I'm Married, In the Closet and Have Been for Years

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    Jul 13, 2012 8:03 PM GMT
    They do study Death of a Salesman still, and you're right I don't want anger to take over my life or make me bitter (and I DEFINITELY dont want to die in an "accidental" car crash). But anger is a realistic response when someone you love and rely on so much reveals themselves to be spectacularly different from what you thought. It won't last forever but the OP should be prepared for the possibility of this reaction from his family. Whatever you do OP, be prepared for it to come to light. People rarely take these things to the grave and even if they do sometimes it doesnt stay there, especially if you act on these feelings. I'm not saying stay in the closet, thats a decision for you to make based on your own situation but I think people deserve to be happy and live an honest life, all of you. In the long run I think honesty is almost always the right choice, often much harder but in everyones best interest. In my case, I don't blame my dad for being gay, its the way hes conducted himself through this process that makes him feel like a different guy. Having younger children makes the decision much more complicated, the best advice I can give is whatever you do behave with integrity. Good luck.
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    Jul 13, 2012 8:04 PM GMT
    Youth is wasted on the young.

    I'm 49 so I have lived long enough to know how true that is.
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    Jul 13, 2012 8:10 PM GMT
    On an energetic or some level, she has to know that you have sexual interest in men. This may or may not have something to do with her interest in you, sexually/emotionally.

    Regardless of being straight, gay or bi you might think about separating from your wife. You children, no matter what you think, can tell it's not a good relationship and it would probably be better for them that you both separate.

    You should tell her that you are bi and see what she says. If you "love" her, but "only" have sexual interest in men that is something completely different. It's a tough situation, but your also probably being too hard on your self. Perspective and positive thoughts about your worth wouldn't be the worst thing.

    All the best!
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    Jul 13, 2012 8:28 PM GMT
    From what you wrote, I would guess that your wife is already checked out of the marriage completely. It may be a good idea, if you can afford it, to look for a sympathetic couples' counselor and have him help you two.

    I've seen the dynamic unfold in a few couples I know. The thing that is really hard to understand is how different the marriage looks to both partners. I've noticed that the gay man's emotion is mostly fear, the straight woman's mostly anger.

    The anger, though, is bottled up. It's the anger not of a person who has been betrayed, but of a person that finally figures out what was wrong in her marriage.

    Fear is a very strong emotion, and i could understand that it makes it hard for you to see where your wife is emotionally. But in her you describe someone that feels slighted, unattractive, with a broken sense of self-esteem.

    For her, the news that you are gay should be liberating. It is not her fault, after all, that you had so little interest in her. Sure, you lied, but you got married young, before you were certain that you were gay. Who's to say when would have been a good time to speak up?

    To you, the situation is probably dominated by fear. You know one devil and you are comfortable with it; the new devil is tempting, but you probably know too little about it to jump into it willingly. You risk losing your family, your friends, whatever else; there is no guarantee that you will find a new family, new friends.

    A counselor that has dealt with couples like yours could help her decouple her justified anger from the lie that didn't cause it. The counselor could also help you face your fears independently of your family.

    In a best case scenario, she'll realize that the end of the marriage is the best thing that could have happened to all involved, and you'll all become a gender-inverted carbon copy of Ross and Susan from the show Friends.

    The worst case is that she'll detect your fear of loneliness and that her anger at you will make her use that.
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    Jul 13, 2012 8:29 PM GMT
    We all make choices in life.
    Some better than others.
    Some we regret and others we cherish.

    You have personal issues that need to be worked out.
    You have family issues that need to be worked out.
    You will not find the answers here in this forum.

    You can either live the life that you are living or you can make better, more informed, honest choices to build a better life, a happier life, for you and your family.

    You can choose to stay, to go, or something in between. Either choice will have a profound impact on your life and that of your family.

    Get help from a trained professional to maximize the positive and minimize the negative impacts of the choices you must make.

    I wish you well.




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    Jul 13, 2012 8:51 PM GMT
    One common regret men have on their deathbed is that they wish they had lived their life the way they wanted, and not according to the wants of others.

    We only get one turn on this blue orb, do you want to waste it feeling lonely and facing constant struggle?

    You respect your wife, but she deserves to be with someone who both loves her as a person and as a romantic partner, you both deserve that.

    It's never too late to put things right, and you are luckier now that society is more accepting. That's not to say that it won't be difficult to do, but in the end it is a much better option for everyone.
  • AllAmericanJo...

    Posts: 4271

    Jul 13, 2012 9:06 PM GMT
    Holy...I'm not qualified to respond. I'll just say good luck and best wishes.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11422

    Jul 13, 2012 10:15 PM GMT
    OP, I would suggest if you resolve that it is time for a divorce (as you wife appears to want) I would suggest that you not bring up that you are gay until after you have divorce. She could use this against you and from what you are saying, she has been ready for sometime to move on with her life and out of the relationship. It sounds like she is actually the dominant partner in the relationship, so more then likely she has stayed with you because you have been a good provider. Even though women are suppose to be the more caring and emotional of the species, they are also less emotional when it comes to relationships, as their main concern is security (whether it be physical, financial or otherwise.) You seem to indicate that you have been there for the relationship emotionally and you have never strayed and have kept true to your promise to her. Even straight married men look at other women lust, so the fact that you may physically desire men mentally means nothing, because you have kept true to your marriage, so don't let her use the fact that you have physical desires for men against you in a divorce.
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    Jul 13, 2012 10:16 PM GMT
    RunintheCity saidThe truth sets everyone free...once they accept it.


    In some places though, the truth will get you killed
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    Jul 13, 2012 10:20 PM GMT
    smartmoney said Too bad you thought it so important to bring kids into such a mess. This is why they should not let straight people marry.



    RIGHT???
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    Jul 13, 2012 10:24 PM GMT
    Hardlee saidI do hope we will continue to be together, which I have been working very hard toward that end. My wife and anyone who knows me has no clue that I am "gay", which I have been ever since I was in my early twenties. If my wife would ever find out it would destroy my marriage and perhaps alienate me from some of my friends and family. The most frightening thought is that it would destroy any relationship I currently have with my lovely children.

    Another part of this equation is that the feelings I have toward men totally go against they way I was raised and my faith. It is a VERY DIFFICULT and VERY LONELY experience.



    You've build this prison and you're afraid someone will rescue you from it.
  • AMoonHawk

    Posts: 11422

    Jul 13, 2012 10:30 PM GMT
    Scruffypup said
    smartmoney said Too bad you thought it so important to bring kids into such a mess. This is why they should not let straight people marry.



    RIGHT???

    You know, you really don't know what goes through a person's head at one point in their life versus another.

    There are plenty of straight couple out there that stay together and abuse their children and put them through hell. It sounds to be that the OP has been a very good father. Not all relationships work out, it doesn't matter if they are straight or gay or mixed up or what ever. Kids can be a bi-product of a straight relationship, that doesn't make anyone right or wrong in having them. What matters is how you care for your children, not how you get along with your partner you had them with, after several years.

    I'll bet a lot of people on here are not still in the first relationship that they got into, so people should stop with the judgmental crap.

    How's that saying go??? "Let he among you who is without sin cast the first stone"
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    Jul 13, 2012 11:06 PM GMT
    Hardlee saidClarification: I'm in love with my wife because yes I do love her, made commitment to her 20 years ago and she is the mother of my children. But I find I am not attracted to women but deeply attracted to men. I got married because I was forcing myself then not to act and go with my true feelings. I hope this provides clarity.


    Your marriage is over..... repeat over and that is OK. Nothing lasts forever except in the minds of fiction writers. I am a Mr. Fixit type guy myself and don't give up easily so I went through the same thing by resisting the inevitable but it's not in you or her best interest to make each other miserable. You have a whole new life to start and you will grow immensely.
    Get on it.
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    Jul 13, 2012 11:07 PM GMT
    I have mixed feelings about this subject so I'll just keep it to myself to avoid conflict icon_biggrin.gif
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    Jul 13, 2012 11:29 PM GMT
    smartmoney saidToo bad you thought it so important to bring kids into such a mess. This is why they should not let straight people marry.
    This is one of the most moronic statements I've seen on this site. I have to wonder if you've ever had a conversation with anyone who grew up in the 50s and 60s to really understand how society molded many of us in how we believed we were to be and how confusing life was for many guys in the generation.

    At 37 I would have expected that you wouldn't be so ignorant and insulting in your response. Really? I'm so glad that your life as a gay man as been so blemish free and perfect!
  • dfrourke

    Posts: 1062

    Jul 13, 2012 11:33 PM GMT
    This is really complicated.

    While sorting out some of the story on RealJock might be helpful, I have to stress (as some have already), this type of work really needs professional guidance with a counselor.

    Most folks on here have opinions about what to do, but how to maneuver those steps without doing major harm to yourself or others is a skill best left for those with training and who can take the time to understand better than any website.

    Much luck while you sort this one out.

    - David icon_wink.gif
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    Jul 13, 2012 11:46 PM GMT
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    Jul 13, 2012 11:56 PM GMT
    Life is short Hardlee, you had better make some decisions while the going is good. Stay or go, out of the closet or not, lots to decide in a relatively short time. I know one thing, if my marriage was unhappy, and my wife was cheating............I'm outta there. Good luck.
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    Jul 14, 2012 1:36 AM GMT
    I found 50 was not too late....not by a long shot. 40 is prime time. Dating was actually way easier and rewarding than it was in my 20's but I had no idea it would be such a learning, growing experience. Dont anticipate doom or failure for yourself or your family. It's completely neurotic to assume the negative because prosperity and happiness is just as likely to happen. No one knows what the future will bring. I know of unbelievable horrors that occurred because there was not a divorce.
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    Jul 14, 2012 3:46 AM GMT
    You know... you're kids will understand, they're a lot smarter then what you think. Are you holding you're wife back from enjoying a new life with someone else? Would you feel better doing your own thing? If you were to lose everything are you the type of person that would say... Oh well, i'll just have to start all over again and make more? Question your motives and decide what's right for you and everybody. Remember you can't please everyone. Good luck bud.
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    Jul 23, 2012 5:20 AM GMT
    I have met 16-18 yo guys (in mexico mostly) who are bullied and beaten up by their dads for being gay . You chose to live that life nobody forced you. Even if someone would point a gun at you: you still can choose.
    So grow some balls and deal with your marriage. Stay married (the way u wanted) and stop being a 14 teen drama queen.
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    Jul 23, 2012 5:35 AM GMT
    I can respond to the OP without feeling that somehow I'm going to insult him... so not reading his entire post... from the replies... I gather the OP needs to get in touch with his sexuality through a therapist, a first and for a long time, without his wife knowing the details... then he needs to confront himself, then his wife with what he discovers about his true self. If he doesn't get the tools at that point to be on his own, if he turns out gay, then he may just end up staying locked in that situation with her... depending on her. Guess I can be nice... icon_redface.gif
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    Jul 23, 2012 3:52 PM GMT
    Artique saidI have met 16-18 yo guys (in mexico mostly) who are bullied and beaten up by their dads for being gay . You chose to live that life nobody forced you. Even if someone would point a gun at you: you still can choose.
    So grow some balls and deal with your marriage. Stay married (the way u wanted) and stop being a 14 teen drama queen.

    Spoken clearly by someone from another generation who has no clue of the struggles that gay guys who married before his generation have.

    Yes, guys are bullied and beaten up all over the world for being gay but that has no relevance for someone here and struggling over commitments made when growing up gay was NOT accepted.

    The nice thing about this site is that it gives guys like Hardlee and others the support to consider all aspects of his situation and to make decisions that are not only in his interest but that of his family. It's not just about walking out and starting a new life, something many young guys your age don't understand.

    Trust me when I say that most of us that have endured this struggle would have gladly accepted the opportunities that your generation now has available in your youth.
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16505

    Jul 23, 2012 4:07 PM GMT
    CuriousJockAZ said
    soulman1969 said

    Life is too short to live it everyday in our own self created personal hell.



    ^^^ This ^^^ You coming out to your wife and kids doesn't make you love them any less. However, being honest with them will give them the chance, and you the wonderful gift, of them being able to prove to you that their love for you is unconditional. You deserve to live your life as the man you truly are, NOT the man you think people expect you to be.


    Agreed... I would encourage you to consider what and who you want to be
    in the future, nothing has to be "frozen in time".
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    Jul 23, 2012 4:17 PM GMT
    This may sound like avery stupid idea, but what about a threesome? If your problem is really just the sexual thing then it's pretty much solved. Considering that your wife tried to meet other men she shouldn't have a problem with that.