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Distraught - husband kept 8 year secret from me

(350 Posts)
Alicetravellingviawonderland Mon 03-Sep-12 16:59:54

Hi, please help me - I discovered a couple of days ago that my husband used the family computer to access porn websites. I confronted him and he confessed and through my questions I now know this has been going on for 8 years (since we've had a computer). He says that it's something he did every now and then but only when I was out of the house. At first he tried to calm me down by saying its something most men do and that it wasn't because of anything I'd done or didn't do. He did it when he was home alone and bored. We have a nice life, decent jobs, a lovely son, I thought we were very much in love and we have a good sex life. I can't tell you how hurt I am that he's had this secret life for 8 years. He says the stuff he watched on line was free and all 'normal' stuff. How can I believe him when I feel like I don't know who he really is? And what do I do now? He says he's sorry (he's been physically sick for the entire day when I found out) and that he'll go to counselling and never return to these sites again. For me, I'm completely shaken and a wreck. I cannot believe I didn't know anything about it - for that I feel very stupid. How could i ever trust him again? Why would i ever trust him again? I feel angry that he's used the family computer for this purpose. I cannot understand the porn thing, is something missing in my marriage or is it really common place amongst men? Also, if he's been doing it all this time, is he addicted and will he be able to give it up? We've been together 21 years - am I married to a cheat and a deceiver or a daft guy who made a huge mistake and who I should work with to sort it out? I go from wanting to throw him out to thinking we can somehow work through this. What's normal, what's acceptable.........what to do next?

bethjoanne Mon 03-Sep-12 17:32:10

dont worry most men look at porn its natural for them to do just like masturbation.may be he didnt tell you if you have low self esteem he didnt want to upset confident and posititive.i wouldnt mind if my dh was looking at porn.think you are overeacting you will push him away and he wont tell you anything as he knows hes in the dog house if he does. have a coffee/glass of wine, relax and forget.hes not a alcoholic, serial cheater (affairs),ETC they are some things i would re act like you are. please forget and enjoy you life its too short to worry about little things. xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

polkadotsrock Mon 03-Sep-12 17:34:10

This wouldn't bother me at all.
Fwiw he is obviously upset that he has upset you, that surely says something. I'm quite sure he's not addicted or you would have noticed it before so talk it through when you've calmed down a bit

Jemma1111 Mon 03-Sep-12 17:34:56

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

ThePigOnTheWall Mon 03-Sep-12 17:36:33

By the way, that list I gave up there ^ I've done all of those things just today <leads secret life> although I will tell DP about the wank and the postman <bit duller>

picnicbasketcase Mon 03-Sep-12 17:36:54

It depends if your relationship is in trouble already I think. If he's looking at porn and doing nothing with you, it's a big problem obviously. If it's something he does occasionally while the rest of your relationship is fine, you might be overreacting slightly. Are you very anti-porn and that's why he kept it secret? Or did he just never tell you out of embarrassment?

tedmundo Mon 03-Sep-12 17:38:11

Oh to be a fly on the wall if he goes to counselling ....

McKayz Mon 03-Sep-12 17:39:05

I clicked on here expecting an affair or secret child not a man who occasionally watches porn.

I think you have really overreacted. This wouldn't bother me at all. Why can't you trust him? He's looked at porn that's all.

AlfalfaMum Mon 03-Sep-12 17:39:13

I have every sympathy for you, OP, and I'm sure I would be upset too at the secrecy. And also because I'm a bit cats bum about porn because I think it's exploitative, and as far as I'm aware my DH feels the same so I would feel misled to boot.
Positives are that it sounds like your DH has been completely honest with you once you brought it up, and it doesn't sound like he has an addiction to me.

MrsPnut Mon 03-Sep-12 17:39:21

I know my OH has a sneaky look at some of the free porn sites when he's home alone and bored too.
I don't care, most of it is self submitted and pretty dire, and he only ever does it when he's alone in the house. It doesn't affect me or our children so it isn't taking anything away from our relationship. I can't see how it's going to make him unfaithful either, he's at home having a furtive look because he can't be arsed to go out or do anything more productive.

If you over react like this about it then no wonder he has never told you.

Dahlen Mon 03-Sep-12 17:40:10

EVerybody is an individual and has a right to their own likes and interests. However, if you're in a relationship and there are no issues of control otherwise, then surely if you love someone and value their happiness you would refrain from doing something that you know your partner finds abhorrent? Porn is not a necessity.

KatieScarlett2833 Mon 03-Sep-12 17:44:00

Porn would be a deal breaker for me.

I don't like it, don't like how it represents women, am disgusted by the idea mooted on here that I would be over-reacting if DH did this on our family computer.

OwlLady Mon 03-Sep-12 17:44:04

It does make me laugh because I am sure men are not as comfortable with women wanting to look at mens big cocks everyday especially if they are photoshopped, but it doesn't concern me because I am married to an owl

AlmostAGoldHipster Mon 03-Sep-12 17:44:20

OP, I don't think you're overreacting at all - you feel what you feel and your emotions are valid.

It would be a deal-breaker for me too because a) I have big issues with porn and b) I would feel as if I didn't really know the husband anymore.

I'm so sorry that you're so upset.

pictish Mon 03-Sep-12 17:44:30

Dahlen - I agree to certain extent, and think the OP's dh's taste for titbits of porn will be up for discussion regarding that....but not until the OP can wind her neck in and behave like a rational person.

Hullygully Mon 03-Sep-12 17:44:33

I'm with you op. Porn is VILE and that is bad enough, but also that you thought you were friends and knew and trusted each other etc means it is a shock and very hurtful to discover the horrid little wanky secret. Yuk.

OwlLady Mon 03-Sep-12 17:46:03

she's upset, has posted when she is upset. Some people can't be rational when upset (I can't for instancegrin)

needsomeperspective Mon 03-Sep-12 17:46:27

Another vote for massive overreaction here. You have a computer and you SERIOUSLY thought your husband had never surfed for porn on it. Ever? The Victorians called and said they'd like thir standards back now please.

adeucalione Mon 03-Sep-12 17:46:30

This is very difficult. One the one hand I think he should never look at it again because he loves you and shouldn't want to cause you pain. But on the other hand I really do think that it is harmless. I am trying to imagine how I would feel if DH told me that I should stop having a glass of wine in the evening because he was teetotal and found it offensive - I think I would think he was being daft and just have a glass when he wasn't there. So honestly, I think that you need to reach an agreement that is acceptable to you both - not to use family computer, only when house empty etc? I certainly don't think you should be considering kicking him out, or even counselling really.

FarloWearsAGoldRibbon Mon 03-Sep-12 17:51:34

I would be bloody upset and angry too, it's a nasty exploitative industry and the thought of my DH looking at videos of girls probably half his age creeps me right out. I wouldn't end a marriage over it in isolation but it would give me misgivings about him and would need to be discussed.

birdofthenorth Mon 03-Sep-12 17:55:32

Looking it at occasionally- perfectly normal, regardless of how disagreeable you may find this.

Being addicted to it- less common, and a bit of an issue, yes. Does he think he can give up?

BlatantRedhead Mon 03-Sep-12 17:58:28

Feel like I've missed something here. Is it fetish stuff he's looking at, that's freaked you out?

To be honest, from what you've said - that its a bit of 'normal' porn that he only does 'every now and then' - I can't really see what the big deal is. I can see why you'd be upset if you had asked him in the past and he'd denied it but if your reaction is to throw him out or force him to get counselling for something as natural as masturbation then I can see why he wouldn't tell you.

It's not necessarily a secret if he simply didn't mention it. My DP doesn't tell me he looks at porn, I just assume does because most men seem to. It doesn't affect our relationship or our sex life so doesn't bother me. It clearly hasn't affected your relationship or sex life if he's been at it for 8 years out of 21 and you hadn't noticed so wy does it matter?

Hullygully Mon 03-Sep-12 17:59:28

<faints at how many women think the porn industry is just fine and dandy>

BlatantRedhead Mon 03-Sep-12 17:59:38

LOL @ needsomeperspective!

OwlLady Mon 03-Sep-12 18:00:50

i know hullygully.

is it an age thing? or are these people really men?

Hullygully Mon 03-Sep-12 18:03:20

gawd knows.

If they are women we've all failed.

If they are men we're still failing.

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