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Sat Jul 1 8:17 pm  #691


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

I wonder if the father being out or not makes any difference here.  I do not know how my daughters would react if he simply told them he is gay.


"Oh what a tangled web we weave, when first we practice to deceive!" - Sir Walter Scott
 

Sat Jul 1 10:15 pm  #692


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Thank you everyone for sharing. My children's initial reaction was mixed. The youngest kids didn't quite understand and so initially they seemed fine with it. Only later did they start to understand what this meant. My eldest understood right away and has had the hardest time with it. I myself am starting to understand the gravity of my decision to come out, separate, and divorce. It's taken me a few years to get here and a lot of posting to see things from my ex-wife's perspective.

I've just come across a series of posts from Stonehouse that struck me. She asked some questions on this thread back in March. Here is her latest post:

1. I've discovered a series of websites dedicated to helping men with porn addiction. They explain that since smart phones and high speed Internet came along, access to porn is now so easy and fast that straight men quickly desensitize to hetero porn, and have to move on to other genres, including gay porn, to be aroused. These sites argue that this is causing men to question their orientations, but that if they stop viewing porn for a period of time, their brain wiring returns to their original orientation, be it gay or straight. I'm confused about this, and contemplating divorce because of my husbands online Craigslist surfing, which he explained away as porn addiction. Do you all think desensitization to porn would have someone viewing gay Craigslist ads daily for weeks on end?"

As someone who has overcome a porn addiction, I'm happy to share my opinion. What she's referring to is something called homosexual obsessive compulsive disorder or "HOCD." It's when someone no longer gets aroused from watching straight porn because he/she has become desensitized to it. So they start to watch porn outside of their normal sexuality which can mean watching anything from violent pornography to gay pornography. I am a gay man and have no interest whatsoever in women nor their bodies. Near the end of my own porn addiction, I started watching straight porn because it was the only thing that aroused me.  

2. I'm also considering seeing a new therapist who counsels spouses on sex addiction, but I wonder if she will try to convince me that there is nothing to this, that it is all just a symptom of his porn addiction, not an orientation issue. I appreciate any thoughts or advice, as always! We had done a lot of couples counseling before I discovered anything. Then once I did (I found his prior 6 weeks of online, 85% male, porn history, though no emails or texts) he said looking at men was just part if his porn viewing and the result of a porn addiction (and my lack of connection to him).

These are all red flags in my opinion. It sounds like Stonehouse is about to go to therapy for him ​which suggests  caretaking or co-dependent tendencies. He should be in therapy for sex addiction, not her. You can't go the gym so that someone else loses weight. He has to want to change, get better, and heal. If he's not doing the work, then it's time to consider separation. With regards to what he's saying, namely "I'm just curious, I'm not gay" there is a difference between passively watching gay porn from time to time and actively seeking hook ups on Craigslist. Yes it's possible that porn addiction could lead him to watch male-on-male videos. But what he's not sharing is that most straight porn addicts who sometimes watch gay porn are completely repulsed by the idea of having sex with other men. Some of them do try gay sex and are disgusted by it because no matter how much porn you watch, it's not going to change your hard-wired sexuality.  

3. I then saw another therapist who specializes in mixed orientation marriage who basically called BS on this.

​I agree. My feeling has always been that if he's on Craigslist, it's more than just curiosity. As your therapist may have already told you, there is a huge difference between curiously watching gay porn and actively hooking up with other men. Gay-in-denial husbands often identify as heterosexual, after all that's why we marry women and have children, and yet we are almost always sexually gay. This means being married to a woman but only having sex with me.   

4. I've since been making baby steps towards separation, with my husband saying I'm using this all as an excuse to leave. I feel guilt because we have 2 kids too. I then found these sites saying the abundance of free online porn can cause men to gravitate from hetero to gay porn because of the need for more and more atypical (for them) stuff over time.

The blaming, guilt trips, and projection all sound like gay-in-denial narcissism. Yes porn addicts may watch porn outside of their sexuality, however, they almost never act on it. If your husband no longer has sex with women (including his wife) and hooks up with other men via Craigslist, he's gay.

5. So now I've spent the last 6 months mentally planning for divorce, but find myself confused. I thought a sex addiction therapist might help me understand my husband more, but I'm afraid she might say "yes it is just a porn addiction, here's how you can help" when what I really need/want is certainty that divorce is the right direction."

Question: what is Stonehouse's husband doing to overcome his porn addiction and be a better husband/father? It sounds like she's doing all of the work while he's doing nothing. What she's described may be the bargaining (or limbo) stage before separation and divorce. We've all been there. If she's not quite ready to divorce, I'd suggest a trial separation. Many gay-in-denial husbands have claimed, "porn is making me do this." Let's assume he's right. Then logically if he stops watching porn, he'll revert back to being heterosexual which will make him a better husband and father.

​During this process, you can ask to separate while he gets therapy and joins Porn Addicts Anonymous. He can come back once he's healed and ready to be a real husband, which means lots of sex with his lovely wife and being a good father to his children. My point is a straight man who loves his wife would take active steps to show he wants to overcome his addiction and have a better relationship with his spouse. A gay-in-denial husband denies, lies, projects, and does nothing to improve the relationship. I hope that helps in some small way my friends. 

     Thread Starter
 

Sat Jul 1 10:50 pm  #693


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Sean,
I'm confused and hoping you'll further explain your thoughts about a couple of things that you wrote:
1.  Near the end of your porn addiction, you began to be aroused by straight porn?  I'm so confused!
2.  Sexually gay vs. emotionally gay:  Personally, I think that is something a GID person says...or a person trying to justify an open marriage, perhaps to salvage a MOM?  Could you elaborate on your thoughts about this?  To me, "sexually gay", but not "emotionally gay" just means plain old shallow or still in denial.  I'm glad you're still posting, for now. 

 

Sat Jul 1 11:35 pm  #694


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Hi JK. In reply:

1.  Near the end of your porn addiction, you began to be aroused by straight porn?  I'm so confused!

I know it's confusing. Think of it in terms of substance addiction. When someone is addicted to heroin, their tolerance for the drug grows as their body adapts to regular usage. This leaves the addict with two solutions: use more of the same drug, or switch to different drugs. Porn addiction is similar. Porn addiction isn't the correct term because porn addicts are addicted to the neurochemical dopamine. Dopamine is the brain's pleasure chemical and it's more powerful than cocaine. When you watch sexual images on a screen, it stimulates dopamine production, making us feel pleasure. The problem is that porn addicts need new and novel forms of visual stimulation to get the same dopamine high. It's like a drug addict needing more of the same drug. As the dopamine/porn addiction worsens, the user has to start watching more shocking images to feel aroused like before. This can mean violent pornography or in some limited cases a straight man starts watching gay porn. At the end of my own porn addiction a few years ago, I'd watched so much gay porn and for so long that it no longer aroused me, simply because it wasn't new, novel or shocking. So like a heroin addict who switches to cocaine, I switched to a different form of pornography: straight porn. I was just trying new and novel things to get the same "high." With regards to gay men claiming "porn made me gay," I find this doubtful. No matter how much porn someone watches, gay or straight, this is still virtual sex and it's easily accessible. However, only a man attracted to men would go out and try to have gay sex. Because there has to be some nugget of real attraction to contact men on Craigslist, exchange messages, arrange for a hook up, and then work like hell to hide it. So while he may claim that porn made him gay, this is unlikely. Only a gay man would seek out real world sex with other men. Even a straight porn addict watching gay porn from time to time wouldn't be able to have sex with another man. Moreover, once a porn addicts stop watching porn, after about 2-3 months they go back to their hard-wired (or normal) sexuality. So for all the straight spouses hearing, "porn made me gay" let him prove it. Tell him to stop watching porn or get professional help to stop watching porn and after about 90 days, he'll be raring to have sex with you. If however after 90 days without porn, he's still hooking up with men via Craigslist, he's as gay as a rainbow.     

2.  Sexually gay vs. emotionally gay:  Personally, I think that is something a GID person says...or a person trying to justify an open marriage, perhaps to salvage a MOM?  Could you elaborate on your thoughts about this?  To me, "sexually gay", but not "emotionally gay" just means plain old shallow or still in denial.

​I posted about this here: http://straightspouse.boardhost.com/viewtopic.php?pid=8496#p8496​. Here is my opinion: I believe that some men identify as heterosexual emotionally while they are almost exclusively gay sexually. He married a woman and claims to love her (emotionally straight) and yet he no longer has sex with his wife nor any other women while only watching gay porn and hooking up with other men (gay sexually). So he sees himself as straight which is why he married a woman and had kids. Yet when confronted by his straight spouse, the gay-in-denial husband has to do a lot of mental and emotional gymnastics to justify why he likes penises rather than vaginas. That's when straight spouses hear the usual excuses: I was sexually abused (often more lies), porn made me do it, etc. After years or even decades in the closet, I believe that a gay-in-denial husband simply cannot accept that he might be gay both emotionally and sexually. Why? The fear and self-hatred are just too deep. Saying, "I'm gay" is simply too raw and painful, particularly when coming out involves making the admission to a wife we married to hide our true sexual identity. This may explain your own husband's current state of mind. Now that you've left him, he's lost his one anchor to his straight identity: a wife/beard.

​I hope I've answered your questions. If not, feel free to post again.

Last edited by Séan (Sat Jul 1 11:45 pm)

     Thread Starter
 

Thu Jul 13 11:44 pm  #695


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Good morning forum! I am so thankful for everything I've learned here. In fact, I can't believe this thread has almost clocked 50,000 views which is staggering. When I first started posting here, I convinced myself it was for the greater good. But then I got an honest reply from Kel. She wrote: 

"Your unique input here has been invaluable.  However, have you taken the time to consider the possibility that you might be using this forum as a place to continue to focus attention on yourself?  To continue to be an validation junkie, as you've mentioned?  All that time you were married and denied being gay, you still wanted to keep your wife around.  You craved her being hung-up on you.  So much so that you hung onto her past the point where not only was it making her miserable, but even you weren't happy.  So long as you knew she wasn't going to get over you.  Now that your ex has made a clean-ish break and most of your communication is about logistics with regards to the kids, maybe you're missing feeling like a leader in the relationship?  That you need to be the expert and have the spotlight on you or you're not happy? Could it be that you are still feeding the need to have straight spouses hanging on your every word?"

​Kel is 100% correct. While acting under the guise of some "greater good", I have to admit that this forum simply feeds my narcissistic needs for love, appreciation and attention. This is unhealthy. And this is why I've decided to stop posting here. Now I'm not leaving in a narcissistic diva-like fit. I leave having learned so much from all of you and perhaps while helping some people along the way. I now have a greater understanding of what I put my ex-wife and children through. Armed with this knowledge, more than ever, I'm committed to rebuilding healthy relationships with my three children and their mother. This means taking all of the time I've spent here and now focusing that energy on children who need their dad.

​So this is a goodbye of sorts my friends. Thank you again for everything. Despite the pain you've all endured because of people like me - many of whom are abusive, dangerous, and downright evil - I wish you and your children happy lives full of love and laughter. You deserve it. Be well my friends. Love Séan.

     Thread Starter
 

Fri Jul 14 8:28 am  #696


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Sean, 

Don't be a stranger..  You are welcome here.   As I've said before, regardless of your true intentions, you have helped a LOT of people and there is something to be said for that. I respect your decision and I hope you are able to transition the time you spent here toward your kids.. that should certainly be your priority. 

Maybe at some point you can come back..

Best of luck to you!


-Formerly "Lostdad" - I now embrace the username "phoenix" because my former life ended in flames, but my new life will be spectacular. 

 
 

Fri Jul 14 10:03 am  #697


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Sean,  I agree with Phoenix & Kel.  There may be an underlying reason for you having started your thread, but still you have helped.  Many of us, probably including you, are trying to process years and years and years of confusion...of our marriages never having been what we thought they were.   Healing a wound so indescribably deep that few even come close to understanding our pain...that takes an enormous amount of time, work, questioning, listening, growth, strength.  The entire situation is full of such damage, that the ripples (& tidal waves) often seem never ending.  I believe you are trying to understand how to move forward, just as we straight spouses are.  Clearly, our stories are connected, though painfully so.

I have learned from you and am thankful for your posts.  I hope you are able to figure out how to be a great father to your children.

 

Fri Jul 14 4:36 pm  #698


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Hi Sean... I am not as active on this forum as I once was so you are unlikely to recognise my name but I just want to say a huge thank you for your dedication to helping straight spouses. I think it's self-evident that you have been a huge help even though some find the very idea of a gay man posting here confronting at first.  Your honesty is commendable. The truths you speak are confronting and yet are often the jolt many straight spouses need to see the realities of their situation.

This forum has been very fortunate to have some great gay contributors over the years. First Difflurker (Diff), then Cameron and more recently yourself. (Sorry if I've forgotten anyone.) Providing support here can be exhausting so I have the utmost admiration for what you have done. I have not seen the narcissism or attention seeking you have referred to and I think that kind of assessment of your motivation is unfounded. Few people would seek attention by committing hundreds and hundreds of hours to help others.

Thank you for being an ally of Straight Spouses.  I wish you and your family peace and love. .

Last edited by Steve (Fri Jul 14 7:02 pm)


You have a future. A good one. It begins as a flicker of hope. Nurture it until it becomes a dream and when you are strong enough you will make it a reality. NEVER give up. 
 

Mon Jul 17 2:10 pm  #699


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

I agree with Steve.  Sean, your input has been so valuable here.  When I very first came here (on the old site) we had Diff and Cameron.  I was so so grateful to have input from someone who could see things from the other side and help explain the situation.  Your thoughts and input have helped hundreds of people. maybe more. Whatever the reason you came, the end result was that you made a huge difference.  Please come back any time if you feel you're ready.   

 

Mon Jul 17 2:33 pm  #700


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

I agree with everyone else you helped immensely. Thank you. I wish you luck with repairing your family.

Last edited by Demons-halo (Mon Jul 17 3:20 pm)

 

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