SL Letter of the Day: The BIBFAULT in Our Stars

Comments

1
Some days you kill a bear. Some days a bear kills you. Move on, Dan.
2
I've just assumed you're in a funk,Dan , cause your team didn't win.
So now, your team
Didn't win and you're got some backs up.
Not a good week all round, really.
3
I think your advice wasn't bad, exactly, just missing one important suggestion.
4
Somehow I missed it the first time, but I tried to read it with an open mind now & I think you did a good job, Dan!
5
Yeah, you could've tossed tossed that in but it did seem like the bigger issue was that the sex was just underwhelming overall and she was dismayed at the thought of never once having amazing sex before she died.
6
I don't think Dan was wrong. If after thirty years this man hasn't been concerned with his wife being sexually satisfied, why would he start now.
7
@6: Because otherwise, she WILL either cheat or leave him. Simple as.
8
@7 It's a Christmas miracle she hadn't already.
9
@6 +1

I'm sorry, I posted a longer comment about this on the column, but I think Dan nailed it the first time. I'd bet that she has already suggested the vibrator (and other things) and he's shooting them down out of hand: "it works for me, why change anything".

Nice of Dan to be responsive to critics, but he got it right the first time, and the "try the vibe during PIV" suggestion will be shot down just as quickly as LW's other requests, which gets back to the existential (marriage-wise) meat of the question.
10
Regardless of the vibrator, simply to note that he has run into substantial disagreement and to provide examples of same without any further commentary about whether he's moving from his original stance or any particulars behind why he answered as he did that he didn't mention the first time seems incomplete, but not a biggie.
11
I'd like to add that I thought Mr. Savage's advice to BIBFAULT was faulty because 1) he made an assumption about why she was doing what she was doing that is often false ("you wouldn't be writing to me if you didn't want to [insert act here]"; yes she would) and 2) I've seen him give better advice to people in similar situations in other letters.
12
Several years ago I was in pretty much this exact position and I finally snapped and cheated. I cheated exactly the way Dan suggests: repeatedly, looking for the right person. My husband found out and immediately demanded a divorce. He also told me I should go to sex addicts anonymous. I wrote Dan to ask if I was a sex addict. He wrote back that no, I wasn't and my husband was slut shaming me. He also told me I was absolutely wrong to cheat. So I guess he's evolved. :)

And he said that it looked like my cheating in the face of certain divorce should I be discovered was slamming my hand down on the self-destruct button. In retrospect, he was so right. The more I cheated, the more I realized that my otherwise perfect husband and relationship was far from it. I only cheated for a few months before he caught me, but by the time he did, I had come to the realization that our marriage was going to end eventually.

The cheating became dating and I stubbornly held out for someone with whom the sex was awesome. Not just pretty good, but completely awesome. I found him, and the rest of him is pretty awesome too. Now I have the passionate relationship that I actually cried myself to sleep over never being able to experience when I was still married.

Short version: Dan's right. She should cheat.
13
@12, why cheat rather than end the marriage respectfully and move on?
14
I guess I'm a bad and bored 42 year old girl /sarcasm
15
@13 I really thought everything else about our marriage was perfect except for the sex. We have 2 kids and had built a whole life. To end that just for sex seemed silly. I loved my husband. I thought if I just got that elsewhere, life would be perfect.

He was having an emotional affair with someone else at the precise time I finally snapped and decided to cheat. I didn't see it at the time but the timing was not coincidental. And as I met other men who treated me like I was smart and sexy and funny and interesting, I began to really see how badly my husband was treating me. I'd been so emotionally beaten down I didn't have a clue. So those few months I was cheating, our marriage just dissolved. I got more angry and depressed and he treated me worse in response to that. Thank god he caught me. I had just realized that our marriage would end, but I figured I'd wait until the youngest was in high school. He was 12 at the time, so I was going to wait 5 years. I probably wouldn't have made it. But this way was better. No slow descent; just done.

He moved in with the woman he was having the emotional affair with shortly after. I have a marvellous man. We get along pretty well now.
16
@Yael, so, in retrospect, couldn't you have gotten there by way of a good personal therapist, rather than by cheating?

And conversely if you had met some jerks, who treated you badly, or if your husband hadn't caught you, then cheating might not have provided a path out of your marriage.

I still think there are better options than cheating. Although, if you end the marital sex and only have sex with your outside partner, then I see cheating in a different light.
17
I would have gotten there eventually by way of the great therapist I had, yes. And in an ideal world I would have realized how fucked up our relationship was, left him and then started sleeping around. But years of subtle emotional abuse (he didn't even intend it; it was just the bad combo of his personality and mine) wore away at my self-esteem and I didn't even see how bad it was until I got out.

I did also meet jerks - they were all part of the learning experience.

Generally speaking, I think cheating is a bad idea. But I also think that it is understandable under certain circumstances, and not just the ones I was in.
18
@17 If it's roughly 50% of the population (the numbers seem to vary by sex and report from 40-60% so let's call it even), I'd guess not all of those people are deliberately acting with anger. I wouldn't put it past myself to do so though. Erica, you are gifted with a singular amount of clarity and let's cut the crapidness. Maybe it's the lawyering practice, but I'm guessing it's a fundamental personality trait. Most of us are a tad more delusional in the story we tell ourselves about our own lives. I know I'm guilty of that. I'd like to think I wouldn't pull that crap now, because I've read enough Dan to be able to give myself permission to leave someone without making a giant mess first, but who knows. Depends on how I am at the time I guess. On the other hand, I've never been in a monogamous relationship so... but there's certainly a hell of a lot of fuck-upedness potential in that too, with very little effort.

Therapy also takes time. Cheating is fast. Given a race between the two...