Kara’s Story–My Boyfriend Is A Porn Addict

Dear JoAnn,

I don’t even know where to begin. I met my boyfriend almost 12 years ago, soon after I had graduated high school. We started dating almost 3 months after first meeting each other. I thought things were going good between us, until I found out he was masturbating all the time, even though we were having sex at least 1x a day if not 2x. I was young, only 19 and I thought, “Well, I guess all guys do it, no big deal.” I think he is a Porn Addict.

Throughout the years, I have tried to ignore it. A LOT of the time I ended up walking in on him with his pants down or touching himself while viewing porn. I always tried to blame myself. I wasn’t thin enough, I didn’t have the small boobs or body size that he apparently fantasized about. I didn’t have sex with other women, etc… I tried to define myself by his values, and only hurting myself in the end.

We have lived together for most of this time. He started hiding the porn from me, denying it, placing the blame on me. Some of the lines he used are: “Your sex drive is too high, it turns me off when you ask for sex.” – When asked about why it is so long between sex his answer was, “Been there, done that.” And I sat there and took it. I have asked him to quit numerous times, but I never truly trusted him.

For the majority of these past twelve years I have been dealing with a sexual drought. Again I blamed something I did on it.

Fast forward to this spring. I am blaming myself at this time, I have no job, I am completely dependent on him, and I am failing at school, simply because I am exhausted and depressed all the time. I had gained a lot of weight through a birth control medicine, and I finally decided that I need to do something to get it off.

I started an exercise program to lose the weight, but yet he gets mad at me for using gas in the truck to drive to this program, saying I am being selfish and I always do what I want. I call one night and end up leaving a message on his cell that I am on my way home. I did this every night. I try calling again as I got closer to home. I end up getting home, opening the front door, and there he is on the computer in the middle of masturbating.

All I can feel is shock, and betrayal. We had started having sex again at least once a week a few weeks prior to this incident. He said he was only looking at porn to get himself in the mood and that he hadn’t done this for awhile. I again tried to ignore the pain and heartbreak. I was so mad I just told him to do whatever he needed to do.

A week later as I sat thinking after he left for work, I realized that it is NOT my fault. I shouldn’t have my needs put to the side, just so he can get satisfaction. My feelings matter as well! I started to do some laundry and I found all the shirts he was using to clean up. I still get that stomach drop sick feeling every time I think about it.

I looked up info online about sex addiction and I wrote him a very long letter that read like a journal entry. I also moved my stuff into the spare bedroom. I gave him an ultimatum. It was either our relationship or his pornography and masturbation. I took a long walk that morning before he came home. He later found me, and that evening told me that he would chose me and that he would work on things. I told him he would need to be completely honest with me, even if I don’t ask it, he needs to tell me when he messes up, and he agreed. I never felt so happy as that night.

Things have been going good, the sexual drought ended… except that I ended up feeling like I was replacing his porn and masturbation. I even let myself believe in him and trust him by moving back to his room.

These past two weeks, something has felt off. The bathroom door is locked when he takes a shower, which was one of the conditions I placed around learning to trust him again. He was starting to get evasive again. There was no sex. This past Thursday (7/21/11) I woke up and decided to peek out into the living room. There he was in front of the computer watching a video of two “girls” and touching himself.

I went outside and came back in and he didn’t see me or hear me, he was so focused. I waited in the room for about 5 minutes, and I decided that I had enough, I shouldn’t be trapped in the bedroom while he pleasured himself. I walked to the door again, and watched him for about a minute, even though my heart and stomach decided that the world had fell out from beneath my feet and I was falling through eternity.

I asked him if he was almost done so that I could actually come out of the bedroom. He jumped about a foot in the air and closed the porn super quick. I told him to not bother, I had already seen enough, that I had been watching him. He tried to tell me that he loved me, and all that other garbage. I have just decided to ignore it and act like he isn’t even uttering such stupid lip service to me.

I am cordial to him, but I really am not feeling it for him right now. My problem is this: Every single time I want to break it off, he begs and pleads with me. (I really don’t believe it, even if I really want to.)

My situation is such that if I leave, I will be homeless. I have no car, no job, and no other family/friends I can depend on. What can I do to keep things civil between us while still living in the same house, but make it clear to him that there are consequences to his actions. I am so lost right now! Please any advice would be helpful!
Sincerely,
Kara

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Responses

  1. Dear Kara,

    How do you know when a porn addict is lying?

    When his lips are moving.

    If you are young and you have your entire life ahead of you……………LEAVE!!!!!!!!!!! FOR THE LOVE OF GOD LEAVE!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This “man” (man-child, really) will give you nothing but heartache and pain. He will never be your emotional equal. He is stuck in perpetual, self-centered childhood. Unless and until he decides to give this up for himself, there is nothing you can do to him or for him to make him give it up. He’ll lie, as he already has, and tell you what you want to hear, but none of it will be real…ever…until he decides for himself that he wants to give it up.

    I know this realization is painful. But it’s much better to face the reality now, while you are young and can find a real man with whom to share your life, than to find this late in life, when you are pushing 50, and have wasted the best years of your life trying to make the lies work. You have to be strong now to save yourself decades of heartache later.

    Please, leave. For the love of God, leave. The child you are living with has more issues than you can fathom right now. It will take decades and thousands in therapy bills to fix him, and even then, there are no guarantees.

    LEAVE!

    My best, Betty

  2. Hi Kara,
    I’m with Betty on this one. I left about 7 mos ago and I have never felt happier. That being said, it’s easy for me to say that you need to go but it sounds like you haven’t much resources. There are options but they will be longer term. If you want to be free of this situation (and others like it), you’ll need to do several things.

    I will say that probably the number one thing you need to do and it’s likely the hardest is to take the focus off him. You cannot control an addiction for him. In my situation, we went to counseling but to no avail. This porn addiction had been going on since he was about 11 years old. Pointless to even try; he has to have the will to quit and it has absolutely NOTHING to do with you, no matter how much he tries to shove off responsibility on you.

    I’m not sure if you are asking for practical advice or strictly emotional support but I’m happy to give you some direction if you wish. Let me know.

  3. first you have to find strength and confidence in yourself as a strong individual who can take care of herself. Only you can do what’s right for you. Then find a job. Any job. This will give you freedom and more confidence. Next make a list of what you expect from your husband… and list what consequences there will be if he breaks those expectations. Give him the list. If he’s willing to follow it then you be ready for “when” not “if” you have to enforce such rules. These consequences need to grow in severity for each time he acts out. You’re not dealing with an adult remember, you’re dealing with a selfish child-man.

    If he’s not willing to follow your list of needs… then start planning now. You can find a job and a roomate somewhere. And if it comes to it you can find a divorce lawyer. Don’t listen to his sweet talk. Oh yes… they mean every word they say – for all of about the two minutes it takes to get you off their back and their heads back into their addictions. Promises mean nothing from a sex addict. Until you see ACTION in a positive direction then you protect your interests and your future.

  4. I made an error in the original title of this story, so I have changed it. Kara is not married, so this man is her boyfriend not her husband. I apologize for the error.

  5. Thank you for all of your responses. I am still somewhat in shock, even though I have known for a very long time that this has been going on, ( I just didn’t have a clue as to how bad it was!). I bought JoAnn’s e-books and I am working on my boundaries right now, but first I really have to take a long look at what my morals and core values really are. I have been buried in so much manure for so long, that finding myself is going to take awhile. I know it doesn’t help that my parents were verbally and physically abusive when I was younger, but I can’t blame them for all of my troubles now. I think I need to change how I perceive the world, and how I think the world perceives me before I can truly start becoming the person that I know I can be, and that I want to be. If you think you are the lowest animal on the totem pole, you will be. If you think you are the eagle that tops it, you might be. But I would rather be the main beam of strength that all the different faces are carved from. I think this semester I will take a break from school and try to work the the student loans department to put off when my loans are due. I think I need to get some counseling and improve my self-esteem and my self-respect before I try school again. I tried to do what I wanted to do, but it is too difficult when nobody believes in your capabilities but yourself, and even then you start to doubt yourself and wonder if maybe they are right. NOW I know they are wrong! I just have to prove it to myself. Best wishes to all of you on your continued recovery! Sincerely ~ Kara

  6. A comment from a man has been deleted.

    Comments from men or Sex Addicts will always be removed. There are more than enough websites for Sex Addicts. This site is to help women heal from the trauma of discovery. We do not care to engage in any type of dialogue with a Sex Addict.

  7. i have been with my boyfriend and finally got him to stop a year ago and i still hate him and make him feel guilty im afraid ill never forgive him and he cant give me a straight answer as to why he did it and worst of all all of his friends told him im out of his league so what right does he have to technically cheat on me!..trust me leave him because you will never forgive him for it

  8. Well it’s. A couple of years since this was posted so I’d be curious to know what happened. Sadly I am over 50 and have just learned my partner of 17 years has been doing the same thing for all this time. I knew our sex life wasn’t normal, I thought he was shy and under sexed although I did know in my heart something was wrong. In some ways I was relieved it was ports and not a peeping tom or something but it was the type of porn that upset me most as it was really derogatory to women (though most porn is isn’t it). I work with teens so when I saw he was looking at sites called 18 and abused I felt really physically sick. To think I’d had sex with this man who I’d loved and respected only to find out he had a secret life. Over the years I have developed a gambling problem partly due to my loneliness and isolation In a loveless relationship. Now he says he’s glad I know! That he wont do it again, that it’s a weight off his shoulders. That’s all great for him but I feel cheated, deceived and alone.ive never been so let down by someone. I tried to give him everything and he’s left me with nothing. I have a good job and family thankfully. I’ve sent him and my son on a month holiday so I can think things over. I really want to have an affair becuase I want some fun and justice. Ive been so lonely inthe years with him and it’s all been for a big lie! I know deep in my heart I will leave when my son finishes school in two years time. I really don’t need this in my life. Now when I look at him I see a dirty old man, even when I look back at past photos of him I see a creep now when I used to think the world of him. My son has young female friends who visit us and it freaks me out to think they’re the same age as those girls in the porn, what is my man thinking when he looks at them, it really makes me feel sick. I don’t know if I’ll ever be the same now. I dated a guy who was into porn mags when I was 24 and I left him because it was unbearable after a while. What a sad world we live in when men think this is normal and ok. It’s a form of abuse of women and I’m saddened to think my son has to try and survive in this disgusting environment.

  9. My boyfriend is a porn addict, he’d rather masturbate to porn than have sex with me. It’s very hurtful. He seems to care less about pleasing me, it’s all about him. I feel lonely and hurt. Of course, I dont look like those women. I’m so lost, I don’t know what to do.

    1. Hello,

      Some of these posts are old but I still would like to respond. First, it is horrible that we are all here. None of us deserve this!!!! I am responding to this because I am in the same place or close. I have a boyfriend which I feel that many people believe, your not married just leave and get over it. Very easy. Well I am 45 years old divorced for almost 2yrs from 20yr marriage and an afair. I met this guy and have been him for over 2yrs where I really thought this is the guy, love with all my heart. I found out first that he was addicted to porn, that was horrible enough. But there is more. Not long after I found that out we add in a Sex addiction. He is in recovery and doing well. However I am not. I have tried a support group and I did not feel connected with anyone in the group but also was not really getting anything from it. Everyone says you need support including my BF but it is hard because not many people you can share this with. I am lost and struggling. I am going to counseling which is costing a lot and he tells me to get support. But how do I find it that I don’t have to pay for. How do I find it? I am lost!!! I know how you feel Evelyn.

      1. Good help, whether it is for a broken leg, an absessed tooth or the trauma of discovering sex addiction in your relationship costs money. I have kept the price of 24/7 support at the Sisterhood of Support as low as I possibly can. Please check it out.