Is this a cure or is this a disease?

Hi.  Things have been pretty eventful over here.  Mostly in a good way.
There’s some crankiness at one of my coworkers, Connie*, who’s rubbed me the wrong way since day 1… and now she tattled on me to our supervisor, about what I thought was a vent session.  ANYway.

Lots of business coming up, mostly with my singles activities group.  Monday and Wednesday are the only days this week I’m not signed up for an event!  Tomorrow is a nature-y one.  I’ve been to 3 events so far, and it wasn’t until the 3rd that I saw cute guys in the appropriate age range.

But yeah, none of that is really why I’m here.  Well, I’m trying not to obsess over the coworker nonsense (to varying degrees of success).  But more importantly, I’m trying to process-without-obsessing over a conversation I had with Seth today.

“So I think I might be bipolar.”  He casually throws out in a Gchat conversation.


Where did that come from?!?

Anyway.  Long story short, as the conversation went on, it actually makes a lot of sense.  I’m certainly not going to try to give my ex-husband any official diagnosis, but I could see it.

The one thing that stood out to me was disinhibition.  By his previous accounts of his extra-marital activities, they happened in phases.  One might even say cyclically.

Ok, I don’t want to go into too much detail here (when has that ever stopped me? 😉  Suffice it to say, I do not consider myself qualified enough to make a diagnosis, but it makes a lot of sense.

To my point:  I’m trying to figure out why this may have drastically changed my perspective of him.  I don’t consider it an excuse for his behavior, but it is one potential explanation.  The events have not changed, but suddenly I’m feeling a bit more sympathy for him.

So, if sex addiction is a disease, and bipolar disorder is a disease, why such a huge perspective shift?  Is it because he did not want to stop/get help for his sexual behaviors?  Whereas he seems to be actively seeking answers and solutions to address his mental health.

If he had figured this out 3 years ago, would things be entirely different?  If he has spent his whole life with this undiagnosed/misdiagnosed mental illness, does that make me an asshole for leaving him, and not staying by his side?  Ok, I don’t really think that last one is true.  I also know that no good can come from “what ifs” and woulda-coulda-shoulda.  But it’s still just kinda rocking my world a little bit.

My knee-jerk reaction is to run and find a sooner therapy session.  But Sid is out of the picture, and I saw Tess Friday.  I’m going to put on my Big Girl Panties and try to muddle through on my own.

On a somewhat similar note, I’ve been reading a book Tess recommended, “Your Sexually Addicted Spouse.”  Another one for the bookshelf.  Anyway, the one really interesting thing I like in the book is the comparison between post trauma stress symptoms, and codependency symptoms purported by 12-step.  It talks about discovery/disclosure of your partner’s sexual addiction as a trauma.  It’s pretty interesting.  I definitely identify with the idea of having experienced trauma… and certainly something about being considered trauma survivor is far more appealing than being automatically labeled a codependent who is as sick as the addict.
But at the same time, I like my 12-step Kool Aid.

Anyway.  That’s all I’ve got for now.


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