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Support » I need advice on a situation that is probably familiar to everyone » January 7, 2020 6:07 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 14

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Hi Another SS:

My gay-soon-to-be-ex-wife had an affair with the mother of one of our daughter's (now former) best friends.  We have three kids (ages 6, 9 and 12) and her girlfriend's family has three kids as well.

Here are the realities.  Your wife is not straight.  She lied about that.  She still likes the ladies.  She felt like she needed to have an affair.  She was willing to deprioritize you and your family so much that she moved out.  Is this really what you want?  If not, run.

You made a comment earlier that bothered me.  "I think the main issue I'm having is I don't want to take her back and resent her forever."  My friend, this is not a YOU issue.  This is a HER issue.  You are reacting normally to learning that your wife has had an affair, wouldn't call it off, moved out of the house, discarded you and the kids, and oh, yeah, isn't straight.  If you actually do consider trying to reconcile, the hard work of repairing the relationship is hers, not yours.

Good luck. 

General Discussion » I Am Getting Off The Forgiveness Hamster Wheel » August 21, 2019 11:25 am

Blue Bear
Replies: 18

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I'm so sorry you are going through this.  After a lot of reflection on my personal situation, here's my analysis of "forgiveness".  Maybe you will find it helpful, too.

In the traditional concept of forgiveness, the perpetrator genuinely seeks forgiveness from the victim after appreciating what they have done.  Very few of us will obtain this from our gay spouses, and I'm not going to squander my precious time waiting for my STBXW to grovel and beg for forgiveness.  To quote The Chump Lady, "Glaciers will melt, refreeze, and become ice swan sculptures at gay weddings in Saudi Arabia before that happens."  (See Chapter 5 of her book, and the reader letter from "Wondering".)

This means that you cannot "forgive" in the traditional sense.  Again, I point you to the Chump Lady on this (https://www.chumplady.com/2017/07/do-you-have-to-forgive-a-cheater-2/), and the brilliant quote she found from Desmond Tutu, in which he redefines "forgiveness""

"However, when I talk of forgiveness I mean the belief that you can come out the other side a better person. A better person than the one being consumed by anger and hatred. Remaining in that state locks you in a state of victimhood, making you almost dependent on the perpetrator. If you can find it in yourself to forgive [i.e., coming out on the other side a better person not consumed by anger and hatred] then you are no longer chained to the perpetrator. You can move on, and you can even help the perpetrator to become a better person too."

This re-definition of forgiveness was really helpful to me, particularly since I've got wonderful kids, a lot of life left to live, and a lot to be thankful for.  My goal isn't to wait in vain for a request for forgiveness that will never come; my goal is to come out on the other side of this hellish experience a better person.  While I cannot control my STBXW's actions, the silver lining is that if this approach makes her a better person for the sake of the kids and san

General Discussion » Dealing with ongoing dishonesty » August 14, 2019 4:55 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 7

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Hi Tyler:  I could not agree more with ADSJ.  It's like the body snatchers have claimed my wife and have replaced her with a really mean-spirited, 100% dishonest person.  The moment I realized that the woman I married was gone, life became easier for me.

General Discussion » Dealing with ongoing dishonesty » August 12, 2019 8:50 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 7

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Dear Tyler: I am so sorry you are going through this. My story is pretty similar to yours. About two months ago (at the suggestion of the great people on this message board), I submitted my story to The Chump Lady, who runs an amazing (and amazingly funny, if you can believe it) blog about infidelity. She is focused more on “straight” infidelity, but there are some substantial overlaps.

You can read my letter and her response here: https://www.chumplady.com/2019/06/dear-chump-lady-my-wife-cheated-with-a-woman/

She is spot on. She absolutely nailed it, and her advice was far better than anything I got out of therapy. The comments are also great. Please read them.

Long story short, I can’t change my STBXW. But I can change how I respond to her, and I’m moving on. I can’t get what I wanted for my life, but I’m getting what I need. (Apologies to Mick Jagger.)

By the way, my STBXW’s lies became epic. It’s clear to me that she can no longer tell between the truth and an outright lie.  She recently told me she was leaving town for the evening, and I asked whether her girlfriend was going.  She said no.  Guess what popped up on Facebook?  I asked her POINT BLANK whether she was having an affair with girlfriend.  She denied it and got mad at me (guess what?  I was right!).  The lies are epic.  It's a lot of work to keep a secret double life alive.

Asking a liar to stop the lies is like asking Simon Cowell to stop being critical.  It's not worth your time or emotional investment.  Just assume everything she's telling you is a lie, and move on.  They become nuts when the deception of their secret double lives start spinning out of control.  It's a defense mechanism, albeit an unjustified one.  

Glad to talk. Glad to chat. Good luck, and take care of yourself.

General Discussion » First Aid Kit: How to survive finding out your partner is LGBT » August 12, 2019 3:40 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 43

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I'd add two more things to the "first aid" kit.

1.  You are not going insane.  You will feel like your entire sense of reality has been upended, and you will often feel like you are trapped inside a very bad dream.  You will likely feel like the future you envisioned with your spouse is disintegrating, and you will start to question whether your past was real.  Your same-sex attracted spouse might further distort your reality by shifting the focus to alleged problems with you, and how somehow, you allegedly contributed to this situation.  This will be more likely if you discovered your spouse is same-sex attracted in the context of infidelity.  Often, same-sex attracted spouses have created elaborate deceptions about their sexuality and affairs, and their ability to perpetuate these deceptions is starting to fail.  Their behavior might become irrational, manipulative and confusing as they attempt to regain control of their deception, further distorting your sense of reality.  Additionally, expect your same-sex attracted spouse to repaint and recharacterize many of the events in your past in order to support their narrative that this situtation is somehow your fault.

2.  Avoid discussing your spouse's definition of their own sexuality.  You know what you need to know, which is that your spouse is same-sex attracted.  They are finally required to confront what that means to you and what your reaction to it will be.  Your same-sex attracted spouse might be confused, in denial or trying to process what all of this actually means to them.  It doesn't matter whether your spouse eventually chooses the label of "bisexual", "gay", "lesbian", "pansexual" or "straight".  What does matter is that you now that your spouse is same-sex attracted, which is probably not what you signed up for when you married them.  The label is irrelevant.

 

General Discussion » They gave themselves permission... » August 12, 2019 11:25 am

Blue Bear
Replies: 3

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I also thought the Chump Lady's post this morning was great.  Her book (excellent...please buy yourself a copy today if you haven't read it) focuses more on "straight" infidelity, but much of the content is applicable to our situations because it deals with the benefits of breaking away from highly damaged and dishonest people.  

Asking your cheater or cheating LGBTQ spouse "why?" this happened is a pointless exercise  Building upon the content in the Chump Lady's book on this topic, we just need to accept that they cheated because they suck, they felt entitled, gave themselves permission, are pathologically dishonest, did not love us the way we loved them, are disordered, did not care about how their actions would affect us or our kids, and have crappy characters.

Accept it, and move on in your life.  You will not receive a logical answer to "why?" from an illogical person.

General Discussion » When people compare this to regular infidelity, I get so mad. » August 10, 2019 5:40 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 11

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You should get mad.  I listened to one of the SSN podcasts (“The Anger” episode), and the straight spouse explained very well why this is worse than “mere” infidelity.

With infidelity, you lose the future that you had planned with your spouse.. With your spouse coming out of the closet in the context of a same-sex affair (the prevalent scenario), you not only lose your future but you also lose your past. You ask yourself what was real in your past, and it sends you reeling. Losing your past and your future is a double whammy.

Support » What to tell teen and YA children; outing vs making ourselves small? » August 4, 2019 9:07 am

Blue Bear
Replies: 29

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I decided to be brutally honest with my kids, ages 6, 9 and 12. They have openly gay teachers at school, and my brother is gay and happily married. I told them that “mommy has decided that she would like to live with x.”  They were angry, but the truth is the best thing in my book.

I felt very strongly about avoiding the “mommy and daddy grew apart” nonsense because that’s not what happened. It’s also a complete non-reason because it’s a result of, rather than the cause of, the divorce. It’s hiding the underlying reason. I also don’t want them to think that I could “grow apart” from them.

Additionally, my STBXW has lied and gasllit them, too. They deserve the truth, and I’m glad that I stuck to that. This situation sucks, but the truth will help make things right.  I don’t want to get into a “who’s your favorite parent?” contest, but the kids have really come in close to me. And that’s what they need right now - to know that they have at least one parent who has their back and who they can trust with their lives. I’m honored to be in that role.

Good luck. You just have to do what’s right for you and your kids.

Support » Constant Reminders » July 31, 2019 4:01 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 3

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Hi SS1979:  I am so sorry that you are going through this.

My 15 year wedding anniversary was last week, and I survived because of the love and support of friends, and particularly with the love and support I received from a truly wonderful person I met through a local SSN meeting.  I’m filing for divorce this week, and even though my situation sucks (and all of our situations suck), I don’t really even feel bad about filing.  My wife had a secret year-long affair with a woman several houses down from us, and divorce is definitely the right decision for us despite having wonderful children aged 6, 9 and 12. 

Like you, I grieve the life I had and the future I thought we would have, but that’s not something I can change, unfortunately.  Accepting that was really difficult, but it did help me see the path forward.  And it was incredibly liberating because I was letting go of something that I just couldn’t have any more.

I have three suggestions:

1.  Meet with a lawyer if you haven’t already.  Many lawyers who practice family law offer initial consultations of about an hour at a discounted rate.  Given the length of your marriage, you might have more financial options in a divorce than you think.  Please do this.

2.  Find a therapist if you haven’t already.  There is something incredibly cathartic about unloading everything on someone who is trained to ask you the right questions to help you move forward in your thinking.  They won’t be able to give you back the life you wanted, but they can help you unpack the burden you are carrying.

3.  Keep active in the SSN.  I joined this group, and it is one of the best things I have ever done.  I’m glad you feel comfortable enough to share what you are going through on these message boards.  I attended a local SSN meeting, and I met people who understand me in a way that few people ever could.  You can share your story, unload, and receive suggestions and support.  Stay here, we are here for you.

Good luc

Is He/She Gay » Could we make this all the more confusing? » July 29, 2019 12:15 pm

Blue Bear
Replies: 20

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Lily: If it's any consolation, I asked my STBXW if she were having an affair with her "friend" twice and a few months apart.  She denied it vehemently.

Duped's and OMOTF's earlier responses are spot on.  The only piece of advice I would give to anyone dealing with this situation is this -- don't try to engage with this kind of mindfuckery.  You will lose, you will never get a clear answer or the answer you want, and you will be exhausted by performing mental gymnastics at the end of it. 

This is the way I felt when I was trying to engage my wife on her sexuality.  I love stupid movies, and one of them is Billy Madison.  Billy attempts to prove his smarts during a quiz, and gives a stupid answer.  The school principal says this to him:  "Mr. Madison, what you've just said is one of the most insanely idiotic things I have ever heard.  At no point in your rambling, incoherent response were you even close to anything that could be considered a rational thought.  Everyone in this room is now dumber for having listened to it.  I award you no points, and may God have mercy on your soul."  That is what I wanted to say in response to her, but I think it would have inflamed the situation even more..

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