Introduction and Discovery

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by SodaSuds, Mar 26, 2019.

  1. SodaSuds

    SodaSuds Fapstronaut

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    I am so humbled meeting you all and reading your experiences. I wanted to start by expressing my gratitude for the open dialogue that has been created here and and my admiration for the resilience/patience of the partners who share their stories.

    Hello.

    Many months ago I met the one, as many of you did. We met through less palatable means; I was on a sugar baby website hoping to assist in paying for Grad school while also fulfilling my attraction for older men. He was looking for someone to see a few times a month to stave loneliness without the complications of a full blown relationship due to his busy work schedule (he is only 10 years older and very handsome!). We were both a bit damaged, but quickly realized just how right we were for one another. A few time a month never came. We craved weekends snuggled on the couch and hours of texting and eventually that blossomed into every night of the week cracking jokes in bed and doing laundry. Now we live for making dinner after one of us has had a stressful day or bringing the other coffee in the morning (typically him for me; I'm not a morning person ;) ). Still waiting for the "honeymoon phase" to end but we have found the ability to break down barriers neither of us ever thought possible. All of the traumatic experiences we've faced are no longer only ours to bear. We are patient and calm; we talk through our dilemmas logically. I know how fortunate I am for such a gift and intend to do everything in my power to cherish it. I am in love with this man. We are now the keeper of each other's secrets; one in particular I was not prepared for.

    Tracing back to 2 months ago, we began discussing how our sexual encounters were becoming more perverse. I will not go into detail for the sake of triggering anyone but he began incorporating things I had expressed trying in the past (I am a bit more experienced than him) and he became hyper-focused on them. They became dialogue and roleplay; so much so that the speech seemed to no longer be centered around us. This was also paired with a couple other oddities. He took pictures and videos of us (which I at the time found flattering and sexy) even expressing how the idea of other people viewing me turned him on. I've never been with someone who had difficulty finishing but after the first month, I was concerned when he could no longer finish with me and instead had to self stimulate. On top of this he experienced bouts of depression and mood swings he could not explain, despite us having a very loving, open dialogue. We agreed that his inability to finish with me was likely due to porn and he agreed to cut down. It seems he continued to watch but I had no idea at what frequency or intensity until this week.

    I left my laptop charger at home and needed internet access for my studies and when I asked for access to his personal computer he happily gave it to me. We already have access to one another's phones and I thought we had no reason to hide things. He no longer used incognito. Before he left for band practice we had discussed that he previously looked at relationship articles so while taking a study break, I opened his search history. It wasn't until scrolling that I realized what an invasion of his privacy it was. It was jarring..

    Daily, he watched very graphic videos; after work, in the middle of the night, possibly while driving. It did not stop there as there were several links to perverse subreddits and even searches on local "dirtyr4r". I can only take his word for it that things there and via Chaterbate "ads" were solely for viewing purposes. I was mortified; not that he was doing it but that I wasn't enough. We have a similar sex drives and expressed interest each time we see one another; often multiple times. I thought our sex was satisfying and fulfilling; often times even loving. What I found in his search history was not the person I fell in love with..

    I felt nauseated and ugly; as if every sexual advance I showed him was laughable and putrid. Why was I wasting his time and mine? All the hours we spent intimately I could have been studying or with someone who actually found me attractive.. How could I compete with photo edited girls preserved in his memory? He always said he had a great imagination.. and he didn't have to see them without makeup. He never had to deal with their daily struggles. They were rehearsed and perfect. I was just a means to kill time till he could be alone again. Those were my immediate thoughts.

    But I took a few moments before his return. The discussion that followed my discovery was an ultimatum. I expressed that our relationship is too young, I'm too hot, and we give too much to one another for me to compete with strangers on the internet. I refuse to compromise my own self worth over them. He has since agreed to do whatever it takes to make things work..

    Someone of the things we have agreed on:
    -No Porn or Porn-subs of any kind
    -No confiding in people of the opposite sex (for either of us)
    -No Masturbation (for now; to be decided when he is away on long work trips)
    -Intimacy is allowed between us only (I know this is a sore topic for some and would love your input)

    I feel insecure and unwanted as a result of this discovery but the last thing I want to do is intentionally hurt my partner. He is cooperative and is now a member of the community. I don't feel the need to punish us both but I know enforcement and consequences are key so advice on how to do this right and what worked for you would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you for reading; I truly look forward to any and all input. This is new territory for me.
     
    Nugget9 and Guitarnerd101 like this.
  2. CPT Shadow

    CPT Shadow Fapstronaut

    @SodaSuds thanks for sharing your story, sounds like some difficult times. Quitting porn is going to be a big adjustment for him based on what you said about the browsing history, so be prepared for him to struggle and relapse, because it happens to most people on here. As far as the content of what he was viewing, it sounds like he was fairly desensitized as the result of P, so be encouraged by the fact that this seems to be reversible in many cases with the help of a reboot, so I recommend being patient while he takes on that challenge and encouraging him as he makes it to milestones in his journey. Once he has reached a 30-day streak (the timeframe can vary), he may start to feel differently about some things and find out that he hasn't been appreciating life due to his addiction, as this has been the experience of both myself and many others on here, so maybe reassess the foundation of your relationship when he gets to a better place. I think your stance that you're not willing to compete for interest is right on the money, and I think your supportive and inquisitive actions so far are indicators that there is hope for you to help each other.
     
  3. SodaSuds

    SodaSuds Fapstronaut

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    @CPT Shadow Thank you for your kind words! I intend to be patient during the process but what are your thoughts on consequences? What should I do when this occurs; some SOs seem to take a more firm approach like withholding affection or time spent apart but I'd find it difficult; are those things that have worked in your experience?
     
  4. CPT Shadow

    CPT Shadow Fapstronaut

    @SodaSuds I don't actually have the best perspective there to give advice unfortunately. When I started dating my ex-wife a few months after meeting her, she demanded that I stop watching P to continue to see her after I casually told her that I watched it (I thought it was normal), and this was enough incentive to make me quit cold turkey for the duration of our relationship. However, I seem to have had an easier time going cold turkey than some other people, so this is not really indicative of how everyone will react to a firm stance like that. My relationship also became emotionally abusive once we got married, so I'd say it's probably better not to emulate the actions of someone with no ability to feel empathy.

    I will say that if this man loves you, he will make it a priority to stop, since you have clearly expressed how important it is to you and what you are not willing to tolerate, and you will most likely be able to tell fairly quickly whether he's truly putting in the effort or not. If he is trying his hardest to stop but is simply failing, that will most likely feel pretty different than if he is not even trying, and I think you will know this difference on an intuitive level. If he is legitimately trying, I would avoid withholding affection, because that might make things worse and generally just be hurtful. Don't let him give up or bs you, but be supportive and recognize it when he hits a milestone or gets beaten down and gets back up again. Love is the strongest motivator. Men also crave respect more than most other things, and if he loves you, the respect you show him will mean a lot and will help him to heal. In the end, withholding affection to get what you want is also known as manipulation, so if you're going to go that route, just cut your losses and move on. That's my take on things. Looking forward to hearing more about your journey!
     
    Nugget9 and SodaSuds like this.
  5. SodaSuds

    SodaSuds Fapstronaut

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    Today marks a week since discovery and I still feel the loss.. A loss of attraction and confidence. A loss of trust.

    While not as intense, I still have the paranoia of being lied to and the thought triggers things I felt in my last long term relationship where there were affairs and requests for an "open relationship". I know these are very different circumstances with very different people but the hurt and bracing for secrecy is similar.

    Still, I don't want to screw this up.

    He woke up to touching himself on multiple occasions while out of town but stopped within minutes-allegedly-and did not PM otherwise. We agreed that intimacy between us was ok and once were were reunited yesterday, we had sex to completion for both of us. Him finishing for me was a first in over two months.. But it felt like it was with a different person. He was not veracious or animalistic; he was loving and gentle. Still I seem to poison the event with my own thoughts that perhaps he turned the lights off to help. The sex was almost painfully quiet in comparison to our typical debacles where he verbally portrays another scene and refuses to look me in the eye.. His eyes never seemed to leave mine once he was home; again, is this a stranger?

    I should be ecstatic from the progress and in a sense I am.. but I wonder now if the visceral need he felt for me before was simply fueled by porn and his imagination. I'll never feel needed or wanted by him like I did before. Ignorance was apparently objectifying bliss.

    To top it all off he admitted to having bought a wedding ring today.. apparently it was purchased before discovery. Something I wanted so dearly is now bittersweet.. and I'm not sure I'll ever have the confidence I did before once more. Before discovery, before him, I could do anything. I could pick up any guy I chose and I had the confidence to speak my mind. I didn't need validation. This revelation has reverted me to the timid person I was years ago.. and I hate this person.

    How do you rebuild a relationship between two changed, vulnerable people? Are we still the same people we fell for? I'm hoping blind trust and love are enough.

    Still, I welcome all opinions on the use of O with your partner during their reboot and what are your thoughts on consequences?
     
    Nugget9 likes this.
  6. Nugget9

    Nugget9 Fapstronaut

    I have been with my gf for 17 years and have had over a dozen times being caught with PMOing and this time is the last time. I must get better. I am on a 30 day reboot and have less that 2 weeks to go. My gf is on here too, numb, she has a lot posted and has a lot of good ideas, check her out for better insight. Good luck to you.
     
    SodaSuds and hope4healing like this.

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