Sex Ed, for me, consisted of one recurring theme. It can be summed up like this:
All men are horny bastards that’ll shag pretty much anyone.
Wham, bam, thank you, ma’am.
For them, sex has no meaning, no emotion.
Women don’t want sex but give in to it to get love.
Men pretend to love merely so they can get sex.
When they can’t get sex, they wank,
fantasising they’re shagging this or that porn star.
All men are horny bastards.
If that sounds offensive and misandristic (man hating), that’s because it is. Worse still, it came from a man who was a close family member who was sexually abusing me while prejudicing me against all other men with his poisonous words.
It was my husband, Rhys, who showed me that there is another kind of men out there. But I learnt it the hard way and Rhys suffered for it.
After Rhys and I had sex for the first time, when the ‘high’ had passed, I felt the need to have The Talk with him. I needed to know how many other women Rhys had slept with. If we were in this for the long haul, and it was clear we were, I wanted to know how many other women my man had been passionately intimate with.
Let’s just say it was below the national average for most men in the UK but higher than I would’ve liked.
I know the past is in the past, but I still got upset. My imagination ran amuck as I imagined my man in the throes of passion with other women even as I tried to cope with Rhys’ open viewing of pornography. ‘Aren’t I woman enough for you?’ I stormed when he was on Pornhub yet again.
When I saw a roomful of bare-breasted women, vaginas bared for all the world to see on Rhys’ screen, it ate away at my soul. I’d curl up in bed and cry. It felt like he was cheating on me through the computer screen with that roomful of (fake) big bosomed young women.
There were fights. Me yelling. Rhys in tears. Because, you see, I was tarring him with the same brush I’d been taught to tar all men. ‘Horny bastard’. Shag anyone and anything on two legs. All about the conquest. Love ’em and leave ’em. Wham, bam, thank you, ma’am.
But I was wrong. Deeply wrong. When Rhys was able to put his feelings into words, and it wasn’t easy for him, I was the one begging his forgiveness. Not he, mine.
Rhys was raped repeatedly by a close female family member when he was a little tyke. At the time, he had no words to describe what happened. All he knew was that he felt dirty. Something was wrong but he didn’t know what it was. So he withdrew into himself and became the brunt of all the bullies in school.
Even his first date was tragic. Turned out it was a set-up. Not a date but yet another opportunity for Rhys to be publicly humiliated.
His first love interest…cheated on him. It would be years before he looked at another women. As far as he was concerned, women were dangerous. He wanted nothing to do with the entire sex.
Naturally, he turned to pornography to release his raging young male horomones. Rhys was first exposed to pornograhy when he found his grandfather’s stash. This was the grandfather who had raped the girl who then raped Rhys. The family is riddled with abuse and incest.
Porn became Rhys’ safe place. When he was looking at porn, the world and all of its problems and pain, just disappeared. ‘It resets my brain,’ he says. He enjoys being a voyeur, but not in a creepy way. He’s not a Peeping Tom or anything.
‘Do you want to bang that skanky bitch with the huge fake boobs who’s blasted out of her skull on cocaine sucking on that guys dick?’ I once asked him, in a fit of pique, as he watched porn.
‘Hell no!’ was his response. ‘I wouldn’t touch her with a ten foot pole’.
His first serious relationship was with his first wife. Five children later, she had a torrid affair with a drug dealer, kicked Rhys to the kerb, took the kids and more child support than it would’ve cost to raise the children well if he’d been allowed to stay in the home. Parental Alienation followed.
His agony was so severe, Rhys nearly committed suicide.
What bothered me is the women Rhys had sex with after his divorce but before I met him. Oh, I know I’ve no grounds. He was over 21, single, footloose and fancy free. But I waited for him. I couldn’t understand why he didn’t wait for me.
I got him confused with someone else. A horny bastard on the make, just looking for a quick shag. But I was wrong.
He thought he was in a relationship with those women. He thought they were going somewhere. He mistook their kindness to a broken-hearted man for love.
Instead, he discovered he was the shagee and they were the shager. Sex was followed by the cold shoulder and rejection. For these women, he was just a quick lay. A shot of endorphines. Nothing more. Wham-bam-thank you, Rhys.
It’s at this spot in our story that Rhys started to cry. He didn’t use them. They used him. He had invested emotion into the act of sex. It meant something to him. Instead, he discovered the pattern of being taken advantage of, and exploited, that had begun when he was raped as a little boy had repeated yet again.
And here was I, his loving wife, misunderstanding, causing him even more pain. Hanging the ‘horny bastard’ tag on him when he was actually a beautiful exception to the rule.
I learnt a sharp lesson that day. A lesson I’ll never forget.
Ladies, it’s no secret that men have difficulty putting emotions into words. They may want to express themselves eloquently but the words just aren’t there, so they get frustrated. Frustration leads to anger and pretty soon the relationship is on the rocks.
So give him the benefit of the doubt. Calm down. Help him put his feelings into words and you may discovered that he’s not a ‘horny bastard’ after all. That porn is an escape, not an addiction. That he doesn’t screw anything that moves. That when he makes love to you, he’s thinking only of you. That he’s as fully invested in the emotion, the act of love as you are. It means something to him beyond a quick orgasm.
I wish I’d known that about men before I ripped my man a new one. He’s a good man, Rhys, and your man may be better than you’ve given him credit for as well.