Disclosing to spouse advice

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by jackstraya95, Sep 22, 2020.

  1. jackstraya95

    jackstraya95 Fapstronaut

    For those that have had experience in disclosing their addictions to their spouse. What is the best way to approach it and what should be avoided? I figured this would be the best group to ask.
    guyforty and JamesTheSquirrel like this.
  2. JamesTheSquirrel

    JamesTheSquirrel Fapstronaut

    Firstly, I think it's 100% the right decision to tell your partner and I think it's really positive that you've come to that decision.

    My advice is just to be as honest as you possibly can be and answer any questions your partner has. I don't know your exact situation but you don't know exactly how your partner is going to respond. For me my wife was absolutely distraught and there was a lot of crying from both of us. I could have spared her a lot of upset if I had told her everything truthfully the first time rather than trickle feeding which just prolonged the hurt and trust damage.

    Don't try to defend your actions, you are just going to have to take whatever emotions come your way and take responsibility for your actions. For me, remembering the amount of hurt that I'd caused is a massive motivator to stay clean.

    Don't do it right before bed or in a time limited situation, you want to be able to have time to discuss with each other privately.

    I wish you all the best!
    dandausa and Psalm27:1my light like this.
  3. Psalm27:1my light

    Psalm27:1my light Fapstronaut

    Do not lie about anything. No matter how afraid you are or how scared. Be transparent. Do not trickle it out, thinking a little at a time is better. It’s not. It’s incredibly damaging. Do you see a counselor? A csat can help you with this. If not, have resources to allow her to learn just what you guys are dealing with. Just be honest. No matter what, do not defend your actions or point out her flaws during this disclosure. Trust me, she will do that enough to herself.
  4. dandausa

    dandausa Fapstronaut

    In my perception, people who are healthy who are dealing with their own demons will appreciate honesty and will desire freedom for you just like they desire for themselves so they will talk to you with mercy and grace. The people who can't handle it are often those who either aren't educated in addiction or they are hiding their own demons and are slowly being killed by them. This advice doesn't necessarily relate to being in a relationship, since its more personal than any of the relationships that I have, but I've just noticed this in the people I talk to in real life about my addiction.
  5. Reverent

    Reverent Fapstronaut

    Sooner than later. There is never a good day to break someone's heart.

    Know that the day you come clean an enormous weight is lifted off your shoulders and you have such a feeling of freedom, however it is the same day you vomit all over her and she now has an icky mess to clean up.
    Just because you will feel good to finally be open and honest, she will not. and she has every right to naturally not enjoy any of it. What you do in her pain speaks volumes.

    I'd avoid anniversaries, her birthday, important days that will forever become a tragic D-day instead. However don't put off telling because the day is this holiday or the other, (replay my first point).

    I echo the above comments, no trickle out disclosure. Rip the band-aid off and deal with what is! Do Not try and manage her emotions. You have no right to not let her feel what she will feel.

    Also, if you can do what is called a formal disclosure with a therapist, would be ideal. Even if you don't do counseling, schedule one for this important conversation. It will help tremendously and add some safety for her upcoming trauma.

    Honesty, rigorous honesty, at all costs!
  6. InappropriateUsername

    InappropriateUsername Fapstronaut

    I’d read some of the SOs journals.

    Honesty, get all out there and don’t hide anything. Also try to explain this is 100% you, not her.
    Psalm27:1my light likes this.
  7. Outside

    Outside Fapstronaut
    NoFap Defender

    Ditto to @Reverent words. "I'll just wait until the opportunity comes up", or "Until it's a good time" -- it never happens. And all the while you feel just eaten up inside.
  8. Gef 71

    Gef 71 Fapstronaut

    Tread carefuly. I don't know you or your spouse, but a full blown confession in the early stages of recovery can do more harm than good for both of you. There is sound advice and guidance to be found on this in a twelve step recovery program.
  9. used19

    used19 Fapstronaut

    Do not lie. Do not minimize at all. She can decide how detailed she needs things, but hiding anything only for her to figure it out later is damaging. We (for a lot of reasons too long to go into here) have not done therapy. We had a first few fights with disclosures. I asked as much as I could think to ask at the time. He definitely minimized it all. We just did a second self led but much more formal disclosure where I, after research, gave him a very detailed list of questions to answer. We sat down and he read me the answers and then gave me the document to review. So much more came out that he had minimized. It was all in line with what he had said originally, but he minimized the types of porn, minimized how frequent. In his mind originally saying he struggled, did it and then would stop for a while sounded less painful. In my mind that meant he did it a few times and then stopped for like a month. The reality turned out to be he was doing it 3-4 times a week and "stopping" meant a few days to at most a week. Crushed me because that is way, way more than what he originally described. A therapist might help you avoid minimizing and lying.

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