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Living a Nightmare. In so much pain. Need to Divorce


BellaDonna
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((HUGS))

Reading all this is heart wrenching. The betrayal is so deep.

 

We always want answers in times like these but most of the time all the answers in the world don't really help.

 

Please take good care of yourself and get your support system in place as soon as possible (including us) to help you through this nightmare.

 

Avman is very correct that getting sound legal advice before you do anything is crucial. Even leaving the marital home can be viewed as abandonment.

 

PS

Does he know about this site?

 

Lost

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Not to throw another fork in the wheel but I also discovered just last night that he also frequents a site with bestiality content.

 

Ughhhh

 

Uchh.

 

This is probably a really good illustration of what was mentioned on Lester's link about "escalation" and "desensitization."

 

Bringing this back once again to my ex with his gambling addiction (which he told me about as a 12-stepper, 7 years sober, when we met), he told me that he (as is typical) got to the point where he could not get the same stimulation from betting the same amount of money, and had to keep upping the sums he was betting. When he first started gambling, betting a couple hundred dollars was a thrill. By the end, he'd had to up that ante into the 10's of thousands to feel any satisfaction. Our brains are so amazing...so adaptable. Which is a double-edged sword. Adaptable to the good -- but also the detrimental.

 

It's really scary that one's own neurochemicals can be as addicting as any HARD DRUG.

 

I did a ton of research into his disorder after we broke up (though he wasn't gambling anymore, his dynamic with me was still symptomatic of someone acting out in other ways -- he was still quite compulsive, too). I was interested in the fact that at his GA meetings, there was a general feeling about members who fell off the wagon that they just weren't up to the challenge of quitting, that they were still too weak to be able to shake it. I was not sold on that. How could someone as desperate as they were, wanting to heal as much as they were, still so unable to control their actions? Were some people just more resolute than others, or was it something else? Were the ones that were successful really just somehow mentally "superior", or was there some factor that was playing in to make them luckier? While I respected that some people had willed themselves to stop, I had to wonder what differentiated them from those who could not -- even though their lives were equally being destroyed, they were equally agonizing over their habit, they were destroying their families, they were losing their jobs, their entire savings, with irreparable damage to their credit history, losing their children to divorce, etc. If that amount of pain and wide-reaching loss, as well as the shameful stigma wasn't enough to compel a change, I had to ask what was missing in this picture. Because no one chooses to destroy themselves and all the people around them like this, knowing they are doing that, without something going horribly wrong. We would easily want to call something like this a "moral failing" (and with all due respect to 12-step programs, there is the emphasis of the core of the addiction being a "character defect", which I believe will soon become an obsolete dictum), but I honestly don't think that's a psychiatrically sound answer.

 

The more research I did, the more I found that there may some inborn imbalance in the way these people's brains process dopamine, in the dopaminergic system. And that medication is sometimes helpful in altering the biochemical predisposition. When people with this kind of imbalance have dopamine drop too low, as it leaves their system, their brain tells them they're deficient, and they need to ramp that up, but more each time because the threshold has risen for the effect to kick in. So maybe for my ex, at a certain point he had an epiphany and that was enough. Maybe for someone else, they found "god" or something to place their faith in that helped them out. But maybe others aren't so "lucky", and are so overpowered by their own brains/bodies/impulses, it's almost a road of no return, and only serious medical intervention can hope to help them regain some control. We all know this is the case with depression -- so the same is true of anxiety and OCD, and I suspect other mental illnesses, since our brains are hard-wired on the feedback loops of conditioning (which is the brain self-perpetuating what it knows and bulking up those "muscles", be those pieces of sensory input, experiences, ideas, or a combination of all).

 

I fully support and admire your decision to try to help him get help -- I think that's wise for all parties. I think if you can try to get him help, to be instrumental, that might indirectly help you heal from this in some way, too. The more you can look at this as a serious MEDICAL PROBLEM, the more your mind may find someplace to ground itself in the emotional turmoil. And your son will be better with a father who is regaining some semblance of stability, if that's possible.

 

Here's to a speedy recovery from the surgery!

Edited by tiredofvampires
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Actually, the extent of 'getting him help' needs to be having her lawyer recommend to the court that he get psychological evaluation before being allowed unsupervised visitation with her son.

 

Pedophilia and any form of perversion is a far, far more complicated psychological disorder than just a 'medical problem' that needs her sympathy or 'help.' For dealing with any kind of addict, there are two separate issues, that (a) the family and friends of the addict have to protect themslves to ensure their own lives aren't wrecked and victimized by the addict's out of control and antisocial behavior and (b) the addict has to take responsibility for himself and his own issues and own them and have the desire to change, then the resolve to stick to the change in behavior and never regress into it again.

 

So her first priority is protecting herself and her son, and her 'help' should be insisting he get evaluated by professionals to ensure her son is protected from any future harm related to his addictions/perversions. After that, it's all on him to change and not on her to enable him or stay involved in his life 'helping' him. He has to do that himself.

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The sites he frequents that worry me the most are both legal sites, but only by a loophole. The "jailbait sites" and the "nudism/naturalist" sites.

 

Anderson Cooper once came down on Reddit for having a jailbait section, after which, Reddit removed it. The story Anderson Cooper did can be found here It opened up a floodgate about the concept of a "hebephile", known as someone who is attracted to teens between 13-17. I would probably classify my husband there, but I just don't now enough yet. I have to prepare for the worst. I do not know the full extent of his behavior yet. I feel as if I have only seen the surface. That is why I have to collect more info both while I am still in this house and also through the process of our separation via whatever legal means necessary. Our son is my #1 priority in life.

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((HUGS))

Reading all this is heart wrenching. The betrayal is so deep.

 

We always want answers in times like these but most of the time all the answers in the world don't really help.

 

Please take good care of yourself and get your support system in place as soon as possible (including us) to help you through this nightmare.

 

Avman is very correct that getting sound legal advice before you do anything is crucial. Even leaving the marital home can be viewed as abandonment.

 

PS

Does he know about this site?

 

Lost

 

Lost, thanks for your kind words. He knew I moderated on a website and that I've met up with mods from this site several years ago. I do not believe it is on his radar at all though. It seems the only sites that are, are porn.

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Since you seem to have directed this post at what I wrote, I'll say I have already clearly stated on this thread that the OP needs to protect her son and err on the side of caution, so you are corroborating my comment.

 

I do not believe that precludes various types of "help" she can provide to her husband, as part of the healing process, none of which involve "enabling". Enabling means allowing it to go on and tolerating it. Nowhere have I suggested her doing that. (You need to stop reading into people's posts things that weren't said.) He will go through court-ordered mandatory psych eval and probably treatment, and she can help facilitate that, but being supportive of his efforts isn't "enabling." I stand by what I said that anything she does to reaonably be part of this process, whatever his diagnosis, could feel healing to her.

 

And when I say "medical problem", any psychological disorder of any degree of severity, or of any qualitative nature, falls under that. It's a broad term, used broadly and inclusively equivalent to "diagnosis", and is therefore applicable here, whether you want to call it addiction, pedophilia, hebephilia (which is a controversial diagnosis -- it's NOT listed in the DSM as a mental illness, as is pedophilia [i.e., the sexual interest in PREpubescent children]), or a combination of the above.

 

The term "medical disorder" does not imply there are no destructive or dangerous sociological implications.

 

I don't think that, as bad as this situation is, frothing at the mouth with fear-mongering really advances a clear-sighted view of what's going on and what needs to be done. You need a rational, calm brain to understand and evaluate evidence. It's pretty clear Bella is aware of what she needs to do to protect her son, and is competently doing just that.

Edited by tiredofvampires
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Just wanted to provide a little extra educational information to the readers on hebephilia, as discussed by a psychiatrist (who, if you research, is one of the psychiatric consultants that contributed to the DSM, aka the psychiatric "bible" of mental disorders, and a professor emeritus at Duke University):

 

link removed

 

This article was followed by another later one by the same author reporting that the DSM task force ultimately rejected the diagnosis.

 

I've seen different age brackets ascribed to hebephilia -- ages 11-14 (the most common one I've seen), 12-15. I haven't seen 13-17 written anywhere, as there is another term, ephebophilia (Anderson Cooper got it wrong), which is sexual attraction to post-pubertal teens (15-19) which would overlap that range. The main distinction of hebephilia is pubescent (adolescent) children, that is, children starting to manifest sexual traits and reproductive ability. At what age that starts is somewhat a grey area (and now, puberty is physically starting at younger ages, which complicates it.)

 

So, as careful as the OP needs to be and not let down her guard, there is a significant difference in profile between men sexualizing boys (or girls, but the OP has a son) of 7 years old and men sexualizing 13-year-old girls. One is very rare, the other is common, from a psychiatric perspective, and it's very unlikely they overlap in the same individual, from a statistical standpoint.

Edited by tiredofvampires
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He will go through court-ordered mandatory psych eval and probably treatment, and she can help facilitate that, but being supportive of his efforts isn't "enabling." I stand by what I said that anything she does to reaonably be part of this process, whatever his diagnosis, could feel healing to her.

 

 

OK- I just have to jump in, because I don't think it's helpful to spin these scenarios that most likely aren't going to happen. At this point Bella has confirmed that her husband is frequently visiting "jail bait" forums where non-naked pics of young girls are posted, porn sites that deal with rape, incest and teens, and bestiality sites. These things are imo, disgusting and immoral, but they are not illegal!! Based on what Bella has posted so far, there isn't going to be "court-ordered mandatory psych eval and probably treatment" ! Let's live in reality here. The courts don't order people to mandatory treatment for their disgusting but legal porn habits!

 

Her husband's porn use/subject matter can be used as ONE factor if a custody battle should arise. But it's not going to be the sole determining factor, I guarantee that. Especially if Bella's ex can prove that he always kept everything locked up, there was no way his son could ever be exposed to it, etc.

 

Bella- I really admire your impulse to help your husband. I really do. But at this point you, imo, need to put that thought aside. You don't know how your husband will react when you leave him over this. There may be shame and remorse, but there may also be anger, minimizing, defiance, etc. Especially if there is any kind of custody battle or money issues. Maybe down the road you can play a role in his seeking help or dealing with this issue. Or maybe that's not an appropriate role for you to play. I don't know. I hope your recovery is going as well as it can. Hang in there!

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OK- I just have to jump in, because I don't think it's helpful to spin these scenarios that most likely aren't going to happen. At this point Bella has confirmed that her husband is frequently visiting "jail bait" forums where non-naked pics of young girls are posted, porn sites that deal with rape, incest and teens, and bestiality sites. These things are imo, disgusting and immoral, but they are not illegal!! Based on what Bella has posted so far, there isn't going to be "court-ordered mandatory psych eval and probably treatment" ! Let's live in reality here. The courts don't order people to mandatory treatment for their disgusting but legal porn habits!

 

Take it easy, Jenny. Not sure why you're so up in arms.

 

But you're right -- if he has not done anything illegal, you're right that the court wouldn't order treatment, so I poorly expressed that.

 

I do believe that in the process of the court evaluating evidence brought against him, there would be a mandated psych eval. I don't know if those are court-ordered in a civil case, or whether that's expert witness testimony brought by Bella's representation, or how that's done but if he is seeking partial custody of their child, or unsupervised visits, a mental health professional would have to determine if he was fit. (And he may only be allowed visits or other privileges conditional to treatment.) One way or the other, whether he likes the idea or not, he is going to have to submit to a psych eval, and that's my only point.

 

I was supporting Bella in her desire to try to get her husband help, and I think that impulse is not misguided, provided she does it where and when appropriate. Which I assumed is understood.

Edited by tiredofvampires
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I’m not up in arms. I support Bella and want her to have accurate information.

 

Some of the things you are posting seem to be based on misunderstandings about how divorce and custody issues unfold. When you post “One way or the other, whether he likes the idea or not, he is going to have to submit to a psych eval” – that’s just not true. It will depend on many many factors- not limited to: what custody arrangement Bella desires, what custody arrangement ex desires, if these arrangements are different, if they can come to an agreement via mediation, if a guardian ad litem is assigned, if a custody evaluation is ordered, if that custody evaluation includes psychological testing, etc. etc. And of course so much depends on what state she lives in!

 

This also “but if he is seeking partial custody of their child, or unsupervised visits, a mental health professional would have to determine if he was fit” is also not really accurate. Most states are moving towards (or have arrived at)the idea that 50/50 is the presumed starting place for custody- and the burden is on the parent who wants more time to prove why this is in the child’s best interest. Parents do not actually start from the place of having to prove they are fit.

 

Some things that we find despicable and immoral do not have any impact on custody rulings. Some do.

 

Of course these are all generalizations based on my experiences and each situation is complex and unique. Bella- I am so glad you have a trusted family member who is a lawyer to guide you through this!

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Bella, Ref., #69 post.

 

You said, “… but I have started to feel a sense of moral duty as my son's mother to try to get him help, for his own sake.

- You can only help him be rejecting him as a suitable mate. (Divorce is not enough)

At one time, he may have been a suitable mate but his addiction has now destroyed that.

 

In a normal, albeit, non-loving screwed-up marriage your intentions would be commendable; unfortunately, yours it not that case…, you are dealing with an insidious addiction first and husband second.

 

He will warp your kind-hearted advice and intentions into a strange acceptance. (Enablement)

“While you may not have been an enabler or culpable, your fear and shock could quickly turn you into one.”

 

You said, “This is so complex because it involves legal, safety, and human decency considerations. Then there is my own hurt and pain to work through. Anger, grief, disgust, despair, sadness.”

- It’s going to be hardest thing you ever did Bella…, but only complex if you chose make it that way.

 

A line in the sand is not complex and is your way to safety and peace of mind.

 

 

PS, You are only a reason for him to want to to change.

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This ^^^^ is all true. There are no absolutes here. A lot is going to depend on the situation. If Bella desires supervised visitation and her husband agrees to this, then there won't be lengthly evaluations, treatment plans, and big fights. If she and her husband are on complete opposite pages well that's a whole other story. Then you can bet there will be a lot of investigation into the allegations.

 

Bella has a great head on her shoulders and I know she'll do the right thing for her child. Lets hope her husband comes to his senses and does not pursue a fruitless course of action here - but there are no guarantees.

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The understandings I have about family court are so far second-hand, and I'm not a lawyer. So I defer on the legal particulars to those who know more.

 

However, where I was coming from in my assertions was the concept that if (and yes, it's an IF) there is to be anything remotely "normal" about father-son visitation or custody -- and by "normal", I mean as would occur in a divorce where the child is in no physical potential danger with a parent -- first Bella's husband would have to be evaluated to make sure his fixations could not possibly cause him to harm their child. However this plays out in court, I do not see OP's husband getting out of this without undergoing at least a psychiatric evaluation. I don't have a crystal ball, but I'd be really surprised (based on other indicators, such as a whole life built around his making a family/child a priority, and my experience with other parents) if he will not fight for unfettered contact with his son. And I don't see how any system will let this man have unsupervised visits with the child without first clearing that he is not a danger. That would be so wildly irresponsible, that even as I may not know who is ordering what, I don't see him having time with his son alone, as most divorced fathers do, without extensive evaluation at very least.

 

That may be jumping the gun, and I'm not predicting how this case will unfold, I'm saying that in a world where we would HOPE for some normalcy for this child's relationship with his father, this man would have to go through mental health hoops.

 

I'm sure we could all agree that it would be preferable for this child psychologically to be able to visit his dad without having to be told that his dad is too dangerous to be around, without supervision. This is the notion I was basing my comments around; so I should have qualified my statements to reflect that. Maybe that's too much to hope for either now or in the future, but one can hope. There are loads of men who share this obsession with adolescent girls and would never take it to their own SON. As a mother, I would hope for that scenario, if it were determined unambiguously, and the only way to know that would be for him to be evaluated by a professional at some point.

 

If someone here tells me that it's possible he could get some form of visitation or custody without supervision (the least traumatic/best scenario for the child, which would be the goal), and without a doctor's clearance first, or it's left voluntary, for him to decide if he's going to be evaluated in that case, then lord strike me dead. Never heard of such a thing.

Edited by tiredofvampires
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If she and her husband are on complete opposite pages well that's a whole other story. Then you can bet there will be a lot of investigation into the allegations.

 

So basically I was talking about this, but I was also thinking in terms of what would be ideal for a child in his relationship with his father, whatever the legal proceedings -- best case scenario being that dad is no threat to his son so they can interact without a chaperone. And what would need to be done to ascertain this.

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I hope they can get a suitable custody arrangement that is safe. I am doubtful that Bella's husband would hurt their son but I am worried about other things. The son being exposed, either accidentally or otherwise, to the smut the husband watches, or the husband molesting or harassing female friends or girlfriends of the son. The husband seems to be good with computers so I worry that he'll use private access to his son to maybe gain access to the sons female friends.

 

I've heard too many stores of pedophile fathers who prey on the friends of their kids. They'd never hurt their own kids but others are fair game.

Something to consider.

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^^

Yes, I worked with a woman who had a young son who started acting out both at home and at his pre-school. He using all these words a child his age shouldn't know, including calling the little girls the c--t and b--tch words and referring constantly to both male and female anatomy in raunchy terms that were not age appropriate. He was also taking little girls into the coat room and bathroom and pulling down his pants and trying to pull down theirs as well to try to act out sexual scenarios with them.

 

The mother got called in by the school and an investigation started, and it turned out the boy's father was apparently watching all this porn with his son in the room whenever the mother wasn't around to catch him at it, and the boy started to pick up on it and was imitating it and trying to act out what he saw and heard with other children at his school.

 

the little boy got expelled from the school because the other parents did not want their young kids exposed to the child's sexual terrorization of the other children, the young boy was sent into therapy, the parents divorced, the mother got custody, and the father supervised visitation only.

 

So it is extremely concerning and there is no way you could rate him as a good parent if he is someone who would watch such porn with his own young son in the room with him as Bella has said she knows he has done many times.

 

I do agree that Bella has a good head on her shoulders and that a father should have supervised visitation with his son as long as he behaves appropriately in a supervised context, but unsupervised visitation with him when his judgment is so poor as a parent to watch such things with his young son in the room calls his motives and judgment into question and does warrant her pursuing supervised visitation until her son is old enough not to be harmed by it, or until the father has had enough therapy that everyone including Bella, the therapist, and the court are convinced he will not endanger or abuse his child or any of his child's little friends that her son might bring into the father's home.

 

Courts would be extremely unlikely to deny unsupervised visitation on the grounds that the father watched porn, but highly likely to NOT grant it if it is shown the father's judgment is poor enough to watch it constantly and openly with his young son in the room, especially if his attraction can be shown to be towards underaged children.

Edited by chickadeedee
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I would hope that he would see he has a serious problem and seek help so he could be the best possible father for their child divorced, single or otherwise.

 

It is my guess that her husband will be embarrassed, shocked and guilt ridden when his actions are exposed. He has been doing this thinking it was secret and now that it has ruined so much I doubt he will look on it the same way and seek help.

 

This kind of discovery about someone you have shared so much with, built a life with and been so vulnerable to is truly a living nightmare.

 

Lost

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I'm so sorry to read all of this Bella. I can't imagine what it must feel like to be in this situation with a man you've been with for 20 years. You're such a strong woman. You've helped all of us through so much - hope we can help you through this. I'll be thinking of you.

 

I completely concur with this. It's all very shocking and crazy and I'm so sorry you are going through this. Thinking of you too.

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