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#301366 - 09/02/09 07:12 PM What do I do?
wnt2bsupportive Offline


Registered: 09/02/09
Posts: 15
A brief overview of my situation. I have been dating my boyfriend for a year now. We currently live together and I am a single mother to a 6 year old child.

Shortly after my boyfriend moved in with me he confessed to me one evening while drinking that he was molested by an older boy that lived down the road from him when he was a child. He asked that I not bring it up and said he should have never told me.

Well six months later I found e mails on his computer where he had been soliciting men for sexual pleasures on Craigslist. At first I didn't want to believe it and tried to ignore it. However; one evening he started to pick a fight with me over something so petty (as he does on occasion when he is stressed or feeling down) and accused me of looking for another man. I explained to him that I would never do that blah blah blah.

As the evening progressed and the fight got worse I confronted him about the e mails (keep in mind I had forgotten about our conversation about his sexual abuse). He of course denied them and said that someone must have hacked his account. I continued to push him to tell me the truth. He refused. He would go out and drink and then come home and pass out and would have nothing to do with me or my daughter.

One night I asked him to talk to me and explained that I would not judge him or be mad and that in my mind there was nothing we couldn't get through if we were honest with one another. I told him if he loved me he would be honest.

He admitted that he had been sending the e mails. He began to tell me how embarrassed he was and how he could not stand to look me in my face. I told him that I would support him no matter if it was as his girlfriend or his friend.

I don't judge or "blame" him for his actions. I truly believe that it is a result of the trauma from what he experienced that he is doing this. He stated that he had never met with any of the men that he was just curious. He told me that this was not the way he wanted his life to be and that he wanted to get past it and would do anything to keep our relationship together.

I asked him to get help but he refuses. He says he is too embarrassed. It has been about a month and we have talked about it some but not a lot. He has been pushing marriage and kids a lot lately as well.

I just found out yesterday that he is still soliciting men. I also found out that he has actually met with some of these men. The problem is he is not the one telling me. He is leaving traces on his computer and that is how I have found out.

He now is telling me that he has to leave and that he can't be with me anymore. He is too embarrassed and has to run.

I have tried talking to him and explaining that it is not his fault.

I want to support him. I want him to get the help he needs but he wont listen. He thinks he deserves to suffer for the rest of his life.

What do I do?

Am I going about this all wrong? I love him and don't want to lose him but I know we will never survive if he doesn't get help and stops the lies.


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#301373 - 09/02/09 08:23 PM Re: What do I do? [Re: wnt2bsupportive]
MadDad Offline


Registered: 09/02/09
Posts: 4
Loc: Midwest
Wnt2,
I'm new here but have much experience with such issues.

Childhood sexual abuse often manifests as hypersexuality or gender identity issues. It sounds like you've done all the right things though being supportive often seems like it is as difficult as the abuse itself.

Continue to be as supportive as you can but do not lose your own identity in the issue. This is one of the big dangers in loving an abused person who who refuses to make the next step. Firm but gentle is the best route but your boyfriend must acknowlege the needs of yourself and your daughter as well as his own.

You have chosen a long road indeed by loving one with such a background, but it can and does get better if BOTH parties are willing to make it so. I have been married to my wife for 14 years and the abuse issues will wax and wane over time.

Just be strong without losing yourself.
MadDad


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#301379 - 09/02/09 08:29 PM Re: What do I do? [Re: MadDad]
Ken Singer, LCSW Offline
Moderator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/00
Posts: 5778
Loc: Lambertville, NJ USA
wnt2:
As you can see, I've been here a pretty long time and I can tell you that I have heard the exact same issues from many partners of survivors. You will find this to be true if you do a little searching of the archives around here.

Some of the key words may be "same sex attractions" or "ssa", "sexual acting out" and other variations of the theme. It is very common for survivors, particularly as they try to have a "normal" life to fall back into old positions stemming from their abuse. There is a chapter in my book which is coming out in the next couple of months that addresses these issues. If you'd like, I'll send you the chapter.

Ken


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#301396 - 09/02/09 10:23 PM Re: What do I do? [Re: Ken Singer, LCSW]
Bewlayb1 Offline
Guest

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 241
Loc: NYC
Wnt2:

It made me incredibly sad to read your post. I think everyone here empathizes with your boyfriend. We are a lot less judgemental than most would be. It's admirable that you sound as rational as you do in this situation. Obviously, the abuse has made a wreck of his sexuality. He understands that he's hurting you and he must feel humiliated and disgusted with himself.

All this doesn't change the fact that his behavior is unacceptable. While I sympathize with your boyfriend, and, in fact, see him as a kind of brother, he's being selfish, reckless and self-destructive. No woman is a saint. If you moved on, it would be understandable. You should feel no guilt. You have yourself and your six year old daughter to think about. He needs to stop. He's an adult. Regardless of the trauma he suffered as a boy, he must take responsibility for his actions.

Yes, the abuse is to blame. If he was an alcoholic, or drug addict, or abusive, it would probably be because of the abuse too. But he has free will. He's not a puppet on a string guided by the hand of a long gone pedophile. He's capable of fighting these bad impulses. To overcome this, he can't use excuses. As unfair as it is, to achieve happiness, he needs to be much stronger than the average person is.

The choice is entirely yours whether you want to invest yourself in trying to save him. He might very well get past this disturbing conduct. Your best bet at that is therapy. It's not my place, or anyone else's, to tell you how to proceed. You sound like a rare, selfless, compassionate woman. I'm sure he'd be devasated to lose you. I hope he realizes that and does what is necessary to keep you in his life. I wish you and your boyfriend the best.


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#301411 - 09/03/09 12:17 AM Re: What do I do? [Re: Bewlayb1]
DJsport Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1742
Originally Posted By: Bewlayb1
Wnt2: But he has free will. He's not a puppet on a string guided by the hand of a long gone pedophile.


Hi, All.

While I agree with most that is said in this post I totally disagree with the above statement.

Unless you have walked in our shoes, making judgemental statements like the above is uncalled for.

I believe you have free will to not accept whatever the bf is saying but to make a statement about someone elses desires do not work well.

I know others here will share their own stories (Ken Singer has given referrence to other topics to search for) about how they struggle with the "puppet on a string" syndrome as you put it.

Hopefully I have misunderstood what you are saying.

DJ



Edited by DJsport (09/03/09 12:19 AM)
_________________________
Live to your fullest potential

Never make someone a priority if your only an option

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#301425 - 09/03/09 07:35 AM Re: What do I do? [Re: DJsport]
wnt2bsupportive Offline


Registered: 09/02/09
Posts: 15
Thanks to each of you for taking the time to reply.

At this point I am still in a state of shock and honestly disbelief.

It's weird b/c I can get so mad and upset at him for some of the stupid things he does or doesn't do. However; this one I just can't be angry about. I think it's what he wants though. I think he would rather that I be angry and push him away then to tell him how much I love him and support him.

I know I am not alone in this. I have tried to explain to him that he isn't either. That he isn't the only one that has ever gone through this. He just doesn't believe me. He came home last night after going out drinking. He didn't want to be there but he did. He slept on the couch. Honestly, I didn't care where he slept as long as it was in our house where I knew he was safe. I was so scared of him doing something stupid.

He says he doesn't care and he has nothing to live for. I know I will never in a million years understand how he feels or what it feels like to be in his shoes. I just wish I could make him see that he is worth it and that he deserves to be happy. I want the pain and torment to stop for him.

I am really glad that I found this site. I truly believe it will be a great source of comfort and support for me and hopefully something I can eventually pass on to him.

Thank you to everyone!


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#301436 - 09/03/09 08:46 AM Re: What do I do? [Re: wnt2bsupportive]
Bewlayb1 Offline
Guest

Registered: 08/03/07
Posts: 241
Loc: NYC
Hello DJ Sport. I did not mean to offend anyone with that statement. I have been in your shoes. I am a male survivor. I was raped and molested for 2 years, or so, by a teacher from eight to ten. Sometimes I do feel like a puppet on a string, as if everything I do originates back to the abuse. Maybe thatís why it came off as harsh. Weíre hardest on the problems we see in ourselves.

But if I have no control over my actions at all, if my whole life I would be ruled by the evil this monster did to me, what would be the point in living, or fighting? The survivor in this posted acted wrong. He has to accept that. We could give up and admit that weíve lost our souls to a psychopath, or we can believe that we can surmount the daunting obstacles against us. I donít know if you misunderstood, but thatís what I meant.



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#301440 - 09/03/09 09:36 AM Re: What do I do? [Re: Bewlayb1]
sugarbaby Offline


Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 338
"I just wish I could make him see that he is worth it and that he deserves to be happy. I want the pain and torment to stop for him."

He has to find that on his own and in his own time, in my opinion.


"But he has free will. He's not a puppet on a string guided by the hand of a long gone pedophile."

I totally get that statement. My husband was just like that.


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#301447 - 09/03/09 11:04 AM Re: What do I do? [Re: sugarbaby]
DJsport Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/20/08
Posts: 1742
Bewlay1

I totally misunderstood you. Your profile says nothing about yourself so I was not sure if you were speaking as a survivor (as a survivor it is clear you know the struggles) or as a non-survivor.

My apologies to you for misunderstanding where you are coming from. I am a survivor who is single. I understand honesty but, I also understand the "pull" from which the csa created.

I empathize with my fellow survivors here. I have struggled with "acting out behaviors". And to be honest the acting out was sexual and recreating the abuse.

Anyway not to hijack this post.

Peace,
DJ

_________________________
Live to your fullest potential

Never make someone a priority if your only an option

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#301448 - 09/03/09 11:15 AM Re: What do I do? [Re: DJsport]
wnt2bsupportive Offline


Registered: 09/02/09
Posts: 15
I do not by any means feel that you are "hijacking" my post.

I appreciate and welcome any insight that can be offered.

I have learned so much just in the last day since joining. So many things in our relationship makes more sense now.

My eyes have been opened to things I never knew or thought I would know.

I cannot express how much all of your responses mean to me right now. I think they are truly helping me stay sane, not blame myself, and definitely helping me cope. I know I am not the "victim" here, but I do feel because of what some horrible person did to the person I love that I am paying a price so to speak.

DJSport, I absolutely love your quote I have heard it before but today it makes so much more sense.

__________________________________________

"The stupid neither forgive nor forget; the naÔve forgive and forget; the wise forgive but do not forget."


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