The Beginning of Something Else

On June 1, 2007 I found out my husband and partner of almost two decades had been unfaithful to me since before our marriage, and had been having intercourse with prostitutes for 3 1/2 years. This is what happened next.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Wrestling with my Self

Went to church this morning, and what I got from it is that because I am an expression of the divine (Meister Eckhart - "Let God be God in you."), all my needs are already met and that when I'm unsure about that, I can lean toward and call on my higher power for support.

I can't say with any certainty that any of this is true, but it gives me a more empowered place from which to live, so for now I say yes to it. It doesn't need to be true to have a positive impact in my life.

Removing Need from my relationship leaves me free to love Husband without trying to get from him what I (with support from my higher self / higher power) should be providing for myself: validation, acceptance, security, guidance. I don't even Need love from Husband. I go to church and I see hundreds of people who are opening their hearts to me.

Love is available.

Love does not come only from a single source (except perhaps in the sense of a Source that is divine universal love-intelligence, of which I believe we are all a part.)

Love may not come from where I want it, or from where I think it will come; and love may come from the most unexpected places.

So I am free to love Husband without Needing him to provide that which I already have (the challenge here is allowing myself to see that I already have it) and that which I can provide for myself as an adult woman.

This is NOT to say that I am willing to be in relationship without expectations.

Expectations can be worked out and expressed between us. And if what I expect out of a relationship can't be met, if what we are able to work out leaves me feeling compromised, that's my indication that it's not the right relationship for me.

Fortunately at this moment in time I have every indication that we can work out a set of mutual expectations that leave us both satisfied, peaceful and uncompromised. Especially with the new tools we've gained from recovery work and therapy.

So I came home from church feeling open, empowered, peaceful and free to love.

Then I opened the letter from the IRS. During the period when his addiction really began escalating Husband neglected to take care of doing our taxes as he said he would. So we have back taxes and penalties that have been growing for several years now.

I have a lot of anger about these things because in my mind they're closely tied to that period of lies, distractions and thousands of dollars secretly spent on prostitutes, for which I'm realizing I still have a lot to work through to get to a place of authentic forgiveness.

So today is a day when I wrestle with what I understand is possible on the one hand, and the pull of my ego / identity on the other.

I think for me the way through this is prayer, meditation, exercise (where I release a lot of stress), and couples therapy (where I feel safe to fully express myself to Husband.)

Something else I've come to today: For me, clarity is an impermanent state, just like anything else; and peace is an ongoing journey.


MargauxMeade said...

I love that you pointed out that clarity is an impermanent state. That's something I often forget.

As far as the taxes go, I understand those feelings of resentment. I'm in a weird situation because I've known about my husband's sex addiction for much of our relationship and I've watched it progress to that crazy place where, besides acting like a lunatic in general, the addict forgets to do important things (my husband and I are separated now, and he "forgot" to pay the rent for three months and, when I came to collect my stuff from the apartment, our cats were emaciated--he "forgot" to feed them). Anyway, since I've watched my husband turn into a completely different person, I feel compelled to tell wives who discovered the sex addiction after the fact this: Your husband truly wasn't in his right mind when he was doing these things. The person my husband is right now is NOT the person I fell in love with--that's how much he's changed over the course of this addiction.

woman.anonymous7 said...

MargauxMeade - Thanks so much for your reminder. On most days I can keep myself present to the fact that Husband was, for lack of a better term, "posessed" when he was active in his addiction. On bad days the lines blur for me again and old questions and doubts resurface.

Many of the few friends who know what we've been going through (none of whom have experienced sex addiction as an addict or partner) wonder or just can't understand why I stay with someone who has done what husband has done.

Reminders from others like you who are also on this journey help assure me that I'm not crazy for allowing for the separation of Husband and his addict.

And if I separate out hurts and resentments of the past and look only at the facts as they are now, it's clear that Husband IS a different person. Of course that's no guarantee, but as I learn to accept what I can and can't control in life (the future, for example) I can more consistently focus on and appreciate how good the present moment is.