 06, 2013 @ 20:43:11

      Rachel…don’t ever accept the blame for his addiction…One thing I have learned is you did NOT cause it. Perhaps once he is in Therapy long enough he will get that. No one can blame someone else for their actions….what a coward…I blame them and them alone for acting act. Even if they are sick they can go get HELP!..My gosh some SA’s don’t have a clue of the devastation they have caused us…..Keep working on you…Hope God helps to heal your broken heart soon!

      Reply

      • Rachel S.
        Nov 06, 2013 @ 21:40:49

        Thank you so much for saying that. I did blame myself for so long. This is before I knew about SA. I want to give you a big hug. You have made my day. He also said he was happy I was gone. I was always judging his behavior. He hated that I was still living with him at the time. He felt like I was his trigger towards the end. Now that I look back at it. He wanted me out because he was afraid people would find out. His friends and family have started to noticed his behavior. He is stupid enough to post it on Facebook. I heard this from his friend that contacted me via email.

        I decided to attend 90 meetings in 90 days. I want to focus on my recovery. Also make time for the people who truly love me. I have been doing that weekly too. I want to focus on my whole life. I need to make time for me. I need to love me again. This time I will invite someone to visit my life. Instead of making that person more important then me. Thank you so much for everyone’s support on here. It means the world to me. God Bless to everyone and Good luck.

        Thank you again Denise. You’re a sweetheart

      • M. Denise W.
        Nov 07, 2013 @ 17:30:41

        Rachel, You are so welcome…..this is the most difficult thing I have had to face in my life…..I am trying so hard to overcome it…it is so difficult…even though my SA has chosen recovery…my mind sometimes just spins round and round…how could I have been so blind to not see..I really thought I had the most perfect, faithful guy….like how could I be so blind…He was going off to work in the city and spending lunch time at the strip bars.(he claims it wasn’t that often) and then hiring escorts 2 x’s a month for BJ’s…this went on for a few years,at least….mind boggling…just mind boggling. If we would read about something like this going on he would say how sick those guys were and meanwhile he was doing it himself…I even asked him about his response to those very things and he says he does believe they ,as well as he, is sick. Claims he became a different person when triggered and could not control it…I have found a good therapist who is helping me understand a lot but it still just blows my mind…May God help you find peace…..

  228. recovery girl
    Nov 06, 2013 @ 17:33:58

    My heart bleeds for you,sex addiction is such a cruel thing and destroys lives.

    Reply

    • Rachel S.
      Nov 06, 2013 @ 21:42:54

      Thank you for your support too. I know what kind of pain your dealing with. I hope that everything will be okay. Remember one day at a time. I wish you all the best.

      Reply

  229. recovery girl
    Nov 06, 2013 @ 17:43:48

    I want to scream today, my SA is in recovery and most of the time seems to recognise my needs and wants, however he had a situation at work which made him late home,he could not understand my anxieties as he states he’s not the man he used to be but that does not make it any better. I wish they knew or could understand how certain situations trigger things.

    We do seem to do really well for a while and then something comes along to bite us on the bottom and remind us what has happened,its really sad, I don’t know why I was meant to live this life.

    Reply

  230. M. Denise W.
    Nov 06, 2013 @ 20:47:52

    Recovery girl…I feel your pain….my SA thinks the same way….he’s better now…he don’t have those feelings anymore…lighten up….Baa I think NOT! You cheated on me for years when I had complete trust in you and you F@@@@@ me over…so now if you wanna be with me it will be on my terms or see ya….He also said something that triggered me a few days ago….it took 3 days to get it out of my mind and back to the way I was healing…This really sucks….

    Reply

  231. recovery girl
    Nov 07, 2013 @ 20:25:36

    M.Denise, I still have a few bads days and get triggered but its nowhere near as bad as it was, but the strange and horrible thing is when I’m triggered it feels like I’m back where we started. Like you my husband was a loving, caring husband who would have done anything for me and strangely at one point when I was getting feelings that things wern’t right (prior to disclosure) I confined in a friend that I thought he might be having an affair and she laughed , implied I was mad and informed me she had never seen a man more devoted.As you can probably identify with when disclouse did come I spent months in shock. My husband had several affairs which I found very hard to come to terms with and you can imagine what sort of individuals they were, that hurts.

    These men have a lot of work to do to get their heads thinking differently. my husband has been in recovery now for 2years and 2 months and every now and then he still manages to say and do things that hurt or trigger me. He says hes in a different place and I do agree with that, he feels his life is improved, hes not so immature , has a loving family and feels spiritually whole. For me its very different, however he knows how the land lies and there is nothing I would ever knowingly put up with.

    God Bless

    Reply

  232. recovery girl
    Nov 10, 2013 @ 16:05:55

    Things not to bad at the moment,a I know Im here a lot but I only really have one good friend and my therapist to talk to and I don’t want my good friend thinking its all I ever talk about, I do try and have life outside sex addiction , honest, lol. So I guess here is another friend for me and a place where I can say orexpress what I feel or whats going on in my head.

    Sex addiction is a terrible thing and whether we stay or go it never really disappears ( the scars that is) and as my therapist has said if I go I will be alone, sad ,have a broken family and change the whole direction of my life. He would not want me stay if he thought I was at risk, I know that. If I stay I have my family, home, love, support, a marriage but have to work through it. Sounds very negative I think when I put it like that but there are times when I feel negative and there are times when I feel very positive.

    I’ve been triggered a lot recently, not sure why, not sure if this is a stage you go through in recovery. I would even go as far as to say Ive been a little paranoid, I think its because we have been doing well and things feel almost normal and that worries me, its strange but normal gives me added anxieties. I will try and explain a little, my hubby was going to 8 o’clock service this morning and asked me if I wanted to go, I said I was going to give it a miss this week, he was going straight onto work from church. After he had gone this little voice inside said to me you know he could be telling you lies and not go to church at all but go and meet some woman, after two years , is this normal?

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Nov 11, 2013 @ 16:36:29

      Hi Recovery girl……perhaps we think that we have to live with the pain because we have chosen to stay… We will never know if the pain gets better as time goes on if we chose not to stay. I am only 6 mos into this and to read your thoughts makes me sad….Because if 2 years plus into recovery it still hurts sooooooo much…not sure that is the path I want. I still go back and forth…stay, don’t stay, stay, don’t stay..so frustrating that I have been thrown into this hurtful world by the actions of one who claims to love me so much……..nothing is the same anymore….yes the intimacy is better, the good times seem wonderful because of a stronger connection with him.. But the memories of what you thought once was and know it really wasn’t is so sad. When you try to go out and have a good time and your mind wanders off into a black hole wondering is he really here with me….or thinking about the pretty girl sitting a couple of seats over ….so hard…so very hard….

      Reply

  233. recovery girl
    Nov 11, 2013 @ 18:13:33

    M.Denise,

    I do not wish to appear too negative by my comments and things are so much different ( and better) than they were when we were six months into recovery, there is hope and I do see a new man in my husband, a better man. Its just a deep sadness I think I feel when I look at it all and think what he never saw in me and my children all those precious years he missed ( and us) and now he treats me as the woman I should have been treated like. The love he shows is immense but mine has been dampened. Like you say when times are good there wonderful but when something triggers us it reminds us what we live. I think its a stage of recovery I am feeling. I can remember being where you are stay/go etc, it does get better I promise. I think we all forget that we have experienced, a great trauma in our lives.

    Reply

  234. recovery girl
    Nov 11, 2013 @ 18:18:15

    Forgot to say that its estimated 3 to 5 years for recovery.

    Reply

  235. linda
    Nov 12, 2013 @ 23:27:46

    I stayed for a year and a half , and yes, after you leave, it gets easier, and much better, I am out of the marriage now, one year and 3 months. You get a different perspective of the situation. You begin to feel whole and worthy again!

    Reply

  236. recovery girl
    Nov 13, 2013 @ 17:17:39

    Linda, I have discussed leaving my SA with my therapist many times and he said why, my man is in recovery and doing his utmost to repair and I will only bring myself deep and unnecessary further heartache. I understand this but it all still hurts.

    I understand why you chose to leave and in your situation I would have done the same. I sometimes feel if he had gone off with one of his affairs the decision to stay or go would have been taken out of my hands and I would have got on with it. Now if I go Im the home breaker, especially if he is trying to turn his life around !!
    My therapist has said its a no win situation for me, I have to do ( well don’t have to but…) damage limitation , what a rotten world it can be.

    Reply

  237. linda
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 01:28:58

    Recovery girl, there is so much more I could tell you, but it clear to me, you are not ready to hear more. I do not fault you for staying, however, I do believe that is what you will do when the time is right for you. I believe you will come to a time, and say, ok, it is time, time for me, to be free of the burden and pain of HIS addiction. Until then, you are learning and healing! Hugs to you!

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Nov 28, 2013 @ 20:26:17

      Hi Linda, I have read this response many times and it troubles me when I read words like’ tell me’ its clear” fault ‘ etc. all our paths are different and I would never tell anyone what they should/could do with their lives. We all hurt but I would not put my opinion onto you or others. In my work I have trained (briefly) in counselling and this taught me that individuals have to make their own decisions to have the best outcome.

      I do not wish to offend you as I feel you have chosen your path and are a strong women but everyone does not wish to make the same choices as you.
      Take care

      Reply

  238. recovery girl
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 08:13:46

    Linda, I think you are right about the healing process and I’m at the stage of feeling deep sadness and which I believe can be followed by acceptance. Im hoping things will start to improve for my well being. Whatever I choose there will always be an attachment to my SA as I have spent about 32 years of my life with him and he is the father of my children and no matter how much terrible pain he and I have experienced in this process he has worked hard to be a different man, and he has succeeded. He has achieved his aim, but I have to look after me.We have come so far and I do pray and hope ‘we’ succeed after all we have been through.

    List of stages for interest and sometimes keeps me going.

    Pre-discovery=where the feeling something just not quite right
    Shock= discovery or disclosure
    Anger= speaks for itself
    Ambivalence = stay or go feeling
    Sadness= Me at the moment :(
    Acceptance= coming to terms
    Growth = moving on, even states realising that the addiction has bought about positive change. New life, whatever the outcome.

    Not sure I’ve got them all right and I do know different books do the stages slightly different.

    Cant wait to get to one of the better stages as I’ve done all the rotten ones :)

    Reply

    • linda
      Nov 14, 2013 @ 14:51:27

      Recovery girl: I believe we are all given a gift at birth, and it is called “denial”, it protects us, until we can can come to terms with painful events.It goes right with the saying, what we need to know will come to us when we are ready! I know that the decision to leave, for me at first ( year and a half) , never even felt like an option, it was too painful to even consider, but as with life, therapy and time, were my best friend! I had to throw my hands in the air, and give up, trying to figure out what was best for me, I had to let a higher power make the decision, and so he did, and I must say, I am soon to be 51 years old, still raising a teenager, working for mininum wage, and I assure you, the decision to leave was the right one! Trust that the universe, which is bigger than all of us will look after you! I assure you this is true!

      Reply

  239. recovery girl
    Nov 14, 2013 @ 20:09:54

    Linda, I do believe my higher power is working with me ( which I’m grateful for) and recovery is a process I have to go through ( should I stay or go) and I intend to let it take its path and not rush anything so I reach the best outcome for my soul.

    For me denial has never been part of it.
    Definition of denial is a refusal to accept or believe.

    Maybe if I was in denial I wouldn’t feel the sadness as I would have refused to accept any of this was my life or happening to me. Interesting thought !

    Reply

  240. recovery girl
    Nov 21, 2013 @ 18:20:28

    Question for dbiscuit please, I know you are much further ahead of myself and my husband in recovery but can you tell me do you feel that there is still an element of your husband you still feel concern about, the reason I said concern is I find words like mistrust ,insecure to strong and inappropriate, Im not sure what the word is Im looking for.

    I think its to do with the deep hurt and damage that has been caused.

    Reply

    • dbiscuit
      Dec 04, 2013 @ 03:05:20

      Hey Recovery girl! in reply to this: question
      (know you are much further ahead of myself and my husband in recovery but can you tell me do you feel that there is still an element of your husband you still feel concern about, the reason I said concern is I find words like mistrust ,insecure to strong and inappropriate, Im not sure what the word is Im looking for)

      YES! I absolutely still feel concern. Mistrust and insecure are definitely appropriate to my situation, and one thing I’ve worked hard on in therapy is breaking the myth that I’ve believed (for my life) that a marriage is supposed to be based on 100% trust. 2 flawed people doing the best they can to stay honest, work on their stuff, and be willing to keep getting up after getting knocked down is, for me, a much better benchmark for my marriage than “do i trust him.” Learning to address my unresolved issues with my parents has helped me to be in this marriage. We have worked hard to rebuilt a great deal of trust, BUT- I have come to believe that 100% trust is not something realistic. And even with that mistrust (which has diminished significantly as we’ve walked through recovery), I am able to enjoy an intimate, loving, and committed relationship with my husband.

      Reply

  241. linda
    Nov 29, 2013 @ 13:49:21

    Recovery girl, I did not suggest you or he were at “fault’, you took the word fault out of context. I will reword the sentence, I feel the decision to stay or leave is personal to each of us. For me, I was no longer willing to accept a husband that was not honest, and faithful. “Clear” means to me, when something becomes ” clear” to me, it simply means, I understand. Reread these posts a year from now, and you will take a different meaning from them.

    Reply

  242. Rachel S.
    Dec 02, 2013 @ 06:12:07

    I just wanted to check in with everyone. I hope you all had a nice thanksgiving holiday.

    I am on here to vent just a little bit. My ex has been coming by my place. I had to call the police on him today. I feel like I dealing with everything all over. He said it’s over why does he keep doing this to me? I feel like I am going crazy. He tells me he moved on and found his angel. He felt I was trying to control him. I wanted him to seek help from a 12 step program and a therapist. Now he is finally seeing a therapist and he is glad I am not around anymore. I refused to believe he was not always acting out. He said whatever he tells me I should believe him. I should not question what he says or does. I was blind to what was going on. Now that I know I am not going to put up with it. He called me crazy :-(. I feel like I am back to day one. I love this person but I can’t deal with this anymore. I just want him to move on and leave me alone. I am thinking of moving if he doesn’t stop bothering me. If anyone can offer advice I would be thankful. God Bless

    Rachel S,

    Reply

  243. linda
    Dec 02, 2013 @ 13:19:54

    Creating physical space worked for me. He is just trying to keep you in his web.

    Reply

    • Rachel
      Dec 04, 2013 @ 04:51:56

      I was able to get some rest last night. I have the worst headache. I thought he moved on already. I hate all these games. I want to kick him in the head lol. I am taking it one day at a time. Hopefully he will move on with his Angel and leave me alone. Thank you for reaching out to me.

      Reply

  244. recovery girl
    Dec 02, 2013 @ 17:58:42

    Rachel, he sounds like a sick man not yet in recover, you have to look after yourself.
    Unfortunately we have to make our own decisions in these situations, I know life can be such a bi***. God bless you.

    Reply

    • Rachel
      Dec 04, 2013 @ 04:54:15

      Thank you RG.

      I know recovery takes a long time. I really wish him the best. I can’t deal with him with anymore. I feel like I can’t carry his problems anymore. I am so tired of being blamed by him. I can only take care of myself. I know he does not understand this. If it continues I will look for another place. I need to focus on my own recovery. Thank you again for your support. I know life is a b lol. I wish it would get easier.

      Reply

  245. recovery girl
    Dec 04, 2013 @ 18:28:29

    Thank you for your reply and your honesty. I do know what you mean for me I have odd days now where I realise what has happen and how my life has changed and yes although things are a MILLION times better in many ways, it is always present what we are. This situation made me wake up to the fact that not only do I know have some trust issues with my husband I have them with the human race, for example what women would sleep with a married man with two children !!!
    Maybe I was given idealistic point of view on life from my parents, not a good thing.

    God bless

    Reply

  246. recovery girl
    Dec 04, 2013 @ 18:59:34

    last entry was in response to dbiscuit, sorry thought I clicked on reply to the relevant one !

    Reply

  247. M. Denise W.
    Dec 05, 2013 @ 18:17:25

    Hi All, Well today is a better day than yesterday. I went to see my therapist Tues., who has been in phone contact with my husband’s therapist. She told me that my husband has mental health issues, (kinda knew that, but was hard to hear it from my therapist). She says something really bad happened to my husband when he was younger. That it may never totally come out and that it may even cause him great harm if it does. That I have to accept what has happened if I choose to stay in this relationship. My therapist says I keep trying to cleanse the situation, whatever that means… That I am the best thing that has ever happened to my husband and he loves me so much. He just has so much damage from his childhood…Gosh this is so darn hard….so hard…A part of me wants to run…run far…and the other part has so much sympathy for him…I pray everyday to God to heal him and I and my marriage or give me the strength to walk away and start a new life…..

    Reply

  248. recovery girl
    Dec 05, 2013 @ 20:24:39

    Hi there M, Denise,
    Give yourself time. They say try not to make too many decisions the first year as your head is all over the place. My husband too had a traumatic childhood with some sordid dark secrets that I never knew until he crashed, I found it hard that I never knew some of his past, but then who would want to share the humiliating,embarrassing and scaring parts of your life, My hubby has never come off his antidepressants and never will but he feels he was depressed most of his life but always tried to cover it and then later became a SA and borderline alcoholic,trying to mask emotions with his drink and sex. He also says he had a lot of immaturity and selfishness which I guess is normal for addictions
    I think hes also bipolar and when he first crashed I thought he would be sectioned under the mental health act as he was so bad in the docs surgery, he has also been close to suicide at times. I have felt much compassion knowing what I know but I knew I would not stay if he didn’t try and recover, however he has chosen to recover and Im here two year plus, there are still good and bad times but on the whole things are much improved.Mentally he is now stable and a better person but im sure we still have a long way to go.

    Just for interest we have always had joint therapy I know this is not always done and doesn’t always suit everyone and I think therapist have their likes and dislikes about this but for us it has been good.

    Reply

  249. recovery girl
    Dec 09, 2013 @ 17:25:29

    Bad day today !!! just a thought why were we made to deal with this.

    Reply

  250. recovery girl
    Dec 16, 2013 @ 19:25:30

    it hurts today.

    Reply

  251. M.Denise W.
    Dec 17, 2013 @ 17:15:52

    Recovery girl…my heart aches for you….this is so hard…..I know how you feel….more good days than bad now…but the bad ones hurt so much….:(. But hubby is trying so hard. I do realize though that it is all in God’s hands…..hopefully it is in his plans to stop our pain soon. I do believe he is in control, just not sure why I was chosen for this role…

    Reply

  252. recovery girl
    Dec 17, 2013 @ 21:00:27

    Today I spotted on my lap top ‘places to stay and visit’ for the theatre etc bearing in mind I like the theatre. The terrible thing is I had a sudden sinking feeling and thought what if its not for me or christmas he is looking for. I did ask at the beginning not to do any surprises ever but in his head he thinks women want this because his mother made them all pamper and surprise her etc wanting to be centre of attention.For me our life has changed and I would prefer everything to be discussed rather than any for of surprise and it only screams deceit to me. Im not sure how to handle this as I dont want to be seen as a spoop but I also dont want to ignore it. Open for thoughts……………..

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Dec 18, 2013 @ 18:11:51

      Yesterday my therapist told me some things that really made me change my perspective. She said if you are going to chose to stay then chose to believe in him.. you don’t have anything left with him if you don’t chose to believe. At least in my husbands case (he has come with me to several sessions) she feels I would know if he were to act out. She doesn’t feel that he could hide it they way he did before without me sensing something wrong. Cause now I know what to look for and the intimacy wouldn’t be what it is now. Made sense to me. If he choses to act out I will eventually find out and then it will be a done deal. In the meantime the more I learn about what his life as been like the more my heart aches for him No young boy, man should have to have suffered what he did. My therapist also said that it is not the same kind of cheating as not being happy in a marriage, looking for happiness somewhere else….it is an addiction that they cannot break without help! They are in a bind cause they think they can’t get help without it coming out and they are afraid they will loose everything if it does…So they continue the cycle and it tears them apart..interesting. Recovery Girl BELIEVE until he gives you reason not to.

      Reply

  253. recovery girl
    Dec 18, 2013 @ 20:43:32

    M. Denise, thanks for your reply. He has done so much to recover, but it hurts and I guess there is a part of me that doesn’t want to be there again and feel that. I’m not wanting to let go and be valuable I guess in case it back fires. I do agree a lot with what your therapist said but its so hard.

    Reply

  254. recovery girl
    Dec 19, 2013 @ 16:42:01

    M Denise, thought I had replied to you but my computer has been playing up a bit.
    I think your therapist view is good and I do feel that I take that stance mostly, however this situation triggered me and then I dont always think very rationally. :(
    I think sometimes its hard to let ourselves be vulnerable when we have been hurt so bad but I will keep going. It was a strange day yesterday as I felt a bit alone with it all and then you replied and I had a call from a SAs wife that I hadnt heard from for months and the whole situation seemed much better and more manageable in my head, so many thanks for that.

    Reply

  255. recovery girl
    Dec 21, 2013 @ 14:59:36

    When this all happened to me I didn’t know who to share it with,so it came down to a very close friend, the doctor and then the therapist. I then confided in my sister as I thought I was going mad, she never came to visit ( we had always had a good relationship) then one night I did a lengthy email about how it all came about and what had happened to my husband, what I had experienced and what he had done and how broken I was.I guess hoping and praying for a bit of comfort and support, I later received a reply never to send an email to her account again.!!!!
    I did reply saying ok I understand and she has never contacted since, then a couple of days ago I had a random text asking how I was ? I dont know what to do as I have enough to deal with. The strange thing is the more I have thought about her and my situation I feel she may have a husband in a similar position. He presents with rage, they all have to work round him, he disappears to his office, never has family time only when its a week away, he works dawn till dusk and she even once told me that a woman had called and said she was having an affair with her husband. My sister dismissed it and said it was someone being venomous because they had a nice life style.
    OMG what do you think.

    Reply

  256. recovery girl
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:03:22

    wishing everyone here a happy new year and hope it brings goodness to all.
    xx

    Reply

  257. Michele Lavin
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 16:51:01

    It’s a long battle even after you leave the SA. I am sitting in a court house for support. He is on a new high now. He told me he found true love. FYI it’s not the same girl I caught him with a year ago either. He has been in and out of the home for over a year now. He tried new meds to help. He was going to meetings. He was seeing his therapist. He was going to a psychaist. He was on the right path. Then he stopped!!! Stopped the meds cold turkey, the therapist, meetings, and his family. We decided to try and I needed a lot from him first before I could allow myself to fall again. Three weeks before I found the old girlfriend on my social network pages. Then I pulled back. I know now he will never make the changes!!! He can’t make the changes!!!! But like I said he did inform me he found true love and has never felt this way!!! He says that’s all he needed!!!! He is clean and sober and this new love did it for him.(it’s been about two mths) He left the other girlfriend for her so she must be special. The most difficult thing of all is I have two beautiful boys by this monster. I am trying so hard to remain calm. I will always love him but he makes it hard. I am leaving for the boys and myself. I need prayers bc it’s hard!!!

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 04, 2014 @ 22:28:24

      Michele, I do believe some can never change. He may say she brought him to recovery but it sounds to me that he is still in that same place of lust…he just found a new victim. Try and find the strength to do what is best for you and your children…..I good luck…I know how hard this is.

      Reply

  258. recovery girl
    Dec 27, 2013 @ 22:41:51

    why does god keep testing me, this journey has been hard enough. Today I have had to deal with his long lost alcoholic brother being sent by his mother to bring him back to his family !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

    • Rachel S.
      Dec 29, 2013 @ 07:44:13

      I am sorry you have to deal with all this. I know it’s not easy for you. I will keep you in my prayers. I pray that God will keep you strong. Thank you for always giving me advice. Happy new year wishing you all the best for 2014. I know this journey is difficult but your going to be okay. God Bless

      Reply

  259. recovery girl
    Dec 28, 2013 @ 11:07:56

    just thought I would say he wants nothing to do with them hes attempting to move on with his life and right his wrongs ,he knows nothing he could say or do would make them understand what has happened or how how he feels,in fact knowing what they are like they would laugh and say he was mad or it was me that has made him mad. My hubby feels these tests just make us stronger.

    Reply

  260. Rachel S.
    Dec 29, 2013 @ 07:42:21

    Happy New Year to everyone and God Bless

    Reply

  261. recovery girl
    Dec 30, 2013 @ 17:08:23

    Having a bit of a difficult time at the moment hence I seem to be here every day but I’m in need of venting or I might go completely mad. I have to confess yesterday I was reading about this addiction on the net and a dating site came
    up , I guess its possible when you goggle sex addiction. Rightly or wrongly I jumped to conclusions. Did some research about pop ups and it wasnt all negative. Well when he came in from work I asked him and said please be honest ( I would prefer the truth and deal with it) he said it was nothing to do with him. This morning I told him how I felt in a very angry and hurtful manner, im sure you can imagine and he broke out into a sweat. I asked why he was visually sweating and he said it was because I was accusing and bring it all back and hes always been like that. Well I do have to say he does have some anxiety issues that have displayed like this in the past but it is making it incredibly hard for me to read what is truth and not. I dont want to jump in there feet first as I have seen improvements in this man immensely but doubt comes screaming in.

    Reply

  262. recovery girl
    Dec 30, 2013 @ 17:10:49

    we have had no therapy since august may be its needed.

    Reply

  263. RemainingHopeful317
    Jan 03, 2014 @ 22:05:57

    This is the best information I’ve read so far, I am also dealing with my husbands addiction to women, and I am dealing with it on a daily basis….It can be so hard at times but I’m keeping the faith. Sometimes I asked myself can he be delivered? And I feel like the only answer is to leave him….but then he begs me not to leave so I just dont know what to do anymore…..I love my husband and we have been together almost ten years, he provides for our family and never misses a night from coming home….but I just dont know if thats enough.

    No negative feed back please, cause I cannot take it at this point, I love my husband and I know that he loves me, but it finally feels good to be amongst others who are dealing with the same issues and can possibly help.

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 04, 2014 @ 22:16:43

      Is he in therapy, is he doing the 12 steps….

      Reply

    • recovery girl
      Jan 05, 2014 @ 11:56:12

      Remaining hopeful,

      Do you have any support or therapy ?
      Have you found books to read about this situation, this was the one thing that kept
      me going in the beginning, as long as the right books.

      ‘Mending shattered hearts’ is a good one.

      Keep strong
      x

      Reply

      • RemainingHopeful317
        Jan 05, 2014 @ 17:28:56

        Hi recovery girl, we have not joined any therapy groups, because I’m in the first stages of discovery. However I have researched it a lot, and that is how i came across this site. I am very careful about the advice i keep, when I research because all situations do not relate to the ones we are dealing with. But any advice would be helpful and greatly appreciated. I have not talked to anyone about his condition, and it is very hard for me cause everyone knows my husband to be a very loving and caring man……..So I have had to deal with a lot on my own.

  264. recovery girl
    Jan 04, 2014 @ 10:47:17

    So nice to have responce from you all and hear your experiences it makes me feel no so alone with all this. X

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 04, 2014 @ 22:21:28

      hi recovery girl…I am surprised at how well I am doing lately, my husband is really doing well….I am finally managing to just believe…in him and us…..going to a couples retreat at a Christian center soon.

      Reply

  265. recovery girl
    Jan 05, 2014 @ 11:48:55

    M.Denise,

    I am pleased you are both doing well and its good for others to hear this as it does give hope and shows there can be positive outcomes.

    I still struggle even though he’s doing his upmost to prove himself to me, I do feel for him as he try’s everything and I sometimes throw it right back at him. The trouble is the hurt and I’m afraid of being hurt again. I think at some point we might need a bit of therapy on trust, although my therapist has said its something I may never regain. He’s trying to prepare me for every eventuality.

    In the beginning he came and told me what he had been doing and then over a six month period gave me a bit more,a bit more, a bit more and each time this was the full story ( he said he couldn’t tell me because of the scale he knew he would loose me) apparently this is one of the worst s ways of doing it as it makes it difficult to rebuild on. Sadly we were also seeking help at that point and they kept telling him what he was destroying and he just couldn’t get to grips with giving me the job lot.

    I do feel a lot of the issues are now mine, so I now have to find a way to take my life forward and leave some of this baggage behind, but when you have been hurt so bad its not easy or natural. I know I have forgiven him, its just tremendous hurt I experience.

    God bless to all.
    x

    Reply

  266. recovery girl
    Jan 05, 2014 @ 18:41:35

    Remaining Hopeful,

    You are wise to be careful, when this first happened to me/us I was too shocked and unable to step outside my own front door as I thought everyone was looking at me and knew our secret, I could not eat, sleep, shop, work etc and yet was trying in some strange way to cope as I could see he was in a worse state than me.

    My husband too has a kind, caring personality and has always treated me well and anyone that knew us would have not ever believed me if I had told them what he had done as are close friends would tease us about how attentive he was to me. For some strange reason he thought if I never knew we could be happy, part of his addiction I guess, compartmentalising and the fantasy aspect. Although he did tell me as his addiction progressed he became bitter towards me as I was getting in the way of him being able to do what he wanted when he wanted.

    I first took the plunge to get help by seeing my doctor, I knew he had a code of confidentially ( that is how I felt, I wanted no one else to know) he gave me sedatives for three days but said I could not have them any longer.

    During this time he had referred my husband to a sexual psychotherapist and my husband had decided he would find a 12 step group although he was afraid as he had read about it on the internet and thought it sounded like a cult. He had become so desperate he decided he had nothing to loose by going to a meeting and see for himself.

    Fortunately his appointment to see the sexual psychotherapist came through in days and that was one of the best things that happened. I went with him to the appointment with the intention to wait for him as the referral was for him. While I was sitting there the therapist came and said this situation had affected me as much as him and I was to come in. Those first few sessions were dark days and heart breaking.

    I know it is difficult and to find help ( I never did manage a twelve step group , for logistic reasons) but it was the starting point for our recovery. As you can see from my entries here I still struggle although things and a million times better than the early days. My therapist did tell me to read up on the condition but to be careful with the internet as there is lots of negative information out there, and he was right, however here has been a safe haven for me as the majority of us want positive outcomes of our situations.

    So please do be carful what you take in as I know when I was in need of information I didn’t always get the best.
    If you want any names of books just let me know.
    The very first one I read ( even though I found it heart breaking that this was now me) was called ‘love over lust’, it was quite a easy read as in the beginning I did find it difficult to concentrate.

    Good Luck

    Reply

  267. M. Denise W.
    Jan 08, 2014 @ 16:41:04

    Another meeting with my therapist and my mind still can’t grasp this ….ok…this is a mental illness….When their minds go to that place that makes them act out…they can’t think of anything else…Not you and how they are crushing your world, not STD’s, not the money they are spending, not the cheating they are doing….not their children. Their minds just don’t go there. They have tunnel addicted vision….their brain just wants that high that they can’t get anywhere else but from doing this…their brain wants this high cause its a high like nothing else…cause it’s taboo…ugh..Once they admit they have an addition and get help then change can begin…ugh……why o why does this have to be my world…How could he have hidden this addiction for soooo long…or did I just NOT want to see it!

    Reply

    • linda
      Jan 08, 2014 @ 18:26:23

      Both, we were in a non healthy emotional place when we met these characters! We all put out energy, that attracts us to each other, and our energy attracted our spouses! It is sad, but true! I knew from the first week of dating him, something was not right within him, but alas, the co-dependent in me, saw all this potential, and sailed right on up the river with him! Thinking “I” would be the one that could help him reach his potential! , Surprise(not), this never happened , if we had been secure, and had a higher self esteem, we would never have allowed ourselves to be with these men. Was it a mistake ? No, not at all, we learned from this experience, a very tough lesson, , we have learned so much about ourselves! My intuition told me from the start, run, I never listened, and over the years, I would beat down my intuition so often, it quit talking to me, denial took intuitions place within me! , when you are in denial, it protects your heart(temporarily), it blinds you to the truth! Listen to the old saying, from the Bible, “The truth will set you free”,
      Nothing but the truth will ever free us! So send denial a message: I am done with you, I am going to have a relationship with intuition now! Two worthy reads are”:Women who love too much”, and Betrayal Bond” Good Luck!

      Reply

      • recovery girl
        Jan 08, 2014 @ 19:58:15

        Linda,

        My heart bleeds for you reading this, it feels like you have exposed your inner feelings to all, I truly hope and believe that god can heal all. I wish you the very best in your future and you deserve it.

        I would have to say that what you have stated about the men we meet does not apply to all, I never had those feelings about my husband ,he never presented in the ways that you identify and I was never diagnosed or felt that I was a co-dependent , so I think it must have been just rotten luck for me.

        Hope 2014 is good for you.
        x

    • Rachel S.
      Jan 13, 2014 @ 07:32:24

      I feel the same way you do. How could they hide this addiction for so long? I would go back and forth trying to understand why. Why I am dealing with all this. It still hurts so much. It’s getting better day by day. Sometimes I just sit and cry. I get so sad because I feel alone. The only person who understands is my mother. Putting all the pieces together now. I see that my dad was an addict too. It makes sense how my mom stayed with him. She was afraid to move on from him. They lived in two different homes. He was living with another woman by the time I was five, I can see so much of myself in my mom. The only difference is I am getting help for it. I left my SA behind.

      I am glad your on this blog. Thank you for sharing these stories with us. We are here to support you. I wish I could do more for you. I wish you the best in your recovery. God Bless you

      Reply

  268. recovery girl
    Jan 08, 2014 @ 18:40:24

    M Denise,

    Im sure we have all questioned ourselves…. but if you were to ask these men in recovery…….. they would probably tell you that nothing we could have said or done at the time would have changed their thought processes.

    I truly believe that if most of us had any idea what our husbands were up to we would have dealt with it there and then but it is a truly deceptive condition.

    My husband has said to me that you ( meaning them) do not see danger and with fantasy and immaturity you feel it will never happen to you. I have worked most of my life in the field of infections and diseases and he had heard me many times on my soap box and it had no effect.
    They compartmentalize their lives.

    He saw me struggle to make ends meet, he saw me with a life threatening disease
    ( even though he always acted lovley towards me he was absent) it really is a illness of individuals with broken souls.

    I know this is so hard and we all ride that roller coaster but Im sure god is with us.
    xxx

    Reply

  269. RemainingHopeful317
    Jan 09, 2014 @ 01:00:25

    Can someone please offer advice on what i should do now. I have put my husband out of the house, and I feel so drained….. He is begging me to go to counseling with him but I don’t have the energy to endure anymore. I want to hate him so bad….. I’m just so tired and confused.

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Jan 09, 2014 @ 07:44:04

      Help is what you both need, go you will start to feel better. For us counselling was positive I did see the man for what he was, broken soul,abused child and a desperate soul to change his life and put his wrongs right. It’s not been easy we are two years into recovery and I’m glad were here. We were only saying this morning how something good has come out of something so terrible we had to experience.

      Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 09, 2014 @ 16:15:49

      Hopeful, I cried and cried when I first found out. I dragged my self to Cosa and S-Anon meetings and cried and cried there too! Could NOT believe this was happening….eventually I stopped crying ALL the time. It took months….My Husband confessed what he had been doing and was very remorseful. I remember about 6 mos prior to discovery him talking about offing himself (his words) My son (29 yrs old) said dad what are you talking about you have a great life. I was confused and thought he was joking. But now I know that he wanted to stop and couldn’t . He didn’t know how or what was going on inside his mind. And because it was a secret he wouldn’t get help for fear his family would find out. My therapist says it is a mental illness. He also suffered abuse when he was younger as you can read in my previous posts. This has been the most difficult thing in my life. My advice would be go to some 12steps if you can. Just to listen and be with others who are going through what you are. I stopped going after a few months cause my husband was in recovery and these meetings made me sad. Get yourself a therapist who has experience in dealing with SEX addiction specifically. Mine has been so helpful because she has been on both sides with clients for 30 years. She gets both sides. I have only considered staying with him because he is going to 12 steps and therapy and I believe that God is leading us both now. He is so sad for what he has done to me and is now a different person emotionally. He knows he can’t get better without help! Of course you have to decide if you can even live with that! Your husband has to take full responsibility for what he has done or he won’t get better. He has to stop all acting out immediately. Lastly or maybe first, I say pray, pray to God to help you both to survive this crazy addiction and allow God to guide you to where he wants you to be…Cause I do believe that in the end it is his WILL not ours! God Bless you and help heal your pain…A pain I know so well!

      Reply

      • recovery girl
        Jan 11, 2014 @ 15:56:23

        M Denise. Interesting what you felt about twelve steps. I tried and not only was it a logistical nightmare it didn’t really work for me either. Its not that I would never not recommend it to anyone and at the beginning of all this it was helpful in the way I could go and say ‘my husbands a sex addict’ to someone who knew what it was like and understood how I felt and did not judge.

        For me I could not continue to go as the individuals that attended this particular group had no positive outcomes so this was not good for me, its a shame those who seem to recovery do not go and the whole meetings were a negative experience. I felt I must be doing something wrong at that point and was searching desperately for different meetings, counsellors etc. When I discussed this with our sexual psychotherapist he said not to beat myself up about it as these groups do not suit all. I still feel I missed out a little but hey we are still together and recovering.
        x

  270. linda
    Jan 09, 2014 @ 02:29:25

    Go to counselling with him, it will only help you, the heck with him! Go for you, the more you discover about him, all the better. It was counselling that helped me leave my SA spouse.Observe him (husband) with your new knowledge of his sex addiction, and you will not like what you see! Voilla… you will see him for what he is…sick!
    Do not rush your decision!

    Reply

  271. recovery girl
    Jan 12, 2014 @ 19:20:23

    I know this has nothing to do with this site really but my dog has been taken poorly today and its breaking my heart ,through all this he has been a great support and has always shown such affection in my time of need. I fear for him as they don’t no what’s wrong,please say a little pray for him he’s so beautiful. He’s known to all were we live and he even had his own Christmas cards as he’s so well liked.our postman most morning shouts his name to say hello. X

    Reply

  272. Rachel S.
    Jan 13, 2014 @ 07:59:31

    I wanted to ask something of you ladies. Do you believe that some SA are Narcissistic? Just wanted to hear what you guys thought.

    I am still doing my therapy weekly, going to meetings in Al-Anon and POSARC. I attend a meeting for survivors of domestic violence. Also I joined a group on meetup.com for abusive relationship healing. I take a weekly dance and yoga class. I am cooking and meeting new people. I am making sure not to stay closed off.
    My friend gave me information from Melanie Tonia Evans. Melanie Tonia Evans is the founder of Quanta Freedom Healing and the Narcissist Abuse Recovery Program.I am not sure if you guys heard about her. I have to get to that system at a later date. I am doing 90 days of programs and self care. Attending the 12 step meetings are so painful. I rather attend the one for POSARC. It’s a healing one for trauma survivors. I feel at peace when I leave my meeting. When I go to the COSA or 12 step meetings. My heart starts to race and everything comes back again. I know I have a lot more work to do. I will continue with my healing and recovery. I journal a few times a week. Sometimes it’s too much to write everyday. I know I should write more. Sometimes I need to take a break. I hope everyone is taking care of themselves. We need to build the stronger version of ourselves before we can help someone else. I finally learned that because of this experience. I wish you all the best in your recovery for 2014 and beyond. Have a nice day

    Message of the day:
    “God’s love for you is extravagant and you should not settle for emotional crumbs. You are a prize to be won! Don’t settle for less then God’s best.”

    Reply

  273. Rachel S.
    Jan 13, 2014 @ 08:19:57

    Not sure if my comment before will be approved. If not then thank you so much. Just wanted to share some links that helped me. Have a nice day

    Reply

  274. recovery girl
    Jan 13, 2014 @ 18:31:13

    Rachel, I think we all have similar feelings and questions and I dont see anything wrong with that we are all searching to heal. I to have had difficulty with ‘Why’ when we can see so clearly such things as our priorities such as children, family and health but the addict cannot. In no way am I making excuses for their behaviour neither, its wrong, dreadful, hurtful etc.

    Although my hubby is in recovery Ive asked him many times to explain how you can not see STDs, children etc he says the addiction takes over and you can’t see anything other than that. They dont even like the women they go with, its the high they are after.He finds it hard now in recovery to imagine he was once that person and he does try to block his past as he feels it is destroying any future, he cant believe he could be two totally different people.

    Our therapist has tried to explain to me that sex addiction is no fun and is killing them. They have no real relationships with anyone , they are isolated, lonely, angry, knotted up, cant see real life and its beauty, they are self abusing until they have noone and nothing to live for. I can see what he means and would prefer to be me any day.

    I too some days feel alone as you can’t meet up with friends and discuss your husbands sex addiction over coffee. You are lucky to have family, mine dont want to know me as they hate him for what he has done.

    Im pleased you you are partaking in activities and keep on the go, it just takes time, you will get there. Our hurt is greater than a lot of people know. I have said to my hubby I know the pain Jesus felt when he was betrayed.

    About them being narcissistic, I think some are and some aren’t. If I can explain my husband and I were a very happy couple for 18yrs ( although he has told me he always felt ‘Weird’ about his sexual thoughts ) he never acted out until approx 18yrs into our marriage and then as a person he started to deteriorate, he became horrible person, I guess you could say narcissistic, however once he was in recovery my old hubby returned.

    Keep going you can do it we are all in recovery whether we are with are partners or not and we all have similar feelings.

    xx

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 14, 2014 @ 14:36:04

      Recovery girl…I have learned the same things you have about this addiction. At times I think logically and know that my husband was very sick…he still is but getting better now that he has faced his illness. Often times though I still think emotionally and my hurt is so broken….I thought he loved me soooo much and even though part of me still believes that another part of me just doesn’t…but then I know my thought process is different then his. I mean he says things like “now that it is real he can face reality and get better” I say duh it was always real cause you were doing it….so I just can’t get that mentality…I really can’t……..On a side note his brother in another state passed yesterday and I am really scared about where that will put him emotionally and mentally

      Reply

  275. mdenise1
    Jan 14, 2014 @ 14:34:45

    Recovery girl…I have learned the same things you have about this addiction. At times I think logically and know that my husband was very sick…he still is but getting better now that he has faced his illness. Often times though I still think emotionally and my hurt is so broken….I thought he loved me soooo much and even though part of me still believes that another part of me just doesn’t…but then I know my thought process is different then his. I mean he says things like “now that it is real he can face reality and get better” I say duh it was always real cause you were doing it….so I just can’t get that mentality…I really can’t……..On a side note his brother in another state passed yesterday and I am really scared about where that will put him emotionally and mentally…….

    Reply

  276. recovery girl
    Jan 14, 2014 @ 17:58:38

    I read somewhere that it can be between a year and three before they start to think on similar lines to us and until that time try and remember their thought process are still along the line of an addict. I guess I can see why it takes time to get there, so they cant just change over night.
    x

    Reply

  277. Dena Martinez
    Jan 14, 2014 @ 21:41:47

    My current boyfriend does have an addition to porn but he denyes it. Ive found pics of other womens private parts sent to his phon which was not sent during the time we were together but yet it bothers me that he engages in this type of behavior with these type of he still says I need to stopwomen.We have known eachother for many yrs but I was not aware of this EVER!!! He acts like its ok & when I tell him it bothers me he tells me I need to stop! I told him I now think he is thinking of then while we are having sex

    Reply

  278. M. Denise W.
    Jan 17, 2014 @ 15:04:42

    Yesterday I searched the net once again for some help understanding my husband, my pain, his addiction and I stumbled upon this site….an amazing site the seems to speak about exactly what seems to be going on in my life right now and gave me yet some more understanding of the SA, though it still seems so foreign to me and my thinking. Thought I would share the link http://www.recoverynation.com/partners/partners_workshop_036.php

    Reply

  279. recovery girl
    Jan 17, 2014 @ 18:14:36

    Its a good read and does seem to fit my hubby.

    I’ve been having a bad couple of days as I’ve been triggered. Its terrible as they seem to move on better than us, it doesn’t seem fair.

    My hubby has engrossed himself in work ( or developed another addiction) and now has been offered a different working situation which does have many positives for us but it also gives me anxieties, even though I know if he really wants to return to his addiction he will do it no matter what he works.
    He has said if I don’t want him to do it he wont, but how has this become my responsibility ? This job has better prospects, more money and could potentially improve our personal life. More for me to deal with, more huddles and anxieties.

    I seem to struggle with the possibility that my recovery husband will do this again to me, I don’t know how to let go. I don’t know how to trust and believe anymore, I have to learn again, does anyone know how ?

    Reply

  280. M. Denise W.
    Jan 17, 2014 @ 18:30:31

    Recovery girl…One thing I can say for sure is that more $$$ doesn’t make a better life. My SA had a 6 figure job. We have a beautiful home, nice cars, …I would trade it all for a small house and peace of mind……peace of mind is worth more than any amount of $$$$$…..Ask him not to take the job, as long as you can pay the bills…Do NOT feel guilty, you are paying everyday for what he has done…now do YOU!

    Reply

    • linda
      Jan 17, 2014 @ 19:07:27

      So true Denise, but mine done it when he made peanuts, and when he made 6 figures! When he went away to work, he dove into the “acting out” with both feet!

      Reply

  281. recovery girl
    Jan 17, 2014 @ 20:07:22

    I feel torn, as I feel he’s trying to prove himself and trying to achieve something he should have down many years ago. I feel it would be a personal achievement for him as I achieved better educationally .
    Money doesn’t really come into it, we are fortunate to have a good standard of living too, its just a bonus. I know completely what you mean about money, when this happened to us I would have given everything we had materially to have a normal relationship.
    I cant help but think these things are sent as tests, just wished he didn’t keep doing it.

    The thing is he cant be attached to me 24/7 and if he wants to return to his addiction he will find a way, no matter what I do, its just painful and hard to let go.

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 18, 2014 @ 14:44:43

      So true, Linda and Recovery girl, don’t know what I was thinking, I am sure if they want to do it they will find a way. Guess I was thinking more of my situation. Sometimes I feel if my SA hadn’t taken a job in the city making good $$$$ he wouldn’t have been able to hide it the way he did…..and spend the way he did…..but who knows……he probably would have found a way! I must say that things are getting easier here…My husband is really, really trying……he doesn’t want that life…..I really believe that…but only time will tell if he can stay out of it. I believe that just because an addict wants to be sober doesn’t necessarily mean he will stay sober….So for now my guard is up! Praying for peace of mind for all of you who are dealing with this nightmare.

      Reply

  282. recovery girl
    Jan 18, 2014 @ 15:13:19

    If he truly wants to recover then that is the main key to recovery. You read everywhere they have to want to do it. I know how hard it is to believe and wanting too as well because if he is anything like my hubby you can see a change as well. The thing I find hard is if he returns to it but I’ve had to try and tell myself I will have to deal with it at the time if it happens and there is no guarantee with any relationship anyway. I think at least we know what we got and what to look out for if I started again with someone new it would be doubley as hard. I don’t know about you guys but we also have a lot to try and save,family,love,kids,home and I know we are good together. I know though and he does if we go down that path again I can not possibly allow myself to be with him. Keep going m Denise its early days and this situation is not easy,but God loves us.

    Reply

  283. recovery girl
    Jan 18, 2014 @ 19:50:53

    M Denise. Forgot to say my hubby never had to pay anything monatry for his addiction apart from the odd hotel room! There is hundreds of women who will sleep with men for nothing!!!!! Sad but true. I just thank God I have self respect and self worth.

    Reply

  284. M. Denise W.
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 14:15:11

    OMG…..another session with the marriage counselor yesterday…ugh…..all I can think today is his saying he’s really a good person…ugh…but his he really…what good person cheats on their wife and hurts their family for years…what good person has relations with girls younger than his daughters….and spends hours in massage parlors and strip clubs and thousands of dollars…….what good person says they were just objects…what good person doesn’t think how he would feel if I look at young men and thought oh I just had to have them, then did…how would he feel…..and when his wife confronts him on their ages his response is well they were both consenting adults yuk….I keep thinking why oh why would I want to stay with this perverted man…what is wrong with me!…My therapist says I have to decide if I want to heal this marriage and if I do then I have to decide when it is time to stop dwelling on the past….ugh I hate this…I hate this so much….sorry everyone but my mind and heart and soul hurt so much today :(

    Reply

  285. recovery girl
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 17:12:44

    M Denise, you are the one to decide not anyone else. All your feelings are natural and is he being honest for a change telling you these things and these things have great similarity to what all us wives hear. Now two years and four months into recovery mine can tell me he thought he was a good, nice person but now realises he was a selfish low life, scum bag his words ! and have been mine also at times. Ive had anger and called him allsorts of horrible things and still struggle with the things he did which I’m sure will for a long time.
    Is this anger you are feeling ? that would be natural.
    How long are you know into recovery?
    Do you have a sexual psychotherapist ?
    ‘Stop dwelling on the past ‘seems a bit hard to say to you as recovery takes time and we do it at different paces.
    I am only just starting to see a glimmer of hope in our marriage and yet still have bad days, and yes HURT is a big thing I still feel after all we are human. Im still waiting for the next stages to arrive where I think its bought about positive change, will let you know when I get there.
    x

    Reply

  286. recovery girl
    Jan 21, 2014 @ 22:13:29

    M Denise

    http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2013/09/12/6-stages-of-recovery-for-partners-of-sex-addicts/

    This is an interesting read, thought you would like to look, im still not sure where I am in the process but it does give us some reassurance, which is what we need every now and then.

    I also forgot to say at one stage i hated him so much and wanted out and treated him with such anger and rage that I started to burn out . I went to therapy asking for anger management as I didn’t know what else to do, but after a few sessions with the therapist we seemed to get me back on track.
    I still have the odd anger outburst but would say I suffer more hurt than anger now.

    Reply

  287. recovery girl
    Jan 23, 2014 @ 21:40:04

    Only wrote the other day ‘anger getting less’ and I guess it has been, however,we had an incident where he was telling me about a member of the public who was female and what she had said to him, I replied with’ could you not see what sort of woman she was’ and he thought I was over reacting and being too judgmental. The thing is before he never seemed able to figure out what sort of person was an appropriate person to associate with, and this has given me anxieties. He tells me hes not the same man and he does never want to be that man but boy its so hard to believe his word. I know I cant live the rest of my life with uncertainty but I’m not sure how I make the right decision now, for example if everything he tells me is true and yes there has been real changes and I call it a day and upset my kids, myself and him and split up the home for what. Yes and what if hes a liar and im being spun another yarn, more pain.

    Reply

  288. recovery girl
    Jan 24, 2014 @ 06:37:03

    why was sex addiction sent to us ? what is the test ? what is the reward? when does is end?

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 24, 2014 @ 15:05:05

      Awe recovery girl….I know your pain to well…Think this is what Linda has been trying to tell us….if we chose to stay it will be an uphill struggle. But Could I let my guard down with anyone after this. If he could dupe me for all these years then…..how can I love again. Would love to hear from others who left and went on to healthy relationships ……is it possible? Or is there something in us that attracts these kinds of people.
      I am about 9 mos into recovery. I have a therapist who has dealt with both sides of addiction. She has helped me a lot. She tries to help me understand the addictive side. Though she understands my hurt and anger also. Today I feel positive and feel like I want to continue in recovery with him…tomorrow who know…………

      Reply

  289. linda
    Jan 24, 2014 @ 15:44:03

    I am 1.5 years, into my recovery. Three years this month since I was hit with this situation! Leaving for me, was the right choice, I could not continue with the doubts, always struggling to feel whole and worthy! Denise, I have not started a new relationship yet, I am not ready, I have much more work to do on me first.(to prevent attracting this type), in the future! As the old saying goes, change nothing & nothing chances!

    Reply

  290. James
    Jan 24, 2014 @ 19:22:52

    I have a dilemma. I am dating a beautiful, smart and engaging woman who was married to a sex addict for 20 years. I did not find this out until after 8 months of dating. Now I am scared of STDs and whatever else that comes with this deal. She is in denial and refuses to get counseling. She just wants to bury the past and deny it.

    Should I make counseling a part of whether I marry her or not? She has trust and intimacy issues but I didn’t sign up for all this. Not at least with the courtesy of letting me know about this. I have a million questions for her because I have an analytical mind but she shuts down if I mention it.

    I love her very much but I seriously don’t know what to do. BTW, this website has taught me a great deal about this addiction that I did not know.

    Reply

  291. James
    Jan 24, 2014 @ 19:52:55

    Sexual addiction has a very far reaching tentacle.

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 25, 2014 @ 16:26:11

      James, I am touched by your commenting here. I was wondering if there is love with another after sex addiction and you have answered my question. Please try not to fault her to much. We have lived through the biggest devastation of our lives. I would imagine that it would be hard to tell someone about this. What would they think of me. Would they think like you, that perhaps there is something wrong with me. I went to have all my testing done when I found out about my husbands addition. Even that was a humiliating experience. To know you have not done anything to put yourself in the position of having to go for testing. To having the person administering the test look at you like you are a sleaze . Mine actually asked me what I had been doing that I would have to come get tested. Talk about humiliation! I can understand why she might want to bury and deny it. Every time you relive it the pain burns a whole in your heart…. If you truly love her James help her. She did not sign up for this either, none of us have. Yes, try to get her counseling or perhaps go with her to one. Perhaps you can ask your questions here and those of us that are living it can answer those questions. God Bless you James and may he give you the strength to stand by her!

      Reply

  292. recovery girl
    Jan 25, 2014 @ 17:36:44

    Hi James, you dont say if its still quite new that her relationship broke down?
    We all recovery at different paces and as you have probably seen in some of my blogs its estimated between 3 to 5 years. I think you do need to talk for both your sakes and the sake of the relationship but I guess its about finding out what is the best way to do this, maybe some relationship counselling for you both and things will then start to flow.
    Have you thought of purchasing some books that are aimed at partners recovering and see the stages we go through and the emotional roller coaster we ride.

    Just make sure its a good reputable author as there is some rubbish out there. Be careful what you read on the internet too as theres plenty of negatives there also.

    Im not surprised you are worried about STDs as most of us were terrified when we discovered what our husbands were doing, but most of us do go for testing as Denise said. Fortunately when I went for screening although I felt degraded to be there the doctors were great and I did tell them I was there because of his sex addiction and they showed me great compassion.

    Hope you both find a way, its just time.

    Reply

  293. James
    Jan 26, 2014 @ 19:08:19

    Well, this is very informative to me. I am head to her house now for a day of shopping and I will cook dinner later. STD testing done here. I got it done and she has never had to do to it. She got divorced a year and a half ago.

    I need to share some more background. I lost my parents as a young man. I watched my son die in my arms after a horrendous car accident so I am very versed in PTSD.

    Yes, there is love and great sex after being married to a sex addict but I need some background. I am a talker and sharer and she is not. One dilemma that we have. Got to go. She is waiting on me. TTL?

    Reply

  294. James
    Jan 26, 2014 @ 20:01:36

    More background.

    My only hang ups are that we have been making love for a year now and I didn’t find out the whole story of her past until 6 months ago. I had to drag it out of her.

    The two biggest obstacles are 1. Her lack of intimacy and 2. Her mistrust of me. I give her my cell phone and she has been having a key to my apartment. I am certain that she looked. No porn there. Although, we do enjoy really soft porn together. We watch something that is not a gateway to harder stuff. Real men do not like hard porn. Ask me about real men and I’ll share what we think and feel. I am a Mamas boy. I open doors for her and I almost always pick her up then drop her off safe and sound at home.

    Gotta go….

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 27, 2014 @ 15:33:48

      James, She sounds like one lucky girl! to have found a man like you. I am so sorry for the losses in your life. It must have been really hard. I sometimes think that even though this has been devastating to me there are things that could be a lot worse. Like what has happened to you! To lose a child…I can’t imagine the pain….
      I don’t know that I could share my experience with this addiction with someone until I was ready. I mean this is so difficult and I already relive it everyday…If I could find a way to put it out of my head, I don’t know that I would want to share and relive the pain… though now that I see how your feeling, I realize that maybe not sharing would be unfair. Lack of Intimacy….wonder if that is a result of what’s happened to her….I am sure mistrust is. I have been married for 35 yrs. I had always trusted my husband. When he would go out I never gave him a hard time. I always said go have fun, life is to short not to! But really he was going to get lap dances at strip clubs, humiliating, hurtful, degrading to me! I think it WILL be hard for me to trust again. I think that will now be part of my baggage. I don’t really no what REAL men are like, only a deceiving, lying, sick, man ..that’s all I know….how sad is that! I must say that since I found out he is like a different person, he tries to make up for the pain he has caused me but my heart continues to ache almost everyday!

      Reply

    • recovery girl
      Jan 27, 2014 @ 18:49:18

      oh James Im a little concerned ‘soft porn’ one thing this has taught me was ‘no pron’, true men dont need either. Mama s boy ! this girl does need some help, sorry to say.

      Reply

  295. James
    Jan 27, 2014 @ 17:04:33

    Denise, I went through a lot of counseling for my grieving. My ex did not. That is why she is my ex. I was hoping that my fiancée would go to counseling so that I am not marrying someone with unresolved issues. Been there, went through that. She gets defensive when I try to talk about it. I am going to try to be patient and let her talk when she wants to. I feel that it is unfair to me but it is what it is.

    My biggest problem? I have a fear of what he may have put her through. Certainly the two issues I brought up already but what did he do to her?? Was he some freak who tortured her? Did he get her to go to sex clubs? Were there threesomes?

    I would really like disclosure from her. If she did do any of those things then I would support her and not throw rocks at her. I am a loving, caring and supportive person. She has supported me in my issues and has been a rock to me. Am I wrong to want to know some of this stuff? She was not wrong in this situation and I told her that on many occasions. She was victimized by a monster. None of this was her fault. I do not judge her in this and I can see how this can be very embarrassing to her.

    To thoroughly explain my desire to know this information you would have to know how a man thinks. If I say that I will not hold it against her then I really mean it. I get a vanilla explanation from her meanwhile I have totally disclosed ALL of my past and my hurts to her. It seems like a balance between her not wanting to relive it and my trying to come to terms with it. Maybe five years into our marriage she may be comfortable enough to discuss it with me? If so, then I need to decide if that is good enough for me.

    Can anyone shed some light into how these monsters operate? Is sex clubs and strip clubs part of what a spouse will do to try to make things go smoothly? Is that question out of bounds? Am I never going to get answers? This anonymous forum may prompt someone to come forward and attempt to help me but please don’t do it if it hurts you.

    Reply

  296. recovery girl
    Jan 27, 2014 @ 18:56:30

    James , research this to find out,read, read, read, I find it a little distressing that you are asking ladies who have experienced terrible things to relive it all,’ how these monsters operate’ ?
    My monster is in recovery and yes it has been a terrible thing but talk about rubbing salt in a wound! Seems like some of your blogs are behind her back, worried !!!!!!!!
    no wonder she is like she is she already had one sex addict and here is a man blogging behind her back, playing on vulnerable emotive females, talking about soft porn !!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Reply

  297. James
    Jan 27, 2014 @ 20:25:10

    Recovery girl, I just got my answer.

    The answer was from someone who I trust with my life was that if I try to force her to answer my hard questions then I am no better than that awful God-forsaken monster. Actually, I am much better than him so I am going to drop it. Probably the last time I post on here which should make some of you happy but I will read any responses to this.

    Blogging behind her back? Yes I am. This site offers complete anonymity so you will never know who I am or who she is. Would this cause her anguish? It might for her but it would not for me. Thus, the differences between men and women. They are indeed vast but the differences between that monster and myself are even more greater.

    My sincere apologies to anyone on here who I might have offended. I meant no harm. Would I have held it against her if she expounded on any of this? Definitely not! I would have processed it and then forgotten it. Someone might say that it would be burned into my brain and I wouldn’t be able to live with her. Wrong. I have other images burned into my brain and they involve death. Not to minimize what you all have been through because I have nothing but the highest respect for someone who lived through this for the sake of the kids, love or whatever reason. Right now if I make a list of positives and negatives then our relationship comes out on the positive.

    God bless and good bye.

    Reply

  298. James
    Jan 27, 2014 @ 22:14:09

    One more thing.

    What did I mean by soft porn? I mean rated “R” movies. Not true porn. I don’t like porn and neither does she. When deciding what to watch together I was concerned about real hard rated R movies depicting rape, incest etc. she clarified it in that she is not offended by such movies but I wanted to get her input about it. Heck, “Sex And The City” qualifies to me as “soft porn”.

    Wasn’t trying to fool anyone or hurt anyone’s feelings. We are going to be alright together…

    We will heal together.

    Reply

  299. recovery girl
    Jan 28, 2014 @ 19:21:48

    HI all, just wanted to say,today feels good :)
    I’ve suddenly realised the qualities my hubby has, he’s not perfect by a long shot, however the last few days have let me see that he’s in recovery and I know what I have with him and if we continue in this way it could be positive.

    keep going
    x

    Reply

  300. recovery girl
    Jan 28, 2014 @ 20:27:53

    Society has always believed that the mantra, “once a cheater, always a cheater,” rings true to just about every situation involving adultery or unfaithful behavior. Whatever your personal beliefs of a cheater may be, we must acknowledge and accept that there is, in fact, a difference between a cheater and a sex addict. The emotional and mental behavior of a cheater is vastly different than that of a sex addict in that their urges and emotions are motivated by different characteristics. Whether you have cheated, been cheated on, cheated with another individual, or have engaged in sexual acts multiple times despite knowing the consequences, it is important to not abandon a sex addict with the label of a “cheater” if they actually do have a serious problem.
    There are, of course, similarities between what we call a cheater and what others call Just need to remind ourselves sometimes.

    sex addicts. A cheater is motivated by a selfish desire to satisfy themselves for personal gratification, in spite of consequences — much like a sex addict. However, cheating is different in that it can only be committed while an individual is involved in a relationship and is not limited to just physical but also emotional unlawfulness. Sex addicts, on the other hand, can develop an insatiable desire for sex long before they are even involved in a relationship. Many times, the beginning stages of sexual addiction starts with unusual amounts of masturbation and pornography. Once the individual commits to a relationship, those addictions will continue to grow and eventually affects all aspects of their life including their personal and professional lives.

    A person who is classified as a sex addict is a person who has an insatiable desire for their sexual needs — much like an alcoholic. The more the individual indulges, the more their cravings increase. The average sex addict will abandon their work duties, family responsibilities, and other necessities in order to have a quick fix for their physical desires. Conversely, a cheater is not always motivated by just physical interactions. Society puts an unusual amount of weight on sexual adultery that we forget that many affairs are also sparked by emotional comfort from another individual. Cheaters, unlike sex addicts, often court the person they are cheating with and escalate the affair to a romantic level. Sometimes, they will take the person out for a date, have in depth conversations about their personal life, and of course, engage in sex as well. In most cases, sex addicts are not concerned with keeping this sexual partner in their life nor are they concerned with developing any romantic relationship with them. Instead, they wish to fulfill a selfish need and then forget whomever that sexual partner is.

    Although this may seem unfathomable, a sex addict is still capable of love and compassion, but they are controlled by an addiction that society seems to refute. When this addiction is refuted, solutions for the problem are never found and the individual continues their unhealthy behavior. A cheater learns to orchestrate their relationship/married life around their affair while balancing all other aspects of their life. In some cases, the cheater gets caught. Sex addicts are relatively careless in their approach for sexual gratification despite knowing the problems that it will cause among their friends, family, and partner.

    Lastly, we often wonder if the individual feels any guilt or remorse. As stated earlier, sex addicts are capable of feeling love, compassion, and remorse. Shortly after committing a sexual act, the individual is overwhelmed with guilt and wishes to return to a normal life, whether it be alone or with their partner. Because this is truly a physical and mental problem, there are Sex Addicts Anonymous programs around the nation that help sex addicts (and their loved ones) understand, cope, and treat their addiction.

    Cheaters are often unmotivated to alter their habits because guilt holds little to no bearing on their behavior. A cheater, unlike a sex addict, will probably return to the same partner each time usually because the relationship is motivated by more than just sex. A person who has cheated has lost touch with their spouse or partner, has greatly threatened their chances of being trusted, and will probably show no desire to mend the situation.

    While it may be easy to clump both of these categories together, we must acknowledge that one is an addiction while the other is a choice. Although it may hurt to be emotionally attached to a sex addict, there is a higher likelihood of seeking help and alternatives for the individual than it is for a cheater. A cheater is a person who has voluntarily submitted themselves to another relationship where they have sought out needs that they feel have not been desired and that, ultimately, cannot be fixed. If you are involved in a relationship with a person who is a sex addict, it is expected to feel pain and anger, but consider assisting their situation and figure out what the real problem is. With these tips, you can decipher and understand where the problem exists and whether or not your partner is a cheater or a sex addict.

    Reply

  301. recovery girl
    Jan 28, 2014 @ 20:31:18

    just thought we need to keep hold of the above sometimes as this is a hard situation to be in.
    x

    Reply

  302. James
    Jan 30, 2014 @ 13:52:03

    I just want to thank you all for the “wake up” call that I received here. If you are wondering if love exists to someone new after being married to or dating a sex addict then the answer is an emphatic Yes! You have changed my thinking in a drastic way.

    For those of you staying in your relationship to work on it then God Bless you. You are doing the Lord’s work. I have had drug addicted family members and realize that this is the proverbial ” monkey on their back” for the person who is afflicted with this sexual addiction problem. After reading a ton on this subject I realize that in many cases they have possibly been abused as children and that is never the child’s fault. It is never your fault either because this is not what you signed up for.

    My Fiancée called it quits after her ex husband refused to get help. Nonetheless, I am very blessed to have her. I look at my son’s picture and miss him terribly. We both are in need of healing and we can heal together.

    Reply

    • M. Denise W.
      Jan 30, 2014 @ 16:13:30

      James, I want you to know that I am not offended by anything you have said here. The term monster did hurt a lil…but to some these addicts may seem like one. I am glad we were able to help you understand a little more about how your girlfriend feels. My husband has chosen to get help but I am still not sure I will stay. You made me realize that I can move on…I can…..and if I can’t work past this with him, I will move on. I realize that a lot of these addicts have been abused but we are all responsible for our actions…..They may have suffered abuse but they have now abused another and to me, that is just NOT ok….Just because you were hurt doesn’t give you the right to hurt another. This has change my life forever! My heart and soul will never, ever be he same again….everyday I wake and instead of thanking God for the gift of another day…I dread getting up and facing another day! Good luck to you James, sounds to me like your fiancée is one lucky girl!…

      Reply

  303. recovery girl
    Jan 31, 2014 @ 12:16:30

    Hi, Just wanted to share a few thoughts and feelings about this situation I/we have found ourselves in.

    Some of the last few comments have made me realise a few more things on this journey we travel, it has made me feel and believe there is life after sex addiction in different shapes and forms for us all.
    It has given me the kick start I needed to move on as I feel I was getting self absorbed with it all. Maybe I have arrived at a different stage in the process of recovery, it would be good to think I have.

    For me it has given me clear direction that if my husband stays in recovery ( the longer sober the more promising) he is the man I want to be with, I know what Ive got ‘warts and all’ if you like, unfortunately. I think this is what my therapist had been trying to get through to me.

    Meeting of others would not be for me, if this doesn’t work I am very comfortable with myself, family and friends, so why don’t I give my marriage my best shot.

    I would not want to play the game of establishing what sort of individual I had met, I think Mr right , oozing charm, self praising and supporting all the wrongs done to me , is not real, its fantasy. I can remember what fantasy has already done to my life. I can also clearly remember what types of behaviour my addict displayed and how easy it was to be reeled in. I would say to anyone starting a fresh proceed with caution, for the sake of your own soul.

    One of the things I have developed through this is an awareness, I guess its from self preservation.I now see situations and individuals with more depth, so take care not to be hoodwinked again.

    I am grateful for the blogging of others as I feel I have moved on slightly and this has made me feel better. Still a long way to go I guess.

    Reply

  304. recovery girl
    Feb 01, 2014 @ 10:41:07

    Had a night on the town last night with some of my divorced friends and interestingly they said to me if they could have made their marriages work they would have even through they experienced hurt, they also said its no fun being 40/50ish and alone. They said most people you meet at this point in your life are strange or come with lots of baggage , which I definitely want no more of that.

    I know this isnt possible for all here but for those that are trying to work at it, its food for thought when we’re on that up hill struggle. :)

    Reply

  305. James
    Feb 03, 2014 @ 13:32:22

    I am trying to move on and be the best person that I can be for my Fiancée but strangely enough I find myself being drawn back to this website again and again.

    I characterized my Fiancee’s ex as being a monster. Let me qualify that statement. HE is most certainly a monster but that has no bearing whatsoever on your spouse. I read where there are two types of sexual addicts. One has some remorse and can be treated. The second type has zero remorse and simply cannot be treated. He is of the latter kind of course.

    Someone who is contemplating divorce should really think it through. It is much better at our age to stay with who you have (warts and all) than to get stuck with someone new who has new warts for you or myself to adjust to. That being said there is definitely love and marriage after sexual addiction. I find that two people who are hurting from life experiences are better suited to heal together than one hurting and one completely whole. I hope that doesn’t sound too harsh because I am counting myself among the ones that is hurting.

    Does anyone on here want to hear more from me? I can shed some light as to how a real man feels about such a topic as this. Yes, I am modest but I proudly proclaim my manhood and can back it up. I raised my kids and never cheated. My ex never cheated. I am in my job for 33 years ever since High School. I have saved a nice chunk of money. I am well respected in our small community and especially at my work. I attend church regularly. Anyone have questions for me? Just ask.

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Feb 03, 2014 @ 16:43:43

      Does anyone on here want to hear more from me? I can shed some light as to how a real man feels about such a topic as this. Yes, I am modest but I proudly proclaim my manhood and can back it up. I raised my kids and never cheated. My ex never cheated. I am in my job for 33 years ever since High School. I have saved a nice chunk of money. I am well respected in our small community and especially at my work. I attend church regularly. Anyone have questions for me? Just ask.

      Not for me thank you, self praise is no recommendation !

      Reply

      • James
        Feb 03, 2014 @ 18:41:16

        Self praise is a good thing. I was beat up for many years by my ex who tried to convince me that my son’s death was my fault. She stayed in the anger stage while I was progressing to the acceptance and appreciation stage. One thing I have learned is that two people can not live together and married if they are in different stages of grief-healing. I went to many counseling sessions and she refused to go to any. I am no better than her and I wish her well I just wish her well with someone else other than me. She is now an alcoholic.

        The reward that I got was a wonderful and giving person who also was tired of being covertly beat-up by a spouse that blamed her for his addiction. He undermined her so much that she didn’t think she could find another suitable mate. Well she did. She says the biggest difference between her ex and myself is that he is a coward. He sulks around and will not look at her or talk to her about money issues that need resolution. I can look anyone in the eye now and feel at least their peer and not feel inferior. I am superior to no one but I am not less than anyone either. He will always say that he was not to blame for their divorce since she filed for it. After 20 years and many chances she just didn’t give him enough of a chance to fix the problem…

        She finally shared with me what he coerced her into doing and it was not as bad as she thought it was. Most of the troubling stuff was done by him and he has to live with that. I will not share any of It though.

        True, newfound self-esteem is a wonderful thing!!!

        *disclaimer, I am not a counselor and therefore what I express on here is just my opinion only. Some facts as lived out by myself and Fiancée and some opinion.

  306. M. Denise W.
    Feb 03, 2014 @ 15:26:20

    Hi everyone, What is really starting to amaze me is how I am drawn back to my husband over and over. A part of me thinks I should be strong enough to move on but I think one needs more strength to stay then move on. The more I put this addiction into prospective the easier I find it to stay. My husband is very remorseful. He is trying so hard to be a better man. He is winning that battle. It had gotten to the point in our relationship where we were just 2 people existing. Not much interaction. All that has changed, we are now so connected it amazes me. I can feel the love, he is so thoughtful and caring and sad about the man he was. I think sometimes my battle is thinking I should leave him because that is what society thinks but really I don’t want to. Being in his arms at night, having date night every Friday, laughing and connecting is so amazing, it really is. Our love is everything it should have been now. My husband is a kind and gentle man, society and his father told him he needed to be different, man up….I really think that is part of what made him become an SA, and the neglect and abuse also played a role. it was the perfect storm…He now realizes, with therapy ,that it IS ok to be the gentle man he really is..so for today…..I am ok…..

    Reply

  307. recovery girl
    Feb 03, 2014 @ 16:41:20

    M Denise, good for you. I do feel the same but sometimes I/we feel the sadness too, I guess its just the stages we go through.
    x

    Reply

  308. recovery girl
    Feb 04, 2014 @ 18:45:53

    Today is good, very good :)

    Reply

  309. recovery girl
    Feb 09, 2014 @ 12:55:50

    Dbiscuit,

    http://www.redbookmag.com/love-sex/advice/sex-addiction

    I’ve just read this, wow. Its wonderful, we have all felt this and it brings hope. :)

    Reply

  310. Trackback: Real world example of recovery after infidelity @ Dr Tammy NelsonDr Tammy Nelson
  311. recovery girl
    Feb 17, 2014 @ 18:02:18

    oh! what hurt. There are lots of things you don’t say such as what help you are both getting and how long into this you are etc. etc..
    The reason I ask is I feel my replies may be more appropriate if I know a bit more background.
    I can relate to some of the things you write and we are now two years and five months into recovery.

    Reply

  312. recovery girl
    Feb 17, 2014 @ 18:04:30

    sorry last comment in response to Blah.
    x

    Reply

  313. recovery girl
    Feb 17, 2014 @ 18:38:15

    Blah, therapy can help you work on full disclosure together, he also seemes to be doing what a lot of addicts do, drip feeding you disclosure and that’s so painful I’ve been there.

    Reply

  314. recovery girl
    Feb 20, 2014 @ 17:54:53

    My youngest child has just come home from a visit to a ex concentration camp I feel ashamed for some of the self absorbed feelings Ive had with my experience of sex addiction.Maybe god works in mysterious ways.
    x

    Reply

    • mdenise1
      Feb 21, 2014 @ 17:29:56

      Definitely something that makes you go hummmmmmm…..I’m struggling with something right now. I have the opportunity to go to a week long therapy session for people affected by trauma . I really want to go, I almost feel like I need to go and God has put this right in front of me….. but I am struggling with leaving my husband on his own that long….My Pastor and therapist say that’s on him…But I do know.

      Reply

  315. recovery girl
    Feb 21, 2014 @ 18:56:07

    I know what you mean, I think I would still struggle now. Is there anyway that you can implement some security for you, like one of the children being around? I know we know they will act out if they really want but this piece of mind is for you.

    We have just been given the opportunity of doing a prayer ministry together but apart if you know what I mean. Hope he will guide you to what’s right for you.

    Reply

  316. recovery girl
    Feb 22, 2014 @ 08:50:23

    Hi Denise, Do you know I was reading what you had written the other day about how hard it is to stay and work at it. I guess its a bit of that old story were never satisfied with what we have. I have been struggling a bit lately with love and the intimacy side, maybe its now a disorder I have !! He’s’ in love’ acts like life is wonderful and has the newfound love for me and life but for me I harbour hurt, anger, humiliation and lack of love and respect for him. We now live in two different worlds and sometimes I think if he had not attempted recovery it would easier as we would have parted as a relationship and my continual problems would have stopped.
    The strange thing is I’ve started to feel no sexual attraction for this man and have become vacant and mentally removed from any form of intimate act. I don’t know if this is a normal process or not. I sometimes cant stand him touching me and he’s always trying to show love and it feels OTT.

    Its never ending.
    Take care
    x

    Reply

  317. recovery girl
    Feb 22, 2014 @ 08:55:16

    Denise, the ‘never satisfied with what we’ve got’ is meant to be me, its just when I read the above back it sounded a bit wrong.

    Reply

    • mdenise1
      Feb 24, 2014 @ 18:09:02

      ouch recovery girl….it has got to be hard to live that way…I think you have to try and merge your worlds …if not what’s the point. For me the intimacy is not a problem, he tries to show me love also but sometimes I harbor the same as you. My world right now is a bit of a sad world . But when I manage to put the hurt aside it sometimes is a happy world…but then sadly I remember and the hurt is back…. somewhere in my head I know life is to short for this. Still trying to let God guide me Bless you recovery girl may God lead you too!

      Reply

  318. recovery girl
    Feb 28, 2014 @ 18:11:17

    Strange last 24hrs, one of his siblings has just died aged 58 such a strange deranged and dysfunctional family no one told him, heard through the grape vine.
    We also heard a lot about this family members personality, what affairs they had they way they treated people and their own. Looks like they all have some sort of addiction/ personality disorder. This individual was a sad, lonely, disliked, hateful and poisonous person when they died,having hurt their own, what a terrible place to be. Im so glad he is attempting turn his life around.

    Reply

  319. recovery girl
    Mar 02, 2014 @ 16:44:22

    we’ve been to church today and this week we are planned to partake in a christain prayer meeting course and everyone today have told us its al life changing event of healing and recovery for the broken. I will let all know how it goes, were not in a bad place at the moment
    God bless u all.
    x.

    Reply

  320. recovery girl
    Mar 16, 2014 @ 15:04:27

    Hi all, we completed our christian prayer ministry training course and I can honestly say it was fab. It would be great whether your still with your partner or not. I can honestly say I feel a different women, more settled. I can say during the personnel ministry I cried for about 3 hours didn’t realise I was still that bad. Well worth doing.
    xxxxxxxxxxx

    Reply

  321. Susan
    Mar 17, 2014 @ 13:42:34

    Thank you for sharing your 21 steps. I want to feel as strong and empowered as you are. How did you make it to this point, besides having God with you the whole way? What courses or support groups do you or have you been a part of? I’d like to know more as I am struggling in a 17 yr marriage and he continues with his behaviors. Please help if you can. By the way, he was the one who found you and asked me to read your story. I see him trying to help me but not himself. Now what?

    Reply

  322. sad and lonely
    Mar 20, 2014 @ 08:33:18

    I’m so glad that I found this blog. My husband and I have been married almost 7 years and he is definitely a sex addict. We’re currently separated (for the 3rd time) reading these post have given me some hope. The things that my husband has done in the 7 years of our marriage have been HORRIBLE!!! Don’t have the energy to even explain it all. I believe that he is staying with one of his many mistresses now. I’m currently in a 12 program but not for SA …. we don’t have one in my city. (Dayton ,Ohio) I would love to meet some women from this area with the same struggles, feel so alone. I’m a Christian but sometimes the church folks just don’t understand.

    Reply

  323. recovery girl
    Mar 25, 2014 @ 20:07:22

    Dear sad and lonely, I don’t even like writing that but I can honestly say I know how you feel, I have been there and on odd occasions I still can get there. Im glad to hear you are trying to get help for yourself first and foremost, its a long process. you don’t say if he’s tried any help or therapy or if he wants to ?
    From my personal experience they are sick individuals and until something penetrates that ‘bubble’ they live in fantasy land and they can almost see no wrong in what they do.
    when they are in that strange place or fantasy land they can be selfish, mean and hurtful. My SA decided to tell me what he thought of me and how he fancied other’s and what he had done with them and that I was dull, boring, not sexy etc., etc. and at that moment in time was pleased with himself as he thought it was out and he could now live the dream and dump me.

    Well he left for a while and saw how I got on although I felt a mess, he saw I had friends, he saw I had a home, he saw I had the children, he saw I had a life etc. and suddenly he hit bottom. He became very depressed and decided to get help and work on himself for him I think the diagnoses of sex addict made him want to turn his life around as he said he felt labelled as a dirty pervert !! He truly believed before he hit bottom that all men did as he did!!!!

    We will be three years down the line in September and its not all roses but we have both worked hard to get here and Im sure we will have to for the rest of our lives if we stay together.

    When you are at the beginning or a dark place, read, educate, get help, care for yourself, the rest will work its way out.

    God bless

    Reply

  324. linda
    Mar 27, 2014 @ 03:25:05

    After you get the help you need, you may leave him, I did. It was not an easy thing to do, but 1.5 years since I left, I know it was the right option!

    Reply

  325. recovery girl
    Apr 04, 2014 @ 16:56:44

    Today I feel cross as there are so many negative web sites out there, yes I KNOW what it is like to be married to a SA and a recovering one and I know it doesn’t always work out but the negativity is terrible. Realism and negativity are two different things, I feel terribly sad for those who don’t find good information or help.

    Reply

  326. recovery girl
    Apr 06, 2014 @ 16:33:36

    Hi.just wanted to ask you all, have any of your SAs come off their antidepressants and how did they cope.The reason I ask is my hubby wants to come off his but we are both unsure.

    Reply

  327. recovery girl
    Apr 14, 2014 @ 16:48:26

    Today feels good ! Strange this is my life and can’t believe this happened but life now feels good, sun is shining and I have a better man in my life even though it took a lot of pain.

    There for the grace of god go I.

    Reply

  328. recovery girl
    Apr 17, 2014 @ 19:30:58

    wham ! this is a terrible condition and I don’t think I can do this for much longer well the up I was on has now come to a down. We had an incident where I asked him if he was looking at a women ( I could see he was) and he denied it !!! In his head he said because he doesn’t look at them in a sexual way its not a lie. I then said what colour hair did she have and he said I didn’t know because I wasn’t looking , when I challanged him he later he said blonde. Lie, lie,lie why cant they see.

    Reply

  329. Nancy
    Apr 23, 2014 @ 05:31:13

    RECOVERY GIRL..I read your post and feel your despair. Heard the same line from my husband..gee the way they can maneuver around the truth. I read “Your Sexually Addicted Husband” great book and visited the POSARC site (Partners of Sex Addicts Recovery Center) and it is helping me with the trauma I am going through. Lots of good advise and I am learning to take care of me. I wont go to counseling with him until there has been complete disclosure and other stuff mentioned in the book. I dont know if this will ever end and I’ve been married 44 years and together 48 this August. I discovered this 2 years ago but he just admitted it a few months ago, probally been going on 7 years that I have proof of anyways…Im so tired of being betrayed, lied to, hurt….I beginning to believe this pain is too bad to stay in this relationship. I asked him to move out right away so I could think..he is in an apartment for at least 6 months, maybe I will know whatto do then. Sorry I just started typing and couldn’t stop..guess cause there is no one to talk to about this..except sites like this or my “Lili” at POSARC, thank God for her. Many blessings to you Recovery Girl and to all the other suffers on here.

    Reply

  330. recovery girl
    Apr 28, 2014 @ 19:41:16

    why in recovery is he so devoted and loving towards me? He says since recovery began he has seen the true meaning of love and life !

    Reply

  331. mdenise1
    Apr 29, 2014 @ 16:30:38

    Hi recovery girl., glad to see you are doing ok . I am doing well, My husband an I are in counseling together now and doing well. I still have my moments when I am sad but I realize that this is my path, for whatever reason God has. Even though it may sound odd, I am actually happier in my marriage today then I was before. I believe dbiscuits husband, your husband and my husband are great examples that recovery from this addiction does exist. My husband is a different man today. He was haunted by his past and the things he was doing. He is so happy to have found a way out of that world. I really do believe that. It has now been a year since my world collapsed . But God has lead me through the darkness into the light, I am so grateful!

    Reply

  332. recovery girl
    Apr 30, 2014 @ 16:40:21

    I know what you mean completely, its like having a different man, but jst like yourself we still have moments, its 2yrs and 8 months for us!!!!
    We two still go to therapy but as they say if it works don’t knock it.
    Love to all
    Recovery Girl
    x

    Reply

  333. recovery girl
    Apr 30, 2014 @ 19:13:03

    Out of the blue Ive just had a moment, triggered :)
    Thing is, don’t know about you others a trigger can come out of the blue and boy he pays.
    x

    Reply

  334. Ann
    May 01, 2014 @ 19:36:59

    hi, I was just out for a blog stroll and happened across your website. It’s great to know I’m not alone… and that there are more current sites out there than what I normally find for women choosing to stay with an addict. Kudos from someone wh is living it with you. Visit me if you’d like. I’ve added this blog to my resource links list too if that’s ok! watchingfromtheinside.blogspot.com.

    Reply

  335. latetia
    May 11, 2014 @ 03:35:43

    ALL I CAN SAY IS EVER WORD YOU WROTE WAS BEAUTIFUL. I SUPPORT THAT

    Reply

  336. recovery girl
    May 12, 2014 @ 20:19:09

    Hi all, we have been going along really well and then for no reason I start to think about it all and it makes me feel really sick and I wonder what I am doing here. I think about his sexual escapades and all the other women. I find this strange as we seem to be doing well,do you think this happens to him?
    Some of the women were on real ego trips and thought they were really special to him and pitied me and thought they had the upper hand and they were ‘the one’ for him. I dont know why but its been going round in my head what does a sex addict really think of their affair partners, do any of you know or know of anything worth reading.

    Do you think the lord will deal with them for their sins ( affair partners) THEY ALL KNEW he was married with children and they still went for it.What terrible people perhaps even worse than the addict as they have no disorder or addiction that makes them think and act disordered.

    Reply

  337. recovery girl
    May 12, 2014 @ 20:21:12

    distorted , it should have said, not got my glasses on :)

    Reply

  338. recovery girl
    May 13, 2014 @ 15:54:45

    Hi all, I sometimes find it good to write here and then read it back as I can see it more clearly and logically. I seem to get triggered really easy but I know I am right in what I say with my SA I just sometimes feel I need to ask others or read it back.
    Today he called me at work and said he was doing a job for a friend which meant he had to pick up some keys from a female ( states he called me to explain this so I didn’t get the wrong idea) however when he used this woman’s first name it triggered me. Its the familiarity I didn’t like. I spoke to him within the hour back at our home however it has made me feel bad. I have told him how I feel and he has said he can’t win if he tells me hes in trouble and if he doesn’t he’s still in trouble. Well I’ve told him its not that simple being an addict there are some things you can’t do or expose yourself too. He keeps telling me hes not that old person he was but for some reason he doesn’t seem to understand how it makes me feel its like because hes a new man then I should just go along with it. When times are like this I just want out.

    Reply

  339. recovery girl
    May 21, 2014 @ 14:47:24

    Hi, my SA is doing really well hes 2 years eight months sober and the change in him has made me finally believe he’s serious but it still doesn’t stop all my emotions.
    I guess that sounds a bit ungrateful as I’ve got a man who’s turned his life around.
    We both agree there is never a day when we don’t think about it :(
    The thing is hes doing everything to try and help me heal, I am stronger and a different women ( sadly) but i’m broken and destroyed by it all. Today I was driving along and I just wanted to cry as the sadness of all we have missed and the youth and fun he missed in me. I just wondered if anyone else every feels like this and what has helped you.

    God bless you all.
    x

    Reply

  340. recovery girl
    May 26, 2014 @ 18:55:57

    What has the world come to ?

    We went to a party last night and we both hated it, I would say by some of the behaviours and sexulized talk there was a couple of sex addics there, it made us both feel sick. We excited quickly. I can’t believe the world seems to revolve around smut/sex. I/We will never be visiting those individuals again.
    My husband said it was terriable as he could see what he used to be like and feels embarrassed that he would appear to others as they did.Maybe good to see or not, I’m unsure, but what a strange planet we live on.

    I pray the lord intervenes for them.

    Reply

  341. Fraying Thread
    May 27, 2014 @ 07:18:09

    I’ve spent the last hours reading the posts on here.

    It’s currently 11:52PM and it’s night #2 of my husband sleeping on the couch. We are 1 month shy of our six year anniversary and for 5.5 years of them we’ve been riding the roller coaster of his sexual addiction.

    I am tired.

    He’s dropped numerous “bombs” on me during our marriage. Porn, dating sites, prostitutes. In the last two weeks I’ve discovered there were 2 more prostitutes. One he spent $1k on. I should add that he has never admitted to anything he didn’t think I already knew about.

    We recently joined a structured two year long SA program. One weekly group meeting, plus each of us attends a one on one therapy session and we also attend one together. We are about 12 weeks in, For the first 10 weeks he was not honest, continuing to act out.

    I have hope for the program, confidence in our therapist and undying gratitude for the women that I’ve started to bond with there. No one can understand the devastation and hurt like they can, like most of you reading this can.

    I understand the nature of addiction. I have my own first hand experience with it. I have insight into his core pain, the underlying reasons for why he does what he does. When “sober” if he’s not acting out sexually he starts drinking. If he’s not drinking he starts shopping, if none of those he’ll start playing too many video games. If he we lived in Vegas he would most certainly have a gambling addiction. Sex however, is his most favorite coping mechanism of choice.

    I understand his monumental shame and that he hates it and himself for it.

    I am struggling though. While we are nearly six years into this I feel like this SA program offers us a hope we never had before. I just don’t know what else I have left to give nor am I convinced that he is ready to change.He’s sleeping on the couch tonight because I’m tapped out on his cosmic selfishness. So mad. I know I shouldn’t be because while I’m up here venting he’s having a grand time watching tv shows he knows I hate and he will very likely sleep like a baby tonight. Effer.

    I have a question for those couples who are working it out, or for those men out there in recovery. How do you know when you or your partner has really reached the turning point? I have NO meter to go by anymore.

    Thanks for reading…

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Jun 05, 2014 @ 18:13:39

      for us my husband hit rock bottom and wanted to turn his life around, he realised he was about to loose it all, me the kids and even his own life, he had become so low.
      not everyone follows the same path.
      Have to say its still never easy even when this happens.
      God bless and good luck to all.

      Reply

  342. recovery girl
    May 29, 2014 @ 20:14:23

    Hi all, today I had to deal with a broken hearted work colleague crying and stating she had found a porn stash, hook ups, phone sex,?affairs on her husbands computer and was there 15 years ago with him but he had promised that he would not do it again, I know we have all been there. I dont know what to do to help her as she is afraid and thinks it might be best to put up with it for the sake of her children. She feels that he wouldn’t be bothered if she asks him to leave. I know everything has to be her decision, and I can’t believe how this sex addiction nightmare follows me around. I’ve advised where help can be sort for her even if hes not interested, tried to explain about the risks to her but she seems to feel that its her destiny so the kids lives aren’t affected. I think I should just sit tight and be there for her, do you think there is anything else I could do. Its such a horrible position to be in, I feel her pain.

    Reply

  343. Karen
    Jun 05, 2014 @ 11:19:16

    I hope you still read and respond? My husband and i have seperated temporarily because if his multiple affairs, flirting and who knows what, after 21 years if marriage. During these years i was time and again accused that i am not normal and his behaviour that i perceived as adulterous was normal. I had to ask for a hug and affection, while other women just got it. I have been critised over and over again. Now after 21 years and multiple affairs, he acknowledged that he might have a problem. He does not have any considerations for his family and i now have to get tests done for Sdd and Hiv. Initually i was willing to reconsile but now i doubt whether i can. All my expectations of being a princess and bride as God intended were long ago shattered. I don’t know how you do it- i know God can do miracles in changing people’s lives- but i can’t see myself trusting him ever again. Don’t know how you do it?

    Reply

  344. recovery girl
    Jun 06, 2014 @ 17:55:36

    God works in mysterious ways, it’s never easy, hope he blesses you.
    I still struggle and my SA has been sober for 2 years nine months.

    Reply

  345. recovery girl
    Jun 07, 2014 @ 18:05:53

    Another struggle today. Im not sure what is wrong with me, I do wonder if I am suffering from depression as I don’t seem to have any ‘happy medium’ and I fluctuate between thinking were on this road of recovery together and then the next minute I want out.

    I have forgiven him but don’t trust or believe in him. I don’t stay for codependency issues, I know I would survive on my own but then wonder things like, am I doing the right thing as he’s turned himself around and theres the kids, the home and the once very strong loving connection we had, it does seem sad.

    I know and he does, slips or relapse would bring my crazy head to a quick decision, as I am already destroyed and this situation would just halt at that point as a human should only take so much.

    I may sound like a ‘moaning mini’ to those of you alone or husbands that do not embrace recovery but it just goes to show stay or go, recovery or non recovery is no piece of cake.

    Reply

  346. Lonely Wife
    Jun 08, 2014 @ 02:56:12

    I hope someone can help me. I discovered my husband’s addiction around 5 years ago. He has been sober from acting out for over 3 years. So, what’s the problem? He had stalwartly refused to go for help with a therapist, he wanted to work our own recovery, which is essentially not talking about it, just move forward. I can’t do that as I explained that I need help with some issues, the least not being that he has been a bisexual addict since he was twelve. (today we are both 62). However, it has taken all this time for him to disclose, very little and only under duress. He did make an appointment with a therapist, an appointment he made only because I finally said I would have to leave. So, what’s the problem? As a result of his deep reticence, I became more and more suspicious that he was keeping something from me and asked if he would pass a polygraph, if he came clean, I would fully commit. He advised that he would pass because he would tell the truth, being that he is keeping something from me, but no matter what, he will not disclose. He says that it has nothing to do with us, it was sexual and he was 12. I have forgiven everything so far and I find it so difficult to believe that he has chosen divorce over disclosure if I won’t let it go. Is it possible to move forward with that knowledge or am I being unreasonable? This is a second marriage and at the age of 62, it feels pretty crummy to think about being single again. Have any of you had any experience with this, or have any wisdom to share? I would truly appreciate it. I just learned this today. Thank you everyone.

    Reply

  347. recovery girl
    Jun 08, 2014 @ 09:43:51

    you could go to therapy for yourself to begin with and you never know what could progress from there. As you see from some of my comments this situation has nearly driven me crazy and I have a sober husband too,if I had not had some therapy I think I would have gone mad.

    Reply

  348. mdenise1
    Jun 09, 2014 @ 16:43:35

    Hi everyone, I to struggle back and forth…I don’t know why some things just trigger me. My SA has been doing so very well…I know, I can tell, but sometimes me…well not so much…..yesterday was a crying, and hurting kind of day. Went to church, then fellowship downstairs afterwards. I had two different ladies come up to me and tell me how lucky I was…Their words… You are so lucky to have the wonderful husband you have, not all woman are so lucky. You have so much to be thankful for…he is such a good man…Well, once we left I lost it…it hurt so much to have people on the outside think that I have it all, and seem some what envious of me, if they only knew that sometimes I feel like I really have nothing at all!….so it was a day that I let just turn into a blurr…a wasted God given day…and when I get like that I just don’t know how to turn it around….and get so mad at myself because every day should be precious!

    Reply

  349. recovery girl
    Jun 09, 2014 @ 17:54:57

    This happens to me such a lot, one minute I am positive and can see the new man and grateful and the next…….. once I’ve been triggered.. well I want him out of my life and think he is the most untrustworthy person that has walked the earth. He doesn’t know if he’s coming or going I’m sure I’m driving him mad because it drives me mad.

    Reply

  350. recovery girl
    Jun 09, 2014 @ 22:33:13

    is there anyone out there that can tell what they feel and experience when they part from their relationship, is it such a big roller coaster as when you stay.
    Im not at a good place at the moment and trying to make the best of my life. Im off the therapy on Friday :)

    Reply

  351. alana
    Jun 12, 2014 @ 06:55:34

    I’m in a battle right now and it’s been a daily walk. I’ve been struggling with a sex addic who can sometimes be abusive when I try to talk about it. I have 5 children but two with him who have just been born in the last 2 years since I’ve been married to him. I’m trying to understand how I can be married to a sex addict and not have any sex life. I was a single mom for 10 years. I kept my purity for my husband. 3 weeks after being married was when he began his wandering around with ex girlfriends. I’ve struggled with not being able to go anywhere without him looking at women. I’ve been cheated on while I’ve been pregnant with both of our children. I go to a Bible study called betrayal and beyond and he attends pure desire. he acts like he wants help and tries to be good for a while but things end up going bad. I’m a fighter, I stand up for what I believe in and sometimes my mouth gets me in trouble. I believe in honesty and truth and I’ve never lied to him.I don’t know how much longer I can go on with this kind of a marriage. I have read many articles many blogs and things that pertain to this area, and I’m still in a toss up. Your points: that you have made are quite valid and I appreciate your input from one betrayed spouse to another.

    Reply

  352. Sherry
    Jun 13, 2014 @ 10:57:48

    I have recently discovered my significant other’s sex addiction. He has asked me to give him a second chance and he’ll prove to me he can recover from this and be a better person. It has been a diffcult month, but I am seeing progress with him being very open and making the effort to read about the addiction and to get help for himself. My concern is that he has recently stated to me that he needs some space from me so he can work on himself. He stated that I was constantly question him and getting upset over everything that it doesn’t allow him to focus on recovering. I’m happy that he’s getting help, but I feel that having space will only help him. Keep in mind I already moved out. When he asked for space he meant that he didn’t want to keep in contact as well at least not everyday. I told him until he made the effort to read and educate himself about his addiction I don’t want to see him. I would at least expect to be in communication with him at least once a day to know what’s been going on with him and his progress. How can I build trust when he won’t speak to me and we don’t see each other at all. He has only contacted once per week just to let me know if anything has changed in his schedule. I have felt so alone in all this and I feel like he’s taking the easy route by avoiding me. I do see he’s making progress though, but is this normal for a sex addict to want space early on in the recovery and should I allow it?

    Reply

  353. recovery girl
    Jun 14, 2014 @ 08:16:52

    Sherry, I do not know all the details of your situation but for us building trust was/is the last hurdle, which we are still on, as recovery and treatment through the mess came first. My husband has been sober for three years in september but we are now working on the trust side. I know not every situation is the same, have a chat to your therapist, you may need to concentrate on you for a bit, rather than trying to manage what’s going on with him.

    Reply

    • mdenise1
      Jun 14, 2014 @ 13:57:56

      Sherry, doesn’t sound to me like he is in recovery…..sounds to me like he may be out doing what he has been doing without being detected, till he gets his fill. I would think if he really was sorry for what he did to you your healing would be as important to him as his healing….you are the VICTIM!!! He is the abuser! My husband is getting better but I am a priority to him. He is an open book about everything going on in his life….that makes it a little easier….but I am still wondering sometimes why I would want to stay with a man who has been with escorts (oral sex) and massages and lap dances. sometimes I think I must be out of my mind also…Who would stay with a man like that!!!

      Reply

      • recovery girl
        Jun 14, 2014 @ 21:21:29

        mdenise, I know what your saying but sometimes I have thought I’m grateful that im not the addict, there life is a mess and horrible.

        I also know what you mean when you say your hubby has made you his priority. Mine has even met ridiculous demands such as not using certain words etc that may remind me of this terriable situation. There are also certain things I have not been able to deal with again, I cant stand him having a phone, social networking or ever going out with the lads. Thats just tough for him and that’s just how its going to be and he says its a small price to pay.

    • sherry
      Jun 18, 2014 @ 14:25:16

      I discovered his addiction last month when I noticed he was spending long periods of time in the bathroom taking “showers.” His phone records showed tons of phone calls to escorts. He was engaging in phone sex, exchanging nude photos, and signing up for chat websites. He hasn’t engaged physically with other women, but maybe if I had not caught him early on it may have progressed to that. I am 27 and he is 24. We have been together for 3 years and lived together for about 2 1/2 years. The people close to me have questioned me why I just don’t leave and that I’m still young and can meet someone else. I feel that nobody I know has been in my shoes and they have no right pass judgement because they don’t know what it’s like to be in my situation. They just look at me in disgust. I definitely know it’ll be a struggle, but I feel I need to go through this recovery. A lot of what was stated in this post about “why I stay” is how I feel. I don’t know what it’s like in the early stages of recovery or how I should handle things, but I’ve been reading as much information as I could and looked up support groups and looked into therapy. I know it’s too soon to see much progress as it is the first month, but I definitely do see small changes. He has come clean about everything in the past and has been open to answering all my questions. I am aware of his work schedule and breaks as he has been making the effort to keep in contact with me. He works in a restaurant so he isn’t using the internet to my knowledge. He doesn’t have a house phone or internet at his place. He only has his cell phone which I have access to everything. He’s told me anytime someone texts him or calls or when he’s given out his number and to who. His whereabout have always been accounted for. My question is what does recovery look like in the first few months. I’m not sure what my involvement should be and what I should be doing. I moved out and have only been in contact by phone. I just can’t be around him in person right now.

      Reply

  354. recovery girl
    Jun 14, 2014 @ 08:53:10

    Dear all, I have been going bonkers just lately as you can probably tell by all the blogs,however yesterday I went to see our sexual psycho therapist first time since last August, think I should have gone sooner.

    He believes my husband is in good recovery, ‘a different man’,he’s found intimacy, life, maturity and worships his family- as I said to the psychologists that’s great for him after he has devastated everyone else’s life and they have lost intimacy, respect, love, caring, vulnerability,dignity,self worth and are humiliated and have the fear of betrayal and disease for the rest of their days.

    As you can guess he said there’s still lots of work for me to do for my recovery. He assures me this can be quite normal and unfortunate as the innocent person gets left behind from start to end in sex addiction, as the addict is focused on from the start, with recovery ,help, relapse prevention, etc. and for me there was nothing only my visits to the psychotherapist and sometimes the addict used these sessions and now he’s in recovery ( my hubby that is) he cant see why I’m not there with him, as life is new and something to be grateful for !!!

    By the way I did try 12 step groups but it was a two hour journey on a Saturday morning into the city, which was a very early start and problematic and when I did attend there was no success in anyone’s life or marriage, so I didn’t feel what ever the outcome for me would be that all the negative side of this would be of any benefit.

    Well the situation now is for me to have some therapy with a sexual/ martial specialist to work on my issues of trust because as long as I have mistrust none of my above issues will improve.This is going to be just for me at this stage,so I’m hoping it will give me what I need to move on.:)

    Reply

  355. recovery girl
    Jun 18, 2014 @ 20:26:28

    This situation is beyond me, I know he was a pathetic, immature creature before he crashed and I carried him for years and worked hard to keep a descent standard of life for the rest of us……….. but tonight I am F***** Off ( sorry) but I feel I have carried this pathetic creature and continue to do so. I asked him to go to the bank to exchange some coins for my son and because there where quite a few he acted like a children and started to say last time he did it there were strange looks in the bank !!!!!!!!!!!!!! GROW UP for god sake, so I will have to rush out of work now at lunch because he;s a child.

    What is wrong with them?

    Reply

  356. recovery girl
    Jun 19, 2014 @ 17:01:48

    I’m trying to assess my situation and you know if we had not have had children I would have not stayed. I’ve thought about this long and hard and yes I would have gone through therapy with him even if there had not have been children but we are nearly three years into recovery and I have to say if there were no kids I would have thrown the towel in, this is no easy path being married to a twelve year old.

    Reply

  357. recovery girl
    Jun 19, 2014 @ 17:16:06

    Sherry, both get professional help DONT rely on his word so soon on, this is such a deceptive condition. All I can say is we three years into recovery and he’s sober and there are still problems. e.g. I was crying at work today about his behaviours
    ( immaturity, poor provider, expecting me to be his support) and that is three years on. They say recovery takes three to five years, I’m not there yet and our sexual psychologist has said I still some specialist help which I believe is around a £1000.00 and he spent that on other women.
    God Bless, its bad for me today.
    x

    Reply

  358. recovery girl
    Jun 19, 2014 @ 19:40:29

    do you think my suffering was a punishment from god for some reason?

    Reply

  359. mdenise1
    Jun 23, 2014 @ 14:21:20

    Oh Recovery girl …how my heart hurts for you…..I am 1yr into recovery and your strength helps me so much….I feel your pain..I do…I also believe if my circumstances were different I would have left. For me I am in my late 50′s, married 35 yrs…. My children are grown, But I don’t know if I want to give up the rest of my life because of him. I cherish what I have….and even him, the him that he is now! But if I was younger and my kids were out of the house or I had no children I don’t think I would have stayed…Why stay with a man who’s mind is NOT right…who has made it that you have to struggle to keep your sanity. I still hurt so much when I think of what he has done and sometimes I think I must leave. So not to have to be reminded by him (just cause he’s around) of what he did to my heart and soul..it’s hard… He says he knew in his heart and mind that it wasn’t right but he couldn’t get away…sometimes I think yeah right………And no I don’t think your being punished…I think that for what reason you were meant to walk this path…God has a plan for you, perhaps it is to help woman like me…because your strength gives me strength.,… God Bless sweet girl….

    Reply

  360. recovery girl
    Jun 23, 2014 @ 17:40:51

    Thank you.

    Reply

  361. recovery girl
    Jun 23, 2014 @ 19:22:58

    Mdenise, I read an article where this lady had a sober husband but said she was still sad and felt empty and felt like he had a new life but she didn’t, I can well and truly identify with that. She then went on to say she had been through all the pain and heartache to get to the sober situation ( with hubby) and if she left he could have a new relationship and someone else would get all her hard work and the better man. She said she was not going to leave as she had sacrificed so much to get there and why should someone else end up with the better man.

    For me if he’s sober I will stay for my family as I will only induce more heartache by leaving. If he ever acts out again there will be no ‘us’ and I know he knows that, I feel I have given him more than I should have already so there will be no other chances. Unfortunately my life still feels like there is something missing for me but have no idea if that will change with time.Our therapist says things will not improve for us until I/we get trust in our relationship, sounds easy …mmm !!!

    You know when I read the things they say to us and the similarities are so great that this has to be a condition in need of real mental health work it would be impossible that they can say the same sort of things and it not be a condition. When you write he knew it wasn’t right but couldn’t get away, my hubby has said he knew it was wrong but didn’t think it would hurt if no one knew and all men did it anyway !!!!. He’s said its so compelling and deceitful to them that is why they can justify it all. He said until he hit rock bottom he could not see half the things he did or was doing was not the norm. I know that’s hard for us to believe.

    I do look at the fact that this addiction has nothing to do with love or the sex its about managing there emotions and stresses and stems from their horrible pasts. Even knowing these things does not make it any easy and I still say to him you still choose to do it !!!

    Reply

  362. recovery girl
    Jun 24, 2014 @ 16:25:07

    sorry if I sounded negative in my last blog but some days are like that. x

    Reply

  363. recovery girl
    Jun 24, 2014 @ 17:06:02

    you know I sometimes don’t get this situation. You would think I should be happy my husband is in recovery and is a different man:

    1 he’s now interested in us all and wants to be a part
    2 he’s sober ( that should have been number 1 )
    3 he’s calm, caring
    4 he’s loving and respectful
    5 he does anything I ask or request
    6 he changed his work for me and the hours
    7 he meets my emotional demands
    8 he shares the duties and some of the stresses, that’s my fault I still find it hard to share anything financial or important because I am so used to doing it myself.
    9 he does not want to do anything without his family
    10 he has no money other than what i give him, this is to try and help me with trust and reassurance. he has no phone for the same reason and rarely uses the internet.
    11 he never goes out with work colleagues and he says he has no intention as they are no longer his priority.
    12 he goes to therapy, church etc
    13 he no longer has a foul, sexual mouth ( I had forgotten about this but they can be quite sexual in their conversation)
    14 he’s no longer arrogant and selfish and conceited
    15 he is no longer always looking for material possessions, perfection ( the perfection would have even been in comments made to me about myself) and the best in everything. Telling me he wanted more .
    16 he seems at peace

    So why aren’t I happy when i read so many of you don’t believe your partner is there yet.

    I have spoken with my therapist as I have wondered if I have developed an obsession about this situation, his addiction, I would not be surprised as it has consumed my life the last three years.

    love to all
    x

    Reply

  364. recovery girl
    Jun 27, 2014 @ 19:57:46

    Can anyone help me, I’m struggling with terriable humiliation.

    Reply

    • Sherry
      Jun 27, 2014 @ 20:23:01

      I don’t know how much help I can offer you since I’m only in the first month of recovery and having an extremely hard time with this, but I’m here to listen.

      Reply

  365. Susan Fullertom
    Jun 27, 2014 @ 20:06:34

    I went through that too and did so for years. I finally left and said he’d have to get a lot of counseling before we might even have a chance of working things out. Always remember YOU are WORTHY no matter what he does outside your marriage. I hope I’ve helped. God bless you.

    Reply

  366. recovery girl
    Jun 28, 2014 @ 07:29:18

    Sherry, I’m three years almost into post discovery however I still get bouts of humiliation and don’t know how to make it better. I chose to stay and he’s in recovery but it still doesn’t stop it. I let him know how I feel but don’t know what else to do. I have looked at the definition of humiliation and the thing I feel is ‘stupid’ don’t really know why but I feel stupid for not seeing, stupid for staying and think others must think im stupid for putting up with a man that F***s everything that’s walks. The thing is it seems as he has some protection from humiliation as people don’t known he’s a sex addict with mental health issues but they know what I’ve experienced. If I was looking outside in and before sex addiction came into my life I would have said what’s that woman doing with him, she’s stupid.

    Reply

    • Sherry
      Jun 28, 2014 @ 08:50:48

      I ask myself the same thing. It’s hard always feeling this way, but I try not to let others affect me. They don’t know what it’s like to be in this position. I just recently told my best friend about all this because I felt horrible pretending that my relationship was fine every time she asked me how we were doing. I’ve known her almost my entire life and when I told her she just looked at me in disgust. She couldn’t understand why I didn’t just leave. It made me feel horrible and angry because she has an amazing relationship with her husband and she had no idea what it’s like to be cheated on and lied to. I regretted telling her, but after all of this she broke down in tears and told me that no matter what I choose she will support my decision. I was so worried about what people will think so I just avoided everyone all together. It took over my life. Life’s too short to feel this way. Maybe a move might help or making new friends or even a little traveling. That way it’s a fresh start for you. After all the sacrifices you’ve made do something for yourself. I don’t have to meet you to know that you’re a strong, kind, and loving person. If you had chose to leave then you would have always wondered and you wouldn’t be where you are today. You’ve come a long way and it looks like things have progressed for you. From what you posted above it seems like there have been a lot of changes for the better and I’m sure there will be more in the future. Don’t be discouraged. I’m here to talk whenever you’re feeling this way.

      Reply

  367. recovery girl
    Jun 28, 2014 @ 12:13:30

    I like the idea of some new friends and a little traveling, I will have to start and plan ahead for me and no one else.
    x

    Reply

  368. recovery girl
    Jun 29, 2014 @ 18:39:34

    hi all, we went to a bar last night with friends and it was packed with people but I he had noticed the ‘up for it ‘ women and boy they loved it. He instantly knew I was mad. Denial, denial, denial until the next morning he admitted it. I don’t seem to understand them, because his therapist had said its okay to look as long as its not prolonged or with intent he thinks he has been given the go ahead. He said there’s no intention, he’s looking round, heard it all before.Somehow its like because hes now sober that nothing else should be an issue. So he now says he does not want to go out any more as its causing me too much distress.It always about them. Well I’ve flipped and said he goes back to the therapist and discusses this or its the end I will not be treated like a second rate citizen over some cheap bag. I do really want to end it and even the reason of my children’s home being split is getting more of a possibility. They are so selfish, ungrateful and bast***.

    I’m still waiting for further help for me, don’t know when its going to happen but hope its soon.Sorry to rant but this is such an isolating subject I have no where else to go to talk its not a conversation you can drop over coffee with friends and half my family don’t want to know me any more because of this.

    Reply

  369. recovery girl
    Jun 29, 2014 @ 20:50:01

    has anyone been treated for PTSD it has been mentioned to me that might be what I am suffering.:(

    Reply

  370. recovery girl
    Jun 30, 2014 @ 12:39:42

    Ive looked on the dating web sites today not that I have any intention but just wanted to see what the outside world was like and you know what I would rather be single and I thought perhaps it should be called the sex addiction dating circle.
    Its a terriable world we live in, I dont know what has happened to society.
    Role on my therapy !!!!

    Reply

  371. mdenise1
    Jul 02, 2014 @ 15:22:00

    Hey ladies, Thought I would share. Yesterday we went to marriage counseling…think it really helped me. She was able to shed light on so many things. My husband really let her in….I almost felt bad for him and his story….and even though I have been filled with grief (I finally am able to label it!) I am finally really beginning to understand what it is really like to be caught in this addiction. My husband spoke about feeling inadequate and even when he engaged in that activity he really never found what he was looking for….How he couldn’t wait to get away..(.but then why go…strange)……but because of his past and his father he ended up in this place called addiction. Also discussed was him having to live with what he’s done…and NEVER being able to really live with it…the sorrow of what he’s done will always be with him….they both talked about how when your in this addictive tranz state you don’t think about anything but what you want…what your brain wants……then afterwards feel awful…and evil….he spoke of ….In the end…what he wanted was right in front of him all along….me…I am not excusing what he did at all…and I admit I struggle with it…most days…..but I just thought maybe….this could help someone feeling the pain of s addiction….

    Reply

  372. mdenise1
    Jul 02, 2014 @ 15:29:14

    Hey ladies, Thought I would share. Yesterday we went to marriage counseling…think it really helped me. She was able to shed light on so many things. My husband really let her in….I almost felt bad for him and his story….and even though I have been filled with grief (I finally am able to label it!) I am finally really beginning to understand what it is really like to be caught in this addiction. My husband spoke about feeling inadequate and even when he engaged in that activity he really never found what he was looking for….How he couldn’t wait to get away..(.but then why go…strange)……but because of his past and his father he ended up in this place called addiction. Also discussed was him having to live with what he’s done…and NEVER being able to really live with it…the sorrow of what he’s done will always be with him….they both talked about how when your in this addictive tranz state you don’t think about anything but what you want…what your brain wants……then afterwards feel awful…and evil….he spoke of ….In the end…what he wanted was right in front of him all along….me…I am not excusing what he did at all…and I admit I struggle with it…most days…..but I just thought maybe….this could help someone feeling the pain of s addiction….

    Reply

    • Sherry
      Jul 04, 2014 @ 03:01:47

      I need some advice. Some days I feel fine, but others I’ll find myself crying just from daily things like driving to the store or eating alone. It has been 2 months since discovery and I don’t feel like there has been much progress. I feel like we’re going backwards. I had packed my things and moved out as soon as I found out and told him I couldn’t see him or be around him after what he’s done. He had begged me not to leave him and that he can change. So I decided to give him a second chance if he works on recovery. I told him I was not comfortable moving back in until I feel like there’s progress. The first few weeks things were starting to change. He had disclosed all the things he lied about. He made sure to do what I asked of him. I had a huge list of things he had to change. It seemed like he was making progress, but I feel like he’s just a robot now. There’s no feelings. It’s like he’s doing it just because I’m “making him.” He updates me about what he does, but there’s no connection between us anymore. All I’d get from him is “I’m going to my dads, I’m picking up my son from school, I’m going to sleep.” We constantly fight over this because I feel like he’s not making an effort towards our relationship. He says all I do is nag and he’s doing everything on the list that I asked for. I’ve gotten so upset to the point when I just stopped talking to him and it’s been a week and a half and he hasn’t bothered to contact me. He thinks it’s fine to just ignore me or that it’s easier not dealing with me when I’m angry. I don’t know what I’m supposed to do. I don’t want to feel like I have to force him to talk to me. Although, I haven’t spoken to him I have been checking up on him to see his phone and Internet activity and I don’t see anything to raise red flags. His addiction is masturbating to phone sex with prostitutes and exchanging nude photos. He doesn’t have a house phone or Internet and lives with his mom. All he has is his cell phone, which we share a family plan. His mom is under my plan as well. His job doesn’t have Internet as well. I know his work schedule and where he usually is. Anyway did any of you experience being ignored in the beginning stages? Is it part of being in denial. I’m having a hard time with the act that I don’t hear from him for days. I’m sure if I initiated contact he would answer right away, but I don’t want to. I feel like he has to do it on his own if he really wants to change and feels sorry for what he did.

      Reply

  373. recovery girl
    Jul 02, 2014 @ 17:15:34

    Thanks for sharing
    X

    Reply

  374. recovery girl
    Jul 03, 2014 @ 09:12:48

    Denise, we need to hear these things from time to time as sometimes I feel trapped, obsessed and overpowered by this addiction. I too feel for my SA but when I get triggered, I hate him, I do try and deal with the triggers but need some extra help with that. We sat in the garden yesterday and he told me he hurts, has guilt, shame, embarrassment and does not feel worthy of me. He too says he has to live with what he has done and knows there is nothing he can do to change that.

    We also talked about how does it happen, how do you get there and what makes you feel its ok to do these things, he said, you cant explain your head and thought processes are not normal and no one or nothing can make you think different .Which makes me think if they hit rock bottom that has to be a huge advantage to recovery as its the wake up call.

    The last few months I have struggled terrible and I am waiting for further help, I have the symptoms of post traumatic stress, but what can anyone expect when life drops on you like this.

    The big thing we seem to be struggling with at the moment is’ his looking’ at the beginning he was given a coping mechanism which seemed to work but know he says that he has a feeling he has to look (although momentarily) and with no fantasy or intent but this causes me distress. He says he feels its a habit and as soon as he realises what he has done he looks away, I do believe this but its too late when its done its already hurt my feelings.

    Denise I am pleased when I hear something positive for a change, it gives us hope and I don’t ever dispute that all SAs have had something awful happen in their lives to cause such damage, but not everyone gets to see the light, which is sad and I guess something we should consider ourselves blessed with.

    xxxx

    Reply

  375. recovery girl
    Jul 04, 2014 @ 07:02:40

    Sherry, I cant remember a lot about the early days of discovery/recovery as we were both numb and in desperate worlds, do you think its that ? rather than ignoring you. We were on a roller coaster of emotions and what I can remember was like this:
    He was: depressed with his diagnosis, he never saw himself as a SA, felt dirty.
    He was not commutative, he wasn’t sure how, he had ducked and dived for years and avoided real human contacts and didn’t know how to.
    He had to get to grips with how he had got there, his life story !
    He went to twelve step group.
    We went to therapy, it was joint sessions, I’m told not done very often.

    I was: numb, in shock, unable to communicate, isolated, desperate, lonely, hated society, hypervigulant, wanted to search for reasons and all the women he slept with and show him what sort of women they really were and show him what he had with his family and make him pay for my heart ache.
    I wasn’t sure if I could stay or what would become of us.
    I read lots of books on the subject, ‘mending shattered hearts’ was the best for me.

    Have you tried therapy ?
    Meditation?
    2months is early days, I think it was three months after discovery before we left the house, for some reason neither of us wanted to see the outside world.
    Some days I still have a cry and that’s nearly 3 years ago, but its different now its not as it used to be.

    hey, if you have had full disclosure that’s mega and helps with recovery, it took my hubby 6 months to tell me ,and that was painful, as he kept telling me that was it and then more would come, not good.

    You mentioned him feeling sorry for what he’s done, don’t you think he is?
    Talk to your therapist about communication, I know now we are encouraged to communicate but we are further along the line.

    In answer to your second blog, is yes, its very early days
    God bless you

    Reply

    • Sherry
      Jul 04, 2014 @ 08:56:14

      Thank you for your response. I am filled with a lot of emotions these days and it’s hard for me to cope. I feel so lost. I don’t leave the house unless I absolutely have to. I feel really down and don’t want to be around other people. So far I’ve read a ton of books because I can’t afford a therapist being that I’ve been unemployed. I know I need a therapist, but I will have to wait until I’m able to. Support groups don’t seem to really help me. It makes me even more depressed. He says he is working on recovery, but it makes me angry because I have no clue what is going on because he hasn’t spoken to me for awhile. I just don’t know what to really expect. I know it’s only been 2 months and I shouldn’t expect things to change quickly, but I can’t help but feel like I’m doing this alone. Anyway, I will look up the book you mentioned and try to work more on my own recovery.

      Reply

  376. recovery girl
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 15:03:09

    sherry, I would be happy to send you my copy but I know that’s probably not feasible. you do sound like most of us did at the beginning so hold on in there, I too could not stand the support groups, do you go to church ? , I found it a great help, it was as safe place for me and a form of therapy.

    Reply

  377. Sherry
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 20:41:33

    I just have no clue what’s going on with our relationship and it’s really hard on me. I’ve been having nightmares. I haven’t heard from him in weeks and I have no clue how his recovery is going or anything at all. I don’t even know if he thinks we’re still together or stopped recovery. I feel like I’m putting all this effort into educating myself and working on my own recovery that I would rather know if he’s not going to even try at all then I should leave. If I don’t talk to him first he never talks to me and I feel tired of all the fighting. Why is it that I have to do everything in the relationship? It’s like he’s being forced if he talks to me. He says he’s sorry and knows what he did and really wants to change, but he’s “too busy” to even talk to me. We used to talk every single day so it makes no sense. I haven’t been apart from him for more than two days and now nothing at all.

    Reply

  378. recovery girl
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 21:09:30

    Sherry, I don’t know what to say for the best, have you been given any advise about contact ? do you know where he is? is he attending work ? do you have any joint friends that know where he is and what he is doing or how he is do. The thing is you have to do what is right for you, no one can really tell you..
    This is such an isolating situation and I do know how you feel, but to work on your self and your recovery is just as important as working on the relationship, if not more important, I never really understood this at the beginning of all this. One thing I did learn is no matter what happens to the relationship we have to make sure we have looked after ourselves so we recover.
    Keep going

    Reply

  379. Sherry
    Jul 07, 2014 @ 22:41:06

    I know what days he works and when he’s off, but I don’t really know what he’s been up to. We have no mutual friends and he’s not really social. It just seems like he’s focused on working and his own family and not me. He does have a 6 year old son from a previous relationship, but I’ve been there for 3 years of his life. I’m sure he asks where I am. His family even called me to see if I’m okay because they haven’t seen me. I just don’t get why he can’t call me or text me at all.

    Reply

  380. mdenise1
    Jul 08, 2014 @ 16:13:41

    unfortunately Sherry I think you have to follow your gut…..If I had followed my gut along time ago I would have never been in this situation for as long as I have….if he really wanted to make things better with you he would not have no contact with you…I think that speaks volumes in itself……and even staying with a person like this is pure HELL!!!!! I have been triggered today…..and It’s hard……I feel like I will never get better til I am rid of him…not really better!

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Jul 08, 2014 @ 16:55:27

      MDenise, triggers are hellish in recovery and for me they have seemed to become more intense as we have got further into recovery. Our therapist seems to think some of it is to do with lack of trust for us. I can see why it takes five years to recovery.:)

      We have just been away for a few days in a complete isolated rural setting in a gypsy caravan and it has done us the world of good as there is no horrible sexualised world in your face. It has charged our batteries for my next mad trigger moment.

      He has been reading’ every mans battle’ while we were away, its quite a good read.

      More therapy on the way for me :)

      Reply

  381. recovery girl
    Jul 08, 2014 @ 16:43:24

    Sherry, when you say his own family ? did he have another life or wife before he met you ? If so is it possible you have been caught up in his addiction? In other words been on the receving end of feeding his habit !
    My SA kept women on a string for two to three years!! ( can you believe that )
    Hope Im wrong,but it was a thought I had when you mentioned ‘his’ family.

    There’s another thought just popped into my head my husbands family hated me so much ( I guess I was a normal person) if he had turned to them when he hit bottom they would have worked their evil ways and turned him against me. Once he had counselling he realised they were the dirty, rotten reason he ended up with an addiction.

    How good is the relationship with his family?
    May be you can talk to them and find a few things out.
    Ask how’s he doing and do they know why he hasn’t been in touch with you.
    Maybe its up to you to make a decision, ( hard I know) however, they do say we should give it a year before we make any hasty decisions.

    I also had a thought did you make any agreement to check in with one another every now and then ?

    Why do you not want to make contact?
    At some point there has to be some contact to know what your future plans are ?

    Reply

  382. Sherry
    Jul 08, 2014 @ 17:44:13

    He was never married to his previous girlfriend, but they went out for 2 years and she had gotten pregnant and cheated on him with his friend. They have an arrangement where the son stays half the week at each parents house. He has a 6 year old and is only 24 and I’m 27, but I spent 3 years being around the son and taking care of him too. It’s just hard for me that I moved out and “left.” We didn’t make any agreements to keep in contact, but in the beginning we did. It was just constant fighting that got nowhere. Then he had told me I made it too hard for him to focus on his recovery because I constantly “made him feel horrible.” It might be his maturity level that we’re having so many issues. I chose not to contact him much because I felt like he only spoke to me because I forced him and that if I didn’t contact him then he wouldn’t make the effort and that seems like the case. I’m not sure if that was the best decision on my part, but it was hard. I do feel that he’s sorry, but doesn’t really know how to deal with things. My relationship with his family prior to this was on good terms, but I do feel like a lot of his issues are from his parents. His parents have changed since then I guess because they’re older and split up, but he’s had a horrible childhood with abuse and violence by his parents and he’s also had a best friend commit suicide. He currently lives with his mom, but I suggested that he needs to move out because she’s feeding his addiction. I noticed he was always angry and stressed out. I didn’t realize a lot of his issues until I moved in with him and his mom last year.

    Reply

    • recovery girl
      Jul 21, 2014 @ 20:33:45

      Sherry, it is quite a common trait of a sex addict that if they are forgiven this equates to trust. This did take my sex addict a long time to get to grips with this. Your SA sounds like he has a long way to go and I do wonder how much therapy he is going to and what information he is getting. our therapist forwarded my husband to the types od things I would need to know, say or do.

      good books for him,’ out of the shadows’ and ‘every mans battle’, they do find it hard to read and digest it all in the beginning, I also think he needs to understand that you have feelings and needs just as much as he has.
      Good luck

      Reply

  383. recovery girl
    Jul 08, 2014 @ 22:17:29

    he needs a lots of help with recovery and so do you, start with yourself first.
    research, educate, read, find peace and see what follows.

    Reply

  384. Sherry
    Jul 21, 2014 @ 07:01:21

    I have never been so angry in my life. My SA believes that forgiveness means trust. That if I forgive him for what he did I can’t be mad and that I can never bring it up again. He even had the nerve to pull out a dictionary to show me the definition of forgiveness. Seriously? It’s only been two months since discovery and even if he has stopped or is doing better it doesn’t mean I’m going to just trust him again. I’ve seen him twice for maybe 2 minutes in 2 months and we’ve spoken about 4 times. His excuse is that I’m always mad and that I always bring it up and make him feel bad so he would rather have space. Didn’t I choose to stick around and still support him in getting help? He can’t expect me to not have questions or be upset because it all just happened. He’s not the only one that feels bad. I was lied to for 3 years. He says he can change and that I just have to trust that he won’t do it again. That if he does I can leave him. That is just crazy that he actually believes that because it’s an addiction. I think he’s still in denial or believes that it was just purely cheating. It’s like I can’t even have time to grieve. I get it, I’m not the happiest person to be around right now. He should be able to understand that, but he doesn’t. I know it’s early on and there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done, but it’s so heartbreaking. I’ve been asking him to read this book I gave him and keep in contact with me once in awhile to at least let me know how he’s doing. The book I gave him is about 170 pages long and only took me 1 day to read and he’s had it for 2 months and only got halfway. I try not to be a nag and rush him, but seriously I just don’t feel the effort. I feel horrible. At this point, I don’t know what to do. I just don’t know much more time to give it before I decide to leave.

    Reply

  385. mdenise1
    Jul 21, 2014 @ 17:28:50

    OMG Sherry..this does not sound good…I am so sorry…They pain and the anger last a long time….it has been about 15mos for me and I am STILL hurt and angry at times…maybe not as much as in the beginning but it took me about 1 year to reach this point..0f only letting it hurt me a couple times a day instead of every second of the day……My husband listened to my hurt and anger…cried with me (and I cried alot, ALOT, he held me and showed so much remorse for hurting me..he goes out of his way to be transparent about everything . yes there were times he was frustrated because he really felt that now that it was out he could get better….we could get better . We have been going to lots of different types of therapy…since day 2 of it coming out…your boyfriend sounds mighty selfish, but then I do believe that this is part of their problem…only thinking about instant gratification and themselves…like spoiled little boys….bastards….. I would seriously think about what you want to do…if you are not married and have no children with him….it might be easier to move on…although it is something you must decide for yourself cause as much as I would be the first one to tell someone in this situation to move on…
    I am still with mine….

    Reply

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