Activity Stream

Activity Stream

  1. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Thoughts keep invading my head.  Very close to relapsing, very close to letting the images my brain is giving me start washing over.  Definitely need to write.
    I spoke last night at SAA with Paul.  I asked if he will help me take step 1.  He will, I am ready to start.
    At another SAA meeting tonight, good to hear Nick and his story.  Good to hear Toby talk - I love hearing Toby talk.  So many people talk of their 'share' and include the story of a loving and caring other half.
    I answered my wife's questions today.  They will hurt her and upset her.  She might want to divorce me, I don't know where this will end up.  I hope she wil lat least see that I have told her the truth.  This is the first time I have told her the truth without any lie or secret in the background, hoping that I don't acidentally spill any beans.  She knows what I have done and I am scared.  Scared what she will do, scared I won't see my children, scared it will rock me to the point of me saying "F**k it, if I have no one then what's the point?  I'll relapse as much as I want".  My brain wants me to do that; it is killing me to feed it.
    I'm going to start my 3 circles.  I need to start giving myself some guidance on what is acceptable, what is not, what is a warning.
    The internet can do one.  I accidentally came across some pictures I took of when I hooked up with someone not my wife.  My brain wanted desperately for me to look, start getting the fog and fantasising.  I deleted them, they are gone.  I then came across some pictures I took to send people; it is at a pretty damining stage when your brain wants you to relapse over photos you took of yourself.  I deleted those too.
    I finished a nice audio book today.  I've been listening to it to/from work the last few days.  It is called Flamingo Boy.  It's sweet, but brought a lump to my throat.  I heard about it on the radio when the author was interviewed; it sounded like something I want to buy for my Son.  I have bought a copy and I'm going to write to him inside the cover.  I hope he will like it.
    Bit of an unstructured ramble.  I will try and keep myself busy over Easter weekend.  I'm heading to my parents at some point; Mum says Dad is overdoing things so I will have some jobs to do.
    Also need to carry on some homework from my therapist.  She wants me to list out big things that happened in my life.  Not just sexual points, but others too.  School changes, deaths in family, moving house.  All of it.  The more I note down the more I remember.  There is a lot of stuff up in my head, lots I had not remembered for a long time.
    Sorry, all a bit rambled there.  Really just trying to get sordid stuff out of my mind.  I don't want to relapse, I want to start helping myself and get rid of unwanted thoughts.  
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  2. Rob added a post in a topic Recovery story   

    Hello Cat,
    I can't quite believe it's taken me two weeks to write back and that I missed your post earlier.
    Thank you for sharing such an honest account. It's difficult reading in places because I can connect with the painful and troubling parts of that process - the backwards and forwards steps of progress and reality coming back to bite at times, as well as the huge damage it inflicts on relationships. It also amazes me that you've been committed to having a much more healthy lifestyle for such an extended period of time. That gives me hope that true long term recovery is possible because I still see many guys (and feel myself) that there is often a slip up around the corner or having difficulty even after a period of years with relapsing. Your experiences around this are particularly interesting in this regard to me.
    Anecdotally, it seems rarer to find women with this problem appearing on recovery forums and around these groups. Some other sites like Reboot Nation do have a women's section in the forums where you might have more luck finding people.
    Thank you again for posting this, it's quite encouraging. How long have you been clean for and would you also be willing to share some of your insights and experiences around longer-term recovery?
    I'm curious - did you do Paula's course?
    Peace
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  3. pdw123 added a post in a topic First direct question from my wife...   

    I have finally been able to write a reply to my wife and will send it to her shortly.  It was incredibly difficult, but I have told her everything.  I didn't go in to numbers or dates or anything like that, but I told her the topics and the things she wanted to know about.  I told her I love her and that I am ashamed of what I wrote about and scared of what will happen from here on.  I told her too of me attending SAA, LFF and seeing a therapist.  I am committed to being a better person and that, at least, is something to hold on to for now.
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  4. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Feeling very nauseous.
    Since my wife asked me a first direct question a few days ago about 'Had I done...", we had avoided me answering.  Me because I didn't know how to and her probably fearful for the answers.
    It has come to a point now; she calmly said that she was going to send me a mail with a number of questions and wanted the answers to know what she was dealing with.
    My entire being is urging me to lie, to cover it up, to try and save my marriage.
    I'm not nauseous because of that, I'm nauseous because I have answered all of the questions honestly.  I've not sent it yet, I think there is more I need to say.  I was horrible.  I betrayed and lied and hurt this woman who did nothing but love me.
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  5. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    I hope that intense one-on-one therapy is part your agenda, because you clearly have hundreds of hours of working things out ahead of you, many of which you probably can't even identify now. If I were you, I'd put the letter on hold until you talked to a a professional and they could go over it with you.
    There seem to be a conflict in you between this "man's man" who is military and tough and addicted to porn and this little kid who is suffering inside of you and begging for relief. It's not that it's an alter ego because I think that's the you that most people see. That kid inside of you, the one that you are starting to identify more with, is who you view as your real self and that little kid needs a lot of of love and support right now.
    Have you seen anybody about PTSD-related illness? I would urge you to do so as that's the thing that comes screaming the loudest out of this. It wasn't until my PTSD was properly diagnosed (roughly 12 years after my bipolar diagnosis) that the cocktail of medications was tweaked to the point we finally found the right formula.
    I would also urge you to reconsider your antiquated stance on medication. I had a similar "I'm not taking anything" attitude for a long time, but then it was finally explained to me that much of mental illness is physical. For instance, with bipolar, it's a failure of the neurons working properly. That's a physical issue. Symptoms of the physical issue are mental, so it can be confused as a strict mental disorder. There's actual some science that suggests it will soon be classified in the same family of physical ailments as Alzheimer's or dementia.
    If you had diabetes, you'd take medication. If your blood was too thick or thin, you'd take medication. You may be suffering from physical conditions that appear to be mental. Your entry bounces back and forth between the tough guy and the kid. Don't be a tough guy. You can't beat this alone, or you would have. You need to develop the tools and take the advice of professionals. I know you've seen stuff, but so have they.
    Good luck and I hope you continue to update us.
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  6. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    I hope that intense one-on-one therapy is part your agenda, because you clearly have hundreds of hours of working things out ahead of you, many of which you probably can't even identify now. If I were you, I'd put the letter on hold until you talked to a a professional and they could go over it with you.
    There seem to be a conflict in you between this "man's man" who is military and tough and addicted to porn and this little kid who is suffering inside of you and begging for relief. It's not that it's an alter ego because I think that's the you that most people see. That kid inside of you, the one that you are starting to identify more with, is who you view as your real self and that little kid needs a lot of of love and support right now.
    Have you seen anybody about PTSD-related illness? I would urge you to do so as that's the thing that comes screaming the loudest out of this. It wasn't until my PTSD was properly diagnosed (roughly 12 years after my bipolar diagnosis) that the cocktail of medications was tweaked to the point we finally found the right formula.
    I would also urge you to reconsider your antiquated stance on medication. I had a similar "I'm not taking anything" attitude for a long time, but then it was finally explained to me that much of mental illness is physical. For instance, with bipolar, it's a failure of the neurons working properly. That's a physical issue. Symptoms of the physical issue are mental, so it can be confused as a strict mental disorder. There's actual some science that suggests it will soon be classified in the same family of physical ailments as Alzheimer's or dementia.
    If you had diabetes, you'd take medication. If your blood was too thick or thin, you'd take medication. You may be suffering from physical conditions that appear to be mental. Your entry bounces back and forth between the tough guy and the kid. Don't be a tough guy. You can't beat this alone, or you would have. You need to develop the tools and take the advice of professionals. I know you've seen stuff, but so have they.
    Good luck and I hope you continue to update us.
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  7. Desperateforrecovery added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    So officially day 1, thought I'd be full of optimism but it started bad.
    Woke up all hazy, disorientated and recovering from some harrowing dreams, I wasn't surprised as I knew I was going to have to talk about my mental health with someone. I know I was panicking, looking for a route out. I went straight to an app that I thought would help, but no memes would help me here. 
    The whole time I was getting ready my mind was telling me to run, just pretend to go to the Dr, go get a coffee, no one will know. No one but me, who is desperate to finally beat this. If I give in now ill never start my road to recovery. 
    It took a lot to walk in to the surgery take a seat and wait. I could feel my heart pounding, my temperature started to rise as I could just feel my cheeks blushing. My name was called and I followed a young female Dr into the room, my instant thought was how the f*ck is she going to understand? She will probably just think I'm some kind of pervert. As I sat there I thought just make something up and walk out.
    I opened my mouth and said I'm still having huge issues with my mental health. Tears welled up and I tried to not cry but it was like trying to cover a burst watermain. Without about 30 seconds and a few words I was a mess, but I had said it. The Dr just sat there and said she will help me, it's just what I needed to hear.
    After I calmed down I told her about my whole addiction to porn, prostitution and that I need my life back. It's not been mine since I was about 13.
    I could see the pain in her eyes looking at me but she called a more experienced doctor in, we sat down and talked about my options, what the NHS can offer and medication. I took the leaflet to get help but I won't take medication, not unless I'm at the point of self harm and because of past experiences i don't think I ever will, just like letting my children see me drunk, I won't let that happen. They can't see the things I've seen.
    I walked away from that building on a high, I felt like this was the beginning and I made a step even though my mind was screaming at me not to. I started to think the 'me' that uses porn is an alter ego, someone I'm not and i need to lock him out of the house, he no longer has the keys, they're mine. If he comes back in it's because I've let him. I know this won't be easy but I need to fight him and all he represents. This may not be a good clinical assessment of my mind but it helps me if I think I'm physically fighting the 'me' of old and every characteristic he represents.
    After that I told the wife about the help I could get, and then had the most amazing day with her and the kids. It was full of laughter and smiles (a few tantrums from the kids but that's normal When they've had too many treats). I also found last night that having a bath relaxes me, it opens up my mind and helps me get perspective. I'll definitely be having more, I just need to find out what works for me. Same as physical challenges, I've never been a gym goer but in my last job I exceeded everyone's expectations on arduous tasks, I never let my size beat me, I'm built like a runner but I can out perform stronger and faster guys because I just have the mental spirit to never give up on something physical. I just need that attitude with locking him out. This house is mine.
    So to end it was a positive day, one step at a time. The next task must be the letter, not sure if I can get it done in one day or one week, but I need to maybe count my dreams as they dance around me, one by one put them down in writing and send it away. It's not all my fathers fault, he was the beginning, I was the one that took that issue and ran with it until I'm at the point where I won't run. 
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  8. Desperateforrecovery added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    Pdw123, thanks for the reply. Most of the SAA meetings and other groups are about an hours drive away and with my shift work ill only be able to attend once every 2 weeks or so. But I'm looking, my next post will be to document today, I just wanted to reply to you and Joshua individually. I'll follow your thread, hopefully we can learn from each other or at the very least I can learn from you.
    I'll try the letter, we haven't spoken in almost a year and a phone call out of the blue will probably be met with rejection as I'm like him. I understand how he thinks because that's where I learnt my complete avoidance of emotion from. I even tried to follow in his footsteps by joining the army. All I can say is that if you already have issues, the Army will make them 10 times worse because of the operational stress and what's socialably acceptable. There are still things that I saw on tour that I haven't told anyone, but it's the smell that I can never forget. That's a story for another time though, that door is locked, the house is my mind.
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  9. Desperateforrecovery added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    Thanks for the replies, knowing that I'm not alone definitely helps. Until recently I thought it was only me that had this kind of addiction. 
    Joshua, never really thought about rehab, I mainly assumed it was a residential course, and as we're on a single income with me work different days every week and long hours I just don't think if would be practical. I am desperate to beat this addiction, yes I got caught but really I had taken my eye off the ball and this addiction was slowly taking more and more of a hold of my life, my wife said she doesn't think she wants to be with me anymore, I can't really blame her I mean this isn't exactly normal and I've hurt her so much over the years. But I told her either together or alone I need to do this for me. At least I haven't lost my connection with my children, which is where this addiction will inevitably end, but someone I might re-build the relationship with her. Maybe, hopefully.
    As for NoFap I found it too basic, I'm using another one called Reboot. It tracks your days, sets challenges and has an important panic button that comes up with helpful messages and some practical exercises like pushups to take your mind away from porn. I've also blocked all 18+ content on my phone by getting in touch with my provider, and I'm going to uninstall the football game that I start playing when I'm feeling stressed or need to act out. My therapist previously said I needed to get rid of all the games but I wouldn't listen.
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  10. pdw123 added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    Hello Desperateforrecovery,
    Yes, you're at rock bottom.  Welcome.  I'm here too.  So are others.  You're not alone.  I'm discovering that the compulsions we share LOVE the shame and secrecy and isolation, so good on you for sharing.  Keep doing it.  
    I've started with a therapist; absolute key is to be 100% honest with them.  If you're not comfortable saying things to your therapist then get another one.  I told mine some things that I've never told anyone, thoughts that I've hidden for 30 years.  She notes it down and we talk around it.  It is liberating.  It might not affect whether my wife stays or leaves me but it will affect the future me that I want to be and she will see one day.
    Keep going to therapy.
    Have you tried Sex Addicts Anonymous?  There is also Sexaholics Anon and Sex & Love Addicts Anon.  Hopefully something will be close to you to attend.  Try different ones as they are all different, even the different location groups under the same organisation.  I've started.  the first visit was very scary.  But I actually look forward to going, because I know it will make me feel better and I know I can get some support, which is ultimately what it is about.
    Try the letter.  Even if you write it and screw it up afterwards, that means you have got out what was in your head.
    Keep going and check in often.
    P.
     
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  11. Annie added a post in a topic Disclosure to partner: what should be told?   

    Thanks Hannah. Its exactly where i am. If i cant prove it then it didnt happen even though the facts i know about he denies. He refuses to discuss anything and becomes angry if i bring it up. He laughed at our counselors and refuses to participate in anything. He says hes clean now. He is 72 years old and i doubt much will change at his age. What hurts the most is his total lack of empathy for me at all. He said it only hurt my ego. I have decided to give up on fixing anything in our marriage. If i have to watch him with other wemon like in the past i will swiftly divorce him. I have set firm boundares and have also made it clear that i dont want any affection of any kind from him because i have no way of knowing what he is doing. I cant kiss a man that ive wstched kissing others. I wont hug a man that can do that in front of me. Sex has been gone for 20 years as he preferred masturbating to my friends and family and i was just rejected. So ive made it clear that if he cant come clean and do the work then i refuse to be intimate in anyway with him. I treat him like a roommate. He has his room and i have mine on seperate ends of the house. I also told him that i am not going to spend my time waiting for him to mature. These are his sins not mine and i paid dearly for them already. Once i made my mind up it has been easier. I no longer care what he is doing. Why should i . He didnt care about me or he would have made amends and our world would have been different. The opposite of love is not hate. It is indifference. The kind he has shown me for so long. But it works for me. I have business to run so i can stay busy. That helps to. I employ about 50 people so to divorce could create a real issue. I go about my life as though i dont have a husband. No more nice wife here. Just indifference. Thats where i am at and i will stay here until i feel safe. Until he can find humility and compassion and i can truly feel a change then he is nothing more than a person. Not my husband. I dont tell him what im doing or thinking. I just go about my business. I give very vague answers to any questions.  Mostly like i have no opinion on the subject. I know he notices but he also skirts it. So i see no change. I would love to hear from others that cant feel any empathy from the sex addict. 
    Thanks for listening
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  12. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic Time to move on?   

    I don't venture over to this side of the site often, but this entry struck me because I kind of felt this way a couple years back about the 12-step groups I was attending. I really got to the point where I was going because I felt like everybody expected me to, but I was getting nothing out of it. In fact, being around a bunch of sad former drunks and sad former sex/porn addicts was actually killing my enthusiasm with recovery. I swear to you I met people who were miserable drunks 40 years ago and are miserable former drunks now. One my reasons for getting into recovery was to try and remove the misery from my life, so I stopped going. I still utilize many of the tools I learned, and I've found writing on these kinds of forums and my blog very helpful and yes, had I stayed, I believe it would have been detrimental.
    Remember, it's not just the addict who gets sick. It's everyone around them. You've been in a period of recovery. For some people, this board could be like a band-aid, for others it could be like major surgery. We're all different and you have to listen to your heart and your head. Maybe for you, it's like chemotherapy. It's good in doses, but you reach a point where it's done what it can do and you stop. If you keep going, you'll actually get worse.
    It seems like there wouldn't be any harm in experimenting with stepping away. You know this forum is here if you need it. You're in a good place it sounds like. If you don't need it, don't use it. Things run their course. There's no need to worry or feel bad if this has done what it needs to do and it's time to move on.
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  13. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic My story, my challenge   

    Hey Desperate...I'm sure you felt a little bit better after sharing that. Please continue to share. You might even consider starting a blog. It's been a key part of my recovery.
    You've clearly got some issues with your father and while you're right that they MAY never be resolved, I can guarantee they WILL NOT be resolved if you don't try. Simply by the act of reaching out, even if you're rebuffed, you can clear you conscience that you tried to begin the process of making peace. There are probably a lot of things he doesn't want, or constitutionally can't share, but it's still worth the effort for you to try. I wouldn't spill your heart out in a letter, but rather say you'd like to get together or have a phone call and do it in a more personal forum so you can read the situation and keep it safe for yourself. If you're worried about him trying it again, well, you're not the problem. It seems like an extreme excuse to avoid reaching out, IMO.
    If you feel you need a support network, they exist. Sex Addict Anonymous and Sexoholics Anonymous are two places to start. Your GP may have more knowledge of what's in your area. Obviously, he should refer you to another therapist. If you have the means and can go more than once a week at first, that's great. Have you actually thought about some kind of inpatient or outpatient rehab?
    Are you really desperate to kick the habit or do you just feel really bad that you were caught again? It's an important question to answer. You don't have a habit. You can have an addiction and an addict's minds work in strange ways. Like you said, fighting your mind is difficult.
    NoFap is cool if it works for you. I don't completely agree with their messaging and sometimes feel like they and a few other companies out there are more about selling T-shirts and other trinkets than they are about helping. Good luck, man. I'll be following.
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  14. Desperateforrecovery added a topic in Sex & Porn Addiction   

    My story, my challenge
    So here we are again. Yet again trying to kick my habit, before my life crumbles around me and I'm left with nothing. I'm teetering on the edge of dispair and even know my brain is telling me that ill be better off on my own, I know it's because it doesn't want to face the pain. I need this, my life needs to get back on track and I must stop hurting the people I love the most.
    I have been a porn addict for over a decade now. At first when I was in my teens, I just thought it was normal. I never linked it the childhood trauma, I thought i just had a very high sex drive. 
    When I couldn't get what I wanted  (sex) I would turn to porn, that eventually led to darken and swapping intimate pictures of my wife. Then when I thought i couldn't get any lower it was then adultery, then it deepened further to paying for sex.
    I have been in therapy, and whilst it initially helped I think what I needed was a support network, and this is why I failed to stop acting out. Even though I confronted my worst memories, but I don't think I ever overcame them. 
    What can I do to overcome a memory of my father trying to take his own life, I remember everything about that day like it happened 30 minutes ago. The walk from my friends house, the items I was carrying after a sleep over, the day was sunny, barely a breeze. Then when I was by the lamp post half way up the alleyway that's when I saw the ambulance. At first my thought was oh it must be Muriel My elderly neighbour. Then I realised they were in our house. The pure panic and devastation that ensured has never been discussed between me and my dad. Now we're not even talking. I've been thinking of sending a letter, spilling my heart out like I never have before, but if i get nothing back will I just spiral out of control? What if he's not in a good place and he tried it again?
    But here we are, after being caught watching porn again and betraying my wife's trust. I need to kick this habit. I'm going to use this forum/thread just to spill my emotions. It maybe what I need.
    Tomorrow I'm seeing a GP about getting referred for help. So tomorrow is day 1. 
    My first challenge is 30 days, small steps, completely porn and masturbation free. But small steps can help you climb mountains. If there is one thing I've learnt is that physical challenges are easy, but fighting your own mind is something I've always failed at. 
    I've downloaded a motivational app, NoFap. Maybe what I need in the heat of the moment is something to remind me what's at stake. 
    So here is my journey to redemption.
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  15. Cowslip added a topic in Partner Concerns   

    Time to move on?
    For the last eighteen months, I have been occasionally posting on this forum, and have read all the posts by other partners and by the addicts themselves.  It has been an absolute  lifeline for me, giving me the chance to share my experiences, to vent about how I feel, and to get a great deal of insight from other forum users.
    I truly believe that my partner is finally committed to staying clean, and is working hard to stay that way.  We are talking more, and being more honest with each other, than ever before in our more than 40 year relationship.  There is more affection between us than for a very long time.  I am finally starting to come out from under the cloud of misery and despair that has hung over me for the last eighteen months, and beginning to see that there might be a better future for the two of us.   A lot of that is thanks to the wise words and support I have received from partners on this forum.
    But I am now beginning to wonder if I am reaching the point where coming to this forum is actually making things more difficult for me.  Reading the posts by other partners and addicts seems to be acting as a trigger for me, and although I want to read what is posted here, I feel my anxiety levels rising each time I log on.  Just like looking up symptoms in Google - each time I read about a behaviour, I immediately begin to wonder if my partner did that (even when there is absolutely no evidence that he did, and even if I had never previously suspected him of it).  Reading about other people's experiences sometimes make me feel that I am being stupidly optmistic about the future, and that I may just be deceiving myself (again, with no evidence that that is the case). 
    What do other people think?  Can coming to a forum like this actually be holding me back from healing?  Should I just take a break for a while?  Or is this just part of the process?
    Feeling confused, and would find it very helpful to know what other people think.
     
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  16. Hannah added a post in a topic Disclosure to partner: what should be told?   

    Thank you for sharing your various perspectives. I can understand why some people would want to spare their partner the pain of learning the truth. I can understand the distress caused by hearing the truth too. I have asked myself what I would want to know  and why. Like Florrie, I too have felt that if I ask for information I would expect a truthful answer. At the same time, I accept the reality that my husband could lie. What is best for the long term health of our relationship? What is the best for my own recovery and well-being?
    My husband didn’t need to tell me anything. His behaviour had already isolated me with the relationship. By d day I was severely depressed and clinically underweight. I was a mess. My self esteem was non existent. That’s what *not telling* can do.
    My husband has admitted to having a problem with porn. So we dealt with it. As for my other suspicions, I had gut feelings which prompted me to ask him questions that he denied. This was some time before d day. After asking I felt I’d blown it, that I’d actually minimised my chances of ever knowing the real truth because I alerted him to be on his guard. Nothing has changed in that regard  
    I have gone forward with the acceptance that I may never know the truth about my husband’s  behaviour. The more time passes the less likely I feel I will ever know. I asked again after d day, and he lied just about everything anyway. Unless I had proof. Some things can never be proven so unless he is honest I’m never going to know. 
    I don’t especially want details. I know that details can be upsetting and triggering but that’s not the same as having a true overall picture. The next question is, Would it help me to know? How would it help me? Does “not knowing” help me? Bear in mind that I have asked already, so how do i feel about living the rest of my life under a delusion? Or the possibility of a delusion?
    I will come back once I’ve thought more about  this one
    Thanks everyone  
     
     
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  17. Florrie added a post in a topic Partner Recovery   

    Hi Rena,
    ”Is anyone else f*cking exhausted? “. Oh yes, I couldn’t have put it any better!
    i am in a similar position to you - husbands sex addiction related to childhood trauma, he is learning a lot about himself, even how to function as a responsible adult, and I in the meantime am signed off from work with stress and also been told by the therapist that I am suffering from a form of PTSD. What I find so exhausting is simultaneously holding two conflicting positions: on the one hand I am full of compassion for my husband and the truly awful trauma and abuse he suffered as a child, and can see clearly how his addiction is related to that, and on the other hand being devastated, hurt, angry and saddened by the impact it has had on me and my life. Being in both places is what really exhausts me, having to negotiate the rollercoaster of emotions that I go through in the course of a day and then I struggle to sleep at night! Like you, I often feel overwhelmed by it all, and to be honest that you are saying this 18 months down the line ( I have been donig this for just 8 months, and feel there is a long road yet to travel) only exhausts me further! What keeps me going is that I can see my husband trying, which gives me hope. He is far from perfect in his efforts and often still slips into, what I call, his ‘poor me’ moments which drive me mad and usually leads to a big row, but he is getting better at recognising these patterns of behaviour and the potential danger of those moments leading back to acting out. I am hoping what he is learning about himself,  through therapy, will eventually become habit as his brain gets re-wired. 
    All that said, I know exactly how you feel and the f*cking exhaustion is taking its toll on me. Feeling numb is something that I have felt for periods of time and I see it as taking ‘time out’ from that rollercoaster. Maybe this is what is happening for you. This road we are is not a linear progression check out the Wei Cheri chart on the web, it shows all the different stages one goes through  following an emotional event and whilst it shows these in a linear way, in reality we jump backwards and forwards on that line until we eventually arrive at ‘moving on’. I am hopeful that things will improve and so I won’t have to feel like this for ever. I hope this is also true for you. You have come along way already and obviously done a lot of work, but take some time out for you now and pamper yourself with some much needed ‘me’ time, and then see how you feel. 
    Take care of yourself, and here’s hoping things improve for you soon....
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  18. Joshua Shea added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    I don't know if you go back and read your older posts, but you're sounding so much better than you were a few weeks ago. You've learned that this won't kill you, it may actually make you healthier in the long run and that the world didn't stop spinning because while you're at the center of your world, you're not at the center of anybody else's, even your wife, who is still alive and functioning, too.
    Your wife knows she needs support, but it's going to be up to her reaching out to find it. Whether she realizes it yet or not, even if your addiction was secret, everybody is effected by addiction while it's going on. She's probably sorting a lot of that out right now. I'm sure she knows of red flags she ignored, rationalizations she made and behavior that she witnessed. Figuring out her place in all of this can be rough, but that's her journey and it sounds like you're still the last person she wants to get help from. You can't blame her. It's like you hit her with your car and then asked, "So do you want me to run into the house and look for a bandage?" You're not going to fix anything right now. You neither have the tools nor the know-how. It stinks, but it's the way it is.
    You may also find as recovery becomes an active part of your life, it's not an active part of hers. The toughest part about coming home from rehab or jail is that while you change, most of the people you see upon return haven't. There were times where I felt like my wife needed a lot more help than I did. And she got it in time in her own way. I couldn't dictate it, all I could do was support her decisions.
    Your brain is going to mess with you for a while. I wish I could say the worst of it is over, but I find the worst hits on a random Tuesday afternoon when you don't see it coming. Just keep working through it. After four years, it's still there for me, but it's a very diluted, rarely-appearing issue. I assume it will continue to dissipate the further I get.
    You're doing better. Recognize that. The legal stuff will be the legal stuff. Nothing you can do about that now except get yourself into tip-top shape should you ever appear in court and need to talk to the person, or people, who will decide your fate.
     
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  19. Rena added a post in a topic No improvement   

    Greetings and love to both of you. 
    I'm in a similar position 18 months in. I am sorry we all feel so alone. I wish I had answers. 
    I broke up with my my partner in January, because nothing had changed. I came back because he agreed to see his therapist again on a regular basis. That has trailed off again, and he wouldn't do any of the exercises she gave him to complete. 
    He tells me he is a different person now, and that I should just believe him. 
    We are at a stalemate now, as I've become depressed, and he blames me for making things miserable. He won't read the SA books, won't reach out for support. He thinks he is doing a lot more than he actually is. 
    When he does something secretive and I call him out, he gets angry at me for not trusting him. He doesn't understand why I can't move on, despite me explaining it all to him so many times. 
    I think he is still in denial. Maybe I am too. 
    I've become very lonely, and the situation makes me feel crazy. 
    Thank goodness for this forum. 
    I hope that we can all find some peace. Xxx
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  20. pdw123 added a post in a topic I love my wife and children. I want to be with them again.   

    Thank you for your posts, I appreciate them.  
    It is difficult dragging along at rock bottom.  My wife is horrified at what I did and the situation we are in; that I have put us in.
    I have started to see a therapist.  She is good and I am very comfortable with her.  She is a specialist in sexual psychotherapy and of the topic that we're rightly not specifically mentioning.
    I have told her things about myself that no one else has ever known.  That I have harboured for 30+ years.  Not illegal, just sexual thoughts; and it feels such a weight off my soul.
    The legal system will take it's course.  In the mean time I am trying to focus on one day at a time.  some moments are good and more moments are bad, but to get to the end of each day not harbouring any fresh lies or fresh bouts of self loathing feels very nice, even if that serenity goes after a few moments and the depression returns.
    As well as the therapist I have got in with Sex Addicts Anonymous who are good.  Also some self help from a particular foundation is good too.
    My brain is really trying every trick it can.  It is flashing me with images and memories, it is trying to get me to letch anyone I walk past, it is trying to get my fingers over the mouse and onto the 'private browsing' browser.  When that's failing, it is taking me to the places that the porn and sex escalations were coping mechanisms for.  As I read more and more, I think I had the addictions or sexual compulsions for years and years, and my brain loved it when along came some very difficult things that I just didn't cope with at all. 
    Hell of a horrible mixture.
    I took a call this afternoon from a SAA fellow.  It feels good to talk with someone who gets it.
    I am worried for my wife though.  I don't know if she has reached out for any support.  I have mailed her some web sites, but she doesn't want to know what I have to say.  She is speaking to my parents and my Sister though, and she has said to them that she knows he needs to get some support, so that is the first step.  I hate that I have let her down so badly.  I hate that I gave myself loads of excuses and lied to myself that what I did wasn't really all that bad.
    Thank you for letting me ramble on.  I'm trying not to make this all about me; for the sake of my family it is most definitely not just about me, but if I can ramble on about it, then I am not isolated, and this addiction of selfishness can go and do one.
    P.
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  21. outofwishes added a post in a topic What I'm going through now   

    Ticking over - getting used to unemployment, even on a Sunday. Have discovered that I won't get internet access taken away; seems that's pretty much a human right these days and I've no problem being monitored. Wondered if I wanted to live in Swansea so I drove there and decided I don't. BST is good for my depression. Been to see doc who won't increase meds but will see me once a week due to self-harm concerns.
    Thanks for your concern,
    OOW
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  22. Rena added a topic in Partner Concerns   

    Partner Recovery
    Hey everyone, 
    I am very thankful to this forum and everyone sharing stories and advice. 
    I saw a post recently from another partner who has reached a 'numb' point, and I would love to know more about people's personal journeys later on in to the process of 'recovery'. 
    During the last 18 months I have learnt that my partner suffers complex PTSD and has ADD and addictive personality. Trauma has been the reason for his sex addiction problems. He is learning a lot about himself, but finding it overwhelming and hard. 
    My therapist diagnosed me with clinical depression a couple months ago, and suffering my own form of ptsd. Most of this is due to being so wrapped up in my partners behaviour, trying to be vigilant, strong, supportive, firm, setting boundaries, and trying to look after myself all at the same time. His issues are really complex and it triggers and engulfs me. I'm learning a lot about myself too. 
    Is anyone else f*cking exhausted? 
    I have reached a numb stage (interspersed with tears haha). I'm so mentally exhausted from dealing with his actions, and trying to heal the pain he caused me, that I've switched off. I love him, but I don't feel love. 
    What does it look like to be looking after yourself while still in the relationship? 
    Does anyone have experience in SA recovery with complex trauma? 
    I am young and I don't know if I can spend the rest of my life feeling like this. It's really hard! I want it to work out, but navigating these issues is exhausting. I want to get my own love and fire back. Is it possible while still together? 
    Thanks and love. 
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  23. Cowslip added a post in a topic In need of advice please   

    It was 18 months ago that I found out that my partner had returned to porn addiction, despite two previous 'discoveries' - after each of those previous events, he had promised to stop, but then gone back to it.  So I understand what betrayal feels like.  The difference the last time was that he finally realised that he had an addiction, and that he needed to do more than just hope that he could give up.  Until then, he said, he just thought he was 'made that way' or 'nasty piece of work'.  The worst thing is that I could see how his porn use changed and escalated over the years, and I just wish I had known back in 1992 what I know now, and done more to make him stop the first time I confronted him.  Then he was just buying relatively soft videos and magazines - once he got on the internet, it all became much more graphic, more extreme and more disturbing.  As he says himself, he was just looking at anything and everything, mainly out of curiousity.  
    I understand what you mean about him giving up for you and not for himself.  My partner would not have given up (had not been able to give up) until I basically broke down and told him that our marriage was over unless his porn use stopped immediately.  From that point of view, he gave up for me.  But later, when we were able to talk things over more calmly, he told me he had tried to stop several times before, because using porn just made him feel bad about himself, but had not been able to, and that seeing my reaction to his habit had give him the impetus he needed to look at the problem properly.  
    I know what you mean about feeling all the hurt and lack of trust some days.  In the main I am able to keep positive, but there are days when I feel I am back at square one, and all I can do is cry (yesterday was an awful day, for no apparent reason), and all I want from my partner is reassurance that, yes, he has stopped, no, he won't start again, and yes, he does recognise how much he has hurt me.  I still need to hear that from him.  I am lucky that he gives me the time to sob and rant and shout, and never tries to close me down or shut me up.  I think we need to feel that we have a safe space to do that, and also that we have the right to do that when we need to.  Physical closeness is important to me, too, and I find that helps immensely (although I realise that may well not be the case for everyone - I can understand anyone who feels that they don't want to share their bed or their body with their partner at a time like this).
    I don't know if or when I will get to the point where the pain disappears - I can only hope that for all of us there will be a day when this nightmare is just a memory from the past.
    And never say you are 'not good enough' - no-one in this world is perfect, and there are days when I look like the back end of a bus on a wet Sunday in Whitby - but we are tough and strong and resilient.  If we weren't, we wouldn't have the strength to stay with and support our partners through this mess, and we wouldn't have the courage to write so openly and so truthfully on this forum.
    Hope you and I have better times ahead.
     
     
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  24. pdw123 added a topic in Sex & Porn Addiction   

    How are you?
    We are all visiting this forum for one reason or another.
    ---
    How are you?  How is your day going?
    P.
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  25. pdw123 added a post in a topic What I'm going through now   

    Hello outofwishes,
    Just checking in with you.  How are you getting on?
    P.
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