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#200957 - 01/23/08 06:08 PM Viewing things that I asked not be viewed
Agape Girl Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 120
Loc: New Jersey, USA
Hi All;

Well I'm back tonight and looking for a little help. Why, please tell me why? Since we both had been thrown into this whirlwind of CSA, it's been rough, that's a given right?

I've asked my bf to refrain from viewing porn, as right now it makes me feel less of a woman and less he desires me. He seemed to have agreed but I find that it hasn't stopped. Should I be grateful that it's not another human being? Should I be upset because I asked him to refrain from it and he full well and good understood how I felt currently? Why shouldn't I matter in this? Why? Should I shrug it off and forget that it's happening.

Why does it happen? What hold does it have, knowing that your hurting someone you say you love. I"m at a loss and I'm confused and I could use a little relief.

_________________________
AGAPE'
means selfless love of one person for another
without sexual implications
(especially love that is spiritual in nature)

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#200962 - 01/23/08 06:45 PM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Agape Girl]
rcm Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/24/07
Posts: 156
Loc: Boston, MA
If you want a honest opinion ....
(a) I've asked my bf to refrain from viewing porn, as right now it makes me feel less of a woman and less he desires me.
THat's a mistake right there. It's not about you or how it makes you feel. Sorry if it sounds harsh but that's how it is. It's about why he does it, and it's more than likely that he is not doing it to make you feel that way. So why ask him to stop doing something because of the way it makes you feel when it is not his intention to make you feel that way?
(b) Should I be upset because I asked him to refrain from it and he full well and good understood how I felt currently?
I don't think you "should" feel in a certain way. If he continues to do it, it's not like you will be able to feel differently about it just like that.
(c) Should I shrug it off and forget that it's happening.
No because obviously it bothers you. But I think that perhaps understanding that this is not about you (and I meand that in a good way) might help. It doesn't necessarily mean that he is not attracted to you. If he has a problem with porn it does not necessarily mean there is a problem in your relationship (ie he turns to porn because you don't satisfy him). Although the porn can certainly create a problem in the relationship (as it appears to be happening).
IOW asking him to do it for you won't work. In fact, it might make things worse if he cannot stop then he'll feel bad about it and start lying to you.
I sincerely hope my thoughts help.
Best wishes to you.
~Raul

_________________________
______________________________________________
Prince Zuko: [looking at a map] How am I going to find the Avatar? He is clearly a master of evasive maneuvering.
Sokka: [cut to him, looking at the same map] You have no idea where you're going, do you?

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#200965 - 01/23/08 06:49 PM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Agape Girl]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
{{{Kelly}}}

I'm sorry you feel so badly about this. It's a tough one to get past. What is the "normal" use of porn and what is obsessive? What is acceptable and what is not? It's a hard line to walk. Having said that, even if you were "OK" with some porn viewing in the past, or at least willing to overlook it, you aren't now because of what you've been through. You accept and deal with the pains and struggles that he's going through, but he's not giving you the same in return. Is that a fair assessment?

I don't blame you for being upset because his behavior is hurting you. Does he understand that?

I know that several months after my b/f started therapy and we talked ad nauseum about his web activities, I found that he'd been on-line searching the same crap he'd been looking at before. I called him on it and he swore to me that he was doing nothing more than looking at stuff; that it was harmless. Well, to mind it was far from harmless as it was a repeat of behavior that caused us to explode before. I told him he was playing with fire and that I couldn't accept it. I get the visual stimulation that most men desire and enjoy, but searching for "horny women in NJ" wasn't Ok with me at all!

You have a right to this simple request and I believe he has an obligation to grant it if he wants to be in this relationship with you. It's not only about him and you bowing to his needs and insecurities, yours are just as important and they are most definitely there. Have you talked to him about this again?

ROCK ON.........Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#200986 - 01/23/08 08:38 PM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Trish4850]
Lou Offline
Guest

Registered: 11/10/07
Posts: 100
Agape Girl,

I feel so bad that you are having to go through this, but at the same time, I can totally relate to what you are saying.

I don't know about you, but I am really sick and tired of hearing that this is not about us, or about us being less of a woman, it is about them. As far as being grateful that it is not another human being, no....I don't think you should feel grateful for that at all. Have we become so tolerant of a society that we now think that it is okay for our men to look at porn because after all, it is better than going after the real thing? What happened to the idea that when you are in a relationship and there is something that either partner dislikes or that makes either one unhappy, you discuss it as a couple, and come to an agreement that because you love the other person and don't want to do anything to hurt them, you stop doing what it is that they dislike or that makes them unhappy? Have you asked him how he would feel if he found out that you were out there behind his back looking at porn or for horny men or women in NJ?

In my case, my BF was looking at porn sites, both women and men, and was even hooking up with men that he met online. In my opinion, this is nothing different than say an alcoholic who thinks that he can stop and have just one beer and keep everything under control, but eventually one beer becomes two beers and two beers become three beers....guess you get my point. When you are addicted you are addicted and thinking that you can continue to play the game to me is playing with fire.

I too have asked my BF to not look at porn and hook up with anymore guys or it is over for us! I can't believe that if he found out that I was looking at porn or hooking up with anyone male or female that he would somehow just be able to say that it is not about him but about me. Trust is a big issue and one's self esteem is damaged severely by this kind of behavior. A healthy relationship is suppose to be one in which you both add to each other's lives, not take something away.

I agree totally with Trish, you have a right to this simple request and he has an obligation to grant it to you if he wants to be in this relationship with you.

I am sure like the rest of us you are putting a lot of work and effort into understanding his CSA, talking about it non-stop, reading the posts on this website and possibly others, listening, reading books, being awakened in the middle of the night with screams of terror from nightmares, etc. etc. We are doing this because we love them and want to see them happy and living a good life. Isn't it time for him to do something that will make you happy and help you live a good life? Sure seems like it to me!

Take care,
Lou


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#200991 - 01/23/08 08:45 PM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Agape Girl]
PeaceSeeker Offline
New Here

Registered: 01/16/08
Posts: 11
I have been obsessed with porn, sex, and fantasy ever since my last SA, which was around the age of 10. It is my core addiction. Whether it's an attempt at retraumatization, an expression of anger, or some kind of attempt to regain control, merely an escape, or a combination of all the above, I don't know. What I do know is that it makes me feel bad about myself, and I'm powerless over it.

Throughout most of my relationship with my wife, I've looked at porn on a daily basis. It was a terrible, shameful secret I had. She found the porn a few times, and I made up good excuses for why it was on the computer. I promised myself I would stop looking at it, and seriously meant it. I hated the fact that I looked at porn. Within a day I would be back at it.

Finally, she discovered that I had been on pay sites with a credit card. I felt like my world was crashing in on me, but at the same time it was a major relief, to get it out in the open. Eventually, with the help of therapy and recovery groups, I was able to tell my wife about my obsession with sex, fantasy, and porn, and how deep it was. The guilt and secrets were so painful that it was no longer worth hiding...I was willing to risk losing the relationship. Well, my wife was of course hurt, but she didn't leave...it was one of the best days of my life...I shared my inner most dark thoughts to someone...and they didn't leave!

Now we talk about it everyday, and she knows now that it's not about her. I go to SRA meetings a few times a week (which is where I learned about Male Survivors), and as long as I'm working on my recovery, she's ok with it.

For me, porn is an addiction. Like many men, I am powerless over whether or not I look at porn. I hate porn - it's devoid of soul, and so degrading to the people involved. I hate watching it, and thereby condoning and patronizing a disgusting, abusive and exploitative business. But it is one of the most powerful escapes in the world...internet porn is like crack. The intense control, isolation, fantasy, escape, and ultimate endorphin rush are beyond compare. The shame spiral and low self worth and guilt that follow put me right where I want to be...on the track to escaping it all with more porn / sex. It's brutal.

If you know someone who is addicted to porn, I can tell you that they will not just stop without help. I can also tell you that it is most definitely not about you, and that under no circumstance will you be able to stop or control the behavior. Just like living with someone who abuses alcohol, it's important to realize that it is an addiction, and is more powerful than the person's willpower. So don't take it as a personal insult when they act out. What you can do is set boundaries in order that YOU feel ok.

Possibly the best thing my wife did was to take care of herself...she stopped her "acting out" by getting support. She no longer checks up on me, no longer checks the computer history, and no longer asks about it. She has made an incredible transformation from feeling pain, defense, and insecurity to feeling compassion and detachment. This could not be a bigger help for me, but she can only do these things because I'm in recovery.

There are great support groups for people involved with sex and porn addicts, kind of like the sex addict's version of al-anon. My best advice would be to get support, and take care of you.


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#200993 - 01/23/08 09:00 PM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Trish4850]
WalkingSouth Offline
Member
MaleSurvivor

Registered: 08/30/05
Posts: 16265
Agape,

I'm obviously not a female so more than likely I can't say I understand. I believe I do understand to some extent however. Trish said it well in her post and I don't want to try and echo that. I would like to attempt to share with you a view from "our" side of the equation.

In most cases our excessive use of porn has nothing whatever to do with you or your desirability. For that matter it has very little to do with our love for you or the rest of the family. It has everything to do with our attempt to workout the abuse of the past in a way that gives us control of the situation. Each episode only serves to bring momentary relief at best and brings debilitating shame and self condemnation at worst. Yet we constantly seek the answer in the exact place where it cannot be found, and we look there because that is what we learned to do. That is how we learned to cope with the shame of our abuse and the robbing of our manhood by the abusers.

Do you need to set a boundary? Of course. Is he going to try to go behind your back and cross that boundary? It's probably inevitable. That does not mean he isn't attempting to do the right thing but that he probably finds it impossible. It becomes your decision what you will and will not put up with, but I will tell you this, It is probable that the impending prospect of losing his happy home may well be the only thing that will prompt him to seek help for this betrayal of trust with you. The downside of that is it may well also be the thing that he cannot deal with.

Don't get discouraged however, my bet is that a man worth keeping, even though he struggles with so many difficulties resulting from his abuse, will also rise to the challenge if it's presented to him in the correct way. You may wish to speak with a counselor on this matter before making any kind of a decision. I wish you well. Hold onto your determination. You are worth it.

Lots of love,

John

_________________________
ďLifeís journey is not to arrive at the grave safely in a well preserved body, but rather to skid in sideways, totally worn out, shouting ĎHoly ____Ö! What a ride!íĒ ~Hunter S. Thompson

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#201070 - 01/24/08 08:46 AM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: WalkingSouth]
Agape Girl Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 120
Loc: New Jersey, USA
Good Morning All;

I'm at work, trying my hardest to stick to "My Commitment I made to myself this morning on my drive in" day one is always the hardest. I want to waiver, to cheat a little, bend the rules. I know I can't I'll be heartbroken with myself if I do.

Reading all your posts was postitive for me and I'm very grateful, please don't ever be ashamed to "give it to me bluntly" I'd rather the truth than no. "No Bullshit" rule is IMPORTANT, so thank you and I'll think hard on your words all day.

thank you
Kelly

_________________________
AGAPE'
means selfless love of one person for another
without sexual implications
(especially love that is spiritual in nature)

Top
#201079 - 01/24/08 09:45 AM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Agape Girl]
NoOneImportant Offline
Guest

Registered: 01/11/08
Posts: 36
As someone with porn issues, I can say, my desire for it has nothing to do with my wife's beauty. I love her, she's gorgeous. I got messed up with porn after my brother came home from the military and brought a crapload of it with him (I was still in my early/mid teens). With an 8 year long history of abuse, It just sucked me in. I haven't looked at porn in awhile now, not sure why, but I know should the urge for it arise, I'll seriously be completely powerless in the face of it. I've never been able to say no to it. I love me wife, and I know if she knew, it would hurt her. I don't want to hurt her, which is the reason I've never told her. I've shared many many hard things with her, but always things that I hope won't cause her pain. If your bf is like me, he wants to stop, he doesn't want to hurt you. But he probably can't stop. SAA or another program might help. Ya know, after reading these things here and writing this, I might just look one up myself. Just love him. Once again, if he's like me, being loved is probably something he longs for. True, unconditional love.

--- Agape Love.



Edited by NoOneImportant (01/24/08 09:47 AM)

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#201098 - 01/24/08 11:13 AM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: NoOneImportant]
Trish4850 Offline
BoD Liaison Emeritus
MaleSurvivor<

Registered: 10/15/05
Posts: 3280
Loc: New Jersey
Guys,

I intellectually understand that porn can have a hold on you that feels impossible to overcome at times. Itís a problem, an addiction. Itís awful. To fight any addiction, the problem is acknowledged by the person with the problem and the support of loved ones is sought and hopefully received so that the problem can be beaten back and tamed. The partner who loves you would not sit back and watch you do a line of coke and think that it was OK, they would react with disappointment, anger and pain if you had promised not to do it and then did it anyway. We run the gambit of emotions when you fall off the wagon because we are also hurt by you doing it. It is NOT ok and it is not to be brushed under the rug because you canít help yourself from continuing these behaviors. An addiction to drugs is fought and won only with abstinence, an addiction to alcohol is fought and won only by abstinence. Why would an addiction to porn be treated any differently?

As with everything surrounding this whole mess, communication with your partner is the key. For us partners, we need to realize that it is an addiction and there will be set backs that need to be dealt with. Heaping a pile of shame and guilt on the survivor who is honestly and truly fighting his way through isnít the answer. Ladies, if your guy screws up the courage to speak to you about this, at your instigation or his, be grateful and deal with it. You can express to him how angry it makes you and how hurt you feel, but be clear that it is the hold that the porn has, not the man, that you are really angry with. Your common enemy is the addiction, not each other.

Guys, I canít imagine how hard it must be to be honest with your partner about something like porn. I can only say that being honest with your partner about your struggle is the only way through. Itís probably less the porn itself that causes the problem in a relationship, but the lies that are told to hide it because those lies hide too many unknowns which leads your partner to speculate about all of the horrible things that must be wrong with her which leads you to porn.

ROCK ON............Trish

_________________________
If you fall down 10 times, Stand up 11.

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#201145 - 01/24/08 02:43 PM Re: Viewing things that I asked not be viewed [Re: Trish4850]
Agape Girl Offline
Guest

Registered: 07/25/07
Posts: 120
Loc: New Jersey, USA
Everyone Thank you! I see a lot of you are new here, it feels strange not being the "real" new kid on the block anymore...regardless we're all the same when it comes to pain.

We talked last night as I tried to fight back the urge to talk about it again and cause him more embarrassment. I must say, we always talk it out, don't know how but we do and that is an essential tool for a relationship. Last night I was hurting badly and alone so I turned to MS for some relief, I think even just typing it out was enough, knowing that in a while someone would come to my rescue. The odd thing was that I didn't sit and wait, which always makes things worse. I woke up this morning and read all your thoughts and posts. I REALLY VALUE THEM ALL!!!! it's the truth that sets me free really.

This morning on my way in (1 hour ride each way) to work, could sometimes be deadly if your mind isn't in the right place. Armed with a book on cd to keep the chatter to a minimun I began only but 15 minutes left to go did my mind waiver. Mantra's are a great key thing to use at this point. So "BE TRUE TO YOURSELF"...kept me company the rest of the way. I had definate goals...and think I could have maintained them all day. Truth is I decided to leave work at 12 to be home to talk with my bf about your posts..Peaceseeker, you made me think hard about your words and I connected my bf to your post. That was my goal along with opening the discussion with, "A healthy relationship is suppose to be one in which you both add to each other's lives, not take something away." Thanks to Lou.

My bf is in the "I'm a big fuck-up, I let you down, I keep hurting you" mode. well yes he is but enough is enough...I've told him time and time again...I"M STILL HERE!!!!

Anyway, we talked for a while and I was hoping that Peaceseeker's post would hit home...Maybe a 1/4 of it he acknoledged, so there was not much to cling to for me which sort of leaves me back at square one. With nothing to understand, out in the cold, clueless, and plain old sucky! He's told me he's gotten so much better and then I explained that how could I know that if I didn't know how bad it was. How can I give him props, all I said to him was you should have never promised you wouldn't do it again. You should have said to me, Kelly, I'll do my best to make you proud. Instead, you feel the need to lie to me now and that's a dangerous thing.

He know's where I stand with things, I don't need to embarass him further. I'm going to step away, not check on him, and not question him, you all know how challenging this will be for me as well, but I have to for me and for US. It's his responsiblity, and I have nothing to do with it. I thought showing him "my trust" in him would be a good thing. It seemed to only aggitate him, exclaiming that I'll just simply assume he's watching porn. I said actually it's out in the open now, and I could care less. So, I'd be lying to tell you I feel better but I do feel some sort of relief, I have a T appt. for Feb 7th. I need to concentrate on me! and make sure I don't get lost in all this nonsense.

thank you to everyone....you were there for me!

always,
Kelly

_________________________
AGAPE'
means selfless love of one person for another
without sexual implications
(especially love that is spiritual in nature)

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