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But it’s really hard to be something that you’re not, and in time it falls apart. Well, one day, about two years into the marriage, he was really upset and pacing all over, and I said, “What’s the matter? A woman gets this because her husband is living with her but doesn’t really want to be with her, so he makes it her fault. What she doesn't understand about being gay is a lot.
Do you find that a lot of gay men in straight marriages engage in blaming and gaslighting as part of the act? Many times these guys, instead of just being honest, will make their wife feel confused about the situation and make her think that she’s the problem in the marriage. I saw in one of your blog posts you use the term “gaylighting” to describe this form of gaslighting. These men make their wives think that they’re imagining things, that they’re seeing things that aren’t there. That’s why I say that living authentically is the most important thing in life and relationships. I don’t know how people can live a lie for years on end. Honestly, I wasn’t even living back then, I was just existing day-to-day. This doesn't excuse anything her husband might have done, but that doesn't mean that what he did is the general rule.
(“Mis-marriage” is Bonnie’s term for “mistake in marriage.” Other people sometimes refer to these relationships using the term “mixed marriage.”) Because I know countless gay men who were once married to straight women, with varying degrees of short and longer-term happiness and misery, I wanted to discuss this topic, and I wanted to do so from the straight wives’ perspective.
Who better to speak with about this than Bonnie Kaye?
But from then on, I noticed things were a little bit off. Hardly a word in this article about their married sex life.
So despite the denials, your gut was telling you something wasn’t right? It was really hard for men, made harder by the AIDS epidemic. He was born with a rare disease, so I was running back and forth to hospitals doing a million things for him. I had a high school equivalency diploma and that’s it. He came back a week later and I had no idea he was coming because I’d never even called to talk with him. If the man was truly, totally Gay he would, at the very least, soon start suffering from loss of desire for his wife usually accompanied by sexual dysfunctions such as the inability to ejaculate or suffer from erectile difficulties all caused by low desire.
I recently spoke with Bonnie Kaye, author of Straight Wives, Shattered Lives: Stories of Women with Gay Husbands, among other books, and host of Bonnie Kaye’s Straight Wives Talk Show on Blog Talk Radio.
Bonnie has spent much of her adult life first living with and attempting to love a gay husband and then helping other women in the same mis-marriage situation.
If society turned the tables and being straight was seen as bad or negative, and I had to go through life pretending that I was in love with a woman, I don’t know how I would do it. They make fun of men who are effeminate because they fear they’ll be judged in the same way. Tell me what’s so bad.” So he finally came through and said he had a when he was with a guy that he was spending a lot of time with. He would blame me, so it was easy to take on the blame. For every marriage such as she describes, I know ot mixed marriages where the gay person was bullied and pressured into marriage, manipulated and cajoled into it by the bride-to-be and often in concert with his family.
When he told me about that, I said, “Why would a guy be so interested in you? So even though Robert lied to me about being gay, I did understand why he did it. “I’ll take the children and you’ll never see them again.” Finally, he walked out. This is what comes of our culture's bi-sexual erasure and the need to place people in clean little boxes instead of making the attempt to understand from the other person's point of view.
Tell him you’re married.” He said, “Well, I don’t want to hurt his feelings.” I know in retrospect, of course, that somebody who was straight wouldn’t say that. And at the end of the day, it wasn’t the fact that he was gay that was so devastating to me, it was the way that he treated me. I think that once he saw I was willing to stay, he started pushing the boundaries, doing more of what he wanted to do. I find it interesting that a lot of men in this situation rationalize their behavior, saying it’s not cheating and it doesn’t mean they’re gay. And I bought into that in the beginning because I didn’t know what I was up against. I really thought that people can choose to be straight or gay. I did, even then, think that many gay people are who they are and that’s all there is to it. He said, “How dare you go through my personal business? ” I said, “You’re seeing somebody and you’re asking me, ‘How dare I find out? He had also been telling me things like, “If you ever tell anybody these silly stories about me being gay, then that’s it, we’re done.” And then he would threaten to take the children, telling me I would never see them again. Not only is there no information about their married sex life, but we are being asked to accept her version of the motivations for his behavior.
During our late teen/ early college years, I began to question his behaviors based on comments made by others and my own suspicions.
I asked him if he was gay or had sexual feelings for men and he denied it and stated that it hurt him deeply that I would ask.