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My husband/partner of 12 years tells me he wants a divorce

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because he does not feel...
My husband/partner of 12 years tells me he wants a divorce because he does not feel free to be himself. When he first asked for the divorce he blamed it on me by saying that I do not listen to him, argue, don't give him credit for what he does around the house, nag him, the typical problems you hear about in marriages. He is still living in the house and has been sleeping on the couch. We are beginning to negotiate divorce terms and sat down to write it out last night. He shows up in my bed last night and this morning he shared a secret that he enjoys wearing women's panties and wanted to tell me this because he wants me to know that the reason for the divorce is not all about mistake I have made, but him not knowing himself. I read that 36% of men enjoy wearing women's underware. What is really going on here?
Submitted: 6 years ago.Category: Mental Health
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Answered in 24 minutes by:
4/1/2011
Mental Health Professional: psychlady, Therapist replied 6 years ago
psychlady
psychlady, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 6,893
Experience: Psychotherapist specializing in the treatment of a variety of mental health issues.
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You should never engage in any sexual activity that you do not enjoy just because it pleases someone else. There is nothing wrong with his sexual practices unless they are unpleasant for you. Men engage in unusual sexual practices for many reasons including childhood abuse, deviancy or just sheer enjoyment. That doesn't mean he has latent tendencies about his masculinity. The two of you could benefit from couples counseling to address the sexual issues and the emotional issues if you are going to reunite. If you are going to pursue the divorce, then his sexual issues are not your concern. Separate yourself from that so you can move on. it is going to be especially difficult if he is in the home. Think creatively about other alternatives. Focus on getting your issues resolve with a counselor. Find a relationship that doesn't include sexual behaviors that you find unpleasant
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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
Why do I feel bad about not enjoying this? I love my husband but some of his habits are hard to live with and I have to say this is probably the most difficult. His secretiveness has been difficult and now as he prepares to leave me and our 10 year old son he comes out with it? It makes me wonder what else he is hiding, I am scared to be alone. I am 53 and he is 41. Is this a generational issue? I am having a difficult time moving forward here.
Mental Health Professional: psychlady, Therapist replied 6 years ago

There is probably an element of guilt there. Not because it's truth or real but because you want to please him. I would be concerned what else he is hiding too. He may have sexual behaviors that put you at risk or would break your heart. You sound like a nice lady and you truly love him, but that doesn't mean it is healthy to put your head in the sand. A relationship built on secrecy is worse than any relationship at all. Find your courage to move on. Your heart won't be open to a new healthier relationship if you stay with him. You will never know what could have been healthy if you participate in this charade that he has created

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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
Ok , the problem is that I start to justify his behavior. Early on in our relationship he told me he likes to masterbate with panties. I found a bunch of them in a coat pocket of an old coat, he was embaressed and asked forgiveness and said he would get rid of them. He never told me that he was wearing them. I figured it was not a big deal.   In my thinking the only cause for our fights was when he would reject me in bed. Several times our fights would get so heated that I would threaten/suggest divorce. Now he blames me for the divorce saying that my threats and temper are the problem. He says he cant talk to me because of my temper and he gives up communication. In January he started disappearing for long periods of time and not returning my calls. On February 12th he did this again knowing I was waiting for him to go out for a valentines date.   It turns out that he has been having a phone relationship with another woman for a while. I got hold of the records and he also bought her flowers and took her to lunch on valentines day. I confronted him on all of this and he says it is not sexual. I have heard that some people have been able to overcome these kind on things and still have a good marriage. Am I delusional? He says now he feels closer and maybe down the line we will end up together. I don't know what to think. I fear that i will not ever be able to trust him or another man again.
Mental Health Professional: psychlady, Therapist replied 6 years ago

You shouldn't trust him is the answer. You will trust another man eventually - you may not trust this man. That is not the same. If he wants to wear women's underwear and you are okay with it, that is not a big deal. It doesn't harm anybody. If it hurts your sex life, then that is a problem but it can be worked out with a marriage counselor. What is more troubling is this relationship with this woman. If he is meeting up with her, eating lunch, and carrying on a relationship over the phone or computer, than that is inappropriate, hurtful, and down the line going to be sexual. People don't get past that. You aren't unusual. They would feel exactly like you do now! They would have no trust, they would be hurt and ready to separate, and they would be offended. If it isn't sexual now it will be. Lunches and messages lead to other things. You have to find your strength and decide where this relationship is going. If you are parting ways he has to go. He can't have his cake and eat it too. Let him go before he hurts you any further.

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Customer reply replied 6 years ago
I think the underpants thing does hurt our relationship because he prefers to masturbate (probably with the panties) more than have sex with me. I read an article that says this can become a problem, and because he confessed to masturbating often, it makes me wonder. I think it is the secretiveness that is the root of the problem. I am not sure how to find my strength. I am scared and facing not only being alone, but having to file bankruptcy, and being a single parent of our 10 year old son. I took a big risk to remarry and have another child with him, and I am very hurt. My moods swing between sorrow, fear, and anger on a consistent basis. I have started counseling through my medical insurance, but I don't always know what to say when I am there and have only gone to two appointments. We have also been to two couples appointments as well, but it has not changed his mind about the divorce.
Mental Health Professional: psychlady, Therapist replied 6 years ago

Masturbation can be hurtful because you probably are feeling that he prefers that activity. This doesn't necessarily mean that that is the case. Sometimes masturbation is pleasurable because the sensations are different, but it doesn't make you less attractive or desirable. You are on the right track with counseling both his and yours. Try to relax and think about what you would like to address. you may even make a cheat sheet before your appointment. Your moods are inconsistent because you are going through this turmoil. Just a thought but you may consider an evaluation for meds due to situational depression. It's okay to ask for what you need. You do have a lot at risk so that is an even bigger motivation to give this 100%. You are free to make your decisions based on what you both wish to happen. He may want the divorce today but he may or may not want it tomorrow. Stay in therapy and deal with these issues with a professional. Best wishes.

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