My husband and I have always had conflicts due to his online porn usage. He's also had many online profiles with which he participated in web cam acts and communicated with others who engaged in them with him.
I've said I'm uncomfortable this; he's said he can give it up… later, I found more evidence of it, and that much of his communication is with other men, not just women.
After his latest promise to stop, I discovered he'd been looking at sites with want ads for "casual encounters" - mostly men seeking other men.
We've been to counselling, both marital and personal. He wasn't able to determine whether his behaviour is a gay or bi-curious issue, and I'm uncomfortable moving forward based only his saying he won't do this again, and he's proud that he's stopped.
We have two small children and the pressure on me to "not break up the family" is enormous.
Omit the guilt from your decisions about your future together, because you BOTH have a responsibility to try to keep your family together, and his behaviour has contributed greatly to this current turning point.
However, the father of your children does deserve another chance at holding onto the marriage, once he's been through counselling and insists he's stopped seeking sexual stimulation and encounters from others.
Trust him, but insist that he continues with individual counselling until he understands the source of his behaviour, and how to best deal with it. He may need to change therapists to get the right help.
Once he's more aware of his own needs, you two need to discuss options for the future openly and honestly.
My wife plans to travel to her hometown to go to her 10th high school reunion; I'm against it, and we're fighting. I can't go along because we have three kids and taking us all on a family trip would be too costly.
So I'm going to be stuck here, knowing she'll be seeing her high-school sweetheart (they were together for six years). She says she's not going because of him, yet she's been shopping for new clothes, got a new haircut, etc.
She gets mad at me for remarks about this, and saying she shouldn't go, but isn't a man supposed to protect his marriage?
The best way to protect a marriage is through loving trust, especially when there's no real evidence that anything else is going on (just your unfounded suspicions).
The build-up to high-school reunions is commonly filled with former classmates "cleaning up" to show they're doing well – everything from foolish crash diets to near-makeovers – lest anyone think otherwise.
By showing mistrust (a cover for jealousy), you're pushing your wife away unjustly, just when she most needs your support. Show her your appreciation, for how she looks and what she means to you, as she is. It'll be the cloak of pride she wears best, when she sees her old pals, including her ex.
My friend is always flashing her latest purchase of jewellery and expensive purses at me, and bragging about their costs, when she knows I can't afford such luxuries.
Am I in the right to tell her that I find her excessive spending offensive?
- Glitzed Out
No. Talk to your friend gently about your differences in circumstances; if she shows no sensitivity, then she's not a great pal for you. But she's entitled to spend as she chooses.
My son and my nephew aren't speaking; they grew up close, but chose different paths. My son's married, has a child, and decent job; my nephew smoked a lot of dope, didn't finish school, only works part-time, and has no partner.
There was a misunderstanding, harsh words, and now my nephew won't come to family functions and his parents blame my son.
What can I do?
Parents are not responsible for their adult children's fights, and mostly, should NOT get involved.
However, you can talk to your son about how he thinks the family rift can ever be resolved. Do this over time, if the exchanges were too recent and too raw, or if he's currently unwilling to deal with the situation.
Objectively, he's clearly the one who's in the more fortunate position. He can afford to be generous of spirit, and eventually try to re-connect, even minimally, for family's sake...
Tip of the day:
When one partner’s watching porn includes repeated efforts at cheating, virtually and real, the risk to marriage is huge.