Chi Ming Tsoi vs CA

266 SCRA 324

Private respondent Gina Loi and petitioner Chi Ming Tsoi were married at the Manila Cathedral on May 22, 1988. Contrary to Gina’s expectations that the newlyweds were to enjoy making love or having sexual intercourse with each other, the defendant just went to bed, slept on one side thereof, then turned his back and went to sleep. No sexual intercourse occurred during their first night, second, third and fourth night.

From May 22, 1988 until March 15, 1989, they slept together in the same room and on the same bed but during this period, there was no attempt of sexual intercourse between them. A case was then filed to declare the annulment of the marriage on the ground of psychological incapacity. Gina alleged that Chi Ming was impotent, a closet homosexual as he did not show him his penis (clinically found to be only 3 inches and 1 cm. when erect). Defendant admitted that no sexual contact was ever made and according to him everytime he wanted to have sexual intercourse with his wife, she always avoided him and whenever he caressed her private parts she always removed his hands.

Is the refusal of private respondent to have sexual communion with petitioner a psychological incapacity ?[i]

If a spouse, although physically capable but simply refuses to perform his or her essential marriage obligations, and the refusal is senseless and constant, Catholic marriage tribunals attribute the causes to psychological incapacity than to stubborn refusal. Senseless and protracted refusal is equivalent to psychological incapacity. Thus, the prolonged refusal of a spouse to have sexual intercourse with his or her spouse is considered a sign of psychological incapacity.

Evidently, one of the essential marital obligations under the Family Code is “To procreate children based on the universal principle that procreation of children through sexual cooperation is the basic end of marriage.” Constant non-fulfillment of this obligation will finally destroy the integrity or wholeness of the marriage. In the case at bar, the senseless and protracted refusal of one of the parties to fulfill the above marital obligation is equivalent to psychological incapacity.

While the law provides that the husband and the wife are obliged to live together, observe mutual love, respect and fidelity. (Art. 68, Family Code), the sanction therefor is actually the “spontaneous, mutual affection between husband and wife and not any legal mandate or court order. Love is useless unless it is shared with another. Indeed, no man is an island, the cruelest act of a partner in marriage is to say “I could not have cared less.” This is so because an ungiven self is an unfulfilled self. The egoist has nothing but himself. In the natural order, it is sexual intimacy which brings spouses wholeness and oneness. Sexual intimacy is a gift and a participation in the mystery of creation. It is a function which enlivens the hope of procreation and ensures the continuation of family relations.

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