I’ve been married around 2 years and have fallen sexually (masturbation) twice. The first time was after our child was born during a period of long abstinence. The second was more recently (she was away, I did not take care of myself with respect to going to sleep on time which led to lack of prayer, being up late on my computer, etc.).
My question is what others think is the best practice when it comes to whether or not to share these falls with one’s significant other. My tendency has always been to share everything with my wife. I used to tell her if I fell in masturbation even before we were married. I just felt like I was hiding something if I didn’t.
The first time in our marriage that I masturbated, I told her.
This past time, I have not. I do recall someone (an older married man) sharing with a group once that if he fell, he would not share it with his wife. I believe this was because sharing it could actually do more harm than good.
I’m a bit torn… I want to be completely honest with her but don’t necessarily want to tell her if I don’t have to. I think a big part of that, to be honest, is that this past time involved pornography, which I haven’t struggled with in many, many years. I’m very embarrassed about that fact and obviously don’t really want to have to share that with her. On the other hand, I’m open to thoughts on whether it would bring about more closeness/trust if I were to tell her since it does show that I’m committed to honesty no matter what.
Anyway, I guess I could go back and forth more and more in writing. I could see pros and cons to either. I’m especially sad about having viewed pornography, as I can’t imagine her knowing that and it’s never come up as a sin in my life since she’s known me. I worry about what she will think about herself and how her knowing might damage our relationship.
I’ve tried to search about this topic here and on Google and not found anything from a Catholic/Christian perspective except for this post: relit.org/porn_again_christian/ch7.php. I believe my situation is different in that this is not a recurring/habitual/addictive area for me at present. I fell in an area I take very seriously and never want to be part of my life, but the bottom line is that I gave in to temptation and sinned. I went to confession the next day. I am still wondering about whether or not I should tell my wife.