I have known and done sod-all about being an alcoholic for more than 15 years. I have lost count of the stupid-assed things I have done while drunk, some I probably can’t remember! Yet through 11 years of hell my husband has stood by me, rock-solid.
Until the shit hit the fan and I made my worst drunken mistake of my life. I slept with his friend.
It was not something I'd planned, I didn’t even really like the guy, I would have never have done it sober. But I did do it on a night when I got stark raving drunk. The day after I wanted to die, literally kill myself but I didn’t. Instead, this is what happened.
I confessed to my husband and I finally got help with my alcoholism, I got STI checks and waited for weeks for the results. We had months of relationship counselling, rows, tears, painful truths and sleepless nights. Months later, he forgave me and I also learnt to forgive myself. We realised we desperately wanted to stay together and we're now happy and have a fantastic sex life.
How do you rebuild your sex life after infidelity? I'm not sure how to answer that. I don’t think you can. Instead you must start fresh.
You must learn together (I never knew he didn’t like his neck being licked, I always thought he did!) You must have patience and think about whether you're both ready to take that step. I desperately wanted to have sex with my husband and practically threw myself at him and begged for it. He wasn’t ready and pushed me away, I felt hurt, ashamed and dirty. I wanted to cleanse myself by making love to him, erase my shame and guilt.
I had to take a step back and give him space - it was like being in a new relationship and you can’t rush a new relationship. Getting to know each other over again, taking things slow. A kiss or hug there, a cheeky snog or grope and date nights. We played a hell of a lot of scrabble, watched box sets and talked. We just spent time together, holding hands, hugging. Being kind to each other! Sounds basic and not very sexual but that was a strong foundation for the mind-blowing sex we have now.
Having counselling gave us the skills we needed to be able to communicate with each other honestly and so we can now ask for what we want in our relationship. Also we can now honestly ask for the things that we want in the bedroom, on the kitchen table, in the shower or even up the bum! (Location is everything, you know.)
Have hope: things can and do get better, it won’t seem like it at the time but you are in it together. If you both want it to work, then fight for it. Forgive yourself and your partner. We are only human, we all make mistakes. No one is perfect. Take things slow, appreciate the small things:
How they smell when they're fresh out of the shower.
The curve of their bottom.
Neither of you will forget but you can forgive, learn to live, love and lust again.
( Image by Regards Coupables )