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October 5, 2020 4:16 pm  #1

Found some stuff out... Confused.

Please read my story...
Let me start from the beginning.  I am in my late 30's as is my husband.  We have 4 young kids.  We've been married for 10 years but have been very close the past 20 years.  

Lately I've been really into cell phone privacy and how much data is being captured and stored by apps on my phone.  While driving, I was showing my husband some things that his phone stores.  He became obviously worried and grabbed his phone back.  My heart pumping because I then know something big is up...  he says we will talk when we get home.

I confront him, but from a lie that says "I know everything - I've already seen it on your phone so it is time to confess".  I felt it was the only way he'd talk, if he thought I already knew something.

When we are alone, with much hesitation, he says "I'm bi".  He admits that he had a gay chat on his phone (Grindr) and that he was strictly using it for chatting to men in similar situations (he admits had been talking to one guy on there a few times since he got the app in the spring) and he promises on our kids lives that he never has met up with anyone.  He admits he put the app on and deleted it 4-5 times since the spring and that he was really just looking to chat with this one guy (who actually talked and didn't want to 'hook up tonight' like most men on the app want to do).  He says that even if he wanted to act on something, he would never act on it because he would die if anyone around here knew all of this and we live in a small community. 

Later in the evening, after the kids are in bed and we've had some wine...  Over the course of many hours into the night (lots of tears and many emotions) I ask him lots of question and he is coiled up in shame, but hesitantly willing to answer my questions.  He admits that he has had oral sex performed on him 2 times before we were a couple, he gave the person a handjob during.  He says that one time was when he was around 20, and once when he was around 25.  He said he has never done anything else with a man.  He says he has zero desire to give oral, or give or receive anal from a man, or kiss a man or date a man. 
Five days go by, we talk for about five hours each night.  Usually with wine.  Me basically interrogating him.  Trying to get in his head and figure out what he is feeling, where I stand etc.   During these conversations he says that he loves me, wants to be with me, never wanted me to find out and question his love for me, that he got the app to try to talk to someone about what happened in his past to try to make sense of it himself.  He says he is not sexually attracted to men, but he guesses has this fantasy about sort of dominating a man and having a man want to suck him off.  He says that is a thought that turns him on, but that a man's body does nothing for him.  We also talk about a time that he has a blacked out memory when he was about 6 that involves being in the dark in a man's basement in his neighbourhood.  He can't recall what happened that day but he has always feared what may have happened.  (I knew before about this)  He also tells me about a few other times he was put in in a position of feeling powerless with older kids doing something to him.  He also tells me about a few things that happened with other girls in college that he kept a secret from me.  Then there is a lot of me crying and saying I feel broken etc.  How could I not have known about this part of him?!

Up until this past Friday, my husband was in a very dark place, very depressed and could not see himself moving forward.  He has so much shame and said he couldn't even look at me.  I then listen to the podcast episode from the straight spouse network  - the one with Joe Kort, is your husband gay straight or bi.  I get him to listen to it when the kids are in bed.  As soon as he listens to it he feels better - he says he feels like it brought much clarity on his situation.  He actually said he felt happy after listening to it and made notes to discuss with me.  He says that podcast episode helped him realize that maybe he isn't that 'weird' or uncommon.  That his situation might be normal.  He said he realized from listening to it that he has never wanted to seem like 'less of a man' in my eyes.  He says according to Joe’s four questions he asks to figure out if a man is gay, he would not fall into that category.  

- He did not have any crushes on guys growing up.  Only girls starting when he was about 8.
- He is not homophobic and being around gay people doesn't make him feel uncomfortable.
- The 'beach test' - at the beach he is looking at woman, not men
- He wants to come home every night to a woman, me.

After listening to the podcast he even wonders if he is actually bi...  He admits he does have a slight erotic attraction towards men, but it is situational -  he says he is romantically and sexually attracted to women, he says he has not physically cheated on me ever.  He says he finds me very attractive (and goes into details about specifics of what he likes to do to to me) and wants to make things work with me if I’m willing to try to work things out with him.  He wonders if he was sexually abused as a kid and has blocked out that memory, and that is why he acted on that fantasy in the past.  He admits he has looked up naked picture of men or porn with a guy giving another guy oral just to imagine it being done to him.  But says that he has looked up porn with woman many more times.  He says he doesn't look up porn very much in general.  We've always had a pretty good sex life.  I have felt desired and wanted by him and he seems to enjoy having sex with me and giving me oral etc.  But.....  over the course of our marriage I have definitely felt like we were living more as roommates/best friends and not lovers.  I have had this talk with him a dozen times.  Saying I want more of a romantic relationship etc.  Also that I'd like him to learn more about how to please me and give me orgasms (and he has recently admitted that his feelings of inadequacy contributes to him feeling like 'less of a man'). Of course I’m feeling 1 million emotions. I feel really bad about all of his shame and guilt and how this has affected him for many years. But I’m also very angry that he has kept so many things from me. This isn’t the first breach of trust and deceit that has happened in our relationship.  The talks we’ve had in the past week he has admitted many things to me which I appreciate, but also makes me angry.   I don't know what to think. Looking up all of these other women who’ve gone through similar experiences, I fear that there is more he’s not telling me or more that he is suppressing or in denial about. It’s hard because I want to be there for him as he’s going through all these emotions, but I’m so angry and upset myself.  I feel like if he had therapy and worked on his issues and learned how to be more honest with himself and me maybe we could save our marriage.  However, I would hate to learn another five or 10 years that he actually is gay or something and he was just covering his ass now.  I am thinking of all of our encounters over the years and examining them for 'signs'.  I feel like I am always on the verge of breaking down.  But I have to try to act normal for my kids, one of whom is still just a baby.  He is willing to try therapy soon to deal with the shame and uncover anything that is in his subconscious.  Then we may give couples therapy a go...  He worries that even if in a perfect world and I forgave him for the deceit, if we can work things out because he wouldn't want me always questioning his sexuality for the rest of our lives. Thank you for reading my story. I am in a position where I am unable to talk to anybody around me (friends or family). I feel very alone.  

PLEASE provide any advice/tips for me moving forward.  I would appreciate it!

Edited to add:
I can understand the feeling of being curious... I myself was bi curious as a teen and me and a girlfriend had a few sexual experiences together. For me though, I feel I got it out of my system and I don’t have any shame about it. I don’t ever fantasize about woman now either.

Last edited by Ferngrove (October 5, 2020 10:51 pm)


October 5, 2020 5:33 pm  #2

Re: Found some stuff out... Confused.

Hi Ferngrove, 

I’m sorry you find yourself here. Your story resonates with me. My husband was molested by a neighborhood teen male roughly twice his age when he was about 7. This went on for some time. I think it really messed by husband up in regard to his sexuality. I have my suspicions that this person also molested numerous others in their neighborhood because from what my husband has told me many of the roughly same age kids were sexual with one another... rubbing each other sexually through clothing, etc. My husband had very limited experience with men other than mutual masterbation with one male friend at age 19. He and I met at 21. I always knew he wasn’t quite typically straight. About 10 years ago I found he was watching a lot of gay porn online. I flipped and confronted him. He and I actually occasionally watched gay male porn before that so I knew he had some interest, but it bothered me when I found out he was trying to be sneaky about it. I flipped. Anyway, that was when he revealed to me he’d been molested. For a couple months at the end of last year he was very depressed. Crying almost daily, but trying to hide that he was crying. In January of this year I straight out confronted him... asking if he had a girlfriend or boyfriend on the side and that’s when he told me he believes he’s bisexual. Anyway, fast forward 10 months and lots and lots of conversations and we’re in a very good place. It’s going to take you some time to really evaluate what is going on. Oh, also we’ve been together for 28 years and we also have 4 children. 

Last edited by TangledOil (October 5, 2020 5:35 pm)


October 5, 2020 5:58 pm  #3

Re: Found some stuff out... Confused.

Hi Ferngrove,
I'm so sorry you find yourself here.I feel your pain, fear and anger, and I sincerely hope you can soon get some clarity and peace. You are not alone, despite not being able to talk to family and friends. I haven't told anyone in my life about my husband's sexuality either. I made him a promise to keep it to myself until he is ready to come out, but it's hard not being able to share with people who know and love me.
My husband and I both listened to the Joe Kort podcast after I discovered him soliciting men on a Personals site. We actually had a couple of sessions with Joe via Zoom as well. He's a great resource in my opinion.
I don't want to frighten you, and everybody's situation is unique, but my husband's answers to the 4 questions changed over time. He minimized, denied and outright lied in the beginning, either out of fear of hurting me or shame of who he really is. At first he was just curious, then he was bisexual, and finally admitted to being gay and wanting a divorce.
My only advice for you is to focus on yourself and your children. You sound like a wonderful, caring wife and I know I felt and still do feel the urge to support and protect my husband while he figures himself out. But it can quickly become one-sided and toxic, if your husband is taking up all of the emotional energy in the relationship.
Make yourself and your needs a priority. Sending big virtual hugs your way!!


October 6, 2020 12:14 am  #4

Re: Found some stuff out... Confused.

I'm so sorry Ferngrove. I have found the podcasts and info from Dr. Omar Minwalla particularly helpful. They highlight both the behavioral and relational aspects of this sort of betrayal and the impacts it has on the betrayed partner. It is a form of abuse, causing significant trauma; and in time I learned to hold that clearly, and attend to necessary boundaries - while also having compassion for another's challenges. We can be angry AND compassionate. We can recognize their behavior as (once) adaptive AND (now) abusive. We can hold to love AND question trust. We can grieve what we've lost AND hold hope for healing. Wishing you all the best.

Take care of you.


October 6, 2020 8:01 pm  #5

Re: Found some stuff out... Confused.

Thank you to those who replied.  I really appreciate it.  I am sorry about all the pain you have all experienced as well!  am not sure if you will see my reply but I am hoping you all do:

TangledOil - what came about after he told you he was bisexual?  Is he satisfied with you or does he want more?  How are you in a good place now?  Did he/both of you do therapy or marriage counselling?  I would like to chat with you more if possible.  Can I email you?

EmpathyStarved - how did the sessions with Joe Kort go?  Was it with both of you at the same time?  My husband and I are currently trying to figure out what to do here...  Him go to therapy first, then maybe try marriage counselling if we get to a place of thinking our marriage is saveable.   When you caught him soliciting men on a site and he lied and said he was curious, did you know in your heart he was actually gay at that moment?  Or did you believe his lie that he was just curious or bi?

Dandelion - Thank you for this recommendation.  I am going to check him out.  According to my husband he has never  actually physically cheated on me - his experiences were before we were married

     Thread Starter

October 6, 2020 8:30 pm  #6

Re: Found some stuff out... Confused.

Hi Ferngrove, 

You are more than welcome to message me. To answer your questions ... initially he thought I’d immediately kick him out. He really never wanted to tell me at all, but he was so depressed seeming that I pushed it. I asked if he had a girlfriend or boyfriend on the side (deep down I’ve known forever he wasn't quite straight). He said he didn’t have either, but he felt like he may need to explore the other side. I told him if he did that we’d divorce or if he chose to remain monogamous we’d go from there as a couple. He broke down and cried like a baby when I mentioned divorce so I knew he really was thinking he’d want to explore and that would end us. The first 4 months were rough. I actually tried during that time to get on board with the idea of him having a man on the side. After the first couple months he never asked for that again, yet I still considered it. Eventually he said he never should have asked as it was such a preposterous and unfair ask. I agreed. 

He’s always seemed sexually satisfied for all of our 28 years. He says nothing at all is lacking with us... it’s just that he has some desire about the other side. Kind of like if you know you like vanilla and chocolate ice cream, but you can never have chocolate. It doesn’t make you any less satisfied with vanilla. You’d just like to have chocolate occasionally too. 

How are we in a good place? We spend all of our free time together doing things we both enjoy. We are planning for our property to be re-landscaped so that’s been a fun project for us. We talk for hours daily, we take long walks together daily, we enjoy each other physically. He says he’s come to terms satisfactorily that he may never experience a sexual relationship with a man. Oh, we do some role play too to make sex fun for both us. We do things we’re both comfortable with and mutually agree upon. 

I have a masters degree in marriage and family counseling. That being said, we did not seek out therapy. 

I will message you my email address. I’m not sure you’ll be able to see the message unless you have a few posts here from what I understand. 

Last edited by TangledOil (October 6, 2020 8:50 pm)


October 7, 2020 12:58 pm  #7

Re: Found some stuff out... Confused.

Hi Ferngrove,
The first session we did with Joe was us both together as a couple. By the time of our next session my husband had told me he was gay and wanted to divorce so he did that next session by himself
When I first caught him and he denied and minimized I think I clung to some hope that he was being honest but knew deep down that straight men do not participate in that type of behavior
When he told me he was bisexual I took it with a big grain of salt and ultimately I was not surprised that he eventually landed on being gay


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