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January 23, 2022 2:22 pm  #1871


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Interview #1 with Kay (or "Walkbymyself") who shares about spending three decades with her closeted ex-husband. If you'd like to share your own story, just message me. If you're listening to this interview on a smartphone, you'll need to click the download button (top right of your screen next to the three dots) to start play. Enjoy! 

Last edited by Sean (January 23, 2022 2:23 pm)

 

January 26, 2022 11:14 am  #1872


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

I’ve made some big leaps into new territory lately, after getting feedback here. Talked to my aunt who lives nearby, whose daughter is a lesbian in a longtime relationship. And talked to my pastor at the little affirming, open minded church that I now attend.

My aunt said my lesbian cousin has been very concerned since she met my husband that he seems gay. This floored me! I thought he gave no clues after college. She doesn’t know him as the drama and musical guy, she knows him as the tough renovate the fixer upper houses guy! My aunt, uncle and cousin kept thinking about this more (not less) but couldn’t bear the thought of possibly saying it to a straight church leader.

My pastor was wonderfully helpful. He gave me a new idea about divorce - if the marriage covenant is broken already, maybe divorce is just the legal fact when there’s no real marriage going on in the home. The more I talked to him, I realized that I feel very peaceful and happy if I think of raising my kids without the emotional drama and roller coaster of my husbands ongoing depression, abusiveness and needing me to accommodate everything we do around his comfort.

He was really shaken up last week when I said it’s monogamous marriage only for me. I did it in a cuddly, sweet moment and made it lighthearted but he immediately got stiff, quiet and went to bed without another word. Basically immediate abandonment happens if I speak this need of mine. Now he’s gone all week in a nearby city to stay at a hotel because he needs personal space to lower his anxiety. I’m wondering this time if he may cheat.

I’m planning to tell him that I love the way he’s healing and being authentic lately. I would love to see us walk that out and build a marriage where we both feel safe and loved. But I also see that it may not be authentic to him. And if there’s ANY chance of that, I’d rather cut our ties now. My aunt pointed out that I’m 40, so divorcing now with a house full of kids is better than him leaving me in20 years at empty nest time.

I feel good right now about being decisive. My religious fears about divorce are gone. I think God would have liked me divorcing him at the first year! When I “try on” what daily life is like without him, it’s like I have my full brain and personality working instead of 80% focused on all his comfort needs.

 

January 26, 2022 4:21 pm  #1873


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Thank you for the update LMM. In reply: 

1. I’ve made some big leaps into new territory lately, after getting feedback here. Talked to my aunt who lives nearby, whose daughter is a lesbian in a longtime relationship. And talked to my pastor at the little affirming, open minded church that I now attend.

Wow...well done! 

2. My aunt said my lesbian cousin has been very concerned since she met my husband that he seems gay. This floored me! I thought he gave no clues after college. She doesn’t know him as the drama and musical guy, she knows him as the tough renovate the fixer upper houses guy! My aunt, uncle and cousin kept thinking about this more (not less) but couldn’t bear the thought of possibly saying it to a straight church leader.

I'm not surprised that another LGBTQ family member and/or ally identified your questioning husband as gay. (I myself can spot another gay man in about 10 seconds.) With regards to your husband being more macho than effeminate, gay men come in all shapes, sizes, and degrees of masculinity...just like straight people.  

3. My pastor was wonderfully helpful. He gave me a new idea about divorce - if the marriage covenant is broken already, maybe divorce is just the legal fact when there’s no real marriage going on in the home. The more I talked to him, I realized that I feel very peaceful and happy if I think of raising my kids without the emotional drama and roller coaster of my husbands ongoing depression, abusiveness and needing me to accommodate everything we do around his comfort.

Glad your pastor was so helpful and supportive. I think you're setting an excellent example of how sharing all of this with supportive friends and family helps lighten the burden.

4. He [my husband] was really shaken up last week when I said it’s monogamous marriage only for me. I did it in a cuddly, sweet moment and made it lighthearted but he immediately got stiff, quiet and went to bed without another word. Basically immediate abandonment happens if I speak this need of mine.

If anyone hasn't read our previous exchanges, I believe your husband was pushing for an open marriage...so that he could have sex with men. In my opinion, his behaviour represents a huge red flag...and perhaps a red flag that you could discuss with your therapist. While I'm not a mental health professional, husbands should not punish wives for having boundaries and/or not just doing what the husband wants. More specifically, the silent treatment is a common tactic among narcissists. 

5. Now he’s gone all week in a nearby city to stay at a hotel because he needs personal space to lower his anxiety. I’m wondering this time if he may cheat.

It's certainly possible. I'd treat this week apart as more of a gift....an opportunity for you to see what life is like without an emotionally volatile husband. 

6. I’m planning to tell him that I love the way he’s healing and being authentic lately. I would love to see us walk that out and build a marriage where we both feel safe and loved. But I also see that it may not be authentic to him. And if there’s ANY chance of that, I’d rather cut our ties now. My aunt pointed out that I’m 40, so divorcing now with a house full of kids is better than him leaving me in 20 years at empty nest time.

Your aunt sounds very supportive. 

7. I feel good right now about being decisive. My religious fears about divorce are gone. I think God would have liked me divorcing him at the first year! When I “try on” what daily life is like without him, it’s like I have my full brain and personality working instead of 80% focused on all his comfort needs.

Onward! Thank you so much for sharing LMM. Please keep coming back and sharing your journey. For every straight spouse posting here, I reckon there are hundreds more following your journeys. 

 

January 26, 2022 8:40 pm  #1874


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Thanks, Sean, because what you said here really validates me. I actually already had an unexpected phone call with him, a very long one that brought necessary truths out. When I asked, he said that he doesn’t have attraction to my body. He likes me as a person and our shared history. He pushes himself to get through sex now (as opposed to years of not having it). He’s basically just performing, wanting to give us the “happy” life.

He wants to stay married. He doesn’t want to be single and live alone and doesn’t want to be with a guy. But he kept saying he sees that I deserve being with a straight guy. He’s trying hard to convince me that sex is only 1% of life, and that everything else matters a lot more. The saddest part was him vowing he’ll really kill “that part” of himself, no more porn or anything, and he’ll be a good husband/dad so he can stay.

I believe that all my years of praying, fasting, imploring God to heal our marriage are coming into play now. It’s coming painfully clear that the marriage is a sham, a cover. God can’t heal what’s not even there. God’s  mercifully setting me free from all the false hopes.

 

January 27, 2022 3:18 am  #1875


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Opinions please….
     Hello. I am fairly new to this page and I’ve been reading a lot of posts. For years I’ve been googling and YouTubing possibilities of what’s been going on in my marriage and this page is one of the only things I’ve been able to find that’s seems to relate to my situation. But since my spouse has not been able to give me a direct answer I am hesitant on whether this is actually the answer (him possibly being gay I mean). I’m constantly questioning my own feelings and thoughts. It’s hard to know what’s real and what isn’t. So hopefully you can help.
I’ve been married for a little under 10 years. No kids. We met in high school and dated on and off for a while. After high school he joined the military and was gone majority of the time but from what I can remember whenever we did see each other we would have sex. We married while he was still enlisted and that’s when everything pretty much started or should I say the sex pretty much ended. It was difficult to notice at first because he was always gone. But he eventually got out of the military and got a normal job. That’s when I really noticed a dramatic decrease in our sex life. Mind you this in my early twenties. We started out having sex a couple times a month, then once a month, then once every couples months, and eventually once every six months. So only twice a year. And it never got better from there. I would try to talk to him about it but he would never give me an answer and pretty much ignore the situation.
I was constantly trying to initiate sex. Trying new things. Dressing prettier. Working out more. Nothing worked. I would ask him if we could have sex and he would say things like “I’m tired” “later tonight after we take showers” but later never came. And I was left crying and feeling so lonely.
I started to notice a pattern. After him not having sex with me for months and months on end I would have emotional break downs thinking he’s cheating on me and I would tear my house apart looking for evidence but never found anything. It was absolutely frustrating. Then every 6 months he would have sex with me. It would make me happy and think things are getting better. But then the pattern starts all over again. This has been going on since the beginning of my marriage.
I’ve recently discovered some things but not sure if it’s enough to validate my suspicions. Or maybe I just don’t want to believe it. He had a male coworker/ friend who was opening gay and they had a pretty close friendship. The friend bought him some underwear for his birthday which I thought was weird but at the time this was going on I didnt think my husband being gay was a possibility. Recently I found some messages between my husband and that friend where the friend screen shotted a picture of me and husband. Then used a filter to make me look like a man. He texted this picture to my husband and stated “I’d be down to fuck both” and my husband just laughed. I also snooped through my husbands social media account and found he had been having conversations with this friend through secret DM’s where the conversations get deleted right away. And the last piece of information is that a family member who was living with us at the time walked past my bedroom and saw my husband looking at a pornographic picture of a man. I’ve looked through his phone multiple times and have not been able to find anything.
Ive asked my husband multiple times why don’t we have sex and before I would get no answer. Lately he’s been telling me he has sexual anxiety and recently started therapy after I tried to leave him (I begged him to go to therapy in the past and he said no). He went to the doctor to get tested for a low libido and when all tests came back fine they recommended he talk to a therapist.
I’ve asked him if he’s gay and at first he got angry and denied it. I asked him if he’s asexual. Asked him if he’s just not attracted to me? If he had an history of sexual abuse. All answers were no. The second time I asked him he more calmly said No. In the most recent conversation we had he told me he doesn’t know if the problem is sexual anxiety or if he’s asexual (which I don’t believe he’s asexual because even though he didn’t want to have sex with me he would often ask me for oral sex. But i could be wrong). He’s told me on more than one occasion that if sex wasn’t so important to me then we wouldn’t be having these marital issues. He also told me I was too judgmental. All these things hurt and confuse me
I love him very much. And I just want to understand what’s going on. But I feel like he’ll never truly be honest with me. I’m also afraid I could be completely over reacting and be wrong about this whole situation.
Any feed back would really be appreciated. Sorry for the long post.

 

January 27, 2022 4:55 am  #1876


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Thank you for writing LMM and September. In response to your posts: 

1. LMM wrote: Thanks, Sean, because what you said here really validates me. I actually already had an unexpected phone call with him, a very long one that brought necessary truths out. When I asked, he said that he doesn’t have attraction to my body. He likes me as a person and our shared history. He pushes himself to get through sex now (as opposed to years of not having it). He’s basically just performing, wanting to give us the “happy” life.

While I applaud your closeted/questioning husband for speaking truthfully, this must have been very painful for you to hear. If I'm reading this correctly, your husband's definition of marriage with you is as follows:

- He wants to remain married. 
- He no longer wants to have sex with you. 
- He wants to open up your marriage to have sex with men. 

When straight spouses first discover their husbands "aren't straight", I often urge them to complete these sentences: 

- Love for me means....
- Marriage for me means...
- My ideal husband is....

If your two definitions of marriage appear to be unreconcilable, then perhaps it's time to consider separation/divorce. 

2. He wants to stay married.

Most closted/questioning husbands do and why wouldn't they? It's the ideal situation...FOR THEM. Most straight spouses aren't sexually demanding, do most of the child rearing, and keep the house. So he gets the cover of being in a heterosexual marriage while f*cking men on the down low. So of course he wants to stay in that comfortable closet. The question is: do you want to live in his closet?  

3. He doesn’t want to be single and live alone and doesn’t want to be with a guy.

Well he's already been with guys, likely for years. He's still using that Christian/Evangelical conversion therapy bullsh*t about it "just being sex" and "I don't want a relationship with a guy." Allow me translate all of this: "Please stay with me and agree to be my platonic beard while I f*ck guys on the down low." I reckon THIS is his definition of love/marriage. Too harsh? 

4. But he kept saying he sees that I deserve being with a straight guy.

Agree!

5. He’s trying hard to convince me that sex is only 1% of life, and that everything else matters a lot more.

Great then if he says that sex isn't important, then he can give up gay sex forever right? Wrong. He's going to make promises that he won't "act out" or "explore" but he's inevitably going to have sex with men again. And what percentage % of his day did he spend watching gay porn, messaging guys on gay hook up apps (like Grindr) (perhaps) cheating on you with men, and hiding all of this? If I were a betting man, I'd say that he spent more time living a virtual gay life than spending quality time with you and your children. He's drowning.   

6. The saddest part was him vowing he’ll really kill “that part” of himself, no more porn or anything, and he’ll be a good husband/dad so he can stay.

Bullsh*t.

7. I believe that all my years of praying, fasting, imploring God to heal our marriage are coming into play now. It’s coming painfully clear that the marriage is a sham, a cover. God can’t heal what’s not even there. God’s  mercifully setting me free from all the false hopes.

Ok so what now my friend? 

8. September wrote: Opinions please….Hello. I am fairly new to this page and I’ve been reading a lot of posts. For years I’ve been googling and YouTubing possibilities of what’s been going on in my marriage and this page is one of the only things I’ve been able to find that’s seems to relate to my situation. But since my spouse has not been able to give me a direct answer I am hesitant on whether this is actually the answer (him possibly being gay I mean). I’m constantly questioning my own feelings and thoughts. It’s hard to know what’s real and what isn’t. So hopefully you can help.

I'm sorry this man has made you feel so confused/disoriented. 

9. I’ve been married for a little under 10 years. No kids. We met in high school and dated on and off for a while. After high school he joined the military and was gone majority of the time but from what I can remember whenever we did see each other we would have sex.

Ok. It's quite common for closeted men to join the military as cover for their attraction to men. Questioning/closeted men often believe that being part of such a macho/manly organisation provides better cover. 

10. We married while he was still enlisted and that’s when everything pretty much started or should I say the sex pretty much ended.

Lack of sex/intimacy is the biggest red flag in gay/straight relationships. 

11. It was difficult to notice at first because he was always gone. But he eventually got out of the military and got a normal job. That’s when I really noticed a dramatic decrease in our sex life. Mind you this in my early twenties. We started out having sex a couple times a month, then once a month, then once every couples months, and eventually once every six months. So only twice a year. And it never got better from there. I would try to talk to him about it but he would never give me an answer and pretty much ignore the situation.

I'm sorry he did this to you. None of this is your fault. You deserve better.  

12. I was constantly trying to initiate sex. Trying new things. Dressing prettier. Working out more. Nothing worked. I would ask him if we could have sex and he would say things like “I’m tired” “later tonight after we take showers” but later never came. And I was left crying and feeling so lonely.

I'm so sorry he hurt you. Lack of sex is a form of emotional abuse. 

13. I started to notice a pattern. After him not having sex with me for months and months on end I would have emotional break downs thinking he’s cheating on me and I would tear my house apart looking for evidence but never found anything. It was absolutely frustrating. Then every 6 months he would have sex with me. It would make me happy and think things are getting better. But then the pattern starts all over again. This has been going on since the beginning of my marriage.

Good work recognizing his pattern. 

14. I’ve recently discovered some things but not sure if it’s enough to validate my suspicions. Or maybe I just don’t want to believe it. He had a male coworker/ friend who was openly gay and they had a pretty close friendship.

Another classic red flag. 

15. The friend bought him some underwear for his birthday which I thought was weird but at the time this was going on I didn't think my husband being gay was a possibility. Recently I found some messages between my husband and that friend where the friend screen shotted a picture of me and husband. Then used a filter to make me look like a man. He texted this picture to my husband and stated “I’d be down to fuck both” and my husband just laughed.

Creepy. 

16. I also snooped through my husbands social media account and found he had been having conversations with this friend through secret DM’s where the conversations get deleted right away. And the last piece of information is that a family member who was living with us at the time walked past my bedroom and saw my husband looking at a pornographic picture of a man. I’ve looked through his phone multiple times and have not been able to find anything.

More red flags. 

17. I've asked my husband multiple times why don’t we have sex and before I would get no answer. Lately he’s been telling me he has sexual anxiety and recently started therapy after I tried to leave him (I begged him to go to therapy in the past and he said no). He went to the doctor to get tested for a low libido and when all tests came back fine they recommended he talk to a therapist.

If I'm reading all of this correctly, your husband's pattern appears to be as follows: he starves you of intimacy; there is then conflict and/or you break down; and then he does the bare minimum to bring you back into the relationship. Once you're re-invested in the relationship, the cycle repeats. Is that a fair assessment? 

18. I’ve asked him if he’s gay and at first he got angry and denied it. I asked him if he’s asexual. Asked him if he’s just not attracted to me? If he had an history of sexual abuse. All answers were no. The second time I asked him he more calmly said No. In the most recent conversation we had he told me he doesn’t know if the problem is sexual anxiety or if he’s asexual (which I don’t believe he’s asexual because even though he didn’t want to have sex with me he would often ask me for oral sex. But i could be wrong). He’s told me on more than one occasion that if sex wasn’t so important to me then we wouldn’t be having these marital issues. He also told me I was too judgmental. All these things hurt and confuse me. 

This is called blame shifting and it's bullsh*t. He's the problem. He won't have sex with you. He's looking at naked men online. He has a boyfriend-like relationship with a gay co-worker. None of this is your fault. 

19. I love him very much.

I'd challenge you on this statement my friend. What exactly is your definition of love? Are you in love with who he pretended to be 9 years ago, or are you truly in love with the abusive man he's been for the past 9 years? 

20. And I just want to understand what’s going on. But I feel like he’ll never truly be honest with me. I’m also afraid I could be completely over reacting and be wrong about this whole situation.

Most straight spouses never hear "I'm gay" from closeted/questioning husbands. I don't think you're over reacting. I think your feelings are more than valid. If anything, he's under reacting. 

21. Any feed back would really be appreciated. Sorry for the long post.

Rant away! That's what this forum is for. I'd suggest listening to a podcast interview I did last year: S4 Ep 3: A “Narcissist in Recovery” Gets Real - OurPath. You might find some similarities between my coming out journey and what you're experiencing at the moment. Please come back and post again or perhaps start your own forum thread. Be well! 

Last edited by Sean (January 27, 2022 4:59 am)

 

January 27, 2022 10:00 am  #1877


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

I’m very focused now on raising my kids and taking care of myself as a single mom. I want a divorce. There’s so much freedom and goodness in seeing life like that, as hard as it would be at first. Everything my husband said made it more and more appealing! Everything confirmed how bad staying married would be!

My biggest concern now is that we’ve left our longtime church and I haven’t made friends at the new one because there’s no socializing or talking due to Covid. Everyone has to stay distanced and then leave immediately. My kids are in schools (no longer homeschooled) for the first time this year, but we can’t meet people because of Covid. They lost all their friends when we left church, too. I had to stop contact with my family (all live here) 3 years ago due to the alcoholic, addictive stuff and abuse. So during this divorce, the kids and I have no one who could visit. They don’t have friends to talk to. We all have therapists, I have my 12 Step and my new sponsor, and my aunt who I don’t usually see more than twice a year.

I look at the typical divorce scenario where the woman has friends and family to come over, help watch the kids, have holidays and all that. I know I can build it when Covid is over, but it feels like I’m choosing this when we’re in the Arctic Tundra, and all I can see is getting the harmful guy away from us. I can support my kids better without him hurting us. But I have no support system, just therapeutic helps so I don’t fully go insane.

 

January 27, 2022 11:46 am  #1878


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

"I’m very focused now on raising my kids and taking care of myself as a single mom. I want a divorce. There’s so much freedom and goodness in seeing life like that, as hard as it would be at first. Everything my husband said made it more and more appealing! Everything confirmed how bad staying married would be!"

Beautiful LMM! Thank you for sharing. 

 

January 28, 2022 5:09 am  #1879


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

Thank you for taking the time to rely to my post. To be honest I’m currently in the process of a legal separation/ divorce from my husband. But I wanted to post my story here because I’ve been struggling with feeling guilty for thinking my husband may be gay when I’m not 100% certain this is actually the case. I just don’t want to make assumptions. I’m trying to be ok with the thought that I may never know the truth. But that’s a struggle within itself. Your feedback was definitely validating. Thank you again.

 

January 28, 2022 6:01 am  #1880


Re: A gay ex-husband answers your questions

September wrote:

Thank you for taking the time to rely to my post. To be honest I’m currently in the process of a legal separation/ divorce from my husband. But I wanted to post my story here because I’ve been struggling with feeling guilty for thinking my husband may be gay when I’m not 100% certain this is actually the case. I just don’t want to make assumptions. I’m trying to be ok with the thought that I may never know the truth. But that’s a struggle within itself. Your feedback was definitely validating. Thank you again.

Thank you for the update September and good luck with your separation/divorce. Once freed of this broken man, fingers crossed that you'll find the [straight] man of your dreams. Be well! 

 

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