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Rebuild Your Marriage 7 minute read

Why Your Husband Looks at Women Online (And What to Do About It)

Last Updated: April 18, 2023

Why would your husband look at another woman, whether online or in real life? From billboards to sex flicks to websites and chat rooms, opportunities are rampant. And it’s as easy as “sexting” pictures of oneself and others. The format matters little. The results are the same: devastation. Because it’s easily accessible in secret, it can be a very private sin, but the result is a very large explosion!

The secrecy surely magnifies the betrayal, anger, and horror a wife feels when she discovers her husband looks at other women online. She may have known he used to do this but believed he lived in victory. Or she may have been clueless about his habit and feels duped by him. Still, she knows it is not “normal” and feels violated, exposed in shame that the man she trusted has taken what was sacred between them and viewed other women and other acts in violation of their sacred covenant of marriage. It is among the worst betrayals!

The wife’s biggest pain is that porn is a fantasy hidden away in his mind. It can’t be stopped unless he chooses. A wife can’t compete with a fantasy. She loses faith that their intimacy is real—it may just be a part of his fantasy about someone else he’s viewed. If she withdraws, he may use that as an excuse to keep looking at other women. If she gives, she may feel used, not loved.

It feels like a no-win.

Update From the Editor

Why Your Husband Is Looking at Other Women Online

What could bring your husband to look at another woman when he claims to love you? Is he just lying? Or is there something more complicated to his sin?

He may not believe it’s wrong.

The Bible clearly teaches that looking at a person with lust involves the same root sin as acting out sexually (Matthew 5:28). However, many Christians today are confused about sexual sin, lust, and pornography. According to a recent Barna survey, only one in three Christians reported feeling guilty when they watched pornography, and 39% said they were comfortable with how much pornography they watched.

If your husband is (or if you are!) on the fence about whether or not porn is bad, check out our article, Is Porn Bad?: 10 Things to Consider Before Watching.

He may not understand how hurtful it is.

Even if he believes it’s wrong to look at other women online, your husband may not understand how this hurts you and damages your relationship. For many, watching pornography is a private, personal habit, and they don’t understand how it affects other people in their lives. Men in particular often compartmentalize this part of their life, and often do not understand how looking at other women might affect the woman they truly care about.

For more, see Why Does My Husband Look at Porn and Say He Loves Me?

He might be struggling with a pornography addiction.

Many men know that porn is wrong; they hate that it hurts their loved ones, and they want desperately to quit—but they’re addicted. If your husband is addicted to porn, he’s still responsible for his actions, and it’s still sin. But an addict may be trapped by his sin even though he hates it.

What does it mean to be addicted to porn? As with drug and alcohol addiction, many people become conditioned over time to crave pornography and rely on it as a form of self-medication. If someone is addicted, this likely goes back many years to a formative experience with pornography.

10 Signs of Porn Addiction: Do these describe your husband?

His sin isn’t about you.

If your husband is looking at other women online, then it hurts you like nobody else. It may feel like a personal attack. It’s important to remember that despite this, his sin is not about you. Many men blame their wives for their wandering eyes, but this is false! His choice to look at other women is not your fault, and he will need to accept responsibility for how his actions are hurting you.

See 5 Reasons Why Guys Watch Porn.

7 Steps to Take When Your Husband Looks at Other Women

So what is a Christian wife to do when she discovers her husband is looking at other females online?

1. Listen objectively.

Before passing judgment or reacting in anger or disappointment, listen as objectively as you can. Don’t jump to conclusions. Listen with discernment to be sure you have the facts. Is his story consistent with what you know? Listen carefully (Proverbs 18:13).

2. Start the conversation between the two of you.

The discussion begins privately between the two of you (Matthew 18:15). Try to understand his depth of involvement, but it is rare to get the whole story the first time. God didn’t get it straight from Adam and Eve, and your husband isn’t likely to respond much better without help.

But a good discussion is two-way, so ask him to listen to how you are feeling and how his sin affects your marriage and also his relationship with the Lord. Appeal to him to get help.

If he refuses, Matthew 18:16-17 says to involve help. Be discerning about whom you choose to involve, and keep the circle small. Don’t run to others who are not a part of the problem or a part of the solution. That includes other family members. Gossip is destructive, even if it is true.

3. Evaluate his attitude toward his sin.

Is his heart attitude toward his sin one of repentance or excuses and justification? Anger indicates a lack of repentance. Worldly sorrow feels bad that he got caught. Godly sorrow produces the fruit of repentance, which is to change. Pray that he will come to a place of true godly sorrow (2 Corinthians 7:10).

But what if he doesn’t want help? Neither did the Prodigal Son initially. Keep praying and trusting God, and get help for yourself!

It is easy to focus on his sin, but you must choose to focus on your faithful Lord instead, and on your own growth through this difficult trial (James 1:2-4). Your husband’s desire for pornography is not about you—though every wife I’ve counseled initially believed she should have been enough for him and that it is somehow her fault. It is not! He chose to sin.

4. Encourage him to find another trusted man to talk with.

He will need people who can listen with compassion and humility, and who know we all are candidates to sin (Galatians 6:1-5). God has given you permission to involve those who can help! The truth will come easier when a pastor, counselor, or friend listens and then guides him into accountability in love, not in shame or anger, because love unifies and encourages (James 1:19-20). The goal is restoration.

5. Determine what kind of help you both need.

The depth of involvement that comes out of these discussions will determine the kind of help you need. Will a men’s accountability group and installing Covenant Eyes be enough? Perhaps for some men, yes. Godly sorrow produces change! Others will need more intense individual counseling with godly men who can unpack perhaps years of wrong thinking and help them develop a lifestyle of self-control in moral purity.

Wives often do not make good counselors or accountability partners for their husbands, but function best in the God-given roles to support, encourage, and pray for their husband’s growth in sanctification. (Learn more about the pros and cons of spouses as accountability partners.)

In fact, you as the wife will need your own counselor and encouragement as you go through this trial! Choose a counselor that will keep you pointed vertically and that will use Scripture to teach, comfort, and guide you through this difficult time in your marriage. As each of you focus on your own growth and sanctification, in time you will unify into that three-fold cord that is not easily broken (Ecclesiastes 4:12).

6. Model grace and mercy.

God the Father so graciously bestows grace and mercy on each of us when we sin and repent, and we should model this too. Forgiveness comes with true repentance and change; it is choosing to model after the way God forgives us. Rebuilding trust is the process that takes more time, observing his accountability, faithfulness, and consistency. But trust first begins vertically: trusting God even when you fear a future fraught with anxiety, with or without him. Going vertical strengthens you to face your anxieties and disappointments, and to choose forgiveness when there are no guarantees.

Related: 10 Things Forgiveness Is Not

7. Work on your communication and relationship as a couple.

After he is growing in his vertical relationship with the Lord, it is time to evaluate the horizontal in every sphere. When a crisis in a marriage becomes a stepping stone to greater growth and intimacy, it strengthens the relationship and builds a platform for ministry to other couples in crisis.

Comments on: Why Your Husband Looks at Women Online (And What to Do About It)
  1. stella AT

    Will not mind articles sent to my inbox

    • Lisa Eldred

      If you look in the upper right corner of the sidebar on this post, you should see a form field where you can enter your e-mail address and subscribe.

    • Carissa

      I’m sorry but I truly believe this is just something men and women will never get peace with. My husband was looking at naked girls online since college and I gave hm love, support, and Godly grace throughout and yet I just caught him looking at half naked ladies AGAIN online. And I wasn’t even looking for it. So that being said, sexual images/videos are everywhere and temptation is everywhere. Just be ready to deal with it the next time they slip up and pray for peace. Dear God I am.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Carissa. Well, it’s a tough problem to be sure! Sexual images are absolutely everywhere these days. However, I think it is possible to get to a healthy place with this issue, when people are willing to take responsibility for themselves and do the work. We don’t have to accept unhealthy behavior as normal, either in ourselves or other people. You might like to check out our free download, Hope After Porn, in which several women talk about the road to recovery in their marriages. Have a look and let me know what you think! Kay

    • Jessie

      I’ve caught my husband looking at porn several times as well as pictures of different girls doing scandalous things probably on a weekly to bi-weekly basis. The thing is that he doesn’t know that I know he looks at the previously mentioned content and I have tried to confront him about it but he denies denies denies. I’m getting tired of living this way, what is the best way to confront/ask him about it? What should I do if he lies?

    • Kay Bruner

      I would say, try to avoid the whole confront/deny dynamic. If you’re able to collect some evidence, that could be helpful. As calmly as you can, say that you’ve found these things a number of times, and show the evidence you’ve discovered. Be ready with the plan of action you would like to see implemented: installing Covenant Eyes, getting accountability in place, etc. You might try saying something like, “However this gets into our house, by accident or on purpose, it’s not healthy for our marriage and we need to work together to keep it out.”

    • Erica Lewis

      My husband and I will be married 5 years in September. I knew about this issue with porn while we were dating, but I never thought he would bring this into our marriage. I found him browsing pictures of women on Facebook our first week of marriage. I would forgive him, and then every so often look through his phone to find porn in the history. He would also have women friends he would chat with on Facebook, but the messages would be deleted when I got to them. a few months ago, I found covenant eyes, and approached him about enabling it on his phone. He didn’t want to. I told him that he had to tell me every time he “messed up” if he wasn’t going to have some accountability. I was hurting and depressed, waiting for the next slip up. The first time he told me was in a text message that I found when I first woke up. He said, “I messed up last night, and I have repented before God, I love you and I’m sorry.” I then fell the floor crying, and I wanted to cut my wrists. I have small children, so I thought better of it and just went to him, asleep in bed, and told him I was leaving for a while, and he would have to watch the kids. I went to the park and screamed and cried and walked around by the river. I knew we needed counseling at that moment. I also knew I couldn’t risk hurting myself over this, and I wanted him to leave. When I came back, I wanted to talk about it, and I was crying and yelling, and he was defensive. I told him at that moment that he needed to go stay with his friends for a while. He then got scared and softened his tone. We stopped talking and I took the kids to a birthday party, then dropped them off with their grandma because I was in no condition to care for them. When I came home my husband was shaking and his voice was cracking, and he held my hand and told me that he would install an app called “secure teen”. He has had this app since May. I had the password and was able to log in to see if he trying to look at porn. I did not tell him this. And I wrestled with God about it, because I felt that I shouldn’t be snooping. Well, I went ahead and looked on Friday. I saw that he has been browsing Craigslist casual encounters w4w (women for women) to see naked pictures of women, because Secure Teen wouldn’t block that. I didn’t say anything, but I put on the blocked list so he couldn’t see that anymore. Friday night we went to bed, and he said he wasn’t tired, and he would go watch a movie. I went to sleep. Saturday morning I checked Secure Teen and saw that the same time he left me in bed, he went to look at Craigslist, but it was blocked. I went to him and told him that I did block it for him. And I was upset that as soon as he left me in bed, he went to look at girls on Craigslist. He was defensive and made me tell him the password to uninstall the app from his phone. I told him that my trust is shattered and I want him to leave. But he wouldn’t go. And I broke down crying. He said no man can deal with this, and most men look at porn, and it’s his personal struggle and I have nothing to do with it. He said that if my trust is broken, then that is between me and God. I only hurt myself when I look through his things. He said he is trying to stop but it is something he will always deal with and I need to accept that and stop trying to control him. He said he is not a child and will not be monitored as such. I kept crying and ended up apologizing to him like I always do. But now I’m left in a turmoil of pain. I have no way of knowing if he is looking at porn with the web open to him. He does not feel like he needs to rebuild my trust. He isn’t sorry because he doesn’t think it’s cheating. He thinks it is only an offense to God and not me. He doesn’t think it affects our marriage. I tell him that I always know when he is looking at porn because I can feel the distance. i don’t know if he is thinking of me when we have sex, or those girls he looks at. I also feel that God wants me not to snoop, and God wants me to trust my husband and pray for him. How can I trust him? I don’t understand? I need help and healing and I’m all alone. My heart has been broken. When I am with him when he is home, I am happy. But if I have to leave the house (he falls when he is left alone at home) or when he goes to work, I am a wreck. I am obsessing about this and he seems fine. I don’t know what to do.

    • Kay Bruner

      Erica, I am so sorry for the pain you’re enduring right now. First of all, it sounds like you’ve taken more responsibility for his porn habit than he has; if he’s really going to recover, he has to take responsibility for himself. Right now it sounds like he’s justified all this in his own mind so that he doesn’t have to deal with it.

      I think what you say here about feeling that God wants you not to snoop is probably a healthy way to go. Turn your attention away from his behavior, and take responsibility for yourself instead. Consider what healthy boundaries will look like for you, and stick to them.

      I want you to know that it’s normal to feel bad when something like this happens in a marriage. In fact, many women meet the criteria for PTSD in a situation like this, and it sounds like you’re experiencing some of that, with the anxiety when he’s away from you. It does impact women! Greatly! This is not what we agreed to in marriage, and the vows to love, honor, and cherish are being constantly broken by behavior that rips the emotional intimacy out of the marriage. It’s normal to feel badly about this.

      The way you can take responsibility for yourself in this is, first of all, find help to deal with your emotional pain. Find a safe place to process this. A personal counselor could help. A group might be another good place: Celebrate Recovery, S Anon, Pure Desire, xxxChurch–those are all places to check for support.

      The second really important thing is to consider your boundaries. Here’s an article on boundaries. You might also appreciate our free download, Hope After Porn.

      Finally, let me say that trust is earned by trustworthy behavior. In this particular situation, I think it would be unwise to trust that your husband is not looking at porn. I think he’s told you clearly that he’s going to keep on doing that right now. I think the person you CAN trust in this is God. Whatever happens with your husband, whatever choices he makes, God loves you and provides healing for you, no matter what.

      Reach out for help today! Start working on your own healing, regardless of what your husband chooses to do. Blessings, Kay

    • Anonymous

      Or just stand up for yourself and leave him.

    • I’ve spoken to my husband about such things, but like other men he denies, denies. When I confront him calmly he blames it on the phone that its acting up and that it’s a virus but I’m not dumb clearly he subscribed to it he raises his voice and I say why are you raising your voice it’s just a question. This is not the first time I have been married for 3 yrs have been together for 10 I lost my virginity to him. I sometimes think because he never had the chance to be with someone else . I do want to give up but I care and love him to much to do so. I know that he is never going to stop . He doesn’t want to go anywhere his lazy doesn’t even want to go the park but he wants me to want to have sex yes sometimes I deny it to him because I work and go to school I’m tired he hair stays home. Plus I have lost interest in sex before I would make time for it now I just want to avoid it even more after I found he looks at girls online.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey there. I’m so sorry for the pain you’re experiencing in your marriage right now. It’s so sad when a husband denies reality and refuses to take responsibility for himself. First of all, let me say that his porn use is NOT because he never had the chance to be iwth anyone else. Porn is everywhere these days, and it’s so easy to fall into the habit. The real question is, what does he do with that habit? Is he willing to take responsibility for his choices, and work on being healthy? Is he able to see the impact on you and on the relationship?

      It sounds like right now he’s not willing to be responsible, he’s not willing to see how this impacts you. Also, porn impacts him greatly as well. Here’s a link to Your Brain on Porn that explains the biological side of porn use.

      I’d recommend that you find some support for yourself. Maybe a group like Celebrate Recovery, S Anon, or online at xxxChurch. Whatever your husband chooses, make sure that you are getting help and support for you.

      Think about what healthy boundaries will look like for you in this relationship. Here and here are links to articles on that.

      Blessings, Kay

    • Erin

      Nice to know I’m not alone. My spouse looks up porn at least more than once a week. It bothers me, I’ve expressed this to him, told him it really makes me feel insecure. I give him love and respect and not to mention he knows he can get it at home so why look up nasty women when there’s a loyal one right there? He just denies. I’ve asked a few friends how they’d feel, some feel the same way I do…. many don’t care. That makes me question am I overreacting. It’s really nice to know I’m not the only one that feels upset about this issue and that I’m not alone

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Erin. The reality is, you should be able to express how you feel and what you think, and have that be respected within your marriage. If other women don’t mind their husbands looking at porn, fine. You, however, DO mind it. It bothers you. This is a boundary for you. Your husband should be interested in respecting your boundaries, understanding how his porn use makes you feel, and then behaving in ways that make you feel safe and respected within the relationship. That is the essence of emotional trust within a marriage. You might appreciate our free download, Hope After Porn, where several women talk about their own experiences in recovery and especially the boundary choices they made to be healthy. Blessings, Kay

    • Patti

      I need help , Please Help Me. Found husband
      Sexting, getting women’s phone numbers. E-mails to women . I’m devastated, hurt, confused,maybe if I know how to handle this it won’t hurt so much ? We have been together 28 yrs come this June . We have grown children & a grandchild . I don’t know what to do I’m lost . God Please hear my prays ??I also cut into my arm the word (WHY) I wanted to cut myself deeper but came to my senses and thought about my children and grandchildren and said I can’t not do that to them. My husbands deleted his Facebook account, and unplugged the computer and wrapped it up right now it is just sitting on the desk. He also gave me his cell phone and is going to get another phone with a new number and I can sit there and watch as he puts in contacts , Like his job numbers, family members and maybe a few guy friends. This is a good start, but I still I’m afraid when he goes out that he will somehow get a hold of access another computer. I am terrified I don’t know if I could handle finding something else on him. Lord please help me amen

    • Kay Bruner

      Okay, Patty. The thing I am most concerned about right now is your safety and wellbeing. You need to find yourself a counselor immediately who can help you process through your emotions without self-harming. I’m so glad you were able to stop yourself from causing further harm, but this is a very serious situation. Even if your husband does really well in recovery, that recovery process will be long, especially with the level of acting out that he’s already exhibited. While he is in recovery, you will need professional help and support. You can’t be responsible for his choices, but you can be responsible for your own. You’ll need to work on processing emotions in healthy ways, and deciding what healthy boundaries will look like for you, going forward. Here and here are articles on boundaries for spouses.

      Please look for a counselor in your area TODAY, and get an appointment scheduled as soon as possible. There are extensive counselor directories at the American Association of Christian Counselors and also Psychology Today. You should be able to find someone in your area that way.

      As for your husband, he needs to find a CSAT certified therapist for himself immediately as well. He should also be seeking support from a group like Sex Addicts Anonymous. He will not recover on his own. He needs help and support.

      But know this: whatever your husband chooses, YOU can choose to be healthy. YOU can choose to be well. YOU can choose to recover. Please get the support that you need, today, by contacting a counselor in your area.

      Blessings, Kay

    • SD3

      I don’t have a problem with porn but I am a man and I do have to guard my eyes often to stay pure… I have experienced moral failure in the past so I walk with a heightened awareness of being a man above approach. My question is this… is it healthy for my wife to allow me to take nude and provoking photos of her for my own private viewing pleasure.?…. she already does this for me and it is extremely exciting, but we were wondering what your thoughts are on this.

    • Chris McKenna

      Well, this ventures into territory where it’s hard to give a definitive answer. Do you masturbate to these photos? If so, is your wife aware of this? It sounds like she is. Then it comes down to your thoughts on masturbation, and whether or not you believe it is honoring to God. Is it worth the risk that these photos exist and could be found by someone else?

      Again, not a lot of answers, just posing some questions that come to mind.
      Chris (Covenant Eyes)

    • Alice

      I’ve been married to my husband for 7yrs. My husband would not admit to anything, he lied to me for so long. I caught him lying several times but i chose to let it go to keep the peace. He didn’t cheat to my knowledge but lied about different things. He was looking at porn online to the point that him and i rarely had sex. He had no idea I knew of him watching porn. I couldn’t take it one day, and i hid in the house told him I’d be out and caught him in the act. After that he tried to change. I see he’s made many changes but he still stares at other women in front of me. The trust is completely gone. I hate to admit it, but I don’t Love him anymore. I just stay for the kids! I prayed for him to change for so long. I know he’s not perfect but I can’t help feeling insecure after all the lies. Every time, I try to get close to him; I get anxiety attacks! I don’t know if I should divorce him or keep going with this marriage.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Alice.

      That decision about staying or going is such a tough one. Luke Gilkerson wrote an article about it a while back, and you might find it helpful.

      Here are some things I’ve learned along the way that you might find helpful.

      First, it takes a long time to undo the behaviors and thoughts that go along with a porn addiction. I’ve heard 5 years, and I think that’s accurate. That’s a long haul! And it’s really hard to get through it alone, so I think you both need help.

      It sounds like he’s willing to try quitting, but maybe he’s doing it on his own. That puts a lot of pressure on you, so if he’s really willing to change, see if he’d be willing to go to a group like Pure Desire, or meet with a CSAT therapist.

      If you’re having anxiety attacks, you’re in good company. Many, many women in this situation will meet the criteria for PTSD, but so many times all the energy and attention goes into getting the husband sober. It’s great if he gets sober, but you need help too, whether you stay together or decide to part. Find a counselor just for you who can help you process your emotions and work on healthy boundaries. Find a group nearby if you can. Join the online community Bloom, and take advantage of their discussion groups and classes.

      You might also want to read this article I wrote a while back about trust and the emotional bonds of marriage. John Gottman’s research is so helpful in understanding that dynamic! His very basic idea is that trust is build or erodes in those very small moments when we choose to turn toward or away from each other. If your husband has been turning away from you for years, then that bond does erode. I think it can be rebuilt, but only slowly over time through “turning toward” as Gottman says.

      Peace, Kay

    • My husband and I have been married 14 years. Sadly, my husband and I did not start with a rock solid foundation. I found out our wedding day that he had been having multiple affairs, which then lasted another 2 years off and on. We have been doing the ping pong dance for the last 8 years with his erotica and Internet porn use. All had escalated to a point of him laying in bed next to me (I was crying and saying no) and masterbates to pay per view porn. That hurt worse than any “actual” (I use actual loosely) cheating on his part. In the last 4 years we were actually less of a married couple and more like disgruntled roommates. He would criticise ALL that I did. At one point while trying to talkeep, I ask him what made him love me? He ignored me while steadily sitting glued to his smart phone that was on silent. Having give a background on us, he has admitted to being addicted to porn/erotica. My questionson through out the beginning of all this: When trying to talk to my husband about any of this he states,”Yes, I did it all, I’m a sorry piece of **it! Then he becomes angry and shuts down saying I would just dig, and dig, and dig. I’m not digging at all at this point, just wanting to talk and to some degree I guess not be humiliated when we see the marriage therapist. Also, in my husbands line of work he works unsupervised with several “twenty-somethings” alone at night and unsupervised. I’ve always been concerned, but now more so than ever. Rendezvous between others have happened quite frequently. He has also emotionally cheated with a few. So if he is abstaining from porn/erotica could this environment be a trigger. I just need to know because right now I can honestly say I don’t put much stock into what I “think”. Thank you in advance. I am ordering Covenant eyes for pc’s and have the book. I do NOT know what I would have done without your site. God Bless You All and the ministry God has called you to do.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Crystal. I’m so glad the site has been helpful to you in this tough situation. I hope you’ve found our articles on boundaries: here and here are a couple to get you started. You mention seeing a marriage therapist, and I think therapy is a great idea. Often I think that sex addicts need their own Certified Sex Addiction Therapist (CSAT) to help them sort through their own issues in addition to the marriage issues that need to be addressed. I want to make sure that YOU are getting support for YOU in all this as well. The online resource, Bloom, is a great place to participate in forums and classes tailored to your needs. Best to you, Kay

    • Ali

      I caught my husband in porn again. There was a history on his phone of looking at porn on tumblr through a pinterest pen. This is the site yhat got him hooked on porn enough yo lose his family. Hr denied it at first but I told him that he denied the past 2 years of porn use and did not believe someone else took his brand new phone to look at pornograhic images.

      He admitted it was him about an hr later and admitted to visited porn sites and watched two pornos after tumblr.

      I was devastated. The past year and a half I was felt insecure, unawanted and unloved after he visited porn regularly for well over a year, went to hookup and dating sites and messgaing women there. He even said he was a widower, that I was dead and spoke negatively to another women about my body when I was in excellent shape very quickly after having our daughter.

      He has ignored me since and I was always worried about him doing it again because he lied about being accountable and had neglected me.

      The weekend he watched porn he was out of town with an old drinking buddy and he was doing this regularly and I felt insecure and worried he was leaving to be with someone else or watching porn. Sure enough he did and he vehemently denied it for 2 days when I asked him if he watched it when he left me again. He only admitted it because I found it.

      It has been a little over 2 weeks since I found out. There has been an apology but nothing to build trust and accountability. A lot of talk about how I just need to forgive and that means trusting him completely. He says he has learned so much since then but I have heard the same speech many times before.

      We just went to church together for the first time in several months which i have asked for and was happy about. He even wore his wedding ring which is very, very rare.

      After church I get into bed with him for a nap and hoping to mess around and rolls over and gets on his phone. I look over and he is looking at womens pictures on facebook. Im hurt… I look up again and he quickly turns the screen off. I got out of bed. I refuse to be with him when he disrespects me like that.

      If it is not porn its looking at it on pinterest or tumblr or looking at women on whatever site he can.

      I feel horrible about myself. I have alwags made myself available to him sexually and always willing to work things out, I have served him in our home and tried to be in good shape for him. I feel inadequate. When we do have sex I have porn images running through my head and feel sick to my stomach wondering if he is thinking about me or these other womeb he looks at. Our sex life is not intimate at all and I crave the affection and closeness and kissing that we used to do.

      I dont know what to do. I have told him that I appreciate him telling the truth and I have told him how it makes him feel. I sm praying for him too. I just dont know how to get through every day when I am worried he’s doing it again because he wont be accountable or reassure me that he is trying to fight the temptation. Help.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey there Ali. Well, I think there is one person you can fully and completely trust here: YOU.

      You know what’s going on. You’ve seen the patterns, you see the ongoing evidence of his behaviors, you see that he is not willing to be accountable or seek help for his behaviors.

      This is not a matter of you not forgiving or trusting; this is a matter of his unwillingness to be trustWORTHY. Here’s a short book I wrote that helps sort out forgiveness, trust, and what that really means in difficult circumstances.

      I think you need to find a counselor who can help you process your emotions about all this, and to consider what healthy boundaries would look like, given your husband’s choices. Here and here are a couple of articles about boundaries. You might also look for a support group in your area. And the online resource Bloom may be useful to you as well.

      The closeness that you long for is a healthy longing, and it’s what marriage really means. Here’s an article from The Gottman Institute about the harm that porn does to relationships. You’re not making it up in your head! Porn really does devastate relationships, and the foremost marriage experts in the country support your personal experience of this.

      Whatever your husband chooses, YOU can choose to be healthy. Trust yourself. Find support. Make healthy choices.

      Peace to you, Kay

    • Annie

      Wow. I couldn’t disagree more. The betrayed spouse always has to stay calm, be reasonable, be tolerant, and ever so misinterpreted–be like Jesus.
      In the midst of idolatry, Jesus pulled out a whip and over turned tables, he called out the adulterous and Paul encouraged us to turn them over to Satan so their soils may be saved.

      I am sick to death of the oppression of betrayed women/men and the responsibility placed upon them to help ‘redeem’ their spouses. God was not soft on sin. Nor did he hold Eve responsible for Adam’s choices.

      Take the entire scripture into context. Stop being selective with passages that allow a spouse to continue in a life of abuse.

    • Kim

      I’ve been married for 23 years and been dealing with my husband’s porn addiction throughout the whole marriage. Every time I catch him, he promises it will never happen again. It always does.

      About a year ago he started texting a waitress that works at a restaurant we always go to. He kept saying he thought of her as a daughter. I had a bad feeling from the beginning. He has other female friends and I don’t have a problem with them. I could feel in my heart that this was different. A few months later I found a paper in his wallet. Not really a note..more like random thoughts. Things like “Don’t tell anyone but I think I’m falling in love with you” and “If I win the lottery will you go to an island with me?” When I confronted him he said it was stuff he wanted his son to say to her and that he wanted to get them together. He continued texting her and deleting the texts. Then yesterday I found pics of her in her underwear on his camera. Of course he is still insisting that he does not see her that way…that she is like a daughter. I keep telling him that you don’t take pics of your “daughter” in her underwear and he says I don’t understand…that the pics were there and he had to do it because of his addiction. He keeps swearing he has no sexual attraction to her and I can’t believe anything he says. He also keeps changing the story about how he got the pics. I don’t know what to do.

    • Kay Bruner

      Trust yourself. You know the truth.

      He lies to himself so that he can keep doing the things he’s doing. He voices those lies to you–that’s called gaslighting. But you don’t have to believe the lies. Look at the truth. Believe the truth. Act on the truth.

      Is this “daughter” underage? If so, report him to your local police.

      Here and here are articles on boundaries that you might find helpful. And here’s an article about when divorce becomes an appropriate step to take.

      I’m so, so sorry for the pain you’ve suffered through all these years. I’m sorry your husband isn’t able to treat you with the respect you deserve.

      But here’s a secret they never told us women: WE CAN TREAT OURSELVES WITH RESPECT. We CAN, and we MUST.

      Trust yourself. Be strong and courageous. Know the truth. Let it set you free.

      Peace to you,

    • Heather

      So I have a bit different scenario. Last night my husband had been drinking and went to bed about an hour after me. It began storming,so the lightening woke me. I heard his phone chime; nudged him to see who was texting him but he didn’t budge. So I got out of the bed to make sure it wasn’t an emergency and to my surprise I see an image of a woman in a black bra with her cleavage showing and she said “goodnight kisses” immediately I woke him to ask who it was and at first he fumbled around erasing the pictures and texts then said she was someone he deployed with many years ago… anyhow. I asked him to let me talk to her and he refused…he text messaged her saying he was in the wrong and all that…I am in utter shock. He is suppose to call our counselor so we can talk but this is my second marriage and my first husband cheated on me. I’m really unsure what to do. Your article was insightful however.

    • Kay Bruner

      Heather, I am so, so sorry. Trust yourself. Listen to your intuition. And, I hate to say this, but get tested for STD’s. And don’t have sex with him again until he gets tested as well and can show you that he’s clean. Your safety matters most. Your physical safety, and your emotional safety as well. Peace to you, Kay

    • Searching for hope

      What if porn is not just the problem, but also harsh verbal abuse ¿ Not only that some men are not easy to talk to. They will lie about it even if you put the proof right in front of them. Even bring up your past to use an excuse for the present choices. Whoever has a good man needs to realize how lucky they are. I’ll never know what a good man is. My only hope is Yahuah my heavenly father.

    • John Pelletier

      My wife found pornography in my browser. This happened on a Thursday morning. I called Samsung and Sprint and they both clarified and verified that I did not open anything up but still she accuses me and wants a divorce I have done nothing wrong what do I do cuz I love my wife. They both said that it was malware that I didn’t even know it was there I do not look at p*** and don’t like p*** I just need to know what to do to convince her cuz I don’t want a divorce I love my wife very much we are Christians and she was a chaplain in the army i adore her. So please tell me what can I do?

    • Chris McKenna

      Hi, John, I’m sorry this is happening. I’m not sure what we can do, if she won’t believe her husband when he says that he did nothing wrong and has evidence from the carrier to support him. It sounds like there might possibly be more going on? Is there anything else that has happened to make her respond so strongly?

    • Deserae Whicker

      I appreciate this information. I feel so betrayed an during sex assumw he’s picturing the naked women he looks up on the web. Sometimes even during work. My recent find… I don’t want to be sensual with him anymore. I literallt sickened. Some of the girls are 20 years younger.

    • Deserae Whicker

      My other discovery is not just that my husband looks up naked women online. He’s left “signs” that he’s clicked on Craigslist’s Personals section and women seeking men and men seeking women were highlighted. He denied it, and said he was only on Craigslist looking for an exercise bike for me and he couldn’t believe I would turn a kuns idea from him into these accusations.

    • Kay Bruner

      Don’t let him gastlight you. You know the truth. Trust yourself. And think about what boundaries are healthy for you. Here, here, and here are some articles to help you think these things through.

    • Heartbrokenren

      My ex husband has been looking at provocative half naked woman and porn throughout our 18 year marraige. I couldnt trust him at all and i eventually left him and we got divorced..then i met my school sweetheart a while after being divorced and he did the same as my ex husband, i left, then i met another guy we hit it off and we eventually got married and have a 8 week old baby now.. i have found out that he is also looking at provocitve videos of woman on youtube after he said he would never hurt me.. im devastated.. i havent gone through his history on google as he deletes his history so i wouldnt know what he is searching.. he assures me he doesnt look at porn and isnt interested on other woman and that he isnt my exes.. but why then would he hurt me and do this after I told him that i dont like him looking at other woman because im insecure and dont have alot of self confidence … alot of people around me Family, feiends and strangers say im soo gorgeous and alot of men stare at me in public but why then would the 3 men i loved do this to me? I give them what they want in bed and i am a lloyal faithful wive.. i hate this pattern im in and i dont know what to do. The worst part is my husband works away from home for 3 months and comes home for 2 weeks then he is away again.. i cant trust him .. what do I do??

    • Kay Bruner

      Decide what healthy boundaries will look like for you. Here, here, and here are some articles to get you started. Find a therapist who can help you process the pain, and who can help you explore the questions you have about relationships and your own insecurities. Find a group of women to talk with about this. And check into the online resources at Bloom for Women, where there are great forums and classes that can help you think things through. You can’t control what someone else chooses, but you can control your own choices for healthy boundaries and good recovery. Peace, Kay

    • Mia DiMartini-Colon

      I have been dealing with this issue for 13 years of his downloading images of other women undressed and parts of the body that he lust after. Looking at Instagram photos, past addiction (probably still doing it just better at hiding it) to pornography etc etc. I am so hurt because our intimate life has deteriorated because of it. How can I want to be with a man intimately when in my heart I know that he looks at and desires other women. Ever time that I catch him it drives me further away from any desire of intimacy with him.
      For years I have used every excuse for my lack of desire but the honest truth is I am now physically not wanting intimacy because of the hurt and sense of rejection and betrayal that I’ve been harboring all these years.
      I no longer know what to do. My desire is to be a God fearing, loving, faithful wife and mother but my human heart is hurting so badly that I try so hard to forgive and it’s always there. I’ve prayed so hard to be forgiving but it is hard when I am repeatedly betrayed by the one person who promised in the eyes of God to love me and care for me as Christ loves us. How can I ever fully heal.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Mia,

      Well, I don’t know if you can heal when you’re being constantly betrayed. The truth is, your good intentions will not change another person’s choices. He’s making his own decisions, and he has to be responsible for any changes in a positive direction. I think it’s time to think about what healthy boundaries will look like for you, given the reality of your situation. Here, here, and here are some articles that might help as you think about this.

      You might also want to find support for yourself, with a therapist, a group, or through the online resources at Bloom for Women.

    • Tee

      Yes, i feel the same way. My husband looks at half naked women and i didnt know it til i saw it on his tablet. Im so hurt and angry. I try my best to look good but it really doesnt matter. They want to look at what you are not. To me, thats not good. Looking leads to other things and i dont feel like waiting on that to happen again. BUT then again, what man will you get who won’t look and search for naken pics? Probably none. We,wives, have to keep praying for God to change them and us. Its the only way.

    • Mandy

      I’ve been married almost 15 years, I discovered my husband had a porn addiction before we had children. He signed up for a Christian accountability site that sent me emails. Now it’s been 8 years and last night he thought I was sleeping & I say he was looking at inappropriate stuff. I was sick, I barely slept, I texted him what I had seen. His response was I’ve been struggling with this off & on for years, I’m going to work, I guessing you don’t want to see me. He did just that & I was awake.I text him & asked I’d he had anything to say..I’m sorry. I don’t know what you want to hear from me. I haven’t cheated, I don’t talk to girls online if that’s what you’re thinking. I’m at a loss of what to do.
      FYI this is not the only problem we have

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Mandy,

      It sounds to me like your husband isn’t willing to take responsibility for himself right now, and you might consider what your boundaries need to be. Here, here, and here are some articles to get you started. I’d also recommend a counselor who can help you process emotions and provide support for your boundaries. A support group might be a good help as well. And check out the online resources at Bloom for Women. Whatever your husband chooses, you can choose to be healthy and whole.


    • Pamela Wilson

      Wow. In all due,respect, this article does not reflect anything close to what Jesus preached. Our culture has made the viewing of pork into a sickness, weakness, or addiction, something that “every man struggles with”.
      Ok, what if I, a wife and mother struggle with desiring to have multiple affairs? Should I embrace this? Wait, it’s an addiction! I need help..when are we going to call this what it is?
      I’m a therapist who specifically works with people who have suffered trauma early in life. We need to look at the root issues.
      We help Noone by this agenda..with all due respect.
      Kindly, Pamela Wilson

    • Judy

      How do you know when enough is enough. My heart is broken I don’t trust my husband and my teenage children can see that. It’s a damn vicious circle and I don’t want to deal with it anymore.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Judy,

      I think we have to examine our boundaries. Here, here, and here are some important articles on boundaries that might help.

      We know that there is nothing we can do to control another person’s choices; we can only be responsible for ourselves and our own healthy choices. If your husband refuses to take responsibility for himself, well, that is his choice. In no way does that stop you from making your own choices. Whatever he chooses, you can choose to be healthy and whole.

      Peace to you,

    • Terri

      Porn has been in my husband’s life since before we where married and he hasn’t denied it,it just never caused a problem,with our sex life till recently,,he stays up late watching it on his phone instead of coming to bed with me,,I have done all I know to do to keep our sex life from dying I don’t know what else to do,,I pray God will open his eyes,and that one day he will stop,I don’t want to throw away 41 years of marriage, any advise is welcomed

    • jessica

      Hi, I have been married for 15 years. About 4 years into our marriage my husband cheated with 6 prostitutes at different times ( I did not know). He was looking at porn as well. I found out when i was pregnant with our fourth child. I decided to stay and work it out. 8 years later and he still looks at porn. It breaks my heart. I have server depression and anxiety due to this issue. But I am a firm believer in my family and keeping it together for my children. They know nothing of their fathers betrayal. I am at the point where I feel like moving on with life is of no use. But i know thats nonsense. I would love to hear some advice. Thank you for your time.

    • Kay Bruner


      I am so, so sorry for the pain you are going through and have been going through for so long. I would really encourage you to find a therapist, just for you, someone who can help you process this pain and set healthy boundaries for yourself. Here, here, and here are some articles on boundaries that may be helpful. And you might also appreciate the online resources at Bloom for Women

      Your life is absolutely worth living, and you can have a healthy happy life, no matter what your husband chooses.

      Peace to you,

    • Denise Amato

      We r both Christians but I have been saved much longer , he refuses to admit of any sites even though the proof is there I fear my marriage is over

    • Leslie

      Marriages have always been at risk when it comes to one partner cheating (statistics show men being the majority), but the last several years (or however long it’s been that internet has become the norm), explicit and pornographic material has become WAY too easy to access. It’s all free and men are foolish selfish slobbering idiots. I myself prefer single and a little lonely to being betrayed and lied to because thats what they ALWAYS do. Any day. Any week. Any year.

    • Anne Reiner

      He always had issues with porn addiction, but a few years ago he stopped. Or so he claims. Suddenly he is into photography, spends hours looking through forums where “artists” Show their nude and lingery photography. Now he meets with women, he contacted online in order to take photo shoots with them. Next he wants to do private lingery shootings in hotel rooms.
      This means he no longer consumes second hand pornography but instead produces his own. I feel so sick and don’t know what to do about it.
      18 years together with two beautiful children, a lovely home and committment and now I feel everything is a lie.

    • Kay Bruner

      Oh Anne, I am so sorry.

      It sounds like mostly he is lying to himself and trying to lie to you about what’s really going on. You know the truth, and you can live in the truth even though it’s hard and painful. We can do hard things and live into healthy, happier lives, no matter what our spouses choose. Here, here and here are some articles on boundaries that might help as you consider a way forward. Also, you will find good support at Bloom for Women, where they take a trauma-informed approach to helping wives in marriage betrayal.

      I hope that helps a bit in this difficult time,

  2. Beryl

    So what do we tell husbands after they discover that their wives are looking at other men?

    • In general the above 7 steps serve as a good guide for husbands as well. Why do you ask?

    • Ann

      Hi my name is ann my husband has problem with porn when i say something an get upset he yells back at me an say you not a real woman if God ,an he say by me gettin upset im not a real evang

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Ann. Well, this is tough. It sounds like you and your husband would both identify as Christians? And if that’s so, then your husband probably believes, deep down, that looking at porn is wrong. However, when we do things that we know are wrong, and feel helpless to stop (which is the case with many men who look at porn–they have tried to stop and can’t on their own), then we often start to create a system of explanations for ourselves about why it’s really fine to do what we know we shouldn’t be doing, and if someone else notices that we’re doing something that we know we shouldn’t be doing, we get upset with that other person. In counseling terms, those explanations we tell ourselves and the blame we fling on other people are called defense mechanisms.

      In other words, it’s really, really common for wives in your situation to get this kind of reaction: he knows he’s wrong, but he’s going to make you feel bad instead. I’ve made two very short animations, posted on YouTube, that help explain this further: here and here.

      Once you understand what’s happening, then you can stop worrying about defending your position, and instead step back and decide what you want to do with what you know to be true. Here and here are two good articles about setting boundaries. And you might also appreciate our free download, Hope After Porn, where several women tell their stories of recovery.

      I would also encourage you to find a personal counselor and/or a group (Celebrate Recovery, Pure Desire, xxxChurch, S Anon) to support you as you process emotions and work on healthy boundaries.

      Blessings, Kay

    • My husband cheats on me with a girl he works with then I fine out he is going to sex site and talking to them and they have his phone number then I cought hem then he asked me how would I feel if he did a porn movie what should I do

    • Kay Bruner

      Lisa, I am so, so sorry. It’s time for you to decide what healthy boundaries will look like for you in this situation.

      Do you want to stay with a person who cheats on you, uses sex sites, and wants to make porn movies? If so, okay. You’re an adult. You can make that choice.

      If you DON’T want to be with a person who cheats on you, uses sex sites, and wants to make porn movies, that’s okay too. You are an adult. You are free to go. That’s a terrible decision to be left with, but it may be the healthiest thing for you. You are the person who decides what healthy looks like for you.

      You may want to find a counselor who can help you think this through. A group might also be a good support to you right now. And, there’s an online resource called Bloom that’s a great place to read articles, join forums, and think about what’s healthy for you.

      Peace to you, Kay

    • mj

      This is to sd3. Keep it between u and ur wife. And don’t let satan tempt u to explore other woman. My husband left me for porn and I gave him everything and photos. And I’m just as pretty and fit as the nasty porn girls. It’s destructive and u will loose the woman u love and ur mind if u let porn into ur life. Keep up the hiding ur eyes from temptation but remember satan is always right there to destroy a marriage. My husband isn’t saved so if u are u have the Holy Spirit to convict u.

    • Kim

      No..the “daughter” isn’t underage. She’s in her early 20s. I’ve been finding out more of the truth little by little and we’ve been talking ALOT. We are also both seeing counselors. I know it’s going to be a long process but he has been doing everything I have requested to help start rebuilding trust..which shows me that he really does care and wants to change. This is something he never did in the past. In the past it was just the promises to stop with no effort to get help or ease my mind.

  3. lauralee

    what if the husband repeatedly goes into rages when the wife CALMLY asks questions or confronts? My husband refuses to listen to me, he goes on a defensive attack and screams at me he doesn;t have a problem its my perspective or my imagination, that I’m crazy. He is a text book abuser and has everyone fooled, even his so called accountability group…….tells everyone I’m abusive…to him if I ask him to see his emails or his phone I am being controlling. I go to a domestic violence support grouup and see a therapist who has met my husband….she says he is a master manipulator, I hear from other women the things thier abusers do and its all the same crazy stuff. my husbnad agreeed to install CE onto his phone when he bought it, now he refuses. I want out. I want to get away from this insanity but have no money. please pray from me.

    • I will pray for you, Lauralee. Your husband does sound like a master manipulator.

      Do you have evidence that he’s looking at porn? What does he do when you confront him with what you know and how you know?

    • Christine

      I was with my ex for 11 years. Filed for devorce 4 times. He always promised to get help so I would come home. It never happened. Finally I took my two children and left with what I could fit in my car. I went to a women’s shelter and stayed with family. Things got worse but I prayed to god and listened to his words every day. Two years later, I bought my first house, my first new car, and the kids have supervised visits with dad. God says he will do the fighting. All we have to do is show up to the fight and know that God is with us. I had nothing when I left. I now have more than when I was married and not just money. Stepping out on faith alone is hard but so worth it.
      I’m not suggesting divorce. My preacher suggested that I leave and tell him to get help and finish all the steps before talking to me about coming home. He couldn’t do it. He chose his sin. He soon started seeing other women and therefor had commited adultery. That’s when I filed for devorce. Stand your ground. Think of your children and be their spiritual leader that their father isn’t being. Maybe he will chose his family unlike my ex. God bless.

    • Thanks for sharing your story, Christine.

    • jacki lamphire

      I just read your comments and wondered how things were going for you? It feels awful to feel trapped.

    • nicole

      my husband does the same thing smh

    • Kay Bruner

      Nicole, I am so sorry that he chooses to behave that way, but you are not responsible for his abusive behavior. I hope you know that! I always encourage women in these situations to seek support. Most communities have shelters and support systems for women who are being abused, and I encourage you to take advantage of those resources in your area. Blessings and prayers, Kay

    • Erin

      That sounds just like my husband. I even calmly express how it makes me feel yet he still gets angry at me.

    • Kay Bruner

      I think when that happens, you’re likely looking at a manifestation of his feelings of shame. I recently made a couple of animations to explain both defense mechanisms and gaslighting. I think women often see those behaviors in addicted spouses. It’s hard to be the target of that, but once you understand what it is, you can be prepared with better boundaries next time around. Blessings, Kay

    • Veronica

      Are you okay now? I just saw this and my heart aches for you

    • mj

      My husband dose the same I alow ed him back and forgave him after 8 mth he promised so many wonderful things and knew how bad porn was and knew that he had no right to get so angry and verbally abusive and made it my fault when I acused him. Even when I had evidence. I still don’t trust him he left 3 times again and one time he came back with porn on YouTube app and thought I wouldn’t find it. He denied it. He is also jealous of me and scared I might find someone better. But he is a manipulator and it’s an act. He erases all his history of porn sites and leaves the news. So ot looks like he dosnt google it at all. He keeps himself from me 2 to 3 nights a wk then he expects me to do oral sex or other gross thing. It’s never enuf for porn aholics. It’s better to be without him. U will have soich peace. God’s word says in corinthians let the unbeliever go for I want u to live in peace. Plus he has committed adultery which gives u a godly reason to leave. Don’t get discourage and take revenge. Just stand firm in Christ

  4. Andrea

    What about when he says he is sorry, and then he goes right back to it? The first time I learned he was watching, I felt sad for him and supported him and did all the things the above article says to do. Five years ago, the second time I learned he was watching, I was crushed, thinking we’d worked through it, but I worked hard to forgive him, and I worked harder to make myself a better wife so he wouldn’t be so tempted by the porn movies. He was encouraging at first, saying he thought our marriage was sweeter than ever, but over time, his interest in me faded again. Then I learned he was back to watching the porn. That time I was deeply hurt and felt harshly betrayed. It’s been two years now since that last discovery. My trust is shattered, and I’m struggling with depression. I’m afraid to let myself ever believe that he isn’t watching and fantasizing about other women, no matter what he says, because I don’t want to experience that hurt ever again. What do I do? He was watching movies on adult cable channels when he is away from home, so no filter will work for his accountability. All I have is his word, and I can’t bring myself to trust that. I feel like a hateful wife when I reread all I’m supposed to be doing to support him, which only brings on more depression. How do we get through this? We’ll have been married 20 years next June, and we have three daughters. I don’t want to model how to be a bad wife to them.

    • Andrea, thanks for your comment.

      I am so sorry to hear about what your husband is putting you through.

      First and foremost, I think it would be best to meet with someone who can give you face-to-face counsel and advice. He needs to be spoken to like man and told to guard his heart and his marriage, and that’s a word that should come from another man, preferably a spiritual mentor. You need support and encouragement to remain strong in your marriage, learning how to regain trust of him.

      I highly recommend you watch these videos by Brad Hambrick, a biblical counselor who has a lot to say about this topic. It will give you a context for where to do next.

    • mj

      Your not a bad wife. He is a porn aholic and if he didn’t get help for his addiction then he thinks it’s ok. And it dosnt matter how u please him and what u look like. There are men who are with models and they have addictions. And there are men who arnt and have none. If u find it again know that u have a right to leave, it is adultry. If he dosnt want help or respect to not waych adult tv cus it hurts u. Then he dosnt care.ive been through it all. And I’m 35 with 4 kids. And I’m fit and pretty as so people say.en think there’s nothing wrong and it won’t affect their love for their wives. But that’s bull! And if he can’t consider ur feelings and honor u, then he needs help

    • cvr

      @Andrea – I know you posted this years ago and I pray that your relationship with your husband has improved. I’m reading your post as i am in a similar position with my husband right now in 2018 and it made me realise i am not isolated in my struggle so 5 years later i thank you for that.

      Just under a year ago i uncovered his porn addiction, we’ve been together for 15 years, married for 11. I was in denial for a few days searching for possible scenarios to explain the downloads, URL’s and strange websites but i finally couldn’t deny it any longer. I was shattered, he was my best friend, the only person in the whole world who i trusted totally with my whole heart…and i don’t trust people easily which made this even harder to take

      When i confronted him he said sorry, that it started when he was a kid and it had nothing to do with me and he didn’t think it was cheating so he didn’t feel that he “betrayed” me and said he felt i was overreacting by calling it cheating. To cut a long story short – i prayed profusely and we talked and argued alot and he finally out of his own went to see a counselor saying he didn’t realise the devastating effect his addiction had on our marriage and me –
      he always thought of it as his act of sin against God and felt awful about that (he is a christian), we had joint sessions with the councilor as well and it seemed that we were making progress we were happy.

      I still didn’t trust him 100% and the paranoia was still there but we were making progress. Then a few months passed and i woke up in the middle of the night to find him asleep and the TV playing a channel showing R rated movies with SNL R18 age restrictions, i watched a bit before overacting again and it was safe to say it was soft porn. I was guted, i let it go not wanting to rock the boat until i woke up again a few nights later to find the same thing. I couldn’t understand we were intimate, we were communicating, things were good to me at least…I constantly checked in whether he was coping. His response when i confronted him was that I wasn’t fighting for him. I wasn’t flaunting myself to him enough i guess to keep him interested. Again i was guted and withdrew completely which i now know just escalated the issue.

      I just couldn’t understand how he took no responsibility and blamed me for his relapse – i understood the relapse getting over an addiction is hard but we agreed he would tell me and we would work through it together. I guess there are a million reasons why he didn’t want to talk about it…

      We left it at that i was withdrawn and i just didn’t care anymore, we were civil but the storm was brewing – we made up after a few days and the relationship has been rocky since. Yesterday i found these disgusting R rated TV shows on our saved channel with explicit sex and nudity and foal language again. Now i don’t know what to do…please excuse this very lengthy comment, i don’t have a circle of friends close enough that i can trust with this – i will go and speak to my counselor again for sure but i just needed to get it off my chest…

      It seems that he is oblivious to the fact that watching these shows cannot be healthy for a recovering porn addict…i rest my case, i’m so angry i just cry all the time, I hate him and love him so much all at once….Thank you for this article Kay and sharing your stories i know some of you have it so much worse than me, I’m just glad to know we are not alone. May God be with us all, restoring us through His loving kindness

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey there.

      I’m so glad you wrote in, and that this is a safe place to share your pain. Here are some thoughts that come to mind as I read your story here. I hope something here might be helpful to you.

      First of all, his recovery is his job. This is not an issue that will be resolved in couples’ counseling. This is an issue that he must work on seriously in therapy, if he is going to recover. I would suggest a Certified Sex Addiction Therapist as a place for him to start. Since this began at such an early age for your husband, he has a lifetime of habits to reverse, the most important being that he needs to learn to cope with emotions in healthy ways, rather than turning to sex to distract himself. This is not a problem isolated to your husband. Most men have been taught to repress and deny emotions from early on (big boys don’t cry) and then to act out sexually instead (boys will be boys, locker room talk).

      Secondly, your pain and your boundaries are your job. You need a good, qualified therapist who can help you process through the trauma of this situation (losing your best friend and your marriage relationship to porn is a huge trauma, which often leaves women meeting the criteria for post traumatic stress disorder) AND help you create healthy boundaries for yourself, given the reality of the situation. Here, here, and here are articles in boundaries that you can read.

      You will also appreciate the online resources at Bloom for Women, which are trauma-informed.

      Finally, if your husband does get into serious recovery and is able to do his own work, you’ll begin to wonder about rebuilding trust. It’s important to note that behavioral trust is a good start, but emotional trust is really what the marriage relationship requires over the long term.

      Peace to you in the middle of this storm,

  5. Melissa

    Lauralee i feel like my story is similar i confront my hisband and he is complete denial hell always have explanations or just laugh it off which infuriates me because im broken i feel betrayed .the worst part is that i have no control over my marriage he is a.manipulater and controls this.marriage i dont want him to touch me i want to be respected and he doesant take me seriously he always s gets what he wantsi feel used we have two small childrren that always see us arguing and i want out but he laughs because he knows that ive never worked he feels in control but seeing otherwomen online isnt just the problem we have no xcommunication he expects me to tell him evthing ,give him what he wants when he wants and with him.its xompletly the opposite he even has password on his phone im ready to get out i cant remember the last time ive actually felt happy i have an unhealthy relationship and my children are suffering with it i need help ive prayed to god to give , me an awnser but thisman doesn’t want to.change he sees nothing wrong with him although he apologizes but he doent know what sorry is. I am very young and deserve so much better thanliving in tjis jail of a.marriage so sorry for a long comment i hope somebody is.kind to read it and help me out thank you

    • Sounds like you need a lot of support right now. Are there people in your life you can talk about this face to face? Have you considered talking to a counselor?

      What your husband is doing to you is deplorable. To manipulate and emotionally abuse a woman is perhaps one of the ugliest common sins of our era. Your husband should be ashamed of himself.

      If you liked this post, I highly recommend you read the others Ella has written for us. They address some of your concerns head-on.

  6. Anonymous

    I really feel for all you women who commented. My husband does the same thing, and when I try to talk to him about it calmly and respectfully, he flies into a rage and screams for hours, and blames me. It really makes me sad. I’ve been praying for a long time for God to help me leave him for good.

    • Alicia

      I really feel for all u woman. I am to going through this painful journey with my husband. Just this week I found out he posts sex ads on craigslist. Do u know how humiliating that makes me feel. We have been married almost a year and as much as I want to believe he is going to quit with the porn and the ads I don’t know if I can take the constant pain of hurt every time I catch him. Especially when I found his ad with convenant eyes program on his phone. He tells me this has been his problem his whole life and that the reason he is doing the ads is to get the same feeling that he gets when he watches porn. How would he feel if I was looking for sexual activity with another man I’m sure I would be the worst person ever. I really hope I have the patience and the support to help. It’s so hard all I can do is cry when he isn’t around.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Alicia, I’m so sorry for the pain you’re going through. Like you, I don’t like the sound of those ads on Craigslist. That sounds to me like his behavior is escalating, which he explains really well: he’s been doing this a long time, and he needs more risky behavior to get the same high he got before from porn. That is a very classic compulsive, addicted pattern. Here’s the thing. HE HAS TO GET HELP FOR HIMSELF. He has to filter his internet, get into a program, have accountability. That can’t be your job. Your job is to have good boundaries, and to let him have the consequences of his choices. We hope and pray that he makes good choices, but we can’t force those on him. Have you read our free download, Hope After Porn? Four women share their stories of what boundaries looked like in their marriages. I think that might be helpful as you consider a way ahead. Let me know what you think! Kay

  7. Torn into

    I am going through the same thing as other mentioned before me. We were on vacation of all places when my husband had his phone open sending a vacation landscape picture to one of his coworkers. Harmless…but after he hit send his phone reverted back to his photo album and lo and behold was a thin young flat bellied lady with her bra and panties on. I never ever look at his phone, nor go through it, after less than one year of marriage why would I? I trusted him. So, after asking him over and over he still lied to my face saying he didnt know how the picture got there, didnt know who she was, thought someone at his job picked up his phone and played a joke on him. My gut told me that this was a big fat lie so I took his phone for the first time and hit all the app buttons and found a new email he had set up with many sent messages on craigslist of NSA and offered one lady 200 to have her all night. He sent a naked picture of his penis to them all too. Who even knows when you “talk” to women on craigslist if they are really women anyway??? I was so upset with grief I slept in my mom’s hotel room with my 13 year old daughter as we were all on vacation together. I bought him a plane ticket home and told him not to go to my house (it was my house before we married he still owns his own home but not living there). I couldnt eat for 2 days and cried my eyes out. I calmly sat him down and asked why the lies, why did he do this and his answer was it was just for fantasy. When does fantasy cross over to become reality? Why do I have to be ok with this might I ask??? Well, he texted me constantly after he arrived home by plane. Begging forgiveness, on his knees begging, pleading, promising he would never do it again. Why did he do it in the first place? Isnt my body good enough, my love good enough, my heart and soul to this man? And we havent been married a year yet. So, I turned to God and prayed and cried and thanked him for revealing this to me even if it had to be during a vacation we planned months ago together. I thanked him for showing me what my husband was doing even if my husband didnt penetrate another woman he did cheat on me. Offering money, keeping photos, sending photos of his penis were just sickening to me. WE DIDNT EVEN DO NAKED PHOTOS WITH ONE ANOTHER!!! So, was it God’s will for us to be together? Yes, it was. So I had to forgive him. Forgive my husband who I don’t know if I will ever trust again. I can tell you that he has been doing the dishes, cleaning, laundry, mowing yard, pulling weeds, taking me to dinner, turning off the tv at night so we can cuddle, sending me flowers twice, cards, jewelry, everything to bribe me to forgive him. Things he didnt do before were many of these things. He always played stupid games on his cell phone at night while we laid in bed and he watched tv all the time after work. Now he puts his phone up, no games, no tv and he even cooked me dinner last night. I appreciate all he is doing to repair our marriage but I wonder if he will go back to his old ways and am hesitant to ever trust him. He was always home after work, he said he just did it at work (emailing strangers to talk dirty and see pictures). He is a mechanic so how do you have time to do this on your phone when you are working on cars? Well, I forgave him but the memory of that lady in her panties haunts me. I will never look like that but am pretty and smart and sexy. Why couldnt that have been enough for him? There is hope to those of you who decide to forgive…I do feel our marriage is stronger, I have his attention for now and he is running on a treadmill to keep me. This has made me aware that most men cheat and you have to decide how you are going to deal with it. Divorce him or forgive him. Even if you decide to divorce him I suggest highly in forgiving him as it will grant you a peace with it I cannot describe. Yes, it is wrong but move on if you cannot deal with what was done to you. You are the only one who can decide if staying is worth it or not. I will pray for all of you and hope my story will help you.

  8. Jessica

    I have been married for 9 years aND have constantly found my husband looking at porn texting other girls, even found a ad on Craigslist once for some one to have sex with him, although he claims a friend put up the ad as a prank, I have never fully believed that since the words in the ad sounded like him and how would his friend now his personal email address and be replying to the ad. I even once found an email to another girl saying he wanted to be with her, but he stated that was a mistake aND didn’t knowant what he was thinking when he said it. This is all through out our marriage aND now we have two kids, I still catch him looking at other women and going on the chive and instagram looking at images. He says he will never stop looking at other women because he is a man and that’s what men do, all men do it so if I can’t deal go marry a priest. I just feel so worthless, I do everything a wife should and I’m still not good enough, he has to look at other women too. I believe cheating in your mind can be just as bad as the physical kind because of the emotional damage it can create. I pray that everything works out, but I just feel like my husband is settling for me since he feels he can’t have these super models so he just imagines that I’m them. I feel this will always be a struggle in our marriage and I pray for the strength to make it through…

    • Hi Jessica,

      What your husband is doing to you is awful—common, yes, but still awful. Yes, “that’s what men do,” but they don’t have to. I hope the above article was helpful to you, but if you’re looking for more information, this free e-book might a great help to you in this situation.

    • Alison

      All I can say is what you look like doesn’t matter a bit. I have been 5’6″ and about 115 lbs since I was a freshman in high school. I could be one of those girls in undie magazines. but eeewww. I’m not the type of girl to wear tons of make-up or wear little jean shorts. I would say my “sex appeal” is a bit conservative. I was raised in a catholic environment, and understand lady like behavior more than the average woman in 2014. But what other women do can’t be stopped. They will wear short skirts and too much lipstick and too much temptation. They will pose and take horrible pictures for every man to look at. Yay!
      I am turning 30 in December and I already I feel like I can never compete with these, lack of a better word, tramps. I have spent the past 15 years keeping my body in shape, and being reserved. I had a 4 year relationship straight out of high school, but he found another girl. I had another 4 year relationship right after that. He became extremely abusive, then I came home unexpected and found three purses on our bed (one with overnight clothes, one with personal stuff, and the other with bath products). There was perfume on the counter in my bathroom. Needless to say, but my heart was pounding out of my chest. THEN, I get involved in another relationship, almost made it 4 years, but he also found another woman. They all found porn, I found videos, pictures, all the needed proof.
      Just last night, my new boyfriend who seemed kinda geeky, turned out to be a horrible offender. His brand new phone he got yesterday ALREADY had a direct link to “dallas adult entertainment” which featured women with ads out offering “body rubs.” I went blank.
      My sister told me I AM ONE OF THE HOTTEST CHICKS SHE KNOWS AND ANYONE WHO WANTS SOMETHING ELSE IS CRAZY. Coming from her, it was an honest compliment, because she has always said she was jealous of me being tiny.
      Men are gross. Being a man does not make it okay to be so disrespectful. We are women and deserve to be treated with more class. We are not live in porn dolls for fantasies.
      To the women who take the pictures, shame on you. And to the men who look at them, big shame on you.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Alison, I think you’re absolutely right–it doesn’t matter how beautiful you are, that’s not what the problem is here! Unfortunately, pornography is so incredibly prevalent these days that hardly anybody isn’t impacted by it. I think we pretty much have to assume that guys ARE looking at porn, and then look for the signs that THEY are willing to deal with it. I wish that we didn’t have to deal with it, but this is how the world is right now.

      One of the things that we KNOW happens when guys look at porn is they do start to be more susceptible to cheating and acting out. Again, that’s not about how you look, that’s about the process of addiction.

      The good news is, guys CAN stop. They CAN get better. They have to do the work, though, and that takes time and a lot of effort on their part.

      Meanwhile, you’re left with a lot of hurt and anger at how your trust has been abused. I’m so, so sorry that you’re having to deal with this, and I WISH our culture, especially our church culture, was more open and supportive to everyone involved. I’m glad you found us here!

      I wrote an article for girlfriends just a couple of months ago. I don’t know if any of that will help you in your next relationship, but I hope so! Please let me know if there’s anything else we can do to be a support to you.

  9. Juliet

    I have done something awful which I feel makes me as bad as my husband. He doesn’t work so I get up early, put in a day at the office, come home to work in another business at home, keep house, pay the bills etc. I get really tired and in truth I’m not well. Of course my husband is not tired – he has all day to do what he wants but doesn’t do much to help out. When I go to bed I’m tired out and I can’t remember when I had a day off to myself to relax.

    Anyway, recently he has either stopped coming to bed with me or comes but then gets up again. This means I leave him sleeping in every morning when I go to work which I am coming to resent and then of course he is not tired at night because he has not been up so early. A few times I have got up and gone to his study to find him looking at porn or quickly shutting something down when I walk in. I became suspicious and so I put some keylogger software on our computer. I feel bad about this but I was fearful of what he was doing when I wasn’t there.

    It seems he is not actually meeting anyone but he is chatting on a number of websites in a sexual way. It has also revealed some things about him I didn’t know he was into.

    I felt I needed to know the truth but now I have found it in this way I feel it places me in the wrong and I don’t know how to confront him. The fact that I bought the computer, pay for the electricity that runs it and pays for everything else in his life made me feel like I had some right to know what was going on – not to mention that we are married and the promises her made to me.

    I have tried having a conversation that if he worked, even part time, did things in the house while I was out etc I would not be so tired and would have more time to spend with him, but he just got angry, made an effort for a day and then went back to the computer.

    I love him and want my marriage but I am not prepared to have him spend his energies on other women and not me.

    • Hi Juliet,

      It would be easy for anyone to minimize what you’ve done in the light of the greater offense your husband has been committing. Make no mistake: his is most certainly the greater offense. What he’s doing to you and to your marriage is deplorable. At the same time, you are sensitive to your own shortcomings in the matter, and I don’t want to tell you to ignore your conscience.

      I would approach him this way. “I’ve walked in on you while you were looking at porn on the computer, so I installed a keylogger to see about the extent of what you’ve been doing online. I know that probably upsets you because I’ve spied on you, and I should have asked you what you were doing before trying to snoop around, so I’m sorry that I handled this poorly. If you want to talk about the issue of privacy in our marriage some time, we can talk about that later. But right now I want to talk about what I’ve seen in your behavior online that has disturbed me…”

      If he wants to make it about you spying on him, then I would say this: “You are right that I shouldn’t spy on you. That’s why I intend to leave all the devices in our home monitored with your full knowledge. The last thing I want to do is snoop, and the last thing our marriage needs is me keeping a secret from you. And it is precisely because I think these kinds of secrets are a bad thing that I’m worried about what you’re doing online. Your private conversations online that you’re intentionally keeping from me offend me in ways I cannot even describe…”

      If he protests you monitoring him, say this: “I understand you want your privacy online, but at the cost of my trust? I know what you look at online and your insistence that you be allowed unmonitored time online only deepens the distrust that you’ve earned. I want to trust you again. I want our marriage to thrive. But to do that, you need to earn the trust that you’ve lost.”

      These are, of course, just my thoughts and just the beginning of the conversation. There are a whole host of other issues at play here: (1) the fact that he’s basically trampling all over your vows by watching porn, (2) the fact that he doesn’t have a job and is lazy, and (3) that he insists on you picking up all the slack around your house. These all need to be addressed as well.

  10. Renee

    I also have a husband who looks at other women online. We have been dealing with this for over 8 years now. I suspect longer. The first few times I caught him, he swore he would never do it again. I prayed that was true. However, I found a series of exchanges between he and another woman whom he had never met, a Craigslist ad, and a few other things, and everything was so explicit. I felt so defeated, dirty, and unloved. He sought help, but I feel now, that that was only because I caught him. I thought I had forgiven him. I figured, God has forgiven me for the multitude of things I’ve done. Who am I, not to offer my husband that forgiveness? Just a few weeks ago, I found that he has been looking again at images online. How do I know when enough is enough already? We have three children and I couldn’t bear to see our family broken apart, but I also am tired of the hurt and disappointment, and feel so broken. I’m not sure I can go through this again. It is truly heartbreaking.

    • Kay Bruner

      Oh, Renee, I’m so sorry for the pain you’ve been living with for so long. I think your situation has a number of complicating factors–like all situations!

      One of the first things that stands out to me is your husband’s ongoing struggle. I wonder what kind of support he’s getting? Addiction is a tough thing to beat, and willpower is generally not enough. Here’s an article with some practical suggestions and spiritual principles as well that might help him. I think that even with the best intentions, recovery from addiction is a long road. It’s primarily his road, too. He has to take responsibility for it.

      The second issue I see here is the question of boundaries: when is enough, enough? That’s such a personal call, and everybody handles that differently. There’s a book I really like, a free download, called Hope After Porn, that you might want to check out. It’s four different women sharing their stories of boundaries in their marriages.

      The third issue you raise is forgiveness. We forgive freely, like you said, because God has forgiven us. Forgiveness is free. But TRUST is EARNED. And it’s earned by trustworthy behavior over time. You can forgive AND have boundaries!

      You’re right, Renee. This is heartbreaking. May the great Healer of your heart hold you close today, as you walk this road. Thanks for letting us walk with you.

  11. Renee

    Thank you so much for your reply. I sit here in tears because after 18 years of marriage, I feel like it’s all been one big lie. I pray that sharing this with him will help and I am grateful to you for your help~

    • Kay Bruner

      We know that the truth sets us free–but it scares the heck out of us first. It’s so disorienting to find out that there are these huge things you don’t know! But no matter what, God’s got you. That’s the thing that never, ever changes. I absolutely believe there’s hope. Not in particular outcomes, but in the Love that never lets us go.

  12. I caught my husband of 18 years watching porn videos,naked pics of women, vaginas sent on whattsapp,romantic messages sent to one woman.he claims these are sent by male friends Itemized phone bills show he phones @least 3 same women every other day( a coworker& widows). I found an empty condom packet in his car & he claimed he was masturbating. ive always known him to be a christian. He phones these women even after midnight. When away he phones them and they chat for minutes. What can i do. I feel so angry,empty,no intimacy. He is in deep debts. So he often says thats why he is always aloof here @ home. when i talk to him& tell him im stressed he says i need to change the way i think coz he loves me & has never cheated on me. How can i trust him? He locks his phone. He doesnt chat with me on whattapp but chats with so many women on email& whattsapp. Pls help. There are three kids here. He doesnt want us to go for counselling. Recently in church he preached about davids sin & admonished us that we need to repent like david. I asked myself if this was what he does wonderd why he had chosen that text when im there

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Sibo. I’m so sorry for what you’re going through. There are a lot of red flags waving frantically here. I know that deciding what to do in a situation like this is scary and confusing. I wonder if you’ve seen the free download here, Hope After Porn? It’s stories from four different women about how they handled those decisions and what the process looked like for them. Here’s the link to another article that talks about what kinds of boundaries are reasonable to have. Trust is a big question, I know. And here is what I would say: TRUST IS A GIFT WE GIVE TO TRUSTWORTHY PEOPLE. It sounds like your husband is not trustworthy right now. I think the “repent like David” sermon may have been just what God wanted you to hear, because it gives a picture of what real repentance looks like: CHANGE! Repentance doesn’t just mean saying “I’m sorry, please trust me.” Repentance means turning away from all the bad choices and making new good choices. It really is possible to change. It takes a lot of hard work, but it’s possible. If your husband is interested in that, here’s an article that might help get him started. It sounds to me like you could use some local support while you’re going through this. If you’d like to look into counseling, the American Association of Christian Counselors has counselors throughout the country. You can search for help in your area here. I hope those resources help you think through all this. Please let us know if you have more questions.

  13. Hi, I feel for all of these women here and I pray that we all find the peace and the comfort we need to get through all this and for God to work in us as well as our husbands. My husband and I got saved 6yrs ago and we married a yr after we got saved God really changed us so much the words cannot explain. 2yrs ago I found my husband going on escort websites and he was also looking at innapropriate youtube videos of women in panties, or big boobs, etc. I felt shattered, I was mortified, and hurt I didn’t know how to confront him, I held it in for months while I conitnued checking his internet searches through google etc and everyday it made me crazy! it got to the point where I would consume all my time and energy at work checking up on him, his internet searches, his phone records etc. I was a basket case, my job productivity fell & I was more and more distant from him, everyday I got up to go to work my stomach was in knots thinking of what he was going to look at that day. I finally said enough was enough I had to confront him, I counseld with my pastor and told him everything and he helped me get through with scriptures prayers and how to approach him etc, well when I approached my husband all I said was “is there something you need to tell me have you been doing anything you shouldn’t be doing?” please be honest with me! & he right away spilled the beans and confessed nothing ever happened with any escort he was just “browsing” and apologized, blamed it on his back injury and my lack of trust etc. he asked for forgivness and said he would come to me if he ever felt a certain way or needed prayer. Well, from that day on I knew that if I didn’t “Let go and Let God” I would be consumed and proabably end up in a nut house bc it was just too much for me to handle, i finally surrendered it all to God fell on my knees and prayed & asked God to take this burden from me, I pray every day and also did the 31 days of prayer for my husband, it’s been almost a yr that I haven’t looked at his search history or his youtube acct. although sometimes in teh back of my mind I have that fear, I quickly pray and ask God to rid me of that anxiety and fear and his Love is always there to help me through. I don’t know if my husbands still looking at videos, or searching for escorts & at times I want to check to see if he has, or sometimes I get negative thoughts in my mind but that’s when I say the Bible says God will never leave me or forsake me so he’s Got this! I need to let go and let God! ever since this happend I got so much closer to God and he’s helped me change to be the helpmeet for my husband. Continue praying for me and I will do the same for you all. A good book to read also is “created to be his helpmeet” God bless you all.

    • Thanks for sharing your story. I’m familiar with Created to Be His Helpmeet, and to be honest I found it disturbing. I think this review of the book summarizes well what I found strange about the book. I’d love to get your thoughts on the review.

  14. Desiree

    I am blessed to have come across this. I recently found that my husband was not just watching porn which I had known about previously but looking at women’s ads online. When I confronted him he was entirely apologetic and starts he will never look at porn again, that he never meant to hurt me. I want to forgive him and trust that he means what he is saying but also feel that maybe he is confessing and apologizing since he was caught red handed. I’m lost and with no clue where to go from here.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Desiree. Well, I’m glad he was apologetic and says he doesn’t want to look at porn and doesn’t want to hurt you. But, I think he probably has a fair amount of work to do if he really wants to make that happen: practical steps like monitoring/filtering devices, and personal steps like accountability. He might do well to join a group like Celebrate Recovery; actually, that might be helpful to both of you. As you think through where to go from here, you might find this list of articles helpful. And you might also appreciate our free download, Hope After Porn, where a number of women talk about their experiences in similar circumstances. I also like Henry Cloud and John Townsend’s book, Boundaries in Marriage. Have a look at those things and let me know if they help at all. If you find you need more support, you might want to look for a counselor in your area. I think the American Association of Christian Counselors is a great place to begin that search. Blessings, Kay

  15. Cindy

    I feel kinda bad to even complain because my situation is not that bad but I still need guidance to deal with it. I found a hooters swimsuit calendar on my husbands desk at work and when he saw I discovered it he said I see you found that… I said yeah it’s ok. He said no I know you don’t like it. I said no it doesn’t bother me u prob need a stress reliever since u have to deal with angry customers and uncooperative co workers all the time. He said I don’t look at that stuff, so & so put it on my desk and I told him he was going to get me in trouble. That was the end of that conversation. So next day he said I told so & so you got so mad & almost slapped me. Then I told him what u really said… So I said something like that’s what he told his wife that you put it onHis desk. Then my hubby reiterated and said I don’t care anything about looking at those women. Ok so two weeks later he wanted sex, he said I need a stress reliever, I said u got one on ur desk at work. I guess i prob shouldn’t have said that. But I did, and he no I put that in the back of the file cabinet. Basically he says for the chance when he might stick a pic on a box for when someone opens it for a shock and a laugh like the old stale biscuit in his desk someone left. But he did mention he may look at it once in a while. So I said I thought u said u didn’t. So now I’m starting to sound jealous (because I am and it does hurt). But then he said he didnt really want to look at stuff like that because ive shown him how it affects women in a negative way. So now I don’t know that to do. Because he is having the right heart about it but still his it and may look once in a while. Why does that still hurt so much? I wish I really didn’t care. It’s not a actual porn or at least not hardcore. He is not trying to talk to women. Should I let it go? Yes I should… but then why should I have sex with him anymore? I’m not the fantasy. What good does me having sex with him do? For me it’s too painful. Thank you.

    • Kay Bruner

      Well, Cindy, it sounds to me like the issue isn’t really the calendar. To me, it sounds like the relationship is where the problems are. There’s a lot of emotional dishonesty in this story: it’s okay, it’s not okay, lying about your response to it. And then, after you’ve said it’s okay, you won’t have sex with him. It sounds like you really were upset.

      It’s perfectly fine for you to feel how you feel about this. My concern is that the two of you aren’t able to be honest with each other about it. Why is that?

      And sex is just a stress-reliever in your relationship? That’s another concern. Best-case scenario, sex is an expression of the intimacy between two people who love each other.

      I think you guys need to figure out what’s really going on here, and I would suggest finding a counselor near you to help you work through this.

      Blessings, Kay

  16. Cindy

    Kay, if I were to be honest and say “hey that really hurts,” then I am likely going to be labeled the nagging jealous wife, which is unattractive and will only push him to look more often & as a, well, stress reliever from having to deal with the nagging jealous wife. And besides, we had the honest conversation of how it makes me feel a couple times in the past after seeing his collection of playboy, yet he still has that old collection but I don’t know if he looks, doesn’t seem to but is a hoarder… & now has the new stuff, what good will putting my heart out there to be vulnerable do? And for background, I had the same basic experience when I was 19 (im 41 now) finding my bf’s porn magazines and I was so upset and cried. He promised to throw them away. A few months later I found them again and the exact same one because he said here is that magazine you found before. And then looking at it globally so many men look at porn without a second thought, yet they still love their woman. So I’ve learned that men can’t or just don’t give that stuff up. Somehow I have to learn how to forgive my husband. He does love me and he has expressed his perspective on it has changed since our original conversations about it. He says he realizes how disrespectful it is to women and doesn’t want to be that way. He says if someone shows him a dirty pic and he tells them he has better at home or he might tell them they don’t need to be looking at that at work. He tries to encourage a professional, respectful atmosphere. He has tried to reassure me but unfortunately I’m a bottomless pit of doubt. I just wonder what I’m supposed to do, if anything at all. I don’t understand how if he does look at the calendar how he can then still want me. I feel if he looks then there is no way he can possibly want me or love me. Maybe he can love me like a friend but that’s got to be it. And if he wants me it can’t possibly be as much as his favorite sexy pin up girl. I don’t think I should say anything to him. If i start talking about it i will want to get inside his head and ask too many personal questions. I better let go since we already had the discussion in the past. I know, go to counseling. We do need that and I want to. At the moment, I deal with it by trying to keep it light. For instance I have said in the past if you look at another girls boobs then I have to show someone mine because you gave your attention to someone else therefore to even it out I need to get someone else’s attention. He laughed. And then yesterday I told him oh by the way you go ahead and look at your calendar girls because today at work a man told me my hair was beautiful so it’s all good now. And he laughed which I was glad because I don’t want to treat him bad about it. We have more important things to worry about. But we do still need counseling because we aren’t connected and we don’t have chemistry and we might have sex once a month. We have only been married a year and a half. That’s not right and it’s sad but that’s the way it is. I know you can’t solve all our problems but thank you for listening.

    • Kay Bruner

      Wow, it makes me sad that you’re afraid to express your pain in your marriage. I hope that relationship can become a safe place for you at some point! Yes, counseling :) Blessings, Kay

  17. Cindy

    We are both first time married and not planning to got pregnant on our honeymoon. We never have had chemistry but we feel God brought us together.

  18. Jess

    Thank you so much for writing this. It has really given me peace and a sense of where we are as a couple. I am so glad that you have included scripture for each section, many articles do not. God’s word is the only thing that I can trust to be 100% true. God bless you.

  19. Natasha

    I need your advises. We’ve been married for 14 years and we have two sons.The first time I found out that he was watching this porn movies I confronted him but as always he tells me that ” it’s a man thing”. I leave it that way for so many years though the pain I felt of knowing every time he is watching it is a great betrayal. Instead I gave him love and understanding. Until one day I found out a more painful than those porn movies. Things got worse, He took videos using his mobile phone with those girls unaware in public areas such as malls and public transport. I have the evidence but I chose to keep it to myself. I confronted him and he acknowledge of doing it but no reason of why he did it. I am really now in pain and struggling with depression. I can’t bring myself to trust him again. please help me.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Natasha. I’m really sorry for the pain you’re experiencing in your marriage. It is concerning that he’s moved on to filming people in public places. That to me would indicate an escalation in his habit, and a need for more risky behavior on his part. If you suspect that he is involved in criminal activities at any point, you can consult with local law enforcement about ways to proceed.

      It sounds like confronting him has not be successful so far, and that’s very sad. I think under the current circumstances that you describe, it would be very unwise to trust him.

      I want to suggest that you get some help for yourself, as you process through your emotions and decide what do to. A personal counselor could be really helpful. There are groups like Celebrate Recovery that can help, too. Sometimes I’ve even had wives who’ve gone to AlAnon, because that’s what they could find in their area–and it’s been quite helpful. Reach out for help. Blessings, Kay

  20. Angela

    I would love some advise ….
    I’m recently married. I’m struggling with my husband’s love of “Chive.” I woke up in the middle of the night lying next to me scrolling through the Chive feeds. Most feeds have at least 1 picture of half naked women in them. This is the second time I woke up next to him seeing him scrolling through pictures. The last time was within this last year, & he was pausing to enlarge & get a closer look of he big breasted ladies. Later I found that he saved pics of women to his phone. Since i spoke to him about it the first time, he says that he no longer saves pics to his phone. Each time this happened, I felt a sinking sick feeling in my gut, a racing heart ….& absolutely crushed. He has told me over & over that he doesn’t look at Chive for the girls, that it’s for the funny pics & videos.
    He shared with me a different time that in his previous marriage he was addicted to porn. He sought counseling, and hasn’t watched porn since.
    He is extremely private with his phone and laptop. I don’t have passcode a to either. As I really don’t want to ‘check up on him,’ I really feel uncomfortable with him being so private. I’ve readily shared my passwords when I’ve needed him to check something for me, without a second thought. He finds it strange that I’m so open.
    I’ve shared with him the way it makes me feel when he looks at Chive or if he looked at any other ‘adults’ only site. He feels I’m trying to control him & states, “you said when we met that you weren’t that kind of woman. That you didn’t care what I looked at.” I told him that I didn’t know that it would bother me or make me feel physically ill and so sad.
    I’m feeling so stuck, because he becomes so defensive. I feel a lack of trust in this department. I don’t know if it’s unfair, as I’ve never seen him using porn sites, ect. Although, this makes me feel just the same.

    I want a healthy relationship. :(

    • Kay Bruner

      You want a healthy relationship. Good for you!!!!!

      Your husband just may not know what that looks like. That doesn’t mean he can’t learn, but it will be up to him to take responsibility for himself and make that effort.

      It actually sounds to me that he may be kind of a ‘dry drunk.’ Maybe he’s not looking at what he defines as porn, but it sounds to me like he’s got some work to do on underlying issues, because he’s still got the defense mechanisms and some of the behaviors in place. (I just wrote an article about defense mechanisms on my own blog, which you might find helpful.)

      I think it’s really courageous of you to have these conversations with him. Keep thinking about your boundaries, what you really want in your life, and keep expressing those things to him. Ask him what he really wants out of the relationship, too.

      If you haven’t read Dr. John Gottman’s Seven Principles for Making Marriage Work, I’d highly recommend that. It comes at the problem of marital intimacy from a bit of a different perspective that I think men find less intimidating than “tell me what’s on your heart.”

      I think a lot of guys really don’t know what they can have. They don’t understand what emotional intimacy really is, or how soul-nourishing it can be. They’re taught to avoid emotions many times, and porn just reinforces that way of thinking and living. It takes a lot of work to get healthy. It’s so much more than not looking at porn, but I think a lot of times guys don’t feel very competent in emotional areas, because of the way we socialize men in our culture. Sex is pretty much what they’re allowed to do…

      Hang in there, and let me know if those things help. Kay

  21. Amy

    I have no idea what my husband does. We haven’t been in the same room together in over 40 years.We have nothing to do with each other. He does his thing and I do mine, we share only our house. He eats and sleeps in the basement and I have the upstairs. I don’t know if checks out other women or not. Its way to late in our lives to care any more.

    • Kay Bruner

      Wow, Amy, that makes me feel so sad. I hope you’re able to find healthy, caring support in other relationships, even if your marriage isn’t what you hoped it would be. I would imagine that you’d need to process a lot of painful emotions in a safe place. If you need to find a counselor, you can check here. And I find that groups can be a great place for understanding companionship as well: Celebrate Recovery, Pure Desire, xxxChurch, S Anon, Al Anon. Even if your marriage is broken, there’s healing and hope for YOU, in the company of safe, caring people. Blessings, Kay

  22. Amie

    MY husband and I have been together for 11 years and married for 4.5 out of the 11. we have 2 kids together I believe in the Lord but he does not. I was looking on his phone one night and saw picture of half naked girls which he denied looking at I felt horrible, I cried for hours, I couldn’t sleep and I almost told him to leave our house. He promised me that he never looked at them and he was sorry that I was hurting so bad. A couple months went by and he left for 4 days to work when he returned I found more pictures of women on his phone after he promised, swore on our kids life, and he knew how it affected me the first time. This time he admitted to looking at them but didn’t think he did anything wrong because their boobs were covered by their arms. I have been cheated on in past relationships so trust for me has been hard I have been afraid of getting hurt again. I was trying so hard to trust him and then this happened I couldn’t eat or sleep and I cried all the time this was about a month ago it happened. I am trying to work things out with him but he never seems to want to talk communication is not a strong point because he never explains how he feels or what is on his mind and it hurts me. I have nightmares now that he is cheating on me or back to the same pictures or live chat which he claims he doesn’t know how to do that. I confront him about how he hides his phone from me but he doesn’t think he does. I am at a lost of what to do to fix our marriage, I have mentioned counselling but he doesn’t want to do it, I have tried to write notes since he doesn’t want to talk it out but he doesn’t want to think of things. Please help I really don’t know what to do and If I will be able to trust him ever again.
    Thank you.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Amie. I’m so, so sorry for the pain you’re feeling right now. I’m glad you found us here, and I hope we can be of help to you as you find your way forward.

      First of all, let me say that your reaction to this discovery is totally normal. Many, many women who make a discovery like this will meet the clinical criteria for PTSD. So it’s really, really important that you get help just for YOU. Find a personal counselor who can help you process your emotions, and who can give you support as you decide what healthy boundaries will look like for you. Find a group like Celebrate Recovery, S Anon, or online at xxxChurch so you can talk with others who are working through similar issues.

      Read up on how other women have dealt with issues like this. Every situation is unique, but it helps to see how others have handled it. Here’s a link to Hope After Porn, which is a free download. And here’s an article that links to our most popular content for wives. I’ll link you here to a short animation on YouTube about porn recovery that I did especially for wives. Educate yourself and make healthy choices, based on your own situation and your own good boundaries.

      The other thing to know is that your husband will need to deal with his behavior for himself. Couples’ counseling is really not an effective treatment option until he is clean and sober. He can go to counseling for himself, join a group, and get some personal accountability in place. Once he’s taking responsibility for himself, then couples’ counseling may be helpful. Until that happens, it won’t do much good. Here’s an article you could pass along to him about what recovery will look like for him.

      You are right not to trust him, as long as his behavior is not trustworthy. Here’s an article from my own personal blog about forgiveness and trust. When he commits to change and starts taking responsibility for himself, you can re-evaluate when it’s wise to trust. While he is not being trustworthy, you’ll have to think long and hard about what is healthy for you in this relationship. Ella recently wrote an article about that, here.

      Whatever happens, whatever he chooses, know that you can find hope and healing. Get support, get educated, get healthy boundaries in place. Let us know how we can help.

      Blessings, Kay

  23. Wendy S

    I am in a committed relationship with a man and found a playboy calendar with nude women in his room and it shocked me to the point where I was numb and could not even get upset at first. The first thing we ever talked about when we met was that Trust is the most important element in a relationship. Without Trust, nothing else matters… not physical attraction, having things in common, common faith, not even Love….Men who enjoy looking at naked women ( on the internet, in magazines, wherever… ) are in every sense of the word… CHEATING… on their wife, girlfriend, etc… Cheating is NOT just a physical act, and starts in the mind… emotionally. The thought and seed of cheating is planted in the mind before it is carried out through physical act. There are two parts to cheating.. emotional and physical. If your man gets turned on or is attracted to other women, that is ultimate disrespect to the woman he is with. Whether it is just visual enjoyment or masturbation, when a man looks at other women ( naked or clothed ) , that is a slap in the face to the woman in his life. I don’t know what to do, because he does not know I found the calendar in his room, so I am pretending not to know anything, but it is still there…..I think about it all the time and it is starting to affect how I act when we are together. I refused sex a couple times recently because of hurt feelings so I could not give myself to him. Trying to think of a good way to find out if he even cares about my feelings and why he has that calendar in his room. I don’t know if he also has nude pics of women on his computer .

    • Kay Bruner

      Hi Wendy, Well, I’d say it’s time to have a difficult conversation with your partner. If you can talk to him when you are calm, and ask him to tell you what’s going on, that is ideal. And if you can share calmly with him how you view this, and how it impacts you, that would also be great. What you’re hoping for is that he will be impacted by your concerns, and that he will take responsibility for himself. You might appreciate this recent article from The Gottman Institute that talks about how porn harms relationships–it would be a good article to share with your partner. I hope that helps! Blessings, Kay

  24. Martha

    I did everything and I mean everything that was asked of me from my Pastor’s and my ex continued to be lustful. I did things that “Christian authorities advised me to do” Love him through it and be there for him and he used that against me. This went on for years! I was a mess! I’d pray and he’d tell me to stop praying. What truly helped me was learning that my identity wasn’t found in this situation but what God said about me in his word. I separated myself from him and moved out. Staying only encouraged him to continue in his behavior because there was no consequences for his actions. I put up with it. He came into my new place and raped me. So I moved in with my brother. And it got better I felt safe. To make a long story short, we got divorced and he later became a registered sex offender. I’m remarried to a man who loves me completely. Every situation is different. And when we seek God through prayer and his word he will show us what to do.

    • Kay Bruner

      Martha, thank you so much for sharing your story here. I’m so sorry for the pain you suffered in your marriage. It sounds to me like the church was complicit in the abuse you suffered–I think that is a pretty common and absolutely horrific set of circumstances that many women endure. I’m so very glad you were able to separate yourself from him, and to press on into healing even under such traumatic circumstances. You’ve suffered terribly, but as I read your story, it’s a story of amazing hope and redemption! God is never out of options. Peace to you, Kay

  25. Hi i’ve been married for 3 yrs.I dont how to react with what i’ve seen in my husband facebook account.He loved to add from his friendlist women & ladies with nude,showing sexy body.Lately he log in to my pc.I open his activity logs and i found out he was posting to ladies pictures saying “Ma’am your so beautiful”..Many ladies on his freindlist have that comment.He also change his cellphone password.Right now where not together since i will be giving birth for our second baby.How would i react about this beacuse right i feel very much angry on him,knowing shes flirting other ladies on social medias.

    • Kay Bruner

      Kristin, I think your anger is appropriate! When your husband breaks his marriage vows and behaves this way, you SHOULD be angry.

      The question is, what will you do with that anger? My hope is that you’ll use that anger as fuel toward good boundaries and self-care. Your husband may be making bad choices, but you can make good choices for yourself! Here and here are a couple of articles on boundaries.

      I hope you’ve got family and friends who can help you through this, especially as you’re having another baby!

      The most important thing is your safety and the safety of your children. If your husband can’t keep those things in mind, at least you can make sure you’re doing what’s healthy and right. Take good care of you.

      Peace to you, Kay

  26. Amanda

    Ok, so my husband most of the time tells me when he looks at porn, and even has asked to because he has to take meds that make it hard for him have an erection. And because I feel bad I say go ahead. But, during foreplay, and I see videos playing in the background, I can’t stand it. What to do? It’s killing me inside but I don’t say anything because I don’t want him to feel bad for hurting me, cause I know he does. But like I said it is killing me and don’t know how to help me deal with it!!

    • Kay Bruner

      Amanda, you get to choose the boundaries that are healthy for YOU during sex. If you’re not comfortable with porn during sex, there’s no porn during sex. End of story. You don’t have to figure out how to deal with things that hurt you. You simply say no. Here, here, and here are some articles about boundaries to help you think about what’s healthy for you, and what you want to have in the relationship.

  27. swathi


    I love my husband a lot I believe that he was my world..I care for him every second…but when he saw other girls I never digest that situations….wherever we go he used to start looking for other girls infront of me…I observe everything…is he will be changed in future…

    • Kay Bruner

      Well, the only person who can take responsibility for his behavior is himself. The best way to predict his behavior in the future is his behavior now. Is he willing to take responsibility for himself? Is he willing to enter into a recovery process? Is he willing to do the work? If the answer is yes–then likely, over time, he will be able to change. But if he won’t take responsibility now, then the future doesn’t look good either. You might want to think about what healthy boundaries will look like for you in this relationship. Here and here are a couple of articles to help get you started thinking about that.

    • kattie

      Even I am kinda going through d same thing…
      But he watches girls online and that has become a habit for him he is not able to stop even after me telling him so many times….
      What should I do? Some one please help.

    • Kay Bruner

      Well, decide if this is the kind of relationship you’d like to be a part of. What healthy boundaries would you like to have? Here, here, and here are some articles to help you think that through. You’re under no obligation to remain in relationships that don’t respect and value you. Decide what’s healthy for you, and live accordingly. Peace to you, Kay

  28. Jo

    Well I don’t know what to do I keep on look at my husbands Facebook and he keeps on looking at other girls. Searching… sometimes there models and other times there just regular girls I am just tired of it I don’t know what to do. Every single time he does it I ask him why and he always tell me ether that it was not him or that he missed clicked!!!! So I don’t know it’s not the first or second time or fifth time. When we were almost 2 years merried I cought him talking texting to another girl and well that seriously Brock everything thing between us my heart was Broken we talked and I told him that if he wanted to be with her to leave. But he broke down crying and he said he would never do it yayayayya. Then like a month later I cought him again same girl but on Facebook… I got so mad he told me that they were just friends but once again I forgave him and now we are almost 4 years married 2 daughters and he just not being respectful to me I give him everything like a good wife. And he still look for other girls on this Facebook why ? Thats why I question myself why???? It’s hard for me to trust him again

    • Kay Bruner

      Yeah, when your husband has a pattern of untrustworthy behavior, of course you don’t trust him. Trust is earned. And it’s earned by trustworthy behavior over time. If he’s not trustworthy, it’s foolish to trust him. And if he’s continuing to be untrustworthy, then you are faced with the very difficult question of what your boundaries will be. Here, here, and here are some articles about boundaries that might be helpful as you think things through. I’d encourage you to find support through a counselor for yourself, a group just for you, maybe an online resource like Bloom. You’ve got hard things to face, so find some companionship on that road. Peace to you, Kay

  29. Jill

    my husband texts another woman, then I see all the half dressed women on his computer. He won’t make love with me, even told me he’s not in the mood! I wonder what the hell I did to deserve this….so not only do I have to compete with this xxxx he texted, I have to compete with the pics on his computer of women young enough to be his daughter….I’m so disgusted!

  30. kattie

    I have been married for a year and a half… we have not had sex even once. My husband keeps watching hot girls videos on utube everyday morning when am asleep. I feel very awkward wen I get to know about tat when I see his search history. Looks like he is not at all interested in me… but acts like he like me a lot… aftr warning him many times he promised he wouldnt masturbate again… but he still keeps doing it… but never tries to have sex with me… he is not at all interested in me… but I love him a lot except for this matter… this problem is gonna destroy my entire marriage life one day and I am sure about it… I don’t know whom to share this with… I started hating myself… kept crying all nite but he doesn’t evn know am upset… he is happily sleeping… I feel like ending my life at times when I think that the one i love is not interested in me but loves to watch other girls body on his phone… am sure he has no idea how much pain am going through each time he does that…

    • Kay Bruner

      I am so, so sorry. What a terribly painful situation. It’s obvious that your husband has deep, deep issues which he is not prepared at this point to confront. Here’s an article that Luke wrote a while back that you might find helpful.

      You might want to find a counselor, just for you, someone who can help you process your emotions and choose healthy boundaries for yourself. If you are thinking of hurting yourself, please call a counselor TODAY.

      And please realize that this situation is NOT your fault. He needs to take responsibility for himself. But whatever he chooses, you can choose to be healthy. You can choose good boundaries. You can choose to take care of yourself. I hope you will do that today, and find a counselor.

      I would also urge you to be open with safe friends and family about what’s going on in your life, if you haven’t done so already.

      Peace and healing to you, Kay

  31. Debbie

    Men are visual creatures who love naked women. Naked women are all over the internet. They may seem real, but they are not. I would just ignore it, or better yet, find your own porn to look at. Leave evidence of your browsing where he can see it. What’s good for the goose is good for the gander. Dress sexy, get other men to really notice you. Flirt with them. Print out pictures of impossibly handsome, muscled men and use them as bookmarks. Get playing cards of hot men, get as many things as you can around the house of gorgeous, hot, sexy men and make sure the hub notices. If it doesn’t bother him, keep adding more. Frame some photos of really handsome, sexy men and put them on your nightstand. Look at them while having sex. Stop doing his laundry. Stop cooking for him. Get yourself a vibrator and use it when he can hear you (while looking at pics of hot men of course), dress up, go out with friends. Make yourself happy! Either he will come to his senses or not, but at least you won’t be feeling sorry for yourself or wasting time checking up on him. Join a swingers website. Spend a LOT of time on your phone/computer without him seeing where you are going (maybe you’re browsing shoes?) and when he gets close, shut the computer/phone. In other words, stop being a freaking doormat!! Jeez! Why do you want to live your life checking up on him? That sucks! He will find a way to look at porn or craigslist or whatever. It is not real! You snooping on him is probably the biggest turn off for him that he can imagine! Why waste your time??? You do you! He will find you much more interesting if you are your own person with your own sexual needs. Try it.

    • Michelle

      Debbie needs to see a therapist. Do NOT consider this to be wise advice. It WILL not go well for you.

  32. Jessica

    I have been married for 16 years. All the while I have always noticed my husband checking out other women and how flirting he was to them. We have 2 girls and they have even saw him winking at waitress. A little over two years ago I found out that he had been looking at porn sexting and only God knows what else. What’s amazing to me is how God through preaching reviled it to me. I was in a revival at my church and the preacher stated if you are not good to your wife it’s because you have sin in your life and you need to get in the alter. My husband and I don’t go to the same church but after hearing those words the wheels in my head started turning. That’s when I started praying for the truth to come out. I prayed no matter how bad it hurts to show me the truth and that I would give God thanks for showing me. About two weeks later God showed me. It has hurt me so much but I think God he loves me enough that he doesn’t want me to live in lies. I have been experiencing some of the same things as the other women. I haven’t been eating good. I don’t feel like I’m good enough. I worry what he is doing when he is gone. I have the same feeling when we have sex that he is thinking about someone else. Well when the truth come out. First thing he said to me was I was not getting alamoni
    He left then came back and told me how sorry he was. He started going to church with me and our girls. I thought he was trying really hard. He didn’t watch much TV. That only lasted about 2 month. Then he started being distant again yelling at me again fussing at me staying gone alot. I have felt alot of anger and hate coming from him. I don’t know why but one day out of the blue he decided that he wanted us to do counseling. I hesitated because I had suggested it in the past. He would tell me that there was nothing wrong with him that I was the one with the problem. I decided to go that way I can say in my heart I have tried everything. We only went 2 times and he wouldn’t make another appointment. So unfortunately it was another dead end. Recently I found out he has two computers I never new he had. I’m so tired of the secrets and lies. I mean come on enough is enough. We are women in charge of our happy Ness. Our joy comes from the Lord Not our husbands. I know God wants us to be happy. I think God he is helping me through this. Even when I feel like I’m going to fall he lifts me up with his arms. In my heart I feel my marriage is over. I’m not going to keep letting him do this to me. It breaks my heart I had such a great hope that my marriage was going to make it. I think he really just don’t care about me. So why should I hold on to him when he let me go along time ago. Another thing I almost forgot he got another checking account and his statements are sent to his grandma house. He must think I’m stupid but I know he is hiding something. I am so battered but by God’s grace we can all make it through this. I will be praying for all of you. If y’all get a chance read in the Bible Malachi chapter 2 vs 13-16. This scripture has been a help to me. To one of the resent post don’t do to them what they have done to us. We will have to answer to God if we did. They are going to answer to God for what they have done to us. Vinyance is my says the Lord. God bless you all I pray he gives us all peace.

    • Kay Bruner

      Wow, Jessica, it sounds like he is hiding a LOT. It sounds like he has brief periods of trying hard before submerging back into the muck that he’s caught in.

      I’m glad you have been able to face the truth, even though it’s scary. I agree, it’s time to face up to the reality that he has broken the marriage covenant long ago, repeatedly, and decide what is healthy for you given the true circumstances of the relationship.

      I hope you will find a counselor who can help you process your emotions and build healthy boundaries. Here, here, and here are some articles that may help.

      You are NOT a slave to his sin! You are free, and fully valuable safe and beloved. Live a life worthy of your value.

      Peace to you,

  33. Danise

    Hi. I’m very irritated and annoyed. I’ve been married 2 & 1/2 years and my husband has been looking at porn, secting other women, flirting with other women, talking to other women on social media etc. So I confronted him and instead of him trying to understand how I feel he becomes defensive and says well if you didn’t hurt me(meaning argue with him over non related issues. Mostly our children cause we are a blended family) then he would do what he did. So I’m the cause of him doing what he does. He can’t go hang out with the fellas, go to the movies, anything but disrespect me and our vows. I can admit that I no longer love him or respect him and to top it off he claims to be a Christian and tries to throw the religion card in my face constantly when he’s the walking devil in my opinion. I’m trying to live right and do right in this marriage but my insides want to give him a taste of his own medicine. I know God will handle it but I want revenge now and i want him to hurt like he’s hurt me.

    What I’ve come to realize in all my living is that most men are nasty creatures (not saying women can’t be the same) but men are nasty. Go look at your neighborhood sec offender list and 99% offenders are men. They act like animals and it’s very sad. I have no hope that things will ever change because evil is lurking around constantly and it’s starting first with our husbands.

    • Kay Bruner

      I wish it weren’t so, but it’s very common for men to throw up walls of rationalization, blame shifting, and other defense mechanisms, along with gaslighting, when they’re discovered violating their own values. You know it’s not your fault that he makes unhealthy choices. And you know that having a blended family is tough, but it’s not an excuse for acting out sexually.

      You choose the boundaries that are healthy for you. Here, here, and here are some articles that might help. Whatever he chooses, you choose to be healthy.

      I think that our current culture, the way that men and women are raised, is toxic to both men and women. As women, we know how it’s toxic to us! But I think the “nastiness” you see is really just a display of the toxicity to men. They are raised to ignore and repress emotions: “big boys don’t cry,” “be a man.” And then they are told that it’s okay to act out: “boys will be boys.” PLUS there’s the huge burden of shame around sexuality in Christian culture, AND men being told that they have to be the spiritual leader. It’s a mess.

      My hope is for the future, that we raise both men and women to be more emotionally intelligent, more self-responsible, and more capable of dealing with life in healthy ways instead of all the acting out, objectifying, blame, and shame.

      Peace to you,

    • Leslie

      I have caught my boyfriend several times viewing porn throughout these past three years. When we were dating I didn’t think to much of it it we lived 2 hours away and I only seen him on weekends. We moved into together in May and in July I found it in his history and asked him to stop that it truly hurts me. He stopped for awhile and now I recently found him looking up girls scrolling online. He says it’s innocent because they have clothes on? I have not found any evidence of him setting on getting on dating websites it’s the ogling of women constantly. He said all men do it blah blah blah. I told him to leave that I’m done. Now he’s willing to get a flip phone? I’m not sure if I can keep trusting him. What is your advice??

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Leslie,

      Trust is earned by trustworthy people. Is he trustworthy?

      Does he understand that his male entitlement is the underlying problem, or is he just making a concession to you with the flip phone so he can continue to ogle women because that’s just what men do?

      I would say that you probably know the answer to these questions, and so then you just have to decide if this is okay with you or not okay with you.


  34. lori mazzola

    my fiance has lied to me our whole 5 year relationship about looking at porn and mostly just pics of sexy women. hes told me over and over that he will stop. but each time i always find it on his phone. i dont understand why he cant stop. he told me he doesnt even get off to it- he just looks because he e njoys seeing other women1?!!?!?!??! how is that okay?!?!?!?! i cant trust him at all anymore and he wonders why!
    i want to get over this and trust him but how. he recently been going to this group at his church for the past 2 months and it was going good but i found sexy pics 2 days ago! he cannot stop! and he denies it

    • Kay Bruner

      I think it’s really important to BELIEVE HIS BEHAVIOR! He has shown you his reality over and over for 5 years. It’s time to believe what he’s showing you, and to think about whether this is how you want to live the rest of your life: with someone who says one thing and does another.

      Of course you don’t trust him: he is not trustworthy. He continues in untrustworthy behavior, and he lies to you about it.

      Believe his behavior, and decide if this is what you want. If so, continue! If not, move on.

      Here, here, and here are some articles on healthy boundaries that you might find helpful,


  35. What about the military wives who yes, stay with thier husbands for years, ”suffer” through the seperation of deployments. By cheating, lying, staying at home never working and making little to no effort to support their spouse. I have a family member who has been deployed for a year this time. His so called wife of 15 plus years only messages him about money. Did not bother to see him off, or try to contact him at all for a month, and then was only about more money. Has he been perfect? No, he’s human. But he takes his vow to her seriously, and refuses to leave, even when she slept with his best friend. I have seen it a million times. He’s a paycheck when away, and an pain when he is home

  36. Anonymous

    Im so sad, angry.. not quiet sure how i feel. We made love last night and he did a funny thing afterwards with my bum. I found it odd.. im married to him for over 15 years. Something didn’t feel right. The morning came and i went onto his instagram. There it was recent searched.. naked chicks. This was obviously before he came to bed. I asked him this morning he needs to decide if its me that he wants. He went off at me. Told me to stop treating him like a little child. Who gave me the right to go on his phone. If i go on his phone again i must bring the papers.. or better yet bring the papers now. I don’t know what to do.. im torn up inside. i don’t feel good enough for him .. why you looking at other woman before you come to bed.. im gutted

    • Kay Bruner

      I’m so sorry. The way he turned everything back around onto you is typical of someone who knows they’ve violated their own personal values, and doesn’t want to face it. Blaming you instead of owning up to his behavior allowed him to deflect from the real issue. It’s a common defense mechanism called gaslighting.

      Is this the kind of relationship you want to be a part of? If you’re okay with this, carry on. If not, then consider what healthy boundaries will look like for you, given the situation. Here, here, and here are some articles to get started with.

      You might also appreciate the online resources at Bloom for Women.

      Peace to you,

  37. Melissa

    My husband and I have been married for 29 years this past Sunday

    He has committed adultery with dozens of prostitutes and was arrested for soliciting prostitutes. He was also watching pornography. He blamed it all on me. I was broken to the point of physical illness, due to a compromised immune system. I was I’ll for almost two years. We went to counseling but he didn’t follow up on anything he was advised to do. He is also a verbally abusive alcoholic.

    It’s been four years since I first found out about his cheating. The alcohol has not stopped. The verbal abuse has not stopped and he won’t do anything to get help. I busted him watching pornography again and he blamed the alcohol, not himself. He neglects his spiritual leadership role and only lives to gratify his flesh. He is a sex addict and alcoholic. He makes me feel dirty and I feel sexually harassed all the time.

    I have filed for divorce three times in the last two years and withdrew the suit.

    I have been an Executive/Legal Assistant for 33 years and have decided to follow my dream of being a personal/private chef. I have relaunched my business, I’m writing a cookbook and I will be working as a cook at an assisted living facility, under the mentorship of an Executive Chef, who is an ordained minister. My dream to minister to people through food has come true.

    The marriage has been severed by his adulteries, and verbal abuse and brutality. I need to move on and legally end this marriage so I can do the things the Lord has set before me, without being afraid of what’s going to happen when I get home? Will he shame me again publicly by his immoral behavior. Will my health fail again because my immune system can’t stand the trauma?

    I am filing for divorce again and I need to trust God that he will provide for me. I need prayer for the strength to let go of a toxic and volatile marriage that nearly cost me my life. I can’t change him and he won’t submit to God to change. I have to let it go. Please pray for me.

    I believe God is releasing me, I’m just afraid to be alone after all these years. Afraid I’ll fail and have to run back to him. How sick does that sound? Running back to the person who has ruined my life repeatedly, and mercilessly. God has plans for me for good and not evil.

    • Kay Bruner

      “Courage, Dear Heart,” Aslan says to Lucy in the Chronicles of Narnia by CS Lewis. Courage.

  38. Marcia Bettger

    So, what after repentance, do you do if your husband keeps doing it. He just gets more sophisticated with covering it up. And I got Step 1 totally off. Why are women supposed to be perfect, and men need understanding.

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Marcia,
      Yeah, if he’s still doing it, he ain’t repented :) Repentance means CHANGE. And of course change takes time but you should be seeing progress, and NOT in his ability to cover it up!!!
      I’d say have a look at your boundaries. Here, here, and here are some articles to get you started.
      You’d probably also appreciate the online resources at Bloom for Women. Such great support there!

    • Leslie

      Amen Marcia! I love how WE wives are supposed to show grace and work on communication and setting healthy boundaries while the husband continues to “stumble”, hurt us and lie. They don’t care. It’s like a fish with a hook in it’s mouth. The bait is tempting but eventually consuming it WILL kill you.

  39. Jamie Decore

    I try to be a good Christian woman and I know that we are both in the wrong for having sex out of wedlock. But my fiance used to always watch porn and it hurt me really bad. One day my best friend was joking and said look imma buy you a dildo because we rarely had sex. Before this I had confronted him multipul times about the porn issue. So after my friend said this I went home and told him what she was going to do and he told me i couldn’t have one because it would make him feel like he wasn’t enough and make him feel less of a man. I then told him fine we’ll make a deal you stop watching porn and I won’t get a dildo. But he didn’t stop he only learned how to delete his history until I discoverd mygoogleactivity. I had his password so I decided to see for my self and there it was. I confronted him about it and showed him the proof. He then admitted and said it wouldn’t happen again but it still happened and the sex slowed down even more to about once a month. I’ve expressed every time that I want him to tell me and there was a few times that I offered to him to change his password. hed tell me that he would rather me see so he’s discouraged. And other times he would yell at me for checking it. A few weeks ago he was looking it up just as I checked and I tried to call him to discourage him and hope that if he saw my name pop up his exitement would vanish and he would answer the phone. He didn’t and we he came home he had this big story of how a coworker had his phone while he was doing a job and he found it on the phone. I almost believed him till I listened to his voice looking something else up 2 minutes before the porn. He started yelling at me about checking his activity so once again I offered him to change the password. I’ve tried to tell him that if he does it again than I’m going to take a break from our relationship but he says he’s probably kill him self if I left him or when i ask him if he cheats on me he would say he’s probably kill him self if he ever cheated on me. There has been so many chances given yet I don’t see the change. What do I do? There have been times that he yells at me saying its not easy to get over watching porn. But he has had 2 years to stop I’ve tried praying I’ve tried getting my pastor to talk to him I’ve tried everything I could think of including that ill move in with my daughters godmom because I’m a stay at home mom and she could help never a daycare job. So please tell me if there is any. Chance in saving our relationship. He has lost all of my trust and respect yet I still stay and fight his own demons when I already have depression anxiety and ptsd. Please HELP!

    • Kay Bruner


      When someone threatens to kill themselves if you leave, that threat is emotional abuse.

      Yelling at you for checking his phone is verbal and emotional abuse.

      Yelling at you for any reason is verbal and emotional abuse.

      It is not your job to stay and fight his demons. If he wants to fight his demons, that is his job.

      The porn is actually the least of my worries here; my major concern is that you are in a relationship with an abusive man who refuses to take responsibilty for himself. He wants you to take responsibility for him, and you are doing that. This is a pattern that will never result in healing for him or for you.

      There is nothing you can do to make him better. He has to do that work himself.

      However, you have the full and complete capacity to take responsibility for yourself and remove yourself from an abusive relationship if you wish.

      You might appreciate the many articles and resources at Domestic Shelters. I would also recommend the work of Lundy Bancroft to you, especially his book Should I Stay or Should I Go?

      Peace to you,

  40. Jasmin

    Hi, I found this site so timely. 2 days ago I found out that my husband has watched porn on YouTube. This is the 3rd time I caught. First time he did, I confronted him and he said it’s really no big deal… I didn’t confront him the 2nd and 3rd time he watched coz I’m tired of it and felt betrayed. We’ve been married for almost 9 years now but our s** activity can be counted by fingers only. We’re having a hard time on this because I am inexperienced woman( which Christian must be)I lost my trust in him. I don’t know who and where to seek help, coz it’s so embarrassing if I share this even to a trusted friend. Does this habit of him watching porn resulted from our lack of physical intimacy? What must I do… would love to hear from you. Thanks a lot!

    • Kay Bruner

      Hey Jasmin,

      Your husband’s porn habit is a result of one thing only: his choices. I don’t know why he is making those choices, but I know it is NOT YOUR FAULT. Please don’t think that “if I just gave him more sex” that he would be “fixed.” These are his choices, and his behaviors to correct if he chooses.

      I would encourage you to find a counselor who can help you process through what’s going on here, and help you move past your embarrassment about sex so that you can understand the reality of your marriage and make choices that will result in health boundaries for you. I would also encourage you to check out the online resources at Bloom for Women.

      Here, here, and here are some articles on healthy boundaries that you may find useful.

      Whatever your husband chooses, YOU can choose to be healthy and whole.


  41. Disrespected

    My husband and I have been married for almost 13 years. We both have successful careers and a wonderful son. When we met, I was the skinny cute blonde. I have put on a few pounds, not a lot. (He’s no body builder either) I have been so busy with work, school, our son,taking care of our home that I have kind of neglected myself. We have a very active sex life. Never, in our years together have I been jealous or suspicious of him….until the past few months. My “gut” feeling told me something wasn’t right. He was so distant. He was staying on his phone. He would throw it down when I walked in the room. He leaves early for work. I go to the kitchen and get coffee while he gets ready for work. One morning I walked upstairs and he literally threw his phone down. The next morning he comes downstairs after he gets off of Facebook and gets a message. I asked who it was and he says “ a girl I went to school with. She must have accidentally sent me a message” it was just a thumbs up. How odd, an “accidental reply” at 4:00am when he’s been hiding on Facebook in the other room. I’m not a snooper, but after that I keep his Facebook on my phone and regularly check our phone bill. There hasn’t been any other communication that I know of. His phone didn’t charge overnight night before last so I told him to just take my phone. He hesitated but did. He works long hours and carpools to work. He has always been honest with me. I got on his Pinterest in some downtime I had yesterday…boom! All that was on there was pics of these skinny girls in bikinis and every “ picked for you” pic was vulgar provocative pics of women. When he came home, of course he denied it. I told him, no sex for 3 months. He is not allowed to see me naked. I’m going on a diet. All the time I spend cutting grass, cooking, cleaning, etc. is now his responsibility. I told him if he’s lusting over everything that I’m not, then the next time I look at his Pinterest it will be women in an apron cooking supper for their husband. It’s his turn to carry the weight for a while so I can focus on me. He has way too much time on his hands to be sitting on his rear looking at naked women on the internet while I’m sinking with a career, going back to college, being a good mom, keeping house clean, bills paid, meals prepared, being a faithful wife who gives her husband enough sex that he should never have to be looking for arousal on the internet! I gave him my burdens yesterday. In my spare time you can bet you next paycheck that I won’t be worried about looking at another man. I’m going to focus on myself. I’m going to go jogging at the park near my home, I’m going to be playing basketball with our son…I really think this is my fault. I have been too good to him. In trying to be the perfect wife, I have given him too much space. The next 3 months will make or break us. I love him from the bottom of my soul. I get sick just thinking about leaving him. Did he cheat? Not physically…..but mentally…yes. Does he know that I mean what I’m saying? Yes. I have never told him I would leave him, until yesterday. I give him my all…nothing less. I also expect nothing less than that from him. I have been his cheerleader, his friend, his lover, and everything else. I have never controlled him, I’ve encouraged him to do things with his friends ( all married, good guys) I will not tolerate this. I will understand and forgive him if this stops. We know each other better than we know our own selves. That’s how I knew something wasn’t right. There was a change in him that I couldn’t put my finger on. That’s why I checked his Facebook a few months ago. The Pinterest thing was just my prayer being answered for the truth. I really hope this stops. I could make it on my own, but I don’t want to. When I made my commitment to him almost 13 years ago, I MEANT it.i respect him and he knows it. I serve him and try to make his life as easy as I can. When I have a day off, I try to catch up on everything at home ( even things that should be his responsibility) so we can enjoy our days off together doing family stuff. I changed yesterday. He’s going to respect me or hate my guts. This is in God’s hands. I really need prayers.

    • Chantelle

      Hi disrespected.
      Maybe I can’t view the outcome.
      Was was your outcome
      I have the exact experience in change and found his subscribed to explicit things

      I want to flow this advice

  42. Lexi

    As i scroll through the comments i can’t help but think one thing. IT NEVER ENDS. Ive been with my husband for almost 8 years…..and it REALLY DOESNT END. Im living in constant torture with this struggle with him. The second i feel secure in our relationship, i find his flavor of the week. We have established boundaries, and he understands them. Yet, flat out doesn’t care or doesn’t see the problem. Its a vicious cycle for me and our relationship. Im mentally tortured, and as a result i feel like im the sloppy seconds or, just not good enough. So i push him away. I find myself in a panic whenever he gets close. I can’t help but feel inferior to these videos and images….. and what’s worse is. He simply doesn’t respect that.

  43. C

    I’ve just read this article. After 37 years of marriage I found out last week that my husband watches, searches, and visits sick porn sites as well as sick YouTube videos dating back to 2014 to April this year. I nearly vomited. We’re both born-again Christians, and he says that he repented, and it’s not all him, sometimes he just clicks and the sites come up but he goes out immediately. He first blamed me, then he blamed Google, then YouTube. After 2 weeks of trying to talk to him about it, he keeps making excuses or telling me that he’s repented, and that I must forgive him. I know I must; I feel hurt, dirty, betrayed. I don’t know this man. We have 4 adult children and 5 grandchildren and if they have to find out, they would never let him near our grandkids. I don’t even want him near our grandkids. I don’t want him to even see our 2 daughters in shorts or bathing suites. I fear he’s sexualized every woman and young girls he sees. I just don’t know how to stop my thoughts. I’ve prayed, begged the Lord, but there’s no relief. I’ve repented from my sin in how I dealt with confronting him, etc. Still so much I need to repent from. It just is so difficult dealing with this because he is so well liked by others who see him as a strong, born-again, tongue talking, devil disturbing, spirit filled Christian. I think I’m going mad. He keeps turning the conversation onto me and points out everything I did or do wrong. I want to understand why he watched porn, his response to me was that I think I know so much and am always answering questions at Bible Study because I have the time to do research, etc. I told him that’s got nothing to do with his porn watching. He actually looked up easy divorce and how to get divorced in South Africa. Then he said he did that to spite me. He refuses to talk about it and won’t acknowledge that he is at fault. He got so angry because I was crying and told him how I feel about what he did that he took his laptop and broke it by smashing it over and over again on the floor in front of me. He kept looking at me with such hatred, and when I didn’t respond, he smashed it even more. I was very scared but didn’t show any reaction or say anything. That was on Sunday evening. We haven’t spoken to each other since then. Yet, he still prays every day and I’m barely keeping myself together never mind trying to pray. He always goes on his cellphone when he gets home, either on Twitter or YouTube with earphones. He will not speak about this or tell me why he did it. I have read up so much on this topic yet nothing said on any site is able to help me. I’m so tired of being in tears and not being able to tell anyone about this. It’s so sick I could never tell anyone. I want to sleep and never wake up.

    • Kay Bruner

      I am so, so sorry for the shock and pain that you’re experiencing right now.

      I am very concerned about your statement that you want to sleep and never wake up. That is a suicidal ideation. I don’t blame you for feeling so desperate; this is a terrible situation, and you are being constantly traumatized by your husband’s behaviors.

      I encourage you to find a therapist immediately, someone who can help you process this situation and support you in dealing with this trauma.

      Let me give you some feedback on the behavior you’re describing here from your husband. IT IS ABUSIVE. He is abusing you, and this is why you are feeling so traumatized.

      The blaming of everything else, especially you: that is emotional abuse.

      The threat of divorce: that is emotional abuse.

      The smashing of his laptop in front of you: that is a threat of physical violence toward you.

      When he keeps turning the conversation toward what you’ve done wrong, to the point where you feel like you are going mad, that’s an emotional abuse tactic called gaslighting.

      It is very classic for an abuser to appear one way in public (“others who see him as a strong, born-again, tongue talking, devil disturbing, spirit filled Christian”) while abusing his victims behind closed doors, as he does with you.

      Here, here, and here are some articles on boundaries that may be helpful to you as you consider a way forward. Because he is abusive, though, I really do think you’re going to need the support of a therapist.

      Of course you can tell people about this: safe, helpful people like a therapist. You do not need to protect your husband from the consequences of his sin. These are his choices, and he can deal with the consequences. You get the help you need, and let him cope with his own choices. Whatever he chooses, YOU can choose to be healthy and whole.


  44. J

    I have been in, what I thought was a mature, happy loving relationship for almost 10 years now. We have sex regularly, we talk about our sex life, communicate, love each other…

    Early in our relationship I told my partner what my boundaries were, he was also aware of my marriage that had ended because of a violation of these boundaries and the loss of trust. This included viewing porn online, masturbating, lying to me about it, and in the end, discovering that my ex husband had been imagining himself in sexual situations with nearly all of my close friends, family and acquaintances. By the time the marriage was over my ex was pursuing my sister, as he had developed feelings for her.

    I just became aware that my current partner is/has been routinely viewing porn, masturbating, and lying to me about it. I asked him if he thinks about women naked? His reply was yes, and from there I asked who, by asking the names of friends and family. He said yes to some of them, no to others. I asked when? He said, for example, if we have a family over for dinner, he would briefly imagine the woman naked- thinking about what her breasts and butt look like, comparing what they might look like to me. I asked if he imagines having sex with them and he vehemently denies that he has ever imagined that.

    The sane woman in me doesn’t want to be made a fool, I don’t believe him-not that it matters anyway. I will only know what he decides to tell me. Like everyone else, I am very hurt, I feel like a fool, he says he loves me, blah, blah, blah. He says that he doesn’t want to be with anyone else and that he would never cheat on me.

    I do believe he would never physically cheat with someone else. But I am also scared to stick around and find out. We have talked, and I don’t feel that he is sorry for anything other than basically being in the “hot seat” right now. He hasn’t said sorry, and hasn’t offered anything to move past this. Not that, the thoughts in his mind can be held accountable.

    I’ve looked online and know that imagining women naked is fairly normal for a lot of men, but I also know that not everyone does it. I struggle with this because I don’t think this is something I can live with- and I don’t want to go through life thinking my partner is imagining my friend/sister naked, or worse imaging sex with them. I want peace, but I don’t know if it makes sense to move forward with him as I will never know what he is thinking. I guess I am wondering if I am overreacting? Is it natural and ok to look and not touch? Can it stop with just imaging someone naked, or will it escalate? And if so, how do I get past the feeling of being betrayed, taken advantage of, cheated on, used, disrespected, embarrassed, undervalued, not a priority, the list goes on…

    We share s young daughter, who I know I would never want to choose to be with any man that would make her feel this way.

    • Kay Bruner

      I think you’re coming up against one of the most common features of toxic masculinity, embodied in both purity culture and porn culture: the idea that men inevitably must see women as sexual objects. They can’t help it, the story goes. They’re wired this way. Purity culture tells this story, and porn culture just reinforces it, which is, I believe, one of the reasons that so many conservative Christian men fall right into porn culture and have such a hard time getting out: purity culture and porn culture have the same underlying assumptions about men and women in relation to sexuality. It’s unfortunately also a part of the “complementarian” point of view in churches, that men are entitled to everything, just because they are men, and this immediately takes over in the area of sexuality as well: of course that sense of male entitlement carries over into viewing all women as potential sexual objects for men, now with the added power of it being God’s will.

      I would say that your husband CAN change. Mine has! But he has to dig down into these underlying assumptions about his right to see women this way. It’s not inevitable. Women don’t “naturally” do this, because we are trained from the cradle that we are the objects, not the objectifiers. Men don’t have to either. The solution is to see the true Biblical reality that in Christ there is neither male nor female, as the Scripture says. We are all one. And when we love our neighbors as ourselves, as the bible tells us to do, we won’t believe that it’s okay to sexually objectify them.

      I don’t think you have to get past those feelings of “being betrayed, taken advantage of, cheated on, used, disrespected, embarrassed, undervalued, not a priority” because they are actually telling you the truth of the situation. Until your husband takes responsibility for the way he objectifies and degrades women, this will continue to be true. The problem is not your feelings. The problem is his behavior.

      Hold those boundaries.

      You know the truth.

      Listen to yourself.


  45. Someone

    How do I deal with it when I am Christian and he is not… so for him this is part of being male. As far as he is concerned he is not sinning against God neither against me.

    • Kay Bruner

      You get to have the boundaries that are right for you, regardless of religious affiliation. The other person doesn’t have to agree with your boundaries, and you don’t have to JADE: Justify, Argue, Defend, or Explain. Your boundaries belong to you. You get to decide what’s okay and not okay. Here, here, and here are some articles on boundaries that should be helpful to you. Boundaries are not about changing him, they’re about you defining what’s okay with you, taking responsibility for yourself, and living in ways that are right and healthy for you. You may want to find a therapist who can support you in that new endeavour, and you may appreciate the online resources at Bloom for Women.

  46. Theresa

    My husband of 42 years looks at women online,sometimes they are dressed sexy,other times nude.I have told him how I feel,but he doesn’t think it’s a problem,the Bible says if man even looks at a woman and lust he had already committed adultry,I pray one day he will stop,But is it reason for divorce?

    • Shayla

      Someone mentioned the root problem with these people being how they objectify and degrade women – I just wanted to cry over this because it’s so true to my situation. My husband objectifies me…the images he views contribute to the problem. He lives in a fake reality about what women like/should do sexually and look like. It hurts….I am attractive, sexually available to my husband but yet, it is not enough. Communication about this only leads to “him having needs and it being my responsibility to take care of them” yet affection and love are not what he’s looking for, he’s looking for that fake porn star.

      As so many men “do this”, or so believed by my husband, he does not see this as his problem. I ask God for guidance in my marriage everyday, I’m struggling immensely. We have been married 7 years, together for 10 and it’s gotten worse. We are currently not talking at the moment because I refused to send him videos of a sexual nature. This isn’t anything new- he always wants something sexually that objectifies women. I voice that I am not comfortable doing so and he pouts/we fight. Divorce is a serious consideration and my heart breaks for our children.

      And people wonder why porn ruins marriages….

    • Kay Bruner


      I am so, so sorry for the pain you’re going through. Being used as an object is degrading, dehumanizing, and so painful. Scripture clearly says that you are not a slave to sin, and that includes your husband’s sin. You may appreciate this article: A High View of Marriage Includes Divorce.

      Stand your holy ground, my friend.


  47. Lou Maye

    I am so sick and tired of this behaviour being excused away, being justified, “oh it’s just hard wired in our brains to do this” blah, blah, blah…
    You show me scripture where it says that it is okay for a Godly married man to take pleasure in looking at a woman other than his WIFE. Like Job, ” I have consecrated my EYES to God so WHY should I look upon a maiden?”
    Because looking or “noticing” implies interest…..desire… So where do you draw the line? When does it become lust? How does lust start? By LOOKING in the first place. I am SO sick of this disgusting perverted planet.

  48. Wish me luck

    I have been through the betrayal group and husband through the seven pillars. It never stops. The lying, the saying sorry, the “I will never do it again”. It never stops. I’m guessing the recovery rate for porn addiction is less than 1%. I suggest you all just leave. These men do not change. Find a different man. Do not put up with the hurt and distrust any longer. They will NEVER change. So accept that they will keep doing it and you need to make the choice to stay , and live with it the rest of your married life, or leave. It is a choice. I am going to go to a hypnotist tommorow. To see if my pain can go away and I can live with this man or not. If I am still in pain, I am leaving. I will not live like this any longer. I will not keep hating myself any longer. I need to try to love myself enough to not be hurt anymore. I have only this life on earth, I want to be happy. I don’t need pain any longer. Wish me luck.

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