Married Issues (sex, love, shame, porn)

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  • Updated 3 years ago
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I have been troubled by something lately.
Background: in college I became crazy addicted to porn and though the frequency reduced when I married my wife, the desire and act of looking at porn still exists. My now wife/then 1st girlfriend started having sex, then we stopped having intercourse (motivated by the death of her mother) until 1 week before we were married (2 years). This happens to my everlasting regret.

We have been married for 3 years now and the topic of sex now incites emotional distress for me because I feel guilty for wanting it and my wife becomes angry and shuts down when I mention it. Since we have been married we have had what I would call passionate sex once. My wife is very introverted and tells me frequently to stop showing her touch affection of any kind. She wants me to exist at arms length at all times. No cuddling, no passion!
She also said that she does not enjoy having sex and feels that it is only for reproduction. She is very fearful of getting pregnant even though the six times we have had sex in 2016 we used a condom and she is on the pill.
I frequently offer and give massages, I cook and do the dishes, laundry and nothing seems to work. I write her letters and buy flowers and she shames me for buying something that will be thrown out. I wrote her a songs and she asked why I spent time frugally. The fact is she doesn't seem to be open to having an emotional or physical relationship with me.

Barring the previous topic, our intellectual and cordial relationship is splendid.

Yes, I want sex, but more than that I want to feel close to her. I love her so much and I want a full emotional, physical and intellectual relationship with her.
I brought up my desire to have sex (more frequently) with her and she responded by saying that I did not care about her feelings. She states that because I want sex and she doesn't , me still wanting it means that I am asking her to "suck it up" and do it anyway. She said that I view it as her problem.

I have asked her to go to counseling with me and she refused. She did allow me to have sex with her but she did so turned away and it felt cold almost as if I was forcing her to be my slave or something. I did not enjoy it and I do not want this to be this way. I want her to know I love her and to reciprocate these feeling through sex and touch and ect.
Originally I thought this was a season and it will pass, but it has been 3 years. Divorce is not an option, I love her and I will live on without sex if need be. I have prayed aloud many times on this, but I have no person in my life that I can safely talk to about this stuff. I know Jesus is enough for me.
I have bounced back to looking at porn and have even been sidetracked by the chat sites designed to snare porn watchers. Facebook seems to trigger me so I have unfollowed all provocative posts. I feel myself slipping away from what I know God wants for my marriage. With every sex scene in a movie we watch or every tight yoga pants women I see I find myself mentally sliping over and over again.

Sorry for the rant, I just need to tell someone! (Thoughts?)
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Posted 3 years ago

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Samantha, Alum

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Hi John, 
    Thanks for the post! First of all, never apologize for being honest. If there is one thing that we understand at Covenant Eyes, it's that total transparency is paramount to recovery, and to maintaining integrity in all situations.  Our Educational Resource Manager saw your post and wanted to respond, but doesn't have access to this forum. I hope you find his message helpful:

"Hello, John
 I'm so sorry to hear about your situation. There seems to be an opportunity for both of you to increase your love and commitment to each other in the one-flesh union. Selfless marriage looks out for the emotional, relational, physical, and spiritual needs of the other. Sex was ordained by God and constitutes the first command given to Adam and Eve. There's something causing your wife to react the way she is. But, she must choose to get better. In the meantime, what can you do to create walls of protection around your life? Can you go to counseling alone? Do you have accountability in your life? Can you volunteer in some meaningful way so that your spirit is being filled? Can you take up some hobby? If this very important part of your marriage is not going to be satisfied by her, then I think it's appropriate for you to try and fill that void in other God-honoring ways. 


Peace, Chris"


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Tom Borden

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Hi John:
I'd like to echo what Chris said above. I believe God wants us to be happy. And, it doesn't sound like you are. 
As her husband, you want the best for her. Good for suggesting counseling, and I think counseling for yourself is a good idea too. My wife had a therapist for herself only and she delt with some sexual issues stemming from her childhood in that way. 
Perhaps leaving out a dear abby column (you can go online and download specific topics) would be helpful. Then it is not coming from you.

Blessings and Kudos on your journey,