7 thoughts on “Locked in Conflict with a Spouse: How to Give Up and Win

  • December 31, 2017 at 1:30 pm

    This blog is written entirely from the standpoint of the perpetrator (“addict”). It completely disregards the trauma these men inflict on their partners, their continued lying, manipulation, and abuse even after “the game is up” so to speak. To advise a woman to be vulnerable and trust someone who has deliberately and intentionally hurt her by living a secret life is adding to the pain.

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    • March 21, 2018 at 2:09 pm

      Yes. They need to acknowledge the immense abusiveness of their selfish choices. The selfisness of sexual greed and lying are incompatible with being in an intimate relationship. These disordered characters need to understand that they can only have one of these two conditions: Putting self first or putting the relationship first. They are free to choose self over relationship, but they don’t get to keep the relationship too.

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  • March 21, 2018 at 1:03 pm

    It takes a long time, a whole bunch of therapy and 12 step meetings for these narcissistic defensive blamers to change. It is hard for them to experience humility. Mine did when I finally filed three charges for assault against him. My refusal to protect him from the possibility of going to jail FINALLY got his attention.
    After that, he really had to assess his culpability for abusing me physically, emotionally and intellectually. It helped him to read Ann Stirling Hastings on sex addicton and fantasy. (F…. you Dr. Ruth!).
    Add to that multiple sessions of Neuroptimal brain training to reset the dysfunctional electrical pathways of his brain, and I have a contrite, apologetic, strangely non-defensive, adult husband. He has chosen relationship and dependence on an “other” – me – over fantasy and independence. He understands that he destroyed the basis of his marriage – trust – and is very serious about his S.A. participation and being accountable.
    We are both glad I hung in there.

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  • March 21, 2018 at 1:19 pm

    “Say something like, I can’t talk about this right now but let’s talk about it later when we’re calmer.”
    The ability to increase the amount of time between feeling emotionally attacked and responding to it is the gift we got from our Neuroptimal brain training.
    Many pieces had to come together for us to emerge from the emotional horror storm of sex addiction. As he heard in his group therapy with CSAT Judy Burch, RIP, if youre going through hell, keep going. Amazingly and with much help, we made it through hell together.

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  • March 21, 2018 at 1:49 pm

    “Each person is afraid to approach the other with openness and trust. Instead each is seeking to find safety in gaining power and avoiding vulnerability.”
    Isn’t this the position of the fearful little boy each sex addict is? Isn’t the addiction an attempt to gain power and control over feeling vulnerable?
    It is ironic that pornography is misnamed “adult” material. Porn and sex addiction are symptoms of the most immature, emotionally under-developed, fearful, overgrown boys.

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  • March 24, 2018 at 6:59 pm

    This blog has so many disturbing things in it, that it’s hard to know where to start. The CSAT community, who almost all have a very stron link to Patrick Carnes and his philosophy, has little regard for the women abused by these men and the ttrauma experienced by the women.
    The statement that there were likely problems in the marriage prior to the revelation of a secret life and deviant sexual behavior – well of course! A person carrying on a secret life is not exactly behaving responsibly and is probably emotionally detached. The woman may know something is wrong, but not what.
    To say that the abused person (typically the wife) should trust him is ridiculous. The burden to be open and honest and fundamentally change is on the offender. Rather than tell her to trust, he should be told to be trustworthy. Also, CSATs often accuse women of trying to control, when in fact they are trying to find safety. Approximately 70% of women abused by these so-called “sex addicts” have PTSD.
    The lying, and all too often the porn and deviant sexual behavior, continues far after the “disclosure”. These men are disordered and are abusers. 12 steps is not treatment, and the idea that men whose secret lives were integral to their abuse should belong to a secret club of equally disordered offenders to “recover” is ludicrous.
    I’m afraid that the author and most of these comments make it look way too easy.

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    • March 27, 2018 at 8:59 am

      Twelve step is hard to believe in and should have two different tracks: one for men who want to stay married and another for those who are not or cannot stay married.
      Because S.A.s are narcissists, Step 1, admitting powerlessness over their evolutionary brains is tough for them and that is good. Steps 4 & 5 make them reflect on and speak their flaws. Eventually, and with psychotherapy, they start to believe that they are normal guys who make selfish choices, rather than special, entitled, all-powerful gods. Humility is what these people need to learn so they can stop being defensive and admit that they are really just cruel S.O.B.s who serve(d) only their own childish, slf-centered greed. Only when they identify their central internal problem can they choose to start changing their value system.

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