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What to do when you think your partner's masturbation is unhealthy for your marriage.

By emp1234 June 11, 2011 - 11:18am

Hi,

I have been married for about 2 years and have been with my husband for over 7 years. My husband has masturbated since he was a young teenager and I learned of this one night when i caught him in the middle of masturbating before we got married. I was a bit shocked because i had no clue he was still doing it especially since we were really sexually active. My initial response was bad. We then talked about it and he explained to me that it has been a part of his life and it is a hard habit for him to break especially on the nights i wasn't around to please him since we didn't live together at that point. It bothered me at first, but i moved past it obviously because we are now married. In our last 2 years of marriage our sex lives have changed dramatically. We went from doing it 2 to 3 times a week each time we saw each other when we were dating to once a week if we were lucky after we have been married. I have also talked to him about this and there are periods where things are better, but nothing has stuck. I have a high sexual drive and think i am attractive. But the other night i saw my husband masturbating again and he did not know i saw him. I didn't confront him because i now feel like there is a reason he hides it from me. So i went on his computer and found his porn stash. IT was soooooo large which at first bothered me, but i think it was something i can get past. I later found pictures of one of my really good friends and a few other people we know but are not close to. This took the cake. I started crying at first and then finally after getting a grip of myself managed to seek help. This is why i am here. I don't want to be ignorant, but i am not sure what i should do. I feel so insecure about myself and like i am not enough for him. There was not one picture of me in this group of pictures. And in my own sick and twisted way, if he is masturbating i don't understand why he uses no photos of me. I am always trying to show him that i am interested and willing to try things new sexually. But maybe it is not enough. What should i do?

By emp1234 August 24, 2011 - 7:33pm

Hi,

It has now been a 3 weeks of personal counseling and 2 weeks of marriage counseling and I don't feel like we have made any progress. If anything, I feel angrier now than ever before. He did do me the courtesy of explaining his masturbation to my friend a bit deeper. Since he met her before me and once had a crush on her, apparently he was fantasizing about what once could have been rather than fantasizing about her now. I don't know if i am thrilled with that response either, but I just don't know what to do. I feel stuck in this marriage and part of me wants out and to hurt him in the way he hurt me. The only way i feel that i can do that is to leave him or cheat on him. I know it's wrong, but lately thats how i have been feeling.

August 24, 2011 - 7:33pm
By misvives HERWriter Guide July 31, 2011 - 9:21am

Hi Emp1234,
That's something very hard to hear from your husband but although it was very painful, it would appear that he was honest with you about it. Do you think you would have felt different if he was looking at a celebrity? I think so since the addiction would seem less personal.

Your in a tough situation to say the least and I am sure it would hurt emotionally as well. Keep up your marriage counseling and your personal counseling as there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Keep your communication open with your husband too and be sure to voice your opinion about your feelings. Good luck and keep us posted.

Missie

July 31, 2011 - 9:21am
By emp1234 July 29, 2011 - 9:59pm

Well, I am going to start counseling for myself next week. We went to our first marriage counselor this week. And to answer your question, I searched his browser history and his bookmarks. My friend's facebook page was saved in his bookmarks with all his other links to porn. Granted it was not the only thing there, but it did bother me cause this is one of my best friends. I don't know how to get over that. In his browser history,I saw he was masturbating one night to random videos / pics, and then saw links to the same friends facebook page. It was disturbing. We now have openly talked about this and he claims that he still loves me and doesn't want to be with her sexually but has used her body for visual stimulation. I don't think i am okay with his explanation so what do i do?

July 29, 2011 - 9:59pm
By Susan Cody HERWriter Guide Leader July 21, 2011 - 5:13pm

Hi emp1234

For counselling, check with your doctor: he/she will have some good resources for you. Have you started counseling yet?

I am also puzzled as to how his "porn stash" contains porn of your friends and aquaintences? Are they in the porn industry? How does he get these materials?

Best,
~Susan

July 21, 2011 - 5:13pm
By emp1234 June 14, 2011 - 6:19pm

Thanks Missie! I read the article you attached and the only thing i can say for now is that while i am saddened by the fact that so many women are going through this, it also helps to know I am not alone in this struggle. I don't think I want or expect my husband to be completely done with porn as I have always been open in our relationship. The largest factor in betrayal is finding the pictures of people we know in his collection. This hurt like crazy. While pictures of strangers also bothers me, the pictures of people we know bothers me 1000 times more. I think we will have to seek counseling. Is there someone that you would recommend? We live in Northern NJ.

June 14, 2011 - 6:19pm
By misvives HERWriter Guide June 12, 2011 - 10:48am

Hi Emp1234,
I am certainly glad that you hold yourself in high regard as in your physical appearance and therefore, please keep holding yourself in high regard as masturbation can sometimes lead to addiction. There is nothing wrong with YOU in this situation....the problem obviously lies within him.

At this point, I think talking to him and perhaps seeking help is necessary. If your sex life is now shadowed by his addiction to pornography and masturbation, there needs to be an intervention. Here is an article that I would like you to review which helps give you an idea on how to battle the addiction http://powertochange.com/sex-love/battleporn/.

I hope this information helps. Please keep us posted and I wish you the best of luck.

Missie

June 12, 2011 - 10:48am