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PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 5:35 am 

Joined: Fri Jun 17, 2016 1:39 am
Posts: 55
Originally this was a reply to Blue who commented in my personal thread, but as it’s about issues we all face, I thought better to share here.

Was THE full disclosure a real full one? I don't know and I don't care. Really.
He did say enough .
Enough for me to understand his addiction and acting out started before he met me, to acknowledge that he lied to me during all these years (nearly 20), and to realize that his acting out reached a level that was breaking my absolute boundaries .
Enough for him to face, in plain light, the extend of his behaviour and the possible consequences
It was a turning point for me. And I think for him also, maybe.

BUT still, he was able to lie to me because he was lying to himself first.
that's what I discovered and he learned at the occasion of a slip few months later:
at that time, he was working on his recovery, and I was expecting some kind of slip like that, but he was still in the frame of mind : "I must be Mr Perfect" , so he lied to himself, minimized, and when I discovered it , I questioned him and he answered "No, of course not" outrageously lying to me eye in eye! The slip was not even breaking any boundary I had put in place! but the lie Yes… And so I had to apply the consequences. it was tough, but I believe crucial for him to consider that a lie, whatever the context, the excuses, the minimizations, … remains a lie.
It appeared that he convinced himself that ‘it was nothing’, so it just did not exist, that’s why he could lie so naturally. Because he believed this lie!

What I have learned is that only facts can be believed. Words mean nothing with a SA, and an addict in general.

I don’t fully trust anyone any more on words. I changed my perception of trust. Especially in a relationship. Trust is not black and white. It’s not “I trust you” or “I don’t trust you”. It evolves. It based on facts. And it’s never 100%. Do I trust myself 100%? No! I’m human, I do mistakes. I minimize or arrange a little the situation sometimes also (within my values/boundaries!) Why should I trust 100% someone else on his words, just because he is my partner?

Also I don't want my trust to be used for manipulation . I don't accept my trust to be a tool that can be used to have 'power' over me. Not sentence like 'if you trust me, you...'

I’ve learned to say things like “I feel something is not right , I don’t know what it is, I don’t know if it’s because of your work too stressful, or if you have problems with your addiction or whatever. I am Not making assumptions anymore. And I’m not going to hurt myself by searching in your stuff a possible reason for this. That’s why I tell you that I feel something is not right in the way you behave. besides it reminds me of bad times when you were deep in addiction and I would always excuse your bad moods (because I fully trusted you). So you have to do something to change this: explain what is your problem or work on your problems or whatever , you have to find a solution. because I will not stand this behaviour/mood in my home anymore”.

However, to consider a true loving and caring relationship without full trust is hard for me. it's not in line with the vision I had for a couple. and this is part of the work I am doing on changing my vision of a couple and the values of the couple.

Have you changed your perception of trust, and couple values during your healing journey?

With warm embrace

PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 9:56 am 
Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 671
Ana, what a thoughtful post. And what a painful and familiar experience: being lied to, again, with all the crazy mental gymnastics addicts go through in order to pretend that they aren't really dishonest. It's exhausting.

What I strongly believe is that loving relationships require as much honesty as possible. It's in how we convey that honesty. So if I say "Do I look okay in this sweater?" and a loved one thinks, "not really", I'd really like to hear that honest answer in a loving way. That way I won't go out in that sweater. Is it ever okay to lie? Probably. But in a committed partnership? Probably not. For example, I don't feel the need to convey every detail of my past from before I met my husband. I think he has a right to ask about my sexual history, for example, but I can keep some things private. So understanding and being clear about what is private versus secret is a skill that committed partners would need to develop. That's what I value now. But that takes real maturity with the willingness to tolerate uncomfortable emotions and the communication skills to discuss the issues.

My values have changed in that I more strongly believe in what I should have believed in all along: sincerity, commitment, loyalty, authenticity and rigorous honesty with compassion and respect. It's a tall order and no one can be perfect, but it's the effort and work that counts. It's being able to have humility about our flaws and the ability to repair our failings with each other. I so wish I had a partner that truly believed these values and actually worked at them with me.

So I don't trust my husband. My trust in others was damaged. But I don't want to live that way. I don't want to be as naive and trusting as I once was, and that is where trusting my gut, as you describe, has become important. It was also important for me to finally learn to develop my personal boundaries.

With compassion,

PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 11:00 am 

Joined: Mon Jan 11, 2016 10:08 am
Posts: 190
I have the absolutely changed my concept of trust. There’s no more of that naive trust I used to have.

I didn’t see myself as naive in the past. I thought I was good at reading people. I thought that if my husband deceived me I’d know. I thought I knew him so well that I was bound to figure it out. I thought I was no fool. I was street smart. I wasn’t going to be one of those clueless women who had no idea their ‘respectable’ husband was lurking around adult bookstores in red light areas. I thought I knew my husband well. This was a guy who’d been a supporter of feminism when he was at university. He seemed to understand issues that affect women like sexual harassment and objectification. He was the last person I would have expected to seek out pornography and go to topless bars and watch strippers. But as I learned through this program, this was his version of hyper-religiosity. More importantly, I believed that my husband was committed to our relationship. Our sexual relationship was very good, and I knew that what we had was rare and precious. The idea that he wanted more, or different, or that he felt he was missing out never crossed my mind. I was wrong in many counts. He took advantage of the trust I placed in him. He had a side to him that he concealed from completely. That’s why my trust became undone.

My d day wasn’t about discovery, it was my “disintegration day”. It was the day that I broke down because I’d had enough. There had been several d days many years previously when I found porn sites in his internet history. His behaviours didn’t begin with the internet, but that’s when I became aware of the porn. Even early on, after several d days, I thought his interest was excessive and unhealthy. That’s when the trust issues began. Whenever he said he’d quit all he did was get better at hiding it. He did what he wanted and I had no say. That’s the way he set it up. My coping strategy was to bury my head in the sand, but internally I was slowly disintegrating.

There were times when I knew things didn’t feel right. I had to turn a blind eye to what he was doing at home ie online pornography. It was also my strategy to deal with other suspicions, but eventually there was a time when I had to ask if there had been any infidelity. His reaction was the classic liar routine. He did everything except answer my question. He laughed nervously at my question. He asked me what infidelity meant. He asked me who the other person was. And then he became ‘outraged’ that I could even think of asking such a thing. If my husband had asked me if I had been unfaithful I’d just say no. But he couldn’t say that. His infidelities have never been disclosed, not even the infidelity that happened early on. Even then, he used the words “Trust me. Nothing happened.” He used the phrase “trust me” over and over as he lied to me. Trust me?! Haha!! He was telling me loud and clear that he couldn’t be trusted. I didn’t learn this lesson at the time.

I know now that if there is no evidence, he won’t admit to anything. If there is any evidence he will say it was “just the once” when it wasn’t. He has told me that I know “everything” and then I have discovered more, only proving that he has lied again. I know there is no point in asking an outright question because all I’m doing is alerting him that I’m on to something. I don’t expect an honest answer. I’ve found evidence. I’ve asked him about it. I’ve watched an Oscar winning performance knowing it’s all a big lie. How do you trust someone like this? It’s almost impossible.

So here I am. 3 and a half years after d day. Partial trust is the best I can offer someone who can only give me partial truths. These days I ask myself how likely, on the balance of probability, is my husband being straight with me? That’s the best I can do.

PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 12:08 pm 

Joined: Tue Apr 12, 2016 3:22 am
Posts: 163
Great Posts, which I agree with, though I can't add much.
In my case along with suspicions, moods, general toxic behaviour which was blamed on me.. I have had d days throughout all my marriage, starting a week after the honeymoon.. Ending four years ago, which was the last straw and the beginning of my education in sa, pa, narcissistic abuse, things I had never even thought about,
I had spent much time making excuses for his lies, behaviour,
The d day that opened my eyes to how deceitful he was was when I had proof of events.. So I didn't tell him. All out, he lied to my face, he would never do that to me, I knew him better than that etc. tried making me out to be untrusting, indignant that I would think.. Then saying online was making me distrust him, and we should close he became aware of how much I kn ew he still only admitted to as much as he could get away with.. All a mistake.. Never again, hated it.. I said I would close my accounts, but watched as he proceeded to carry on regardless, with the only change being could he please wear a full mask..
Tbh, same last d day, he didn't know her name.. Lol.. He fully did, it was me not giving cuddles etc.. Rich as he was with holding . My dad was dying at the time, and mum developed dementia..
It has gone past him disclosing, if he told me a long list.. Longer than the one I have my own proof of.. I don't think it would help, as it is him who needs to change, to suddenly becone self aware, he says ea h time that he has done nothing, has always been faithful.. So I am not sure if he actually believes his own lies.
So it's not just I can't trust what he says really, it doesn't matter, my trust has been lost in his authenticity, who he actually is.

PostPosted: Wed Jan 23, 2019 7:43 pm 
Partner's Mentor

Joined: Sun Sep 14, 2014 1:34 pm
Posts: 671
They do lie to themselves. There have been a couple of occasions recently where my husband has been calm and honest about himself. He says that he was so compartmentalized, he honestly believed he was a standup guy of integrity in his "good guy" identity. He truly saw his secret life as something..."other" I guess. Jon talks about this in the lessons, and I now believe they lie to themselves and have distorted thinking.

On the other hand, they aren't psychotic. I think they know full well when they lie by commission. It's the omission where they get slippery. And my husband right now still struggles with honesty and integrity.


PostPosted: Thu Jan 24, 2019 7:28 am 

Joined: Fri Jun 17, 2016 1:39 am
Posts: 55
Oh the "Good Guy", yes Dnell, I completely see what you mean,
he definitely believed he is a Good guy,
as his speech sounded like a strong supporter of feminism , like for you Blue.
Funnily enough, when he was about to start his full disclosure, my partner said:
"before I tell you all, I have one thing to say: I'm not a bad guy. you have to believe me. I'm not bad"
well...I didn't know any more who he was, but I knew what he did was bad.
incredible how it was important for him that I believed him to be a good person, more important than hurting me by his acts...

May be he was a good guy at the beginning, may be some of him was still good; may be in his mind he was a good guy, may be he was sincerely thinking that he supports feminism, that women should not be objectified etc...
but his acts were not in line with this good thinking,
and we don't live only in our heads, we live by and through our acts.

It's like Love,
Love is a feeling, in our heart/mind/soul,
But Love is also a Verb: to Love
Love should be seen in acts,
we all have definitions of love, but looking at it as a verb, for me:
Love is to care
Love is to say I Love you, even without words
Love is to respect the other boundaries and values
Love is to spend time and experiences together

And this apply to ourselves:
we should Love ourselves because we are our best friend, our best partner ever, and do it in acts: take care of ourselves, respect our own boundaries and values, listen and trust ourselves, ...

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