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March 3, 2024 4:38 pm  #1

Wife came out yesterday

My wife came out to me yesterday evening.  We have 4 kids and a house together, we've been together ten years in a strong loving relationship where we've both grown and changed a lot. I recovered from alcoholism 2 years ago, and we've both started careers, bought a house and built up such a wonderful life together. We've been talking about having a relationship in a new way, but not sure what it all looks like. In short I am really just so broken down right now, and hurt. I know she feels the same, and I love her so much. There hasn't been any infidelity that I know of, but she's very adamant about going out to meet women in the coming months to explore her sexuality more, and while I understand that's a part of it all it just hurts so much. We're both extremely caring and involved parents who want to maintain a home full of love for our children. As of now we're hoping to move forward with a mixed orientation marriage and try and sort things out. Anyway, I guess I'm just posting here to see if there's anyone with advice on how having a mixed orientation relationship has gone for them? Any words are appreciated.


March 3, 2024 8:25 pm  #2

Re: Wife came out yesterday

I was never in an open marriage but "coming months" sounds like a fast moving schedule. This is a very big step to take and I don't think it should be rushed. It's been one day since you found out. Most likely you are still in shock. In my personal opinion, I think both of you need time to process and think about what your paths are before you start walking it. Professional support is great, if you can get it. Both of you matter. Others here may have some advice. Post as often as you need to. We all know what a shock to the system this type of disclosure is.

“The future is unwritten.”
― Joe Strummer

March 3, 2024 10:07 pm  #3

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Sebastian...in my opinion there are 2 ways a mixed orientation r'ship works. You either make it monogamous, and have enough trust in your gay/bi partner that it will remain monogamous. Or you submit to an open r'ship and all it entails. 
I was in an open r'ship. My self-esteem became so messed up I asked to go back to our monogamous r'ship but the damage was done, the trust was gone. It never came back. 

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KIA KAHA                       

March 4, 2024 6:56 am  #4

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Sebastian - Take a moment to think about what you want. You should check out the MOM section. Many start the path of an open r'ship, but it does not work. Based on my reading, MOM r'ships work if it stays monogamous with trust. I also tried to have a MOM r'ship but slowly started to see the disrespect from my GID Ex. The common denominator is the one who wants to explore gets greedy and consumed by their needs. They will slowly push your needs away in the name of "discovering who they are and what they want." 

We have three kids, and I understand it's more complicated when they are younger. Write down the boundaries you need HER to follow to protect your heart and feelings. Write down your non-negotiables. She doesn't get to forsake her vows and you because of her 'newfound' identity (but I'm sure you have seen signs before she's verbally admitted it). I would give you the same advice if you were my friend and told me you want to explore outside your marriage. 


March 4, 2024 6:46 pm  #5

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Like Darryl said, Sebastian - this is going very fast.  Too fast.  It's like you've been blindsided - in one day we go a) honey I'm a lesbian and b) you need to accept that I am going to be having relationships with women but c) we're not going to end the marriage first.

That does not exactly scream respect for either you or the marriage.  Where's the bit where she cares about how you are feeling?  This is not a big but nice shock, it is immensely painful.

What I want to point out to you is that this is not a shock for your wife, she's lived with it all her life.

I don't think it's fair of her to change the basis of the marriage - didn't you expect monogamy and loving sex?

good luck, hang in there, take it one day at a time.  In a little while the feeling of being in shock wears off and you get back to more normal operations.


Last edited by lily (March 4, 2024 6:49 pm)


March 4, 2024 6:58 pm  #6

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Hey, all thanks so much for the replies and support. I will be writing a list of boundaries to go over with my wife tomorrow and hope to be working through that. As for our marriage and how it all looks, I think the consensus is to open our relationship over time. She's agreed to not go looking for women until I have had more time to heal. I want to believe her in this, but it's so hard. My trust in her is very diminished and I'm finding myself becoming increasingly paranoid, which is very unlike me.  

I am realizing she's had three months of figuring this out and planning the future about it where I have not, so she is much farther along in her process which is really painful. I don't see us working out long-term. I don't plan on making it work long-term, but our lives are immensely intertwined and we can't just separate immediately without causing more pain for our children.  We are in agreement that the best thing for now is to keep parenting and maintain a lot of our normalcy until things can more gracefully come apart. 

It all sounds nice when I write it, but god, I am just an absolute wreck.  Outside of this forum does anyone have additional resources? I am starting therapy soon, but I don't know if there is anything else. 

     Thread Starter

March 4, 2024 9:43 pm  #7

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Normalcy of the routines will help a lot.   I stuck to my routines like a religion when going through this.

That said I could not stop physically shaking when she "went out" and had to get medical help.
Make sure you build a support system for YOU...getting rhe help you need.  Those kids will need a strong dad...not one that is debilitated from hurt.

"For we walk by faith, not by sight .."  2Corinthians 5:7

March 4, 2024 11:32 pm  #8

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Look, I am absolutely sorry to say this but what's that saying - it isn't paranoia if it's true.

Can you imagine going through puberty without noticing your feelings over certain girls?  I can remember the boys I got interested in and the first one was in primary school.  I can still remember his name, what he looked like, he had dark eyes and looked down his nose at me, but then he kept on looking.

That's why it's such a shock.  It is a piece of information that matters so much, it changes how you view your past as well as the present.  That's a lot of shock to process.  It takes time.

Do you have a friend or family member you can confide in?  That I think helps the most - I had a sense of relief when I first spoke to someone else, because it felt so grounding.  


March 5, 2024 10:33 am  #9

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Hey everyone. 

Thanks so much for replying. I have connected with Family, not quite friends, but I plan to soon. I moved across the country recently and am sort of socially isolated. I know I need to fix that ASAP, but like you are saying I am trying to stick to routines and maintain normalcy as well. 

I plan to be a strong dad. I am a strong dad already, but this is the hardest thing I've done in my life so far and I am learning what it means to be strong in a new way that I'd never planned on and it is a challenge. 

I am hoping to connect with other LGBTQ+ people just to help better understand the experience my wife is going through. I want to talk to her about it, but I feel having a third party to talk to that I am not so emotionally invested in would be a good way to see this situation a little more objectively. I'm curious if any one else has done this and if it really is a good idea?

Anyway, I want to say a big thanks to everyone who has posted on here so far. I am not normally one to resort to online discussion, but this has been an incredible space and I feel so accepted and heard. It really helps my heart, thanks so much to you all. I will keep posting updates, and try to be more conversational in my replies, but I've just been so scatter brained when I posted here initially that it's been hard. 

     Thread Starter

March 5, 2024 1:55 pm  #10

Re: Wife came out yesterday

Hey Sebastian!
You seem like a really kind guy, and I am sorry that you are hurting. Just wanted to say that you could check out the late bloomer lesbians on reddit. Many of the women write about coming out to their husbands and how hard it was for them. I read many posts there to gain some perpective even though I am straight woman who was left by a male who came out after 13 year relationship. But I think this thread helped me because I can relate better to how women express their grief.
Anyway, I wish for you that you will always remember, even on hardest days, that even this will pass. You will not feel this pain forever. It will weaken untill it dissapears.


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