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Patience

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Posted

Hi, I am really struggling to come to terms with the fact that the father of my kids is a sex addict. This only came to light weeks after the birth of our youngest.  He has been on the intensive course and returned more selfish regarding my emotions and pain than ever.  I understand that he must be able to focus on recovery but I am struggling to come to terms with the rejection and feel that I was and never will be wanted by him in a normal way.  I'm disappointed that there seems very little time spent on explaining the severe impact on partners yet it seems that partners support is acknowledged as important and beneficial to an addicts recovery. Whilst I get that both partners  have to work on themselves, family life cannot just stop. I feel like I am supposed to suddenly be made of stone and steel not blood and guts. Believe me I know I have guts,  but I am really struggling to be expected to constantly maintain compassion for the perpetrator of all my pain, struggling to show patience with my partner whilst none is returned  when I need it most from him.  Sorry for ramble, just need to get it out. 

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Hi, I'm so sorry to hear that your struggling now your partner has returned.  Yes it's true that they have to focus on their recovery but we do fully appreciate the impact on partners and the fact that they need their own support too.  On our intensives we very specifically state that we don't focus on partners needs - this is to enable the focus to remain on recovery and there are often members in the group who are not in a relationship and hence it would be using group time on something that is not relevant to all.  Perhaps most importantly though, there just isn't time during the 6 days to convey the importance of expressing empathy and developing rigorous honesty.  Therefore what we recommend is that the guys attend our stand alone 'Understanding Partner's Needs Day'.  This is a full one day workshop specifically for people in relationships where the focus is 100% on the essential issues they need to address.  We have a day in London in September and one in Leamington in October - please do email us if you want information - info@paulahall.co.uk 

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Hi, I understand how difficult it must be to cope with a partner who, as a sex addict, is one of the most selfish and self serving creatures on the planet. Once in recovery we partners expect things to change for the better immediately. They don't. Alas that's not how it works. Your partner will have been told to focus on his own recovery. I hope you are getting support for your own recovery too. BUT you have the right to expect certain things based on some form of accountability from him and some boundaries you've set for yourself about what behaviours you will and won't accept. I assume from your post that you are hoping to recover as a couple and move forward together. If this is the case you will expect to see your partner develop grown up emotional responses ( instead of the emotional immaturity that fuels SA). To do this he will need to fully understand and address the root causes of his addiction ( the SA is the symptom of an inability to manage life not the cause). Part of managing life includes showing real empathy. I would recommend you read 'Worthy of her Trust' by S Arterburn and J Martinkus. Then give it to your partner to read. My partner found this book invaluable in helping him to step up and do what it takes to rebuild my trust in him. It's still a work in progress but it helped enormously. I think timing for this is important. I don't know when discovery happened for you  but the first few months for me were emotional chaos. I gave my partner this book after about 6 months when some of the fog had started to clear. I hope it helps

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Firstly, thank you for taking the time to reply. My partner went on the UPN course and most of the content was repetition of what was gone over on the intensive course.   He said it was a waste of time and money.  I am disappointed. I have read both books and a lot of the book for partners is repetition of the book for the 'addict'.  I appreciate the book is initially good because it gives you a label, it offers some theory when you are desperate to make sense of your shattered world but I find it cold and lacking in solutions for the partner.   It basically states the obvious of how you feel but offers no real compassionate reasoning for why.  The courses are not cheap and in my experience my partner has come away with a very damaging victim stance, still very defensive, has not had any insight at all of understanding a partners needs. Still manipulative. The only thing he has been practicing is self assertion and he has only damaged relationship further by asserting his own selfish and warped attitude. He has gained no support with how to take responsibility for the damage he has caused. He gets angry that I refuse to accept him sweeping it under the carpet.   I appreciate that your courses are designed for the addict and that the nature of this is the epitome of self-centredness but I do not think you can claim to understand partners. Five months in, he's been on the intensive with weekly sessions from one of your councillors at a whopping 75.00 each and still no emergence of empathy, still no sign of finding his way to focus on any restoration work on our relationship. I have run out of patience.

WORTHYHOPE the book you suggest is definitely worth the read and made a lot of sense but my partner has not been able to improve from it unfortunately. His overall attitude suggests anything that even hints of God and he's automatically rubbishing the credibility of any of the writers wise words. 

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