Author Topic: A mans way to say sorry  (Read 2177 times)

seekinghelp

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A mans way to say sorry
« on: January 05, 2018, 07:32:46 AM »
I am a 61 year old male. I have been addicted to porn for twenty years. This past year it took complete control of my life. I could not figure out what was going on. I was always moody, I pushed my wife and friends away. Then in a moment of clarity I admitted it to myself. I went online to gather information, I was stunned, I had no idea. I told my wife. She was devastated, she had worked so hard for years trying to figure out my ED. I found a forum for woman to share their stories on how this impacts them. It was the lowest moment of my life. To see the hurt and anger that I have caused to the person I loved so much. Our relationship was loving and caring, there was nothing in me that would have ever hurt her and yet I had crushed her.

She could not handle it and has divorced me.

I share this because some men will see the hurt, the betrayal, the lies. They will see the damage done. If they do and if they can heal you might  have a man that spends the rest of his life making it up to you. You might have a man that finally lives to his full potential. You might have a relationship that goes to a level you never have seen before.

As it is I will just say,,I am sorry, I am sorry.




HoplessMrs

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #1 on: January 05, 2018, 08:57:15 PM »
Thank you for sharing your story! I'm sorry to hear that things didn't work out. I am also finding myself at the crossroad, to fight for my marriage, or to file for divorce. I can't speak for all women but for myself it is wondering if I can trust him. Can I trust him to let me help? Can I trust him to tell me the truth if he slips? These are all questions I have to answer for myself but the fact that he is in counselling with me gives me hope.

I'm trying to be more understanding of the shame that follows the addiction. This is why most addicts lie, theyre ashamed but I dont know that he can ever truley be honest with me. I want to overcome this and fight for my marriage and I will continue to after reading this.

Thank you and remember there is nothing you can do about yesterday but today you can always choose to be a better man. Best of luck on your continued recovery!

mpkl

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #2 on: January 09, 2018, 07:26:27 PM »
As a 19yo male fighting with pied and p addiction stories like that work as a lesson for me.Thank you sir for your honesty and your time!

There are times where i imagine myself in a couple years or that i use my age as an excuse for me to cure the addiction later and use it now..

I have a gf that i cared way too much for her and as it seems she accepts my problem and waits for me.I dont want to lose her or dissapoint her!

I just know that my life is trash caused by p addiction.Im a person willing to have a life a joy but i cant knowing p keeps me off true happiness.

I was in 70days no screen arousal (yesterday breaked it and felt like shit but gf said its okk)

Today im feeling a new person ready to chase his dream and not to pmo again!

Wish me luck sir!

P.S.i would like to hear more from your p story (how it started etc)

Thanks again i hope you get your life together and get your wife back!

Objectified1

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2018, 02:00:40 PM »
I am sorry to say, but I don’t feel you can ever “make this up”. Hubby and I are still working at it 2 years in and there are days I’m still in so much pain and feel nothing but hate for him. It’s better overall . But he can’t ever, “make it up”.

aquarius25

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2018, 08:39:06 PM »
I think the term "making it up to her" is a term meant to be a good thing just not fully aware yet of what recovery is. My husband and I are a year and a half into recovery. He said that a lot in the first 9 months. I understood him to mean he is sorry and was trying to see if there was something he could do to repair it. The problem is a few things. One, the best thing he can do is to recover for himself. To see himself with enough self respect and deserving of a better life not filled with shame. He needed to understand that what I needed from him is for him to be a person of character. I wanted and needed (and still do need) for him to leave the shame and be the man he claims he wants to be. The second problem is that, if I am going to be perfectly honest, there is no amount of good works he can do for us to be "even" or for him to have it "made up". Forgiveness doesn't work that way. At some point I have to (and am still learning how) to let go of the past. I have to decide each day that I choose him today and that the man he is today I am willing to build a future with. If I continue to throw the past in his face, I not only  hurt him and his progress but I hurt myself too! I have learned that forgiveness isn't just for him but for me too. Grace is needed for both of us. We both have to learn to accept who we are today, accept each other, and start from today. That is the only way we can build a future.

Emerald Blue

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #5 on: February 14, 2018, 07:15:39 PM »
I think a sticky might be a good idea at some point, to advise recovering addicts about relationship recovery beyond quitting. There are significant changes in the dynamics of a relationship over the years where sex/porn addiction is a factor. The longer and more deep seated the behaviour, the greater the effects on intimacy, both physical and emotional. Rebuilding trust is a very important issue, as is learning better skills in communication, negotiating boundaries and committing to honesty. As you can see, these are shared issues and require the commitment of both partners.

Unfortunately it’s not as simple as quitting and “making it up” to the betrayed partner. She too will have consciously and subconsciously reacted to the subtle changes in the addicts behaviours over the years, even if she is not consciously aware of what’s going on. In turn, you would also alter your responses and how you behave towards her. The partners aren’t passive bystanders that things have “happened to”. We too have an active role in both our own personal healing and that of the relationship. After d day, many partners realise that they have to own their share of the relationship. It’s their responsibility too.

I’m sorry that’s it’s not as simple as “making up”. All I would say is (1) quit, and (2) tell the truth. The truth might be what partners say they want but it can be difficult to hear. But given the choice, we’d rather have honest disclosure than lies. Hope this helps. I’m sorry it didn’t work out for you.

« Last Edit: February 14, 2018, 07:20:06 PM by Emerald Blue »
His porn addiction: you didn't cause it - you can't control it - you can't cure it

Redfire03

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #6 on: June 01, 2018, 02:57:38 PM »
Man i really wish i could convence my wife to join and read all of these post. She filed for divorce last week and has shut me out we have two kids 3 year old and 18 month old.

aquarius25

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #7 on: June 04, 2018, 12:38:28 PM »
All you can do is continue to try. Divorce can take time so maybe her heart will change during that process, especially if you are doing everything you can to be open, honest, and to get completely out of the fog of porn. Even if it does go the way so many marriages do, well at least you will be present, honest, and have integrity to model for your kids. Life will get better, maybe not in the way you expect but dealing with this addiction is a good thing. Don't be discouraged. I am sorry you are hurting.

HumbleRich

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #8 on: June 05, 2018, 08:06:03 AM »
That is precisely why you should never talk about relapses or tell them everything.  Keep it to yourself and work  your recovery.

mrsturtle

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #9 on: June 10, 2018, 12:03:28 PM »
Wives and partners deserve full disclosure nothing more, nothing less! It’s the SO choice if we decide to go down the painful, hellish road to healing or not. If you don’t tell your partner, you contribute to the sick, pitiful secrecy of P addiction. We deserve to know the truth of who and what we are dealing with and have the informed choice to move forward from there or not. You cannot win at this by more lying and omissions of the truth.

aquarius25

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #10 on: June 10, 2018, 01:23:34 PM »
HumbleRich, that attitude doesn't help gain authenticity for yourself or heal a relationship. It just continues the lies. There will always be a divide. You will always carry this secret. In addition to that, it doesn't help your reboot. You are continuing to feed those attitudes of lying and shame which porn thrives in. You have put yourself in a place where you can relapse and "nobody will ever know". That isn't real healing, there is no accountability, and ultimately it will reflect in the progress. Even if you do manages enough self control to "not look at porn" it will most likely be replaced with another compulsive behavior. You haven't progressed forward in a path of real integrity. Also you have left your partner in a fog of deceit. The truth has a funny way of coming to the surface eventually and it doesn't make a partner feel any better the longer they find out. You aren't respecting her and treating her as a real partner. Partners don't hide and lie, they honer each other. I am sorry to be so harsh, it isn't my intention to be hurtful but more to be clear in hopes that you might understand just how imperative it is for addicts to be honest. It is just as important for their partners as it is for themselves and their recovery. Encouraging other addicts to hide doesn't really help anyone.

If you believe this to be incorrect please, I am open to your thoughts. I just can't see how encouraging an addict to continue lying helps them or their marriage. You can't really work your recovery and maintain a relationship when you hide such a big part of yourself from them. That isn't a partnership.

HumbleRich

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #11 on: June 12, 2018, 05:54:45 AM »
I will read through both of your responses carefully and thoroughly..., but I completely disagree.

Full disclosure is not necessary for personal and relationship recovery, and further, it can actually cause irreversible damage that, more often than not, dooms the relationship to an early grave.

I argue this for a few reasons:

1.  Porn addiction is a sickness, and illness.  I argue that it is an abduction of our natural sexualities.  A transformation of them.  It turns us into a monster, we didn't start off as one. It is an addiction, and thus...

2.  It tells you very, very little about the human being with the addiction.  Knowing the details of the addiction tells you nothing about the person you married.  Believe me, our addictions evolve as we perpetually look for new ways to get our buzz.  Before long we are looking at stuff that would have disgusted us three months prior.

3.  Full disclosure does not help US or YOU.  Will it really make you feel better as a partner knowing what your husband searched, considering the first two points I made? 

You deserve to know if we have searched anything illegal or monstrously unethical, but beyond that, disclosure is...again, neither helpful nor conducive to healing of the relationship.


What DOES heal the relationship and the porn addict?

1.  The porn addict quitting porn, erotica, and compulsive masturbation.
2.  Not talking about the addiction with the spouse.
3.  Working on healthy intimacy and rebuilding the marriage.
4.  Complete honesty about the rebuilding process.
5.  Relearning affectionate and intimate activity.

These are the steps that actually work to repair relationships.

Modern psychology, neuroscience, and psychotherapy tell us, that regardless of what the media says...

Dwelling on the past is not conducive to healing from trauma.

Healing depends on NOT dwelling on what happened.

It depends on focusing on the present and the future and working on core skills.

I hope the best for both of you,

Rich

Gracie

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #12 on: June 12, 2018, 06:44:26 AM »
Very respectfully HR I disagree with your stance.  However I do agree with part. 

I have always advocated for a loving husband, who truly loves his wife, to make time to sit down and tell her that he has a problem.  And then telling her.  Why?  Because when people marry they become two halves of a whole.  The become one team.  We promise to be together.   For life.  Because of this team, there are then two people working on the problem.  The process of solving the problem is then halved.  Is it easy?  Hell no!  Is it fun? See previous answer.  Is it worth it? Amazingly so!

Besides the reason above, I advocate for disclosure because there always exists the chance of discovery.  You see women are very intuitive, and we know something is not right.   Something is off.  No man treats his wife exactly the same when he seeking other women whether in physical form or 2 dimensionally.  Not only that, family members sense the withdrawal and changes and they ask.

Now, I do not advocate for the "and by the way I loved sex with goats" disclosure. I say that knowing from this forum and another one that PAs get into some weird shit due to desensitization.  But yes we need to know you are addicted to porn.

This can lead to discussions about how to heal as well.  It also holds you accountable to your healing.  It gives you your best friend as a cheer leader.   Do not short change your wife or you in this process.  Trust the love in your marriage.

Emerald Blue

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #13 on: June 12, 2018, 09:37:16 AM »
Speaking from experience, my own and the partners on this forum, and from reading Paula Hall’s book on the partner’s perspective, honest disclosure is almost always necessary for the recovery of the relationship.

Just as all individuals are different, all relationships are unique to the personalities involved and within any relationship there are a number of ways a relationship can turn out depending on the choices, behaviour and communication of both partners. In other words, you can make or break the relationship according to your actions.

Consider this. Disclosure isn’t the only way for a partner to discover a porn habit. Many partners discover porn use unintentionally. Many partners make repeated discoveries, sometimes after being told their spouse no longer does it; sometimes on a hunch because they sense something isn’t quite right, so they look for it. Discoveries aren’t always the spouse searching through phones and computers; sometimes they walk in on their husband masturbating; sometimes it’s their kid walking in and becoming upset or unsettled by the experience. Sometimes people are caught viewing porn at work. And so on. The point I’m making is that you cannot possibly expect to control what your spouse knows or doesn’t know, and you cannot realistically sustain this relationship based on the assumption she is never going to know you have a porn addiction.

Most partners will tell you it’s the lying and deception that does the most damage. Repeated discoveries interspersed with lying, denial and minimisation — the trickle truth scenario — is the most damaging to partners and to the relationship but it’s also the most common pattern of discovery. An honest, full disclosure is the least damaging. Sometimes it might be necessary to do a therapeutic disclosure with a counsellor who specialises in porn/sex addiction. This is precisely because the partner may need support to deal with the trauma and upset. Disclosure isn’t easy for either partner.

With regard to WHAT to disclose, it’s probably better to avoid the details, that is the specific categories of porn, but it’s probably important to say that you have a porn habit that is interfering with your life and/or your relationship. It’s probably important to explain how long it’s been going on for and that it’s reached the point where it’s having negative consequences. A broad outline is OK, but it’s probably best to avoid descriptions and details about the porn material itself.

Disclosing your porn behaviours is a risk. For a partner, discovery/disclosure will almost always create conflict in the initial aftermath. Most partners will find honest disclosure, regardless of the details, far easy to deal with than the discovery – denial - trickle truth route. Disclosure isn’t easy for the partner to listen to, but addicts have to accept this, and so do partners I suppose. Honest disclosure is much less likely to end up in separation than years of lying, deception and gaslighting.

With regard to porn addiction, I would say that almost all partners on this forum are aware of the various theories about porn addiction and have a fairly good understanding of how porn addiction begins and perpetuates. Most partners will be motivated to learn about porn addiction and will be willing to help repair the relationship in the light of this knowledge. Repairing the relationship takes two. If one partner has a “secret” porn habit and believes that an equally “secret” 90 day reboot is somehow going to restore the relationship, particularly the sexual relationship, then think again. Partners are not passive recipients nor are they without sexual feelings of their own.

Partners also have their own separate recovery process which is entirely different to that of the recovering porn addict. The damage is already done. We might not know why certain parts of the relationship don’t feel right. We don’t understand why our spouse isn’t interested in sex any more. We sense an emotional distancing too. We pick up on all sorts of little things that don’t quite add up but we can’t put our finger on what it is exactly. Being in a relationship with a porn addict who is not (yet) in recovery is a very lonely place. Living like this eventually takes its toll on our emotional health and wellbeing. The longer it goes on, the deeper the damage and the longer it will take to put that damage right. That’s why I feel that it’s important for addicts to be honest. Speaking personally, my partner’s 15-20 year porn addiction resulted in depression, disordered eating, late onset anorexia and body dysmorphia, not to mention it’s damaging effects on my sexuality and sexual identity. As far as I’m concerned, it’s too high a price to pay just so he could masturbate to pixels on a screen. He told me that the only way he could quit was by admitting after many years that he had a problem with it.
His porn addiction: you didn't cause it - you can't control it - you can't cure it

HumbleRich

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Re: A mans way to say sorry
« Reply #14 on: June 16, 2018, 11:15:46 PM »
I've read all of your responses but I still disagree.  Full disclosure is not right for every relationship.  I told my wife back when we were dating that I had problems with porn, and then when we were long distance we talked about it periodically.  We haven't talked about it since we got married.  I can't tell anyone else what is right or wrong, but personally, my wife and I are going through a lot.  Most important for my wife is my recovery from alcoholism and not drinking.  I last drank a little more than a month ago (six weeks to be exact), so it is fresh in her mind.  Beyond that we are dealing with other drama: my mother is visiting and I do not exactly have a great relationship with her, we are working on getting ready to move from South Korea (where I have been for 3 years, she for 5) back to America to take our teaching exams so that we can finally be teachers.  Adding to that, neither of us want to stay in America (we feel we cannot afford to live in the US), so we are trying to move either to England or back to Asia.  We are trying to have a baby as well.

All of this adds up to a lot of stress. 

My recovery helps reduce this stress by getting me to act my age and help by being fully aware of everything.  Talking about my lapses will do nothing but harm the relationship.

I would definitely tell her if I was refusing to give up my harmful behaviors, including porn.  But talking about my difficulty with the process would not be helpful.

I appreciate your perspectives.

Rich