DH and I have been together for 23 years. Fetishes have always existed in the relationship - somewhat contentiously, but they've always been there. The thing is, I have a history of having been verbally abused by family and sexually assaulted by strangers as a child and his fetishes just makes me really uncomfortable and really wound my already struggling self-esteem. DH tries to accomodate and largely restricts his fetishes to talk, self-bondage and latex - but I know that he wants much more. I try to accept and accomodate as much as I can, but I really don't like it and the fact that he needs these things as much as he does makes me feel woefully inadequate. There are certain things he wants that I really find distasteful (wanting to wear the gear in public, for instance) and other things that are psychologically painful for me to hear(telling me in great detail about the physical changes he would make to my body to make it "truly sexy" - like piercings, tattoos, plastic surgery). I have 11 piercings and 3 tattoos all at his request/insistance, but it's never enough. It will never be enough. We've been over it a million times through tears and outside the bedroom (trying to separate the act from the conversation). But the thing is, to me the fetishes (talk of modifications and the pressure to do them, latex, bondage) feed my insecurities and honestly I feel like I'll never be able to be enough just on my own. For him, he says he can't see what the big deal is, that it's my problem if I feel inferior when he does these things and that I have to deal with it. Ten years of prozac hasn't helped, and he's against me going to counselling ("a waste of money when there must be books at the library"). The thing is, I've looked and I see advise for the fetishist but not for the one left in his wake. The only thing I can find is advise to "go with it, you might enjoy it" or leave. I've tried going with it and I truly don't enjoy it. I don't want to leave. I love him desperately and outside of the bedroom he is my very best friend. He is a wonderful father to our girls and I would never want to take that from him. If it weren't for the fact that it would devestate my parents and my kids, I would have probably killed myself by now just to stop the hurt. Please don't tell me to just get over it. I can't. But is there anything I can do to learn some kind of coping strategy so I can go on living with the "other woman" in our lives? Because she's not going away and her presence is getting more and more prevalent as time passes.
First I would NEVER say 'get over it'. You need to listen to some sound practical advice on how to cope with the 'other woman'. Now you need to talk to DH and explain to him that you have wants and needs outside his fetish and these need to be discussed in the open. You could try to get him to go to 'Relate' with you and discuss the situation.
Or you could tell me where you live in the UK and perhaps we could arrange to meet and then discuss the situation. You must never consider suicide. If you feel somewhat down you can call me on 07917453864 or if you can't do that please call the Samaritans.
I want to help you all I can so do read this and take any one of the options offered.