Pornography use does not necessarily mean that your partner no longer loves you, or that he or she no longer finds you attractive.

Remember Tiger Woods’ wife, the gorgeous blond supermodel?  Remember Sandra Bullock, one of America’s most adored actresses?  They were both very beautiful, vibrant, successful women, and their husbands still cheated, repeatedly.  Clearly, this infidelity had nothing to do with either woman’s attractiveness; your spouse’s infidelity has nothing to do with your attractiveness, either.

Pornography addition doesn’t work that way.  Porn use of this kind is self-centered in the most literal sense.  No aspect of this behavior is about you.  It is not about hurting your feelings, or considering your feelings at all.  It is not about your appearance, your performance, or your flaws (either real or imagined).  It is all about your partner’s urge for quick, easy gratification, and in the grip of that urge, he or she sees nothing else- including you.

This is problematic, obviously, because people in relationships simply can’t think only of themselves.  Your partner’s pornography use affects you profoundly, so even though your partner was not thinking of you either positively or negatively when it started, he or she has to think of you now.  It has to stop.

It is very important for you to remember that your partner is the one with the problem- not you.  You are okay.  This is not your fault.  You did not cause this.  You did not “fail to prevent this”.

Unfortunately, even in the initial stages, addicts often don’t respond constructively to even the most loving and reasonable confrontation.  (In all fairness, although this is a common pattern for addicts, it’s common enough in its own way for most of the rest of us, too; nobody likes facing guilt, shame, and accusation.)  Deflection, in which the person being confronted tries to shift blame and attention to you, is a common reaction.  Your partner may respond to your confrontation about his or her porn by making an angry comment about your appearance, your weight, your performance, or some other fault.  Don’t take these to heart.

If our community here at Feed the Right Wolf is any indication, many porn addicts do love their spouses, do find them attractive, and do care deeply about the future of the marriage.  They just have to pull away from the pornography long enough to see what’s really happening around them. Getting there can be a long and difficult process, but all of us here wish you and your partner the best, and our community is here with information, advice, understanding, and support.


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