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#369119 - 08/30/11 10:41 AM What is a Supporter?
SamV Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5942
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
What makes up a supporter?

How does a supporter separate from the survivor as to what is their's to act on, and what is the survivor's?
Should the supporter allow anything the survivor stipulates? Can the supporter demand therapy? Should they be active in the therapy? Should they coexist without interfering? Can they be the "conscience", correcting the thoughts and feelings of the survivor? What can they allow, to themselves and to their lives? What is to be expected of them, from them and for them?

What, in your experience, has aided a survivor to recover? When is it time to affirm your life, and remove yourself from a survivor? What have you seen that has benefited you, and the survivor?

What is a Supporter?

Sincerely,
Sam

_________________________
MaleSurvivor Moderator Emeritus 2012 - 2014

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#369124 - 08/30/11 01:09 PM Re: What is a Supporter? [Re: SamV]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1734
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
Hi Sam
Nice post, good questions. Hope you dont mind if I put in my 2 cents worth

Quote:
How does a supporter separate from the survivor as to what is their's to act on, and what is the survivor's


A supporter separates by not being codependent. I know Im a bit of a broken record on this point but it is a really important factor and I cant stress it enough. when to act is when the survivors behavior is affecting the family. Other than that the problems are his to resolve.

Quote:
Should the supporter allow anything the survivor stipulates?

No I dot think so, because that would be like spoiling a petulant child.

Quote:
Should they be active in the therapy?

Involved but not active

Quote:
Should they coexist without interfering?

Definitely not, this is a partnership in sickness and health etc.

Quote:
Can they be the "conscience", correcting the thoughts and feelings of the survivor

Never thought of it this way but yes, "conscience" is a good way to look at it.

Quote:
What can they allow, to themselves and to their lives? What is to be expected of them, from them and for them?

Don't quite get what you are asking here?

Quote:
What, in your experience, has aided a survivor to recover? When is it time to affirm your life, and remove yourself from a survivor? What have you seen that has benefited you, and the survivor?


Being tough and not allowing me to act out and standing up for herself, these got me to work on my healing.
Its time to remove yourself from the situation when, You are being hurt, abused mentally, or just utterly miserable with your life.
Ill recuse myself from this answer.

Thanks for the post again
Martin

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

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#369134 - 08/30/11 03:49 PM Re: What is a Supporter? [Re: whome]
GoodHope Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/05/11
Posts: 415
I've thought about my role a lot. I believe almost everything is up to him. I view my job as that of stabilizer for the family as a whole, and emotional stability and support for him.

I don't have the right to "demand" therapy for him, but I am within my right to not stay with him if he is not actively working to get better. It isn't about manipulating him, it's about us working together to create a relationship and an environment that is emotionally healthy for all of us.

I am not his therapist, but I listen and not so gently offer different perceptions of what transpired, (i.e. he still feels as though he consented, although he concedes that at 5 he didn't, still grappling with his role as a teenager).

I research for my own edification, but I share what I learn with him when he is interested (which is pretty often).

I try to respect his privacy (I failed in a big way once with this) and allow him to divulge what he wants, when he wants. I don't ask him about therapy directly. I want him to have a space for him to work his stuff out without my meddling.

There are some key things that are extremely difficult for me as a supporter and they are primarily, being a stabilizing emotional support when I am broken by his affairs. It impacts how I feel about me, him, us and sometimes I am a broken down, slobbering shell of myself. Thankfully, that is less and less often than just a few months ago, but I am torn because I feel like I am adding to his burdens (which are many outside of the CSA and its fallout) but I also recognize that I am wounded, he wounded me (doesn't matter the reason) and it too, has repurcussions that have to be dealt with by both of us.

Letting him go at his own pace is also problematic for me (but only on the inside--I've not said one word or prodded or pushed--on the outside, lol!)

I have no idea what he is feeling. I read things like shame, dirty, disgust and freakish. He has shared those feelings with me, but what it actually feels like, how it impacts his day to day living and thinking, I can't relate to. So I want him to charge in 1000 mph, go to therapy twice a week, just rooting this stuff out. But he can't. It's too painful. It's too much. It's too tough. And I respect that. But the glacial pace frustrates me, while the fact that he is even attempting it, fills me with immense pride--probably more than any of the public accomplishments he has (and there are many).

_________________________
Wife of a survivor

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#369165 - 08/31/11 07:22 AM Re: What is a Supporter? [Re: SamV]
Pie Offline


Registered: 05/27/11
Posts: 61
Hi Sam

Supporter - a person who gives strength, help and encouragement.

As someone in the support role of a survivor and addict, we are permitted to require certain behaviours from that person. Should we see the need for therapy it can become one of the conditions of maintaining the relationship. However once they are in therapy that part of their healing becomes the survivor/addicts responsibility. Obviously if its a couple then couples therapy is needed to work on relationship issues, this is over and above individual sessions.

A supporter should never allow the survivor/addict to enlist them in something that goes against their own judgement.

I have found that becoming firm with my husband has worked. I don't bother entertaining his whims, nor do I put up with his "acting out". This is obviously done with love and understanding.

What is to expected from,to and for the supporter, is respect and dignity. We are people who have chosen to remain in the relationship and should be given as much love and honesty as the survivor can afford.

One of the best examples of a supporter is, the post that is used to hold a sappling up right. Should the tree start growing around it and engulfing it, neither the tree nor the post will retain its strength.


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#369542 - 09/05/11 09:35 PM Re: What is a Supporter? [Re: Pie]
SamV Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5942
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
Thank you supporters, and survivors,

Getting this information helps me to understand the plight my supporter is going through. I will definitely be more gentle with her, she is caring for her and me, even if I am not always aware.

When I am, I better be Johnny On The Spot with some good feelings and support for her!

Sam

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MaleSurvivor Moderator Emeritus 2012 - 2014

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