I don’t understand why this is so hard yet so simple. I am not the person that I used to be. I made the choice to make the changes and work on being the husband that my wife always deserved. It wasn’t easy, but nothing worthwhile ever is. My old life was toxic and it infected those around me. My life now is much better than it ever was. The choice to make the changes was easy. The work to make the changes was a challenge, but not impossible. Why are other men stuck in the process? Why do other men believe that they are wired differently and can’t change? There’s no secret or magic formula. It takes time and deliberate work to change your life and live in freedom. It takes having a vision of the life that you want to have and making it happen.
I believe that the only true way to recovery is the hard way. I have come to understand that my addiction was created due to my inability to deal with life. I learned to escape my painful emotions by filling my head with unhealthy garbage. Even after I understood that I had a problem, I never really faced it. I did just enough to get by and fool myself into believing I was better. I even had a therapist tell me I was cured.
Continue reading “The Hard Road”
I can never forget the awful person that I used to be. I don’t want to ever forget it because going back to that old broken life is not an option. I see what I have done and how it is still affecting my wife. We are starting our third year on this journey of recovery. Our marriage is better than it has ever been. We have the connection that God designed us to have as husband and wife. Things are better but there are still triggers for her.
Continue reading “Triggers”
I have reached a point in my life where I can look back and see who I used to be. I don’t like the person, but I am no longer that person. I made the hard choice of making a permanent life change. My previous life was influenced by my addiction and it was broken. I gave up that life and made the choice to do whatever it took to live a healthy life. I didn’t do it alone. My wife was with me and never gave up on me. I do not identify as an addict. I am a husband, father, grandfather, son, brother, and friend. I do not deny or will I ever forget my past, but it doesn’t define who I am.
I have not posted in a while because things are good. My recovery has been positive and I am not the person that I used to be.
Continue reading “Recovery Update”
I have spent most of my life lying about things. I’m not sure when it all began, but it went hand in hand with my maladaptive coping skills. I believe that I lied to myself as much as I lied to everyone else. My lies fed my false beliefs and kept me emotionally stunted. I am not proud nor am I bragging about my ability to lie. I became so good at it that I could make things up in an instant. I chose a profession where my ability to make things up quickly was an asset.
Continue reading “Honesty”
I realize that it is a challenge to believe our recovery has progressed this far this quick. When we first started it was all doom and gloom. There were no positive stories. We believed that we were stuck with this addiction and that I was going to have to live the rest of my life surrendering and attending meetings. This is not how we wanted to spend the rest of our lives.
Continue reading “Too good to be true”
We are almost a year and nine months into this journey of recovery. At this time last year we didn’t know if it would be our last Christmas.
Continue reading “Progressive Hope”
My wife asked me to share my thoughts on the full disclosure process. Initially it scared the heck out of me. I had spent all my life lying and manipulating. Now I had to tell the truth and tell her everything.
Continue reading “Disclosure”
When writing or talking about his recovery from sex addiction, JP always mentions how his CSAT helped him resolve his childhood trauma. So why would a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist treat childhood trauma? Why wasn’t she focusing on his porn use and other acting out behaviors? I decided to make this post a Q&A to help explain those answers.
Continue reading “Why do we talk about childhood trauma?”
I’ve had a front row seat to watch my husband’s recovery journey. It wasn’t always smooth and the first few months included him breaking through denial of how just how bad his addiction was. Once he realized how much damage he’d done and found the resources for recovery, he dove in. But some addicts want to be spoon-fed their recovery without doing much work. You only get out of recovery what you put in to it.
Continue reading “Spoon-fed Recovery”
I have reached a point in my recovery where I have more clarity. I have made it this far by making drastic changes to my way of living. The addict’s dream is to move on and get back to normal. “Let’s focus on the future and forget the past.” Forgive and forget was a common theme. All of these were lies and part of the denial in active addiction.
Continue reading “Normal”
My wife had questions this evening about a specific acing out incident. I immediately stopped what I was doing and gave her my full attention. I answered her questions to the best of my ability. I fully owned what I did and expressed my sorrow for causing her pain. I can never change what I did but I can be present in the moment and hold her pain. This has been a major changing point in my recovery.
Continue reading “Getting it out and beating it up”
The definition of disillusioned is “having lost faith or trust in something formerly regarded as good or valuable”. I’ve been becoming more disillusioned with several sex addiction resources over the past few months.
Continue reading “Disillusioned”
I have reached a point in my recovery where I am free of my addiction. I can look back and see with some clarity how I got here and why I am in a good place now. I stopped my acting out over a year and a half ago. Stopping was easy, I had done it many times before. Staying stopped was a whole different battle.
Continue reading “Stopping”
I have come to see the pain that I have caused my wife over the years. I lied, manipulated, and gas lighted her for years. I was not mature enough to see the consequences of my actions. There is no excuse for my behavior. I chose to live a life of lies and deceit. I never imagined that it would cause her so much pain.
Continue reading “Trauma”
Relapse is a word that is used way too often in recovery. Early on in my recovery my wife and I agreed that that there was no room for relapse in recovery. Relapse is just another excuse for more betrayal trauma. It’s a built in excuse to act out. It is part of the addiction cycle and not part of recovery. True recovery is getting to the root cause and resolving it. We must face our trauma that led us to our addiction and kill it. I have done this and my addiction is no longer part of my life. I have found freedom in my new healthy way of living.
My husband and I had to start over with our marriage. We didn’t try to rebuild it, because the foundation was cracked and faulty. We had to tear it down and start from the beginning. Is our marriage better now? Yes. Would I go through all of this again to have a better marriage? No way. But this is where I’m at in life.
Continue reading “A New Marriage: The Wife’s Perspective”
I have been on this journey of recovery for over a year now. I have a 12 step online support group that I attend weekly. My 12 step group has helped me develop healthy connections. The one aspect of the 12 step group that I didn’t understand was the surrendering. I didn’t want to spend the rest of my life surrendering lustful thoughts.
Continue reading “Surrendering”
I feel like it’s been extremely beneficial for me and our marriage that my husband has included me in his recovery. JP never believed in “stay on your side of the street”. I’ve never read about or heard another wife who said it was beneficial for her addict husband to work his recovery while leaving her in the dark.