Archive for February 27th, 2013

There ain’t no good guys, there ain’t no bad guys.
There’s only you and me and we just disagree.
  –  Jim Krueger

A.S. writes:

I’m in a “lukewarm” marriage.  I love my wife and do not want to hurt her, but ever since we had kids 11 years ago, I have been frustrated most of the time.  10 years ago, I started visiting massage parlors, and 4 years ago, escorts; I now meet with an escort I have known for the past 3 years, and after each meeting, I feel happier, better able to work, and happier to see my family afterwards.  I know I am betraying the promise of sexual exclusivity I made to my wife when we married, and that she would be hurt if she found out.  However, I feel it is better for our kids if we stay together, and as long as my wife doesn’t know what I’m doing, everyone will be happier.  Should I try harder to stop seeing escorts, and focus on rekindling romance and intimacy in my marriage?  Or continue seeing an escort and risk discovery and pain later on?

Messer Marsilio and His Wife by Lorenzo Lotto (1523)Marriage was designed to serve an economic purpose, not a sexual one; up until the 14th century absolutely nobody pretended otherwise, and until the late 19th century the idea of “love-matches” was largely a conceit of the economically-secure European upper middle class.  But about a hundred years ago the rather absurd and untenable idea that marriage should be based only on love and no other reason became the norm throughout Western society; even this wouldn’t have been so bad if not for the “social purity” movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which insisted that men could be held to standards of marital fidelity and premarital chastity which didn’t even work for some women.  Prior to that time, it was universally understood that the average man wanted a lot more sex than the average woman, and that’s what whores were for; prostitution was recognized as “the lesser of two evils”, a practice which helped to prevent rape and lessen affairs with other men’s wives and virgin daughters.  The “social purists” and their political wing, the “progressives” (yes, that’s the origin of the term) insisted that mankind was perfectible, and that laws inspired by “science”, drafted by wise and educated “experts” and imposed on the population at gunpoint under threat of “correction” in “rehabilitative” prisons, could be used to “improve” and “re-educate” people.  I’m sorry for all the scare quotes, but I think all reasonable people can see what this misguided belief-system has done to the United States, the country which (because of its unique sociology) embraced it most wholeheartedly: busybody laws that make literally everyone into criminals, 25% of the world’s prisoners (though we only have 5% of the world’s population), and a war on our own citizens that has resulted in the destruction of millions of lives and the waste of trillions of dollars worldwide.

Human beings are not perfectible; we are flawed, human and individual.  Even if we were perfectible it could certainly not be achieved through coercion (either through state violence or via the sort of emotional blackmail favored by manipulative wives).  And even if some foolproof method of coercion could be developed, who gets to decide what “perfection” means?  Some ruling elite selected by birth, doctrinal orthodoxy, wealth, physical strength, education or skill at winning popularity contests?  Such a system would destroy the souls of its subjects and reduce humans to automata.

If you’re wondering what this has to do with your question, I’ll spell it out.  In a perfectly-matched marriage, the husband would be able to focus all his libido on the wife and she in turn would be excited enough by his interest to want sex every time he did, or else be wise enough to provide him with it every time he wanted it simply because she loved him and/or understood that it’s part of her economic contribution to the marital arrangement.  But no person and no arrangement is perfect, and that includes you, your wife and your marriage.  It’s not unusual for women to lose interest in sex after several children; it’s just biology, and your inability to just settle for what little boring sex she chooses to dole out is likewise biological.  Neither of you is the “abuser” or “victim” as feminists and MRAs both pretend; it’s simply normal, imperfect, frustrating human life.  You could have attempted to badger your wife into more sex, or displayed your frustration through constant arguments, or turned it inward so you could become mentally and physically ill and possibly lose your job or be arrested once your judgment was eroded enough that you did something stupid. But you instead did the wise thing: you hired professionals to deal with the issue,healing touch just as you might hire a guy to cut your grass if you couldn’t do it or day-care people to care for your kids if your wife had to work.  Because that’s what sex workers are: professionals.  We’re not “homewreckers”,  or criminals, or the pathetic victims of evil men who dare to commit the sin of having a sex drive higher than that of their wives; we’re caring professionals who help human beings to deal with the necessities of mortality.

My advice to you, then, is to be as careful as you can so that your wife doesn’t find out.  Keep trying to get her interested in sex, enough to let her know you still want her but not so much that you annoy her.  Make sure she knows you still love her, but only to the extent you sincerely feel it; excessive displays are not only deceptive, they’re suspicious.  Of course, she may find out despite your precautions; she may already know but is simply wiser than you give her credit for, and understands that what you’re doing is for the best.  You mention “the risk of pain later on”, but that will exist no matter what path you choose; all of our lives are full of sorrow, pain and disappointment, often from those we care most about, and all any human can do is to try to minimize the harm his actions cause others…which is exactly what you’ve been doing for the last ten years.

(Have a question of your own?  Please consult this page to see if I’ve answered it in a previous column, and if not just click here to ask me via email.)

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