Stuck in sex­less mar­riage with a hubby hooked on celebrity porn

Sunday Independent (Ireland) - Living - - MARY O’CONOR -

We are a cou­ple who have been mar­ried for six years with two small chil­dren. With­out a shadow of a doubt, I have al­ways loved my hus­band with my heart and soul and he me. We’ve had a num­ber of stresses over the years but got through them all. While he has a huge abil­ity to love, and be loved, he has al­ways had enor­mous dif­fi­cul­ties iden­ti­fy­ing and pro­cess­ing his emo­tions. I’ve tried my best to sup­port him through this, but at times in the past few months he has been a closed shop.

We had a very happy sex life in the early years. I am ashamed to say that in the past year we have had sex once only. We kiss, hold hands, flirt and lie to­gether when sleep­ing, but there has been zero in­ti­macy as such. I hold my hands up in that I’ve had min­i­mal in­ter­est in en­gag­ing in sex but I’ve broached the sub­ject with my hus­band and queried why as a man he doesn’t seem to need sex as of­ten as I pre­sumed a man should. He has al­ways said that’s just the way he is.

Many years ago I dis­cov­ered he had been look­ing up fe­male celebri­ties on the net. This made me feel in­se­cure and he promised to stop, al­though some months later there was a sim­i­lar episode. About two years ago I dis­cov­ered he had watched hard­core het­ero­sex­ual porn on a Sun­day af­ter­noon when I was out. He apol­o­gised and again we moved on. How­ever, yes­ter­day my world came tum­bling down. While start­ing work he sent his usual morn­ing text wish­ing me luck for the day and telling me he loved me. Im­me­di­ately af­ter that I re­ceived, by mis­take, an ex­tremely graphic text that re­ferred to what he wanted him­self and an­other man to do to a par­tic­u­lar fe­male celeb. He con­fessed that for some weeks he has had a Twit­ter ac­count where he and two men tweet what they want to do sex­u­ally to var­i­ous fe­male celebri­ties. He be­came in­volved in this Twit­ter ac­count hav­ing again searched for hard­core het­ero­sex­ual porn.

We are now in cri­sis and I am ut­terly heart­bro­ken. He im­me­di­ately can­celled the Twit­ter ac­count. Ini­tially, he told me, as it was on so­cial me­dia, he felt it wasn’t real. How­ever, he has been in reg­u­lar con­tact with two men over a pe­riod of weeks for sex­ual plea­sure. So that con­sti­tutes a form of cheat­ing to me. I also worry that had he not been caught out he would have pur­sued this, got in con­tact with more men and pos­si­bly even pro­gressed to meet­ing these men should the op­por­tu­nity have arisen in time. He ve­he­mently de­nies this and said he had been mean­ing to stop. We stayed up most of the night talk­ing things through. He is dev­as­tated at the pos­si­bil­ity of los­ing me and at the pain he’s caus­ing me. I’m so un­cer­tain about ev­ery­thing right now but I do know I still love him and at the mo­ment I don’t feel I should walk away from what was before such a lov­ing mar­riage.

WHAT a hor­ri­ble shock for you to open that text. It seems to me that as your hus­band got more and more in­volved in the world of fan­tasy, he lost sight of the re­al­ity that if you found out it would be hugely detri­men­tal to your mar­riage. He thought of it all as purely fan­tasy, whereas for you it was quite real that he took sex­ual plea­sure in dis­cussing with other men what they would do with what­ever celebrity was the fo­cus of their at­ten­tion. This was all tak­ing place to a back­ground of no sex­ual ac­tiv­ity be­tween the two of you — al­though your love for each other was de­clared in all sorts of ways — and a busy work­ing house­hold with small chil­dren.

I don’t know quite how this Twit­ter ac­count op­er­ated, and what the sex­ual part was, al­though there prob­a­bly was mas­tur­ba­tion in­volved. This, how­ever, does not mean that your hus­band has ho­mo­sex­ual ten­den­cies — the celebri­ties were fe­male. While he didn’t feel he was cheat­ing, you felt that he was, and so have been left in­cred­i­bly hurt and feel­ing dev­as­tated. That is what you will have to deal with and that is enough. I think you should seek coun­selling as you will have an un­bi­ased per­son help­ing you sort out your feel­ings. How­ever, it would be in­fin­itely bet­ter if both of you could at­tend. You need to hear what it was that caused him to look for thrills on the in­ter­net. Even six ses­sions would be ex­tremely ben­e­fi­cial.

You can con­tact Mary O’conor anony­mously by vis­it­ing www.dear­

or email her at dear­mary@in­de­pen­

or write c/o 27-32 Tal­bot St, Dublin 1. All cor­re­spon­dence will be

treated in con­fi­dence. Mary O’conor re­grets that she is un­able to an­swer any

ques­tions pri­vately

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