The Recovering Wino, http://stayathomemotherdom.blogspot.com/ offered to interview me for her blog, as a way of sharing a little blog love. Here are my answers to her questions:
1) I understand your situation because I have been there before. How do you work at dealing with the longing you feel for someone you are addicted to and are trying to resist? How do you deal with the anger? Is it working?
I am in a 12 step recovery program for sex and love addicts, I'm also in other 12-step programs, and I use the tools of those programs to help me get the focus off other people and back on myself. But those programs or the people in them are not my saviors ... they can't take away my desire to have sex with a stranger or to carry on an extramarital affair. My brain is broken, I don't think clearly when it comes to intimate and sexual relationships. I'm trying to heal old wounds. So ... in order to deal with the longing, I have to use all the tools I have to "prevent" the longing from coming on -- I have to go to meetings, call recovery friends, read literature, eat properly, stay present in the moment and when the cravings get really bad, I know that I have messed up somewhere along the way and for now the only thing I can do is either one go to bed or two get out and move. Whatever I do, I have to get out of my head.
How do I deal with anger ... this is a good one. I have trouble with anger. I don't feel it or I feel it extremely. My anger is usually misdirected and I have to admit that I simply am a work in progress when it comes to anger. Many of the same tools I mentioned above, as well as the Serenity Prayer, help me to deal with anger.
Is it working? Well, lately, I don't get all worked up about the bad days like I used to. And I feel a greater connection to my Higher Power, feel more like I'm on a path and have choices, so yeah, I'd say it's working. Not to mention, I have not met a complete stranger for sex in almost a year. (As opposed to a regular daily dose for several years.) I have had only one "casual" sexual encounter in that same time and was able to end a year long affair that I truly thought was going to do me in.
(2) How long have you been married? What initially attracted you to your husband?
I have been married for almost nine years. I think I was initially attracted to his intelligence, and I liked that he was attracted to me. Through therapy I have come to realize that I was also attracted to him because he comes from a background so different than mine and I just wanted to run away from everything I'd ever known.
(3) What is one of the most significant moments in your life?
One? There have been many changing points ... but I'd mention one here that has been in my mind lately as its anniversary is coming up in three days. My mother died when I was 25 years old and the aftermath of that has been incredible. I was very close to my mother and her death was devasting. On the day of her funeral, I saw my biological father for the first time. He had never acknowledged me. Later after everyone left the house, my stepfather, who had molested and abused me from the time I was three years old, tried to seduce me, telling me that I wasn't actually his daughter, so it was OK. Today, 14 years later, I realize that my mother's death was a gift. No longer did she have to live with my horrible stepfather, I also could begin the slow and painful process of healing from my abuse. I never told a soul about what happened to me until after she died. It was hiding the secrets that made it the hardest to live with.
(4) Do you believe in God? What do you believe?
Yes, I believe in God, but most likely not the same version of God that you will take on your mission trip. For me, God is in every living thing, and I am also a part of God. When I can feel the strength of the wind, I know that I am in that wind and it is in me. When someone shares something deep and meaningful with me, I know that they are a vessel of God's message to me. I don't believe I have the omnipotent powers of that higher being, but I believe that the powers of that omnipotent being are with me.
(5) What is your favorite website and why?
I love the web and blogs. I guess if I had to pick a favorite website I'd say it's mail.yahoo.com, because it's how I keep in touch. But I also am lately loving a blog by a young man in Alabama named Andrew. He's an addict and a schizoprenic who writes about his daily life. You can find him at http://4thavenueblues.blogspot.com/
2 months ago