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#374232 - 11/04/11 04:54 AM Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ?
Anniemy4sons Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/29/11
Posts: 98
Loc: NJ
It has been 2 months and 2 days since my husbands disclosure. So many emotions, so many ups and downs. One thing that has been consistent is our love for each other and our lovemaking. But it's different now. He is always putting my needs FIRST. Because of the SA our therapist says this is a must. I must be the one to initiate and I must come first.

But I'm wondering, is that okay being that he is a csa survivor?

He says no but I'm concerned if this makes him feel powerless? (for 20+ years he has always said I control our sex life) stressing the word control here. I NEVER considered it ME controlling him, but he did/does!)
This was always a huge issue for us. I have never used it as leverage or punishment.

I know his thinking is distorted when it comes to this subject. He did admit that he feels grounded and "we're okay" if we are consistent. But now I feel a huge responsibility about being careful with him. He is very fragile and emotional these days. (he cries now, he NEVER cries)

On the other hand the SA has me worried . How do I tell if he is making love to me OR he is having sex with me (replacement acting out)? He also claims NO.

Am I over thinking this..? Just let it be what ever it is. My fear that he becomes sexually anorexic is a major factor. I feel like I'm constantly on watch/read duty.

Our love making has become VERY intense, long, very erotic. Very sexual if you know what I mean. Different... While we are touching more, hand holding snuggling etc. Outside the bedroom ( he has always been affectionate with me) I feel like he is trying SO hard! To connect almost. OR he has to hold on to me ( like I'm going to run away from him)

So my questions are:
1) am I over thinking this.
2) should I be concerned that he is "acting out" and how to tell the difference
3) how do I reassure him outside of the bedroom that I'm here for the long haul. A forever kind of thing. Don't worry, be happy. Your secret is out and You are safe with me.
4) is it normal for lovemaking to change after disclosure?

One more thing, he keeps asking me if I still find him masculine. ( the answer is YES!)

We're so screwed up but I love him and I love US. DEARLY!

_________________________
God is my teacher, Jesus my comfort and the Holy Spirit my protector.
I AM Listening...

Thank you Mother Mary.
Pray the Rosary every day. http://www.comepraytherosary.org/

I BELIEVE IN HER PROMISE.

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#374247 - 11/04/11 08:17 AM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Anniemy4sons]
Disappointed Offline


Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 540
Loc: U.S.A.
OMG!

_________________________
Female.

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#374249 - 11/04/11 08:19 AM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Disappointed]
Disappointed Offline


Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 540
Loc: U.S.A.
And YES, he's asking if you still see him as masculine! While being sexually abused, he was cast in the submissive, feminine role. Of course he has self doubts, especially now that you know and he can't hide behind his flawless masculine mask!

_________________________
Female.

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#374258 - 11/04/11 09:23 AM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Anniemy4sons]
lucylives Offline


Registered: 04/07/11
Posts: 364
Your post jumped out at me as we deal with alot of the same issues.

My therapist told me to let him initiate when we make love because he has felt powerless from the abuse. I will say that when I initiate, I see frustration with him. I think he feels pressured to perform. Whatever. What about my needs? Just for today, though, I am going to follow what my therapist says because it makes sense. The acting out my husband did was all about reenacting but he was the one who says when, he was the one who was in control, so to speak. Am I reading your therapist said the opposite??
I don't think you are over-thinking at all. This all feels really weird and we are in the dark all the time. That is what i hate the most. I just want to know what is happening with him. The problem with wanting to know what is happening with him can totally distract me from my own feelings. That is what I am working on right now. I can spend all day, every moment worrying about this stuff to the point where I am "numbing" and not paying much attention to what I want, need and am feeling.

I, too, worry about the sexual anorexia thing and Yes, my husband worries too that he isn't enough of a man. Please! Why would what happened to them as children affect how we view them as men. They were little boys!!! Silly thinking, in my point of view. We are not responsible for f^&*ed up people's actions towards us when we are kids. We can't let the crazy people control how we feel about ourselves as adults. I try to tell my husband that but to no avail. He still takes on their shame.

The replacement acting out or acting out with me is a concern too with me. It is very possible, in my opinion, that they act out with us. I guess you can tell by whether or not he seems really present or not or if he seems lost in his "thinking". How do you tell that? i don't know yet. I would say if he is keeping his eyes open and doesn't seem to be lost in his mind, then he probably isn't acting out but I don't really know. The truth is we don't really know anything unless the have the capacity to tell us and to really know themselves. I think alot of times, my husband is clueless as to what is going on with him and what he is feeling. I don't think he really knows himself and what makes him tick which is part of the issue. After years of stuffing feelings with acting out and numbing, could we expect anything different?

I think this is going to be a VERY long journey for him and me too. I am glad for this site and for my 12 step groups and for the books I have read. It is really easy to take this stuff personally (another thing I am working on) but just for today, I am going to work on having a good day and do what I need to do for today to have a good day for me!!!. This stuff is so overwhelming it can occupy my whole life.

It would be great if survivors could respond to all this. That is the closest I think we will get at this point to knowing what is going on in their heads. I think it is easier probably for them to open up to us here than it is for our husbands to open up to us and it may be easier for survivors to open up to us here than to their wives. I may be wrong but I think shame makes it hard to share all this stuff.


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#374266 - 11/04/11 11:59 AM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: lucylives]
1227ms Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/01/10
Posts: 98
Loc: PA
Anniemy4sons,
Let me try and share my perspective as a survivor.
We all have our own stories and journeys so everyone needs to evaluate their own situation.

My csa was emotionally and developmentaly traumatizing but not physically traumatizing. I developed and maintained walls emotionally to protect myself. I am 50, married 30 years(very strained at this point), 2 grown children, 1 granddaughter. I never cheated, never went to strip clubs (alright, twice with the guys from work) but never as a way of "acting out". I did often wonder if I was "masculine enough". I have learned that was a result of CSA. I have never felt any homosexual tendencies. In my marriage I always wanted sex. My wife would say she didn't feel an emotional connection. I would respond that for me an " emotional connection" comes with sex. I have learned that while it is not atypical for a man to react that way it also is a result of CSA which at 10 taught me that sex = affection/love. On my healing journey I am learning and feeling that in reality, sex should be a healthy way for intimate partners to express love. I have been on my healing journey almost a year. While on the outside I am the same man, inside I have a new understanding of me. I now can express feelings. I no longer feel a complusion to have sex. I can choose. I can talk about sexual desires and feelings and have intimate conversations about how I feel. I have found it is hard to explain the difference to a person who didn't experience CSA. My old "normal" is not my new "normal". The abuse shaped my view of relationships, intimacy and sex into something a non CSA survivor never experienced. My healing journey is reshaping that and I love the new normal which is developing. On my healing journey I needed my supporters (spouse, children, parents, therapist, brothers here at MS) not to tell what I should feel but to tell me they loved me, I wasn't nuts or wacky, to let me heal at my pace but with their support. For me hearing I love you I am here for the long haul would have felt great. To have my spouse read a book or 2 about male CSA would have been great. I'm not sure about the "don't worry be happy" part. I get the great intentions behind it, but it seems a little like telling him how he should feel. I would think that ultimately sex could become a much more intimate connection and so would change in some ways. Hopefully for the better.

Hope this helps a little.

_________________________
“Everything becomes a little different as soon as it is spoken out loud.”
Hermann Hesse

Hope Springs alumnus 2011

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#374272 - 11/04/11 01:05 PM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Disappointed]
Anniemy4sons Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/29/11
Posts: 98
Loc: NJ
Dear disappointed,
If u read my previous posts you would not be so judgmental! I have dealt with my husband having unprotected sex with prostitutes, affairs, sleeping with my dead sister 15 years ago, stds and more. So I have every right to be cautious and wary of everything he does! I have stuck by him for 22 years and have supported him these last couple of months. I am not looking for perfection only respect. In my home, in my bed and on these boards.

Please try to remember Pain is Pain, we are not here to one up each other on who has suffered more. This is about supporting each other and sharing information & advice from those who have gone before us on this journey.



Edited by Anniemy4sons (11/04/11 03:17 PM)
_________________________
God is my teacher, Jesus my comfort and the Holy Spirit my protector.
I AM Listening...

Thank you Mother Mary.
Pray the Rosary every day. http://www.comepraytherosary.org/

I BELIEVE IN HER PROMISE.

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#374275 - 11/04/11 01:11 PM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Anniemy4sons]
Anniemy4sons Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/29/11
Posts: 98
Loc: NJ
Thank you for the productive responses. I am concerned if our therapist is more concerned with the csa or the sex addiction. Which should be treated first etc.

I don't want him to ever feel rejected so I need to try and read his needs when I can without jeopardizing my own. It's a careful balance.

_________________________
God is my teacher, Jesus my comfort and the Holy Spirit my protector.
I AM Listening...

Thank you Mother Mary.
Pray the Rosary every day. http://www.comepraytherosary.org/

I BELIEVE IN HER PROMISE.

Top
#374282 - 11/04/11 03:04 PM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Anniemy4sons]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
@Disappointed, it is still a concern for us if someone is acting out with us. I did not want my ex to feel he had to have sex with me if it meant he was acting out...that was for his benefit and mine. Let's not "compare" pain and say one type of acting out is more harmful than another. It would be hard for me to hear my husband say "Yeah I have sex with you but it's just because I'm acting out, not because I enjoy it or because I love you." Annie has every right to be concerned about it, and I think the type of response to her post was uncalled for.



Edited by hopeandtry (11/04/11 03:36 PM)

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#374284 - 11/04/11 03:18 PM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: Anniemy4sons]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1734
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
"am I over thinking this." Yes

"should I be concerned that he is "acting out" and how to tell the difference" No

"how do I reassure him outside of the bedroom that I'm here for the long haul. A forever kind of thing. Don't worry, be happy. Your secret is out and You are safe with me." Just tell him so, A lot.

"is it normal for lovemaking to change after disclosure?" For me yes

"One more thing, he keeps asking me if I still find him masculine." He is afraid that you might think he is effeminate, now that he has told you of the abuse, You just got to over play the masculine thing, compliment him if he picks up something heavy and tell him he is such a man etc. He is afraid that you don't find him attractive.

Hope the short answers help.
Martin

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

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#374286 - 11/04/11 03:42 PM Re: Lovemaking/sex and the survivor - survivor ? [Re: whome]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
I'll throw in my (other) two cents here, Annie.

If my ex was having sex with me and I knew he was only doing it because he was acting out (with me), then I would feel used. I would feel like my body is not here for him to love and cherish, but to use as a piece of meat so he can act out. While I wouldn't take the acting out personally in the sense of there being something wrong with me, I would feel that I was being used AND I would feel that it was harmful for him to associate me with his abuse (not sure if this last part is actually hurting him, but it would make me feel bad to know I was associated with his abuse rather than with love). I'd rather him just not have sex with me. My body is not here for someone to act out on. It's here for love. I would want him to be honest with me. If he can't have sex because it's acting out, then I would be understanding of that, but I have a right to know if he is "present" during sex or not, acting out, whatever. It's my sex life, too.



Edited by hopeandtry (11/04/11 03:43 PM)

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