Journal Entry: June 13, 2014
We were back in Los Angeles earlier this week for therapy. I received a phone call from my mother regarding my step father’s birthday/father’s day this coming weekend. I have been making so many excuses for why we have been out of town so much, and why we have been so distant, and why we have not attended family events, and I just could not do it anymore. I am an honest and open person who is not prone to lying or hiding, even if it is for my own good. It was time for me to come clean about why I was attending therapy out of town and why I had been so distant for the past five months. While on the phone with my mother, I broke down and told her everything. All they had known was that my husband had been going through a difficult time and had decided to cut his parents out of his life. They knew that he had broken some promises to me (this is what my husband’s therapist had suggested we tell people), but they had no idea what those promises were.
My mother was shocked when I explained the severity of my husband’s situation, his addiction, and my subsequent and ongoing trauma. Like everyone else that knows the truth, she admitted that they did not know anyone else diagnosed as a sex addict and they really had no idea what that meant, but they of course knew lots of betrayed spouses… my mother having been one herself 45 years ago. I tried to explain our situation the best I could, but I suggested Blue Eyes and I come to their house when we returned home. My mother agreed that would be a very good idea. The reason I had not wanted to tell them before is because they already have enough stress in their lives with my borderline sister and her needs, as well as the fact that my step father is dying from prostate cancer. We don’t know how much time he has left… maybe months, in our dreams and prayers, he would have years. He had his prostate removed approximately 12 years ago, but the cancer had spread to some lymph nodes. They treated him then, but knew it was only a matter of time before the cancer would be found somewhere else in his body. They said it would probably take a decade. Almost exactly two years ago, doctors found the cancer in his spine. The medications have kept the cancer small, the PSA scores low. But cancer is very good at adapting to medication and he has gone through two already. We keep hoping for new medications. My step father doesn’t need this extra stress. But then I decided to take to heart what all the therapists have been saying to me… I cannot protect people from pain or stress. It is best that my parents know the truth. Not knowing why we have been so distant is also stressful. Knowing the truth and knowing that we are working through it, and how we are working through it, was the better decision for me right now.
We sat down at my parent’s kitchen table, where we had sat so many times before for happy occasions, holidays and birthdays and really great family meals. Today was not one of those happy days. Blue Eyes started in on his story, the real story, the one that includes childhood neglect, sexual abuse, and humiliation. He traveled through his painful adolescence and his obsession with masturbation and porn. He eventually explained about his affairs and the destruction he had perpetrated on our marriage. He talked about my cutting incident and how he has not been able to metabolize the shame, it is so overwhelming. It took a while for him to traverse his nearly 50 years of life, such as it is. Both my parents were in tears. I am glad I come from this amazing family of empathetic people who love my husband, but I am usually really astonished by how quickly they come to his aid while seemingly forgetting about my needs. I don’t really think they forget about my needs, I think they just view me as this pillar of strength who can handle anything, take on the world. I took about an hour to explain to them how, in the face of infidelity, I am not that pillar. I crumbled. I told them in great detail about the phone call from the other woman. I explained to them how she has not given up on a relationship with Blue Eyes and about the subsequent phone calls and the card. About how Blue Eyes was under the impression that this secret life would never cross over to his real life and that due to where this woman lives, and who she is, there were so many degrees of separation, that it would never be an issue. Well, he was sadly mistaken. This woman, ironically, went to the same high school I did (albeit eight years before me), she actually works at the medical center where my parents receive ALL of their medical services, and she lives really close to my sister. She knows all our names and about our lives, and she is not very stable. Every time I drive by her exit on the freeway, I have a panic attack. She was in his life for over eight years. She thinks she has earned a spot in his life now. What a fucking nightmare.
A weight has been lifted. We can now speak openly and honestly to my parents about our situation, and if I have to leave my husband, they will not have to wonder why.
2 thoughts on “We told my parents today”
Well done you two, but yeah, I see how Blue Eyes’ story would be pulling on heartstrings while you sit there dying painfully.
My lovely Mum died suddenly thirteen years ago, at just 55 (gulp!) and she adored my love, and thought the world of him, my stepfather two years ago. He never knew what Rog did, he also had a whole heap of time for Rog. I had no one to share with in my family. I shared with Roger’s mother, who I had lived literally next door to for seventeen years and was very fond of, at the three week mark. I felt I had no choice, OW was threatening to turn up on her doorstep and tell her that she and Rog were destined to be together, and Rog was in denial about how fucking crazy this woman was at that point. The woman was scary, threatening to our children and I didn’t know whether she meant it or not, but I was terrified his mother would find out via her bunny boiling. She was doing some scary stuff. My MIL said, “are the children alright?” I said, yes. Then she never mentioned it again. I was traumatised, and in dire need of a mother figure – missing mine so damn much – and she ignored me. Five and a half years later, she has never mentioned it again. Her golden child. Let’s pretend it wasn’t him. I don’t put myself out for her any longer, and luckily the children are old enough to visit alone, she has been a loving grandmother, but I have very little to do with her anymore. I was really heartbroken “my family” weren’t able to be there for me. But at least I guess I know who doesn’t have my back. She couldn’t even offer me a hug. God I wanted one so badly at that stage. My MIL that I had loved for 21 years, and she showed me I meant nothing to her.
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This process is so devastating in so many ways. Sometimes I just stare at my husband in shock. I have been devoted and loving to him and my entire (huge) family has welcomed him with open arms and now my parents totally have his back (well, and mine too, of course). And yet, none of that was ever going to help with his childhood wounds and his hidden addiction until he acknowledged it. If the OW hadn’t gotten through to me, who knows. I think even if the men aren’t sex addicts, the issues stem from the same place. I am so sad you lost your mom so very young and your MIL was not strong enough to be genuinely helpful to you. I bet she does care a lot for you. She probably feels like she needs to choose. Sad. We feel so empty as it is. Another reason I did not want to tell my mother was because she is a consummate worrier. She constantly asks about the other woman and our safety. And yes, we have a potential bunny boiler as well. We eventually did call the police (a post that will show on my blog soon), which seems to have stopped the madness. We will see. I believe that my MIL has never cared for me and even though my in laws beat down their son, if it came to divorce or even if they knew about his sex addiction, they would still completely blame me. Before my husband’s brother committed suicide, he had four long term relationships (three marriages) and no matter what happened it was always the woman’s fault, never their son. The first was too focused on her own career and too selfish, the second was frigid, the third was a gold digger, and the fourth (in their mind), was a cheater and murderer. Sad, sick people. Thanks for continuing to share with me. It really helps!