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This Open Forum is funded and administered by the Straight Spouse Network (SSN), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides support to straight spouses and partners who have discovered that their spouse/partner isn’t straight. The results from SSN’s Annual Summer Donation Drive are in! Together with your help, SSN raised $16,381 during our annual Summer Donation Drive! That’s 109% of our goal! Learn more about how the funds will be utilized.

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Straight Spouse Network Open Forum

This Open Forum is funded and administered by the Straight Spouse Network (SSN), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that provides support to straight spouses and partners who have discovered that their spouse/partner isn’t straight. Your donations allow us to provide important support and resources that straight spouses can't find anywhere else.


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February 6, 2021 10:42 am  #1


First Timer

My wife and best friend of 11 years has come out as lesbian. I'm all over the place w this. Apparently she was suppressing her true feelings all her life and in going to therapy to work out her self esteem issues, it became clear to her. She's been honest w me and wants to now live her life as a lesbian. She told me just before New Years. We own a home and have 2 kids. One of us alone cannot afford the house. We're trying to "stay together for the kids" because we don't know how anything else can work but I'm just so all over the place. I'm heartbroken, depressed, angry, scared and confused. I've started counseling to try and help sort the emotions. I think this group will be good for me. I need people who can relate. I feel like the few people around me who know just can't relate. How do I attack this? Take it as it was just wasn't meant to be? What will make me happy going forward? Being alone? I will post more. Thank you all for sharing. It helps

 

February 6, 2021 12:38 pm  #2


Re: First Timer

I hoped that one of the men who post here and have been in your situation would be online and welcome you to the club that no one wanted to join. I think that it is important that you are thinking about what will make you happy because that matters too. It is good that you have started counseling for yourself. .

My children were adults when my now-ex husband announced that he was gay, was moving out and wanted a divorce so the issues you face are not the same. Staying together is not always best even if it means selling the family home. Children need calm and happy parents, even if they are in separate homes.


Try Gardening. It'll keep you grounded.
 

February 6, 2021 12:51 pm  #3


Re: First Timer

Meant2be,

So sorry you have to find yourself here, but glad you found the site for support. We’ve all been through similar situations, even though all different in some ways— but, the felling ‘all over the place’, especially at first is common to most of us! Your world, as you knew it, has just been turned upside down and nothing that  you thought was real is no more.....I’ve been there. My husband is bisexual, not gay, so we’re trying to make it. However, he cheated for years anonymously with many men before I found out, so we had a rough start. We were best friends before all of this, so it gave us a base to begin with.....doesn’t mean it’s been easy, though.

You say she wants to live her life as a lesbian. I also see you’re trying to ‘stay together for the kids’...and, the financial problems come in, as the home. So, it looks like you both have some things to work out. How long can you live in the same house with her NOT being your wife? Will that be all right for you? Also, I don’t have children, so I’m only going by what I’ve read & heard from others, but you may want to talk to a counselor about this (heck, all of it) idea of staying for the kids...... they can sense when things are not right, even when they’re young. It’s better to be open to them (age appropriate, of course), and take whatever action you need to take. They will be better adjusted in the long run rather than living in a home where mommy and daddy aren’t really ‘mommy and daddy’...
It’s between the two of you, whatever you decide. Like I said, getting outside help, like a therapist, will benefit your decision making.
All the best to you in your journey. Post as often as you like. There are many on here in your situation that can relate better than I.

(((HUGS)))...it does get better.

 

February 6, 2021 5:46 pm  #4


Re: First Timer

meant2be, Welcome to the forum. I’m truly sorry for what you are currently going through. It’s a rollercoaster ride of emotions for sure. All the emotions you described - all normal, although very difficult to manage and navigate.

It’s all still fairly new to you, be kind to yourself. Men often don’t think they need to nurture themselves, I think it’s more difficult to convince men to take care of themselves in this way at times.

One day at a time for now, no need to make any drastic decisions. Be honest with yourself, make sure you take your own needs/wants/dreams into account in all if this as a first step.

As you go through this journey, know that you aren’t alone facing this anymore, the people in this forum have lived through similar experiences. You are correct when you say people can’t relate. It’s a complex situation to find oneself in, it was my experience that the people I told, although empathetic, were really at a lost for words and uncomfortable with the topic.

What will make you happy should now be at the forefront of this journey you are now on. You have to put yourself first, if you aren’t happy, in the end the kids always feel it and it’s not the materialistic things kids remember, they remember the atmosphere growing up, everything else fades.

Post as much as you need. Some male straight spouses will post too shortly, I’m sure.

Be super kind to yourself during the coming months, it’s what helped me travel the hardest parts of my own journey.

 

February 7, 2021 1:12 am  #5


Re: First Timer

Staying together might be a functional option for the short term but I think you will find it more difficult as time goes by. You now have an elephant in your house. It sounds that your spouse will be looking for new relationships and eventually other people will appear. That can get very awkward unless you define some house rules for this arrangement. Remember to keep them just as fair for you.

I don't think I've ever seen someone say that staying together 'for the kids' was the right choice. If you level with them they may be confused why you're still all in the same house. If they don't know, well kids are perceptive and they will figure out something isn't right. That may lead to issues. Here is a quote from another member here that was posted just the other day...... (This quote is from a reply by Sean in his thread "A gay ex-husband answers your questions")

"For me personally, after coming out I was willing to consider a mixed orientation marriage with my (then) wife "for the kids." That is until we saw a marriage counsellor who was also a child psychologist. Near the end of one counselling session, I offhandedly asked what effect our gay/straight marriage was having on our kids who were 12 (boy), 10 (girl) and 6 (boy) at the time. To my horror, he diagnosed them having never met them: 12 year old is trying to be the "perfect" child so his parents will stay together; 10 year old is emotionally withdrawn and is showing the telltale signs of a future eating disorder; and the 6 year old suffers from insomnia and/or constipation."

Something like this isn't always the case but I think there's a better chance your kids will be happy if both their parents are happy. It's not conditional on everyone being under the same roof.

Counseling is a good thing, no matter if it's professional or through SSN type groups. Being able to talk about it is important. Man culture in some countries discourages feelings and suggests you have to be a rock, take one for the team, etc. That's B-S. Your emotional health matters. Being all over the place is natural when this starts. Most people's initial reaction is to focus on how to fix it and to try to continue with the familiar.

I would also suggest you investigate just what options you have. Even if you are not currently planning on separation or divorce, find out what that entails in your area and what expectations there may be in terms of asset division, custody, child-support and so on. Maybe talk to a smart financial advisor and see if there are any options you don't know about that might allow one person to keep the house. Or, depending on your local market, maybe you can time a sale just right and come out with a plan that allows you to still provide a home for the kids but allow you and your spouse to be independent.

Most of all, don't think you have to rush and get all the answers right away. If you're in a good situation with your spouse, (no infidelity, no fighting, etc.) you may be able to take this a piece at a time. Figure out where everyone wants to be and how best to get there.

Good luck and keep posting as much as you need to.
 


“The future is unwritten.”
― Joe Strummer
 

February 7, 2021 9:44 am  #6


Re: First Timer

It hurts alot. I cry randomly certain days - I feel like a child. I don't feel like I can live w her but what if I make a decision now (like selling the house) and 6 months from now (after some healing hopefully) I end up regretting that decision? Ugh.

     Thread Starter
 

February 7, 2021 10:47 am  #7


Re: First Timer

More reason to proceed carefully and a cautious pace. Right now I think you should focus on your health. If your spouse isn't in a huge rush to change her life style, you may be able to come to a short term agreement that buys everyone a little time to start considering the available options.


“The future is unwritten.”
― Joe Strummer
 

February 7, 2021 2:04 pm  #8


Re: First Timer

Your life has just been turned upside down, everything you thought was real, is now questionable - cry, it’s healthy, don’t suppress your emotions - you won’t move forward effectively. One day at a time, one step at a time.

I’m fifteen months post discovery. I know it’s seems impossible right now to imagine, but the emotional waves do slow down, and they won’t come as frequently- you are in the early days still and in my opinion, that’s the toughest part.

Start emotionally detaching a little each day, it doesn’t  have to be done in a mean way, but for your sake, you need to. Otherwise, it’s going to be much more painful for you I think.

Small steps, do something special for yourself frequently, it doesn’t have to cost much, maybe it’s just doing something you enjoy that you haven’t had time for lately.

Post as much as you need/want. It’s a hard road ahead but we all somehow get through, please know that.

 

February 7, 2021 4:36 pm  #9


Re: First Timer

meant2be wrote:

It hurts alot. I cry randomly certain days - I feel like a child. I don't feel like I can live w her but what if I make a decision now (like selling the house) and 6 months from now (after some healing hopefully) I end up regretting that decision? Ugh.

Okay so I have a different take here - which is listen to yourself, listen to that deep down feeling and get away from her fast as you can.

Idk about when is a good time to sell the house but do you know anybody who has regretted leaving a bad marriage?  

Homeostasis - we are self-healing, too hot you will sweat, too cold you will shiver.  cut your skin, it will heal.  Take an emotional bruising and automatically you will start to heal - don't you think it's a good idea to get away from the bruiser though?  

While I was still living with my ex it felt like I was being knee-capped every time I got back up and running.

 

 

February 24, 2021 1:42 pm  #10


Re: First Timer

Welcome to the club no one wants to be part of

My wife came out about 6 months ago as lesbian after being married for 8 years and having 2 kiddos. I am still heart broken many days. BUT I do want you do know I also have some wonderful days and they are becoming more frequent.

We initially stayed together as we were is a similar situation where the house was just too expensive for just one of us to stay. It was horrible we were constantly fighting and arguing about stupid things. The kids new something was up (they are both younger then 6) and it was not a good place for them.

Having my own space and making it the way I like it has REALLY helped in finding my own identity. It has been a tough journey we were married for 8 years and together longer so I feel like I lost a big part of my identity as an individual that I had to find again.

The main reason we decided sooner rather than later to go our separate ways is we want to remain civil / friends as we have kids. Staying in the same house just did not help make that situation any better and made things harder actually.

So just know you are not alone, the fact that others go through the same thing does not make it easier but it helped me to know it. If you want to talk to someone feel free to DM me

 

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