Coming Out Married, Part III
Around the time "Coming Out Married, Part II" (last post--see below!) ended, I was scheduled to leave for a month-long business trip hundreds of miles from home. My DXH wasn't coming, so I'd have plenty of time to stew about my sexual orientation. I was probably at least bisexual, I was now convinced, but beyond that, I was still confused.
I had very little extra time on my trip. But with what time I did have, I found myself trolling Craigslist W4W. Just to look... You know. To see what was out there. In the back of my head, I thought that I might be able to get the gay "out of my system" by having anonymous sex with some woman, which would let me return to my marriage and live a "normal" life happily ever after.
Guilt was becoming a heavy, constant burden. I hated myself for entertaining the idea of cheating on my DXH. I went so far as to answer an ad and arrange to meet a woman at a cafe. I remember sitting in the dark of my rented car and deciding whether to go in. What stopped me wasn't the fear that I might be a lesbian, but the sadness that flooded me when I thought about violating my marriage vows. That was the closest I came to physically cheating on my DXH. I didn't go into the cafe. Instead, I drove to the far end of the parking lot and sat in my car for over an hour. I thought over my options. On the one hand, I could stay married. On the other, I could kill myself. There only seemed to be two options. Killing myself seemed the better one. I decided it would be the least painful for him if I made it look like an accident. If he thought I'd died randomly, he'd eventually move on. I had promised my psychologist that I would call her if I was feeling suicidal. I did. We talked. I didn't do it, but thought I might do it the following day, or the one after that.
I began looking at flight schedules, trying to put off my return home for as long as possible, and convincing myself that this was necessary for work. Once I realized what my subconscious mind was up to, I knew I had to tell my DXH or I'd never come home. At the time, I thought I lacked the courage to kill myself. Now, I realize that not killing myself took much more courage.
In the end, I told him on the phone. I had to. I went to the top floor of a deserted shopping mall early one morning and sat in the empty food court with my cell phone shaking in my hands. After saying that I had something important to tell him, I think my exact words were, "I think I might not be entirely straight."
I will always be grateful for my DXH's first reaction. He thanked me for telling him, and said it must have been unbelievably hard to carry that around with me. He asked if I was a lesbian, and I told him, truthfully, that I didn't know. I thought I was probably bisexual. I fervently hoped I was bisexual. I told him it was probably just a realization I needed to have. Once I worked through it, I thought, we'd probably be okay. Two days later, I was on a plane, headed home.
To be continued...
11/12/2011 05:02:54 pm
I'm so glad you never went through with attempting to commit suicide. It takes strength to overcome that, and if you had done it, well, people like me and all your other readers never would've seen all the great advice you have to offer.
11/13/2011 10:02:16 am
I'm glad your DXH took it so well! I wish mine had done the same... I was married for almost 7 years when I came out to my DXH (2 kids later), and stayed married to him for 4 years after that (and 2 more kids). Figured, I was just bisexual, and then the more and more time that passed, I realized that I wasn't interested in him at all anymore. Now I consider myself lesbian. I'm not butch, but a lipgloss femme. I can't wait to read more of your story!
11/13/2011 11:23:59 pm
I was married to a lovely man for 14 years and had 2 beautiful children. he was amazing when i came out...something which had been eating me up inside for several years and many sleepless and teary nights. we are still good friends.
11/15/2011 03:17:36 am
I'm so thankful that you're writing this. I'm going through this right now. And I'm so thankful for the comments from people saying that they were able to remain friends with the man they were married to when they came out.
11/16/2011 01:46:19 pm
Thank you for sharing. I didn't go through this, but it helps me understand how hard it can be for others. And sometimes that you have to be there..
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