What do you say...if anything?

Discussion in 'Partner Support' started by Lostneverland, Apr 7, 2019.

  1. Lostneverland

    Lostneverland Fapstronaut

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    This question is for all the SO’s:

    What do you say to friends and family when you run into them and they notice that you aren’t your happy self?

    Do you tell them the truth?
    Do you avoid the questions?
    Do you minimize the severity?
    Do you expose his lies and betrayals?

    Any and all input would be GREATLY APPRECIATED.
     
  2. For me, it depends on who the person is.

    If I think the person is truly safe for me to talk to, I will tell them. I have told 3 people.

    If it is someone that I know cares for me but I don't know if they are safe to share this with, I will tell them that I am having a hard time and that I appreciate their concern.
     
  3. Lostneverland

    Lostneverland Fapstronaut

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    Okay..thank you for your response. Now how do you know who a safe person is ?
     
  4. That's a good question! Someone who is safe is going to be there to support you, but won't tell you what you need to do.
    Someone who is safe is going to listen without judgement.
     
    lostintx likes this.
  5. Lostneverland

    Lostneverland Fapstronaut

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    That’s a really good response...I think I need a new group of friends.
     
  6. hope4healing

    hope4healing Fapstronaut

    In our 25 years together, I have never told anyone about anything related to my husband's PA (except here on nofap). The main reason for that is because I always thought that's just what a good wife does...protects her husband's image from outside scrutiny and judgement. I didn't want people to think less of him, and I thought that by protecting his reputation, I was showing him my willingness to be supportive.

    Other factors that have kept me from saying anything are 1) my fear that no one would believe me or they'd think I was exaggerating. Everyone we know thinks of my husband as the most respectful, honest, moral guy around, and he'd usually be the first to speak out against any kind of infidelity. He's the last person anyone would think could be a PA. 2) Because of everyone's beliefs about the type of person my husband is, I feel like all of the blame for his addiction might unfairly be shifted to me...I'm not a good wife, I'm not sexually available or don't care about his needs, etc. While none of that is true because I've always been a ready and willing participant (much more than he has), it's easier to point the finger at me than at someone who seems so unlikely to be a PA in the first place.

    For a long time, I was really good at hiding my pain, and everyone has always thought we are the 'perfect couple' so it went completely unnoticed. But, several years ago I finally got to a point where I couldn't keep it all inside anymore. My Mom and sister especially could see that I wasn't myself anymore. They've asked me about it numerous times but in gentle ways so I've always been able to pass it off on life stresses. And, as the betrayal trauma has gotten worse over time, I've slowly isolated myself from most of the people in my life that would have been the ones to notice. So, with the exception of close family, the need to explain anything to anyone has been nearly eliminated.

    I'm realizing now the toll it's taken on me to keep everything inside for this long. I am merely a shell of the person I used to be. But, to be honest, way back when I first decided to keep it all to myself, I never would've thought that I'd still be living in this nightmare all these years later. I truly believed this was an issue that we would face together, and we would quickly do whatever was necessary to put it behind us and move on. Obviously, it didn't happen that way, though, and the longer it went on, the harder it became for me to tell anyone so I never have. However, I think it's time for me to tell my Mom everything. In a way, I feel like it's something I need to do...it's the right thing to do. She already knows something major is affecting me, and I know she worries about it a lot so it seems unfair to not share with her all I'm going through. I can trust her to not tell anyone, and I know she will only react with loving concern, no judgement. I think it'll be difficult to open up about everything after all this time, but I suppose it can't be any harder than holding it all in forever.
     
  7. Lostneverland

    Lostneverland Fapstronaut

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    Hope4healing...yes please talk with your mom. Everything in your post is so familiar. The most polite, moral ,kind guy, but behind closed doors it’s another story. The perfect couple etc...
    I understand about becoming a shell of the person we once were.

    I thank you very very kindly for your sharing. I do believe you exposed a lot of the feelings we as SO’s have all experienced. Not being believed, blamed, judged etc...

    Your post brought tears to my eyes this morning. I feel your emotional pain.
    This is a challenging position to be in.

    Thank you once again, my heart is with you. ( BIG HUG coming your way)
     
  8. The first person I told was an older lady from church. I knew that there had been rough times in her marriage that they had gotten through them. I also knew there were things in her kids' lives that she wished could have remained hidden, things that could feel like a reflection of her, just like we SO's can feel like our husband's PA reflects on us. I saw the way she handled those situations and the way she loves others that are hurting.
    She let me talk, let me cry, comforted me. She said she knows what a huge problem porn is and that it didn't affect her view of me or my husband.

    The second person I told was a friend that was also having trouble in her marriage. The trouble in her marriage comes from a different source, but we are able to support each other.
     
    hope4healing likes this.

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