My Husband is at a Strip Club and I Can't Stop Crying

Reading this thread has made me realize that I would never dare to touch a stripper at a club, let alone put my mouth on her–I mean, just think how many pathogens must be communicated that way! What a totally unsanitary profession! No way! Lesson to the ladies: marry a man with a disease phobia. :slight_smile:

On a more serious note, I would say that the ability to separate sexual acts from any sort of emotion is pretty normal for males. To us, as Stranger on a Train noted, orgasm is not much more inherently “personal” and “intimate” than urinating. That’s why the fact that a man has sex with you doesn’t mean he loves you, or even likes you. And it’s why a man can do what DoperChic’s husband did and not feel that he is being unfaithful.

It seems many women feel very differently about these matters. Whenever there’s a profound difference of opinion, it isn’t wise to assume that the other person understands your point of view. Both partners in this marriage seem to have made some naive assumptions about the other’s perspective. Without being able to hear both sides in the dispute, that’s all I can really say.

As for what is normal and/or acceptable behavior for men, I suspect that those who say many or most men aren’t really “wired” for sexual monogamy are right. But the nice thing about our liberal society is that you aren’t expected to promise yourself exclusively to someone if you don’t want to. A man who marries a woman and promises to forsake all others should be held to that promise as long as the marriage lasts. Honoring a solemn oath even if it’s hard is right in line with my concept of masculinity, and I would hope with most people’s.

DoperChic:

Your husband is not doing this in spite of the fact that it hurts you. He is doing this BECAUSE it hurts you. He is cheating on you for similar reasons that I cheated on one of my exes: because doing so in such a way, humiliating you in such a way, and then getting you to stay with him afterwards gives him a feeling of power over you. Well, it’s not just a feeling, actually: he DOES have power over you, power that you have ceded by your acquiescence.

Take your power back.

I really think that we have come to somewhat of a wall regarding how my husband and I interpret what he did. Neither of us is really willing to budge. And maybe it does just needs to be OK. I need to stop trying to change him and how he views what he did. Until that happens, we’ll just be going around in endless needless emotional circles.

Thank you. I just wish I had had that cool head Saturday night as well. That one phone call he made that night set off some old emotions that I thought were dealt with but obviously were not and I snapped. My husband is very willing to work on this with me. He has been there for me through all of my highs and lows for the past 8 years. I have no doubt that he will continue to be there for me and will work with me to overcome this.

Now you tell me this! :slight_smile:

I had my husband read this post and he agreed with you. It’s really hard for me to understand this point of view, but I think I need to accept it in order to forgive him and be able to move on.

I have been in counseling before and this is one of the things we worked on. I tend to get very focused on how I perceive something and become convinced that my way is the way things are. For example, my husband going to a strip club means that I’m not doing enough for him, that my body isn’t good enough, and he has to then get his needs met elsewhere. Rationally, I know this isn’t true. Hubby tells me that this isn’t true. But that nagging thought in the back of my mind just won’t let go.

Yes, some men cheat because they are sick and twisted. My husband is not. I’m not sure where you are getting this based on what I’ve told you, but it’s not true. Our relationship is not a constant power struggle. I’m sorry that yours was.

You need to remember, though, that power can corrupt—even otherwise decent people can be susceptible. IMO/IME if person A does something he/she shouldn’t, that person B allows, the respect can start to suffer. I’ve been on both sides of that equation.

Ridiculously extrapolated example: the Nazis. When bullies have success, they become bolder and bolder in part because they lose all respect for those who won’t stand up to them. It’s a lot subtler in marriages, but it’s there nonetheless.

Probably I’m over-identifying because of my own issues. That said, lobotomyboy63 nailed it with his bully analogy. When I cheated, I knew exactly what I was doing, and getting my girlfriend to stay with me as I took advantage was part of the point.

@skald: I’d bet it’s a gradual process, isn’t it? You lose a little more respect each time until it turns you into a tyrant.

I’d also add that the process doesn’t require you to be a genius. A related story: doctors told my sister that she couldn’t get pregnant. She’d always wanted one, but it just wasn’t in the cards for her. And then, somehow, without really “trying,” she became pregnant.

Well, talk about a joyful moment! And when she had the baby, she was supermom. That kid couldn’t get out a second whimper before she was right there with a bottle, fresh diaper, etc.

But eventually, my sister pushed herself SOOOO hard that she ended up with pneumonia.

My point is that you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to manipulate people. Understanding a little cause-and-effect can go a long way. If a newborn baby can manipulate my sister…

So why not just move on? Why the need for counseling? :confused:

It wasn’t with that girlfriend. I went into the relationship intending to be as cruel as I could without being physically abusive. But it was a gradual process that led me to that point, and I’m hyper-vigilant about avoiding such patterns with my wife.

Because the root of the issue is a problem with communication, not a problem with fidelity. DoperChic and her husband failed to communicate their expectations of each other with regards to sexual fidelity, and so he cheated without realizing that what he was doing constituted cheating. Now that they’ve finally talked through this issue, he knows that kissing and orgasms with any other person is off limits, so he won’t do it again. Nonetheless, that doesn’t solve the underlying problem of communication, so there could be a similar blowout over another issue. Counseling, ideally, should help both DoperChic and her husband communicate better and strengthen their relationship.

I know a guy who launched his own vendetta against womankind. His fiancée had cheated on him, broken off the engagement, yadda, while he was at sea with the USN. He spent the next couple years destroying women everywhere he went.

Now that time has passed, I would think that he’d realize that he was punishing innocents; I’m not sure much guilt has caught up to his psyche yet, however.

I think we’re hijacking the thread, so I’ll shut up.

No, we aren’t.

ETA: Well, yes, we are, but for good reasons, like wanting healthy relationships.

He got a quasi-hand job while she was pregnant?
He thought the stripper ‘liked’ him so much she was going to let him pay her for sex?
The OP needs to get to a male strip club and go to town.

NOOOOO!!!

I’m anxiously awaiting your reply and I get this?!

Now I know you have a mean streak, but please satisfy my (and maybe others’) curiosity about why you would intentionally go into a relationship trying to hurt someone and what you mean by intentionally. I’ll even start a new thread if you’d like.

I haven’t read the whole threat yet (up to page 3 so far) but so far no one has said, or they’ve brushed over, a few of the things I’d like to point out.

  1. What the hubby did this time is not the same as what the hubby did last time. The first incident, he did what he thought was OK and got heat for it. He said “I don’t get why, but I understand that it’s wrong.” Then he went to a club again. At no point were we told that he once again sucked a stripper’s tit or came from a dance. For all we know, he just got drunk and watched. He was unknowingly wrong the first time and this time, he’s perfectly OK until you tell me he got off again.

  2. A male orgasm is NOT a personal, sexual experience all the time. Physical stimulation can do that even if the brain isn’t into it. Broomstick and DoperChic, you need to understand that there IS a difference. When hubby is screaming “But it was from the 20 minute dance!!”, you need to understand that what he really means is “My brain wasn’t even in it! It’s the same as if I had a wet dream!” Then you need to understand that he’s telling the truth. I feel you’re not really respecting this biological difference between the sexes. Put another way, cum!=orgasm.

  3. I think we can sum up the argument thusly:
    Dc: “I don’t want you to go to a strip club because if you cheated on me once, you’ll cheat on me again!”
    Hu: “But the first time, I don’t think I cheated on you. I can’t imagine holding your viewpoint on this issue, but I respect your position on it and won’t do it again.”
    Dc: “Then why are you going? Going means you’ll cheat again, especially since you don’t understand what you did wrong last time.”
    Hu: “It’s my duty as a guy friend to go. This is not as big a deal as you’re making it.”
    Again, I think the whole problem is that DoperChic is saying that going again=first time incident. Evidence: He doesn’t think he was wrong. Hubby is saying that it’s OK because going again!=first time. Evidence: He knows you don’t like it.

Resolve that and you’ll have it all patched up.

DoperChic, ever consider rewarding your husband if/when he makes the right decision with you giving him a Better Lap Dancesup[/sup] at home? It would be a win-win situation, and the positive reinforcement (in the future) would make him invulnerable to the peer pressure he might get from his friends questioning his refusal to go to any more strip clubs.

Yeah, who’s to say what’s normal and what isn’t? :slight_smile:

The OP wasn’t explicit, but it seems she has been through some sort of past problems that has left her with “issues” as we say these days, and she has benefited from counseling in the past. She feels that more of it could be helpful at present. Nothing wrong with that conclusion.

I have several close friends who, due to abuse in their childhoods, have been in and out of counseling during their adult lives. Done properly, it can be of great benefit. It doesn’t even have to be a constant thing - a year or two of counseling, followed by years out of it, followed by another year or two when something comes up or needs further work, is a perfectly valid pattern.

If you want to start a new thread I’ll answer there. This thread should be to help & support DoperChic.