Friday, December 30, 2011

When the white surrender flag is raised

The beginning of the end ... 

My mom had just left to head back to MA after a week long visit with us. We had had a great week together. We visited DC, took the baby to the Zoo, had some great family meals together etc. She had even helped me clean the house during her stay; since I had been so busy between working and being a new mom our house was near disaster. Our son was 7 months old and I was inside tending to him. Maybe I had just finished nursing him? I’m not really sure and don’t remember the preamble to this story all that well. It isn't what is important really. The STBX was outside mowing the lawn and I was standing in front of our sofa holding the baby when his pacifier fell to the floor and rolled under the sofa and into the darkness.  I quickly swooped down, baby still in my arms, and blindly reached under the sofa to retrieve it. Instead of pulling out the pacifier, however, I pulled out an old white T-shirt of my husbands. I remember hoisting the baby up on my hip as he started to cry for his pacifier, and proceeding to just stare at what I was holding in disgusted disbelief. It wasn't just some random shirt that had gotten misplaced while folding laundry in the living room and then never put away. No. It was crusty and covered in yellow-crusted dried-up spooge stains. I was mortified. Beyond mortified. My cheeks still turn red to this day just thinking about how I felt holding that disgusting rag in one hand, as I held our innocent child in the other. 

"What if my mother had found this while she was helping me clean!?!!"

The question ran through my mind over and over at a furious pace as I stormed outside barefoot; screaming baby in one arm, spooge-rag waving like a flag in the other. “What the f*ck is this?” I yelled, as I ran up to him shoving it right into his face. He cut the lawn mower’s engine, took one look at me (I must have looked crazy pissed) and then another at his spooge-rag and had the audacity to say “I don’t know” very, VERY unconvincingly. And defensively too! I'm telling you. My STBX has some freakin' nerve.  Needless to say, I flipped out. I screamed a bunch of obscenities, threatened that I was leaving, with my baby still in my arms and still crying for his pacifier mind you, and then I threw the disgusting shirt down to the ground before storming back in the house.

This incident was the fourth or fifth occurrence of his hidden pornography addiction blown wide open since I had gotten pregnant. Each time, he promised it wouldn’t happen anymore. That he didn’t do it that often. That it wasn’t an obsession. That it wouldn’t impact me anymore. That our own intimacy would get better. The lies and broken promises go on and on. I would later find out he looked almost daily. I would later find out that he looked while riding the commuter rail to work via his cell phone. I would later find out that he looked while at work. I would later find out that he paid for it behind my back with credit cards I didn't know about.  When I found out that much, I stopped trying to uncover his habits and instead started planning my escape from the hell that I was in. It was over at that point and I didn't want to know any more. The uncovering of that dirty spooge-rag found under our sofa that day was like the white surrender flag going up on my ability to handle the bullshit anymore. And it was stained; just like our marriage was. 


  1. Proud of you for publishing. This is a sign that you're getting stronger and it allows you the opportunity to vent all of your 'negative' energy. You go girl!

  2. After suffering the same demise in my marriage, albeit 10 years longer, more confrontations, and more discoveries, I appreciate your candidness and truth. It is hard for anyone to understand the damage of pornography and masturbation and the effects they have on a marriage unless you have lived it. The ripple effect of a person's behaviorial choices are life altering for those around them. Like any addiction, it is an illness, and with my ex, I hope that he will learn and grow, to one day experience a real relationship with trust and intimacy instead of his fantasy world.

  3. Agree with anonymous...sharing these stories is a sign of healing and strength. But wow, what audacity he had to deny it and so defensively

  4. I, too, am proud of myself for being able to share some of my story surrounding the STBX's repeated offenses with the pornography. It is the HARDEST part of my marriage's break down that I've tried to understand, come to terms with and/or accept, get over and subsequently recover from. I've also found that there are very FEW people out there that understand the damage the STBX's porn addiction had on our relationship, and on me as a woman.

    The thing that kills me the most about all of it is that I am the farthest thing from frigid or anything of the sort. I love sex, lingerie and consider myself a little bit on the kinky side. 9 times out of 10 I was ready and willing. 9.5 times out of 10 I was the one initiating it. More than half the time, I was getting turned down. When I complained that I felt like "the guy" in our relationship, I was made to feel like something was wrong with me and like I wasn't "normal" or something. I honestly thought he was cheating on me with a real, in-real-life, flesh and blood woman. When I started hunting around for evidence of that, that's when I discovered the porn addiction and the problems. It all suddenly made sense; the lack of intamicy, the lack of love in our love making, him constantly pushing me to do things I wasn't comfortable with etc., ... and honestly, the discover of his problem hurt as badly as I can imagine discovering he was having an affair might have hurt. The betrayal is the same when the behavior is negatively impacting the stability and quality of your love life with your partner.

  5. You are stronger than you know; sharing something like this only makes you stronger. I'm so proud of you, Phenom!!

  6. Thanks, Emily! Most days I don't feel very strong. I'm just doing what I need to do to move on. Onward and upward!! Love you :)

  7. Jessica and all, you are incredibly beautiful, courageous and brilliant! While ever story of divorce is unique, there are shared experiences that we all have. Addiction of any kind has nothing to do with you. It is owned by the person who is addicted and while it is an incredible challenge to get there, you must remember that it is also not your problem to solve. If you are able, take your time, energy and attention and focus it on creating the amazing life you imagine and deserve. The rest will work itself out. Your Ex's have their own journey to attend to...and that is not your responsibility at all. You are remarkable is YOUR time to step fully into your own destiny as women! Have a happy, healthy, peaceful, abundant and magical new year!!!

  8. Thanks for sharing this! My ex has had a porn addiction since his early teens. It was extremely damaging to our marriage, but I don't feel I can write about it on my own blog. I know that he reads there, as well as friends and family that know us both. I'm glad to know I'm not alone in this, though.

    1. Porn addiction kills intimacy like no other marriage difficulty and the sad part is that we, as a society, are in denial! Thanks for commenting and I hope you found comfort in knowing that you are NOT alone. And I'm sorry you went through that as much as I am sorry for having to go through my own pain

  9. My ex also had a porn addiction, for our entire relationship. And while it didn't directly lead to the end of our marriage, it was definitely one of the contributing factors.

    Personally I don't have an issue with pornography within the context of a healthy, loving relationship, as long as both partners are comfortable with it. It's a problem when it leads to lying, sneaking around, and hurting the person you supposedly love the most in this world.

    Seems like porn addiction is a very common problem in our society. It's a sad thing.


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