Do you think he gets it?
Does your husband understand the absolute devastation his porn viewing has on you?
I doubt it.
I hear this so often.
“My husband doesn’t get it. He watches porn and wonders why it upsets me.”
“He flirts with other women in my presence and tells me I’m crazy.”
“He wants me to just get over it.”
His dismissal of your concern makes you wonder. Do you need to “just get over it”? You struggle to put your pain into words because you can’t clarify those phrases or feelings yet for yourself.
I think you know the answer. The answer that’s best for both of you. No. He doesn’t get it, and you don’t need to “just get over it.”
Statistics tell us that 60% of divorces cite pornography as the main reason for the end of the marriage.
Another scary stat: Pornography use increases the infidelity rate in marriages by 300%!
Ignoring the potential for an affair or divorce is not something to “get over.” It’s time to put your pain into words.
But he sees it differently (right now). Men have this incredible gift of compartmentalizing their lives into neat boxes. Women have more of a spaghetti-bowl-turned-upside-down processing system. Trying to untangle the spaghetti strands is messy and nearly impossible. For a woman, all of life feels interconnected. Often, I’ve asked God to give me one area that I could keep in a tidy box, but that hasn’t happened to date. Sigh. Dave and I joke about this contrast between men and women. He even has a shirt that says, “Don’t bother me! I’m in my nothing box.” One day, I’ll swipe that shirt since I can’t take the box. 🙂
When a husband tells his wife to “get over it already,” he further wounds and betrays her. It’s the husband who caused the wound by his choices to break his marriage vows. Denying that this action hurts you shows great emotional distancing (often a result of porn viewing), disrespect, and disconnect from relational normalcy. Unfortunately, these behaviors and thoughts are common for someone who watches porn.
The good news in all this? There is hope!
To overcome porn addiction, the addict must address the roots of their addiction.
He needs to consider: Why do I seek porn? What triggers the desire?
Once these issues are identified, it’s time to grow and develop new neurological pathways, thoughts, relationships, and personal identity. He has a choice. And hope. And, fortunately, now there are great resources to help men with porn addiction.
- Rob Jackson, The Iceberg Model of Christian Spiritual Formation
- Ten Shimer, The Freedom Fight
- Jonathan Daugherty, BeBroken Ministries
Yes, men and women are vastly different. But neither of you “need” porn to be happy. You won’t get over the destruction it has in store for you, your relationship, your family, and maybe even your job.
So where do you start to talk with him about it and put your pain into words?
Here is a collection of ideas for where you might start to explain how you feel:
To the man I chose to marry,
I trusted you to mean every word of our wedding vows. But every time you look at porn, you break your vows. You’ve committed adultery, yet you continue to treat these choices with a nonchalant and cavalier attitude.
I don’t want to “just” forget it.
You might as well stick a dagger in my heart and twist the blade because that’s how my heart feels. Shredded beyond repair.
When you look at porn, you tell me I’m ugly and unlovable.
When you look at porn, I believe I’m not worthy of being cherished.
I feel ashamed that I can’t be enough for you.
I feel unseen.
I feel worthless.
I feel used.
I feel like I don’t matter.
My confidence is shaken to the core of my being.
It feels like I can’t trust you.
I want a relationship with you, something I thought we had.
But, pornography will eventually take all of that away from us. I don’t want to share you with another woman—fake or real. I hope you feel the same about me. We are meant for each other, not to be shared with someone else.
Please choose our marriage and family instead of porn.
I’ll work hard to heal whether you choose me and our marriage or not. But, I ask you to choose me and us. You need to choose what is most important to you.
I hope you’ll choose us. We make a great team.
Remember when we met?
We have had so many great times together. More than anything, I want our marriage to succeed and thrive because nothing is separating us.
I love you enough and respect me enough to draw this boundary for us.
I know this is a difficult conversation.
One that I suggest is had in the presence of an experienced, neutral party. Those of us experienced in dealing with this can help. (And most of us offer our services virtually so you can be in the security of your own home.) Your marriage is worth it.
Wives, I hear you. I know your pain.
You’re not crazy or alone. You won’t “just get over it.” But you do have hope.
You can begin to find hope and heal through my free resources and my Aftershock Recovery Method. I’ll help you put your pain into words. My free videos on YouTube are striking a chord with women who felt that they had no voice and no option other than to “get over it.” I am so glad. But what most women need is to talk to someone about all of this. I offer safe, judgment-free, confidential group coaching and one-on-one coaching to help you stabilize and process the aftershocks eventually arriving at your preferred future. You don’t have to suffer in silence any longer. Please reach out. Let’s talk.