Saturday, July 31, 2010

Blissfully unaware

When I met Tom, over ten years ago, he was the perfect man (or so I thought).  A nice guy that everyone liked.  He was the ideal man.  I wasn't the only girl set on marrying him.  There were several girls who just knew that this was THE GUY that could make all their dreams come true.  He was kind, and he loved the Lord with a passion I had never seen before.  He was attractive and fun to be around.  His passion for serving God was one of the biggest attractions for me.  I wanted to marry a Christian guy who valued family and wanted to serve God.  I couldn't (still can't sometimes) believe that he would be interested in someone like me.   Remember, I'm the girl who believes that no one would ever CHOOSE me.

When we started dating, our relationship became very serious, very fast.  And it became sexual.  This was something I had never before experienced in a relationship.  I had barely kissed a guy, let alone allowed him to touch me.  With Tom though, I learned something I never would have imagined before.  The physical aspect of a relationship was intriguing to me, and it felt good.  How could something that I was raised to believe was wrong feel so good?  I knew sex before marriage was wrong-that is what I was taught, and what I believed.  What I didn't know is that I would actually WANT to do more than kissing.  I was very naive.  For Tom, the physical element of our relationship was new to him as well.  We found ourselves in a predicament.  We cared deeply for one another, and were also very attracted physically to one another.  We wanted to be alone and explore our bodies together, though neither one of us talked openly about it.  It was just something that hung in the air between us, unsaid.  As a young Christian couple, who believed that sex before marriage was wrong, this quickly became a problem.

About a month into our relationship, the struggle for purity began.  I can still vividly remember the day that our defenses weakened.  Really, it began from the moment we first kissed; we just didn't realize it.  But I can pinpoint the day that I allowed Tom to cross that line.  We had gone to a park.  We were walking along a trail, chatting and flirting playfully.  We should have never stepped off the path.  But we did.  We found this large rock, away from people and the trail we were on, sat down and began kissing; something we had done on numerous occasions.  Tom was lying back on this rock, with me leaning over him.  Things began to get heated, and for the first time in my life, I had thoughts that I couldn't understand.  I wanted him to touch me.  This was shocking to me.  I had two voices screaming inside my head, while my body felt like it was on fire.  One voice said "You want to know what it feels like" and the other "This is evil!"  To my surprise, Tom must have been hearing the same voices because his exploration of second base began that day.  And I let him.  Before too long, Tom was able to pull himself together, listen to the voice of truth and stop.  Feeling awkward and uncomfortable, and still very much wanting to continue what we had been doing, we walked back to the car.  We didn't talk about it much.  We both knew that what we had done crossed all the lines we had carefully drawn for ourselves, and it was uncomfortable to talk about.  But we knew it was wrong, and we silently vowed that it could not, WOULD NOT happen again.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Celebrate Recovery

Has anyone ever heard of Celebrate Recovery?  We went to a meeting last night and my husband is excited about the hope he felt last night.  I'll admit that I am hopeful too.  Skeptical, but hopeful.  Not skeptical about the program.  Skeptical that it will be THE turning point for him.  It might be.  I don't really know.  I'm still reeling from all the hurt and pain of my husband's most recent confession and am having trouble believing that after 15 years living with a pornography addiction he will embrace freedom.  It isn't that I don't believe in my husband.  It isn't that I don't believe that God CAN and WILL free him.  It's that I have seen firsthand how Satan ensnares and I know that he isn't going to just sit back and allow my husband to easily break free from the enslavement of his addiction.  And I don't know what my husband will choose.  I don't know if he will finally truly give this to the Lord or if he will still hold onto it, in little pieces, so that he can use it to cope with life's stresses.  However, I know that being a part of Celebrate Recovery will at least be something, and I think that it is a really great program.  Doing something is better than doing nothing.  It sounds so simple, but sometimes simplicity has its own complications.  It's the whole "easier said than done" concept...

Because I am writing in anonymity, I have no friends.  Virtually I mean (though in reality I'm somewhat lacking in that area too, as I am somewhat shy).  I started a Facebook account so that I could hopefully connect with others out there...but you can't just go asking anyone on Facebook to be your friend.  SO...if any of you reading this would like to be friends on Facebook, I'd love to connect with you.  That goes for Twitter too.  You can find me on Facebook here, or Twitter here.

Smart and Trendy Moms

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Thursday hops

I am continually amazed at all the love and support in the blogging community.  I cannot believe how many people have written or commented already, as this blog is just a baby.  Starting next week, I will really begin my story about my painful journey, starting with how I met my husband, when I found out about his addiction, and how our dating relationship was impacted by it.  For now though, I hope you will bear with me as I try to build up a reader base today and tomorrow.  Everyone has told me to participate in these hops to gain new followers and I will spend the next two days not only trying to introduce myself, but also making connections with other bloggers out there.  By Saturday, I think I will have more time and be ready to really jump in and begin.  I do not know if I will write every day, because my story is a painful one.  I may have to take a break from time to time.  Again, I am so thankful to those of you who are supporting me in this.  It means a lot to know that I am not alone.

Bassgiraffe's Thoughts Thursday Blog Hop

The Two Savvy Sisters


Back to the beginning

Growing up, I was always very self-conscious.  About my looks.  About my intelligence (or in my mind, a lack of).  About my ability to offer anything to anyone.  Low self-esteem?  That was an understatement.  I hated myself.  I hated how I looked and how my voice sounded.  In my mind, I was ugly and stupid and no one would ever want to marry me.  It didn't matter what anyone else said.  That is how I viewed myself.  Some days, I still see myself that way.  It's a constant struggle for me.  20+ years later, I can now hear a compliment and politely say thank you, instead of saying "Yeah right" and then wondering what that person's motives are.  But that doesn't mean I believe it.  I believe that the person giving the compliment means what they are saying, but I don't see myself that way.  When I look in the mirror, I see an overweight, sad woman who will never be beautiful, and who will never be good enough.  I haven't learned to see myself as God sees me.  Some days I think that I never will.  I can take anything in the Bible at face value, except the parts that talk about how God sees us.  I believe that it applies to everyone...except me.  It's flawed, messed up thinking.  I know this.  I know that it is not healthy.  And yet, it is where I am.

I felt like it was important to share that, as it will play a large part of this story.  I'm insecure and while I don't hate myself anymore, I still believe the lies in the mirror.  I believe it when Satan whispers "You're ugly."  And when he says "You'll never be good enough."  and "You are nothing." 

And I feel like it is also important to tell you that I don't have all the answers.  I don't have the sure-fire way to overcome anything.  While I want to help others, it won't be because I have learned over the years HOW to be strong and stand firm in the face of trials.  Because the truth is, I haven't even come close to learning that.  But I will not underestimate for a second the power of sharing my heart with others.  You all have shown me by your comments and emails (THANK YOU!) that what I have to share is important and that God will use it.  Reading your kind comments and hearing some of your stories in your emails has been such a blessing and an incredible source of comfort for me.

So many of you have called me brave.  I don't feel brave.  I'm terrified.  But I know that I am being obedient to God in this endeavor and for now, it's enough.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Friendly Wednesday

As I am new to this whole blogging world and really want to raise awareness for my particular topic and build my readership, I think I will participate in a few of these blog hops to start out.  That's how people do it, right?  If anyone has any suggestions on how to promote my blog and get my story out there, I'd appreciate any tips or recommendations.  I'll be back on tonight to continue "my story".  Thanks for stopping by!  If you are stopping by from the hop, this blog is going to be my journey to tell how my life and marriage has been affected by my husband's addiciton to pornography.  It's not going to be pretty.  It's been a difficult and painful journey, one that I am still on.  I'm hoping I can make some friends and provide support to others along the way.  Thanks to those of you who have already reached out and are ready to join me as I tell my story.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


I debated on whether or not I would tell my husband about this blog.  In the effort to keep this completely anonymous, I have assumed a new name and will do everything within my power to protect my husband and myself.  I wasn't sure I wanted my husband to read this.  Last night when I began, I wanted to keep this to myself.  I was scared to tell him.  I wasn't sure how he would feel.  And I didn't want him to read it and see the deepest part of me, the part that is hurting and feeling alone.  Beyond that, at some point I will share the poor choices that I have made in our marriage.  And he doesn't need to relive that.

But today, it just felt right.  And so I told him what I was doing.  I even shared my first post with him.  While it was painful for him to read, and difficult for me to share, as my heart was fully exposed and he was faced with my uncertainty about whether or not I would do it all over again, I couldn't keep it from him.

I was surprised -though he's given me no reason to have expected any less-with his response.  He believes that my idea to write about our struggles in anonymity is a good idea and he is fully supportive of this endeavor.  We even talked about the possibility of him contributing his side of this issue from time to time.  I think it would be good for both of us.  While we have a good marriage overall, we are broken.  And we need to put the pieces back together again.  And maybe God will use this to bring healing to our marriage.  And ultimately, it is my prayer that God uses this to bring comfort and hope to others.

Soon I will go back to the beginning, where it first began.  I will tell our story.  It will be a long and painful recounting, but it must be told.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Where do I begin?

I have over a decade of pent up anger, hurt, frustration and pain to express. I have a vision for this blog. My purpose for writing is two-fold. I need to get these feelings and emotions out. I need a safe place to bear my soul. But I also want to help other women like me. Living with someone with an addiction of any kind can be difficult. I can't speak out about alcoholism or drug addiction. My specialty is surviving the aftermath that comes with an addiction to pornography. You see, I married into it. I was young and naive. And in love. Boy did I love that man. And while I knew about my husband's struggle, I didn't understand it. I didn't realize the toll that it would take me him, on me, or on our marriage.

And here's the real question:

If I had known what I know now, would I have still married him?

Honestly, and it pains me to admit this, I don't know. So many experiences over the last decade have shaped me into the woman I am now. Unfortunately, there are aspects of this sculpted me that I hate. There are things that I have done that I despise.

But there are also so many blessing in my life. My children for example. And yet, when I try to picture myself reliving some of the most excruciating moments, I can't wholeheartedly say that I would want to go through it all again.

I'm am hurting and broken and feel so utterly alone in this. I don't make friends easily, and I can't openly talk about this very personal topic without exposing my husband, which I am not willing to do. I can't talk to my husband about it, because I can't bear to see the hurt on his face. I know you may be thinking "Why is HE hurt?"

You see, my husband loves me. And he loves God. And he HATES what this does to him. He HATES what it does to me. He hates to see me hurting. And I can see it in his eyes. He believes that his addiction to pornography defines him. He think that it is a part of him. Deep down, he believes that he will never be free. And I'll be honest. I'm really struggling right now to believe it myself.

I'm writing this just days after my husband's most recent fall off the proverbial wagon. A fall he wasn't going to tell me about. A fall he lied to me about when I confronted him. So the wound is still fresh. I don't know what form each post will take, or how I will share my story. But I know that I need to begin to heal, and I believe that some of that healing can come through writing. And I hope that I can be a source of comfort and hope for others out there who are lost and hurting and alone.