I feel trapped in this marriage.

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by Anonymity40, Jun 3, 2016.

  1. I was once engaged to a porn addict. It was bad... that was over 10 years ago. We went to therapy, etc... but I left and knew I deserved better. I have dated many folks over the years, the longest relationship after that 6 yr relationship was 8 mths. I did my own therapy to do my internal work... and when I was at a good place... I met my current husband and we were married relatively quickly (Now I see that I probably should have slowed things down). He was very different than anyone I had ever dated. Gentle, affectionate, connected, we could talk, I trusted him (Note: I hate saying anything good about him right now due to my intense anger and hatred towards him right now). I told him about my trigger - porn. I told him it was fine if he had used it (since he was single for awhile and I saw it on his computer), but that it was my bottom line. He said he didn't need it while in a relationship, etc... (I should not have trusted him then).

    I have trusted him in our 3 yr relationship. I have never snooped or anything. I was looking a movie up on his phone this weekend and found a porn site... on incognito/secret mode. He denied it at first and then admitted it. He clearly knew how to keep it secret from me. He fessed up and said he has been doing it for 2 yrs and *acts* like he is ashamed. 2 out of the 3 yrs in our marriage. Maybe I knew though and I was just numb. He would keep his bathroom locked in the morning, I would knock and knock and that was his thing. He's fucking pathetic. His reasons are the stress that have been building (his company folded, job changes, taking care of family, loneliness, my deep funk due to how I hate my job, which saps his energy). I fucking hate him right now, deeply.

    If we did not have a mortgage and were not married, I would leave his ass (thankfully, no kids yet).

    He took it upon himself to find therapists to go to couples therapy. But I can't imagine how I could ever gain trust in him. I look at him and am completely disgusted, hurt, and just think he's trash just like all the other fucking men in this world. I regret never having experimented with women.

    I am an expert on being numb and I don't want to be. I don't know if I am capable of loving him, anymore. I'm not sure. I used to tout that he was my biggest success... finding love and him. Maybe he is my biggest failure.

    We met on an internet dating site, maybe that should have been a clue. He was unable to get it up during sex at first... maybe this is due to porn induced erectile dysfunction.

    I feel like I have been naive and have been living with a maniacal and conniving piece of shit. I also don't feel as vicious as I did with my last porn addicted partner. Like, I care for this guy (my husband). I just don't know if that means we should stay together. You can still love someone and they are not good for you or right for you.

    He has so many insecurities and is so hypocritical... He used to ask me and worry about how big the penises of my ex-partners were... etc... and although I have had ex-partners with larger penises (but no connection), I didn't put that in his face. I told him I loved him for him. I did. I used to. Now, I'm not so sure.
  2. Jpr

    Jpr Fapstronaut

    Wow Thats was a little intense to say the least what I just read right now. First off, I am not a therapist and just telling you my personal opinion. I'll say that yes your husband was in the wrong to say that he was not going to watch porn anymore while you guys were in a relationship but, in fact he did that. There is no justification for what he did using porn but as for many, myself included, use porn is used as an escape from reality as his company folded and ect... to "feel good" and not feel anyting. But as it turns out it becomes an addiction and it just cant be switch it off it takes time and effort from the person using it and only if the person whats not use it anymore believe me its a daily struggle. Next tell him how you feel, tell him that it was hurtful what he for lying to you and that your here for him you will support him but tell him you want him to stop watching porn. Not just that put all your feelings out there in the open yours and forgive him(it will be hard) about your issues, and work it out. Cause the other option is as you said being "numb" you "protect" yourself from getting hurt but lets get real here by being "numb" , it will not just hurt you but it will definitely hurt him as well because you will become bitter, hateful and resentful. Then you'll project your feelings of frustration onto him for what he has done and he will use porn as an escape and will become a cycle of frustration, anger and pornography then mostly likely divorce. I get that you don't want to go through all therapy again, etc... as in your past relationship. But in marriage you guys are partners, best friends a team even, I say work out your feelings and as I said before you tell everything to each other put it all out there , be both venerable with each other, and especially with problems things like his porn addiction. In the end, if you ever loved this man and if your marriage means anything you will try to solve this porn problem out, just don't throw it out the window like it was yesterday's trash like meant nothing to you cause we all make mistakes were not perfect. If you guys can overcome this you guys will both become closer and stronger for it best of luck. :D
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  3. letter

    letter Distinguished Fapstronaut

    My Journal
    Take a step back, look at this with a bit of detachment. I understand how you would feel hurt, but don't let your emotions control you. Try to see this from as many perspectives as you can, if you limit yourself to just your own POV you'll likely miss something, somewhere.

    The hardest POV in this that may yeild you the greatest understanding is the POV of your husband. Based on what I saw you saying here, the pain of the circumstance has made you retreat. While he may or may not have been honest to you with his feelings, the pain of this may be causing you to read things as "he is wrong". It may be that your feelings are not allowing him a chance.

    Think about that a bit more. Are all men terrible, or is that the pain talking?

    I'm not saying that what your husband did was right, but that you'll get nowhere if you've already cut him off in your heart.

    Imagine this hypothetical situation: one day your husband has a really really terrible day, maybe a terrible week or month. It has been a whole year that he's been faithful to you on his word of no porn, but then the shit really hits the fan, the pressure is growing to be too much. Maybe you are sick, away or unavailable. Unfortunately, he succumbs and then the most intense guilt and shame wash over him. These things you feel about him now, he's feeling in himself without anyone else's help. Men hardly talk about this, even anonymously on a website, confess to their partner while they are deep in the hole? That's a tough thing to do. It's the right thing to do, but its hard. And with the chorus of shame and guilt, another voice joins the party: "You KNOW how she feels about this. YOU KNOW it's going to HURT her." And then the sly voice of a lie disguised as reason slips in through the gaping cracks of your husbands soul, "if you tell her, she'll just be angry and she'll leave you. You've got to do this alone." So, he tries to fight against it, but it's a fight too difficult to win solo. 2 years later, its not any better but now worse because of the time.

    If those kinds of things were in your husbands head, are your current actions and emotions not providing validation to the reasons he may have kept this a secret in the first place? Of course his part is not right in this, but if you look closely, you may find the cards were stacked against him. In such a case, are you going to help him out or call him out? While he is being the proof to you that men are pigs, are you just proving to him to women are cold heartless bitches? Why not prove something else to each other? Why not prove that you can be understanding, help him back up and give him another chance to prove he is faithful?

    That choice is yours.
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  4. BlueDevil

    BlueDevil Fapstronaut

    +1 to @exchronos, OP.

    I don't really know how to react to your post, and worse, I can't really speak for your husband because I don't know what is in his heart either. But exchronos' hypothetical situation, is like my EXACT IRL situation. I'm trying to get better. I WANT to stop watching P. I want to be a good husband and a good father. But if P is even mentioned between me and the wife, she flies the f off the handle at me, even if I try to tell her "Hey I've been clean for 2 weeks! Aren't you proud of me?" No, she can't be, HOW DARE YOU HAVE A MOMENT OF WEAKNESS! Not really encouraging, especially when on my end, I put an awful lot of effort into those 2 weeks, and the 2 weeks clean before those, I just... slipped. My heart's in the right place though. :/

    But when I get trounced on and "YOU BETRAYED ME" rage and all that crap, you know what I want to do? Take a hot shower. And fantasize about someone else who's just happy to be with me for a moment and get it out of my system in the shower. Unfortunately, I did that just yesterday, and I feel STUPID about it because it's not helping me to break any of these habits (woo hoo at least I didn't technically use P... :/ ), and if she ever found out it would hurt her further, I did technically cheat on her, and it didn't benefit me any and wasted more time.... But the truth is, her poor reception to my honesty, is a great motivator to go back to dishonesty. Try to fix this problem on my own, in secret, because she is not part of my support group, and I need help. I need...help.

    Now I can't speak for your husband, there's a huge difference between saying he wants to quit just to appease you, and actually wanting to quit and not being able to. If it's the latter, you're not being fair or helpful -- but I TOTALLY understand you feeling hurt, and I'm not saying you're a bad person. I'm trying to help you see it as undermining yourself. That you could attract more flies with honey. That your husband - if he is genuinely trying to kick the habit - really needs your help and encouragement.
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2016
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  5. ILoathePwife

    ILoathePwife Fapstronaut

    I get your rage and pain. I was in your place once and now my husband of 11 years and I are on the path to happiness due to a reboot and better communication/nonsexual cuddling. It is possible. But he has to be ready, on his own, to try to quit. I'm adding you to our private group for SOs of addicts.
    Simon Shy likes this.
  6. ILoathePwife

    ILoathePwife Fapstronaut

    I'll add. That he found a therapist is a good sign! Remember not every therapist understands PMO addiction. Our marriage counselor didn't and minimized it. (Although we were in a different situation and it wasn't something that was recently discovered.) If you don't click with this therapist, don't waste time. Get a new one.

    Secondly, individual counseling for you and him may be a better choice. You need help with the trauma of your discovery and he needs help with his addiction. For him, I recommend a therapist with experience in sex addictions.

    Finally, does he know about nofap? My husband has been fighting this addiction for 20 years. I've known about it for 7. (Like you, I was kept in the dark part of our marriage.) The reboot thing, and some other things we learned here, are really giving me hope for the first time.

    I told my husband he had to: get therapy, work toward recovery and NO more lies. Period. Or I would leave. Fortunately, he was ready to do that. It hasn't been an easy road, but we're finally on a good path.
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  7. Idk. These supposedly understanding people are talking about women as "bitches" (even though their porn usage is a main reason for sex trafficking and rape culture and exemplifies that they are not interested in actually fixing their internalized gender hierarchy and misogyny) and you "technically" cheated on your wife? I have seen so many couples try to fix what is broken and they become ghosts of themselves. Sounds like you would be much happier apart. Your child will be better off because he/she will not be raised in dysfunction. That's just my perspective.
  8. about a girl

    about a girl Fapstronaut

    I know you are upset :( May I suggest you ask your husband to join the nofap community .. My ex fiance left me for porn he will not give it up :( I moved out and I am still struggling .. I do not want a relationship with another man because I am quite hurt and not capable to trust at the moment .. You mentioned that you regret not experiencing with women .. You know women are addicts to porn also .. I understand your anger my ex told me younger beautiful naked woman are stress relievers after a stressful day ( btw I am 22 ).. I had no idea till I moved in with him how much stress he needed to relieve with barely legal :( I hope your husband wants to find healthier ways to relieve stress .. You know as well I know porn is not going anywhere and you can choose to trust him to stop or you may need to leave if that is not an option ..
    Sunflower80 likes this.
  9. Patric

    Patric Fapstronaut

    It does seem that you're looking for faults. This is totally understandable with this resent discovery. Your rage is clouding your vision tho. What was said about women being "cold heartless bitches" wasn't directed to anyone. It wasn't a statement that was made with intention. So it seems unfair to just read some words to be able to criticize them. To be fair you were actually the first one to call out all men as trash.
    We're on your side, we all think P addiction is a persons responsebility. Watching P is wrong all together, since what you're saying it totally true.
    But just know that this is a sociatal issue as well. Men are in general quite week when it comes to visual temptations. The whole society, through media and such just plays with that weakness. There are no moral guidelines when it comes to nudity in adds, or even P. It will become a hugh issue in the future.
    My warning is just this, that it might actually be quite hard to find a partner that doesn't use P in the future, since it's so common already. So even if you leave this man you might actually be burned again. If you really love this man, and there is a chance that you can deal with this issue, maybe it will be more worth it than just switch partner.
    I'm really sorry for the pain you've gone through, I really am.

    Trashy man
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  10. Ikindaknew

    Ikindaknew Fapstronaut

    Without my wife's support, I wouldn't be where I am today.

    wish you both the best, but I'm troubled by your initial post. It's not an addict bashing site. here both addicts and victims co-exists and try to work together to support each other.

    Your alias, MENS ARE PIGS doesn't show much room for opinion shift right now.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2016
  11. i_wanna_get_better1

    i_wanna_get_better1 Fapstronaut

    When a wife discovers her husband has been using porn it feels like a major betrayal - because it is! Discovering your husband has been lying to you about a subject that is very sensitive to you is also a major betrayal. You are justified in feeling the way you feel and this is the place to express them. Addiction hurts the addict, but the unseen and unheard victims are the spouses of those addicts. They need a voice and they need compassion and healing too. This folder is the place where you can find others who can empathize with your situation.

    Trust is a major issue in a relationship with an addict. He was supposed to love you and make you feel safe. Now that safety has been taken away. It is perfectly natural to react with rage, anger, and sadness. In fact, raging and going numb are your defense mechanisms against the pain of this betrayal. Until you feel safe again you will experience many uncomfortable emotions and may swing from one emotion to another throughout the day. You've been traumatized and you've unsure what your future is going to hold.

    Once a spouse betrays you it becomes very difficult to reestablish that trust. It may be easier to trust a stranger because you KNOW your spouse hurt you and isn't worthy of being trusted right now. One book described a man who has betrayed someone's trust as a piece of meat that has fallen on the ground.... no matter how much you try to clean it off you will always imagine it being contaminated... and you may always see your husband as someone who hurt you.

    Part of his recovery will involve rebuilding his relationship with you... if you choose to let him try. Now is not the time to forgive him or coddle him. A person who deserves forgiveness is someone who has acknowledges his mistakes, addresses the consequences, and takes steps to not repeat them... he's not there yet. Nor should you coddle or feel obligated help him yet... addicts think of themselves as victims and will delude themselves into thinking their behavior is justified/not that serious/or that they don't need help... only when an addict feels the painful consequences of his addiction will they seek help.

    Expecting a spouse to help the addict is like asking a family who's been robbed to help the robber get better. An addict needs to get better no matter who helps him. A man who has accepted the responsibility of his actions - a man who owns it - will do everything in his power to make things better. Only an addict will think it's unfair for you to feel the way you do. An addict in recovery will be appreciative of any help he is offered and not take it for granted. Others have tried to criticize the way you reacted and they were WRONG.

    So far you haven't asked any questions and you simply needed to rant. Rant on if you need to. Let us know how you're doing and ask us any questions if you need advice.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2016
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  12. Rav70

    Rav70 Fapstronaut

    Recovery is possible!
    Take porn out of the equation. Does your hubby have the qualities you love and adore? Is your relationship worth saving?
    I understand your feelings because my bf was an addict. He changed for us. I'm happy I gave him the chance to make things right. I can't imagine not being with him.
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  13. Patric

    Patric Fapstronaut

    Your post is a just one. We have not been fair towards the feelings expressed, given the situation. I agree that now is the time for action an not coddling the addict. However you are clearly mixing forgiveness with reconciliation. Forgiveness is never earned, it is given. Forgiveness means refraining from punishing someone that is guilty. That means for example, not to throw old mistakes in the face of a person everytime you argue. If you keep doing that, obviously you haven't forgiven them.
    Now that definitely doesn't mean that you accept the action or belittle it. Obviously the hurt will not pass so quickly and the trust is broken. Actions have consequences, on physical, mental and spiritual levels.
    But reconciliation on the other hand means that two parties come together to settle a debt. In this case something is indeed required! Trust is never given for example, it is earned. Here you obviously have to earn your place, but of course it requires that both parties are willing to settle it in the first place.
    Now that we cleared that up, forgiveness isn't something you give lightly, just to take it back. It's a process though, but it is first and foremost a choice. One doesn't have to go to a priest or pastor to understand the importance of forgiveness(though it might make more sense), you can just ask a psychiatrist or therapist. It's essential for moving on in life.
    But someone that doesn't have any intention of fighting P addiction seriously, obviously won't be someone that you can be reconciliated with.
    Now it must be a choice for the hurt part, to stay or leave. But chosing to stay, especially now that no children are involved, isn't fair if you aren't going to support the honestly fighting P addict. Obviously if he isn't, it would be insane to stay.
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2016
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  14. I'm annoyed because I see little rawness on this site (i.e. What people are specifically looking for in porn - body types and shapes etc..) it's all like "yeah you can do it hurrah" which is not useful to me.

    My question is this: if a person thinks (or says they think) that their spouse is beautiful and sexy and they can't live without them, etc... What is the porn seeker looking for in the images? Larger tits? Bigger asses? What turns them on so much? Do they hold that image in their mind? What's the purpose then of having a SO? Do all men just want to live in harems surrounded by naked, wet and hot women who will strike their egos all day long as these women serve them?

    My SO says he seeks to see a woman who cums/satisfies herself or a guy getting jerked off while woman is talking dirty. I don't necessarily believe this - because it's stuff we have done. How could the images not stay in his head? How could he view that and then view me and think I'm beautiful and sexy? Is this the whole bullshit with jesus and Mary? How a wife is like holy and classy and the Internet women are where the lust comes out?

    My SO used to always get annoyed if I made generalizations about men. He would say he was different and thought differently on many issues than most men - esp due to his parents divorce. Now I get to say well apparently he can't separate himself from his biology - and he is just like them all. The fact that the comfort, cave, is random strangers - naked and hot and willing to cum at will - even though many are forced into it - just makes the seeker sick, deranged and nasty.

    Society is fucked. I used to get in so much trouble for refusing to use the word "him" for God. Most Faiths do. I say fuck any god that is a man - that was made up by and for men - so they could create their patriarchal control and create environments where a whole species with a penis is somehow secretly ingesting internet porn.
  15. Rage is to be expected. I would caution you about making decisions in a rage state however. Clarity of mind does not typically walk hand in hand with fury.

    I wish you the best.
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  16. about a girl

    about a girl Fapstronaut

    I completely understand your anger :( my ex would flaunt his love for a particular pornstar for her dirty and naughty behaviour .. I laugh to myself as well over certain things he did like making sure I never dressed trashy , had a bra on ridiculous as it seems huh ? So I do get what you're saying .. However now you must relax and gather clear thoughts and make a decision .. Will you truly be happy without him ? Realise porn is very mainstream you may not find a man or woman that doesn't view it .. Will you be OK financially and emotionally on your own ? I know it will be difficult .. I am living proof how I went to sleep fine and then woke up in a living nightmare :( My wedding plans out the window and having to explain to everyone there will not be a wedding :( I had to leave because he wouldn't even try .. He told me straight out he enjoyed porn and it's entertainment naked women made him feel awesome .. I feel terrible still however it is not normal behaviour to live with your devices as your companion .. It's really a lonely life for the addict .. If it's not xxx they have no clue what's going on in the real world that surrounds them .. They lose touch with what's real and when they must deal with real life they can't wait to reach to their smart phone on any given chance .. It is a serious addiction .. I'm not making light of your feelings .. My very own journal on here is filled with anger and tears .. You need to on your time make a decision ..
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  17. i_wanna_get_better1

    i_wanna_get_better1 Fapstronaut

    I'm going to make some broad statements about addiction and porn. Some of it may apply... some of it may not. I think more of it will apply than you or he even realizes. There are similarities between all forms of addiction: drug, alcohol, shopping, eating, gambling, and porn.

    First and foremost, addiction is about medicating emotions or controlling emotions. An alcoholic is chasing a feeling and uses alcohol to dull negative feelings and escape from emotional pain. The alcohol may taste good but an alcoholic is looking to alter his mood. A porn addict enjoys looking at porn but he is looking to control or alter his mood.

    A teenager may discover porn and continue to watch and jerk off because they are curious and want to explore themselves. Slowly the brain learns that they can use porn to make themselves feel better. The dopamine rush creates a feeling of excitement that he can use when he feels depressed. And the opioid rush he gets from an orgasm gives him a calming feeling and he can use that when he feels anxious. When we experience negative emotions later in life - stress, anxiety, boredom, rejection, loneliness - he can use these 'natural' chemicals to alter his mood. The brain remembers what works and uses it over and over again.

    In the next, stage the addiction gets worse as his behavior starts to change. He learns to go into a 'trance' or 'auto-pilot' mode where an addict spends hours 'consuming' their object of addiction. There is no pain while in the trance. An addict will prolong the time he spends in the trance for as long as possible and he will seek out the trance as often as possible.

    An addict will also start building up a tolerance and will escalate to achieve the same feelings. He will escalate in frequency of usage. He will also move towards more intense forms of pornography. If there are other issues inside their minds then they may develop fetishes or act out in ways that involve other real life people.

    An addict soon starts to believe that people are unpredictable and cannot be relied upon to satisfy his emotional needs and will soon turn to their object of addiction as a reliable source of emotional satisfaction. It is an illusion, but an addict deludes himself into thinking that happiness can only come their addiction. Instead of reaching out for real things, they sink deeper and deeper into their addiction which leads to them isolating themselves from others. They have formed an emotional relationship with their object of addiction and it is very difficult to reason with them to get them to give it up. They value it more than other relationships.

    The addict now starts going through cycles - buildup of emotional pressure, release through consumption, they feel better, now start over again. The addict is now involved in a loop of behavior that is very difficult to stop. They chase emotional control... they believe that if they can perfectly control their emotions then they will feel perfectly happy. It is an illusion and it is irrational, but addicts believe it anyway.

    Online porn has been specifically tailored to hook a vulnerable person. The full link is here, but I'll sum up the three reasons for you. Porn is more available than ever. Porn is more fresh and novel than ever before. And porn is more stimulating to the mind of an addict than real life. So an addict can have a supermodel looking wife - it doesn't matter. An addict can have sex everyday - it doesn't matter. An addict can have the most amazing sex in the bedroom - it doesn't matter. An addict unfairly compares his fantasy life and his real life and finds fault with it.

    Now that I've laid out the groundwork, I'll try to answer some of your questions. You ask: What is the porn seeker looking for in the images? He's looking for an image that will make him feel good. He is looking for images to alter his mood. He's manipulating his mind to secrete chemicals that make him feel high or relaxed. The exact image is irrelevant.

    You ask: Do they hold that image in their mind? Yes... they can use that image to daydream to give them a small dose of happy chemicals to hold them over or they can use that image during sex to merge his fantasy life with real life.

    You ask: What's the purpose then of having a SO? An addict learns to compartmentalize parts of their life. They delude themselves into thinking that one thing can be kept separate from other things in their lives. Porn only comes out during certain parts of the day or in certain circumstances. Then it's time to put that identity away and put on the role of father/husband/employee. An addict is still getting something emotionally or physically from being married. An addict cannot reconcile how awful of a human being they have become... they are blind to it.

    You ask: Do all men just want to live in harems surrounded by naked, wet and hot women who will strike their egos all day long as these women serve them? Humans want a pain-free, pleasure filled, emotionally happy life. A BALANCED person understands that life is work, family, leisure, and love... and there is a time and place for all these things. But an addict is UNBALANCED. They think that happiness lies in the total immersion of leisure/entertainment/recreation/sex. It is a fantasy that ultimately leads to MORE unhappiness because it is an impossible to achieve. The world around us inundates us with the message that sex equals happiness and a vulnerable person is sucked in by that message. Yes, a man still has free will and has a choice to reject it but if a man is weak then it will overwhelm, change, and consume them.

    Sounds like your husband really needs to see a therapist. A self aware person might be able to unlock all the emotional pieces that fall into place that make a person vulnerable to addiction, but a professional can help him find REAL answers to his problems. Recovery is possible if he is serious about change.
  18. noexcuses

    noexcuses Fapstronaut

    I agree with a lot of what you said. The addict has to be the one to do the work. The OP can feel any way she wants about her husbands actions and definitely has the right to be angry. I think the point that others were trying to make is that her temperament (what ever she chooses that to be) will most assuredly have an effect on her husband's recovery efforts.
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  19. i_wanna_get_better1

    i_wanna_get_better1 Fapstronaut

    When a person first arrives on this forum it is often the worst day of their lives. Life as they knew it was blown up when they discovered their SO has lied to them about their addiction for years. Our first response should be to triage the wound. The first instinct many men have is to offer solutions instead of comfort. When we invalidate a woman's feelings then we are not helping her... we are injuring her further. One negative response could be enough for that person to never return to this forum. Telling the poster to calm down or don't be made at her husband invalidates her feelings. While true, that advice can wait until the rawness of the betrayal wears off. Also, we must be VERY careful when offering advice to NOT even appear to take the side of the addict. Yes, we all have good intentions and we all want to help but a physician first does no further harm.
    Last edited: Jun 7, 2016
  20. Patric

    Patric Fapstronaut

    It's very true that we men are quick to give solutions and slow to listen. That's a very fair point. So I do apologize if I came accross as cold. Hopefully there can be an understanding that it was with good intentions, even if it wasn't the moment to offer advice.
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