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#67301 - 08/11/03 01:37 PM Falling Off The Wagon
Polly Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/11/03
Posts: 4
Loc: uk
Five years ago my husband saw a councellor for sexual abuse. He remained in councelling for 2 years.

The issue that took him to councelling in the first place has reappeared \:\(

He announced to me the other day once again that he was bi-sexual.(that was the event that took him to councelling for childhood sexual abuse in the first place - about 18 months previous he gave me a similar announcement that he was a transvestite.

I guess I always knew about the transvestitism, and its not at all an issue to me - rather kewl really its like having a husband and a female friend all in one go :)I embrace the things that make him different, and it dosen't hurt anyone.

Bi-sexual didn't seem that bad to me either as long as he was monogamous, and if it was for the right reasons.

But I feel it may be not.

What he describes to me - the only feelings he did at the moment - sounds awfully like what was done to him.

What's happened lately to cause this trigger I ask myself - if it is one.

Well his stress levels have increased at work to bursting point.

I have also been giving him unwanted and most probably unwarranted stress owing to recent marital problems which I now think I blew out of all proportion (I feel that one of the reasons for me doing so was mainly because he closed off his emotions again, another sign maybe that we both should have noticed, but when you are in the turmoil it is very difficult to see the recurring patterns.)

He won't go back to councelling as his councellor has moved on and he dosent want to start again from scratch.

So I think we have fallen off the wagon. I say we because what affects him , affects me and our family.

Oh sh*t.
sorry but I just don't know what to do.

Hugs
Polly


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#67302 - 08/12/03 09:40 AM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
Wifey1 Offline
Member

Registered: 12/03/02
Posts: 380
Polly,
for some reason i have re read your post more than ten times. I am trying to wrap my head around all of what you say and try to keep myself clear of my own crap... not so easy but I am going to try -- your post seems so lonely, and i could not let it sit here without a reply ---

you say "But I feel it may be not" re: bi sexual, as it seems a lot like what was done to him.

I've had to learn to "trust my Gut" on so many issues. I'm no Genie and there is no lamp so I'm just geussing here... My suggestion is to attempt to open up conversation with your partner if you can and try to talk about this further.
As far as the counseling goes -- hmmm, I dont think I have ever really left it in over 12 yrs. And as Dave said in one of his magnificent posts =

"I believe we will carry our history with us for ever, I've not met anyone yet who's dumped it.
Nobody's convinced me anyway"

I thot for a long time that my hubby2 would "naturally follow me" into therapy as I knew of his SA b4 we were married. Until he broke and flooded I was as blind as sh*t to the males side of SA, and truthfully I think the men have gotten Effed over in the Help dept. for far too long -- (then again i am biased here being a survivor myself)
I do want to urge you tho' -- we are seperate individuals in our unions. Each with our own personal nightmares even tho' as you say We are a WE - and it is true about the effects/ affects for the union and whole family.
Can I suggest that perhaps just YOU go to a counselor? For YOU?
Simply Polly, I believe in the trickle down theory very strongly with SA and partners and family, but I also believe not just the negatives in those trickles, but the POSITIVES that can happen.
Lord We Love Them! But we cant FIX them!
Support them, gain & share knowledge, listen to them, talk to them and with them... but a Survivor still has to do their OWN work for themselves.
And our Partners (speaking as a survivor here) get traumatized in there "own special way" dealing with our SA issues.
Take care of YOURSELF TOO Polly, and Best of Luck
Keep us posted
Peace Fill us All ~ Sammy


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#67303 - 08/12/03 12:45 PM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
LovingPartner Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/08/03
Posts: 26
Polly-
Wifey1 gave some good advice. Have you asked hubby2 why he has announced that he is bisexual? I was reading "Allies in Healing" by Laura Davis the other night. One of the questions the partners had was why her boyfriend has this total obsession for rough, mean (whips and chains and hitting here) lovemaking. Laura said it was a desire to re-create the environment of the abuse to feel in control of it or to actually like it (at the time of re-creation). (I don't remember exact words but I think I got the idea.) Could this be what he may be trying to do? Just a thought. If his perp was male, could he still be questioning his sexual preferance?
Try to get him to talk with you. You can't go buy a kit or something to fix him. He has to do it himself. You can do what it looks like you're already doing, being there for him when he needs you. I know the guys here will try to help if they can. But also take care of yourself. You have to take care of the rest of the family too. Everyone needs a break every so often. Go get a massage, you deserve it! ;\)
I hope I helped you. If not, well, at least I tried. Keep us posted.
Loving Partner


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#67304 - 08/12/03 01:41 PM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
Would your partner be willing to go to couples counselling with you?

Maybe that would help him see the issue in the context of not just him but him and his family..

Thats what my BF and I did when he started going back to his old "tricks" (anger, drug abuse) - we wound up going to couples therapy in order to learn some "fair fighting" techniques and to learn about the unhealthy ways in which we dealt with each other, and the ways in which we were adding stress to our lives together rather than reducing it.

Then he cut us loose to go to deal with issues that were independent from us as a couple. My BF was strongly recommended to go to a group therapy session for Anger Management for S.A. survivors as he was having serious anger problems (which were causing serious harm to our relationship), and I was strongly recommended to go to hypnotherapy (as I had a tendency to spazz out and add fuel to his angry fire).

Anyhow thats our experience - I dont know if this helps or not.


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#67305 - 08/13/03 05:18 AM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
Polly Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/11/03
Posts: 4
Loc: uk
Thank you so much...

Sammy, you said my posting sounded lonely \:\( oh I do feel so lonely.

I was given some good advice from a friend of mine once about finding a female friend to talk to - but I can't talk to ANYONE about this, how can I. I need to keep his secrets too and keeping secrets hurts \:\(

How could I say to a friend - OH by the way, I am feeling shitty at the moment because my husband, who I love more than anything in the world, is a bi-sexual, transvestite who recently had/has feelings for another woman at work (not a sexual affair, just an emotional one - somebody he could talk to I suppose) and he is so closed off to me - he won't talk about his feelings and I just need someone to talk to.

I feel that I could deal with anything if I was sure that he loved me. Really sure.

Sometimes I feel that he does love me, at night when he holds me close - but then he goes to work and becomes someone else.

Because of what he is telling me about how he is questioning his sexuality, on top of everything else that has happened recently sometimes I get to doubt that he ever really did love me and our life together thus far has been one big lie. \:\(

Because he is so withdrawn he gives me no indication that this is not the case.

There is so much crap in his head that he is trying so hard to deal with it there is nothing left for our marriage. He says he loves me because he's here isnt he - but there is more to it than that isn't there.

There is more to it than that?

I did see a councellor recently, it really didn't do anyting - she only told me how to deal with the anxiety attacks that I have been having. Its one thing to know how to deal with an anxiety attack, but another to actually remember to do it when you are in one!!

I so wish we could have gone together like PAS said - I would like to be able to discuss how the SA affects us as a couple, and how to deal with it when it does. It would have been good for us I think, but he won't go. I wish we could.

Is he scared of his own feelings? I don't know but getting them out in a controlled way would be good. Does this indicate that he cares nothing for our relationship? Please tell me not.

I don't want to 'fix' him - I know only he can do that, but while he hasn't got the strength to work on our marriage, I need to. I need to keep it strong for us, or it will die, that scares me.

When I am having a really bad day - I get to thinking perhaps he's just trying to get me to leave him or something - and he's probably thinking geesh what have I got to say to get RID of her!! LOL

Well, just incase he reads this - I AM NOT GOING - I LOVE YOU!!! ALL OF YOU... We can work this out together. You work on your bits, and I will work on my bit and our bits while you are unable to, and there are bits that we need to work on together, but that will wait until you are ready

LovingPartner - Why did he tell me he was bi-sexual at this time? Well, he did tell me that he thought he was 5 years ago, then he went into councelling and stopped sharing himself with me.

I think because he wanted my 'permission' - my permission for him to act on his compulsion.

Yes his perps were male - yes he does question his sexuality because of the SA, but am I just looking for a reason or an excuse.

I believe that he feel compelled to act out.... but I don't think he can see that it could be for that reason, but as I said am I just looking for a reason or an excuse.

Even with the other woman thing - I thought that he may have been looking for someone he could be 'normal' with, someone that didn't know of crap he carries with him all the time, someone who dosent know that he has these dark secrets - someone like I was when we married, (as he didnt tell me about the abuse until we had been married for 25 years) somebody he could forget his past with or once again and start from a clean sheet or once again am I just looking for a reason or an excuse.

What I do know is I am at the end of my rope....... I can't find the energy or the will to hold on at the moment. I so badly need him to tell me he wants me to hold on.

I so badly need him to let me know he wants me to.

Thank you all once again
Brightest Blessings
Polly


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#67306 - 08/13/03 12:45 PM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
Freedom Offline
Member

Registered: 09/21/02
Posts: 164
Loc: US
Hi Polly,

It sounds like you need a break. I wish I could tell you that all will be well but I do not know that. I do know, however, that YOU need to stay well. Take care of you.

I believe in prayer, so I pray that you get a positive sign soon. In a meantime, find your own positives. Your post tells me that there is a lot of strength in you. Hold on.

I am glad you are not leaving but stay for the right reasons and maintain your boundaries. YOU are imortant and deserve care and love.

My things change for you soon for the better.

Bless you,
Freedom

_________________________
Life is moving on. AM I?

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#67307 - 08/13/03 01:35 PM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
PAS Offline
Member

Registered: 06/12/02
Posts: 577
Loc: Canada
Sorry to all but this is a really long reply.

Polly your post just spoke so much to me - I hope you dont mind if I write a long note back. I hope my experiences will be of some help or comfort to know that you are not alone.

Quote:
Originally posted by Polly:
Thank you so much...

Sammy, you said my posting sounded lonely \:\( oh I do feel so lonely.

I was given some good advice from a friend of mine once about finding a female friend to talk to - but I can't talk to ANYONE about this, how can I. I need to keep his secrets too and keeping secrets hurts \:\(



I know exactly how you feel. I wish I could give you a hug!!! Dealing with things that are so "outside the mainstream" is the most isolating thing on the planet. I have to admit that on a few occasions my own pain drove me to break my BF's trust - he was not happy with that so now I am in fact seeking a therapist with specialization in SA that I can tell my crap to.

Quote:


How could I say to a friend - OH by the way, I am feeling shitty at the moment because my husband, who I love more than anything in the world, is a bi-sexual, transvestite who recently had/has feelings for another woman at work (not a sexual affair, just an emotional one - somebody he could talk to I suppose) and he is so closed off to me - he won't talk about his feelings and I just need someone to talk to.



You DO need someone to talk to. Can you find a therapist for yourself? Someone who has knowledge about SA - someone who can be your anchor through this?

I totally relate to your situation - when all hell was breaking loose for me in my current relationship (my BF did not initally want to go to therapy so I do understand what it is like to "feel stuck" - we in fact bordered on breaking up many times due to serious verbal and borderline-physical abuse that was going on...) I would go into work and go "why do I friggin care about anything here when my BF is at home crying on the couch for days, cant go to work, and wants to die because of some man in his past who plied him with alcohol and used him to "get off" and coerced him into participating in kiddy porn pictures of with adults..... and that he's just remembering some things now.. and that he just said that he hates me and never wants to marry me ever and that I"m full of shit... and that he just slammed my freaking face in a door and cut me (I still have a scar).. it kind of just makes "every day life" just seem so irrelevant!

And the fact that all of this was going on on TOP of years of my own abuse recovery, my dad's third suicide attempt and arrest/prosecution for DUI, my brother's nervous breakdown and job loss, and just after a period of unemployment and homelessness and a bad breakup and the death of a good friend of mine!

For several years - from 1998 - 2001 I thought I was gonna die. I wanted to die. I couldnt take the pain any more. I stole my dad's tranquilizers and used them for a few months. I started to get hooked. I knew I was in trouble. A few times I even wandered - no staggered - over to the local hospital and collapsed on the intake nurse - and was able to see a crisis counsellor in the emergency Psych. ward.

And the hardest part was that to tell someone in "real life" what was going on would just floor them. My life was like a damn soap opera for years.... I really cut myself off from old friends and family because I KNEW that they'd just run away from the intensity of the situation I was in! I felt like a freak. I would cry uncontrollably. I would scream and rage. I alienated a lot of people.

I posted a post a while ago entitled "in comparison to every day people" and the essence of it was just what you wrote - that sometimes I find it hard to "fit in" with the "rest of soceity" when so many horrible things happened and were happening, and in a way, still are happening.

Rest assured Polly your life wont' always be the way it is at the current time. Things will change. They definitely wont stay the same. You WILL get through it!!!!!!!!!! I know you dont believe it at the time but you will!!! And you will grow stronger. Things you dont think you will be able to ever deal with you will find yourself dealing with.

With respect to your husbands feelings I belive that he did and in fact deep down inside still does love you. But you certainly hit the nail on the head that indeed "there is so much crap in his head that he is trying so hard to deal with it there is nothing left for our marriage."

I grew up with a father that was going through this same type of issue - having so much going on inside his head that he just wasn't there (not only was he not there he was abusive when he "was there"). I can firmly say that it horrible to deal with - my experience has hurt me deeply, left me with major abandonment-anxiety issues, and profoundly affected my life in more ways than I can explain.

All I can say is that you are stronger than you think and you WILL get through this. You do need to spend some time and effort on a support network other than your husband. Therapists, social workers, trusted friends - you must build that up for yourself and use them to lean on them through times like this!

With respect to staying "grounded" during a panic attack - I can relate to this too - I suffered from the same thing - I went to therapy a LOT and talked in the abstract about things, but when the chips were down I didnt act or feel any different. As a result, I have sought hypnotherapy to be able to be more "in my own head" and recognize when I'm actually in a panic attack. If you have access to that type of therapy and are open to it, perhaps you may wish to explore? It has helped me in countless ways that other therapy never could.

I do hope I haven't made the situation worse by telling you that my BF and I did go to counselling. I was hoping that your husband might be able to see couples therapy as something different than his own therapy. I can relate to your situation actually as my previous relationship (five years - two years common law) wound up in a situation like this. He was a SA survivor only he didnt recognize it. He refused to go to therapy and it was horrible.

All I can say in hindsight is that I wish I had taken better care of myself while my life all went to shit around me. Because I realized that the most important person that I could count on was ME and that I really didnt take care of myself. And in the end I did literally lose everything, and I was in shitty shape to deal with that.

But if my story has any lesson - that it did take some time but my life DID turn around for the better. Four years after my breakup, homelessness and unemployment, I find myself almost (almost!) engaged to a great guy, with an amazing job, in a new city, with new friends. But my dad is still suffering. My brother is still looking for work but has decided to go back to school to retrain. My BF has - wonder of wonders - gone on to group therapy for anger management and even taken the bull by the horns and decided to prosecute his SA perp. I still suffer from the anxieties of the past, and my BF and I still have the heartaches of SA to deal with, but we are starting to come out the other side. It IS possible and you WILL get through it. But we certainly didnt get through this alone. We relied heavily on a support network.

Also Polly what is important here is that you have to recognize is that even though your husband has gone through something horrible there is a line that cannot be crossed when it comes to acceptable treatment. While I recognize that my own father was the victim of horrible abuse, that did not give him the right to turn around and abuse and neglect me in turn. What happened to your husband was horrible, but it does not give him the right to turn around and hold your marriage hostage to those emotions. What happened to my BF was horrible too but that did not give him the right to abuse me early on in our relationship....

Hold tight - it truly is a scary situation that you are in. It is totally normal and expected for you to be afraid. You care for your husband and your marriage and your life so your feelings wouldnt be any other way. I have been there with my last relationship falling apart - him saying things that were more and more outrageous. Him having feelings for his best friend's roommate. Me feeling him pulling away from him. You feel that your whole life seems to be falling around you - your hopes, your dreams, your expectaions of how you thought your life and your marriage would be. And that alone is hard. The grief of things not being the way you thought or wanted them to be is very very hard and painful indeed.

If you are wanting to try and stick this through as you said so determinedly in your post - you WILL definitely NEED a multi-layered support network around you as much as possible right now. Friends, family, professionals, activities for yourself only, prayer/spirtuality if that suits you, exercise, a proper diet, everything healthy. You need to cling to the things, the good things you can count on right now.


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#67308 - 08/14/03 03:09 AM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
Polly Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 08/11/03
Posts: 4
Loc: uk
Thank you everyone for your kind words. I don't have the time to write the answer that I would like to, so thank you.

I feel less alone since coming here. I wish I had done so before.


hugs
Polly


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#67309 - 08/14/03 07:30 PM Re: Falling Off The Wagon
Lloydy Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor
Registered: 04/17/02
Posts: 7071
Loc: England Shropshire
Polly
I waited 25 years before telling my wife about my abuse,

I was having serious doubt's about my sexuality, I'd acted out with strange men - a re-enactment of my childhood abuse.
So much of what you say is a mirror image of my life, and my wife's ( as much as I can ever truly understand her reactions and feelings )

I feel that your husband might well be in the place I was in about 5 or 6 years ago.
I also felt that my head was full to bursting, it was. With fantasies, dissasociation, and confusion.

I have been totally faithfull in my marriage.
"So what about the acting out then ?"
Yes, I had some sexual contact with men. BJ's were my particular 'act', but there was no emotional need attached to these acts, the need was a hangover from my abuse.
And I also know that I'm not gay or bi, I've never looked at another guy and though "Hey, I'd love to......."

I loved Linda all along, but I didn't know it fully and certainly didn't show it.

It's a complex deal that's a fact, and It's nowhere near as simple as I've just stated it, but I hope you get the idea. Our abuse drives us until we get the help we need.


You sound as though you are both remarkably 'up front' about many things, and that's got to be a good thing.
Maybe you should work on him a bit - without him knowing of course - and get him to think about therapy once again. And therapy that concentrated on the abuse.
Or failing that would he come here ?

If there's anything you'd like to ask, go ahead.

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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