I still have a dozen or so stories that I am sorting through. I do thank all of you for your patience as I have been a little tardy in getting all of them posted. Here is a story I received last December. I do hope that Aileen is still with us, but, if not, we are with her in spirit and I hope she is well. (Update–After I contacted Aileen to let her know I had posted her story, she sent me an update. I have copied it at the end of this post.) Here is her story:
Thank God for your website. For the first time in days I feel like I am not alone. As you know this is a shameful problem and thinking about possibly staying with my husband has made me feel even more shameful. Now I see there may be hope. We are at the beginning of our struggle but I want people to know that sometimes the signs are not huge and this can surprise even the most savvy wife.
“He’s Catholic!” Those were the words that got me to go out on the first date with my to be husband. My mother set me up with him and to all he seemed perfect. Handsome, athletic, driven, smart and soon became my love and my best friend. After three years of dating we became married in a beautiful Church ceremony with all of our friends and family present. We promised to love through good times and bad, forsaking all others, as long as we both shall live.
After leaving my career to follow him to graduate school, we relocated once again to another new city for his new job and bought the American Dream. Beautiful home on half an acre, near a lake and enough bedrooms to have a litter of children. We sank all of our savings and retirement into this home but it seemed like a small sacrifice for our happily ever after.
Then the nightmare started. I work a lot from home and went to log into our mutual computer and when I checked my email it opened up an email I had never seen. This email had over 500 messages in it about porn, discrete affairs, and some website called BeNaughty.com. For a second I thought my email had been hacked. It took me a couple of minutes to realize this was not my account, this was my husbands account. Over the next couple of hours I saw explicit photos both to and from his account to many different women, some not looking a day over 18. Most of the emails discussed chat rooms and texting. Being a trusting wife I had never analyzed our phone bill. As long as the price was what it was supposed to be who cared how many minutes or text messages we used. We were on an almost unlimited plan. After some work with the phone company I began to pour over our phone records of the last 16 months. Some months there were only 1500 text messages from him but some months hit over 3000. Times were usually when I was at work away from the home (I am a Realtor) or late at night. It seemed to happen whenever he had a free second-on New Years Day, Thanksgiving, my birthday. Then I noticed text messaging led to phone calls. I was physically sick. All the lies, all the time he spent with these women and not me, all this wasted energy.
After confronting him he didn’t have much to say. He told me he was happy with our marriage and me but just wanted sex more than I did and this was his release. It was something to fill that void since he felt guilty begging me for sex. I thought our sex life was fine. We had sex twice a week. When I asked how long it has been going on I was shocked to hear over two years. We have only been married four years. He even admitted to once spending over 14 hours online with different types of porn and chat rooms.
I always thought that sex addicts were addicted to just true sex. I have learned quickly that it can be anything sexual. Porn, texting (or sexting as it is currently known), phone sex.
We are working hard to try to save our marriage. He states that he was glad everything is out in the open and he had tried to stop repeatedly and had even tried to tell me. It explains why he always wanted to study or work on the computer while I was home. I was his guardian even though I was unaware of it. Other signs that I never noticed (I shouldn’t have been looking) was his distance, anger, computer crashing, him wanting his phone taken away. Once I had gotten an old 80’s porn tape as kinda a gag gift and noticed he was watching it more than I expected. One day I noticed it in the trash. He said he couldn’t stop watching it and had to get rid of it. The problem with this addiction is that temptation is everywhere…tv, phone, computers.
My trust is destroyed but I still love him and want to help. He has risked our marriage, our home, our future, his education and even his job for this addiction. Seeing what he was willing to risk helped me realize it was something that he had lost control with. The other hard part is now he is getting help with something that he has struggled with for two years and starting to feel human again. On the other hand, I am just finding everything out and am having to deal with and feel worse while he feels better. That is leading to guilt all around.
Hopefully through SAA, counseling (both apart and together) and possibly medication we hope to get him sober and save our marriage. Other things that have helped is locking the personal computer and removing his non work phone. This was all at his suggestion. Including the counseling. After reading about so many husbands that are resistant to help encourages me that we may work through this. Like many have said, we are taking it one day at a time and some days are better than others. Glad that I have found your website. There are not many support forums for spouses of sex addicts.