As you can see from my previous posts, I have struggled in my current relationship with insecurity/control - largely because of my history of non-sexual relationships (including a very long one with someone who was gay) and the fact that I really love and feel something for this person and don't want to lose him. The good news is that most issues - insecurity with female friends, other attractions, figuring out what feels comfortable in the bedroom - have really resolved themselves over time. I have been able to be empathetic to his perspective, communicative about what bothers or me or how he can help me feel more secure, etc. I feel so much more secure than I did before and it's wonderful that when I am more trusting, he becomes more open and communicative. I've never had that interplay and I love it. Sexual interaction has also become significantly more intimate and we are both so much more vulnerable in the bedroom than I've ever thought possible. He also has revealed some very deep family secrets to me including some about his dad's sexual past.
The other thing worth noting is that I have been cutting out alcohol and cigarettes - persistent coping mechanisms of mine - in order to get a clearer brain.
However, I still feel guilty about all of the times I was irrational in talking about them or didn't express my emotions clearly or in a way that actually was honest. On some level, I'm scared that I have ruined my ability for him to take me seriously.
The other thing is that no matter how much I take strides toward self improvement, I cannot stop thinking about how much porn watching bothers me. It has come up a few times in our relationship - the first few times because I was surprised by its discovery (on his computer in recent items even though he had "private browsing" turned on, in a drawer of his where he asked me to look for something, and later on, on my computer at home while I was at work). After the last incident at my house, I brought it up to him and told him I was hurt but didn't judge him. I asked him not to watch it on my computer again even though in my heart, I wanted to ask him not to watch it. I told him I was worried about being one of those couples where that becomes a replacement. He told me "he didn't like watching it anyway" and that my pictures were a part of his experience. (I send him tons of pictures and videos of myself.) Since then, we haven't explicitly talked about it but it's come up when I was drunk in ways that weren't super direct and/or passive aggressive, which of course, I don't feel good about. I find myself thinking about whether he does it a lot
So far, in my brief sobriety, I just can't shake thoughts of him watching porn. I feel like while all of the other issues were directly arising from my past issues and feel more peacefully resolved within me now, I just don't know if I can be comfortable with porn watching. But then I think what if this is just my insecurity and control coming out in a new way? And even if it's something I have a right to talk to him about, how do I do it in a way that doesn't shame him, that doesn't make me a persistent nagger? I am torn between my desire to explore why I feel this way but my desire to not make waves because maybe over time this too I will be able to accept. Any help would be immensely appreciated.
Posts: 11 | From: Phoenix | Registered: Apr 2013
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You know, with the porn, I think at this point you've set all the limits that are sound for you to set, IMO. In other words, you've set a limit around it in your own space, and said how you feel about it. By all means, if you don't want to be involved with someone who views porn, you get to make that choice, but that ball would be in your court at this point. In other words, if this is a dealbreaker for you at this point, I'd say that it's then on you to figure out if you want to stay in this relationship or not.
If you can't live with it, you've got your answer. But if this relationship offers you a lot you value, though it happens to be with someone who uses porn -- including porn you make for them yourself -- you're probably not going to want to leave over this. Instead, this will be more about figuring out how to have this be something he looks at on his own time.
I do think, though, if you feel really not-okay about it, it does send a bit of a mixed message to make it for him yourself. Do you know what I mean? It just may be something you want to think more about, either per if it's really something you want to be doing given your feelings about porn, or if maybe the way you think about porn and how negative it is in some respects can't be tempered with how you feel about *some* porn, like the porn you have been making and sharing with him yourself. It also may be the issue is less about porn than it is about jealousy per other people he finds attractive, or maybe about issues you might have with him having parts of his sexuality or sexual life that are only his, or for him, and not for or about you?
But I'd say that when it comes to him, he's likely not the right person to explore these conflicted feelings about porn with, because I don't see how you can do that without putting pressure on him to feel differently than he does, if that makes sense.
-------------------- Heather Corinna, Executive Director & Founder, Scarleteen About Me • Get our book! Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. - Margaret Mead Posts: 67055 | From: An island near Seattle | Registered: May 2000
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