A high-powered London businesswoman is divorcing her husband after he refused to play along with the erotic themes in the raunchy blockbuster, Fifty Shades Of Grey. The wife, a 41-year-old banker who earns more than £400,000 a year, bought the bestseller almost as soon as it was published last year, and decided to use it to pep up the couple's staid sex life.
But when her husband failed to respond to the novel's themes, which include bondage and S&M, she petitioned for divorce.
In the case, filed in the High Court, the wife refers to the book in her grounds for divorce, which blames the breakdown of the marriage on the husband's lack of sexual adventure. The wife's solicitor, Amanda McAlister, one of Britain's leading matrimonial lawyers, says she believes the case is the first where the book has triggered a divorce.
The wife is arguing that her husband's 'boring attitude' to sex is evidence of 'unreasonable behaviour', one of the five grounds for divorce under English law.
Ms McAlister said: 'The woman had been reading the book and wanted to spice up her love life. 'She thought their sex life had hit a rut – he never remembered Valentine's Day and he never complimented her on her appearance.
'So she bought sexy underwear in an attempt to get her husband more involved. She said, “Let's make things more interesting.”
'But when he still didn't take any notice she told him he had a boring attitude to sex and she was fed up.'
Ms McAlister said the husband's response was to blame Fifty Shades Of Grey: 'He went ballistic when he found out the name of the book she was reading and told her, “It's all because you have been reading that bloody book.” '
The woman's husband is admitting 'unreasonable behaviour' so the divorce can be granted quickly without a contested hearing in which his low libido would be discussed in court.
Ms McAlister, who is in charge of the family department at Russell Jones & Walker, said that it was one of a growing number of divorce cases brought by wives spurred on by the Fifty Shades literary phenomenon – dubbed 'mummy porn' – which encourages women to be more adventurous in the bedroom.