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August 2, 2018 3:37 pm  #11


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

Wifeofabiman wrote:

....... To date he hasn’t done anything except gay chat......

 

Do you honestly believe that this is all he's done?
 


*between a rock and a hard place*
 

August 2, 2018 5:04 pm  #12


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

I know I likely sound crazy and irrational. I am just trying to hold things together until I can make the best decision for me. I hope I can do this without having my heart crushed.

But to answer your question, yes. You likely think that I am foolish but I told him he must be honest with me; he promised; I quizzed him. Plus he really doesn’t have time to. Since we have been married, we spend most of the time and most days together. We went to grad school together; we do the same job; every job we have had we have worked at the same place together; we exercise together; we go to church together; and so on. That likely seems weird but that is how we have done things and have enjoyed our lives. I think this is likely another reason that I am so upset all of this... he has been a big part of my world and I don’t want to share him but I don’t want to live without him....

     Thread Starter
 

August 3, 2018 7:44 am  #13


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

Thank you....yes this is alll hard to hear....I want so desperately for us to be happy together until we die... but when I inquired more about what he wanted and he told me about the emotional connection, part of me died. Knowing what I know changes things. I wish and hope that when I tell him that he can only have friendship with another person, he will say no problem. But I am afraid he will say that is not good enough. I also hope that If I am ok with it, that he can experience this sexual encounter with a man but not over and over again, he will say ok or I don’t even want to. I only need you.... I am trying to get a social support system in place and spend more quality time with him. We actually had a really nice date last night — lots of laughing— my husband is kind of strange—/ he will get an idea —- almost any idea in his head —- and changing his mind about  that idea is impossible. So I usually don’t bother. I help him until he realizes on his own that he needs to change his perspective. Most of these uses have to do with projects he likes to do.... I have so many unfinished projects laying about in my house, it isn’t funny. I am hoping so much that this idea of him explorating his bisexuality is like one of these projects... that he will get bored )if that is the right word) with it. But I am still not convince that he is truly bisexual. I would like to say that is more like being intrigued and a way to make him feel better about himself... 45 was a hard birthday for him. He has been going through a midlife crisis ever since. I know I have to keep it in my head that he may actually really want to be romantically involved in a male but....

Thank you for your support. I don’t understand why there are so many of us....it is so unfair... did you stay with your partner long after you found out? Do we know of any MOMs that have been successful.

I am right with you I am sick to my stomach all of the time. I hard can eat anything. I may cry at any time. I was in my exercise class and burst out in tears. I am sure everyone was wondering what was going on...any time I have experienced a difficult situation, I look at it and look at the ok parts and tell myself that things could be worse and then think of how things could be worse..... but I have not been successful at doing that with this situation yet.

     Thread Starter
 

August 3, 2018 10:55 am  #14


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

I believe I'm in a successful MOM, so I am going to respond here.  Please understand that my comments are based on my own experiences.

In a month, it will be three years since my husband admitted to me and to himself his attraction to men.  He identifies as bisexual.  Like your situation, he has not been physically unfaithful (I believe this).  But, over the years, he had intense relationships with men.  Because I had asked him if he was attracted to men prior to our being married (25 years), and he said no, although the relationships were puzzling, I wasn't threatened by them.  The men involved were always straight.  Anyway, whether he understood it (he claims he didn't and I think I believe him...although there is a kernel of doubt here), these were emotional affairs.  3 years ago, after he became involved, yet again, with a much younger straight man in which he had little in common, I couldn't come up with any other explanation as to his behavior.  I asked him if he was gay.  He said "maybe half" and that he had just begun realizing this for himself within the last six months.  I could write a ton on his repression and denial, but am focusing on the marriage.  Like you, this set us on an incredible emotional roller coaster - up, down, anger, tears, highs, lows, were were going to do everything to stay together, I was leaving right now...you name it.  After some very rough patches, we seem to have reached some equilibrium and, in the last year, have begun planning for the future again.  Here are my thoughts as to how we turned this around:

Both of us were committed to trying to make the marriage work on terms that were acceptable to us both.

No decisions/changes were to be made within the first year (this was advice we got from ALL of our therapists).  So, to begin, because were were a monogamous couple, it stayed this way.

Speaking of therapists, we went to marriage counseling and individual counseling (his was an LGBT positive therapist).

He became comfortable that he is bisexual through his therapy, and as a result, I am comfortable with this as well (I would not remain married to him if he were gay - yes, I know that the lines are not all that bright, but "bisexual" to me means that he is actually attracted to me - not necessarily women, but me; and gay would mean that he was only attracted to men and not to me...both physically and emotionally).

In order to truly get our marriage back on track, we realized that we both had to get to a place in which we were in it because we wanted to be in it, not because we were afraid to be out of it.  Only time and space can help with this.

When we acknowledged his SSA, my response was terror.  I was afraid to be divorced- afraid of what it would do to our teenage son, afraid and ashamed of the situation itself, I was convinced that I could not survive without him.  Giving the year (time and space) with no decisions helped with this considerably.  Through my therapy, I got a grip on what I was afraid of and, I have to tell you, it was mainly shame (I was so ashamed of what people would think of me having been married to a homosexual man for all these years - what is wrong with me? was my life a complete waste?).  It was not really about my son.  Although a divorce would not be an optimal situation, my husband and I are friends and will always be.  We would make the process as soft for our son as we could - no acrimony, full support, teamwork.  And we know our son would be ok.  Because I have a stable career and income for myself, I realized that I was not afraid to be without him because of finances (we earn about the same).  What it really came down to for me was the shame and the fact that I would be "trapped" geographically until my child graduates from high school (my family lives in a different part of the country and I would not live where I do except for my husband and son...if we divorced, I would be "stuck here") .  Once I understood what my fear really was, I learned in therapy to get over it (the shame) and I was able to really develop empathy for my husband. Because I am financially stable (lucky in this respect), every day I stay here because I want to be here, not because I am afraid to leave.  This is huge. 

My therapy honed in on what I wanted.  And I wanted a monogamous relationship - period. So the requirement for our relationship is monogamy.  Thankfully, my husband has not asked for nonmonogamy.  While I fully accept that my husband is attracted to men and I do not advocate his denying attraction or repressing sexuality, I  have a dim view of affirmatively exploring or acting on attractions.  That is, if an attractive guy comes into my husband's ambit (in his job, on the beach, on a tv show), and he takes a look and has a little fantasy - good for him.  I'm happy to join in the enjoyment of the view.  I have always been this way about attractive women (he has a thing for Liv Tyler and, every time he sees her onscreen we both ooh and aah, for example).  However, actively seeking out connection such as chats/relationships - this is a hard no for me.  I'm uncertain about the role of porn (I am equally swayed by it is not good for the marriage and it is a healthy outlook), and haven't completely settled on it (I don't monitor what he watches).  I am not closed minded (indeed, I'm a bona fide blue state lefty lib practically socialist), but if staying in a monogamous relationship is the goal, how does affirmative seeking accomplish this goal?  This requires a special effort and intent that is not compatible with the stated goal.  If my husband wants these things, he can have them...he just can't have me as well.  I realize that other folks have other arrangements that work for them and I do not judge - knowing myself (and I am an inherently insecure person), I could not bear an open relationship.  It is just me.  Marriage is a two way street, I do/don't do things because it is good for my marriage as well (the geography thing is pretty potent for me and I have given up a lot to be here - this is at least as valid as asking that my husband rein in actively exploring something that his harmful to the marriage as we define it).

So, every day, he has to decide whether these terms work for him or whether he feels too boxed in.  If he decides he wants to affirmatively explore, we will split.  It will not be fun, but we all (husband, son and I) will be ok.  Getting to the point where you know that you will be ok no matter what happens is really the key.

Don't allow anything to be forced on you that you are not comfortable with (bringing in another person just yet).  This will cause you more grief and hinder the recovery/healing process.  I suggest that you and your husband agree on a time period ( the therapists say a year) before even talking about decisions.  Then, work on understanding exactly what your fears are.  If you are dependent on his income, I suggest having a meeting with a divorce attorney who can discuss with you the economic issues you may face - at least you will have concrete information and you can go from there.  Then, really think about why you want in, rather than being afraid to be out of the marriage.

Best of luck to you.  I remember well how you are feeling.  It gets better, it really does.

 

August 3, 2018 6:03 pm  #15


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

smokeymama, I wish you the best.

wifeofabiman: I hope we're not coming off as dismissive here, but many of us have our own baggage.  For example, men coming clean a tiny bit at a time, downplaying how far things have actually gotten.  It doesn't mean this is what your husband is doing, but on the other hand many of us were initially told the same thing -- "I think I might be bi, but I've never acted on it, I just want to explore this side of my feelings."  The problem is that people rarely come asking for permission like this.  They sneak around, try it a bit, and then want to come clean but can't acknowledge having already done it.

And who can blame them?  Would you want to risk your entire marriage and family, on an untested theory?

We can come off skeptical about these claims of "bisexuality" because for a lot of these people, they don't want to face, up front, the fact that they lured us into marriage knowing that they had no attractions to us.  How much easier to claim, against all evidence, that they've just now figured out they're bi!  So it's not that they don't love us!  They just want to keep us and still get to play around!

My husband is a prime example.  When I confronted him, his response was "I have always known that I am bisexual."  Now, under the circumstances I have bigger issues to deal with beyond debating a dictionary with him, but to be clear: he has risked everything just to be able to have multiple hookups with men.  He has declined to have any sex at all with women, notwithstanding the fact that he could have done so at any time without even risking his marriage, by having sex with me.  Which part of that screams "bisexual" to you?

So if we're reacting the way we are here, please know that we are truly, truly on your side here, and it's entirely possible that your husband is as attracted to women as he is to men.  It's entirely possible that he has never given in to the temptation to find out how serious his gay side might be.  It's entirely possible that he's telling you the truth.  But to protect yourself, you should be aware that he could be lying to you.

 

August 3, 2018 11:55 pm  #16


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

smokeymama wrote:

I believe I'm in a successful MOM, so I am going to respond here.  Please understand that my comments are based on my own experiences.....

 

Thanks for your story. I compare it to another MOM-story (by Yaz-pistachio, and it's so different....the tone of it, the language used to describe it....that it just helps to prove that (not that I didn't already know) that no one MOM is  the same as another and one should be circumspect when listening to the comments of those who have "been through the fire and come out the other side....burnt" and who can only see a relationship based on their own experience. These men and women have buckets of good advice & compassion but all to one end......the collapse of the marriage/relationship. 


 

 


*between a rock and a hard place*
 

August 6, 2018 9:51 pm  #17


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

Thank you everyone for your comments and support. I can’t believe that I — and all of you —- are going through all of this.... It is just not fair.

Anyhow I have spoken to my husband several times since my last post, mainly about, although he is dealing with a lot, he can’t forget I am also going through a lot and that I never asked for any of this. I reminded him MULTIPLE times how hard all of this is on me. I think finally that it is clueing in a little that the revelation he has made affects me as well as him. He has not pushed, suggested, or anything about exploring his bisexuality. He actually has been very attentive. But I have been doing lots of reading on this subject matter. I still don’t understand hardly any of this, especially how it could happen to me. 20 years ago if anyone asked me or suggested that my future husband might be bisexual, I would have laughed and told them that they were crazy. He was such a lady’s man.  But here I am now. So I have decided that although I love husband very much and I like how things are now... sort of back to “normal,” I will take my kids and go away with them for a week. I told my husband that he has my permission during this time to explore his bisexuality since he can’t even (or won’t) tell me what actually he wants or what will “complete him.”

I likely am making a big mistake but I don’t know what else to do. I still don’t want to divorce him (not yet anyhow). I am really hoping that he will realize that he isn’t bisexual at all, just horny? intrigued?  I know that I am hoping for something that won’t happen. But maybe, he will realize what he has with me is better or at least just as good? ... or maybe he will tell me that he is actually gay? (Then maybe I will have the strength to say I am done with this). I don’t know. I do know that I don’t want to go on for months, years, wondering how bisexual is he... can we make this work or not? How can we both be happy? Is that even possible? And if exploring his bisexuality makes him that much more happy, how can I deny that to him. I will look at this at one blessing? at a time... at least he came to me and did not cheat... at least he came to me after 20 years of marriage not 50... at least he wants to work something out.... So I am just jumping into the fire, hoping that I (and my kids) will survive somehow and that maybe some of my questions will be answered....

     Thread Starter
 

August 8, 2018 8:20 pm  #18


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

It s really helpful and encouraging to be able to read these posts, and to know I am not the only woman going through this. Like some of you, the need for my husband to explore the sexual side of his nature, as long as we continue to be respectful, honest with each other, and for him to be safe and discreet, does not bother me nearly as much as the thought of him developing a deep emotional relationship with someone else, anyone else. We had a heart to heart today and Brian assures me that he loves me and our family and wants to remain married. We have a very good sexual relationship as well as emotional and spiritual. We have been working on our marriage in this situation for over a year now. He told me today that above all else he wants our marriage to work and that if I tell him this must stop today he will end his exploration. I, however, cannot do that. I cannot deny the other part of him. I love all the parts that make him who he is. There are days that I am truly torn and it makes me question everything about who I am. But the truth is, I love him, I respect him. He has been a wonderful father to my girls, raised and supported them as if they are his very own.He is kind and compassionate and always willing to help others in need. So for me it comes down to choice. If I must choose between judgement and mercy, I will choose mercy. I have lived this all of my life and don't intend to stop now. However, to deny any insecurity would not be completely honest and so I told him today about my fears ,my emotions, and I came away again saying, "I want this to work!"

 

August 8, 2018 8:48 pm  #19


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

Brian'sGirl wrote:

..... So for me it comes down to choice. If I must choose between judgement and mercy, I will choose mercy. I have lived this all of my life and don't intend to stop now. However, to deny any insecurity would not be completely honest and so I told him today about my fears ,my emotions, and I came away again saying, "I want this to work!"

 

Respectfully BG.....most of us have realised sexual identity can be hidden, but never fully repressed, and all the judgment or mercy. leniency and 'exploration' in the world won't change that.
Work on you, your choices and insecurities.
The forum is your soundingboard
 


*between a rock and a hard place*
 

August 9, 2018 5:26 pm  #20


Re: Bi husband wants our marriage to work

Ellexoh_nz wrote:

Brian'sGirl wrote:

..... So for me it comes down to choice. If I must choose between judgement and mercy, I will choose mercy. I have lived this all of my life and don't intend to stop now. However, to deny any insecurity would not be completely honest and so I told him today about my fears ,my emotions, and I came away again saying, "I want this to work!"

 

Respectfully BG.....most of us have realised sexual identity can be hidden, but never fully repressed, and all the judgment or mercy. leniency and 'exploration' in the world won't change that.
Work on you, your choices and insecurities.
The forum is your soundingboard
 

 
Not real sure about the first part of your response to my last post. I have no desire for my husband to repress his identity or his need to explore his sexuality. None of us want to live a half existence. Concerning judgement and mercy, I am speaking in regards to our spiritual walk and committment to my husband in light of the situation. There will be many in our circle of family and friends, our church who will be very judgemental when we choose the time for Him to come out publically. Some will be critical and want to condemn him. Some will want to condemn me for staying and working to keep our marriage together. I am choosing not to judge him concerning his walk, his Christianity, that is between him and God. It has taken a lot of time and study to get to that point because of my strict, Christian upbringing. And i am so glad for this Forum, for those of you whom have paved the way for those of us that are new here. And yes, at 56 yrs. old I do need to work on myself. If I cannot be secure in who I am, I will never be secure in our marriage with all of these changes. I have not confided to anyone in my large family of siblings, friends, or church family, so it is great to be able to open up without fear of recrimination. Thank you all for understanding!

 

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