I have been in a relationship with another man (Tom) for just over a year, and he told me eight (8) months ago that he had been sexually abused by his older brother and a babysitter. I was the only person in his life that he had told, and Tom was was very clear that he never wanted the topic to be brought up again. He is an absolutely wonderful human being and I think the world of him. He has never had counseling on the matter.
There was very little intimacy before he told me of the abuse, and there has been none in the eight (8) months since. Tom is very involved in our Unity Church and is always writing prayers and meditations, giving classes or reading spiritual books that usually have a "personal healing" theme to them, so I always have this feeling that he is on the brink of being ready to deal directly with the abuse issue.
The issue that I need some immediate advice on is regarding his ex. He was with a man for about 10 years, then the man left him for someone else. But Tom couldn't let go, so they were together off and on for another six (6) years, up until about two (2) years ago. That guy was 15 years older than Tom, cheated on him, and wasn't that great of a guy. This guy lives in Tom's home town which is a 17 hour drive away. Tom had not been back to his hometown for 2 years before we got together, now he is planning his fourth (4th) trip this year. The way is see things, it's like Tom's self-esteem drains out every few months, and he has to go back to see his ex to get it refilled. This trip is to visit his ex's father who is dying of cancer. The last was to return some of his ex's stuff, but he didn't take anything back. Tom usually says that he is going to his hometown to spend time with his mother, but his mother has told me that she only sees him when he gets there and when he is leaving.
Keeping my sanity has become a full-time job. I really want to be supportive of Tom, and even his trips to his ex. I don't have any reason to believe that he is sleeping with his ex. I'm having a harder and harder time playing pretend, and ignoring all of the elephants in the room.
I want to say: You've gone back home 4 times this year, and I feel that you need to go see you're ex for emotional reasons more than any other reason. It's tough for me to deal with - but I will deal with it - it does get easier each time.
I need some suggestions, ideas, thoughts etc. on how to deal with this - besides quietly going insane.
Any feedback will be greatly appreciated.