Anonymity is generally coveted on betrayed spouse blogs. Some of us are protecting the reputations of our husbands, because we want to. Because we believe in them and their ability to overcome whatever it was that drove them to their wretched cheating behavior in the first place. And if it is not their reputation we protect, perhaps we want to help them protect relationships. The relationships they have with their family…. people that are vulnerable, or people that might not understand why they did what they did. Or maybe we just want to protect others from being hurt, like our vulnerable children. To protect them from having to ask the question, why me? Why would you lie and do something you knew would hurt ME?
If it’s not their reputation we aim to protect, maybe it is our own. The world is a judgmental place. It is not fun to be blamed for someone else’s bad behavior. Maybe, just maybe, we were good, loving, compassionate, honest, reliable, hard working, loyal partners and we are not to blame at all. Why put ourselves out there in that capacity, to be judged and ridiculed. Maybe we just cannot handle the misplaced criticism from people we know. Unfortunately, we do receive a lot of this criticism on blogs from the world at large. Even as we type out our heartache, our story, we receive criticism in the form of comments on our blog, many of them written anonymously. Some even written in the name of “anonymous.”
I hate being anonymous. I remain somewhat anonymous on this blog because my husband asked me to, for now, respect the fact that most people do not understand sex addiction and while he is recovering, he would like to be able to control who knows and how they are told. Until discovery, he had no idea what was really wrong with him and he had no clue what sex addiction was. This is one of those things that unless you are living it yourself, it is pretty difficult to understand. I do respect his wishes. When people reach out to us by email, we generally share our identities, because we want people who are suffering to know that we are real, tangible people going through the same thing they are and we have found that not having to feel so alone can be a very healing component of recovery. Recovering from sex addiction, AND recovery from betrayal trauma.
I have been writing about my betrayal trauma for nearly three years, and I have been posting on this blog for over two years. With close to 5,000 comments, I know that a lot of people either don’t understand or don’t believe in sex addiction and that is not really my problem. I continue to live with a recovering addict, and so there is absolutely zero doubt in my mind that sex addiction not only exists, but it affects A LOT of people. I am not asking anyone to, in their own personal lives, believe my story or believe anything for that matter. I write my story here because it helps me heal. That is it. Unfortunately what does not help me heal is people who have not read my story, who do not want to try and understand, and who give totally unsolicited advice aimed at hurting versus helping. I am not asking anyone to solve the world’s problems, much less my problems, here on my blog. I do, on the other hand, LOVE the blogger friends I have met here. EVERYONE who reads my blog knows this. Having a way to talk out my fears, my frustrations, my anger, my excitement, my joy, my appreciation… with friends who generally get me, well, it’s like nothing I have ever had in my life prior to this. I have friends, yes. But I do not have any friends in real life that really understand from having lived it, what I am going through. Of course I don’t want them to have to understand through living it, our friendship is not about that. But here, our friendships ARE about that. I like to take any opportunity I can to thank my blogger friends.
Another thing most of you know about me is I do not delete comments. Early on I got up the nerve to answer blogger questions honestly and openly, even though the topics were generally about something I was still struggling with and for which I was ill equipped to handle on some days. I have come a long way since those early days of blogging, and the not so nice comments that would come through every once in a while. Those kinds of comments are really few and far between now and I have been responding to nearly all comments on my blog for quite some time.
Then, while sitting in a hotel room in Tokyo late last week, this comment “waiting approval” (for those of you who don’t blog, even if we don’t moderate comments, the first comment to be posted by a new commenter is always queued up for moderation) showed up in response to my ‘Living in denial’ post:
I read the comment and thankfully had no emotional reaction. I did have a choice at that point: 1) delete the comment (something I have never done), 2) post the comment and post a reply (something I have always done). And honestly, I also could have emailed back this person and told them to fuck off. But you see, the email attached to this comment doesn’t even look real. I mean, it looks totally made up in a random way. I guess I decided I needed to address what was written in the comment, but in Kat style, I decided to REALLY address what is written in the comment. I sat on it for a couple days, and now, this post. I have never, personally in my life, written a comment to anyone like the one above, anonymous or otherwise. I don’t think my blog (if a person actually takes the time to read even part of my blog) warrants such a comment by anyone. But, I do read a lot of comments written anonymously by what seems to be angry, judgmental people. You know, they are everywhere on the internet. Written in response to political Facebook posts, or articles about anything, even if only remotely controversial. It is like there are people so full of hate in this world, that they just sit around writing these comments, anonymously.
So here I am. Responding to anonymous on my somewhat anonymous blog. It sounds like I am “married to a narcissist, maybe even a socipath (sic).” Hmm. Okay. First, the DSM-5 criteria for narcissistic personality disorder (a very real thing) include (mayoclinic.org): 1) Having an exaggerated sense of self-importance, 2) Expecting to be recognized as superior even without achievements that warrant it, 3) Exaggerating your achievements and talents, 4) Being preoccupied with fantasies about success, power, brilliance, beauty or the perfect mate, 5) Believing that you are superior and can only be understood by or associate with equally special people, 6) Requiring constant admiration, 7) Having a sense of entitlement, 8) Expecting special favors and unquestioning compliance with your expectations, 9) Taking advantage of others to get what you want, 10) Having an inability or unwillingness to recognize the needs and feelings of others, 11) Being envious of others and believing others envy you, 12) Behaving in an arrogant or haughty manner.
I am very familiar with this list, and others, having looked at it numerous times in relation to my mother in law (whom I have written about numerous times on this blog), the person who raised my sex addict husband. Blue Eyes has been tested numerous times for all mental disorders including narcissistic personality disorder (and I have written about that here on my blog). Since discovery, Blue Eyes has spent many hours, thousands of questions, numerous questionnaires, with multiple therapists. Blue Eyes does not even come close to qualifying for, what seems to be the insidious diagnosis for cheating spouses, narcissistic personality disorder. It is true that all of Blue Eyes’ behaviors stem from having been abused as a child and from extremely low self esteem and low self worth. He sought attention from women to fill an empty void in himself. He does not think he is better than anyone else, quite the opposite. He is successful, but he did not seek success above all else. He used an addiction to cope with the fact that he never felt good enough, or successful, at all. It is true that Blue Eyes learned to put aside the feelings of others in order to feed his addiction, most addicts do this, feed their broken emptiness with their drug, to the exclusion of all else. It is the definition of an ADDICT.
Regarding Blue Eyes being a sociopath, perhaps you mean Blue Eyes has antisocial personality disorder? He doesn’t. Again, he has seen multiple therapists who have confirmed Blue Eyes is, in fact, an ADDICT. I have been in a relationship with my husband for nearly 33 years. I am not an idiot. My husband is a sex addict who hid his coping behaviors from absolutely everyone he knows. There was not one single person in his life who knew the truth about him. He is a loving, kind, intelligent, compassionate man. I wouldn’t have married him, or stayed married to him for decades if he exhibited dispassionate antisocial behaviors or attitudes towards me, our children, or anyone else for that matter. Blue Eyes hid his behavior because he hated his dark side and had no idea why he turned to it, at all. He never showed lack of remorse, he exhibited normal behavior, he was not an opportunist. Even when the truth was revealed, his sexual acting out behaviors were not opportunistic. He always doubted himself and everything he did. He even chose broken acting out partners who would never turn him away. They saw in him the same brokenness they exhibited themselves. A real fucking mess.
No, I have never considered that Blue Eyes says things to me now purposely to hurt me. He does not get a thrill out of abusing and hurting me. He feels deep shame and remorse whenever he does something that traumatizes me. If he didn’t, I would leave him. Have you ever even read my blog? He is not dumb when he brings up past events from which he draws good memories. He has a difficult time differentiating past behaviors. His memories are warped because of the sheer level of remorse and shame he feels about so many of his past acting out behaviors. Behaviors that started when he was 10 years old, or younger. He used these exaggerated good memories to help him live within his own hell, caused by repeated childhood abuse. He did the same with his acting out partner, creating false or exaggerated memories. Unfortunately, he is still recovering and unfortunately, him not being able to differentiate past experiences nor remember dates, times, etc… does cause me trauma. Hopefully one of these days in the not so distant future, both of us will have healed past this.
Thankfully, in your extremely hurtful and rude comment, you have it all wrong. Of this I have absolutely no doubt. My husband loves me, he cherishes me. He cares for me more than he probably should, to the detriment of himself sometimes. He IS a LIAR and an ADULTERER. No one disagrees with that. He is also a REMORSEFUL ADDICT who is in RECOVERY. He is not a wicked person. He is a SEX ADDICT.
The rest of your comment is worthless to me. Actually, it is all, to use your own word, “wicked.” You apparently lack compassion and also have not read my blog. That is clear. I have referenced narcissism nearly two dozen times on my blog. I have also said many times that sex addiction is not a way to blame something or someone else for the adultery, it is a path to recovery. Have you ever considered the fact that you are evil? Your comment is a cop out for not reading my blog and not caring about people who are trying to be better humans.
And that my friends, is why I hate being anonymous. I don’t ever want to use my semi-anonymous presence here for bad. Please call me out if I do that. Ever. Anywhere.