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not ready to leave marriage

Discussion in 'Coming Out Advice' started by moxie, Sep 3, 2021.

  1. moxie

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    I didn't know where to put this exactly. I've been coming to terms with being a lesbian, but I'm married to a man and not ready to come out or leave my marriage. I would really like to connect with others in the same situation (here, or if anyone knows of a group/support group) as it's a very lonely place to be. I really could use some support that is not trying to convince me I need to come out and/or leave my marriage.
     
  2. I'm gay

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    It's ok that you're not ready to come out or leave your marriage. This is a safe space for you to talk about how you are feeling, ask questions, and learn about yourself.

    Of course this site is called Empty Closets for a reason, though. We will likely encourage you to face your reality as you progress in your thinking, with perhaps the ultimate goal leading to coming out. That's not meant as pressure to come out, just encouragement for you to be mentally healthy and at peace with yourself, whatever that may look like to you.

    As for where you put this thread, this forum is a fine one, and perhaps the Later-in-Life section may be of interest to you as well.

    Good luck on your journey!
     
  3. quebec

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    moxie.....There's no rule that says you have to get a divorce if you come out. Although the majority of people who are married and then accept that they are not straight do get divorced. It's just that it's not automatic, not "required". :old_smile: Some couples do stay together. It depends a lot on the personality of both people. The most important thing when you find yourself in this position is communication. You haven't said if you've come out to your husband or not yet. How he responds to the news is quite important as it relates to the whether the marriage will last or not. Things are somewhat different now than they were even ten years ago as it relates to mixed-marriages. In the past there was very little chance that a couple in your situation would stay together, now things are a little bit different. I don't want to give you the idea that your husband will be just fine with a relationship involving three people or that he will accept "sharing" his wife with someone else. But you will never know until you have discussed it with him. You have also not mentioned if there are any children involved. Children will complicate the situation quite a bit. So again, it comes back to communication. No matter how hard it will be, at some point you will have to have the discussion with him before you can have any idea of what your next steps will be. Remember that you are a part of our wonderful LGBTQIA+ Family and that we do care! :old_big_grin: Please keep us updated on how this works out for you...we do want to help in any way that we can.
    .....David :gay_pride_flag:
     
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  4. Tikimon20

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    I hear you...I can't hurt my wife, but for many years I've had strong feelings for men. I came out to a friend recently and its helped so much. I'm just doing small steps and looking for support groups. I've hid this since I was a teenager and feel safe here, and hope you will, too.
     
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  5. LostInDaydreams

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    Hi @moxie

    I’m sorry that you’re in this situation. I found this situation to be very lonely too. I was with my (now ex) partner for three years (after I realised my sexuality) before I separated from him. Everyone gets to the point of being ready in their own time.

    What aspects of the situation are you struggling with?
     
  6. EddieWrite

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    Hi moxie. I’m in the same boat as you. I’ve been struggling with this for a few years now. I love my husband; he’s my best friend and a great guy. I count myself lucky in this regard, but it only makes the whole thing harder.
    As I mentioned, I’ve been struggling with this realization that I desire women for a couple of years now. When you say you feel lonely - I get it so much. It is such a lonely, sad and frustrating place to be. I did some research and found out about this site. I created an account in hopes of finding others who would understand and could offer support.
    Like you, I have no interest in anyone pushing me to come out and get a divorce (although I now feel myself a lot closer to wanting to come out than I did before - actually, I came out to my best friend about 2 months ago). I just want to talk to other people who get it.
    Best regards.
     
  7. LostInDaydreams

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    Hi and welcome to EC. :slight_smile:

    I’m sorry that you’re in this position and you have come to right place. I have been in a similar situation to you - I stayed with my (now ex) partner for about three years after realising my sexuality - and I found EC to be incredibly supportive and helpful in that time.

    I hope that you also find the support you’re looking for here.
     
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  8. Daisydoo

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    I can relate to your situation completely. I love my husband but there’s so much I am hiding of my true self in relation to my sexuality and desire for women (which has always always been there) I can’t ignore it anymore so I’m taking small steps to honour my truth. I’ve shared it with my friend, joined this forum and hoping to start counselling to talk safely about it. I feel so many feelings. My husband and I are having our issues but at the same time I do love him. It feels like everything is in the air. Trying to keep it one day at a time. I’m really grateful to those who share their experiences and advice/support.
     
  9. JackRabbit

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    I think you’re probably one amongst millions, my dear. Even if you’re not ready, I would suggest that there may be some selfish thinking there. Why are you not ready? Even if you don’t feel deprived by remaining in a marriage that’s contrary to your biology, might you be depriving him of something? True and inseverable commitment? Reciprocated attraction and arousal?

    I don’t want to make too many assumptions because you didn’t give us a strong factual background to make those assessments. But I would look at it more from a perspective that asks whether what’s best for you is necessarily best for him.

    It’s also never healthy to live life as someone you’re not. If so we’re you, I would get with a therapist quick. Not because you need to be fixed, but because you need advice from someone who can look at your specific facts and advise you on what’s healthy and what isn’t.
     
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  10. JackRabbit

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    P.S., Part of the reason I’m so passionate about that question is because, gay or straight, I’m a man. People who identify as men, particularly those born with masculine parts, tend to think similarly, whether gay, bi, or straight—at least in broad strokes. If I found out my spouse wasn’t genetically programmed to be attracted to me, I would be angry, not that she (or he) came out to me but in how long it took her (or him) to do so.

     
  11. Really

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    @moxie

    You do what’s right for you in your own time. It’s nobody else’s place to try to convince you otherwise.

    We’re here for you if you want to hash out your thoughts and/or feelings. There are many similar stories to yours and I’m sure you’ve already seen some or will come across them very soon if you keep reading.

    Welcome to EC. :]
     
  12. silverhalo

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    I can totally understand why you or someone in that position would feel angry and you would have a right to. I don't even think it comes down to gender. If it were a man coming out to a woman then the feelings could likely be the same. That being said it is way more complicated than that. It is not just down to selfish/unselfish and @moxie has every right to navigate her journey at her own pace and speak to her husband when she is ready. Most advice on EC would be that honesty is mostly the best policy but only she knows herself and her husband and when the right time would be. There is no information on the post about time frames but actually they are irrelevant she has to get to a point where she is ready to tell him.
     
    #12 silverhalo, Feb 22, 2022
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2022
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  13. JackRabbit

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    That’s a good point, David. I was actually considering that as I wrote my response. That said, therapists can do a whole lot in helping you inventory the pros and cons of making difficult decisions and helping you to come to terms with what’s best for all people involved.

    Without a doubt, that hinges on honesty. The sooner two people come to terms with the reality of their relationship, the sooner they can act (or not act, as you cleverly point out) on it. I’ve known people in similar situations, and they stayed married, stayed best friends, and went out together to ogle “chicks.”

    The difference between that outcome and another can be as simple as time… Someone pointed out their own similar circumstance below where they withheld their sexuality for three years. That’s a very important variable, isn’t it? Because resentment doesn’t exist in a vacuum, it exists in a pressure cooker. Time not only chills resolve, but it turns up the heat. The difference between three years and, say, 15 is monumental.

    That’s another reason to see a therapist. So all those variables can be laid out, examined, and incorporated into the resolution.

     
  14. JackRabbit

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    Admittedly, selfish wasn’t the best choice of words. I’m typing from my phone, so don’t have my draft sprawled out on a larger screen for editing purposes. (I probably should prior to responding, given the gravity of the issues involved.) And I think you’re absolutely correct.

    There are just a lot of variables to deal with, and this decision-making process has such a profound impact on, potentially, so many people’s lives that it is unfair to ask one person to shoulder the guilt, or grief, or other emotional burdens.

    As I was saying to David, subject to the condition that no one but her husband can say with any authority what is and isn’t a reasonable amount of time for him, if any at all, I could forgive three years a lot more easily than I could forgive fifteen, or twenty. I was more or less trying to relay the real opportunity here for resentment to take hold.

    That’s another good reason, I believe, to see a therapist on an issue such as this. Certainly, to lay out all the sensitive variables that you wouldn’t necessarily lay out here, on a public microblogging site/forum. But also, to understand the psychology of the other half of the equation, prevalence data, etc.

    At the same time, what’s best for him is something that should be considered thoroughly. Even if it’s uncomfortable, you don’t feel it’s the right time, etc., there is a strong argument to be made that he ought to have a say in when the “right time,” to the extent such a thing exists, is. To the extent that’s impossible to gauge without telling him, I would argue that makes the weight tilt in favor of sooner than later. That is, in accordance with the advice of a counselor.

    But again, there are too many variables to consider that are private and shouldn’t be laid bear online.

     
  15. JackRabbit

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    I hope you saw my secondary posts, by the way. Perhaps on an issue I shouldn’t be, I’m writing from my phone where I can’t scrawl my draft out on a screen to ensure my thoughts logically connect or I’m not self-righteously accusing someone of being selfish when I intended to relate that some internal inventory needs to be done to ensure that, in withholding who you are or in unilaterally deciding when the tine is right, to the extent such a time exists, you’re not depriving him in having a say in that matter.

    I think I saw you say that you’ve been married three years. No one but him can tell you how long is too long if not any amount, but three years is definitely a lot easier to deal with than 15, or 20 years. Those are those variables, some of which are too intimate to post on a public forum, that need to be part of that inventory analysis.

    I really hope that, if you have not already, you seek out counseling. As stated, not because there is anything in you that needs fixing. You are coming into compliance with your genetic code. And that tends to be my position in anything. I’m not a religious person so I don’t have clergy to go to for advice and counsel, I do routinely see therapeutic counselors. That’s something I neglected quite a bit when I was younger and I’m all the worse for not utilizing all the resources availed to me, even when a subject felt too personal to do so at the time.

    At the same time, and perhaps this is why I came out so insensitively when I should have just shut up, I knew I was gay at such a young age that it’s hard to relate to people who say they didn’t know, or didn’t realize it until young (sometimes late) adulthood. It’s not because I don’t believe them, or you… (or whether I believe matters.) It’s just a place that I’ve had the benefit of never being; there was never a huge mystery as to what got me aroused. I was there for every awkward moment of it. But as a result, I don’t know how heavy those shoes are. I can’t imagine how heavy those shoes are.

    What I can say is congrats on coming into your own. The water is warm here. I think you’ll like it.

     
  16. hopefulB

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    I absolutely relate. I'm coming to terms with being gay but in a straight relationship and she's my best friend. I don't want to end the marriage either. Just know you aren't alone.
     
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  17. ThxSens8

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    It looks like Moxie has been away from this site for a long time. I hope she returns or gets the support she needs elsewhere.

    In these situations, a person's spouse can be hurt and lash out, but it is also very possible that you have chosen an open person who, despite the initial hurt, will support you and continue loving you at a different level.