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How do you get your confidence back when dh has upset you?

(49 Posts)
Mapleissweet Sun 13-Oct-13 19:35:17

Dh and I had a baby last year and I have just returned to work. It has been a tough year emotionally and I feel a lot if pressure. Ds has been a difficult baby.

Things didn't help when I found out that dh had been looking at porn, nuts magazine etc and checking out people he knows on line. He is very remorseful and has done everything he can to make it up to me.

It has however really knocked my confidence and I am normally a confident person. I don't feel as if I an sexy enough for him and it hurts me to think of him drooling over these girls on line while I was nursing our baby.

I don't know how to move on from it. I so want it and we make progress, but then something will trigger me off and I will feel really low about it. I do feel good around other men and do get attention, but I feel upset my dh could treat me with such little respect. Leering at top less girls online when I had just given birth has effected how I think if him.

He has stopped. But how do I let it go and draw a line under it before I wreck my marriage.

Boosterseattheballcleaner Sun 13-Oct-13 20:30:36

nuts magazine? What is he? 15!

Don't take his own inadequacies as personal slight, I'm not surprised it has affected your respect for him. I would find the whole thing a total turn off.

If you have made the decision to draw a line in the sand the perhaps you would feel better if you started doing a few things for you, getting out of the house for a few hours and feel a bit less "mummy" and a bit more you.

You can try to rise above it and put it down to juvenile behaviour, but be prepared to recognise that you might never get that respect for him back.

Mapleissweet Sun 13-Oct-13 21:47:29

God yes, how do I get my respect back for him?

And how do I stop myself feeling so crap sad

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 21:54:35

Why was he looking at porn Maple out of curiosity. You said you were breastfeeding. Were you still having sex?

bigstrongmama Sun 13-Oct-13 21:56:07

Do you want to let it go and draw a line under it? If it was me, I'd want to talk about it a lot before I could let it go (if I felt I could).

To get respect back for him, I think you'd need to understand and respect his motivations for looking at other women when you needed his support. Tricky, that. Counselling might help you work out your feelings and what you need.

Mapleissweet Sun 13-Oct-13 22:01:56

Yes we were having sex. He said he was there on every other way for me (he was), but admits he behaved badly in this area.
It's very difficult to let go given it was at a time most women including me feel vulnerable and self conscious.

I feel as though I go round in circles.

Mapleissweet Sun 13-Oct-13 22:03:01

I suspect he wanted some kind of escapism from the stress of a new baby.

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 22:37:40

Men do enjoy porn though and to them it has nothing to do with how they view you. Its separate. I understand how you feel and you have made him aware of how you feel but if its something he has always done (maybe in secret from you) then do you think you can let it go? If he likes it then he will still do it anyway. Can you come to an understanding that you are both happy with maybe? I don't think its a good idea to make him feel bad about it though.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:05:53

Hello there

I have no respect for men who use porn for societal and political reasons. Particularly when they throw their use of it in your face for "not showing them enough attention"

I disagree with Rules profoundly

You don't have to put up with it, and you don't have to swallow your disgust and disrespect

He is an inadequate person. People who use porn, by definition, view certain women as "less than"

They think there are nice women who are fit to be wives and mothers and women who are not. If I thought my husband felt this way, he would be out of my life.

I wouldn't accept "he will do it anyway (so basically, STFU and make him a sandwich)"

If it is a deal breaker for you, then so be it

I suspect though that this mindset is not quite where you are yet. You are still thinking in terms of "I am not good enough" (aided of course by the porn apology we absorb all around us, ably demonstrated by comments such as those abov)

You are wrong. You are plenty good enough. It is your husband that is sorely lacking

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:08:17

"I need a little light relief from changing nappies. I know, I'll go and look at some borderline underage girls from Eastern Europe get their assholes stretched open"

Yep, makes sense. Not.

CuttedUpPear Sun 13-Oct-13 23:09:48

I also disagree with Rules profoundly.
What AF said ^^

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:10:40

Lots of women like porn too though. For most of us its just a bit of fun as Adults.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:12:56

Rules you need to educate yourself about what porn means to women as a whole.

Until then, I consider your advice to women in these situations to be less than helpful and possibly downright abusive.

Your best solution then might be "try it you might like it" ?

Puh- lease

Gingersnap88 Sun 13-Oct-13 23:13:24

I love AF. Completely agree.

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:15:10

We are all different as women and Im well enough educated thanks.

Mapleissweet Sun 13-Oct-13 23:15:13

Thank you af and all. You have helped.

He is sorry, but I'm trying to come to terms with he us not who I thought he was. He has changed and us changing, but I can't seem to move on and my insecurities and upset keep reoccurring.

What you say I agree with, it's just difficult to apply to myself and that the person who I thought was my everything has made me feel do crap and undermined what I was/am to him.

How do I make myself feel better?

CuttedUpPear Sun 13-Oct-13 23:16:42

Rules if you could speak to the women making porn then you might change your outlook.
Unfortunately you won't be able to as they are not the kind of people who have a voice. Or a way out.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:18:14

I am in a certain amount of shock that this is the Relationships topic and not AIBI

AIBI is chockfull of porn apologists. Relationships, less so

Porn is corrosive to functional relationships if there is a mismatch of acceptance of it

Both partners are A-ok ? Carry on exploiting those women, you are both as bad as one another.

When one partner is uncomfortable with it, it's not ok. Really not ok

Using porn is not a given. It's a choice. For some women, their partner using porn is a deal breaker. And that is ok, certainly not something that anyone should be coming on to say "men will always do it, don't you think you should get with the programme". hmm

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:18:38


damn autocorrect smile

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:19:44

A lot of women making porn are totally in control and make a lot of money and are quite happy with their choice. Yes it is a suspect industry and people (men and women) can and are abused within it however there are also strong women who have been in porn themselves and now run their own businesses and are not in any way abused.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:22:06

OP, you should not be trying to "make yourself feel better"

Your distress is wholly justified. Why would you try and talk yourself out of it ?

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:22:43

Of course if its a deal breaker within your relationship and your partner continues to use it then you have the choice to walk away.
But for some couples porn is part of their relationship and that is ok too.

ThisIsBULLSHIT Sun 13-Oct-13 23:23:31

maple it will take a little while. It must feel like he has betrayed you.

And your perspective has changed so dramatically having had a baby, yet it seems that his has not.

I suspect you might have to wait it out and wait for him to earn your respect back by being a decent DH and dad.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:23:35

Rules this is the wrong place for your pro-porn flawed propaganda. Seriously, you are not helping and your lack of education is making you look very silly.

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:24:07

I understand you are against it for your own reasons AF but that does not mean that it is wrong for everyone.

ThisIsBULLSHIT Sun 13-Oct-13 23:25:42

And I mean that he will have to actively earn it back, not just that you will have to wait and find ways to respect him again.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:28:41

So it's ok to tell a woman it has to be ok in her relationship just because it's ok in yours ?

Projection, much ?

I do often feel that female pro-porners come on here to tell us how brilliant it is do so because they actually have no choice but to decide it is fine.

Let her make up her own mind up. She has access to the research that tells us overwhelmingly that porn is bad for women. You would shut her down though, wouldn't you, to make yourself feel better ?

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:29:23

It seems that you are getting your knickers in a bit of a twist AF so I shall bow out now before you become even more insulting towards me.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:30:23

That is your prerogative.

It was only a matter of time before someone picked up your pro-porn stance as being unhelpful here. Whether it was me or someone else.

Rules Sun 13-Oct-13 23:38:14

Message deleted by Mumsnet for breaking our Talk Guidelines. Replies may also be deleted.

AnyFucker Sun 13-Oct-13 23:39:28


glastocat Mon 14-Oct-13 04:47:32

I'm with AF on this one.

PuddingAndHotMilk Mon 14-Oct-13 05:38:58

I'm also with AF on this Rules. The op clearly isn't ok with it and so your opinion isn't very helpful, is it?!

OP. you don't need to accept this but if he is truly sorry and won't do it again then you have a chance to move forward. Talking from experience to feel better you need to work on your self esteem and self worth. Then you'll find your preparedness to accept bad behaviour reduces naturally as you realise its them NOT you

Good luck thanks

schnockles Mon 14-Oct-13 06:33:45

If porn isn't in your relationship OP, then that's that really.

I agree that the idea of a partner getting their rocks off online whilst their OH nurses their baby is pretty off putting and it's not surprising you have not only lost respect for him but lost confidence in yourself. I can only suggest your DH continues to try to make it up to you as these things take a long time to heal. You we're hurt when you were at your most vulnerable. Take some leisure time out just for you - I realise you work so you have tone out from the baby - perhaps join a running club or something else active. The sport will help your self esteem and give you a boost, and be something that is just yours. This isn't about making yourself feel better for your DH, but for you.

CharityFunDay Mon 14-Oct-13 06:42:58

I am not pro-porn, but I'm not anti-porn either. I think it's quite a complex thing for all (consumers, partners and participants alike).

But the main thing here is that by his partner's standards, the OP's OH did something completely inappropriate at a completely inappropriate time, so I am solidly behind OP on this matter.

Mapleissweet Mon 14-Oct-13 06:51:11

Thank you all do much. It makes a big difference to me that I am not overreacting.
He has let me down so much. He has pretended to be one thing when in actual fact he was quite the opposite. He is remorseful, but I feel very angry with him that he could treat me so poorly having just had a baby.
How do you build on your self esteem? I feel it is crushed with him. Yet my confidence elsewhere I feel is ok.
Within my relationship I will not tolerate women being objectified. To me it is very damaging.
How do I really know if he's changed, or if he's just 'stopping' to save his marriage.

CharityFunDay Mon 14-Oct-13 06:55:31

Even if he never uses porn again, you'll never be able to control his fantasies, and it's quite normal to masturbate privately within the context of a relationship.

All you can do is make sure he treats you well, and respects other women in his life.

Boosterseattheballcleaner Mon 14-Oct-13 08:06:24

Mapleissweet Self confidence doesn't just appear overnight, it works like trust if someone chips away at it it takes seconds to crumble and a much longer to re-build.

I have confidence because I am confident in what i believe, what i expect from my partner and I don't base my self worth on whether or not i am masturbation material.

Your body has just done something amazing, embrace that and let your DH know it!

Fake it until you make it is the advice a lot of posters get here, put your game face on and show the world what you are made of

sorry for the pom pom waving at 8am but you are worth it

Yougotbale Mon 14-Oct-13 09:36:16

Are you ok with him masterbating without looking at porn?

I doubt he had an emotional attachment to the porn, at least he sounds like he is sorry and wants to make it right. Maybe asking him to explain his thought process of looking at porn may ease your worries.

Mapleissweet Mon 14-Oct-13 12:09:52

I don't mind him wanking or even finding other women attractive as I do other men. It is normal and healthy.
But to actively leer at girls (prob half his age) on line avd looking up women we know on line after I had given birth and was coping with a new baby has really upset me.

I think it is something he has always done. How can he fix this and how do I let it go.

OhBabyLilyMunster Mon 14-Oct-13 12:17:19

Its just time, maple, it really is. Dont underestimate how long recovery from pregnancy and birth takes. My youngest is 12 months and im still getting my shit together. And for what its worth i am right behind you, his behaviour is not on and theres no amount of pro-porn claptrap will convince me otherwise.

SugarMiceInTheRain Mon 14-Oct-13 12:38:38

I suppose only time will tell whether he has really changed and can really be the supportive husband you deserve.

As for building your self-esteem, maybe I'm not the best one to be giving advice. Mine is shot to pieces for different reasons to yours, but I think it's important to be trying to rebuild your confidence for yourself and your own happiness, not your DH's. Not feeling desired does chip away at your self-esteem, but you need to find ways to boost yourself up which aren't related to appearing sexy and desirable to your DH. Whether that is by taking up a hobby, remembering what you're good at and embracing it, going out with your friends and reclaiming your social life, or whatever helps you, make sure you do this for you. It does take time to recover after you've had a baby, but in the meantime, fake it til you make it is a pretty good strategy.

AnyFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 12:58:59

Looking up women you know ? In what way ? He sounds like a fucking creep, tbh.

Yougotbale Mon 14-Oct-13 13:24:13

Was it on Facebook, the women you know? Maybe they had just posted on the news feed.

Or was he doing something odd

MarcelineTheVampireQueen Mon 14-Oct-13 14:07:23

As usual) I agree with AF..

But putting the argument aside, OP, at the end of the day, only you know where your line is. Based on your post, he crossed it.

What happens next? What would you like to happen?

Mapleissweet Mon 14-Oct-13 19:27:36

I don't know. He has changed and is changing, but in stuck in thinking about how he treated me after having ds.
On paper he sounds like a creep, but in person he us kind and loving. Very difficult to compare who I see with what he did.
The anger and upset just won't go away even though I want it to so I can feel better and enjoy being with him.

Mapleissweet Mon 14-Oct-13 19:29:31

The FB issue was him searching for women we know but not requesting being friends. Basically just snooping.

AnyFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 20:08:04

But why ? confused

AnyFucker Mon 14-Oct-13 20:08:51

I believe Harold Shipman was a very personable and trusted GP in his locality. Just sayin'

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