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To Find Connection, I Must Remove the Poison – Part 2

(written 02-12-2017)

 

I know, I know. You’re here expecting to slash the machete through the thicket of my complex brain while we discuss my processes through EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing).

 

Sorry to burst your bubble. Not today!

 

I learned something yesterday that I wanted to share first. It’s important, so bear with me. We’ll explore my jungle tomorrow.

 

I’m currently taking a course by Dawn Clancy called ACOA 101. Yes, I have numerous workbooks, podcasts, books, and a variety of other recovery resources I’m doing to really understand my internal pain and how to heal it. This has become my personal goal, my life mission so to speak. You’re just lucky enough to join me on this Rocky Road.

 

For some reason, I’m currently craving ice cream.

 

Anyway, what I just learned was, that as a child of a dysfunctional family, I was expected to follow three implied rules. These rules are explained in Claudia Black’s book, Children of Alcoholics: It Will Never Happen To Me.

 

The three rules are:

  1. Don’t Talk
  2. Don’t Trust
  3. Don’t Feel

Read more

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Relational Triage for Sex Addicts and Their Partners

If my Fledgling has identified him or herself as a sex addict in the early stages of recovery, I’m guessing you’d follow in my footsteps and leap to this page first.

 

“What can I do to fix my relationship?” was where I put all my energy in my recovery.

 

That mentality blinded me from being truly supportive towards my former spouse and, in many ways, worsened our chance of reconciliation.

 

In recovery, I still made everything about me and what I needed for me to feel safe; all at the expense of my former spouse.

 

Head’s up for the addict!

 

If you want to salvage your relationship, please read the following list of articles BEFORE you read this one:

Understanding PTSD

Sex Addiction Induced Trauma

More Trauma in Partners of Sex Addicts

Treatment for Partners of Sex Addicts

Understanding Your Partner

For The Partner

 

Now, if my Fledgling has identified him or herself as the partner of a sex addict in the early stages of recovery, I’m guessing that this is the last blog you even want to look at. I wish I could say, from my experience, that a relationship after betrayal can be salvaged, but unfortunately, in my situation, it wasn’t.

 

I’m grateful that my former spouse and I remain good friends and are on the same team as co-parents. Unfortunately, the definition of what I wanted “family” to look like is different than it has become.

 

I believe what hurt our chances to heal our marriage was that I never learned the concept of first triage for the partner, eventually followed by relational triage in our recovery. All I could focus on was skipping what she needed to heal and jumping to what I wanted; relational triage.

 

In many ways, our relationship became a power struggle. She needing to heal from the post-traumatic stress my actions caused, while I fought for our marriage as the only way to manage my own fears and my own insecurities.

 

Both of us were screaming for our needs to be heard, but we were deaf to each other because of our own pain. Read more

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Treatment for Partners of Sex Addicts

In the last few blogs I’ve hopefully enlightened my Fledglings how partners of sex addicts have symptoms similar to people with PTSD.

 

We started our journey first in Understanding PTSD where I defined PTSD, listed symptoms of PTSD, educated how PTSD relates to ACOA (Adult Children of Alcoholics) and presented different kinds of treatment for PTSD.

 

In Sex Addiction Induced Trauma, I explained the thirteen different dimensions that were developed by Dr. Omar Minwalla specifically to understand the different types of trauma that partners of sex addicts suffer from. And in More Trauma in Partners of Sex Addicts, I talked about the key points that Barbara Steffens co-wrote in her book The Sexually Addicted Spouse.

 

It’s important to remember, that treatment for the partner is just as important as treatment for the addict. The following blog will focus on that treatment.

Read more