Monday, March 20, 2017

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK NEWSLETTER - MARCH 2017

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK
March 2017     Volume 18, Issue 183
Bonnie’s Mantra:
LIFE WAS NEVER MEANT TO BE THIS COMPLICATED. PERIOD.
COMPUTER RADIO PODCASTS - www.blogtalkradio/bonnielkaye                                     Live on Sunday night 9 p.m. EST or any time after the live broadcast!

NEXT HEALING WEEKEND
There is still time to come to my next HEALING WEEKEND which is only weeks away in Philadelphia on Saturday, April 29 – Sunday, April 30. If you would like to be part of this amazing weekend, please email me at Bonkaye@aol.com and put the word “Healing” in the subject box. I will send you details. There is no charge for the weekend outside of travel, lodging, and food. This is a life-changing experience for people who need help during the grieving and recovery process.

HAPPY 16 YEAR ANNIVERSARY TO MY READERS

This month marks the anniversary of my first newsletter in March of 2001. Sometimes I really feel like “retiring” because how much can any one person keep saying? But I keep going, fueled by your letters and your pain. In all of these years, the situation has barely changed at all. Women still feel the emotional “isolation” while going through this even though millions of us are doing or have done it. Believe me, it’s not a handful when the numbers are in the millions—and that’s just in this country.
In the years since I’ve started writing these newsletters, I’ve had over 27,000 monthly readers, many whom have gone on to new lives and healing wishing me goodbye and thanks. I was their “lifeline” during this time of numbness and confusion. When people “graduate” and asked to be removed from the list, I am so happy to say goodbye and good luck. Being a straight wife does not have to define your future. The goal is to heal from it and restart your life over. Many of our women have found real happiness with a straight man. Others have found happiness being alone on their own by CHOICE. Either way is the right way. There is no wrong way to move on except for one way—finding a mentally or physically abusive situation again with a predator who senses your weakness after a destructive marriage. Sadly, this happens, too, when women don’t spend the time they need in Gay Husband Recovery. They run and jump too fast looking for love in all the wrong places. They haven’t learned the lesson from that famous Whitney Houston song that learning to love yourself, it is the greatest love of all.

That may sound trite—but ask someone who has found happiness again, and she’ll tell you that it’s true. If you don’t love yourself enough, you will never get the love you deserve and should expect to find with a man. You’ll settle for less—and still not find inner peace. A true relationship with a new partner has to be one based on fulfilling your needs—not just you walking down that street of pleasing a man so he will stay with you. You did that for enough years of your life—and it doesn’t work. It doesn’t matter that your new husband is straight—in fact, it’s worse. At least with a gay husband you know the problems were because he was gay, but with a straight husband, there are different problems. Now it’s not the “gay” messing up your life—it’s other problems that you may not even know about that you have to now face. And trust me, you’ll fall back into those old habits of having to do all of the pleasing like you did/are doing with your gay husband because you will be convinced that “you” are the problem. That’s just the way it is. Period.

If you are strong when you are ready to meet a new partner, you’ll have a better chance of seeing those red flags of danger waving in your face and knowing when to run in the other direction. Your new mantra will be “NEVER AGAIN!”  Hopefully you won’t get your heart broken too badly, and even more hopefully, you’ll gain back some sexual confidence and insight into sex with a straight man. I always say that no experience is wasted experience—even if it isn’t the “forever” experience. These “starter relationships” help you realize that you aren’t emotionally wounded or sexually numbed forever. They awaken feelings in you that you thought were gone, and that is the purpose they serve.

One thing that saddens me the most is that after all of these years of writing, talking, speaking, and spreading the word, straight wives still don’t matter. No one has taken up our cause of seeing how we are the true heroes and how we continue to suffer. I hate to keep repeating this message, but I can’t help it. I want us to feel like “victors” more than “victims,” and the only way that will happen is when society acknowledges that we are SUPERWOMEN who withstood more pain than almost any other woman does. We try our hardest to make our hubbies happy but to no avail. We are missing that magic wand if you get the double meaning there. No matter how loving and helpful we are, it will never replace what he really wants and needs—and it’s not us—it’s a man.

Over the next five years, I plan to move things to a new height is getting people to understand why we are the real heroes here—not “self-imposed” whiners who must have known that our husbands were gay. Yep. That’s what many on the outside think. They are so smug in thinking that we knew but accepted it anyway. Sometimes they even think that we caused it—misinformation thrown into the fire by some angry gay men. But we know the truth. The truth is we didn’t know “gay.” We didn’t understand “gay.” We couldn’t conceive why a man who wanted men would want to marry us. Some of us still don’t understand it—but we have to live with it because it’s the truth.

I am looking for women who will stand with me while I do battle with what the screwed up divorce system this country has called NO FAULT DIVORCE when there is a fault. It’s misleading to think that these marriages are like other marriages when they are not. There is no fault here when our gay husbands reveal they are gay and want to leave. That’s not our fault—it’s his fault. That’s why I am going to challenge the NO FAULT and try to change it to YOUR FAULT divorce. It’s going to take a lot of fighting because in this country, divorce is done state by state. There are some states that accept adultery as a reason for divorce, but they don’t consider gay sex as adultery. Something must be done to change the laws.
I am asking my readers to see who will help me on this mission. I’ve asked before, but the response was not enough to start this moving. I think you can see that now is the time for us to unite and start standing up for ourselves. Until the world can understand that STRAIGHT WIVES MATTER, we will continue to allow ourselves to feel minimized by not only our marriages, but also by society.

If you want to help, please write to me and put the work READY in the subject box. We’ll take it from there. And maybe by the time of my next newsletter anniversary, we will have made great strides. Tell all of your straight wives friends from other groups that we need to be allies and fight this together. If we do this in a united way, I know we can win. The battle has just begun!

A TRIBUTE TO MARGIE M. – A HEROINE DEAD AT AGE 32 IN 1989

I have written about hundreds of topics over the past 16 years of this newsletter. Yes, this month marks 16 years of endlessly writing about topics that affect women who married gay or bi men looking at every possible story or thought that came my way—except for one.
I felt the need to write about this now because I’ve never addressed it before. But as the years go on and people still don’t get that STRAIGHT WIVES MATTER, it continues to jolt my mind in so many directions of why we feel so “minimized” in this situation.

A friend of mine recently wrote that he is so excited to be in a play about AIDS. It made me think about the whole situation of this horrific disease that created one of the darkest clouds of terror that our country faced in my adult life. It was such an ugly time of watching people behaving at their worst out of pure fear (which was understandable) and in many cases, ignorance (which is also expected whenever there is fear).

There is no way that I will minimize this horror story that gay men faced as they died painful and isolated deaths due in many cases to refusal of medical personnel to treat then due to fear of contamination. In the early days of AIDS, it was believed that the disease was airborne and you could catch it by being in the same space as someone. Those days were frightening—and I knew it first-hand from my own experience.

My son was only four years old and attending nursery school in 1986. Sadly, he was born with a rare genetic disease that caused his death at the age of 23. In his early years, he had a number of hospitalizations for treatment and surgery. I was invited to appear on the Sally Jesse Raphael show to discuss straight/gay marriages, and I accepted the invitation. I was getting hesitant to do television as my children were getting older even though we had different last names as I didn’t want them to be affected by my involvement on this issue. The show was national at that time, but it was shown at 4:00 a.m. in Philadelphia which made me think I was “safe” as far as people not seeing it in my area.

The show was scheduled to be shown about one month after the filming. A week before the showing, my son was hospitalized for an infection related to his rare disease. He was out of school for three weeks, and during that time all hell broke loose. Petitions were sent to the nursery school organized by a mother who woke up early that day and saw me on the show. She saw that my husband was gay and my son was sick, therefore he must have AIDS. Parents threatened to take their children out of school unless my son was removed. The school stood by me and refused to remove my son. Several of these women did remove their children from the school because of FEAR that I had no control of no matter how many times I told them that my ex didn’t have AIDS and my son was sick from a bacterial infection—not a viral one.

This situation made me so much more empathetic to people infected by this deadly disease because I saw how people reacted to me and my son—and this was just because someone put two and two together and it equaled seven. I couldn’t even imagine the horrible life of people infected as they were handed that death sentence.

Many movies were made about the horror of this disease focusing on the pain these men went through. However, other than Precious, a movie about a teenage girl infected via sex with her addicted father, very little has been said about the women who died from this terrible death—meaning those women who were infected by their gay husbands. No movies or tributes have been done for them—and I know I was working with seven different women who died during those years--not from sharing needles, but from sharing their husbands with gay infected men. All of these seven women were blindsided—they learned of their husbands’ homosexuality when one or the other became ill. Both of them—husband and wife--died leaving orphans behind. Going through the nightmare with these women forced me to take a step away for ten years because I couldn’t deal with the emotional pit in my stomach anymore. It was too deep.

Here I will tell the story of one of these women—Margie M. I met this lovely lady late in 1988. She had seen me on a television show locally here in Philadelphia several years before I “disappeared” from the public on television, and she found me on the Internet.  I’ll never forget our first call because her tears of hysteria are still fresh in my mind when I allow them to surface.

She called me and said she saw me on a show and felt I was the only one who would understand her. I told her that I am here for those women who find out their husbands are gay and that I understand her pain. She responded to me with:

          “No you don’t. You can’t possibly understand my pain.”

I replied that I had worked with over a thousand women at that point, and I really did understand. I had been there myself.

          “Well, let me ask you this, Bonnie,” she said. ‘How many other women have you worked with who won’t be alive to raise their children because they have AIDS?”

I admitted none. She was my first, but sadly not my last. Margie went on to tell me that she learned of her husband’s homosexuality when she went to the doctor and tested positive for AIDS. She had started to exhibit the symptoms of AIDS shortly after her husband. He went for a test, and when he revealed the startling news to her, he told her that she needed to be tested as well. And so with heavy heart and strong fear, she took the test which came out positive.

Back then, AIDS was a death sentence. We both started crying and continued throughout the conversation. Both she and her husband were going to die and leave their three children behind. The children were then 5, 7, and 10. Both Margie and her husband had lost their parents, and the each only had one sibling who was unable to care for the children. My heart broke for her. We spoke five or six more times before her death seven months later. Her husband had died two months earlier.

I felt very helpless to provide any comfort to this heroic woman. Her husband—like many others—didn’t think about his actions and how they would affect her. In fact, over 20% of the women who come to me have some form of an STD. Thankfully, people today can live with HIV/AIDS, but it isn’t easy. Men who are out there having sex and not taking precautions and then coming home to their wives to have sex without taking precautions are at best unconscionable. That’s why I tell every woman to get checked so she can make sure that if she has an STD, it can be treated early.

Side note: I can’t help but mention the number of women who have told me that their husbands turned their anger towards them when learning about the STD claiming there was no way in the world they—the husband—could be blamed. He would start blaming the wives of all kinds of infidelity which never happened or sitting on a toilet seat to “acquire” crabs or herpes. These women walked around feeling guilty and blaming themselves—some for years. Again—UNCONSCIENABLE.

Men today have told me (gay husband men, that is) that AIDS is totally different today because it is treatable. Most people are living long lives, and with medication it can be controlled. I say, “Thanks, pal.” Justifying this with stupidity is worse than not mentioning it at all. Too many of our women have been diagnosed with every variety of STD’s. Some will carry the scars forever because they are controllable—but not removable. This really takes its toll when you are trying to start a new relationship. You really have to scour the earth looking for a man that doesn’t mind that you have HIV and says he couldn’t care less. Those kinds of guys are really like finding needles in a haystack.

Getting back to my story of Margie, let me say this. There were no movies made about her and the other number of women who died as a result of their gay husbands’ infidelity. Those women were heroes in our midst who were never acknowledged or even spoken about. I haven’t seen any movies made about them, or heard much discussion.  Many of them died with no peace of mind like Margie wondering who would raise her children. They had the double blow of learning their husbands were gay and then learning they were dying because of it.

In my research, I did find that the actress Amanda Blake, best known as “Miss Kitty” on the show Gunsmoke, died from AIDS in 1989 which was a gift from her “bisexual” husband who also died from AIDS. I didn’t see any tributes or movies made about her. My point is, until women are treated with the same respect and admiration as their gay husband counterparts, we will never achieve the recognition we deserve.
Straight Wives DO Matter even if we don’t talk about it. Society continues to make heroes out of the gay men who come out late in life or pay tribute to those who died during the AIDS crisis, but there are no tributes to the Margie’s of the world. And so Margie, today I salute you and pay tribute to you and the other women who live with the infections bestowed upon them by men who just didn’t care enough to do the right thing.
HAVE A HAPPY MONTH. Spring is on its way!

Love, Bonnie  




BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK - JANUARY/FEBRUARY 2017

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK
January/February 2017     Volume 17, Issue 182
Bonnie’s Mantra:
LIFE WAS NEVER MEANT TO BE THIS COMPLICATED. PERIOD.
COMPUTER RADIO PODCASTS - www.blogtalkradio/bonnielkaye                                     Live on Sunday night 9 p.m. EST or any time after the live broadcast!

NEXT HEALING WEEKEND
My next HEALING WEEKEND is only weeks away in Philadelphia on Saturday, April 29 – Sunday, April 30. If you would like to be part of this amazing weekend, please email me at Bonkaye@aol.com and put the word “Healing” in the subject box. I will send you details. There is no charge for the weekend outside of travel, lodging, and food. This is a life-changing experience for people who need help during the grieving and recovery process.

AT LONG LAST—REASONABLE COST FOR LEGAL MATTERS
I am so excited about a service that I would like to present to you—one that I have used for the past year and LOVE. One of the most difficult problems for our women is having the financial resources to hire an attorney to learn about your rights during the divorce. Sometimes just a first consultation can run $1,000.00, and then several hundred dollars per hour. Even when you have a phone call, you’re billed in time slots of 15 minutes which can mean $100.00 or more for a short question. When you have limited resources, this may seem impossible.

Now there is a solution. JustAnswer is a service that can save you a lot of money and give you peace of mind. They cover family law in the US and in Canada, as well as medical problems, computer problems, home repairs, and veterinary problems. I have never had to wait more than an hour to get a response from an expert, and most of the time, I get a response within minutes.

I pay $36.00 a month for peace of mind, and there is no time limit. You can order the service for a month or keep it on-going like I do. I’ve asked legal questions for a number of you already, but I always advise our women to get the service. You can ask as many questions as you like. I have asked many questions about medical problems in my family as well as computer advice. I think it’s so wonderful to have your own team of experts for such a wonderful service. The link below will take you to the Family Law link, but you can ask any question to try it out yourself. Give it a try—and let me know what you think. There’s no cost to try it out on any topic—legal including divorce and custody, medical (live doctors on line!) or computer problems. This can be a deal breaker. At least you can get a lot of preliminary answers before you have to get a lawyer to go to court which will save hours of time and hundreds if not thousands of dollars.
Click into this link for your free question from any of the experts! Then bookmark the page for the future.


And you can ask any question on the topics listed—not just the legal ones!

VICTIMS OF SOCIETY
          Last month, I was corresponding with a gay man who had never been married to a woman. He was comfortable with his life as a gay man. He was interested in the information on my website at www.gayhusbands.com. We had written back and forth a few times, and I know that he truly did sympathize with women in our situation. He also understood gay men who married us based on the pressures of society especially during the times when homosexuality was not an option.
          I am very clear—always—that I do understand the reason why most gay men who marry women do so—especially during the “dark ages” when gay was considered to be a death sentence. I do believe these men loved us to the best of their ability as gay men—but it wasn’t the love that we needed or deserved. I do believe they were hoping against hope that loving us would push away that need for sexual contact with men—but it didn’t. It just got worse. And the worse those feelings became, the more frustrated our husbands became and took it out on us. We became the keeper of the prison key to the prison that they set up for themselves. Don’t forget—we went into these marriages with true love and pure hearts. Most of us didn’t marry out of “desperation” like some gay men claim. We were kind and loving, and these men were counting on that.
          In time, rather than doing the right thing, these men just keep doing their thing which means going out there and cheating on you. Yes, call it compartmentalization or any similar word which means separating your realities from each other, but they do it.
They are not willing to do the “right thing” by being honest with you, but rather they make you think that you are the one with the problem—not them. That’s where the abuse begins.
          Okay, I’ve stated and overstated this enough time over the years. So when this gentleman told me that he understands that there are victims on both sides—I appreciated the fact that he acknowledged our pain while so many others don’t. However, the more I thought about it, I couldn’t let it just stay like that because the “victimization” here is definitely not the same. This was my response to him:

I understand why these gay men get married, but I don't think they understand what they do to an innocent person when they do that. The same sense of societal rejection that he (the gay husband) feels is the same kind of personal rejection she (the wife) feels from him. I don't know if you're in a relationship or not, but I assume that at some point you've been in one. Imagine how you would feel if you partner kept sexually rejecting you and then started blaming you for "smelling bad" or "having such bad breath that he couldn’t kiss you" or "being too dull in bed." Worse yet--what if he told you your penis size wasn't large enough for him? What if started to criticize how you look, how you clean, how you cook, and anything else he could criticize because the truth was he had a lover he wanted to be with--and it wasn't you. Then you may have a slight insight into how women feel. Women love their gay husbands and married them for that reason. They don't stop loving them when they start feeling the sexual and emotional rejection--rather, they try harder and harder to be better wives.
I have seen women spend thousands of dollars "improving" themselves with breast implants, breast reductions, liposuction, gastric bypasses, plastic surgery, and lots of therapy to see why they aren't making their husbands happy. I personally feel so saddened when women try everything when they can't win a battle that can't be won.
Then there's the social "stigma" of having a gay husband. People ostracize you for marrying someone gay--or worse yet, claiming you must have lacked the ability to be a good wife because he wasn't gay when he married you but became gay later. Certain religions and cultures keep their children away from our children because they find out the father was gay. About 20% of my women have some form of an STD from their gay husband's indiscretions. Do you think this is fair?
In the late 1980's, I had approximately 11 women whom I supported call me that they were dying from AIDS. They had no idea their husbands were gay up until this point. Back then people didn't live with AIDS--they died and their husbands died leaving the children with no parents to raise them. Was this fair? Today you have to be happy if you have herpes or syphilis. At least they’re treatable--but how many men want to date a woman with herpes--the "gift" that lasts forever.
So, I have to say that women truly are the victims of our society that "pushes" gay men to marry. And there are plenty of younger people in your age bracket that I am STILL working with.
There are some gay men my age and older who never married. They didn't come out, but they never married. You don't have to "come out" to be gay. You can live your life with dignity and still do the right thing. No one has to know about your sexuality by covering it up with a woman. There is a different choice that gay men could make. It wasn't get married or come out--it was come out or stay in.
          I stand by those words. I am tired of people making heroes out of gay men who 35 or 40 years later “did the right thing” and come out. There is hardly a mention of the straight wife, and if there is, she is not the hero. She is reduced to just a by-product.
One woman who knows how to articulate the pain we face is Kristin Kalbli. I found Kristin several months ago and had the pleasure of having her as a guest on my radio show. On Sunday, January 29, Kristin came back to my show for a second time and promised to do it on a regular basis. The link to the show is here:
http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bonnielkaye/2017/01/30/bonnie-kayes-straight-wives-talk-show-with-guest-kristin-kalbli
Last year, Kristin wrote an excellent article that she allowed me share with you here. I know you will feel her heart-felt words that express how almost all of the women in this network feel. It concerns NY City Councilman James Vacca.
By Kristin Kalbli
Jan 28, 2016
James Vacca, a New York City Councilman who represents the 36th district of Brooklyn, came out as a gay man on Twitter this week. According to the New York Times, “the post was marked with the hashtags #outandproud #comingout and was greeted with a flood of online support and praise from city and state political figures.”
It is undoubtedly a good thing for Councilman Vacca to be out of the closet, and I congratulate him on his choice to finally live his truth with integrity. Yet an important part of this story is being overlooked: his straight spouse, his wife. While the congratulations and public support for Mr. Vacca pour in on social media, his wife will not get the spotlight, or the same level of public support. Not even close. In fact, she receives no mention in this article; it is merely noted that councilman Vacca is "getting a divorce." In this story, she is not even a person.
But she is a person in the story, and she has every bit as significant a part as Councilman Vacca. Hopefully, if this experience (being married to a closeted gay man) is as traumatic for her as it was for me (my ex-husband is now out after two failed marriages to women), she will still receive a lot of support, although that support will likely be privately and discretely shared away from the op-eds of the NYT.
Before we jump to praise and congratulate Councilman Vacca for his “bravery” upon coming out, I would ask him a few questions. How long has he known he was gay? Or when did he first begin grappling with his sexuality? Did he confide in his wife immediately, as soon as there was a question? Or did he dissemble, equivocate, and lie to keep her from intuiting the truth? In short, did he do harm to her to keep himself safe?
You see, many gay spouses spend years intentionally lying to straight spouses, covering up the truth, throwing up smoke screens in ways large and small, so as not to be discovered. There has been gaslighting, script-flipping, evasion, denial, diversion and deception. Much of this is consciously and intentionally done. These tactics, designed to throw the straight spouse off the trail, severely damage the straight spouse's sense of reality, sanity, and often, their sense of self. Lying and denial on this scale, and in a relationship this intimate, takes enormous effort, and therefore the damage done to the victim-spouse (yes, victim), and the sense of betrayal is proportionally enormous. Especially when the blame for the lack of physical intimacy in the marriage is laid at the straight spouse's doorstep, as it often is to deflect suspicion. It is crazy-making. In the face of such Herculean efforts to make the straight spouse doubt herself instead of her gay husband, she will begin to doubt everything else: including her own sanity, her goodness as a person, her ability to assess reality, her capacity for trust. The very air in her home doesn't seem to be made of oxygen, because it is made of a lie. It is the carbon monoxide of lies; you can’t see it, smell it, taste it, but it still there, killing you slowly. You can intuit something is “off”, but you can’t quite put your finger on it. And when you get “warm,” (you find gay porn or some other evidence) your spouse will tell you are so, so, so cold (“I don’t know what you are talking about! It’s not mine! You’re crazy!”). Because they are still in the closet, and they are using you as it’s door. It is a personal betrayal on the most intimate of human levels. And yes, this is a high level of using another human being. And no, no one gets to do that.
While the reasons for the gay spouse's hiding and deception are complex and nuanced, and often understandable, they are NOT noble, and they are never excusable. And sometimes, they are downright unconscionable. If two people are in a Mixed Orientation Marriage, then both people in that marriage have the right to know that. There is no excuse for robbing someone else of the ability to consent to the kind of marriage they are in. When one spouse unilaterally decides the other spouse does not need to know they are in a MOM, they have unjustly robbed their spouse of informed consent. From personal experience, being unable to consent to the kind of marriage I was in constituted a deep violation of trust and bodily sovereignty that took nearly a decade to come back from. (I would never have consented to marry him had I known my ex husband was gay). It’s was a violation of my sexual agency (I would never have consented to have sex with him had I known he was gay). It was a violation of human decency (I was deprived of the potential for a loving, sexually fulfilling, mutually nourishing marriage with a straight man for 2 decades).
The consequences of these violations of the straight spouse’s life are severe: PTSD, Major Depression, anxiety disorders, a deep sense of alienation from the self and from reality, and when it all comes crashing down when he finally has the “courage” to come out, a deep sense of betrayal because your whole life together was a lie.
I know none of the private details of Councilman Vacca’s life and marriage to his wife. However, we have to stop seeing only the side of the story that indiscriminately celebrates a gay spouse when he/she finally has the “courage” to come out. Before that, there was a husband or wife who may or may not have been traumatized, cruelly sexually rejected, deprived of consent, gaslighted or used as a prop in a play of the gay spouse's creation, or worse, used as a brood mare to produce children.
I promise you, it is beyond devastating to find out you, a human being, were merely used as a prop, a bit of set dressing, a trompe l'oeil, a "beard." It is beyond enraging to learn, as we eventually do, that someone you loved and trusted felt your life could be sacrificed for their illusion, a mere currency they exchanged to buy and build a decoy life. It is a kind of psychological rape that someone felt entitled to unilaterally decide what kind of marriage you should be in, and you weren’t given a choice, because of their fear (legitimate though that fear may have been). That a choice was taken away from you each successive year you were kept in the dark and deceived about the kind of marriage you had, each successive year you did not have knowledge and did not give permission. Your spouse commandeered your life, and didn’t tell you what you were being used for.
Gay columnist and sex advice podcaster Dan Savage is famously unsympathetic to closeted people, stating about one closet case in one advice column: "He is being dishonest, and his chicken shit closet-case games require you to be dishonest, too." This is what many straight spouses experience, only without their knowledge or permission.
This is not about demonizing closeted gay people. Many straight spouses stay quiet about their pain and trauma precisely because we don't want to hurt or offend our LGBT loved ones and friends, and we don't want to seem "too angry" or too unsympathetic to the gay spouse's coming out journey. This has to stop. It is nothing less than a form of violence to a soul to lie to another person so thoroughly. A gay spouse is not excused because they are a persecuted minority (and yes, they are a persecuted minority). You are not granted permission to lie to someone on the most intimate of human levels, to shatter someone else’s life because yours is hard.
This is an acknowledgment that wherever homophobia permeates a society, forcing people into a closet so deep and so dark that they themselves cannot bare to leave it, and will conscript non-consenting partners to maintain it, no one, not even straight spouses, are left unscathed. There is real, and lasting trauma. Let us acknowledge it.
Thank you, Kristin, for your beautiful words. No writer moves me the way you do!
If you missed any of my recent radio broadcasts, here is a link:
On 2/12/17, one of our favorite guests, Dr. Margalis Fjelstad, spoke about our roles as caretakers with men who are narcissists or have borderline personalities. I am so excited that Dr. Fjelstad’s newest book Healing from a Narcissistic Relationship: A Caretaker's Guide to Recovery, Empowerment, and Transformation will be out in late April or May. I’ll announce when it is out, and Dr. Fjelstad will return to the show to discuss the book. To listen to our show from the 2/12, here is the link:


Dr. Fjelstad has a FREE MONTHLY NEWSLETTER to help you set better boundaries. You can write to her at: margalistherapy@gmail.com to get on her mailing list. The words of this woman will definitely change your life—for the better by giving you the tools to take back your life!

I’d like to send a special thanks to my dynamite monthly co-hostess Coach Suzette Vearnon. She inspires us every single month. Here’s a link to her February show to help you through the Valentine’s Day holiday:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bonnielkaye/2017/02/06/bonnie-kayes-straight-wives-talk-show-with-co-hostess-coach-suzette-vearnon

Ladies, this marks the official end of the holiday season. Life can start resuming now without facing the daily pain of family and lover holidays. It’s time put the past few months behind you and let the sadness go. Happier days are ahead. Just write to me at Bonkaye@aol whenever you need support.


Love, Bonnie <3

Saturday, December 17, 2016

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK NEWSLETTER DECEMBER 2016

IN THE HOLIDAY SPIRIT….
Ladies, I’d like to wish you a holiday season. It would be a little silly to say “Happy” holiday season to the many of you who would feel I’m being sarcastic or insensitive during the worst months of each year.
For those of you who are still suffering in your marriages built on illusions and mirrors, there is no real happiness to talk about. Your future is in limbo, and you know that any moment your husband walks out the door some shoe can fall on your head.
For those of you who are newly divorced, this will be your most difficult year yet. All of those holiday traditions you celebrated together are no longer there. And as much as people like me advise you to “start new traditions” and give you “tips” for getting through the holiday, let’s be for real—it’s never, ever that simple.
For those of you in the early years of Gay Husband Recovery, memories of what you thought was yours forever will do the dance of the sugar plum fairies in your brain—no pun intended. They just make you wonder on what was real or not real for those years.
For those of you who are further into your recovery and still struggling with “issues” that create residual feelings of PTSD when certain triggers remind you of what you had, lost, or never had and lost—this is the time to expect those feelings to rise to the surface.
No matter what phase you are in, we are all struggling in this game of either GIVE ME BACK MY LIFE AS IT USED TO BE, or when you realize that won’t happen--TAKE BACK MY LIFE SO I CAN MOVE AHEAD. Unfortunately those pictures being shoved in our face every day and everywhere of families living out our fantasies that we believed to be our realities really tips our boat over making us feel like we are drowning or tilts the pin ball machine in our brain with bright lights until we are screaming “Tilt, Tilt.”
Personally, I think the holidays are a time we don’t have to be happy or even pretend to be happy. We’re not going to fool ourselves for sure. Maybe we can fool others around us, but do we need to do that? Do we need to pretend that our feelings aren’t really that important? Do we need to feel any more “minimized” than we already do?
Being in or ending a marriage to a gay man—whether he is open, in the closet, or somewhere in between—is a traumatic life event. Your investment of time and love into a no-win situation is your reality. In most cases, knowing that your husband was “exploring” his sexuality while lying next to you while he was lying to you and blaming you for the mishaps along the way is something you have to process. In over 20% of the cases of women who come to me, they have the received a gift from their gay husband’s indiscretions that never goes away—namely an STD that will last forever in some cases. And if that isn’t enough to kick you in the gut, people are praising him for being “brave” for coming out. Hello….what about us??? Is anyone praising us for the years we devoted to our family trying to be superwomen in hopes that our husbands would want us? Is anyone marching on a special day saying, “We are proud to be Straight Wives”? Do we get a special day of recognition or a movie about our pain?
And what about how we are portrayed by the media? First we had Brokeback Mountain that portrayed the two wives of gay men as idiots. Now we get a Netflix dramoedy with a real-life older out lesbian playing a straight wife. Oh—we also had Fran Drescher playing Nanny to her gay ex-husband on their double dates and a few Mormon women on TLC talking about how they are happy to marry their gay boyfriends. Is it any wonder that our ex gay husbands are the heroes? There is nothing real about how the media portrays our struggle—we appear as stupid bimbos who should have known better.
Yep. I’m angry. But I’m not bitter. There’s a line that separates them. A few people call me bitter—but that’s not the case. My life moved on, and I am living happily ever after. I’m angry because too many of you still suffering. Bitter would mean that I’m encouraging our women to stay angry. I don’t encourage it at all—but I do acknowledge it. I will validate every raw feeling that you have and make sure that you take absolutely NO RESPONSIBILITY for the demise of your marriage. I will not accept any man telling me, “Well, it wouldn’t have worked out even if I were straight.” That’s what I call denial. They just don’t get it because gay men don’t think straight. They don’t get that the way that you act is in response to the way they treat you.
Most of our women are wonderful women who want to be wonderful wives. Yes, some of us come from situations where there were “issues,” but that doesn’t mean that we can’t be wonderful wives—if we have wonderful husbands to nurture us and help us thrive. When we live a daily life of lies, confusion, and blame, we become different people. We become fearful, co-dependent, and suspicious because we are living someone else’s lie. This is the true shame of the holidays when you are a straight wife.
So, my message to you is to “just get through it.” It’s going to be a rough time until mid-February when all of those loving holidays are finally gone. Until then, it will be one reminder after another of what you thought you had but don’t have.
One of the reasons I get bummed out around this time of year is because I do know what’s ahead. I know that within the next 4 weeks or so, I am going to be meeting dozens of new women who will be hearing the news they never wanted to hear. This is the time of year that many married gay men wait for to tell their wives. They don’t want to louse up the holidays for the family, so they hang in there until January 1st or shortly thereafter. No comment. I’ll just be waiting for them.
Maybe it’s not the best time of the year for many Straight Wives—but it is a psychological time of renewal when January 1st comes along. The worst of the holiday season is behind us so things can get back on track. I was going to say “normalize,” but that would be misleading, wouldn’t it?
KRISTIN KALBLI – MY NEW HERO!!!

After 35 years working with Straight Wives, it takes a lot to inspire me to the point where I stand up and cheer. One of our sisters, Terri, shared this article by Kristin Kalbli with us. I was so blown away by the author’s writing that I wrote her a “fan” letter asking her to be a guest on my radio show on Sunday, December 18, 2016. After the article, I’ll give you the link to the show that you can listen to live at 9 p.m. EST or any time after that at the same link. Kristin gave me permission to share this article with you.

Frankly My Dear, I am the Victim of Homophobia Too!

Recently, author Rick Clemons published an article in the Huffington Post, ‘Frankly My Dear…Gay Men Marry Straight Women! Here’s Why!” 07/19/16 
In the article Clemons asserted “if you haven’t lived and breathed sexual orientation confusion, felt gay shame, or laid awake at night wishing that you really could pray the gay away, then honestly, you’ve nothing to contribute to this discussion.” As the ex-wife of a gay man (who was in denial during our marriage, but came out after divorcing his second wife), I know that I do have something to contribute to the discussion; and I have earned my place in the conversation.
It is an utter travesty that homophobia still exists in our culture to such a degree that self-loathing and fear still infect perfectly wonderful people who happen to be LGBT. Recently the Archbishop of Philadelphia said that gay couples should be abstinent. Preachers still promote disproven and insulting “reparative therapy” and advise gay men to marry straight women (as if our lives are suitable sacrifices on the altar of their religious homophobia). This is baldly discriminatory and deeply harmful to LGBT people.
But when my ex-husband chose to marry me (knowing he was gay), he compounded that harm, spreading the trauma and devastation to two lives, rather than confining it to one. I am the victim of homophobia too. Many LGBT people may not want to acknowledge this, thinking it detracts from their very real suffering. I certainly understand that they may not want to share that particular medal in the Oppression Olympics. 
I am not invalidating the brutal homophobia that sent people like my ex-husband so deeply into his closet that he had to use me as its door. I am saying that my life was ripped apart by that homophobia too. And I am in pain, and angry. Very, very angry. 
My justifiable anger should not be confused with homophobia. I am not, nor have I ever been, homophobic. I have officiated at LGBT weddings, and count LGBT people among my closest colleagues and friends. This shared trauma should make us allies against the injustice of homophobia and its consequences. But often, criticism of behavior like my ex-husband’s (deceiving a straight spouse into marriage) is spun as anti-gay rhetoric. And that is dishonest, dismissive, and divisive. 
I unequivocally sympathize with the struggles of LGBT men and women, although I don’t know what it is like to question my orientation.  But I do know what it is like to have my own sexuality deeply shamed, rejected and damaged. 
Let me explain: I was abjectly and repeatedly sexually rejected by my ex-husband, in the most intimate way a person can be rejected. But I had no idea why. I intuited that he might be gay; I even prayed that he was, because it would have explained the soul crushing rejection. I asked him on different occasions; he always denied it. He left me to guess, to ruminate, to wander in a desert with no answers, to live in an ether of doubt and questioning. And he left me to conclude I was the problem. My body image suffered, my self-esteem collapsed, my soul was damaged, my trust obliterated. I was devastated not to feel desired by my own husband; I was devastated my own husband did not want my touch. My sexuality was a threat to him, a reminder of his own homosexuality, which he was desperately running from. So he had to shame my sexuality and shut it down. 
He did the exact thing to me society did to him. And almost a decade post-divorce, I am still recovering from this form of sexual abuse, this gas-lighting, this mind-f**k. 
Clemons is correct that LGBTQ people are often cruelly “shamed and belief-poisoned” into hetero-normative marriages, but I take exception to his inclusion of the term “forced.” As the ex-wife of a gay man, I say with confidence that I was forced into a mixed orientation marriage against my will, without my knowledge or consent. I did not know he was gay at the time of our marriage, but he did. I would not have married him had I known the truth. was forced, not him. My ex-husband was not “forced” to lie to me, he was not “forced” to marry me, and he was not “forced” to stay in the closet. Not by me, at least. 
Because of my experience, I question Clemons’ narrative that gay men who marry straight women are merely the victims of cultural and familial homophobia and are entirely without responsibility or culpability for these deceptive marriages and their fallout. The homophobia of our culture, vast and grotesque as it is, is not an excuse to rob someone of agency, truth, and the ability to consent. 
It is the definition of entitlement for one person to use another as a beard, a shield, a prop. My ex-husband stole years of my life, depriving me of the love, sexual intimacy and pleasure I might have found with a heterosexual husband. And he did this knowingly. He is responsible for that choice.
In a somewhat cavalier tone, Clemons continues “So the burning question that some of you may still be asking is, ‘Why do gay men marry straight women?’ Frankly My Dear because, sometimes it takes time to live the life you’re meant to live.”  
Ok, fair enough. I get that. But what happens in the meantime to the straight spouses waiting for the truth while their gay spouses have “experiences not yet experienced,” as years of their lives are sacrificed on the altar of their gay spouse’s self-discovery? 
Is the straight spouse’s life disposable because it “takes time to live the life you’re meant to live?”  I cannot imagine anything so disregarding, so dismissive, and so self-serving. 
OH WAIT, yes I can, because I lived it
Yes, it is true, that “true freedom comes from trusting yourself enough to be yourself,” but let’s encourage each other not to learn that lesson at the expense of someone else’s life. 

Thank you, Kristin, for the beautiful words and thoughts of inspiration. To listen to more of Kristin’s thoughts on this matter, listen to our show live on 12/18 at 9 p.m. EST or any time after that at this link:


PATSY RAE DAWSON SURVEY
Patsy Rae Dawson is a Christian divorce coach who has helped many of our women of faith come to terms with the end of their marriages to a gay man based on religious scripture. She would like to help women in this situation with this very interesting survey that will help you make the right choice for your future and feel good about it. Here is what she offers:
FREE: Sexless Marriages & Without Natural Affection 4-Generational Survey by Patsy Rae Dawson
One unloving person without natural affection damages many lives over four generations or more. This survey helps you analyze your home of origin and marriage plus the effect on you and your children, and even your grandchildren. It helps you understand that a sexless marriage is not about you so you can make healthy decisions for your family. The survey is based on Bible principles. The most common remark I get is, “Being without natural affection includes much more than I expected.”

God doesn’t trap anyone in unloving marriages and provides many ways of escape including divorce that is as righteous as partaking of the Lord’s Supper.

When you participate, you’ll receive two free eReports: (1) Analyze Your Answers and (2) Everyone Is an Adult Child: God Doesn’t Tell Children to Love Their Parents—God Tells Children to Leave Their Parents.

Start the healing process today by taking this survey:

http://patsyraedawson.com/sexless-marriages-surveys/sexless-marriages-without-natural-affection-4-generational-survey/


MAILBOX
Each month, I receive letters with feedback from you, my readers. Those letters that I think will help so many of our readers are reprinted here with the writer’s permission.

Dear Bonnie,

First of all I want to tell you how sorry I am for the loss of your friend.  True friendships are hard to find, and finding someone who struggles with emotions you know and share is even more valuable.  Know we are all here for you .
     As I read your letter today I had many emotions strike up.  The first being a WOW.. So true and I wanted to add so many exclamation points in it when you discussed the emotional pain we go through. The blame...the constant lies...the emotional DRAINING of myself.... becoming someone I was NOT.  It has been over 3 years since my divorce, 16 since I first found the emails and group chats, and less than 24 hours since I dealt
with my ex.  The pain never leaves, I think it becomes tolerable and you find coping mechanisms to deal with them.  When you have children you focus on them and often put your own emotions to the back.  My ex still has not "come out" but the rumors have!!! My children now deal with those, even though they know from figuring it out and me sitting them down all about the same time.  I waited for them to start putting the pieces together, then when I realized he would NEVER do it, I did. He is a political figure in our county and community so when the rumors surfaced...they spread like wildfire. Many of my daily acquaintances finally put 2 and 2 together on the divorce.  I won't lie, I did enjoy the thought that the "Oh poor XXXX" that everyone felt when I left him and all the things people said about me...got thrown in some faces.  But you know
how people are. Only one apology was said to me about what people had said.  The worst issue was I WAS seeing someone else and I knew it was over...I just refused to put it in his lap and ruin him like I could have.                                                                           The road I now take... when I am asked I tell people yes, it is true. I tell them it is something he can't help and I know that if he could have made it work with us he would have and that I will always care for him because he is the father of our children.  I also remind people he and I are friends and will always be, and I sympathize with his issue because he won't face it.  Then I drop it.
     Is the pain still real??? YES !! Each time my current husband goes some time without making love…I have doubts and trust issues.  When you live a lie for so long....you worry and those old fears and relationship issues surface.  I require constant assurance from my husband and luckily he is also my best friend because we can talk about it and discuss openly why our past was difficult and can trouble us today.
     No...life is NOT meant to be difficult ...but it is.  I know I have become a different person because of this...but it was an event in my life…not my entire life.  I am a survivor and choose to continue to be one.  My children have survived and know there is a reason God gave us this path. They also know he will continue to guide us daily to be the people he wants us to be, just as he guides and loves my ex.  He will struggle forever until he accepts his life and I pray one day he will find the courage to accept who he is so he can be happy and experience true love the way it is meant to be..and how it is meant for. Unfortunately..that was not going to be with me as hard as he tried.

     All my love to all....Stay strong..this is an EVENT ...not your entire life!! Make it only an EVENT!!!  Choose to survive!!

Straight sister – Melinda


Dear Bonnie,

I would not 'feel better' if I didn't know the reason for my ex-husbands sexual rejection! The gay man 'happily married' to his wife keeps her in ignorance - which is selfish & cruel especially as she was abused in her youth, because the patterns of being a 'plaything' for the self-serving sexual needs of others is perpetuated. He may not be physically abusing or brutally raping her. But he is serving his own sexual needs by avoiding sex with her. He is depriving her of intimate touch. He is treating her like a china doll (not for her benefit, but for his) as if she has no mind of her own but were a fragile inanimate thing best left in a display cabinet - yet she is a living, breathing, thinking, sexually-rejected woman. If you accept the definition of rape to be 'sexually forced against your will' then she is being raped because he is forcing his wife into a sexless marriage on the basis that HE can't handle being sexual with a woman. Not her choice. His. And he is also choosing to keep her in the dark, in perpetuity. Keeping her in a gilded cage. Love is about setting people free! It is very patronizing to assume he knows what is best for her - that is a conclusion SHE needs to come to, but it can't happen when he is systematically lying by omission. Her entire marriage has been predicated on a lie. So in answer to the question posed in your November newsletter - I would need to know the truth. Only knowing the truth can I face it. Only knowing the truth can I make I informed decision about my future. 
Terri x

COMPUTER RADIO LINKS FOR THIS MONTH

This month’s computer radio show links in case you would like to listen:

Author Tarra Helfgott: Author, Looking for Mr. Straight:


Coach Suzette Vearnon – inspiring us every month!!


http://www.blogtalkradio.com/bonnielkaye/2016/12/05/bonnie-kayes-straight-wives-talk-show-with-co-host-suzette-vearnon