T O P I C R E V I E W
Member # 107860
posted 07-02-2013 07:08 PM
So me and my girlfriend have been going out for nearly 5 months now. All I can say is how amazing our relationship is. We are extremely close, understand one another and we both have the same outlook on life and the same ideals when it comes to a relationship. Even this early on, its hit me like lightening how much she means to me and that I have fallen in love with her. Ive never imagined a future with anyone before and never felt the need to, but now Im at a stage in my life where I want to focus on the future. She came into my life at the right time, and in all honesty has helped me become a better person. She is so supportive of me and has helped me through some rough times in regards to my health (I suffer from Colitis) - I honestly could not ask for a better girlfriend or relationship.
Everything about her and our relationship is perfect. But obviously, like all relationships, we have hit a bump in the road. This is a sensitive topic for anyone to discuss, its not exactly the most pleasant thing to talk about in general. So please bear with me. Last week, we were fooling around on my laptop and at some point I left the room. I have nothing to hide, absolutely nothing, but when I came back I felt as if she had found something that had disturbed her. Anyway, what she had found was a porn site that I had book marked. Before I go any further, I need to stress something. Im not making excuses for myself and yeah its a horrible thing to find. However, a couple of years ago I swapped from Firefox to Chrome because it was my belief that Chrome was better and faster. A couple of weeks ago I had to swap back because Chrome started going slow- so I reverted back to Firefox. My bookmarks did not carry over, so its not as if it was a recent bookmark. I had no idea it was there. I could tell she was disgusted. She sat and said how she felt sick and that it was extremely off putting. The thing is, I agreed with her and I told her about my whole reverting back to firefox after 2 years, but obviously that wasnt the point. The point was that it was there, still there after all these years. However, we managed to get through it and she apologised about the way she reacted 2 days ago. I thought that was the end of it. Then today, something else came up. She was flicking through my phone, in front of me. Im cool with it because I know she wasnt snooping. I showed her some pictures from my phone of something, I cant remember what. She continued looking at my phone, then fell silent. She had found porn on my internet history. I immediately felt sick. I could not believe this was happening again. I looked at the history, and it went back to before I even knew her. Again, I know thats not the point. I never go on the internet on my phone unless its facebook, twitter or to read news articles. I felt so low and disgusted at myself. I actually feel sick right now as Im typing this. I would be totally honest on this board because I know we dont come on this to judge one another but I seriously had no idea about any of these pages. I dont frequent those sites anymore at all. I felt helpless because anything I said didnt seem to get through. I agreed with everything she said and Im not proud of it at all, but its my past. She pointed out how it was still there and that the one on my laptop was bookmarked. I just cant get her to understand or trust me. I feel so guilty. I understand how low her self esteem is and this must have battered it even more. I cant express how horrible I feel about the whole matter. I tried to talk to her about it but it never got anywhere. Shes now being distant with me, telling me thats its okay, but I know what she is like (its gonna eat at her, shes a worrier). She says she still wants to be with me, but I cant help but feel as if Ive ruined everything. I understand why and it only happened 4-5 hours ago so I know she needs space. This time it feels as if she will break things off because I feel as if she thinks less of me or her view of me being this amazing boyfriend and person has been smashed to pieces. I keep apoligising and telling her how much she means to me. I seriously cannot lose her over something like this, but even though our relationship is pretty strong at this early stage, Im scared this will overshadow everything. I know she is just hurting right now, but she leaves for New York in a couple of days for a months holiday and I really just want this to be resolved before she leaves. I know it cant happen overnight and that I should give her space and time but Im absolutely petrified. Im scared that something from my past has killed my relationship. Im sorry for the length, I just really need some advice on where to go from here right now. Thanks for reading, I really appreciate it and any help you guys throw my way.
Member # 3
posted 07-02-2013 07:13 PM
Hey there, CitizenErased.
I want to make sure I'm understanding, because I feel like I'm missing something here. have you previously told her you do not use pornography? Or made some kind of agreement with her not to? Or is this about none of that having happened, and her assuming you didn't, and/or just not liking the specific kind of porn she saw, or that you've been someone who has used porn, or...? You say you feel horrible, which is some of what has me confused, because I'm not sure what it is you feel horrible about. I'm also not sure I understand why she's saying you "ruined everything," if there wasn't some kind of agreement around porn?
Member # 107860
posted 07-02-2013 07:34 PM
Hey, Heather. Thanks for the reply
No, it wasnt a subject that ever came up. I never felt the need to talk about it because its not a situation I have ever been in before. I partly didnt bring it up because I dont use pornography anymore. Well, she says she knows some people use pornography but what I took from the conversation was that she just didnt expect to see it on my laptop and that it is something she does not want to see. I can obviously understand that. Also, she never saw any of the porn, she just saw the site names and put the pieces together. Sorry Heather, I must have made a typo. She never said that I have ruined everything, what I meant was that I feel like I have ruined everything. This is down to the fact we settled the laptop situation and now another situation has arose because of what was on my phone. I feel horrible because she is feeling extremely low right now and its my fault. I just feel guilty.
Member # 3
posted 07-02-2013 08:14 PM
So, I think -- this is what I think, obviously you get to have your own opinions -- you're taking WAY too much on here. However she feels about pornography? Those are her feelings. If porn is an issue with her and her esteem? Also hers. You don't own her issues, just like she won't yours, and it's also not on us as partners to "protect" one another from our won stuff, if you follow me. Really, it's on us to protect ourselves if and when we need to, and then ask partners for help or support with whatever that is as is reasonable. By all means, if she doesn't want to date someone who has used or does use porn, she gets to make that choice, anyone does, but of course, then the onus is on her to ask about it. It sounds to me like this is really just something for the two of you to talk about, including what boundaries she might want around this. But you know, you can't miraculously know in advance how someone is going to react with something like this, and pornography, of all kinds of types (including things like romance novels, for instance) is something many people have used/looked at/read at one time or another, or do. So, when dating we often are going to find people we date enjoy or use some kind of pornography. That doesn't mean they did something wrong or are bad people, and everyone has their own wants, ethics and thoughts around this. We all also, again, certainly can choose not to date anyone who does or has used porn, but again, we've got to put that out there pretty soon to the start, then, you know? Mostly, though, this sounds a lot like someone just stumbling into someone's private stuff on accident, where everyone is uncomfortable. That happens when we open up more of our lives and our stuff to someone. The answer is just usually to talk about it, including talking about what we want and need if and when one or both of us feels uncomfortable, or doesn't like what we find. So, you can tell her that as of now, you don't currently look at porn. If that's something you feel like you don't want to do again or won't, you can put that out there. If she wants an agreement around it, you two can talk about that and both work out if whatever agreements those are work for both of you. You can also ask what she needs around this, and say what you do. (Like, I'm hearing what sounds like you really needing to hear she doesn't think you're a horrible person who has ruined something you really value, for instance.) Okay?
Member # 107860
posted 07-02-2013 08:34 PM
You are completely right Heather.
The way I see it, is that is my business what I done in the past. Both our pasts have came up in numerous conversations, and we have both went through similar ordeals. With that, we are pretty similar so we are able to talk openly about things - so not to repeat previous mistakes. I just never thought to bring this up, especially when its not something I partake in anymore. I guess it is a bit of a touchy subject for some people. This is new to me, talking about this subject with my partner, but I did make it clear to her that I dont use it anymore. I just feel as if she doesnt believe me. I can understand she is upset though and obviously needs time to calm - its just hard for me to see her like this. I have said all I feel I can say on the matter to her. I have told her that all of those sites were from my past, that I do not use pornography anymore and that more importantly, all I want is her. I dont feel the need for pornography, never have, it was not something I frequented a lot in the first place. Sorry, Im ranting. Iam nothing but open and honest with her. I had no problem with her being on my laptop/phone. I never felt as if I had anything to hide (obviously I didnt think about the sites). I think she needs time to calm down then I will speak to her about it. Right now she is saying she doesnt want to talk about it. I just dont want to leave this for it to creep up again. All of your advice has been fantastic and Im really grateful. Thank you Heather
Member # 3
posted 07-02-2013 08:40 PM
I'm in agreement with you. It really sounds like you've done all you can do here. Now all you can do is let her take care of herself, sort out her own thoughts and feelings, talk about it if and when she wants to again -- or when you feel it just needs to be sorted, if that just never seems to happen -- and just keep being the overall awesome partner I'm sure that you are, and see where things go from there. I hear you, though, on something I think you're feeling: it can be tough the first time something about us or our lives touches a nerve -- and not in the good way -- with someone we care about, and who we really like being thought well of by. I tend to chalk it up to one of the deals of just being real with someone, being who we are, and getting close. But that still doesn't make it any easier.