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Your Call: When Your Partner’s Fantasies Are Seriously Disturbing…

Fri, Oct 8, 2010

Advice, Dear Em & Lo, Your Call

photo from Arbron

We’ve said before that one’s fantasy life need not be impeded by fears, be limited by ethics, or even abide by the laws of physics. But then we read a comment like the one from icequeenkjd in response to the post “Wise Guys: What Do Men Think About When They Fantasize?” and that whole philosophy comes crumbling down:

I have recently discovered that my boyfriend of 2 years searched out step-dad/step-daughter porn on the internet.  I have two beautiful daughters, one is nine and the other is 13.  I have since moved out and I am completely crushed.  Any thoughts?

What do you think? Did she do the right thing by moving out? Any words of comfort and support you can provide?

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20 Responses to “Your Call: When Your Partner’s Fantasies Are Seriously Disturbing…”

  1. johnny Says:

    So, you checked the intenet history and moved right out? This is incomplete story-telling. Surely there was some sort of dialogue between you and your dude, and the details are relevant. But since they’re absent I’ll speculate.

    Scenario #1: You confronted him about this, and he admitted that he does indeed have a fetish for for the stepdad/stepdaughter thing. Fearing for your childrens’ safety, you moved out. That’s prudent parenting.

    Scenario #2: You already hate his porn, and this was the straw that broke the camel’s back. He has no particular fetish for the stepdad-stepdaugher thing – he just clicked that one because the girl was sexy, as many of us have done. It was one of many types of video he looked at, but you don’t want to hear it – you’ve had it with him and his pervy porn. This would be an over-reaction in my book.

    Scenario #3: Without giving him a chance to explain, you jumped to the conclusion that he’s a sexual predator and fled for your life, uprooting your daughters and teaching them that you just can’t trust men. This is a hysterical over-reaction.

    So, which is it?

  2. trillie Says:

    I also sincerely hope that before you moved out, there was a reasonable discussion about this.

    I would like to add that some fantasies are fantasies precisely because they have some kind of forbidden feel (best friends, boss/secretary, or just something very kinky your partner is just not that much into). Because of this, I would always go into the above mentioned discussion assuming that the spouse is able to distinguish between fantasy and real life. Also, stereotypically the ‘story’ in porn is much more important to women than to men and Johnny may simply be right that he just thought “the girl was sexy”.

  3. Dannie Says:

    How old were the step-daughters in the porn he was looking at? If it was child porn, I can understand your concern (though I do hope a discussion took place before leaving, I understand the fierce desire to protect your children). If it was sexy of-age “girls”, then I would agree that it was the taboo factor that drove him, and because of that I would be on the look out for increasingly taboo fascinations (ie, slipping into a fascination with child porn). However, I don’t necessarily believe that a fascination with the taboo is a downward spiral of mental degeneracy–kink is not necessarily a drug, it is part of a person’s sexuality. I, for one, am just really glad that he’s into *step* relation porn. There’s no real blood incest there at all–and how many dramas and reality TV shows and soaps have had issues like this pop up?? Like I said, the porn really isn’t as disturbing as it could be, if the women involved were legal adults, not dependent children.

  4. misspiggy Says:

    Obviously none of us know enough about this story to comment very usefully. But it’s not inconceivable that he does find your daughters attractive, and possible that he could have been seeking porn to help him deal with a forbidden attraction. Deep down a lot of men do find young girls very attractive, although they rarely admit it. I don’t see any point in blaming someone for this, if it doesn’t affect their behaviour towards the children or towards you.

    Alternatively, it may have indicated a transition towards real abuse. But the porn on its own isn’t necessarily useful in telling you which is the case. You could argue the fact that he’d sought porn on the topic indicated he was willing to act, but if he had been intending to abuse your daughters it’s perhaps more likely that he would have set up decent computer security.

    It would probably help to reflect on what his behaviour has been, find out from your daughters how he has been relating to them, and make your own best judgement on his attitude and actions. But without any other evidence, it doesn’t seem that you can claim a clear moral case for splitting up – it’s more a case of what you are prepared to accept in a partner.

  5. Bettany Says:

    Believe it or not, some of us women just can’t go from seeing something like our significant other’s interest in stepdad porn to keeping up the romance. Some of us – who contrary to popular theory – aren’t frigid or mentally imbalanced or man haters – just don’t appreciate or want to be with a man who needs porn to get off.

    Why shouldn’t this woman have taken her children and fled? Speaking as a woman who was repeatedly raped by a family member when I was just a child, I wish like hell MY mother had taken me away from the horror show I was living through. She saw the evidence, and confronted my abuser who denied everything. His explanation and denial sounded believable so she believed him instead of me – sentencing me to 4 more years of his nightly attacks.

    It doesn’t matter if it’s biological incest or stepdaddy sexual misconduct, it’s ALL wrong and the mere fact that there’s porn to popularize this sick behavior makes me angry.

    Good for the mom in this story, she did right by her daughters. Find a man who will respect you AND your children, and you’ll find a REAL man.

  6. Black Iris Says:

    Yes, she did the right thing by moving out. Now she needs to figure out how to ask her daughters if they were molested. I would suggest finding a competent therapist who will look honestly without asking leading questions or disbelieving the girls. If she wants to talk to her daughters herself, she could look for books about safe touch, etc. and talk about the issue in general. She might also simply ask them if they liked the boyfriend and how they felt about living with him, etc. She needs to look for signs that the girls are afraid of him or have been told not to tell on him.
    Sorry guys, it may be that fantasy doesn’t mean anything, but when you’re a mom, you have to put your kids first. You can’t take the chance. I could see asking him how the porn got there, but he’d have to have a really believable explanation. Personally, I wouldn’t be able to trust a guy again, even if I thought someone else put the porn there. It would poison the relationship for me and I would have to end it.
    I also wonder if there were more signs of something odd than what the woman posted. Perhaps her boyfriend’s attitude around her daughters was giving her a bad feeling before this happened.
    For any guys who are enjoying kiddie porn – get therapy.

  7. Black Iris Says:

    @Dannie “I, for one, am just really glad that he’s into *step* relation porn. There’s no real blood incest there at all–”
    Why the hell does that make any difference at all? Step-children are more likely to be abused than children living with biological parents, but it makes them just as miserable. And since this guy is a step-dad, what could be worse than finding out he gets off on the idea of step-dads having sex with their step-kids?

  8. Dave W Says:

    I used to say to my shrink(and she agreed) that one can’t be judged for having a thought enter your mind. Rather, it’s how you respond to the thought that matters. If a 13 year old strikes someone as being attractive, well, it happens. Her BF was searching for stepdaughter porn, which probably means he was cultivating the thought. That’s not good. Breakup probably justified.

  9. Dannie Says:

    Black Iris–no, I completely agree with what you’re saying. I wasn’t being very clear. My primary concern is the age of the people involved. Abuse is never, ever, ever even close to something we might think of as acceptable; and as a step-daughter, I know that the word “step” has no real meaning when it comes to a man you truly see as your father, blood or no. That was not my point. My point was that, it’s a difference between the idea of two independent adults *consentingly* committing a taboo, two very closely -related- adults having sex, and a father figure harming a child. There are way too many avenues this can take. And I totally agree–almost every single one of them is disturbing and abhorrent, most of because of his role as a step parent. Maybe I’ve just read Oedipus and Phaedra one too many times, but my mind went to completely different places when confronted with this topic initially. I’m mortified and sickened to think anything else could be seen as my opinion.

  10. Johnny Says:

    I guess I’m seeing this more and more from the mom’s point of view.

    It’s just much more natural for me to see it from the dude’s point of view: there he was, surfing porn and having a wank, when he decided to go somewhere extra naughty. He has a relatively innocent wank, with ACTUAL child abuse so far from his mind that he doesn’t even bother to clear the history. He forgets all about it, until one day he comes home and comes to find his hysterical girlfriend slamming all her stuff into suitcases and moving out.

    Trust me, that scenario would be worse for him than for her.

    But I there is the possibility that he’s a dangerous kind of perv, and I guess the mom can’t chance that.

  11. Black Iris Says:

    I think you’re seeing it from the point of view of a normal dude. I don’t buy the idea that a guy who actually is a father or stepfather can look at that kind of porn in an innocent way. But, even if only looked at it once and wasn’t really thinking, I think it would be worse for the mom.
    She is now worried about whether or not her children were actually abused and she has to figure out what to do without scaring them or making things worse. She probably wonders if he loved her or was after them. It’s going to be hard for her to trust another guy.
    The mom in the comment doesn’t tell us much, so we don’t know how many times he looked at the porn, how much effort he put into finding it, and what other porn he was looking at. We don’t know if his behavior around the girls was odd of if the girls disliked him, but the mom does.

  12. Black Iris Says:

    @Dannie – thanks for clarifying your comments. It does make me feel better to understand your point of view.
    I don’t personally see a difference between consenting adults who aren’t related having sex and consenting adults who are biologically related having sex, if one of the adults was in a parental role when the kid was growing up. (Yes, I think Woody Allen is scum as a human being.)
    You’ve brought up a subject that generally bothers me in our society. I believe that porn about having sex with a grown-up step-daughter can be a way for a father/step-father who wants to abuse a child to fantasize about it. In the fantasy the child is grown up and wants it. I don’t think it’s healthy for someone who could actually abuse a child to be fantasizing in that way.
    I also have the impression that although this kind of porn sometimes uses very young adult actors, the girls try to look like children. So again, I think this can be a way for someone who wants to actually abuse a child to fantasize about it.
    I think there is also porn on the Internet that doesn’t even pretend to be about consenting adults and the boyfriend could have been looking at that.

  13. Marie Brown Says:

    I think she did the right thing by moving out. For those who said he went to watch thinking the girl was sexy or hot or whatsoever. I hoped you would have read the narrator clearly that he SEARCHED for that certain category of porn, which shows that the certain thumbnail did not pop out naturally.

    To narrator: I also hope u have discussed it over with your partner clearly before u moved out hastily.

    Back to my stand on how I feel it is correct.
    I bet some of the people who replied are porbably not mothers yet, or probably do not have close little kids in their live whom they love/adore/die to protect. I think we should all stand in the shoes of the narrator and understand how hard it is a decision for her to make. I’m very certain she does love her boyfriend. But the love she has for her child has significantly superseded her love for her boyfriend to make her go to such extent to protect her child from him. She simply cannot seem to watch them get hurt.
    Better safe than sorry, is the stand she has chose.
    Thus, as I’ve mentioned earlier, I had hoped that they have clarified the matter before they called it quits. So all the best to her.

    I think she is a really noble mother who chose to forsake her love life for her child. :)

  14. Heather Says:

    Flat out, I think we need more details from the writer before any conclusions can be drawn. I emphatically agreed with Johnny’s first comment as I was reading through everything. Did she confront him? What was his explanation? How has he acted with her children?

    I am someone who has deep fantasies related to taboo relationships (i.e. father-daughter, teacher-student, senior citizen-young girl, etc.) So if I were to enter into a relationship with these fantasies already in place and my partner had children and I wanted to watch porn regarding these fantasies, does that mean I am suddenly not allowed or that our relationship can’t last? There is a HUGE difference between liking to see these taboos acted out on-screen by two of-age actors, versus being attracted to young children or wanting to have sex with your partner’s children. ALSO, there is a huge difference between PEDOPHILIA (aka being attracted to children) and being interested in a stepdaughter-stepfather relationship. Her children are fairly young. And he wasn’t looking up child porn, he was looking up stepfather-stepdaughter porn. And actually, was he even looking it up? Or, like Johnny said, did he just click on a link that happened to feature that plotline?

    So, while I completely understand needing to put your children first, I also think there are a lot of missing details here. And I also do NOT believe that everything should be panic first, get details later. Unfortunately, our society is a little hyper-vigilant when it comes to child sexual abuse. Not that it’s not a real threat, but sometimes we disregard healthy sexuality (both in adults and in teaching our children) in trying to be aware of all the dangers or perversions related to sex, rather than focusing on some of the positives and the diversity among people. Fantasy is just fantasy and does not normally translate into reality. What about people who fantasize about being raped? Or about being gang-banged? Or about sleeping with their friend’s or relative’s partner? Most of those fantasies never come to fruition, and most of the fantasizers don’t want them to actually happen, so why is this scenario different?

    Now, if this woman writes in again and says she did confront her partner and he was shady about the whole thing, or she finds out he was acting inappropriately with her children, I will support what she did. But in the meantime, we have to consider all sides and intentions.

  15. Tony Says:

    Since you’re asking, I suspect you’re either looking for confirmation that you deserve an award as ‘mother of the year’ or you’re wondering if perhaps you acted too irrational and are considering going back to him.
    Please note that I understand your dedication to the safety and well being of your children. However, your brief description comes across to me as you being one that would readily settle for nothing less than having your daughters locked in their rooms, protected from any contact with males, until they were 30.
    The serious issue as I see it from the information given is one of mistrust. How did you ‘discover’ what your boyfriend had been searching on the Internet? Accidently, or were you ‘snooping’? If ‘snooping’; why? If you have no reason other than a few Internet searches to suspect anything, I feel you quite possibly over-reacted. Would you have left if perhaps you ‘discovered’ that your boyfriend had been using search terms such as ‘slasher films’ and ‘murder mysteries’?
    Yes, it’s quite possible that your vigilance has spared your young daughters a terrible fate. It’s also quite possible you denied them a chance to have at least a ‘pseudo father’ that might have been a very positive influence on their lives.
    If per chance further facts emerge that he has molested either or both of your daughters, no matter how superficially, I offer my sympathy.

  16. Madamoiselle L Says:

    I agree with Johnny on this. Talk was necessary. Surfing can bring you to all kinds of weird websites, without even intending to go there.

    Abuse of children is horrible and reprehensible, and never acceptable, step children or biological or neighbors or strangers. There is no argument about this.

    The thing is: 1) She MOVED OUT after only seeing something on an internet history? Really? No discussion. Did she suspect something before? Was she waiting for “something” to happen? If so, she was putting her child in danger, and THAT is an issue she should have dealt with earlier.

    2) Who the f^%$ doesn’t clear their history after looking at porn? I know of no one with even a modicum of internet knowledge. If he knows how to surf the net, he knows how to clear the history. My guess is (If this is true, which I doubt) he either accidentally surfed into it, or he knew she had issues, knew she spied on him, and put something in the history so he wouldn’t have to end a relationship he no longer had any interest in.

    It could be the guy was a child molesting pervert, but as the child’s MOTHER, she didn’t see any clues about that before or after letting this man move in with her and her child? C’mon. IF he is a person who harms children, there would be MUCH more evidence than a single listing to a suspect site on his internet history.

    AND, what was she doing looking through his history anyway?

    If she at all thought he was going to harm her daughter BEFORE the websnooping session, THAT should have been the deciding factor. Was she clueless to his behavior, or was she jumping the gun? We don’t have enough evidence to make a good judgment.

  17. Jack Jones Says:

    What if she discovered that her partner was into watching violent films for (gasp!) entertainment. War films? Crime dramas? Murder mystery? Would she be worried that her partners was a murderer?

  18. Shewolf68 Says:

    Nice to see you understand the deeper concern for young children’s well being Jack!

    How obtuse and shallow of you!

  19. Will Says:

    This is why you should never date women who have children. Too much drama, and too many potential landmines.

  20. Aly Says:

    This chick overreacted. Like other people said, if he watches slasher films it doesn’t make him a killer. Sexual fantasies are generally things people just think about or role play, but they don’t REALLY want to do them. My fiancé and I are into all sorts of things but they stay between us. We would never do them with anyone else. And I have a child, but I trust him. Not every kinky man is a perv. Just like not every woman who fantasizes about being raped is a slut.

    Most Mommy/Daddy fantasies are just about being loved and nurtered. Most incest fantasies are just about the taboo. The same with Teacher/Priest/Cop/etc. Rape/gangbang/bondage fantasies are about being helpless. Nothing’s hotter for a woman than being helpless and struggl ing while some unknown man ravages you ;)


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