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Fantasy Deprived the BH, Delivered to the AP

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HellFire posted 7/4/2020 12:18 PM

I get it. If my husband gave something,sexually, to another woman,willingly and enthusiasticly,something he had denied me throughout out marriage, I would be so incredibly hurt.

For example, I love having him give me oral. If he had never given me that during our relationship, then I would have accepted that was just something he wasn't into. But, if I found out it was something he just didn't want to do with me? Wow. No way.

But, here's the thing. I wouldn't ask him to do it for me after dday. I wouldn't get mad if he didn't want to do it. I would never beg.

I would divorce him. If I had spent years sacrificing that pleasure,only to find out he enjoyed it, but didn't desire it with ME?

Dealbreaker.

WalkinOnEggshelz posted 7/4/2020 12:34 PM

Many times, however, the BS does not want to D, and then there's a fine line between the tone of a request and a demand in addressing this issue. Demands have no place in a sexual relationship. Ever. But requests are always appropriate. If the request is denied or agreed to unenthusiastically, a BH is free to pursue a D just like any of the rest of us.

I see what you are saying and I agree that demands are a different thing than a request.

I wonder though, how many conversations in the privacy of homes between a BS and WS go straight to demands and coercion. I’d like to give the members here the benefit of the doubt that they are trying to make sense of it, trying to discuss their feelings, and trying to work things out the best they can under the circumstances. I’d be willing to bet that by the time someone posts about it here, they are venting and blowing off some steam. If it were any other subject, they would receive support. Instead however, we jump straight to demands, coercion, and even rape which are terribly strong words that hold a lot of charge.

Like sisoon and Okokok have stated, we need to figure out instead what the feelings are behind the request. I think these discussions could be much more productive if instead of telling these members they are wrong or even criminal for their thoughts, we helped them work through those underlying feelings.

Instead we go in circles:
The BS wants what the AP got but the WS is unwikkingbto do so. The BS is told they have a right to D over this, but requesting or asking and even stating it’s a dealbreaker is coercion. Feeling the need for it to R is considered forcing or demanding. It’s really a no win no matter what. It appears it’s only ok to D but not give the reasoning behind it.

So I wonder how these threads would unfold if we stopped talking about the acts themselves and just focus on working through the deep hurt behind them.

blahblahblahe posted 7/4/2020 12:55 PM

It is a simple and very straightforward method for measuring the relative value the WW places on the BS...period.

I do not see how reasonable a human being from an objective perspective and with reasonable level intelligence can see otherwise.

One can twist it with semantics and mental gymnastics however at the end the value equation remains the same.

Rideitout posted 7/4/2020 14:40 PM

The BS is told they have a right to D over this, but requesting or asking and even stating it’s a dealbreaker is coercion. Feeling the need for it to R is considered forcing or demanding. It’s really a no win no matter what. It appears it’s only ok to D but not give the reasoning behind it.

Exactly. Which is why, the only logical conclusion that leads to R is "just do it" for the WS. Before they ask, anticipate their needs (as you did very well for the AP) and just do it. Don't make them demand it, ask for it, hint around it, because, any WS with a shred of intelligence is going to be able to see right through all the pussyfooting and realize "this is a must do". And any BS with an ounce of self-awareness is going to say to him/herself, "I can dress this up anyway I like, talk about my feelings for days, but.. End of the day, it's do it or get out".

So I wonder how these threads would unfold if we stopped talking about the acts themselves and just focus on working through the deep hurt behind them.

Speaking for myself only, I don't want to talk about the feelings behind them. I want(ed) my WS to FIX THEM. To repair the damage done, to heal the wounds she caused. To me, this is like a capable surgeon sitting by the bedside and asking you to describe, in detail, how it feels to have a bullet lodged in your leg. Well, great doc, and I'll be happy to talk to you all day long about it, but, I don't know, how's about you get to FIXING the problem?! If there was nothing a WS could do, I agree, that's when talking about feelings and trying to work through them becomes important, but.. That's not the case here, there's concrete, tangible action a WS can take in this situation, be it hanging from the rafters sex or buying a diamond Rolex. Would we say that if a rich man had an AP, bought her diamonds all day long (and never bought them for his wife despite knowing she loved them and deeply desired them) and then, after the blowup, council him that the right course of action is to talk endlessly about the "why's" behind it? When he was fully capable of buying them for his wife and she'd always expressed interest in them? Well, maybe some of you would, but I know I wouldn't. My advice would be "go buy bigger and better for her, and then keep doing it until she's got so much more than the AP that what you bought for her looks like stuff you'd get in a happy meal". And, then, when that's done, then MAYBE you talk about it if the BW is still upset about it. What not to do? Don't pretend it didn't happen, don't even say the word fog, in fact, don't even think it, and above all else, do NOT make her demand you buy her something nice. Get AHEAD of it, just like you did with the AP, anticipate her desires and fulfill them, again, just like you did for the AP. It's really not rocket science people!

It is a simple and very straightforward method for measuring the relative value the WW places on the BS...period.

Of course it is. And even, if through some feat of mental gymnastics it's somehow not in your (the WS's) mind, guess what? The BS will see it that way anyway. Suggesting otherwise, is really, IMHO, completely over complicating the issue. I wanted it, I made it known that I wanted it (before the A), you denied it to me, then gave it to the AP. Doesn't have to be sexual at all, anything that follows that basic track is going to bring the BS's worth into question, in pretty much every situation I can possibly think of. And you know what? It should. A BS (me, for example) in that situation SHOULD question the WS's feelings for them. There's a reason these measuring sticks, sexual, financial, emotional; whatever exist, because they are often valid. A girl who you take on 5 dates and never kisses you but then sleeps with another guy after he smiles at her and asks her to come to his condo.. Well, she probably DID find him more attractive. No, not always, but often enough that if you were the guy getting ready for the 6th date, I'd council you to stop wasting your time, she's "Just not that into you". And that's OK, it really is, but let's not turn it into some complex foo/kind of rapey/damaged woman complex. Dude, she might like you a whole lot, she might want to be your friend, but she doesn't want to be romantic/intimate with you; move on.

I get it. If my husband gave something,sexually, to another woman,willingly and enthusiasticly,something he had denied me throughout out marriage, I would be so incredibly hurt.
For example, I love having him give me oral. If he had never given me that during our relationship, then I would have accepted that was just something he wasn't into. But, if I found out it was something he just didn't want to do with me? Wow. No way.

But, here's the thing. I wouldn't ask him to do it for me after dday. I wouldn't get mad if he didn't want to do it. I would never beg.

I would divorce him. If I had spent years sacrificing that pleasure,only to find out he enjoyed it, but didn't desire it with ME?

Well, that's exactly my situation, except of course, I did lay it out there after d-day. I didn't want to D, I loved my W, and I really felt like I had to try. But, anyway, thank you for saying this, it makes me feel, if nothing else, like a bit less of an ogre.

Let me ask a question, if this was the situation, but instead of you demanding oral after d-day, he told you, "Yes, I did it with her, and I'm so sorry I never did it with you, I just had some hang up about it in our relationship and I really do want to make it right" and then proceeded to shower you in that particular act, do you think he'd have a chance? That's my council to WS's in this situation, and while I know it would have been MUCH better than where I am now, I do wonder sometimes.. Does it apply more broadly? Or is it just a dealbreaker, close up shop, call the attorney?

I see what you are saying and I agree that demands are a different thing than a request.

One of the big problems coming out an A is that the line between request and demand is incredibly blurry. "Do it or I'm filing" is clearly a demand, but "IF we don't do this, I can't continue the relationship" starts to sound a little better, right? There are many fancy ways we can dress this up, but, coming out of an A, a lot of it is really "demands". You will tell me what happened/write a timeline or I'm going to D. No, I didn't say that, I "dressed it up" but, come on, most of us are smart enough to see the intent and meaning behind that, right? It's a "veiled demand" and honestly, I think that's most of what happens after an A, even as simple as "You need to stop seeing him/her" even if not said, carries the meaning "or I will divorce your cheating a** and tell everyone we know". It's a very, very sticky subject, which is why it's immeasurably better if the WS comes up with the "action plan" instead of the BS, in all areas of recovery.

EllieKMAS posted 7/4/2020 14:52 PM

Not an agenda. Just the forlorn hope that females might possibly be viewed as people rather than sexual vending machines. The application of price tags on our sexuality is offensive.
Unfortunately CT, these kinds of threads will go on for 50 pages and this will never happen. Btdt, how many of these dumpster fire-type threads have we seen now?

I don't think there's any concrete way to compare the losses between a BW and a BH. Imho for BHs, the physical stuff is the hardest for them to to get over. For BWs the emotional stuff generally is. And ne'er the two shall meet.

Bottom line is, as a BS if there is something you just can't reconcile with, then get a divorce. If you can't accept that your ww enjoyed anal/threesomes/whatever with ap and not you? Divorce and go find someone more sexually compatible and adventurous. If you can't handle that your wh fell in love with/made promises to the ow? Then leave the M.

I know that there's practical considerations and price tags to divorce, but what is the price tag for staying in an M where you won't ever be able to fully forgive your partner? Maybe it's just me, but I will pay anything to be free of a toxic situation. *Shrug.

If R, true R, is being sought, then at some point the hard truths must be accepted and dealt with. If a BS can't do that (and some can't and that's okay), then they owe it to themself to get free of it, whatever it takes.

Rideitout posted 7/4/2020 15:02 PM

Bottom line is, as a BS if there is something you just can't reconcile with, then get a divorce. If you can't accept that your ww enjoyed anal/threesomes/whatever with ap and not you? Divorce and go find someone more sexually compatible and adventurous. If you can't handle that your wh fell in love with/made promises to the ow? Then leave the M.

Does the WS have an role in this? Sure, at some point, D and move on is the only option available, but we all know that. What of the anal/threesomes/whatever WS? They just sit back and wait for the D? Or they get with the program and do it with the BS, or, if they can't stand the thought of it, file for D because it's obvious they don't feel the same way about the BS as they did the AP?

Sure, you can let the "chips fall where they may", and tell WW's "don't do anything special in bed" and I can council WH's "her emotional needs are bulls**t, you just do you man, she'll learn to live with it". I COULD do that. But I won't, because I know that providing that "advice" to a WH is akin to signing the D papers for him. You want to be married? Well, you better make your wife feel more special than the AP. Don't feel like it? Well, then you shouldn't be married to her in the first place and pack you s**t and move out. That would be my honest advice to a WH if he were crazy enough to bring that here to the group. :) I wouldn't tell him to make sure his wife understands fog, talk about his FOO, or any of the other stuff that gets wrapped up in this. Do it or don't, and if you don't, you'll likely wind up divorced (and, frankly, you should).

HellFire posted 7/4/2020 15:54 PM

RIO, this is all hypothetical on my end. My husband has never denied me this particular sex act. I was simply empathizing with the BH here.

But, again, hypothetically, if he were to suddenly want to give me that all the time, would it help? Would it make a difference? I would have to say no. Because it would feel inauthentic. I would want him to WANT to. And nothing he would say,or do, would make me think he suddenly wanted to. Except,maybe, because he enjoyed it with OW so much, that he now wants that with me. And that's a big NO thankyouverymuch.

It would be my dealbreaker.

Rideitout posted 7/4/2020 17:04 PM

It would be my dealbreaker.

Fair enough. And trust me, I live, understand and feel exactly the same as you do. The inauthenticity is difficult to overcome, in fact, it may be impossible. It's kind of one of those, "you just have to live with it" kind of things for me. It certainly would have been better if freely offered, I think I can say that safely, but, I really do think for a lot of people this is just "automatic dealbreaker" from which there's no possibile recovery. Unfortunately, lots of WS's know this too, so there's a ton of incentive to lie, if the truth will get you to the "worst outcome" then, well.. There's no logic in telling the truth anymore beyond a personal moral code, and, well, that's not something that WS's are exactly known for coming out of an affair.

The flip side of that, if you know that most people are going to lie, how do you believe it when they say "nope, nothing new, just what I did with you"? IDK, I'm sure at least some people here heard that message, believe it and it's not true.

I never would have found out the truth without the OM. He basically dropped me all the dirty details real quickly once he realized the leverage I had over him. And then it took me the better part of 2 years, even KNOWING the "real story" to get my wife to finally admit it all. It was an awful process.

The end result? Well, I have porn star sex now whenever I want to, in fact, more than I want to because my wife always initiates. Does it make it all better? Oh f**k no. Does it help? Oh f**k yes it does. I'm well aware that the sex life I have with her would be very difficult/impossible to replicate and you're darn right that has an impact in my desire to stay in the relationship. So, despite all the pain and heartache this particular issue has caused me, I suppose you could say I got a reasonably good outcome.

Honestly, the whole process made me question the authenticity of any sex I've had in the past. I went through life thinking that the women I slept with wanted sex, and wanted it with me. Well, come to find out, it's very likely that a lot of them didn't want sex, they provided sex in return for something else, something that I almost certainly was not giving them (commitment, caring, emotional intimacy, etc). So in a lot of ways, I look at it as the "devil you know" kind of thing. Sure, I could D and go find someone else, but who's to say that sex is any more authentic, and more a desire to have sex with me than my wife's? I've proven myself to be a terrible judge in this area and just kind of thrown my hands up. Sure, it'd be nice to believe my wife really does want to have sex with me, but, it'd be nice to believe in the easter bunny too, not sure either of them is very likely though. I feel like the best I could do in a new relationship is not KNOW that sex was compelled, or that it was provided in return for other things, I'd just "think it might be". Honestly, of all the things that came from the A, this is the biggest of all of them that I really want to "unknow". Learning this has totally changed my view on so many things, and honestly, I really liked the old me a lot better. Sure, I was living in a fantasy world, but man, that world was so much more fun than the world I live in now.

StrugglingCJ posted 7/4/2020 18:08 PM

Bottom line is, as a BS if there is something you just can't reconcile with, then get a divorce. If you can't accept that your ww enjoyed anal/threesomes/whatever with ap and not you? Divorce and go find someone more sexually compatible and adventurous. If you can't handle that your wh fell in love with/made promises to the ow? Then leave the M

Totally agreed here.. If you really struggle with how your partner behaved in the A And cannot reconcile that behaviour going forward then maybe D is your option.. Its my current direction.. Mostly because I CANNOT accept how my WS behaved not so much in the A but post DDay..

I fully understand those BH who felt emasculated by the A.. It hits you hard.. Your wife let herself be much more sexual with another guy.. It is hard to get over.. But to R you must try to.. And she will play a role in it.. Both of you need to be honest with what you actually want going forward..

I tried this.. But my WW would not be honest.. Or could deal/accept with my main desire.. Which was NC.

WalkinOnEggshelz posted 7/4/2020 19:13 PM

Speaking for myself only, I don't want to talk about the feelings behind them. I want(ed) my WS to FIX THEM. To repair the damage done, to heal the wounds she caused.

This is exactly why I believe you stay stuck RIO. Her performing the sexual acts isn’t going to magically fix everything. Does it help? I believe it does, yes. That’s only a part of it. You both have to come to understanding of what exactly her doing those things with him and not you means. Just as you have to come to an understanding of why she did it with him and not you. This is where true remorse comes from...the understanding of how her actions have made you feel. It’s possible if she understood the level of betrayal and hurt, she may even be more enthusiastic about fixing the problem, as you say.

Healthy sexual relationships take a great deal of communication and trust. You can’t just expect her to understand your needs. On the other hand, as a remorseful WS she should be proactively trying to figure out what they are. I know it’s not fair, but sometimes a little guidance is necessary. If WS’s instinctively knew these things, we all may not be here.

Rideitout posted 7/4/2020 19:49 PM

This is exactly why I believe you stay stuck RIO. Her performing the sexual acts isn’t going to magically fix everything. Does it help? I believe it does, yes. That’s only a part of it. You both have to come to understanding of what exactly her doing those things with him and not you means. Just as you have to come to an understanding of why she did it with him and not you. This is where true remorse comes from...the understanding of how her actions have made you feel. It’s possible if she understood the level of betrayal and hurt, she may even be more enthusiastic about fixing the problem, as you say.

Honestly, I'm not "stuck", at least not on this issue anymore. I always chime in when I see it because I truly believe the advice given is sometimes like encouraging a man to "keep seeing the AP, just stop getting caught" level toxic and/or detrimental to R. And, of course, I'm trying to prevent some other BS from being in my situation by explaining to WS's the "just do it" mentality around this (which, as said before, isn't just sex, it's all the "recovery" stuff, don't make your BS demand it, just do it).

Oh, she's explained what it "means", it has a lot of "lack of respect for myself" and "wanted it to be different with you" and a lot of other unintelligible stuff in it. I stopped asking, because, honestly, I really don't care what it means anymore, and I doubt she'll ever be able to explain it someway that makes any sense to me (other than, of course, I just liked him more and was willing to do more for him, which makes perfect sense to me).

My "stuck" no longer really is about her, it's about sex in general. I just don't know how I feel about it anymore. I used to love it, like absolutely love it, both with her and with other people. Now, I still love the act, but the whole "ego kibble", "should I leave money by the table", "tit/tat" nature of sex just rolls around in my mind. How am I any different than the AP? She didn't "want to" sleep with him, she wanted him to keep giving her kibbles. That sounds batsh*t, but, after reading it, ohh, about 1000 times from other WW's, I've come to believe that it's basically true. Well, great, that might "help" with the affair, but it also has the effect of completely destroying the nature of sex in my eyes (two people, attracted to one another, making each other feel good); it's not that, at least not for her. She makes me feel good sexually so I'll "return the favor" elsewhere. Now, of course, she'd never say that, but she doesn't have to, 100's of other people have said it for her here.

So.. That's where I'm stuck. And I really have no idea how to get unstuck. I've been in therapy for several years stuck on this issue. And I really don't think there's an answer that "works" because, not all, but a lot of male/female sexual interactions are in fact, as I've now come to understand them. Not all, in fact, I'm sure I have some that were not in my past, totally anonymous stuff that was all about feelings and orgasms, but that's not at all my "common" sexual history.

I searched and searched and searched to try to understand the A, and particularly her sexual behavior in it, and yes, I think I found the answer but, man, be careful what you wish for. I don't see a path to ever "get back" to how I used to view sex and man, do I ever wish I could. I really did NOT want to know. It's very rare that happens to me, when my wife finally dropped all the (horrible) sexual details from the A, it was like a sigh of relief for me. Yes, it was bad, almost ridiculously so, but I was ready for it. Sex for kibbles? That, I was totally NOT ready for, I didn't even think it was dangerous ground (trying to figure out the "whys" for the sexual olympics) and well.. Was I wrong.

oldtruck posted 7/4/2020 21:21 PM

for a BW to say that a they can hurt just as much as a BH is
insulting. i have never heard a BH state that BW hurt less.

sex acts are not worth, valued more than other sex acts.

when a WW does things for her OM that she had refused to do
for her BH before the affair shows that the WW valued the OM
more than her BH.

after D day when a WW refuses to do those sex acts in recovery
that she did with her OM but had refused to her BH before
D day. shows that she valued the OM more than her BH.

WW was doing whatever she needed to keep the OM. Now
after D day when a WW refuses to give her BH the sex acts
that she gave her OM she is showing that she values her BH
less than her OM.

cocoplus5nuts posted 7/5/2020 07:58 AM

I'm sure I'm going to forget some things I wanted to address, but here goes.

Absolutely, yes, if my H denied me something that he gave to the MOW, it would be a deal breaker. FWIW, his cheating was a deal breaker for me, anyway. As far as I'm concerned, our relationship is dead. We're still M, but we are not R. I don't think I'll ever be able to truly R with him.

There is one sex act that would've ended our sexual relationship if he had done it with the MOW. He swears he didn't. There's no way for me to know 100%. I choose to believe him so that I can continue to enjoy that one thing with him.

FTR, as far as I know, my H did not give anything to the MOW that he denied me. I'm pretty sure she got less. He never really wanted sex with her. He may have thought he loved her at one point. I know he told her that he loved her. Really, though, what he loved was how she made him feel. None of it was about her. It was all about him and his ego.

Also, ftr, they didn't not have any kind of long-term, wild and crazy sexual relationship. They had sex twice. The first time, she gave him oral. That was it. The second time, they had pretty vanilla sex. That was it. Maybe my H is weird, but he doesn't have any sexual desires or fantasies that he feels the need to act put with anyone other than me. 🤷‍♀️ If he did, I would almost certainly be gone.

Here's the thing, though. I didn't let any of that affect my worth. None of it is a reflection of me. It may be a reflection of how my H thinks or feels about me, but that's about him, not me. If he finds someone else more attractive than me (which I'm sure he does), that doesn't mean I'm not attractive or not good enough. I'm sure there's someone in the world who finds me more attractive than my H does. When I told him he took away my chance at having that one person who truly accepted me and saw that I am worthy just as I am, he said that I am worthy. My response to that was that I know I'm worthy. That's not the issue. The issue is that I will never have that with/from him.

Why so emasculated? Well, because it's a pretty darn clear statement that the other man is "better than you" in some way. Better in bed, better at convincing her to do something new, better at seduction. I don't think "emasculated" is really the right word, it's more "outdone", or "shown up" that probably describes it better.

So, this ^^^^^ us all in your head. If you feel like you aren't good enough because of what your CW did, that's on you. If you can't reconcile that with your CW, you have to either swallow it or D. Your CW can't fix that for you. That's about you and your self-esteem, which has nothing to do with anyone else and what they do or do not do.

I totally get that it's an issue in your relationship now. But that is only an issue with one person, your CP. You have 3 options there. Stay and continually work on it, D, or suck it up.

I have always said that we all have right to ask for anything we want. We don't have the right to try to make another person do it for us. You have every right to tell your CW that you want the entire sexual menu now. Just remember that she doesn't have to give it to you. Then, you have to decide what you are going to do about that.

I agree that we (some BWs) need to stop trying to minimize this issue. I don't see that the BH is reducing his CW to a sexual vending machine. What I see are BHes who are deeply hurt and trying desperately to save themselves.

cocoplus5nuts posted 7/5/2020 08:00 AM

Now after D day when a WW refuses to give her BH the sex acts
that she gave her OM she is showing that she values her BH less than her OM.

Do you understand that this has nothing to do with your value?

Butforthegrace posted 7/5/2020 08:36 AM

Carissima:

Do you really want the act without the desire?

Me, personally, no. It would not be the act that bothered me, it would be the enthusiasm for the act.

The paradox of the currently active poster that I was ruminating about when I started this thread is that the desire and enthusiasm IS there, but because of the unique nature of what the WW gave the AP (which was semi-anonymous "zipless fuck" sex with a man she barely knew and only encountered a few times at parties), it cannot be recreated in the context of the marriage between the WW and the BH. It's sort of the obverse of what Rideitout describes in his marriage.

I think that thread illustrates the power of this concept. It is my impression that the WW has tons of heartfelt desire for her BH, but he's stuck on the sense that she gave something to another man, while married, that her BH had never experienced but is a fantasy of his.

[This message edited by Butforthegrace at 8:37 AM, July 5th (Sunday)]

Darkness Falls posted 7/5/2020 09:25 AM

Do you understand that this has nothing to do with your value?

Coco,

I’m going to disagree with you here. Healthy or not, we as human beings define our own value by all sorts of ways that others don’t agree with. Sexual attractiveness being one. Right or wrong, we also assign value judgments to others—even (possibly mostly) unconsciously—based on our own perceived lens. I don’t think we should tell a man that he shouldn’t value himself in part based on a woman’s sexual interest in him. Reason being, there is no objective “correct” system of assigning one’s value. It’s all based on other people’s perceptions.

What I do think we ought to be aware of is that ONE PERSON’S opinion does not make or break us or our value to others. Because one woman or man valued an AP or an affair or crack cocaine or hang gliding or whatever more than you (general “you”), it doesn’t mean they speak for all of humankind. I think THAT is where people get tripped up. They put one person’s preference on a pedestal and allow the results to make them feel worthless. Sexual and otherwise.

truthsetmefree posted 7/5/2020 09:57 AM

I understand what many of the BHs are expressing here. I also understand why it may not be fully understood.

I am a female and was in a largely sexless relationship/marriage for almost 20 years. We're not talking certain sexual acts...we're talking just sex itself. At best, it was bland, unenthusiastic and often felt forced on his part. We can explore all the various possible reasons for that but the wound that comes from it remains the same. Much the same as when it comes to affairs - although a WS is fucked up and has a variety of reasons for having an affair, it still hurts just as much. (What reason could a WS give for having an affair that would actually make you feel better??) There's a lot to unpack and there's a lot of your own healing that you have to faciliate on your own. I totally get that.

But there's another part that makes an affair especially hurtful - and that's when there's an added component of what you weren't getting in the relationship is then given to someone else during an affair. It doesn't matter if it's sex, love letters, going camping, or making an apple pie. And when it's something you deeply wanted in the relationship, it hurts even more. When it's something you sacrificed by not having in the relationship - particularly because you loved and valued your partner - it really really hurts and is extremely hard to reconcile. "I gave it up because I loved and valued you so much" easily and even logically flips to "You gave it away to someone else because you loved and valued me so little". How is the very sacrifice we made to have no value when it relates then to how our spouse behaved toward us? It that thing was actually to be camping we'd all be questioning just how remorseful a WS is if they wouldn't give up a weekend to camping. Yet somehow when it's sex - an aspect of marriage that makes it fundamentally unique from any other relationship - it's a completely different topic...even though the affair sex it is often the VERY thing that solidifies a betrayal itself. (I do know that it is not the only thing...and my intention is not to minimize the many different aspects of betrayal in an affair. But many of us also know how gut-punched we felt when we finally learned that the affair DID also actually involve sex.)

I don't have the answers to this...but at the same time, I also don't profess to know any right or wrong responses when a BS determines something they think they need in order to heal. After all, we often say that healing ourselves is up to ourselves. If eating chocolate ice cream makes you feel better then I say eat chocolate ice cream. If it's demanding certain sex acts as reparation, then I support that too. At the end of the day, your WS has the same right of autonomy to their own body regardless of your demands - and the same right to get out of the relationship if they find the conditions unacceptable. I just think you do have to bear in mind that was what given freely to another may not be as reparative as you hope when it's given under demand to you. Either way, the core issue remains - and that's the discrepancy in values. That, and even eating chocolate ice cream has its own potential detriments.

Darkness Falls posted 7/5/2020 10:12 AM

I just think you do have to bear in mind that was what given freely to another may not be as reparative as you hope when it's given under demand to you.

Exactly.

I totally get “wanting what the AP got”, especially if it was something you already had always wanted. What I don’t get is thinking it will have a positive impact beyond just the nameless and faceless physical pleasure that you could be getting from one of those sex robots.

And THAT’S where the (admittedly divisive) terms like “rapey” and “coercive” come into play. Because when you already know, from prior experience, that your wife didn’t want to do it with you (or else she would have), then what other pleasure would you get from the act (aside from the purely physical) than by exerting your dominance and “making” her do it?

Look, I *get* that you (general) WANT your wife to WANT to. And I *get* it being unacceptable that she WANTED to with Joe Schmoe AP but doesn’t want to with you. Who wants that sort of dynamic in their marriage? Nobody. I am not failing to comprehend the issue at hand. I just don’t know what the solution is. I think a lot of wives just end up doing it (whatever “it” is), to save the M. I fully support that choice. I also fully support either spouse’s choice to D if it’s just not salvageable.

[This message edited by Darkness Falls at 10:13 AM, July 5th (Sunday)]

OwningItNow posted 7/5/2020 10:21 AM

I don’t think we should tell a man that he shouldn’t value himself in part based on a woman’s sexual interest in him. Reason being, there is no objective “correct” system of assigning one’s value. It’s all based on other people’s perceptions.

If you are valuing yourself based on other people's perceptions, you will live a life of pain, powerlessness, and uncertainty. Your worth will be up or down given the whims or moods of those you hold in high esteem, jerked around like a puppet on a string as they navigate their own turbulence and emotions. And god forbid you knowingly or unknowingly decide to value the opinion of the emotionally stunted or damaged, the narcissists or sociopaths, the manipulative or the cunning. Your view of yourself will lie in tatters on the floor as they mock and laugh at your foolishness in giving your power away.

Or you could decide that there is only one person's view that matters, yourself. And you could covet and protect that view like the valuable possession it is, never letting anyone touch it, living a life of personal strength and certainty.

Which will it be?
You choose.

[This message edited by OwningItNow at 10:24 AM, July 5th (Sunday)]

Darkness Falls posted 7/5/2020 10:27 AM

OIN, I agree. But as social animals, we are who we are. We have probably based our feelings of worth in part on how others perceive us since the dawn of man. And I am hearing many men here on SI saying it’s dismissive of us to tell them how to think. We can’t change others.

The weight-loss industry is not in the billions all because people want to get healthy. The cosmetics companies don’t rake it in solely because women want to look good for themselves. Those are shallow examples, but people generally do things because of how they want to appear to others.

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