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#363717 - 06/06/11 08:52 PM New partner seeking more understanding
lightseeker Offline


Registered: 06/06/11
Posts: 4
Hello
I am the partner of a male victim/survivor of sexual abuse (he is 40). We have been together for a little over a year and the last 4 months have been very tough, with the 'revelation' (which helped me at least understand it wasn't me that wasn't good enough for him), uncontrollable fights where he would run anway and leave me in a restaurant or a bar, snapping at me, being extremely loving and affectionate at other times (usually this spells trouble as 2-3 days later it goes pear-shaped again) and also break ups.
The last one (and possibly final) was on the weekend, and the admission (again) that he has serious doubts about his sexuality and cannot commit to 'us' whilst he has this feeling of not knowing who he is. Fair enough of course, and I thank him trying to protec me, if that is what it is. This will all ring a bell to a few of you no doubt. I find it extremely distressing as I love him, possiblymore than I have ever loved anyone, and want to be there for him. I have managed to get over my own feelings of low self-esteem now that I understand the reason for his erratic and often hurtful behaviour, but I am now in a position where I don't know if I should try to help him, if I should fight for his love (will that make things worst anyway and scare him), or if I should leave him. I feel completely stuck. I have a natural desire to help others anyway, and this part of my identity is affected by his suffering as I have been engrossed in trying to help him - obsessively so perhaps. Reading and reading about it, horrified at how common it is, feeling angry at the world about it and the lack of knowledge people have about this, feeling very isolated and alone too as I can't tell others about it - they just think he is no good for me. We both are not from this country either and so there's further isolation from being away from family.
I have had arguments about him with friends, protecting him. I keep hearing we have to look after ourselves - I do, but how can I pretend all is fine when the man I love suffers to terribly and tells me at times he has had suicidal thoughts. Where do you draw the line between being a supportive girlfriend and being motherly (not a good idea in his case as she was one of the abusers - if intoxicated at the time and lost herself - sorry, no exuses as far as I'm concerned).
I am astounded at how many men and women have had their childhood ripped away from them and how many partners struggle as well, trying to be the best human being they can be and doing the right thing.
Sorry, long-winded message, but isn't it good to be able to put it in writing and pressing the button 'send'.


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#363787 - 06/07/11 12:17 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: lightseeker]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1734
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
Hi Light seeker and welcome to the sight.
My first reaction RUN. But we cant say that, as we don't know enough. It seems that he has admitted to the CSA. Is he in treatment, therapy or group. Is he keen to seek treatment. DOES HE want recovery. We would need to know these points before anyone could give you response. So my first reaction is null and void. Please let us know about the above and all will assist and comment, I'm sure.
GOD SPEED
Martin

_________________________
Matrix Men South Africa
Survivors Supporting Each other
Matrix Men Blog

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#363808 - 06/07/11 07:10 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: whome]
lightseeker Offline


Registered: 06/06/11
Posts: 4
Hi Martin
Thanks for your reply. I don't want to run, after 12 months together it is clear that I love him deeply and will do anything for him. He admitted to the CSA a couple of months ago when we broke up the first time. He is not in treatment, he was for a few years overseas but feels it didn't help. He says he will find treatement here but then the costs involved deter him. And this is a very expensive country so he's got a point. However he will spend money on concert tickets etc. I think he does want recovery, he is desperately unhappy. He doesn't know where to go.


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#363812 - 06/07/11 07:56 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: lightseeker]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
I am glad you are here for yourself as much as for him. I agree with you that he probably does want recovery, but it probably seems so unreachable to him at times. Sometimes it's hard to start even trying because you are afraid of what will happen if things don't work out. Heck, I've felt that way in my own life and I'm not a survivor of abuse. But be sure to take care of yourself, because that is, in the end, the only person you have (and should have) control over.


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#365101 - 06/28/11 01:18 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: hopeandtry]
lostcowboy Offline
Member

Registered: 11/10/04
Posts: 797
Loc: North Texas
Hello lightseeker,
I also want to say run. Not because of what happened to him, but because he is being controling and abusive to you. For some reason you are letting that happen. Find out what happened in your past, that is making you allow him to be that way with you. I don't care what happened to him as a kid, he is not allowed to be controling and abusive to you.

While he is unsure of his sexuality, you should give him some distance. It can be very confusing to be attracted to the same sex, when you never had been before. I still don't know why it happened to me that one time.

Take care,
Clifford

_________________________
"Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don't walk behind me, I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend." - Albert Camus
Pretty much my life as I have posted so far. Triggers!

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#365102 - 06/28/11 01:41 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: lightseeker]
Still Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 02/16/07
Posts: 6376
Loc: 2.5 NATO Nations
Originally Posted By: lightseeker
... Where do you draw the line between being a supportive girlfriend and being motherly


You have permission to think and care for yourself. I recall my ex-wife trying to determine what line, what mile-marker needed to be realized for her to call it quits. I think it was when she began realizing she was losing herself. Don't continue if you are losing yourself...and it sounds like you are.

_________________________
Jesus Loves The Hell Outta Me!

Still's Globs

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#365113 - 06/28/11 04:56 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: lightseeker]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1734
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
Hi Lightseeker
Yeah My first instinct is RUN.
Things DO NOT get better with a survivor who does not want treatment. The abuse increases until you are lost. I manipulated my wife to the point where she did not know where or who she was. She completely lost herself and that is not fun.
Don't even try to think that you can change him, you cant. He must want change himself. Survivors who don't go for treatment will end up with a whole truck load of problems, Rage, alcoholism, maybe addiction, sex addiction porn addiction etc.

You are young, and I know you don't want to hear this, but you have your whole life ahead of you, dont waste it. His abuse is not your fault nor is it your problem. You have tried to help and if he doesnt want it LEAVE. Do what is best for you not him, before you end up with children, a mortgage, 2 SUV's and two cats in the yard. You will then be stuck in an abusive relationship.

Heal well
God Speed
Martin

_________________________
Matrix Men South Africa
Survivors Supporting Each other
Matrix Men Blog

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#365117 - 06/28/11 05:20 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: whome]
rebecca24 Offline


Registered: 07/15/09
Posts: 34
Loc: AZ
May I also put in that if the treatment didnt help find a therapist who is willing to work with him. Finding good help is difficult and if one didnt help try another method. Each survivor is very individule it may take a while to find one that fits some times traditional therapy does not help one and one all the time. If he doesnt want help now, he may at another time, always encourage healing in the way that suits him. If the abuse is serious and there is addictions and other sexual issues you may need to back out of the relationship. He may not return the affection, and you dont want to get tied up in things that you regret coming from a partner who know s csa. If cost is the only reason he is out of therapy there are ways to pay for it, and I agree with martin


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#365154 - 06/29/11 02:29 AM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: rebecca24]
lightseeker Offline


Registered: 06/06/11
Posts: 4
Thanks everyone. I appreciate the honest feedback. My ex is in the UK right now and that has 'forced' me to look after myself and the distance is doing me good. I still want a relationship with this man, I think I made him sound a lot more horrid than he deserves, he has many, many qualities and a lot of people appreciate him as a friend - however, I will not tolerate being mistreated anymore - not by anyone and I have learned a lot about myself thanks to him. It has also opened a can of worms for me and some abuse I suffered as a child which clearly I have not addressed before properly and will do so now (I have started seeing a therapist!).
Rebecca I think you are right - because the therapy he received before didn't work (psychoanalytical therapy) he is reluctant to try again - but he has been enquiring here and there, and he has spoken to people about getting help.
Cost isn't the only issue to be honest - he wants to stay in the country (we have a visa system) and keep teaching as well, and is worried it will impact on his visa and job - I am trying to make him understand it's confidential info but he is remaining cautious for the moment - that, I can understand.
Anyway we are no longer a couple so I am not so involved now. But I will keep supporting him.
Thanks again for taking the time to share your thoughts. Telling me to "run" is being heard, and I will take this on board seriously.


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#365371 - 07/03/11 04:08 PM Re: New partner seeking more understanding [Re: Still]
katie1205 Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/03/11
Posts: 48
Hi there,

Not related to my current husband (2nd), I was raised that if they abuse you once, they will do it again. As awful as giving up 1 year of your life is, I gave up 19. No I am not kidding. I dated my first husband 3 years and was married for 16. He became verbally abusive and hit me exactly ONCE and I filed for divorce. He also has many wonderful wonderful qualities and we remain very good friends to this day but you should not allow yourself to be anybody's punching bag emotionally, mentally, or physicially (sp). I am 40 so I literally walked away from my partner of half my life. It was very hard but my second husband taught me that I was worth being treated better than that.

Also as far as the gender confusion, there is nothing YOU can do to "fix" that. One of my best friends, female, is gender confused. While I love her as a good friend, she's messed up mentally over this. She has dated both men and women and does not consider herself bisexual. She considers herself a gay man. It's confusing at best. You could be the hottest sexiest thing in the world but if you have the wrong equipment, you have the wrong equipment. And this is something that will take him probably years of therapy in addition to the years of therapy for the molestation. You need to move on and find yourself a good man who knows what he wants, namely a good woman. Being involved with a gender confused person is a lot of heart ache. And since you are not married to him or have children by him and can walk away cleanly, that's what I would do. Personally. You don't have to set the bridge on fire and never speak again. You can keep him as a friend but at a distance and not get romantically involved.

Love,

Katie


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