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coming out to wife of 23 yrs.

Discussion in 'LGBT Later in Life' started by headshaver, Apr 19, 2015.

  1. SiennaFire

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    Thanks for posting this headshaver! Given my week of hell since coming out to my wife and some of your recent posts, I was beginning to doubt myself. Not any more! :stuck_out_tongue_closed_eyes:ride:
     
  2. bi2me

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    That's wonderful! I'm so happy for you. :slight_smile:
     
  3. headshaver

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    EC friends - today, I'm just feeling really down. Maybe I'm just tired.
    I've worked really hard to be open and honest with wife these last 4 months since coming out. I've been very transparent with regard to how I will continue to support her and the kids just like they live today. I've worked very hard shopping for apartments in the area to find one that fits into our budget. I created a complete analysis of each apartment, location, price including utilities and financial impact to budget each month. And, I even found a way to dip into our savings without penalty in order to pay off a credit card, the house furniture and my daughters car -- which would release $1600 into the budget and totally cover my apartment and utilities. I've provided all of this data in a nice budget spreadsheet to wife. I get no response. I'm so exhausted trying to carry her along the way with me to ensure she has the opportunity to share input or opinion. Yet, here I am with nothing. I'm just tired and today I found myself in that regret mode of thinking -- regretting ever coming out - regretting all the turmoil that I have created in our life - just regretting everything. Part of me says screw it - go forward - tell her what you are going to do and do it. The other part of me says to give her time... that she will come around - so here I am in limbo with a cloud of regret hanging over my head.
    A friend of mine told me that reality will certainly sink in when I tell my kids in 2 weeks. She said they will surely be direct and want to know if I'm leaving or not.. and the answer will be yes, that I have plans to leave and expect to be out by labor day.
    I'm not sure where I'm going with all of this, but I just needed to get it all out there - and maybe someone out there will throw me a golden nugget of feedback that I can hold on to. Peace!
     
  4. Spaceman

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    Remember for her this is much less about finances than about feeling deceived and doubting her identity as a wife and a woman.
    October will be two years since I told my wife and she's just now starting to move past her anger and grief.

    A big nugget I learned is that I can't wait for her to be totally healed before I do what I must to move my own life forward. I give her all of the compassion, consideration and financial support she deserves, but I'm not standing still.

    I've also given up on waiting for her to forgive me and accepted that she may never want to be friends, as much as I would love that. I still struggle with guilt and regret and second guessing but moving past it all does get easier with time. There's nothing easy about this as you know, but it's the only path to peace and happiness, I still believe that.
     
  5. SiennaFire

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    headshaver

    Think back to last week and your PRIDE posting. Everyone putting their pic on Facebook with the gay pride colors and your fraternity brothers and other professional colleagues coming out. There will be more great days ahead like that one. You've come so far. You'll regret even more if you stop short of living the life you were born to live.

    Spaceman does a much better job addressing her feelings than I was, so I just deleted my feeble attempt to do so in this post.

    The therapist I've been working with suggests that we have the parenting and living arrangements nailed down before coming out to my son. The former are consequences of divorce that have real impact on our son. Kids don't really want to think about their parents having sex.

    Hang in there

    Love and hugs (*hug*)
     
    #125 SiennaFire, Jul 1, 2015
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2015
  6. Viator

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    This is such a powerful story you are recounting. Just reaching out to say you seem to be clearly in touch with the feelings of your wife. There is so much change brought about by ending a marriage. I myself am not sure when I will be able to come out to my STBX. Thank you for your bravery, candor, and willingness to share this journey.
     
  7. headshaver

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    The last family vacation:
    Hello EC family - it's been about 2 weeks now since I've provided an update on my journey. I wouldn't really say I've made progress over the last two weeks - I would say I have stumbled to this point in the journey. In fact, the last two weeks have been extremely emotionally charged and I find myself eating Advil like candy on a daily basis to control headaches from the stress of it all.
    I signed a lease on my apartment - I may have told you all about this in a previous post - sorry for the repeat. I will be moving into a 658 sqft apartment about 5 miles from our current home. The apartment is ready for move in on 7/31. I opened my own bank account and I have applied for my own credit card - all of this to ensure my finances are separate from all our joint accounts after 7/31.
    In a previous conversation with wife we decided I should move labor day weekend. Not sure this is still a reality. I know that I have plans on telling my kids this coming week and feel certain that I should move into the new apartment once they are told. I think they will be very confused if I continue staying at the house sleeping with mom after telling them that I am gay. Of course, my sister-in-law weighed in telling me that I need to move out immediately. I think she was just trying to see if I was prepared - and was shocked when I told her I could move out on 7/31 and if I needed to move before 7/31 I could go live with several friends who have offered a room at their place until I am ready to move. HA!
    I continue to feel bad that my wife is silent about all of this - bad really isn't how I feel, I would say I am unsettled. I just want to know how she feels - tell me if you are passed, happy, sad, don't give a damn... just tell me something.
    I got what I asked for when I received a note on my office desk from wife last week on Monday - wherein she told me that she is a processed, she compartmentalizes everything (no shit - I've been married to her for 23 years - tell me something I don't already know). She goes on to write that her lack of communication regarding all of this in now way diminishes the intense feelings she has. She is utterly broken and feels she has little resources within her capabilities to keep herself glued together. My coming out has taken away all the joy in her life, it has taken away our bonded family, eliminated any excitement about the future and that aside from death she see's her life being filled with loneliness as she finds herself hopelessly floating around with nothing to cling to. WOW!
    Of course, I felt like shit - again - but I also know that she needs someone to talk to about all of this other than me. I have a friend from fathers first group (gay fathers group) who's wife is the lead group organizer for Single Spouse Network ( a group for women who have gay husbands). I provided my wife's cell number and the contact reached out to her - and has several times last week. My wife choses to not respond to someone who is willing to help. I can't do anything about this - she has to make the decision to get help.
    We left Wednesday for a family trip to Orlando, FL, for universal studios. I decided, and told wife the same, that we leave all of this behind when the wheels go up on the jet. She agreed. We had a great time but it was clear that there was this uncomfortable spirit between us. We only took pics together if the kids suggested.. as an example. Anyway - we made it thru the trip and flew home last evening. On the plane, kids asleep, I leaned over and told her thank you for a great trip and that I loved her - she simply said "I know" and then I looked at her and said I was sorry... and tears began building in my eyes... I had to get up and go to the laboratory on the plane to get myself together.
    So - here I am exactly where I left things before the vacation - I need to tell my kids, I need to start preparing for my move. I honestly believe I will feel so much better when I tell my kids and I know that is when reality will set in for my wife - who I believe is still in denial and thinks all of this will just go away....
    And the journey continues.....
     
  8. headshaver

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    Preparing to discuss with the girls – I
    need to tell them that I am gay and that wife and I are separating. I’ve put this off as long as I can at this point and they need to know. Things at home are just getting uncomfortable – wife and I are nice to each other, like two people who are good friends, but there is also a certain level of discomfort in the room. I’m certain she has a lot she wants to say to me – or say to someone – but in true form, she internalizes everything and finds it very difficult to talk about her feelings / concerns – especially given that this is an area of conflict – which she avoids at all cost – almost hoping that it will just all go away. I have provided her with multiple resources for help - counselor at church, therapist covered under my insurance, contacts at single spouse network - but she choses not to speak to anyone.
    I’m certain she is still in denial about our situation – given that she asked me to tell the girls that we are separating because of marital issues. She would rather them not “be burdened with knowing about my Lifestyle Choice as she put it...” I feel I have been more than patient and I have tried to be fair with every aspect of all the issues my coming out has caused – I cannot honor this request. I will not lie to the girls.
    One of the primary reasons I came out was to stop lying to myself and the people that I love – and I certainly do not want to tell the girls a lie only to have to come back at some point in the future and tell them …. “oh, it wasn’t you or really that we were having issues – it was because I am gay” They will always wonder what other lies I am telling them and their trust with me will be diminished.
     
  9. Yossarian

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    You are doing the right thing, headshaver. Stick with the truth and you will never have to worry about remembering the right lie, or have to explain it in the future.
     
  10. Spaceman

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  11. headshaver

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    Thank you all for your support! I know this is the right thing to do. I also know the wife is being a good Mom - protecting her children. Saturday is the day... not sure when - but Saturday is the day. I'm praying daily that God will just set the whole thing up and give me the right opportunity to have the discussion. This will be the final weight lifted off of me - I don't care about others perception of me - I just care about my family :slight_smile:
    Updates as soon as I have a chance to take a breath after the talk.... peace!
     
  12. bi2me

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    Kids can handle more than most people think. Being honest is the right thing to do. You are empowering them to know that each person deserves to live a life true to his/her own vision of the future. They will come to realize that you were in an impossible situation in which you couldn't be yourself if you stayed quiet any longer. They will also soon figure out that you are not looking to stop being a dad to them.

    Good luck!
     
  13. hanshotfirst

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    Just want to wish you all the best telling the kids, it is the right choice and they need to hear the truth from their dad. Your story hits so close to home so please keep us updated. We're all here for you!!!
     
  14. SiennaFire

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    Best of luck headshaver. Best to be honest with the children. It would be terrible if they found out from anyone other than their loving dad (&&&)
     
  15. Viator

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    Wishing you find the grace and presence of mind you are seeking.
     
  16. headshaver

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    Hello EC Friends - an update on things...
    The conversation with my daughters

    Well, I didn't have quite the reaction from my daughters as many of you have had with your kids. It was a long, long weekend filled with anxiety and emotion.

    I had plans to tell my daughters on Saturday but that didn't happen. Wife knew that I wanted to discuss with the girls over the weekend and she didn't want this to happen. Saturday, wife planned an entire day of events away from the house then planned a family dinner and movie night. So there was no opportunity for us to be at home, sitting down all together in a place where I could talk to the girls.

    Sunday morning I came in from a run and told wife that I would be speaking with the girls at some point in the day. She once again wanted to know how I was going to tell them, she asked to be part of the conversation and she asked me again to not tell them I was gay. I exploded and in anger told her that I would not lie to my daughters about being gay and that this is the reason we are separating. The rest of the day was touchy as wife didn't want to talk to me. We had forced conversation the rest of the day.

    Finally, last night, around 9ish - we were all in the same part of the house, watching TV. I put the TV on pause looked at my girls and told them there was something I needed to discuss with them. Wife just sat there - didn't say anything and didn't say anything the entire conversation - she was no support.

    I took a deep breath, looked at them both with tears in my eyes and said "you know, sometimes in life you try to do the right thing and you realize at some point that what you were doing wasn't right. I wanted to let you know that there is something I have been dealing with all my life, a battle I've been fighting, and I can't fight it any longer - I wanted to tell you that I am gay.". I don't remember anything I mumbled out loud after that ... all I remember was my daughters faces - the shock on their faces, the tears in their eyes as I continued to talk to them. I finally stopped talking and I went to them both sitting on the sofa - I put my arms around them and hugged them both telling them I was sorry and that I loved them both.

    My oldest (19) just started shaking her head back and forth as if she was trying to say NO this isn't happening... then she pushed me away, got up and walked downstairs telling us she needed to go outside. My youngest allowed me to hold her in my arms while she cried - as if someone had died - for 30 minutes - I could feel her body tremble as she cried saying nothing. All I could do was hold her, hug her and tell her that I loved her and I was sorry.

    I finally got up to check on my oldest daughter - I walked the neighborhood and found her - sitting alone at the neighborhood park under the pavilion, crying. We talked for a while - well, I talked for a while, she sat and sad nothing as we walked home. Finally as we approached the house, she said "you know, this really sucks dad and it is going to take a long time for me to forgive you for what you have done to our family.".

    I tried with both girls to help them understand this is something I have been dealing with all my life - and that I had a choice to make - either continue to live a lie and lie to them or be honest. I told them that either way had consequences so I chose honesty as I didn't want to lie to them because they would always question my integrity for the rest of their life. I tried to tell them that I wouldn't change - I'm still dad - I still love them. - I am still committed to them and would die for them both.

    They both wanted to know when we were going to divorce - I told them we were separating and divorce isn't on the radar right now. They wanted to know about moving, etc. I told them we were not selling the house, that they wouldn't be changing schools, that life - as they know it - isn't changing. I told them again that I am committed to providing for both of them and their mom and that I would suffer before I let them suffer. That seemed to help them calm down to some degree.

    Morning came today and my oldest is off to her summer job. I usually cook her breakfast before she leaves. I asked her if she wanted breakfast - she looked at me and said, no, I don't need your help. She said nothing to me the rest of the morning. Wife still isn't talking to me and I await my youngest waking up.

    I knew this would be difficult - but I never dreamed that I would be shunned so badly. Today, I am filled with guilt and shame. I hurt more today than any day in my life. I know in my heart I did the right thing and at some point good will come from all of this. I just don't know what good looks like and I hope and pray for peace and strength to see that day come.

    My journey continues.....
     
  17. greatwhale

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    Hey,

    I know this sucks, coming clean is never easy. I commend you for your courage and honesty. Let time do what it must, everyone is grieving in their own way.

    Your relationship with your family members will never be the same, however, it is nevertheless an opportunity to deepen this relationship in ways you probably never would have imagined had the status quo prevailed.

    The kids are most likely more upset over the breakup of their family, this needs to be mourned all on its own. Even though they will be angry, you need to keep up the struggle for your relationship with them. Although they may reject you a thousand times, you need to stay available a thousand and one times, to be there for them and yes, even to fight with them if necessary because they need to know that you will be there no matter what. They need to know that they will survive this and that your relationship will survive this.

    I know you are in a world of hurt, but let time do what it will. The wounds are raw and there will be scars, but stay the course and be the father that you are...no one said it would be easy...
     
  18. bi2me

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    It sounds like they will need some time to come to grips with everything. Keep us posted. We are here for you.
     
  19. headshaver

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    thank you for the support and encouragement. I WILL MAKE IT!!!
     
  20. flNiceGuy

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    Wow...i can't help but admire your courage n honesty... though I don't have any advice or wisdom to give just would say hope you find peace n happiness you n your family deserve..