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#67886 - 12/12/06 03:35 PM The person looking back
sweet-n-sour Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/06
Posts: 409
Loc: chicago
Have you ever stopped to think about what it is exactly you want from life? I mean, suppose your partner, spouse, boyfriend awoke one morning and they had somehow healed to perfection...well, then what?

It seems (and I speak for myself only) I have dedicated a lot of time and energy to "support" husband but in the process it seems as if my true passion has been placed on hold. Just for the record, I enjoy writing. This I do for personal satisfaction and to channel an overactive imagination into something constructive.

I've really had to struggle since husband's disclosure this past summer so that I didn't disappear within a storyline. I'll be honest, I'm no picnic to live with. My focus teeters from reality to what I'm writing and more often than not, I am the classic "space case." Words have a power over me and it is often very difficult to see beyond the next chapter within my mind.

I fell into a story last evening and I feel very guilty about this. I lost three hours as if it were fifteen minutes. It takes tremendous discipline to pull away from the words especially when they flow. Husband has been very supportive, but I wonder if somehow during the more creative moments if I've exactly been a good wife to him. At one point, he immersed himself into television and instead of complaining, I ignored because this freed me up to produce more chapters. Our kids...well, they just step in and interrupt. I welcome this break because it slaps me back to my responsibilities. In retrospect, I ran away from my husband, ran far from his needs, wants and issues.

I pm'd a survivor yesterday and he said something that caused me to consider my role in my husband's acting out. What he said was how he had begged his wife to meet certain needs and because she was not willing to, he gave up. This is honesty here...and boy can I relate. It's often difficult to take a good look in the mirror...just past the fluff of surface, who in the world is looking back? Can I be proud of who I am and how I treat those that I love? I think I need to work on this...and learn balance between my passion for writing and my family who so desperately needs a loving wife/mother in their lives. I obviously have flaws, but I intend to change so that perhaps someday I can meet my husband half way. Well that is how I see my role in the wedge between husband and myself. I'm considering balance and perhaps setting some time limits for writing so that everyone's needs are met.

Thanks and best wishes,
s-n-s

_________________________
"As long as he continues to try, I will meet him in that determination and commitment."

cm 2007

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#67887 - 12/12/06 04:18 PM Re: The person looking back
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
sns,

I look back and see that I was not approachable enough for him to confide in me the ugly parts of his life. I realize now that I was overly judgmental of people and I'm ashamed of it now because I'm also a Christian, but that's not the way a Christian really ought to be. I realize now that my judgment on people may have caused him to feel even more shame and self-hate (even though none of it was his fault but he hasn't come to learning this yet). And I certainly had no inkling that anything I was ever prejudiced (does that mean to "pre-judge"?) about could hurt *him* b/c I did not know he had all this shame inside him...

I realize that my own parents were very judgmental and sheltered me from the "real" world. So it was all I knew.

So I can see how me being this unapproachable contributed to him looking elsewhere for comfort or acceptance. I feel very sad about my role in this, but also very happy that today I am a different person since I have discovered this truth about myself in therapy - just realized it on Friday, actually, and I told him I was sorry I sat on a throne and that I'm a different person now and don't judge, because I don't know people's personal circumstances. I said this to him with tears in my eyes, and he just stayed quiet and seemed to accept my apology. He said nothing, so I didn't get any verbal feedback I had hoped for, but he gave me a long hug and a few more later on during the rest of the day as if to let me know he understood.

I can spend hours on the internet (more so since learning about csa and finding this site) without realizing how the time flies. I try to give myself a limit so I can be available to our 3 yr old more.

I guess we all need our escapes, and mine is probably cooking/baking/decorating/antiquing/and lately, psychology research. Also I have a good friend whom I spend time with when our 3 yr old is at her school 3 days a week. We meet at Starbucks after I drop her off at 9:00 and stay there until 12:00 sometimes! Just visiting...

So I think taking a good look in the mirror is very helpful, especially if we hope to help someone else do the same or at least help them face what happened to them.

They say for the wife to seek therapy even if they can't get their husband to, and I used to think ,"What use would that be, he's the one that needs to fix things," but really, I know now that me being in therapy first can help ME grow also in necessary ways in order for me to be there for him. It's just neat how that happened. I think so much of this is God's hand - His timing - b/c if I had to deal with this before learning about it, I would have freaked out and left him, and if I had to deal w/ it without me getting into therapy first, I would have still been judgmental. So see, God's laying out a framework so that he can get the help and love he needs and has always needed.

My motto lately is "Better late than never." People aren't made to be perfect. Only God is. Only God can judge. Only He knows everyone's personal circumstances. That is why He is the only one allowed to judge, because He know's peoples' hearts. This knowledge alone convinces me that He is a God of mercy and compassion.

Well, that's the long reply. ;-)

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#67888 - 12/12/06 06:36 PM Re: The person looking back
sweet-n-sour Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/06
Posts: 409
Loc: chicago
Dear Brokenhearted:

"I realize that my own parents were very judgmental and sheltered me from the "real" world. So it was all I knew."
I was just speaking to the therapist about this very thing. It seems we all carry into relationships the patterns that our parents have established. According to T, it's when these patterns shift that our relationships are thrown out of balance. T claims that if one in a relationship is attending therapy that the other should as well...sort of like a counter balance to the new direction.

I can't help but want better than before, a life full of laughter and warm memories to look back upon. I believe it is obtainable. I'm betting it all begins with a more positive outlook and trying to learn/grow from the journey.

Thanks for your reply Brokenhearted.
As always, best wishes to you!

s-n-s

_________________________
"As long as he continues to try, I will meet him in that determination and commitment."

cm 2007

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#67890 - 12/13/06 04:43 AM Re: The person looking back
Brokenhearted Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/06
Posts: 644
Loc: TX
Selene, I can see your strength gathering yet again and it's a good thing.

"... but if i ever become less of myself in this process (and i can definitely see there is the danger of just that), i'm not only betraying myself but everyone around me" ----I agree, and let's all keep each other in check regarding this,ok, so we don't unknowingly let it happen.

_________________________
Brokenhearted

It were better for him that a millstone were hanged around his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.
Luke 17:2

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#67891 - 12/13/06 04:15 PM Re: The person looking back
sweet-n-sour Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/06
Posts: 409
Loc: chicago
Dear Selene:

Thanks for your response. I think taking it all one day at a time helps but quite often the outlook changes about as much as the weather. Relationships with csa survivors is definitely not an easy thing. I am glad to hear that at least for now you are supporting your husband.

You mentioned you are an artist, what is your medium?

Take care and best wishes,

s-n-s

_________________________
"As long as he continues to try, I will meet him in that determination and commitment."

cm 2007

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#67893 - 12/23/06 01:16 AM Re: The person looking back
serenebreeze Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/30/06
Posts: 8
Loc: united states
It has been a while since I have posted anything but I just wanted to say this certain topic struck a cord with me. I think you guys are amazing for your character,understanding and compassion. These posts help me understand where I fall short and my husbands csa. It is truly better late than never. All we can try to do is be supportive, positive and loving. I realize I spend to much time living in the past wrapped up in fear. I want to go into the future looking forward knowing that god is ultimatley in control.

I used to think I was so supportive of my husband. Actually I was until about four years ago. It seemed as though so many things went wrong. Our relationship became a blame game, a reactive approach so we wouldnt get hurt. I find it ironic that we tend to create the opposite of what we want. If we want love,respect or kindness we would create barriers and reasons why that couldnt happen. Living in fear has reeked chaos in our relationship. There are no guarantees. If we extend ourselves and become vulnerable we could potentially be hurt and if we dont extend ourselves we lose out on love by not being open.

I have learned that I am not as tolerant or accepting and loving as I once thought I was. So I feel now it is time to redefine those things, not just for my husband but for myself,my son and all those I know. This will be my lifelong journey. I feel like this forum for friends and family is a sisterhood that only we can understand because we all share one thing in common. We love our men of csa as hard as it may be and we want them to be happy and healthy.

With love and wishes for a Merry Christmas.
Anne
P.S. God bless all of you!

_________________________
serenebreeze

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#67894 - 12/23/06 01:22 AM Re: The person looking back
serenebreeze Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 03/30/06
Posts: 8
Loc: united states
I resonate with brokenhearted's post and mines just an echo of agreement.

_________________________
serenebreeze

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#67895 - 12/23/06 03:37 PM Re: The person looking back
sweet-n-sour Offline
Member

Registered: 10/03/06
Posts: 409
Loc: chicago
Dear serenebreeze:

Thanks for your voice! Fear is a difficult thing to overcome. I'm personally still not there yet and every time I just about have myself convinced to let it all drift away...well, the wound in my heart is still too fresh I guess. The best I can manage is to pull myself up, brush off the dust and give it another try.

We are all here under similar situations and at most we can do is lend an ear, offer some support and a bit of wisdom to one another.

Your de>
_________________________
"As long as he continues to try, I will meet him in that determination and commitment."

cm 2007

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#67896 - 12/24/06 01:25 AM Re: The person looking back
beccy Offline
Member

Registered: 05/28/06
Posts: 449
Loc: england
Hi all!


I totally relate to the guilt which comes with the realisation of falling short of certain necessary things in the relationship. Something which occured to me this week though, is that I think it might be important to remember the reality to actually how difficult it potentially is to properly and fully love someone, who firstly doesn't seem to like being loved, and secondly shares themselves so little, we don;t really know them enough to be able to fully love them. You know? Also I think it is perfectly understandable, (in situations of infidelity/sexual identity confusion/broken trust), for the partner who's been decieved/anxious to find it hard to come out of their shell again. I totally understand that it can become a vicious circle...and I've been there too and my experience of it was a loss of self esteme in some way, as I felt it was partly my fault. But it's not our fault. I understand it's not truly our partner's 'fault' either, but I think if they're falling short of making changes in this area it's a good idea to talk about how difficult that can make it for us, you know? Like it's MORE than a mountain I have to climb...a lot of the time, reguarding itimacy(mostly sexual), I am backed into a corner and it's too small for me to move in, so if neither one of us ever initiates in that way, nothing ever happens and I decided I can't live that way. I just really thought it was up to him, no matter how hard that might seem, it's just a fact....


I so agree about this forum and it has been/is like a refuge for me. It is such a relief to feel understood here and so many useful viewpoints and advice and other's experiences.


This christmas i do feel like I am appreciating all of the good in my life. There is so much good in life, in the human spirit and I believe in that. I am striving to be my whole self, be honest, open and loving. Whatever will be will be and the best i can do is be the good person i know I am. It's so true that we grow from unpleasant experiences. It's hard to live in that kind of hell, and when you come out the other side, the pain is always a part of you, but you're FREE to live again! For me it was like that when I finally recovered from my parents break up when I was much younger. I think it's better to feel the pain, move through it and live again, than feel numb.


I wish everyone here the very best christmas. Peace and goodwill to you all,


Beccy


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#67897 - 01/02/07 07:31 AM Re: The person looking back
SAR Offline
Administrator Emeritus
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 12/07/03
Posts: 3310
Loc: USA
S-n-S,

I am coming late to this thread, but I have to say I can identify 100% about learning to balance supporting someone else with living my own life.

I was confronted very early on after my partner disclosed to me, by someone who didn't know him at all and didn't even know me that well-- but he said, SAR, whatever it is that is keeping you from being yourself lately, get help for it now. It was a real slap in the face to me as to how much I had been allowing myself to get lost in my own hurt over his actions, and in grief and fear about our future if he didn't start living differently. I am so glad that person had the bravery to speak up to me. It really got me thinking.

I know that my self-sufficient behaviors were a factor in my partner's acting out, but I am not apologetic about them really-- because what he was looking for from me, at that time, was an unhealthy type of need/dependence so that he could live out his half of the>

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