The Lie That Shattered My Life
***Podcast disclaimer: Early in Anne’s healing journey, as are many women, she was exposed to the codependency model for recovery from being married to a sex addict. She has since realized that she and other wives of addicts have truly experienced betrayal trauma.
Betrayal Trauma Recovery no longer supports the codependency model because it has been found to cause more harm than good. Betrayal Trauma Recovery strictly uses the trauma model for assisting women who are seeking peace and safety amid the chaos of their reality.
Anne continues to utilize the 12-step manual for developing and improving her own relationship with God. Anne now uses the trauma model for her own healing. You can find more about her thoughts on this podcast here.***
Anne, founder of Betrayal Trauma Recovery, believes that sharing our story is one way we can find healing. She is interested in hearing other women’s stories. If you would like to share yours, please email Anne at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Everyone’s story is different. Here is one woman’s D-Day (Discovery/Disclosure Day) story:
“I wanted to share my D-Day story because today is the three-year anniversary of my D-Day.
My Husband Doesn’t Have That Problem
“One Sunday, three years ago, I was at church. At that time, I had a young, colicky baby, so church, for me, meant a lot of walking the halls and dealing with a sad baby. That particular day the third hour of church was a special lesson. We had two missionaries from the Addiction Recovery Program for Pornography Addiction come and speak to us.
“They spoke to both the women and men of my congregation about the addiction recovery program and about their stories. I was only able to hear a little of it because I was in and out with the baby. I remember thinking, at the time, ‘Wow, I’m so grateful I don’t have to deal with that.’
“After church, we went home and put our two kids down for a nap. I was talking to my husband about the lesson and said something like, ‘I’m really glad that you don’t have that problem, so we don’t have to deal with it.’
My Husband’s Lie Shattered My Life
“He got this green, almost sick, look on his face.
“Stunned, I asked, ‘Am I right? We don’t have to deal with that, right?’
“Before we got married, I had asked him about it, and he’d told me he was fine, so I thought it wasn’t even an issue. He hadn’t been truthful because, hello, addict!
“We had been living a lie!
“His face went greener and he said, ‘Actually, I have a problem,’ and went on to shatter my life.
“This happened three days before our three-year wedding anniversary, which really pissed me off. Let’s be honest, I was looking forward to our anniversary. I can’t even remember right now what we had planned, probably just dinner, but his disclosure changed everything.
“I didn’t know what to do. I wondered, ‘Do I check up on him? How do I check cookies? How will I know if my husband is lying again?’
Frozen By The Lie
“I felt like I couldn’t trust my husband anymore, that trust had been completely shattered. I didn’t know where to go from there. I am one who struggles, who has struggled with emotions. Dealing with, sharing with, just feeling emotions.
“I grew up in a home where, especially, negative emotions were not ok. My siblings and I joke that we grew up British. We don’t talk about real things. We don’t talk about negative emotions. We don’t talk about depression or anxiety or pornography addiction.
“I didn’t know how to handle it, so I just froze. It took me a long time to start working on my own healing. In fact, it wasn’t until this year, when my husband had another relapse, and I was just done, that I decided to stop focusing on him and start focusing on me. That has helped me to work on my own recovery.
“It’s been neat for me to look back on this, the third anniversary of my D-Day, and see how far I’ve come. Back then, I was so crushed and so sure that it would lead to divorce or sadness. I had no idea how much it would affect the next two or three years of my life. I was terrified to have another child with him, and terrified to make any plans because I was so afraid of the future and what it held.
Life Beyond the Lie
“Today, being where I am, where I have a mentor, I’m in good recovery, I’ve found my serenity. Luckily, my husband has been working recovery, too. I’ve been blessed with that. He’s been in recovery, and our relationship is the best it’s ever been.
“I guess I just wanted to share my experience of D-Day. I wanted to share those crushing feelings, that I’m sure others recognize, and where I am now, three years later. I wanted to let others know that you can have good recovery, and you don’t have to let that one moment destroy your life.
“When you work on your own healing, it works! I’ve seen it in my own life, and I’m really grateful for the programs available and for the support I have, and where it’s led me.”
Sharing your story with others can be hard and scary. We’re so grateful for the women that are willing to share theirs. When you do, it helps other women find the validation they have been seeking. It helps them realize that they are not alone and that there are other women out there who have found peace and hope.
If you aren’t to the point where you feel safe in sharing your story, that’s okay. We’re all at different places on this journey. If you are struggling to find someone to share your story with, read this post on how to find a safe person. For tips on setting boundaries, read this post.
You can also find a safe place to share your story in our Betrayal Trauma Recovery Groups and Individual Sessions. Each session is led by a Certified Betrayal Trauma Specialist. They can help you on every step of your journey.
Books to help you understand what you’re going through and find healing can be found here.