Friday, April 20, 2007

Bubbling up from the inside

It seems like so much is coming at me all at once ... all good stuff (for the most part).

This morning my husband said a couple of things to me about the house being in a mess and I reacted with anger. I told him that I wanted him to treat me like an adult, not like a child. Then I also explained that what he had said affected my self esteem, because I felt guilty and shameful for not doing a better job of keeping up with the housework considering that I'm not currently working. Then a bit later he came to me and talked to me as he often does in a cooing voice like someone might speak to a little kid. It was, as it always is ... so irritating to me, even though it is his way of trying to soothe things.

I spent some time thinking ... "Why does this bother me so much?" And I realized ... first of all, I never was a kid. I was always "responsible" for holding my family together, by hiding my sexual abuse (or so my stepfather told me in those private moments when he would incest me), I was also responsible for my younger sister, I was told. Because I began to use food to "stuff" my emotions at a young age, I was always fat, so never really fit in with kids my age. But I could impress the adults around me with my maturity, my brightness and my sense of responsibility. So, I spent more time with adults than with kids my age. Second of all ... I didn't like my childhood and I don't want to feel like a child. I feel that children are not really loved, they are just placated. (My inner child speaking)

So, then I spent some time thinking ... OK how do I get my husband to stop doing this? Then I realized ... It's not him who you (in healthy circumstances) need to change. I need to change myself and my attitudes. I'll have to work on that.

Next, I started thinking about how the cards of my life have come together ... I never told anyone about my sexual abuse until after my mother died when I was 25. I wrote a note in a journal this morning, "My mother died so I could tell my story." That's pretty deep stuff that didn't come from my concious self. What did come from my concious self was that I have always tried to maintain that sense of responsibility for my sister. My stepfather is her biological father, and I never wanted her to think she had such a monster who could begin molesting children at 3 years old for a father. I hadn't had a real father in my life. I wanted life to be different for her.

I have always felt guilty that I was the successful one in our family -- the one who graduated from college first and made a career for herself. But then after a few years, my depression and addiction took care of all that. Suddenly I became unsuccessful ... was it perhaps because I have always felt that my sister hated me for being successful and that's why she rebelled? She has made tons of poor choices in her life, and I've blamed them all on myself because I feel like she did them to "get back" at me.

It's amazing how all these things are rising to the surface, so fast that my fingers can't hardly keep up with it all. But I have to tell you ... I am so thankful it is coming to the surface, so I can begin the process of dealing with it ... and learning how to heal.

10 comments:

dexplorer said...

I’m glad to see you post again rae. You seem to be feeling a bit better than the last few times. I’ve read a great deal of your blog by now. It’s certainly a searing, difficult, story.

If you haven't seen it I posted a long comment to your Feb 16, 2007 post (having by then read most of your blog), in an effort to say something useful. It was a week or two ago I think, long after your post.

I did come here thinking it would be another story of a hyper-sexual and yes cheating woman who was maybe making a mess of things in some ways but was also having titillating, exciting to read about, real casual sex adventures (in ways that reasonably attractive women who really want that in volume can so more easily do, primarily because far few women – though still more than a few – want that).

Since that cooing, talking as if to a little girl voice of your husband irritates you and makes you realize you never really were a little girl, you should tell him that. He really might be trying to give him some of what you said you needed e.g. on your Feb 16 post, where I left a long and I’d hoped useful comment to you (if you haven’t seen it – I did leave long after the time of your posting.) Couldn’t he express that desire to sooth you, reach out to you emotionally, in a different voice that actually did those things more for you?

Have you managed to not refrain from contacting R over this period? That was a hope of yours a couple of weeks ago. Have you been pursuing your sex addition behavior lately, online or also meeting up with men – now that you’ve been in this new location for a while I guess.

I gather that although your husband knows of the years of incest by that stepfather, and it’s lasting impact on you, he doesn’t know anything about your I’d guess hundreds of liaisons with other men? Or does he just have no idea of the dimension of it and thinks you’ve stopped? Or perhaps just that you have a net sex addiction that he thinks doesn’t go beyond talking?

Is there any possibility of telling him at least some of this, in an effort to make the communication between the two of you more genuine, and to not had a incredibly large and often consuming part of your life completely hidden?

Have you returned to thinking you will probably stay with your husband, or are you still thinking of leaving?

dexplorer said...

Rae, I'm afraid I was unclear in the first couple of paragraphs above, because of their justaposition, mostly. I mean I came here thinking it would be one kind of blog, and finding it something quite different.

Rae said...

Dexplorer,

Thanks for your notes. I didn't find any of them until today. Thanks for your interest in my story. And yes, I can imagine that you might have gotten here while searching for something else.

I have found a bit more of a voice in telling my husband about what I need, what I am going through, etc. Sometimes he gets it, sometimes he tells me to "get a life."

He doesn't know the extent of my acting out ... and I think that's best for now. I may change my mind in the future, but for now I think it's best I just begin to talk honestly with him each day.

As for acting out in my new town ... no, I haven't. I've come close a couple of times, done some online intrigue, but haven't acted out. I'm going to a bunch of meetings and working on myself. I think that has to be my primary focus right now.

I have spoken with R. -- but I am also finding my voice there. Both my internal voice and the voice with which I speak with him. Last week was the one year anniversary of our first conversation and we talked quite a bit on that day. Otherwise he's overly enthused with S. -- his new woman. That enthusiasm usually hurts me, so I prefer not to talk.

I'll post comments regarding your earlier posts later.

Rae

dexplorer said...

I have found a bit more of a voice in telling my husband about what I need, what I am going through, etc. Sometimes he gets it, sometimes he tells me to "get a life."

That actually sounds pretty hopeful. Do you ever really reward him when he does get it? By giving him, after the talking and the holding and what you need (say more?), giving him meltingly sweet and responsive sex? Does that, or other good kinds, ever go on between you too these days? Did it ever? Do you have any hopes with him beyond being a better friend and stable rock? Or not.

Wouldn’t it help you to say more about that here in detail? Wouldn’t that help you think it through? Wouldn’t that help you to hide less? I’d certainly be interested Rae, and try to be helpful. Isn’t hiding one of, maybe the most, central issue for you?

He doesn't know the extent of my acting out ... and I think that's best for now. I may change my mind in the future, but for now I think it's best I just begin to talk honestly with him each day.

Yes, it probably is best he doesn’t know the full extent of the past now, or perhaps ever, and that you focus on the present. That MIGHT not always be true with every hypothetical person (though stages of revelation as trust and connection builds further would still probably be best) but it sounds like it is with this real one.

I’d need to know more.

Would you like to know what really goes through my mind when I think of your story Rae? This response makes me think maybe you would.

What I keep thinking is do you really have to choose, or cycle, between these two extremes? On the one hand a monogamy with a husband who MIGHT not be or have ever been (PLEASE say much more about this) very sexual with you, which your AA style sex addiction groups seem to all consider THE WAY, and utterly compulsive chasing of almost as much casual sex with multiple partners as you can manage, regardless of it’s nearly all consuming effects when you’re in that mode.

I realize this is the AA model – total abstinence from the addictive behavior, whether that be alcohol, cocaine, or here extramarital sex. I also realize it’s what those who are truly and classically substance addicted need to do.

I also realize that you, unlike a lot of hyper-sexual women who many others might call sex addicts or classically nymphomaniacs, truly do have a sex addiction issue that truly does heavily take over at times, often extended times. It also stems from or at least very heavily from, classic very early, long lasting, and completely hidden.

At least a large part of what drives you may indeed be the classic psychiatric explanation or theory, which to be heavily reductionist, is that nymph/addicts use sex to try to get love and affection (due to childhood experiences often), which even when offered they tend to not recognize, or feel, or believe genuine, or really possible. Since that’s how they feel, it’s often very heavily effects who they attract and how those men respond.

You also however seem to have a very intensely sexual nature. Much more so than is true for most women, but is of course true for more than a few. You seem to be hyper-sexual. Bottling that up completely in ideals of monogamous fidelity esp. if it is and is likely to remain a low sex marriage, seems awfully tough. And, frankly, stifling. Is there any more middle course?

Or let me ask you straight up. When you do or have gone on your sex wilding binges, connecting and luring through the net, do you sometimes look for great sex? Do you sometimes get it and really respond to that? Or is your hunger almost entirely about intimate affection from more and more men, and then you move on?

dexplorer said...

Above it should be

It also stems from or at least very heavily from, classic very early, long lasting, and completely hidden sexual abuse from a family member -- your stepfather.

Rae said...

Dexplorer wrote:
Isn’t hiding one of, maybe the most, central issue for you?

To some degree this is true. Having a second life is very damaging for me, because it allows me to escape from "the present." This is one of the reasons I go to lots of recovery meetings and share with friends about things that are going on in my life. I also have regularly seen a therapist over the past few years. Occassionally I write here to remind myself of the growth and failures.

Another central issue for me is responding to the luring suggestions of hyper-sexual men that I "share" more of myself for their pleasure and benefit, despite its effects on me.

That is all about me hoping that someone who feigns interest in me will actually turn out to love me and care for me. In other words, I recreate the abuse of my stepfather with hopes of a different result.

Am I doing that in my marriage? Am I denying my sexual side a chance to live and breathe? I am not sure.

Those who have read materials about sexual addiction know that for every addict there's an avoidant. So, while I'm an addict with other men, with my husband I tend to be an avoidant. As I said ... I am growing in my relationship with my husband at this point ... and that means the relationship is growing in all ways.

My main focus at this point is improving me. It remains to be seen exactly what role others will play in my future.

Just to clarify, my particular 12 step program allows me to define my sobriety. So, if I were to say that extramarital affairs were healthy for me, I could engage in them as part of the program and still claim sobriety. Some of the sex addiction programs have a strict definition of sexual sobriety, which includes no masturbation and no sex outside marriage. I tend to think they are looking for a backdoor way to discriminate against porn watchers and gays. I set my own sobriety restrictions to include "no sex outside a committed relationship." I was in a committed relationship with R. and we had a great sex life ... but we were love addicts, and hurt each other badly.

I get the impression that you are hoping to hear more of those "titillating, exciting to read about, real casual sex adventures" ... however, that's not something you will likely find here -- at least in the new posts.

Take care.

Gus Paul said...

Ah ha, still blogging I see...

Rae said...

Still blogging ... how about you?

Me, Myself and I said...

good

dexplorer said...

I get the impression that you are hoping to hear more of those "titillating, exciting to read about, real casual sex adventures" ... however, that's not something you will likely find here -- at least in the new posts.

Well I told you that is part of why and how I initially found your blog. Although my largest focus really Rae has been for real life sex blogs of very sexual women as a way of exploring avoiding in the future what has been my fate in a (childless) marriage and in a longer term live together relationship as well. In your most recent post you describe it as:

All the men I acted out with had told me that their marriages had become stale, that their wives no longer satisfied them sexually. I would listen like a loving friend and then give them the sexual excitement they were looking for.

It’s a very real phenomenon. Only I didn’t do much playing on the side, until the very end of my marriage, after I’d basically decided it was over, but well, just hadn’t taken any action yet.

So I’m trying to figure out if more open styles of marriage can work. Whether they can work because they keep both partners, including the woman who often does become much less sexually interested than her husband over time, sexually alive and hunger, or it’s something that hyper-sexual women are likely to want – either open or cheating. I’m trying to figure out if there are ways of doing that can keep the central pair bond relationship, often the marriage, strong and caring and also sexual, without it simply shattering it.

Some titillation along the way, yeah. But I’ve looked at net written fantasy porn for years. This is a different search.

Back to you.

Have you ever had good, exciting to you sex with someone you felt really cared about you or loved you? Did you at first with your husband? Have you ever more recently? Did you with R?