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I'm a single mom who started a relationship almost a year
ago. The beginning of the relationship was great (as
always), but things have been changing during the last 5
months or so. My woman's intuition sensed something weird
was going on, but I continued the relationship to the point
where we moved together in early June. However, a couple
weeks ago (and after a night when he suspiciously went out
and didn't came back home until after midnight without
letting me know where he was, like he always does), I found
out he uses this online dating site (which explains his
extensive use of text messaging). I opened an account there
just to see what was the site about, and I discovered he had
a profile as a single, looking for girls for short and
long-term relationships, and that he replies to messages
often. I was devastated and let him know that he could not
continue to do that if he wanted a relationship with me (I'm
not playing, after a divorce I want a stable, long-term
relationship). He said nothing had happened, that he uses
this site for ''scientific purposes only'', and changed his
status to ''seeing someone'' and ''looking for friends only'',
and his behavior with me changed a bit (more amorous, less
neglecting). As a result of this, I created an account at
that site with false information stating that I'm seeing
someone and that I'm looking for friends only just to see
what this is all about, and so far I have received an offer
from a married guy who just wants to have sex with whoever.
Of course, I'm disgusted at this. That only gives me an idea
of what really happens when you use those kind of sites.
My question is: would you really trust a partner who uses an
online site for fun when he/she states he/she wants to
pursue a serious relationship with you (including having
kids in the future)? Is this something common for a younger
generation (people in their late 20s)? I'm older than him,
so for me that seems completely disrespectful, but just want
to make sure I'm not being a drama queen here. I would
kindly appreciate your advice on this. Thanks.
Confused and heartbroken
I am sorry to hear this is happening to you, because I can tell you are shaken by
it, and very attached to this man. However, this is infidelity. Even if there was no
sex this time, there will be. This is sex and love addiction-behavior. Leave now,
or be very sorry later.
been there, done that
No you are not crazy and yes, he is lying to you about his
intentions. People in committed relationships do not join
online dating sites for ''research''. In my opinion, he
probably has a sex or sex and love addiction....lying about
his actions, being available for dating or sex with others
and even being more affectionate to you to keep you in the
relationship with him are all signs of that. Take care of
yourself and ask yourself if this is the relationship you want.
Get out of that relationship! And read the book ''Women, Sex and Addiction'' by
Charlotte Kasl. It will change your life.
I'm sorry, but you need to end the relationship. There is
no way that he is using an on-line dating site for
''scientific purposes'' (eek). Of course he is looking;
anyone who has used those sites knows that you are either
looking or you are not; if you're not, you take down your
profile. He is active on the site. And it sounds as if you
are looking for an honest monogamous relationship. This
ain't it. Please do yourself a favor and get him out of
your life asap. And look for someone who fits your profile,
to use on-line dating language.
former on-line dater
Dump him. He obviously isn't trustworthy. Don't move in
with anyone until you are married.
Ask him to move out right away. He hasn't shown any
commitment to you whatsoever.You've known him for less than
a year and he's already looking for other women to date.
Seems to me that it would be a really good idea to know
someone very well before asking him to move in with you,
especially since you have a child.
sounds like a bad situation
The title of your post is an oxymoron. How can he have a
serious relationship and be dating others online? There are a
number of red flags you pointed out, like the fact that both
of you are online sneaking behind each other's back. He is
playing a game right now and maybe that is exciting to him.
Tell him to put an end to it, it's not negotiable and that you
are able to see what he does online. Be prepared to walk
away, I would.
It's good that you caught this now, rather than finding out
about the affair when it's been ongoing for a while. Your
boyfriend is cheating on you. It's utterly premeditated.
Please don't try to varnish it or say that it didn't mean
anything. Time to get out.
The title of your post is already giving you the answer: do
you realize how obvious it is that this guy is going to
break your heart? You want a stable relationship and have a
daughter and you moved in with a guy you barely know? Do
you think he's not planning on having sex with these people?
Why did he hide this stuff from you? Why did he put that
he's single if he's looking for just friends? If all this
were not already tremendously disrespectful to you already,
when you found out, he stayed on the site?!!!!! And he
changed his status to 'seeing someone'?!!!!! He's not
'seeing someone'; he's living with someone. Please, please,
please, take care of yourself, for yourself but mainly for
your baby: throw him out in the street right now! Rebuild
your life and your confidence. Make a beautiful little
family with your daughter and make your lives so 'sacred'
that only good people, who have proved themselves to be
deserving of the two of you, can be a part of them. Good
luck to you.
no, honey, it's not ok. You need to start thinking about
being on your own again. Sorry to be so blunt, but he's
got issues, and they're not compatible with yours.
Personally, I think you should never put up with anyone
who takes off without telling you where he's going,
period. And that he does it regularly and stays out till
after midnight? He has a completely different
understanding of ''relationship'' than you do, and for all
you know he could be a sex addict. Most likely, now that
you've caught him, he's probably got some fake profile
too. And really, isn't it exhausting to have to do
detective work on your own partner? I think you should
start making plans to be on your own before you even talk
to him, because I'm afraid you'll believe his nonsense in
your desire to have everything be ok between you. You'll
Deception is so hurtful, I am sorry that you are going
through this with someone you love and trusted. However,
the bottom line is that he is looking for relationships
with other women and he is not honest with you. Get out
now or throw him out. Honestly is key to a sucessful, long
term relationship and he has demonstrated that he is not.
Take care -
East Bay Mom
No, I wouldn't believe or trust him, that ''scientist'' story
is total BS. He's a player and a liar. Dump him pronto!
-You Know He's Lying
The short answer is, no, I would never trust a partner who
uses online dating for WHATEVER stated purpose, and no, it
is not acceptable behavior with the younger generation - if
the young people in question are serious, committed and
respectful with each other.
I would gently suggest you might have low self-esteem to
even consider this a legitimate option. And who cares if it
were a passing fad with a younger set? It should be
unacceptable to you as a self-respecting individual.
Trust me, no one trolls dating sites to ''just'' meet up with
some potential friends. That kind of activity is always,
and I mean always, motivated by some kind of search for
''more,'' whether conscious or not. Your partner may even be
lying to himself, but on some level, he is looking for
excitement and possibility. If such a possibility
materializes and he takes advantage of it, he will then tell
himself he really wasn't *planning* on anything happening,
it just sort of happened. Many people buy that one, too.
The point is, he is leaving himself wide, wide open for
*something* to happen.
This might sound harsh but it comes from a good place -
woman to woman - from somebody who has made big mistakes
with men a couple of times. DUMP HIM! This is serious, to me
a deal-breaker, and SO EARLY on. You can't trust him. This
is most probably sex and even if not a total betrayal. Your
''discussion'' with him after you found this out - anything
but throwing his crap out on the sidewalk and changing the
locks - demonstrated to him he can walk on you. He confirmed
that by just edging away to something ''less'' bad but staying
on the site, and you're allowing that and messing around
with the fine points of it? (Demonstrating further he found
a partner he could walk on.) No. The behavior you describe
goes along with this serious pattern. You had the intuition
before he moved in, it was accurate. If you were my friend I
would also add, something in you doesn't quite know you
deserve better, not totally. See to that too, get whatever
help you need.
- there's better fish in the sea
Break up with this guy. He's bad news. Please break up - you'll find someone
else. No, this is not normal - no you're not being a drama queen. The situation is
not worth all this analysis - he's not honest, he's not mature, he doesn't deserve
to live with you and your child.
I know how hard it is to be a single parent and how lonely it is to care for a child
without a partner (I've been there), but please soldier on until you find a worthy
person, which you will eventually, I promise.
All my best, and trust your intuition!
My answer to you is Hell No! It sounds like the only person
''serious'' about the relationship is you. Get out before you
It's totally not a right things to do - I absolutely agree
with you on that. And my feeling is that this kind of man
probably will not change his behavior as he is always having
his option open; so be prepared to protect yourself while
trying to deepen your relationship with him.
I recently caught my husband planning online dates with women on
chemistry.com to make his life more interesting while im out of
country for few weeks with 2 kids - 5, 1. Checked the site and
they offer subscription service which most probably he has
signed for to find matches. We are married for 11 years, working
professional. He is posing as not himself, false name and maybe
false profile... I feel cheated and hurt... I confronted him
right on, and he said, it was since he gets bored when im away
and was planning to only go for dinner with a few of these
women !!! What should I do ?
Im mostly busy with the 2 kids & day-day life with a full time
job and the 2 kids. Sex life would be grade 6-7on a scale of 10.
He has been disinterested in kids activities and needs and often
complains of boredom & monotony.
Your husband is cheating on you - make no mistake. Whatever his
excuse is, it's a betrayal of you, your vows, your family life.
Cheating isn't just physical contact with someone else, it's the
betrayal of trust. He was hiding his activity from you, and was
going to do it while you were gone. That's betrayal. Install a
keylogger so you can check on his online activities while you are
out of town.
Read the book ''Not Just Friends'' by Shirley Glass (also the
website www.survivinginfidelity.com is very helpful)
Oh yuck. Every marriage has it's own rules, but are you allowed
to go out to dinner with random men? I would be looking into
couples counseling and or divorce.
I sympathize with you and don't think this is appropriate
behaviour. Let me give you my perspective being a guy ...
I have 2 daughters (ages 4 and 2). Since a few times, I have
been having doubts if this is all that life is meant to be. It
is incredibly hard to do anything new and exciting. As life
becomes routine, it also becomes boring for me. My wife doesn't
have such issues. Perhaps because women are better at relating
to kids - shopping, watching movies etc. She also likes routine
more than I.
I recently communicated this to my wife and she was supportive.
We have setup a week or so in a year where I can go out and do
my stuff - be it travel/ visit friends/ family etc. This is
just my time. Recently I went to Vietnam on my own for my high
school re-union. She took care of both kids. I would say our
bond has become very strong because of this. Perhaps you guys
can try something similar so that your husband doesn't try
Where do people get the idea that their marriage can survive
this sort of behavior ? And why do they have the hubris to even
Your marriage will never be the same- mine was not. What I
think you should do is confront him, tell him to stop
immediately, and that if he ever does this again you will divorce
him the next day. By the way, if you do end up divorced- you will
be better off.
Can I come over to your house and kick your husband in the crotch?
He gets bored? Can't he rent some movies? go out with friends?
Even if his intentions were genuinely to just have dinner (which
I have a hard time believing), he's still crossing a pretty big
line with you... and deceiving these other women as well. I can't
imagine he would tell them that he is a married father who gets
bored when his wife and kids are out of town.
Treat this like the major transgression it is.
I just found out something which I find devastating to my happy
marriage(or what I thought was one).
Unwittingly, while looking for a tile and stone website I had
visited on the internet (we are remodeling) I went through our
computer's file log. I found some disturbing things that have
really shaken me to the core. My husband has been on
scanlover.com, been on myspace web pages, asianbeautybook.com
etc. This is all so ''out of the blue''. I'm sad and upset. We
have a very good marriage, two kids, nice house, good income,
good families, we are happy, I am pretty good looking/good b
ody, great sex life etc. Why would my husband do this? Why
would a man ''troll'' for cheap looking women (they looked pretty
bad to me) on the internet?
What should I do? Confront him about his secret web searches? I
just found out that I'm pregnant with our 3rd child. I all of
a sudden feel trapped. Should I get an abortion? Should I
threaten to leave him? Most of me is so sad, I cannot stop
crying about it, the angry part of me wants to leave him, make
him suffer etc. Has anyone encountered this situation? What did
So my response to you is basically the same as my response to the person
who wrote about their husband's internet porn issue. I'll cut and paste
what I wrote to her, but first, I just want to say that in my experience
men who look for sex or porn or love on the internet are usually doing
it for a much more deep-seated reason than their partner not being
''enough.'' There is an emptiness they are trying to fill, or a fear of
intimacy, relationship dissatisfaction, childhood abuse or neglect
issues being worked out, or an intense addiction to fantasy and
difficulty dealing with reality (real relationships with real human
beings are much more difficult than fake relationships with internet
personalities or real women who are being paid to pay you
attention!) It is also an escape from difficult feelings a person might
be having. This may not be something you can fix.
But you can certainly focus on taking good care of yourself in this and
get some support.
There is a 12-step program / support group for people who have been
affected by another person's compulsive sexual behavior that you might
find really helpful:
There is also a program for Sex & Love Addicts, partners of addicts also
often find themselves in this meeting:
Sex & Love Addicts Anonymous
There is also CODA, which can be helpful for ppl who are in
relationships with addicts... and RCA (Recovering Couples
Anonymous) which is a program you could go to together if you were both
interested in working on this stuff.
I hope you can get some therapy, or go to a support group, before you
make any huge decisions about leaving or having an abortion.
Best of luck to you!
While it may be as bad as you think it is, it also may not be. You need
to talk to your husband openly. From what you wrote, it sounds like one
possibility is that he was just browsing through those website out of
curiosity. I have actually done that myself, out of boredom. Almost as a
sort of curious joke about what is out there, having absolutely NO
desire to know what is really out there or any desire whatsoever to act
on it or speak to or contact anyone. Just literally bored and curious.
Maybe that's all it was. You won't know for sure without confronting
My heart goes out to you. Your situation seems different--and more
distressing, in a way--than the woman who found out her husband is
looking at porn on the internet. It appears that your husband is at the
very least fantasizing about another relationship, and possibly even
actively pursuing one. This would be devastating to discover, especially
when you just learned you are pregnant again. Particularly given your
pregnancy, I think you need to talk as soon as possible with your
husband about what you found. You don't say how old you both are, but a
''best case scenario'' might be that he is going through a mid-life
crisis, feeling vaguely restless, and letting off steam through these
online wanderings that he has no intention of acting upon. I'm sure you
can conjure up the worst-case scenarios yourself.
Either way, couples counseling may well be necessary to get all the
issues out on the table, and to make sure that now is a good time to
have a third child. I wish you all the best.
I'd say first assume the more benign ... that your husband is just
looking for some sites to fantasize to, probably while pleasuring
himself. This may or may not be anything at all. He may just be
feeling like he needs a little more sex than he feels comfortable asking
you for, particularly since you're pregnant and most likely tired, so
he's taking care of it himself. It could be something more, but don't
drive yourself crazy over something that may not be such a big deal
I have recently found myself in the same situation. I searched the BPN
archives and found similar topics covered in 2003 and 2005. I found
explicit text messages on my husband's phone.
When I confronted him, he admitted that he had actually created a
profile of a fictional version of himself and put it on an internet
dating website and has been ''flirting'' with women he met there on his
cell phone using text messaging. He swears he has never spoken to these
women and has only emailed and texted them.
I took his phone away and he is changing his number. Our sex life has
been not so great since our baby was born earlier this year, but I feel
for you because I feel that it is completely cheating regardless if it
is virtual or in-person because there is a level of time, energy, and
intimacy that he put into this whole secretive thing that I would rather
be spent on ME and our marriage, not directed outside of our marriage.
I would definitely confront your husband and see what he says.
If he says its harmless, tell him it isn't so, because you are extremely
hurt by it! It may be that something is lacking in your relationship
from his perspective, and perhaps counseling might be a good idea, if
that kind of thing works for you. My advice, talk to him, see how he
reacts (denial, fesses up and apologizes and says he'll never do it
again, wants to talk about something he's missing, etc.) Does he know
you are pregnant? I think it might be a communication breakdown in your
relationship, and I personally think you can work through it and save
your family, but only if both sides are willing to be honest and open
about it and can face any underlying issues (sex addiction, etc.). But
who knows, I am still trying to figure it all out myself! Can't wait to
see other's responses anon
Whoa Whoa Whoa...just because someone looks on a site does not mean that
they are looking for or having an affair. I have ofen checked the local
single men in my area on yahoo singles(or whatever) for fun, it makes me
realize how lucky I am to NOT be looking for anyone. I would be
HORRIFIED if my husband looked up what I had been checking and thought I
was looking for an affair!! And often there are links that just come up
that your husband might have clicked on. Don't jump to conclusions.
Ask him about it, it might be totally innocent...plus, there is nothing
wrong with looking, it might be making him realize how lucky he is to
Your message brought back some old memories for me. I had to deal with a
similar issue when I first moved in with my now- husband, and I get the
feeling it's VERY common just not talked about much for good reasons. I
know it's hard to imagine being accepting of this behavior on any level,
but there are a bazillion married men out there (many of which would
probably never have an affair) who enjoy looking at naked women. I don't
think it's perverted at its core. Perfectly normal, actually.
It's just that the naked women are often found on these terribly named,
cheesy websites so it makes it seem more lewd.
I think the nature of it being dangerous (''what if my wife catches
me?!'') plays a part. Anyway, I had to come up with some ground rules
that worked for both me and my husband. He stopped looking at porn when
he thought it might break us up. Now we've been together for 10 years
and we have a don't-ask-don't-tell policy. I don't really care if he
does at this point because our relationship is solid otherwise. Hope it
helps to know that you're far from alone in this Anon
I think porn is valued different by different people. I know my husband
does it and I'm OK with it. I've also done it occasionally, and we've
watched together in a few instances. I think getting a divorce over
this may be too strong a response, especially if you already have two
children and are expecting a third one. Maybe therapy will help you both
see each other's perspective and work towards a middle ground that works
have been in similar situation, our partnership is pretty sexless (i
think defined as less than 10x's per year?) and he was looking at a lot
of stuff on the internet.
i think you have to break the issues down a little bit. He lied and
broke your trust - which feels like cheating. He has to own up to that.
the porn can serve as a distraction and drive those energies away from
your relationship, i know some therapists don't like any porn because of
that factor - the sexual energy should be driven toward each other.
i think your anger is very valid and he has to work for your trust. if
he is unwilling to listen and understand your frustration and fears that
he has conjured up by his behaviors than you have to decide if you can
continue to live with this type of behavior.
my partner pretty much stopped looking, but i did have to make a
humungous fuss a couple of times and it took a while for him to get it -
he hadn't thought about it critically before and started to see my point
of view and how it hurt our relationship...visually it is a stimulation
they can become addicted and the danger is they tend to want ''more''
stimulation after time by looking at more aggressive or surprising
so things can change, but it can be a struggle good luck
How terrible for you! I unfortunately understand what you are going
I would give yourself some time to sort your feelings out. But print
out or save the screen images somewhere - because if you do confront him
you have to have evidence, they will deny deny or say it wasn't a big
deal - you have to show them what the big deal is.
looking is not the same as doing, so don't jump to conclusions. if your
marriage seemed happy, you could very well be happy. but perhaps he
thought he was being harmless or wanted a cheap thrill (looking, not
it is most important that he know how hurtful it was and that his
actions were inappropriate. i think most men have a completely
different world view then women about porn and even escort sites
(closely related) on the internet.
there is no real way to be sure if your partner really called one of the
girls or used their services, you will have to decide and use your
instincts on that one. it could have been a road he was going down but
never went ''all the way''. your kids and marriage can survive it if
you both use it as an opportunity to communicate. however, i will warn
you it may likely happen again and you will have to make a fuss
again...it can take a toll and cause lots of distrust - and it can take
years for you to feel confident again and lose the nagging doubts or
concern. i think some men are eternal teenagers.
having kids, and the new pregnancy, perhaps there are issues he has
about needing attention, sex or fears that his life will be totally
consumed w/ kids that caused him to seek escape?
good luck to you, don't make any rash decisions, but make sure he knows
how you feel
guys are from Mars
First, I'm just a guy whose been there. It's interesting that you
explain how you found out about your husband. Were you trying to justify
to us how you found out? Anyway, I understand your shock about what you
have discovered, but perhaps this is not as ominous as it might seem. I
have searched the sights as have many of the men I know. Perhaps your
husband is just curious. Even if he is more serious, I would hope that
you can see this does not have to be the end. When I was looking, I
hoped that I would find the convenient 'affair', but it does not exists
on the internet, especially on the porn/date sites. You say that you
believe that your marriage is a happy one. Are you sure? When my wife
and I finally went for counceling, she was amazed that I felt that our
relationship had been in the dumps for a long time (years!) I was
equally amazed that she did not feel the same. We fought all the time,
we were not haveing sex and often would sleep in seperate beds. Does
this sound 'happy' to you? If your marriage is truely as 'good' as you
describe, then I would find it hard to believe he is 'looking for love'.
Even if your husband had succeded in his search, I presume you are still
together. At this point I think you need to talk to him and find out why
he is looking.
Whether you do this alone or with a counselor is up to you and how you
believe both of you will be able to handle the situation.
I would suggest with a counselor. Perhaps you can find a counselor to
talk with for yourself and then bring your husband, that is what my wife
did when she found out about my affair. Let me also say, in my
defense(?)that all the time I was out 'looking' and even when I was
having an affair, I still loved my wife and did not intend on leaving.
Although counseling may seem to be a very difficult and painfull task,
going through a divorce is far worse. It may be the easy way out, but it
is NOT easier.
Of course I can not speak for why your ''husband was looking for love'',
but unless you believe that the reason you married your husband has
truely disappeared I think that you both deserve the opportunity to find
out why your relationship has begun to stray and perhaps then you can
put it back on track. Hopefully you will be able to rescue your marriage
and your third child will not be an issue. I hope this gives you some
I am hoping someone can give me some sound advice.
I have been married for over a year to a man I truly love. He is
younger than me by 8 years (I'm 41) and I feel that basically we
have a really good friendship and marriage. Our sex life is
excellent and he is a good man who I trust and respect. We don't
have children yet, but we are trying and hope that will happene
soon, one way or another (IVF, etc.)
There is something that has been bothering me more and more
though: he seems to have a limited repertoire of conversational
topics and he repeats them over and over and over again as we
talk throughout the days, weeks, months together.
In light of all the horrible relationships that are out there, I
almost feel bad for bringing this up. I tell myself I should be
more patient and I make an effort to listen. I know he has needs
that need to be met too, and I want to be there for him. But it
just seems like its the same crap, over and over and over again.
It changes from time to time as things change in his life, but
basically it's always the same. It mostly centers around work and
his experiences there. Other than that, its his views on the
world which are unchanging and sometimes more conservative and
close-minded than mine. Sometimes I can handle it, other times I
just flat out say, 'you have to change the subject, I can't hear
the same shit another time.' I worry that I am hurting him each
time with such brutal honesty, but on the other hand I feel it's
better than repressing my feelings.
He is an engineer and I know that they can have a certain
mentality... I am a designer by profession, I also sing and have
a lot of other creative interests. He appreciates those, but does
not really have those qualitites himself. That has never bothered
me until now.
I few months ago I started a blog, I think partly in response to
this. I wanted a different kind of conversation. I don't have a
lot of friends, I should probably mention. I really want more, I
just find it hard to find kind and trustworthy people who have
time to be there for you.
Here's where it gets tricky: a young man started leaving comments
on my blog. I went to his blog and started reading. He is an
aspiring poet and his poetry is beautiful. Moving and it touched
something in my soul. I slowly became obsessed and even started
flirting shamelessly with this young man. I think he picked up on
it because his poems became more and more erotic. It got worse
and worse, including me masturbating thing of him and his
poetry.. you get the picture... and I even sent him an email at
one point... he now has my contact info, etc. A big internet
no-no, but I know now how stupid that was. Fortunately, he lives
in Canada, so I don't think anything realistically ever will
really happen... but I am feeling very, very guilty. I feel that
I have damaged the sanctity of my beautiful marriage.
I never even wanted to hardly look at other men (aside from
occasional lusting.) And suddenly this...? What the hell is going
on with me? Has anyone ever been in a similar situation?
I want my beautiful marriage back. I do not want to have an
affair. I love my husband. But how do I get him to really talk to
me instead of repeating things over and over? Am I wrong to
expect him to be able to fulfill my need for connection like
that? I want to feel my soul is connected, not just my heart...
if that makes sense to anyone.
Please send your thoughts - I will read every one.
In my opinion, you definately need to get on birth control now and file
for divorce as soon as possible, like today, BEFORE you have children.
Your husband sounds like an awesome guy and deserves someone who doesn't
cheat on him and has their life together. Internet chatting, blogs,
emotional affairs or whatever is cheating and as bad or even worse than
having a actual physical affair in a marriage. Ask anyone who has
experienced the betrayal. There is no difference. Who cares if he's
shy and not a conversationalist, not everyone is and peole deal with
imperfections or others that don't possess the same qualities. You knew
what he was like before you got married and I'm sure he hasn't changed
too much. It would be selfish to stay in the marriage at this point. I
feel really sorry for him and hope he finds someone whole and wonderful
that he can share his life with and have lots of babies who appreciates
him for the great guy he is. Please, please, please do not get pregnant
and let him go! He's too young to deal with these complications you've
dumped on him and I think if you had a son in a similar situation, you
Sometimes my partner goes on and on about work and it bugs me too, and
sometimes I tell her, but all in all her wonderful and amazing and
loving qualities outweigh her tendency to talk a lot about certain
topics. I think it's all a matter of realizing our partners aren't
perfect (and neither are we!) and judging for ourselves if the good
outweighs the bad. As for the web romance, I know that whenever I've
briefly found myself attracted to someone else (or a concept of someone
else), it's because of something I have a lack of in my own life. If I'm
attracted to someone who seems more literary than my partner, for
example, well, maybe I should join a book club where I can share my love
of books with others. I don't mean to say it's all simple and easy, but
I do think this web romance is more about what's missign for you than
anything else. I'll put in the perennial plug for counseling and sign
off. I wish you well.
Hi - My first thought upon reading your post was that you've married my
ex-husband. Seriously. I had to do the math on the age thing to figure
out that it's impossible.
I, too, got really bored with his unchanging conversation. He, too, was
an engineer. And I, too, got obssessed with someone else, also over the
I can say this to you: if you keep corresponding with this other man,
your husband will look more and more boring to you, and you will not
become more interested in your marriage, and you will not regain your
loving feelings toward him. If you are really serious about revitalizing
your marriage and staying with your husband, you must cut off all
contact with this other man.
It's very easy to fantasize that someone else is our ideal mate,
particularly when we don't have to live with them. But there is no
relationship where the man doesn't stink up the bathroom, leave hairs in
the sink, tell you the same jokes, etc. It's just that your
computer-based relationship is void of reality. It is not a certainty,
or even a great likelihood, that you could forge a lasting relationship
with this other person.
Your obssession with this other man will eventually wane, if you let it.
You may be left with ''what if'' thoughts, but they will not be the
first thing you think of when you wake, and consume you all day. You
will feel so much better in a month.
Just let it go and see.
older and wiser (and staying away from the computer)
My husband does the same thing. I call it his 'top 10'. It drives me
crazy too. And, I'd guess a lot of us don't always put our spouses in
our fantasies. I have a rotating lineup.
But, with regard to the internet flirtation, that can be dangerous. I'd
suggest stopping the blog and staying away from his, and blocking his
email address from your email accounts.
You can keep him in your fantasies, you've already idealized him.
And, what keeps me from getting too worked up by my husband's annoying
habits is to talk to friends who have it worse. It helps keep things in
Not always thinking about my spouse
This may be hard for you to hear but I invite you to try. What your
husband offers up in conversation is not the issue. That it drives you
crazy is clear evidence that you are extremely uncomfortable with how
you are showing up in your relationship.
I understand what you mean when you say that you want to feel your soul
connected. But from my experience, that is not something that comes
from outside of ourselves. If you felt connected with yourself, you
wouldn't feel a need to try to get it elsewhere. Look at what you
wrote- ''how do I get him to really talk to me.....?'' But you are not
really willing to talk to him. You are hiding from him!!!!!! You are
not willing to expose yourself to him, so how do you expect him to be
vulnerable with you. You can't even see what is really going on with
him while you are keeping secrets. All you can see is your own
discomfort which your mind then blames him for.
The titillation and fantasy that you are engaged in probably seems fun
to you. But it is a major distraction and detour from what you say you
are looking for. And it is all an illusion.
Ultimely, you can't have any control or much influence on how someone
else shows up in relationship. All you can hope to influence is how you
show up in relationship. So you need to start showing up the way you
think you want him to show up.
Expose yourself, reveal yourself, let him see all the hurt and wounded
places inside yourself that you are afraid to show. This is what it
means to be brutally honest- with yourself. And yes, this includes
telling him the whole truth about your blog relationship in detail and
that you justified doing it because you were making him wrong for how
you thought he was showing up.
But that you aren't going to make him wrong any more.
Once you really show up in relationship, I guarantee you that your
husband will look different to you even if he doesn't change a thing.
Might he look boring to you? Sure, but if you get serious about your
connection with yourself and expose all the crap that is in the way, the
level of intimacy in your relationshiop will go through the roof. And
in the process you
won't feel the need to get your needs met outside of yourself.
Hey, sounds awfully familiar.
I am an artist, my husband is an engineer.
Now we are divorcing.
We have a child and he suffers.
We do not reach each other on an intellectual, communicative level.
A must for erotics.
I completely understand your romantic fantasy with the poet.
words have the same effect on me and it happened sth similar to me.
Realize now, if your marriage is not giving you what you need, because
later it will only feel worse.
sitting in the same boat
I've been in a very similar situation and have a couple of thoughts for
you. First, realize that you have done nothing wrong so far. Despite the
current emotional turmoil, it's very likely that you'll be able to go
back to having a normal relationship with your husband, and that after
some time, the emotional intensity of the moment will subside. As you
say, it's very unlikely that anything real will come out of the internet
conversation, since the other guy is so far away. However, a more
serious question is whether the current 'affair' is pointing to
something that is missing from your relationship with your husband,
specifically emotional support and spiritual connectedness. I think it's
worth thinking hard about your emotional needs, and whether they are
being met by your husband.
While the current situation may pass, these issues are likely to come up
again, especially if you have children. Second, your description of
monologues and repeated topics of conversations reminds me of Asperger's
Syndrome. It's possible your husband has a mild form of this. You may
want to look it up on the web. One site you can start with is
I would be happy to tell you more about my own experience with all of
this. Please ask the moderator for my email address if you're
Good luck figuring things out
Some people are better conversationalists than others. Some value
conversation more than others. It sounds like you and your husband are
woefully mismatched in this area.
You'll have to decide if you can live with this mismatch for the next,
say, three or four decades. Sobering? It would be for me. I love
conversation and would give up a lot of other relationship perks to
get/keep that in my life.
If it's just a matter of him wanting to talk engineering, I'd go out of
my way to learn some of the subject matter; but it sounds like what he
wants to do is mostly complain. Look deeply and honestly to see if
that's true, or whether it's just a subject-matter problem.
Also, this just in: people tend to get *more* conservative with age, not
less, so don't expect him to become less ''unchanging and close-minded''
than he is.
Be wise about this blogging guy -- in fact, if I were you, I'd pull away
from that situation immedately. But take it as a sign that, like it or
not, you are looking for a way out of your marriage.
I read your post and had a few thoughts to share:
1) It is inevitable in a long-term relationship that some conversations
will repeat over and over. These range from the ''how was your day?''
exchange to the funny story you will hear a hundred times over the
years. This is part of being with someone for the long haul. Sometimes
it may be a bit boring, sometimes you may not really listen, and
sometimes you may be able to listen attentively and hear something new
that you missed before.
2) There have been times when I felt my husband was being boring and not
giving me the stimulation I needed, but often I realized that I needed
to turn the spotlight on myself. Was I trying to start interesting
conversations, or was I waiting passively for him to entertain me? Was
I talking with him from the heart about the things that were most
important to me? Or was I down and flat and blaming him for being the
3) Following up on the last point: you mention in passing that you are
trying to start a family. Attempting to get pregnant and going through
fertility treatments can be incredibly stressful on both partners (been
there, done that). It seems highly likely to me that some of the stuff
going on in your relationship right now is related to this difficult
experience. Both men and women can have strong, though sometimes
masked, responses when they discover it won't be easy for them to
procreate. You might want to check out Resolve, an organization that
deals with fertility and infertility issues.
4) Finally, I think the guy with the blog is pretty much a mirage--a
place for you to project your feelings. You seem to genuinely love your
husband and care about your marriage, so I assume your obsession with
Mr. Blog is mainly a way of focusing some of the frustration you are
feeling right now. It's important to remember that men who write
wonderful poetry or novels or music that touches our souls are not
necessarily nice guys in person--in fact they tend (if I can make a huge
generalization) to be somewhat self-centered. It sounds like you want a
healthy partnership with a man you can picture being a good father to
your child. I would encourage you to focus your energy on your current
relationship and put Mr. Blog aside.
Pardon my blunt honesty, but get over it! Dump the online flirting and
get back to reality! Your husband is at home where you should be. If
you want to seek attanetion from other men then get a divorce and go for
it. Keep your issues out of your husband's feelings; I am sure he'd be
torn up if he found out that you're masterbating to somebody you're also
writing emails! You knew who you were marrying so don't use his
conversational skills and ethical/political views as a crutch to seek
attention elsewhere. This is not his fault at all. Get back to your
marriage or get yourself a divorce.
An engineer with a revolving (often political) monologue? How familiar!
I've learned to shut it out and focus on what I do find interesting
about him. I also call him on it (so when he complains about x political
thing for the 100th time, I ask what ACTION he plans to take to change
it). I also yearn for more
(diverse) connection- the kind you write of. I had a good friend tell me
''don't try to get it all from one person.'' It's REALLY helpful to
think about. Is it always bad, no? Having a baby helped us have a more
common topic (not suggesting that, though- it comes with it's own
Perhaps your young male interest (sans masturbation) is a good way to
get your needs for other types of conversation met. But to avoid an
affair beyond emotion- I don't know... you might need to cut him off and
find a local poetry/ art group. People with common interests- a group
that will keep you in a more comfortable, non one-on-one-tempting
situation. Hey, we're
animals- put the temptation there with the right need... it can be
Remember we can't love everything about everyone in our lives. It sounds
like you really do love your man. Focus on why. And see if he can find
people with common interests who like his gig. Then he won't need to
give it to you all the time.
Unlike some of the responses you may receive, I do not think having
''crushes''or fantasies about someone other than your significant other
are particularly wrong, or unusual, for that matter. Just because you
gave some guy (in another country) your contact info. does not mean you
were unfaithful to your husband. The real issue here, as your posting's
title states, is the lack of what you feel is real communication within
your relationship. This is a big problem. It sounds to me like you and
your husband should try a bit of couples counseling. I know several
engineers/scientific minded men, and a few truly do exhibit the poor
communication skills you describe. However, I wouldn't just chalk up the
inability to communicate with one's spouse to having a certain kind of
left-brained intelligence. Have you ever felt satisfied with the manner
and content of your husband's communication? You clearly want a soulful
connection that includes the creative spontaneity involved in making art
or music. As an artist myself, I know that the creative muse ebbs and
Perhaps you're at a period in your life where singing and other art
forms are more important to you than they once were. This would
certainly explain your frustration with your husband's lack of artistic
interest and participation.
Definitely try counseling, and try to find an activity or hobby that you
both can genuinely enjoy and explore together. Cooking classes, dance
lessons, hiking, anything that might generate some new dialogue and
allow your relationship to grow. And...remember...there is nothing wrong
with fantasizing. Most married folks do it, I'm sure. The issue here is
not that you're interested in another man or in having an affair, but
that you wish your husband had certian qualities that you're discovering
are important to you.
Wish I could help more
Over 16 years of marriage, every few years my husband develops
an intense relationship with other women. According to him
these are not sexual relationships, but they do involve him
spending a terrific amount of time and energy involved in verbal
communication often with flirting element or tone that makes me
feel uncomfortable when I enter the room. During the times of
these relationships, I also notice that he becomes somewhat
critical of me and implies I don't appreciate him enough. The
most recent one involves an online relationship that started
with a woman at a blog site. I had some suspicions from the
time he was spending online and flak I was getting, but found
out about it when I was shutting down the computer one day and
he had left open a file of copied email correspondence.
Although I shouldn't have checked his email, I realized he had
sent her two valentines, and didn't even bother to give me one.
I also found out that he has created a website where the two of
them can receive secure email. We argued about it, and he
basically feels that we each have the right to have friends
outside of the marriage. I agree that that is true, but feel
that a friendship with this degree of a secretive nature and
dedication is what I consider an emotional affair. I have gone
to therapy myself in the past during one of these ''emotional
affairs'' as he was unwilling to go. Am I being unreasonable?
Any suggestions for therapists if I could get him to go?
Feeling like I keep seeing a cycle
This emotional flirting is really trying and I have been on both
sides. I feel it is symptomatic of problems in the relationship.
The person feels dissatisfied and searches outside the home for
something more satisfying without severing the current
relationship. It is very destructive and time consuming. I
confront my partner when I see him flirting with blonde, much
younger, attractive women. He always hotly denies doing it, says
I am seeing things, etc. but then stops doing it for awhile. I
was flirting with guys on the internet and I don't think he knew
about it, but I was spending more and more time on line. Finally
he gave me a lecture about what constituted flirting, cheating,
etc. and that if he ever caught me doing it, our relationship
would be over immediately. I immediately cut off all! contact
with my on line buddies. If your husband thinks you are serious
and values your relationship, he will stop his activities as
well. If he doesn't stop, can you live with it or do you need to
make a change?
been there, done that
I really feel for you. Long, long ago, I was one of
these ''other women'' (emotional only) to a married man. It was
clear that he dealt with his own commitment issues by having
two relationships at once, and thus did not feel ''trapped.''
Since then I've been able to see that his feelings for me were
rather artificial--before me he had fallen in love with a
lesbian. In other words, he always chose women who would not
ultimately ''give in,'' thus playing it safe. When I married, my
husband made it clear that he would not tolerate my having
these sorts of male friendships. While it would be easy for me
to say that he's jealous, etc, the truth of ! the matter is that,
when we encounter problems, we are forced to deal with them,
rather than escaping to intimacy with someone else. I now see
the wisdom of this arrangement. I do have some good male
friends, but there are clear boundaries on the relationships.
I no longer confide in my best male friend from college when it
comes to my relationship with my husband, and we talk much less
frequently. On one level it's sad, but on another, it's the
best thing for my marriage. I don't know what to tell you vis-a-
vis your husband, especially since I think men in these
situations most often refuse to admit it's a problem. One
friend I know started doing exactly what her husband did. In
her case, it worked, but it's a risky business. On the other
hand, it seems like drastic measures are in order. Basically,
though, all I can offer is confirmation that your husband IS
indeed cheating on some level, and that you're right ! to feel
upset and hurt about it. good luck.
This is a very vexing problem. I had several experiences of
this type with my first husband (from whom I have been divorced
for more than 30 years now). The most difficult part for me
was that it seemed ''innocuous,'' yet made me feel terrible. So,
if this is true for you, let me be among those who tell you
that your reaction is ''spot on,'' that it is an ''emotional
affair,'' and that his secretive behaviors do demonstrate that
even he realizes he is doing something ''outside the
boundaries.'' Interestingly, what I finally figured out with my
ex was that he had a ''two woman'' syndrome. He had, in fact,
been raised by two women (a full time maid, and his mother).
He loved them both, felt a desire to have two women, and tended
to pit one of them against the other (in order to keep them
apart! ). Even after we were separated, he presented a woman he
was dating to me in such a way that I soon grew resentful of
her. That's when I realized the ''two women'' nature of his
interactions and reasoned he was trying to keep us apart, which
he did by telling us each things about the other that made us
feel uncomfortable and/or upset with the other. My solution:
I called the other woman on the telephone, and let her know
what I had discovered. I told her I wasn't happy that my
husband and I were apart, but she had a right to be with him if
I wasn't. I told her I wasn't angry at her when her
relationship with my estranged hubby started and that any bad
feelings we had toward one another were unnecessary. In
invited her to get in contact with me ''at will'' and let her
know I was not angry or estranged from her. Boy, was
that ''spot on!'' My ex had dumped her within two weeks ! of
learning that she and I had talked (he was mad at me, too, but
I was okay with that). It is purely immature behavior. Your
husband is not willing to take responsibility, fully, for what
he wants. He keeps two women, one a fantasy woman and the other
a real woman (one to be romantic about, one to snap at and
treat not as well). Check out your situation to see if your
husband grew up with two women, and needs to keep two in his
life now. My best.
My guess is that your husband is cheating on you emotionally, if
not physically. It's a vicarious affair.
I don't know if the following situation is like yours but I hope
this advice is helpful:
There's a particular kind of man who doesn't know how to get out
of a relationship so he just doesn't bother to end things.
Instead, he makes life unbearable for his partner by ignoring or
criticising her so that she is the one forced to leave. He may
even strenuously deny that he wants out. I've seen women go
totally neurotic because the guy keeps saying ''it's all in your
head'' when it's right in front of her face.
Some people stay in this kind of relationship for years before
one of them finally ends it. It often ends with the man leaving
after getting involved with someone new. A coworker of mine
told me that he would have left his wife years before but he was
waiting for their kids to graduate from high school - then he
dumped her flat. He felt like he had done the right thing by
I think that instead of asking yourself if your husband is
having an affair, you should ask yourself if your husband is
trying to find a way out of the marriage. For many women the
financial and emotional implications of divorce after years of
marriage are so staggeringly frightening that they don't even
contemplate the possibility until it's too late for them to plan
for their own future.
I truly hope that you can get him into counseling and that
things will work out for you both. On the otherhand, don't wait
to be traded in for a newer model. You need to find out where
he stands so that you can either work with him to fix the
marriage or start preparing yourself for life without him.
What an interesting dilemma: Having affairs without technically
having them! My son's father was prone to the same behavior.
Every once in a while, he would ''befriend'' a woman who would
become his constant companion until it petered out. I will tell
you that one of these occured while I was pregnant, and his
female ''friend'' got very nasty, and even once showed up at my
door with a tale about buying a video camera from my husband. A
few months later, when I was very pregnant, she started calling
me and threatening both my life, and my baby's life (too bad for
her that I'm a formidable opponent, and she quickly disappeared).
It was all very odd, given that he swore up and down that they
were just friends (and he did spend the night at home, so I
didn't really suspect anything).
Here's my point: Your husband is having affairs. He may not be
consummating them, but he is definitely having charged
relationships with other women. You don't know what these women
are like, nor how emotionally attached they may get to your
husband, and you don't know whether you will become inadverantly
involved, either by your own emotional reaction, or like, the
target of an irate woman who's love isn't being requited quite as
she would like.
It's not fair in any way, shape or form for him to shove this
back on you as if he's doing nothing wrong. He's being secretive,
your gut is telling you there's something not quite right about
these ''friendships'' and yet he's calling on you to question what
your instincts are telling you. He's probably rationalizaed his
actions by NOT having sex, if that is true. And it may well not be.
Of course you'd like to think that these intermittent attachments
are harmless and aren't affecting your marriage, but they are.
You know this, and have sought therapy for it. The problem,
however, is him, not you, and he is the one who needs to figure
out what the hell he is doing -- to you, to these other women,
and why he feels the need to do this. You may want to get him
into couples counseling, though I've never had any luck getting a
guilty male to do such a thing.
Ultimately, I left my husband becuase of this behavior. I wasn't
jealous, but it just didn't feel right. I hope you find a
solution that suits you, rather than allowing this manipulative
husband of yours to force you to accept uncomfortable situations
that are compromising you and your relationship with him.
After reading your post I had to write in. You are not being
unreasonable. I don't have a specific therapist to share but I
just want to make sure you understand that what your husband is
asking is not ok. If my husband wanted to have a relationship
with a woman that I did not know and he spent a lot of time with
this woman, whether in person or thru email I would be furious
and incredibly hurt. I think your husband is engaging in an
affair whether it's sexual or not. What he is doing is not
having friends outside the marriage - he's have an emotional
relationship that I think constitutes him cheating on you. If
he refuses to go to therapy I would look at whether you can stay
with him if he continues to have these affairs. I wish yo! u all
the best - I know this must be so difficult.
It sounds to me like you're being used. Sex or no sex, he's cheating you of the love
that you deserve, and he's using you to fall back on when the companions he deems
worthy of his love grow tired of him (or when he grows tired of them). I can't
imagine how your self-esteem could stay healthy in this situation. Must you stay in
a marriage with a serial cheater? I think you deserve a man who can give his love to
You Deserve Love
That sounds awful. Get counseling. Good luck.
I just discovered--for the second time in two months--that my
husband has been using the internet to meet other women.
Previous to this, at least to my knowledge, he was visiting
internet porn sites, so even if I was not okay with this, I
figured that he was basically doing this for some fantasy
outlet. However, these two recent discoveries involve an
ongoing email conversation with an ''old friend'', and to some
matchmaking site--my guess from his responses from this site is
that he was seeking in his preferences a woman in my same age
range (I am ten years younger than my husband), of my same
ethnicity, and in the local Bay Area. Ouch!
I haven't seen any emails my husband has written to
this ''friend,'' only an email she wrote back, which was quite
flirtatious (''thinking a lot about you'', and ''you're good
looking'', etc.) so I don't know the extent of their relationship
and although I know they see each other in casual situations
(the gym) I don't know if they had made an effort to see each
other in a ''date'' situation. By the way, my husband said he
deliberately left one of her emails to him open on his computer
screen so I would discover it.
I would have let this email incident go, since he assured me
that it was a misunderstanding on her side (although, I pointed
out to him, he did nothing to discourage it, or tell her that he
had a wife and two little kids), except that then I discovered
this internet match site thing. When I asked him about that, he
told me that it was unsolicited spam, based on some preference
card he filled out a long time ago just for fun. Well,
yesterday I found out that the internet site had made a charge
to his personal credit card less than a month ago, so his
activity on this site has been relatively recent!
My question is, is this sort of activity part of a ''normal''
fantasy life for a married man, or is this a pattern of behavior
that I should be concerned about? Right now I'm pretty mad that
he's lied to me about this, but I'm not sure if this will be the
deal-breaker to our marriage. I'm going to seek counseling if
he won't (I've suggested it to him in the past but he was
reluctant to go, rather saying that we should solve our own
Thanks for listening.
this is NOT normal. your husband is playing games. confront
and deal. the sooner the better.
Is this behavior normal for a married man?
Um, no. At least, it's not normal for a married man who's being
faithful to his wife.
He should not be lying to you or sneaking around. If he can't
stop, it's reasonable for you to evaluate whether your
relationship is going to work. Now, by ''lying,'' I don't mean, he
looks sheepish when you find his porn on the computer (*everyone*
looks sheepish when that happens.) I mean you consistently catch
him doing things he's agreed not to do.
My husband had a real problem with lying to me for the first
three years of our marriage -- I finally put my foot down and
said he could either clean up his act or I was out of there, but
I wasn't going to be lied to any more. To his credit, he
straightened himself out, and we now have a really good
relationship. It is possible. But you really have to be
convinced in your own heart that you don't deserve his dishonesty
any more before you can tell him to knock it off for good.
Good luck, and be strong -- you'll need it for yourself and your
Ouch! How painful! I've seen this a lot, and unfortunately,
learned the hard way myself. Your husband is cheating and lying
to you about it. Either literal and/or emotional infidelity. A
lot of women talk themselves out of the severity of it, or deny
it altogether, or just endlessly argue. As a result, the spouse
assumes there's little or no consequence for his behavior and he
can continue. Only when women face it squarely on, calling a
spade a spade, and appropriately assigning a significant and
impactful consequence, does it have any chance of stopping.
Without that, we're condoning and teaching men and/or our
partners to be disrespectful toward us, our relationship, and
even toward our children.
I'll bet you're going to get a lot of advice on this one! Since
I'm sure there is more involved than what you could put in your
post, my first advice would be to go to that counsellor to get
their perspective. That said, I'd be more than a little upset
about your situation! If he can't demonstrate, in no certain
terms, that this is an innocent situation (staying OFF the
internet.. introducing you to the woman at the gym), I'd really
consider thinking about getting serious - separation,
couselling, etc. Really tough situation.. good luck!
Both of you need to go to marriage counseling NOW.
Be forewarned: my opinions about this are very strong. Your
post seems very calm about all of this. I have been dealing
with a similar situation for the past three years. I am not
married, but we lived together. He was writing other women. He
slept with one that I know of. I finally moved out.
I was, and am, very hurt and angry. This has been happening in
varying degrees for three years, and I am not confident that it
will stop. He is now finally willing to go to counseling, but I
don't know that it will be worth it for us.
If I were you, I would try to get him into counseling so that he
can hear a third party relate to him how offensive and
disrespectful this is to you and to your children. This is
ABSOLUTELY unacceptable behavior. I can't tell you what to do,
but I've found that men who cheat and lie about it DON'T STOP.
Ever. I know that people cheat on each other, and that cheating
is a sign of other couple problems, and that some people stop.
From what I see, the people who stop cheating fess up when they
get caught. Men who deny, deny, deny, then try to make you feel
like YOU misunderstood and that EVERYTHING is innocent on his
behalf, and that THE OTHER WOMEN misunderstood his innocent
phrases are, in my opinion, the ones who will never reform on
their own without third-party interaction. They need to hear
from other people that they are wrong, and they need to believe
they are wrong before they change. It sounds to me like your
husband doesn't think he's doing anything wrong.
I chose the man I've been with because I was convinced he'd
never do this, but I was wrong. I'm now trying to resolve why I
choose men who cheat. I'm looking for a therapist now. Your
husband will not change until he understands why he needs so
much female attention and he deals with it. It sounds to me
like it has nothing to do with you, but I think he will continue
to lie to you, like my man did/does, because he is too selfish
to understand how damaging this behavior can be to his family.
EVERY SINGLE TIME I've discovered that he's done this, I
IMMEDIATELY wrote the other women to tell them he was involved
with me and that we have a child, and I cc'd every email to
him. I've NEVER been cruel to the women because they were
always lied to about our situation (he always said we were
broken up and he was single, which was not true). They
generally have written me back to tell me what he said, and have
advised me to drop him because they believe he's scum. They
call him and curse him out or write him to leave them alone and
THEY tell him he's a bastard. I believe that these women have
helped him understand how damaging his behavior is. He no
longer says I'm crazy, and he acknowledges that HE has a
problem. He wanted what was happening to be a big secret adn
told me, like your husband, that our problems should be solved
by us ONLY, but I FORWARDED HIS MESSAGES TO HIS PARENTS and to
ALL of his female friends. I was not going to sit and be
dignified and just take it. Until I started confronting him and
the other women, he always believed he was doing NOTHING wrong.
I don't care what people think of me about being indiscreet. He
fucked up, and everybody finding out was the consequence. He
now has no confidants to run to who view me as the evil
girlfriend. He was demonizing me to his friends so that he
could justify his behavior, and now they at least ACT like they
respect me. They now know I'm a real person, not someone evil
woman who is ruining his life, which is a great way to get
sympathy from people to justify your hitting on other women.
This worked for me, but you do what you feel comfortable with.
Your problem won't go away. If he REALLY loves you, he will go
to counseling to save your marraige. If he doesn't go to
counseling, you can stay and accept that he's this way, or you
can leave him if you can't take it. I couldn't accept it, so I
left. He's still trying to get me back, but I'm trying to
figure out if it is worth it to me to go through couseling to
save us. Good luck. I feel for you.
Everyone else will no doubt tell you this too: Your husband
is not fantasizing but actively seeking (and perhaps seeing)
other women and lying to you about it on a continuing basis.
Whatever ''normal'' is -- cheating and lying make intimacy
with you impossible. Unless he undertakes a serious,
honest and life encompassing effort to change, these
behaviors are all but certain to continue. You can't make
him change, but you can focus on yourself and how you are
going to take care of yourself now that this awful truth is out.
It sounds like you're in a bit of denial, and who can blame
you? Posting your problem and reading responses is a
great first step. Good luck.
Well, in short - No, I don't think this is normal behavior and
even if one were to say it's ''normal'' - it really depends on how
YOU feel about it, right? The fact that his credit card has had
recent activity means that he is actively participating, not
that someone solicited him or SPAM.
He may be acting out fantasies or acting on frustrations he's
had. It obviously seems as if you two need to have a heart to
heart. Anyway, straying from a relationship is not usually what
breaks up the relationship - usually, it's the things that lead
up to straying that breaks it up. So, I'd address those issues.
It seems like it's time for counceling for you and your husband.
What he's doing, of course, is not ''normal'' in the sense of
being OK. It may be normal in the sense that he seems to be
unhappy (or more likely unfulfilled) in your current relationship
and is fishing for something outside (attention, praise,
excitement, etc.) He probably thinks that as long as he doesn't
have sexual relations with another woman what he's doing is OK,
and doesn't realize that he is putting your relationship, his
family and everything he holds dear in jeopardy.
I don't really have much advise for you. I went through
something similar with my husband - and even though we went to
counceling, he just wasn't ready to accept that the world did not
revolve around him and his needs until it was too late. Maybe a
better councelor would have helped.
Marriages are ideally supposed to built on trust and your
husband is not being honest with you about his 'internet night
life.' Your concerns are valid, and you are wise to get some
counseling. By going to the Match-making site it seems that
he's taken the next step from porn surfer which most men
probably do, to active seeker? good luck
You ask if your husband's behavior is normal for a married
man... I can't speak for all marriages, but can give you an
example of one for comparison. I know that my husband checks
out the porn websites from time to time. The way I see it, it's
the modern version of Playboy, Penthouse, etc and I don't mind.
BUT, I would have a VERY big problem if he were contacting women
over the internet! That comes very close to cheating in my
i think this whole new world of internet relationships is just
such a bad bag of worms! my sister's fiance was having a cyber
sex relationship which she found out about and they almost broke
up too. i think the lame part is that because it is a new
territory the rules are not as defined as definitely wrong or
definitely cheating so some people are doing things hoping it's
anyhow, my feeling is that if your partner/husband is doing
something that violates your sense of security in the
relationship than it is wrong. if he ''wanted'' to get caught he
is throwing out a big blazing red flag - cry for help of some
sort or is not brave enough to confront how he really feels with
your relationship. i know a LOT of people who would rather get
caught cheating to break up than are brave enough to break up or
deal with real relationship conflict - for some reason it is
easier. i'm not saying he wants to break up but maybe doesn't
know how to address the problems or express what he wants
effectively and is being selfish and immature.
because you have a family i think it makes confronting things
like this so much more volatile - but don't let that be an
excuse to let things go too easily as well! i wish you lots of
luck in dealing with this! at the least i would express that
this definitely is not ok with you and what boundaries you are
I think you are amazingly calm and that you have handled things
in a very trusting, non-accusatorily way. He on the other hand,
does not seem to have reciprocated with honesty. If he lied
about the site being free or spam mail, it is very hard to
believe anything else. I encourage your instincts to get
counseling. It is very hard to handle the feelings of
disappointment, frustration and betrayal that arise from
catching your spouse in dishonesty. Firming up your own
foundation, knowing what you can and cannot do in support of
your marriage will add to your confidence and resolution no
matter how things work out. I wish you the best.
Yes, you should be very concerned. No, it probably won't be a
deal breaker to your marriage if you guys can move through this
period. Your situation sounds almost exactly like one my
husband and I went through about two years into our marriage.
He was looking at match services (though not writing to any of
the women) and writing to an ex-girlfriend (who thankfully was a
few states away) in a bit more than flirtatious matter...okay,
it was pretty graphic. I found the e-mails and leveled with
him. I told him that if he wanted to leave (mind you there was
plenty of sobbing on my part) then I would let him
go...yadda.yadda. In the end, we spent a week having the most
frank conversations of our relationship -- found out what each
wasn't giving the other. The result of this episode is that we
are now great communicators and more in love than ever before
(just had a baby).
I have always believed that infidelity, in most cases, is the
result of things that both people in the formerly monogomous
relationship did (does that make sense). I guess that I am
saying that if my husband cheats, it isn't all him -- it is
actually us. He isn't 'that sort' to cheat so things must be
pretty bad with us for him to do it. I am not saying that it is
the right thing for him to do or justified, but I won't be able
to say that I would be perfectly blameless. At that point, we
would have to figure out whether or not the relationship is
I don't think that your husband is there yet, just as mine
wasn't. But, he could be headed down that path. You two need to
have a 'come to Jesus' to figure out what your problems are and
figure out what you need to do to solve it. And realize that
going to therapy is not for everyone. But, if you guys really
want to figure out what is going on, then you can without
bringing in a third party.
It sounds as though you don't trust your husband, and your
husband is pretty busy giving you more and more reason
not to trust him. I think getting counseling on your own is a
terrific idea but it would be better if you went as a couple.
You can point out to your husband that he is making it pretty
difficult to sort out your problems on your own- that would
call for a little more honesty and self-discipline on his part.
Sure, men like pornography- look how rich the porn
publishers are! Guess who spends the $$$ to look at it!
That isnt the real issue. The real issue is that he is going
beyond looking at tittillating iimages, and damaging his
marriage with lies and flirtations. Now, for all I know, he
may legitimately feel his needs are not being met in your
marriage- two little kids can do a lot to sap the romance out
of an evening- but the only way out of that one is honest
communication and the willlingness to try to change things,
not some half-assed pathetic passive aggressive attempt
at communication like leaving a provocative internet
message open so you are sure to see it and get upset!!
Counseling takes time and isn't very fun, but it is cheaper
than divorce and child support payments.
It doesn't sound like this is a harmless situation to me at all.
If your husband is lying to you about what he is doing on-line
and in-person then there is a problem. I must confess that I may
be biased, your message rang a chord in me beacuse just two
years ago I found suspicious websites on our computer and after
searching the saved files discoverd that my husband had for
years been frequenting some increasingly graphic porn sites. In
horror I confronted him and he admitted to the problem and
decided to change. (I was pretty clear that he had run out of
second chances since this wasn't the first big lie that had come
between us.) After some searching of the net we found sexaholics
annonymous (I am not sure of the exact name) and then he entered
therapy. We actually found a great therapist Dr. Charles King
who has his office on the corner of Ashby and Shattuck. He
specializes in men with sex addictions. My husband's therapy has
been very successful and has led to some big changes in our
relationship including better, more honest, communication. If
you want to read up on sex addiction the best book I have read
is by an author named Phillip Carnes (I think that is all
spelled correctly.) Some of the books on this subject are not
good because they are very moralistic and preachy, but his books
are very good. There is hope... if he is willing to work for
your husband is not only being dishonest with you, but with
himself. no, this is not normal behavior in a marriage. it is
very difficult to deal with a problem when one of the parties
can't even admit that what they are doing is wrong. i think
you should insist on counseling to work it out one way or the
other. it all will depend on what you are willing to accept or
not accept in you marriage unless he realizes that what he is
doing is hurting you and your marriage and makes a change.
Your husband is indulging in lying, addiction (yes, one can be
addicted to the whole endeavor of flirting with and finding
people on the Internet), and seems to have a problem with real
intimacy. If that were not enough, your husband may or may not
be committing adultery. (And what of other lies that you haven't
Do you want to be married to this person whom you have painted as
not being anywhere near accountability and/or contrition (or
healing) regarding his behavior? It doesn't really matter what
other woman would do in your situation; it matters what you would
do, and, of course, you need to consider the needs of your
children; on one hand having a liar (and possible adulterer)
living in their midst. On the other hand, living without their
parents together on a daily basis may be more problematic.
I wish you luck; the situation is both frighten
Better cynical than fooled
From experience, I broke up with a man who I was dating for a
long time when he repeatedly (2 or 3 times)said he'd stop this
activity and didn't. It was the best thing I ever did. If there
are no children, I'd leave a husband for this in no time flat!
Iím single, and have done some dating through personal ads. A man
answered an ad of mine and we decided to meet. He told me he was
separated from his wife with a divorce pending, no chance of
reconciliation. In our correspondence he told me about some of
his past dating experience. I was just looking for some fun sexy
dating, not a long-term relationship, and his tales, some of them
pretty racy, didnít shock me.
When we met, we wound up sitting in his car talking and I began
to figure out that in fact he was still married and not even
separated. He told me more about his personal ad experiences,
many of which were during his marriage, and some of them were
really out there- real acting out fantasy, semi-dangerous stuff.
He blamed his wifeís lack of interest in sex!
He was by appearance your average, mild-mannered, upper-middle
class, professionally employed guy, and no one knew he had this
shadow side. His wife had once found some porn he had downloaded
in the trash, and one time asked him about a charge on the credit
card to one of those personals phone lines- he brushed both off
with some excuse that he thought she had bought. He was eager to
talk and confide in me, and I saw just what a sick puppy he was,
and seriously jeopardizing his marriage (2 young kids). He was in
complete denial about the seriousness of his actions and delusions.
I let him have it regarding his behaviour and told him to call
Sex Addicts Anonymous and start going to meetings. His kind of
behaviour is an addiction, and the kind of isolation and denial
he was in with it is typical of addiction. I followed up with one
email giving him the phone number to call for SAA, and pointing
out again that he was really in trouble and needed help, and
told him that I was not interested in being his further
confidante. He wrote back, thanked me, and said that he had
gotten the SAA meeting schedule.
I hope I made a dent in his denial and think that this guy was
lucky to meet me. There is a huge gap between looking at porn,
and telling women that youíre single and available to date and
lying to your partner. My experience demonstrates that some
ordinary people cheat do on their mate and that they often drop
clues, maybe unconsciously.
Donít ignore the evidence, trust your intuition, and take good
care of yourself!
Not a Home-Wrecker
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