How do I tell my husband I feel violated?


#1

Hello all. I hope you can give me some advice.

My husband is a good man and he treats me very well. He has a good job, is very involved with our two children, and does a lot around the house. I am very blessed to be his wife. He is a non-practicing Lutheran who very occasionally comes to Mass with me (2-3 times per year). I recently had my first cycle after giving birth to our second son, and we are using NFP to avoid.

My husband definitely has more trouble abstaining than I do. He would never think of using (or asking me to use) ABC, but he has no qualms about masturbation and finishing outside of me.

I try to be faithful to church teaching, but I am often at a loss when he wants me to participate when I know or suspect he does not intend to finish the act in the proper way. I want to be loving and be intimate with him, so I am reluctant to refuse outright. I also understand that as long as I make my views known, and I do not seek disordered pleasure for myself, his choices are not my sin. I am often tired with two young children and a full time job, so I really do have to work to make myself available to him.

The other night he initiated intimacy, and I as usual suspected he would not be completing the act. I tried to be intimate anyway. He was touching me, and he asked if I wanted him to use his penis there. I said yes, but soon realized I was mistaken in what he meant.

He initiated anal sex, and I hated it. I am not a very good communicator sometimes, and I know he has been frustrated in the past with my lack of interest when our first son was small. I didn’t say anything, but tried to pull away a little, and just put up with it, thinking my discomfort served me right and could be my penance for not putting a stop to what I knew would be disordered from the start.

I hoped to just forget about the whole thing, and tell him later that I prefer he avoid that particular activity. Today I am still feeling upset about it, and am on the verge of tears. I want to tell him how I feel, but I don’t want him to think I am just attacking him, or questioning his ability to please me, or to feel that I am afraid of him. I also think he must have though I knew what he was asking, but I assumed the touching that was going on back there was incidental and unintended, as I know I have asked him not to touch me there in the past (years ago though).

Anyway, I think I am getting less and less clear as I type, so I should finish this post. Any advice on how to tell my husband I feel violated? He really is a good man who loves me and encourages my faith and faith for our children. He just doesn’t share the fullness of the faith.


#2

Hi LovesHorses. Welcome!

Boundaries aren't just an issue of when it comes to religious beliefs. I'm sure there are many non-Catholic women who are not on board with the particular activity you described here.
These things just have to be discussed lovingly. Any good and reasonable man will be okay with not taking part in an activity that his wife does not enjoy, as long as he is not left feeling rejected. An easy way to let him know you are not comfortable with this is "OUCH." You can be lighthearted about it and just let him know it is a very uncomfortable thing.
If you already reminded him a few years ago, he may have either forgotton or think that enough time has passed to try again.

As far as the other issues that have been going on... perhaps you can let him know that you feel very distant from him physically and emotionally when he carries on with sex in a way that disagrees with your values. I think that all husbands ultimately want to feel bonded to their wives. They do not want their wives to walk way from an enounter with them feeling terrible. Let him know that these encounters don't leave you satisfied, physically or emotionally. Let him part of the solution with you. It is best not to start with accusations but instead something like, "it would make me feel really great if..."

Have you guys read Holy Sex by Greg Popcak? Or Intro to Theology of the Body by Christopher West?


#3

I think that you are wrong about this. His sin* IS* your sin. My understanding is that the marriage sacrament binds you together. Two will become one… etc.

As far as advice goes, I would suggest that you tell him to keep it in his pants. Many people practice NFP. Couples often have to go without intercourse for various reasons. Tell him it will be worth the wait.


#4

A little hard on someone who’s coming here for advice. Someone who is clearly troubled about the situation. Their first post! I believe that Jesus would handle it just a little differently. Using Christian love to help someone.

And MtnDwellar…I know you’ve never sinned…so it’s hard for you to understand. But…try a little compassion.

First post! What a welcome to CAF you’ve given. Please don’t lecture me on sin either. We all sin.

They will know you by your love for each other. Can’t remember who said that…but I’m gonna look it up. :smiley:


#5

No, MtnDwellar-he’s the agressive one here. He’s totally wrong, She’s totally innocent. Your wrong and rude to this person.

Loveshorses-(I love your screen name)-you have the right to your body-just becasue your married doesn’t mean you need to partake in bizzarre sexual practices.

Tell him what you told us.

Welcome to the forums. Ignore posts like the one from MtnDwellars


#6

Just for perspective, I am a non-Catholic who disagrees with many Church teachings regarding sex. Personally, although it is not my cup of tea, I see nothing morally wrong with anal sex between two consenting adults.

That said, many people find it to be distasteful. If you happen to be one of those people, there is nothing wrong with that. Just tell him that you don't like it and that you're not going to do it again. End of discussion.


#7

Bam. That’s all that really needs to be said. If his attitude is properly aligned, this is what men want more than anything when it comes to sex, to fully satisfy their wives… even more than their own pleasure. Sure, men tend to be more, how shall I say… initiative. And that comes from an evolutionary desire and one that’s definitely on the minds of men more than women. But at the same time, men also want their women to desire them and be satisfied by them even more than they want their own satisfaction. It makes us guys feel well, like bigger and better men! Honestly, I feel bad when my wife isn’t getting the same satisfaction even though she’s perfectly happy, when say pregnancy or breastfeeding hormones interfere with the fullness of physical pleasure. She would get a bit frustrated too, but assured me that I wasn’t doing anything wrong either morally or physically. Still, that puts a strain on things when you as a man think that you’re either being selfish or just not performing. It takes awhile to understand that sometimes you just can’t override those female hormones! Bottom line is that if he’s anything like most guys, yeah he wants sex more often than women, but he wants to satisfy his wife and in a big way. That’s a big ego boost and in a good way.

So yeah, address it in the terms MercyMia laid out. Talk about how you want to feel close, how it would be more intimate and better for you if he followed the Church’s teachings on climax. As far as the other bit goes, I won’t get into the moral discussion of the act itself, but anything that makes you feel uncomfortable should make HIM uncomfortable too. There’s nothing wrong with a bit of change, a bit of spice or whatever as long as it’s within the boundaries of Church teaching, but if you feel violated, uncomfortable or anything like that, you need to communicate it… lovingly but promptly and firmly.


#8

Hey Bucket…you and Mercymia are on a roll! Kudos!!!


#9

I think that I have to apologize. I seem to remember the priest telling us that we were united and will grow together or fall together.

I didn’t mean to be rude. Was that the rude part?

Sorry.


#10

I would be careful not to state your words in a manner that would cause your husband to think that you think he raped or forced you into something you were against as that doesn't sound exactly like what happened. However, since you didn't enjoy the act and don't wish to do it again I would tell your husband that while you're up for spicing up your sex life (as this seems to be okay with you from what I got our of your posting) but that this particular act is off the books as an option.

I think communication is highly required in this marital problem. Not just in this particular act but in the marital embrace overall. It sounds like the two of you are on two different pages and need to get on the same page. Unfortunately, that's hard to do, but it needs to be done especially if being on two pages of expectations led to this.

Either way, I'm sorry that you're having to deal with feeling violated and I hope that you and your husband are able to talk about and overcome this.


#11

MtnDwellar, you’re mistaken. It would only compound things if she refused him his marital rights. She is not responsible for his actions. It would be the same in the case of a couple whose wife decided she wanted to use contraception: her sin, not his. This is the same: if he is not finishing the marital act, it is his sin, not hers. She wants him to finish. She wants to practice NFP.

But you’re right that she needs to get on the same page with him about NFP. They need to sit down and talk about this, and perhaps with a marriage counselor, preferably a Catholic one who can counsel them on NFP adjustment issues. And she should probably consult her priest.

BUT, part of it is that it has to be mutually consensual. She needs to tell him that she doesn’t want to participate in anal sex in a loving way and be sure to make him understand that she is not rejecting him, or that he doesn’t please her, but that she doesn’t like THIS. MercyMia and Bucket said it very well.


#12

[quote="MtnDwellar, post:9, topic:194590"]
I think that I have to apologize. I seem to remember the priest telling us that we were united and will grow together or fall together.

I didn't mean to be rude. Was that the rude part?

Sorry.

[/quote]

It was rude of you to say it was HER sin. It clearly, cleary was not her sin-she had NO implication in this whatsoever. Period. End of discussion. She wasn't even a "willing participant"

I'm shocked that you would even think that way.

If the husband goes out and shoots up a liquor store-she responsible for that too?

You need to apologize to her.


#13

The way you describe him as being a good and loving husband, emphasizes to me the need for you, when you have this discussion with him, to start from that point. If he loves you as much and deeply as you say, he might be very upset with himself that he hurt you that badly.
Some of the others had great advice.


#14

Anything above and beyond standard vagina-penis sex to me is going above and beyond the call of duty. I think it is O.K. for your husband to ask for non-standard sexual acts, but if you try something and clearly don't enjoy it, he should stop asking for it out of respect for you. And really, how can he enjoy himself if you aren't?

I would try to initiate discussion when he's "not in the mood" and see if both of you can think of some things you can do together that you will both enjoy. Who knows? It might be kind of fun.

I feel for you and will pray for you.


#15

I did apologize. I think that I may have been wrong to do so…

Since several people wrote to tell me that I was wrong, I was actually thinking that I was wrong. Having read the subsequent posts, I think that my error may have been that I did not fully explain myself. Here goes:

Chastity is part of the spiritual welfare of the family. It is everyone’s obligation to tend to it. What that means is that both parties have to moderate their desire so that it is in accordance with actual circumstances. There are ways of engaging the conjugal acts which are proper and others which are not.

Pollution is the voluntary effusion of semen outside of the actual conjugal act. Both parties are responsible for avoiding pollution. So one person may not behave in a way which will lead to pollution. Acting in an intimate manner, even with one’s spouse, and knowing that it will result in illegitimate consummation of the sexual act is sinful.

A woman is designed in a specific way. Given the nature of the natural law and the structure of the genital faculties, any misuse is immoral. It is a vice contrary to nature and is called sodomy. Both parties are responsible.


#16

Your a good man/woman to apoligize.

I still think your wrong, and that she has nothing to be sorry for. Any other discussion about that should probably be done between you and I though PM/email.


#17

She doesn’t share his intentions so she doesn’t share in his sin. Her actions would only constitute material cooperation in evil and can be justified depending on the circumstances.


#18

How can one say “only” material cooperation in evil? Willing cooperation in another’s evil act is itself evil. There are no exceptions. If a person is raped, then she is not willing and that is completely different. I did not understand that to be the case.

I can clearly see that my opinions are in the minority on this thread. I don’t want this turn into one of those back forth arguing type of threads which does not benefit the OP. I have said all that I need to say.


#19

I'd just wait til next time. If he asks or starts to penetrate you in that way, say "honey, that does not feel good." Don't make a big production out of it.

The bigger problem is that your husband does not respect your faith. Will he pray with you? Try to start there.


#20

[quote="LovesHorses, post:1, topic:194590"]
I hoped to just forget about the whole thing, and tell him later that I prefer he avoid that particular activity. Today I am still feeling upset about it, and am on the verge of tears. I want to tell him how I feel, but I don't want him to think I am just attacking him, or questioning his ability to please me, or to feel that I am afraid of him. I also think he must have though I knew what he was asking, but I assumed the touching that was going on back there was incidental and unintended, as I know I have asked him not to touch me there in the past (years ago though).

Anyway, I think I am getting less and less clear as I type, so I should finish this post. Any advice on how to tell my husband I feel violated? He really is a good man who loves me and encourages my faith and faith for our children. He just doesn't share the fullness of the faith.

[/quote]

You're not required to deny your husband because he pulls out. Search the Ask an Apologist forum, it's permissible for one spouse to have sex with the contracepting spouse. There is no sin.

You should really think twice about telling your husband you feel "violated". Tell him you don't like anal sex, and that you never want to have anal sex again. Don't tell him he made you feel violated, that will make him feel awful and would be hard to get past.

He didn't violate you, you did give him the impression you wanted him to when he asked you and you said yes, and when he started you said nothing. He thinks he did something you wanted, and had you said at the time you didn't want it he would have stopped.

You really need to think about why you didn't tell him to stop when you didn't want him to have anal sex with you.


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