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Afterward we went to my home to get something to eat..
Her midriff was bare and I don't think she was wearing underwear with her stretch pants.
My husband just got home from work and I thought nothing of it.
However, later on I saw him masturbating. He confessed that he got an erection from lusting after her and he was very ashamed. I told him it was her immodest dress that was to blame.
I confronted my sister about this and she told me I ought to leave him because he obviously can't control himself. I also talked to some ladies at my church and they agreed with my sister. they said my husband committed adultery according to Matthew 5:28-29 and he had violated our marriage covenant. I also brought up that I had not had sex with him for a few days because of a yeast infection. They said it wasn't relevant and that I was "excusing rape."
We still love each other and we have a three-year old son we love. I don't want to leave my husband and I won't.
But do they have a point?
Could this indicate something seriously wrong with his character?
It sounds like he's confessed his sin and is seeking forgiveness. He needs God's grace to help him learn self control.
You're not excusing rape, you're trying to understand why the man you love did something sinful which has hurt you both. Hopefully by God's grace you can forgive him and repair your marriage.
The women from your church apparently skipped right past forgiveness, counseling and reconciliation and jumped straight to divorce. So now, your husband cannot be respected at that church anymore, but that seems ok since it doesn’t sound like a very Christ-like environment anyways. Also, “making excuses for rape?” What rape? No rape occurred in your story.
The bottom line is that your husband admitted wrongdoing, and asked forgiveness. The ball is in your court. I recommend finding a church that practices forgiveness and encourages reconciliation before calling for divorce.
My DH once confessed he got an unintentional glimpse down my (younger, more attractive) cousin's shirt at a family gathering and couldn't help enjoying the sight of her breasts, though he didn't dwell on them. We just used it as an opportunity to direct his full attention to my breasts and enjoy the unintentional jump-start to his arousal.
He's a human male. Men tend to be visual creatures. Yes, there were better ways he could have handled this. But he was honest with you when it would have been easy to lie. I agree with David. It sounds like he's repentant. We all make sinful mistakes. It's what we do after the sin that counts. That says much more about your husband's character than the mistake he made.
God's grace is big enough to cover this, and you have the honor of being the vessel through which God can show His mercy.
Rather than judging him as it sounds like you are being advised to do, I feel it would be better to extend the tenets of the fruit of the Spirit. Open a conversation with him about how you can help him feel sexually satisfied during times that you can't have intercourse.
1 Corinthians 7:2 tells us that one of the purposes of marriage is to help each other avoid the temptations of lust. My husband and I are very aware of what is tempting to me, and we are careful to take care of my sexual needs during those times. It really helps me avoid temptation. It's a beautiful thing to have a spouse who can be your go-to in these times of trial.
As for your sister - I get the whole "women should wear what they want and should not be sexualized", but men are visual. We just can't help it. Yes, we can train ourselves to divert our eyes, but sometimes yoga pants leave nothing to the imagination. What's seen is seen.
Lastly, I apologize for being a little pointed, but you have some judgey women at your church. Excusing rape??? Yes, enjoying the sight of another woman to an extreme is considered adultery, but fudging a couple dollars on your tax return is also stealing (see Commandment 8). I said it above, and I will say it again - we ALL have sinned, and we ALL fall short. I hope you both can work through this and move on.
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I’m more concerned about the company/church friends & family you keep. Clearly there is no room in their lives for imperfect people and for error, living in grace and truth, and exercising, grace and forgiveness if they respond so quickly in judgement and encouraging divorce over this. As others have said, no rape occurred, lusting? Yes. But to throw a marriage out for this alone is asinine and I believe, unbiblical.
Duchess had a great idea about sitting on things before talking to these people...but I’d add, drop them as wise counselors. If you are that shaken or believe your marriage needs some work, go find a QUALIFIED, TRAINED and CERTIFIED CHRISTIAN counselor who can help you both address issues in how you relate to one another but no counselor worth their salt, certainly not a Christian counselor would lead & advise you to dump your husband over this alone.
Where is love? Where is the fruit of the spirit? Where is for better or worse? Jesus said, “let him who has not sinned cast the first stone”. These “friends” are legalistic Pharisees...and shouldn’t be sought out for advice...and you need to protect your heart from your sister and any family that would choose to bash or castigate him. He’s your husband and this is part of the “for better or WORSE” part. Set boundaries and make sure you’re available. This is God’s plan and design as DoveGray wrote.
I’ve come home to my wife on multiple occasions and have asked to see my wife’s breasts or make love due to someone/something I’ve seen while out. She is also sensitive to our lovemaking or lack of, and on the occasion she’s had infections or our schedules haven’t worked out well for long lvemaking, so she’ll offer a HJ, BJ, or other opportunity for sexual release. All these things HELP me keep my focus at home (not suggesting or saying you haven’t), then it’s up to me to guard my heart and mind.