Interview With A Real Dad Starting Over – “William”

This is the second in a series of interviews with REAL dads and dudes starting over in life. From each of these stories, we can learn a great deal from each other and see that we are nowhere near alone in our quest to start over.

“William” is the an example of a VERY common scenario:

  1. Little experience with women before or after his ex-wives.
  2. Comes from a broken home with an absent father figure and strong attachment to mom.
  3. Strongly attracted to women from broken families, histories of abuse and has an intense need to help them.
  4. His kind/pushover nature eventually backfires on him as he is taken advantage of the worst way by predatory women.

DSO
So, if you could, tell us your name, age, number of kids

William
William. Age 48. I have three biological children and then two who are bonus children.

DSO
Bonus children… step kids?

William
One former stepson who I am still close to and one who I discovered was not mine, but am also close to.

DSO
Oh wow. Sounds like you do have a story to tell. And what ages are the kids?

William
30, 28, 27, 24, 23. The 30, 27, and 23 year olds are mine. Yes, it’s quite a story. 23 year old is the only girl.

DSO
That poor girl! That’s a whole lot of testosterone. Married how many times?

William
Twice. Quite a story with both.

DSO
Well let’s go with ex #1, how did you two meet?

William
We met in high school. I was a basketball player and she was a track/basketball athlete. She asked me for a ride home from practice every day and one thing led to another. The 30 year old son was born my senior year.

DSO
Started early! And how about her family life? Broken family? Abuse?

William
Her parents divorced due to her father’s infidelity. There were rumors of abuse between her father and her sister, but it never went anywhere. None between my ex and her father that I’m aware of.

DSO
And your family life?

William
My dad was an abusive alcoholic to my mom. I witnessed a lot of it. They divorced when I was six. I was not abused, but I have heard rumors that my older sister was. We’ve never discussed it. We are very close though. My mom is a saint.

DSO
Looking back on the early “courtship”, did you feel a bond with your shared family “issues”?

William
Not on a conscience level I don’t think.

DSO
So senior year, your son is born. How do you cope with that? Family help?

William
Yes. I quit basketball and started sacking groceries full time. I stayed at my ex’s house and got up with the baby on weekends. My mom and my stepdad were upset at first, but extremely helpful financially and emotionally. I got a job out of high school working in the billing office at a hospital and things went okay for several years.

DSO
College?

William
I took night courses at the local Junior college. Got my Associates degree in four years. Started at the University level about the time the first marriage fell apart.

DSO
So, “went okay for several years”, when did the wheels start to fall off?

William
We were married for five years. I came home one night after running in to my childhood sweetheart at a convenience store. I came home and told my wife about it. Shortly after that she insisted that we move. We did. As it turned it we were living caddy corner from her boyfriend’s apartment. At the time, I had no suspicion that anything was going on.

DSO
Oh, so the prompting for the move, in your mind at that time, was your surprise meeting with the childhood sweetheart?

William
Yes and no. I feel she used that as a justification in her mind, but she was already planning to set herself up with Plan B (him) in case Plan A (me) didn’t work out.

DSO
She was already in the middle of an affair with Plan B by that time… and for how long at that point (the move)?

William
I feel that it had been going on for several months before the move, but I have no proof. The fact that we moved in so close to his place was not a coincidence in my mind.

DSO
Oh… so not only did she want to move, but she had the specific place already picked out… right across from Plan B. Gotcha.

William
Yes. Again, just a theory.

DSO
Well that was ballsy of her. So when did you discover the affair?

William
After the move, she insisted we should separate. I moved in with my mom with the idea that we would work it out. She would give me no reason for the separation, just needed “space”. I went back to our place and discovered a note to him on the door. I don’t remember what it said, but the implications were clear. I started moving my stuff out that night.

DSO
Sorry to hear that… and pretty textbook. So now you have a son and a cheating wife. Was divorce pretty soon after?

William
Oh that’s where it gets crazy. We had two sons at that time. She came to me a week after I moved out and told me she was pregnant. I told her I thought it wasn’t mine. The state of Oklahoma would not allow me to divorce her while she was pregnant. They also told me that I not only had to prove the baby was not mine, but I also had to prove whose the baby was or I would be held financially responsible for it. I was not allowed to divorce her because the baby had to remain a product of the marriage in case the true father was not found.

DSO
Oh, no way. Wow. Are the laws still the same to this day in OK?

William
It took a year and a half for all the prelim crap to get done and the divorce to be granted.
I don’t know. I live in Colorado now and haven’t been married for 16 years. Doubt I ever will again.

DSO
So eventually you prove the child is not yours AND you find the father?

William
Yes. It didn’t take too much detective work on my part.

DSO
I know I’m getting into specifics here… but this whole “state forcing the non-father to pay” thing always amazes me…. What was the process for proving the paternity? Did the suspected father have to go through testing? Or did he/they just confess?

William
I had to subpoena the blood from the baby as well as the suspected father. The fact that she was able to just keep the truth to herself and hope for the best has always stuck a burr in my saddle. She was not asked to testify or anything.

DSO
She knew she had the state on her side. Okay, so… two bio kids, one that is with her lover, and you are divorced. Does kid #3 have a relationship with bio dad?

William
Yes, but he always came over to my house with his brothers. Birthday parties, sleep overs, etc. He is currently getting his PhD and will be married in May. I’m invited to the wedding. He says his father is a 50/50 bet on whether he will show up.

DSO
Well, good for you and him both. Sticking with wife #1 for now. Looking back… any red flags through the short relationship?

William
Yes. She was my first, but she was known to have slept with a lot of boys in high school. I had some friends who warned me about her, but I didn’t listen.

DSO
You’re not the first and certainly not the last with that story. If you didn’t get her pregnant while in high school, would you have married her?

William
Her best friend got pregnant about the same time she did too. I think that was part of the plan.

Definitely not. I was trying to “do the right thing”. I wish I’d have been told by an older male role model that I didn’t have to marry her. Don’t know if it would have changed my mind, but it would have made the divorce decision come a lot faster.

DSO
And how soon after was kid #2?

William
Kid 1 was born 1987. We were married in 1988. Kid 2 was born 1991. We split up in 1993. Kid 3 (not mine) was born 1994.

DSO
Was #2 another “oops”?

William
No. He was planned. Maybe just a “trying to do the right thing” thing again. I am very close to my sons though. We have a lot of fun together.

DSO
That’s great. Did you have a fair co-parenting/custody sharing plan from the beginning?

William
Yes. But I was very busy working full time and going to college so I didn’t get to see them 50/50. That as used against me when it came time to calculate support, which makes no sense. I was doing my part when I had them.

DSO
And how has ex #1’s life gone since your split?

William
She married and divorced the guy she was sleeping with. She has just been released from the county jail and into a halfway house. Her and her new boyfriend were convicted on trafficking meth through the mail.

DSO
Wow. I’d say that’s a pretty low point in life. So how long after #1 did you meet #2?

William
I was sitting in a class in 1993 thinking about the aforementioned childhood sweetheart from before. All I knew of was where she worked, Wal-Mart. So I left class, drove to Wal-Mart and sure enough, there she was working the front. She took a break and I filled her in on my situation. She showed me evidence that her husband was physically abusing her. I told her that I didn’t want to wreck her marriage, but that if they broke up, I would like to give us a try. We began an affair, and she became pregnant with my daughter. There was and is no doubt that the child was/is mine.

So I guess it was only a matter of three months or so.

DSO
Wow. You weren’t wasting any time. Ran right into the arms of another broken one. Also not uncommon.

William
Haha. Oh ya.

DSO
So, the first red flag is obviously “I was abused” and “I am willing to have an affair and get pregnant”… what other red flags did gal #2 have? How about her family life?

William
Her mother was a mean bitch. I remembered it from my childhood. Nothing had changed in the years that followed. She was a tom boy and an athlete from the time we met, age 13, all the way through high school. She actually told me after she divorce her first husband that she never wanted to marry again. I was so happy we were together that I didn’t mind. We were living together and we had a daughter. My two sons, my bonus son, and her son were with us most of the time once I finished college. We were making the blended family work. She never initiated sex though. I thought she was submissive, but as it turned out she was hiding a deeper secret. Queue suspenseful music…

DSO
So… in hindsight do you feel she grasped onto you as a way out of marriage #1?

William
Yes. I also feel that she knew she could get away with what she had planned next because of what had happened in my previous marriage. I may be paranoid, but that doesn’t make me wrong.

DSO
So, she gets pregnant… how long after did you marry?

William
She approached me two years later in 1997 and asked, “Why haven’t you asked me to marry you?” and I said, “Because you said you didn’t want to get married.” and she said, “Well, we might as well. I mean, look at all these kids in our house.” and I said, “Okay”. Shortly after, I called the kids into the living room and I proposed to her. We eloped to Colorado and were married on Christmas Eve, 1997 in Aspen.

DSO
And after marriage… how long until the big bomb drop?

William
June, 2003 she told me she was leaving me. She didn’t say why at the time. We had just made our first payment on a new house.

DSO
Wow. What was the process after that? Did you start investigating?

William
I take that back. She told me she was leaving in April and the truth about why came out in June.

I helped her move into her own apartment. I told the landlord I needed a key since I was on the lease. When she took her son to the movies one night, I went to her apartment and found a journal. In it, she confessed her love to her new girlfriend who lived two states away and she revealed her plan to move there as soon as she could.

DSO
Wow.

William
It was shortly after that she admitted she was gay. She never told me of her intention to move. She intended to abandon us.

DSO
You were helping her move into an apartment that she planned on leaving soon?

William
Yes.

DSO
And her plan was to leave you and the kid?

William
Yes. and my stepson with his father.

DSO
Oh wow. How did she meet the girlfriend?

William
Work. The GF had moved away in order to prevent wrecking our marriage, or so the story goes.

DSO
I see. Did the wife later admit she always KNEW she was gay, or this was something she discovered later in life?

William
She said that she had always known she was gay. She said no man was ever going to touch her again and that her whole life had been a lie. She was celebrated for now “living her truth”. The fact that she had discovered it at the expense of so many lives was swept under the rug.

Maybe not discovered it, but verified it. Found the courage to admit it to herself. However you look at it.

DSO
And she has remained in the new lifestyle since then?

William
Yes. She has a GF now that she met when she was 45 and the GF was 17. Also something for which she has never been held accountable.

DSO
WOW. Well, this is usually the case in these relationship dramas. The damsels in distress will get the adulation… You’ll just go crazy trying to understand it.
So, how soon after the bomb drop did you divorce?

William
It took four and a half years. When I would go to court, the judge would give her additional time to appear even though she had left the state. Once I got Oklahoma DHS to start garnishing her paycheck for child support did she finally show up and the divorce was granted. She also got custody arrangements changed and once she paid her back child support, I had to start paying her. I raised my daughter for five years without help from her and then she came in and got what she wanted.

She moved back to Oklahoma and started playing “supermom”

DSO
Wow. That seems to be the them for this story: “Wow” She moved back to OK… and the kids went to live with her?

William
Haha. I’m 16 years out and I still can’t believe it.

By the time she came back, my daughter was 13. She wanted to know her mom and asked if it was okay if she lived with her. I helped my daughter move. There’s nothing I wouldn’t do for her. it is a fact that if not for her, I wouldn’t be alive. We are very close today. So part of what the gay ex got was what I allowed her to have for the sake of my daughter.

DSO
And she stayed with her for all of her teens?

William
Yes. But again, I would meet her for breakfast before school and I would have her and her friends over when she wanted. My gay ex knew I would do anything for my daughter too, which of course she used to her advantage.

DSO
And her relationship with your daughter today?

William
They are good. One year after I left OK for CO, my daughter followed me though. All of my biological children have left OK and moved closer to me, much to their mothers’ dismay I’m sure.

My daughter and her mother visit occasionally. I have no contact with her mother. We haven’t spoken in years.

DSO
So after the second divorce… have you had any relationships? Dating?

William
My first relationship after the gay ex (both wives were my first and second) I had an affair with the minister’s wife. She divorced her husband to marry me, but I told her I wasn’t going to marry again. That ended our relationship poorly. Had a GF for about three months in 2007 or so. She broke up with me because I told her I didn’t plan on marrying again. I don’t date at all now. I work hard and do my own thing.

DSO
There does appear to be a pattern here… not to play psychologist… and I don’t mean to overstep my bounds.
1. Being attracted to broken women
2. Ignoring red flags and jumping into serious relationships with broken women.
3. Pursuing relationships with women who are already attached to others.
Sounds like you nipped #2 in the bud and stopped the marriage train.

William
If I had to self-psychoanalyze, I’d say that I have a bit of a hero complex after seeing my mom take some hellacious beatings and not being big enough to stop it. I did not grow up to be an abuser. But instead I grew up allowing myself to be used. I didn’t stand up for myself. Now I do. I am fine on my own. I’d love to meet someone who would love me, but it is not a priority.

DSO
Did you have a close relationship with your mom? Almost a surrogate spouse to her?

William
Yes. She is a retired nurse and an absolute hero.

I’m about out of time. I wanted to plug the Straight Spouse Network. It is a support group among those who may have married homosexuals either knowingly or unknowingly. They are at www.Straightspouse.org. They have been very healing for me over the last couple of years.

DSO
Thank you for sharing your story!

William
You’re Welcome. Keep up the good work.

Real Love

What is “REAL” love?

Real love is the man who has been with his wife for 30+ years and helps bathe and feed her while she battles life-threatening cancer. He drives her back and forth to her chemo sessions and cleans the vomit in the car while telling her she’s beautiful and he wouldn’t want to be anywhere else in the world.

Real love is the elderly wife who feeds, hugs, kisses and sings songs to her husband of 50 years as his brain is eaten away by dementia. He doesn’t have a clue who she is, but she doesn’t care one bit.

Real love is the wife who finds out her husband lost his job and tells him that she is so excited for his future and will do all she can to help him land the next big gig.

Real loves is tough. Real love is strong.

Real love is a choice.

“Falling in love” is NOT real love. That is lust. That is a shot of dopamine hitting your brain like a bullet. That is nature saying, “You must procreate with this human!” It’s brain cocaine. It’s fleeting and very easily fades with time.

The irony is that all good romantic relationships should start with the brain cocaine dopamine hit. They should start with, “Whoa… who is that girl over there??” There should be butterflies and anxiety. If the feelings are reciprocated, this should eventually result in lots of awesome nights together in bed with a sexual freedom only seen with truly compatible people.

Real love presents itself when those insane lustful feelings inevitably start to fade. Real love steps up when life beats you upside the head and makes you want to crawl in bed forever. Real love keeps your head above water.

After you live together for several years, what was once a cute little quirk becomes an irritating habit that makes you want to claw your eyes out. The kids make you want to run out to the woods and scream. Your life at home is just so fucking draining.

That’s when it’s decision time:

“Is this person and our relationship worth the inevitable years of hard work ahead of us? Does it get better?”

Make no mistake, real love IS hard work.  To remain committed and loving to a partner requires a whole series of steps that, frankly, most of us just aren’t cut out to do.

Most of us shouldn’t be in long-term relationships. It’s not for everyone.

Not only is real love not for everyone, it doesn’t happen very often. Contrary to what Hollywood may tell you, REAL LOVE is EXTREEEEEEEMMEEEELLLY rare. Finding two people who enjoy the intense lustful fun of the honeymoon stage AND are able to string together several decades of strong dedication and love… well, that’s like winning the lottery.

I wouldn’t bet on it happening in your lifetime. Sorry if that stings, but it’s the truth.

You don’t just fall into real love. You choose it. You work for it. You EARN it. It’s very tough. Most don’t have the stomach for it. It takes two people deciding to work very hard and work together on a common goal: Stay together and help each other go through life as happy and content as possible.

Falling in love is easy. You literally cannot help it when your brain and penis say, “Whoa… that chick is amazing. I don’t know if I’ve seen anyone hotter. I would totally do her. OMG she just smiled at me.” The woman can’t help it when her brain and hoohah say, “Whoa… that guy is really cute, rich and seems to really like me. I wonder what it would be like to be his wife. Hmmmmm….”

Those thoughts and feelings happen in a millisecond. Nature doing what it’s supposed to do. The falling in love part happens when you take those feelings and combine them with opportunity and willingness to follow-through to the next step.

It doesn’t take much time at all, and almost zero effort to cross that line.

Already in a relationship and experiencing these thoughts about others? Real love means recognizing these perfectly natural feelings of approaching the line, stopping, and turning in the other direction.

Real love means taking those lustful feelings home to your spouse and showing them your sexual side you reserve just for them. Physical intimacy is absolutely crucial for real love. Without it you are buddies.

Real love also means recognizing the extreme importance of those early “in love” feelings and doing all you can to keep them going throughout your relationship. You NEED to keep that fire going. Real love means taking care of yourself and doing all the “shallow” work of looking nice so that your spouse will be happy to show you off. Real love knows you have to sprinkle in lust and anxiety here and there to keep the sexy love engine going. Real love means being true to yourself and your sexuality and being open with your partner about your needs.

Real love means never getting comfortable. All of this could go away in a heartbeat… as many of us have learned.

It’s hard. Most people can’t do the work.

Most people see the end goal of “real love” and think it begins and ends when you say “I DO”. Nope. Not by a long shot. That’s when the real fun begins. That’s when you test the strength of your relationship.

Want kids? That’s the biggest test of all. You’ve just put your marriage on HARD mode. The lure of throwing away all the silly shallow sexy stuff and propping up your Provider role is stronger than ever. That’s a disaster waiting to happen, as those in dead bedrooms can tell you.

Getting older? You’re both not as young and virile as you used to be. She’s not getting catcalls anymore and young gals run away when you try to be friendly with them. As far as the rest of the “sexual marketplace” is concerned, your values just went down the toilet. Do you just say “fuck it” and plop yourself in the recliner for the next 20 years, or do you value your relationship and put in the hard work of trying to be the sexiest damn spouse possible?

Are you worth the effort? Is SHE worth it? Is your relationship worth it?

Times they are a changin’

If the inevitable aging and introduction of kids aren’t enough… modern society has kicked things up a notch for you. It’s now tougher than ever to maintain and nurture REAL love.

Thanks to social media and that stupid supercomputer phone in your pocket, temptation is just one tap or swipe away. Your wife knows this truth better than anyone.

Men are desperate. Men will bang a knothole in a tree if they have to. They see a tired mom who was worn down by life, and all it takes is “Hey there, sexy. Haven’t seen you in YEARS!” on the Facebook messenger and your wife’s dormant sexual engine gets started right back up.

Nothing wears down the boundaries of a woman like a dull and predictable marriage to a dull and predictable husband. What is comfortable real love to the boring husband is life-questioning unfulfillment to his wife.

Yes, the man that everyone says is a loser is able to pull your beloved wife away from the foundation of real love that have you built together all these years.

That is the delicate nature of real love. It is no match for falling “in love”. The drug is way too powerful. All it takes is one side to walk away, and it’s all over. Years, if not decades of marital equity wiped out with one steamy sexting session with that guy from the bar.

It takes two to tango.

Most guys I work with had the end goal of “Real Love” in mind when they married. They wanted nothing more than to be the comfortable loving grandparents sitting on the porch watching their grandkids play in the front yard. Then they get blindsided when they find out their spouse opted out of the agreement and instead pursued the instant gratification of “falling in love” with an affair partner.

Why would she DO that?!

What was once viewed as so strong and comfortable is now a piece of trash that can be easily tossed into the waste bin.

Real love… it ain’t for everybody.

You picked somebody who got a whiff of excitement and decided to pursue the life of momentary excitement over the inevitable years of hard work. They let nature take over and rode the “falling in love” wave right outta your life.  It may have taken years, but they finally showed you what they are made of, and it’s not good.

They’re not cut out for real love. Lesson learned.

You’re not the first to go down this road, and you most certainly won’t be the last.

I cringe every time I see a poor guy emotionally vomiting on Facebook after he’s been dumped. If he’s lucky enough to get responses (nobody gives a shit), SOMEBODY will inevitably say “You will find true love again! Trust me!”

Sigh.

Immediately, people are saying to our poor sap, “You know what the cure for being dumped is? Falling in love with another woman and trying again!” This is the absolute last thing these men need to hear.

Most of my readers have some type of childhood baggage that has programmed them to look for REAL love above all else in life. They sacrifice their dignity, their masculinity, and their sanity in order to achieve the prize that they feel is their god-given right.

Even if that means putting up with a cheating spouse and groveling at her feet when she has such obvious disdain for him, he will hang on for dear life. She’s busy kicking away at his ribs repeatedly saying, “I. DON’T. LOVE. YOU.” He’s coughing up blood while screaming, “BUT… WE HAVE REAL LOVE!”

When finally kicked to the curb for good, these men try to immediately stop the bleeding with another woman.

He wants so badly to win the lottery. He keeps buying scratch-offs and tickets for the MegaBucks/Powerball weekly drawing. instead, he should spend that money on a therapist and a gym membership.

As I’ve said many times… it’s not until you have harmony and balance within yourself that you have an opportunity to find real love. Until then, you just find women to fill a hole. Women aren’t spackle. They’re human beings. They’re flawed. The more you NEED them to fix what ails you, the more FLAWED your partner is likely to be. The woman who you meet and decide to move in with 3 months after meeting her is more likely to have the kind of baggage that will bring you and everything you love down the toilet.

You don’t NEED real love to function. You don’t NEED it to thrive. You don’t NEED it to be a man.

The more you don’t NEED something, the more likely you are to find it.

Such is life.

Dissecting Dead Bedrooms

My own personal experience and that of thousands of other men who have been married and/or dated will tell you the same thing:

If your woman is crazy about you, you will know it. She will leave zero doubt. She will shower you with praise. She will have her hands all over you. She will buy you gifts. She will feel very jealous at times. She will submit to you, sexually. She will be very adventuresome in bed. She will open herself to you mentally and physically.  She will feel completely comfortable and safe with you.

So, for all of you guys in long-term relationships or marriages that don’t see any of the above… well, bad news my man.

She just isn’t that into you. 

Why is that? Why are there communities of men online talking about their “dead bedrooms“? As with most problems in relationships, it’s your fault, dude. Yep. You.

No, this isn’t some post saying “Women good. Men bad!” This is real life. YOU are the driver of both yourself AND your relationship. You say what goes for both. It’s called being a leader. You want your woman to be crazy about you again? Then do something about it. No amount of begging, pick-me dancing, whining, flowers, house-cleaning, diaper-changing or other horse shit will get her in bed with you. She needs to WANT YOU again. She WANTS to want you again.

But, DSO! My wife is worked to death! She’s tired! The kids wear her butt out! At the end of the day she just wants to lay down and watch some TV or read a good book. I totally get that! I feel that way too, a lot of the time!

This is 100% absolutely perfectly understandable. Life is tough. It wears on you. Work. Kids. Bills. Stress stress stress. It takes a certain mindset to get a woman in the mood for intimacy… And those are some pretty big obstacles that get in the way. But, here’s the thing:

The energy is in there. Trust me. It just needs to get pulled out.

Many husbands/boyfriends out there are noticing or have learned two things about their completely exhausted, stressed-out female partners:

  1. These women sure are obsessed with porn. Yeah, those “romance” novels she reads? The photo shoot with that hunky pop star her friend posted about on Facebook and your wife liked and commented on? That’s porn. Woman porn. Ever read Fifty Shades of Grey?  Synopsis: Dominate, sociopath rich man picks out shy, homely woman for crazy bondage sex. Women all over the globe at that up. They made a movie of it. Women went to the cinema in DROVES to watch it. Gajillions of dollars were spent.
  2. She’s talking about other men. At work. At the gym. At the playground. At the soccer field. She’ll talk about their butts. Their pecs. Their tight stomachs. She’ll talk to her friends about them. She’ll talk about celebrities on TV. Athletes. Her favorite country singer in tight pants. Maybe even in front of you. Probably in front of you. Wow, for an exhausted mom… she sure does have her eyes constantly open and taking in all that hot sex on display, doesn’t she? Interesting. Yes, it’s mostly harmless and fun and EVERY mom does it, right?!

SIMPLE RULE: If your woman is crazy in love with you and turned on by you, she has no need openly partake in poorly-written woman porn or sharing pictures of some soccer dude’s abs and butt on Facebook. She looks at those as silly and brags about YOU instead. Oh, and she’ll want to bang you. You won’t need to Google things like “Wife won’t have sex with me“. Crazy, I know.

Alright, so maybe you’re coming to terms with the fact that your wife isn’t so crazy about you anymore. So what?! Maybe she never was. What’s the worst that could happen, right? You already have kids, a house, jobs, etc. Life is already set in stone. This is just how marriage IS, right!? Maybe you’ve convinced yourself that sex isn’t THAT important to your well being as a man.

Stop kidding yourself. Is that why you find yourself looking at porn on a daily basis? So much so that double-anal-double-vaginal fisting bukake amputee porn is the only thing that gets you mildly erect. You can’t walk outside of the house without looking at and drooling over every female of legal age. Your fantasy world exceeds your reality in every way imaginable. But hey… every other married guy is the same, right?

Wrong. It doesn’t have to be that way. A robust and healthy sex life is NOT out of the question for married people. Not at all. Ironically it’s usually the WIFE who is the first to come to this realization. That’s right, your woman isn’t happy about the lack of sizzle in your marriage, either.

She wants more. She wants better.

She wants to be picked up, thrown on the bed, man-handled and turned into a sex slave. She wants to drive out to the middle of nowhere at 2:00am, be dragged out and thrown on the hood of the car by a man who rips her panties off in a lustful rage. She wants a guy who is not afraid to say what he wants in bed in the most direct way. She absolutely LOVES dirty talk.

SHE JUST DOESN’T WANT TO DO ALL OF THOSE THINGS WITH YOU.

She’s just not that into you, dude. Sorry. She may not have ever been.

Many of us dense men don’t come to this realization until we catch our wives in an affair. Here’s a very common phrase out of the mouth of a betrayed man who endured a dead bedroom for years:

“She did THAT with HIM?!?! She never would do THAT with ME! What the hell!?” 

Yep, that super exhausted partner of yours managed to dig deep down inside and find enough sexual energy to power all of Eastern Europe.

“Wonderful. Now what?!”

So, you’re like a lot of guys and you’re nodding your head right now. This “dead bedroom” phenomenon sounds way too familiar and way too depressing. What to do?! Well, a common refrain is “couples counseling!” Get in an office with a professional and freely communicate. Get things out in the open. Yeah, it makes sense on the surface. Communication is a huge thing in any personal relationship. But, ask yourself this:

Will openly talking and pussy-footing around the main issue (her lack of attraction towards you) REALLY get her libido going? Will that ignite her dormant fire?

This has never been said, ever:

“Oh my gosh, honey! You know what? Now that I hear you tell me bluntly that you need more intimacy… I am suddenly all turned on!! WOW I had no idea sex was so important to you! NOW I AM ALL KINDS OF HORNY!! Let’s get home and do this!!”

It’s a fantasy that has never panned out.

FACT: You can’t negotiate attraction. It’s there, or it isn’t. No amount of talking it out will pull it out of her.

MEN: ARE YOU IN A SEXLESS MARRIAGE?

YOU'RE NOT ALONE

THERE ARE A LOT OF MEN OUT THERE NOT HAPPY WITH THEIR SEX LIVES.

What is going on? Is the tried-and-true stereotype of the undersexed husband and the cold, bossy wife inevitable? Are monogamous relationships doomed to such a pitiful state? Is that just the way marriage is?

I DON'T THINK SO.

To make a long story short, several years ago I was married for 15 years, discovered infidelity, quickly divorced and found myself newly single and sharing custody of three little kids. I then started a website at www.dadstartingover.com. After chatting with many men in my situation , I slowly started to notice patterns of behavior. Most men experienced long “Dead Bedroom” periods in their relationship prior to their divorce. Many of these men later discovered infidelity.

I wrote about my thoughts on Dead Bedrooms on my website and it is by far the most popular topic to date. It has outranked all other topics combined. Then I started a podcast and recorded a few episodes. The Dead Bedrooms episode was the most downloaded.

Simply put, nobody seems to know what to do to keep the fire going in their longterm relationship. Most of us experience a “honeymoon phase” of intimacy, and then watch it quickly fade as the stress of life and the boredom of familiarity settle in.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

I don’t claim to have all the answers for a happy married sex life. What I do know is that my own experience and the experience of hundreds of other men have helped to create a prescription for what I feel is the only true, honest, no bullshit way to get your wife jumping your bones again.

I have finally put that prescription down on paper, and I call it The Dead Bedroom Fix.

Porn

Eugene the porn addict

Meet Eugene.

Eugene will be the first to tell you that he doesn’t have much luck with the ladies. In fact, for all intents and purposes, he is worthless in the mating game. For years he has watched everyone else out there being happy and getting laid. He spends month after month, year after year, alone. No companionship. No intimacy.

His very human needs are not being met.

He’s not dumb. He sees what it takes to get women attracted to him, but he feels it’s just not worth the effort. He just wasn’t made to be a Lover. He’s resigned himself to his lower status.

But, he still has needs.

To relieve the tension, he has resorted to watching his hotter, more attractive friends have sex while he masturbates. That’s right… Couples get naked and have crazy sex while he sits in the corner, hunched over, masturbating like a monkey. They never acknowledge his presence, let alone ask him to join in. He’s basically invisible. He’s cool with that. Everyone agrees on this arrangement beforehand.

He finishes. Doesn’t take long. He leaves. He may leave a little money on the way out the door. Usually not.

He does this daily. Every single day he finds somebody to watch have sex. Sometimes it’s the same couple. Sometimes he likes to mix it up, maybe throw in a dwarf, two or more women together, or maybe some extreme bondage. His tastes seem to get more extreme as time goes on. There’s never a shortage of people willing to help him out.

After doing this for years, this has become his sole means of reaching orgasm. He can’t do it any other way.

This, my friends, is porn.

When viewing porn, you are admitting your lower sexual status. You are throwing your hands up in resignation and saying, “Ok, can I just sit here and pleasure myself while you way more attractive people do all the hard work? I won’t bother you. “ It’s like sexual welfare.

Porn is like that two-way mirror that they use in police interrogation rooms. You’re on one side jerking off while the hot people are on the other side having the time of their lives. They don’t see you, but they know you’re there. They’ll even angle their bodies towards you to give you a better view. Then they’ll all laugh at you when you leave the building. “He’ll be back, they say. “He always comes back. Pathetic.”

You’re addicted.

You can also think of porn as a drug. Like alcohol, some of us can have a little taste one night and forget about it for weeks or months at a time. It’s just a social lubricant and makes things relaxing and fun. For some of us, we have a drink not just to unwind or hang out with friends, but to self-medicate. We have anxiety issues or insecurities that alcohol does a very good job of mending (temporarily).

Booze saves you the hard work of dealing with your deep-seated issues like a grownup. Why go through all the trouble of real introspection and therapy when you can have a few beers on a nightly basis? Everybody does it, right?

The problem with booze is that it’s ok in small doses, but can quickly lead to a HUGE number of problems if taken to the next level. Unfortunately, the “next level” is hard to define. It varies greatly from person to person. Everyone with a drinking problem will tell you how it just “snuck up” on them and one day they found they couldn’t function normally without it.

Porn is the exact same way.

With porn, you’re avoiding dealing with the main issue that is staring you directly in the face:

You’re not getting laid.

More specifically,  you’re not doing things necessary to GET laid. Instead, you’re just doing things that cause you to have an orgasm.

There’s a huge difference between having a real intimate relationship with another human being (even if maybe just for one night) and being hunched over in front of your glowing laptop. Actual sex is the natural result of a fun and drawn-out dating game of socializing with other people. You eventually allow enough trust and attraction to build up so that you can get naked with another human and rub your dirty bits together.

What’s not natural is feeling that itch for intimacy, firing up your computer, and reaching orgasm within minutes. Your brain and body weren’t setup for such an arrangement. Much like eating Cheetohs… or drinking way too much vodka.

Who is the typical porn consumer?

As I see it, there are two kinds of regular porn users:

1. I can’t get sex. I need relief. Porn is a quick way to get what I need. I have grown accustomed to it. It’s the same as having my morning cup of coffee. I’m legitimately addicted to porn.

2. I am married or have a girlfriend. I can get sex if I tried… But it’s just easier to rub one out instead of going through all the trouble of being intimate with my partner. Yes, I use porn regularly. Maybe even every day. But… I don’t have a problem. I have sex with my wife, after all. Sometimes.

#2 is becoming more and more common. These guys are like alcoholics in denial. They have a giant bottle of vodka hidden in their office and don’t think it’s a big deal.  Hey, everybody drinks, right? No, they don’t tell their loved ones about it. Yes, they feel some shame about it… But, again,  it’s no big deal, right?

Ask their partner if it’s a big deal.

There’s a growing Dead Bedroom community of sex-hungry wives and girlfriends online crying about their men repeatedly turning them down for sex. What’s most disturbing to them is that their man has a huge internet porn habit. The wife is told that he is just so tired from work and can’t think about sex. She then goes to his internet browser history and sees link after link of gangbang porn he watched just ten minutes ago. She is crushed.

The quick drug of streaming porn gave him the relief he desired, and now he no longer feels the need for the very real flesh and bone of the woman he loves. He has short-circuited his brain. His natural inclination is to find women and try to have sex with them. Thanks to modern technology and the free market system, he has found a MUCH easier way to achieve the same end result. He’s able to skip steps A – Y and jump right to Z.

This is not a good thing.

The gap between the guys at the top of the Dude Pyramid (who get all the girls) and those at the bottom is widening rapidly. There’s a myriad of reasons why. Most men are out of shape, tired, uninteresting, and lack the oomph they need to crawl up the ladder and better themselves. Porn is a huge component of why this is happening.

You watch porn all the time? Congrats. You’re Eugene.  The porn producers are preying upon your human nature. They have engineered their product in a way that keeps you coming back again and again… while they shove their dick-growing pill advertisements in your face.

They know you’re insecure and not getting any. They know precisely what buttons to push to get you coming back every day and possibly forking over a few bucks in the process.

You’re in the sub-basement level of the Dude Pyramid.You’re down there with the degenerates, weirdos and social misfits that all of society says “Ew, go away” to.

Cut this shit out of your life.

Don’t be another fucking Eugene. Be a man. Go get laid.

“My Wife Wants An Open Marriage”

More and more I’m seeing the topic of “Open Marriages” come up from men online. Unlike what many people may think, it’s not the men making the case for sleeping with other women, but rather husbands caught off guard by what they thought was a seemingly happy wife pushing them to “allow” her to have sex with other men. “Hey,” the wife explains, “You can have sex with other women now, too!”

The man is confused, scared, angry… and yet… intrigued.

But we’re getting ahead of ourselves. Let’s dive into the nitty gritty of this alternative lifestyle choice and why it is now so much out in the open and what it means for YOU.

The concept of an “open” marriage is not a new one. Two people being together in marriage but open to sex with others has been around (but kpt hush-hush) since… well… forever. It wasn’t until the 1972 book Open Marriage: A New Life Style for Couples came out that a how-to guide for these adventuresome couples was created and the concept further thrusted into popular culture. This was in the midst of a huge sexual revolution in America… the 60’s and 70’s. The baby boomers were challenging, well… everything. If it was “normal” it was “a drag”. Is there an institution that is more “normal” than good old-fashioned marriage?

Let’s not confuse people in open marriages with swingers. Unlike swingers, open marriage couples have fun without the other partner. Swingers go to parties together and possibly have sex with others in front of their partner. People in an open marriage go out and have dates and casual sex without the presence of the marriage partner.

What do the two have in common? Both are very strict about one rule: “We are married. We are partners. We are primarily with each other. Doing things with others is just sex. It’s just fun. That’s it. Our communication is always open and we do everything to avoid the complications of becoming attached to others outside of our marriage.”

As with most things in life, it ain’t that easy. This is especially true when sex is involved.

With the 1980’s came the Reagan era and AIDS. The party was over. Studio 54 emptied out, the bathhouses closed up shop and the sexually adventurous all got scared and went home. People they loved were dying and relationships were falling apart left and right. Hey… maybe boring monogamous marriage is ok after all? Seems to be a lot less trouble, at least.

The authors of Open Marriage: A New Life Style for Couples, reassessed things and came out with the follow-up book called The Marriage Premise. They conducted follow-up interviews with couples they spotlighted in their first book… and it wasn’t pretty. Most of the couples were not honest with each other about their extramarital affairs (so much for open communication and not getting feelings involved), and as a consequence, most of the marriages did not survive. The authors were upset that so many people took the concept of “open marriage” and defined it as “go out and have sex with whoever, there are no consequences”. They saw the concept more as “be individuals that have experiences outside of the marriage… oh, and that might mean sex with others, too.” Understandably, everyone saw “SEX WITH OTHERS” and went hog wild.

Wow. Who saw that coming?

Fast forward to today, and the social climate has changed dramatically since the 70’s. Women are more powerful than ever. They are the majority of our university students, they occupy high levels in the corporate world and they have stay-at-home husbands that take care of their kids.

With all these changes comes dramatic shifts in our relationship dynamics.

Many men point at times like the 1950’s as the Shangri la of marriage past. The man works and the wife stays home and cares for the kids. Divorce rates were much lower. Everything just clicked into place. What they fail to mention is that women weren’t necessarily happy with the situation, but the social pressure and lack of financial options may have left them trapped in unfulfilling marriages. She could divorce and be a broke social pariah… or stick it out and raise a family and try to enjoy life.

Both the social and the economic barriers to divorce have been broken down. Women now file for 70% of all divorces… even higher if she is college-educated.

Today we have a pervasive theme that has both good and bad repercussions. That theme is a deadly combo of “you go girl” and “you deserve it all”. When society tells you that your nagging feelings of doubt and unfulfillment are not only legitimate but can and SHOULD also be acted upon… well, that can be a recipe for disaster for the unsuspecting husband.

To summarize: We’re seeing a rise in women telling their husbands: “I would like to go out and test the waters to see what else is out there… but I don’t want to blow up this comfortable marriage we have going on here. At least, not until I know I have a for sure thing lined up. Cool?” In the past, this would result in a one-way ticket to DivorceTown, USA and a lifetime of social shame and financial struggle.

Today, it’s an empowering statement and realization of her own sexuality.

I did a search for “Open Marriage” and saw article after article that came up with the same basic conclusion:

“You know… maybe an open marriage isn’t such a bad idea.”

Is the cultural zeitgeist shifting? Is society overall more open and accepting of relationships that fall outside of the monogamous template we’ve known all these generations?

No. Actually, if the General Social Survey is to be believed, people today are more intolerant of sexual relationships outside of marriage than they were back in the free and sexy 70’s.

These articles weren’t based on research of hundreds of couple interviews with thousands of data points to digest. No, they stopped at, “She felt trapped, she wanted something more, she heard about open marriage and wanted to try it… and that’s ok.”  To say that Sally’s thoughts and feeling MAY NOT be 100% A-OK and could actually be destructive to the relationship would go against the much larger and more inclusive/progressive theme of “Anything goes… no judging here… be free.” In other words, telling Sally “Well, that’s a stupid thing to ask. Perhaps you’re just not cut out for marriage.” results in being labeled an oppressive misogynist.

Maybe we’re jumping the gun here and assuming the worst. These are genuine feelings that Sally and thousands of other women like her are experiencing on a regular basis. Maybe the strict confines of a traditional marriage are too much to bear. Hey, men always want to sleep around, right? They like porn and strip clubs and other outlets for their sexuality. That’s the equivalent of cheating in many women’s eyes. Maybe it’s time women tried out a more sexually free lifestyle. Life is short. Why be miserable?

Maybe your wife has genuine sexual desire that she feels can’t be confined to your one-on-one relationship. Maybe THAT’s why your sex life is so dull. Maybe she just feels trapped. Maybe she absolutely still loves you and her sleeping around will go on for years and years and you two will continue to grow closer and closer emotionally and live happily ever after.

It’s possible, sure.

I’ve never seen it play out like that.

In fact, based on what I have seen again and again, I feel confident enough to say:

A wife asking for an open marriage signals the beginning of the end of the marriage. She’s breaking up with you.

The wife is so confident in her ability to dictate the rules of the relationship (she lost respect for you long ago), that she tells you she wants to have sex with other men but still keep you around for the other non-sexual resources she needs.

She is bluntly telling you, You are a great Provider, but I need more Lover. Don’t go anywhere. Not yet, anyway. I need you for all that non-Lover stuff right now.”

I can’t think of anything more hurtful to a man, to be honest. Your wife is, in essence, leaving the romantic relationship… and telling you to put your feelings on hold right now while she figures things out.

Why is she doing this?

More than likely, this means that another relationship candidate has already been lined up. She would normally just have an affair behind your back… but that can get messy. This absolves her of any guilt or shame. It also keeps the logistics of her life in order until she can figure things out.

The wife is not stupid. She knows that asking “Can I sleep around?” will probably be met with “Are you out of your god damned mind?” So, she says what all women in this position say:

“You know, you can have sex with other women, too!”

Before she can finish the sentence, the dumb husband is already fantasizing about that one girl at the gym, that one cashier at the grocery store and that chick that smiled at him that one time at his kid’s basketball game.

Men can be so delusional.

He envisions a buffet of hot women at his disposal. A veritable conga line of hoohah ready for him to sample whenever he likes. This will be the sex life he has always fantasized about! It’ll be just like porn!

But, wait… that means his wife has sex with other men. That’s not good. Oh well… he can deal with that jealousy when it comes. The buffet awaits. This will be amazing.

TRUTH: THE FANTASY RARELY, IF EVER, PANS OUT FOR THE MAN.

You and your wife are living in two completely different worlds. Even if you look amazing, you’re charming, you talk a great game and have lots of cash to use on your dates… your success in dating will pale in comparison to your wife’s.

She’s going to get laid. A lot. You will not. It’s just that simple.

If you were the type of guy that could go out and get laid so easily, your wife probably wouldn’t be asking for an open marriage.

Fast forward to six months after you agree to the new arrangement, and you have a grand total of one woman that you had a series of dates with and one awful night of sex. It probably turned you off from the whole idea completely, but you don’t dare tell the wife. You innately know that your lack of success in dating will paint you as a lower status than her. That will be extremely unattractive.

Your wife, on the other hand, had many steamy nights of sex with the one guy she had already begun a relationship with. That didn’t work out, so she cried in the arms of another guy she kinda knew… a friend of a friend… and that resulted in a two-month affair that also fizzled out. While she was out with her girlfriends drinking her sorrows away, she met two more men she exchanged numbers with and ended up having sex with them both over the next two weeks.

You get the idea. Not the same ballgame. Combine a world of desperately horny men and a wife with zero boundaries and her new “I get to have sex guilt-free” card, and you are in for a world of trouble.

Please keep in mind one important thing: What your wife is doing is NOT just enjoying casual sex with zero interest in commitment. She is most likely looking for a replacement partner. Something or somebody pushed her buttons and her “must procure new mate” programming is off and running. She is back on the market and she won’t stop until she gets the guy that will check all the boxes. That’s when you’ll get the crying wife at home apologizing and telling you that she didn’t MEAN to fall in love with this guy, but it just happened.

There MAY be women out there who can casually date and have sex outside of the marriage and be completely unfazed and return home to husband with zero attachment to the other man. I have never seen nor have I ever heard about this scenario playing out successfuly. I just don’t feel that the majority of women are wired for such an arrangement.

Why Did She “Affair Down”?

Many times, when a guy tells me about his wife’s affair partner, he will start rattling off reasons why the loser is the absolute opposite of what you would expect from a “typical” affair partner:

1. He has a horrible job.
2. Everyone thinks he’s a loser.
3. He lives with his parents.
4. He’s not that great looking.
5. He has a criminal record.

Most of the betrayed husband’s observations can be summarized as, “He’ll never be a good provider for her. He’s a terrible prospect for a serious long-term relationship.” This goes against the common belief that a woman is always looking to “upgrade” to a better man if given the chance (a phenomenon known as Hypergamy). This guy doesn’t seem to be an upgrade in any sense of the word.

That’s precisely the first thing that draws her to him. He’s not the Provider. He’s not a long-term relationship candidate. He’s not a dad. He’s not her husband.

He’s her Lover.

Any “player” type of guy with no sense of morals will tell you one universal truth:

The easiest women to “pick up” are married women.

Why? The player doesn’t have to compete with thousands of other guys… just one.

Husband is caring, kinda boring, sweet, and a great father? Then just be dangerous, kind of a jerk, adventurous, and let her know in no uncertain terms that you think kids suck.

If he catches the right wife at the right time, the “must mate with this man” buttons are pushed in a big way. Surprisingly easy, actually.

Next thing you know she’s getting a tattoo, researching cosmetic surgery, starts making more disrespectful comments towards the husband and spends less time with the kids.

So, exactly what is going on here? What happened is that the Loser Lover stumbled upon a woman that was perfectly ripe and ready for plucking from the fidelity tree. For a variety of reasons, her boundaries were broken down to the point where she was willing to be intimate with a man whose sole criteria was, “Not my husband. Nothing like my husband. Just help me get away from all this awfulness in my life. Make me feel alive again.”

More to the point, the Loser Lover is not doing things to appease her. He doesn’t live FOR her. He’s not part of THAT world. Not even a little bit. He’s independent. He’s mysterious. He brings about some anxiety… but in a good way. In a thrilling way. In a dangerous way.

“So, wait a minute…” every exhausted husband says. “For years now, she’s been pleading with me to do all these things for her and the kids. Be more thoughtful. Be nicer. Be more helpful. Be a better dad. I bend over backward to accommodate her and to keep her complaining to a minimum… and the next thing she does is run off and have an affair with the COMPLETE OPPOSITE of all of that AND blow up our family in the process?! Seriously?!”

Yep.

Remember, this is emotion we’re talking about. Human nature. Don’t fight it. Don’t try to rationalize it. You can’t win.

Your woman gave you subversive signals and tests throughout your relationship. These came in the form of complaints, hissy fits and appeals for you to connect with her emotionally and to validate her feelings. There were also tests to measure your fortitude under pressure.

You probably failed these tests. Repeatedly.

On top of that, your woman probably has a great deal of personal baggage. Daddy issues. Substance abuse, maybe. Probably issues with overeating and/or spending money. She’s always looking for the next dopamine hit or something to silence her negative anxiety for just a brief moment. She’s never truly dealt with her lingering childhood issues and so the baggage builds and builds, and her self-damaging behaviors begin to bubble up, and she eventually crosses the line in the worst way.

Unbeknownst to the perfectly normal and not-a-total-loser husband, he is at the epicenter of the “I’ve just about had enough of all this all this B.S.” emotional storm that is in his wife’s head. Justified or not, he represents all that is wrong. He is why she has “lost herself”. He is the cause of having to continuously give and give and not feel appreciated. He is why she no longer feels like an attractive woman but instead like a doting mom and a fat nagging wife.

Her husband just doesn’t GET her and apparently never will.

She is trapped. This is not how this “married life” was supposed to be.

Then along comes relief. This is something different. No, it’s not an awesome surprise or gift from the husband. There’s way too much resentment built up and no way for poor hubby to overcome it. Even if husband gave her an all-inclusive trip to Tahiti with round-the-clock massages and all the cocktails she can handle, she would still roll her eyes every five minutes and complain that the masseuse is too rough, the drinks are too weak, the sun is too hot, and she feels fat in her swimsuit.

Instead, relief comes in the form of the bartender with a horrible prison tattoo on his neck. He says, “I don’t remember seeing your sexy self in here before” while she was out having cosmos with her girlfriends.

That’s all it takes.

Her “have affair” button was right on the cusp of getting pushed all the way down (and had been for quite a while), and Dumbface McLoserstein comes along and slams it down with a gusto.

“HIM?!” everyone asks. Well, yeah. Who else would it be?

You thought she was going to be able to snag some billionaire fitness model with a strong jawline and a 140 IQ? No, he’s at the top of the dude pyramid. To him, your wife isn’t even a blip on the “woman I would take to bed” radar. Sorry if that’s insulting, but you’ve been wearing the rose-colored marriage goggles for a while. You’re not living in reality.

What about another guy like you with a good job, a good heart, a good reputation and decent looks? What, you mean a “normal” guy? No. Most normal guys can smell crazy and “ready to blow up and shove a fork in my eye if I say the wrong thing to her” a mile away. Your wife has a ton of baggage and is ready to pop. We ALL see it. You’ve been blind to it for a while, but the rest of us haven’t.

Finally, here comes Mr. Right. This guy has a freight train full of his own baggage. He probably has his share of mommy issues, addictions and constant chasing of dopamine hits. A “thrill seeker”, but not in any good way. Because of that, he doesn’t judge. He doesn’t care one iota about what kind of dinner she makes for her kids, whether or not she is 20 lbs overweight, what kind of grades her kids get, or whether her kids are in too many sports.

Your wife is not a catch. She is a loser. How do I know? Because she threw away her life for the chance to have an affair with a loser. That’s a pretty strong “I am not a prize” signal right there.

She “affairs down” because SHE is down there, too. She always has been. Her affair was lateral, not vertical. She found a “soul mate”, if maybe just for an evening.

You can’t see it now, but you will soon enough. Her spell over you will fade and you will be left with an overwhelming sense of “What in the sam hell was I thinking?”

You’re not alone. You’re a good dude who made a big mistake. That’s life. You ignored lots of red flags and allowed a human into your world that was WAY below your level. You were just too dumb, too love-struck and too GOOD of a guy to see it.

Now that you know, what are you going to do about it?