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PostPosted: Sat Oct 01, 2011 2:50 am 
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Exercise Sixteen
A. Create a list of at least ten core values that represent the person you want to be. You should be able to rely on this list with confidence in guiding decisions, actions, prioritization, etc.
1. Personal integrity based on weighing up pros, cons, impacts on all different people, including myself
2. Honesty and openness- currently being reassessed in terms of what I can/should tell my loved ones about this situation
3. Loyal, faithful
4. There when needed by loved ones, offering unconditional love but not idiot compassion
5. A mother that is mindful of not acting out on her children, providing love, guidance, reliability, fun, laughter, joy, boudaries
6. A loving, fun, challenging, honest, communicative wife
7. Looking after myself/knowing myself as an integral part of being able to be the above- being aware of my own blindspots, limits, messiness
8. Being a professional with integrity and ethics- again honest, open, attention to detail and compassion for my ultimate clients
9. Being a 'good' daughter and sister
10. Trying in the small ways available to me to 'make the world a better place', acting on the privileges that I have had not taking them for granted.

B. In your own words, how can you use these values to guide you through this current crisis (or a future crisis)?

I think that remaining true to my own values is very important. Showing my husband that I do practice what I preach, that I am able to offer him a safe space to be. But this is so difficult too. Sometimes I can't be true to those values. Sometimes I am just darn angry. But I suppose that is where 7 comes in and has to come in.
These values conflict with each other at the moment though- I am struggling to hold job, daughterhood, sisterhood, friend, mother roles while submerged in this mess. It is getting easier to extract myself but I am aware that this is the time for Value 7 to come into its own, as well as Value 6. Value 1 is always there, unavoidable. Although the others are supporting me, just the proportions are different at the moment.

C. Compare this list to the vision that you created in Stage One; Lesson Two. Are they similar? They should be. In fact, they should be practically identical--with your vision serving as a narrative for the list you have here. If they are not, change whichever is inconsistent with the life that you want to lead. Your vision must be forged from your core values or you will continue to struggle with imbalance and chaos.
The time issue is one that I am struggling. RN takes up a good hour of my day, talking with my husband at least 2. That is 3 additional hours to find in an already full life. So things like meditation, even running are slipping. But in my vision, I was aware that that would probably be the case. I am saying no still to quite a bit of work. My children are the priority that I will not compromise on, otherwise the cycle will just repeat itself with another generation of my husband's family not getting the quality parenting that they deserved.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 02, 2011 9:16 am 
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Exercise Seventeen
A) In Stage Two; Lesson One, you created proactive action plans for three values to help you begin the process of stabilizing your life. You now need to expand this to the remaining values listed in Exercise Sixteen.
B) For each, think about the meaning and fulfillment you are getting compared to the potential meaning and fulfillment available.
C) Develop a specific plan that will allow you to maximize the potential in each of those remaining values.
D) List the 'next two or three steps' you will take to begin strengthening each value. Note: you will not be expected to begin taking all of these steps. The goal here is to gain clarity in what steps to take and to have a plan of action ready for times when you have either lost focus or have some extra energy.


1. Personal integrity based on weighing up pros, cons, impacts on all different people, including myself
This is so important to me. The 'do no harm' principle guides my actions. Of course, I make mistakes but my work requires integrity, so do my roles as mother, friend, daughter, and sister. And wife. Acting selfishly without awareness doesn't work. I have seen that and I know that. Sometimes the selfish path is the one that I need to take but at least I aim to make it clear to others why I am choosing that path.
Plan- I don't know
Steps- I don't know. Need to come back to this.

[i am really resenting doing this exercise, the sun in shining, it is sunday, i want to just relax with my children. I DO NOT want to be doing this] I don't really 'get it' either.

2. Honesty and openness- currently being reassessed in terms of what I can/should tell my loved ones about this situation
Fine balancing act between being honest and hurting people.
This is what I am learning. This balancing act is what you probably call a 'conscious' value. I don't quite know where the line is and need to keep thinking about it. Honesty and openness were spontaneous for me. I am the example you give in the lesson.

I DON'T know what to do here. I understand you are saying to strengthen this value but how? Is this about balancing it? I don't get it...

3. Loyal, faithful
Loyalty to myself first? i.e. strengthen myself?

4. There when needed by loved ones, offering unconditional love but not idiot compassion

5. A mother that is mindful of not acting out on her children, providing love, guidance, reliability, fun, laughter, joy, boudaries

6. A loving, fun, challenging, honest, communicative wife

7. Looking after myself/knowing myself as an integral part of being able to be the above- being aware of my own blindspots, limits, messiness

8. Being a professional with integrity and ethics- again honest, open, attention to detail and compassion for my ultimate clients

9. Being a 'good' daughter and sister

10. Trying in the small ways available to me to 'make the world a better place', acting on the privileges that I have had not taking them for granted.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 7:37 am 
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Exercise Twenty-Four: To regain balance, you must regain a perception of control over your life. A difficult task indeed while mired in the addiction of another. One of the most powerful ways of regaining control is to have a clear, realistic notion of what options are available to you.

A. List three or more relationship options that remain available to you.
1. Recommit to the relationship; Stand by him in recovery and expect him to stand by me in my recovery.
Benefits:
- We have the chance to be in an honest, open relationship, with all the years work we have put in leading to something where we both gain
- children have their parents
- I get an honest husband who has learned new skills that will enable him to be a 'better' husband, life partner
- I get to stay with the man that I love

Obstacles
- can I forgive/ move on? If I can't, it will be hell for both of us
- can I trust him in the future?
How to overcome?
THis is a risk. Feel we can do it but it still is a risk. I have to be clear that I am choosing to take the risk myself.


2. Request a separation. Live apart.
Benefits: I get some peace and quiet in the short term.
Obstacles: Huge- logistical with children in particular
Feel like we do need to do this work together. If we live apart, that will be harder
More expensive.
How to overcome?
Bring in child care. P would have to work. Less time for his children.

3. Request an emotional separation. Live together.
Benefits: I get some peace and quiet in the short term.
Children get both their parents.
I get to rebuild myself without HIS needs dominating, as they always do.
Obstacles:
Not so easy to be emotionally separated while living together. It would feel artificial. Not my style of working.
How to overcome?
Lay down some clear boundaries.
Maybe come together again every week, see how we are doing?

4. File for divorce.
Benefits: I won't have to live with 'what if'. I get to stop doing this course.
Obstacles: I do love him.
Children etc.
How to overcome? This really doesn't feel like an option. Things would have to be a lot worse.

5. Take a "wait and see" approach to his/her recovery progress before making a decision on the relationship.
Benefits: Less risky to my emotions
Obstacles: This is hard for him. Also for me. Sitting on fence never been my way.
How to overcome? With communication and openness. That there is love. I will be there for him. But in what form we don't know.

D. Select the one option from exercise A that you feel yourself leaning towards (or have already selected). Why do you think this is/might be the best option for you? What would be your second option?

Option 1: Recommit to the relationship; Stand by him in recovery and expect him to stand by me in my recovery.
We do love each other. He has clarity.
However, he isn't able to have compassion for me. At the moment. But will he ever?

3. Request an emotional separation. Live together.
Benefits: I get some peace and quiet in the short term.
Children get both their parents.
I get to rebuild myself without HIS needs dominating, as they always do.
Obstacles:
Not so easy to be emotionally separated while living together. It would feel artificial. Not my style of working.
How to overcome?
Lay down some clear boundaries.
Maybe come together again every week, see how we are doing?


E. What options do you believe are realistically available to your partner? Which do you think he/she would choose?

2. He will actively commit to recovery and develop into the man that he made himself out to be.


F. Optional (though strongly, strongly recommended for anyone with even the slightest hesitation towards whether they should stay in the relationship or whether they should end it)

Over the next several weeks, take the time to develop an actual plan of action in the case of a possible separation or divorce. Include every possible detail regarding things like: finances, housing, employment, child care, lawyer's fees, property exchanges, etc. Take the time to develop a thorough, well thought out plan that will provide you with some semblance of comfort should the decision be made to end the relationship. The Partner's Coaches have put together a checklist for you to use in helping you to complete this activity. Click on the Healing Checklist to access it.

The goal of this project is not for you to prepare for separation or divorce, but to develop the knowledge that such an option is a viable one. That way, when it comes time for making decisions as to whether or not to remain in the relationship, you will not base those decisions on ignorance or insecurity, but through choice and control. Control over what is in your best interest.


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PostPosted: Tue Oct 11, 2011 7:47 am 
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Exercise Twenty-Nine
A. List three behaviors that you have engaged in since discovering your partner's addiction that you would now describe as destructive:
- smoking
- glancing at his RN posts
- getting into his behaviour i.e. seeing all females we pass as objects for his sexual gratification


B. Pick one of the behaviors listed above and answer the following:

a) What decision-making process did you engage in before taking this action?
Weighing up pros and cons of immediate relief vs long term risk of lung cancer


b) How did you feel just prior to taking this action?
Rubbish. I need some relief from the stress, I need to take control of my emotions

c) How did you feel as you were actively engaged in this action?
Great. Empowered.
d) How did you feel after you completed this action?
Aware of how disgusting smoking is. Washing teeth, hands...


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PostPosted: Fri Oct 21, 2011 2:24 pm 
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Couple's healing contract

I. The first step in developing a healing contract is to clearly document your existing values and boundaries. Again, these are your values--not your partner's and not your relationship's. If you aren't clear what these are, simply list five to ten areas of your life that you value (your values) and ways that you will protect those values (your boundaries).

I am a person with faith and belief in herself and compassion for human beings.
Boundary: I also know where to draw the line between compassion and idiot compassion.

I am a committed mother. I make time to play, listen to and actively love my children.
Boundary:

I continue to be in a fulfilling career and to do the overseas travel that I need to do.
I am a support to my friends and family and my friends and family support me. My priorities remain clear and I remain open hearted.

I make time for myself. In the short term, this means that I go for a run regularly, bathing in my beautiful surroundings, physically working out the tricky energy that all this is causing. I will return to my meditation practice. I will be kind to myself as this will not be right now.

II. Next, put aside your list and allow yourself to think about the following questions in relation to your partner:
•What behaviors would you find completely unacceptable in your partner?
1. Him having an affair- online, phone, face to face, whatever format he thinks of. If he is liaising with another person, male or female, without telling me- that is an affair.
2. Him sneaking off to view pornography/ pornography in the home
Basically, anything that he is lying about: by omission or blatantly (e.g. contacting anyone that is not 'a friend to our marriage' without telling me).
Lies are now unacceptable.

•What behaviors would cause you to worry about your partner's overall balance?
- manic behaviour
- voyeurism
- deceitful behaviour
- ignoring me behaviour
- agressive behaviour
- detached behaviour: failing to notice my emotional state or care about me and do something about it.

•What behaviors would symbolize a return to their addiction and/or a detriment to their own healing?
- all the above

•What healthy behaviors would you like to see from your partner in response to what has been identified above? In general, we are talking about behaviors related to past destructive patterns, though you do not have to limit yourself to this. Document the behaviors you have come up with.
I need him to do the following if I am to stay with him:
- checking in regularly with me telling me about his emotional state
- telling me daily about SA progress- any issues that need to come out.
- enhanced communication
- awareness that I exist
- compassion
- empathy
- not sneaking off.

III. With the above steps completed, your final task is to determine an appropriate response that you will take for each behavior--should it be observed.

1. Him having an affair- online, phone, face to face, whatever format he thinks of. If he is liaising with another person, male or female, without telling me that is an affair. Includes prostitute.
Response: he leaves the family home, I divorce him.

2. Him sneaking off to view pornography/lap dancer
Response: He leaves the family home for a week minimum if it is one incident. If it then appears that there were more and he didn't tell me, it will be one month.

3. Voyeurism
Response: Changing room thing is putting us all at risk. He will leave the home for one month and we will then discuss again.
Response: Peeping Tom- As above.
Response: Setting up camera. Divorce.

Basically, anything that he is lying about: by omission or blatantly.
Lies are now unacceptable.
To discuss together....

- manic behaviour
Response: sit down and chat, work out what is going on: caffeine, lack of food, mania. Take relevant action to address.

- deceitful behaviour (other than above)
Response: sit down and chat, work out what is going on. Take relevant action to address
Sanction? Peter?

- ignoring me/ detached behaviour- treating me as a sex object or a random stranger, not respecting me as a human being, with a history, who has borne him two children. Not having compassion, empathy, sympathy, warmth.

Response: Note it... he is planning to work on it. Come back to this in 3 months time and note how I am feeling. If not change, then reassess response. I am not prepared to live in such a relationship.


- aggressive behaviour
Response: ask and get for Timeout.
If not respected, I and children leave building.


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PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 3:12 pm 
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Thanks Coach Mel for taking the time to look at my posts. I do really appreciate it as I know how busy RN is. By the way, I did give up smoking ;-) And yes, it has been really helpful watching the nicotine try to take me in at the same time as watching what is going on for my husband. Listening to the 'it will kill you in the long run, oh but it sure feels great right now!' voice.
The pendulum is less dramatic, nights get sleep in them again but the anger is still there.. But anyway.... won't go on as you have enough to read. Thank you once again. Very best wishes to you....


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PostPosted: Tue Nov 01, 2011 3:20 pm 
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Couples Workshop Exercise 9: business partner gambling and burning down building.
Found this pretty frustrating. Me talking, him listening is what we do. He listens well, but doesn't mean anything changes so I don't trust him listening. I trust him when he voluntarily tells me something, which is very rare.
I feel that the example didn't really work in that it is Me in the prison, not him. He is not begging for 2nd chances, I feel he is in win win whatever. I am the one imprisoned in a situation that is not of my choosing. Yeah... maybe.... eventually... I will benefit. But right now... who knows. We have children, I like him, I like his company but I don't know him, don't feel connected to him.


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 03, 2011 2:32 pm 
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Exercise 8
1) In your Couple's Thread, discuss ways that you can practically implement the insights offered in this lesson. For instance, how might you integrate joy into your relationship now, as a part of the healing process? How might you offer sincere support to your partner's efforts to change his life (as opposed to patronizing support, pressured support, etc.)?
Integrating joy: going for beautiful walks amongst the Autumn leaves, roasting chestnuts that we have collected on our fire, playing games with the children, eating nuts that we have picked...
sincere support: ask him how it is going, how he is feeling, give him hugs and say well done.

2) Examining your current role in your partner's recovery, what mistakes have you made? Are there any you might still be making?
I won't call them mistakes as I needed to do them. They were about MY recovery. So shouting, being angry, being upset, making comments. I needed to get the shock and energy out of my system. Now I just need to watch that I don't make comments just for the sake of it. If I have something to say, then I need to say it mindfully not mindlessly. However, I am not going to bottle things up just for his recovery. That would destroy mine which wouldn't be of long term value to either of us.

3) Describe the things you ARE CURRENTLY DOING to role model healthy partnership skills.
Respecting him
Thanking him
Acknowledging him
Asking for his opinions and taking them on board
Holding his hand when I sense he needs it
Being aware of his emotional state and providing comfort where needed


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PostPosted: Sun Dec 04, 2011 3:15 pm 
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Weekly Health monitor
Question #1
"Over the past seven days, where did the majority of my meaning and fulfillment come from?"

- Work, been away abroad, very long days...
- Being part of a strong, fun team of women
- Experiencing a new culture, with its rich strong history and sense of self
- Meeting new people striving to make the world a better place
- Being 'me' without him: a strong, empowered capable woman.
- Seeing my children on skype and just watching them play

Question #2
"Over the past seven days, were there any major drains on my time, energy or emotion?"

Having to quickly paint two floors in the house and trying not to resent my brothers not doing any of it

•Include any obsessive and/or irrational behavior on your part--like ruminating about your partner's addiction/recovery; checking behaviors; significant communication issues; major value conflicts; ongoing financial pressures; etc.

Question #3
"Given the meaning that was added to my life this week (Q1) and the events that drained my life (Q2): how well did I do with managing it all?"

Very good, it was great week.
Structurally my ability to manage my life was stronger than the week before.


Question #4
"Is there anything that I need to anticipate and/or prepare for over the next seven days that will facilitate the effectiveness of my life management skills?"

My Mum being here, trying to behave like an adult and not a petulant child.

Notes:
•If you are struggling with obsessiveness, are there any goals that you want to challenge yourself to achieve that will address the need to shift your focus from this obsession?
•Are there any insights that you want to focus on that will strengthen something in your foundation that is currently weak?
•Are there any situations that you know ahead of time that will likely cause a crisis in your life? Your partner going out of town on business? An old friend visiting? An anniversary of a bad memory/event?

B. Have I engaged in mindful speech?
Have I engaged in mindful behaviour

D. Over the next four weeks, document your monitoring in your personal healing thread. Continue to document in your healing manager over the next six months.


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PostPosted: Wed Dec 14, 2011 2:40 pm 
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Exercise Twenty-Nine
A. List three behaviors that you have engaged in since discovering your partner's addiction that you would now describe as destructive:

Smoking
Angry attacking speech
Trying to get his parents to take some responsibility

B. Pick one of the behaviors listed above and answer the following:

a) What decision-making process did you engage in before taking this action?
None that I am aware of, it just happens...
b) How did you feel just prior to taking this action?
Angry! No, probably vulnerable
c) How did you feel as you were actively engaged in this action?
Angry! Empowered, great, in control
d) How did you feel after you completed this action?
Angry! Guilty, it is against my values system to engage in mindless speech.


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PostPosted: Sat Dec 31, 2011 9:04 am 
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Exercise Thirty
A. Identify the consequences that you are experiencing that may be reflective of a possible situational depression
Lethargy, slowness, lack of enthusiasm, exhaustion, mental exhaustion, ruminating mind
Inability to 'move on' 'move forwards', feeling stuck, which is very unlike me.

B. Identify how each depressive symptom may be affecting you in your ability to work through this major event in your life.

Lethargy, slowness, lack of enthusiasm, exhaustion, mental exhaustion: vicious cycle, just get more and more tired.
Ruminating mind: just exhausting, wasting precious energy, not getting me anywhere, wasting my time.
Inability to 'move on' 'move forwards', feeling stuck, which is very unlike me: this makes me feel down, I wonder if 'I' will ever come back, has he destroyed 'me'?

C. Identify the additional events/stressors in your life (unrelated to the addiction).
Brother in Law been having secret affair with a woman who he (possibly) got pregnant which impregnating his lovely wife twice, she miscarried both, he was having unprotected sex with two women, one of whom was also having sex with her husband. He seemed like salt of earth.

Dysfunctional in-laws


D. Write yourself a compassionate letter that emphasizes the reality of the situation that you face.

Dear Me,
You are really struggling aren't you? You feel so lonely and exhausted. You feel unable to see the future, unable to live with him, unable to see yourself living without him. You want to rise up to the challenge but you are finding it so difficult, so tiring, such a waste of precious energy. Your children are resourcing but you don't want to depend on them. You want them to be free of his stuff, well as much as is possible.

You don't want to be bitter, untrusting, 'damaged'. You want to be clean, light, enthusiastic. You. But you feel stuck in black, thick mud. And you didnt choose this path. You dont want it.

But you will be ok. You are doing your best, what more can you do. You need to make space for yourself and in fact you are doing that well, you are learning to take the space and he is making it happen for you. He is doing his best and being considerate. This is what you are gaining, a more considerate partner.

But you will at some point need to let it go. But maybe there is no rush. You are where you are. While you don't want to sink maybe it is ok to just sit a little and reflect and engage with where you are. Let it out, then move on.

Continue to find time for yourself, to relish the small moments of grace that there are in this world, to reengage when you are ready with people. Continue to make time to be with your children. Continue the discussion with your 'husband', try to remain soft, don't harden up, you will hate yourself for it. Let pride soften, let it go, it doesnt help.

Just keep taking pigeon steps, be true to yourself and stay open as much as you can.

You are a good person. Bad things happen to good people but on a world scale this is something that really can be overcome. As Pema says: turn the arrows into flowers.

With so much love to you precious you
Leslie x x x x







Continue on to outline a general overview of how you will go about making the changes that need to be made in your life to overcome the situation that you find yourself in. Address any real symptoms of situational depression that you may be facing. If you are uncertain as to how to deal with something specific, do a little research, or ask for feedback in the Partner's Support Forum.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 08, 2012 2:26 pm 
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Exercise Thirty-One
A. Previously, you listed the consequences your partner's behavior has had on your life. Today, consider the consequences that your partner's behavior has had on your partner. What consequences of his/her actions has he/she had to face? List both the imposed consequences (i.e. from you, legal, etc.) and the natural consequences (lost respect, shame, etc.)
Imposed consequences: contract, having to move into a bandb for a week, his family knowing, doing the Rn course, having an STD test, loss of a wife, having to be honest, having to work and prove that he is willing and able to recover.
Natural consequences: feelings of facing up to being a SA, damaged relationship, lost respect (from my family), doing some form of recovery work, listening to me hurling himself back at him, showing him the mirror of his exploitation and abuse of women.


B. Review the list above, ensuring that you have made a complete and unbiased inventory of your partner's consequences. After this review, list below any additional consequences that you believe your partner needs to experience in accepting responsibility for their behavior.
This is difficult as he does accept responsibility, he always did. If I had to say something, I would probably say
To feel humility in the presence of the 'divine feminine', to be humble in the presence of the female instead of being a predator, exploiter of her.

C. In your own words, describe the roles that blame, punishment and/or responsibility have played in response to your partner's behavior.
Unhealthy:
Using blame or punishment out of fear when I start to relax and 'forget'. I find it so hard to balance letting go, with being seen as condoning, saying it is ok. It isn't ok.
Healthy:
The contract makes it very clear what my expectations are and his responsibilities are. This is very helpful.
This makes it clear that I am not condoning, that his behaviour is not acceptable and that there are consequences.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 10:12 am 
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Exercise Thirty-Three
Rather than labeling yourself 'codependent', it is much healthier to think in terms of the patterns that you have engaged in that may be obstructing the recovery and/or healing process.

A. What patterns are you NOW ENGAGING IN that may be impeding the healing/recovery process? What unhealthy roles/thought patterns might you be holding onto?
I am really struggling with letting go. I feel like if I let go of 'what he did' I am condoning it, forgetting it, putting myself at risk, being foolish, and many other judgements/fears.
When things are going well, I feel that I dredge up what happened and hold on to it to keep a distance between us. The distance feels safer than letting go.
I am scared to let it go.
Letting go feels like jumping into the void. What will I find? Can I trust? John says you can't trust a SA. But at what point can you? Never? I am not clear about that. H is really trying and I am seeing progress, he is communicating and using his value system. But when I write that I immediately get visuals of 'what he did'.... Simultaneous- warm though, bad visual. They are hand in hand at the moment.



B. Of these patterns/roles, what have you done/think you should do to change them?

I really don't know. Is it a question of time? It is still early days.... At what point, is it no longer reasonable to hold on to the fear?

I think I will look at the forum and see what comes up....


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 19, 2012 12:02 pm 
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Exercise Thirty-Four
A. Consider the consequences of your partner's behavior over the course of your lifetime. How might they affect future decisions that you make? What positive roles might these consequences play in your life?
Strangely, I don't think that over my lifetime they will be that dramatic. I suppose because he is really making the effort to do things differently.

1. I have realised how strong the sexualised mind is and will never underestimate it
2. I have greater insight into compartmentalisation
3. I will be very cautious with my daughter. I feel nervous about the risks in the world from men, I hadnt realised how even 'good men' are sexualising women. I knew it happened but not to this degree.
4. I will be even more stringent in bringing up my son to bring up women.
5. Positively, if we get through this, my partner and my relationship will be much healthier.
6. I don't feel personally damaged by the process so don't feel that damage to me is a consequence. I have not taken it personally. Although I am angry right now that he was so stupid and could throw away the relationship. I can also separate the behaviour and see that it is 'his thing' and not mine.



B. Referring specifically to your partner, take some time to consider the addictive patterns over the course of his/her lifetime. Imagine your partner as a child. Imagine them as a teen. Imagine them as an adult. Imagine them in other relationships. Gain a firm grasp as to how similar patterns have helped them to manage their life. What thoughts come to mind?


My first thought is 'what a waste'. A waste of time, of energy, he could have been doing things to make the world a better place, rather than a worse one.

As a child, I feel for him. I feel his loneliness, his desperation for a motherly or fatherly embrace, for strong, physical love. For cuddles, for contact. I see the little boy striving for approval through using his intellect to get attention. The boy who didnt get held.
I see the teenager desperate for love, misplacing that with sex. Then when that wasnt enough with more sex, and more and more. But it just wasnt working and he didnt know why. And he didnt think about why. A total lack of emotional intelligence. All very cerebral but nothing there to help him where it really mattered. Leading to more and more exploitation of girls and women who couldnt and wouldnt ever be able to meet that overwhelming need for contact. Strong physical holding. So that need got put into a box, met from time to time, then box got closed. Always there though when needed, the porn, the moving into another relationship, the sexual excitement...



C. What does it mean to 'humanize' your partner? Why is this important in forgiveness and in seeking closure to the current crisis?

I do humanise him. I see him and his behaviour as very separate. I get his unmet childhood needs. I get how his behaviour developed and helped him, I get how the box opened and closed. But then I think 'how can such a clever person be so stupid'. I understand it all from a psychological perspective and I get the emotion based decision making etc. but I still find it hard. But then I have MY emotions. And of course they aren't logical/rational/self less.
So I have humanised him but I need to work through MY emotions in order to forgive. It isn't all about him and humanising HIM. I need to humanise myself actually. Allow myself to feel my feelings. WHICH is HARD when you are humanising the other person. Because at the end of the day, they still are responsible for the pain created in MY life, whatever their reasons, justifications etc. are.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 26, 2012 4:36 am 
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Joined: Wed Aug 31, 2011 9:25 am
Posts: 67
Exercise Thirty-Five
A. Brainstorm the areas of your relationship that you suspect MIGHT have been influenced by your partner's addiction. You have already documented the consequences of their addiction earlier in the workshop, so there is no need to duplicate your effort here. List only those subtle behaviors associated with sexual addiction that you suspect may have played a role in the following situations:

a. Your courtship
His total utter unreasonable despair when I wouldn't sleep with him on our first date, that led to him being devastated and calling the whole thing off while he went away to think about it.

b. Your partner's sexual desire for you over the course of the relationship
Groping me, jumping on me, 'NEEDING' me/my body as totally necessary to his own wellbeing.
NOt being able to read the signs
Being one track minded
Taking days to recover if there was a failed sexual attempt i.e. I didn't see it through.
His desire being more important than ME i.e. a sense of lack of discernment when it came to sex, I had the feeling that any vagina would have done rather than his wanting to be with me.
His denial about his sexuality i.e. I just make love he told me when I asked whether he shagged or made love. Well actually he didn't.
His shutting down of my sexuality - it scared him, it put him off, it was his sexuality that ran the show.
Little wonder that I stopped fancying him, although we continued to have sex and it was good. It was SO loaded for me that spontaneity wasn't really an option. THere was always- I need to see this through or I better not start. So the fun and mystery of not knowing where it would lead was gone. It HAD to lead to penetration it didn't count.
In fact that is what he told me.

c. The ten biggest decisions that were made in your relationship (e.g. marriage, childbirth, housing, career)
Did we make decisions? It all feels like a whirlwind- pregnant within 6 months, bought a house together within 8, married within 14.
He was very in love with me, very attentive, very giving, very generous in supporting me and my career, a great father.
I suppose possibly the fact that he needed ALL of me, my attention etc. This has isolated us quite a bit. In previous relationships, the relationship was just one part of a rich, big social life. But with him it became very intimate. Very closed. He took a lot of my energy, his 'stuff' took a lot of my energy.

d. The seven biggest arguments/conflicts/difficulties that you have had
They were pretty much ALL based on sex and still are. Everything else for us is pretty easy. We communicate well, we are a good team, we want the same things (well apparently not all the same things)
but my goodness was sex a loaded issue.
His approach i.e. lack of connection to me, learning via porn and his need rather than through exploring a real woman
His desperation- of course a total turn off
His belief that sex=penetration
His total sulk if it didn't go as planned, for DAYS...
And of course I didn't know what was going on behind my back. The above was just about the sexual relationship that he and I were having.



B. If you were granted five specific questions to ask your partner regarding his/her behavior that were guaranteed to be answered honestly, what five questions would you ask? And what do you think the answers are?
I think I have asked him any questions that I had and I believe he does answer honestly. I suppose the ones that I don't have 100% confidence in is

1. Do you have any secret internet accounts (or e-mail accounts, or porn subscriptions) that I don't know about?
2. Are you having any online contact with someone that I don't know about?


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