I just joined today and have spent ...dunno how long reading. Unfortunately, I haven't found what I was looking for, which is hope for my situation. Maybe I just haven't read long enough, but I decided to post instead.
I have been married to a survivor for 20years. I found out about his abuse about 14 years ago. At the time, I mistakenly thought that him remembering his past and informing me of it was enough to let us lead a happy life together. Over the years he did not choose to share much info about his abuse with me. I never pushed him to share because it wasn't my place to do so. But every few years the loneliness of our marriage, with almost no physical or emotional intimacy, became too much to bare and I pushed him to do 'something".
He would respond with something like going away and thinking about it, a small amount of reading, and once he saw a therapist for a few months. The bottom line
from my perspective is that very little ever changed. We had a fabulous platonic
relationship. With trust, respect and enormous amounts of love.
I have told him all along that I'm not happy and that I am not going to wait for him to change forever. As our 20 yr wedding anniversary approached, he had a meltdown. He couldn't deal with facing his demons so he had to get away from me.
He also refused to admit to either of us that he was running from his past.
I could probably write a book about his exit from the relationship. Basically he spent three months destroying what we had had for 20 years. I literally mourned the death of my husband while living with a new monster who hated everything about me. By the time I couldn't fight for us any more, I was suicidal for the first time in my life. I spent many months in therapy trying to recover from PTSD.
Then, one day I went over to his apartment and ran into his girlfriend (the affair was his final ticket out of our marriage). I took the opportunity to get a few things off my chest ;\) During the tirade, my husband's meltdown officially ended as he saw her (the epitomy of denial and manipulation) side by side with me (honesty and love?). He says I rescued him that day. He never saw her again and we started working to put our lives back together.
Sounds like a happy ending, no? I thought it was. I thought it would take time and hard work, but that this marked the beginning of the end of the death hold CSA has had on our relationship.
My husband has now been back home for almost a year. good things have happened. he has shared his story with me. He feels like a weight was lifted off because of this, and his recovery has definitely moved forward. I have read about SA almost constantly, so I feel fairly well informed. But there has been almost no movement on the intimacy front. Only now, when I bring it up, he very often becomes verbally and emotionally abusive. I am now becoming scared to have a conversation with him.
So, what about me? I feel like a shit for asking. What he is battling is so ugly and unfair, and my woes are so small in comparison. But when do I get to count? When do my needs get to even register? When do I get to have a life? I have now spent 23 years being patient, loving and giving. When does me being noble and loving turn into me being stupid and naive? I have held on for so long because a. I really love him and want to be with him, and b. I had always seen reason for hope.
I am not seeing any hope anymore. if him trashing our lives and then being given another chance isn't motivation enough for him to work through his shit , it seems that nothing will be.
If anyone out there has any info, good or bad, about long term relationships and the possibility of recovering to the point of having intimacy (emotional and physical) I would love to hear it.