Thursday, April 19, 2012

My Sex Addict Husband ... If I knew then, What I know Now?


Here is a question that people ask me "If you knew then, what you know now .... would you stay with Ed?"  .... that is probably the hardest question for me to answer.  The answer is "I DON'T KNOW".  I know that isn't the answer that people want to hear .... but it is the truth!

First of all, I love Ed so very much!  I'm happy that we are together, I am happy that he is healthy and I am so happy with the incredible family we have.  AND I would love to say that I have no regrets at all .... but that would be a lie.  I don't like to dwell on the past, I am here now, I am happy today and I did the best I could at the time.  But, that question is often asked and I wonder if I had the knowledge and tools that I have today ... would I have made different choices?



Truthfully, I may have!  The problem is that Ed .... and many addicts as well, are so good at lying that it was really hard to truly see the reality of what was going on.

I wish I had picked up on the subtle clues at the beginning of our relationship.  As always, the beginning was AMAZING .... so intense, so passionate, so what I wanted!  But then it faded ... not gradual as with many other relationships but a sudden halt.  We still had our great friendship and I couldn't imagine my life without my best friend so I just kind of ignored it and complained a lot about it.

That lack of intimacy has been so lonely over the years.  It is something I crave, something I need and Ed has never been able to give it to me.  The harder I pushed the more it would drive him away.  We have had our good times and our bad times but the fact is I wouldn't wish that LONELINESS on anyone.

Also, worrying about diseases really SUCKS!  Ed was acting out sexually and was safe MOST of the time, but it only takes once to catch a really, really bad disease!  I think addicts don't always think clearly.  So, a bad choice can be made in a moment of weakness and they may not even realize it or they lie about it ... and I think we all know about "the lying".  And as a result .... that puts our health in danger. 

And to top it off, the shattering of trust and the trauma that is a result of his acting out has been awful too. This wasn't a mild case of sex addiction ..... and the fact that it happened a second time .....

Wow .... I just changed my mind ... as I read everything that I just wrote down, I'd be out of there quicker than I could run ... well, NO... um, YES... hmm, NO.....YES... NO....YES ... AAAAHHHH!!!

Omg .... this really is the hardest question ever!  I'm sorry that I just can't answer this .... I have NO idea what I would do.  We've had wonderful times that I would never want to not have ... and the bad times I could have lived without but here we are today.  It really doesn't matter what I would have done but I know other fabulous women out there, who are in pain, sometimes want to learn from us survivors of this.

I do know this ... if your partner is willing to do the work, the toughest, terribly painful, looking within and dealing with all the shit pain that they have caused work ... and are committed to recovery and I mean a lifetime of recovery than it truly CAN be worth it.  I PROMISE you that!!!!!  

BUT, if your partner is not immersing himself 100% in healing and stopping the insanity than I would seriously think about YOU and your happiness a bit harder.  You are most definitely worth it!!!!    It is a tough road and I'm sure I wouldn't be quite so supportive if this kept happening again.  There is only so much one CHICK can take!








41 comments:

  1. Wonderful statement for souses struggling with this hard decision. As a professional working in this field I have had the opportunity to witness that hard eared happiness that comes with a strong commitment to the recovery process. Thank you for sharing your struggle.

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    1. Thanks so much for reading! It's been truly wonderful to write ... hey, I never knew that I liked to write so much .... and to be able to give others HOPE. We've had a lot of wonderful help and guidance through this so I'm hoping that other spouses can learn something from Ed and me ....

      Thanks again and I hope you keep reading!!!!!

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  2. What a terrific summary of the “partner’s dilemma” that we in the sexual and romantic addiction treatment field hear virtually every day. As you wonderfully point out, with sexual addiction it’s not the cheating itself or any specific sexual act that causes the deepest pain to a betrayed spouse or partner, it’s the betrayal of relationship trust caused by consistent lying that causes intimacy to crack wide open. The decision of whether to stick it out or remain together is always difficult, and unfortunately there is no way to ever make it easy.

    Rob Weiss, LCSW, CSAT-S
    Director of Intimacy and Sexual Disorder Programs
    Elements Behavioral Health

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    1. Thank you ROB! This comment means a lot to me coming from you! I follow all of your writing and I think you are a FANTASTIC voice for the world of sex addiction. I also hope to be an EMPOWERED voice for couples everywhere! I have a lot of really interesting things going on right now and I am certain that our paths will cross one day! Keep up the amazing work you do!!!!!!!

      Thanks so much again!

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  3. Hello everyone, I'm ED, Mishka's husband. Thank you all so much for supporting Mishka and in turn supporting me and my family. In the words of Rob Thomas (we love him), "I can't believe how far we've come." To think only last year I was near death before Mishka pulled me out of the gutter and saved my life with George Collins (from Compulsion Solutions). You all have been a big part of our healing and we are going stronger then ever. It's amazing, but true, we are happier than we've ever been. It feels good, as George says, to "Go Sane!"

    I can NEVER go back there. NEVER!!!

    With all my abandonment issues (what George and I call my "stories"), being adopted, abused by my adoptive mom, blah blah blah, reading Mishka mull over whether she'd stay or go hit me... hard. And here I go again making it about me. But this time it was different. What hit me so much about this blog is how I connected with her feelings.

    My eyes welled-up when I read about her loneliness. I know loneliness and it's well . . . lonely.

    For some reason this was one of the toughest blog posts to read. It's hard to read about her pain. I've read it again and again and can't stop thinking about the word "loneliness" that Mishka felt when I was emotionally and sexually unavailable. The more I connect with her pain, the more I heal, the more she says she does, and the closer we become. At first it was really hard to empathize because I fell so hard and made such terrible mistakes I could barely look in the mirror let alone look my beautiful wife in the eye.

    We are so committed to sharing our story with the world because it helps us tremendously grow closer, it helps me stay sober and we get to help others. We've learned how many brothers and sisters we have out there -- so many are struggling and we are honored to support your healing too.

    Wow, it's amazing how far we've come. We even had wonderful sex a few days ago. Pretty cool right!

    I have some very serious problems with intimacy but that's healing incredibly because I have such an amazing wife, because I'm amazing, and because we have connected with such wonderful people in George and Paldrom from Compulsion Solutions. George and Paldrom.

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  4. As a therpist working in the treatment of love, relationship and sexual addiction, I can't begin to tell you without a lengthy response as to what the impact is on a partner when the acting out behavior is found out or disclosed.

    You have given the best answer to the question, whether one stays or goes, knowing now, what you didn't know then..........."I don't know."

    I hear it all the time from men and women, "what do I do now?" When answering this question, it certainly is different, difficult and complicated for everyone.

    Here in lies the dilemma for each person to wrestle with, but I have seen from my work with individuals and couples that they can survive this, if they are both willing to now do the hard work of healing and intimacy recovery.

    Vicki M. Wotring MSW, ASAT, CADC, EMDR
    Discovery Counseling of Orlando
    celebratelife3@aol.com

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    1. Hi Vicki!!! Thanks for your thoughtful and inspiring words. You hit the nail on the head with the fact that "BOTH" partners need to do the hard work! It really is both and it really is hard .... but as you said couples CAN survive it!!!

      Thank you again and it's wonderful to connect with therapists who are here to help couples in this crazy, insane journey!!!!

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  5. Mishka,
    This got sent around the sex addiction therapist community, to which I also belong, in addition to being a recovering addict and couple with my incredibly brave, resilient, and loving wife. I have just today taken the time to read your blog post. The pain and poignancy revealed in your writing and in Ed's posted comment brought tears to my eyes, as does the hope and promise of a new and better life in recovery that your story speaks to. Early on in the recovery process my wife and I had incredibly difficult and painful conversations about the possibility of a future together. We mutually concluded that the most difficult path - to work together to heal individually and as a couple - was the one that held the most potential for growth. This has proven true for us as we have begun to experience the promises of individual and couple recovery. I absolutely relate to what you have written here, as it so accurately and succunctly captures the painful truth so many struggle with. Thank you for sharing part of your story and for the opportunity to connect. Peace, David Llewellyn

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    1. Wow David! That is so wonderful when you are able to take a completely bad situation, recover, learn something from it and use your experiences to help others! That is absolutely wonderful. People like you, who have been there, and stayed together through all the hard are an inspiration to the community. My readers often tell me that my story, is real and gives them HOPE .... and that I find is one of the most important things with this.

      Give your wife a HUGE hug for me! I love hearing stories like yours!!!!! Thanks so much for taking the time to share your story with me! If you or your wife would ever like to do a guest blog post on your story I would LOVE to do that! Let me know if you are ever interested!!!!!

      Good luck and keep up the great work with helping others!!!!!! Thanks again for your ... ever so encouraging words! It means so much to me!!!!!!!

      - Mishka

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  6. I admire you for trying but I think there is too much here. I think this man is too messed up and it is not healthy for you. A prostitute tranny? Drugs?


    I think it is time to move on. I am guessing you really never had another relationship and that scares you. You need to be on your own and away from someone who has traumatized you to your core.


    The failure rate for recovery is too high. Living a lie is a way of life for him. It is too easy to slip back into.

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    1. Thanks for reading and for your insight! You are definitely partly right .... there is so much there! And it is something to be totally aware of and not be blind to things going into the future. This is something we have had lengthy discussions on how I WILL NOT go through this again and I am making sure financially that I can take care of myself if it ever were to. Ed says that my new independence and separate bank account is great and he respects that growth in me and encourages it ..... that way I make decisions based on what is right for me and the kids, not decisions made out of fear.

      Recovery has just brought us both closer and much more connected. I also have 2 beautiful children who love their dad and we are a HAPPY family right now! For me, that is important and if we can make this work, THE WAY WE BOTH NEED IT TO WORK, than it is completely worth it.

      I do believe however that people can change once they truly commit 100% to healing, recovery and self growth. It is hard, many relapse but I personally know some that live wonderful lives. I am hoping for that .... We have had some horrible times and we also had many incredible times!

      Thanks for looking out .... it is wonderful to hear other opinions!!!!! Just know that I am much more aware now and am looking out for myself, this is just where I need to be right now! I don't know what the future holds but right here, right now I am happy.

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  7. Miska,
    How beautifully you speak to the struggle of being in relationship with someone like your Ed. I too am married to a sex addict. Well, more specifically a recovering sex addict. My husband, George, is not acting out now and has not for many years. So I directly experience the possibility of someone being able to work with this issue. Through his eyes I have come to see this world of sex and porn addiction, the pain and the possibility. You and Ed are clear example of what is possible, so thanks for sharing in this way.

    Paldrom Catharine Collins
    Compulsion Solutions
    Author of "A Couple's Guide to Sexual Addiction: A Step-By-Step Plan To Rebuild Trust and Restore Intimacy"

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    1. Thank you sooo very much for that!!!! I love how you write "the world of sex addiction .... the pain and the possibility"! That is SO TRUE! With the pain does come some wonderful possibility! That is true for us!!

      And not to sound corny but ... "what doesn't kill us makes us stronger!!!!" It really is true ...

      BTW - I love your book! Such a great book for couple's who are trying to work this craziness out! It is possible!

      Thanks for reading ... I hope my blog can be a support for some of your clients who are finding their own path through this!

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  8. Mishka - This is a question I've asked myself, and I've come to the conclusion that it's not a helpful question because it exists outside of reality. There's no going back, and dwelling on the past (which I don't think you're doing) is time spent not living in the present. The future is a bigger dilemma for me. One-day-at-a-time is a helpful practice when that gets overwhelming. And I agree - it's all about a focus on recovery. Or rather, a life of recovery. Good to hear you have peace.

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    1. You are SO VERY right my dear .... it isn't a helpful question to ask. It doesn't get you anywhere, that's for sure, and only makes you feel worse when you think about it. I try not to do it ... but I think our minds have a tendency to drift there from time to time, it's only natural.

      I actually wrote this because people often ask me this question. Some people are early in the recovery process and may not be married and I know that they are needing guidance in that moment. We all want that occasionally ... the problem is that it is so individual for everyone.

      I read your blog and I see where you are coming from with the Future. I think you are so awesome and brave to be putting it out there to share .... it is incredible. But you are at a point where you need to begin to focus on YOU. And that's wonderful & scary at the same time. Keep up the amazing work, stay strong and you will know what to do when you need to do it. Trust yourself and love yourself ..... you deserve it!!!!

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  9. I stayed with my husband, and he is in treatment, and I believe he is getting better. However, if I had known everything I know now at the beginning, I would have divorced him. In fact, I would not even have told him I found out about the prostitutes. He would have found out when he got the divorce papers.

    So, why am I staying? ThHere are a million answers to that. The biggest one is that I didn't realize how painful, how huge, the recovery process would be until it started to get better. That's when I saw all the trauma I had been through.

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    1. Wow .... I hear ya my friend! It's amazing how the spouses are impacted by this .... and how the "trauma" affects us emotionally and physically. There have been studies that have proven that the trauma we experience is similar to the symptoms of a PTSD. Personally I have experienced that myself. I actually get physical symptoms where my legs get numb. That is where my stress and anxiety manifested during the "crisis" .... it's crazy!

      And you are right, there are a million reasons why we all stay. It is funny though when we try to answer that question it is impossible to answer because I know I am a different person now. Hindsight is ALWAYS 20 / 20 .... so it is a easy question to answer now looking back!

      Just remember through all this insanity and pain does give you an incredible opportunity for self discovery ... and that part can be great! I am now taking care of myself more and doing for me ... something that has always got lost in the craziness of life. That I am proud of!!! This will be the year of MISHKA!!!! LOL

      How is your relationship now? How long has the recovery been going on? I am always here for you if you need to bitch, vent or scream!!!! Stay strong!

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  10. I have been suffering through this trauma since Sept 2010 with my 2nd husband. We were only married a few short months when he started looking for sex on Craigs list and going to massage parlours, his response at the time I found out was "why would I want to f***k you..we were separated for some time and I filed for divorce..he begged and pleaded to give him another chance meanwhile he lost his job and really does not help much in my home financially...he moved into my house which I own before I ever met him..

    My trust is gone and the loneliness I feel is killing me, I feel more resentment as I have been emotionally been falling apart while he is going to school and working on himself..During my short marriage I have endured 2 back surgeries and just found out that now I have to have another one in my neck..Frankly I am sick of taking care of his cheating butt, and I am angry as I feel I have not seen what I need to trust him ever again, he has gone to sporadic counseling in the past 2 years and gone to a class at our church for sexual addiction, the past 4 years of my marriage he never touches me never wants intimacy...He thinks cooking me dinner and his housework is what I need..I am beyond depressed at this point..

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    1. Wow Bridget .... my heart goes out to you! It truly does, what a tough position to be in. Are you and your husband still together? Is he still acting out?

      In my experience it is so important to go to steady and consistent counseling for an extended period of time for true healing and recovery to happen. There are the select few who can have a lightening bolt hit them and then they magically heal .. but most of the time that isn't the case. I'm sure you know this but consistent counseling is crucial. I'm sorry that he isn't doing that.

      Have you been seeing a therapist? My therapist helps me deal with my own emotions and empowers me to work on myself (having compassion for ME and what I have been through and loving who I am). It has helped me get through the tough times, be comfortable in my decisions and also has helped in our relationship. I really believe that it is sooo important for us LADIES to provide that level of LOVE to ourselves! We do deserve that!

      So, he is going to school ... what are you doing for you???? You deserve the world so make sure you are putting yourself first!

      I know for Ed intimacy and touching is very hard ... it's that fear of intimacy ... and that is the case for many sex addicts. So, that is normal behavior for sex addiction .... it doesn't mean that he doesn't love you .... BUT it is also not an excuse to not work hard. Recovery for sex addiction is HARD WORK and it takes a tremendous amount of courage to do everything you need to do to recover. Remember, half assing recovery doesn't work!

      I encourage you to take care of yourself and figure out what you want! If he isn't willing to completely commit to recovery than you need to evaluate how healthy the relationship is for you.

      Ed and I are starting a phone support group for couples that want support from those who have been there! Let me know if you are interested at all .... would love to help if we can!

      Good luck and I will be sending so much positivity your way!!!!! Dig deep and find your inner awesomeness .... it's there, I know it is!!!

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  11. Thanks for replying Mishka, my husband is still here physically but I feel emotionally he is checked out and has been for a long time. I am a psychiatric nurse and have seen the revolving door of addictive behavior and I felt that I couldn't believe that this was happening to me.

    I have waited and watched his behavior I don't believe that he is acting out at this time. My feelings towards him and any sense of wanting intimacy with him is gone as well at this point, I guess I was looking for someone who would go after what they want, but that is just a fantasy at this point, I am done in my life trying to lead a horse to water to make them drink!! I believe he lives in fear and I am not going to beg for love, I feel taken advantage of financially and emotionally. After I found out all I have been doing is working and taking care of my kids which are my biggest joy, they are 23,17,15 and 8.

    So I have alot going on with college plans and so on so that is exciting, I also like to travel and My 17 yr old daughter and I are going to Paris in July, I love to travel!! So I do have nice things to look forward to before I have surgery..

    I have been working alot but that has come to a complete halt because of problems in my neck, I also am taking some on-line classes to finish up my bachelors degree as I want to go on for my masters degree, but it seems like every time I try and do something for myself I have to deal with some health crisis. I am also tired of being his financial supporter, it's like in marrying me his whole standard of living has increased and he is happy making dinner..it makes me sick..I do not see spending the rest of my life with him, I don't trust him and he seems so unattractive to me at this point..I feel more like I was conned to believe he was something he is not in the begginning..we have no children together so nothing binds us..I feel let down by him because I gave him another chance to show me something and I still have nothing..Just feel like it's a waist of my life..I also feel that my heart will not be able to trust much again...sure I would be interested in phone support that is a great idea... as I do know that through the hard things we go through in life there is always someone we can help..I feel like I have been doing that most of my life helping others..but I cannot help him he needs to help himself..

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    1. Hi Bridget!!! Wow .... what a tough point in life, huh? You are absolutely right .... he needs to help himself! As you said .... you can lead a horse to water, but we both know all too well, that you CANNOT make him drink! He has to WANT it, he has to COMMIT to it, he has to want to CHANGE HIS LIFE completely. It sounds like you provided him with support, love and now it is up to him. Addicts make choices .... often times they aren't the right choices and they are the ones who need to deal with the consequences!

      And the right choice is not getting a hold on their addiction completely. Just getting control and existing is not going to get you better. In my own experiences, that is a recipe for relapse! The way to true recovery is to completely jump in and immerse yourself in the act of changing your mind / behaviors! I wish you so much luck with that!

      It sounds like you are worrying about yourself and for kids first ... that is a wonderful thing! When you are ready to make the choice to leave (or the choice may be to stay & open yourself up to him) you will be ready. Just worry about YOU and the decisions will come when you are ready!!!!! It isn't easy but you will know when the time is right!

      Have you read "The Couple's Guide to Sex Addiction ... A Step-By_Step Plan to Rebuild Trust & Restore Intimacy" by Paldrom Collins? http://www.compulsionsolutions.com/couples-guide-to-sexual-addiction.html

      It is a wonderful resource for couple's struggling through this! And I think it would help you to understand the whole TRUST thing and I think it would help you in any future relationships! You can and will trust again .... if it isn't with your hubby than you can do it with someone else!

      Also, George Collins wrote a wonderful & powerful book about overcoming sex addiction and it CHANGED my hubby's life! Breaking the Cycle, Free Yourself From Sex Addiction, Porn Compulsion & Shame. Nothing else but this helped Ed truly free his mind & start to really get it!!! http://www.compulsionsolutions.com/free-from-sex-addiction.html

      I hope these 2 things can help!!!! They did us ..... actually saved our marriage and our own sanity!!!!!

      I'll let you know when Ed & I get our support thing going!! Good luck my dear ..... KEEP BEING FABULOUS AND KNOW THAT!!!!!! I am so excited for you to be going to Paris with your daughter ... that is sooooo wonderful !!!!!!! I've never been .... I would love to go there 1 day!!!!

      Please keep in touch!!!!! You can also email me any time at mishkas.life@gmail.com !!!!

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  12. Hi Mishka,

    Thank you for your caring response, it is nice to know that I am not alone in this pain..The pain for the last 18 months of my life has been debilitating to say the least..My husband left last week at my request...It hurts a lot as I am not a person who gives up easily..What I have noticed in myself is that when he is here I feel so lonely..wishing and hoping in one way he could reach out to me and help me out of the pit of hell that I was thrown into..but I realize he cannot do that...He tells me that he has tried his best and that I am not open to him, that may be so but I was looking for a real commitment of him seeking out help without me directing him to it..I don't believe going to a counselor 2 or 3 times and going to a church group for 6 weeks cuts it for me...I feel bad inside because he seems to think that is his best and it took him over a year to do anything real..I guess I am looking for much more, we have been married for 4 years and I have felt rejected by him most of this time...I cannot live without love, affection, and intimacy that he does seem to be able to give me, and then on the other hand the thoughts in my mind of him going to massage parlours and looking for sex on Craigs list haunts my mind so much...for the past week without him being here seems to have given me some peace from myself in my thoughts..when he is here I seem to have this cloud of sadness and depression over me and I am sick of it as my kids need me..so I have told him I need to work on myself so I can function properly..as I don't like the negativity that his behavior has brought to me..I didn't ask for any of it!!

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    1. Great for you Bridget!!! I so agree with you ... from what you describe that is not immersing himself in recovery 100%. That is trying to stop but there will be that piece that clings to him that is stuffed down but may not really be gone. Recovery is a LONG process and it takes commitment and WORK ... hard work! It is a lifelong journey and 2 or 3 sessions of therapy is NOT going to cut it. There is a select few who that may be enough for but from what I learned those people are few and far between. I can't even tell you how much therapy, support groups and reading Ed has been through ... and he has needed it all. It is different for everyone but again but 18 months is a long time to make lots of changes and work through this time TOGETHER. It doesn't sound like that is the case ... and I am sorry that you are still suffering.

      Remember, you are the only one that can help yourself out of the pit of hell ... it's nice to get it from our spouses but in the end when we can give that LOVE and SUPPORT to ourselves ... it's amazing how then we can get it from others. YOU are the most important right now ... and it sounds like you are TRULY BELIEVING THAT!!!

      What works for me when I have flashbacks or emotions tied to his actions ... I put my arms out, give myself a huge hug, and love and accept myself and the situation that I have been dealt. None of us ask for these betrayals and this pain, here it is ... for me when I can sit with the pain, accept it and love it as a part of myself .... It takes the sting out of what I am feeling. I have stopped running away from it, I have learned to bring it in and feel it, truly feel it. While I am feeling it I accept it as part of me .... and I still know that I am still a FANTASTIC person, That helps me deal with what I am feeling!!!!

      You are doing awesome taking care of yourself right now!!!!!!!! Keep up your amazing strength!!!!!!

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  13. My husband is a sex addict and won't admit it.idk what to do..We have 3 kids and have been together 14yrs and had major ups and downs..I just can't take the lies..to make things worse a week after I delivered my son, I received a call that my husband got a 20 yr old preg....im at my.end..he won't even discuss the issue..I suspected the cheating but he would lie and.she wasnt.the only one he was with either..I finanically can't move out, paying.day care and bills leaves me.with.nothing..so confused, messed up.

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    1. Oh sweetie ... what a tough place to be in!!! And, not a place with an easy answer either! There is no right or wrong here ... just a place where you need to start taking care of you and moving forward one day at a time!

      Ok, first of all ... the only one that can change him is HIM. You know the expression ... "You can lead a horse to water but you can't make him drink" .... That expression is so true here. Unfortunately if he doesn't want to admit there is a problem than there isn't much you can do to there. The trap we often fall into is trying to make it better, working on making it better and the addict isn't fully participating in that. If that is the case or he is not taking responsibility for his actions, I believe you need to start working on you. AND preparing yourself toward independence. It may not be feasible over night and it really sucks but I think it is important to empower ourselves.

      We all deserve an incredible life and just remember, if he isn't going to be honest and be fully there in the relationship than you can create your own happiness. If he can own up to his behaviors and both of you commit to recovery 100% than it absolutely can work. BUT, as long as he is not being honest and present ... well, than it is a tough and lonely road.

      Can you get a part time job at night? Maybe a home based business? There are small things you can do to start empowering yourself. Sometimes a move toward independence can open their eyes to what they are going to lose. My hubby started looking at me different once he realized that he was going to lose everything and I was a POWERFUL woman .... a woman who didn't NEED him. I wanted him ... but I didn't need him. And the same goes for you!!!!

      Have you tried any couple's work? Good luck my friend ... I'm sending BIG HUGS your way! Keep me updated on your situation ... and remember, you are powerful!!!!!!

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  14. Great post! I really enjoyed glancing over your post!

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  15. I'm so glad I stumbled upon your blog. It's been the only really positive thing I've seen since my research began and my world turned upside down 5 days ago. My husband has been away since his sex addiction has come to light. How do I prepare to protect us (financially, and from relapses) or other preparatory things I should do or not do before he first arrives home? I have already changed all my passwords on everything and have demanded he give me all his updated ones so I can stop the major financial crush this has been. Do I monitor his phone, make him sell his computer? What about sex? It had declined but never got so far as to go away. I'm only 34 and I'm still rocking a pretty bit body as well as enjoy all things sexual (between us). Do I try to emulate his fetishes or ...? I have 3.5 days before his return. Any advice would be appreciated.

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    1. Hi honey!!! I am so glad my blog was here to help you!!! Thank you for that! Wow ... your head must be spinning right now! It really is a lot to take in at once ... it can be so overwhelming that you actually feel frozen. I know and my heart goes out to you .... just know you are not alone and you will survive this insanity!!! I think it's great that you are trying to prepare yourself as best you can. These are little ways that we can begin to empower ourselves ....

      Is your hubby in a treatment facility?

      Ok, so what to do or not to do? That is a really tough question, it's different for everyone and you do what works for you. It may take time to understand what you need and what he needs to get through the beginnings of recovery. I totally can relate to the financial crush ... Ed spent thousands and thousands. What I did to protect myself is I opened my own bank account and put much of our money in there. He couldn't access it and I paid our bills from there. That helped me feel a sense of control financially.

      Now, regarding passwords, his phone and computer ... that is a tough one. I am not one who believes in monitoring their activity. Some people find it very helpful but I find it a be a bummer and in reality I do not want to be Ed's mother. I also find it sometimes makes the guy feel controlled and it can feed their shame cycle too but some people wouldn't agree with me. So, you will have to see what works for both of you. Have a conversation with him when he comes home and tell him how nervous you feel. See what solutions you both can come up with together that makes you both feel supported. And really you can't not have a computer these days. I don't monitor Ed but when I feel uncomfortable or triggered I ask him to show me and he respects that.

      Ah, sex ... that is a BIG issue! Have you read my latest post on sex in sex addiction recovery? Check it out ... it answers this question. I believe it is helpful to take sex out of the picture for a while so you can work on building trust, safety, and intimacy. Intimacy is not sex ... intimacy is rebuilding the emotional connection that has been severely broken. That takes time and sex can confuse that issue. So, I think no sex for a little allows him to recharge himself and both of you to work on healing the really important wounds.

      It is so important that he finds support in his recovery with a counselor or coach who specializes in sex addiction. Have you guys found one yet? Have you found support for yourself at all? I am also a firm believer in doing couple's work too ... it is so important since this needs to be a partnership for recovery not just about him. The key for Ed and I was doing the recovery work ourselves but also equally supporting each other and working on the dynamic of our relationship that wasn't working.

      So, tell me more about what has happened? Have you checked out Ed and my podcast on recovery?? It might be helpful to listen to it together! http://www.spreaker.com/user/sexaddiction Check it out ... it may help!

      Feel free to email me at mishkas.life@gmail.com if you want ... BIG HUGS!!!! Don't forget to give yourself some pampering and love right now ... you need it!!!!!!!!!!!

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  16. Thanks for the post. I had been looking for something related and found your web site in the process.. I will definitely be back for more.

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  17. Good day! Does the frequency of updates of your blog depend on specific things or you work on blog articles when you have a special mood or write blog entries if you have enough time on that? Can't wait to hear from you.

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  18. I left my sex addict husband after 25 years of marriage. He is the LAST person anyone would ever expect to be a SA. and sadly, he doesn't seem particularly sorry nor does he seem in the least bit concerned about the devastation he has caused me. He says that he's not as "bad" as those "other guys." No, he's worse. the "other guys" admit they have a problem.

    still... he was my best friend. I don't care about sex. I can pleasure myself if need be, but i did so very much and still do miss being held and loved. No one would believe it. I'm considered to be a beautiful woman. heads turn. sooooo? I'm sitting here in my apartment by myself. I fear going out. I'm so very tired.

    and now... I don't know how I'll ever be able to even go on a date again. Years ago, my h suggested that I do so, and after months I gave it a whirl.

    easy prey, I was... for other predatory males.

    and I latched on to a doozy. It was a failed experiment. I had no idea about my husband. I just thought he was depressed and had low libido... and then one day... he left his shit open on our computer for me to read.

    I understand why women stay. I really do, but its not for me...

    I will never ever allow a man to lie to me and cheat and betray my sacred trust... that is... if I'll ever be able to trust another again.

    if only... if only he knew the immense amount of power he has.

    however, if I let him have that power, he has won.

    his goal (although not consciously) was to destroy the one woman he ever loved.

    except it wasn't love.

    love doesn't hurt. ever.

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    1. Hi there!!! I am sooo sorry that it took me so long to get back to you!!! I like to respond to everyone so better late than never!!! Anyway, I'm sooo sorry that you had to go through that and so sorry that you still carry the effects of it!!! It is hard, I know!!! ANd it is sooo hard when our men don't acknowledge and own the reality of their situation.

      Can you trust again? Absolutely .. there are other amazing men out there, men who OWN their shit and take responsibility for it when they fuck up, and make the choice to embrace growth and change ... they are out there and it takes us opening ourselves up, allowing ourselves to be vulnerable (and I know that it is soooo hard) so we can let that in. You are a SURVIVOR ... you have survived ... and we as women cannot let ANYONE destroy us. We can make the choice to create our happiness ... because you SOOO DESERVE IT!!!

      You will find it my friend!!!!!! I am sending you a great BIG HUG!!!

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  19. Hi there, this is a great blog. I'm from the UK. Are you from the US? x

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  20. I just found this site. After 21 years of marriage and several affairs, flirts, etc my husband was diagnosed as a sex addict. I have asked and been asked that question that

    After much counseling, requests, begging, etc for me to give me another (6th) chance, I reluctantly agreed to stay in our marriage. Because he is now getting the appropriate counseling for this, he really has done better and has changed as he never had before. However, I still feel that I am one foot in and one foot out of the marriage. The last woman he cheated with was one a repeat and one who stalked him for 9 years. Think Jodi Arias and you get the idea.

    So for me, when asked the question, "If I knew then what I know now about him, would I have married him?". Even though we have a great relationship and friendship, my answer is no. I would have run as far and fast away from him as I could.

    If I had to do it over, I would not repeat the pain of 21 years of this.

    T in Seattle

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    1. Hi T!!!! Thank you for you very honest response!!! I am just thinking about the women stalking him for 9 years! That is insane!!! Did you know about her and what she was doing? 9 years is a LONG time!!!! Wow ... that is one that I haven't heard before!!!

      The funny thing is though that life doesn't work out that way ... hindsight is always 20 / 20 right??? So, for whatever reason we end up in the situations that we are in and it is up to us to use our experience to grow and empower ourselves. And it sounds like you guys have done that ... and that is AMAZING!!! Make these years worth it ... you deserve your happiness!!!!!!

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  21. I also just found your site & I am so greatful. I left my husband after 10yrs of marriage for his sexual addictions. I lost my house, my garden, but I gained self respect back. When I found out about continuous lying & cheating, he begged for my forgiveness. He went through a residential treatment program for sex addiction & alcoholism. I stayed by his side through the whole time. I felt so angry & betrayed by him. After 7 months of him being at home I was ALMOST on the verge of loving him & forgiving him & then found out he was lying & cheating on me again. I filed for divorce that same day. That was 7 months ago & my divorce has been finalized.

    I'm still feel very angry and hurt & refuse to have anything to do with him at this point in time. I can only hope that at some point he realizes what he has lost & that the path he has choosen is a very lonely one. and quit frankly I hope he burns in hell for all the damage he has caused me. as I told him on the few occasions I have spoke to him, "you didn't have to do it to me a second time, all you had to do was to tell me it wasn't working for you"

    K in Klamath
    Would I do it over again? Don't know at this point.

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    1. Hi K!!! Thank you for sharing your story .... man, that is really painful and my heart goes out to you! There is not much for me to say but good for you for setting your boundary and sticking to it. Good for you for NOT losing your self respect. Good for you for reaching out on this blog!!!

      It sucks ... some men truly change and some don't. It sucks so bad .... but the one thing we can feel strong in is that you have survived, you are still here .... and know that you are AMAZING!!!

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  22. Hello I just found this post, thank you so much. Yes my head is spinning..
    I have been married to my husband for almost 32 yrs, been together for 35 yrs.
    I think it all started with watching porn around at around our 10th anniversary, he had an affair which I knew from the way he acted, and has just escalated from there.
    I caught him having profiles on adult sites a single, or separated. His answer was to just look at the pictures.. I'm sure their has been many others I don't know about.. Around our 25th ann. I seen on our acct. a place, called the number come to find out it was like a whore house, where you go in an pick your girl out.. Well he said he didn't know what kind of place it was to embarrassed to just leave, but he didn't do anything, he just watched her... Do I believe him, No... At that time he admitted to having an addiction, but now says he doesn't have a problem...

    Well this addition only gets worse. He doesn't act out (that I know of), but I believe is having phone sex with someone that he has met on line. It's been going on for about 4 years now. It is getting worse, to wear he is listening to her while we watch tv and in our bed at night. I believe that she has porn on that they both can listen to or something alone that line. I have blown up because I can hear her, and feel him well you know the bed shaking. But he says that he is doing nothing, that it's all in my head I am just hearing things. That I can not prove anything. He has a company phone and I have checked it time and time again. I have recorded him, but he says he doesn't hear anything that I am going crazy.

    Well he told our grow kids that I think he doing this and he is very worried about me. Yes turn it around on my that I am going crazy. That I have hid all this from them. I can not figure out how he is doing it... If any addict is on here and can help me, please I am willing to listen. I love my husband and don't want our family to fall apart. But I am loosing my mind in the mean time. I am so lonely, when he is here I still feel he isn't.

    Thank you, PLC

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  23. Addiction is one of the major reasons why relationships fail. It is hard to live with an addict but many try to deal with the sacrifices that go with it especially if they know that their partner is trying hard to recover from it. Given the choice, I know a lot of people who woukld rather stay away from sex addicts.

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  24. This is the story of my life that i am still pondering upon even as i write this article.I maybe judged and i may not be but even if i am judged, no one can ever know my real personality or family.I have been asking myself if i should let the world know about this or maybe i should just keep it to myself cos most people might think am crazy.All the same am telling my story.I live in Bordeaux, France with my husband and four kids and we have a happy family.It wasn't always just like that.Before my husband, i have been married to five different men.Yeah five, all five marriages failed after six months not cos we had problems or the relationships was on the rock they just come and go without good reason.It was easy to say i was cured by someone or something.I had a feeling there was something about me that wasn't just appealing in the site of all the men that claimed to love me to death.The entire puzzle of my life just seem to fall into place when i met my present husband i fall hardly in love with him like he also did.It was all in his eye that he loved me with all he's got.Yeah we got married but just after the first six months as always he just wanted out as every other man that i was married to.I never really wanted to let go of any of my ex husband i was willing to fight for the marriage but they bluntly weren't ready for that.But this, i just got tired of same old same old thing just wanted a steady marriage with the love of my life.I tried marriage counseling with him which is suppose to me the best way to resolving marital problem but he was like its been tattooed in his mind that he wanted out of our marriage.I WANT TO LEAVE A QUESTION FOR ANYONE READING THIS CAN A WOMAN REALLY BE HAPPY OR FEEL COMPETE WHEN EVERY OF HER MARRIAGE FAILS.CAN A WOMAN EVER FEEL LIKE THEY BELONG IN THE SOCIETY WHEN EVERY MAN SHE IS MARRIED TO REJECT HER AFTER A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME WITHOUT ANY COURSE?FOR ME MY ANSWER IS A NO COS I KNOW HOW HARD IT WAS FOR ME AND MY FAMILY IT AFFECTED ME PSYCHOLOGICALLY BUT I WAS TOO STRONG TO BREAK DOWN COS I HARD TO FIGHT FOR KIDS WHO LOOK AT THEIR MOM AS INVINCIBLE AND STRONG.Honestly don't know how and when i contacted a spell caster to help me.AT FIRST IT WAS JUST TO SEE HOW TRUE AND HOW HE COULD REALLY HELP ME FIX MY PROBLEM LITTLE DID I KNOW IT WAS HE SOLUTION TO MY GRIEVING PAIN.His name IS MUTTON OSUN i think he was of great help cos i honest remember that he helped me save my marriage and made me helped myself to feel loved again.Its being one year and six months exactly since he cast a spell to make my husband stay till dead do us part and my husband is still with me now and we are happy and in love just like how we were for the first six months.I will be fully convinced if we get to celebrity our 50th year anniversary.I don't want any body to see this article like it was meant to make you contact him.I am just sharing my experience on how Mutton helped me restore my marriage with spell casting and i should tell you he does not charge for his services all you are to do is to provide materials he will be needing for the spell casting.If you feel he can help you solve any of your problem contact him here godsofosunx@rocketmail.com this was what i used to contact him good luck.

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