My addiction probably began around the age of thirteen when my fascination for sex became much stronger and I decided to explore that realm with my sister. She was only seven at the time. See, no one had approached me to teach me about my own sexuality and my sister was the closest person to me. Of course, that’s not an excuse, but I molested her on and off for about three years. I really don’t think that age would have made any difference.
Fortunately, my lack of sexual knowledge combined with a little morality prevented me from crossing the ultimate line, intercourse. When she finally asked me to stop, I did. And with that, I have carried shame and guilt throughout my entire life until these very recent days. Many times I wanted to discuss it with my sister, but I could never bring myself to ask her about it. I was too damn scared and ashamed of what I had done. So I never did.
Though I had been masturbating from the age of ten, it wasn’t until around the time I molested my sister that my masturbation became more obsessive. That is also when my fantasies became a source of my sexuality. In other words, I spent more time dreaming of sex and masturbating then trying to have sexual relations with anyone. I became intrigued with the thought of sex and started to objectify women, and I would sexualize them in the privacy of my own mind.
Most of my fantasies where about women I had met at some point in my life and never had the guts to talk too, and that was almost every woman I had an attraction too. The few women I dated or had been sexual with, had been women that had shown interest in me, and throughout my school years, the few women I had gotten close too never seem to have any sexual interest. Maybe they weren’t ready or willing, or maybe I wasn’t secure enough in my own sexuality and it showed.
Either way, it was hard for me to ever make the first move. In a couple of cases, I actually tried and was totally rejected. I don’t think I had any tact or any ability to be sensitive or intimate. I wanted to go straight for the touchdown. After a few failed attempts, I pretty much lived my sexuality through masturbation, fueled by fantasies of the women I dreamed to be close to.
When I finally lost my virginity around the age of fifteen, it was a very awkward situation and we didn’t bother to use protection. The consequences never crossed my mind during the act, but afterwards, I sure worried for weeks.
When I was about seventeen, I allowed a man in his early thirties, to be sexual with me. He had been picking up hitchhikers for the purpose of sex. I didn’t realize that at the time, but I needed a ride. He was actually harmless, and when he approached me sexually I found myself aroused and figured I would give it a try. Not a whole lot happened, and it turned out to be just a one-time thing. It wasn’t until I came to this program that I realized he also had a problem.
Anyway, I didn’t have another real sexual experience until I was about twenty. However, I was pretty damn promiscuous in my fantasy world of “Ron the Lover”, and of course it worked for me. It was safe, comfortable, and I could do anything I wanted. Most importantly, I would never be rejected.
When I moved to Colorado just before my nineteenth birthday, my father was getting married for the third time and I became obsessed with his fiancé’s sister, my aunt-in-law. She was a couple of years younger then myself and very pretty, plus she had experiences where I didn’t, with sex. We also had some things in common and could relate to each other. But the thing that worked for me the most, was the fact that I could get close to her without any effort.
Over the years, we got to know each other and spent some time together, but I never could approach her in a sexual way. The fact that she was considered my aunt had a lot to do with it, but I never had the guts to do it. Instead, I fantasized about her, spying on her, trying to listen in on her conversations, and I even listened in while she was having sex with her boyfriends. My addict lusted for her and I just didn’t know what to do about it and I kept those feelings hidden deep inside. Even though she had made certain advances that I was too scared and blind to see, it wouldn’t be until after the fact that I realized we could have been sexual. The truth is, I probably would have chickened out anyway because of my insecurities.
As my obsession with my aunt was fading I started hanging out at a pool hall. It was there that I had met some younger girls I felt comfortable with and finally had actual sex. I found that it was easier for me to talk to girls that where younger than I and I felt more comfortable attempting to have sex with them. However, I did have sex with girls my own age too. I just believe they were as emotionally undeveloped as I was.
Just after I turned twenty-one I met my first real girlfriend and proceeded to move in with her and I even asked her to marry me. She had sex with me anytime I wanted and I thought that was the greatest thing. We tried to move forward with the whole couple thing, but I knew in the back of my mind that she wasn’t the one. After I broke up with her, we continued to live together because we had to wait until the lease was up. I continued having sex with her up until she told me she was pregnant. I felt she had done this intentionally because she had been on the pill the entire time we dated, and nothing had happened before. Nonetheless I had put myself in this situation because I let my little head do the thinking.
Fortunately, she made efforts to keep me away from the child, and I didn’t argue with her because I didn’t want to get stuck with child support. As it turns out, she got married six months later and then she put her husband’s name on the birth certificate. I eventually regretted the decision to avoid my fatherly duties, but at the time I really didn’t have a clue.
It wasn’t long after that I met my next wife. She would be the one I fell in love with, and she would be the one that would break my heart. She was my first love. Unfortunately, I became so jealous with her, it drove her and me crazy. The jealousy was fueled by my own stupid imagination and my own insecurities and was eventually the downfall of our relationship. I actually stocked her for a little while after we broke-up, but I finally managed to move on. It was one of the hardest things I had to deal with because she had broken my heart, or maybe I had broken my own heart. It was after that I decided I wouldn’t allow myself to get close to anyone. I knew that I had to work on my own issues, and at the time, jealousy is what stood out.
I was hired on at another pool hall and as it turns out, it became my home away from home. That’s where I met almost everyone I know today. Behind the bar, I was the center of attention and with that came a sense of confidence and lots of opportunities with women. Of course I still had insecurities. I generally focused on the younger ones, and during the next couple of years I became, in my own mind, a “ladies man.” Now don’t get me wrong, I didn’t treat them like dirt. In fact, I would be totally honest with them about my intentions and I did things with them: hung out; went to the movies, and ultimately had sex. I just made it very clear to them that I would not get emotionally involved on any level.
Later I learned that most of the women actually appreciated the honesty, especially after they had dealt with other men. However, the bottom line is I did treat them like dirt, I just did it honestly. My addict was a good manipulator. He could even convince me that I was being a good guy. Maybe in some ways I actually mislead them, or maybe they thought they could change me. Either way, it seemed to work in my favor…sex with no emotional attachment.
During the course of working there, I had met this girl that was very attractive and we ended up becoming friends. Though she was a few years younger and even approached me in her own subtle ways, I never did have the courage to ask her out. A little while later she had moved into a house with two other people and that ended up being our hang out. One of my best friends was interested in her as well, but he had the guts to ask her out and eventually they started dating. Of course that pretty much diminished any chances I had. However, her roommate and I, whom was seven years younger then me, ended up having sex and that lead into my third serious relationship. I moved in soon thereafter.
That relationship actually lasted over two years and it was purely sexual, at least for me. I had found the sexual relationship I wanted, and we just clicked in that area. We actually became good friends and the only thing our relationship really lacked was the love that I didn’t have for her. Well, I am sure there were other things missing, but that’s what I thought at the time.
Now the truth is, I had feelings for our roommate, her friend, and as it turns out, those feelings where a driving force for me getting together with my girlfriend in the first place. Over time my feelings for our roommate got stronger and my desire for love instead of just sex had increased, so I broke up. I told my girlfriend that I felt it wasn’t fair to her or me to continue the relationship because I didn’t love her. Even though that was true, it was an excuse, because I really wanted to be with her friend, and I knew she wouldn’t be able to handle that.
Soon after, I decided to come forward to the roommate, and as the story goes, she claimed to have similar feelings. Over the course of eight days we really explored them. We never had sex, because my “ex” was one of her best friends. Due to all of that, I was inclined to put everything out on the table, so I did. Now that probably wasn’t one of the smartest decisions I ever made, but I felt better knowing that my feelings for her where out in the open and that we could be honest about how we felt. As it turned out, she hated me for disclosing so much because she had a different agenda. Everyone thought I was the bad guy. I lost my best friend…the one I thought I was in love with, and I had broken up with my girlfriend. I managed to single handedly destroy my life as I knew it within a single week. I never did regret being honest about everything because I was able to walk away with a clear conscience, but it did bother me that I was looked upon as the bad guy even though I was the one that was honest.
My “ex” actually forgave me and we became sexual again, old habits are hard to break, but we did this while she was seeing other men. I think it was her way of moving on. At some point I actually felt that maybe I just had to settle for someone that I was compatible with, because maybe love wasn’t out there for me. So, I asked her to get back together with me and she ended up turning me down. Now that’s irony for you. However, we did continue our friendship, at least until I met my wife.
After being on the road for a communication company for over a year, where I flew my “ex” out to visit me on a couple of occasions, I came back to Colorado and met my wife. It was love at first sight. Not only did I have a strong attraction towards her; I could feel the attraction she had for me. So for the first time in my life, I actually pursued someone and I was proud of myself. It turns out she had the personality and characteristics of the woman that I had envisioned myself with. We married eleven months later.
She had a daughter who was one at the time we met, and I never thought anything of it because I had imagined that my future wife would most likely have a child. In some regards I thought it was only fair sense there was someone taking care of my own child. I had told her about my sister and I explained it like it was just a curiosity thing, which I truly feel it was. My wife just happened to be seven years younger then me and that was the worst part. She actually supported my story and we moved on, never discussing the topic again.
The beginning of our relationship was a rocky one, but eventually we learned to work around our insecurities and issues. We wouldn’t talk about our feelings or emotions because that was safe for both of us. The funny thing is that throughout our relationship I stressed the importance of open and honest communication, but of course, I never practiced what I preached. I even had the desire to express some of my deep and darkest thoughts, but would never build enough courage to do so. The truth is that I felt that she wasn’t capable of that kind of honesty, but I never took that first step to even find out.
Anyway, as time went on, we became less sexual and we settled into a comfortable routine. Just after our marriage, I started to feel sexually attracted to her daughter. I believe it was an intrigue towards her private parts, and eventually, I acted-out on that. I can’t tell you why. I can only tell you that it continued and progressed. It was roughly a year later from the first time I touched her to the time I hit rock bottom. I was caught, destroyed my family, lost almost all my friends, and was facing ten years in prison. My addiction had finally caught up with me. The worst thing is the fact that it never even crossed my mind to get help, and I knew it was wrong.
I am not 100% sure why I had those attractions, and I am not sure why I chose to act on them, but I am sure my intimacy and sexuality issues played a big part. I look back on my life and realize that sex was a very powerful driving force. It was an obsession and it influenced my actions and decisions. I was even sexual with a dog once when I was eleven, and again in my late twenties, even though I did manage to stop myself because I thought, “how stupid”.
All my serious relationships had one thing in common; they all started out very sexual. My compulsive masturbation never stopped, even during all my relationships, even right after I just had sex. Not only did I use it compulsively; it had become my closest friend. It was what I turned to when something wasn’t going right in my life or I just needed an emotional release.
I masturbated several times a day and it got progressively worse. I would masturbate at work, in my vehicle, at my home computer desk just a few feet away from my wife and kids while they were watching TV. I dared to push the envelope. My fantasies never really involved children; at least none that where so young, but they did involve teens. During sex I fantasized about everyone except the person I was having sex with.
I never really got involved in porn, strip tease places, or any other type of commercial sex. They just didn’t interest me. But, after I crossed the line with my stepdaughter, I ran across child pornography, and all it did was validate what I was doing. Though my addict didn’t get involved in some of the other addictions, he had finally shown his true self, and I spiraled out of control. Unfortunately, it was with my stepdaughter.
It’s very clear to me that throughout my life I was powerless over sex, and it’s clear to me that the powerlessness is what made my life unmanageable. I never had any control; I was only allowing my addict to grow. The things that aroused me before just didn’t excite me as much anymore. I believe molesting my sister convinced me that it was OK to start molesting my stepdaughter and the euphoric high that I reached was overwhelming. The sad thing is there were times throughout my life that I knew something wasn’t right; that I had problems that involved my sexuality as well as intimacy. I just never acknowledged them.
Even when I was acting out with my stepdaughter, I knew it was wrong, but yet I would still continue. I think the power that the secret carried, was more powerful then the act itself. I could stop myself from being sexual with a dog, but I couldn’t stop myself from acting-out with my stepdaughter. When I think back, it really puzzles me…how, why? Now, that the truth has come to light, I finally realize that my life was out of control, that I was powerless over my own sexual behaviors.
I now see the seriousness of my crime and that I have to come face to face with my addict. I finally took a look at myself for who I really am, and I sure didn’t like what saw. I not only destroyed my family, but I destroyed my friends as well. I finally reached the end of the line, and let me tell you, it’s only a thread. The fact I was caught when I was, is a blessing. And even though it’s hard to face what I have done, I know that it could’ve been a lot worse. I do thank the Lord that I didn’t cross any more lines with my stepdaughter then I did, because it would only have been a matter of time.
I also thank the Lord that He brought me to this program and has shown me that there is a new way of life; and all I have to do is go after it. The support, the guidance, and the lessons learned in this program are invaluable. Not only can I express myself here; I can do so without judgement, and let me tell you how hard it is to be honest about molesting a child. I have met and gotten to know some wonderful people here, and if it wasn’t for this program and the people in it, I don’t think I could have made it this far. In fact, I probably wouldn’t be alive today. I know that my recovery will be a life time effort, but I know I can do it with the help of the S-fellowship and all of you. Thanks for listening.
A First Step Inventory shared by a Member
SAA Monday Nights, Boulder