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#373704 - 10/29/11 12:16 PM Blame The Spouse Game
Esposa Offline
F&F Greeter
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 10/19/11
Posts: 811
Loc: NJ
Early on in the process of healing, I know denial is normal. But is blaming your spouse normal?


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#373707 - 10/29/11 12:55 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
Him blaming you? Yeah, I'd say that's normal. Don't accept the blame, but yeah it happens. Happened to me, but when he was in his "right mind" he would admit it wasn't my fault, that I'd treated him well, etc. When not in his right mind, he'd blame me, withdraw, push me away, get defensive, whatever.


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#373709 - 10/29/11 01:09 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
lucylives Offline


Registered: 04/07/11
Posts: 367
Esposa
I think they like to blame us for everything so they don't have to look at their own stuff. I find myself doing this too. It is also much easier to blame someone so you have an excuse to not feel the shame of what you have done..addictions, acting out, lying etc. The truth is, at least in my case, my spouse was obviously suffering and hurting way before he met me. His acting out and unhappiness started WAY before me...


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#373718 - 10/29/11 02:26 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: lucylives]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
I think what lucy said is key...we do this, too, like it or not. I know I have blamed my ex or other people for things so I could avoid looking at my stuff. I am in SANON and the whole point is to quit trying to fix our partners and instead look at our own selves. You can't fix him, but you can fix your own "stuff." Once you start owning your own stuff, he may start owning his. Then again, he may not, but what's important is that YOU are taking care of your own self. If he chooses to blame, you will learn not to accept the blame (except for things you really did do wrong, which I've had to learn to do).



Edited by hopeandtry (10/29/11 02:27 PM)

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#373723 - 10/29/11 04:31 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: hopeandtry]
mmfan Offline


Registered: 09/25/11
Posts: 115
In my survivor's case, when he experiences negative feelings from his past, I'm the closest object in his environment, so he thinks I must be causing them. It's hard for him to separate past from present and place the feelings in the context where they belong.

One example- because I'm a close woman in his life, he sometimes "forgets" that I'm me and sees his mother (one of his many abusers). It could be something as small as a word or mannerism, or something he can't even name. All he knows is he starts feeling scared, manipulated, or controlled, and he pushes me away as fast and as forcefully as possible -which makes sense, as he's reacting to (what he sees as) a threat.

I know he's reacting to a person and situation from the past rather than me, but its still hard not to take it personally, as his ways of pushing me away are very effective- harsh words and tone of voice, shouting, wild accusations, attacks on my character, etc. It feels like all my effort and care is wasted at times, and he's not even "seeing" me. It hurts, given how much I care about him, and how hard I try to help him feel safe.

At some point he recognizes that it wasn't my fault and apologizes, and I know at times (following some of his worst outbursts) he has felt extremely guilty for how he's lashed out at me.

It might be a bit different for us because we aren't romantically involved (thankfully). If we were, I know he'd have a harder time separating his "stuff" and I'd probably become a constant trigger/threat/object of blame.


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#373747 - 10/30/11 01:15 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: mmfan]
whome Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 05/07/11
Posts: 1739
Loc: Johannesburg South Africa
What MMFAN says is true.
We lash out at the ones we love because they remind us of things in the past, or moan about things we are doing in the present, things we feel helpless to control at this point.

What I find worse is that we then feel guilty, so now, we have added problems, (like we don't have enough).

I sometimes feel that I would be better of alone because I would not have the added guilt.
I then feel bad for thinking that I would be better of alone, and so the cycle continues.
Healing happens in fits and starts and we don't know what is going to happen next, even for someone that works hard at the healing. I feel good for weeks and then all of a sudden I start to withdraw, and become very distant. I don't even know I am doing it. My wife then points this out, and I get angry because I think that I am doing well. We then have weeks of fights and anger, and threats of divorce etc.

It sucks, big time.
This is tough on us, I can only begin to imagine what it does to the ladies in our lives.

You girls hang tough, and remember those boundaries,don't let us cross them.

Martin

_________________________
Matrix Men South Africa
Survivors Supporting Each other
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#373759 - 10/30/11 09:20 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: whome]
KMCINVA Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3219
I think it is great that the supporters stand by to support the survivor. I also believe the supporters need to be treated with respect because what they are dealing with is extremely difficult and painful. The survivor does hurt and may lash out--but must maintain boundaries.

I envy those who have their family to support. As you know I had buried the memories of my CSA so deep I thought I would take to the grave. But new wounds of new torment and abuse in the home opened the old wounds (as my T says the 4 decades of poison that built in those wounds was destroying me and were lethal to me once released) opened and I began to self abuse and self destruct--loosing time and these actions hurt others. I am sorry for that hurt and I am working to heal and recover memories. I live in an environment were the torment continues and I try to hold to the boundaries but sometimes push beyond. But my family seems to have no boundaries, they can attack and accuse at will--still seeing no wrong in what they did in the home to me. Hopeandtry I admire your courage to admit things you may have done wrong and you stand there to support. Kudos to you and all the other supporters.



Edited by KMCINVA (10/30/11 01:04 PM)

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#373773 - 10/30/11 12:28 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: KMCINVA]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
"I sometimes feel that I would be better of alone because I would not have the added guilt."

@Martin, I feel that is why my ex pushed me away. He couldn't handle the added guilt (whether or not I did something to guilt trip him or just me being around reminded him that he feels inadequate). Even me apologizing for what I've done wrong probably triggers him sometimes because he just feels worse that I stood by him and am willing to apologize (that's just my guess...I don't know for sure).

@KMCINVA, thanks for the words of encouragement. I can't really support him anymore because things are over, but it is true that I tried to support him before AND admit things I had done wrong. It was hard to find a balance...I wanted to admit my wrongs but I didn't want to overly blame myself. I still struggle with that.


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#373775 - 10/30/11 12:35 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: KMCINVA]
Disappointed Offline


Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 541
Loc: U.S.A.
KMCinVA,

I've read many of your posts. Honestly, if your family is as vicious as you describe them, I'd be moving out. They don't have boundaries?! They don't have decency!

I'd never put up with the crap you have.

D.

_________________________
Female.

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#373778 - 10/30/11 01:08 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Disappointed]
KMCINVA Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3219
I do believe the feelings are compounded CSA and when one feels tension, pain and hurt it is hard. Also hard to leave behind so many years, things were good for many years. So I hold onto the past and hope everyone will heal in the family. Am I fooling myself I do not know. I know it seems vicious but when people do these things, sometimes they do not realize the impact and how it is felt by the receiver. I never expected this in my life but need to heal and hopefully I can show I can be the person I once was--no longer emotionally aloof, detached and feeling worthless. I am working on it. My T is concerned about re traumatizing myself.


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#373779 - 10/30/11 01:13 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: KMCINVA]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
Honestly I think it's a stretch to say "I'd never do X" or "I'd never put up with X." I used to think things like that but it's very easy to get sucked into a situation or allow things to go on that you never thought you would. We are ALL capable of a lot of things, and we are all capable of allowing ourselves to go through more than we should. In my mind, the moment I think I'm too "strong" to let a certain thing happen, that's the moment I'm weakest because I get too confident. @KMC, I think it's understandable that you have allowed certain things to happen with your family. You don't deserve it, but I can see why you would be afraid to let the situation go. Change is scary.


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#373780 - 10/30/11 01:22 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: hopeandtry]
KMCINVA Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3219
Thank you and I understand what you said. I guess I still see the things I did wrong when I was self abusing and self destructing--I have not done that since I began therapy-I work hard at it--I want my old self back--. I know I am not perfect and things I have done have hurt others. But I remember a family I once knew--the rule in the home was everyone is welcome and if someone is made to feel unwelcome, it will not be this person leaving, but rather the one who made the person feel unwelcome-the only out was to apologize and not let it happen again. A smart woman who knew words and actions can hurt. I have lost sight of that rule and I hope I can live by it as I move forward.


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#373783 - 10/30/11 02:15 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: KMCINVA]
KMCINVA Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/31/11
Posts: 3219
I sometimes think I must have done something to deserve all this-I think that is why I have allowed it to happen. In T I am working on self blame and guilt. I can understand it is not right to happen to others but somehow when I think of myself I think of it differently--I had to do something to deserve it. SO it is hard for me.


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#373784 - 10/30/11 02:56 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: KMCINVA]
Disappointed Offline


Registered: 08/11/09
Posts: 541
Loc: U.S.A.
As far as thinking you have done something to deserve it, of course you think that! Lots of abused children are TOLD bad things are done to them because they are bad, which is a lot of hogwash. The abusers just say that to keep the child malleable and under control.

As far as your family, let me just say, if you quit putting up with the crap and tell them you're leaving until they start behaving, they might wake up and start behaving.

You can always return if you wish, unless the wife goes crazy and pretends she's afraid of you and gets a restraining order.

Have to say, for financial reasons, it's always easier to stay, but you know what they say: You can't buy sanity.

_________________________
Female.

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#373785 - 10/30/11 03:01 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Disappointed]
hopeandtry Offline


Registered: 07/28/10
Posts: 476
My point was that we are all capable of getting sucked into a bad situation...not that you have already, Disappointed. I was free and clear until a couple years ago, then I ended up in one. I just think it's dangerous to say "I'd never do X" because sometimes it happens faster than we realize it can happen. In any case, everyone has their faults or weaknesses, whether it is being mistreated by others or something else.


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#501318 - 09/05/16 01:38 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
I know this is an old thread - but WOW.... the subject matter is so relevant to me in my current situation with my soon to be ex husband.

He struggles with guilt and shame big time. I also think he feels incredible guilt. All 3 of those things - I dont think he should feel at all. He had no control over what happened to him - but there is no convincing him of that. He will have to understand it one day. And once he is convinced of something, he stands fast on it. There is NO changing his mind. And if he has a choice between a negative and positive - he goes with the negative EVERY SINGLE TIME. It makes me cringe.

My husband - how I love dearly - also thinks he cannot be married, cannot be loved, cannot be those things which are good - like being a strong, happy, loved man in a solid, trusting marriage because of the things mentioned in this topic.

He retreats as soon as he starts feeling good - starts pushing me away, and then projects all that feeling of anger and loss of control on to me. It so confusing because it comes out of the blue sometimes. I work on overdrive to always be upfront with him and I refuse to manipulate him. I have never wanted to be a parent to my partner... and he constantly puts me in that position. He relies on me to make all the big AND little decisions - and then tells me that he feels like he has no control. When I try to get him to participate - by asking him his thoughts, or what he thinks we should do/choose/whatever - then its me controlling him by forcing him to participate.

Dammed if I do - dammed if I dont. He is going to be leaving our home soon, and our life together will be over. I am broken hearted about it - he already seems to have moved on. His focus is on World of Warcraft... not me, not our life, not even on himself... which is the most important thing of all. i am no longer taking the blame of "controlling him" as its not true. I am not longer taking the blame for what happened to him and his unhappiness in life because of it.

When he leaves - all of those same feelings go with him as they have never had anything to do with me.
_________________________
*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501347 - 09/06/16 07:05 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
HealingHope Offline


Registered: 08/24/15
Posts: 115
Wontgiveup, you've been so strong for him and your strength seems to shine through even at such a painful time. Much love to you.
Thank you for drawing this thread out again, I hadn't seen it before, it resonates with my situation too. Only difference is because of his total withdrawal and no communication at all, I've drawn my own conclusions by seeing patterns in survivors and loved ones stories here. I'm grateful to so many.
Your post wgu, has helped me see too that I know I didn't cause my survivors pain but maybe at times I triggered him & maybe he's staying away because he can't manage the emotions and confusion I may represent. I think trust, love, guilt & shame seem all part of this for me. But I'm just pulling things together alone & perhaps now I need to see I need to let go too.
But how do you let go of someone you love so deeply are so proud of and see their courage even when they don't believe it?

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#501363 - 09/06/16 02:18 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
HealingHope - I spent a lot of time reading your posts yesterday as it does seem we have some similarities in our situation. Especially with the whole going away for a few months and then coming back stuff.

Thank you for that compliment about strength... honestly - I sure dont FEEL strong. :-) I feel like crumbling into a pile on the floor and crying until I pass out and then never waking up again. But i guess i dont have a choice, its swim or die right?

One thing that I have to repeat to myself ALL the time is this:

I didnt cause it
I cant control it
I cant fix it

As much as I would jump right in, fix all the bad if I could. Man... if only. I would fight like a demon to save him. I wish I could say that he feels the same about me, but I know he doesnt. My soon to be ex is extremely self centered, he doesnt really see outside his bubble. I know that this is a common trait - and is really a self protective mechanism (living with the mentality of a child since he has never grown emotionally from that point in his life - when he was robbed of the chance of growing into an emotionally mature adult by those monsters who abused him). HOWEVER - just because I understand it doesnt take away his VERY REAL responsibility of his own actions.

I get why he does what he does, but I no longer allow it to be an excuse for behavior that harms me. And his constant threats of abandoning me (if he is unhappy for any reason) and his manipulation of me to get what he wants are both examples of behavior that is harmful to me. His emotional neglect and withholding affection is harmful to me. He demands that I provide him with those things (non sexual of course) but doesnt and hasnt returned it to me.

I deeply love this man. With my whole heart. I love who that man is inside - behind this mask that I hate. He is incredible this man, amazing - badass really. That man ignited a love inside me that knows no bounds. And even though he is choosing to walk out of our life, and choosing to hide - I will still love him. It will be a long time before I will be OK after this, but I WILL BE OK....

I will choose to rise up, to not sink, to address the PTSD symptoms I have after 7 years of this living in his hole. Yes - I lived in HIS hole with him, trying to help lift him up, provide a life line and a light in the darkness to help him get out on his own. I will not stay in the dark, stay in the hole anymore. I am surrounding myself with people I love and who love me back. I am addressing my own health issues, trying to make myself physically AND mentally stronger. I am focusing on my career which is starting to really ignite. I will not let the monsters who have consumed him consume me too.

You didnt cause his pain HH. And you cant take it away from him, or fix it for him. All you can do is 1. protect yourself, 2. create boundries and DO NOT DROP them, 3. Love him with your whole heart, but know that you cannot loose yourself in that love.

I know this is rambly and alot of similar stuff I have written before. I suppose I do this not only to reach out to others, but to also vet out my own feelings, and writing it out really helps me to see to the core of what hurts me about all this.

I think maybe I should create a new topic about the effects on me as a spouse.... Thanks HH! You have really got me thinking hard!
_________________________
*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501369 - 09/06/16 05:56 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
HealingHope Offline


Registered: 08/24/15
Posts: 115
"3. Love him with your whole heart, but know that you cannot loose yourself in that love."
I think this is where I lost myself for sure & feel I'm still lost in the love I feel for him.

Thank you for sharing WGU, like you I've found processing out my thoughts in a post seems to shine light in the dark hole I'm stuck in. For me I'm not sure how I let go of someone who I feel so deeply connected to & in a heartbeat I'd be there alongside for, if he shows up again.
You seem to have found the tipping point where it's time, but for me I'm still wrestling with the just where mine is. I'm not there yet... But maybe it's denial again. I just know deep deep in my bones that he's hurting and struggling alone & too stubborn to reach out this time.
Thanks again wgu for helping me process this some more as well.

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#501380 - 09/06/16 07:50 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Well, for me... my tipping point, my straw that broke my camel's back was when he told me that he only wanted to be married when he was "in a good mood". It was like something in my head just SNAPPED. We had been having a lovely few months, and just the week before he was actually ...well perfect. He was on top of things, loving, kind... all the things I could have wanted from him right now. And when he told me that, it was like I realized to him - I would never be enough. Its like he is always looking for whats better, whats next.

He has always threatened me with leaving. Every time we have a fight, or there is a family crisis - he shuts down, wants to leave. When my first husband died, when my dogs have died, when my mother died... all of it.

I realized that he didnt even SEE me during these times - when I needed him most. It was always all about what he wanted, what he needed.... and I lost myself in meeting those needs and never got to grieve properly.

My mother died 10 months ago, and a month after her death, he was telling me he wanted a divorce. he goes through this same thing every year, around the time his sister committed suicide. So I told him that I didnt believe him, and that we had made promises last time we went through this is that we both agreed, we loved eachother and KNEW beyond a shadow of a doubt that our future was together. He made me promise -and he promised as well - that we would never e ver make these threats again, that we would always talk to eachother and work through any issues that came up.

A few months later... he broke his own promise. Again.


Soooo back to what broke me.... when he said that he wanted to leave again, that little string that was holding me together snapped. it was like my heart got whiplash and suddenly everything seemed so clear. He has, had and never had intentions to do any work on himself. And also - a new expansion for World of Warcraft was coming out (along with a movie). And WoW is not allowed in our house because of how cruel he was to me with it previously. He has no control with that game, and I told him the LAST time he tried playing "and staying in control of it" that I was done. That he could choose the game or me - but he could not have both anymore since he cannot function in a family when that game is present. So... *I* think that on top of his regular freak out, the movie came out, the expansion came out and now he wants to play.

And my heart snapped when it all came into focus. I would never matter as much as that game (as evidenced by my router logs that show him watching WoW videos and chain smoking all day long - but not doing anything to work on any of his issues). I would never matter as much as what ever he felt at the moment - because thats how he lives, like a little kid who isnt actually in control, but thinks that if they get what they want when they want it - that means they are in control. I would never be a priority while he is on the path he is on. And he doesnt want to get off the path he is on because its "the easy road" to take.

Dont get me wrong, the balance tipped - but the love didnt go away. I still love him. I love him to my core. But I cannot drown in his fear. I do not want to live another year of my life in a situation like the past 7 years have been. If he wanted to truly make a real, consistent and proven change to me - that would be one thing, and I am not looking for perfection - just progress. But I am not worth it to him.

I guess you can say the balance tipped when I no longer believed he loved me or cared for me, and that I would never get my needs met by him since he doesnt care about them. So - even though he said he was leaving, I am letting him. I am not fighting him. I am working on my life with out him. Making plans, visualizing all the things i wanted to do with him - with out him. Its very hard, and its another loss I can mark on my belt in my years of loss. Years of death.

I will be ok. He is leaving and I will be OK. Thats my mantra. sometimes I have to repeat it to myself over and over. Sometimes I feel strong and good about what my life will be. But I do love him, very much. I have given everything that I had to him. There just isnt anything left... nothing was ever given back to replenish me.

The worst part is - just recently, like in the past month, he started changing. Started working out again (which is critical for ADHD and very very good for channeling anger), started doing the things he has promised for years (like cleaning up the yard, cleaning up the deck etc). Had he been following through - I suspect we would not be here now because he would have felt accomplished with himself and I think he would have realized he is truly capable of anything.

HH - I am not saying that things will be easy, but they will be better if you turn that focus in on yourself. As for now, dont look at it as letting go so much as preparing a better, stronger YOU for when the time is right. You cant be good to anyone else if you are not doing what you can to love yourself and be happy in your own life. I dont know what your life is like, but even just getting 20 minutes of walking in a day can change your outlook. Strengthen youself physically will help you strengthen yourself mentally. Pick something, set a goal and DO it - and when you get lost in thinking about your survivor, breath, find your mantra and repeat it. Your mantra has to be about you and your life... Also - get rid of the denial. Dont be scared of whats going on, feel EVERY BIT OF IT. Cry, Scream, hit a pillow, what ever you have to do. You need to make sure that you are living in reality. For me - it helps to tell myself over and over how he has not even bothered to read a single chapter in ANY of the books HE REQUESTED about ADHD, CSA, any of it... in 7 years to make our relationship better. Here I have been killing myself slowly trying to hold him up, and keep us above water and he wasnt doing anything at all to help. And that angers me - and it fuels my mantra. He is leaving, and I AM OK WITH IT.

And just remember - pain is just weakness leaving the body. You are getting stronger every day and you dont even know it.
_________________________
*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501390 - 09/07/16 01:09 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
HealingHope Offline


Registered: 08/24/15
Posts: 115
WGU, thank you so very much for your words and for sharing more about how you came to your tipping point.
Your advice feels so calming to me, and you're so right about shifting my focus. I have been in lots of ways but the void he's left is still there everyday. I know I'm slowly getting used to it, it's just the unknown that keeps me stuck, that after all we've been through he can't say goodbye. At least you had clarity and his intentions in front of you to make your decision, that's where I'm so stuck you see.
Any other relationship it would have been obvious he'd dumped me but with all I know about his csa, his family & this push pull & return pattern we have, it seems to me something really awful has happened again. It always does your see when he disappears. Everytime he's been back it's been after something horrific at a scale of abuse unimaginable. It's this I think that keeps me holding on, I can't abandon him if something has happened this time, which every bone in my body tells me it has. I'm the only person in the world who knows pretty much everything & it's bad stuff, really really bad stuff that no man should experience. He's so trapped and my heart breaks for what I know he can't see he can change.
Maybe that gives a little more colour to my situation. I don't feel I can share much because it's his story after all, it just perhaps explains my stuckness?
I can't thank you enough for taking the time to reply & give me your advice, it's means so much.

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#501402 - 09/07/16 10:47 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
HH,

I am not saying this will be easy - but its *probably* the best thing to do, based on my understanding of your situation, and based on the color of my vision of my *own* experience.

You say he cant say goodbye, so maybe you need to be the one to do it? All though my husband says he wants to leave, and he is done, he is still in my home, and still acting as he always has. He wants to stay through to next year. I havent decided if I am ok with that - really it all depends on my dog. (long story there)

I know this seems counter intuative, but maybe you need to put aside all the CSA issues, and take his treatment of you at face value. If he values you, and your relationship MORE than facing his inner demons and monsters (created by the abusers) then he will need to find it in himself to make a stand, and you holding out for him isnt going to change what he does.

If I were in your situation (and again, this is totally flavored with my own experience) - I would close the door for now. And make sure that I didnt open again unless there was a change that was real, tangible, provable. I would, and I hate to use these words because they seem callous, but I would write him off as a lost cause (not that he IS, but that he is as far as partnering in my life - make sense?)

Its basically how I am dealing with my soon to be ex. I love him, but I have come to the conclusion that I value myself more and know that I deserve more than he is willing to give. *WILLING* being the key word right here as I believe everything is a choice.

I do not allow myself to reach out to him.
I do not allow myself to put him first.
I do not allow myself to make him my "first person" (in other words, when I have something cool to tell someone, or want an opinion, he is no longer the first person I reach out to. This one has been very hard to do.)
I do not allow myself to fall into a "false" bubble when things seem "normal". I refuse to let myself think that things are starting to be OK again.
I do not allow myself to dwell on it for too long - again this is VERY hard, but very very very important. When I feel myself doing that in a way that tempts me into accepting less than what I deserve - I repeat my mantra over and over, and remind myself that to him - *I* was not even worth the effort of reading a chapter in a book. That when I gave him a gift from my heart - a 3 page letter describing all the amazing things I see in him - he was annoyed and rolled his eyes. He showed contempt to my efforts of showing him love.

There are more, but these are the primary things that I am working on. I also have a couple of friends who are helping me visualize my future, making plans with me (hello road trip!!) for "after" he leaves etc.

Its crushing. its not what I wanted, but its what I got. And I will not follow him back down in to the darkness again. I am making my own stand against his abusers. he can choose to let them control him and make him into what they wanted but I wont let them do that to me.
_________________________
*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501414 - 09/07/16 04:24 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
HealingHope Offline


Registered: 08/24/15
Posts: 115
Think I can see you're much further down the road of acceptance than I am.. Thank you for being honest but, no I'm not ready to say goodbye, it just feels that something is missing, I haven't reached my tipping point, there's a piece of the jigsaw missing . Your suggestion to end it has made me see that's not my truth... Thank you again for helping me know my truth and hearing my heart. I can't give up on him.
I wish you so many blessings for your new beginning, you've been so strong for both of you, and now it's your time to live your life & find the joy you deserve.

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#501415 - 09/07/16 05:19 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
bey Offline


Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 442
Loc: canada
"he can choose to let them control him and make him into what they wanted but I wont let them do that to me." Is maybe the most unkind thing I've ever read.

Not all marriages work, for loads of reasons. But for those of us that fight every day have a decent life, even a semi decent one, hell, even any life at all - that fucking hurts.

I don't choose mental illness and anxiety and ocd and all the other things that come along with this life I live. This is the only life we have, and we certainly didn't choose it. Divorce the dude, be happy, whatever, but don't imply that people who fight and struggle and flounder are choosing to be who *they* wanted us to be, and freedom is a choice away. You didn't and don't live his life. Saying that he's choosing that, that's just mean.


Edited by bey (09/07/16 05:20 PM)
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Benji

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#501418 - 09/07/16 06:09 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: WontGiveUp]
AlexBoyd Offline


Registered: 02/23/14
Posts: 90
Loc: Louisiana
Originally Posted By WontGiveUp

I am making my own stand against his abusers. he can choose to let them control him and make him into what they wanted but I wont let them do that to me.



I am removing my original message because I wrote it in anger. My more eloquent fellow survivors have sufficiently explained why the statement quoted above is insulting and uninformed.


Edited by AlexBoyd (09/12/16 09:12 PM)
Edit Reason: voice of reason
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Alex

"A sheltered life can be a daring life as well. For all serious daring starts from within." Eudora Welty

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#501421 - 09/07/16 07:40 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
manipulated Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 09/25/14
Posts: 359
Loc: Great Lakes Wine Country
HH please do not take advice from someone who chooses to remain oblivious to the struggle, abandons mate over a chapter she deemed he read in a book. Can anyone not read this and beg her to seek help instead of friends? This Empress ain't got no clothes and needs to be told.
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Feeling, Healing, Recovering.

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#501425 - 09/07/16 09:31 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: bey]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Bey - you are absolutely correct that not all marriages work. And this one isnt. I fight VERY hard every day to keep my head above water.

I am sorry you think that is an unkind thing - but its not unkind at all. I cannot make his choices for him, I can only choose for myself what I can handle and not handle. You have no idea what I have been through with my spouse. You dont know our circumstance at all either.

My husband is the one who is choosing to leave - I am just not going to stop him. I have fought for YEARS to help him. I have supported him in every venture he has ever tried. What I got in return were constant lies, betrayals, etc. And i still stuck it out with him. You should probably read some of my history here.

My husband has treated me with contempt and emotional manipulation for YEARS. And I still stood by him - and to this day I STILL SUPPORT HIM - I feed him, clothe him, pay for EVERY THING for a man that flat out told me that video games mattered more to him than me or our marriage.

Tell me - how am I supposed to FORCE him to stay in our marriage? How am I supposed to force him to care for himself? He knows I love him, and he flat out told me he does not love me. Am I supposed to just ignore him and pretend I know better than him?

I know he didnt choose what happened to him - but he is choosing to not persue recovery, and he is choosing to not go to therapy and he is choosing to do NOTHING to work on himself and our relationship.

He threatens to leave me every time we have a disagreement. He has walked out on my numerous times "because he wasn't in a good mood". And still... I took him back.

You are wrong - its not mean at all to say he is choosing his own path. Its the truth. He is choosing to walk out instead of stay. I am just not going to continue to fight him on it. I dont have anything left to give him.
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#501426 - 09/07/16 09:33 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: AlexBoyd]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
AlexBoyd - you lost all credibility with me a long time ago. You call me all sorts of names with out knowing a thing about me or my life, and have flat out refused to even bother looking into the person you are insulting. its all here, you can see who I am in any post.

I have never ever said he chose to be abused, never even once. And had you read ANYTHING I have written before you would know that. YOU however are incredibly abusive and destructive and i feel very sorry for you.

I dont need this from you.

This is the SECOND time you have called me an abuser. Leave me alone.
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501427 - 09/07/16 09:39 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: manipulated]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Manipulated - I am not leaving him - he is leaving me. And yes, he didnt read any book HE asked me to buy him. He hasnt not returned the efforts I have put into this relationship. I am on empty - and have nothing left to give.

And when I get upset, and want to beg him to stay, beg him to get help - ANY help he can - I remind myself that he doesn't want the help, he doesnt want to take the path towards recovery. His words - "i want to rebury it all". What am I supposed to do - lock him in the house and prevent him from doing what he wants? His life is his choice - he has to be the one to make it.

I would give anything in the world to help him, if I could fix it for him I would. I have sacrificed more than you can imagine to stand by him. I haven't flinched, I haven't run from him when he has done some seriously shitty stuff (putting me at major risk emotionally, financially and professionally). He is running from the monsters, and I cant stop him. I cant destroy the monsters, I cant take away the pain from the abuse - only he can choose to work on getting out of it. I hate that he lives in this fear. HE has to be the one to decide how and when and IF he wants to recover.

I didnt cause this
I cant control this
I cannot fix this

He has to do it for himself.
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501428 - 09/07/16 09:42 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: HealingHope]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
HH - only you will know what is right for you. I hope that your man comes around, and I hope he finds his way to joy and recovery and back to YOU as well. Its a very hard road. But you cannot force him to do anything, just take care of yourself, be the strongest, best self you can be. And maybe fate will bring you both back together.

As I said before - I dont know if its strength or just trying to survive. The heartbreak is unimaginable. Watching him just give up is probably the hardest thing I have ever had to bear witness too. I hope that he finds his way someday.
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#501429 - 09/07/16 09:47 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
bey Offline


Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 442
Loc: canada
I absolutely think that if the marriage isn't working it's fine to end it. I'm going through an amicable divorce myself at the moment. My point isn't that he is trying to make the marriage work or is a good husband - he might be a shit husband. But saying he is choosing to let the abusers turn him into the person they wanted is mean. Some of us fight every day to get out of bed, not kill ourselves, maybe playing video games is the best he can do. And if it is, bravo to him for making it through the day. That doesn't work for you, go live your life. No shame in that. But don't assume you know his battle. We are all fighting harder than anyone realizes.
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Benji

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#501431 - 09/07/16 10:06 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Bey - thankyou for your comment and understanding.

I say that he is letting the abusers turn him into what they wanted is because of the nature of the abuse and the things they did to him. Hard to explain with out getting into details that I dont want to in a public forum.

They made him do things that made him hate himself - make sense? When I say that, I am saying that he is buying into that hate. He hates himself - and thats what they wanted. They wanted to make him less than what he is. And he is letting that control his life. Nothing that any of us say and do can convince him that he isnt worthless, that he isnt horrible and that he should be loved. He is letting what they did to him dictate his life.


His sister did commit suicide from this. And believe me- it has always been a fear of mine, which is why I have essentially been a doormat for the past 7 years, out of my own fear of setting him off somehow. I am very familiar with his battle - even though its not MINE. I have stood by him through all of it. He has fought extremely hard, but has point blank said he just wants to hide from it, and go back to how he was. Those are his words... all I can do is believe him.

He doesnt see his own worth, and honestly, his acting out and bad behaviors are cruel and destructive. Everyone else has run away from him, but I have stood my ground because I love and support him. This isnt ME wanting the divorce. This is HIM wanting it. He wants to leave, I dont want him to. But I have to accept it. Its not my right to choose for him what his life will be - but I am not ignorant to what his choices are either.

For a while, he really started working on recovery - and oh gosh... it was a beautiful thing. But more things ended up being remembered, and some other things unrelated to the abuse happened with his family - and from that point... he gave up. He can do it - but he has to choose it. Thats what I mean by choices.

Healing is a choice.
Running is a choice.
Surviving is a choice.

Some of the stories I see here - gosh they just gut me. It has shed alot of light to whats going on with my H. But in the end, what can someone do if the one they love doesnt love them back and wants a different life? I cant force him to love me, to stay with me, to get help. I cant fight that. I used to try. But, he is a grown man, and as such has to make his own decisions about his life.

I love him more than you can imagine. Thats the kicker. Thats why this is so hard. If I didnt love him - it would have been simple to walk away years ago before loosing almost everything just to save him. Sad thing is - I would STILL be trying had he not again, said he wanted to leave.
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#501433 - 09/07/16 10:10 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
HealingHope Offline


Registered: 08/24/15
Posts: 115
I know my heart, I love him and the courage that he draws on everyday to just get through. If there's one thing I've realised today about the csa, and the perps is how toxic and vicarious the affects are. For me I won't let their acts infect something good and pure & true ...what we have. I know deep deep in my soul, this is why we met, I will fight my own crap, which I see clearly is trying to hijack my heart. It's truth is ringing loud and clear. I'll be here for when he feels he can come back to me.

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#501434 - 09/07/16 10:19 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: HealingHope]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Good for you HH! Become the strongest, best YOU you can be. And when things turn around - you will be able to be there for him all the better. And in the meantime, you will be able to focus and love yourself.

I have unrealistic hopes sometimes - and I have to force myself to NOT think that way. My situation isnt yours though. I have to accept things at face value and make decisions for my life based on what he is telling me.

Take care of yourself, strengthen yourself, attack your own issues, fight that inner crap! :-) My elliptical gets a beating every day from my own inner crap. But every day I get a little stronger. Every day I gain back a little of what I have lost. I am working hard to be the best me I can be.

HH, no one can predict the future. And I dont believe in "never" as I have seen some incredible changes in people that have astounded me. I believe that thinking in terms of "never" is fatalistic. Hold on to that hope. Just like your name - Healing Hope. I dont know if you are a religious person, but finding something to hold on to (not your partner) that can give you encouragement would be a good thing. For me, its my mantra.

It will be very hard, and always be honest with yourself. Sometimes thats the hardest thing in the world to do. But you can do it.
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501435 - 09/07/16 10:56 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
AlexBoyd Offline


Registered: 02/23/14
Posts: 90
Loc: Louisiana
WontGiveUp,

I could not care less what you think of my credibility, but I do care greatly about the damage that someone like you can do by coming on a site for abuse victims and telling us that all we need to do is "choose" to get better. It shows how you are either clueless or willful.

If someone expresses a point that does not jive with yours, you choose to sidestep it, which is what you have done with the other survivors' posts today. That makes you a waste of time, so you won't hear from me again.
_________________________
Alex

"A sheltered life can be a daring life as well. For all serious daring starts from within." Eudora Welty

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#501436 - 09/07/16 10:57 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
md4e Offline


Registered: 02/01/14
Posts: 41
Wow wow, I can hardly believe what I am reading. Ouch to tell a spouse to fu#k off. After finding the vulnerability to share what it is like to live with a survivor and be told that....
After 33yrs of marriage to a survivor (not thriver) i can say it is not for the faint of heart. To watch a spouse....it is like watching a loved one be tortured and hear it see it and not be able to do a damn thing about it....sucks but then....
We are blamed,reacted to as if we are the cause, perpetrators.
But after WORK compassion and love we love them back. No easy feat!
We really all are responsible for how we leave people feeling, so did your actions today help or hurt. Your intention???
I can say that I always come from a place of love and helpfulness regarding my husband. And not what I get back most times.
That "our" lives are being effected by crimes done by others and not processed. Is flat out hard. Personal. ...tough not feeling like it is when we are supposed to be their person

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#501437 - 09/07/16 11:02 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
md4e Offline


Registered: 02/01/14
Posts: 41
I forgot one thing ...survivors share pains on their forum and are not attacked for speaking how they are feeling. Kinda scares me to share and I am sure that is not what this website is about. We dont cross over onto that forum to????? Please remember why we are here...we all want to not feel like a victim

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#501438 - 09/07/16 11:19 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
THANKYOU md4e...
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501439 - 09/07/16 11:27 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
bey Offline


Registered: 01/28/10
Posts: 442
Loc: canada
Md4e,
This forum does invite "male survivors" to weigh in here, while the make survivor forum is only for "male survivors". So that's why there isn't a cross over the other way.

I think the mandate of the site is to support male survivors of sexual abuse, including being a support to friends and family. What I'm hearing from people on this thread is that people feel that saying that "not healing is a choice" can be a painful and dangerous statement.

Don't think we don't see how we might hurt others, ruin marriages, live a life that's smaller than what we dreamed. We do see that. When you say that's because we are choosing to let the abusers win, that we aren't fighting, that we've given up, that hurts. Because we might flounder but fuck we are still fighting.
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Benji

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#501440 - 09/07/16 11:30 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
md4e Offline


Registered: 02/01/14
Posts: 41
As fighting are we

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#501441 - 09/07/16 11:33 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Bey... You DO have to choose to heal. It doesn't magically happen. You have to make the choice to get help. I hear this constantly from other survivors, in fact just the other day on another post from one of the survivors here pointed that out specifically. That's why as a supporter we can only do so much unless the survivor In our lives are ready to choose the path of healing.

I don't think that it's a thing where you can just decide to be healed you are fine one day. That's dangerous thinking right there. But healing? Yes, you have to choose to walk that path... What ever that path looks like to you. You have chosen to come here for support, that is a choice you made. And it can take a long time, and take many turns... But it is always in your hands to decide how you make that journey or if you DO make the journey.


Edited by WontGiveUp (09/07/16 11:41 PM)
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#501442 - 09/07/16 11:40 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: bey]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Bey, also... Where you have chosen to keep fighting, my husband is choosing to bury. His words. Your experience isn't his. I wish he was here posting. I wish he was progressing instead of regressing. He has floundered plenty of times, and I have never given up on him. See... That's not the problem. HE has given up on him, not me giving up on him. I cannot force him to live a life I choose for him. He has to decide for himself what his life will be. And he is choosing a path I cannot follow on anymore. I love him, and wish it was not the case. But I have to respect what he wants and do what I can to clean up the mess and fallout he is leaving behind.

Please keep in mind also that I only speak for my own situation with the survivor I love.

I hope you keep fighting too, I hope you find yourself in a place where what happened to you has no more pull and effect on your functioning in any way. I want the same thing for my husband. Hell, I hope everyone who posts here finds thier true joy I. Who they are.


Edited by WontGiveUp (09/07/16 11:45 PM)
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#501443 - 09/07/16 11:47 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
md4e Offline


Registered: 02/01/14
Posts: 41
I really do understand the "choice" issue, one I work on alot, because if I need to do something I don't like or find hard, I.....I choose. Then I don't feel a victim. Like why I stay...I choose... I keep in mind I know he loves me, doesn't want to hurt me. But his actions do have that result.... so I hurt but I choose to stay. His choices where taken, that was then...now he does, he might not see it, I do. The same way he makes other choices...a million different ones, but regarding me he can't. That is the tangled mess we are in. Personal not personal.
All this is work for us, we are tired, weary, hiding, but most of all we love. We love, it is so simple but maybe not easy for our survivors. Where are the boundaries? We give our spouses more latitude. But crap we matter, you chose us. There has to be some
commitment. And that brings us back to the beginning of this.
We just like everyone we don't want to feel pain.
Love to me and you all, Debbie

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#501444 - 09/08/16 04:17 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
Blue22 Offline


Registered: 09/02/16
Posts: 10
Loc: CA
Choice is a sensitive issue for us because back when we were impressionable, choice was the very thing that was taken away from us.

We've been struggling to regain that control as part of our coping or healing process. The quality of these choices are very difficult to surmise: sometimes, they ARE colored by the old CSA script, sometimes they are simple coping like we did as younger people, and sometimes they are attempts at more lucidly progressive healing.

The problem is they run together so closely and sometimes we "choose" destructive coping mechanisms, wherein those choices are really "forced choices." I'd choose to rebury everything too, if it would just make it all go away.

For instance, withdrawal is a hallmark of fear-of-rejection, abandonment, and undue judgment. I withdraw, fail to share, or what have you, because when it comes down to it, I'm afraid of being judged and that someone who chooses to associate with me (e.g., not a parent or sibling) will choose to leave, or shame me, or worse when they find out some of these terrible things. I'm terrified it will be exploited, I don't want to be hurt again. Learning to trust again has been nearly impossible. Intimacy has often been physically and emotionally interminable, even painful.

And, thus, that "choice" of mine is indeed influenced by the old paradigm. It just doesn't go away. Traumatic stress alters the brain: yes, my very ability to choose has been compromised and is different than other people's.

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#501446 - 09/08/16 05:28 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Blue22]
HealingHope Offline


Registered: 08/24/15
Posts: 115
Originally Posted By Blue22

For instance, withdrawal is a hallmark of fear-of-rejection, abandonment, and undue judgment. I withdraw, fail to share, or what have you, because when it comes down to it, I'm afraid of being judged and that someone who chooses to associate with me (e.g., not a parent or sibling) will choose to leave.

Blue22, I can't thank you enough for this, I feel that you've just given me another missing piece of our jigsaw. It makes total sense. I also want to say that I agree with you about the choice issue, I've worked hard to understand the effects of csa and the unconscious impacts that hijack the self. Thank you for this, its helped me so much.

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#501455 - 09/08/16 09:56 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Blue22]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
Thank you Blue22!

Its why I am so addement of NOT taking my husbands choices from him in any way. Its very important that he is able to decide for himself what he wants to do and wont do for his life. I cannot and will not choose for him.

I know his choices are colored by his experience - its something the therapists we have worked with drilled into both of us over many years. My husband has some real issues with "magical" thinking and "warped" perspective - two things common with abuse survivors of all sorts, and I have had co-dependency problems inside our relationship - putting all my focus on him and helping him with out taking care of myself. Unfortunately, some of the coping mechanisms my husband used to survive are now causing destruction in his life (and have cause destruction over the years). Its not uncommon from what I have read and what I have been told by therapists and by what I have been told by other survivors. Those same mechanisms that protect that "inner child" can harm you if the mechanisms take over - like disassociation.

ANd yep - my husband is in deep fear of rejection and abandonment, which is why I think he self sabatoges and pushes people away. He has always threatened to leave me and our family anytime there is conflict, and I think that is his way of "punching out first" - before he is left behind. He self isolates as I think he is absolutely feeling exactly what you wrote about the fear of rejection and being judged. This has gone on for many years now, and its extremely hard to maintain a positive outlook with all of the acting out and destructive choices he makes based on those negative things in his life.

My husband withdraws and shuts down as well - which is what he is doing right now. Its been a cycle for him, especially at certain times of the year. He falls back into addictions and wanting to leave, then changes his mind - wants to work on things and work on recovery, but its much easier said than done.

I love my husband. Watching him self destruct is unimaginably painful. I would do anything and everything I could to change things for him. He is the love of my life, and to see him hurt like this - even in the guise of apathy and contempt - is brutal. Being the object of his scorn and projected/misplaced anger and being the one blamed for his pain....all while trying to do everything I can to help him. All those things you talked about being afraid of is what I live every day. Rejected, judged, shamed, abandoned, used. He projects those fears he has, and then in turn treats me in exactly those ways. I know why he does it, I understand it - but it doesnt take away the sting, the hurt. I cry myself to sleep almost every night - he knows right where to hurt me.

I would give everything I have left if it would get him to reach out to ANY lifeline and pull himself back out of this path he is on. (He has been on this road, and it was horrible). But in the end, all I can do is provide for him the tools he can choose to use for recovery. I cannot force him to action on it. And right now - what we have, the life we have together is not worth that effort to him (HIS words).


Blue22, you are spot on about trauma and brain function. Its been proven that trauma - ESPECIALLY childhood trauma - rewires you and forces you to mature in a "non-normal" path. For instance, my husband, before the CSA was realized (that stuff was buried deep inside) was diagnosed with severe ADHD and depression. He really had all the hallmarks, and it was a rough time, even with out the CSA being out in the open (before he remembered). After the CSA came out, it kinda connected the dots on what was going on. From what I have read, though I dont think its 100% proven, is that there is a pretty big connection between ADHD,addiction and CSA survivors. When you have ADHD, the brain literally functions differently - just like what you said how your ability to choose has been changed and is different. Over the years I have learned to adjust my perspective and alter my expectations to whats been going on with him. But in the end, it wasnt enough for him and he is choosing something else.

I really hope that you find what ever it is you need to push through the pain Blue22 and get to that place where you dont have those fears beating you down. I can see how and why you would have them - I see them in my husband too. There is hope though, and you CAN find true joy. That old saying about going through hell - dont stop! Keep going until you get through it.

Something I have told my husband over the years - and I hope that you take it to heart as well... dont view what you went through and your coping as weakness.. its not. Its strength. Its INCREDIBLE strength that you survived. You have been through hell and made it out. Scarred, yes. But not destroyed. Every day is new, every moment is new. You are amazing, you are strong, you are a fighter who is PROVEN. Yes, things are sometimes hard, sometimes unbearable. But you will prevail. YOU are strong, YOU are brave. YOU are valuable and have worth. And when you feel the most alone, know that there are others out there - who might not know your face, but they know your words and you matter to them. You matter to me.

My husband it the most precious entity in the world to me. My marriage is my most beloved jewel. But I have to let him go because its what he wants.
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501563 - 09/12/16 10:00 PM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: WontGiveUp]
Bowierocks Offline


Registered: 12/23/15
Posts: 154
Loc: Seattle WA
Originally Posted By WontGiveUp
I know this is an old thread - but WOW.... the subject matter is so relevant to me in my current situation with my soon to be ex husband.

He struggles with guilt and shame big time. I also think he feels incredible guilt. All 3 of those things - I dont think he should feel at all. He had no control over what happened to him - but there is no convincing him of that. He will have to understand it one day. And once he is convinced of something, he stands fast on it. There is NO changing his mind. And if he has a choice between a negative and positive - he goes with the negative EVERY SINGLE TIME. It makes me cringe.

My husband - how I love dearly - also thinks he cannot be married, cannot be loved, cannot be those things which are good - like being a strong, happy, loved man in a solid, trusting marriage because of the things mentioned in this topic.

He retreats as soon as he starts feeling good - starts pushing me away, and then projects all that feeling of anger and loss of control on to me. It so confusing because it comes out of the blue sometimes. I work on overdrive to always be upfront with him and I refuse to manipulate him. I have never wanted to be a parent to my partner... and he constantly puts me in that position. He relies on me to make all the big AND little decisions - and then tells me that he feels like he has no control. When I try to get him to participate - by asking him his thoughts, or what he thinks we should do/choose/whatever - then its me controlling him by forcing him to participate.

Dammed if I do - dammed if I dont. He is going to be leaving our home soon, and our life together will be over. I am broken hearted about it - he already seems to have moved on. His focus is on World of Warcraft... not me, not our life, not even on himself... which is the most important thing of all. i am no longer taking the blame of "controlling him" as its not true. I am not longer taking the blame for what happened to him and his unhappiness in life because of it.

When he leaves - all of those same feelings go with him as they have never had anything to do with me.


Wow , I'm sorry . I hate to say it, I'm like your husband except video games are boring and I am trying to stick it out . My wife isn't very verbal , whereas I am , and sometimes doesn't validate as she should - she's very pragmatic my shrink says . She did say a long time ago she didn't want to hear about it as she has been through enough . That hurt like hell and I am not proud to say I turned to another woman emotionally but no sex . She was also a survivor and I needed someone . But I swore I will never leave and stopped talking to the other woman . Any words of advice ?
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Ashes to ashes , funk to funky, we know Major Tom' s a junky , strung up on heavens high, hitting that all time low .

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#501571 - 09/13/16 09:02 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WG Offline


Registered: 09/09/15
Posts: 239
Loc: WA
We all have the need to feel validated in some way. We're meant to live in community - most humans are. There are exceptions, of course, but for the most part, we're communal creatures - sort of like a herd.....
We as survivors are a pretty needy crowd. but the needs aren't apparent at first. I know there were times one or two of my elementary teachers thought something had gone horribly wrong with me, but back then (mid-50's), it just wasn't on people's radar and there were few, if any, laws to protect us. So we looked for validation where we thought was best. As for the husband in this post, he has so many needs and so much to process about the CSA - and our wives who walk this crooked road with us are brought into it whether they like it or not. Mine was/is...after 35 years of marriage and 3 children down the road. We're still here. She has gone to my sessions a handful of times over the years, but it doesn't go as deep for her since it didn't happen to her - but it DOES involve her since we're married. We do a lot of things. And possibly that's one part of it - we feel that no one else understands, yet we are to have this closeness and intimacy that can sometimes scare the living hell out of us, cause us to feel like we're back in the abuse again or cause us to feel like we're that age again. Then we have to stop. process, tell ourselves something calming, and try to move on......sorta like being on a stairwell with someone - they've gone on up to the next flight and we're still down on the landing looking up wondering how they arrived there. Then we realize we've been shut down for a while, come back to reality and try to move forward.............ok, I'm rambling now. Time to go get some coffee, have breakfast and talk to my loving wife......

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#501576 - 09/13/16 10:26 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
BowieRocks (first off, LOVE your screen name!!!!)

I am very sorry that your wife isnt wanting to listen to your story... I cant imagine how hard that might be. My husband also has no interest in "my" stories either and its very hard. I look at it as him not really being able to manage his own emotions (being out of touch with them really) and being afraid he cannot respond as he thinks he should. Almost like a fear that he will do the wrong thing and make it worse? Maybe your wife has some of those same fears? Especially if she is a non verbal kind of person, she might feel like she wont know what to say and that it would hurt your further.

When she says that she has "been through enough" - maybe she is like my husband and cannot deal with the addition of someone else's pain on top of her own? If she has not learned to handle her own issues and recovery, then it would probably be exceedingly hard for her to try and be there for yours. Messed up I know.

My husband has no capacity to be there for me when I need him - maybe its the same thing with your wife? Not that it is helpful to you. :-(

My best advice (and please know this is totally colored by my own experience), is to spend time here, reach out to the people here. Tell your story when and if you are comfortable to the forum or even just in a private message to someone here you have learned to trust. That will help you get things out since you have the need to talk about it.

Advice about your wife... this is hard since you are both survivors and you for sure are trying to work on recovery - but is she? If she isnt, there is not much you can do but let her know you are there for her if she ever wants to talk to you, that you love her and are committed to her. Practice kindness, show love. (this is for yourself as much as for her to be honest) Take on the role of supporter when you are able. This will be very hard for you as you are trying to recover yourself. Sadly - I do not think you can have expectations of her to be there for you.

I know that there is an assumption that supporters cant and dont understand or identify what a survivor goes through. And that is true to an extent. But Supporters have their own stories too - and many of us are survivors as well. So we have to learn how to get our own personal needs met on top of trying to handle loving and supporting another survivor. Its a very hard, lonely, frustrating road - and since you are both a survivor AND supporter, its gonna be a double whammy for you.

BowieRocks - you have an opportunity here in many ways that other survivors dont have. You can make some sense of your wife's actions to you based on your own experiences. Maybe if you frame her reactions from the same place as your own abuse experiences, it might make it a little easier to understand? Perhaps some counseling on how to communicate better with someone with experience with CSA? On paper you would think that 2 people with similar experiences should be able to relate better to eachoterh - but that isnt always the case.

I wish I could tell you what to do to make things better, all i can really say is show love, and set boundries to protect yourself. Be kind (to your wife AND yourself), dont have expectations, find good places for support (like this forum, maybe get on the chat sessions for "live" talking?), and read up on being a supporter in addition to a survivor - since you are both.

I want to commend you for being willing and ready to talk about things with your wife, that is a gift that many of us supporters would LOVE to have. Your commitment to work on things and stick it out is also brave, and I thank you for it. My experience as a supporter has been very hard as my husband says he is committed, and then few weeks later its "I am broken, I dont want to be married" and back and forth. If you can maybe show her over time your solidness to your commitment, and show that you can be trusted to not run out. I know that my husband believes that I will abandon him (totally projection on his part). Maybe tell her about this forum? Let her know there is a section for family and friends that might be encouraging/helpful to her?

I also would say - if you are like my husband as you said - work on not withdrawing and pushing your wife away. Work on that openness you said you wanted. Its hard to be there for someone when they retreat once you show vulnerability in your support of them. Make sure that you are not making assumptions about your wifes actions - and what I mean by that is if she is angry, dont assume that she is going to run out on you because of it - make sense? My husband acts like I am the enemy with random times of anger, and I have NO idea when it will hit or even why. When I ask him, he says everything is fine - but his actions towards me (and only me) are extremely angry. One thing you can try is keep a little journal on you, and write down your emotions. If you feel angry - write it down and what time. That way you can start connecting the dots on your emotions. It might help you to break some communication bad habits and identify some triggers that you didnt realize you had. If you can identify when things go "off" for you, it might help you to see how/when things go off for your wife as well. Getting in touch with your own inner reactions and emotions will help you in SO many ways.

Sorry - I know this is rambly (not enough coffee! :-)).

There is alot you can do - but focus on yourself, you can only control your own actions and decisions/choices. Work on identifying why you withdraw and when - track your own actions/feelings/words and see if you can see if there are changes you can make for yourself to help yourself, which will in turn help your wife.

And last of all - GOOD ON YOU for doing the right thing, and stopping the emotional affair. The short term good you get out of it wont outweigh the long term negative. Its good you got out before things got physical. Its a very strong thing you did, and you should feel good about that. Its honoring your wife and your commitment - and that is a sign of strong, excellent, honorable character. It shows what a good person you really are. So hang on to that my friend.

I wish you all the best - and if you ever would like to ask any questions, I am always willing to answer from my personal experience and perspective of a supporter. :-)
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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#501578 - 09/13/16 10:28 AM Re: Blame The Spouse Game [Re: Esposa]
WontGiveUp Offline


Registered: 02/12/13
Posts: 118
And one more thing BowieRocks - you CAN have all those things, a strong marriage, a solid trust with your spouse. You ARE worthy of that love, of that goodness. You are not the abuse, you are a strong, amazing survivor who beat the odds. Make sure you give yourself the love and credit you have earned. You are brave - and you inspire others. Hang in there!
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*** rising from the ashes like a phoenix ***

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