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Nina Laltrello's blog


Make It Stop!! Josh Duggar and Ashley Madison - Will “It” Ever Go Away?

"One's first step in wisdom is to question everything - and one's last is to come to terms with everything."

- Georg Christoph Lichtenberg


 

For the spouse betrayed by Sexual Addiction, reminders can seem everywhere. These reminders are called triggers. Triggers to  “offensive stimulus” feel like they might not ever go away.  In the recent days of the Ashley Madison Data Breach and Josh Duggar’s sexual secrets revealed, spouses report in my office asking if the reminders of their own life’s betrayals might ever stop.  

Recently clients have said in my office:

·      “Can I ever go out to dinner again and not be reminded of what is going on in my life?” 

·      “Do I have to hear people talking about the news non-stop?”

·      “Movies and television shows make me so angry.  I didn’t realize how commonplace this was until I am agitated every time I see a reminder of what has impacted my life!!”


I Believe

Every year in our household growing up I would watch “Miracle on 34th Street” with my father.  My father passed away almost 8 years ago but I still look forward to catching that movie with my own daughter.  One of my favorite scenes is when the little girl, played by Natalie Wood, after trials, tribulations and nay-sayers regarding Kris Kringle, repeated slowly to herself “I believe, I believe….” And she spotted the gift promised to her by Kris Kringle.

Recovery is believing.  When you think you can’t, change your thoughts.  You can.  Find Courage.  When you think you can’t….Believe. The gifts of recovery await.

You don’t have to have a monumental program, just be consistent every day.

 

I believe, do you?

Merry Christmas!

What Can the Tour de France Teach Us About Recovery?

"Habit is stronger than reason."- George Santayana

Each year I love to follow the grueling Tour de France (TDF) cycling race.  Besides watching what, in my mind, is the toughest sport with the fittest athletes in the most trying conditions, the race also serves as travelogue for a very beautiful and diverse country.  As I watch this year I couldn’t help but notice the parallel process between the endurance race and the enduring road of recovery.

Some of the many parallel thoughts I observe:

 


Surround yourself with a strong team.

While there can only be one winner of the race, the winner does not win the race alone!  To the outside observer it looks like it could be a single rider competing for that yellow jersey.  Each TDF team is composed of 10 members that support one another and compete with an overall goal and strategy.  Recovery is not a solo event.  Similarly you are riding for yourself, but those with strong recovery ride with a strong team of peer support surrounding them.  Riding in the peleton can be stressful. When one has a strong team of support surrounding them, anxiety is reduced and safety is increased.

Beginning Couples Recovery in Sex Addiction Recovery

"Commitment is what transforms a promise into reality."   Abraham Lincoln

 Couples recovery is difficult in the aftermath of sexual betrayal.  The repair process can be a long and winding road.   Trust is blown in the marriage impacted by addiction. Fear is at an all time high on the part of both parties. What a betrayed spouse thought was about their marriage, isn’t.   Initially repair feels like an insurmountable mountain to climb.  Anger, rage, fear and feelings of grief on the part of the betrayed spouse run high. For the addict’s part, initially, they feel a whole lot of fear and shame. The betrayed spouse tries to get at the truth and is approaching someone who has been hiding the truth of a somewhat secret and hidden life, sometimes for years. The tools to right the sinking ship are lacking in the beginning days.

The ability to live honestly, truthfully, and with integrity is necessary.  How do you get there from here?