Tuesday, August 04, 2009

My Book Report

I'm halfway through Out Of The Shadows and now I understand STBX's statement in court.

Why should he apologize for something he had no control over?

There are many things in this book that ring true to him and to what I imagine his childhood to be. There is also a chapter on co addiction that says it's wrong to hide your spouse's porn and to discount your child's disclosure because you're just feeding into his cycle of addiction.

But thus far, the main gist of the book follows AA and even has the 12 steps for sex addicts.

You are powerless in the face of your disease.

STBX jumped onto that bandwagon as quick as he could. Powerless? Not responsible? Hey, it's the card he played his entire life.

The killer of it, for me, is that he would go on mini-rants about how AA was ridiculous and that alcoholism wasn't a disease and that alcoholics used that "disease crap" as a crutch.

But when it comes to the consequences of his own actions, suddenly, it all makes sense.

As I figured, this book completely ignores the devastation that families are in after the offender has done his worst. I'm picturing the drunk driver lurching down the highway after causing a twenty car pile up and the author of the book running up to the drunk and asking "Are you ok? Let me get you a band aid." Meanwhile, twenty cars are piled up with people bleeding to death, completely ignored.

When STBX turned to my daughter at the sentencing and said "I thought we could just work this out in therapy," I was appalled at how minimizing that statement was.

Now that I read this book, I can see how he made that statement. One of the steps in recovery is to go back to all the people that you've hurt and talk it out.

That idea, in and of itself, is so completely off kilter that I can't even go there. The idea that a person who has done unspeakable things thinks it's ok to force themselves onto their victim at some point in the future so they themselves can "get better" is, once again, self centered. The book does mention that this step should be done so long as it "doesn't cause the victim pain".


Crack pipe smokers unite!

The book also spends a sentence or two on how manipulative and secretive these folk are yet talks at some length about how co addicts are to blame for not listening to the sex addict and not telling the sex addict how they really feel.

I haven't quite figured out if the author is calling all spouses co addicts or just the lucky few that pay off the babysitter after their husband tries to feel them up.

How could I discuss my feelings with "my addict" when I was called a bitch and told to shut up? The most infuriating part of the whole scenario is looking back and remembering the odd questions that he would pose to me. Things that made me look at him as if he were from Mars but never things that made me say "Ah ha! You're a pedophile!"

I'm certainly guilty of stupidity and ignorance. I'm also guilty of staying in a broken marriage and putting up with years of misery. By the time I was plotting my get away, it was years too late.

What this book fails horribly at is looking at the flip side. It can tell all the scenarios out there: Dan was a married man with two kids and a good job. He spent $5000 a month on hookers and porn and when his daughter turned eight, he began molesting her. This lasted for six years.

Poor Dan. My heart is bleeding for him.

How about a flip side to this scenario?

Mary was married to Dan and she had two kids. Communication had broken down in their marriage long ago as Dan withdrew from the family unit. Whenever Mary would try to talk to him about her day or the kids, he would snap at her. Whenever the kids would try to talk to him he would ignore them for at least five minutes, hoping they would just go away. If they didn't give up trying to communicate, he would sigh heavily and answer them sarcastically at every opportunity. Aside from being at work, Dan spent all of his time on the computer. On the rare occasion when he was home at dinner time, he would take his plate and sit at the computer, once again ignoring his family. It was later discovered that Dan began molesting his daughter when she was nine. He had engaged in coercive sex with Mary after the births of their children and Mary, a survivor of abuse as a child, had managed to bury the trauma. Her flashbacks to these times would start after finding out about her daughter's abuse. Mary had distanced herself from Dan emotionally and physically and had been planning her get away from him for at least a year before disclosure.

Wow. Mary and Dan. Pretty screwed up, eh?

Glad I don't know anyone like that.

Apparently, I am not the only skeptic...

No comments: