I followed an internet trail last night, quite unintentionally.
There's nothing like reading articles on sexual addiction on the internet, only to realize that your STBX had made a comment on the article twenty days before being sentenced to prison. A funny comment. Or at least, an attempted funny comment.
Because it's ever so amusing to have someone say that if you're a sex addict, all you need to do is masturbate a lot. What a great addiction, huh?
Needless to say, I stopped trying to educate myself by reading articles online.
Right after life hit the fan, I tried to educate myself on molestation and pedophilia. It wasn't easy. It never is.
Coming from the perspective of a survivor and a non-offending parent, the betrayal and anger that I felt came from so many different levels. There weren't many resources out there for my situation.
Also, when you are feeling so emotionally raw, picking up a book can be like picking up a bomb. I read a book that was geared toward my story as a survivor. It was for girls that have no family member to turn to. When they disclose, they are dismissed or called a liar. It was a good book until I got to the chapter on mothers. The author made almost a throw away comment that mothers almost always know what's going on and many times are complicit. As a survivor of abuse, this was true. When I disclosed, my adoptive mother called me a slut and said "I always knew."
But coming from the perspective of a mother who didn't know, this single sentence tore me apart.
When it comes to books written for non offending parents, they are few and far between. Thankfully, I found one author, Jane Gilgun, who manages to discuss all perspectives of an abuse scenario: child, parent, and perpetrator. If you follow the link, you can download the book "Child Sexual Abuse" for free. It's a good starting point.
It is hard. It is always hard to read the words of perpetrators. It is also hard to wrap my mind around reading a book on sexual addiction.
But I'm going to.
The hardest part of the whole exercise is reading a book that is talking to the perpetrator, especially after listening to STBX's statement before the court. He stood there with blinders on talking about "me...me...me..."
There are so many throw away lines and comments in books like these, regarding the people being hurt by the perpetrator. It minimizes the victimization. This is exactly what STBX fed into with his statement to the court. I'm sure it's not intentional by the author, it's just that the book isn't necessarily meant to be read by the person that was on the receiving end.
But I will go there. Somehow, I can't imagine STBX ever picking up a copy of The Courage To Heal and learning about the consequences of his actions.
And that's the saddest part.