iheartlife...you made me want to cry. I am and have been seeing a cognitive behaviour therapist since September. He has been in IC in New York since January when he moved back from Singapore. We have been going to marriage counselling since jan. He is repentant and admitted to looking at porn pretty much every night for the last 10 years. We moved to Asia and he immediately started sleeping with prostitutes and then he started a year long affair on top of that. He then admitted that he had sex with a girl in a bar on business in Ohio over 2 years ago. I guess I know he is a serial cheater, but as I discovered all of these things at once over a few months si that his second chance, or is the fact that he did all these things and not choose to stop before being found out mean that there is less hope? I have 2 daughters aged 10 and 12 and I would never, never want them to stay with a man like this, so why am I? Yes, I love him..I want to believe he is sorry and will never hurt me again, but is there just too much damage? Is the fact that he did so much..ONS, prostitutes and a year long affair mean that there is less hope? I am so confused, so tired. I wanted him to leave the house last night and go to the condo he rented when I found out about the prostitutes, but I stopped him going in the end because I knew that if he went he would spend the night looking at porn...that is so messed up. My life has been taken over by this for 8 months. Do I walk away now and not care whether he is sorry or not? I know nobody can tell me what to do, but I am losing myself and I want to be a great Mum to my girls. They did not deserve this. What I struggle to get over is that he had sex with me not knowing his HIV or STD status..he had the tests done but they would not have been valid because it was only a week after the last prostitute in Hong Kong. Is that just too much???? What more would he have had to do for me to walk away? I have asked this before...sorry....
Are any of your therapists trained in porn addiction? Many men enjoy porn and are capable of carrying on healthy marriages. But not all.
Have you seen this famous lecture on porn? TEDxGlasgow - Gary Wilson - The Great Porn Experiment - YouTube
Again, some men are able to watch porn and then channel their enjoyment into a healthy sex life. Other men get caught in a cycle with porn where (like a drug) they need increasingly harder and harder core stuff to get off (and by getting off, I mean masturbation, which creates a dopamine reward cycle in some men much as cheating does--which is often discussed around here). And then some men take that and then seek more partners to live out their porn-induced fantasies which become stranger and riskier as the "newness" wears off.
In terms of your question about serial cheating, I do believe that it counts if they have multiple partners before you find out. I would probably lump seeing prostitutes as "one" and the affair as "two." Even though he saw prostitutes many times, theoretically he wasn't attached to any one of them and they were to some extent interchangeable bodies where it was all about sex.
But I can see your point, which is that all of this occurred before he recommitted to your marriage, so another way to look at it is that it all counts together as a great big "one" time.
What is the understanding between the two of you about his porn use? That you don't like it but he can still do it? That he tells you he won't but he does it anyway? That he says he's allowed to do it and you shouldn't try to control him?
I'm also curious--if you don't mind me asking--whether any of the therapists have brought up the madonna/who** complex, where he puts you on an idealized pedestal, meant to be worshipped but not enjoyed in a 'dirty' sexy way.