A BEAUTIFUL MESSAGE FOR THE HOLDAYS FROM A STRAIGHT WIFE--KRISTI
One of the members of my support network is an amazing woman Kristi. She sent this message for our women who are struggling with moving out of their relationships. I hope her words help and inspire you--as they did for me. Thank you, Kristi, for sharing!!
I feel the need to share my heart on something with y'all. It's a deeper look into my story than I think I've shared before.
In light of a straight wife's mention of reconciliation, I just feel like it might be time to bring it up in case it might help anyone. I don't know why I've never felt compelled to share the entirety of it before now. I guess it just makes me feel so stupid and so blind that I haven't.
Anyway, here goes, and I hope it helps someone.
My gay ex and I got married in January 1994. In December 1994 (Christmas Eve, to be exact), he told me he had always thought he might be gay. Shocked (although I shouldn't have been, I guess, because my mom had told me from Day 1 that he was, and my gut said so, too), I remember saying, "So, what do we do now?"
He said, "Well, I don't want to act on it."
I stupidly and naively crawled into the closet where I would spend the next bunch of years and said, "Well, if you promise not to act on it, I promise I'll never tell anyone."
He agreed, and we stayed married until February 1998, when I finally couldn't take the rejection anymore.
On Groundhog Day (what a great Coming Out day, huh?) 1998, he said, "I'm gay."
I again (pre-Bonnie's SWC (Straight Wives Club)) said, "So, what do we do now?"
See, the good Christian girl in me had promised never to get a divorce no matter what.
He said, "Well, I guess we get a divorce."
I was horrified, but it was clear that he had no intention of staying. He was free.
For the next few weeks, I slept in what had been our bed, while he slept in the guest room. He was so mean to me. So cruel, so hateful... He rubbed my face in his new reality and made it clear that he couldn't wait for me to get out.
I did. On Valentine's Day. 1998.
We agreed not to see each other or speak to each other again, but I broke down and called him. We had grown so dependent on one another (largely due to the crappy secret I was keeping), and I believe now that he saw the value in keeping a sucker in his pocket. So, we reconnected.
From about July 1998 until the fall of 1999, we kept in touch via email. His email then was the ever-so-gay Cute28FL because, in his words, he was cute, 28, and lived in Florida.
He told me details of all of his escapades. Graphic detail.
I was so torn up and so devoid of anyone who could POSSIBLY understand what I was going through that I honestly just craved the friendship. He knew the secret, so I could talk freely without watching my every word. Yes, I was still keeping it. Gosh, how I needed the SWC back then!!!!
Anyway, I visited with him in Florida once for Christmas, and we exchanged presents and marveled at how wonderful our relationship was that we could remain close even after divorce.
He told me of his relationships (living with 6 different men in 6 different apartments over the course of a year and a half), and I supported him to his face and cried myself to sleep every night. Yet another secret I kept...
In fall 1999, he called me to tell me that he had moved back in with his parents and was thrilled to tell me that he wasn't gay anymore. That God had changed him.
I argued that it was impossible, but he poured on the charm and begged me to meet with him to see the differences in him- because surely once I saw him, I would see the miraculous transformation God had made in his life, and if I believed that God could do anything, I would certainly be able to believe in the change God had made in him.
Again, stupidly, I agreed. And he was right- at least to my naive eye! His walk was different. His talk was different. He talked of how he regretted not being affectionate with me and how he wanted to "have sex all night" with me.
I got sucked in, but mind you, he still felt it very important that he not have sex with me unless we were married.
Seduced by the thought that he FINALLY wanted me and blinded by my own loneliness (and not wanting it to seem that I didn't believe that God can do anything), I agreed to remarry him.
So, I did- in January 2000 (on our original anniversary date).
Not that it will surprise any of you, but never even once was there anything close to "sex all night."
Six months later, he began cheating on me. That cheating would continue for the next 12 years- until he finally broke down and confessed to having sex with "hundreds of men."
You'd think that's when I got out, wouldn't you? No, Queen Stupid here still didn't know what to do. Again, no SWC...
But don't worry, he said. Why? Because guess what!! God changed him again! (Don't even get me started on how much I believe there is a special place in hell for people who use God to cover their own lies and for their own special purposes, but I digress)...
I went to my preacher, who told me I had every Biblical right to get a divorce but that "we serve a God of restoration and RECONCILIATION" and that he'd like to see me give him 6 weeks to prove the change in him.
I was so much in shock and so numbed by it that I said, "OK," and six weeks went by, and still having no idea what to do, I told him that I wanted him to sign a contract that I would make up that would allow me access to all of his online accounts (FB, etc.) so that he couldn't do anything anymore. He agreed never to go to the restroom alone again. He would never be online unless I was around.
So, the sucker became a wife, and the wife became the babysitter...
And six weeks became six months, and I buried myself in a cocoon of survival and self-preservation. I was sure no one could ever understand me or what I was going through, and surely I must be unlovable, or this man, whom God kept "changing," could find it in his heart to love me.
My options were to survive or be alone forever. At least, that's what I thought.
Finally, I found Bonnie and the SWC and found my voice. I also found my own self-esteem and my own self-worth.
You, my dear sisters, are worth far more than the mirage of reconciliation. You are worth more than spending your days hoping that, one day, you'll be enough.
You already ARE enough. You are just trapped in a relationship with someone who will never see it.
I gave up half of my life hoping that the caterpillar would become a butterfly. In the end, I found that it was impossible, for he was a worm and never a caterpillar at all.
I found that I was the caterpillar and that I had stayed in the cocoon far too long. I can't tell you the joy I felt in allowing myself to become the butterfly.
You, my precious sisters, are butterflies. Don't stay in the cocoon. Please don't be fooled by the temptation of reconciliation. Worms never become butterflies- no matter how long you wait and wish.
After years of staying in a place where I didn't belong and wasn't (and never would be) wanted, I finally made the decision to free myself. If only I had known what awaited me on the other side of my decision! I am now married to a wonderful straight man who loves me the way a husband is SUPPOSED to love him wife, and he loves my kids, too, as if they were his own. I had convinced myself that a happy ending just wasn't meant to be. What I didn't realize was that a happy ending is impossible when married to a gay man.
My prayers are with all of you- always. Love to you all,