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Advice: My Husband Looks at Gay Porn

Echo Park adjacent relationship expert Wesley Ford takes your questions.

I am very embarrassed by my problem. Last week I started to send you an e-mail several times but chickened out. However, I’ve become increasingly upset with each passing day, and I am desperate for some advice. Here’s my problem.

Two weeks ago I caught my husband looking at male pornography on the Internet. He says that he was just “curious” and that he has done it only on one or two other occasions.

We have rarely had sex over the past year, and we don’t spend much time doing things together as a couple. We have been married for two years, and I’m now afraid that he married me just to make himself look like he’s heterosexual.

I am presently staying with my sister. She knows that I am having a big problem with my husband, but I haven’t told her any of the details. I’m too embarrassed. I am still talking to him on the phone every day. I miss him terribly but I am scared to go back and I feel uncomfortable around him.

He says that he wants me ONLY and that I can trust him, but I don’t feel that I can.

What should I do?

Scared

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Dear Scared:

Although your husband’s behavior may be troubling, there is no reason for you to feel embarrassed. You certainly aren’t the first person to encounter this situation. Almost all men– -and many women–-are consumers of some form of commercial pornography.

While looking at male pornography isn’t the norm for most straight guys, it’s hardly enough to conclude that your husband is gay. After all, just because you look at a menu it doesn’t mean you have to order.

Ask yourself the following questions before making a decision: Does he seem turned on to you? Has he had any gay experiences in the past? When you say you rarely have sex, could he explain why?

More importantly, what is making you so uncomfortable that you feel you can’t trust him? Is it that you really think he might be gay or are you just picking up on a vibe? From your letter it seems that you don’t believe you’re getting a straight answer (no pun intended).

I would trust my instincts. We all know when someone is turned on by us, and you don’t seem to be feeling that at all.

He may be bisexual or just plain curious, but if this makes you too uncomfortable it will continue to be a source of deep conflict in your marriage --especially if you don’t trust him--which appears to be the case. If you choose to stay in the marriage, I would strongly advise that you and your husband seek marriage counseling.

Best of Luck!

Got a relationships question? Email me at wesford@aol.com. Questions will be kept confidential, though they may be edited.

Wes Ford has been a practicing marriage and family counselor and has taught university courses in the sociology of marriage and the family. He has graduate degrees from University of Western Ontario and University of California, Berkeley.  He has lived in Silver Lake for nearly 25 years and recently published a book titled How to Pick a Lover: For Women Who Want to Win at Love.

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