Help needed!

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by Lizzy196, Jan 16, 2019.

  1. Lizzy196

    Lizzy196 New Fapstronaut

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    Hi Guys and Gals, I'm after some advice regarding my partner who I believe has a porn addiction and the related ED that goes with it. I will start at the beginning, I am 47 he is 50 and we met 4 years ago, sorry it's a rather long rant and possibly disjointed as not slept a wink last night!

    When we first started seeing each other it was a sort of long distance thing, he would come and stay with me on the Friday and go back on the Monday. Sex was ok but he didn't have strong erections, we just carried on and got round that! 6 moths later sex completely stopped, however, he would bring his tablet, the computer, not the blue variety! Once he locked me out of my own house after I nipped to the shops which I though was odd, obviously he didn't want to get caught, he would go to bed really early, with his tablet and I had a feeling he was watching porn and masturbating, tuned out I was right. He eventually told me he had ED, I was fine with that, it happens where there's a will there's a way! He had mentioned porn a couple of times previously, I remember thinking he seems a bit enthusiastic about it but, whatever!

    We moved in together but sex never improved. He had to take three months off work due to an injury on his left shoulder, when I got back from work I would noticed the pubic hair on the desk, a few crispy socks next to the bed. He started getting up really early in the morning and be on the computer, I started getting up early too and the look he would give me was of utter resentment seemingly because I had interrupted him, has stayed with me. What has also stayed with me is hearing him masturbating in another room after rejecting me many times, my attempts to try different things to turn him on, but nothing but rejection. He started working night shifts every other week, he took his laptop with him so he could play football manager, when he changed jobs I emptied the computer bag, it was FULL of crispy flannels and tissues. At one point we swapped over bedrooms, his incredible pile of socks and shirts that he rarely sorted out were all crispy, we were having sex once every four months, he told me he had no libido!

    Ok, so, bad as it is I started looking for evidence, I looked his old computer that wasn't using anymore, the history was quite incredible, 4 hours of porn each night after work and while we were chatting on messenger, pages and pages of it, his tablet, also full of porn, I knew then what was going on. I suggested that may be he had a porn addiction, which was fobbed off. I have tried to tell him what this is doing to me, he has seen me break down over this and becomes quite defensive/nasty. I have also tried to tell him that actually making love is not everything in a relationship but is very important, that also falls on deaf ears. I have told him how I feel beneath porn, that I feel like a big bag of shit now, then he will turn it around by saying it's 'all about me' which of course it's not. I have suggested we tried therapy, that started an argument. I hate this, all I want to do is to resolve this together. We have had a lot of arguments about this, I just can't explain to him without him getting nasty what this is doing to me and us. I have never been sexually lacking in confidence, but I am now, I feel like I must be so, incredibly ugly that he can't stand touching me, it's crushing and at one point I was self harming because of the frustration and humiliation. I don't initiate any more because the rejection was becoming too painful and after one occasion where I suggested we have a play the response was 'ewww no' and another 'You'll only make me fail' I had enough and switched on the child filter. He just downloaded stuff from pirate sites. I'm even getting to the stage where I don't want him to see my body, so he never sees me naked, he's never asked why.

    For the last year we have worked the same hours and sex did improve. Then he was given a phone in April last year, between then and October we had sex 3 times, it was rough and painful. He then started coming home a bit later from work, I believe he's watching porn when everyone goes home as he has an empty office. I have found a crusty t shirt in the back of his car, a crusty scarf in the washing machine, he's doing everything he can to hide this. Two weeks ago his phone went wrong, I almost audibly cheered, he initially panicked and is looking for a new one but it's notable that he seems happier in the last couple of weeks and is home at the normal time.

    We are planning on getting married in September, but this issue is causing me even more sleepless nights than before. I'm scared that we will end up being married flat mates.

    He is a wonderful man and we love each other and he treats me very well, except for this. I have tried to get through to him but I can't, but I can't be sexual second best anymore, it's painful beyond words. He is addicted, but he won't accept it. I don't talk about it any more, there seems little point and it just starts an arguments and causes resentment. I want us to have a fulfilling sex life, he wants porn.

    We do need to start working on this now. I just don't know how to approach this, I think I've tried everything. HELP!
     
    Nugget9 and Celticwarrior16 like this.
  2. Lizzy, I have full sympathy for you. You are, to put it bluntly, in a no-win situation.

    Porn addiction is like any other addiction, in that the addiction takes precedence over everything else. There is no exception. I have seen people choose their addiction over their own children.

    Now, while on the one hand, it is true that your man is the slave of his addiction, it is also true that it's not your problem to solve. It's his.

    It's also not your duty to support him in his addiction. It's his duty to do something constructive about it. The more you support him while he's addicted, the worse it will get.

    He has no right to impose this on you, and no right to lie about it to you. You have the right to be respected and to receive honesty.

    So, that's where I'm starting from in my response to you. Sorry that I'm being a bit blunt; I don't know how else to word it.

    If you step back a bit, given what I've just said, you'll realise that the addiction has already started to hurt you, badly. It's not you who is ugly. It's his behaviour. Your support, generosity, patience, forgiveness have been worthy of a saint — you are beautiful.

    You know how recreational drug abuse leads to more and more? When a drug addict takes his "hit", over time, the hit needs be larger and larger to have the same effect.

    Porn is the same. At first, so-called vanilla sex suffices. Then, it no longer works, as the brain acclimatises to it. Gradually, the need for porn becomes more and more extreme; for example, younger actors, older actors, group sex, BDSM, gay sex (if you're straight), shemales, and so on.

    The obvious corollary to this is that a real woman is no longer enough. That's why he is finding you unattractive; not because you aren't enough, but because you aren't an unlimited supply of extreme porn.
    Again, the same — you're trying to replace the porn. It can't work. You are only one person against a multi-billion dollar industry churning out everything from tame to overwhelmingly disgusting. Don't be upset that you can't compete. Actually, be proud of that fact — what would you have to be to compete! Accept that you are a real woman.

    I wish that there were an easy way to say this. But I think that you already know. You can't marry an addict. Whether it's heroin, crack… or porn… you can't marry someone who is still an addict. It will destroy your relationship, and you will be collateral damage.

    Those are related. As time progresses, you'll cease to be second best… You'll become irrelevant.

    There's one thing that you haven't tried yet. I'm going to ask @GhostWriter to let you know about boundaries, because he's good with that, but alas, I rather suspect that the one thing that you haven't tried is the only thing that will protect you from destruction. You know what it is.

    As I said to someone else…
    You will cry.
    You will feel terrible.
    But after a while you'll feel better.
    And then you'll thank your lucky stars that you no longer have to deal with him.

    Best of luck, and keep posting for support.
     
  3. Numb

    Numb Fapstronaut

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    First I'm sorry you are going through all this, there is a lot of support and resources here for you and him if you want it. Second, hold off on getting married. This will not get better unless he admits to it and puts the work in to fix it. It will likely get worse if things continue how they are now. It can be hard to get them to admit to the problem. It took my boyfriend 15 years to get serious and begin recovery. Before that we had had too many DDays, he always promised to stop. I think what helped get through to him was I had reached my breaking point and was ready to leave. I had spent the previous two years hoping for change but distancing myself. I felt so broken and worthless. Unloved, nothing. So with that last DDay I was ready, it was over for me. But he turned around and has been clean since Dec. 12 2018. We've come far but there is still a long way to go. One resource that helped him see the damage p caused is the site yourbrianonporn.com. If you can get him to at least do some reading on PA maybe will start to come around. But as long as he is in denial things will only get worse. You have to ask yourself if you are ok with the relationship as it currently is? Can you live with that?

    Since my BF has been working on recovery he is happier all around. So much more loving and affectionate, he listens and actually remembers(that was a huge problem before, he'd forget everything). He is getting more done and more open to talk and listen, less angry. Of course sex has improved and he is present during. All this is only possible because he wants it and is willing to do the work.

    You need to understand that his PA is not because of you, he has likely been a PA for a long time. I still struggle with that at times and it was so much worse in the beginning. This is his problem, his addiction and he is dragging you through it. Take care of yourself, try not to let it drag you too far down. Set up some boundaries and consequences. This is to help protect yourself, not punish him. Make sure you follow through or they mean nothing. Don't say you'll leave if he relapses unless you plan on doing it. My boundaries are simple and my consequences are distance and me sleeping elsewhere.
     
    Nugget9, Mordobarn, Susannah and 3 others like this.
  4. Susannah

    Susannah Fapstronaut

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    Please, please do not marry him. Just don't.
     
  5. Lizzy196

    Lizzy196 New Fapstronaut

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    Thank you all so much for your support and time you're taken to respond to me. It's been helpful to get validation that I'm not imagining things and that actually snooping was the right thing to do in this case :) although, I have known he is addicted for a long time because of the evidence, it just makes you feel like you're the crazy one after a while.

    Thank you also for the suggestions. I know that I will have to have yet another discussion with him over this, just the thought of it makes me feel nervous as I know how he might react but it has to be done. One thing for sure, the reality of him being without me hit home quite recently after I was diagnosed with cancer, just gone through a couple of rounds of chemo and I'm completely free thank God, just a bit of radiotherapy and that interesting side of my life will be finished! He has been with me every step of the way, but the fear of losing me has been significant to him, I hope he remembers that feeling because, ultimately I cannot live in this situation for ever, he has to come to terms with the idea he has an addiction, I really hope he does.

    Hopefully he will realise and I will point him towards this site, you are all amazing!
     
  6. Best of luck, Lizzy, and keep posting if you need more support.
     
    samnf1990 likes this.
  7. Rah1604

    Rah1604 Fapstronaut

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    I hope you are fit and fine now. Keep us update about him and ofcourse about your health.
     
  8. SirErnest

    SirErnest Fapstronaut
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    Seems you've got some extensive advice here. Perhaps he could at least deal with the crusty socks etc as that's just gross.
    He's deep-in, for sure, and you should probably allow for the possibility of the relationship not working. Fear not!
    Hope progress is made though..
     
  9. That's what I thought when I first read it. A man has to be deep indeed to lose the self-respect to leave that stuff lying around.
     
  10. Lizzy196

    Lizzy196 New Fapstronaut

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    lol yes, the crusty socks are rather gross! It reminds me of a joke I heard the other day. How did the sperm cross the road? The man put his socks on and went for a walk!

    Well, he has no access alone to electrical devices any more because his phone went wrong, he would like to get a new one but I'm hoping he wont. He must have gone without porn for around 6 weeks now. He seems grumpy and has no libido, he would put that down to stress although I know it's far more that that! So, providing he doesn't get a phone or find another way, for now his detox has been forced upon him, long may it continue so we can start to develop a sex life once all my treatment is done in a few weeks! :)
     
  11. He's addicted. He will.
    That's good, although the detox might be only porn; he might still be masturbating. He might, of course, be buying porn magazines and using those. I hope, though, that this reduced access to porn will help him come close enough to his senses to realise that he has a severe and chronic problem.
     
  12. Beamer_Dreamer

    Beamer_Dreamer Fapstronaut

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    @Lizzy196 I would be careful. It is a positive sign that he is frustrated. Quitting any addiction will make that happen.

    I want to tell you a bit about the process that happens in this addiction, which applies to others as well. The first thing is, an addict will try any way possible to use their addiction. I wouldn't be surprised if he was using at work if he has access to a computer or something. That is one of the most common reasons that people here in the U.S. get fired. I have done accidentally found some porn at work and I hid it from my SO (Significant other.) I take it based on your language that you are from the U.K. I don't know how employers handle things across the pond. If he really has been off porn than that is fantastic. The hard reboot as we call it is when you stay off Porn, Masturbation and Orgasm or PMO. That is the best strategy to get to sobriety and on to recovery because abstinence and addiction recovery aren't the same things.

    This is such a complex disease and there is so much to say that I will forget to mention. My wife has a resources thread on here that can help you so much with understanding. It would also be good to have him read it too. If he will listen of course. Also, there are two apps that are available in case he does get a new phone. One is Ever Accountable. I believe it is on the iPhone but I am not sure. I know both apps I will mention are on Androids google play store. Ever Accountable doesn't block anything but it monitors EVERYTHING. You can set up yourself as the accountability partner and get weekly reports of his activity or check it regularly. You can also put in words and websites that will be flagged and notify you immediately. This laptop has it so if I type sexy, hot, porn, girls or things like that it probably just notified her because they are flagged words and it reports if it so much as appears on the screen. It does not interfere with any applications, it just sees what is on your screen. This has a subscription, although it isn't much, $6.99/mo USD.

    There is also an app I use on my phone along with Ever Accountable. It is called Mobile Fence. It is designed for kids with devices but works perfectly for Porn Addicts (PA's). It can monitor like EA but also can block anything including all apps on the phone. Or for other things like if he's playing a phone game too often and fucking off, you can limit the time period he's allowed to play, I.E. after work until before dinner, or you can limit the total time of apps per day, I.E. 20 minutes, 30, 55, one hour, two hours.

    Also, I would say to please figure out how you guys are going to start healing if he's willing too. I feel like stress from his addiction can contribute to your cancer probably coming back or depending on the type happening again. (my mom had melanoma and they got rid it and said to stop smoking, it can come back. Of course, she didn't listen.) Good luck I hope things start to go well soon.
     

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