your spouse is addicted to drugs, internet, alcohol, gambling, or anything else
it can create a situation where you are never quite certain you can trust them
thus you are experiencing ongoing trust issues. Are you ever quite certain you
can trust them? Can your relationship endure this constant influx of mistrust
for a period of time? I don't think this is possible in a fully intimate marriage.
The following true story is a really bad situation of what has happened and
how the internet has destroyed their relationship. The purpose of this letter
is to show you what can and has happened to internet addiction. One needs to tell
them how their behaviour impacts you including your broader fears and concerns.
Get your partner to come to an agreement about this issue and hold up to their
end of the deal.
too recently discovered my husband's online sexual romps and cyber-flirting. I
actually discovered it the first time four years ago before my husband and I were
married and asked him to stop it then, but he continued with the behavior
on and off behind my back until five days ago when I caught him.
only is the cybersex bothersome and disturbing, but he also had an online girlfriend
with whom the relationship wasn't about sex but ventured into dangerous emotional
territory. My husband maintains many platonic online friendships with various
people (male and female), many of whom are old school chums or fellow professionals.
Occasionally, one of these chums develops a crush and my husband's need for ego
affirmation causes him to "egg-on" the flirting because it helps him
feel better about himself - especially when things aren't going well between us.
recently became a little too enthusiastic talking about one of his pen-pals and
a red-flag went up. So, I went against my need to respect his privacy and logged
into his e-mail accounts. Not only was this girl and old flame, but she had been
sending him up to four e-mails a day including vomit-inducing love-poems. Her
last e-mail to him when I discovered this was an invitation to cybersex.
also checked out a new e-mail account I hadn't noticed and discovered this account
was reserved specifically for cybersex. I can't even think about the e-mail correspondence
I read because it's too "Penthouse Forum" to share politely. But it
made me sick that he was describing all the things he wanted to do to these women
and vice-versa. The realization that he'd given and received more orgasms with
these women (always the same women too. He's had the same "regulars"
for years) since we've been married than he had with his own wife made me ill.
I confronted my husband regarding ALL the indiscretions and of course he got mad
and my invasion and actually left me for a few days. While he was gone we discussed
a few things and through the tears (both his AND mine) he confessed to what had
been going on and that he was glad he got caught. He agreed to marriage counseling
and also agreed to give me unlimited access to all his accounts. He also agreed
to draft a letter to his cyber-ho's explaining that he wouldn't be playing any
more (he even let me hit the "send" button. He also said that he hadn't
heard from his online girlfriend (and according to his e-mail accounts this is
true), but if she continues with the inappropriate banter, he's also agreed to
let me hit the "send" button on her as well. He also agreed to cancel
AOL to limit his access to real-time chat so that he won't be tempted to return
to his "regulars" in the future. He also says he understands my need
to monitor him for future indiscretions and doesn't blame me for my lack of trust
in him (in fact, he expects it for quite a long time).
our discussions we've come to some realizations. My husband and I both tend to
go into periods of depression, and the times we were both depressed is when he
forayed into the seedy world of online sex. Not being able to help me while feeling
bad about himself caused him to seek ego-affirmation from other sources. Plus
I never saw my husband as being emotionally fragile before - probably because
I felt my love should be enough for him. I think that's a trap many people fall
into. People get married hoping their partner will help "fix" them instead
of just looking for a companion to enjoy life with. That's a lot of pressure to
put on someone and my husband and I both had that expectation of each other. I
think people also take for granted that just because their significant other appears
"strong" and "in control" doesn't mean that inside they're
not scared little children with delicate self-esteems. (Than again, some people
are just jerks). Also, I noticed a trend among the women he was having these indiscretions
with - they were lonely and many were also in uncommunicative marriages that was
lacking in emotional fulfillment. Birds of a feather, I guess - but that doesn't
husband and I both agree that the most important focus through all this is to
get to the root of what causes his behavior, and
not of the behavior itself. This is an effort that requires both of us in the
form of marriage counseling and individual counseling for each of us. I'm optimistic
and he's receptive - and at this stage in the game that's as much as either of
us can ask for.
In my husband's case, he said he went back to the behavior
because I didn't put my foot up his butt about it four years ago when I discovered
it and that he needed more than a "please stop because I don't like it."
I guess as with any addiction, you can't just ask someone to stop, but you have
to help them - sometimes with tough hard-nosed tactics. Am I wrong to give my
husband the benefit of the doubt? My mother tells me the people don't change and
I should just leave him - that's so black & white though.
love to hear some success stories if anyone has any. Good news will help me get
through things right now more than bad news. Signed: Pam