By Maia Pellegrini, LMSW, CSAT-Candidate
Workshop Facilitator, Rio Retreat

People who identify as sex addicts and partners of sex addicts are often pessimistic about salvaging a relationship after years of deceit, pretend, and folly. Staggered disclosures of infidelities, emotional pain, anger, and shame — as well as a lack of knowledge and skill to rebuild the relationship — result in hopelessness, despair, and perhaps apathy.

By John Parker, MS, LMFT, SATP, CSA

Trust is a funny thing; it disappears in an instant and yet takes what seems like an eternity to rebuild, especially after sexual betrayal. When sexual addiction walks in the room, dishonesty usually follows closely behind. It is rare to see one without the other. A betrayed partner will feel the pain of infidelity, and that pain is intensified by the lies and manipulation that go along with it. Complete lack of trust is the salt in an already excruciating wound.

Rebuilding trust can be a daunting task for both the addicted person and the partner. Usually a long, arduous process, it does not follow a nicely laid out path. So, what is a couple to do? Can a betrayed partner ever trust his or her addicted loved one again?  

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Why Do I Keep Ending Up Here Again?

Addictions, relationships that don't seem to work, unexplained fears, constant feelings of being different or just not belonging anywhere in this world; these are some of the many things that can stem from childhood trauma or from growing up in a less than functional family. As adults, we sometimes fear that we are stuck with the baggage we ended up carrying from our childhoods. Patterns that we inherited from our families can be so strong that we feel we are doomed to keep playing those patterns out in our adult lives. This is not true.

The desire for a relationship to work out is discouraging when it starts to unravel due to barriers in communication, sexual intimacy, and varying idiosyncrasies. There are solutions, and it isn’t a foregone conclusion that you live life in an unfulfilled relationship, having to end a current relationship, or without a partner at all. The solution may be the lens from which you are viewing the relationship. In the Love Addiction/ Love Avoidance Workshop designed by Pia Mellody, Senior Fellow at The Meadows, participants have an in-depth opportunity to learn about the dynamics that perpetuate problematic relations and how to take corrective action.

The desire for a relationship to work out is discouraging when it starts to unravel due to barriers in communication, sexual intimacy, and varying idiosyncrasies. There are solutions, and it isn’t a foregone conclusion that you live life in an unfulfilled relationship, having to end a current relationship, or without a partner at all. The solution may be the lens from which you are viewing the relationship. In the Love Addiction/ Love Avoidance Workshop designed by Pia Mellody, Senior Fellow at The Meadows, participants have an in-depth opportunity to learn about the dynamics that perpetuate problematic relations and how to take corrective action.

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Why We Need To Thrive

 “I wanted to bring a fully psychodramatic (experiential) workshop to Rio Retreat Center. And who better than the master, Tian Dayton, to develop it and train our team. Thrive breathes life into people’s stories and the characters that create them. It connects their head, heart, and gut, so they get it on a deep, soulful level that heals."

Jean Collins-Stuckert, Executive Director of Rio Retreat Center at The Meadows 

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Living The Meadows Model

Nancy Minister, Workshop Facilitator at The Meadows, discusses the Meadows Model in our newest blog. 

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Ghosts of Holidays Past

'Twas the night before the holiday, when all through the house
Every creature was stirring, even the spouse;
Tossing and turning, sleepless with fear,
In hopes that there will be no family drama this year;

Digital staff writer for the Books desk at the New York Times, Concepción de León, discusses her experience with trauma and her therapeutic journey in "How to Rewire Your Traumatized Brain".

Visit the living room of the average family that is “living with,” or should I say “drowning in,” addiction and you are likely to find a family that is functioning in emotional extremes. Where feelings can explode and get very big, very fast or implode and disappear into “nowhere” with equal velocity. Where what doesn’t matter can get unusual focus while what does matter can be routinely swept under the rug. A family in which small, fairly insignificant behaviors can be blown way out of proportion while outrageous or even abusive ones can go entirely ignored and unidentified. Where things don’t really get talked about but instead become shelved, circumvented or downright denied.

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Intensive Workshops • Facilitating Healing • Empowering Emotional Growth

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