Newest Members
BCtejas, JHNebraska, mike42069, JACKL, Personman
12491 Registered Users
Today's Birthdays
mrwhiskers (25), SouthernLaw (41), TerryT (61)
Who's Online
2 registered (Laurie, CafeMan), 81 Guests and 6 Spiders online.
Key: Admin, Global Mod, Mod
Forum Stats
12491 Members
74 Forums
64159 Topics
447737 Posts

Max Online: 418 @ 07/02/12 07:29 AM
Twitter
Page 2 of 3 < 1 2 3 >
Topic Options
#449862 - 10/11/13 02:32 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2024
Loc: durham, north england
That makes sense otf. This however is also why I pretty much believe I'm stuck with genophobia unless I can find someone to fix it with, ---- since it's pretty hard to learn to communicate on your own.

Top
#449939 - 10/12/13 02:32 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
HD001 Offline


Registered: 07/30/12
Posts: 263
Loc: us
Dark brings up some valid points.
Yes, I think a lot of women make martyrs of themselves and get with men who treat them like crap. People have issues that's real.
I don't think it is always the case though. I got with H because he was the first guy who would give me enough space. Oh the irony. For a woman I'm pretty emotionally distant. Most men I dated felt like I was cold and didn't want to let me have time to go play in a band or do my own thing. H really liked that I had hobbies that where my own. I liked that he did too. We have a ton of shared interests and when he isn't acting crazy we get along great. He is funny and smart and interesting. He is everything I thought I could never find and well he also struggles with mental illness brought on by CSA and neglect.
I didn't know how bad it was till after we got married. Looking back there where signs but I have my own past and ptsd stuff from time to time so I figured that he would handle it and everything would be fine.
My Dad brought up a good point to me about my H. He said mental illness is a funny thing in our society. If someone has cancer, or get their legs blown off in war we rally around them. We support them and offer them compassion. If someone has a mental illness of emotional trauma we tell them to just get over it and move on. They can't because their illness is every bit as real as the person fighting a battle with cancer. Emotionally your husband has had is legs blown off so you can't just demand that he get up and walk. (this was a funny visually and made me giggle a bit I have kind of a dark sense of humor.)
I think this is a good point, and I think about it when I want to "tell my H to get up and walk" so to speak.
If he had cancer I wouldn't leave him. If he was a vet who returned from Iraq in a wheelchair and suffered nightmares I wouldn't leave him. So why is CSA any different, well it really isn't.
Someday my PTSD could come back really bad or I could get very sick and it could go on for a long time. I sure hope that H would stick by me in my hour of need no matter how hard it was.
So Sugarbaby how do we deal?
We deal in all different ways I think. At least I do. Sometimes I vent on here. I meditate. I keep a gratitude journal. I take me time everyday and go to the gym and keep my body strong. I cry when I need to. I have a glass of wine with my girlfriends. I paint my struggle on a canvas and write songs on my guitar. The more I do for myself the better I am. The less his anger and pain seep into me. The more I am able to love him without condition. The more I see myself growing into the wise grounded old lady I want to be someday. My best advice is to find what you love about yourself, your talents and strengths and nurture them. Feed your inner light so that you will feel safe no matter how dark everything is around you.
This is at least what I have been working on. There are still crap days but I am able to pull myself out of my funk a lot faster and I am quick to remember how lovely I am. When our husbands can't see the good in themselves they won't be able to see the good in us either.
When I want to give up, when I hurt, I ask myself if I want to let this journey with H break me and turn me into a sad bitter person, or do I want to let it grow me into a pillar of compassion and strength?
You can do it! I'm cheering for you.
_________________________
Everything comes from within

Top
#449947 - 10/12/13 03:47 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
dark empathy Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 11/26/07
Posts: 2024
Loc: durham, north england
Well Hd, I don't know whether it's because most of my friends and the people I know and have seen start relationships are university students, but to me at least the occasions when one partner does nothing! for and of themselves just don't seem to work, indeed I personally find the idea of such quite repellent.

If love is a conversation, well it won't work if one person has nothing to say of their own, irrispective of anything else. This is certainly not gender specific, albeit when I've seen men involved in that sort of thing it tends to be expressed a little less eloquently unless the men in question are particularly happy with articulating their feelings, but it certainly happens, (heck, I think my parents were in severe danger of this albeit they seemed to have worked things out).

As I said, I don't think this covers all surviver relationships, but it is something I have sometimes wondered when reading surviver partner stories, especially! when the surviver in question has been deeply unpleasant. Of course I'm not one to judge, and I would never try to point out in any individual case which person was doing what, this is just based on personal observation of others and a degree of self knolidge, but I do wonder if it's something people need to considder, ---- heck not just for surviver relationships but for relationships generally, especially! when one partner has problems which they refuse to address, (I certainly believe my friend and her hypochondriac husband have done this to an extent).

Top
#450220 - 10/15/13 11:04 AM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: dark empathy]
sugarbaby Offline


Registered: 08/17/08
Posts: 377
Quote:
If he had cancer I wouldn't leave him. If he was a vet who returned from Iraq in a wheelchair and suffered nightmares I wouldn't leave him. So why is CSA any different, well it really isn't.


I agree with that...BUT....I find that I'm not getting the reciprocal commitment and that is a current problem.

When bad sh*t happens to me I'm on my own. I've never been that way with him and it's getting to be a deal breaker.

When he hurts, he runs to me. When I hurt, he runs away.

When my father died - he disappeared (emotionally and somewhat physically) He says "I didn't know what to do.". I say....your 40 years old go figure it the f*ck out! Ask your parents! Google it! WTF!

Last year I had a very big tumor taken out in a very complicated surgery (special surgeon at the cancer hospital...a big friggin deal I still can't pay for) and I was (figuratively speaking) sh*tting my pants that I was going to die. I sat in that waiting room (pre-op) and cried and cried.....by myself. He sat across from me and just looked at me. I kept thinking he looked like a wounded child trying to blend into the wall. I talked to him about it and he said "I didn't know what to do.". Your 47 years old....go figure it the f*ck out.

I'm with you about the cancer scenario. I feel the same way. It's just like any other illness/injury. I don't know what it is with him though.....when I hurt, he runs. It makes me bitter and reluctant when he needs me and that is a bad cycle.

You know what is odd though....he wasn't like that the first half of our relationship. This is a newer thing. When I had gotten very sick during out engagement he was right with me. ......weird.


Edited by sugarbaby (10/15/13 01:14 PM)

Top
#450260 - 10/15/13 05:50 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
gettingstronger Offline


Registered: 09/24/13
Posts: 192
Loc: Virginia
sb,

That sucks. No advice to offer; it just sucks. I'm sorry he's so closed off when it comes to the things you need, especially when it sounds like you've really been hanging in there for (and with) him. I hope this changes for you soon. Off the point entirely, but also glad you made it through the surgery! Take care.

Bob
_________________________
Never worry about "three steps forward and two steps back." Thirty steps forward and twenty back are still ten steps in the right direction.

Top
#450270 - 10/15/13 07:07 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
overwhelmed1975 Offline


Registered: 09/23/13
Posts: 25
Hi, I am a new wife here so... I don't know how much of what I have to say is useful. I am still "learning".
Sugarbaby, that sucks, because I know as a wife, you want to support H while he goes though this process, but do not understand why he cant do the same for you. I said it before, you hate them for the crap they are putting you through, but at the same time are so horrified about what CAS did to them, that you do not want to walk away. You love them, but everyone has a breaking point. Everyone has different breaking points and things to consider. At what point does it become too much? There is nothing wrong with acknowledging that.


Edited by overwhelmed1975 (12/12/13 12:46 PM)

Top
#450370 - 10/16/13 04:41 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
Robert1000 Offline


Registered: 06/27/12
Posts: 336
Interesting stuff, overwhelmed. (Should you change your handle at some point? I don't always want to refer to you as "overwhelmed." I mean, you may be sometimes, but it's not your identity....)

Anyway, I had a point in beginning to write, though....

This is about being a fixer-upper.

I've always been a little torn between the idea of being super-dramatic and being stoic/regular. I think part of it is that I always admired stoic/regular people. I thought of them as more together than me, less desperate and pathetic. But, thanks to my unacknowledged CSA and related PTSD (and the problems the ran out from that), I had a TON of pain and emotional turmoil in my life, but it all felt otherworldly, disconnected to myself. I was lonesome a lot. Sometimes my eyes would fill with tears. I would become unaccountably afraid sometimes. Like if I was playing basketball (where I have played a bit like a star), I'd sometimes just make stupid mistakes or find myself unable to make free throws, even though the day before I could make 94 out of 100, which basically means you're hitting 12 in a row, missing one, making 20, missing two, making 25, missing one... and so on. And so with a constant bubbling up of fear and emotion combined with the inability to recognize and express the emotion, I think I constantly invented fake drama. Maybe it gave me a safe way to express my feelings. Like I would pretend something had hurt, and I would react in pain and sometimes even cry... even though it didn't hurt at all! It was also a way to lie, I guess. But all of it revolved around inventing drama to cover up the real drama, all while I admired most the people who were the least dramatic, and that's probably what attracted me to my wife... that and the fact that she's gorgeous and awesome, funny and smart.

Anyway, the urge to milk a dramatic situation can be a great distraction for someone dealing with CSA, especially early in the therapeutic process. And by early, I mean, for me, the first few years. And that's because it's VERY HARD for me to attach words and emotional displays to my actual feelings and emotions. It's MUCH MORE ATTRACTIVE for me to "fake" it. And because of lifelong practice, I'm REALLY good at faking it.

But here's another wrinkle. Some of the stuff that I thought I was faking at the time actually, as I've thought about it more, was real emotion, and my "faking" it was actually me dissociating myself from my own emotions. I don't know if you or your husband dissociate, but it's a common PTSD symptom. For me, it manifests itself as feeling like my "identity" is deep behind my eyeballs, like really remote, as if the inside of my head is maybe as big as a football field, and I'm on one side and the edge of my eyeballs are on the other, like everything is so, so, so distant. Things can get strange like that sometimes, like the whole world can look wet and shimmery with a thin film of water. It's pretty scary, to be honest. Or things can just look fake. I've learned that dissociating is something a kid learns when they're getting raped or something, so they don't have to experience it fully at the time, because that's too overwhelming. It's crazy to think that the ability to dissociate can be so powerful as to create hallucinations and all kinds of insane stuff! Literally!

Anyway, As I have learned more about identifying my emotions and feelings and expressing them, the dissociating has happened less often, and I'm better at making it stop. Likewise, I have fewer instances that I feel my emotions are "fake" or that I create "fake" emotions. BUT... I still appreciate a very mellow and low-key response from people, including my wife, about whatever is up with me. Any dramatic response can be overwhelming, and prove tempting for me to "milk" overmuch.

How does all this relate to you? Well, I think it relates, because it helps explain why your Hs might be quiet and distant. (Possibly dissociating or being dramatic.) Plus, being having CSA encourages incredibly selfish thinking, because you're self-obsessed and you've got every excuse to be, at least in your own mind. Although I think your H's response to the scary MRI was probably more typical of a dude than anything, because dudes want to solve problems, not hear problems and express sympathy. I think guys generally think... is there a problem? Let's fix it, and then let's move on!

It also might relate, because your H may be (this might seem ironic) using the hullabaloo around the infidelity and CSA to actually avoid dealing with his real emotions and continue "faking" it. I've actually done that from time to time, as weird as it may sound.

And hey, you wish you had a "regular" husband. I wish I was a "regular" person. My goal... and I'm not there but headed in that direction... is to heal enough that CSA just becomes part of my past, just like the fact that I broke my arm as a kid. We all have shitty things in our past. But CSA doesn't have to be our defining characteristic.

OK. I'm signing off for the day. May be gone for a few days, actually. Today has been a doozy!

Bob

Top
#450383 - 10/16/13 06:33 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
HD001 Offline


Registered: 07/30/12
Posts: 263
Loc: us
Wow robert what a great response.
I want to be sure that my analogy was strictly the conclusion I've come to currently about my situation. I really didn't mean to imply that if staying with your H is damaging you should stay anyway. As much as we all have in common on here each relationship is different.
Another important piece for me is that I have seen continous progress from my H. It is slow progress but just the same he is moving forward. I don't know that I would choose to stay or even marry him if there hadn't been steps forward.
_________________________
Everything comes from within

Top
#450426 - 10/16/13 11:27 PM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
GoodHope Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 07/05/11
Posts: 417
Dark Empathy makes me have to address something I always feel awkward about when I'm on MS.

My advice for married people is different than for people who aren't but who are in a relationship with a survivor.

I'm positive if I had known that the traits I saw while we were dating would end me up here because he didn't/wouldn't work through his issues, I would have bolted. When we have these discussions it is really important to remember that survivors present in a variety of ways. I picked Mr. Perfection. Everyone loves him. He's the nicest, the kindest, the most helpful, the most friendly, the most civic minded, etc. I would love to tell you that he was like that in public and a monster at home, but that would be a lie. He's like that at home too. He doesn't drink, smoke, do drugs or rage. He did/does have a porn habit for years and I didn't know it was a problem (I know it's difficult to believe but his business has late hours and he calls the shots). He began having extramarital affairs, all the while active in our church and perfectly nice to me at home. He also keeps important secrets like investing all of the money we had and some of the money we didn't very unwisely. The cheating really is difficult to bear but I'm still here because I made a promise to God and to him. We also have children. Partners who have made no such promise to God and/or each other and their survivor mistreats them and will not seek treatment perplex me. I want to yell "RUN!" Partners not promised who are with survivors seeking help, I absolutely get. I don't know, but I don't think I would have broken things off with my then boyfriend now husband had he told me of the CSA before we got married vs. 5 years into it PROVIDED he was seeking treatment. There are some women who have come on this board in the past and they feel like they can really help their guy and offer understanding and unconditional acceptance and on and on and on. And maybe it's true. And maybe their man won't act out, because I know not all of them do, but if I had even a whiff that I might end up in the position where I'm unknowingly exposed to STDs because of my husbands multiple infidelities, I'd be a gonner. I'd have never thought that I'd be worth more dead than alive at this point in my life because I can't imagine dealing with money the way he has. I think the number one lesson I learned on this board is "You didn't break him and you can't fix him." The second you start to think that it is your love or your understanding that is going to save him, you are sunk.And when you start to peel off whole chunks of your being to accommodate his sickness, you have bigger problems than the fall out from his CSA.

I love what HD001 says about how she deals and the cancer analogy. It feels harder because our men have choices and we can't understand why they don't choose healthy. It's a really hard thing to watch in general, but when you are married to them, those poor choices impact you too.
_________________________
Wife of a survivor

Top
#450456 - 10/17/13 10:49 AM Re: So how do we fix it? [Re: sugarbaby]
Robert1000 Offline


Registered: 06/27/12
Posts: 336
That's some profound stuff, GoodHope. Thank you for giving voice to your thoughts and feelings.

Top
Page 2 of 3 < 1 2 3 >


Moderator:  ModTeam, peroperic2009 

I agree that my access and use of the MaleSurvivor discussion forums and chat room is subject to the terms of this Agreement. AND the sole discretion of MaleSurvivor.
I agree that my use of MaleSurvivor resources are AT-WILL, and that my posting privileges may be terminated at any time, and for any reason by MaleSurvivor.