Last week we started looking at how sexual betrayal impacts a betrayed partner’s sexuality. We discussed the loss of sexual desire, the loss of one’s sexual voice and power, and using sex to emotionally caretake one’s partner. This week we are going to look at falling into the trap of using sex as a form of control – as a way of managing the cheating partner’s behavior.
This week we want to turn our attention to the negative impacts these dynamics create for betrayed partners. Each partner experiences the impacts of sexual betrayal in different ways, but almost all partners report some degree of damage. Let’s take a look at some of the common ways a betrayed partner’s sexuality can be impacted by sexual betrayal.
A couple of weeks ago (sorry about the brief hiatus!) we started a discussion about sex that becomes an obligation and evolves into a cycle of dread in the relationship. …
This week we are going to focus on an issue that can be caused and/or exacerbated by betrayal but can also be present without the experience of betrayal. This is the issue of “duty sex” and the cycle of dread that can develop around it in a relationship.
The simple truth is that sex addiction does not just disrupt sex. It disrupts all aspects of the relationship. When sex addiction hijacks and distorts the sexual relationship, it is accompanied by emotional and relational dynamics that are also damaging to the relationship and the betrayed partner.
When most people think about sexual compulsivity/addiction, they think about the ways in which someone is being compulsive outside of his or her primary relationship. And for many sex addicts, this is the way that compulsive sexual behaviors manifest. However, some sex addicts are compulsive with sex inside their relationship, seeing their partner as another source of the sexual high and the emotional escape provided by that high.
This week we are going to look at the sexual injury created by sexual betrayal. We are going to break the silence around this issue. My hope is that this series of blog posts will empower you to begin talking about this issue—to your therapist, to your support group, and to others in your situation.
What is the least addressed topic when dealing with sexual betrayal? The topic that is often left completely out of couple’s therapy? The topic that often gets almost no focus in addiction treatment? The topic that betrayed partners can hardly find a book or article about? You got it. It’s sex.
Today, I want to give you a little present, to help you get through this Valentine’s day, whatever your situation and wherever you are in the process.
Joy is one of the most difficult feelings for us to allow ourselves to feel, because it automatically makes us incredibly vulnerable. When we allow our hearts to fill with the indescribable feeling of joy, we become vulnerable to the possibility of it being taken away, our hearts being crushed, and our hopes dashed on the hard ground of despair.