Wednesday, June 1, 2011

One Foot In

Once again I am reminded of how much in recovery is about the addict learning to do what is human, and the partner learning to do what is against human. In it all is an ironic twist since the addict must descend back to earth, get grounded, and pull his/her head out of the pink haze, while the partner must learn to transcend the phenomenal world and rise above earthly, biological leanings. When looked at this way, the partner should come out better in the end after all. 

And yet, so much of what I learned about "enlightenment" is that you don't escape the mundane. You walk with one foot in enlightenment and one foot on the earth. And all I can ever conclude (so far in my shaky recovery that is) is it feels impossible that I should ever be expected to lean into love and trust with someone when I am asked to behave against what love and trust looks like naturally between humans. Let go? Keep our noses out of each other's most delicate and personal growth? Don't ask, don't tell? 

It seems to be the only thing that works in recovery from everything I've seen (though there are intelligent critics with other plans), and it at least serves to sever the trauma bond, but it is not what I know in my ancient DNA that love should look like.
Comment made to this post.


  1. Ok. Here is my opinion:

    I get and understand and actually support staying out of one another's recovery, unless the other person is willing to invite you in and share stuff with you. I tend to be controlling so I would be the type to want to ask and monitor how things are going and if he is going to a meeting etc., but that would actually be something that would hamper an addicts own recovery.

    Here is the other thing, though, from what I have seen in the open AA meetings, the couples that are together after....there is still this weird *thing* between them. And that is just from alcoholism. The whole staying out of each other's business pushes women to not even share how they feel about things which leaves them sharing in meetings about how angry they are which has them not speaking to their partners out of fear of causing....what....relapses? Which is not what the program that I've been in has taught me.

    There is a fine line. Letting them go and grow on their own is good, and if they actually grow and mature I believe that they would actually share with the people closest to them (their wives and partners). Those that don't? Well.

    /more rambling

  2. "The whole staying out of each other's business pushes women to not even share how they feel about things". Yes, that pretty much sums up my point. I'm fine with leaving others to their Recovery for the most part, but I'm in a RELATIONSHIP with this person. The decisions I make, my financial well-being, whether or not I have a support system, etc...all the things that we're partly in relationship FOR depend to a certain degree on this other person holding up their end. If I have NO clue where he is in the process, what's going on, what's coming up, it makes it unreasonably difficult to make decisions. I'm not ok with that.

  3. It's where I struggle so much too. Although, now that I've backed off, he started working his first step. I didn't ask him what he's done, but just told him I was there for him if he needed me. I know myself well enough to know that I will press for details at some point because I feel I deserve them. It's my marriage, if I'm staying in it, then I have the right to know what the heck is going on in it!

  4. Wow, I am new here. I know everyone has had their own experience and they are all different, however, one thing that is the same for us is that we are in a RELATIONSHIP. That requires TWO people. Two people working on that ONE relationship. I refuse to stay out of my husbands recovery and although it is his, it is ours as well. My husband led a secret life of porn/sex addiction for 24 years. So while he had a secret life, WE had a shadow life. I refuse to be kept out of his recovery. I have had enough of his secrets and private life. The only way to heal and recover is to be a part and be included, there should be no more separate anything!! Everything should be out in the open and nothing hidden. A relationship is about sharing everything with each other, becoming one. I can't take anymore secrets and lies. To me not being a part would be like giving him permission to continue to with-hold from me and rebuilding trust and intimacy in our relationship. If I am going to stay in this marriage and work on rebuilding it then I want US to be in every part of it together, if not then it would be a deal breaker. I am learning alot about recovery and what I have discovered by experience is that One is NOT controlled by anything, one ALLOWS oneself TO BE controlled, and when one CHOOSES to NOT to be controlled then one will OVERCOME and RECOVER. We all have choices and my husband will justify anything he CHOOSES to do because he WANTS to do it, in the name of ADDICTION. Really it is a choice what is more important to them? There is no "gray" area ... there is only black and white.....your either dead or alive. Addiction somehow gives permission to "to do" whatever "addiction" you "have". It is an excuse...plain and simple. I told my husband when he first started viewing Porn he wasn't hooked, and as he MADE the choice to do it, EVEN WHEN he WENT AGAINST HIS CONSIOUS, HE WAS CHOOSING! Nothing took over his mind or his body, he wasn't "Possessed". It is simply because he LOVES THE WAY HE FEELS when doing it and now it has become routine, a way of life for him, a coping tool. And now he HAS TO RETRAIN HIS BRAIN. Which means he has to use his WISE MIND and CHOOSE to do the right thing. It will take time and I want to know every step he takes in his recovery not to control him but to make sure the path and choices in his recovery and our relationship recovery is built on truth, respect, honesty and love. You can't be on the Road to Recovery if he is getting there without you!! Just my experiences and thoughts. This is the hardest thing I have ever had to face!! My heart breaks everyday, seems like something else pops up either something he says or some bad choice he makes and it throws me into a state of panic!! It is going on 3 years since D-Day and 1 year since his RELAPSE. I didn't know what a relapse was, nor how much more devastation it would bring, it took everything left!!! I am at the point where I am looking for anything to stay in the marriage. As I sit here and write this I realize that today is our 24th Wedding Anniversary! I am not celebrating a wonderful life built, but grieving the loss of what I didn't know I didn't have and a future that I don't know I will ever have!! I ask myself will he ever choose to SEE ME!!!

  5. Seeme, thanks for visiting and for your comment. It sounds like you're in a lot of pain, and I'm so sorry you're dealing with this. One of the things that is so devastating about sex addiction is how it can be kept secret for so long, unlike most other addictions which are tough in their own right.

    What I've seen in couples who've managed this experience and come out stronger is that each takes care of their own recovery, but there is definitely a move to being transparent and making compromises. Couples therapy also seems to be necessary.

    I hope you find the light at the end of the tunnel soon. My heart goes out to you.