[Two Pronged] Why does he prefer sluts?
Dear Dr Holmes and Mr Baer,
My fiancé and I have been engaged for 5 years, but I still don’t know him so well that I can predict his every move. I like it that way. I like that he surprises me often. Not with presents, etc, but with the things that come out of his mouth. They are not necessarily intelligent – in fact, quite the opposite.
I am 24, and he is 39. I was always more sexually aggressive than he is. He is more moody. We do not get along that well when it comes to sex.
There are times when he seems to be turned on by exhibitionism. He likes to make love when we are having dinner at our friends’ houses (especially if he thinks the our host/s is/are in love with me). He wants us to be caught while I’m servicing him instead of pleasing each other. I do not enjoy these times, I go along with them only to make him happy.
But all this is nakakapagod (tiring me out).
What I know about him is that he is not fond of sex. He is lazy. He always wants the focus on me, me, me (that is, him, him, him).
I saw shocking pictures on his cellphone: naked women with their legs spread apart.
He took those pictures, but he’s denying it. Why does he want these women and not me? I know their type. They are all cheap. Why would they pose that way if they are not sluts? Is he a maniac?
I would not fall for this kind of guy even before.
Pagod napagod na po ako (I am so tired of all this).
Why did he ask me to marry him if he is not satisfied with our sex life? Why did he do it if he does not love me? Why, when he is not even good in bed or fond of sex? Can I leave him? But he says I am being childish for feeling this way.
Thank you for your email.
Your description of your boyfriend (let’s call him Rob) does not paint a very attractive picture, certainly not one that would seem to underpin a 5-year engagement, but perhaps you just decided to keep your account short and dwell mainly on his shortcomings. Anyway, it is a positive that you appreciate his unpredictability and if he is potentially a good husband and father, that might be sufficient for someone with low expectations in the first place.
However, the problem lies elsewhere, in his performance as a lover. Selfishness in bed and a love of porn are not ideal qualities when contemplating marriage, and it seems obvious they are closely linked. After all, a man who is only interested in his own pleasure is an ideal candidate for a form of sex where the product viewed can be 100% curated by the viewer for that very viewer’s delight. And the more Rob watches, the wider the gulf between the images on the screen and the reality of the world around him, i.e. you. And to make matters worse, you have what to him is the temerity to expect your own pleasure which is scarcely likely to mirror his.
This is perhaps the Madonna/Prostitute dichotomy of the modern era. While the old model of fiancées embodying the virtues of virginity, femininity etc., and thus "qualifying" for the position of mother of any future children is more or less unchanged, "prostitute" now covers not only those working in the world’s oldest profession but those displaying their assets online. Indeed the online version boasts several improvements: greater anonymity, no risk of disease, 24/7 availability in the luxury of one’s own home.
Now, all of this is bad news but even worse is his complete lack of interest in listening to your concerns, much less showing any willingness to modify his behavior. In light of this, continuing this relationship in the hope that he will change seems utter folly. It is an axiom of family therapy that the only person whose behavior you can change is yourself, so ask yourself if you can become reconciled to a life with Rob in which he will simply label you childish if you disagree with him, will not offer you a satisfying sex life, and in all likelihood will replace you 100% with porn substitutes.
If you think I am suggesting you leave him, you will not be wrong!
All the best,
Thank you very much for your letter. In it, you asked 7 questions, but only one was about you; the rest were all about why he did what he did. Let me answer the “about you” question first, and then respond to your 6 other questions, okay?
You ask: “Can I leave him?” Of course you can! In my opinion, the sooner you do, the better. It will release you from a relationship that seems mainly built on lies, conjecture, and lack of communication.
Mr Baer and I are not in the best position to answer your 6 other questions: 1. Why does he want these women and not me? 2. Why do they pose that way if not sluts? 3. Is he a maniac? 4. Why did he ask me to marry him if he is not satisfied with our sex life? 5. Why did he if he does not love me? 6. Why, when he is not even good in bed or fond of sex?
We do not know him, he has not confided in us, and it would be the height of hubris to even attempt to do so.
However, I have a question to ask you, which I hope you will try to answer, and if you feel particularly stumped, write to us again and we will try and explore possibilities with you. You said: “I would not fall for this kind of guy, even before.”
My question is: “In that case, why do you think you fell for him, especially since it seems so out of character for you? What did you see in him (the “pro”) that made you stay in this relationship for 5 years, despite all the obvious “cons” attached to it? To name a few, these include: his being lazy, his always wanting the focus on “me, me, me,” your not getting along that well when it comes to sex, and the clincher, your feeling “Pagod na pagod na po ako (so tired)” regarding your relationship.
If our responses are to be of any more help to you, we would do better moving away from sheer speculation regarding the whys and wherefores of his behavior and focusing on something that might help you understand yourself better.
So let me paraphrase the initial question I asked: “Why do you think you continued this relationship when it seemed to offer you so little to begin with? What did the relationship give you that made all the humiliation (agreeing to be discovered servicing him while in someone else’s house, for example) and frustration worth it? What is it about you (your needs/vulnerabilities) that made you agree to such an unequal relationship to begin with?”
Three final questions (for now), and I hope one you can answer more happily: Was seeing those pictures of other women the last straw? What can you do to strengthen your resolve to end this relationship? Is realizing his pathetic attempts to keep you from leaving him one of the ways you can stick to your guns?
What pathetic attempts? Accusing you of “being childish for feeling this way” instead of listening to you, instead of apologizing for (or, at least acknowledging) his behavior, for one.
For another, trying to win you back perhaps by promising, for example, to be more solicitous of your feelings, rather than discounting them with what the most predictable and pedestrian defense most scoundrels use – turning the tables and accusing the aggrieved party – in his case, accusing you of childishness.
Focusing on him and why he did what he did is a distraction from the hard work of asking questions about yourself that may help you in your future relationships – starting with the one with yourself.
Good luck and please write to us again if you feel we can help.
All the best,