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Found H's porn stash today

(56 Posts)
changedchanged Fri 01-Jul-11 15:32:12

I've already posted on relationships today and have had some good advice but also feel a bit bashed by others telling me I'm a prude and that I'm over-reacting, etc. So anyway, some of the more sympathetic posters pointed me in the direction of this section for some words of wisdom.....

DH knows I don't like porn. I'm no expert on the politics of it all; all I know is that it makes me feel sick, disrespected, unattractive and disgusted. It also makes me sad for my DDs that they will have to confront this shit themselves someday.

I found a stash of mags hidden in his office. One of them is called Barely Legal - that one obviously hit me the hardest.

I am so shocked. It's easy to say but he is truly such a kind, considerate and lovely person to me and always has been, and a lovely dad to our DC. How can that sit alongside what I've just found?

Please someone give me some words of wisdom. I feel terrible and I don't know what to do.

changedchanged Fri 01-Jul-11 15:35:11

By the way the subject of what I found is now on three different threads on MN sad. I originally posted in relationships, got a bit of a bashing, then found I was getting another one on a separate thread started by someone else saying they didn't understand why women like me had a problem with it.

I feel so crap, surely that means my feelings are valid? If there was nothing wrong with what I found, why does it make me feel so bad?

Of course your feeling are valid changed.........it is wrong FOR you and your DH obv knows that or he wouldnt have hidden them.

I must admit, I dont have a problem with my DH looking at stuff like that once in a while but even I think that the one called Barely Legal sounds very disturbing!!

I'll let the others comment more, they will be more informed than I am smile

Oh god changedchanged. That's so unfair. No it doesn't mean your feelings are invalid. It means some posters are unbelievably insensitive and lacking in empathy!

Personally I would go bonkers if I found that stash in my house and that is a perfectly reasonable response. Barely Legal ffs! I think you need to take a time out. Can you go stay with parents/friends or something? I think you need to make him understand that this is a big deal and you don't have to put up with it.

Hugs to you as well!

goodkate Fri 01-Jul-11 15:41:42

I think it depends on your outlook, some women don't mind, some others, like yourself don't like it.

I think it is important to understand why your DH looks at it. Is it just fantasy (as it is in most mens case), I think understanding why will help take away some of the fear.

Then you have to explain (not rant) why you don't like it and ask that he doesn't keep it in the house - I think thats reasonable.

I think men are driven in some part by their sex drive, they want to screw all the time. Women don't - well sometimes but you see what I mean.

I think most of it is a safe outlet for their frustration. Don't take it personally, men don't think like women do, they are very different in that respect.

Personally it doesn't bother me in the slightest - in fact I find it a turn on too BUT I do understand why you feel like you do. Just try and discuss your feelings with him and let him explain too without being to judgemental.

pinkytheshrinky Fri 01-Jul-11 15:43:08

no your feelings are not invalid but you have asked the question about whether he can have this stuff and that sit alongside being a good father - well yes it can because he has been doing just that.

The barely legal section would have me asking him all about it though - can of worms mind you but i would have to challenge that

He looks at it because he objectifies women and doesn't see these women as being fully human. He doesn't consider the exploitation of these women as important, at least not as important as him having a wank.

queenofthecapitalwasteland Fri 01-Jul-11 15:45:43

I feel sorry that people have called you a 'prude' with no regard for your feelings on the subject. You have every right to be upset, especially as your DH knows your feelings on it. He should have at least respected you enough to say 'I know you feel x about porn, but I feel y and use magazines'.

I have no idea about your DH as a person, but anyone who would keep a mag called 'Barely Legal', regardless of how they aquired it, would be kicked out of my circle of friends (difficult for you I realise) as the only reason I could think anyone would buy that is 'Not Yet Legal' magazines are illegal.

Does he know you've found his stash? You have to discuss this with him soon, before it eats away at you inside. Good luck.

changedchanged Fri 01-Jul-11 15:45:59

Kate I'm really struggling to not be judgemental about the 'barely legal' aspect of it.

There is nowhere I can go unless I want to make a big drama out of it with the rest of my family and I don't need that either. They too think the sun shines out of his arse and would be really shocked. And our DCs are old enough to be confused and upset by the disruption. I don't want to go off and leave them, even for a day or two, but I don't want to say I'm 'taking them on a little holiday without daddy' either. I just want to disappear. How do you even talk about this kind of crap when somebody gets home without little ears hearing? Mine don't miss a thing. We never argue, either, so they would be so shocked if I start laying into him.

changedchanged Fri 01-Jul-11 15:47:37

queen I'm off work today at home. He is at work. I found them today when I was looking for something so he doesn't know yet.

changedchanged Fri 01-Jul-11 15:51:30

What I mean by 'big drama' is that I wouldn't ever want to involve my family in something like this unless that was it and we were splitting up. Otherwise I would never hear the end of it.

queenofthecapitalwasteland Fri 01-Jul-11 15:52:21

Take time to make sure you're calm and think through what you want to say to him, write it down if you need to. Don't launch at him as soon as he's home (it's probably tempting) but he needs to understand how betrayed you feel and whether the wank mags are more important to him than your happiness and your DCs future relationship with him.

goodkate Fri 01-Jul-11 15:54:08

My feeling is that this is a big issue for you, but it may not be for others including your family. Therefore IT is really important for your own sake that you discuss this in a calm and rational way - men fear calm and rational women much more than a ranting one.

I think you need to arrange for your little ones to be out of the house or at least asleep in bed if you are concerned.

Remember this is about you and him only and not about anything else, it affects your relationship with him, you can't runaway because it won't go away. You must express your feelings as best you can and see how he responds, if he is as good as he says he is, deep down he'll be mortified.

goodkate Fri 01-Jul-11 15:56:10

By the way occasional arguments are no bad thing - it proves your human and if you show your DC that you can have an argument and then kiss and make up then thats another life lesson!

Indigojohn Fri 01-Jul-11 15:58:28

I think there are possibly two issues.

One being the use of porn and your feelings wrt that and the second being the secretive nature of his stash.

I would have no problem with porn use but would not be happy about him using it secretly especially if he was aware of your feelings surrounding the issue.

I would try and talk to him calmly though . It probably is really not a big deal to him, it often isn't to men.

goodkate Fri 01-Jul-11 16:05:23

changedchanged - I think all the advice on here has been good and I hope it helps Indigo had a good point - him using porn isn't a big deal to him - but you being offended hopefully will be a big deal to him.

Good luck - I'm sure you'll be OK.

omaoma Fri 01-Jul-11 16:07:16

your feelings are valid. I am going to reply using the information from another of your posts.
to give a personal point of view: i do believe that an individual's sexual fantasies are their own property. I also believe that the nature of sexual desire and its links to transgression in our culture mean that we often explore transgressive ideas in our fantasies and this can be accepted without eg becoming an apology for child abuse. somebody else's private sexual fantasies may well shock or disgust another person but that doesn't make them wrong or that they should censor them. For example, anal sex is par for the course for some couples, but is not an activity that others you find desirable or sexy. How we introduce our fantasies in to the real world and to our sexual partners does have to be handled carefully tho and clearly if they are in any way harmful or illegal there are further serious issues there.

i think there are several issues you are grappling with:
firstly, you have come across your husband's private sexual fantasies and they have shocked you because they are news to you and you do not share them. This doesn't mean he is wrong to have those fantasies. There is no evidence that your husband had forced them on you so he has respected your right to a private fantasy landscape and an agreed sex life. The question in return is: can you respect his right to a keep some contents of his mind private from you?

2) i am personally uneasy about the production and use of porn for ethical reasons. I think that is similar to how you feel. And I agree with another poster who said that because it is widely available (and because it is almost entirely aimed at empowering the male experience) it can become difficult for men to acknowledge porn is anything but a 'normal', useful part of life. It's so much part of our cultural scenery that it can seem weird to question it. It may be useful for both of you to explore how strongly you feel about the ethics of porn once you know a bit more about it and each other's responses to it. Could yours be a knee jerk reaction because of first point above and soften your views if you understood more about why he uses it and what it does for him? Or would he feel less comfortable with porn if he learnt more about a feminist or female-experience take on the production and effects of porn?

3) Some of the porn he was using seems to be on subjects that may be more obviously morally dubious than others ie, the idea of pre-legal sex could be seen as linked to/slippery slope to child abuse whereas anal sex is neither illegal nor ethically problematic (unless you are religious which you do not mention). This is worth exploring as a couple also - I'm not an expert on this area but you clearly need reassurance. See point above about transgression - MOST sexual fantasies are transgressive - think how many women fantasise about so-called 'rape' scenarios, and no it doesn't mean they want to be raped.

god this is long, sorry - but to finish. being kind and considerate isn't necessarily outside the venn diagram of having intense sexual fantasies. it doesn't mean he is jekyll and hyde. But Do seek reassurance, do persuade him to do this with you as you sound like a couple who deserve to retain trust in each other and not be harbouring horror and fear about how the other perceives you.

jenny60 Fri 01-Jul-11 16:09:22

Just wanted to offer my support again here changed. I am absolutely shock by some of what I've read on the other thread, especially the defence of Barelylegal. If anyone has the time to go over there to have a look, I'd appreciate it as I am beginning to think that I am going crazy.

If my DP had that stuff it would be a deal breaker I'm afraid. I certainly wouldn't want him near mr my DDs if I knew he got off on pictures which simulate children. Lots of people here will support you whatver you decide.

inigo I think you're one of the people the OP has come here to get away from so leave her alone

jenny60 Fri 01-Jul-11 16:10:52

And goodkate whther his using porn is not a big deal to him or not is not the point here. He knows his DW doesn't like it, yet he brings it into the house. That's not on.

He knows his DW doesn't like it, yet he brings it into the house. That's not on

Well, in all fairness, my DH does loads of things I dont like, and vice versa, but at the end of the day, no one owns anyone, we are our own person! If he shouldn't really bring them in the house as DW doesnt like them - he'll just leave them in the shed/garage etc etc if it was that simple

The key thing, well for me anyway, is that he has hidden them. I dont object to my DH looking at mags if that is what takes his fancy but I would object if he had hidden them from me.

I dont think OP should throw her dolls out the pram and leave, it would be silly to leave an otherwise good marriage (if it is) for this one thing but she does need to sit down with him, explain exactly how this makes her feel and find out how he feels, esp about that one magazine!!

I think indigo is right in the sense that to men it is just not a big deal that it can be to some women......I watched a documentary once about a woman who was having hormone treatment to become a male...she said as soon as they started injecting her with testosterone she was thinking about sex ALL the time, whereas before she had never given it a thought.

Not excusing his behavior, just like to see from all angles.

UnhappyLizzie Fri 01-Jul-11 17:00:28

jenny60 I can't believe what you've said there. Finding porn may be a dealbreaker for you, but it wouldn't be for lots of people. You seem to be implying that a man's own children might be in danger if he looked at something like BarelyLegal.

It's really irresponsible to post that on here when OP is so upset already. Your views are very extreme. BarelyLegal is not paedophilia, it's not child abuse, it's not child pornography. It's fantasy material and it is not illegal; it's tasteless but not perverted. There's a girls school near where I live and if I walk along the road there I can see ALL the guys in cars ogling the teenage girls. And it's the ones in uniform; they are all under sixteen.

Only way to stop it is castrating them all - because it's normal.

Not saying you are a prude OP, do sympathise, just trying to give you a perspective that might help you be a bit less upset.

I think a lot of the people on here won't help you, they will make you feel worse.

omaoma Fri 01-Jul-11 17:11:45

sorry just want to make it clear that when i say 'explore as a couple' certain subjects, i mean talk them through, get professional support etc.

worried it sounded liek i was suggesting you immediately start playing sex games...

jenny60 Fri 01-Jul-11 17:15:16

Yep, Unhappy your telling the OP that men near your school ogle teenage girls is perfectly normal and respectable will help. Well done. I think that's creepy too and if my DH ogled a 16 year old girl I would be disgusted with him.

I am not telling her to leave her DH and my views are not extreme. I'm just telling her that I understand why she is upset. I am validating her feelings and trying to give her some support in what appears to be a concerted effort to tell her hse's over-reacting - no matter how much it might upset or offend individual posters.

Am loving the idea that because something is 'fantasy material' it isn't offensive. If that were true, child porn would be legal too.

whomovedmychocolate Fri 01-Jul-11 17:18:12

I'm with you OP, I'd be horrified to find DH owned anything called 'Barely Legal'.

I can't give you advice because I've not been in that situation but you do need to talk to him. And I don't think you are going to get less angry if you leave it really. But start with your end in mind work out what you want him to do (I was suggest get them the hell out of the house and never bring porn home again is a good end point). But you need to think about what further things you want to discuss with him.

KRIKRI Fri 01-Jul-11 17:20:19

First off, I do think your response, your anger and disappointment, are completely valid. If your DH knows that you find porn hurtful, demeaning, politically/socially unacceptable, whatever your reason, but continues to use it, that imho is a betrayal, so you're dealing with genuine feelings arising from that.

If it is a big deal for you, it IS a big deal for the relationship. You shouldn't need to feel you have to "put up" with something your partner does that is hurtful to you, but sadly, I'm not surprised folks elsewhere have suggested that. If other people accuse you of being a spoilsport or a prude, that's their problem, not yours.

It doesn't sound like the feelings will just go away, so somehow, you'll need to talk with him. It may be that he isn't aware just how hurtful his actions are to you. If he's made aware, it's then for him to decide what's most important to him and no, I don't think being honest with him about what you feel is in any way unreasonable.

There's stuff on the web that may help to validate some of what you are feeling, maybe suggest what you can do to deal with it in your relationship. This is an American site, but I think it's got some useful resources. www.antipornmen.org/info-and-resources/anti-porn-general/ And although this video isn't just about porn, some of the comments about the industry are pretty sharp. www.womenssupportproject.co.uk/content/news/210,1,329/ProfitvsPleasure.html

Take care of yourself and try to be clear in your mind and heart. Best of luck.

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