Stay or go?

As the partner of a sex addict, one question you may have throughout the recovery process is whether you should stay in the relationship and try to work things out, or file for divorce or end the relationship. Usually, those asking themselves this question are highly invested in the relationship – maybe you’re married with children, or you own a home together. Maybe you’ve been with your partner or spouse for years, and still love them. Whatever the reason may be, it’s not unusual to ask yourself it the relationship is worth staying in.

Many times, divorce seems like a good option. However, it may not be the best option. Here’s three reasons why.
1) It’s a quick fix – divorce looks like such an appealing idea to some couples because it’s a fast solution. However, the quickest solutions are rarely the best ones. However, divorcing stumps growth, and causes both parties to push down feelings of internal grief, instead relying on surface feelings of denial and anger. Premature divorce proceedings tend to intensify these feelings, with both partners trying to prove the other is wrong and deceitful.

2) There’s no accepting of responsibility – Both the partner of the sexual addict and the addict themselves have some level of responsibility they need to accept for the relationship. Divorce gives both the opportunity to say, “It was my partner’s fault, not mine.”

3)  You won’t learn and grow from the experience – In moving through counseling while still trying to work on the relationship, or at least with some responsibility to the relationship, you’ll both be forced to learn and grow from the experience. Both partners will have to learn new skills and accept new ideas, growing as individuals and through their relationship.

However, there are times that removing yourself from the situation entirely is preferable. If the relationship is dangerous to you, your partner or others involved (such as children you may have), either physically or emotionally, it may be healthy to walk away from the relationship.

The question if you should stay with your partner or not is a difficult one, and an answer no one else can supply you. The best way to discern the answer is to work with a therapist individually or as a couple to begin the steps toward recovery. Contact the team at Coeur d’Alene Counseling today to get started.