Journal of My Story..... Thoughts | Feelings | Healing | Partners Recovery

Discussion in 'Significant Other Journals' started by HonestyMatters, Sep 7, 2018.

  1. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    • My husband has been honest with me :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My Boundaries are in place & being met :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has initiated & connected with me about his thoughts, feelings or urges thru Daily Check-In :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has regularly communicated with me about his recovery work (either through talking or his journal) :emoji_heavy_check_mark:

    Healing Trauma from Sexual Betrayal Course

    14/37 - Responding With Purpose

    Questions to ponder:

    What images/memories are running through my mind, as a result of this experience?

    For the first 4 years after his porn use discovery just about every day / night was filled with constant thoughts of what he was looking at, what kind of women, their age, what he was so attracted to, sexual situations/scenes. Also, I was constantly preoccupied with the thought about whether it had or would ever escalate further. Had he / or ever thought about acting out physically with other women, particularly women he worked with because that's where he spent most of his time, other online activities like webcams or sexting. Had he ever visited any brothels or anything like that? He assured me he hadn't but with all the lies nothing felt believable. When I discovered he'd signed up to a local Meet up For a Fuck site in 2014 I was overwhelmed with the endless possibilities of what he was / could have been doing. Again he insisted it was nothing more than curiosity but given all the lies I didn't know what to think. To this day he still holds firm that it was never anything more than pornography. Whether it was more than this only time will tell. If he is sincere and genuine in his recovery and if he has more to disclose I can only hope that he will do a full disclosure sooner rather than later as other PA/SA's have done with their partners.

    In the past 3 years prior to the latest D-day I haven't been as obsessed with his porn addiction. Mainly because I'd believed he'd genuinely stopped. I still had fears at times it could be going on but didn't spend as much time thinking about it or all the possibilities. I was pretty certain he wasn't at home due to accountability software but I never had any idea of all the platforms that were available that he was accessing at work and how easily he got around their monitoring software through the use of these platforms. I was fairly certain he wasn't doing anything outside of the relationship as he was mostly at home when he wasn't working.

    Even though the last few years were different in the sense of not obsessing so much about what he may be looking at, or doing, I have constantly struggled with ongoing anxiety and depression since June 2011. Nothings ever been the same. I can't put into words how much its affected every area of my life over the years. There wasn't that much info around on betrayal trauma then, not that I seen anyway but I can see clearly now I was definitely suffering from it. I never really identified with the whole co-dependency thing. I read about it and never thought I sounded like any of it. I didn't have any of the traits or characteristics. I wasn't a people pleaser. He didn't get any mollycoddling or sympathy from me. I certainly wasn't turning a blind eye to it and I didn't allow him to treat me like a door mat either. I just couldn't really relate to it. I wish I'd had betrayal trauma help back then. Things might have been very different. I might have finished my degree and pursued my career had I not become so depressed and helpless with my own personal life.

    The last 18 months have been terrible, rather than obsessing over whether he has an addiction or not I was just paralysed with uncontrollable anxiety and so much fear and insecurity to the point I didn't know what the hell was wrong with me. It was just this constant feeling of dread and pending doom but not for any particular reason. I didn't want to associate with anyone, rarely left the house, the thought of working again was terrifying, everything was just overwhelming. Just being around or talking to people was hard work and I'd never felt like that before - even to close friends. That's when I started medication in May of this year. It definitely helped but unbelievably I had another d-day only 6 wks after starting anti-depressants. I was just shattered and couldn't believe how selfish and uncaring this man really was. How could he just continue this behaviour knowing and seeing how fucked up I was. He acted like he really cared that I was in a bad way but then all the while still doing what he was doing. That was the most mindfucking thing of all. No matter how fucked up I was - it made no difference to his behaviour whatsoever. I am only thankful that I started the meds when I did. Had I found out 6 or 8 weeks earlier I seriously don't know where I would have been at. I was already in a bad way, hated my life and didn't really want to be here any more. I wasn't thinking about suicide but I didn't want to have to do life anymore either. I felt like I had nothing more to give. I was in a constant state of anxiety and panic. The only thing that made me hang on and keep going were my children and how much I loved them but I even felt a failure in that department just being so anxious and down all the time.

    What have I come to believe about myself as a result of this experience?

    That I am a failure. That I'm not good enough. That I don't finish important things that I started. That I have lost all ambition and passion about life. I have become unmotivated and lethargic. I just feel tired and worn out a lot. I don't feel dependable or reliable in employment anymore (some days I feel great and can take on anything, other days I'm all anxious, feel like I cant cope and think what was I thinking when I committed to this). I'm not sure I can trust my own judgement anymore. That I can't handle stress or pressure anymore. That I'm not the same person I used to be. That I don't know if I'll ever be truly happy and feel safe and secure.

    How has this experience influence my health? Am I storing the stress in my body?

    It's definitely affected my nervous system. I always feel on edge with a lot of nervous tension and shakiness especially hands. Tight neck and shoulders. Insomnia, forgetfulness, tense, highly strung, fatigued, lack of focus & concentration
  2. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Healing Trauma from Sexual Betrayal Course continued....

    15/37 - Safety & 16/37 - The Science behind a Calm Mind

    Short videos on slowing down the anxious mind and the importance of finding & creating safety.

    17/37 - Understanding your Fears

    Has the danger passed?

    No. Not until he has worked consistently at an extensive recovery program for the long term.

    How would I know the danger has passed? How would I know I’m safe in this relationship? What would I need to feel safe again?

    Because I will have seen his constant efforts and the see changes in his mindset and in his behaviour through the work he's doing. I know i'll be safe when I can feel him genuinely connecting with me and him openly and honestly sharing his real thoughts and feelings, his struggles and his successes, not just because he feels he has to, but because he genuinely wants to. He won't feel mentally or emotionally disconnected from me. To feel safe again I need to be able to restore my trust in him, to know that he'll always be honest no matter what and that he'll never ever again just watch me slowly die and suffer while he does nothing to stop or help himself.

    What is short term danger?

    That he relapses. That he disregards my boundaries. That he is not completely honest with me. That he's only half-hearted in his efforts.

    What is long-term danger?

    That he doesn't remain consistent. That he's not in it for the long haul. That overtime he loses motivation and drive in his recovery. That he relapses and falls back into his old behaviours and begins to lie and betray me again.

    18/37 - 5 Solutions for Calming the Mind

    Video on the benefits of practising mindfulness. The art of being an outsider to your mind and thoughts and just watching your mind and your thinking without judging or criticising but just compassionately being aware. Not going with or chasing thoughts but just observing the mind. Also the regular practise of body scans and yoga to help physically release the trauma from your body. The benefits of daily deep breathing and meditation to calm the anxious mind as well as the importance of giving your experience a voice, even if it's only through writing.
  3. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    • My husband has been honest with me :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My Boundaries are in place & being met :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has initiated & connected with me about his thoughts, feelings or urges thru Daily Check-In :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has regularly communicated with me about his recovery work (either through talking or his journal) :emoji_heavy_check_mark:

    Not feeling good today or yesterday really. Just feeling empty and depressed. I have so many things I could be doing but lacking enthusiasm or energy. I'm not sure this trauma course is doing me that good. It's just dragging up past hurts and memories and making me feel down. So far all the suggestions I have been doing over the years, like meditation, mindfulness, yoga, giving my trauma experiences a voice etc...but I haven't been given any real tools yet that I feel are useful or helpful. I know all those things are good but I feel like I really need something more. I'm only half way so maybe there'll be more tools that I've not tried before. Maybe I'm just expecting too much and just want this pain and self doubt and uncertainty to just be magically taken away. I'm thinking I might need to make myself a daily schedule and try and stick to it. This is something I used to always do in the past primarily because there was just so much to juggle now I feel I need it just to motivate myself and give myself some direction, something to push myself towards.

    I feel uncertain about my husbands recovery. He is making positive steps and has been getting on Nofap everyday and reading and writing in his journal. He's been mostly doing his check-ins with me and being honest and he is reading YBOP. These are all positive steps but I just feel like something is missing. I guess I just want to see and feel that he's doing more. He's not doing any courses, seeing a therapist or anything like that. I am not pushing him because this is his recovery and he has to work it out for himself - although in saying that I have prompted him because I asked him to post about what courses others are doing, he didn't just do it for himself. I guess I feel he's only touching on the surface of his recovery. Like what he's doing is only the tip of the iceberg. He's done extremely well not looking at porn for nearly 3 months and no M for 3 weeks. I just feel that he needs deeper recovery work so it doesn't just turn into more abstinence. I read lots of guys talking about really getting down to the deeper core issues of why you started using porn and masturbation in the first place, what was going on, some talk about being ashamed of who they were as teenagers, not feeling good enough, not feeling like they measured up and porn and masturbation comforted these feelings. Others talk about avoiding and blocking out there feelings by using porn. Whatever the reason you have to ultimately really do some self discovery and soul searching work to find the underlying root cause. There are those who have not looked at P or M for nearly a year and still have times of strong urges and thoughts and have realised until they can get down to these root causes that their really only abstaining. I just don't know if he will dig this deep and really get in touch with himself and be honest with himself and me about it. I know this kind of work I have tried to do with him for many years to break through the emotional and mental disconnection I have felt with him and I know from past experience, he hates doing it, he hasn't seen or understood the value of it or just feels like he can't do it. Mostly I think he becomes lazy. So I just don't know how prepared he really will be to do what it takes. Every other time this is where his recovery work kind of comes to an end or a standstill because he feels like it's all too hard and doesn't want to do the hard stuff, going deep within himself and searching for the truth and finding the answers. I guess these are my concerns, that he'll just stay where he feels comfortable and just touching on the surface. I've talked to him about finding tools for when he does get strong urges and to date he hasn't put anything together. I suggested he ask what others do but he hasn't. I know he says he's going ok now but I feel he hasn't got a plan in place when things get tough. Like 3 weeks ago, we were arguing and keeping our distance and so he masturbated because he couldn't handle the pressure he was feeling down there. So, what's going to happen next time if we are at odds for whatever reason, how's he going to handle it then if he hasn't worked any out any tools or have a plan to put in place. I just feel if it was me that's what I would need to do not just hope for the best.

    Anyhow, so those are thoughts going through my head.

    I feel I really need something uplifting or inspiring right now because I just feel so slumped. Thanks for reading. Would love any comments or feedback if anyone has any advice or suggestions xx
  4. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    So i thought i need to just start doing something, anything and just stop thinking about all of this for a while. I've been so focused for weeks and weeks on his porn addiction, reading posts, journalling, work on myself, my trauma, past traumas and all the rest of it that it's starting to get me down. Maybe I need some time something different. So spent the last few hours doing just that.... Feeling somewhat better for it and listened to some podcasts and motivational speakers whilst doing some jobs....

    This one was brilliant. I thought I'd share.....I recommend anyone to watch. It really is all about Mindset. And although we know this, we so often in our day to day lives forget it. It doesn't matter what you're going through, whether it's betrayal trauma, whether it's porn addiction or a thousand other things, getting through it and overcoming it, is all about changing one's MINDSET!!!

    Banjaxed likes this.
  5. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

    So true. We can’t always choose what happens to us, but we can always choose how we react to it.

    Pushing a PA along with recovery must be like pushing a piece of cooked spaghetti. Time to focus on yourself for a while and let him come to you/recovery
    fuzzywaz and TooMuchTooSoon like this.
  6. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Thanks for your post Banjaxed. I don't get as much feedback in my journal as I'd like and I think connection with others is really important and helps a lot. So I appreciate your message. I have been trying to just focus on me of late and am completing a betrayal trauma course. I'm getting a little frustrated with it as I feel it's just dragging up a lot of old stuff that I just want to put behind me but I guess it's all a process. For the most part, I'm just letting my husband deal with his own recovery because as you say anything else is like pushing a piece of cooked spaghetti. It's been like that for years and I know it doesn't work. He's so far doing well and respecting my boundaries. I can only hope that he takes his recovery to a deeper level and does either the NoFap Academy course or something similar because I believe he will need the tools and support in the long run. At the moment, he seems to genuinely want recovery so that is positive. I just hope he sees it through and works a program of some sort for the long term.

    You are doing very well at 116 days. Do you mind me asking what work you have been doing? Have you done the NoFap Academy course at all?
  7. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    • My husband has been honest with me :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My Boundaries are in place & being met :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has initiated & connected with me about his thoughts, feelings or urges thru Daily Check-In :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has regularly communicated with me about his recovery work (either through talking or his journal) :emoji_heavy_check_mark:

    Today has been a pretty good day. I did an hour long yoga class off BLOOM this afternoon as well as yesterday which I really enjoyed and also did my 10 meditation afterwards. About to get back into some of my BT course. Everything has been going fairly smoothly with my husband and today he talked about maybe doing the 90 hard mode through the NoFap Academy and undertake their online course. No sex for 3 months will definitely be a challenge for me but I know it'll be even harder for him. If it's going to help him beat this addiction once and for all I'm willing to do! It'll definitely be worth it in the long run.....

    Healing Trauma from Sexual Betrayal Course continued....

    19/37 - Self Calming Kit

    So I need to make myself a little crisis kit. I will do this tonight and tomorrow. It sounds like a little fun and will be nice to have something to help calm me when I'm next feeling anxious or out of control.

    View attachment upload_2018-10-18_10-56-13.png

    20/37 - 3 Strategies for Slowing Down an Anxious Mind

    The video discussed Mindfulness again and we carried out a short experiment on being really present and mindful on something. Just really appreciating and becoming aware of everything about it. Experiencing it through taste, touch, see and smell. Teaching the importance of really just slowing down and taking in that which we normally just race through.

    21/37 - Giving Pain a Voice

    Next, we were to do this same exercise but with a difficult situation or memory. The situation I chose was my older sister who nearly died a couple of years ago. I was in a terrible place. My husband and I were seriously contemplating separation due to his PA and I just couldn't deal with it anymore. Out of the blue my sister was diagnosed with brain cancer and only given weeks or months to live. I told my husband I couldn't cope with dealing with us right now and I had to just focus on my sister and that we'll need to put our problems and separation on hold as it was all too much. The thoughts I had were just terrible sadness and pain to be losing her at such a young age and I didn't know how I would cope without her. Emotionally I was a mess due to my broken marriage and this on top was just excruciating. Watching her die and lose all her bodily functions within weeks including her ability to move, speak or even eat (she had to be peg fed) was just horribly painful. But I knew I could not show it, I had to be strong for her and her 3 children and had to help her fight. I was probably emotionally and mentally at the worst I've ever been. Physically I felt weak and extremely drained and depleted.

    What was so hard about this experience?

    Just dealing with the death of a loved one. It was the first time I had to deal with it with an immediate family member and the suddenness of it made it extremely difficult. No-one was prepared for it.

    How did I make it through the experience?

    I don't know. Something else just kicked in. I knew I had to be strong for her and my other family members. That I could not just fall apart. When I thought I had nothing left from my own marriage problems I found a deeper strength to just keep going.

    Do I feel like I resolved the experience?

    After being in palliative care for months and the oncologists refusing anymore treatment my sister had a miracle breakthrough. She refused all the morphine they had her on and through the physiotherapy my mum and I were doing with her she was able to gain enough strength back to be able to resume treatment. There's a whole story I won't go into but she fought back and through treatment and extensive brain surgery she was able to get rid of the 3 brain tumours, one which was on her brain stem. She had to learn to walk and talk and eat again, all the things we take for granted. I am very grateful she's alive with us today, she still has her struggles but she's alive and fought all the odds. She's considered a miracle amongst the leading oncologists and neurologists here because very few have been as far gone as she was and fought back like she did. I've resolved that she has been very lucky but it's always a delicate situation with her and nobody knows what the future will hold. It's taught me life is short and some things you just can't control and you just have to appreciate and make the most of what you've got because things could always be much worse and you never know when the tides will change.

    And the next part of the course, which is what I've been looking forward to is UNWINDING your Betrayal Trauma - so that will be next!!! Yay!! :emoji_pray:
    Last edited: Oct 17, 2018
  8. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

    116 days of sobriety but I’m barely scratching the surface of my true recovery. I haven’t done the NoFap academy course nor looked into it, but have read good things about it here. Here’s what I’ve been doing so far:

    1 - my wife and I are not currently having any intimate contact so this is a hard mode reboot by default. This is not my choice, but I think is probably been helpful for two reasons: firstly for rewiring the brain away from sexual gratification, and secondly (perhaps most importantly) for reinforcing the seriousness of the consequences of my PA. relapse would come with too high a price. This is not a sustainable strategy/mindset but as emergency surgery it’s actually been helpful in building up a base of sobriety on which to launch my proper recovery.

    2 - fairly immediately after D-Day my wife found a sex/porn addiction treatment centre in the UK - the Laurel Centre (we live on a tiny island off of the UK, no specialist therapists here on the ground). She emailed one for herself and asked for a referral for me as well. I spoke to one via Skype for an hour. This was very early on and whilst I have no aversion to therapy I recall that my primary motivation was to keep my wife onside in the aftermath of d-day. This was little more than an introductory call and brief explanation of the nature of addiction, but he did follow up to suggest two books: YBOP and a book for the partners of sex addicts written by Paula Hall. I have read the former and my wife read some of the latter but seems to have stalled. The book was actually recommended for me to understand what my wife is going through and also to help me in he context of my wife’s emotional affair.

    My wife and I together had a follow up call with the therapist whilst on holiday, but this was really just a repeat of the first call for me. I did help my wife begin to understand about the nature of addiction

    3 - Around this time I also started immersing myself on NoFap. I hungrily read threads in the relationship section, journals of SOs, and journals of PAs of a similar age/situation, who were committed to recovery and not just sobriety. I’ve name-checked a few I’ve found helpful in my own journal. I’ve also devoured a lot of the materials linked to. I’ve also read/reading recovery books as I come across recommendations. So far YBOP, Out of the Shadows and Pornland.

    I’ve found NoFap an incredibly useful resource and will continue to spend a lot of time here. However I wanted a less haphazard approach to recovery so.....

    4 - I signed up for the 8 week online recovery course run by the Laurel Centre. Format is 6 guys and one CSAT who meet once a week by video conference for a 90 minute guided discussion. Homework is set. Only had one session so far so we’ll see how it goes - course program suggests it will be structured revision of what I mostly know from reading here/books until last couple of weeks, but revision/reinforcement is never a bad thing. The counsellor has made clear that one of the key benefits is the group dynamic and comms outside of the group - kind of like NoFap but more concentrated, less anonymous since you know their names/faces.

    5 - thanks to NoFap I’ve started to become much more self aware and introspective, and I wanted to get some personal counselling to help explore myself. I’ve had one introductory session with a guy that I really clicked with and really spoke to me - here’s what he had to say in his follow up email:

    I believe I could serve you very powerfully and go really deep into personal transformation. I feel that you are on the edge of a tremendous period of growth and I know we can work together to accelerate that inner change.
    The coaching processes I use are all about internal shifts, leading to external change. I would suggest that we focus exclusively on that internal emotional processing work, looking at where you self sabotage your own experience. I see the potential for you to step fully into this work, embracing the change, the pain and the huge growth that comes with inner work.

    This is the part of my recovery I am currently most excited about. I’ve signed up or 5 sessions initially but really hope they live up to the billing and this is really just the start of an extended program of reshaping my entire self. This will be once a week or thereabouts

    6 - I’ve confided in a friend. Someone who is in my friendship group but wasn’t necessarily a best friend ( I don’t really have a best male friend). He has always been one of the more outwardly sensitive ones and is facing his own issues with alcohol. At first I felt selfish picking someone with his own stuff to deal with but opening up to him has been a revelation, and hopefully let’s us both know that we are not alone in all of this.

    7 - this weekend I plan to tell one of my sisters. Opening up to family is a big step for me, as our family is. Is not close, but I think that lack of closeness is either a symptom of, or a part of, the underlying problem -certainly in my case - of intimacy anorexia. I want to get my sister’s take on our family and upbringing.

    8 - not really related to my recovery but my wife and I are having relationship counselling.
  9. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

    In other forums I’ve been a part of they sometimes have a “reader” tracker alongside a “replies” tracker. I.e. it shows how many people have read your journal as well as posted on it. It wasn’t uncommon for the ratio of read/replies to be 100/1, and I think it could be useful on this site sometimes, not least to highlight how many people are browsing/lurking here without posting.

    It might also encourage journalists to know how many people are reading their journals

    So please do keep posting. I know that replies can be hard to come by but you are helping others by sharing your thoughts and hopefully helping yourself too. I will follow your journal and will happily post if you ever want a male/PA perspective. Or just shoot me a DM
  10. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

    you wait ages for a reply and three come along at once ;)

    You mention that you are finding your BT course frustrating because it is dredging up things/feelings you want to move on from. My wife has a similar attitude.

    My thought is that there is a reason thoughts/feelings are painful and to try and bury them won’t work in the long run. I did that with P. My recovery will be to identify those feelings and bring them into the light, analyse them, accept them. Not to run away from them.

    So my “mindset” is that I want to go through the pain, and am actually looking forward to it. I’ve been hiding for too long. I think it’s this attitude that led my therapist to write that email above, he could sense my desire to reconnect with myself. He said it will improve my life immeasurably, make it more vivid in every way. Can’t wait
  11. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Haha! 3 in a row lol...must be a record :D

    Sounds like you have a great plan of recovery worked out Banjaxed. Personal discovery and peeling back the onion layers so to speak, to learn who we really are and why we do the things we do is so important. Best of luck confiding in your sister. It's interesting how you say you are not close to your family and if that could be a cause for your intimacy anorexia because my husband has never been close to any of his family either. Plus no sisters growing up only brothers. I've often wondered if that is why he is so emotionally disconnected from me. Not really having a lot of female connection growing up. But who knows it could just be a personality thing too. I have a daughter and 2 sons and she talks all the time about how her eldest brother is just emotionally disconnected, never talks about how he's feeling whereas the younger brother is a lot more open and she can connect with him a lot easier.

    I seen in your journal that your wife wasn't really into NoFap. Hopefully she might eventually join. I've found it very helpful to me just knowing there are so many other SO's going through the same that I can connect and relate to. That's the worst part is feeling so alone in all of this. I did confide in some close family members and friends but i think unless they're going through the same they just don't really understand the depth of pain or trauma you feel as a partner and how isolated it can make you feel.

    Best of luck with all the coming work, I think it will improve your life immeasurably too. I look forward to following your journey!! :)
    Banjaxed likes this.
  12. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    • My husband has been honest with me :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My Boundaries are in place & being met :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has initiated & connected with me about his thoughts, feelings or urges thru Daily Check-In :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    • My husband has regularly communicated with me about his recovery work (either through talking or his journal) :emoji_heavy_check_mark:

    Healing Trauma from Sexual Betrayal Course continued....

    22/37 & 23/37 - What we can & can't control

    What can I control or influence in this relationship?

    I can accept and honour how I feel. I can control my actions and reactions. I can control what I will and won't accept through boundaries & consequences. I can control my life.

    What can't I control or influence?

    I can't control my partners behaviours. I can't make him change or make him even want to change.

    What have I come to believe about myself as a result of this experience?

    I'm not the same person I used to be. I don't have the same enthusiasm or spark for life. I feel empty inside. There's no point in trying.

    Can I change or alter what I've come to believe about myself?

    I can give myself self-love and compassion for how I feel. I can be understanding and accepting of myself and through self-nurturing gain strength to change anything and everything. I can change my mindset and how I choose to think.

    How would I like to think or feel as a result of this experience?

    That I am worthy and capable of being happy and fulfilled no matter what. That I am in charge of my life and if necessary I can live a full and happy live without him.

    If you could go back in time and give yourself any advice what would you tell yourself?

    That you are worthy and capable. Just trust in yourself and let go of all your fears. Even if you don't feel strong now, you will grow from strength to strength. You deserve and can achieve a better life and you don't need anybody else but yourself to do it.

    What have you been trying to change?

    Trying to get him to deal with his porn addiction. To be a more open and honest person. To be closer to me in his mind and his thoughts and feelings. To create more connection and meaning in our lives. For him to develop more direction and purpose in his / our life. For him to be more involved and interested in our lives and our children's lives.

    What has worked and what hasn't?

    The only things that have worked is what he has wanted to change and has been willing to change.

    25/37 - Assessment: Perceived Social Support

    Moderate Perceived Support

    Skipped a few parts as it's very repetitive.....

    31/37 - Healing & Recovery Capital Quiz

    Give yourself a score between 1 and 7.

    1 being completely false and 7 being completely true

    1. I feel like I understand my trauma and why I respond the way I do to my spouse’s/partner’s behaviors. 7

    2. I have established a safe environment where I feel safe with myself and/or I can talk openly with someone who understand me. 5

    3. In an effort to give my trauma a voice, I am talking or writing about how my trauma influences my thoughts, emotions, behaviors, sensations. 7

    4. I feel like I am processing my trauma in a way that I no longer feel stuck in my pain. 4

    5. I have a positive social support network around me. 3

    6. I have developed healthy habits (e.g. eating healthy, regular exercise, good sleep) to help me during this difficult time. 5

    7. Even though I am experiencing trauma, I still maintain my core values (e.g. serving others, taking care of my body). 4

    Total Score: 35/49 The lower the score the more you get to work on :)

    32/37 & 33/37 - Building Your Recovery Capital

    Step #2: Find a Safe Environment “Only in a safe environment is it adaptive and appropriate to simultaneously inhibit defense systems and exhibit positive social engagement behavior.” – Dr. Stephen Porges

    Am I safe? (physically and emotionally)

    Physically yes, emotionally sometimes.

    Where am I safe?

    At home, when I'm meditating or visualising my safe place. When I talk to my therapist or my doctor about what's going on for me. When I speak to my mum or close friends about my problems.

    If I have a safe place, can I inhibit my defense systems and exhibit positive social engagement behavior? (are you connecting?)

    Yes, most of the time

    Do you know where your trauma is stored? Think about a painful image or memory. As you think about this pay attention to where you’re noticing that in your body.

    Usually in my solar plexus / chest area. Also, neck & shoulders

    As I think of the areas where I feel stuck, what thoughts and/or images come to my mind?

    Depression - I just feel very lifeless

    As I think about the image, what negative belief do I have about myself now?

    I can't seem to pull myself out of it or if I do it never seems to last.

    As I think of the image or thoughts, how would I like to respond?

    I want to feel alive again. Like a new person free of painful memories or hurts. Feel uplifted and full of life!!

    Who do I trust the most?

    That's a difficult one. I still trust my husband with most things in our lives just not his porn addiction and how he compartmentalises my deeply hurt feelings around it. And definitely my mum. I know she would always be there for me no matter what.

    What is it about them that makes me feel safe with them?

    I know I can tell my mum anything and she tries to be compassionate and understanding. To make me feel heard and not feel so alone in it.

    Healthy Habits How are you doing in the following areas?

    Give yourself a score between 1 and 7. 1 being not at all and 7 being very often.

    1. Am I exercising regularly (3-5 times a week)? 3

    2. Am I eating healthy foods? 5

    3. Am I sleeping between 7-9 hours a night? 5

    4. Regular self-care (Breathing, meditation, yoga, journaling) 5

    Step #7: Stick To Your Core Values Think about yourself as a little girl. Think about your hopes and dreams. Bring into your memory a happy little you. Maybe it was a birthday, maybe it was Christmas, or maybe it was sitting on grandma and grandpa’s lap. Maybe it was playing with some cousins, running around. See that happy you.

    Now ask yourself, who am I really?

    I am active and full of life energy. I am talkative and love connecting with people. I am free spirited, carefree and full of curiosity and adventure.

    What do I value?

    Family & friends
    Feeling happy & at peace
    Connection with close ones
    Speaking my truth / and others speaking theirs
    Love and kindness
    Supportive & nurturing environment
    Positive & inspiring surrounds
    Good health - mental & physical
    Feeling safe & secure
    Financial security
    Physical fitness
    Time alone / personal space

    Which of the following things most define you?

    o Curiosity
    o Love Learning :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    o Judgment/Critical Thinking/Open-Mindedness :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    o Ingenuity/Originality/Practical Intelligence/Street Smarts :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    o Social Intelligence/Personal Intelligence/Emotional Intelligence :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    o Perspective o Valor/Bravery
    o Perseverance/Industry/Diligence
    o Integrity/Genuineness/Honesty :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    o Kindness and Generosity :emoji_heavy_check_mark:
    o Loving and Allowing Oneself to be Loved :emoji_heavy_check_mark:

    Are you acting consistent with what you value the most? If not, you will likely be in stress.

  13. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    • My husband has been honest with me :emoji_question: (I can't know for sure, he's distancing himself, no attempts at reaching out to me)
    • My Boundaries are in place & being met :emoji_heavy_multiplication_x: (2 boundaries broken yesterday)
    • My husband has initiated & connected with me about his thoughts, feelings or urges thru Daily Check-In :emoji_heavy_multiplication_x: (Not yesterday)
    • My husband has regularly communicated with me about his recovery work (either through talking or his journal) :emoji_heavy_multiplication_x: (Not yesterday re: HARD MODE)

    I feel deeply hurt and a lot of sadness right now. Yesterday I got an alert about something and so I wanted to have a look into it to make sure there wasn't anything to it which meant I needed to look at H's laptop. We have an agreement that I can look at what I need to with or without him and that is supposed to be ok. He walked in only moments later, and I hadn't actually looked yet but was about to and I just felt really bad about even looking. I hadn't mentioned it to him at that point. Anyway he went and I had a look and later went and spoke to him about how I felt really bad about looking and kind of unsafe emotionally about doing it because of the incident that had unfolded weeks before that we haven't discussed since because he believes he is right and didn't do anything wrong.

    So we started talking about that and how as a result, I now feel uncertain and to a degree unsafe about our whole transparency agreement, and my permission to look into whatever, whether he is there or not.

    Without going into a lot of detail about the previous situation, I wanted to look at some stuff on my own because we weren't on good terms and feeling upset with one another, but he wouldn't hand it over. He insisted on being involved which I repeatedly told him no, so he'd breeched the agreement at that point. I became frustrated, snatched a piece of paper off him to which he became outraged and whilst throwing his wallet that hard within inches of my head and nearly hit me in the face. A totally uncalled for an unjustified reaction to the situation.

    So consequently I don't feel mentally or emotionally safe, especially because he can't see that he is in the wrong. If I'm looking at something, and I don't want his involvement, I don't want to feel like I have to hide it.

    I tried to explain that not letting me look at something on my own was a breech of the original agreement to which he argued (gaslighted) that it's not.

    I tried to explain that him forcing his involvement (help he calls it) after me repeatedly telling him, No, I just want to look on my own was him being controlling to which he also argued that it's not controlling its only him helping (so further gaslighting - I didn't want his help or involvement at that point - it was too tense between us).

    I told him how he become outraged and nearly hit me in the face by throwing his wallet was totally uncalled for and not justified to which he replied I was the aggressive one because I quickly took the paper from him but him aggressively thowing his wallet so close to my head was only a reaction (more gaslighting).

    He then argued that what he had done with the said money was what we had agreed to - it was not (further gaslighting)

    He then started to become very angry and upset saying it doesn't matter what I say or do he knows his truth and nothing will ever change his mind on it.

    I just felt flabbergasted. How do we ensure the same situations don't unfold in the future when we can't break the problems down, and he can't be accountable for what went wrong. And can't make a decision or plan to avoid the same event unfolding again because he can't own what happened previously.

    So it all ended in an argument and I said I need to put my boundary in place because of the gaslighting around everything he had said. So later that night as per usual when we are not talking he decides to watch TV for hours. At about 9.30 I said so I take it because of situation you aren't going to do your check-in with me then. He said well it's a bit hard since we aren't really talking. I said there's other means. We had made an arrangement if things were ever tense between us that he would write in our daily communication email. I reminded him of this. He never did it.

    About 11pm I was out in the kitchen and I became very uneasy / uncertain about what he's probably watching on TV. I feel when he's upset with me he'll more often than not look at SBS or 7mate which tends to air more sex scene / nudity movies than the others. So I said why are you always on 7mate. That was the channel he was currently watching. He just laughed, ignored etc...and said I'm just flicking through...there was a movie on that he was watching so I went and looked it up on imdb it said severe sex scenes / nudity. So I had a look. 4 explicit sex scenes, lots of nudity, each of which go are fairly lengthy, lots of breast and full frontals including pubic region. He said he did know this because he'd seen it previously but was just only trying to watch the car racing part and not looking at any of those parts. Not ok. If it was the night before when we weren't fighting he would agreed that this is definitely not ok to even be on that movie at all, whether those scenes are playing or not, don't even look at the movie. But because boundary was in place and he's out watching TV on his own, some how the standards change, and just trying to see the car racing parts is supposed to be ok and I'm being stupid and unreasonable. I said 2nd boundary broken now so that needs to go in place. I was deeply upset and hurt. Feeling very emotional. He just treated me like I'm an idiot. That I'm being totally unreasonable. As far as I'm concerned a decent man would be avoiding all sexually explicit material on the TV when his wife is not there, meaning not watching any part of a movie that has subjective material in it - Full stop!! A decent man wouldn't say I'm only trying to watch the non-sexual parts of the movie. Come On!!! Wtf?

    And this is all on the eve of him starting his 90 day HARD mode reboot. Which means no sexual contact for me either for 3 months. What a great start. If he had of talked to me before signing up, which he had been days ago, I would have said we should sort all of this out before he starts but he just went ahead without talking to me and signed up. Like it doesn't affect me either - I obviously don't matter in this decision. I don't feel good this is how he's decided to start his reboot. I'm the one missing out on sex for 3 months because of his whole addiction problem. What was supposed to be time spent intimately together prior to him starting turned into an argument in the morning then boundary went in place. Later in the afternoon he signed up for the Reboot Camp at NoFap Academy. Then that evening on a TV show with female sex and nudity, 2nd boundary in place. So in total 10 days separate sleeping arrangement. Now he is angry at me. Thinks that my first boundary in place was all just bullshit. So I don't know what that comment meant. What, because of that it escalated to him breaking a 2nd boundary that he otherwise wouldn't have??? He's pissed off at me. If he's actually pissed off at himself he's directing it at me by being sarcastic an unacknowledging of anything I say, stonewalling and avoiding behaviour coming into play. I don't think he's pissed off at himself because he's told me repeatedly that he is not in the wrong in any of what has happened. He know's his truth apparently.

    So feeling really sad and hurt. I feel to pained to keep going through these situations with him.
  14. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Thanks for your reply @GhostWriter.

    I'm to upset to write much at the moment but I will try to later.

    I am wrong on the signing up to 90 day Hardmode Reboot. He said he was doing it yesterday. The accountability software showed that he logged in to the sign up page. I should have checked the bank account - no payment processed so he must have decided not to. He's not talking to me, so when I seen the signup page I jumped to the conclusion he'd done it. He says he has not.

    Also, it wasn't a device he wouldn't hand over. He makes money online in the form of cash vouchers / gift cards. Has been for 12 mths or so. I had no knowledge of it until D Day a few months ago. It's how he funded the purchase of hard drive / usb devices to store his porn / nude movies on. Rather than stop him from doing it which I would have preferred, the agreement was I can view all vouchers / gift cards that he keeps in his wallet at anytime. I don't have to ask him to look. I don't have to look at them with him if I don't feel comfortable. I can look myself without his involvement. He refused to just give them to me. He wanted to go through it all with me. I didn't want that. Things were HIGHLY tense between us at the time. I needed him to just back off and leave me be with it until I was ready to ask any questions. He wouldn't back off. That's how in the end he just threw the wallet.... The whole thing of him making money this way is just fkd's too hard to keep track's only an issue because it was his secret way of purchasing stuff unbeknown to me.

    I will respond with more when I can think overwhelmed with everything right now!!! But as always I appreciate all your time and efforts.
  15. Queenie%Bee

    Queenie%Bee Fapstronaut

    I’m sorry I didn’t realize that was your SO :(
  16. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    no, don't apologise QnB, how could you know, and feel free to post on his journal, he needs all the help he can get. What you were saying makes sense but what i'm afraid of more than anything is when he does open up and speak, which he needs to do, it won't be actual truth but rather what he calls his truth, the gaslighting - lies and denials that I am constantly bombarded with. And then the feedback he receives will be based on that, which reinforces his gaslighting behaviour. Which leaves in me in a more dangerous situation than i am already in with him....
  17. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    Dear Journal
    This gaslighting behaviour has me so frantic and traumatised beyond words. My husband doesn't care that this is how it affects me. His words says he wants to help me heal and understand betrayal trauma but his actions leave me in this state. For 4 days now everything has just been a blur. Thank god my mind is strong that he hasn't got me so delusional that I actually believe him. But that's all i have, physically I feel week, and my mind is frantic, pained & traumatised. This person who is supposed to be my rock, my trusted one, my protector, my greatest supporter in helping me heal is doing everything the opposite right now.
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2018
  18. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

    I’m sorry to see you struggling. All I can offer is a pithy reminder that recovery is not linear, it has ups and downs and it sounds like your PA is having a firm down.

    Stay calm, stay kind, stay firm, stay the course. I think you’ll be back on an upward swing soon. In the meantime focus on you...
  19. HonestyMatters

    HonestyMatters Fapstronaut

    I think you're aware of my PA as you are posting on his journal too. I don't want to stop him from writing his angry thoughts or feelings, my post above yours on his journal was only to say I don't think it's good to block each other. Though I am afraid of him lying in his journal and then receiving validation and support on those lies and consequently making my life more difficult. He severely gaslights me.

    Thank you so much for your positive words here....I am trying but it's a hell of struggle right now!
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2018
  20. Banjaxed

    Banjaxed Fapstronaut

    It’s ok to be afraid. Please take the following in the spirit in which it is intended, to be helpful to YOU (remembering always that I am a PA, not a SO)

    Your post on his journal refers to him in the third person, as your comments are responding to another SO on there. This would be a huge trigger for me. It’s like your having a conversation over his head. I would feel infantilised and marginalised, on my very own journal! I’m sure that is the last thing you want to do but I raise it as a possibility.

    You are worried about him lying on his journal. Understandable, but you can’t stop it or control it, you cannot censor what he writes and even if you did, you cannot censor what he thinks. If he doesn’t do it here he’ll be doing it with his friends IRL or on another forum. He has to get there on his own, and speaking as a man and a PA, that process will not be helped by you trying to force him down that path. Think of us like mules - if you try and drag us down a path we’ll likely resist, even if we know deep down it’s in our best interests. Show us the path for sure, make clear the implications if we don’t go down the path, try and make clear the implications if we DO go down the path, then step back and observe.

    You have to step back IMO. Checking bank accounts to see if he’s signed up for the 90 day course? That’s no way to live and it’s ineffective in achieving what you want.

    Set boundaries, set consequences, then step back and let him get on with it. In the meantime focus on YOU

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