Bro, you are saying that you use pornstar sex - almost any sex, I bet - for external validation. You have just written - and you've written this before - that sex is more than sex to you.
So why do you keep stating the opposite? What are you getting out of lying to yourself (and to SI)?
OK, let's say your right, I throw up my hands and say "you win". Your right, sex is just about, or primarily about validation to me. In fact, even though it's the best physical feeling I've ever experienced on this earth, for some reason, that's not the point of it at all, I'd do it if it hurt, because I want that validation so desperately.
Now, I don't think that's true, in fact, I think it's nearly as far from the truth as you can get, but, let's just say/suppose it is. What does that change? I feel like when I have this conversation with people, it's like if I say "yes, sex is validation to me" it's like some light bulb will go on somewhere and shine light on.. On what? I'm really not sure, which is why I pose the question. Let's say it is all about validation and nothing to do with the pleasant sensations, then what?
Also, as an aside, please do not call me a liar. I may be hiding things from myself, that I can get behind and examine. But I am not intentionally lying to you or other members, and I don't think it's fair to say that; I've posted here for a long time, and have been nothing if not consistent. You have no reason to think I'm a liar other than my view of sex, or at least the view that I think I have, doesn't align with your own. I see a lot of posters (typically male) who post things that make my antenna shoot right up, "that doesn't sound believable" when they have a LOT of incentive to lie (WH's for example, talking about sex with the AP) and while I may dig in, I can't recall a single time I called one of them a liar, even if I'm 99% sure they are. I don't deserve that label, "asshole" perhaps, and "blunt/direct" for sure. But I am not a liar, in fact, if I was, I probably never would have wound up here because I would have just lied, told my W what she wanted to hear, and kept the "brokered peace" at home. I will not tell anyone "what they want to hear", I will tell them, as best I can, the truth, and the reasons behind it if they care to ask.
There can be no pretending in mutually satisfying sex. The partners have to be honest to reach satisfaction. But you jumped to 'pretending.'
At the same time, I'd really like you to take responsibility for pretending. It was your choice, and other choices were available to you.
I was, in my M before the A, pretending that the sex we were having was "what I wanted". I asked for more, she said no, I told her I was OK with it and pretended it didn't hurt me. It did hurt me, but, the rest wasn't pretend, I was "OK" (not good, but OK) with it. The only pretend was acting like it didn't bother me, and frankly, I'm not sure what else to do in that situation. We talked it over many times, I'd express my desires, she'd shoot them down, and sometimes we'd compromise on something else. It's not like I was pretending not to want things, just pretending about the impact/importance of those things. And, like I said above, what's the alternative here? "I would like to have anal sex. No, I'm not into that." I think my response in the past would have been something like "OK, well, if you ever change your mind, I'd love to do that together". Which was true. But I was hurt, of course I was. So, what would have been more authentic? Moping around the house? Acting mean? Getting a D or saying "I won't marry you without this"? The question was asked, answered, I gave some color, that was the end of it. But I'd love to hear, using that particular example, how one can "not pretend" while also not compelling/guilting the other partner into it and continuing the relationship. Yes, I wanted it, yes it hurt me, no it wasn't worth ending the relationship. So, I guess, putting the question to group, what's the authentic response there that meets the above criteria?
You betrayed yourself. We all have, in some way. You did it in a way that meant a lot to you. Accept it. Accepting that you betrayed yourself is the best first step in ensuring that you won't do it again.
In this context, I'd say we all betray ourselves. But we call it "compromise". And it's a reasonable thing to do, yes, your betraying your individual wants and desires for the sake of another person. I think that's OK, so long as it's not totally one sided, in fact, I think that's basically a prerequisite for a healthy relationship/marriage. I've done that many times in my M, and, frankly, just about every time, it was the right thing to do. The thing that's different here, of course, is that I betrayed myself FOR NO REASON. Imagine if my wife desperately wanted something, I refused it to her repeatedly with the excuse "Can't do it now, need to go to the store". And my W accepts that, "well, he is busy, he needs to go shopping, and I understand he can't do what I want". Reasonable compromise in a relationship. Or it seems to be, until I tell you that I'm not actually going to the store, I'm going to bar to hang out with friends to avoid doing whatever it is my W wants me to do. Now it's very different, it's just me being an a**hole, this isn't compromise, it's just me intentionally not doing something she wants to either spite her or put my own needs entirely before hers. Also, I'm lying when I tell her "no, need to go to store", much like she lied to me with "no, I don't do that" (which would have been true if she'd added "with you" to the end of the statement, but clearly was NOT true at all for her as a general statement). And that's really it, it was a compromise for me made in bad faith by her. I gave up something under false pretenses, and that's a whole different ball of wax compared to healthy compromise in a relationship.
I'm not sure you're scarred. The wound seems raw to me, still open and infected. It's been years, bro. Why not get the help of a good IC?
Why, when I have the free therapy here?? I've been in IC consistently since the A, and we do discuss this topic frequently. I would, however, agree with you, the wound is still open and infected. But the infection isn't spreading, so.. Maybe that's the best I can hope for?