Numb

•June 20, 2013 • Leave a Comment

I’m calling this post Numb because it describes how I felt during the last couple of years living with my gay husband. I decided to write about this as a caution to other people in the same situation or any situation in fact where you feel desperate. Don’t turn to drugs or alcohol, it’s not the solution. I did and it was extremely detrimental to my health and well being, it only made everything worse and prolonged the pain.

My husband was a drug addict from an early age and I married him knowing this but me being a fixer thought that I could help him, make him realize he doesn’t need that stuff to be happy. Now I know why he’s always had problems with drugs and alcohol, it’s obvious now. An escape from reality, from truth.

Unfortunately I fell into the same trap. I never did drugs before I met him, I barely even drank alcohol. As the years went by and I became very unhappy (for reasons I couldn’t figure out at the time, but now know), he introduced me to strong painkillers. When I first tried them I thought wow this takes away my pain, it wasn’t a physical pain it was a deep rooted unhappiness inside, a feeling something wasn’t right, depression. It wasn’t long before I became addicted to them.

It completely numbed all the pain and sadness I felt and from that point onwards I turned into a zombie. I never left the house, I never answered the phone, I was in bed mostly, didn’t even shower. He carried on with his life as normal, business as usual, being the hardened drug addict he is it didn’t affect him in the same way, he was still able to function normally. This went on for a couple of years, maybe more.

Not only was I addicted to painkillers but I was also drinking heavily and taking pills to sleep and other pills to wake up. I would wake up in extreme physical pain and at night I could barely sleep because the drugs made me restless.

All this time, we basically were living in separate rooms, me in bed and him just going about his business, whatever that was. Just going to the store was like climbing a mountain for me, I was a mess. I lost my job, my friends, cut myself off from everyone and I looked a mess. I was completely under his control. He’d disappear for hours, days. He didn’t care at all, he just watched me disintegrate.

I tried to overdose one night. I passed out and woke up hours later with a searing pain in my stomach and the worst aches through my body. I would drink a couple of bottles of wine some nights on top of all the pills. I was crying out for help and nobody was there. I was trying to reach the ultimate numbness, nothingness.

In a flood of tears one day I made the call that saved my life and something I should have done long ago. It wasn’t long after that I was out of there and heading to a much better place, a safe place surrounded by loved ones. I haven’t taken drugs since.

Drugs and alcohol don’t help. At all. They only make things worse. You’re not supposed to numb this kind of pain, you’re not supposed to ignore it. If I’d been sober I think I would have dealt with things sooner and faced up to the reality that our marriage was over.

Don’t hide how you feel no matter how scary it is.

Life is too precious.

You matter.

I’m one of the lucky ones because by some miracle I’m still here and I never want to be back there ever again. There’s ALWAYS a way through. Drugs are not the answer.

Don’t be numb like I was.

Anger

•May 30, 2013 • 2 Comments

I have a lot of anger, at times it consumes me. I think it’s normal to feel angry in this situation because the level of deception is so high and no matter how hard I try to shake it off it’s always there. I have good days and bad, sometimes I’m able to push it aside and focus on my life now but there are times when I can’t think about anything else and I just want to scream. In the beginning I didn’t feel angry because I didn’t understand what was happening, I was still trying to figure it out. My feelings towards him were of pity, I felt sorry for him, made excuses for him. Then like a wave anger washed over me and I felt full of rage. When the pieces of the puzzle started to come together I realized just what he had done to me and that made me angry. My anger made me stronger in the sense that I was able to stop feeling sorry for him and start dealing with the pain and the deceit and I could see things clearly for what they were. The realizations I made were painful and difficult to accept but my anger was the fuel that helped me accept all of it. So I think it’s normal to get angry, it’s definitely a part of the process we have to go through as straight spouses. I don’t want to be angry forever and hopefully over time it will leave me and I won’t be so consumed by it but it just takes time I guess..

Signs

•May 23, 2013 • 2 Comments

I’ve read so many stories from women asking the same question ‘Is my husband gay?’ and conducting lists of reasons, suspicions, signs. These lists are usually quite similar to one another and I’m always able to spot more than a few signs that I recognize from my own experience. For now I’m just going to make a list and then later I’ll elaborate on each one individually.

1. Lack of intimacy/No sex
2. Inability to maintain erection/Blaming it on ED/Viagra prescription
3. Porn stashed in home (involving more men than women)
4. Questionable internet activity (late night, multiple email accounts, live webcam)
5. Spending a lot of time with young, male friends
6. Disappearing for unexplained hours, sometimes a whole day
7. Buying magazines for men (Fitness etc)
8. Buying sex toys (anal beads, dildos)
9. Wanting a threesome with another man
10. Talking about friends penis size
11. Commenting on how handsome certain men are
12. Wanting me to dress like a tomboy, hated sexy lingerie
13. Overly flirtatious with women (overcompensating)
14. Drug use, alcoholism (an escape from reality)
15. Constant state of depression (good way to avoid intimacy, confrontation)
16. Frequenting gay bars (just for fun, apparently)
17. Increased personal hygiene when going out alone
18. No eye contact during sex, covering face. Wanting anal sex.
19. Vacations in places with separate beds
20. Anxiety, irritability, anger at being touched
21. Obsessed with the size of his penis, constantly saying it’s too small and not good enough for me and that I deserve better.
22. I found mens underwear in his suitcase after a work trip, he said he didn’t know how they got in there.

I’ll continue to add to this list as I think of them. I should say that this post as with all my posts are from my own experiences and are relevant to my situation.

Support

•April 3, 2013 • Leave a Comment

When I started to suspect my husband is gay I began searching frantically online in the hope that someone out there might be in a similar situation and that’s when I discovered the Straight Spouse Network. Here I found that I wasn’t alone, quite the opposite in fact. I started to read other peoples stories and realized that what I was experiencing was very common. I can’t begin to tell you the relief I felt just knowing that I wasn’t the only one. I’ll be forever grateful to the men and women there who have given me advice and support. These are people who’ve been through it, come out the other side and have managed to start anew, this gave me hope. It’s been such an important place for me, knowing I could go there when I had nowhere else to turn. They’ve been a lifeline of sorts, and have made all the difference to me, helped me understand and helped me cope. I feel it’s important to mention them because if anyone happens to read my blog because they’ve found themselves in this situation it’s a good place to start so I’ve added a link to their website. They have an open forum where you can connect with other straight spouses anonymously. It’s cathartic to tell your story and if somebody identifies with it- that’s an amazing feeling, finding out you’re not alone. I’ve also recently discovered Bonnie Kaye’s website which I’ve added a link to as well, on there you’ll find a wealth of information and support, I’ve found listening to her blog radio talk show particularly helpful.

Loss

•March 21, 2013 • 1 Comment

Thinking about the effect this has had on me I’ve found that the most prevalent emotion I’ve felt is loss.

The Dream:

Realizing that everything you thought was real, isn’t. Hopes and dreams are shattered. Memories are broken. Everything you have worked towards, building a future together, the promise of children, security, unity – gone.

Time:

I wasted 10 years of my life with somebody who thought it acceptable to lie to me and use me. I’ve read stories from men and women who found out after 30, 40 years of marriage so I know I’m fortunate to have found out early on but still, it’s 10 years I’ll never get back. I was in my early twenties when we met, I had a great job, was independent, healthy, full of energy and ambition, I was happy. Fast forward 10 years and I was severely depressed, anti-social, unemployed and using drugs.

Self Esteem:

The effect that being a straight spouse has on your self esteem is huge. Only those who have been through it can fully understand what it does to you. Here are just a few of the emotions/feelings I have experienced:

Embarrassed, ashamed, inadequate, unworthy, ignored, unappreciated, foolish, angry, sad, confused, unattractive, stupid, disgusting, naive, used, doubtful, abandoned.

I felt this way during and after discovery. My self esteem was shattered into pieces. I have issues now that I didn’t have before and have had to start rebuilding what was broken.

Trust:

Finding out the person you married completely fooled you definitely leaves you with trust issues.

Friends and Family:

I touched on this in an earlier post. I’ve lost some friends which makes me sad at times. As far as family goes I’m referring to my extended family who I happened to be very close with. As if overnight all ties were severed. The day I walked away was the day I lost them. I know this happens in most break ups but for me it felt all the more awkward because of the circumstances surrounding it, I couldn’t even go there. I didn’t want to hurt them.

Independence:

When I left my husband I had to move back in with my parents. I hadn’t lived at home since I was 18 so moving back in my 30s well I just felt embarrassed. It was the best place for me however, they rehabilitated me and were so patient and caring and non-judgemental. I don’t know how I would have coped without them. Being fiercely independent from a young age did make this transition testing for me, having to rely on other people, emotionally, financially. I’ve felt like such a hindrance, a real pain in the ass. I would just like my independence back one day.

Identity:

This is one that I think I’ve made progress with and it’s been quite fun to reclaim my identity. I didn’t realize till much later how controlling and manipulative my husband was. When I left him I had no idea who I was anymore, I was like a blank person. He controlled every aspect of my life and I didn’t even know it. I’ve been on a journey of self discovery and I’m learning everyday. I’m much more in touch with who I am, who I was before I met him and the kind of person I aspire to be.

Till next time.

Paths

•March 20, 2013 • Leave a Comment

‘Midway in the journey of our life

I came to myself in a dark wood,

for the straight way was lost.’

From ‘The Divine Comedy’ by the poet Dante Alighieri.

When I got married I thought it was the beginning of a beautiful journey. No matter what come rain or shine we’ll get through it because we have each other and love will conquer all. I really did believe that. Maybe I wasn’t being very realistic.
My parents have been married for over 40 years. They’ve weathered many a storm and are as close now as ever before. Most of my friends parents have divorced for one reason or another so I admire mine, I always have. So I knew it might not be easy but I thought if they can do it so can I.

For a straight spouse it’s so disheartening when you discover the truth about your marriage because it’s not something you can work on or even fix. It is what it is and everything changes forever the moment you know. You feel duped. I kept asking myself how did I not know, well he was a very good actor you see, he just managed to play straight very well. He’s had everybody fooled his whole life (although I suspect some family members and friends may have known, not sure). But it’s assumed he’s straight. It took a few years before I suspected anything then the signs suddenly seemed to be everywhere. I think what initially got to me was the lack of intimacy in our relationship, that was the starting point from which everything else branched out because I could not for the life of me work out why we weren’t having sex, we weren’t even making out. I tried everything but hell no, nothing worked. I cringe now when I think back to those times, he must have dreaded those moments when I would try to initiate any sort of intimacy with him.

And what a fool he made of me.

I’ve been thinking a lot about the journey of life, we each have our own, all different, unique. I remembered the Dante quote a couple of days ago and it seemed to fit. The paths we take in life. I found myself in such a dark place because the path I took was the wrong one, I was misled. I wouldn’t have gone down that path had I known the truth. The amazing thing is some positives have come out of this experience and I would never have thought that possible. So I think in some ways it made me stronger. I reached a point of complete darkness but eventually the light poked through and now I’m on a new path, a new journey. Hope got me here.

Closet

•March 12, 2013 • Leave a Comment

When a marriage breaks up it’s inevitable that you’re going to lose friends on the battlefield. It’s not easy for them either, they have to choose between the two or then attempt to remain friends with both which can be awkward. I get it. What I found happened is I lost touch with all of ‘our’ friends and kept in touch with a few of my old friends, but even then I lost a couple along the way.

To those I lost touch with I’ve wondered what he said about the break-up. Do they think it was my fault, did he tell lies, did he say we just drifted apart, I have no idea. Do I ever cross their minds? I know it doesn’t really matter at this point.. but still I think about it.

This is where the closet comes in. Being afraid to come out and reveal all. I left him because I found out he’s gay I should say, he lied to me I should say, he’s not the person I thought he was I should say. Instead, I’ve kept it to myself. Partly out of fear and partly out of embarrassment. As a result he gets to say whatever he wants regarding our relationship, who knows what that is. I tell myself if they cared they would have gotten in touch, since they haven’t they mustn’t care. That’s how I deal with it. Maybe they know he’s gay, maybe they knew all along, maybe they think I knew. I guess I’ll never know.

Hopefully I will be able to make new friends in this new life I’m trying to forge for myself. And I’ll tell them my story. It might not be a great story, nor inspiring, but it’s mine and to know me is to know my story.. with all it’s ups and downs. I want to be asked questions and I want to answer them honestly. I want to escape the closet he put me in and not be ashamed to tell my story.

He can stay in there forever, I don’t give a damn.