PMO has 17 year marriage in trouble

Discussion in 'Rebooting in a Relationship' started by idiot husband, Jun 5, 2019.

  1. idiot husband

    idiot husband Fapstronaut

    So, Monday a week ago my wife of 17 years dropped a bomb on me. She told me that she is not happy to the point of being miserable, and has the feeling that we need to really think about divorce. She and I seemed to be happy, although my ED has caused major intimacy problems during sex for 10 years or so. I have not been able to maintain an erection to finish sex with her for nearly that long. Or, I would not be able to O without using my hand after we had sex for a while. I would have to pull out and finish myself. This caused lots of self confidence issues for her and me in the long run. It got worse over time. Eventually, I didn't even want to ask about sex because I worried about my performance. Which led to constant PA. As I think back on events leading up to all of this, I keep going back to the times when our sex life was good and I would ask and she would not be in the mood. After our first child, she was not interested for long periods of time, 4, 5, 6 months. I began to use PMO to relieve my horny bug. Never really thought about it being a problem. Then after our second child, the issues really began to occur. She seemed to be in the mood more and more, and I was slowly but surely having more issues. I didn't recognize that the more she wanted and the less I could deliver was causing her to be unhappy. Then life starts getting in the way, and little things start to go away. Not as many hugs, holding hands, passionate kisses. We get to a little peck before work and after, and before bed. We try sex more with the same result, which I can see is really beginning to affect her. She visibly cries in front of me after a date night, where I bought her lingerie (and she looked amazing in it). We tried to have sex that night and I failed. I went to a urologist, he said I was normal, prescribed the blue pill. I tried the pill, it helped some but not enough. So, we have come to present day and she is miserable. And, tells me how bad it is for her, and how close the marriage is to the end. I am not ready to give up on us, but it is a 2 way street and her street is basically closed. As I have began my research on what my issue is, I have come across PIED. It is my symptoms to a T. I never thought I had a problem with porn or an addiction. But, as I look back on our relationship I begin to realize that I was as much to blame for not being in the mood. I would be horny, and rather than ask her for sex I would PMO. it was easier than taking the chance on rejection. I am now 6 days in to my reboot. I am trying to find the right time to talk to her about it. Well, just got awful news. I have noticed her hiding her phone from me constantly, and I couldn't help myself. She left it by the bed while she went down to do laundry and I picked it up to look at it. There was a message notification from a guy that has popped up recently all over her Facebook. I had asked her about him the other day and she blew it off as a friend of her brothers from high school 25 years ago. Well on her phone screen was a text notification from the guy. So, she is not being honest with me. I couldn't help looking. I wish I hadn't. I asked her about it, and she was mad (rightfully so) that I looked at her phone. She said they have just reconnected recently and been texting and Facebook messaging. Nothing is going on according to her. But, it is hard not to think something is up. I am trying like all hell to not break down and PMO from this stress but I know I need to reboot for recovery. I am sorry for rambling, but I need an outlet and am not sure where else to turn right now. I am devastated and disgusted with my self.
  2. Bobske

    Bobske Fapstronaut

    Good luck my friend. You seem to have reached a bad place.

    My advice, set her down for a long, long talk. Really take the time for it.
    Reconnect. Read up on this addiction and tell her about her. Make clear its not about her, its your fault, its an addiction, take the blame. Ask for her help. Be 100% honest.
    Tell her you love her, always have, always will right?! Really tell her, the everyday things she does and you respect

    Help each other find that love and being in love again and make it make you feel secure and strong.
    Do not let life get in the way.
    And focus on yourself, admit guilt, don't make it about her.
    But if she talks
    Really listen to her if she talks. No solutions, no judging or anger or resentment.
    And focus on being there for her. You're a man, so talk about your feeling, don't whine.

    I'm being a bit strict and harsh but that's because I really feel for you and am afraid you have reached the end of the line. Start blogging, and make her your accountablity partner. Anything put here, she can read, 100% honesty and trust. So no looking at phones anymore.

    You might still lose her. But that is what opening up and this is all about, running away from the fear of rejection.
    Best of Luck!
  3. krdt

    krdt Fapstronaut

    There are many who have been in your position and managed to turn it all around for the better. There is quite a few journals from woman who's partner is like you and things have improved dramatically

    In any case you must STOP porn.
  4. I'm an SO. That can relate to your story of your wife some.

    Not trying to sound mean or be a downer here but...chances are high your wife is getting her emotional needs met by the other man. And leaning towards physical needs here soon.

    We can only take so much.

    I know because I am a recovered addict as well. I did what your wife did (more or less my issue was roleplaying and talking to other men). It doesnt make it right, but it ends up happening.

    I've been sober for about 10 years while my husband kept on doing his thing(s).

    We have 4 kids and truthfully the past few years I was literally counting down the years until our youngest was 18 then planned to leave him.

    As of today he has been PM free for well over 100 days. His ED has just about disappeared. And we actually talk, laugh, and the divorce thoughts are not ones I have now.

    We have bad days. Really bad days. But our good days are awesome. And as long as hes honest and open and working on recovery, I'm here to stay.

    I highly suggest you talk to her. It'll be hard and emotional. But she needs to see that side of you.

    It can go good or bad. But she, and you, deserve to be completely honest with each other for each other to heal.

    My husband is @Mourde if you'd like to talk to him.

    I wish you nothing but the best in your recovery and marriage and send prayers to you both :)
  5. Mourde

    Mourde Fapstronaut

    Like everyone has posted so far it's time to sit her down and open up! It's the best and hardest thing to do,like @SOofanaddict who is my wife said we went through alot of what you are going through now. If you truly love her and want to make things right,its time to sit her down and see where she stands and start recovering yourself and your marriage if she wishes to save it! My wife has told me a lot of times we were over and she was done but we kept fighting for each other so there is always hope. Good luck and there is always support here! And if you need you can message me any time like my wife has stated!
  6. IamOlive

    IamOlive Fapstronaut

    Hi, I’m the SO of @MisterDirection who hangs around these parts working on his recovery.

    I’m not sure the best way for you to have a disclosure with your wife. I didn’t have that. I knew our entire 19 years of marriage of my husbands P and M useage. I didn’t realize to what extent it was directly affecting me and him for that matter. I’m sure others can give some tips.

    Your wife is in betrayal trauma. Probably...She thinks she is crazy. She thinks she is unloved. She thinks she is an object. She thinks it’s her fault. She thinks she is unattractive. She is alone.

    I do know when you do disclosure to her you need to set aside your shame and guilt for a moment and sit in her pain and hurt. Listen to her. Don’t make excuses or try to justify. Let her feel all the feelings.

    If you are 100% committed to saving your marriage, show her. Talk is just talk. You have to do the work.

    Have patience and don’t expect her to trust you immediately. It’s been years, it’s going to take awhile for both of you to heal.

    Come to terms there will be really crappy days. Days where you will spiral and question everything you are doing. Days where she will cry all day. It sucks but part of the process.

    Wake up each day committed to keep trying. It may feel like she is not supportive or questioning your mortives, she is just waiting. Waiting and praying that you are for real.

    You can do this! One day at a time. Keep talking. Keep listening. Keeping working. Keep loving her.
  7. fadedfidelity

    fadedfidelity Fapstronaut

    I agree with everyone that said you need to have a long sit down face to face and tell her what has been going on with you. Be gentle, talk softly, own up, and show regret.
    Words will mean nothing to her after this, the betrayal and lies will make her not want anything to do with you for a time. She will be angry and hurt, and rightfully so. You will have to SHOW her you are sorry and are willing to do whatever it takes to make her feel safe and earn her trust back.
    Also know that it may be too late. You have to be willing to let her go if she says she is completely done and doesn't want to wait months or years to try to fix things. Wives can only take so much and then we will put up a wall to cut off emotional attachment to stop the hurt.

    IF she is willing to work on your marriage you will need to make big changes, which include:
    1. Get web filter/porn blocker on every electronic device and STOP LOOKING AT PORN.
    3. Get an accountability partner
    ***(NOT HER! Do not make your wife you accountability partner, it hurts us more to have to check on your computer and see more slip ups, plus we do not want to be used as a mother/babysitter watching your every move! It is not healthy. You must have another man be your accountability partner.)
    4. See a sex addiction therapist
    5. Do not feel sorry for yourself and mope. This will lead to the circle of shame. Man up. Replace the PMO habit of coping with sadness/rejection/stress with new, healthier habits like exercise, lifting weights, projects around the house. She will see this as a HUGE improvement and it will make you feel better too!
    6. Read books, blogs, and join websites like NoFap, Feedtherightwolf, the Mindful Habit online, Reboot Nation.
    7. Practice gratitude. Tell your wife/family daily what you appreciate about her/them. "Thank you for being a great mother to our kids."

    Of course, this list is not going to be the same list your wife may need. You and her will need to talk about it and come up with your own boundries and consequences list. But #1 and #2 are essential.

    I wish you the best and hope your marriage can be repaired. Just know even if you lose your wife, you will carry the bad habits to any new relationship if you don't fix you. You sound like a good guy and I hope it works out for you.
  8. HFR 2.0

    HFR 2.0 Fapstronaut

    @idiot husband - I would like to invite you into the Married With Children Accountability Group, if you are interested. We are doing a live discord chat tonight at 7pm ET as well, if you'd like. @fadedfidelity summed up what I'm doing, and so far it's been working very well! I can't promise that the same plan will work for everyone, but I want to come along side anyone who needs support. If you're interested, either jump on the chat tonight, or post in the group forum (link above), or just PM me. I'd love to support you in any way I can. Take care!
    justapadawan and fadedfidelity like this.
  9. idiot husband

    idiot husband Fapstronaut

    Thank you for the support. It means alot to know I am not alone, and see others who have been through the struggles as a couple.
  10. idiot husband

    idiot husband Fapstronaut

    Thank you for the support. #1 and #2 are already in place. I have a web filter installed on my phone and computer. I am struggling with #5 at the moment. I have been doing the exercise and projects around the house, but the shame, guilt, and hurt feel like a vacuum inside my chest. My hands tingle all of the time, and I can't eat or sleep.
    justapadawan and Butterfly1988 like this.
  11. idiot husband

    idiot husband Fapstronaut

    Thank you for the support. I am sure I will reach out at certain points. I appreciate the offer.
    justapadawan and fadedfidelity like this.
  12. Susannah

    Susannah Fapstronaut

    I know it must feel like that, but think about what you are saying. You say yourself your problems have been going on for years and you mentioned an incident where she cried in front of you. From my own experience and those reported by SOs on these forums, I have seen that it is often the case that men do not take their wives attempts to communicate their unhappiness seriously until it is too late. From the wife's perspective she thinks she has been shouting her unhappiness at every opportunity for years. Sadly, by the time her husband finally sits up and takes notice, she's done.
    In addition to taking all the other advice about stopping the behaviors and healing yourself from the addiction, listen to @fadedfidelity . You have nothing to lose.
    Also know that this is true. I'm so sorry this has happened and sincerely hope she will respond to a heartfelt attempt from you.
  13. fadedfidelity

    fadedfidelity Fapstronaut

    THIS is 1000% true for me and I think every SO. I have cried, screamed, begged, reasoned, talked, and then cried some more in front of my husband to get him to understand and stop hurting me over the years. (I still feel hurt and angry that he ignored or didn't seem to think it was that big of a deal each and every time I brought it up.) How a man can watch the woman he supposedly loves cry her heart out and beg for his love and respect while just sitting there with no emotion is sick--this is what porn does to you! (But this is also a symptom of a deeper issue that led to porn being a coping mechanism.)
    Unfortunately, it took drastic measures on my part to show him I was serious about leaving him if he didn't fix himself to save our marriage. The biggest two were telling HIS family and friends what he was doing (I had kept it a secret for him all these years) and kicking him out of the house for a while. I grieved the marriage and person I thought I knew and loved so hard while he was gone and womaned up a bit to not focus on him anymore. I was done being the understanding and supportive doormat. It was time to take care of myself and the trauma he caused me.
    Luckily for me, he FINALLY seems to have gotten the RIGHT resources plus HE wants to really to turn things around for HIMSELF. I have made no promises of staying, as I really don't know what to expect based on our history. But I do know that he has turned the same old loop of shame and guilt into positive attitude, establishing work boundries, and giving gratitude--all things that break the cycle of shame/guilt=PMO=destroy wife's trust and love.
  14. justapadawan

    justapadawan Fapstronaut

    Hello fellow fapstronaut. Maybe, maybe you were an idiot husband, but I refuse to call you that now. You are now trying to fix things, acknowledging the problems of the past, and taking concrete action to work towards a better future. Is it too late? Maybe so, but now is not the time to think about what you should or could have done. Just focus on today, and how to be the man your wife deserves. How to be the better version of yourself. Situations like that are really complex, and maybe some forgiving from part to part will be required.

    You took one first, crucial step to resort to this community. Here you will find that you are not alone in your struggle, you will meet supportive people that will help you out through this journey.

    I hope you the best of luck, and I really wish you take this challenge seriously. Even if things are beyond repair within your marriage (I trust they are not, and your wife will see with a brand new perspective once you commit to improve), you should do this for you.

    Welcome, good fortune, and count on us.
  15. blazer72

    blazer72 Fapstronaut

    Good luck man. I hope it works out for you.
  16. Welcome to NoFap .. you have just started what will likely be the hardest journey of your life. But this community is full of people who are all going through the same thing. I strongly encourage you to encourage your wife to join NoFap and/or find a support group .. there are many options out there including BTR (betrayal trauma recovery -- / Life Recovery Groups (Christian-based) [find a LIFE group] / Celebrate Recovery groups (Christian-based as well)


    One thing you have to realize...there are 3 distinct recoveries that have to be worked on in the coming months/years:
    1. Your recovery from PA
    2. Your wife's recovery from Betrayal Trauma
    3. The recovery of your marriage

    Depending on a number of factors, sometimes #1 and #2 have to happen first .. sometimes #3 must be put on hold for a while. Not every time .. but it's really up to the SO.

    What you need to do is focus on #1 -- focus on you. There is probably very little you can directly do regarding #2 .. except to get free from porn addiction and to give your wife whatever space she needs for her own healing/recovery. That doesn't mean abandoning her -- maybe you two will be able to work together on your own individual recoveries (together). But, it might be separate recoveries in the beginning too. You will have to take your queues from your SO.

    Prepare yourself for many frustrations .. in your own recovery journey and in your SO's.
    Whatever timeline you think of in your head that it will take for you to recovery and your wife to recover .. it will almost certainly take longer. Prepare for a slow, methodical journey .. with lots of up's and down's.

    I'm not trying to be negative--just trying to give it to you straight.

    Learn to be patient .. and learn to get comfortable with being uncomfortable -- both of these are tough..extremely tough.

    Continue to write in your journal -- find accountability partner(s) -- telling a close friend or family member or pastor/counselor if you can...talking out your PA and realizing how it has affected you and your marriage -- it's very helpful to expose it to the light. If you don't have a safe friend/family member -- find an in-person support group if you can.

    Good luck. This journey is long .. but at the end of it -- if you stick to your recovery, you will be a better person and a better spouse to your SO. Stay focused on yourself and your own recovery in the beginning. ("beginning" == first 6-12 months)
  17. Growing Man

    Growing Man Fapstronaut

    Well how have things been going. Staying strong ? You ever sit down with her?
    Bobske likes this.

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