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July 6, 2018 8:53 pm  #1

Here goes

I've been lurking for a few weeks, unsure if I wanted to 'come out', so to speak. But after a particularly difficult week and a pending counseling session, I think I need to take the plunge.

We met at an event in fall of 2006. Quickly became friends and worked together on some consulting projects off and on for 3+ years. During this time I got married and soon divorced. I assumed he was gay.

We started to work together much more closely in 2010 and by the end of that year, we found ourselves together at least 5 days a week. I got to know his girlfriend. (Plot twist!)

Girlfriend gets dismissed in 2011 and somewhere in the course of the 6 or so months following her departure, we had no choice but to acknowledge that we were dating. Hard to deny it when we spent every possible moment together.

He was in a supervisory role over me, though and my entire livelihood was tied up in him. So I was extremely hesitant, despite my obvious attraction.

Long story short, he told me that he was bi, he told me that he was HIV+, and he told me that he was in love with me. It took some real soul searching to get past those 1st two. Months. But he was by far the most emotionally mature human being I had ever met. And at 46 years old, with all of the clarity with which he presented himself and all of his -isms + baggage + history, I decided that I couldn't afford to say no to my chance at real, grown up love.

We talked at length about his history with both men and women. I thought I had all the details that I needed to make informed decisions.

We had a wedding that, 5 years later, people are still raving about. He's a very visible public figure in the community and our nuptials were all anybody could manage to talk about for years before and after the big to do whetherthey were there or not. The fairy tale couple, we were the power couple, the ideal.

And for the first 2.5 years, I felt that way too. Ups and downs, sure. Bumps in the road, of course. Disagreements and points of contention, without question. But we were good.

I was more than patient with the ED. I knew that getting with an almost 50 year old workaholic meant that I was unlikely to get the 3-4x a week that I would have liked. I knew that he was willing to continue to try different medications, trial and error, and that while he worked through all of that, there were some pretty significant lulls.

Then the job change. A gigantic adjustment for us and one that I had always feared. His incredible charm and often astonishing lack of boundaries made me insecure not having him where I could see him. Looking back, I realize that I was way off the mark with that.

Immediately, like from day 1, literally I began to feel completely left out. It started with little things like forgetting to tell me about this week's 'big-big thing' that I had to change my schedule and get all gussied up for. And the sex was virtually nonexistent at this point. But when a person goes from working 65 hours a week to over 80, it's easy to see how that might not get as much attention.

[I'm currently at a point where I'm working very hard to release the narrative in my mind about all of the marriage issues that snowballed during this 2.5 year period, so for my own emotional stability, I'm going to skip those details. Suffice it to say that by the time I really started to wave the yellow flag, I had resigned myself to the fact that he was never going to value this partnership for anything other than how it made him look good to his professional colleagues. And dinner and laundry.]

January. 1st big communication. I emailed him about the lack of sex. I was direct and clear and told him that it had to change, by hook or by crook. 3.5 weeks later when he responded, he said a whole lot of nothing.

Check ins every 3 weeks or so. Have you gone to get your testosterone checked? Have you scheduled with the therapist? Always, the answer was no.

Mid-May I couldn't take it anymore and checked into a hotel for 10 days. Within 24 hours he was ready to talk. "On the spectrum of sexuality, I thought I was 60/40. It seems like I am actually 40/60. I'm not heterosexual enough to meet the demands of this marriage."

Late May. I'm back home, grudgingly but we are scheduled to see the counselor who did our pre-marital sessions. 1st session reveals that he has been watching porn and fantasizing. 2nd session his tearful admission 'I don't want to be gay'.

Another email. Because at this point, I don't have the capacity to say words to him out loud.
-I feel so stupid.
-I feel so used.
-I have been your beard all along.
-Have we changed the designation from bi to gay?
His response? To be offended by the beard comment and me saying that I suspect he has been forcing himself into these MF relationships to try to 'overcome' the SSA. No acknowledgement of any of the rest.

3rd session "I need you to tell me the truth. I need to know that when you see me naked, it moves. When you brush up against me in the bed, it moves. When..." "I'm gay."

That was 10 days ago.

I am in a physically debilitating depression. I haven't left the house unless I absolutely must. I finally broke down and told him that I had to move because being here makes it too easy to get comfortable and pretend like any of this makes any sense.

I almost feel embarrassed to say that he has been very apologetic. No blame. I read the horror stories on here and try to find some comfort in the fact that he isn't treating me badly. But I am dying inside. Watching him be fully functional while I am having a hard time breathing...it's infuriating. 4th of July he cooked up a whole bunch of food (while I spent the entire day sobbing in bed) and at one point he walked into the house singing. Every other phone call, he's exploding with laughter. Because 'everybody processes differently'.

When asked if he has any emotions (because all I see is 'normal'), he led with RELIEVED. Said some other stuff about sad or uncertain or whatever. But all I heard was RELIEVED. Because that's the feelings-word that aligns with his actions. It takes every bit of energy that I have to walk outside and I can't say more than 2 words to him without breaking down sobbing, hyperventilating. But he's singing. I gave up everything I owned and have zero money (and mountains of debt) trying to help him keep up this image that we had it all. I can't afford to move anywhere. I have no furniture, no dishes, nothing but 3 closets full of great dresses. And he's RELIEVED. Singing. When I told him how difficult it is for me to go out in public and put on the mask as if everything is ok when really everything is falling apart....his response? You should reframe your thinking.

I've managed not to physically assault him. To date.

So I spend every day trying to do just 1 thing. Work, apartment search, anything that's not sitting on the couch bawling then sleeping for 4 hours. I wish I could say that he's a terrible person. I wish I could align his behavior to Sean's NPD symptoms and patterns. I really just wish he would take it all back.


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