You Can’t Give Me What I Want

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(Rated PG-13 for Intimate References)

  
Even though the discovery of my husbands porn addiction has killed most of my desire for physical intimacy, I recognize its importance in a marriage, and purposely try to jump-start my desire regularly by:

* Recreating old romantic memories as a surprise 

* Reminiscing with him on date night about our favorite encounters

* Watching a sappy romantic movie in bed (kind of tacky, but simple to plan)

Our last intimate encounter began with gentle cuddling and kissing which slowly progressed to the point where both of us were ravenous. I gasped, “What do you want?” He replied, “You can’t give me what I want.”

  

(beeeeeeeep)

My husband and I are middle aged. He is not as lean as he used to be, and I have a knee injury. The knee makes it painful for me to ‘ride’, although I have played the cowgirl because he likes it. For the last year or so, though, he is too round for me to straddle him. A half-squat half-straddle gives me the traction I need, but is even more painful than than just trying to ride. We have talked about the pain of this position.

  
When I looked at him, he explained,“I want you to ride me, but you can’t do that.”

OUCH. Then why bring it up?  That’s like me telling him, “I want you to earn more money, but you can’t do that.”

This is where I’m supposed to describe what I have learned, and turn this post into a positive experience. This time, dear readers, the positive outlook will have to come from your comments. Although, as always, I welcome any comments.

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Settling for Less

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This week I broke. We were laying in bed in the dark, and silent tears were streaming down onto my pillow. My husband asked me a question, and I replied quickly, in one word, trying to mask the emotion flooding through me. He inquired if everything was ok, and I replied that it was late. But he wouldn’t let it go…

  
 It can’t be explained, but after a few more of his questions, the dam broke, and suddenly the tears were accompanied by shaking and great gulps of air. Initially, he was angry. He got up and prepared to leave. The sound of the bedroom door unlatching was nearly drown out by my embarrassing emotional outburst… but he was still in the room. Slowly the addict released the handle and came around to my side of the bed.

  
 
The first words that stuttered out of my mouth were, “Why did you choose me!?” He was hurt and confused. Wasn’t it obvious that he loved me? “I’m still here,” he said like it was worthy of an Olympic gold medal. Of course it didn’t answer my question.

Since discovering his pornography addiction, I have seen the kind of women that turn him on. They are nothing like me. When we were dating did he think, “Well, she’s not an 18-year-old red head that’s a size 2 with an F cup, but I like her new car?” Did he just settle for me because he couldn’t get what he REALLY wanted?

He told me I was beautiful, and he loves me, and he doesn’t want anyone else. I look in his big, gorgeous eyes and think of all his delicious lies that I have swallowed. When I bring up that his taste in pornography makes me wonder why he picked me, he replies that those women mean nothing. I am silent, not because I believe him, but because the futility of this midnight conference is clear. 

While drifting off to sleep I marvel at his word, ‘nothing’… but that is another post all on its own…

RENEW THEIR STRENGTH

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There are a lot of things to worry about when someone you love is an addict.

Will They Ever Recover?

 Will I Ever Be Able to Trust Them Again?

 Do I Have the Strength to Continue this Relationship?

“They that wait upon the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.” Isaiah 40:31

What does it mean to wait upon the Lord? I know the Lord can help my husband when he is ready to be helped. However, I could use some help right now.

Perhaps waiting on the Lord means exercising faith. Gandhi said it this way:

Clearly I don’t have the faith of Gandhi💛

In Matthew 17 a lunatic is brought to Jesus that his disciples could not heal. Jesus explains the if they had only a tiny amount of faith they could do great things. Then he asks his disciples a key question:

How is it you ‘goeth not out but by prayer and fasting’?

Maybe I need more prayer and fasting to help me wait upon the Lord.

WILL VS. WILLPOWER

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Step three of addiction recovery is…

Turn my will and life over to God.


That is a powerful statement if we understand what ‘will’ means.

Will is our desire, or our choice. Turning our desire or choice over to God means we will let him direct us to a different life. 

However, I hear a lot of addicts speaking of willpower… the ability to control ourself… often through strong determination.


My concern is that if a person had the ability to control their behavior, they wouldn’t be an addict.

Perhaps that is why step 3 instructs addicts to turn their life over to God.

WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?

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I can see that my husband is trying very hard to improve our relationship. He made plans for us to go out this weekend. He even sent me a loving text in the middle of the day.

So What’s the Problem?

I am afraid… afraid that he is on his best behavior that won’t last… afraid that the more I open my heart the more he will hurt me… afraid that he is just going through the motions…


Why Would He Just Go Through The Motions?

Maybe it is easier than the financial hardship of divorce? Maybe he is trying to ‘fake it until you make it’.

I question if a porn addict knows what love really is. Since he is desensitized and detached, can he actually feel for someone else?

I want to believe he can.💛 

HONESTY:

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Step 1:

Part of my frustration is my husband is still on step one in the addiction recovery program… Which consists of two parts:

  1. Admit that you are powerless to overcome pornography.
  2. Admit that your life has become unmanageable.

It begs the question… Does he really think he can stop any time he likes? Or is his life just not ‘unmanageable’ or ‘miserable’ enough for him to make a change?

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I can see how unmanageable his life is. His family relationships are in shambles. He doesn’t have any close friends. He can’t advocate for himself at work. Some of his children are also addicted to pornography.

Since our recent ‘Come to Jesus’ meeting where I pointed out that he had been lying to me for a long, looong, looooong time about his sobriety date, I don’t believe a single word he says about his addiction recovery success… and because I do not have a good poker face… he knows it.imageI swear I am not getting in his face and pointing my finger between his eyes. I usually just listen and say nothing. Nevertheless my unbelief is just as offensive to him 😦

I really believe that part of the recovery process for the addict is recognizing he has been a JERK and a LIAR and the people who love them have the right to be a little skeptical until they can begin to see a change…

Becoming Personal

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One idea many addicts justify behavior with is, “It isn’t personal.”


Since physical intimacy in a relationship is personal… VERY PERSONAL… this is how a partners pornagraphy addiction becomes personal:

– when the addicts initiation of physical intimacy with his partner is consistently low because he is frequently satisfying himself.

– when the addict rejects physical intimacy invitations from his partner because he recently satisfied himself in the bathroom.

– when the addict can no longer be aroused by human interaction with his partner and invites digital partners into the bedroom.