Hi Dr. NerdLove,
I’m certain that you receive thousands of letters, but I am genuinely struggling and confused.
My wife of 10 years (we’ve been together for 20 years total and have two kids together) has shared that she is into the idea of having sex with other people. Specifically, she is into the “Stag & Vixen (Hotwife)” lifestyle, where she has sex with other men (and possibly women) but wants to remain committed to our relationship and family. She says that she has a need to pursue pleasure and needs to be slutty because we got together when she was fairly young, only 22 years old, and she feels like she never got to fully explore her sexuality. I am trying my best to understand where all of this is coming from (some of which was triggered by my past addiction to pornography and subsequent lack of sexual energy and desire for her – I have committed myself to the NoFap lifestyle and it made a big difference in my desire for her but the historical hurt remains). I am trying to be “cool” with it because I love her and I want her to be happy and feel sexually fulfilled. I am also trying to be understanding because our sex life has been reinvigorated since we have been communicating more openly and honestly about our fantasies and desires and I want that to continue. I want to remain deeply committed to her, the mother of my children, and to please her sexually (which I mostly do, she told me so).
When the two of us are having sex and she tells me about the fantasy of fucking other people and flirting and sexting, etc., I find it fairly hot and exciting. When, on the other hand, she tells me about flirting with the electrician and some subsequent dirty talk via text, I completely lose my mind; I feel anxious and hurt and confused and have irrational thoughts like, “she doesn’t love me” (which I know is not true) and that “I am worthless” (which I know isn’t true) and “I should kill myself” (which I won’t do, but that is an indication of how incredibly horrible I feel). I also feel mad at her and while having an unrelated argument I have said something like, “If your hobby is fucking other people, then I can have a hobby too!”. Immediately, I regret it and feel ashamed because I don’t want her openness about her innermost desires to be used against her. Did I mention that I REALLY love this woman and I’m committed to doing the hard work to stay together?
My friend told me that “I don’t have to force myself to feel OK with something that I’m not OK with.” He points to the fact that my internal reaction speaks very loudly that I don’t seem OK with this. When I tell my wife how I feel, she takes me in her arms, kisses me deeply and assures me that she loves me, wipes my tears, then fucks my brains out. At this point our mutual agreement is that we can flirt and dirty talk with other people but what if I can’t handle this? And what if she wants to, but I don’t feel motivated or interested in pursuing other people for dirty talk and flirting?
Can I learn to control my jealousy and calm my mind, reassuring myself that this is just a kinky game that she needs to play or am I doomed to feeling the fucked up way that I feel? Is it OK that I am interested in the fantasy, but not the reality, of my wife having sex with other people? My wife told me in one of our first discussions, “Hurt feelings are not sexy. I am not doing this to hurt your feelings.” But I feel so hurt and confused. What if it’s a deal breaker for me? I am scared of losing her if I tell her that I am NOT cool with her having sex (or maybe even dirty talk) with other people. Am I “cock blocking” her sexual desire and need for fulfillment if I say that it’s a deal breaker for me?
Reluctant & Struggling Stag