Activity Stream

Activity Stream

  1. Realitycheck added a post in a topic Time to move on?   

    Hi Cowslip,
    Hope you're  doing ok.
    I feel the same about this forum. Sometimes its good to know you're not the only one going through this but on the other hand its not a club you ever wanted to be part of, if you know what I mean.  I can be  feeling stronger and then begin reading on here and it can bring me right back to the reality and the shock of 'is this really happening in my life' and all that fear will wash over me again. 
    Its good to know its here but we must move forward. I find im in a better place by focusing on the good things I used to enjoy and spent time on before and the more I  do that the less intrusions I have and the more confident I am that I will get through this. 
    Its helpful to make yourself a list of goals for the day no matter how bad you feel in the morning. If you start small and to do something positive for yourself each day it helps. 
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  2. Cowslip added a post in a topic How to Discuss   

    First of all - everyone on this forum will understand just how you are feeling right now, and I am sure we would all say that you have made the first and important step in coming on to this forum and sharing what has happened to you.  It is not an easy or comfortable thing to do, and I hope that you will find the support you get here useful.
    Many of us (including myself) have had the experience of knowing about our partner's porn use but not knowing how to raise the subject with them, or what to say.  From my own experience I found that the longer I kept it bottled up inside, the worse I felt, and the more my imagination and fears ran away with me.
    What I did was to spend a little time working out exactly what I wanted to say and making sure I covered everything that I needed to tell him, including questions I needed to ask him.  Once I was clear in my own head, I actually set myself a date and a time when I would start the conversation.  I made it a time when I knew we would not be disturbed, and I told him in advance that I needed to talk to him and told him when we would be having the conversation. 
    On that first occasion, I told him he had to just listen to me, and to answer my questions as honestly as he could.  Confronting him was one of the hardest things I have ever done, and even though I had prepared myself, I found there were some things I just could not say.   My partner's initial response was to tell me he loved me, that it was 'just' porn, that it didn't mean anything to him.  That first conversation didn't take us very far, but it did open the door, and the conversations we had later, and which we are still having, several years later, were more useful and more meaningful. I have had to initiate every conversation (except once, early on, when he decided to come clean about some of his porn use).  I don't mind that, as long as he really listens to me and answers my questions truthfully.  It took time for my partner to open up and to be completely honest with me.  It also took time for me to work up the courage to ask him the really difficult, and scary, questions, and to tell him honestly how I felt.  Those conversations are still hard, but we are both now in a much better place than we were a few years ago.
    I understand you don't want to bring your daughter into this, and I think you are right about that.  I never told my partner how I found out about his porn use, and he has never asked me.  Basically, over a number of years I developed a sixth sense about when he was using porn, and when I did, I went looking for it on his computer and phone.  Yes, I was snooping on him and checking up on him, but I don't feel I need to apologise for that - he should not have brought that stuff into our home!  You may find that your partner won't ask how you know, but if he does, make sure you have a reply ready (this may be a time when a white lie is justified in order to protect your daughter).
    None of this is meant as advice - we are all in very different situations, and we all need to find our own ways to get through this.  I am only sharing with you my own experience.  One thing I would say is that you must take care of yourself, and put your own mental and physical health first.  
    Let us know how you get on, and stay strong!
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  3. Enigmajacq added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    So I have had a really difficult weekend. Firstly I am not sober, clean or abstinent from my addictive behaviours.
    I've had a huge slap in my face that should have got me running for cover, but sent me straight to the behaviour I want to stop.
    Two people who I have been using have had their marriages break down and I have been a main factor in both. I have not wanted to hurt anybody,  but my actions do hurt people. I've tried justifying it in so many different ways- it was their behaviour not mine (I'm single), if they weren't doing it with me it would happen anyway with someone else.............. you know the sort of things. 
    But it is me.....that wife will never be able to unsee the pictures and videos she came across. 
    I feel so shit right now and that is dangerous knowing what I can do when I feel like this and want to punish myself. 
    Anyway I've rambled enough. .....
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  4. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Thank you very much for the shout-out for my website...helping you, especially those first couple weeks, has been just as rewarding to me and has been a big part of my recovery. Once you move beyond these early phases, I have no doubt that you'll be there for others the way you feel I was there for you.
    My final bit of advice to you publicly -- though I hope you'll continue to check in with me privately from time to time -- is that you are in charge of your recovery. Your sponsor can guide you, these boards can guide you, SAA can guide you, I can guide you, but ultimately this is a trip that you take on your own. If you feel like you're every with the wrong therapist, or wrong sponsor, or getting bad advice from someone, it's OK to make changes. Just because there are "experts" and those with "experience" out there doesn't mean that they have the answers for YOU. I always encourage people to try everything and talk to as many people as possible because that's how you find what works for YOU.
    I say good luck to you for the things outside of yourself that you can control, but I don't think you need too much luck when it comes to you. You'll be fine.
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  5. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    A p.s. to my 'bye for now' posting. Anyone who stumbles across my ramblings and feel they need help with their own sex/porn addiction - well done for thinknig that.  It is the first and most important step to think you might need some help. Over the eight weeks since I hit absolute bottom, I have started a spiritual journey.  I have, with a heck of a traumatic shock to me and my nearest and dearest, come to stark realisation that I have a problem.  I want to get better.  I have a few things that have been good for me and I'd like to share them.  These may or may not work for you but they worked for me. Move your PC to a shared part of the house e.g. only use it in the kitchen, somewhere where you wouldn't look at porn.Delete your porn, your accounts (to sites, to secret email accounts etc) and your browser histories - all of it.  Use Ccleaner to permanently get rid of all that; that way you won't be tempted to look at things and you are less likely to try and get it all back.If you're technically minded, set your internet router to block adult sites or block internet altogether after e.g. 9 pm. If you're not too sure about that try some software like netnanny.Get to Sex Addicts Anonymous. I have done and it is the best decision I could have made; there are people who care and understand. YOU ARE NOT ALONE! or    Please please try this; even if you don't talk for your first few meetings please reach out.If you can afford it, get a therapist and BE 100% HONEST WITH THEM.  If you can't afford it, contact some anyway and say about your finances, they might be able to offer something anyway.Have a look here - This guy contacted me via a UK based forum but he is in the US, he is lovely and is good to talk to for someone who has been to rock bottom and climbed out the other side a better person. Take care all of you. P.
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  6. Enigmajacq added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Good luck in the rest of your journey. Thank you for the support you have given 
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  7. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    I will be stopping posting here for a while.
    It has been really useful to post my thoughts and ideas and to get cmometns and messages back from people, but I am really getting in to my SAA programme and my sponsor has suggested focussing just on that for the time being.
    What with seeing my therapist, attending 3 SAA meetings a week and working the SAA programme, it is all a bit too much.
    I'll be recording my journal still, but privately in a notebook (doing it as the day goes along).
    Perhaps I will return here.
    Thank you for reading, I hope you benefitted from it as much as I have.  And thank you especially to those that were compelled to reach out to me and comment or mail.
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  8. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    That's a very wise thing to say. It wasn't until I was in rehab that I could actually trace my addictive behavior back to being a kid. The guy who ended up with the alcohol and porn was the same one who needed to collect over 200K sports cards when he was 10 or had to beat every videogame he owned the day he got it when he was 12. He was the one who would work 80 hours a week to impress the boss at 22. I knew that my biggest challenge was kicking my addictive personality more than my specific addictions. Alcohol could become food and porn could become gambling very easily. Are those worse? It's really just a matter of semantics. I don't want to end up on a gambling message board anymore than I wanted to end up on a porn one.
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  9. FeelBroken added a topic in Partner Concerns   

    How to Discuss
    Hi everyone, new here and desperate for some advice.  Sorry if this is a bit long.
    I'm looking for some advice on how to explain to my partner how I know he has been watching porn with me in the room.  My daughter who is 24 recently stopped over and has just told me that while we were all sitting watching tv, he was blatantly watching porn on his ipad.  (He's not her dad). He was sitting facing me so I wouldn't see it but obviously didn't realise that she could see it from where she was.  It has made her feel very awkward about coming round and she doesn't want to me to tell him about this because she doesn't want to feel even more awkward around him and not be able to come to see me anymore.
    I really need to speak to him about it as if he can't even refrain from looking at it for one evening then he clearly has a serious problem.  I was aware that he prefers porn to sex anyway, we have only had sex twice in nearly 3 years, which I initiated and both times he lost his erection very quickly.  He made excuses about it being his age (53) but refused to see a doctor. 
     I feel devastated, heartbroken and furious all at the same time.  It's the disrespect of doing this right next to me that hurts the most.  We have had conversations before and he has always said that he only watches it occasionally and that it is not the cause of our lack of sex life.  We previously agreed he could watch porn as long as it didn't affect our sex life but I have let this slide due to being busy moving house etc. I know I should have addressed this sooner but he doesn't like speaking about  it - and I didn't want to pressure him, given that during those last 3 years I  have developed issues which mean I would be unable to have sex very often anyway even though I would like to.
    I only found out on Friday afternoon and when I got home I put parental controls on the internet.  As soon as I went for a shower he must have tried to get on it because when I came back down he was not on his ipad which is highly unusual (he says he plays golf on the internet!).  He then cuddled up to me on the sofa, again unusual, and kept telling me how beautiful I am !!  The cheek of the man amazes me.  It's probably a good thing I couldn't say anything as there would have been big drama.  Right now I feel repulsed by him.  He clearly knows I have stopped his access to porn but still hasn't said anything.  He has noticed I am very quiet and not myself but hasn't asked what is wrong, scared I will tell him. He has been really nice to me and took me out for dinner last night but still no moves sexually. Right now I would rather not have him anywhere near me and actually feel like leaving him.
    Unfortunately he will still be able to look at porn on his phone and I can't do much about that but it may reduce his use a bit at least.
    I have hardly slept the last two nights and am typing this as he sleeps peacefully upstairs.  I so badly need to have this out with him but how can I explain how I know about it?  I can't go on like this it's making me ill.  Someone please help!!
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  10. Enigmajacq added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    Thats the thing. I don't want to just transfer my addictive behaviours to a different addiction. I know I need to address the root cause of what need they are filling for me so I can work out non destructive ways of meeting it.
    This is so hard, but just being able to talk to people who understand is a comfort.
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  11. outofwishes added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    Hi Enig - I agree that stopping any or all the destructive behaviour though force of will or any other method is really only the beginning, indeed it might not even be the best place to begin. Addiction seems, for a lot of us, to be filing a hole in our lives and with sex addiction that's might well be intimacy (in its broadest sense) but I'm sure your work with the various organizations will help you explore that. But I do think it's worth asking the question, 'and then what?'. When you leave the addiction behind, what will you life look like; what do you want it to look like?    
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  12. outofwishes added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Just wanted to pick up on this:
    It’s a really cr@ppy way for it to happen, but if I really an work through this then I can be a better person, which should make me a better father, son, brother and (possibly) husband… which will hopefully translate on to all the people that my behaviour has affected.
    I think this is a really important message for every one of us - especially those of us who have been outed one way or another. Once this is over you will be better, you won't have (and are already getting rid of) those crippling secrets that were eating your brain, you will no longer have to go through that thing, while you're doing whatever activity it was, of thinking about how disgusted this or that person would be if they could see you. Every new person you come into contact with is meeting a new, genuine version of you and when they say something positive, there's no part of you saying, 'you wouldn't be saying that if you knew what I do'.

    The next trick, which I've certainly not got to, is putting aside the thought, 'you wouldn't be saying that if you knew what I did'.
    There's a real paradox here: there are many people we knew before we were caught who took us at face value and liked spending time with us, even though we were behaving in this unacceptable way. Now that we have stopped, many will no longer want to be around us. Hmmmmmm, soz this is getting to be about me.
    BTW - Like the gratitude list; will start one of my own
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  13. yvonne added a post in a topic 'Enabling' my husband's porn addiction   

    I googled PIED and this stream came up. I read the post and started crying - and i joined. I am still crying writing this.
    A lot of the descriptions are so familiar in my life.   I change in the bathroom to hide my body.  I have all the feelings of not measuring up, poor body image etc. I told him i cannot compete with the porn bodies. I am not able to arouse him - with just me. I have given up on our sex life as of Monday and I did tell him this.
    I am sad. I am angry. I am old and droopy. I am graying and carry extra pounds.
    He says it is not me. He says it his problem and it is in his head. He says he loves me and my body. He calls it "performance anxiety". He is attentive and shows lots of affection in public and private. You would never know there is an issue in our bedroom. Every other aspect of our relationship is fantastic - other than his communication with this and trying to fix the problem. He never brings it up. I am the one who has initiated the topic and how to address it. 
    It has been this way since the beginning of our relationship 7 years ago. I had a very healthy sex life in my prior relationships.  His doctor ruled out any medical reasons.  I am the one, in year 2,  whom introduced porn in our bedroom as an aid to help with his performance anxiety. It worked great! except for penetration -  Started with magazines and eventually, moved to online. I did not know it would make it worse - I did not know about PIED, although he had issues prior.
    Now he uses porn privately. He had been the whole time.   He had promised to stop -  3 times now. He went  to Hypnosis therapy and the therapist said using porn is OK in moderation.  Thats all he needed to break promise number 1. He clearly did not convey to the therapist the true nature of the situation.  He did not complete the sessions. 
    We are both over 55 and I feel our sex life is over, 
    I have no one to talk to about this.
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  14. Alys added a post in a topic Struggling to trust again   

    So glad you’re getting there, Judith 
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  15. Alys added a post in a topic Struggling to trust again   

    Judith, it’s great that you’re doing much better now. I don’t feel that I’m any example of a  success story, it’s more a case of trying to make my way through an unfamiliar territory. My husband has quit his porn habit successfully but the effects on our relationship and on each of us as individuals goes very deep. 
    There’s no doubt that our hypersexualised porn culture has consequences on us as individual women and of course it’s a huge influence on the thoughts and behaviours of our partners, otherwise we wouldn’t be here. Every day, we - as women - receive toxic cultural messages: be young, be hot, be sexy, be thin, be busty, be sexually available, be compliant, be a temptress, etc. On the other hand, men are served up hundreds of images of “sexy” women for their titilation, their arousal, their entertainment. They almost always fit into a narrowly defined set of physical characteristics. For those of us married to porn addicts, we lose our life partners to nothing more than pixels. Suddenly all the images in the magazines and advertising hoardings etc are triggers. If they hadn’t had the disastrous effects they did on my relationship they wouldn’t be these triggers. And that’s what’s hard about it. This stuff is everywhere, in publications and entertainment aimed at women too.
    It doesn’t matter if I’m slim. It doesn’t matter if I eat enough and eat well. It doesn’t matter if I wear nice clothes. Even if it’s not a trigger, there’s always a message that tells me — and you — that I’m not enough. That no woman is ever enough. Just look at the magazine covers. It’s all about weight loss, beauty products and how to please your man in bed. Once you add to this negative brainwashing all the sexually objectifying imagery aimed at men, whether it’s magazines aimed at men featuring women barely dressed, music videos  with near naked women dancing provocatively or the explicit porn sites — what does all that do to us when we’re married to a man who’d rather masturbate to this than have “real” sex? Who can’t leave it alone? Who has it on his phone, his USB sticks, hard drives or even stored online?
    Just how straightforward is it to be a real, living, sentient woman in the midst of this hypersexualised culture that is running your partner’s sexuality? That has left you isolated, body shamed, or body dysmorphic even, hiding your shape with shapeless dowdy clothes, you have low self esteem, your eating is disordered, you’re depressed, and so on. 
    It’s not a good place to be, but I’m fighting back. And I’m not buying into this commercialised definition of what female sexuality “should” be. Because that’s all wrong. It’s not a healthy message at all. 
    What works for me and what has really helped me are the women activists, authors and podcasters who take a stance against all these harmful messages aimed at us, day after day. I’m not here to indoctrinate people but there are alternative voices who are critical of porn culture, diet culture, and the unhealthy aspects of the beauty and fashion industries. Now, I love dressing and adorning myself, I enjoy food and cooking, I like nice bags and scarves, etc, but I’m choosing these things for positive reasons, not to try and live up to these false ideals imposed on us. I’m resisting these “not good enough” messages. 
    So where am I at now? Im working on body acceptance, im learning about intuitive eating, I’m actively resisting our toxic hypersexualised culture. Im trying to work out a better way. It’s part of MY healing. Maybe not for everyone, but being my own one-woman resistance movement is helping me heal. At lesson for now. 
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  16. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Read blue card.  Read Just for Today.  Read text from Tools for Recovery
    Called and spoke with Brendan and Lloyd
    Attended SAA Swindon.  Walked through first draft of my circles with Sponsor Steve.

    A reasonable sleep
    A good shower
    My wife still communicating with me
    Stimulating bit of work
    Fresh air
    Pleasant lunch
    Speaking with Brendan
    Speaking with Lloyd
    Good SAA meeting
    Nice hotel
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  17. Enigmajacq added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    Thanks for this. I'll try and check it out. I just wish porn was my biggest challenge, but unfortunately I crossed it to reality far to long ago.
    I hope you are managing your stuff. And really do appreciate you taking the time to respond.
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  18. outofwishes added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    I found working through 'In the Shadows of the Net' a good place to start understanding my stuff - just a thought.
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  19. Enigmajacq added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    Hi and thanks for the reply. I'm in contact with saa and Sauk but I'm struggling to get anything near me. 
    The therapist I spoke to was from the laurel centre. It's just such a nightmare to be at a place where I know I need help but not be able to find it. I'm worried that by the time I can source something that I will have gone through the window and decided it is just what I'm going to live with forever.  
    I think I wasn't clear though with my comment about losing people. The people I've been culling have been some of the people stoking my addiction. People who have been encouraging me to explore the more extreme aspects of my addiction. 
    One thing I have managed, is not to go on the porn site. Although I am no where near sober in relation to all of my sexually addictive behaviours, this feels good. But is that just me trying to make myself feel better about myself given I've still met people and been physical with them. 
    So many confusing thoughts right now.......
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  20. pdw123 added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    Are you able to get to any SAA meetings?  They might be useful.
    On the main Paula Hall website you can post a request to be contacted by a therapist.  Perhaps put something there but be honest about being unable to pay much.  Some may be willing to come to an arrangement with you.
    Thinking about people that you are removing from your home (your life?), I wonder if it is worth thinking why you are doing this.  Is it because you really don't want them in your life (which is fine) or is it because you are worried what they will do or think if you were to talk with them about yourself honestly?
    It is probably not a great idea to remove people base on how you think they might react.  If you think you are going to lose people who you care about, why not reach out to them and talk to them then let them make their mind up whether you are worth keeping in their life?
    Keep coming here, keep writing
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  21. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    So so tired.  I think I need to take stock of things, busy is good, but not to the neglect of looking after myself.
    Felt low at the content of some of my wife’s email but so glad she is still communicating.
    I need to take stock of the concept that my sexual addiction and behaviours amount to abuse of her and my children.  As usual my head is saying ‘no, no, no’.  But if she feels abused, then it is abuse.
    Landlady already in bed by time I got back.  She has taken down all the pictures in the lounge and removed glassware from the kitchen before she goes on holiday tomorrow.  I will not see her again because I will have moved out when she returns; I will only see her to collect the deposit and overpaid rent.  I have lined up to look at some new rooms to lodge at.
    I saw a mortgage adviser today to talk about possibility of getting a place for myself.  It’s not impossible but will require either a big input from parents (not a conversation I look forward to) or taking equity from our own home (also not a conversation I relish with wife)
    That will have to do.  Good night.
    Thank you for letting me ramble.


    Asked for a sober day, reviewed gratitude list, read 12 steps and 12 traditions
    Made call to Wayne; voicemail left with Sponsor Steve; took call from Julian
    Completed first draft of all 3 circles to discuss with Sponsor Steve tomorrow.
    Thanked for a sober day and read 2 pages of green book.

    A decent sleep
    An email from my wife
    A good workshop
    Scampi for lunch
    Wayne from SAA
    Giving some information that might help someone on support forum
    Jon the mortgage adviser
    Mystery shopping
    SAA meeting
    Crabbies Ginger IPA
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  22. Enigmajacq added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    I'm good and not good.........
    Spoke to a therapist yesterday and got my hopes up but then dashed as can't afford the sessions and 1:1 can't be supported. If I was a bloke then group sessions could be available which I could get help with. That made me feel even worse about myself as the group's don't run for woman as there aren't enough of us to do them. How bad am I then!!!!!!!!
    So the inevitable happened yesterday and I suppose I punished myself using my own body. I hate myself right now!!! I had felt so positive. I had deleted lots of things and people from my phone, I was trying to do things for myself. But I don't know where to go from here. I feel very much alone again. 
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  23. pdw123 added a post in a topic New and ashamed   

    How are you getting on?
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  24. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Had a really big wobble today.  The fact my landlady had asked me to leave felt unproportionally bad, especially when I take into account that there are a few things I don't really like about the house where I rent a room.

    I did what I could to get better.  I looked for another room, I contacted advertisers of rooms, I went to look at a room.  I also said to landlady I prefer to leave as early as possible.  I don't want to be somewhere where I am not welcome.  She was not happy, but I cannot influence that.

    Thankful for speaking with Dave today; I am so grateful for having numbers of SAA fellows.

    Saw my therapist.  We ended up talking about a whole load of stuff that wasn't really on her 'to talk about' list.  Spoke more about how me and my wife have never really spoken about really important things and how I feel that she (my wife) focuses on negative aspects which causes me to avoid talking.  I was asked "why did you marry your wife?".  It should be a really easy answer, but I stopped, I had nothing.  Right now I know I love her, but why did I marry her in the first place?  Expectations perhaps, someone had made themselves available to me? 

    Also spoke about my bisexuality; about how I have no desire to emotionally attach with men and that my interests were basically like a porn hunt, desire to find someone to talk about fantasies with and that I treated men like female sex workers - no interest in anything emotional, just wanted to have sex and basically didn't care which gender.  Therapist suggested that she thinks I am heterosexual because a bisexual person has loving and emotional connections with either gender.

    Now sat in a hotel a couple of hours away from home/lodging as there is a last minute early morning workshop to attend.  Busy busy busy.

    Thank you for letting me ramble.



    Read the blue card, read Just for Today, read Tools for Recovery, read 12 steps and 12 traditions
    Spoke to Dave and James


    The blue card
    Dave from SAA
    My sponsor
    Looking for a new lodging - something I can influence
    Work colleagues
    Getting a hotel
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  25. Nanook1975 added a post in a topic No improvement   

    Hi everyone .
    Reading all your stories it's amazing how similar we all feel.  I am also 18 months on and still feel so alone. 
    My husband also went through the denial and blame stage when I discovered.  This lasted for about 6 months until he finally broke down and agreed that it was an addiction and yes all the promises followed,  it will never happen again, I will do everything I can to make this better, ect. 
    I have read so much just trying to understand and I asked my husband to read Recovery Nation. Yes he started but then came to a point where he was reading about being selfish and imature and got angry saying that this was not him and he always put me first , that was the end of that. He has said he will continue reading but this is about 3 weeks later.
    I have eventually been to my GP because I have tried and tried but can't seem to shake this cloud, hurt, blame, no trust, questioning everything ect. Now I am coping a little better and I am calmer. 
    Even tough my husband hasn't watched porn in over a year (yes I am happy for him) how do I know that he won't again as he hasn't and won't speak to anyone about this. He tells me that I have to believe and trust him but that's easier said than done when you have been deceived for 20 years. 
    I really do hope that we can all get through this and be even stronger. 
    Wish you all the best xxx
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