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Dear Chump Lady, My husband prefers porn to me

Dear Chump Lady,

I am very new to this site and honestly I’m just trying to wrap my head around if what is happening in my marriage is considered cheating. I sure feel like it, but I don’t know if I’m just being a prude. Okay, so here goes….(huge sigh and highly embarrassed).

 My husband is very disconnected physically and emotionally from our marriage. He uses porn, especially web cam sites (where he interacts with these women) to meet his physical needs and ignores my attempts when I want to be intimate.

When I tell him this is hurtful to me, he says he’ll stop, but doesn’t. He just think he hides it better on the computer. I am really confused if this is cheating or not, as he isn’t technically physical with them. But it feels like a huge betrayal, especially as he is constantly lying about it.

We have been to counseling about it a NUMBER of times over the years. (He’s been labeled by our counselor after many tests as a porn addict) but he hasn’t done the work to try and overcome this issue. If anything, he just gets very mean and mocks me when I bring it up.

I am very unhappy in my marriage, but as (well as far as I know) he hasn’t been physical with anyone, my pastor tells me I don’t really have grounds for divorce as it isn’t adultery.

Am I just being a prude or is this a form of cheating?

Thank you for your input.

Sweetpea37

Dear Sweetpea37,

Let’s set aside the Is Porn Cheating question for a moment. Right now, I just want to give you a big hug. (((Sweetpea)))

You are NOT the problem here.

That pastor of yours needs to be dropped on his head. Newsflash Reverend McPatriarchy — women can divorce on ANY grounds! They don’t need your permission or Biblical interpretation of their marriage. Why don’t you go do something useful, like dust the hymnals or glue felt banners (or perhaps something actually Christ-like! Like orphan feeding!), instead of shaming women. I hope you choke on your Doxology.

Back to you, SweetPea.

Imagine this isn’t porn. It’s collecting hubcaps. We’ll see if your husband sounds like any less of an asshole, shall we?

My husband is very disconnected physically and emotionally from our marriage because he loves hubcaps. He is online at all hours cruising hubcap sales and viewing pictures of shiny hubcaps. He doesn’t want to have sex with me, or interact with me, because I’m not as interesting as a hubcap. I’ve asked him to please pay some attention to me, and he’ll do so grudgingly, but he goes back to hubcaps (and then lies about it). I’m lonely. He has his hubcaps. I wish I were chrome with spokes.

Your problem is NOT FAILURE TO BE A HUBCAP. The failure is your husband’s preference for inanimate objects over REAL, flesh and blood, YOU.

Tracy, porn stars are animated. They do a lot of things with pizza delivery.

My point is pictures on a screen are commodities. Interchangeable things, like hubcaps. They don’t have needs. They can’t hold up a conversation. They don’t need you to help visit their mother this Thursday. They’re just shiny and attractive and completely devoid of intimacy.

WHICH. IS. HOW. HE. LIKES. IT.

Think about that Sweetpea. This guy doesn’t DO intimacy. He prefers humping hubcaps. That makes HIM the freak.

Now, this is where all the sex positive, edgy folks weigh in about how porn is awesome and revs your jets, and the only people who object to it are right-wing evangelicals or hairy-legged women liberationists — and which are you? (When you consider it, is surprising that these two overlap on a Venn diagram at a ll…)

Team hairy liberationist here. But the point isn’t, does porn work for you in your relationship, or is it fine in moderation, or every man does it, or quit shaming men for their visual kinks — the POINT is — is it a dealbreaker for Sweetpea?

Sweetpea — do you want to live in a perpetual pick-me dance with pixels?

Do you want to be married to a man who’d rather jerk off ALONE than have sex with luscious, lovely YOU? Who is emotionally withholding? Who IGNORES your attempts to be intimate with him?

That’s a dealbreaker for me, and it can be a dealbreaker for you too. And fuck Rev. McPatriarchy.

I am very unhappy in my marriage

That’s enough. End it ethically. Get out and find real love and REAL SEX with someone else.

Quit investing your energies on the “But! Is it cheating?” question — you’re married to a man who doesn’t want to fuck you, and doesn’t care if you’re hurt and unhappy. LEAVE HIM. Ethically, honestly, LEAVE HIM.

I’m sure he and his Jergens and box of tissues will be very happy together.

Ask Chump Lady

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  • {{{Sweetpea}}}

    If it feels like cheating to you, if it hurts you and he keeps doing it, if it makes you uncomfortable and he doesn’t care, then you should think about whether you really want to stay in your marriage regardless of what religious advice you get. He belittles your concern, his behavior is impacting your intimacy and he doesn’t seem to care? Time to pack your bags. Better yet? Get him to pack his and tell him to go kick rocks.

    • I am just learning at this stage of my life that these dealbreakers — if it hurts you, causes you to struggle — this is where you have to put boundaries. It doesn’t matter if it crosses anyone else’s line, it has crossed your line. Why allow someone else to cause you to struggle and feel bad. Sweatpea, listen to Chumplady, CakelessinKalamazoo, all the other wise people on this site, and most importantly listen to what your own intuition is telling you.

      • I’m learning about these dealbreakers too. For too long I thought I had to compromise, that I was unfairly judging him and that I needed to accept people for who they are. While all that might be true, I also have the right to walk away if it is causing me to struggle.

        For years, I suffered through a dead bedroom, making excuses for my ex. But he other day I found a journal entry from 2012, recounting an episode where he told me he wanted a divorce, that he was normal and I was not and when I told him I felt unloved because he had been rejecting me sexually for years, his response was “Do you every wonder why?!” Later when I was crying, he just looked at me and said “You’re just going to cry?”

        Never, ever did this man reflect on how his actions affected me or do anything fix anything in our relationship. My boundaries were repeatedly crossed, my feelings invalidated..basically I was told I didn’t matter. Yet I stayed with him for 5 more years until he finally discarded me. My intuition at the time was telling me to leave, but somehow I could not find the strength to do it.

        Now I understand that I had every right to demand therapy or that my feelings be heard and I had every right to walk away when he showed me he didn’t give af.

        • @”I could not find the strength to do it” — That’s because these situations take an emotional toll on us and rob us of the strength we need to do anything except function on a basic level. I guess our brains are in overdrive trying work out how it’s ok that you are with an abusive spouse that doesn’t give af.

        • We’ve all been there. Chumps feel more committed to be “understanding” than to having dealbreakers.

          CN, can we all shout, “I am allowed to have dealbreakers!!!” ?

          • THIS^^^ if we Chumps redirected even 50% of the “continuing to love and believe” we give to our cheaters, we’d never settle for less again.

        • CC – I’m so sorry he hurt you like that! I can’t imagine how much that must have hurt. I’m glad you left and are working on being in a better place. You deserve so much better! <3

        • CC, I could have written your post, I heard the “you’re just going to cry?” along with, Who in their right mind would want to fuck you?”
          I was the understanding wife, since he told me all guys watch porn, he’s isn’t hiding the fact that he watched porn like the other guys. I was lucky to be married to him because he’s honest (unlike the other husbands).

      • This is relevant to life in general, not just relationships. If someone is doing something shitty – you have the right to tell them to cut it out, and if they refuse, then end the friendship/partnership at work/etc.

        I actually had something like this happen to me about a week ago – with a (now former) friend. He crossed a line and made a sexual comment towards me. I told him to back the fuck off, as I am in a long term relationship (not with him) and that it wasn’t appropriate. His response? Laughter and “it was only a joke”. He then had the hide to say that I was the “salty one” for not immediately backing down from my boundary, and that I should “get over myself” because he doesn’t want me in that way. I promptly told him to fuck off and that the friendship was over. I knew I had made the right decision when, instead of being contrite and accepting my decision, he proceeded to spew copious amounts of abuse and threats my way (of which I gave zero response to).

        Friends don’t make sexual comments to each other when they know that the other party is in a committed relationship. My partner was immediately aware of what happened, because there are no secrets between us. Blatant disrespect towards me or my partner (or collectively the two of us together) is an instant dealbreaker.

    • Dear sweet pea
      2 years for me ex watched porn and saw escorts. He sent escort flowers on Valentine’s Day 2 years ago after lovely marriage counseling

      So not you. They are as chump lady says not able to have an emotional intimate real relationship

      You got this!!!🤗

  • You are very unhappy and deserve to be happy. He has a serious problem and you deserve a normal relationship. This is no way to live. If he can’t admit he has a problem and seeks help you need to leave him. Your not a prude and this is not healthy behavior. Why would you want to live like this?

  • Sweetpea – this one got me too. And then I found out about the EA’s, then the actual cheating with prostitutes, and then the Wednesday women.

    As Tracy says – it’s enough that it is NOT ok with you.

    • Yep. Same deal.

      Over a decade od dead bedroom and I believed I didn’t hsve the grounds to divorce since it was pornography and not full-blown adultery.

      It destroyed so much of my confidence.

      Then…..it turned out that during his porn/experimenting times he had fucked a hooker 8 years prior anyways.

      You know what I felt?

      I actually felt LESS devastated by the hooker than the porn.

      LESS.

      Because
      1. It gave me grounds (at least in my mind it was settled.)

      2. At least it was a real person as opposed to being replaced by a series of images. At that point just being replaced and judged as “less than” to whatever wandered actoss a screen was fucking traumatic.

      3. I had had recurring dreams of him fucking around on me and they STOPPED after that.

      Anyone who says being porn-obsessed isn’t cheating can go eat a pack of syringes.

      Those years absolutely traumatized me to the point where I STILL have difficulty being in public, I feel like there is somethung just very visibly wrong with me and my extra weight doesn’t help.

      I never had those issues before my husband’s porn addiction.

      The betrayal & devastation of porn vs. Hooker felt almost completely identical.

      There, your side by side comparison, from a victim-of-cheating expert. You’re welcome!

      Couldn’t even go to Costco or the park ON MOTHER’S DAY without him staring at people. Fucker.

      • Matthew 5:28 “But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart.” He has no respect or honor toward you or himself. He HAS committed adultery.

  • Dear SweatPea,

    There is only one question that matters here and that’s “Is his behavior acceptable to YOU?” If as you say, you are very unhappy in your marriage, then you have your answer. It doesn’t matter if your pastor says you don’t have grounds for divorce, because this isn’t acceptable to you. You’ve spoken with your husband and he continues to do this knowing it’s hurtful to you; you’ve been to a counselor and that wasn’t helpful.

    You could give it a last ditch effort and try discussions and counseling again (with a different counselor) or you could do as CL suggests and end the marriage honestly. IMHO, he’s not showing you the kind of respect you deserve is he’s discounting the way you feel. It doesn’t matter if he’s physically cheating now or not. Disrespect is often a precursor to cheating anyway. If you show him a boundary and he ignores it then he is showing you who he is. Believe him the first time!

    • Great points! My beautiful daughter is a newlywed, her new husband has been watching porn, he promised that his “minor porn issue” was behind him and he’d never do that again as my daughter broke up with him three years ago over that issue, that was prior to marriage, she thought he got it … well one month after the wedding he was back at it… now she’s the bad guy for wanting a divorce and not willing to forgive… I think he’s an asshole and has shown who he is..

      • Feeling for you and your daughter, Orange xx The whole point is he knew her boundaries when he married her and failed to respect them. Boundaries could be anything – wearing green, buying fast food (to be silly) – but if your partner knows them, has agreed to respect them and violates them, it’s a breach of trust.
        This happened to me too. I found the asian lesbian superhero-costumed porn about a month into our marriage. My ex immediately asked me if I wanted a divorce. I thought that was so wierd, said of course not but didn’t want him to do that again. 23 years later during wreckonsillyation he was shutting me out of our bedroom so he could use porn. When we tried to reconcile I asked him to do two things, to give up porn and to dance with me (he never had). Neither of those things happened.
        We are never the bad guy for holding to our boundaries. If other people don’t see that, it’s because they don’t accept the fact that people can have different boundaries to themselves. And often they see that as a criticism of themselves.
        Respect to your daughter! I wish her well. Xxx

  • I wish I had left when it was “just” porn. I would have saved myself years of abuse. Instead, lying about porn turned into lying about EAs, then lying about “massages,” and then my being discarded after I found out about an actual affair. And that’s just the stuff I know about!

  • Sweetpea, if you were ok with it (and youre clearly not) AND if it didnt impact your sex life then I would say go for it. But that is not the case. And the more he watches the less inclined he will be to come anywhere near you. My ex was CONVINCED these women adored sex and I was frigid. All that screaming and ooohhhing and aaahhhing was the real deal. That is until we watched a documentary on the making of a porn film and the number of times the ooohhhing and ahhhing got turned on and off when the “producer” yelled “cut” was amazing. And thats not mentioning the poor girls who could hardly walk at the end because the guy(s) couldnt come for god knows how long. Ditch this asshole and be kind to yourself. (Sorry about the puntuation my keyboard has gone nuts)

    • Oh my gosh Attie, what was his reaction after he saw the doc? I can’t believe people think your typical porn has any realistic qualities. It’s like thinking cars always explode after an accident al la Michel Bay.

      • Sleepless, as usual when he was proved wrong he just kept his mouth shut. I was so very, very upset for this one particular young girl. She went into it willingly thinking it was “glamorous” but soon found out it was anything but. She could have 3 guys on her at one time, went through tubes and tubes of lube and she wasn’t going anywhere until these guys came – which took quite some time. Then she had to pretend she LOVED them coming in her mouth – all three of them! One time, in the middle of the oohhhing and aaahhhing a truck went past, the producer yelled cut, and they all rolled off each other going “what the F”. Once the truck had gone past it was back to it. It was so sad. When the young girl got up she literally couldn’t walk!

  • And the inverse situation for me….

    He didn’t care if I was hurt or angry or unhappy.
    Which I spoke up about.
    Until I was blue in the face.
    And I was ignored.
    So I didn’t want to have sex with him.
    And I TOLD him it was because I was hurt, angry.
    Response?
    Ignore ignore ignore……
    And I guess that he thought I should just ignore my feelings and fuck him.
    Because that’s what HE does.
    But I can’t do that.
    So he continues with the porn.
    Which eventually quits working, so he has to cross the line into live-action with Craigslist hookups.
    He found the perfect woman for him….active alcoholic (I am in recovery), does not speak English, from a culture that does NOT talk about feelings or problems. Soul mate alert!!!
    So my million dollar question is WHY did I pick this?
    Because I don’t want to end up here again.
    But for sure I thought he had the affair because of a crummy sex life….I think now we had a crummy sex life because he was having affairs and hooked on porn.
    But the bottom line?
    I need a partner who meets me halfway to deal or the deal is off.

    • Somewhere in the CL Archives are red flags about narcissists to help us avoid them. But for me an inner exploration has to take place. Why do I accept withholding of affection and sex?(withholding is abuse too) Why do I think verbal abuse or being taken advantage of is ok, not just with parents and spouses, but by bosses and friends? I’m starting therapy, before I have the $$ to leave narcwife. Not ideal to get therapy while I’m still in the cage but it is helping me see how I leave myself open to abuse. Dollars will eventually come, right?

      • Therapy and Chumplady are good starts Rat, for those of us who are too much in denial and need to have our spouses manipulation and callousness demonstrated for us over and over again before we can finally grasp it. Hopefully it won’t take you too long.
        Also, you might really end up saving more money if you are single then with a cheater.
        Anyway, keep it up! Keep making strides towards the door. Don’t get stuck.

        • I feel for ya. Boudicca is right: you might find yourself much better off financially after you leave a cheater and gain a life. My serial cheater wife and I earned similar incomes and I never had much money left after paying our bills. I was worried about going to a single income.

          While I basically had to start over at age 48 with 3 kids, I am pleasantly shocked at how much I have been able to save in the past two years. I thought I was going to have to give up the work I love (I am a government scientist) to take on a higher paying administrative position – which would have been tough for me. But that hasn’t been the case, and I can honestly say our standard of living has likely improved a bit. (We live a simple but rich life.)

          Point being that I think some of us are financial chumps too. Narcs are expensive and not having to support one has been been, surprisingly, a huge financial boost for my kids and I.

          Leave a cheater gain a life.

      • Look up Childhood Emotional Neglect ~ essentially anyone who accepts being a chump learned it from their parents. Maybe the parents were not as vicious as the cheater but they still were unable to properly respond to emotional needs so chumps learn to accept not having emotional needs fulfilled.

    • @VelvetHammer, I feel you so hard on this issue of identifying somewhat with the “withholder.” Except that (like you, I’m sure) I never stonewalled, cheated, or escaped into addictions. Spouse cheated on me the first time 14 years ago (“just” a weekend fling), and we did therapy, I swept it under the rug, honestly haven’t thought about it much in recent years. Then Spouse pressured me for years to have a second kid I didn’t feel prepared to have – and eventually, I caved. What does that say about my boundaries? But I digress…. Even though I thought I had worked through both of those violations of respect, and smaller daily ones, I think they still lurked in the background. And I have other issues, like constant fatigue, stemming from cancer treatments I had in my 20’s.

      The last couple of years, it’s true that I have not been very emotionally or sexually engaged in my marriage. But I NEVER stonewalled – if Spouse wanted to talk about something, I always did, and tried not to get too defensive about my fatigue etc. Meanwhile, I was burning myself out on work, and taking care of the kids and household, feeling like I had just barely enough energy to get through each day. I did try to reach out whenever I felt I could. If Spouse had come to me during that time and said “MY NEEDS ARE NOT BEING MET,” I would instantly have agreed to therapy and whatever else might have helped. (And I have been continually trying to find solutions for my fatigue this whole time.) If Spouse had then moved to divorce me, I would have felt unfairly abandoned – it’s not my fault I’m always tired, and what was that about “sickness and health”? – but ultimately, I would have understood that sometimes these things happen. Some needs are dealbreakers.

      But guess what? Spouse did not bring up these things with me. Three weeks after Spouse’s (narc) mom died, Spouse picked up a woman from a bar and initiated a summer-long affair that became a full-blown romantic fantasy.

      I’m still technically with Spouse, though currently in an in-home separation. Though I know what CL has said about this issue (and see her point!), I do feel like it’s too soon for me to make a life-altering decision. I need to work through the trauma first, knowing full well that I might not ever be able to love Spouse again. At least this time, I’m making it about me, and holding boundaries. And gosh, have I ever learned a lot about covert narcissism!

      I can just see a lot of greys in this issue: I’m sure a lot of our cheating partners have argued that they’re just sick or poorly equipped to deal with real life, and need to work on themselves. With my medical background (and as a self-diagnosed co-dependent), I can sympathize to an extent. I guess it boils down to: my particular form of illness-related emotional withdrawal didn’t actively disrespect my partner, and I tried my best to counteract it. I certainly would have responded with empathy if my partner had approached me to articulate how her needs were not being met. The great tragedy is that cheating and porn use hardly ever fill those needs – even if they were genuinely felt – in any sustainable way.

      • Sometimes it boils down to……life is short. And how much of it do you want to spend with a person who sees betrayal as a coping tool for life’s situations?. Fear of change can be a big challenge as well.

  • He is sharing something both intimate AND sexual with other women while refusing to love, honor, and cherish you. Why yes, yes it is cheating. Now that your question has been answered, let’s get back to what CL has said, because, honestly that’s really the only thing that matters. Are YOU happy? If it eases your mind, refusing to perform his husbandly duties is grounds for an annulment if you don’t want to file for divorce. On the spiritual side, he has broken his marital covenant many times over. Get out of your toxic situation.

    • “He is sharing something both intimate AND sexual with other women while refusing to love, honor, and cherish you.”

      ^^^THIS. It’s the very definition of betrayal.

      • ^^^Absolutely this! Also, I’d say that he is cheating doing the Web Cam thing. It is a live girl. Also it can certainly be an emotional affair. He pays them, and if he is doing this regularly he likely has ones he uses frequently, one-on-one private time slots, maybe even the same girls for years.

      • Short simple and to the point. There is so much honesty in that statement. You cannot deny these cold hard facts.

  • Mine started out early in our marriage with this kind of pornography crap. Overtime it escalated to physical encounters with prostitutes. Sadly sweetpea, I don’t think he will get better. I think they only get worse. It sounds like he doesn’t want to change. I tried over 20 years to change mine and he continually escalated his sexual misconduct. I felt like crap. I blamed myself. But finally I saw the light. Listen to all the wisdom on this site. Love yourself and go get a better life! You deserve it. He does not deserve you. Hugs.

  • Sweetie 37,
    my ex was a heavy porn user throughout our entire 16-year marriage. It didn’t matter how often we were having sex (sometimes 3x a day), he always had time for porn.

    And when the internet made it easy for him to have anonymous IRL sexual encounters, he did.

    He’s picking something else ahead of you. Stop the pick-me dance-I wish I had.

  • Sweetpea,
    Beyond the obvious betrayal by sexually gratifying himself with other women -pixelated or not-which is cheating on you (as that is not ok with you and you voiced that to him)…I’m stuck on the “he says he’ll stop and he doesn’t” and “he gets very mean and mocks me.” That is unacceptable! Who is he to treat you- his wife that way when you are investing to try to save a marriage?
    Please invest in yourself. You don’t have to be embarrassed by his behavior. You need to get motivated by it. Motivated to break free of sexual infidelity and a man who disdains and mocks you. ((((Hugs))))). I can sense your pain. I hope you get angry and do something in interest of your self preservation.

  • Has anyone ever run across a member of the clergy who told a husband that he had no grounds for divorce despite the fact that his wife spent every evening watching porn and masturbating but refused to be sexually intimate with him? In addition to CL’s amusing hub cap analogy, I hope Sweetpea will consider the double standard she’s being asked to submit to.

    And then, remind herself that it doesn’t matter what the pastor says, if your marriage is unhappy, it is okay to leave it in an ethical manner.

    • Good point on the sexism! While the church explicitly teaches that both spouses are to be faithful to one another, there’s an implicit understanding that a husband has “needs” that grant him the right to a sexually available wife; yet a wife…well thanks to the Madonna/whore complex a wife has no needs and therefore no right to expect a sexually available husband.

      It’s also my (entirely unscientific) opinion that the stigma attached with infidelity – questions such as Why didn’t he/she want to be with you in the first place? and What needs were you not meeting that your spouse had to look outside the marriage? – that stigma results in less men than women willing to request church intervention. Generally, women are already conditioned by society and history to accept the blame and eat the shit sandwich. Often, women have less interpersonal power and ability to exercise their agency (especially true for mothers and homemakers). Consequently, the cycle perpetuates in which men don’t seek church assistance, they’ll just avoid the stigma from their spiritual leaders and go straight to the civil courts. But women are more likely to ask for help from their spiritual leaders and less willing to question the double standard. So the church is never called out for the hypocrisy and therefore it continues.

      Of course there are exceptions. Gender issues can be really sensitive, so I apologize in advance for causing offense to anyone. I just really hope that we chumps rise up to question the hypocrisy and challenge the narrative.

      • True. What I don’t understand is why any woman would be a member of a church that deliberately interprets religious text in a misogynistic way and even preaches sexist nonsense from the pulpit. These institutions are toxic for women. There are plenty of more equality-minded churches which women can choose. Evangelicals tend to be the worst of the Christian ones, with many being both anti-woman and anti-LGBT, yet millions of women flock to them. It’s weird.

    • Frankly, I think that if she found evidence of RL cheating, the preacher would start moving the goalposts and then it would be “well, what did you do to contribute to the cheating? Has he apologized? Have you tried fighting for your marriage?” and all that other bullshit.

      The endgame for preachers like that is that the wife is the property of the husband, and she doesn’t have the right to leave unless the husband does something unforgivable like stopping to support the church. Accordingly, so long as the hubby is in the church’s good graces, no matter what the situation is, it will always be just shy of giving the wife the right to leave.

  • Sweet Pea, take your Bible with you and go down to see your minister. Show him the bit in Deuteronomy about coveting your neighbour’s wife. It’s in a list called the Ten Commandments. He may have heard of them.

    Then close the Bible, smack your minister hard across the back of the head with it, and go find another church.

    Porn is cheating. It sure as hell ain’t Christian. Your husband is a complete degenerate. I hope he manages to find webcam prostitutes to wipe his backside when he’s old.

    Don’t say anything to him about this at all. Line up your ducks and separate your finances. Find out for yourself privately about divorce law in your state.

    God bless you honey, but this isn’t marriage.

      • From my honest experience, this is the case more often than people realize. A close family member of mine is a pastor (with ongoing and long-standing porn issues), and I grew up in that community of pastor’s families and heard the gossip about others, too. I think many are drawn to the clergy (and to the psych professions, too) in a subconscious attempt to fix their own problems.

        My family member has made active strides to stop viewing pornography, as he views it as a sin and it has impacted his marital life. He has been successful in stopping, as far as I know, and I applaud him for it! I don’t view pornography as a sin per se, but if it interferes with intimacy or if you partner is uncomfortable with it, IT NEEDS TO STOP.

        Sweetpea, don’t feel like you’re a prude. Religious and non-religious people are all over the spectrum on how they feel about pornography. It is perfectly reasonable for you to not be ok with it! Your husband’s refusal to honor you is a serious problem, and a reason you should consider ending your marriage. Blessings to you, sweet friend.

        • If you’re in one of those dispensational new-testament only churches, show that fool pastor the passage where Jesus takes down men who lust after other women. You know the one: “He has already committed adultery in his heart.” Then flip to the New Testament passages in the apostolic letters that list the sins which will keep anyone from entering heaven.

          When you’re done pointing those out, turn your back on the fool and find another church. I suggest a traditional denominational church where the pastors actually have to get degrees in theology before preaching.

          • I agree, AC!

            The first thing that entered my mind was the passage that states if a married man looks at another woman with lust in his heart, he has already committed adultery with her in his mind.

            And the thing is, if our wonderful ex’s didn’t first have those thoughts about being with other women, having sex with other women and about dumping us and how we repeatedly disappoint them, maybe we wouldn’t be here.

      • My X had a secret, disgusting porn habit which I discovered on my daughter’s lap top.

        I had given her my good lap top when we moved so that she could connect with her friends from home.

        She went away for a weekend and he decided that he would use her laptop ( computer in office belonged to the church – must not have naughty stuff on it !).

        I found it propped up against our bed. Since I still had files on it – I decided to open it and take a look. Needless to say – there isn’t enough bleach in the world to erase what I saw on there. Ick.

        My kiddo was 14 at the time. He had not logged out. She would have been exposed to that.

        I did confront him and he cleaned up the lap top ( right after church ). 2 hours later we picked my daughter up at the train station like nothing happened.

        Screw the clergy. If your marriage sucks – that is reason enough to separate and divorce.
        You owe no one an explanation.

        I do agree to keep quiet. Just get yourself to a good lawyer and find out what your rights are.

    • Evangelical churches are now recognizing porn as an issue and they definitely see it as cheating
      From my personal 30 years it is almost impossible for them to change as they use it for stress relief and no one woman can ever be as exciting as the thousands online
      And yes,they do progress to actual encounters to get the same dopamine hit they have become used to

    • Not to mention Matthew 5:28 which addresses the whole porn thing pretty straightforwardly:

      Matthew 5:28 King James Version
      28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.
      Jesus made it very clear with this statement. Looking at porn is committing adultery. The Bible allows for divorce due to the sin of Adultery.
      Your pastor should be fully aware of this. Either he doesn’t know which makes him a crummy pastor, or he doesn’t care which makes him a false pastor.
      Either way, screw what he’s told you. Your husband is committing adultery and even though God despises divorce, He allows for it in the case of adultery.

      • ^^^THIS^^^
        The entire Biblical support for divorce is IMPORTANT to some of us. You can all talk about being unhappy being enough reason to divorce, but to those of us who take our faith very seriously, that is NOT enough. We actually follow a book that lays our principals to live by. We are allowed to care about what God and the Bible tells us about our marriages and our conduct as Christians in this world.
        That said, Matthew 5:28 most certainly wraps that up pretty tight!
        Can I also encourage you to keep reading that passage?
        There are verses that tell us that when you love someone you love and treat them like your own limb. A part of yourself. As important as yourself.
        The next verse in Matthew says when your limb (or eye) causes you to sin or brings sin into your life, CUT IT OFF or pluck it out before it hurts the rest of the body.
        I say cut that fucker right off!

  • Full disclosure: Im not a porn-healthy sort of gal, I think its damaging to all parties concerned.

    During my brief “dating” period between my Cheaters death and finding love (with whom I set a firm “no porn” boundary in our relationship and it has held) I read about this as I was suddenly “out there” in the dating world and I wanted to understand. Men who are compulsive porn users can eventually rewire their sexual response so that porn is the only way they can function and the flesh and blood relationships they have or try to gain wither and die on the vine.

    It is a betrayal and it deprives you of what you (by being married) can only get ethically from him. The fact that he mocks you when you bring it up says volumes. My Cheater was a rager…his anger was toxic and destructive and I begged him to get help and he never did… I look back on the fact that he was perfectly OK staying how he was and didnt give a fuck how it hurt me and I cant believe I took it for so long.

    • I briefly dated a porn slob. He had a very hard time getting and maintaining an erection, even with a dose of the little blue pill. And a fit hourglass figured (real/live) woman with big boobs in front of him ! Why waste your time with a person who is sexually rejecting time and time again ? You deserve more. DTMFA.

      Also, how much money (joint marital assets) is Porn Slob wasting and dissipating on web cam girls ?

  • Hi Sweatpea,

    Chump Lady has made an excellent point about your husband’s inability to care about your feelings. You obviously take the values of your faith seriously, and your husband obviously doesn’t. Does a man who behaves this way show faithfulness to you or to God?
    My exH was into porn (not my cup of tea) and surprise, surprise…he was cheating offline too.
    Along with CL and CN, I have also found Divorce Minister’s website very helpful from a Christian faith perspective and it may help you too. ()

    Faithful.

    • Thanks for the plug!

      SweetPea,

      You do have biblical grounds. Mathew 19:9 is where Jesus gives the exception for divorce. He uses the Greek word, porneia. This a broad term for all sexual immorality and even the root word for pornography. So, I would say your situation fits Jesus’ allowance for divorce.

      Hope that helps!
      DM

      • Your pastor doesn’t know his Bible… Matthew 5:28 says that “if a man looks at a woman and lusts after her, he has already committed adulterery in his heart” and adultery is Biblical grounds for divirce. Take it from a pastor’s kid, FIND A NEW CHURCH!!

  • My ex liked to go to strip clubs with the guys. This was happening early on in our marriage and it really bothered me. Whenever I said anything, I was told that all guys do this and I should stop being so naive. I was made to feel like a prude. Truth is that I was really young when we got together and was not sexually experienced. So I bought into is view of me being a prude.

    But you know what, Sweetpea? It continued to bother me. Then after 18 years of marriage, I found out he had been cheating on me. Went to counseling and he cheated again. Then I started digging and it had been going on a long time. The porn is probably just the tip of the iceberg, Sweetpea. And that unhappiness you are feeling is trying to tell you something. Don’t ignore it. Life is better when you don’t have to love with it.

  • Most pastors don’t like divorce because it looks bad it happened on their turf. Screw them they don’t have to live with the problem. You do, until you make the decision that enough is enough.
    He is not going to change because no one is willing to call him on it other than you, and so far you have been easily kept in your place with the aid of the pastor who heaped on some spiritual shaming for good measure. You deserve better.
    Get out.

  • Honey, he *is* committing adultery. Matthew 5:27-28

    He refuses to fulfill his marital duties to you. He is not to reject you sexually unless it is to be in a “season of prayer”. 1 Corinthians 7:1-7

    If he refuses to seek help for his problem, you’ve got ample biblical grounds.

  • Sweet pea sweetheart, my story too. Our sex life crumbled (early menopause, 3 toddlers, debt problems) and he turned to porn. That made it even more difficult for me as my respect for him lessened (partly because of my faith, partly cos I think the pornography is damaging and just so dann undignified for everybody though I wouldn’t push my ideals on anyone!) though I didn’t call him out on it because I thought “He needs something…”
    That years later became an EA and led to him shutting me out of the bedroom so he could have a wank. Just nonsense, when I’d asked him to give it up when I took him back and I was right there wanting to heal the marriage. He didn’t want intimacy.
    Also – I’d love to know what your marriage vows were. Isn’t there something about forsaking all others? Cherishing you? Loving you as Christ loves his church? Worshipping you with his body? Not denying each other sex? That’s in my bible. I should point all that out to Reverend McPatriarchy if I were you.
    Sweetpea darling huge hugs to you today – time to be mighty xxx

  • Dear SweetPea,

    I am so sorry. I have been in your shoes. It’s a complete and utter mindfuck. Trying to compete with women who ARE NOT REAL destroyed any confidence I had in myself as a woman and a partner. It’s been a long, uphill battle to try to get it back. Don’t let that happen to you. Here’s the real crux of Tracy’s answer:

    “My point is pictures on a screen are commodities. Interchangeable things, like hubcaps. They don’t have needs. They can’t hold up a conversation. They don’t need you to help visit their mother this Thursday. They’re just shiny and attractive and completely devoid of intimacy.

    WHICH. IS. HOW. HE. LIKES. IT.”

    Your husband doesn’t do intimacy and he doesn’t want to do intimacy. If he did, he would have stopped the porn by now. He knows it’s a problem in his life and more importantly, he knows it’s hurting you. He doesn’t care. And there’s a definite progression to this, SweetPea. It will take more and more porn and then weirder and kinkier porn for him to get off. The hunt for a better “fix” will consume him. And with the growing fixation will come more difficulty in separating fact from fiction. He will start believing that all women like (or maybe deserve) to be treated the way women are treated in porn. That the revolting way women are used in porn as objects with no needs of their own is normal. Eventually he will almost certainly “go live” with strippers and/or hookers in order to take it to the next level. This will not help with problems with intimacy and empathy. Women will become even more objectified to him. I have never know this situation to end well for the wife, SweetPea and I know a lot of women who have been through this.

    Listen to Tracy. Get out. Find yourself a good trauma therapist and check out POSARC (Parterns of Sex Addicts Resource Center). Also my dear friend, Diane Strickland has a wonderful blog that is a great resource: http://www.yourstoryissafehere.com Choosing porn over your partner exposes a darkness of the soul for which there is no cure. Don’t invest any more of your precious life on a man who will never be capable of a really intimate relationship. Save yourself SweetPea. You are worth it!

    • Not trying to unravel the skein, but the more I think about events in my marriage,the Dickhead’s behavior, the more convinced I am that I only saw the tip of the iceberg on D-day. He was always hiding his laptop. After D-Day, he started locking in his gun safe. I know there were hookers and I know he cheated but I don’t with who or there were multiples (I suspect). And I think there was porn because he would spend hours in the basement supposedly working out or spending time in his hunting room.

      Your statement – Choosing porn over your partner exposes a darkness of the soul for which there is no cure. – hit me like a brick wall. At D-day, he tried to throw all this baggage into my lap. I fell apart under the weight of it. Blaming me for a sexless marriage. It wasn’t until almost a month later than I threw it all back at him. He had choices and that the path he chose. I told him that I don’t care what you tell your family, your friends or co-workers. Your cheating is 100% on you and you know it. Gets me mad again just thinking about it.

      • I was blamed for a sexless marriage, too.
        In the book by Debra Mirza “The covert passive aggressive narcissist” this is actually explained. That these covert types create the narrative early on that you are wrong in some way sexually. So, you always feel guilty and like you are withholding. It makes me mad to just think about this. Because what she describes is exactly the dynamic created in my relationship.
        It appears it was similar in yours.

        • The Dickhead pretty much called the shots when it came to when sex happened. When we first got together, he spoke like he was a sex-crazed animal. Only I never really saw it. Maybe the first 4 months, and then it was gone. I never knew what happened. He just turned and to this day, I’m not sure what happened. Hell, I’m not even sure why he married me and stay married for 19 years.

    • Sweetpea-
      Chump Lady is 100% spot on when she said “My point is pictures on a screen are commodities. Interchangeable things, like hubcaps. They don’t have needs. They can’t hold up a conversation. They don’t need you to help visit their mother this Thursday. They’re just shiny and attractive and completely devoid of intimacy.

      WHICH. IS. HOW. HE. LIKES. IT.”

      Let me save you time, money for therapy, and more future heartache. Once hooked or addicted on porn-your cheater is done with you except as wife-appliance. You will be banished to the dick desert. And if by some chance, your cheater wants to have sex with you, the dick will not work & it will be your fault. The porn is like a drug that they need to even function sexually at all and over time the user will have to resort to more extreme types of porn which will eventually carry over into real life encounters with rando strange, cam girls, hookers, massage parlors, etc. The recovery percentages for these types of addicts is incredibly low and most will NEVER admit they have a problem-you will likely be blamed for the reason that they are doing it. This is a lose-lose scenario. These disordered freaks are incapable of any real intimacy and they like it that way. They will blame you & destroy your self-esteem for not being like the porn or pay-for-play girls. Ask me how I know

      My ex was going starting to go down the road of barely legal girl porn & more aggressive porn. My therapist advised that it was going to get worse-way worse and asked if I really wanted to be with him when he got arrested for being a john or for being with a minor? And how could I trust him with our friends young daughters or young female family members? Or would I want him introducing my son to that way of life?

      I was DONE right then & there.

      Big hugs SP-I know it is scary & hard but so worth it. A better life & church are waiting for you!

      • My 2 x 4 up the side of my head moment: I found a strip club manager’s business card in my 19 year old daughter’s bedroom. He had given it to her when he saw her at a bar. He wanted her and her friends to come by and “audition” for him. My daughter the feminist thought it was a joke which is why she kept the card. I showed it to my then husband and asked him how he would feel if his daughter walked into a strip club and saw her dad in there doing whatever the hell he did in strip clubs. He shrugged and said that club wasn’t one of the ones he went frequented. My reaction? Stunned silence. He had no sense of shame much less horror at the thought of his daughter in one of those places or seeing him in one of those places. That was when I officially knew there was something terribly “not right” about him.

  • Oh and Sweetpea, so sorry you have to be here – but so glad you’ve posted, please keep on posting and learn and be comforted by Chump Nation. We have your back. X

  • Porn found by my then 14 year old son was the catalyst for getting my ex out of our marital home. I had lived for years with a physical and emotional void for a husband. That had lead to serious health problems for me both physically and emotionally. But when it all came out, it wasn’t just porn, he had had an affair and a number of hook ups. He had been bash and robbed during a hook up which lead to months of work, so financially we struggled, he would accuse me of being unstable if I ever questioned if he had been with anyone else. And the whole time he set himself as the spiritual bench mark I needed to aspire to. When it came out, his attitude was that he had confessed therefore it was all now in the past and my being angry was my sin of abuse towards him. I ended our marriage the night our daughter was diagnosed with cancer a month after D’day. He instantly began painting himself as the victim, later claimed to be delivered of an unclean sexual spiritual. All under the restoring eye of the pastor who told me I had no right to say my marriage was over because to do so was breaking my marriage vows, and how was I going to save face once my husband was restored and I had to take him back if I had already told people it was over. Needless to was I ended it with my cheating husband and church who kept him.

    • Pious Pastors are Putzes with Power.

      I’m an active Christian, so I don’t say that lightly. I was blessed with a Pastor who told me this just after the discard “As Christians we want to believe that God brings things/people to us… but we almost also remember that God will take away those things/people that cause us harm because he loves us that much.” (And, he was the Pastor who married us.)

      Find a Pastor who shares your values… and a husband who does too.

  • I’m going to stand in line here with the other Chumps and ask: Is this behavior acceptable to you?

    Now – I ask that from a position I was once in where Mr. Sparkles would have online sex “live” with women in forums on Adult Friend Finder. These were real people and he jacked off with them watching and left the dirty spooge filled hand towels on the laundry pile for me to wash. If that doesn’t scream psychopathic fuckwit, not sure what does.

    I guess my point is, from my experience, it is absolutely unacceptable behavior TO ME. And, it became a deal breaker (one of many) in our marriage because I found that he didn’t stop there. He would IM these people, he would meet them in hotels, he would fantasize about them while with me. They don’t leave it at the computer.

    Don’t lose another day of your life with this asswipe. Leave a hand towel and some lotion by his keyboard and go see a lawyer today, right after you find another church.

    ((((Sweetpea)))) This doesn’t define you – but it does define your husband.

    • Agreed. Is this how you want to spend the rest of your life? Mine did the same thing – tried to normalize porn early on, and because my first asshole boyfriend was constantly watching porn, leaving magazines around in full view, I was desensitized and if I complained, I was made to feel like a prude. So when the husband continued the behavior, I didn’t say a word. Until he started preferring it over me – watching it up to three hours a night, and like ICSTMC leaving his dirty rags on the floor (not even in the laundry, I’d have to go down to the basement and collect them off of the floor because he still expected me to clean them, sigh!), no consideration whatsoever. In the last five years of our marriage he moved full-time into the basement and refused to touch me unless it was some deranged sex act he’d seen in porn that he wanted me to try…um…no thanks. No kissing, no cuddling, no intimacy, just him speaking to me like I was a whore, and me putting up with it. I still didn’t want to pull that thread because I was terrified of what I’d find. Then one day my daughter got ahold of his phone, ran up to me and asked me not to divorce him – the phone was riddled with porn. He knew she had his code, and still didn’t bother to clean it up. So I started to pull the thread – found out that he had an inappropriate relationship with a Tumblr pornstar – brought the woman to my house and everything (“but I didn’t fuck her – you know me better than that!”) as well as was following women around our metro area, taping under their skirts, their boobs, their butts…just disgusting. I decided that even if he didn’t get his dick wet (which I do NOT believe for one instant) this was no way for me to live. Our morals didn’t match up and I was done. Everyone is absolutely right – he’s the freak, you’re not a prude, you’re just not a sociopathic freak and the fact that you question the fact that he wants to normalize this behavior speaks volumes.

    • Thank you so much PutAForkInMe. I’m sorry you went through this. It is it’s own special hell. Yes, my husband only does webcam porn where he tells the girls (and I do mean girls like ages 18-24 our daughters age) what he wants them to do. It is sick and the more responses I read the more my confidence builds that this isn’t about me. It is about a sick man who will never give his all to a relationship as he’s too busy avoiding intamcy and true connection. Thank you for sharing your story. Hugs

      • Sweet Pea,

        My priest cleared this up for me in the pick me dancing stage. This was first cheater back before the internet. He said this, ” I don’t see any difference. He is having a sexual experience outside of your marriage that does not include you. His vows as a Catholic explicitly forbid that. He knew that when he pledged them. He has broken his vows.” When I tried to demure (hey I’m no prude) and said I didn’t know why it bothered me so much, it wasn’t real. Priest said, “It is real. That is a real woman in that picture. He is a real man, having a real sexual experience. If she were naked across the room from him and he was using her to masturbate would you be bothered? If he was lying next to her on the bed masturbating, would you be bothered? Of course you would because he explicitly vowed that you are the only person he was going to have sexual experiences with. Period.” That was clear. Yes, it’s a betrayal. He is having sex without you! And most of these jerks are doing it while denying you sex. If it’s outside of the covenant you made and he knows it hurts you–it’s cheating. When I was single after that, I told every guy I got remotely serious about that that was my view. It startled many–true. And some dropped the relationship because of it. Well, if they are allowed to have a dealbreaker including porn, then I was sure as hell allowed to have one excluding it! In the end CL is 100% on. If it is unacceptable to you, then it is a dealbreaker. There are religious leaders who are in agreement with you. Seek them out. My priest was an enormous source of support and strength for me. I have two divorces and two subsequent annulments. And, I am finally in a marriage where our morals and values match! It is possible to find someone who thinks like you do. Maybe it isn’t easy–but it is possible. By the way, I doubt many of those girls are even 18. Average age to be trafficked into porn/prostitution is 14. He isn’t just abusing you. He is abusing them as well.

        • @Jojobee
          Thank goodness he had some sense and decency!

          It really disturbs me when I hear people getting the “it’s not that bad” treatment from people in positions of authority whom they trust and look to for guidance.

          • It Aint Me, yes it disturbs me too! The truth is a good priest/pastor can distinguish between good and evil and does not let the world’s “hey all sex is great/no big deal and if someone doesn’t think so they have hangups/are a prude/are frigid/are naive” schtick influence them. You have the right to hold your spouse to his/her vows! Your religious authority should think so as well because to not do so not only denigrates you, but the religion as well.

      • I’m so sad you had to go through this.

        Looking back on my perverted Chester I now remember that after we were married a few years, when we got out first computer in the early 1990’s, I found his logon to a swingers website. He was offering me and him up to random strangers, and I did not even know it. When I confronted him about it he said oh I thought you’d like to do this, I just found this interesting. He had already been communicating with a guy in a close city who was trying to talk his wife into it. I wonder when he was going to tell me? Or was he bringing them here to rape me?

        Then fast forward to the present time about four months ago, when he brought the iPad back from his work down at the coast renovating Schmoopie’s condo, there was porn downloads all over it. He said it stopped working and he left it at our house. I guess it got a virus. When I looked at it a few months later it looked like it was for WebCam girls. But all of the downloads had expired. So I couldn’t verify it. It looks like something you logged in and paid for and then left comments for people to do things. I asked him about it and he said “ i don’t know what that is.”

        I remember one time he went down to the coast to work. He wanted to video me while doing yoga and wanted me to wear only my underwear. He said he didn’t think he’d make it down there that long without sex. I should have seen the red flag then and refused him to go, or taken a 2 week vacation and gone with him. But at the time I didn’t think going with him to work was anything I should be doing. Plus I have a full time job.

        Of course the affair was already in full mode at that time with my horn dog slutting around. He just can’t hold out a few weeks and keep his marriage vows- not even for 2 weeks. I certainly did hold out for those 2 weeks he was gone. I never felt the need to cheat because I couldn’t make a few weeks without him. I guess I have different morals than him. He started telling me those past few months- “you’re the good one, I’m the bad one.” I never read into it too much until D-Day. Any excuse will do for him.

        • RE “You’re the good one….” : during wreckonciliation he said “I’m yours forever if you want me” and I rushed into his arms saying “I’m so happy, you’re the love of my life”. As I was in his arms he said “I have a bastard soul…” amazing spackling me assumed it was an apology for the hell he was putting me through and reassured him. Three months later when I said it’s me or her, he left.
          We really don’t read these comments right – because we Chumps just don’t imagine the depth of manipulation these Cheaters can sink to.
          Hugs to you. IWillRise x

  • He’s hurting you and he won’t have sex with you. Even if he’s not physically cheating with you, it’s a bad marriage and you have every right to end it.

    My FUU agrees.

  • I discovered on dday and thereafter from his long stay at “sex addiction camp” for his “porn addiction”, that my elderly XH had been using porn since he was a teenager. I was clueless. The two times I discovered it on the computer he claimed it was his son. Six years into a 23 year marriage, he developed ED after a heart attack. That is what he and his doctors claimed, anyway. Nothing worked to help him.

    This supposedly Christian man sat me down and mournfully begged me to promise chastity, since he was unable to perform (and the couple of times we tried before that, he failed and raged for days…). We talked about intimacy without his completion. He begged, cried. I agreed at 48 years old to forego “real” sex hecause I loved and trusted him. There was never another minute of real intimacy between us. None. I might as well have been his sister. I had to listen to him explain that he would understand if I had an affair, blah blah blah, BUT if I did, he would divorce me. (Gaslighting.)

    In reality, this creep was using porn daily. Heavy weird porn. His “ED” stemmed from the porn use. It was just too much trouble to satisfy anyone but himself, so he gave me up, “as too much trouble”, the heck with my needs. Years and years of a sexless unhappy marriage, lied to, used, hurt, gaslighted.

    All this came out from “sex addiction camp”.

    Porn accelerates. Porn teaches disrespect for women. Porn requires him to push limits into things you never heard of. It leads to needing real human deviancy. They are always stretching for the next hit, human, animal. My quiet, lawyerly, Christian H was screwing my dog. Male prostitutes. He admits to “collecting” in his mind women to mentally screw, including his daughters young friends. He had affairs with friends.

    After discovery, this totally sick man would accuse me of wearing rose colored glasses and being naive and a prude!!

    I threw his butt out and was relentless in my financial demands. But I lost all these years of a real marriage, decades of giving up my sexuality to his lies.

    Run, dear. Nothing good can come of this. Your marriage is over. Just ignore your pastor (like 50% are porn users) and get yourself out of his life of filth.

    • Oh Dianne, screwing your dog!!! I know this happens but ….. that is the most disgusting thing I have read in ages! So glad you got rid of him (and I hope took him to the cleaners financially!)

    • “Run, dear. Nothing good can come of this. Your marriage is over. Just ignore your pastor (like 50% are porn users) and get yourself out of his life of filth.”

      — You know what the company says… “Nothing runs like a Deere.” (John Deere tractors). Put on your green tracksuit and go.

    • Thank you for a clear, concise description of how porn works in the pleasure centers of the mind, and requires acceleration of usage and weirdness and inappropriate behaviors. I was never a prude, and I think there are some behaviors that can lead to intimacy because they are erotic, without being pornographic in the least. Intimacy is all about SHARING pleasure in live and personal encounters with a person you care about. You need to care about that person in other aspects of life, too, for that intimacy to be more than a sexual encounter. Sexual interactions without true intimacy and caring are nothing but selfish acts of masturbation, with no care for the needs, desires, or even the name of the other participant. The internet makes access easy, but it is still prostitution, whether or not the contact is “real”. Porn makes body parts interchangeable, and unimportant to those who access them. Nothing can be more dehumanizing. If your partner is more interested in porn than being with you, it is time for you to change partners.

  • Yes, it is adultury. Remind that pastor of Matthew 5:18 “But I tell you that anyone who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”

    Your husband is cheating and he is completely unrepentant. Your pastor is putting the onus on you to keep your marriage together while it sounds like your husband is completely unaccountable. He has broken his vows to you and mocks you when you express your anger about it. The Bible also is pretty explicit in how husbands should treat their wives. Your husband has broken his vows to you and is behaving in a very unChristian manner.

    God did not institute marriage just so a man would have a ready made, butler, cook, housekeeper, and ego stroker at his disposal while he dallies with whomever he pleases. You are his wife, and he is treating you like an appliance. You deserve better than that.

    Porn is destructive to marriages and gives men unrealistic ideas about women and from a secular standpoint, he is also contributing to the human trafficking problem.

  • SweatPea,

    I am so very sorry. I was raised in the church, and God has been so very near to me and my kids during my awful marriage and divorce. But like you, for a long time I attended a church where the very literal, harsh interpretation of scripture had me believing that ONLY verified “real cheating” was grounds for a divorce. ExH choked me? Nope. Threatened my life and the kids lives? Nope. Screamed at me, called me names, smashed my head into walls? Nope. Spit on and kicked my toddler daughter and me? Nope. Flirted with other women in front of me? Nope. Only “verified” adultry. Otherwise, I was going to hell. So I stayed, and suffered, and he got worse.

    Then, at a Mom’s group at a very Bible-based, grace-filled church, someone asked me, “Do you think Jesus – everything you know about His heart – would want you to stay in this marriage? From everything the Bible says about the heart and will of God – is THIS what God wants for you and your kids? And even if you don’t see the truth after those questions – Is there anything God won’t forgive?”

    Long story short, exH left shortly after that, so I didn’t have the chance to leave. And after vehemently denying for 10 years that he cheated, he called me a few weeks later from his undisclosed Schmoopie getaway to say, “You’ll be happy – I’m getting married! (we were still married…)…and when I said, “Happy?”, he replied that now I could get a divorce and not be worried about the church…since he’d been cheating the entire ten years.

    Happy? Not so much at the time. But it is likely that the cruel, demeaning behavior your husband is exhibiting is the tip of the iceberg. Pornography in the way your husband is using it IS adultry; in any event, God does not will this kind of pain on his precious daughters. Not ever. Prayers for strength for you and for godly counsel of grace on your journey.

  • Sweetpea, did you hear the one about the woman who went with her new husband to be missionaries in Asia? Something wasn’t right between them and she discovered her husband had been using child porn years before they married. They got sent back to their very prominant church in Texas. She filed for an annulment. Her church publically shamed her while praising her husband’s recovery.
    The point is that many churches are proponents of an absurd patriarchy. It is rigged to support the established male heirarchy. Can you imagine Jesus telling the missionary woman or you to suffer the rest of your life with this? Me neither.
    I got all kinds of support from church in my divorce from an adulterous wife. As I got deeper into church culture I realized much of it was because I had the golden ticket between my legs. Over the years I saw too much and my wife and I left for a church that treated men and women equally in all aspects.
    Sweatpea, you are going to need support through this and you are not going to get it where you are at. Please find spiritual support where you can get it. Definately go to DivorceMinister.com
    Your husband, as much as you have loved him, is not healthy for you now. Do yourself and him a solid favor by getting out now. You need a life and he needs consequences.

  • OMG. My ribs hurt from laughing so hard. CL, you are a genius at cutting through the crap and, yes, allowing us to laugh at all the mindfuckery. (Although Seeetpea probably isn’t able to do the laughing … yet. Sorry, Sweetpea. I know this sucks.) I just wish I’d found you and all the others on this site 5 years ago.

  • Beth nailed it. Beyond the morality, beyond the addiction, bottom line, you are saying “ouch”, he is saying “I don’t care.” You are in this marriage alone. He is viewing and treating you as an appliance, not as a living, breathing person with feelings. I am sorry to say it won’t get any better, only worse. He has already devalued you. His comments and actions are showing it clearly.

    You deserve so much better.

    Quietly, lay the grounds for an equitable divorce. Financial abuse often goes hand in hand with addiction and abuse. Protect yourself by making copies of tax returns, important financial papers, bank statements, IRAs, passports, birth certificates, deeds, etc, and store them in a safe place other than your home. Take momentos, jewelry, and things you value, and store them elsewhere. Quietly, run a credit check on both of you. You may be astounded at what you learn. If he doesn’t yet have an in the flesh affair partner, chances are he will eventually because that’s how it progresses. Don’t confront him, just quietly lay the foundation for a good settlement for yourself and your kids if you have any.

    And keep coming back to this site. We have your back here because we understand. We have been through this too, and because the disordered generally use the same play book, we can predict what is coming next.

    Sending you great big hugs.

    • I 100% agree to this! Except, invest in the biggest most badass attorney you can afford. Whatever you do, don’t let him talk you into “sitting down at the table just the two of us to split our assets”. It’s been documented that when women do that they also end up with less because the xh goes in with a strategy coated in sugary words. My xh tried that, and my attorney threw it out the door. Also, I don’t care about equitable to him…. just make sure this is fair for you.

      This is the most important thing. You deserve a good life, a good relationship with kindness and love, and this isn’t it. I fell into the same type of abusive relationship that my parents had, and I didn’t even know what a good relationship could be until I met my husband. We are so happy, and I would not know about that if I had stayed.

      These evil people gaslight and manipulate kind people into doing what they want, and you don’t have to do that!

      Consider yourself hugged.

  • I had the same problem with someone who is thankfully several years in my rear view.

    It was the same. Porn all day. Promises of stopping that were total lies, he just went to greater and greater lengths to hide it. I tried compromising on what kinds of porn it could be, but he just took that inch and kept pushing for a mile (“Well what if it’s this? How about this? Well I didn’t think you meant THIS…” pushing for further and further…which he wasn’t even sticking to the agreements anyway so it was all bullshit.)

    I would say he wasn’t looking at cam girls, but in all likelihood he was, and lying about it. I remember finding out that he was getting female “friends” he met on the internet to draw him customized cartoon porn (…what even the…?) and I got into an argument with him because he seriously did not see what was wrong with that. (He also conveniently didn’t mention to these “friends” that he was even dating me. One time I was on the computer and one of these girls popped up in his messages and I started having a conversation with her. Upfront just said I was his girlfriend and she and I were talking about some tv show we both liked. He FREAKED OUT. Got extremely angry at me and said “You don’t need to be talking to my friends!!” …why not? You maybe…hiding something? Yep, he was.)

    When we (finally) broke up, he looked me in the eye and said “I would rather be alone and have porn than be with you and have sex.” He denies having said that, but you don’t forget it when someone says something that hurtful to you.

    Later I found out he’d cheated on me at least 6 times (that I know of. It doesn’t matter if there were more. Once is too much.)

    Look…this isn’t a question of “is this cheating?” He is choosing porn over his own wife. Like CL said, this isn’t a debate about whether or not porn works for some people, whether it’s feminist or not, whether it’s healthy to masturbate, etc. This is a question of if it’s worth the unhappiness you are feeling.

    You have done the right things. You have gone to counseling, you have expressed your unhappiness to your partner, you have attempted to be intimate with him, you have even sought (…terrible…but this isn’t your fault) religious advice, and nothing is changing. You are unhappy, and your husband does not care. He prefers the porn. And CL is right, it lacks intimacy. He probably thinks himself hot shit with the cam girls he pays for, but the reality is, he doesn’t matter to them. They make him money. They will do and say whatever he asks them to as long as he pays up (which this is probably something you can ask for in a divorce agreement, lost marital assets.)

    But that’s all he has to do, is pay up. It’s no work for him. It’s no emotional effort, he doesn’t have to listen to those pesky annoyances like the feelings and emotions of an actual human being, like his wife. That’s not to say that cam girls are not actual human beings, but that’s not the point. The point is, porn videos/cam girls/porn pictures don’t demand much more than cash, and a click of the mouse. And he’s shown you that’s what he prefers. He doesn’t care.

    And he’s probably just going to keep doing that because he thinks you’re just going to keep putting up with it. He doesn’t have to do anything because he’s figured out he can blatantly show you how little he cares and you’ll take it. AND he has the backing of the church. So life is pretty good on his end. He gets to get his rocks off with no effort, the church tells him he’s right, and you’re still there.

    Leave him.

    I can’t say he has 100% for sure slept with someone else. But I will say this is eerily similar to the ex boyfriend who was as addicted to porn as your husband is. I told myself he hadn’t cheated in person either, but he absolutely had. I don’t think you should be asking yourself if porn is cheating, you should be paying attention to his blatant disregard for your feelings and his disrespect to you as his wife. At the risk of making blanket statements, but given my experiences, someone who disrespects his partner because he prefers jerking off to strange women is someone I would not trust to be faithful.

    Either way, leave him. You’re not happy, he doesn’t care you’re not happy. You have tried in good faith to work on the things that are making you unhappy and he has not budged. You gotta go. F*** what that pastor says. I do not believe that god would obligate you to this misery and disrespect.

  • Sweetpea37,
    I’ve spent a lot of time studying the relevant passage (Matthew 5:32), and, with all due respect, I think this DOES qualify as cheating & grounds for divorce under the Bible. The actual Greek word used there is “porneia” It is is interpreted not just strictly as adultery, but as “sexual immorality” In other words, the Good Book isn’t just saying he has to go the full monty with these women (though that counts, too) for it to be grounds for divorce; the use of this word eliminates loopholes, like what your husband is doing. If this Greek word (“porniea”) looks suspiciously like another word (“porn”), it’s because it IS the same word! It’s actually the root for “pornography!”
    So, this guy performs a sexual act while talking/chatting up other women, and probably forms an emotional bond with them, too? How is this NOT cheating? I’m sorry, but this is just semantics, here. By that logic, a guy with ED could never cheat, as he couldn’t “finish” what he’s doing. Your pastor needs some serious guidance into reality; would he be ok if his wife did the same thing? So, yes, YES, this is cheating, and it IS grounds for divorce in the Christian church.

  • Sweatpea–Lots of good advice here. Basically, the question boils down to this: is this acceptable to you?

    So far, the answer is no, it is not acceptable, and it looks as if the only reason you’re still in this marriage is because your pastor says that being married to a man who wants to masturbate to porn instead of having sex with you is okay. What this tells me is that you have a very strong faith and you want to do right by it.

    I’ll side with everyone else on this. Regardless of how loudly your pastor professes a faith rooted in the Bible, he misses the mark. Just take a look at Divorce Minister’s comment. TAAAAT gives a list of Biblically-based reasons.

    And here’s the other thing. Your wedding vows are a contract that you both make to each other, witnessed by God and your faith community. You don’t have to worry about breaking that contract because your husband has already broken it. He has not “forsaken all others.” Heck, he’s ogling them every chance he gets!

    Please check out some other churches in your area. A God-centered ministry will not tell you to stay in a marriage where you are being emotionally abused, especially when your abuser has no intention of stopping the behavior.

    And see a lawyer. You definitely deserve to be married to someone who cherishes you.

  • Sweetpea,

    Your situation sounds miserable! I’m so sorry for what you’re going through.

    Looking at this from a Christian’s perspective for a moment, I understand you want to ensure that any decision to end your marriage has Biblical backup. The Bible is clear that adultery is one of the few “acceptable” reasons for divorce.

    Your pastor’s point of view is that your husband’s porn use does not fit the true definition of adultery because he’s not physically engaging in sexual activity with the women on his computer screen, no matter how skanky they may be. However, your pastor’s not taking into account the following verses in the New Testament:

    “The laws of Moses said, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’ But I say: Anyone who even looks at a woman with lust in his eye has already committed adultery with her in his heart.”
    ~ Matthew 5:27-28

    I’m no Bible scholar, but in my mind, this scripture seems to confirm that some form of adulterous activity is taking place since your husband‘s heart (lust) is focused on other women rather than you. Is this how you want to live the rest of your life?

    • This is a ticklish point on what constitutes real adultery. If anybody looks at another with lust in their hearts they have already commited adultery acccording to the scripture you have referenced. Carrying this postulate to the extreme, we have all committed adultery, therefore all of us have Biblical grounds for divorce. I don’t know what DM would say, but I think that carries the concept too far.

      Sweetpea, your husband, if not a true adulterer, is a dunce for ignoring you. How many husbands would give their right arm to have a wife who actually wanted to be intimate with them and have sex too? I’m no expert here, but I think porn is a fall-back position for husbands that have no other outlet. That doesn’t make it right, of course, because it degrades humanity and in the end, is a poor substitute for the real thing.

  • Sweet Pea,

    I don’t know whether your husband is cheating on you or not. I don’t know whether he is committing adultery. However, from the way you describe him, he is chronically NEGLECTING you! Is this what you signed up for when you committed to him? I think not. Are you willing to continue being neglected by your husband–for the rest of your life? Another question to ask yourself to help you decide what to do, ‘What does this marriage mean to me?’ and ‘Why am I staying in this marriage?’ not in a judgmental way but in a gentle core beliefs revealing way to know your own mind.

  • when a woman can actually write, “I am unhappy with my husband”, the emotional, the thinking about the relationship, the subliminal thoughts, have all fully matured. Leaving a major piece of your life is awful, yet millions do it every week-from starting to live a different life forced upon them by a death of a loved one, a job loss, a health loss, it’s all hard. We don’t have a say so about those things. A husband is a aberration with prurient interests-we don’t have a say so about that either. But blessedly we do have a total say so if we want to live with this unhappiness or not. Please find this peace and happiness in knowing you have 100% control over what you will do. Resolving wishes to you.

  • POP was a porn addict (in addition to his being a chronic cheater–duh) He kept it from my sight as he would watch it in the middle of the night, in my home office.

    I will never forget my revulsion one Sunday afternoon when he changed that ritual. I had been in my bedroom watching a favorite classic movie (Mildred Pierce) and came up behind him to get something from my kitchen. There he was sitting at the island, making ‘sounds’ as he used earbuds to watch one of his truly pervy movies on my kitchen tv. Outraged, disgusted and repulsed, I ejected the disc and snapped it into a million pieces before he could come out of his porn stupor and realize what was going on.

    He did many, many disrespectful and disgusting things while in my home but for some reason, this incident ranks really highly on that list. There were many places in my home that he could escounced himself but he chose to be right in the middle of my kitchen–my sensitivities be damned–once again.

    I recently discovered that he’d managed to get back on a dating site that I had gotten him removed from in the past. After sending the site a detailed account of his abusive, assaultive behavior (including info of his many arrests for same), they have once again BANNED HIM as of today.

    It’s not revenge on my part. I did it to protect unsuspecting women from being victimized by him.

    He’s a predator–a Predatory Opportunistic Parasite (POP) that uses women for a place to live and everything else he can get from them.

    • Hesatthecurb…..I can’t believe I forgot about this with skankboy. Many nights I would ask him to come and watch one of our favorite shows together. He would say he was so annoyed by the commercials that he dvr’d it. Soooo, I would watch it alone and occasionally walk into MY office asking if he wanted some snack, be it whatever. He would have his laptop open, then when I walked in he would close it. Stupid me, I thought how nice that he would do that so as not be distracted and have his full attention on me. (SMH). Fast forward to a few weeks before Dday. He was sitting on the couch in the living room in the middle of the day with his laptop opened. I came home unexpectedly, around the corner in the kitchen to the living room. He did not expect me to be home. I saw he was watching porn. Shy me (cough) asked are you watching porn? He was taken aback….”Ummm, ummm, I opened an email and there it was!” RIIIIGHT! I had never caught him watching porn, but now explains why I had so many viruses on MY laptop! I never understood that since I never open anything, ANYTHING on my office computer unless it is a known source!
      This also explains when I used the expression, “making love,” he would say “no, it’s fucking.” What a depraved semi-human! So glad I am at meh, I think I’ll run for Treasurer!

  • Time, physical and emotional resources are being diverted from you, Sweetpea, to women on a screen who help your husband jerk off. So, yes, it is cheating.

    At a minimum, the non-reciprocal aspect of your marriage and investment is sufficient to end this toxic relationship.

    I have a friend who is about to end a 20-year marriage to an otherwise nice-man for the same reason. Both her husband and yours are KNOWINGLY engaging in acts that (rightfully) cause you distress and anxiety. Doesn’t matter if their intention is to cause you distress, they both know porn addiction and having screen sex with another woman are unacceptable (or they wouldn’t hide it; pretty sure your husband doesn’t tell his friends about his Habit), and that the Habit causes immense distress in their wives.

    A lesson for all of us–anytime a relationship is non-reciprocal, leave it.

  • All of the above. Yes.

    In addition … If your home internet is being used for porn, and especially if there is a minor living in the home, there is a very real risk of an accusation of felony crime. Even if the person doesn’t intend to watch underage porn, underage porn permeates porn culture. It’s nearly impossible for it to be true that no underage porn use is occurring with internet porn use. And that, at least where I live, will earn you a trip right into the pokey.

    So you can start with “I can’t have pornography in my home. Do what you want, but not anywhere that I live.” So, one of you has to move out and/or his name and devices need to be off your internet and mobile phone accounts and he needs to be deprived of the internet passcodes in your home for your own safety.

    If he’s as addicted as he sounds, he’ll get his own phone account at a minimum, so you can at least save yourself from the risk of indictment.

    Second, I know some people are porn-positive, and that’s their right, but exploitation is so prevalent in the industry, and so heavily used to create an addictive response in viewers in order to boost sales, that I have to question the social ethics of any person who spends any money or bandwidth on mainstream porn. If you have some way of accessing something that has a known source, maybe that’s different. But when you knowingly feed the pockets of someone who also traffics teens on the same site, I can’t call that sex-positive.

    My two cents

    • There is also TONS of evidence that regular use of porn alters how you perceive the opposite sex. It trains you to think of them as objects, and alters your perception of sex as this performance-art based act with physically perfect people, rather than an act of intimacy.

  • (((SweetPea)))
    I am so sorry this is happening to you. I’m not sure how much reading you have done on CL, but there is a technique, Trickle Truth, that he is probably using to withhold as much detail as possible. It takes a finely honed liar to be successful with it – just enough information, but not too much… When I searched deep in my X’s computer found photos and videos of him masturbating and confronted him about it, he walked away from me and worked hard on a letter of “truth and remorse” which he gave me later that night. The letter expressed relief at being caught so he could be the husband he should be and the assurance that he had never been with anyone physically.

    All lies; partial truths, no real remorse. Just angry he got caught. He had met men from Craigslist in hotels. He is an exhibitionist so his real joy was having people watch him on camera – not visa versa. And the online set is happy to oblige – egging him on. I sent his computer to a forensic specialist in Denver. I wish I hadn’t because what I found was so troubling and it was expensive. You know enough, Sweetpea.

    Your reason for divorcing him doesn’t have to be porn use. Divorce him because he does not care about you, he has no empathy or understanding how his actions affect you, he puts himself and his needs first and does not care that you suffer. Divorce him because you have nothing to work with here. Go live a happy life without his toxic poison in your world!

  • The fact that these are those cam sites is concerning. You PAY for those. And trust me, they don’t just sitting there topless, blowing kisses at the camera.. It’s faaaaar from that tame. – it’s a sex show and that I equate to prostitution.

    It’s not you. I was VERY open minded in bed and gave into his every kink. Still couldn’t compete with the skin flicks and yes, I’d be told *I’m so tired* only to find him in the dark bathroom w/ his phone and headphones in late @ nite.

    Dear, check the bank statements. Gather your evidence and start working on an exit strategy. I don’t know where you’re located, but in my state you have to prove adultery, and it can’t be through the person admitting it via text.

    At a minimum, isn’t “they won’t have sex with me” a legit grounds for divorce?

  • We don’t talk enough about marriage & divorce in this country. You literally don’t need “grounds” for a divorce. Your husband can divorce you because you make tuna casserole not to his liking. You can divorce him because he chews with his mouth open. Yes, yes, there’s the morals & the vows & all that, but I’m talking in the eyes of the court, you can leave for whatever reason.

    To me, his porn addiction is definitely cheating, and is really no different from trying to save an alcoholic, drug addict, gambler. Also all bad addictions that will pull you down under with them. You don’t need to understand it or diagnose it or save it, just get away from it!!

  • Dealbreaker.

    What if you were spending every waking hour playing Fortnite and neglected him in the same way? Hid it, lied about it, and rejected him repeatedly in favor of fake avatars and online gaming priests? Spent marital funds to play? Despite being told repeatedly you are being destructive you chose to do it anyway and mocked him because he was not as free as you are and that he really needs to get a hobby?

    Here is a good Golden Rule:

    “If I would never do that crap TO you, I don’t have to put up with that crap FROM you.”

  • Sweetpea, I don’t know which version of Christianity you are, but porn in mine is a grave sin. Yes it is adultery “in the heart” Matthew 5:28.
    Definitely less so than the real affair. It is also an addiction. I am not sure I agree with Chumplady’s advice of divorcing him. Most men watch porn. Most marriages go through rough spots. Yes, he can stop if he has the desire to stop. If you communicate to him directly until the message gets home that this addiction of his could end your marriage, I think, if he loves you, porn watching will end.

    • Chumpman, I have told him several times I don’t like it and it hurts me. I have told him it wears on my self esteem and makes me question my sex appeal. We have been to counselor after counselor…he just lies and hides it more. And it’s not just pics and videos of women (which is bad enough) he interacts with people on webcams (18-24 girls, which is my daughters age) and have them act out sexual fantasies…which btw I have always been open to all his kinky requests. But he chooses these web cam interactions over real sex. He lies, he hides, he gaslights. It’s a bit more than “every man uses porn” (which I don’t believe but anyway). He knows I want to leave the marriage and continues, so really at this point it is about me doing what I say I’m going to do I guess and leave.

      • Every man does not use porn! And if he knows he is hurting you and that hasn’t changed his behavior–he doesn’t want to change. You do not have to live with someone who abuses and decieves you. Also, as I and many have said, whatever you have found is not likely the whole or worst of his actions. It is a short step from live web cam to prostitute. My second cheater had made that leap long before I found out. Run. Please. Not to mention the marital assets he is spending on his infidelity. That shit is expensive. Pour over those bank/credit card records closely and you will be shocked. Hmmmm “Honey, why are there repeated ATM withdrawals for $300 cash every few days? What’s this weird charge that occurs almost every day for a month?”

      • He knows I want to leave the marriage and continues, so really at this point it is about me doing what I say I’m going to do I guess and leave.

        What he’s really doing is betting that you WON’T leave because you have tolerated his porn for so long, because he’s good at gaslighting you, because he has faith that you have faith, because he’s fine with you doing all the work in the marriage.

        Go see a lawyer on the quiet. You do this because even if you’ve said you want to leave the marriage, he doesn’t believe you. Once you actually file, you’ll notice that he’ll first try to tell you that this was all a mistake, that he really loves you, that he’s a sick man and needs your support, etc. When that won’t work, he’ll try rage.

        And see your own therapist–not the person trying to help you with your marriage. You’ll need someone who can help you deal with the fallout from the years of abuse.

        Good luck!

      • Chumpman,

        CL did not direct her to divorce him over porn. She asked if it was a deal breaker for sweet pea and it is. Sweet Pea has told him repeatedly how she feels about it and he just takes it underground and then goes right back to it even though she has expressed it hurts her.

        Regardless, the ONLY thing that matters in this scenario is what Sweet Pea’s deal breaker is. If her deal breaker is porn and as a result of this, she is very unhappy in her marriage, she should absolutely divorce him.

      • Sweet Pea,
        You said, ‘He lies, he hides, he gaslights.’ I’ve said that many times about my now ex-husband and my last boyfriend, who married the young woman he left me for within a year of discarding me. In my opinion, lying, hiding, and gas lighting, especially when repeated, are extremely disrespectful and enough to warrant leaving. I wish that I had opted to leave when I realized that my husband and last boyfriend (fake friend of decades) were doing these things. I would have felt a bit better about me than I do now having hung on until they kicked me to the curb. Also might not have lost as much money. I wish you clarity and comfort.

      • Dear Sweetpea, someone posted he doesn’t believe you will end this. Let him think that and I would not tell him anymore you want out. You have support here and I hope you have friends and family. Do not let anyone tell you that you are unreasonable and put it on you. You must start gathering financial documents, bank accounts . 401 k, any other information in case he is hiding money and assets from you. Please get to an attorney. Do not say anything to him again. When he finds out at the right time he will try to manulipate you. It may first be the crying I am sorry or it will be very nasty. he may sic that same pastor on you to try to guilt you. Please, please get to a lawyer quietly.

    • He clearly has no desire to stop and he mocks her pain when she talks to him about it. That indicates he does not love her and is most likely incapable of loving anyone. Of course she should divorce him.

  • I never really found my STBX to have a porn thing going on. But I might have just missed it. I knew that he did not mind this kind of stuff, but he was embarrassed when I once found a picture on his computer.

    However, he had the same type of reality distortion. He clearly believed women should be available and willing whenever he wanted. He never bothered to learn what I liked. My requests were always met with an astonished observation that something must be wrong with me.

    He liked sex in public. Slow at home with foreplay was not part of his repertoire.
    He like to slap my butt when others were watching. Me telling him I did not enjoy this type of attention was met with the comment that I clearly do not know how to flirt and was taking things too serious.
    All his moves felt like rehearsed and learned moves; he never understood how to listen to actual me.

    I always felt my STBX was part of the generation internet / porn. He did not actually engage for intimacy with the partner, but to act something out. And it was always the same. Where the woman needs to be willing, but does not challenge and does not actively participate in the script.

    I think it is the same with what you are experiencing. The fake world of women always willing and available. Not need to pay attention to the likes and dislikes. No need to put in any real effort. No need to learn something about your partner.

  • Sweetpea,

    I don’t think you’re here because you don’t have the answer to that question. I believe you’re reaching out because you don’t understand how, in spite of all, you’re still there and still feel love for him. You may have even bargained with yourself about putting up with it until it reaches X point, or shoved your unhappiness aside in an attempt to demonstrate your commitment to ‘fix’ instead of flee.

    You don’t have to beat yourself up if any of that resonates with you. Like many of us who have walked in those shoes, it only spells out your selfless capacity to love and commit. There’s nothing broken or stymied about your heart’s capacity to do so—it makes you human. And exceptionally human at that.

    So, if any of this is true to you, the more honest question isn’t whether excessive porn constitutes cheating, but rather if that fierce sense of love and loyalty you have for him should supersede the protracted unhappiness you confessed. I believe if you answer that question with your head instead of your heart, the answer will be clear.

    But just in case it isn’t, maybe you should try applying that question to other walks of life. Would you deliberately choose unhappiness if it was your job making you miserable? What if a person who purports to be your friend disrespects and hurts you repeatedly—would you make the same deliberate choice then? What if your plumber did a horrible job, didn’t fulfill his promises, yet still charged you full price…would you make the choice to call on him the next time something springs a leak?

    The point is, you DO have a choice. And you should probably consider NOT expending your valuable emotional energy on semantics if remaining in the marriage is truly making you unhappy. You were honest to admit that. And honest in all your attempts to ‘fix’ it. The only real choice you have left is to apply that honesty to the tougher question; when is enough finally enough?

  • Sweetpea, you deserve to have a loving husband, in all ways.

    This present arrangement is nothing more than your H having a live-in maid, and all the sex he wants with someone else.

    DTMFA and get on with your life. Let him enjoy that facsimile he’s presently living.

  • The thing is once you know about it, they hide it well, still if you have the PI skills of 007 you can still find it. I have twice mentioned it now to my H and he thinks I don’t know but I do and it just changes your perception of them when you know it’s most days (even if it’s just 15 mins) and behind your back. I don’t actually have a mega issue with ‘occasional’ if they are honest and upfront, but I do have an issue when it gets as regular like as brushing your teeth . Unlike others though it has over sexualised my H so that even getting undressed it feels like a starving lion looking at you, it’s a viscous circle, it just makes me feel very unattracted to him and I have said this now twice before, I can see it being the issue that causes a split rather than the past emotional affair .

    • Who wants to live like a super-spy 007? I used to, and its like a big sandbag on your shoulders. And you keep finding stuff, which means you know in your heart what is going on.

      Besides, all you end up doing is making a better criminal every time you confront him. He just gets better at hiding it.

  • This really breaks my heart. It is perhaps even harder, & a bigger mindfuck to endlessy wrestle with labeling what your husband is doing than the pull-no-punches realization of “standard” cheating.
    But, let me be frank: it’s only a matter of time before he makes the physical, in-person leap.
    Back to you, though. You are very unhappy & that’s grounds-a-plenty to act NOW. This your life. You are being mocked & pushed aside for some bullshit technicality.
    Your husband is INTERACTING
    with these women, not jerking off to movies & mags. If he’s not already screwing around, he will be.
    I’ve been where you are, but my ex wasn’t quite as bold or in-my-face about his online activities. He was sorry & would quit. I forgave. We had young kids. Over a decade later — guess what. Full on whore cheating.
    The deepest regret of my life is that I lost those years to a *man* who didn’t deserve them.
    The sooner you stop worrying about technicalities & realize you’re being badly mistreated & ridiculed, the sooner you can Gain a Life!
    Big big Hugs!

  • This scenario is totally confusing to SuperDuperChump. Does this guy go to a restaurant to just look at the menu?

    SuperDuperChump doesn’t want to watch video nor webcam.

    SuperDuperChump is a Homegrown, Hot blooded, Texas Country Boy who likes only live action…..live, hot, gyrating, female hips. While optional, having a set of breasts pressed in his place at the same time, is an added bonus.

    This guy is totally messed up.

    • You’re a sweet and apparently well balanced person. The people who seek this as their primary venue for satisfaction don’t want to engage in reciprocity. They have removed their desire for the real thing since it involves the idea that the fantasy object isn’t just a lust machine. His hand and her faking garbage on a screen is enough. Because he doesn’t have to try.

  • YEP. Cheaters are like icebergs–about 10% is what you can see. THERE IS ALWAYS MORE. And it is always worse than you can imagine.

  • Sweetpea,

    ((Hugs))

    I have played on both the sex positive and hairy legged liberation teams. The sex positive culture gets it wrong sometimes about porn.

    Porn is still about consuming something visually, but not actually being interactive with another human being. Its full of problematic tropes, ideals, and activities done for camera angles. Real people having satisfying, pleasurable sex do things that are not for a viewer, but themselves.

    Your husband is not showing up for you as a partner to have sex with an actual woman (and his wife). Porn is ok, but given a choice between porn and having sex with a person i am attracted to, and love and care about, real sex wins every time.

    Yes, porn and sex addiction exist. The sex positive culture fails to understand that addiction is about a flawed relationship to an activity or a substance that causes harm to the individual and the relationships around the individual. Essentially, the primary intimate relationship an addict has is with the process/ activity and the substance. Everything and everyone comes after that.

    A therapist explained to me that addicts and narcissists functionally present the same way. Until the addiction is fully treated, you will actually never know if the person is an addict who is capable of remorse and intimacy, or a personality disordered individual who is incapable of intimacy with others. An addiction is a functionally narcissistic disease is what my therapist explained to me. I emphasize this because my former partner who cheated on me, definitely had problems with porn addiction and sex addiction. Misinterpretations of “sex positive culture” by his various “friends”/coaddicts simply served to enable him. I didn’t want to hang around to find out whether he was a PD or an addict. He was insane, destructive, and wreaked havoc on my life.

    Back to luscious, lovely SweetPea. Your needs and desires to be appreciated and interacted with in a relationship are real, valid, and completely normal. Reverend McPatriarchy is the reason we have a separation of church and state, and no fault divorces. He is unqualified to be a therapist or to hold you back from divorce. You have given your husband multiple chances and tried counseling. He has no desire to change.

    Free yourself and find a new life. And have some real sex!

    Good luck!

  • ((((((((((((((((Sweatpea)))))))))))))))))))), big hugs to you. I haven’t the time to read CN’s responses, but I have no doubt everyone is saying the same things.

    It doesn’t matter if a lot of people think that porn is okay and they don’t view it as cheating. As long as it’s not okay with you, then you have every right to walk away from this man who is withholding himself from you. If it feels like he’s cheating on you, then he is. And this man is not going to change unless he himself is convicted, wants to change and does he very hard work on changing. And that pastor of yours sucks just like my EX-pastor sucks! In my experience, it’s a mans world in most churches and the men stick together. They justify, rationalize and minimize anything the cheating spouse does. At least that was my experience and I have read many stories of other women being treated the same way by pastors.

    One thing that has helped me is to ask myself this question: Would I want my daughter or son to be in a relationship like this or be treated like this? If the answer is ‘no’, then I shouldn’t be treated that way either and I need to leave as I deserve the same treatment as my dear children.

    My porn and stripper loving “Christian” ex-husband showed lots of red flags even before we got married. A week before we got married, his “Christian” best man took him up to Canada to go to 100% naked strip clubs for the X-rated part of his stag party. The G-rated stag party was earlier in the day with his dad, uncles, etc. — a golf outing. He promised me they wouldn’t do anything like that. And when I looked at my hungover fiance in disgust, thinking about wanting to cancel the wedding. He said to me, “Now don’t tell Mary (best mans new bride) and get him in trouble.” I felt so stuck and didn’t know what to do as our wedding was a week away and we had lots of people heavily invested in our wedding and family coming over 600 miles for our wedding. I wish I would have canceled it and walked away from him as he never changed. He cheated on me emotionally and physically with porn, strippers and ho-workers non-stop our entire marriage. They just don’t change!

  • My ex-husband never actually had physical sex with any other woman either (That I KNOW of –Narcissists are incapable of truth telling). He received naked pictures from other women, sexted with them, and had an “emotional” affair for years with multiple women. He’d also troll random women on FB and send them messages, “Wish I could experience you”; “Wish I was on your prospect list”; “Can’t stop thinking about your lips”. Was this cheating? In my eyes it WAS! I too am a woman of faith and the dialogue in churches is still to “save” your marriage at all costs. It took me 5 months to finally ignore THEIR voices and listen to mine: It WAS cheating. And who cares if no one else thinks it’s as serious as I do? I was miserable and wanted out and that’s all that mattered. I’ve been divorced now since August ’17 and I couldn’t be happier. Better days ARE ahead. When you’re finally out of the cloud of toxicity, you’ll be able to see it more clearly how horrible life with him IS and that’ll make you appreciate your future life without him so much more. Life After is beautiful! *Hugs to you, my friend.

  • I’m willing to bet money that if he tried to have sex, IRL, with you or anyone he would be a complete & utter failure. The poster-child of the Two-Pump Hump.

    Which is fine for pixels, but totally inadequate for lovely, luscious REAL Sweetpea.

    Run now. Run fast! Run FAR away to Meh-land!

  • I agree that religion shouldn’t matter but know from experience how hard it can be to untangle decades of religious wiring when you’re already going through one of life’s most stressful experiences.

    David Instone-Brewer wrote “Divorce and Remarriage in the Church” which deep-dives into the context around biblical teachings on divorce and cultural expectations of spousal support …. and *huge shocker* the husband in this post is absolutely failing at his vows and she has every right to file for divorce under any *accurate* interpretation of Biblical teachings on marriage. So …. go be free. And please, please find another church that is kinder to women.

    Unrelated note: I saw Tracy listed on another all-time favorite blog (Laurel Bern Design) and squealed and felt very meta. Of course the best would know the best, but so awesome to see!

  • Sweetpea37, please listen to all these wise people. My ex divulged his porn issue 5 years into our marriage. Only because he messed up and was in trouble with a young 19 year old college classmate. He cried “addiction” and I spent the next decade trying to “fix” him. One of many counselors we sought told me that the it would only get worse, it would progress to levels I could not imagine. He said to stop the progression my ex had to really devote himself to fixing himself. Of course my ex did not and I spent all those years discovering emotional affairs, webcam girl affairs, then ultimately real life affairs, many of them. After he died (young) and I had total access to him computer, etc. did I know the FULL extent of his depravity. The websites he was on looking for real women to hook up with were some of the most disgusting vile displays of humanity I have ever seen and to this day haunt me. And all the while, like you, he withheld affection from me, sex was sporadic at best and I was a shell of a human being. Run fast, run far, this road leads only to destruction. So sorry you are going through this.

  • Whether he is touching them or not, the fact remains that he is getting his sexual gratification from women who are not you, his wife. Is that cheating? In my book, Hell yes it is!

    Your preacher is clearly a porn addict too.

    • Yes, this! What does your preacher say about Matthew 5:28? “But I tell you than any man who looks at a woman lustfully has already committed adultery with her in his heart”.
      Now I’m not going to comment on whether I believe this is correct or not. But if your ignorant preacher is going to hold religion over your head to force you to stay with this cruelty, then he at least needs to know his stuff.
      For what it’s worth, there are churches and pastors who are much better educated and wise about the Bible and what it’s telling us. I feel like you might need one of those for support.
      (((Hugs)))

  • Heterosexual male entitlement to porn equals male entitlement to women’s bodies, with no commitment, no emotion, just their bodies, owned and there to serve said male with said male entitlement.

    Trust me, porn is just the tip of the iceberg. It’s a symptom of much deeper darker desires that DONT include you. If I had the benefit of hindsight 7 years ago when I first realised my husband was addicted to porn (and covert sex in long term relationships with multiple men and women where they didn’t have to get on with the adult job of running a household, organising kids and generally being a nice guy who gives a shit about his family). Run.

  • As a Pastor’s daughter I want to say to the “Minister” the following:
    “Mat_5:28  But I say unto you, That whosoever LOOKS on a woman to LUST after her has COMMITTED ADULTERY with her already in his heart.”
    – This clearly is talking about the “looking/pornography” Industry. You are also definitely, if he is completely UNREPENTANT given allowance to “put away/divorce” your husband.

    Dear Sweetpea,
    I myself experienced this before my Husband “divorced” me literally for a younger version of “Amber”. I know it can seem hard right now or scary, but, I would not have met my BEAUTIFUL, AMAZING, GORGEOUS Italian David if we hadn’t split. Let me tell you the “hugging” (wink, wink) is incredible! YOU deserve to have THAT RIGHT! It even says so in the Bible in 1 Corinthians 7:3-4
    1Co 7:3  Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband. 
    1Co 7:4  The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.
    “Minister” EPIC FAIL

  • To all my believers in Christ who find themselves here. I respect all religions (rigorous care) that lead to enlightenment.

    God is Love

    Love does not exist in porn.

    If your mate has chosen this method to achieve closeness with a woman through orgasm, they are IN FACT cheating on you.

    There are many websites addressing this insidious attraction. Some actually are trying to help men and women who cannot stop themselves from the relief it provides them.

    YOU CANNOT and WILL NOT ever PROVIDE the same relief. It is a sickness of the soul. Leave.

    Please, please, please move out and on with your lives. You are doing your children NO FAVOR staying with a human who relies on porn and not his spouse for sexual satisfaction, connection, and love.

    You can have compassion for someone so void of human connection. This does not mean you have to live with them.

    God is there for you each difficult step of the way. Pray for the parent of your children, but leave.

    Make your heaven on earth by rebuilding with your loving family. Exit this hell. All your love in the world cannot enter Dante’s inferno to retrieve their lost soul. Only God. And I promise, God has it under control.

    Hugs to anyone who suffers from having a relationship with a porn addict.

    • Tempest, place my commas. I’m the worst. Poor Sister Bernadette for the life of her could not get me to do it right. All that sentence diagraming for nothing. ♥️

      • Ha–only added one comma because I am a devotee of the Oxford comma. Sister Bernadette would be proud of you.

      • And a very astute comment on porn addiction, a chump’s likelihood of changing an addiction, and recommendations (LEAVE), CJ.

        • ♥️ Thanks, Tempest.

          Chumps, just so you know, I have a great sexual appetite with a man I have emotional and intellectual attraction.

          We have been blindsided by the effects of instant porn, skype and the availablility of anonymous hookup sites on humans. My fear is the worst is yet to come. No pun intended.

  • I recently watched a lot of hoarding reality tv and what struck me about them is…. collectors… they collect so they can have unconditional control and affection from something else. Therapists for hoarding call them out on it. And they totally get why marriages and relationships break down. The people wall themselves up with stuff, to be away from the people who demand actual reality from them. And people who do what this dude does.. it’s the same. Same with ‘actual’ cheaters. The wall is the same, wether it’s physical or emotional or online or paper magazines or 50 cats or hubcaps or whatever. And frankly, yes, the pastor in this letter is an absolutel a-hole and completely missing the biblical point. Infidelity is not honouring your spouse. He does sound like he’s probably got his own shady closet of skeletons he’s trying to rationalize . Definitely doused in the patriarchal kook-aid. Looking at live other people and utilizing their nakedness… especially when you are completely closed off from your spouse… that’s pretty full of cheat from a lot of people’s perspective. Pretty sure if you asked your pastor to pull it up on his computer at work and start trying to preach the good word to a topless Skype partner he would be pretty unwilling (perhaps because she would be like ‘bob?!? But we normally meet on Tuesday! Thursday is a treat! The usual? I moan and play with my nipples and 60 credits for me to reach down and flick my bean a bit’ while he was trying to tell you that it was toooooootally What Jesus Would Do, he is TOATs ok with husbands freezing out and mocking their spouses for desiring intimacy while they talk dirty to a woman via the inter web. Yep. That’s right between Luke and John in the new testament book of Hank Moody.

    I’m not adverse to porn, I was for a long time because it was a route the man I married used to wall up from me, and he did exactly this until and during his tumble into massage parlours and hookers. I don’t think porn is the problem I think that it’s used by people to wall off because they choose not to connect. Then they are mad when we ask for conditional love. Yep. I ask for a person to be responsible and cherish me and be my partner because that’s what I give. I will give it all: all of me. But… I want it in return. And that’s conditional. I guess that’s the asshole in me.

    But- back to the video chatting and your creepy pastor. I double dog dare you to start posting anonymous notes on the bulletin boards at church that say this preference and I’m pretty sure people will start talking about this subject and I challenge your pastor to somehow back this up with scripture that a spouse should be ok with this. And yes, I was raised in a strict denomination I have strong values and morals and all that shit, both my parents are ordained ministers, my dad has his doctorate in theology, I’m steeped in pretty strong understanding of what Jesus would do. And it’s not cyber fuck some other people. It’s not tell you to turn the other cheek. He would hug you and invite you out for a walk and feed you and tell your husband that wives are meant for cherishing.

    Fucking tool.

  • I love Jesus. I’m really a pretty conservative Christian.

    That pastor can. eat. a. dick.

    God does not love the institution of marriage more than he loves the souls in the marriage.

    God loves you and he gave us the gift of divorce to free us from hellish marriages.

    There. I’m getting off the soap box now.

    God bless you, honey.

    • ^^ THIS. Yes.
      Also, with porn, like many addictions, it gets worse. They need more and more and sicker and darker material. It is a downward spiral; it does not stay at the same level. It will get worse.
      GET. OUT. NOW. Your husband is a sick depraved nasty person. GET OUT NOW.

  • I really hope the LW takes it to heart. You’re like my hero, Chump Lady, and I’m not even in a position where I need the advice anymore, having suffered from shittypartnerosis early enough in my life that I consider myself immune. But if I ever get sick again and need another shot, I know where to go. Thank you.

  • First, I believe in God. Ok, please, please, please, please, PLEASE do not ask anyone if you should get a divorce. If your law allows it do it. Your husband is a zombie. Seriously he has had his brain fried and the only things keeping him going are porn and his autonomic and sympathetic nervous systems. They are keeping his organs and muscles working but that’s about it. No one should have to tolerate this.

  • I’m going to replace the porn/hubcap analogy with my situation: I was a young single mom in law school when I met X. I only went to law school because I needed to support us — my dad had died when I was a teen and narc mom kicked me out when I was 16.

    I told X from first date that I wanted to marry and have a large family and primarily be a wife and mother and use my law degree to help me run a part-time real estate business on the side. I never wanted the big law career working 24/7. X quickly asked me to marry him (3 months) and said his Dad, a real estate investor, would help us. I never checked with him. He knew nothing about it and in 26 years NEVER lifted a finger for us.

    I worked myself to the bone —nearly to exhaustion several times —for 25 years in jobs I despised all because X Said he was too stressed out to be the primary bread winner. I made my needs smaller and smaller. He did almost nothing at home either. He finally got a job making enough for me to stay at home with our 4 kids and that’s when he left for the young goldigger, whom he has supported financially now for 4 years.

    I’m back to doing all child-related care, solo, and working 24/7 at a job I despise but for the $$ and my financial future, which at 52 and newly divorced is uncertain.

    It’s hatd not to be enraged.

    I wish to God I would’ve waited to find a man who actually wanted to support me in my dreams. I wish I could tell my 21-year-old self to be patient and to not be afraid and to not settle. 😢😫😢😫😢😫

    • I wish I could have told my 31-yo self not to settle and fall for the sparkly turd. God, I knew so little, even then.

    • Mother chump,
      I am tremendously impressed with your determination, stamina, etc. I, too, wish that I had told my young (or, at least younger, self not to settle for crumbs). I might not have had kids, but fewer people would have suffered and my self-esteem and bank balance probably would have been much higher.

  • Whoa. This could have been written by me.

    When I dated him, he was just “odd”. I thought he was different than all of the other medical professionals that I worked with, and I had a rule not to date within the medical field. He wore combat boots and cut off fatigues and Sonic Youth teeshirts, promising he “wasn’t one of those drs who had an ego”.

    Until I opened a drawer in his only clothing dresser and there sat at least two hundred VCR tapes (yes, I am dating myself!), with thousands of porn movies on them. Where he got them, I have no idea, because they were not store bought. There was a steamer chest full of magazines. Again, these were given to him over a period of 15 years or more. They were all of “not so normal” porn–nothing illegal, but just not the average run of the mill screw film.

    I proceeded to throw every single thing out the window into a dumpster, telling him—-it’s me, or those filthy things.

    He promised it was “done” because now he had the love of his life and he was “content” with me. Until….

    He started demanding that I perform the things that he used to watch on the porn videos. This began a 12 year long struggle. I could talk about the bullshit things he did and said, but the bottom line was—

    NO MATTER how I protested, told him that it was demeaning for him to demand that I cut my hair to a pixie, bleach it platinum blonde (i am a very dark italian with super curly hair), and get 48G implants—while performing pornographic and perverted acts on him—HE DID NOT CARE. He only found other ways to try and do an end run (no pun intended) around my protestations.

    When I married him, the fights weren’t really there. He was apologetic and compliant. The sicko stuff started after we got married, when he felt he had The Right to Demand.

    When computers became more affordable and available—that’s when the locked office door, separate computers and encryption codes came about. He’d get up at 0530 (his day started at 0830), lock himself in his office and then I wouldn’t see him again until he would come home from work at 1830, sometimes later.

    It just didn’t matter. My opinion, my feelings, my needs—I would as DIRECTLY for him NOT to do certain demeaning things—think of the one nasty thing, in my experience, most men want to do for some reason—and he would attempt to do it at least once a week.

    I got so tired of his bullshit that I simply stopped sleeping in the same bed. Yes. He could say then that I was “withholding”—because I wouldn’t even give him the simplest of physical affection—for fear that it would INEVITABLY turn into a Porn Fest Request.

    Just sickening. I did date a man after my divorce—and we got to the point where the discussion about sex was a natural progression of the relationship. When I told him—porn is a deal breaker, I will not be coerced into doing anything that I am not comfortable doing (and I am comfortable with a lot)—he bailed. Breaker for him? Was that I would not allow “that certain nasty act” that seems to just rock the worlds of men. It’s a porn staple—and even if it weren’t, I don’t like it and I don’t feel I should perform like a trained circus seal in order to “keep the peace”.

    We did go to counseling. Twice. Once with my choice, which ended in him stalking off screaming that the “doctor is a quack” and “just agrees with you because he wants to fuck you” for saying he is a sicko porn freak with borderline tendencies….and another of HIS choice who told him precisely the same thing. End of counseling.

    He’s now sitting in his condo on the 23rd floor, doing telemed work, (no personal interactions), beating off between consults and drinking/doing drugs. He never remarried, because he says he can’t trust another woman after I had “promised him everything and gave him nothing”.

    Well, I took half, which was my due—and I am the one who is scarred for life. All I can see or feel when a man gets close enough is—when is the other shoe going to drop? When is the sicko perverted bullshit going to start? How much am I going to have to compromise to have a little adult company? Does EVERYTHING have to turn into a Pornographic Fuck Fest? What the sam hell is WRONG with people anymore??

    I am quite satisfied now with my life…dogs, friends, family—and never having to wake up to some asshole who thinks that sticking his erect penis into my back and groping my breasts while I’m sleeping and whispering “Guess what I’ve got for you” is some kind of foreplay (after refusing to come to bed with me while I am AWAKE and willing).

    • SGW, thank you for being so vulnerable and honest with us. This is an AWFUL story, and one I have heard variations of for decades from so many other women – and it’s just getting worse.

      You have suffered immensely, and it’s completely normal – in fact, it’s healthy – to be cautious and suspicious, because you’ve been so badly burned in the past.

      ADULT company is great. Actual adults. The trick is finding them. But once you find them, nourish those friendships – and keep them as friendships. This is the hard part – not losing touch, and not going to the other extreme and crushing on them – but it’s worth the effort.

      God it’s awful – the whole entitlement thing, and You’re Not the Boss of Me. Exhausting.

      I invest my energies now in being a productive and happy single person, and it’s fulfilling and makes me very content.

    • PS: Women don’t have a prostate gland, so anal sex is never going to feel for them like it does when men do it to each other. Plus it’s a total porn fantasy because the woman is humiliated and prone, but of course She’s Really Loving It Because She’s a Dirty Little Slut.

      And I know there may be women here who get off on anal, or who enjoy pegging their man, or WHATEVER – but the fact is, your anal sphincter is designed to hold your bowel movements in until you’re ready to release them.

      Mess with it – especially stretching it beyond what it’s intended to do, in terms of size and duration – and you run the risk of a lifetime of fecal incontinence.

      Nothing says true love like a giant pair of Depends on a forty year old.

      Bottom line (pun intended): if you’re only doing it so he won’t leave, it’s not love-making – it’s hostage-taking.

      Here’s some real life fallout: https://nypost.com/2019/01/16/teen-suffers-life-changing-injury-trying-to-imitate-porn/

      • Lola,

        Thank you for the support. I re-read my comment and was just shocked at how little I’ve gotten past the whole ordeal, and I didn’t really even say much in support of OP.

        OP….please leave this guy. Take it from someone who lived for 12 years with “knowing I could change him into a better person by example”—it doesn’t work.

        It’s the same as any type of real physical abuse. If you allow this to happen once—your feelings or thoughts or wants or boundaries to be violated and dismissed—they will continue to do so.

        NOBODY who loves you would do this to you. No. One. Some of us come from awfully dysfunctional families where parents or siblings trample our boundaries routinely—and this is a comfortable place for us, ergo, we repeat the process with our significant other relationships. My mother is a walking billboard for borderline personality disorder. ALL of my relationships after leaving home, until my divorce, consisted of me attracting this type of person into my life.

        Pornography always has been and always will be about the degradation of one participant, be they male or female. Period. It’s EXPLOITATION. There is no honor, love, respect or truth in it and the young people of this world have been bombarded with this trash since the early 70’s—the chickens are coming home to roost.

        The norm is becoming what used to be considered deviant. Watching television–I know many here probably love Game of Thrones—I couldn’t get past the first episode, first scenes. It was designed to shock and titillate—and it was perverse and obscene. I turned it off and never thought about it again.

        I LIKE the fact that I am a private, loving, sensual person who likes to have their partner BE private, loving and sensual. I don’t like violent, abusive, coercive, freaky or otherwise uncomfortable scenarios to be brought into my private life.

        Your husband doesn’t care whether he hurts you, huh? Well, what if you turned that on HIM—what if you did to him what he is doing to you? Would he react in a positive, sunny and happy way?

        Lola. About the nasty thing. I was actually referring to something else, but anal was also something he wanted to push the limits on as well. No…I was talking more about how women are made to kneel, with the man standing over them while they ejaculate all over them. It’s demeaning to the degree that I would very plainly—succintly and clearly—tell him that if he did it again, I would not have sex with him again.

        He would try to do it again.

        He’d pout and whine, especially when I wanted to sleep. One night, he decided that he wasn’t going to take this “I’m tired from a 14 hour day on my feet” thing as an excuse for me to want a decent nights’ sleep….so he stood next to the bed and masturbated and ejaculated on me while I slept.

        Yeah. Great guy. And he could not fathom, for the life of him…why I flew into a rage when I woke up to discover my nighclothes soiled in such a way.

        I couldn’t sleep with him in the house for months after that. When I found out about the cheating, it was almost a relief. I could finally get rid of this piece of garbage and not look back. I still have nightmares and I will never, EVER allow a man to stay the night again, even if I do decide to have a relationship.

        OP, this is what porn will do to your husband. Whether you believe me or not—mine started out with just “big jugs” magazines—and ended with the episode I just described. RUN.

        • Wow. If that’s not treating you as a object of the male gaze, I don’t know what is.

          Someone was telling me the other day: if a man trains himself to look into his wife’s face/eyes every time he comes during intercourse, he will be able to train himself not to be able to come with any other woman. Only the face of his wife will be associated with that pleasure.

          I wonder if it’s true. I would like to think so.

    • Mine was like that too. He was like this too: after I had four impacted wisdom teeth surgically removed he wanted sex just about right away and when I refused he mumbled, “It’s only your mouth that hurts”.

    • Yes. I get it. Mine would put his hand between my thighs when we were going upstairs and jiggle my legs. When I protested, he would tell me “I can’t tease with you anymore”. He would stand in the doorway to the sunroom where I liked to hang out with his pants around his ankles and say “You can have this anytime you want. It’s ok to look”. Now, why in the hell would I think that I would enjoy looking at his flaccid penis with his belly hanging down or having my thigh fat jiggled?? ewwwwww. He is a narcissistic idiot. He also spent hours and hours in the bathroom with his phone and the shower running…. ewwwwww. There isn’t enough soap in the world to clean that from my mind.

      The peace that has washed over me since he left is nothing short of amazing! No more pick me dance. No more gaslighting, no more having sex and wondering when he would finish. No more counting during sex in my head and thinking ” i just have to make it to 100″ if you know what I mean. His dysfunction is no longer any of my worry. No more spackling weird-o behavior in my mind to try to keep it together. Yee Haw!

  • I had the ice-ice cold, abandoning cheater type. He had magazine and movie preferences that did not become apparent until after the wedding. It was intermittent but very much a problem especially throughout the first years, when you’re pregnant, have young kids, and all of that. After 20+ years of dealing with all of his issues, thinking there was progress, he blindsided us and left for another woman.

    These intimacy issues are a huge red flag to the shallowness of the human connections these men make. Know that he’s showing you how much he values you when he chooses the pixels over you. There are parts of this man that are literally dead and cannot be resurrected, they never even formed in the first place. It’s not even possible for him to experience the full spectrum of human connection. If you’re torn over leaving now, fretting over what your pastor said, first set serious boundaries then get-out if he continues. He’s going to continue. Start thinking of your exit plan.

    • What I failed to mention is that when he ran off, that was the finale of a long series of abandonments throughout our marriage.

  • This post brings back memories of exh1, he was a porn freak. After witnessing me give birth to DS1 and lost all interest in me sexually, his wife, and spent the next 10 years sexually neglected and overall made to feel unwanted nor desired.
    He would jerk-off first thing in the morning before going to work and was only interested in sex until he reached his magic moment, I had to fend myself.
    It made me even more “live prey” for exh2/TEO.
    Feelings of undesired and unwanted, fear of being rejected were major themes running in my mind for years, endless cycle.
    It took me a long time to stop dwelling on those feelings, but I did.
    Sweetpea37, you’ve got this!!!
    Move on, honey. There’s nothing to work with here.
    ❤️🙏❤️🙏
    I’m with CL/CN, your pastor can suck it!!!

  • Oh boy, oh boy, oh boy. This article is like catnip for a cat for me. Can’t resist chiming in. My 14-year-old son has started reading this site and he has the most hilarious one liners.

    My son says the reason Rev McPatriary says webcam girls and watching porn online is not adultery is because Rev McPatriarchy uses the church laptop to video chat with the honorable Rev’s favorite cam girls. My son also said Rev McPatriarchy seems like the type who has a secret Hentai fetish. My son says the honorable Rev likely prefers the octopus the most. Something about those testicles…. I mean tentacles. (Wink) Folks, if you don’t know what Hentai is please do NOT look it up. You will be offended.

    That was my son’s analysis.

    Now onto mine. Let’s first consider what Judaism says. In Judaism, pornography violates several Torah laws that have to do with sins of the eyes. Also, in Judaism- even ancient Judaism – a wife has the rights of “onah.” It means she has a right to have intercourse with her husband when she desires it (except for the time when she has her period.) She can divorce a husband without question for not fulfilling her sexual needs. Yes, folks, this has been around since ancient times. Judaism is a “sex positive” religion (in some cases) in that there is no shame attached to women having sexual desires and women have a right to be fulfilled sexually by their husbands. Judaism acknowledges it to the extent they allow a woman to divorce if her husband is not meeting her sexual needs.

    Ever heard a Christian say that? Me neither!

    Onto Christianity. Reverend McPatriarcy is not up on adultery laws. Or shall I say down on adultery laws. Jesus said if a man lusteth with his eyes, he is committing adultery. I think Jesus knew pornography would come along one day and so he has us covered – 2,000 years later. Jesus is The Man in the best way possible. Anyone who throws tables (when he sees bankers) inside the Temple gets on my good list. Also Jesus was very sarcastic and snarky. Most people were never taught that about Jesus.

    Onto the hubcab analogy. Perfect and flawless. Love it, Tracy.

    Anyway you slice it, the husband is in the wrong and Rev McPatriarchy needs to have a debate with me. I can actually educate him about the Bible and it’s actual interpretation. But he wouldn’t like that. First off, I am a woman. We are supposed to be seen and not heard. We are especially not allowed to study Latin, Greek, word derivatives or cultural contructs within a certain time and place. That violates the barefoot and pregnant rule in Christianity.

    Sweetpea, you sound very sweet and kind. I am so sorry you are going through this. It might be time to find a new Christian congregation. Not all are backward. The ones we have where I live have female ministers and they are very liberal. Might be time to find one.

    Most of all- this Reverend is not a spiritual authority. I would love to go toe to toe with the guy. He wouldn’t know what hit him.

    God Bless you Sweetpea, and let God lead you. God is not sexist and wants the highest good for your family.

    Sarah

    • I had someone point out that a careful reading of Genesis shows that God didn’t curse Eve at all! He said she would be an enemy of Satan. I’d call that an honour!

  • PS-
    This is actually not an outrageous or uncommon letter from Sweetpea. What I mean is that I hear this drivel to this day from Reverends, Ministers, Pastors etc. One minister told a wife that if she wanted to be a Good Christian Wife she should accept that her husband lived with the OW (even though he and OW had sex) and this was KNOWN to the male minister. The minister said a Good Christian Wife will pray and fast and wait with unconditional love. After about 4 months of this wife hearing this she almost had a mental breakdown. I had no idea this was going on. One day I saw her on errands and she burst into tears. I took her somewhere private and asked what was up. She told me. I was flabbergasted. This woman is very educated and knows better.

    But, we all know being chumped wipes out much of our critical thinking skills- sometimes all of them– in the beginning. I told her that her husband was committing adultery, living in sin, and that her minister was knowingly aiding and abetting adultery. Thus, her minister was culpable in his own way. I told her that her minister was crazy and that she must save herself and divorce her husband. She asked me if God would be angry at her if she divorced. I asked if she was kidding. She was not kidding. I told her that God makes it clear that adultery violates HIS LAWS and that we are not supposed to stay married to someone who commits adultery because we are then passively allowing it.

    I am referring to when a spouse has volumes of irrefutable proof that her spouse is committing adultery and the spouse doing it refuses to stop, lives with the other person, and refuses to come home. She had all that proof. She divorced the bastard.

    And she has blessed since then.

    He now has to work and can no longer drain her bank accounts on his women.

    And yes, she is VERY HAPPY now. Also, I do NOT expect others to have my opinion about when to leave. I was using concepts and words to empower her specifically and to remove her guilt and shame about leaving- the guilt and shame her minister and husband teamed up to brainwash her with. So… glad she divorced…

  • When my ex gave me the “I’m unhappy” talk and before I realized that he was having an affair with his boss, he confessed to me that, for years, he spent hours every night with webcam girls, spending who-knows-how-much money, all after the kids and I went upstairs to bed. I had no idea what webcam girls are, much less that he was obsessed with them. He told me that he wanted an emotional connection because we “lacked intimacy”. HA! You know what causes intimacy to deteriorate? Spending time with webcam girls instead of your wife.

    Misunderstanding my shock as disbelief, he tried to convince me that he had been doing this for a long time. He thought that would make it better somehow. He reminded me of a time we went out of the country for a weekend about 5 years before that, reminding me that his credit card stopped working, leaving me to pay for everything (which I usually ended up having to do anyway, so I’d honestly forgotten). He said that the card was blocked because he tried to access his webcam site from that country, so the card was locked as an antifraud measure. Here, rather than say “Oh yes, dear, you’ve clearly been unfulfilled for years, like you say”, I said, “Wait… you mean to tell me that you were accessing that site while the kids and I slept just a few feet away in the same hotel room??!?! Gross!!” We chumps talk of the mask slipping as we “see” our cheaters for who they really are. Well, the mask practically tumbled down after that little confession!

    His “real” affair was harder to hide. I saw the signs, as did his boss’s husband at the time. But that behavior goes hand-in-hand with creepy webcam girl behavior. Webcam girls are essentially a gateway drug to a full-blown affair.

    If the word “cheating” doesn’t fit, then call it being “unfaithful”. It’s the same thing. In wedding vows, we vow to “forsake all others”. He isn’t holding up his end of the bargain. He is lusting after others, not forsaking them. And it’s making you miserable. You deserve to be treated better.

  • Sweetpea, PLEASE leave him! He sounds exactly like my ex and I know exactly how lonely, isolated and unloved you feel. I always had to be the initiator and 95% of the time, I was turned down (unless he was drunk and then it’s a whole other issue of why does he only want me when he’s wasted…). Whenever I asked him about it, he would just walk away, until finally one night, he told me he wasn’t attracted to me, he was only attracted to everything that was my opposite (short, tan, black haired girls…seriously???) and how he compared me to every girl on TV or on the street and I just didn’t do it for him….you would think that would’ve been enough to make me leave, but I didn’t. I researched porn addiction and just couldn’t understand why he liked fake girls over the real life one in front of him (his wife!), but I never could wrap my brain around it and then a couple months later, he did me the biggest favor I ever could’ve imagined…he walked out on me. Just came home from work and told me he didn’t want to be married anymore, then packed his shit and left the state, never to be heard from again…thank you, baby Jesus!

    Sweetpea, do YOURSELF the biggest favor you could ever possibly do for yourself and get out! This man does not love you, he only loves himself. It’s a horrible, painful truth that you have to accept, but alas, staying with him, in that unlovable, “never good enough” marriage will eat away at you until only a empty shell of yourself remains. His voice still sometimes echos in my head but today, I am married to the most amazing man who loves me completely and who has never once made me feel like I’m not enough for him….it is out there and I promise you, you deserve nothing but the very best….so, go get it!

  • He’s a dirtbag. Pornography is a adultery. Mine was also using ‘webcam’ prostitutes. Pornography turns them into impotent, brain damaged, sexually deviant and violent predators. Pornography turns them into rapists and yes, a husband can rape a wife.
    Leave this monster. He is irredeemable. Research the doctrine of ‘Reprobates’. These scum are reprobates, beyond repentance. The walking dead and damned.

  • I think the term “addiction” is broadly overused. Considering a habit to be an addiction is just plain bullshit. Pornographic subject matter is going to escalate over time but that’s not to feed an addiction, that’s a combo of curiosity and continued interest. Will a person have physical withdrawals? No, because chemical dependency isn’t a factor. Coming down from porn may cause blue balls but it sure as hell won’t cause a person to endure gut wrenching detox’s, no risk of possible death, or even experience a psychotic break. It’s a dirty little secret that gives the participant a rush. It’s not heroin, cocaine, meth, alcohol, or even food. Do you see people living in “jack” houses (instead of crack houses), stealing from loved ones, robbing convenience stores, picking at their skin, loosing teeth, racking up felony convictions all so they can get a fix? It’s a habit disguised as a medical condition that wants a sympathetic bitch cookie and zero accountability. Porn addiction? More like manipulation excused masterbation.

    • True that sex addiction is not in the DSM but people can blow massive amounts of money (there goes the retirement account !) on hookers/web cam girls/strippers and get arrested for looking at kiddie porn.

    • My ex is an addict. In his 20s he stopped using cocaine and heroin, and weaned himself off of cigarettes, but he retained that need for a dopamine high, and in 35 years of being married to him I watched him feed that need in a lot of ways, including overspending, overeating, overdrinking, and through porn.

  • I was married to a porn sex addict once! The thing about these guys is they cannot ejaculate doing sex with a normal flesh and blood person they rely totally on their own hand ( just like the pastor) TRUE they are so used to pug and tug nothing else gives the same sensation – over self stimulation with porn ruins their ability to procreate ahahahaha!

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