Husband Only Believes Women are at Their Prime at 20

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2002
Husband Only Believes Women are at Their Prime at 20
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Sun, 04-20-2014 - 2:48pm

I've learned to lived with my husband's love of porn; however, lately, it seems like it's gone from normal (healthy) looking to looking at it whenever he gets the chance. He has lied to me considerably about a lot of things and our therapist said that because he's "lying less," it means he's making progress. (On a side note, I don't agree with her.)

Yesterday, I found out the depths of his porn watching when we were going to stream a show. Not only was every site a porn site, but it was all porn related to 20 year-olds; twentysomethings in threesomes; etc.

I was very upset; he basically comes home and instead of holding-up his side of things (to help with the house), he's been watching porn. I work a very tough corporate job and sometimes I work until 6; it turns out that's what he does when he gets home. As soon as I get home, he expects me to make me dinner and on the nights he's supposed to cook, he says he bought the stuff, isn't that enough?

When I discovered just how deep-seated his reliance on porn was, I asked him if he talked to the therapist about it and how it's affected our relationship. He said he told her that he feels women's bodies are at their prime at 20 then it's all downhill from there and he can't nor he won't change his mind about it. I told him that we've both put on weight since we met and we've only been married six months and that his expectations are wrong; I know many people in better shape than 20 year-olds and relying on porn as a gauge of what's reality is just...wrong.

I don't know what to do. I feel that every time we have sex, it's not me he's thinking of - and I've told him that. He also can't maintain an erection in positions other than missionary or from behind. Any other time, he struggles to maintain an erection. He doesn't like receiving oral sex - and I've been told (in the past), I was very good at it. I cannot get him to ejaculate with my hands because I feel he's so used to masturbating to porn (even when I ask what he likes), he cannot achieve whatever is inside him brain that lets him do it when I'm not there. He's also a functioning alcoholic, so his memory is shot (as confirmed by his physician), so any recollection of our previous conversations is gone.

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iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010

You've only been married six months but you've already accepted his porn addiction so it seems like you knew about his problems before you married him? He must have some really wonderful traits because you married him anyway, what  are those good qualities? In what ways does he show that he cares about you, that your feelings and needs are important to him?

His belief that women are at their physical prime at 20 is skewed by his objectification of women from the porn. It may be true in the sense that their skin is at its most taut etc but obviously it says nothing about their character development etc, the things that make someone a person and not just an object.

The negative things you mentioned, combined, would be a deal breaker for me. A lot seems to center around his self-gratification. He's addicted to alcohol and to porn, to the point that there are sexual problems because of it; he doesn't keep up his share of home duties which of course causes more resentment and relationship problems; and he's a liar. After 6 months of marriage the relationship requires therapy. And you are probably correct that he needs to fantasize about an air-brushed image when he is with you.

I don't know why you married him but I would say to cut your losses and get out now. His problems sound very deep seated and will take a long time to overcome---which can't start until he wants to change and is willing to do the hard work required. If you are determined to stay married to him, then what are you asking for here?

Avatar for wClarity
Community Leader
Registered: 11-04-2012

I can totally related to the high functioning alcoholic who didn't remember squat because he drank to black-out mode.

I recently left a 10-year relationship with a HF alcoholic.  I left him and all my friends behind where I grew up and moved south because I could not afford to rent an apt. in Mass.  Our relationship deteriorated because I no longer wanted to even bother conversing with him because he wasn't 'present'.  They say that once the sex wanes, as long as you have a friend and good conversation, you'll be good. That was not going to apply to our relationship, he wasn't willing to change, so I changed.  

Unless HE is willing to get sober...and that doesn't mean just putting down the drink...there's a lot more to it than just that to make for real change and to get healthy...nothing will change for him or for you.  Alcoholism is a progressive disease and will only get worse unless he does.  

I'm sorry you hitched your wagon to a known alcoholic and now porn addict...it's a lose lose for you.  

Gather your strength...gather your financial resources...gather your belongings and get out while you can.

Good luck

Clarity

Community Leader,

Ending an Affair Support Board

iVillage Member
Registered: 07-05-2002

I knew mainly about his anxiety and how his anxiety (through the years) prevented him from having relationships with women. For example, in his past (before dates), he would vomit out of sheer anxiety. A lot of things make him ill. We were engaged for a year before we were married and about five months into the engagement, we sought the help of a therapist to help him with his anxiety but also help me understand, if not cope, with his illness.

What I want to also know (besides some advice) is to validate that what I feel is not wrong; women are beautiful at any age and I wanted to know if I'm somehow overthinking this - because he says I have no empathy whatsoever (about his issues) and that he has his therapist thinking that I have Asperger's - the latter is based on some basic characterists anyone can have (running late; having an exceptional memory; etc.). I've called him on looking at younger girls (seniors, college-aged girls, as we live in a university area), but he completely denies it.

At this point, I feel like I'm being paranoid...

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010

Women are beautiful at any age: of course they are! Some women become more beautiful as they get older. And beauty is not only about the arrangement of facial features or physical proportions. A person's character, spirit, confidence, kindness, all of those things contribute to a person's beauty. A woman's smile from inside may make her eyes sparkle and light up an otherwise unremarkable face. And many of us have seen someone who has the features to be considered beautiful but because of a mean disposition those features never soften into real beauty.

Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. A mature man could find a woman of any age to be beautiful whereas an immature boy/man might only consider a young woman who looked like a Barbie doll or Playboy bunny to be attractive. Think of younger men who are attracted to so-called "cougar" older women. And middle aged men who want a trophy wife who looks like a cosmetic surgeon's project. The list goes on. Your husband has a very narrow (and I'd say warped) view of female "beauty" whereas you probably have a much broader and realistic view of it so you and he will never agree on this. Don't allow his opinions to make you doubt your own.

I don't understand the part about you not having empathy....how are you supposed to feel? If he represented himself as having only an anxiety problem and hid from you the addictions to porn and alcohol, then you would be justified in being angry for feeling  cheated and lied to. Those are huge issues to try to deal with in a spouse. I wonder if he has empathy for what you are going through? And looking at other women of any age while he is out with you is disrespectful to you. You didn't say how far past 20 you are but his comment about 20 year olds is a mean jab at you. If there is not emotional abuse going on already, I suspect that there will be eventually. Its interesting how he's trying to shift the issues onto you--that you must have Asperger's, WTF?---and deflect the focus from his numerous problems.

I reiterate what I said before, get out now. This situation is too messed up for such a young marriage, he should not have married anybody while he has so many unresolved problems. They are way too big for you to fix, to be fixed by the love of a good woman, etc. Also, if you don't have confidence in the therapist then she's not going to be able to help you.

iVillage Member
Registered: 11-28-1999

You could say generally that younger women are more attractive in that they don't have wrinkles or gray hair to worry about--you can't say every 20 yr old woman has a better body since there are out of shape young women and very in shape older women.  Just the thought process, though, that would allow him to say that after 20 women are all going downhill is just crazy.  I mean you could say the same about men--young men are generally in much better shape than older men and you don't have to worry about baldness or ED too--but as a middle aged woman, I can appreciate young men but I also wouldn't want to date a guy who is as young as my kids.  I wouldn't tell a middle aged man I was dating that I only thought young men were sexy because it would devalue him as a person, which is what he is doing to you--even if you are only in your 20's now, he's basically telling you that you will become less attractive to him with each passing year--how is that supposed to make you feel?

Not to mention that he's lazy--he won't cook for you and if you are getting home later from work than he does, why isn't he making dinner all the time so that dinner will be ready when you come home?  Instead he thinks it's better to watch porn in his free time and when you come in exhausted from work, his response is "what's for dinner?" not "you look tired, let me make you dinner."  Plus you have anxiety and alcohol problems too.  It's a lot to deal with and since you just got married, maybe you should reconsider.  Exactly what makes you want to stay with him, because you haven't really said anything positive.

Avatar for wClarity
Community Leader
Registered: 11-04-2012

What you are feeling is not wrong.  

Community Leader,

Ending an Affair Support Board

Community Leader
Registered: 08-25-2006

I scanned the thread and all I can add is this: If he really is an alcoholic, nothing else either of you try is going to work unless his alcoholisim is addressed.  

I could go on and on with these topics, but that is my short answer.  Get to alanon and if he is willing to admit the alcohol and porn is a problem (but to be honest, I am not sure where that line is with porn as men are very visual)  and he is willing to get some help, then by all means follow through and see what happens.  Like another poster said, he must have some positive qualities or you wouldn't have married him.  

Good luck and I hope you stick around and keep us posted!

Serenity CL making a marriage work

Serenity
iVillage Member
Registered: 09-29-2010

Regarding the comment about getting him to admit if porn is a problem: "I am not sure where that line is with porn as men are very visual".

Any behavior becomes a problem when someone is so compelled to do it that they regularly indulge in it instead of doing things they are supposed to do. If the agreement was that he will make dinner or do housework when he gets home from work, and instead he spends the time viewing porn, then its a problem. In addition the porn is a problem because its affecting the way that he responds sexually with his wife. And she's bothered by it even though she's trying to be accepting of it. That he has some degrading ideas about women may be from the porn or maybe from some other issue.

I agree that men are visual, but not all men view porn, and most of those that do view it keep it at a level where it doesn't affect their relationships and daily life. This man seems to be out of that range, possibly unable to control himself. Like a drug or alcohol addiction, he's probably not going to be able to to do it on an occasional basis. It would have to be out of his life completely.

Community Leader
Registered: 08-25-2006

Red, I totally agree regarding addiction.  I just throw that out the way I did because knowing that men are visual, I didn't want to throw the baby out with the bath water.  Sex addicts still have sex, food addicts still eat, etc. etc.  

So I think it will depend what a professional says on that count.  Another poster on another board had a SO that may or may not have been addicted, but she had zero tollerance.  So I tread lightly on that topic.  

Not that I like to see people have issues, but I am glad the board is picking up a bit.  :)

Serenity

Serenity
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-25-2013

Read some articles on men addicted to porn. It's pretty scary. I read something like it actually changes the neurons in their brain. Porn becomes their default turn on, and a real life human being stops doing it for them. It seems true, since I often read about women complaining their husbands won't have regular sex with them and would rather view porn.

The secret to a happy marriage is to marry someone you don't want to change. He has the right to be who he is--an alcoholic porn addicted liar who is verbally and emotionally abusive to you. You shouldn't have married him if you weren't happy with him exactly as he is. If he changes to please you, he'll wind up resenting you because it didn't come from his own wants. 

It's time to take a good, long look at yourself and ask why you think this is the person you deserve for your one precious life. I think you probably have self esteem problems, since you chose and stay with a man who doesn't treat you like you should be treated. An emotionally mature man who loves you showers you with affection, compliments, respect, and can't wait to show in bed how much he treasure you. You need validation that his views are false. Why? How will this change anything? So you can tell him other people say he's wrong and then he'll all of a sudden see how wrong he was and start desiring you alone?

When he blames you for everything, it means he's not at a place for wanting to change. That means he'll only be more sneaky about things to prevent you from knowing what he's doing.

My advice? Get an anullment. Get some therapy to improve your self esteem, or at least read some books on how to do this, so you never choose a man who is not worthy of you. Do not date again until you mourn this relationship and then get to a place where you feel good about yourself. Then, make a must haves list and a dealbreaker list for potential dates. If you find a dealbreaker, cut off the man immediately. The dealbreakers should include addictions to gambling, alcohol, narcotic porn. Physically or mentally abusive. Financially unstable. Low work ethic. Must haves should be high work ethic, financially stable, kind, respectful, sexy, affectionate. Good luck and let us know how it goes.

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