Raped by husband
My husband raped me 3 years ago and has half-heartedly apologized. I am really hurting on the inside and struggle with intimacy. He does not understand why our sex life has dwindled to nothing. He says he loves me. Can a man rape and love his wife at the same time? I am confused and want to go on with my life but I am emotionally stuck.
Is it realistic to be able to heal myself while having to make myself be intimate with the very source of my pain?
Eve, from the little information you've provided, it does not sound realistic that you could heal yourself in that situation, at least not by yourself. Your husband would need to participate in the healing process at some point, either in couples' counseling or in cooperation with your individual healer. Your husband has not properly atoned to you - beyond a proper apology, there is understanding and compassion due you from him.
What do you need to feel safe, Eve? You deserve to have trust and safety in your home and it sounds like you're lacking that right now. There may be a way to get beyond this painful crime committed by your husband against you, but it will require that you begin to ask for and if necessary demand that life and everyone in it treat you with respect and consideration. Rape followed by half-hearted apologies and claims of love are pale ghosts compared to the real thing.
How does your husband treat you these days? Has he changed since three years ago or do you feel that he doesn't understand that what he did was wrong or that he hasn't changed? These are factors to consider as you seek more safety, understanding and respect from your husband and treat yourself with more respect as well.
Michael Mesmer, MFT
This question was answered by Michael Mesmer, MFT. Michael is familiar with several therapeutic approaches, including brief, holistic, transpersonal, narrative, and body-oriented therapies. He works with issues of domestic violence, grief and loss, relationship and phase-of-life challenges, teenage concerns and parenting skills. For more information visit his site or his compact information page on QueenDom. For more information visit: http://www.therapyalternatives.org/