Hi. I have some issues that I hope someone can help me with. First of all, I live in a very small town with very few counseling resources. Plus everyone knows everyone’s business so am hesitant to ask for local help. Came across this website (thru averagemarrieddad.com) and thought maybe this could be a safe place for me to ask some stuff. I wrote an extensive (and I do mean extensive) email, but it was too long to send. In a nutshell, some of my issues include a strained marriage due to a discovered porn addiction since age 9, including gay porn that might stem from some childhood stuff – and thus obviously some questioning of my sexuality. I want to experience healthy sexuality and save my marriage but need/want help in sorting it all out and hope that I can find some help. If anyone there is able & willing, I’d really appreciate it. Thanks.

Dick of Dick-n-Jane.com
(layman with a website)

The format of this site is not really setup to provide ongoing dialog or in depth analysis, which is what you appear to be looking for, and the quality of assistance you seek is beyond “free advice”, which is all we have to offer. Prior questions with some overlap on yours can be found at the links below:

Questions About My Husband’s Sexuality
Same Sex Attraction Is A Marital Secret
He Watches Porn and Lies About It

Our panel of experts would refer you to an AASECT certified therapist but I am guessing one might be hard to find in your area. Perhaps you could contact them to ask about the availability of therapists online. It might sound strange to seek help via webcam but I have heard very positive success stories about this type of therapy.

Regarding porn addiction, I have an opinion to share. There’s no such thing. There is culturally enforced shame in consuming porn and so we do it in private and we try to hide our tracks. Porn is something we enjoy so we keep doing it but the real problem is not the porn, it’s the sneaky behavior it inspires. When discovered, a convenient excuse is that we “couldn’t help it” and so we blame the porn.

Trust is bedrock in any marriage and it should get priority over your love of porn. I’m not saying you shouldn’t consume porn (there’s nothing wrong with doing so) but transparency is key, don’t hide it from your partner or you will do damage; erosion of trust if she catches you, guilt or diminished self image if she doesn’t.

I went through this with Jane. Just like so many men, I fucked up and thought I had to hide. In the end, Jane and I learned to enjoy porn together. This lead to mutual discoveries, hot sex, and openness which permits each of us to consume porn without undermining trust. A fantasy life is healthy and can improve your relationship, porn itself is not a problem unless you allow it to be.

Good luck, man! I hope you find a good therapist who can guide you and your wife through to a better place.