The proof is in the numbers. This blog gets consistently more page views when I write about straight wives and gay husbands.
I have quite a few more interesting experiences and ideas to share on that topic. I hadn't planned on writing about my straight wife and me, but this little anecdote is worth a few sentences.
Three weeks ago I wrote about Feeling Lost.
In the several months since my wife and I agreed to separate I've had one date. My self-confidence has been so low that I've opted not pursue anyone because I'm afraid that I can't handle being rejected. (Yes I know I'm being ridiculous.)
I've come to suspect that I have a psychological block of some kind. Until a few days ago I hadn't been able to identify the cause, but now I think I've found the problem. Or at least, one of the problems.
The fact that our "separation" is something of a joke has been on my mind. On the one hand, my wife has her boyfriend and she has encouraged me to go on Match.com. On the other hand, we still sleep in the same bed and she still talks about saving for "our" retirement. I've been asking myself, does she understand that we're separated??
I've discovered that my discomfort with my wife's strange attitude is near the target - but still far from the bulls eye.
On Friday, my wife and I again discussed our separation. I told her that I felt like I needed more guilt-free freedom to find a new center for my life since she couldn't be that person.
"What exactly do you want to do?" she asked.
"Well...I don't know..."
"You must have some ideas."
"Not really. I guess I just mean more freedom to date."
"Date who? Do you already have someone in mind?!!"
"No! No, it's not like that."
"Well WHO do you what to date?"
"Who?" I couldn't understand what she was getting at. Then it clicked. "Oh. Men."
"I knew it! I always knew that's what you wanted. You've been gay this whole time! Even when I asked you before we had kids!"
Yes, ladies and gentlemen...for reasons that completely boggle my mind...my wife thinks I just came out to her.
To say that I am stunned is a huge understatement.
It seems to me that if my wife had not lost her mind she would recall that I first came out to her 18 years ago. It was a rather memorable event...considering that she moved out and we separated for 10 weeks.
And even after we got back together I was upfront about my homo-ness by letting a few lusty comments slip. My lust-honesty didn't last long, that's true. My first few comments made my dear Gabbie bristle so decided to keep my mouth shut in the future. This means that if I was going to vouch for my wife's sanity I would have to admit that shortly after we reunited I went back into the closet for an extended period of time.
But hello!! It was just this past November that we separated and in that conversation she said to me, "I know you're gay," AND "I've always had a feeling that you wanted a different life." ('different' = wink, wink) AND "I guess on some future Christmas we'll be celebrating with the kids and I'll have my boyfriend and you'll have yours."
Yet NOW she thinks I'm coming out to her?????????
I don't think I will ever be able to understand this. I mean I've been confused about how she spoke about our separation but I never, ever would have guessed that she honestly thought I was straight.
I've been trying to figure out what this revelation means.
One thing that's clear is that I must take a half-step backward. I thought we had both made peace with the fact that she's straight and I'm gay. Apparently not.
As part of my move backward, I repeated the same offer I made to her in November: we can live happily ever after together if she dumps her boyfriend and honestly wants to have a "normal" intimate marriage. She's responded by giving me a tentative "No, I can't do that." But I can see the wheels turning in her head. Maybe she never believed that I would find someone else because she thought I was closeted? Maybe now that I've made it clear that I'm willing to replace her, she's reevaluating whether she's willing to let me go?
For now, I'm off the dating market. I can't proceed until I get a clear, definitive statement from her, wherein she releases me. I have no idea how long that might take. Days? Weeks? Months? We have a one week vacation planned for just the two of us at the end of May. I think it would be awkward if I was actively dating and then we spent 170 hours alone together. My guess is that I won't be able to seriously consider trying to date again until June, at the earliest.
I also don't know for certain whether getting through this hurdle with my wife is going to clear my attitude problem. It might. I still have big concerns about dating men. The more I see, learn and experience about gay dating, the less appealing it becomes.
Regardless, I can't worry about that now. First things first.