Basically, the article shared the findings of a poll they conducted of almost 2,000 men. Here are some of the results:
45% think about other women during sex.
55% watch porn at least every week.
17% of men have faked on orgasm. (Okay, someone is going to have to explain this one to me.)
41% have snooped through their partner’s email or phone.
47% say they masturbate weekly (and 17% do it daily).
77% of guys say it is perfectly fine to keep secrets in a relationship.
Ummmm, great. Way to make a girl feel good about herself, Women’s Health! Thanks a million.
In the article, after each statistic they posted, there was a little paragraph advising women on whether they should be alarmed by this particular behavior or not. Mostly it was just fluff masquerading as advice such as “Every guy masturbates”. Personally, I found it to be a tad condescending, because everyone has different tolerance levels for these types of private behavior, right?
Well, here’s where this seemingly innocuous article suddenly hit close to home.
Before bed one night, I was teasing L about the article. I jokingly called him out on one of the behaviors listed above assuming that he didn’t do it. I’m not going to say which one, because that is just awkward for L. To my surprise, L ended up admitting to it.
I’m not naive enough to think that L has never done any of the things listed above while we’ve been together. I guess I just assumed (read: hoped) he wasn’t doing anything, because I never caught him in a compromising position, I never felt something was amiss, and I never asked him point blank…until now.
Right after he came clean, I was really shocked, and then I was hurt. The reason for the shock is because L and I have always prided ourselves off of knowing mostly everything about each other. We tend to have bathroom humor and can be frighteningly honest about a lot. I didn’t think there were many uncomfortable conversations we hadn’t had.
But apparently someone dropped the ball somewhere, because I was left standing in my PJ’s at the stroke of midnight with my jaw on the floor.
Then to add insult to injury, L got all defensive and told me, “Don’t ask questions you don’t want to know the answers to.”
Those words really stung. In retrospect, he had a semi-reasonable point, but bad timing, buddy. He has since apologized for his little gem of a comment.
As I took some time to gather my feelings, I realized I was upset for a couple of reasons. First, I was mad at him for doing this behind my back. Second, I was pissed at myself, because I felt like an idiot who had failed as a wife.
Yes, I felt like a failure. Why would my husband need to resort to certain behaviors if he was getting everything he needed from me? Ahhhh, I feel weird even writing that, because it sounds so cliche. I think self-blame is pretty natural in a situation like this, unless you can seriously convince yourself it only takes one to tango. But ultimately, it wasn’t my fault. We desperately needed to have a heart-to-heart.
Anyway, L and I have since talked things over. We have come to an understanding that we are both comfortable with, and we are back to joking around with each other again. Thank goodness.
It’s weird though. Right after our spat, I cursed the fact that I ever read that article. Then I pondered whether I should have taken L’s harsh advice of “don’t ask, don’t tell”. In the end, I’m glad I didn’t. Today I’m actually thankful for that article. It got us communicating about things we hadn’t talked about in a long time. We realized we don’t need to divulge everything to one another, but certain things do need to be discussed from time to time.
Issues like this are tough to talk about. Sometimes it is super embarrassing for one person or both. Ultimately though, you will feel better if you bring it out in the open.
Deep, dark secrets can ruin relationships. That’s for sure.
Thoughts? I’d love to read comments from my readers on this one.