How can I expect him to not find other women attractive?

Discussion in 'Women' started by zen_lioness, Mar 9, 2014.

  1. zen_lioness

    zen_lioness Love will conquer all.

    Things have been going... Ok. I recently have developed much anxiety about gojng out in public with him. I have irrational fears that every woman he sees and finds attractive means that he wants her. He talked about this one woman that used to come I to his work and every time he imagined her naked. Every time! I want to see her. I want to compare her to me. I am so incredibly worried that he finds these other women more attractive than me. This feeling is overwhelming to the point that I feel like I am willing to give up our life together. I don't know how to trust and believe what he says. I don't know how to feel good enough. I feel like I don't know anything anymore. I just want to be normal again.
  2. Gonnabeatthis

    Gonnabeatthis New Member

    a) You can't control attraction. It is not a conscious thing, if it were, this forum wouldn't exist and PIED wouldn't also.

    b) He is with you. This is the proof he wants to be with you, isn't it?

    As a recovering addict, I figured out that attraction and looks_only don't mean anything. Really, now that my sexuality died down to a minimum and I flatlined, I could see this clearly.

    Now, every time, I would pick a girl I have a connection with over a good looking one. Most of them are totally boring anyways when your hormones don't go amok.
  3. Bibbity

    Bibbity Wife of a recovered addict. 3 yrs strong.

    I know exactly how you feel unfortunately! I actually just came here to post a similar story. Even a year later and no more ED and with a great sex life I can't help but feel super insecure when out in public. It gets worse during the spring and summer because there's much more skin showing.

    The bottom line is that we have been deeply betrayed by our spouses. It's not a small thing. Betrayal is the worst thing you can experience in a marriage. Before I knew what was going on I had a ton of confidence and now I have very little. I also see how other men look at me when out in public and it makes me feel so angry at them. There wives are right there but yet they are choosing to disrespect her by looking at me. sometimes the wives give me a dirty look but if only they knew!!

    I really don't know how to get over this either. I don't know how it will ever go away and I will feel confident again. We talked about it again last night and he reassures me that although men are "wired" to notice women, it's his choice what he does next and he is choosing to respect me. It's still hard to believe and it's because trust is broken.
  4. zen_lioness

    zen_lioness Love will conquer all.

    Gonnabeatthis: Yes, I agree that having a connection with someone is way more important than his or her physical appearance. I think I just need reassurance that HE thinks that. I mean obviously he loves me and has been lusting after other women for almost the entire 7 years we've been married, but I just need to know that he thinks that I am more attractive than any other woman. Just like if I were to have Mark Wahlberg or my husband sitting in front of me and I had to choose who was hotter, I would choose my husband even if I didn't know him, because something about him is exactly my definition of attractiveness. This is the case even with his receding hairline and not so chiseled body. I know this sounds very unrealistic. I know that logically it shouldn't matter, but for some reason it does. I have tried and tried to not let it bother me, but the more I fight those feelings then the more they keep coming up and trampling over me.

    Bibbity: I am so glad that someone else understands what this is like. We had a good conversation last night as well. I also read the article by Mark Chamberlain, "One Real Wrinkled Wife or a Harem of Airbrushed Goddesses?", and it really seemed to resonate with me. The description you gave of experiencing other men staring or as my husband calls it "doing a double-take" is almost exactly what I have been hyper aware of lately. I see it happen when I walk by in stores or whatever and I get so incredibly angry. The other day my furnace guy was telling me how pretty he thinks I am and blah blah blah then told me about his little girl close to my son's age. I asked a question about his wife and he dismissed her. This was infuriating! I felt so incredibly sad for his wife. She probably has no idea that he would do that!!!! Anyway, I also started thinking about high school and how so many guys would try and get into mine and my friends' pants. We were never special to them, but for that night or hour even they made us feel that way. Once conquered, we were nothing to them. This helped me to understand that I can be the ultimate prize to my husband and at the same time he can find other women sexually attractive and want nothing to do with them. Granted, this is an understanding that I was able to accomplish for this second, but I am going to enjoy it while it lasts! I have a difficult time lasting in this sanity and the other 75% of the time run around like a crazy woman feeling threatened by every vagina with legs!

    Ugh, I hate this frustration! I guess this is just part of the healing process... I wish there was just a quick easy fix to this.
  5. missy

    missy partner of an addict

    hi ladies
    you most certainly not alone in your thoughts as i feel exactly the same, its to the point now that i just dont go out with him anymore and like you, im dreading the summer, so much so that im really considering just letting this relationship go. at the moment we have fallen out because he says hes sick of my moods, this was after i had found a condom in his wallet, like you ive no trust and no confidence either.
    i was too wishing there was a quick fix but the only one ive found is to just let him go.
    hope you work it out and take care.
  6. zen_lioness

    zen_lioness Love will conquer all.

    Have you read, "Love you, Hate the Porn" by Mark a Chamberlain or visited his blog? You should check it out together. It really has helped me.
  7. Bibbity

    Bibbity Wife of a recovered addict. 3 yrs strong.

    Missy that's really too bad but I do understand :( I hope you can find peace once again. I contemplate divorce every now and again especially over this topic. I feel such relief when I think about going places by myself and not having to worry about everyone else or if we will bump into an attractive woman. We are thinking about doing a Disney cruise in the fall but I told him that I really need to be in a more secure place before I can handle it. I know the work has to come from me. I need to let go of what he thinks of other women and know that I am good enough. I am just not sure how to do that. As women we are so bombarded with messages that we don't measure up but when you are betrayed by your husband it compounds the problem big time. The one person who is supposed to protect you from all of that is the one who turned on you.

    I find relief sometimes in reading some of the journals of struggling men honestly. They don't want this anymore than their wives. Some of them have described their wives/gf as beautiful and perfect but yet the addiction continues so it helps me understand that it's not about me in anyway. I just need to keep reminding myself. I hate being the victim but I guess I really am.
  8. I am sad

    I am sad New Member

    Wow, I can relate, and I hate it and it makes me feel so insecure! Possible trigger alert in this post....

    I've gone from feeling 100% confident and attractive and happy with my body, to hating it at times. Blame it on my size B boobs and the fact that my Bf is into boobs like nothing else. We were friends for years at first, and turned our relationship into something more during many email conversations about boobs. When we decided to take things to the next level, he stopped talking about boobs for a brief moment ( all still in emails) and said, want to have sex....we can have sex too. He thought we were hooking up for lots of TF or BJs, etc. And no wonder, being that he was a virgin and only had experience with porn.

    So being together, then moving in together, I learned of his addiction and unfortunately every fantasy and desire. I know just what all of you are saying...there is no turning back and UN-hearing all these things. What if I was doing nothing but looking at pictures of guys with massive dicks, talking about them, And if only guys wore gstrings in public, or Speedos (both gross by the way) I'd be drooling and staring all the time. How the hell would he feel then??

    My ex used to tell me nearly every day how wonderfully perfect my boobs were...not the monstrous things some women have. My be with a man that appreciates and loves and respects us for who we are and what we have!

    My bf said once at a race(where he wanted to be at the finish line)- I can't stop watching all the boobs bouncing around. Great...thanks. Once at an amusement park, where as always he walks so fast and leaves me to trail behind(no matter that I stop, and tell him he's rude for walking faster than I can) that he doesn't know where to look....there are boobs (in skimpy shirts) everywhere. AND he wonders why I'm not eager to go back for the last 2 years! Now we go to music lessons every week where the chubby, plain teacher wears low cut shirts with boobs half out. Hasn't she ever heard of wearing a camisole underneath? I've started wearing low cut shirts and push up bras on those days, just so I can show him I have something desirable as well. Recently we had a fight about it...I said, you know that women can see when you're looking at their boobs (she leans over to get her dog, or move the bench, or get her instrument). No, not on purpose...she is definitely clueless. But I've left with hidden tears in my eyes because I know what's going on in his he would love to once in his life feel what big boobs feel like and do stuff with. And that was when I wished there was a guy there in a Speedo and I could drool and let him see how I feel. But I told him after, it's rude and disrespectful to her to look at her chest when she's right there. He said he wasn't aware he was doing it. Uh huh. Then because he means well, he asks me what he can do, to improve things with us.

    The right answer is desire ME, tell me I'm beautiful, have sex with me more than once a week so that it doesn't feel like you're just obliging me. I didn't say this or anything. We've had those conversations before too many times. I'm past the point where I believe he will suddenly desire me like I do him or want something more. I had hoped when he gave up porn (6 months ago) that he would find me more attractive (and there is no doubt I'm attractive,especially according to other men!) and desire me more. It hasn't happened at all.

    So yes, there were many times I was very pissed at him. Everyone says you can't blame someone else how how you feel...your feelings are your own responsibility and your own outlook, and I understand that. But how the hell do I feel anything but sad when he has constantly says and does things that make me feel like I am never enough??

    I don't need an answer. But I'm glad to know their are other women who can relate. And to the your SO, tell her she is the one you adore, make her feel cherished and special.
  9. zen_lioness

    zen_lioness Love will conquer all.

    Ladies, my heart hurts to hear all of your pain and sorrow. The one thing that makes this bearable for me is to know that I am not alone. We all may be super attractive females. Maybe we are known as the hot girlfriend or the MILF, but still known of us can measure up to "The P". Oh, how it haunts me! It has been a rough past few months, but I think it is getting better. At times, I am willing to throw in the towel, but then can't imagine my life without him. I am so incredibly in love with him and I know that he feels to same way about me even if at times his demons keep him from showing it.

    We all have demons. I've been there. I just feel like I need shelter from this. His willingness to talk about it and talk to me about my feelings makes me know that we are fighting this together which is refreshing. I just hope I can hang on to this sanity through the weekend. It seems like when he is home and we have to go out in public is when I fall...
  10. WFO

    WFO New Member

    Your Original Post Title: "How can I expect him to not find other women attractive?" The answer? You cannot. Simple as that. There are always going to be other women that are attractive. Just like you ladies will all find some other men attractive in one way or another. It doesn't mean that we men are going to leave you. Honestly we beat ourselves up more than any of you realize over that. I delayed settling down with a girl friend, or a wife, for years because I thought I would eventually meet that one girl who I would find attractive in a unique way and I would forget every other woman I ever knew. Eventually I gave up. It is our behavior that matters. Now I would NEVER tell my wife about some of the other women who I thought were attractive because she would worry herself - and me - sick over it. There was, however, one time when I took my wife to San Antonio for a week end and she actually pointed out another woman to me, commenting how attractive her legs were. I took the 5th on that one. Guys can be insensitive and kind of stupid and they say things not realizing that you will get irrationally worried over it. Guys are that way. You know that by now. Please don't let it ruin your marriage. As a guy I will tell you that it just is totally incomprehensible to me that many of the women I see around, including my wife, are so reticent, to put it mildly, to take care of themselves. I am not saying that every woman should spend 8 hours a day at the gym working out! But for goodness sakes, just do the minimum recommended by the American Heart Association and spend about a half hour a day doing some aerobic exercises. And watch the diet - eliminate sugary and fatty foods. Then your husbands may have half a chance to look at other women and think, "Man, I got lucky!"
  11. Gracie

    Gracie Member

    So you are assuming that we are overweight not taking care of ourselves creatures? Maybe if men spent time looking at their wife and telling her that she is his beloved and beautiful he would realize how lucky he is. This is the woman that washes his clothes, make his meals, takes care of him when he is sick. She is the one that loves you, by your side through thick and thin. And yet, that is not enough the man expects us to forever be 19. We should not have stretch marks, scars or anything else unattractive. We should execise and diet and all will be well. Appreciate what you have! She should not have to do all those things for love. I had surgery and could not exercise. I had no energy and working 8 hours a day plus the morning bathe and dress was all the energy I had. Makeup was too much to do physically. Raising my hands up was painful. For eight months this was the case. Perhaps it would surprise you to know that women too have to decide whether to wait or pick one because of the attraction they have to men. I did that for 11 years after my divorce. When I chose my husband he was it. I was all in as they say. Then we women find out, the men want to look for something younger. BTW I am not obese, I am 61 but those guessing my age choose around 45. But that is not the 19 that is expected.
  12. zen_lioness

    zen_lioness Love will conquer all.

    I am 5'5 120 lbs and I exercise regularly and eat very healthfully. Thank you for your concern. Even if my husband does look around and think "Wow, I got lucky!" he still turns his head when attractive women walk by IF he is weak from his addiction. I am assuming that the other women that have commented have situations similar to mine. I could be the hottest woman in the world and he would still look at other women BECAUSE of his addiction to P. He doesn't always look at other women, but it is the fear that he will and the pain I experience when he does that I was addressing in my post.
  13. Bibbity

    Bibbity Wife of a recovered addict. 3 yrs strong.

    I totally agree with WFO. Some women do not care about how they look and unfortunately it seems to be a vast majority of women over the age of 25. I do of course realize WHY some women are that way. They feel guilty for putting themselves first, spending money on clothes and shoes, leaving their kids with their husbands to go to the gym because he complains so much about it, trying to do it all in a feminist society that tells us we can have it all, the career, the kids, the great sex life etc. but at the end of the day we are zonked. I gained some weight in my marriage because I had a sexless marriage. I didn't feel sexual or desired. I see it in a lot of women's eyes. They are completely apathetic about their appearance because what's the point? He never wants to see me naked anyway. It would be interesting to see what came first the loss of appearance or the loss of sex. Since my husband and I have started having sex and are emotionally and physically connected I have lost about 30 pounds. I no longer eat chocolate to fill the void. Food is an addiction too! We do stuff all the time to fill voids. I didn't even realize I was doing it until I didn't have the void anymore. I am putting myself first and requiring more from him in our relationship. I am lucky that he is choosing to step up. I would also like to point out that beautiful women get cheated on all the time. Halle Berry was voted the most beautiful woman in the world and yet her husband cheated on her many times over. Looks aren't everything. If you are a man with a problem, own it. Stop blaming others.

    It's important above all else to have compassion for others. Compassion for the lonely woman who is eating to deal with her lack of connection in her marriage and compassion for the porn addict who turns to porn for comfort. We are all walking wounded.

    I am sad: Are you married to this guy? I can honestly say that if my husband had ever made a comment to me like the ones he has said to you I would dump his ass faster than a hot potato. I am sorry but he is being thoroughly disrespectful to you and I have no idea why you are standing for that behavior. Does he realize how much he has hurt you?
  14. WFO

    WFO New Member

    Gracie and zen you must not have read my post very carefully. Apparently you lept to the conclusion, as many women do, that I was directing my remarks at ALL women. Here is what I said "...many of the women I see around...". Not ALL. I would never argue that there are no men who refuse to control their looking and lusting. Just saying that there are many women who make it doubly difficult for their men to fully appreciate them in a sexual way, which is what the forum is about isn't it? Of course many women do their husbands' laundry and many other things. I used to do my own as a single guy and I will say my clothes looked better than 98% of the other guys at my work who were married. Now that I am married my wife insists on doing that stuff instead of the things which I really need her to do - like spending a measley half hour working out each day. Something that EVERYONE ought to be doing. I did not marry for a housekeeper, but that seems to be the only role my wife - and I'll suggest many other women - prefer to fill in their marriages. You harvest what you sow ladies. There are many occasions on which I seriously wonder if women really like having sex in the first place, and whether or not it is simply a means to an end for them.
  15. Bibbity

    Bibbity Wife of a recovered addict. 3 yrs strong.

    WFO you sound like an extremely unhappy person and it is understandable. Are you fulfilling all of her wishes outside the bedroom so she becomes the sex kitten you so desire? If I lived with your attitude I'm not sure I'd want to have sex with you either. It takes two.

    Perhaps you both should read "For Women Only" and "For Men Only". I found pdf's online. The books address both subjects you brought up. "For Women Only" is the book for your wife. It talks about the importance of looks and sex for men (among many other things) and "For Men Only" it talks about the things that are important to women, like romance and not looking at other women (among other things). The book was made by compiling data from answers to questions using thousands of men and women. So it's not really an opinion book more of an actual look inside men and women's brains. My husband and I really appreciated the books and we spent a lot of time discussing it. Anyway the book has a Christian slant but don't let it take away from the important messages.
  16. Amp111

    Amp111 New Member


    I read the first post yesterday and it has made me think and I don't think anyone can answer your question apart from yourself. I'm sorry the pain your husbands p use has caused.

    You cannot stop your husband being attracted to other people but you can expect him to not act on that attraction.

    When I viewed p it had not so much to do with my wife or real women it was to do with avoiding the way I felt about myself - the p would make everything I hated blur out of focus and there was just p - it wasnt even p i wanted I would really sit there and the hope was that the next video or click would be what I was looking for - all I found was complete unhappiness.

    I have had to make serious changes in my life to move away from this and your husband will have to make great strides to leave this behind as it is depressing and addictive and it will ruin intimacy and trust.

    I had to talk to my wife and explain everything my problems what made me fail - everything it was horrible for me -at the end I really saw no hope of happiness for her with me because of all the hurt I had caused I thought too much had gone on before - I knew if my daughter was married to someone like me it would be easier for her to find someone who wasnt so damaged. My wife wanted to try again -

    Marriage is about trust and intimacy and there should be happiness - think about what you want - I don't know what your husband has done or how much he wants to quit but his road will probably be long and full of failure - my wife has stuck by me and the road has also been one of rebuilding trust / there have been times of great sadness and happiness that had been missing a long time....

    I guess all my rambling here boils down to is that we are all on this earth for a short time - once it's gone you don't get any of it back - you deserve to be happy -

    can you trust your husband again (he needs to earn that trust - an addict will abuse the trust in the beginning) - can you forgive him a great site for information and reading for both your husband and yourself - I will always be ashamed of what I have done to my wife and reading how you feel has brought tears to my eyes because I feel more of what I have done to my wife -

    you cannot change the past but you do deserve to be happy
  17. WFO

    WFO New Member

    Bibbity I am not sure how you got that out of my response to Gracie and Zen. I will say that it is incredibly frustrating when things one says are taken as an absolute when they were not stated that way. But that is usually what happens when one says something that someone else doesn't want to hear. No one is perfect so I am quite sure that I am not doing everything my sweet wife wants. I know she wants to live in a different town (where the crime rate, taxes, and traffic are worse...). We simply cannot move right now. And she knows very well why not. She only works a few hours a day during the school year to help out on kids tuition in their private school. I work 9 or 10 hours a day to bring in enough $$ for her to not have to worry about any material needs. I don't go out on my own - ever. We do not have a boat. I don't ride motorcycles. I don't drink or smoke. I don't golf. I keep myself in reasonably good shape. There are dozens of other things I could tell you about how I care for her. You can believe what you want. For the record my wife does seem to enjoy having intimate physical times together with me. What I wonder about with her is her spriritual training on that topic. She grew up the daughter of a Baptist Deacon. So the notion of actually preparing herself to be sexy I fear has been supressed. There is basically only one act she will tolerate for our times together. She will allow no flexibility to make things interesting. She always tells me that [whatever else I may suggest] scares her. My interpretation = she tolerates sex because the Bible says she must as a wife. I can see this in many other active church going couples. Almost every one of the wives is either overweight or obese, and doesn't seem to care. And in my mind that is not scriptural stewardship.
  18. Bibbity

    Bibbity Wife of a recovered addict. 3 yrs strong.

    WFO unfortunately I can only respond based on what you said in your post since I don't actually know you. This last post gave me more detail and it seems like her religious upbringing is why you don't feel happy with your sex life which I completely understand. Those two books I mentioned are written with a Christian slant so she might be receptive to it? It specifically addresses attractiveness and sex. I used to be on another forum for marriage when my husband and I were going through our issues (I didn't know about this site) and it was pretty sad the amount of men who were only getting sex a few times a month (if that) and most of the time the wife would just lie there and some wouldn't even take their shirts off etc. I was on the other side wondering why my husband didn't want to have sex with me and when he did he had ED. Sad days for sure. I really have no idea how you navigate a relationship like that but you have to at least try.
  19. WFO

    WFO New Member

    Bibbity I guess what is really difficult to grasp is the fact that women fully (and quite naively, I think) expect to be the only ones who are attractive to their husbands (which is not realistic in this fallen world...) but then for the most part (apologies to Gracie and Zen) they do very little or nothing at all to help the poor guy. It is just not behaving in good faith when you set someone up to fail like that. So then the guys eventually succumb to porn and the relationship suffers, and in all good Christian doctrine that is the husband's fault. It seems to begin in junior high when the girls finally wear mom down and she lets them wear short skirts and high heels to church, so they can feel like "big girls". Which only aggravates the porn monster in the young guys in their class. It is a vicious ccycle in which their marriages are doomed to fail.
  20. zen_lioness

    zen_lioness Love will conquer all.

    WFO, I feel much sympathy towards you and your seemingly miserable outlook on life, women, and marriage. The purpose of this topic was not to bash my husband for being attracted to other women. It was to process the pain and unhealthy and irrationality in my feelings and thoughts on the subject. In an ideal world it wouldn't pain me at all. Actually, before I knew of my husband's addiction it really didn't bother me so much as long as I thought that he only sexually desired me. His addiction throws that off. I get confused and my feelings get in the way of me understanding. I started this topic to have a safe place to share that without having to continuously burden him about it and it seems other women have struggled same as me. Thank you for your feedback and thoughts about how women and marriage should be. I do not agree with you in many aspects, but I feel that if I were to spend the time going into depth about my own viewpoints then I would be wasting my time because you don't seem to be open to learning or listening anyway. Plus, it would serve as a distraction for me and would take away from my focus on the healing and issues that I am working to overcome.

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