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#389722 - 03/18/12 07:08 PM Want to Help, but don't know how
karin4him Offline

Registered: 03/18/12
Posts: 22
Loc: Illinois
My husband was molestd by his older brother and by older boys in boy scouts. That is as much as he will tell me. He has been an alcoholic for quite some time and has quit drinking recently. I caught him looking at gay porn and looking at m4m on craigslist. He even met one for lunch. He confessed he had a sexual relationship with another man prior to our being married.

We started seeing a counselor and things were getting better until I caught him on craigslist again. He is now beginning to admit that his csa may be part of his drinking problems. He goes to AA meetings but has not started healing from the csa.

I am a survivor of csa myself, so have lots of self doubt which does not help our situation. I often feel that I deserve this and I know he's going to hurt me like all the other men in my life have done.

I want to believe in him, I want to help him. I want him to be happy, I just don't know how to get there or what it will do to our marriage. I worry that he may find he is gay, but after reading many of the posts, he may not be, but his ssa may be an outcropping of his csa.

I don't know what to do or where to turn for help, so I am here looking for suggestions or at least an ear to bend.

Thank you.

#389726 - 03/18/12 08:58 PM Re: Want to Help, but don't know how [Re: karin4him]
SamV Offline

Registered: 12/13/09
Posts: 5954
Loc: Talladega, Alabama, USA
Hello karin,

Welcome to MaleSurvivor. You are experiencing many difficulties in your recovery from sexual abuse and his acting out. This is a frustrating time for you both, and it is not the relationship you agreed to in the beginning. This may have been the marriage that was to bring relief and support that you sought, the care and stability you needed to complete recovery, be confident and settle into a balanced, happy relationship.

May I be the first to tell you, "he is still in there", and he loves you very much. Struggling with sexual identity can be linked to sexual abuse in the formative years. The overwhelming sexual feelings survivors struggle with can creates sexual scenarios in every decision. It has no boundaries, no gender, no race, no creed, no conscience. It has to be gratified, or it will overwhelm and control.

While there are similarities to what women and men experience as symptoms and disorders from sexual abuse, the differences are vast. What you have experienced is unconscionable, his abuse is trying to take over.
You are a supporter, and he desperately needs a male sexual abuse expert therapist. Your support needs to be about being a good partner and not judging. He needs an atmosphere that lets him know he is a good and valuable person. However, there are limits he MUST adhere to, boundaries he cannot cross. He cannot recover on your back, karin. You two must recover, in separate therapy, then couples, then through talking and affirming yourselves with each other.

This is a marathon, not a horse race. It will be long and arduous, but it is worth it. For now, if this information has brought you a sense of well being and understanding, know that you have found the the place you and he needs to keep together for years to come. It is a place for you both. We welcome survivors and supporters here.

MaleSurvivor Moderator Emeritus 2012 - 2014

#389795 - 03/19/12 02:26 PM Re: Want to Help, but don't know how [Re: karin4him]
Chase Eric Offline

Registered: 10/25/10
Posts: 2188
I see two victims caught in a cycle of hurting each other and hurting themselves. Your husband sounds like he is trying so desperately to find himself, even so far as to reenact the secrets he was forced to keep (VERY typical of CSA victims). At the same time he looks for the only escape from his demons that he can find - at the bottom of a bottle. And you sit there thinking you actually deserve this; despite your own abuse you focus on him and HIS struggles. And all the while, he is trying hard to define his basic identity and you are just holding on for dear life to the marriage, not knowing where this runaway train is going to end up...

If anyone has any doubt as to the damage CSA causes, just read this thread.

The one thing that comes through it all, however, is that you love him. Even your name, Karin4him, brings tears to my eyes because it is a testament to love - it just gives you away. I wish you both every bit of karma, prayer, good will, good luck with this. I am no therapist, but can say that recognizing the problem is the first step. That you are here says a lot. Bring your husband here as well; like AA, this is a brotherhood of friends all sharing the same struggle. It has given me much needed context about who I am, and has assured me that I am not alone (and CSA can be one of the most isolating experiences ever).

But most importantly, seek the professional guidance you both deserve and need.

In the final analysis, I suspect your love for each other will be the engine that powers your recovery. At least in your case, it is there in spades.


This is what brings me here

#390427 - 03/23/12 07:18 PM Re: Want to Help, but don't know how [Re: Chase Eric]
herowannabe Offline

Registered: 11/01/11
Posts: 386
Loc: USA

Wow. Do I ever get you!

I'm a supporter of my husband, a survivor of CSA. Like many of the supporters in the F&F section, I have been damaged by the surprise affects of CSA trauma. I'm in good company there, and you will be, too!

You've already gotten some words from some of the board's BEST (IMO), so you're off to a good start.

Breathe deep. Take care of you, too. Lay your burdens on us; we want to help and support you.

Wish you peace and love-


For I know the plans I have made for you. Plans to give you a future and a hope. Jeremiah 29:11


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