My husband was laying on the bed, watching a show on his phone. I had just finished listening to a podcast in which 6 men were talking about their experiences with porn. Even though I was working as a Marriage Coach and had been helping couples with their sex lives, the topic of pornography hadn’t really crossed my mind.

 Quite surprised that 100% of these personal-development-kind-of-guys had all used porn at varying degrees, I flopped down on the bed, looked my husband of 15 years in the eyes and asked him one of the most important questions of my life, “Do you watch porn?” Never in a million years expecting the answer that followed.

 A sheepish, uncomfortable half-smile developed across this face as he choked out the word, “Yes.”

 I sat up on my elbows in disbelief. Surely I was hearing wrong. In all the counselling, therapy, coaching, book reading, workshop taking and late-night arguments about MY low sex drive, this had never occurred to him to mention? Why had nobody brought this up? Why hadn’t I been able to detect this? Could I ever trust my intuition again when it hadn’t picked up on such a huge break of trust?

 The following week was a nightmare of disclosure. All the secrets and lies of our marriage came tumbling out and I was faced with the reality of my husband’s infidelity: not with an actual person, thank goodness, but with an illusion of connection, power, and intimacy through the screen and phone.

 I have come to see that moment as the most important turning point of our marriage. The courage that it took him to tell me the truth, the power I accessed to draw a firm line in the sand and our mutual resolve to give 100% to our marriage when it would have been very easy to blame and get defensive.

 You may be thinking, like many do, “This is a little overboard and dramatic. Porn is a harmless activity. So many people do it!”

 This is correct. The stats indicate that around 73-93% of men watch porn. In fact, women will often tell me that they find it a relief that their husband watches porn because it takes the pressure off them to perform.

 Before you continue reading this article, I want to make one thing very clear: I’m here to solve a problem, not take a moral stance. The problem I specialize in solving is married women not wanting and enjoying sex with their husbands. And porn is 100% contributing to this problem.

 After I recovered from the shock of my husband’s answer, my decision was clear, “It’s porn or our marriage, you choose.”  After a full recovery, my husband told me that he would have never quit (and reaped the tremendous benefits) if I haven’t had the clarity to create a clear consequence that day.

 Now that I have had the absolute pleasure of helping hundreds of married women want and enjoy sex more with their husbands and also make that clear request for porn use to stop, I know that my own personal experience wasn’t unique.

 I can tell within minutes of listening to a wife talk if her husband is masturbating to porn, even if she doesn’t know it yet.

 The symptoms I see are: pressuring her to perform sexual acts even if she doesn’t enjoy them, an obsession with anal sex, wanting to ejaculate on her, pushing her to wear lingerie, rejecting the idea of scheduling sex even if it’s working, an inability to stay slow during penetration, difficulty maintaining an erection without intense visual or physical stimulation, refusing to follow her personal boundaries, not feeling important or a priority in his wife’s life even though she tries very hard to prove it to him (attachment issues), emotional immaturity and extreme defensiveness around the topic of porn.

 If safety, acceptance and zero pressure are essential ingredients for a woman’s desire, you can see very clearly how this would affect the couple’s ability to have an intimacy heartbeat in their marriage.

 It took my husband a full year for his brain to completely heal from the effects of pornography. Now we have a delightful sex life – full of connection, mutual pleasure, and experiences we didn’t even know were possible when porn was in the picture.

 If women are always blaming themselves, feeling broken, and thinking they are alone with their lack of desire, they will never look around at other factors that may be contributing to the problem.

 My advice is unwavering: ask the direct question, “Do you watch porn?” and make a clear request, “Please stop,” for the long-term health of your marriage.

If you find yourself WANTING to want sex with your husband but just not (for whatever reason), I have a free class this week only. “The Real Reason for a Lack of Desire and the 6-Step Solution to Connecting Again”.
link: www.jannadentonhowes.com/freeclass

Janna Denton-Howes is a Sex Coach who specializes in helping married women want and enjoy sex more with their husbands.  Known for her popular course, The Wanting It More Program, Janna empowers women to create boundaries, trust their intuition and prioritize their pleasure in the sexual experience. After getting married as a teen and struggling with low desire, Janna spent many years trying to increase her libido with no long-term results. She eventually developed her own methodology for healing this, first for herself and now for hundreds of other women.

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