Jump to content

Leaderboard

Popular Content

Showing content with the highest reputation since 11/28/2020 in all areas

  1. Hi Hec, being sober is not the same as recovery at all. The acting out behaviour is a symptom of much deeper issues and, in my experience, if those aren't addressed, they will come out sideways elsewhere. I agree with Kaykay, it isn't unreasonable to expect your partner to work at your relationship, if he wants to be with you. Last week, I read a letter that I had sent my partner a month after I discovered all the things he was doing in secret. I was soooooo encouraging and reassuring and I could practically see myself jumping up and down with pom-poms like some over-enthusiastic cheerleader. Reading this letter a year later, I was struck by how little energy he had put into meeting me in the relationship. I felt ridiculous putting so much energy in, whilst he went through the motions but has yet to make the commitment to really working his programme, and to really working our relationship. So, I've stepped back. I'm still there to support him, if he will step up and support me too. Much to my surprise, he noticed that I had put the pom-poms down and was quietly getting on with my life. For the first time ever, he initiated a conversation about my feelings and about our relationship. He said, "I hate to see you so sad. What can I do to help?" This is completely new for him, and I know it wasn't easy. My partner too has to work on himself, but our relationship can't sit on ice while he does this. I have been the mad cheerleader for over a year now; I'm not doing it any more. I know his initiating a conversation is a tiny baby step. I don't know that he will continue to put the effort in, but I know that if I keep repeating my groundhog day, there is no space, nor need, for him to put effort in too. Every couple is different, but I think what this forum shows me is the similarities in the pain we feel when our need for emotional and physical intimacy isn't met, and when our love and support is betrayed. It also shows me how devastatingly damaging shame is and makes me sorry for the addicts that flail about stuck in their shame and doing so much damage in the process. I don't know if your partner can step up into your relationship (hell, I don't even know if mine can!), but I do know that whether our men can be there with us or not, we need to look after ourselves. We are no good to them or ourselves if we get sucked into their shame and pain too. Ann x
    5 points
  2. In my experience, addicts can't deal with real emotions, which is why they hide away in the fantasy of porn and meaningless relationships. I know you want him to help you, be accountable etc, I wanted the same, I still do, but it has been 11 months since I discovered all the awful things my partner was doing, and while I can see that he is working on his recovery, it is only now that I have been able to ask him to work on our relationship. We have started couples therapy and, to tell you the truth, I am still highly doubtful that he is able to think of anyone other than himself. Your partner won't know which end is up at the moment, but well done him for taking himself off to treatment. If these 30 days give you a chance of beginning a healthy honest relationship, then it is worth it. It also gives you a chance to look after yourself without the distraction of his crumbling in front of you. He can't make your PTSD go away, only you can do that, preferably with professional support. Being in the same house as him won't necessarily stop him acting out over the next 30 days, or any day after that. His recovery is his work, and yours is yours. Taking care of yourselves is absolutely necessary before you can take care of each other. Now, almost a year on, I'm not sure how far my partner can recover. I'm not sure that we will be able to have an ongoing relationship, but I do know that I can and will look after myself. Be kind to yourself, Ann x
    4 points
  3. Dear Zaybd-24, Your husband has a LOT of issues he needs to deal with before he will be ready to try and make things better between you. I've been dealing with my husband's addiction for some time, and I've come to realise that it isn't in any way, shape or form anything to do with me. He can make my life miserable, if I let him. Or, he can leave me alone and sort himself out, whether through counselling or whatever it takes, and then - and only then - does he have any right to want to have a married life with me. It is not what any of us signed up for when we said I do. And we should not have to go through it - it isn't fair. So the only thing you can do is say, I'll be there when you've had help, but until then, I'm looking out for myself. I think I still love my husband, but I don't like him or his behaviour at all. You can't fix all the horrible things that have happened to your husband, and you're going to drive yourself mad if you try to. Stand firm - but look out for you. x
    3 points
  4. I really relate to this. It’s heartbreaking: I’m trying to stay strong. Will try to message again when I’m feeling stronger x
    3 points
  5. I know this an old thread but thought I’d reignite it. I practically grew up and learned everything I know about sex from porn. Within the last few years it changed into chat sites too and that where my relationship started to fail. My wife felt rejected by my lack of interest in her sexually, ive now learned the impact porn has had me. You brain on porn explains it really well! P.I.E.D is a horrible thing for both partners it I’ve been off it now for 110 days and things are returning to normal . I know longer have to fantasise about porn to perform. It takes time but the brain can heal itself. And with effort the relationships too can heal.
    3 points
  6. I thought it might be helpful if I told you my experience of this situation. I don't have any answers, but I have found some things to be useful. My partner was a lifelong porn user (we're talking over 50 years fo use here, including more than 40 years while we were together), starting with magazines, and then moving on to videos and then, in the last 15 years or so, to on-line stuff. I was aware that he was a 'user', but turned a blind eye, as our life together was in all other ways absolutely wonderful, and also because I grew up in the era when it was thought that all men did it. However, I became increasingly uncomfortable with the whole situation, and also became aware that his porn use was escalating. Over maybe twenty years, I confronted him half a dozen times, and each time he said he would stop (and I think he believed that he would and that he could). But he was essentially trying to go cold turkey each time. Five years ago we had a major bust up over it, and I threatened to leave him. He did a bit of research and read the on-line material available on this site. This time he was clean for three years, and then fell off the wagon again. I don't need to describe how I felt - everyone on here knows how completely devastating and overwhelming the feeling of betrayal and hurt is. But this time I insisted that he and/or we got some outside help. The first step was getting himn to admit to himself that he was an addict. He did one of Paula's one day courses, which he found incredibly helpful. More helpful for me was that we found a couples counsellor who followed the same approach as Paula. We used Paula's books as a basis for understanding the issues that we were facing. This was really a game changer for me. We didn't focus on why my partner had become so fixated on pornography, but focussed on how we could deal with the situation we found ourselves in. There was a lot of discussion about what triggered him to look at porn, and how he could deal with those triggers, so that he had a toolbox of strategies to use whenever he felt tempted. We discovered that he used porn to help with feelings of anger, stress, and sadness, which was not something he had ever really understood, and which I had no idea about. We did a lot of work on communication and on trust (although trust is still an ongoing problem for me!). I liked the fact that we were able to develop practical solutions that were based on how we lived our lives and how our relationship worked. I felt supported by the counsellor and was able to say things in our sessions that I would never have been able to say at home. It hasn't wiped away the hurt and the pain, but it has helped me understand the situation, and the pressures my partner was under that made it easy for him to become addicted. Perhaps the most useful thing the counsellor told us was not to think of this addiction as something to be cured, but as something to be managed. The addiction will always be there, so the challenge is to make sure that the addict does not act on it. Two years on from his last relapse, we still revisit what we learnt. My partner says he feels more confident that he can avoid viewing porn again. I still struggle quite often, but now we are able to talk about how I feel and what my worries are, and I feel my partner understands my position much better. Most importantly, if he relapses again, we know how to deal with it and what to do, so I am able to feel much more confident about the future. I'm not sure if any of this will be helpful for you, but I do hope you find a way through this. I wish I had been braver early on in our relationship and confronted this awful thing, but I had no idea the occasional magazine would lead to such an overwhelming addiction.
    3 points
  7. Hi Scarlett, I'm so, so sorry you have had this experience and like many of us have turned to this forum in desperation for support. The knowledge that you now have of your loved one can never be 'un known'- something that, for me, has been the very hardest thing to deal with as, like you, I have loved my husband for a very long time and can't imagine life without him. But the feeling that I can't live with the knowledge of what he has done can be very corrosive. He is now in recovery- if you're not sure what that means I urge you to investigate the blog posts on this website and maybe download Paula Hall's excellent book for the partners of sex addicts. This will give you encouragement as well as practical advice for what will inevitably be a long journey for you. If you can afford it, some counselling from the expert therapists at the Laurel Centre will be incredibly valuable for you. Your wellbeing, health and recovery must be your top priority. Whether your partner decides to embark on his own recovery is a separate issue. If money is tight there are some free online support groups too, such as S-Anon. For now, I'm sending love and a virtual hug, please know that you are not alone. I think all of us continue to be amazed at how far this addiction reaches into all parts of society. Please look after yourself and reach out again as often as you need to. x
    3 points
  8. I haven’t been on here for so long. I just felt I couldn’t look. I didn’t want to read the stories for fear of thinking that other people’s recounts of what their partners were doing, might be something my husband was also doing but I didn’t know. That fear of never having full disclosure never leaves me. Then I’ve felt bad for not responding to others and trying to offer words of support 😟. Have others felt like this at times? I am almost two and a half years in from discovery and it’s one and a half years from full disclosure. I can not believe how hard it is still after all this time. Although my life has stabilised to a degree and we are still together, I am still so full of grief and sadness. The disbelief is as strong as it was on that terrible day. I ask myself, is this it? Will I feel like this for the rest of my life? I still have a cry almost every day. I’m so sorry I am not writing anything positive. There are some, I’m sure. But they seem to get smothered by the pain that I am still feeling. Hoping that you are all feeling stronger and if not, that you have support somewhere x
    2 points
  9. Thanks for your kind words, Ann. I think one of the frustrations for me is that my husband has actually been totally accepting of the pain I feel. He has worked through therapy for many months. Fully understands what issues have led to this addiction, which was there way before me. He is devastated by the pain he has caused and feels such shame. When I am a complete mess, he never says I should be over it by now or tried to make excuses. He just supports and comforts me the best way he can and is constantly saying how sorry he is. I have seen such a change in him in accepting and talking about what he did. I’m sure all of this is vital. If he wasn’t doing this, I would be gone. But despite the successes of therapy, I still feel so so sad. For 20 years, he was the man who showed me true love. I felt so lucky to have such a wonderful marriage to the kindest man I’d ever known. Now I have to accept that part of my love story wasn’t true. I’m still plagued by intrusive thoughts and I think I’m dealing with overwhelming grief. But I love him. We are good together and happy in each other’s company. I just want to feel normal. There is a new normal that I’m trying to accept. But it is so tough at times.
    2 points
  10. Hi @Lenet4, so sorry that you’re having to go through this. I would second what Christine says above about having someone to talk to yourself, especially if you are becoming frightened of your partner’s aggression. My partner had some elements of this when I gradually discovered his addiction nearly two years ago. I wasn’t scared of him, but I realise now that I was scared of him walking out - he tended to do angry stonewalling rather than aggression in the ‘traditional’ sense. I’ve come to realise that for my partner the anger is intrinsically attached to shame, so anything that hits his shame buttons has the tendency to provoke an angry response. As such, eye contact and ‘being seen’ while I tried to talk to him about his addition was not conducive to having any kind of productive discussion. We’ve had the most meaningful talks about it and about his past experiences while walking side-by-side - I think the lack of eye contact and the exercise helps to reduce the shame. It’s a hard path choosing to stay with an addict, and I think that I was too understanding initially, and did not put my own needs first enough of the time. However we are in a much better place now where we can discuss things more openly, and (I believe) he’s been sober for a while now. This has included a year and a half of therapy for him and I still wouldn’t say we’re out of the woods yet. The road out of addiction is a long and winding one!
    2 points
  11. Hi there; I just want to share that I have dealt with similar things and feel I can relate: hang in there! Will send a longer message tomorrow as I’m super tired but didn’t want to read and move past….
    2 points
  12. This thread is very timely. I spent all yesterday afternoon in tears, trying to explain to my partner how soul-destroying it is to live with someone who is sexually anorexic as part of his addiction. He swears that he finds me attractive, but I have to take his word for it, because he shows nothing more than a sisterly affection for me. I give him credit for actually joining in the conversation, even though he wanted desperately to run away (and probably act out, for all I know). It became apparent that at 56 y/o, he has never had a physically and emotionally intimate relationship. I think that is really sad. So when I say I want a normal healthy sex life, he has no model at all for what that is. He says he wants to learn how to do that, and I honestly believe him, but the task seems, frankly, insurmountable. I likened it to wanting to be fluent in German; sure, he knows enough German to get by, but how realistic is it that he would become fluent at 56, and how much work would it take to do so? How motivated is he to put in the effort and really, what does it do for my self-esteem to have a man who has to put in effort to show me that he loves me? Where does this leave me? Like you, Long-Suffering, I have contemplated finding another man, but that isn't what I want and, to be honest, my sexual self-esteem has been destroyed by my partner. His ex-wife and I had a conversation last year where she told me that for 26 years, she thought that she was too ugly for him to want sex with her! Poor woman! I assured her that it wasn't her, but I know exactly how she feels. Or do I take matters into my own hands, so to speak, and end up satisfying my needs without him, which is the very thing that I get upset at him doing? And that does nothing to satisfy my need to be part of a loving relationship. Very occasionally, we both let down our guard enough to make love, and it's wonderful. I stupidly think that we have turned a corner, and how can he not want more of this closeness and good feeling; then he sabotages it with acting out in some way and we are back to square one, with me feeling like a fool - yet again - for hoping that things could be different. We are in couples therapy, so I am hoping that this will help us break the cycle, but I have been here so many times that not only do I feel stupid, and unattractive, but hopeless too. I work with a lot of people with addictions, (for a long time before I met my partner) and while they all hurt their loved ones, I don't think any addiction takes down a partner's sense of self like sex addiction. While my head knows that there is nothing wrong with me, my heart is so crushed by the repeated rejection, not to mention the betrayal, lies and secrecy of the behaviour I discovered last year, that if I were to start over with another man, I think my sexual self is destroyed now. I never thought I would be in this position, and I don't know how to change it. I think it is tragic that there are so many of us who evidently have been hurt in this very personal way. I can't explain this, even to my close friends, because they just wouldn't get it. I am grateful to you all who are willing to share your similar experiences. Ann x
    2 points
  13. Thanks so much Chrissy-i hope you do one day find the partner you are looking for and deserve. I like your definition/understanding of real intimacy and agree wholeheartedly and can see that is at the root of my issues with my husband. I will try and raise this area with him when we next talk in that kind of way. My situation is different - i presume for a host of individual, personal and family reasons....I really imagine that I am in for the long haul and do not plan to leave, separate or divorce in my present thinking but of course there is always the bomb that could go off and change my mind!! hug to you too. x
    2 points
  14. I am a complete newbie too if that refers to the forum rather than the hurt partner!I am really relieved to have found the laurel centre resources- I feel that my same story is mixed up in reading the above, and other bits and pieces... so many parallels and similar accounts and emotions. I feel for those of you that are hurting and send love and courage. I also feel in solidarity with this group- good knowing we all understand the situations so well and get the picture immediately, and speak the same language. apologies for my ramblings below and the fact that thoughts are all over the place. My husband is 64 and has been an addict for 50 years although only diagnosed officially 4 years ago after a particular event. We have been married 43 years....childhood sweethearts and soulmates and most of that time really happy despite the fact that over the years my husband had explored all kinds of methods / platforms / avenues to feed his addiction. He's been a confirmed sex and love addict since doing an intensive course 4 years ago in London at the Hudson clinic. This was a good turning point after which he had been sober......things i thought were going well. Over the years i have known about his demons, and many elements and obviously the big disclosures and to a large extent I have done remarkably well to be understanding and continue to love him and not leave him even after a long affair. Naturally i was under the impression things were on track; he attends regular meetings, works through the steps ( stopped at step 8 though???) Initially he used his sponsor well but recently disengaged with the programme and then the all too familiar situations re-occur. The slips occur along with and deception and lies and we are back to square one. Yesterday after seeing a strange list of names on his phone, I confronted him once again and he confirmed what i had suspected..he is acting out again, connecting with so many strange woman all the time on chat lines on his phone ( now confiscated) He was completely out of control using his phone at very inappropriate times and it was never far from his side. I naturally feel an idiot for not being more demonstrative. I guess i am the consummate enabler but yet i do know the addiction IS NOT MY FAULT> Right now my husband is so full of shame he can hardly talk and feels beaten. I am broken again but only temporarily i hope. i have a lot that is good in my life. We have two grown up daughters and a first grandchild born just 4 weeks ago with another due in a few weeks time so the thing that makes me so cross is how the addiction can lead him to change/ruin things with his behaviours in a second . I have just retired to be able to help the girls - so yesterday in reality my day went from blissfully content to that familiar stab of pain in a second- knowing "here I am again" I should be hardened to it all as for me its been such a long journey but each time there is something new to deal with, it winds us so badly with a spiral into deep despair. I guess this is all too common after disclosure and then the hard road starts again to navigate through recovery along those well read 12 steps. time to end and read more of other's experiences........
    2 points
  15. Foreverhealing, I am so very sorry for how you are feeling. I totally understand what you are saying, it is such a difficult situation to deal with and impacts us partners in such a massive way. As you have said, the lies are the worst thing. And sadly that is what addicts do, they lie to cover up their habit. I always prided myself on having good instincts about people, but completely missed what was happening with my husband, and that has then created insecurities about everything! I wish I had the answers, but I don’t! I have come to learn that I have to look after myself first and foremost. That’s what I try to do. I have therapy with a therapist trained in this area, I try to practice mindfulness, and I look to my friends and family for emotional support. I try to just be! sending you a virtual hug and love xxx
    2 points
  16. I think as humans we always need hope. Otherwise it’s very hard to put one foot in front of the other. We are all here with the same pain but we are all on different paths and that’s ok. As Ann said, we need to focus on ourselves. Once we have done this we can decide where we want to go. I think of it as this, we (my partner and I) each have a garden to tend and care for, once we have taken care of this we can care for our shared garden. I can’t tell you whether to stay or go, only to take care of your own garden first. Once you are doing this hopefully it will be clearer whether your husband wants to join you in caring for the shared space. My husband is coming up for 3 months recovery. He has had small slips which have been disclosed straight away. The last slip was almost 4 weeks ago. He says it will take the best part of 18 months for his brain to rewire but he will be in recovery for the rest of his life. We still manage nice days out with the children and I have found intimacy with him healing for me personally. But I am also healing from trauma and that means I have to work hard as well at keeping my mind on track and not allowing myself to be taken down a painful road of self blame and beating myself up that this is my fault: easier said than done but I still have hope and feel that I have much more to gain than to lose….
    2 points
  17. Hi Freddiebear, I'm so sorry you have had such a rotten time of it during this period. Firstly, you don't deserve this; none of us do. I don't think there is any other addiction that makes the partner lose her sense of self in the same way that sex addiction does. The way I deal with it, is to keep reminding myself that with him or without him, addict or not, I have to take care of myself. It's not always easy, but I do things that make me feel good about me. I go to the gym, I read poetry, I do my knitting, walk the dog, and spend time with people who make me feel good about myself. I especially enjoy spending time with my children, who are all adult now. The things that make you feel good may, of course, be different, but those things work for me. If I have chosen to live with an addict, I know I need these things in my life to help me deal with that. And if I choose not to live with him anymore, then I will need these things in my life too. I still feel unattractive, spurned and foolish many days, and I doubt my choice often, but the more I do these things for myself, the easier those days are to cope with. I'm only a couple of years younger than you. I know that my body is not what it used to be, and while my health is good now, I know that that is not guaranteed. I'm not going to spend the rest of my life dependent on this man, or any man, to make me feel good about myself! I'd like him to feel good about me too, but I can't rely on that, although I hope that a better expression of that will come in time. You aren't a headcase! You are having a normal response to an abnormal situation, one that you could not possibly be prepared for. Just reading the entries on this forum will tell you that, sadly, you are in good company. As for protecting him from suicide, you can't do that. Firstly, it's not fair of him to make you feel responsible for his continued life. Secondly, if someone is really determined to commit suicide, they will find a way to do it, regardless of the vigilance of those who love him/her. Pull back your energy into taking care of you, and let him learn how to do the same for himself. I wish you well as you regain your sanity and poise. Ann x
    2 points
  18. Hi Ann, I’m 3 months post latest discovery. This time seems different; to summarise (17 years together 2 children) first incident was 2017, second 2018, Paula hall course 2018, I thought recovery 2018-present but latest Incident was 3 months ago (sex worker) and he admitted he never recovered from the porn following the course in 2018. My husband insisted in 2018 that he wasn’t to share his recovery with me. On reflection he told me this was a huge burden for him, that whilst the lies were to protect hurting me, he was also falling further and further into disconnection and he felt so ashamed being with me because of keeping his lies to himself. 1 lie turned into another. I know that it is suggested not to share recovery with your partner, but if you’re like me, have decided to support/forgive/intellectualise that it’s not to do with “us” then it could work? this time we are doing the following: a whatsapp group for us which is called accountability. Daily video posts here, notification of urges, anxiety triggers and flags, daily check in, communicating all planned free time, phone and screen detox (gives to me when home) etc, going to bed together. It’s a huge commitment from him but feel it’s on the scale with my commitment to support him through addiction. Without this, I think the relationship would be over and out 3 and 7 year old would be devastated. I’ve made the boundaries clear. Physical cheating = it’s over, porn relapse = has to be disclosed within 10 minutes. If continually not disclosed = will also be over. not sure if any of this helps at all. X
    2 points
  19. I would endorse everything that Tabs said, and I would add that it is so important to take care of yourself, like really really take care of yourself! One year on, I am only now realising how much time and effort I have put into holding my partner up as he is dealing with his addiction. I still intend to support him, but this year, I am taking care of myself better and asking more of him. You will find a lot of understanding and support on this website. Sending you big hugs, Ann x
    2 points
  20. Hi KR1212, I believe you have come to a kinder place than mumsnet. Porn addiction, from my experience, isn’t really acknowledged and understood by anyone who has not been impacted by it, or those that have studied it. It is real, it is relationship destroying and sadly, as I have experienced it is life destroying. The good thing is your husband recognises he needs help and has sought it. That’s takes courage. For us partners we are suddenly thrown into an alien world, where we feel are we no longer able to trust our judgment. My husband, like yours was the kindest gentlest man. Unbeknown to me he was suffering mentally and porn, including on line chat, and actual hookups, was his medication. From being very broad minded on the subject of porn, and social media, with the knowledge I have gathered, I now believe it to be toxic. Many lives are being destroyed, and will continue to be, with those affected getting younger and younger. Until society wakes up to this, it will continue, and get even worse. It might help you to read Paula Halls book for partners, and there are other books covering porn addiction which I have found useful, The porn trap, the porn myth….it’s very real. Do you have anyone that you can trust to talk to? It’s a heavy burden to carry alone. It is a tough and emotive subject, and as you found on mumsnet, the ‘public’ tends not to want to understand or look deeper. Remember, this is NOT about you!! It took me some time to realise this, but it helps enormously to know this. You could have done nothing to stop this behaviour. It is about him. look after yourself, put yourself first, and practice self care….hugs to you! xx
    2 points
  21. Dear All, I just want to share something that I feel is a positive to come out of this awful situation we find ourselves in. I now actually really SEE the world that I live in. I have been gifted with more compassion and empathy than I had before. I now believe that if we truly open ourselves up to learning about what is in front of us, taking our time, and instead of going along with our initial reactions and emotions, gifted to us by past experiences, our education and morals, together with media propaganda and mob rule mentality, we really grow. We improve as individuals. So, even though I have gone through the very worst, I have, I believe come out of it as a better and stronger person! I do hope so! I’m sorry if this grates with some, but I just want to share some hope and positivity. I needed it so badly at the start of this journey. much love and strength to you allxxx
    2 points
  22. We can’t hug you, but any of us who read your pain can identify with it. I, for one, know the fury of seeing my partner compartmentalise his feelings, while I am fragmenting. He looks like he’s fine, and I appear the mad one. Is it loyalty, shame, or hope for better times that keep us from telling everybody what is really happening? What helped me, was just to remember to breathe. Each breath will move you closer to some point of resolution, though it may yet be some time. You aren’t alone; we are all suffering in silence with you. X
    2 points
  23. Morning @GemGem I can completely relate to all you are saying, my therapist mentioned that partners sometimes can be experiencing PTSD and I think to people outside of the situation they may think we are overreacting (“it’s only a bit of porn all men do it”) which is super unhelpful. My heart goes out to you knowing you have lost friends due to this, and all I can say it feel free to message me on here if you need a chat or to vent - because I will maybe be able to relate. I think having support is so important, I have told my friends quite watered down versions of what has been going on (I’m truly embarrassed about his behaviour, will people think it’s a reflection of me? Am I so terrible in bed my boyfriend would rather stay up into the early hours paying for other women?). He said that when he knows I will be going away he plans what he’s going to buy (this makes me feel so sick and it feels so calculated). He said he can’t get rid of his smartphone and I know I can’t force anything - it needs to be what he is willing to do. Like you, I have managed to discover exactly what he’s being doing and when - so now there are dates in my mind which I know will be triggers for me. On Mother’s Day where he said he was spending time with his family and didn’t really call me all day he had spent £300 on porn. This day now will be a huge trigger for me. I crossed checked our WhatsApp messages to his computer files and bank statements, there are several occasions where I’ve sent him intimate photos of myself and that same day he’s bought personalised videos of other women. Days when he’s messaged me whilst I’m away and asked for some money to buy gifts for family or food shopping whilst I’ve been away he’s actually been using it for porn. It honestly is killing me, when I look at him I just feel sick. I keep hearing the womens voices in my head, I wish I didn’t watch the videos but once I found his secret folder I was like a women possessed and I now can’t unseen what I found. Will your partner go to therapy for this? I feel like I’m clinging on to mine because he is going to therapy but I don’t know if he’s just doing it to keep me here. I have no trust at all. Sending you big hugs too, and thanks for replying and listening. It means a lot, it really does❤️
    2 points
  24. Aww I know, this particular forum is new to me but back in 2015 (1st & most horrific in terms of trauma, what I found & the drip drip of finding more & more over a number of weeks) I googled for online support groups I was desperate for someone to hear my pain & to understand. I found one called Through The Flame but it doesn’t exist anymore. I felt like you, horrified at the circumstances I’d found myself in. It is a lonely place, I completely isolated myself from everyone except my parents (who have both since passed) I wish I hadn’t but I’d had a total nervous breakdown, I couldn’t see at the time that cutting literally everyone except my parents out of my life was the worst thing I could do. It took a long time (1.5yrs) to stop having panic attacks etc and coax myself to the shop... simple things. By that time the friendships I’d had prior had died away. Whatever you do, don’t do that. Try to keep in contact with a few good friends (whether you confide in them or not). It does make you feel physically ill, it’s all the shock/stress chemicals like adrenaline, cortisol etc flooding your body/brain. It makes you exhausted, shaky, bad stomach etc. My heads been hurting non stop. When the anger waves come I feel like I’m going to have a stroke or something. I actually fainted today in the bathroom. I think it’s a mixture of not eating due to the stress plus the fight/flight chemicals. I remember seeing the money spent on extra phone data etc and being livid. The discoveries that first time that I found spanned our whole relationship including my pregnancy and our wedding (I know what he searched out watched & did the night before our wedding) I can never un-see the things I found. I know that worlds crashed down feeling it’s truly awful. Your counsellor should help you with setting & implementation healthy boundaries. I child locked everything last night, Amazon fire tv, tablet, laptop etc. I’ve set everything up password protected for anything over pg rating. My husband has only had a basic Nokia (no internet phones) since 2016 which is probably why we’ve had a few years of relative peace. Unfortunately for reasons only known to him he’s been using our 8yr old tablet that we got him for Xmas to search out saucy images of various models, actresses etc he’s ruined so many simple things for me like watching tv, a movie, certain adverts if it’s got someone in it he’s gone nuts searching over. The triggers this addiction leaves with the partners are plentiful & very painful. There are many of us suffering the same, you’re definitely not alone in that sense but I totally get what you mean because it’s not the sort of addiction you feel you can lean on other people for support. Those who haven’t experienced what this addiction is like to live with in a partner can be very dismissive of it & make light of it..... they are callous & have no idea. Sending you a big hug & solidarity x
    2 points
  25. Hi all, hope you are well and safe. I am the wife on the receiving end of a husband with porn addiction. We have been together for 8 years now and at the beginning of the relationship I was slightly naive. I followed my gut instinct, I sensed something wasn't right but couldn't quite put my finger on it. Then it all became apparent, I caught him on multiple sex chat rooms,videos of him and other girls on sites, on his pc, phone etc. I was absolutely distraught, not overly confident myself due to childhood issues which he was aware of, he knew how it would make me feel however, despite telling me on numerous occasions he will stop it continued. Then when I fell pregnant with our beautiful girl, he was evil, I knew the signs, I knew what he was doing and I caught him again. I decided I didn't want to bring my child up in this environment so I went back to my own town. I was done, it hurt so bad, my first child,. I was petrified. I then found out he had put our personal videos on sex sites. Violated was an understatement. As time went on I got used to the idea of raising my baby, till one day he turned up out of the blue at my door begging me to give another chance so I did. He sold his house i sold mine we brought a nice new home,.it was looking up. We moved in on the Friday I gave birth on the Sunday. Again I started to sense something wasn't right. He never wanted to know me, didn't interact with our daughter and used to go work then bed. One day he called me early in the day really upset, I asked him what had happened, he said work had sent him home because he was depressed. Something wasn't right, when he got home I could tell there was more to it, so I said you just need to tell me the truth. Eventually he did, all the time I was pregnant he was and when we moved to our house he was seeing a girl from work, they were sending explicit videos and pictures to each other using work laptops and he got suspended. His parents disowned him I was absolutely broken. Again, I stood by him. He promised to get help, went to a couple of sessions and stopped. Same thing again and again. We ended up getting married another clear slate but yes he's is still doing it, he has no interest in me whatsoever, he sleeps in my daughters bed and she is in our bed with me. I really thought after the last time he had done with it. I tell him how no intimacy makes me feel. He told me he couldn't get an erection, I offered to go doctors with him. Weeks went by no change, no doctors. I actually thought to myself no way he can't still be doing this 8 years on. Yes, he is, I caught him again 2 weeks ago, all the videos he said he never had any more were all there again despite him having a new phone. When he asked me to prove it, even when confronted with the evidence he continued to deny it, how patronising. I never argue in front of my girl so I just left the house. I asked him to be gone when I get back. He was still there sleeping like a baby. He came down to me and gave me the same thing I have heard for years. I ended up poorly last week and was hospitalised. I am out now and he is acting like nothing happened and continues to sleep in my daughters room. He has completely destroyed me, he is an amazing father, my daughter dotes on him, we never argue with the exception of the above times, we actually have things in common but I'm torn now I cannot break my daughters heart but how many times do I let him do this to us. I ask for nothing just to be loved, feel loved and always be honest. I'm so lost right now, I have a heart of gold and I always get along with everyone. I have really had enough but then I look at our girl. When I met him I was a size 6-8 and I kept myself very fit. When I had our daughter I gave my body to her for the 9 months and went to a size 26, after having her I am now a size 12. I feel he is not attracted to me, he is 53 I am 41. I have people paying me Compliments, I could easily find another man, but he is my husband and the father of my child. I feel so empty right now and really low self esteem. I'm sharing my story to try and get help but also to give people an understanding of how the receiving end feels 😌 x
    2 points
  26. It is so hard to keep giving love and not have it respected and valued. First and foremost, you have to take care of yourself. Read everything you can about sex addiction. For so many of us, there is a lovely man that we love, and then there is the addict. As long as the addict is the one you are dealing with, you don't have access to that good man, however good a husband/friend/father he might be. The addict will chew the man up, chew you up and chew your relationship up. Get yourself well, with good trustworthy support. If your husband won't do the same, then he is lost to the addiction and with the best will in the world, won't be able to access all that is true and good in himself. Many of us ask ourselves the same questions every day. You are not alone. x
    2 points
  27. Hi everyone, I'm brand new to this all. I've been with my partner 10 months, after a spout of heart aches and bad boyfriends for the two years before. I met my bf and thought finally, this is someone I see a future with. There was a rocky start where I found he was talking to another girl, but lied about it. We never really sorted that out as he gas lighted me about it, saying it was in my head. I've always known there was something up. I have so many male friends that I didn't want to be that gf who said he can't have female friends. So I went against my judgement and encouraged him to see and speak to his female friends. About a week ago I got a message from his ex, who I don't know. She said my bf had tried to get her to sleep with him in December and she only just found out he had a gf at the time. She said he'd done the same to her. So then I sat my bf down and spent three horrific days trying to figure out what's going on. It took a lot of me pulling things from him, getting evidence from his phone and even when presented with evidence, he still tried to lie. Even though I knew most of it anyway. So the damage is this. He slept around for the first two months with people online. He lied to me and took a trip to see the girl I knew he had been speaking to, and spent the night with her. And yet he continued to say it was in my head. He then had a few one night stands around that time too. He then reached out to another girl he used to know online saying how he hates how much he misses her. He then went to stay with his best friend late summer, and slept with her twice. With this one, it was pre planned as they spent the day discussing it. He lied and told her he was in an open relationship. This is his longest most dear friend who he has now lost. He spent the day messaging me, whilst discussing how they were going to sleep together that night. He then introduced me to this friend a month later, taking me to her house. He sat me on the sofa they had sex on. I kept asking why, as he didn't need to do this. He said he didn't think about it. About two weeks ago, this friend messaged him, saying her new date was "friendly, good looking oh and a dom". He went out of his way to come over and show me the message, and said "wow we never talk about sex. This is so weird, what should I reply?". It is moments like this that hurt me, as that was unnecessary. I would never have seen that message as don't even know the code to his phone. Then there is the online affair. He posts constantly in forums saying he's looking for someone to meet. He met this girl on there, who was on some infidelity forum too. I saw messages of my bf saying how he wants an illicit affair behind his gfs back, and that's what excites him. The girl also has a partner. So they spent 2/3 of our relationship every day chatting on a secret messaging app. Sending photos and videos and voice clips, saying how much they like each other. He called her a nickname, said how much he wanted her in his bed. They would sext a lot. He also sent her photos of himself when me and him were on dates or walks. He sent her photos of things I got him for presents. He sent her everything he sent me, and more. He kept trying to meet with her and last week had invited her to his flat where he said he had planned to sleep with her in our bed. Then in Jan he met up with her. She said no to sex at first date. They walked. Then a week later he asked why she had been quiet. She said she didn't want the sex part anymore and just wanted to be friends. So this sent him in a spiral as it was rejection, and it hurt him so then he then mass text all the women in his life that he had slept with or had previously engaged in sexting with, asking for more sex or sexting. This included his friend from earlier on, an ex, and others. Despite her being very secretive, I've actually found her online. I found where she works. And the irony is she helps people for her job. And yet I don't have any plans to do anything with that info. It just hurts to see her there, unaffected by this all. And potentially doing it again to someone else. Throughout the whole of our relationship, my bf spams people online, on forums. Reaching out to anyone either with sex or with normal chat. This is about up to 30 messages a day. He used different apps and messaging services to send people photos of his naked body, with his face in them. And would share a photo that we had shared online, of our bodies close up. So this means with his face being shown, they could potentially track down who I am fairly easily with the other info he told them. And now they have a naked photo of me (although it was shared online, but it was meant to be untraceable). There was also a friend of his who I didn't like him talking to as he kept talking about her so fondly, and hating her bf. He also told me they had kissed before we met. We had a massive argument in Jan about it. Eventually he said he wouldn't want to hurt me so will stop talking to his friend. I felt very guilty and told him this, saying I hate that she has lost her friend. He used to bring it up, as a "look what I'm doing for you". But it turns out he never stopped talking to her. He actually told her I said not to talk to her, and he will do it anyway. Then he tried to sext her last week. It tuned out also they had slept together before me. He actually cheated on his ex, with this woman. And she knew he was with someone at the time too. The last time he slept with someone they didn't use protection. So I could have an sti. He also could have brought covid into my house. So then we come to the lying. He lies about so many different things. Things that don't matter or bring him any gain. When caught in a lie, he can't stop. And he even gas lights me to stop himself admitting it. I've gone to cbt for anxiety last month, which he pushed, and came off my anti depressants in Nov. And yet he still chose to say it is in my head, than admit he got a take away (that was one of the lies). By the way I love take away and would not care at all. So this all came out last week. He has been so distraught and crying and opened up to me. He never has admitted the severity of this all before. He has lied to people since he was a child. He let me tell his friend he had lied, and now she has removed him from her life. He also reached out to his mum (who left the family home when he was young) and tell her this. He also let me phone her and fill in details, so she gets a full understanding of how bad the situation is. One thing I'm struggling with is this. Is this the behaviour of somebody who is actually facing mental health issues. Or is it somebody who has chosen consciously to live that life, but wants to keep me around to have his cake and eat it too? It is the pre planned part and the harshness of gas lighting me and forgoing my mental health, physical health (sti and covid) that really hurt. Currently we are trying to get him the professional help he needs. And have had a relate session. I'm starting a new high power job in a month or so, and just don't know what to do.
    2 points
  28. Hi Bluebell, So sorry to hear your pain. The first few months will be really hard and there is no easy way through. You are probably still in shock. The problem is that we often don't suspect anything. My husband would have been the last person ANYONE would think would do this. I would have sworn that this was an issue we would never have had to face. And yes, it had been going on for years. The most important thing now is you. Don't try to make any future plans at the moment. You will be finding just getting through the days is hard enough. Don't put any pressure on yourself. One day, one hour, sometimes one breath at a time. I get it. I have never known pain like I felt at the beginning of this journey. One of the hardest things is that for us this is all new. For our husbands it has been part of their lives for a long time. Your husband may not understand that you will be in shock as well as heartbroken. I don't know if your husband has admitted he needs help, or started a programme? This is something he has to decide for himself as wanting to seek help must come from him. Mine is working through the 12 step programme. We are working hard on our relationship, but at the beginning I honestly thought I would never even be able to bear looking at him again. What I'm trying to say is that however you feel, that's ok. There is no right or wrong way to think or feel. It is totally unique to you. What we all have in common here is hurt, but also to gain strength from knowing we're not alone. Do whatever you need to do for you. It is time to focus on yourself. Your husband must work out what he will do, but that is not your problem. Sending you hugs and strength. Things will get easier, whatever the long term outcome, but I know it won't feel like it at the moment. Take care of yourself. You are no fool, just trusting, as most of us were. x
    2 points
  29. Hi Bluebell, I’m so sorry that you find yourself here. I can feel your pain. I have sadly discovered there are many of us, some never share their story, so well done for doing just that! My story is on this forum. I was devastated when I found out about my husband’s secret world. He had a lot of therapy, and still is, and is now understanding his actions and the impact this has had on his life, and mine. It is hard when we have lived a happy life with our partner, then to learn it was not as it seemed. Firstly, I have learned, that is not our fault. Secondly, it is for him to fix himself, and for you to put yourself first. Something I still struggle with. There are lots of good resources on this site, and other sites on the internet. I have read so many books, and papers and forums. My head understands now, but my heart hasn’t quite caught up. I’m still a work in progress! please practice self care, that is important. big hugs xx
    2 points
  30. Thank you, it’s a huge relief to have this resource and be able to draw on experience and professional expertise. I feel that we are ‘getting there’ albeit slowly and in a 2 steps forward 1 step back approach. Lockdown bizarrely has helped because we have been forced to be together and many aspects of our relationship have improved but it’s a work in progress.
    2 points
  31. Hi Squirrel. I am really sorry to read your story and there is no perfect answer to any of this. I guess it starts with whether your partner is prepared to do everything it takes to be free from this and how committed he will be to a long journey into recovery. It's either both feet into recovery or what is the point? Have you told him your staying is conditional on this? Also aside from this have you out discussed boundaries that would help ? For instance wifi controls, blocks to certain sites with his mobile data provider, his mobile phone only being used in your presence? You cant control this but you can ask for things that make you feel safer emotionally. I made the decision to tell my family and a few close friends and it was the best decision for me. It was nothing but love from them, no judgement.suprisingly toward him too. They believe in the power of redemption as do i.... that the man my husband was is not the man he always has to be. Remember that you have time and dont need to make any decisions about anything just yet, particularly about decisions that could have consequences. You are in control of when and what you decide, my own counsellor has advised I do nothing for 12 months and I am 5 months into discovery. Please also remember that you didnt cause this, you cant control this and you cant cure this. Take care of yourself x
    2 points
  32. Hi all, I have been in a relationship with my husband for 5 years and we/he have battled with his addiction to dating websites which he uses like porn and his acting out is getting progressively worse and worse. He has always gone out driving so he can access the site and go and meet women and admits to having physical contact with them in various forms ( says no sex but obviously that’s unlikely ) Unfortunately he left his phone line open by accident and I had the hideous experience of listening to it happening live just before Christmas. We have talked and talked and cried lots about this endless cycle of lying followed by huge remorse, guilt and shame and despite going through the NHS for help we have got nowhere during covid. I feel abandoned by the services and I don’t feel I have anywhere left to turn now. We have a beautiful 2 year old and I know he loves us both deeply but he can’t control this addiction and in turn it’s now controlling me. I so want to keep my family together but it’s looking so unlikely now that I am devastated. I know there is not a question here for anyone to answer but hearing other people’s stories makes me feel just a little less alone.
    2 points
  33. Thanks so much for your reply! Your absolutely right, the action has to come from him and I have to focus on me and building myself back up. I will have a look at your suggested posts, and thanks again for your kind response xx
    2 points
  34. I am so sorry Worry_Wort, I don’t know if you have read my story, but we are in a similar position. I am now 16 months into my journey and hope I can use my own personal experience to help you. I understand your need to know what caused your husband to go down this route. I needed to understand too, to help process this massive shock. Your husband being in therapy is a great start, is it with a specialist therapist? Both my husband and myself see a StopSo therapist, they are very well informed in this area. They will help your husband explore why he got to where he did, he has uncovered a lot of issues on his childhood and into adulthood, all of which he covered up so well. He seemed calm, happy and under control. But he wasn’t. Through my therapist and the various on line offender partner forums I have learned there are so many people going through this journey , but it such a taboo subject that most people don’t talk about it. The therapists know a great deal about the crime side of things, which I find helpful for me. She also helps me process and acknowledge my feelings, which still continue to go all over the place. My therapist has also trained with Paula Hall, and she deals with other types of therapy too, so we cover a little of the relationship side, in fact whatever I need to talk about. I have joined the StopSo and Lucy Fauthful Stop it Now forums, and they are great to talk to people in a similar position to us. I also come here as not many on there have partners that have physically acted out too. Basically I look for as much support as I can! We ARE victims and I am determined to work to get the authorities to recognise us. I have great support from friends and my family, but it’s not a comfortable subject to talk about, and I don’t think they can truly understand. I initially went into overdrive on helping him and researching and reading, to the detriment of my mental health. I have only recently done free an online course on ’Healing Trauma from Sexual Betrayal’, I wish I’d done this many months ago, but I have only just found it. I’ve found it to be excellent. please google it, it may help you. I understand it feels like we’ve lost our husbands. I have a widow friend and we talk about how we feel, and we both agree it’s actually worse than death, as there isn’t the closure and the celebration of a life. But we have lost, suddenly, the life we were living and our future. I truly hope you find some peace soon. Although, I must say I’m still looking. With time though I have got much stronger than I ever thought possible. Take care X
    2 points
  35. Thank you Jay123. I am so sorry that you are dealing with the agony of social media too. I just wish that there was more public awareness of this addiction. It is hard to explain to others, it sounds like excuses, not reasons, when I talk of his past and how it has impacted on his mental health which has led him down this addictive and destructive path. No one sets out to ruin their lives do they? We both have therapy which helps us understand. But some people don’t even want to attempt to understand. Many do though, and I am grateful for them in my life. People who know me/us. Strangers are the ones who are negative and very vocal, faceless keyboard warriors. I just wish that people were kinder. I don’t think they understand the impact of their words, at a time when we are in more than enough pain. I am still waiting for police outcome. We are still living apart. Another Christmas alone is looming , and with Covid too this year. I feel very sad for him, as he has no one, and that is not healthy. I talk to him occasionally but we are becoming more distant with each other, but he is still the one I want to turn to. Best wishes to you too, and I hope that you are able to move on with your lives. X
    2 points
  36. Hi Lilo, I’m sad to read this post. I can hear that you feel very abandoned. I am no expert in this, it seems that every situation is different. I hope an expert will be able to give you some answers. From what you said earlier he is having therapy, maybe he is struggling with his own feelings still and needs to continue to deal with his demons alone? My husband I myself have been apart for 22 months now, I doubt we will ever be reunited as a couple, but I am supporting him. We have only met for 3 times for probably an hour total during that time. We texted and talked on phone, but only when we needed to to address practical issues. My situation was different in the outcome but the same root cause. The emotional support I needed I found from friends and family. I have have therapy which has helped me to see that I am capable of living alone and helps me explore what I want, what my values are. He has not been ready to open up and discuss fully, his therapy was intense and identified and explored a lot of hidden traumas. We have agreed once he is out of prison we will have a joint therapy session to help us explore our relationship and find closure. He still says he loves me and has hopes for us reuniting, but I have to make sure that any decisions I make are good for me, and honour my core values, I am responsible for me and me only. He is responsible for himself. I do hope that you find peace. Sending love. xx
    1 point
  37. I’m so sorry to hear you are going through this. I would suggest trying to get as much info as you can about sex and porn addiction to help with processing things. If you can’t afford sessions there are some great books. Let me know if you need recommendations. You will see from my other posts my story. I know that porn addiction is a behaviour and not about you. I hope your husband can come to the realisation Ito get help with this…. My husband also used to be in denial it was a problem, but he is now there..
    1 point
  38. I just wanted to reach out to you all to say there is hope. My partner is 18 months sober. He has completed 12 steps and is now a sponsor. His past is nothing short of horrific. Sleeping with over 50 people behind my back during our 15 year relationship. We have a great home, good jobs and two amazing kids it is completely unbelievable he would risk it all. His infidelities were friends, work colleagues, random hook ups on nights out, girls he met online, his sisters best friend was the lowest blow😔 it had spiralled out of control. Whilst I knew of snippets the sheer scale was unfathomable. I'm not in a everything is rosy place. But we can talk openly about our feelings, talk about the acting out and generally we are in a good place of acceptance of what has happened and why (to some extent). I now am struggling with the concept that he was powerless to addiction. To me I think really he was juts ignorant to the trauma and morality. The fact he has had no slip ups or relapses says to me I think he was in control and chose to do what he did as and when it suited him. Its a dark place and you can be consumed with feelings that everything is tainted. What I will say is with hard work (reading, talking trying to understand each other) you can get to shore so to speak. Sending hugs im still here and it gets better. You truly do feel like you can tackle anything if you can get through this x
    1 point
  39. Hi , Both the Laurel Center and Marylebone Centre are excellent for both partners and the addict, Good luck!
    1 point
  40. Lilo, I hear you, I really do. I so wanted my husband to plead with me to stay with him, to tell me that he really loved me, tell me why, to demonstrate his love. It it such a mess of conflicted emotions, but all I wanted was the person I thought he was......I needed him so badly. But, I know now, that he really needed to focus on himself, and try to understand the root of his problems, his, NOT mine or ours, HIS. He needed to find out who he was. I needed to take time to heal, to reflect, and to find myself again. Therapy helped me, as did lots of mindfulness and meditation, and my friends, they became my source of comfort and love. And I read, lots, and tried to understand. Firefly, thank you for sharing your experience with us, it must be painful to remember. But you are certainly helping me understand the ‘why’s’. It’s a brave thing to do. I am in a position now of some peace. I’m 20 months in from D day. Of course, life still sends me problems to overcome. But I try now to not let it overwhelm me, sometimes I’m better at that than others. My husband is in prison, for a total of 14 months. He’s nearly served 2. He will have a lot of obstacles to overcome, but they are his. I choose to support him, by doing that I am being true to myself, but I am also protecting myself, by keeping some distance relationship wise. I forgive him, I forgive those in his life who made his life so difficult. That’s the only way forward. I do not want to live the rest of my life in anger, resentment or fear. I so want to help others, there are so many on this path of destruction. I wish I had known about this ‘danger’. Until we start being open and honest, this addiction will continue to rise. That is so sad! To everyone, I wish you peace going forwards. We can and will learn and improve from this horrendous experience. xxx
    1 point
  41. my husband cheated on me with a prostitute in 2017, then spent all our money on CAM girls, again with a prostitute in 2018 when I was pregnant. I just found out he cheated with a prostitute last week and has been addicted to porn for the past 3 years on and off. Feeling numb and in denial. I still love him and want to forgive him again
    1 point
  42. Yes @GemGem you are completely right, I feel like a shell. Not really eating, knackered, no focus on anything. Saw some friends and my mind was elsewhere (hadn’t told them so they probably just think I’m being moody and uninterested). I am pleased you’ve got a zoom with your old counsellor- I did feel better, albeit temporarily after having my first session... I’m so looking forward to my one next week, it’s like a lifeline. I’ve self harmed since all of this, I’ve never ever done that in my life before so this is all just messing with my head. I was a confident, happy, sociable person before all of this. He’s dragged me right down. It’s so weird, because when I read back your post, my instinct is to tell you of course it’s not you because it is not!! That’s also what I’d tell any of my friends should they be in this situation, but when it’s yourself you can’t separate it and it feels like a personal attack. Maybe deep down I know it’s not me, but then it means facing up to the fact I’ve fallen in love with a liar. Almost blaming myself for being ugly makes it seem logical... I don’t know. It is a mess. I totally get the surgery thing (my bf seems to have a thing for fake boobs, huge fake lips etc) I definitely look natural, and he has always told me that’s what he likes and he hates surgery etc.... evidently not. It feels so manipulative. I suppose it is good your husband has said he will seek professional help.... hopefully this time it will work and maybe he will have to attend weekly sessions for the rest of his life, if it helps you both. I am worried my bf is going to act out again as soon as some kind of normality kicks in (I don’t even see that being any time soon). He has had two sessions so far, another booked for next week but he said he won’t attend any groups as he’s so embarrassed about what he is and doesn’t want anyone to know. I know you are right with regard to stopping the detective work.... I keep finding myself on the women’s instagrams / twitters and throwing up. Especially when I read the comments, knowing that my bf is probably thinking the same when they are posted, paying up for a video then cosying up in bed next to me at 3am saying he’s sorry he was “working” so late into the night. I feel so sick at it all. This is all new so hopefully once the shock has worn off a bit I will stop obsessing over these women. I do need to put myself first but I’m so terrified of losing my life. I wish I didn’t love him so much. He keeps telling me to stop going on forums and that I should just trust him because strangers don’t know him.... he doesn’t get that being a partner is worse than having the addiction. We’re just innocent passengers on this horrendous ride. I think once I get into my own therapy sessions I’ll have a clearer head and will be able to decide if I want to continue in the relationship. It’s all so fresh now. Thanks again for replying❤️
    1 point
  43. Hi everyone just some background on our situation. In summer 2017 I discovered my husband had been using sex workers and it turned out it had been going on since late 2011. That was a double shock we had two more children during the time which I’ve found hard to get over. when I discovered it he was relieved and immediately told me how he felt he could finally fix this problem and got in touch with a sex addiction therapist to talk it over. He appears to be reformed but it’s always in the back of my mind that I didn’t even notice it happening before and it could happen again. it just left me feeling a low self esteem and insecure and questioning everything. when we are together I have images of what he might have done and with who. Not all the time but it’s torture. finally I was always faithful and feel foolish. I tried to understand so many times this condition but still I Can’t get over it. anyone else?? Thank you for listening :)
    1 point
  44. Hi Lorna, I’m so sorry for what you’re going through. I can completely imagine that it wouldn’t be any easier because it’s a (newly) ex partner. Betrayal is betrayal whatever the current status of your relationship. If there’s anything that you can take away from the horrible stuff you’ve found out is that his behaviour is nothing to do with your personality, physical appearance, emotional life, brain and so on. It really sounds from what you’ve said that he has deeply-rooted problems that are causing him to act like this. While you’re still in shock after discovery you can only take it one day (or one minute) at a time, remember to breathe deeply and be as kind to yourself as you would be to one of your friends if they experienced something so upsetting. I’m not in any way completely recovered, but can attest from my own experience and reading that of other partners on here that it does get easier once the trauma of discovery has subsided a bit. I talked to the Samaritans a few times at the beginning which was actually really helpful. Also distracting myself with work, exercise and so on helped to get me through the initial stages (though not easy in covid). Sending good wishes to you and hope that you feel a little bit better soon.
    1 point
  45. Dear Tabs and Stillinlove Thank you for your responses. I'm just starting out on this journey and it is good to know I am not alone. I have tried to read a few books etc and am definitely trying to look after myself. I have a strong faith and rather than being turned off from that, it's the only thing at the moment that I feel is getting me through and I can turn to. I still however go regularly throughout the day to being ok, to then being totally broken. My husband says he wants to make things work with me, but he can't deny that he still has feelings for this other woman. I am distraught over this. I'd rather think it meant nothing. She is currently messaging saying she misses him. He doesn't think the affair is anything to do with him acting out - he said maybe in the beginning because of the thrill of it, but it became more than that (all within a few months). The love addiction element you talk about makes sense as he was stressed and lonely, needing love while traveling (this gets me, as I was lonely and alone too). I hope his therapy will help him see that it's all connected. I fear we have a long road ahead! Bluebell
    1 point
  46. He has been to court, pleaded guilty, as the evidence is clear, ‘she’ wrote in messages that ‘she’was 13. His messed up mind didn’t even register it. ‘She’ sent a photo of ‘herself’, 18 year old, according to the decoy.....covering herself against being charged for illegal images, or was it really a pic of someone aged 18??? she spoke to him on the phone - actual age 30! I heard her on the video, clearly a full grown woman who smoked!! He never pretended to be anyone other than who is is. Who cares???? It seems the written word is the more powerful one. Who cares that it was an adult pretending to be a child, with an adult brain, someone intent on carrying out a sting for public entertainment? The law is the law. Yes, there will be ‘mitigating’ circumstances, but he has already damaged his life. He is now on the sex offenders register and will be sentenced next month. The court didn’t tell him to report to the police station, I did. He didn’t even know what he needed to take. What the hell???? We have a broken legal system, or one that wants to trip people up right from the off. I am angry that I am STILL having to look out for him. He lives so far away, living his new life, and he can’t even sort out something that could have landed him being arrested again. He has physically and mentally deteriorated. Is still suffering from severe depression. Authorities are concerned about him killing himself, I’m worried about that too, and consumed by worry and fear. But no one in authority gives a damn. 2, yes 2 physiologist reports show zero interest in children, and zero risk. We haven’t even been able to get beyond this to be able to sit together and really talk through the rest of it, the hurt and betrayal I feel with regards to his hookups. His secrets. His secret life. I have been in this hell for 18 months now. There have been times of calm, waiting, hoping. But now I can feel no hope. This sex addiction is truly dangerous and destructive. Where is the education?? My head understands addiction, the fact that he does love me, but my heart doesn’t understand. I don’t know how I can keep going. It’s all a mess. When will I be allowed to heal. My plea to you all is to stop them getting further and further into addiction. There are evil people out there. And a legal system that is broken, with many people who really don’t care. Make them read what can happen.....my husband didn’t choose this path, he was taken down it by his addiction. Sorry this is a ramble, but my experience has surely got to do some good for someone. I’m helpless with regards to my life, but want to help someone else. X
    1 point
  47. Hi. I'm new here. I just don't know anyone who has been through this. My husband's sex addiction came to light 5 years ago, which was 5 years into our marriage. Long story short, we had been together since high school, married young, and he managed to keep it a secret from me for all that time. It was devastating. We worked it out. Lots of therapy and counseling and groups. I thought we had rebuilt. My trust was restored. We had a couple more kids. I asked how he was doing often. Always good, according to him. We recently decided to upend our lives and move (far), which meant a new job for him and me needing to stay behind with the kids to sell the house in the meantime. Last night he finally admitted to a relapse. Not just this week, but off and on for the past year+. I just can't wrap my head around being so comfortable with lying to me. I feel played for a fool and I'm furious that he waited until I made massive life changing decisions with him to finally be honest with me. I am about to leave my home and my entire support system. I can't stomach the thought of leaving him, mostly because it would wreck my young kids. And despite it all, I do love him, I just feel like a fool and i don't know what to do. Has anyone made it through another bout of long term lies?
    1 point
  48. I was lied to for 2 years. The drip drip disclosure. It's painful. I think you possibly have to decide whether relapses are something you will be able to cope with. Think about the terms of your relationship. What are you gaining and what are you losing by staying of going. It's so hard. I understand x
    1 point
  49. Eliza, I’m so sorry you’re experiencing this. I too can’t comment as I’m 15 months in and only 7 months in from full disclosure. I can’t imagine what my reaction would be to relapse. I tell myself if it was pornography viewing i’d cope. But anything more feels like it would be the end. But who knows what I would actually feel or do!
    1 point
  50. Hello Claire, I read your post with great sadness about your husband's lack of empathy and understanding. From my own personal experience, I found it very hard to acknowledge the damage I'd done to my marriage. It's taken me considerable amounts of clean time to be able to step back and discuss things calmly with my wife and really dwell in the situation from her viewpoint. It's hard because for me, my own self-loathing and guilt over my behaviour would get in the way. That then manifests as anger, defensiveness or indifference, which would be very hurtful towards her. It's taken a lot for me to challenge that in myself. Sometimes when I can empathise, it's a very difficult place for me to be in as I can feel how much hurt has been caused by the many years of lying and undermining of trust. More weirdly still, it would be easy for those difficult feelings then triggering me into wanting to act out more... ! It may sound brutal but for me, us separating after she had an affair was the rock bottom point where I realised things cannot go on. As an addict, I just wanted a quiet life where I could continue acting out really without needing to change or be bothered much by demands from real people and the real world. While things "kind of" worked, I was "happy" to go on - or rather, not sufficiently motivated to change. It was a horrible place to be but had become so ingrained into my thoughts at every level. This is the "bubble" you might hear addicts talk about. Only by spending a lot of clean time outside the bubble and with my own thoughts without distraction have I been able to work on myself. From there, I start to be able to see things differently. Rather than my wife angrily pointing out (correctly) my behaviours and the defensiveness etc. Strangely and interestingly, the longer I've spent away, the less angry and defensive I am etc. Continuing to use porn really makes your head very very screwy. But it takes a long time and commitment as well as being able to look at yourself objectively but crucially not judgementally or critically. That is all work your husband needs to put in though. You are not going crazy. Us addicts fundamentally do not have a good healthy relationship with ourselves. So until we can develop that, we can't offer it to others. For me, part of recovery has been working that out. It's completely understandable that you find this lack of empathy as upsetting and frustrating because it's a core part of a healthy intimate relationship for most people. All the distress and hurt that goes with it is very hard to bear. Above all, just as your husband has to sort out his problems and learn to take care of himself properly, you have to look out for yourself too and find support however you can. My wife particularly found it very hard to be able to talk about it to friends and has found it isolating because of that. Peace.
    1 point
×
×
  • Create New...