A reader responds to Limited Confessions Are Limited:
When my husband gave limited disclosure…we were in a false recovery. Our marriage was still being based on lies. There was no real healing taking place because it was shrouded in deception still.
Had the limited disclosure continued, our marriage would have surely ended. I’m positive of that. Ever new disclosure set us back to the beginning, opened MORE wounds, MORE trauma. It got to the point I didn’t know how much more I could take. Had it all been disclosed in the beginning, it would have been much less traumatic. Still painful, yes, but not as traumatic as it ended up being.
True healing absolutely did not begin for either of us until full disclosure happened. And in my heart I KNEW he was still hiding things from me. But once that full confession finally happened, it was like the flood gates opened. True healing could finally begin. Emotional intimacy between us could start to be restored. He became vulnerable with me. He could begin HIS recovery. We could begin OUR reconcilation.
So, my point is yes, I absolutely agree. Limited disclosure is the worst substitute.
My counselor made the point to me at our first meeting after i had finally been honest with my wife about my my porn addiction that all of it needed to come out at once. i could not confess a little now, then more later and yet more even later. He said that if i didn’t go for full disclosure right away then i would be tormenting my wife even more than she was already experiencing in the crisis we were facing at that time.
He described limited and intermittent confession in terms of scraping the scab off of a wound that was just beginning to heal. He asked me how many times i thought my wife would be able to handle such scab-tearing trauma before her heart broke beyond repair. The answer was: we aren’t going to find out. i was going to get it all out on the table at the start.
As painful as it was, that’s what i did. And it made a huge difference.
As the reader comments above: her husband couldn’t begin his recovery and the marriage couldn’t begin its recovery until the disclosure was complete.