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#61923 - 05/27/06 01:25 AM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Weepy Wife
Intimacy is a problem for so many of us, we want it as much as the next man, but somehow it's denied us and it takes huge efforts to reclaim it.

We suffer flashbacks and all kinds of 'body memories' that some people don't believe in, but far too many survivors feel them to be false.

Like your husband I can't bear to kiss when making love to my wife, and that's because one of my abusers would kiss me when he had sex with me.
That's a terrible thing to still experience after over 30 years of marriage, and extensive therapy.
But the fact is I still have trouble seperating the sex I endured as a young boy from the sex I want to have as an adult in a loving relationship.
I still struggle to relate 'normal' sex with love and intimacy, my head still has images of sex as something raw, dirty and done for nothing more than the ultimate aim of an orgasm. Caressing and kissing aren't associated with sex for me.

Slowly I'm getting over all this crap, but I have to make a big and conscious effort to do so, and that's backed up with the therapy I have done.
It's also supported by my wife, and to be honest her understanding and patience is crucial to me. Without that I wouldn't make any progress at all.
Is it worth the effort?
You bet it is!

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#61924 - 05/27/06 03:11 AM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
Thank you for your honest answers. They really help. I needed to know the truth/reality of things. I know there is a possability that my husband may always feel like this...there is the possablitity that things may get alot worse. I know he will always have the scars of what was done to him. BUT you have given me hope. I have HOPE that he will not always feel this badly. I have HOPE for our future. I think I read another post that said something like "as long as I have hope I am part of this relationship" I feel this way. I am ready to stay by my husband as he deals with this but I have to have hope for our future. Right now he is in a place where he does not have hope..but maybe if I give him some time and space he will get better. (and encourage him to come to this website)

Nobby,
Thanks for posting the essay. I haven't read all of it yet but it looks very helpful.


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#61925 - 05/31/06 11:38 PM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
scooter Offline
Member

Registered: 05/23/05
Posts: 76
I don't know where to start. I disclosed to my wife after 8 years of marriage. As I understand my sex drive, body image, desires, coping, etc. sex and intimacy get harder and easier. It'll get harder for a couple weeks and then be amazing for a couple weeks.

I'm constantly triggered by sex, like I can't have my foot off the edge of the bed or I have flashbacks, I can't take a shower around sex because the water running down the side of the shower takes me there again. I'm finding my strength slowly and my wife has given me the space and time to work through this (I've been in recovery for a year now).

But in the space and time, she always checks in with me. At times it has seemed like the recovery process has taken over our relationship and for much of the year she didn't get much attention. I became very insecure and was even afraid of losing her, esp. when I'm sexually unavailable.

She has wondered if I had an affair (which I haven't) and told me she was uncomfortable with me around the children for the first bit, because I had hidden a porn habit. But she trusts me and continually lets me know what she's feeling (in all areas of life) and doesn't spare me from her feelings. I appreciate that. I am not fragile and I do not want to be treated as such.

But I find more and more that I've learned to lean on her. To find comfort and safety in our relationship. We have always been best friends and lovers and talk about everything, but this is something that I still struggle talking about. I still struggle with feeling and don't even know what some of the feelings are.

I'm rambling now, but I want you to know that my wife for me has given me some of the greatest insights and is a support that nobody can replace. She is also amazing in her ability to feel through this and her experiencing all of this and expressing her feelings and thoughts has given me an example of how to be a better man. How to express myself, even when I feel vulnerable, shamed, and weak. She lifts me up over and over again, even when I don't want anyone to do it for me.

So much is conflicted and it takes so much once the coping mechanisms no longer have their effectiveness. I want to pass on the mantra that my wife gave to me for when I am stuck - we use full use of the words when we say it - "this f-ing sucks."

We are in this together. And it took me a while to understand that she was hurting too, and it wasn't my fault, and I couldn't protect her from my feelings and thoughts and ways of coping. All I can do is be honest and share fully who I am with her. I've learned that talking with her about everything heals and we aren't actually focusing on the abuse as much as when I am a walking coping mechanism. I continue to hope that she chooses to stay with a broken man until I have recovered all that was stolen from me.

Our intimacy has grown. We have a new respect for each other - deeper than what we thought was possible. And even though days and weeks are hard, I am learning to accept. She has always had an amazing unconditional acceptance of me, as I have of her - now I'm just learning to have that for myself.

Just be who you are and who you need to be. He probably doesn't expect you to be perfect and probably wants to protect you from his shame, guilt, and pain. Until he opens up it'll continue to devour your lives. I don't know if it was recommended before, but "Victims No Longer" by Mike Lew is excellent.


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#61926 - 06/02/06 02:29 AM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
Wow scooter, thank you for posting that.
It sounds like you and your wife are an incredible team, you both deserve all the credit \:\)

SAR


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#61927 - 06/02/06 02:57 AM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
roadrunner Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/02/05
Posts: 22045
Loc: Carlisle, PA
Weepywife,

Quote:
I know right now my husband doesn't feel like there is any hope for his recovery. I feel like there is no hope because he feels like there is no hope.
I would just urge a bit of perspective here. Your husband feels there is no hope for two very simple reasons.

One is that he is new to recovery. At that stage you feel so alone, ashamed, confused, guilt, polluted, dirty, whatever. And these emotions don't line up in an orderly way so you can deal with them one by one. They come like a hurricane and trying to cope can easily reduce a survivior to feelings of worthlessness and total despair.

The second is that he probably still imagines that "recovery" would mean forgetting what happened. But none of us get that. Recovery is far more complex, but it IS possible. What we get to do is not forget the past, but change how it affects us in the present and future.

Just some thoughts.

Much love,
Larry

_________________________
Nobody living can ever stop me
As I go walking my freedom highway.
Nobody living can make me turn back:
This land was made for you and me.
(Woody Guthrie)

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#61928 - 06/02/06 11:30 PM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Scooter and Larry have said it all, and SAR seems to agree with me.
It's not easy, we do go backwards sometimes, but is it worth the effort? Yes, 100% it's worth it!

The more effort we make, the more support we get, we the better we BOTH get.

Dave

_________________________
Go confidently in the direction of your dreams! Live the life you've imagined. As you simplify your life, the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau

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#61929 - 06/03/06 12:15 AM Re: My Perfect life EXCEPT
weepywife Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 05/22/06
Posts: 57
Thanks for the input.
What all of you said makes a lot of sense.
It's easy to get pestimistic....especially before when I had no outlet to vent.
Also, my husband is great at solving problems. In the begining, I was so confused I was looking to him for answers and when I wasn't getting any I got scared and frustrated. Now I have a better idea of what he is going through.

Quote:
The second is that he probably still imagines that "recovery" would mean forgetting what happened. But none of us get that. Recovery is far more complex, but it IS possible. What we get to do is not forget the past, but change how it affects us in the present and future
This is right on. I think we both were hoping to forget this whole incident. We were both in denial and didn't want to deal with all this stuff. I am starting to understand this is going to be a long hard road. Unfortunatly, I don't thing my husband is ready to deal with all this yet


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