Should I be this upset? Internet Addicted Spouse...

  • So my husband and I have been married for a year and a half. The majority of this time we have spent arguing over things that I do, like how I dress, who my friends are, how often I talk to my family, me furthering my education.....pretty much anything that has to do with me having a life outside of him. My husband however is addicted to the internet. You know what I mean......he will either go to bed late or wake up extremely early to do his surfing. At one point he was actually talking to other women on sites. I've never been with someone who was so insecure yet had all this kind of activity going on so I'm not really sure how to handle the internet thing. After I found out about him chatting on line (not just browsing) I confronted him on three different occassions about it. I'm not sure if he's still doing this but I know he still spends a lot of time on the computer. My issue is not necessarily with the fact that he's viewing adult material, but with the magnitude of it. I think he truly has a problem. I'm upset that even though I'm willing he would still rather spend time in cyber space. I feel like he's cheating still even though it's not right in my face like an outright affair would be. So I am really disgusted an dhave been thinking about talking to him about a divorce, but I don't know if I should really be this upset. Any thoughts?

  • Yes, you have every right to be upset. I have been through a very similar experience...although I naively endured 15 years of marriage being virtually dictated too...dress,friendships got to the point I gave up & he insisted on doing the weekly family food shop so he can control what was in the food cupboard (hardly anything)...and yes he used the internet to cheat, although he used his work computer & started work early & stayed late for "paperwork" ! !I divorced him & have since happily remarried. Do you have a dull ache right in the pit of your stomach making you feel that something is wrong? Tell him how upset you feel! Perhaps go away for a "dirty" weekend away from the temptation of the computer..try & rekindle some of the passion . It may be not technically "cheating" but he is not giving you the attention you so rightly deserve. May be the suggestion of divorce might shock him into realising the damage he is doing to your self esteem & your relationship with each other.

  • Divorce is such a huge deal, once it's done, it's done. So I so agree with mrchick, go on a long weekend together, stir up some of those old feelings, maybe you can get through to him in a neutral safe envrionment. BUT, do not and I repeat, DO NOT allow him to control other aspects in your life like, how you dress, who your friends are, when you talk to and see your family, etc. I can tell you for sure these are the beginning signsof abuse, it is definitely mental abuse, and could turn into physical abuse. Be very, very, careful with this man. If you even have one inkling that this man is capable of taking his need to control any farther than it has, get out as fast as you can and don't look back. You did not say if there are any children involved so I am going to assume there isn't. Take every precation to not get pregnant, this would be a very unfortunate situation during this turbulent time in the marriage. Just remember, when you think something feels off, it usually is. Trust your gut, you know what is really going on here. Don't ignore the signs of a bad thing happening. As far as the internet goes, my experinece with it is, it never turns out good. If someone is spending that much time online, privately on line that is, there is a problem. See if he is willing to let you look at the screen periodically as he surfs the net. If he acts secretive about it, it probably means he is up to no good. Good luck!!!

  • Thank you both for your responses. I did forget to mention that while he and I do not have any children together, I do have an 11 year old son who lives with us at home. I do feel like just a sinking feeling when I think about the entire thing, I get angry when I think about how he tries to control my life and I think "How dare he?" The entire time we've been together he's been what I understand now as insecure....he's said he has trust issues and that was supposed to explain the constant questioning and the changes he wants me to make....yet he's not trustworthy himself.

  • Hi, I don't think the situation you have explained is going to get any better by taking a mini-vacation. He's issues are deep-seated and he really needs to get into counseling. That is, if you want to stay in this situation. My advise to you is to get back to school like you were going to and keep your friends. What you are talking about IS life--education, family and friends. It's not a life outside of him. He chooses to be outside and it sounds like the internet IS his life. Personally, I would have a big issue w/him viewing pornography especially since there is a child in the home. I don't know if you can erase the history on your computer, otherwise it'll remain on the history bar. I would be quite upset at this point.

  • Okay, now that I know there is a child in the home that changes the whole game. GET OUT, and use your actions as a way to teach your child what is and what is not acceptable in life. I've been in a similar situation in my life and I have to tell you, the minute I finally (after 7 years) put that man out of the house I felt so much better. I never even grieved the loss, this man was so much work it was rediculous. It is unfortunate, but you have a responsibility to your child to do the right thing. Children learn by our actions, so, no matter, how hard it is to do the right thing you have to do it...Good Luck

  • I agree with Myviewpoint, that as soon as I left my ex..even after 15 years of marriage, I felt so much better and I got my self esteem & confidence back. And thank you, myviewpoint, for stating that you didn't feel any "loss" ....for I didn't either and I always felt slightly guilty for not feeling as hurt over a break up that in total spanned 20 odd years! You need to do what is right for you and your to your family as long as you like, pursue your educational dreams....get your own independence going etc . Tell your family, if you can, what's wrong too - I bottled it up for years so when I did admit what had been going on I got immediate support but they were also upset that I had endured his behaviour for so long! Wishing you lots of luck.

  • I am actually dealing with the same issues right now. My husband also "browses" the internet and I'm sorry, I consider it online adultery. He's cheating on me with someone else, just not someone he can physically touch. The control in our house is a little more subtle and manipulative but boils down to the same thing. And I've been married going on nine years. I actually just found out about the internet use 9 months ago and found out that is has always been going on since we were dating, I was just too naive to notice anything. I wish I would have found out before we had a child together because it makes it so much harder to leave. I tried everything to get it to work out, including time away and marriage counseling (though he would only attend one session). I did threaten divorce and it scared him enough to try acting much nicer but it hasn't changed my feelings. Everyone in my house is miserable and my child is even acting out because of the tension. So, I am actually leaving and filing for divorce after almost three years of trying to work it out. I guess what I'm saying is that it doesn't get better. If these problems are already there after such a short time, they will just get worse and make you more miserable as the time passes. And you really don't want to wake up in two years with a baby and even more tied to the situation. Get out now while you have the least to lose and find someone who is worthy of your love and commitment. My sister has a fabulous saying that I will pass on to you. "When someone shows you who they really are, believe them"! Because people don't change, they just alter their behavior for a little while to manipulate the results they want. Good luck!

  • Oh my gosh, you are all so helpful. I was concerned about the not feeling a loss too. I actually told him I wanted out and now he's trying to fix everything...which I don't want him to do, I'm done. I don't feel my feelings changing even though he's trying to do things differently. And no I don't want to wake up one day with another child and this still be going on in any capacity. I just was worried if my not feeling bad for wanting to end my marriage meant something was wrong in me. Obviously, I'm not the first woman to feel that way. Thank you all.

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