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Florrie last won the day on March 27

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  1. Florrie


    Hi Lorraine, so sorry to hear you have made this discovery. Similarly to you my husband has used sex workers and pornography for all of our married life (27years). Like you it started way before we were together, and is in part related to a traumatic childhood. It is hard to take in and as you say, continuing with ‘normal life’ seems impossible. However, we are 8 months down the road now and I would say some semblance of a new nomality is emerging. That isn’t to say that everything is rosy now, it often isn’t, and arguments seem to flare up from nowhere as a result of ill timed statements or clumsy attempts at humour, but we are generally learning to get on in a more meaningful way than we have done in recent years. Can I suggest you look at the revovery nation website, there is lots of information there that will help you to gain some understanding of what has been going on with your husband and also gives some good insight into how it effects partners and ways for partners to move forward for themselves. There are also a series of things for couples to work on together ( whether you intend to stay together or not) which I found particularly helpful for us moving forward. Also I recommend the Paula Hall books, both for the addict and partners, they are full of useful stuff too. I know this is all a big shock, but the way I dealt with the shock was to try and understand the situation and gain as much knowledge as I could in order to make informed decisions that weren’t emotion fuelled. That is not to say that there hasn’t been lots of emotinos on display ( not a day goes by when one or the other of us isn’t in tears over something, but I can say that it is getting easier. As they say at SAA, just take it one day at a time.... wishing you all the best,
  2. Gosh, Kat, that sounds like an ordeal to say the least. I don’t know if I can offer any words of wisdom really, but feel that your priority should be the safety of your children and yourself. To find out that your husband is a sex addict is awful, but under such conditions is beyond imagination. If I were you I would seek legal advice for yourself, and try to explain to your husband that his actions have put your children’s well-being at risk. He needs to understand this, and take full responsibility for what he has done. I would need this from him at the very least, before I could move forward from this with in any civilised way. I wish you the very best of luck in beginning to sort out this mess you have found yourself in. Just focus on the needs of yourself and children above anything else first, and then work out how you feel about your relationship with your husband.
  3. Florrie

    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....
  4. Florrie

    Telling grown up children about SA?

    Hi Dee, sorry I never saw this reply to my original post. Knowing what to do about telling grown up children is really difficult, isn’t it? We have still not arrived at decision about what to do. Like you I struggle with explaining some of my actions and behaviours, like why I have been signed off from work for the past three months. They know that my husband is seeing a therapist but think it it relating to childhood trauma, which it is, but they don’t know the implications of how that trauma has spilled out into adult life. So they have aloof sympathy for him, but are confused about what is going on with me. I feel like yet again I am covering for my husband, and my issues are overlooked. But at the same time I don’t want to damage my husbands relationship with the children as it is better now than ever and they deserve that. The. I think that they are adults now and I don’t need to protect them anymore. It is really confusing and I am still in the dark about what is best to do. My husband is undertaking the 12 step programme and he is at step nine where he has to apologise for wrongs and make amends, he wants to apologise to the children for not being more emotionally available to them and for the financial harm his behaviour cost the family, but how he does that without explaining what is going on is impossible. This is just one of the ways that this whole mess impacts on us, it isn’t just about me and him and our relationship,it is so much more far reaching. i hope you decide to go to the partners counselling regardless of what you tell your kids you deserve to it for you. Let me know how it goes. Keep strong and keep going with you healing process, and if you have any iseaablut how to broach this subject with your kids please also let me know
  5. Florrie

    Help & encouragement please

    Hi Snowy, firstly, I feel your pain! A discovery such as this is shocking to say the least. The Jeykell and Hyde nature of the sex addict is hard to comprehend, when you have lived with a good man for so many years. I have been married to my husband for 27 years and discovered this unfolding nightmare in July last year. Whilst it has been hard and the emotional rollercoaster is exhausting, I try to remind myself in those darkest moments that he is still a good man, despite the ‘bad things’. So let me try and share some things that have helped us work towards a better place. When I discovered my husband had visited a sex worker and he confessed that he might be addicted to porn, I did some research on the internet and came across a site called Recovery Nation. Here, I discovered that there was probably no point in trying to get the truth out of him in the beginning as he would lie to protect himself and the marriage - truth often comes much later when they have had a chance to get over the shock that their secret world has been discovered and are further along the recovery road. We found a specialist counsellor who worked specifically with sex related trauma included addiction and abuse, but interesting employs a technique to heel traumas called EMDR. The counsellor initially said it could take a year to get to recovery, but now thinks it will be less time than this. He is working hard and responding well to the EMDR work. Whilst it is expensive, I think that he could be spending that money on his addiction, so it is better spent here! My husband also found to nearest sex addicts anonymous group and made contact with them (this came about as a result of him seeking a ‘massage’ with a HE whilst I was just two streets away shopping in London, and in his rush, put his t shirt on inside out!! Thus,making me realise that the one occasion I had discovered was a myth). In the beginning months we worked through the exercises on the Recovery Nation site, which helped us to find those connections that held us together whilst doing recovery work that could potentially smash us apart. I have also started seeing the same counsellor, who describe my symptoms as post traumatic stress disorder, and we have worked through that. I don’t go as often, we couldn’t afford that, but it has helped me to have a place where I can rant and try to understand what has happened in my life. I also am on the waiting list for NHS counselling, as this would be free and again is a space for me to work through how I feel. Sadly, there isn’t a lot of specific support out there for partners of sex addicts, which is why this forum is so valuable. Now 8 months down the line, I have started to seek the truth about the extent of his acting out, and whilst it is shockingly worse than I might of anticipated, we are both in a better place to deal with it. Don’t get me wrong, this is not a happy household, and there is rarely a day goes by where one or the other of us, and usually both, are in tears at some point in the day. However,I believe that the work we did together, in those early days, following the Recovery Nation couples exercises, were invaluable to where we have got to now. I think the key thing was that my husband realised that he naeeded help after the shopping incident, where I became devastated and realised that I should get tested for STIs. Basically his two worlds collided that day and that was his wake up call ( this was 2 months after my initial discovery). Health wise, I am glad to say, we are fine but emotionally there is a long way to go. As things stand currently, I believe that we have a chance to make out marriage work. Whilst I can see he is trying, this gives me hope. However, I manage my expectations, and recognise that I cannot yet trust him, and state that clearly, and we have worked out ways to reduce my fears; so for instance, today he in London for work and he will phone when he arrives, then when he reaches his work destination he will text to say he is there etc. I have messenger and what’s app so I can video call if I am feeling insecure to see where he is. He had a slip a couple of weeks ago and so the computer is not allowed to be downstairs in the mornings, so he doesn’t have access to the internet first thing before I am awake. ( we have porn blocks on our internet now, but who know you could still get photo images! I am still naive!). Taking from Paula Hall’s book for partners of sex addicts, we have now drawn up an accountability contract, as a means of helping us to clearly communicate our needs and keep safe. This means you don’t have to be doing all the checking, as he has to take responsibility for himself. im sorry this turned into a long rambling response to your message, but I hope there’s are some things here that you might find useful. If you have any questions about anything I have said I will be more than happy to try and answer them. This journey we find ourselves on, which is not fault of our own, is long and hard, and whether we make it together with our partners or not, it is a journey we have to face for ourselves, regardless. There are no guarantees in life and promises seem meaningless, but what we can do is build our strength, develop our resilience, and nurture ourselves so that whatever happens we will come out of this mess in one piece!
  6. Hi Hannah, I would like to offer a different perspective. I am someone who wants to know that if I ask for information it will be given to me. I am 8 months down the road form D-day and in the beginning I didn’t ask for information as I was unsure whether he could be trusted to tell the truth. Now, all these months later, and with intensive therapy, I feel that my husband owes me the truth. I feel that without this I could not move forward. Also, not knowing stuff felt like he had got away with it. So whilst Rob has said it would make him feel shame, well so be it - when faced with the question, “why do you want to know what happened?”, then my answer would be, “why shouldn’t you tell the truth, you have acted without any regard for me and you want me not to ask? Well tough, you did it, now face up to what you have done.” That might sound like I am seeking revenge, and in a sense maybe I am. But I am not interested in throwing all this back at him, it is just that I need to be clear about what has taken place throughout 24 years of a 27 year marriage. So, I know that he visited prostitutes on a frequent basis and that with the advent of easy access online porn these visits became more extreme in content. I know the towns and cities where they occurred, including the town where we live, but not exact locations. I know that in the main it was for paid ‘regular sex’ but in recent times there were a lot of ‘extra-curricular’ activities, if you get my meaning. This has come out this weekend, after him doing his step 5 of the 12 step programme. I felt that having come clean to somebody else it was now my turn. The way we did this was I asked questions and if needed he referred to the list which I had not read. The extent of his acting out was quite shocking, and I don’t see why I shouldn’t know that, however shameful it was for him. I am obviously upset, angry and hurt, but I truly don’t think I could have continued to live with him, if he hadn’t been prepared to tell what I wanted to know. So in short, my answer to your question should be, if you want to know more then that information should be forthcoming. I did not accept the excuse ‘it wouldn’t be good for me to know’ as that is my decision to make and no one else’s.
  7. Florrie

    Red flags

    so sorry to hear all this - it sounds like your husband is still very much in denial to say the least! Perhaps from now on you need to focus on you and what you need and how best to achieve that - this might include thinking about whether you have a future together. I do hope things improve for you soon.
  8. Florrie

    Telling grown up children about SA?

    Cowslip - thank you for your insight. I, like you, felt that the children need not know about this, but various different literature talk about not 'covering up' and not keeping anymore secrets within the family, one book in particular had a whole chapter on telling children and made me feel we had made the wrong decision, and that my 'covering up' was a sign of co-dependant behaviour. It pleases me to know someone else made the same decision as me and that I am not necessarily doing the wrong thing. As you quite rightly say - we all keep things from our kids, as they do us, and this doesn't have to be any different, I guess. The whole thing has caused such confusion and I think I just looked to the 'experts' who write about it as having the 'right answers' in order to try and clear the mess that is my head. But of course, each story has its own context and it can't be a 'one size fits all scenario'. Thus, from now on maybe I will go with my first instincts and not get hung up on 'shoulds' and 'oughts'. After all, we all have to tread our own path in the end, in a way that is comfortable for us. It is also good to hear that 18 months down the road, things are looking brighter for you and your partner. This gives hope to us all here that things can get better
  9. Florrie

    Red flags

    Hi, I have just read your post and feel for you. Have you tried couple therapy? It might be helpful in establishing clear boundaries and maybe draw up a accountability contract. It might also be helpful for you to off load some of you anger to see a counsellor on your own. This is a really long and winding road isn’t it? I am six month down the road and still feel like I am on the big emotional roller coaster - just when I think things are stabilising, something else happens to push me back to anger. whatever you do, be kind to yourself and keep looking after your own needs first.
  10. Hi, I wonder if anybody has any experience to share about talking to grown up children about partner’s SA? I discovered my partners addiction last September, and to be honest I went into ‘crisis managment’ Mode. Found all the info I could, sought an appropriate councillor for him and he went to SAA. It was only after full disclosure in November that I went into shock and felt devastated by what I heard. I understand that this addiction predates me (we have been married for 26 years), and is not related to me in any way, but I am still finding it difficult to come to terms with all this. We have two children aged 25 and 22, neither live at home. So far they know nothing of what is going on (although they are not stupid and probably have some idea that something is amiss). What they have been told is that my partner was repeatedly sexually abused as a child and that he is in therapy to deal with resulting issues. However, since the new year I have been signed off from work with stress related issues. I am studying for a PhD and both children think I am off with stress relating to my studies. (THis makes sense as I had big difficulties with my supervisor and decided to complain and get somebody new - all of which happened in December ). We have been discussing telling them the truth, as it doesn’t feel right that I should be covering up for his addiction in this way. However, the thought of telling them and potentially shattering their good relationship with their father makes me feel physically sick. I worry particularly for my daughter who I think idolises her father, and she has just come out of therapy for anxiety, is about to move abroad for six months as part of her training at work and is just getting herself into a good place. Our son is at uni doing a Masters course and I don’t want to rock the boat for him either(although I believe he is in an emotionally stable place. So my question is, do we tell, when should we do it and how? Any advice/personal experience of this would be welcome. Sorry for long winded post! Thanks for reading