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Anxiety & Panic Disorders

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Apr 7 2014, 10:58
  • KMS Newbie

    -1 +1

    My husband and I have been married for almost 10 years. We had both agreed that porn and strippers were not okay after a huge fight when I found out he had been looking at porn online right after we got married. Well, 1.5 years ago I found a message from him to a woman who is a dancer at a super gross strip club and when I asked him about it he told me that he had been going to strip clubs for the last 6 years. He worked in a town 40 minutes away from where we lived and would tell me he had to work late so he could go. I found out that we were financially ruined because of all of the money he had spent on lap dances and tips and that he had started a relationship with a stripper in which he kissed her at the club. He insists they never met outside of that setting, which I tend to believe because from the message I found he seemed more like a stalker than anything else. This was incredibly devastating to me. I have always suffered from pretty low self esteem and anxiety, but I used to be pretty good about covering it up. No I start shaking uncontrollably when things trigger a memory from that time. It is like I have PTSD... it can be a smell, a word, a random memory that makes me think of something, etc. My whole world was great and I though we were happy, and then I found out that everything was a lie. SO MANY LIES!
    So we moved to a different state, because I couldn't even go to the city where he worked without having panic attacks. We got different jobs and I am trying to move on. He has done everything he can to fix this and has been very transparent about everything. He says he is glad he got caught because everything was completely out of control. I believe him when he says he wants our marriage to work and I believe that he intends to never do anything like that again. But I cant trust him. How can I? He talks about how out of control he was and I worry that he won't be able to control it if he has opportunity. He told me about a time when he began developing feelings for a woman he worked with and so avoided her completely, thinking that this would make me feel better. Now I am panicking that he will meet someone at work and have feelings for her. I feel so badly about myself that it feels completely rational. I mean, if he had any choice why would he stay with me? He has some self esteem issues too, and is extremely susceptible to feeling like someone 'likes' him. I just randomly met a person who he has to work closely with (who he said he did not in any way find attractive) only to find out that she is extremely pretty and thin and looks just like his stripper girlfriend. I can't live like this.... I don't sleep, I can't watch tv or movies (because any mention of strippers, hookers, affairs, people falling in love, kissing etc make me extremely uncomfortable), I don't want to go any place where he might see good looking women.... I realize that it is crazy, and I also know that he is getting super tired of it, and I live in fear that he will just have enough one day and be gone, ruining the lives of my children and leaving me alone... cause I don't believe anybody else would ever be interested in me.
    I tried therapy, but our insurance only covered 1 session and we can't afford to pay for it (you know, because of the financial ruin because of the lap dances). I don't know what to do. I want to feel like I used to... at ease with our relationship and confident that he loves me and will be faithful to me. Confident that, although he might meet a beautiful woman, he wouldn't be interested in her because he loved me. Anybody who can give me some insight? Help me figure out how to move on so that I can have a life again.
  • SmallStress Contributor

    -1 +1

    Apr 8 2018, 10:13
    In my opinion if he has issues with being loyal,then it may be best to marriage consular once you are in a stable fanacial place. I would also consider putting your money in a separate bank account from his since he obviously has issues with controlling how much he spends. You are a saint for still staying with him after all he has done if I'm being truthful. To work on trust, I would say do small things to help strengthen that bond between both of you, fun dates without spending a lot of money, watching a show together, get back to the feeling that you two really know each other and how you think. Sit down with him and tell him how this is all effecting you, tell him ways that he can help or people/things he should avoid saying.
    Personally I wouldn't have stayed with him after all he has done but because you are committed to him and this relationship, I'm sure you can work through it.