Reflections on a “Partner’s” Sexuality

Quite by accident, recently, I had the fortune to stumble upon a special on CNN about Adrianne Haslet-Davis. She was the woman who lost her left leg in an amputation as a result of the Boston Marathon bombing.  She was an award-winning ballroom dancer and by all accounts felt her “real self” only when she was dancing.  She said about her leg, “to have it removed in a split second is devastating.”  She chronicled her recovery in a documentary for CNN with weekly video updates from post bombing to current day. All in all those weeks were filled with severe bouts of depression, anxiety, PTSD driven reactions, exhaustion and doubt about who she was and who she became. This afternoon, while I sat in my weekly partner’s group, I realized how much in common these women (and many partners of those struggling with a sex addiction) have with Adrianne Haslet-Davis. The focus of that next day’s group focused on the impact of the addict’s addiction on the partner’s sexuality. The women discussed the many ways in which their sexuality was and remains impacted.

At the close of group I shared with them about Adrianne Haslet-Davis.  I reminded them that like Adrianne, they never thought something so unexpected and unforeseen could so radically change their life as they knew it, let alone in the blink of an eye. Like Adrianne, they lost much about who they used to be and how they saw themselves in the world.  And, like Adrianne, they, too, could continue to revision their world, themselves and their sexuality albeit differently than what they had planned or imagined.  I reminded them that in spite of their experienced betrayal and humiliation their sexuality is, was and will always be their own to express.  The women left the group today stating that they felt uplifted by hearing Adrianne Haslet-Davis’ story and realizing that they could/will rise out of and beyond their pain; stronger and more victorious from adversity.

If you are a woman affected by sexual betrayal YOU ARE NOT ALONE. Call today for help.

 

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