Sunday, August 23, 2020

BONNIE KAYE CLASSIC ARTICLE = GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT

Hi Friends,

I wrote this article back in 2013, but it is just so important that I wanted to reprint it now. I hope it helps you gain perspective of the failure of your marriages.

 

NEW EPIPHANY - GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT - July 2013

Every few years, an epiphany hits me like a ton of bricks. The first one was in 2001 when I realized that we became women who we were not necessarily supposed to become because our husbands are gay.  Instead of working to grow emotionally and professionally, we are spiritually muted or stagnated for years living in a state of what I call "Muck"...much like sinking in quicksand. That is because we dance in that "circle of crazy" which means running around in circles like a dog chasing after its tail. Even the dog is in better shape than we are because sometimes he gets a hold of his tail--we just keep sinking further into helplessness.

Several epiphanies later, I now have a new one. This comes from 30 years and over 90,000 women asking me dozens of different questions that usually start the same way:

"HOW COULD HE DO THIS TO ME?"

It's very simple--he's GAY.

And here's my newest epiphany:

"GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT."

Please don't misunderstand me. This is not a put down on gay people at all. It's just a reality based on years of observation. I am the first to say that I don't think gay. That is because I am straight. Once again--an observation.

So when women ask me how their gay husbands can do the things they do, it's quite simple--they are GAY. They don't belong in a marriage to you. PERIOD.

The problem with our women is that they keep expecting their husbands to act as if they are straight--not gay. You forget that gay men who complain about their unhappiness are unhappy because they are married to you--a woman. And even though your husband  was for the most part all excited about the "opportunity" to marry you before you said, "I do," he was saying, "I hope I can, I hope I can make love to her, I hope she'll believe me when I pretend to be straight, I hope I won't keep fantasizing about men anymore, I hope those things I've done with guys will be in the past, I hope that if I can't resist these urges and she finds out, she won't leave me," etc. etc. You see, while you were entering the marriage filled with hopes and dreams, he was entering your marriage filled with the hope that he could "pull it off."

Don't ever believe that your gay husband just found out he was gay after he married you--after 10, 20, 30, or 40 years. That isn't true. And don't believe that he thought all men--including straight men--fantasize about being with men or have occasional sexual encounters with men because that is NOT true. And he knows it isn't true--he is just justifying his sexual fantasies and encounters. And why? He doesn't want to be gay.

I do believe that most gay men marry you because they love you--but let me clarify that by saying that they love you to the best of their ability as gay men. They love you the way they would love a sister or a cousin--but you are not his family--you are his WIFE. And as a wife, you are expecting more out your husband than to love you as a family member or best friend.  That's where the disconnect begins. Some of us have that happen sooner than later in a marriage--but eventually, it does happen. And when things are not heating up in the bedroom, that's where the anger, resentment, and blame begin.

          You: Why does it feel like I have to ask for sex all of the time?

          Him:  Why are you always thinking about sex?

          You:   Other women spend romantic evenings with their husbands.

          Him:  You are watching too many movies. It doesn't happen that way                      in real life.

          You:  We've only been married a couple of years. Why don't you                            make love to me?

          Him:  What are you? A nymphomaniac? All you think about is sex,                        sex, sex.

Here is the disconnect. As a gay man, he is also thinking about sex, sex, sex. But he is not thinking about having it with you. When he thinks about sex with you, he is thinking about a way out of having sex with you. Just like the thought of having sex with your brother or uncle would be repulsive to you, he has the same thought when it comes to you. It's not that he doesn't love you--he just doesn't love you the way you love him--because he is gay. He can love you, but he can't be "in love" with you. He is gay--he doesn't know how.

Gay men in denial who have a deep enough desire to stay married because they can't face living in a "gay world" will go through the motions. They can talk the talk. After all, they've been practicing their whole lives observing straight people. They can walk the walk--they know what a "straight walk" looks like. But they can't do the "dirty" indefinitely no matter how hard they try. And after a while, it becomes "dirty" to them. It becomes as incestuous to them as it would be for us to have sex with a family member--or even your best girlfriend whom you love--but not as a lover.

Why do we keep expecting gay men to be straight men? That is the faulty thinking that we have. Every response they have with you is based on their gay thinking--not on straight thinking. The resentment they have towards you is because you are a woman who wants them to be a straight man. Why wouldn't you? He married you. He promised to love you through everything--but he didn't understand that everything meant being a husband who wants intimacy and sex with his wife as part of the marital deal.

When your husband married you, he figured he could do it and maybe enjoy it. After all, he could always close his eyes and fantasize about his dream man. Many of these gay husbands do just that--and they have told me so. But they don't want to do more than they have to do to convince you that they are straight. After all, if they can get an erection every now and then--even if they can't keep it during your intimate moments--that will prove to you that they are straight. And if they lose the erection in the middle of one of those moments--no problem. It's your fault, isn't it? If he can get one, he takes the credit, but can't keep it going, then you get the credit because it must be your fault. Let's see, you're too fat...thin...dirty...smelly...flat chested....big chested...have bad breath...breathe too loud...demand too much...boring during sex...didn't clean the house enough, don't use the right shampoo, etc., etc., etc.

And then you ask me how they could do this to you.

So ladies, here's where my new epiphany should become your new mantra:

GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT BECAUSE THEY ARE GAY!

You need to say this over and over again to yourself daily whether you are still in your marriage or not. You see, we keep wondering how they can worse after they leave the marriage. We keep thinking like straight women who have a straight husband:

Us:       Maybe now that he has left, he'll realize how much he has                             hurt me.

Them:    I gave up so much of my life for her. I was such a good                                husband and provider. I gave her everything I had, and all                           she did was complain and complain about sex. She's so                              ungrateful.

Yes, we just don't get it. Women have come to me and said, "He's willing to give up his family for a roll in the hay with someone? Sex means more to him than his family?

Yes, you just don't get it. It's not about sex--it's about being gay and being free of living a lie where he can never please you. It's about him feeling the kind of love and excitement with a man that he can never feel for you because he is gay. And say it again:

GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT BECAUSE THEY ARE GAY.

The key to healing from this nightmare is to realize that you can't do anything about it other than accept it. You can't personalize it. When your husband or ex-husband blames you for his unhappiness, you can believe it because you are a woman. You can never be the wife he needs because he doesn't need a wife--he needs a man. He is gay.

When he blames you for ANYTHING, hold your head high because you need to believe this has NOTHING to do with you. You didn't create it, and you can't change it. In Bonnie Kaye terms that means: You didn't break him--you can't fix him. Stop trying.

Nothing upsets me more than women who tell me that some of the problems in the marriage happened because of their behavior so they have to take some of the blame. Well sister, here's the news--you don't have to take any of the blame. You married someone who can never make you feel good about yourself because he was rejecting you on some level since the day he married you. Even though he didn't want to hurt you, he couldn't help himself because he is gay.

What does that mean? He resented you. You became the enemy. You were the keeper of his internal prison he created, and YOU held the key that you refused to hand him to escape. It doesn't matter that he wanted to marry you, nor does it matter that he refuses to leave his safety net and comfort level of leading a "straight life." Now you are the one who "keeps him trapped" into being someone he doesn't really want to be---namely your husband..

This is where another disconnect sets in. He continually picks, picks, picks--and he is picking at you and on you because of his frustration. He'll look to blame you for the problems in the marriage. After all, he's done everything to make you happy, but you are never happy. He's a good provider. He's a good father. What's the problem in the marriage? It has to be YOU. In his mind, he does what he believes is the right thing to do--other than giving you sex every time you ask for it--and don't you keep asking? What is with you?  

Since most of these men don't  or won't tell you the truth until they are ready--and sadly, too many will never be ready, even when they leave you--you slowly begin the deterioration process that strips down your self-esteem one layer at a time. You lose your footing because no matter how hard you try, your husband doesn't love you the way you know a man should love a woman. You're not stupid--but you sure are feeling very stupid because nothing you do is making your husband happy. When you don't know why all of your efforts don't bear the results you want, you finally understand what is wrong in your relationship--YOU ARE INADEQUATE. You have made every attempt to make your husband love you by showing him with love, affection, and passion--but nothing helps. What is wrong with you?

This is where the anger, depression, and worthlessness starts taking over your psyche. Many of our gay husbands/ex-husbands are passive-aggressive. They use a "slap and smile" strategy meaning they slap you down (mostly emotionally, but in some cases physically) and then tell you that they love you. Our "perception" of love gets distorted. As long as you hear those words "I love you," you feel there is a chance if only you can change some of your ways. You know what upsets him most--SEX. Other than that, he's not "that bad." As your family and friends keep telling you, "He's a good dad. He's a good provider. You go on nice vacations. He's not a WOMANIZER. You are a lucky woman." Message: There's nothing wrong with him. You should be happy.

So why aren't you? You start feeling guilty because you think you don't have the right to complain. Then you start reading magazine articles that say most relationships "lose their groove" sexually in time, but the friendship and love is still there. As the song goes, "Don't worry--be happy." Right? Wrong.

This is not about straight couples who get caught up with life on life's terms over the years where sex can diminish due to health issues or job pressures. This is about a gay man who has never made you feel valued as a woman--only as a sexual aggressor who has turned him off. It's about losing confidence in everything you do because no matter how much you have done, nothing is working. So many of our women try transforming themselves by going through life-changing surgery like gastric bypasses, breast implants, liposuction, and plastic surgery in order to make themselves more beautiful so their husbands will desire them. That's because he usually throws in those little excuses, "If only you weren't so heavy....if only you would lose weight...if only your breasts weren't so small....if only your body wasn't so flabby....if only, if only, if only.

Ha, ha, ha. Like changing this will make their husbands want them sexually more. They soon find out that "enhancing your appearance" to make yourself more beautiful is an act in futility. Your husband doesn't want you more beautiful--he wants a man--he is gay.

 When you are a normal woman, years of getting the message that you are 'abnormal" deprives you of ever knowing who you really are. There won't be much personal growth or actualizing here because you are too busy trying to get your husband to love you which means "desire you." You have to learn to accept the way you want your husband to love you WILL NEVER HAPPEN BECAUSE HE IS A GAY MAN!

Never mistake "cuddling with you" for "passion" with you. If it gives you some false illusion that "cuddling" means loving you, then you are deluding yourself. A marriage doesn't need cuddling as its primary source of affection. It needs the passion and desire that that makes you feel like you can climb a mountain or float on a cloud. A straight man will never just "do it" to make you happy. He will make you happy because it makes him happy when you are sexually satisfied. He loves to touch you. Cuddling is secondary--not the primary reason he wants to touch you. When a man loves you, he wants to "make love" to you.

I have been with my boyfriend for 19 years and 6 months. We have a beautiful and regular sex life that is always top of the line even at our age. As he explains to me, "Making love to you is the best way for me to express how much I love you." Yep, that is how a straight man thinks. We are both so in sync with each other because we know what pleases each other. After nearly two decades, I can tell you that he still works just as hard to please me because to him IT IS NOT WORK. It's passion that has built our intimacy to survive those difficult time when sex isn't possible due to medical issues. The medical issues are never an excuse--they are just a delay knowing things will be better and we will be fine. That's the difference between a straight man and a gay man. Straight men want sex with you because you are a woman--gay men don't want sex with you because you are a woman.

In closing, repeat these words every day:

GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT--GAY MEN DON'T THINK STRAIGHT


Sunday, August 16, 2020

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK AUGUST 2020

 

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK

Last January, I resumed my weekly podcasts on Blog Talk Radio. I want to thank the wonderful members of my support group who have been kind and generous in being a guest on the show—and some of you more than once. Our women need to hear you to feel inspired and supported in their own recovery process. I have received some beautiful feedback from women all over the world about your interviews that is so rewarding to me. Since January, we have had over 17,200 listens to the show on every continent of this world. You can listen live to the podcasts on Sunday evenings at 8 p.m. EST or anytime afterwards at this link: https://www.blogtalkradio.com/bonnielkaye If you would like to be a guest on my show—anonymously—just drop me a note at Bonkaye@aol.com. We all need to learn from each other how to balance this life changing experience.

UPCOMING INFORMATION FROM THE NEW STRAIGHT WIVES #3 BOOK

I am in the process of collecting stories for my new Straight Wives: Shattered Lives III book which I hope to have published this fall. I have some wonderful stories from some of the women in this support network, but I would like to have three more if you are interested. You can email me at Bonkaye@aol.com for the guidelines.

People wonder why this book is necessary. The last volume, STSW: 2, was published TEN years ago. In our changing current society where homosexuality is celebrated rather than hidden, people can’t conceive that this is still going on. But it is. Gay men are way ahead of where they were, but many of them are still confused. They don’t understand why they can still have feelings and attractions to women but still be gay. It doesn’t equate for them in their late teens, twenties, and sometime thirties. They can fall in love with a woman, have sexual relations with her for a number of years, produce children, lead a straight life—so how can this be gay? Okay, so they find men sexually appealing. But that’s just sex—not emotions. Sex is not a big deal in marriage after a while, so what’s the difference. Yes, they think they can go through life like that, but it all changes later. Those attractions to men intensify in time. Their desire to be with men sexually is overwhelming, and the need to act on it is their new reality

Okay, we all know that story. We’ve all lived it in one form or another. But I have found is that attitudes about this situation from outside our world have changed, and we need to acknowledge this. In the introduction to my new book, I state why we need to keep this momentum going. This is a portion of it for you to read. I lead into it by talking about how I believe that things are worse for straight wives now in 2020.

So what’s the “worse” part? That is the part that our straight wives have to endure when their husbands come out and become the new heroes. Now society sings praises to these men who have the courage to live their new “authentic lives.” They cheer them on. They feel saddened over the years of torture they had to endure by pretending they were “straight men.” They want to pin a big round badge of COURAGE on their shirts. In the past, women would at least get some sympathy from their friends and acquaintances. Not now—now our gay husbands are getting that misplaced sympathy. Society sees them as the victims—rather than us. That has changed—and it doesn’t help us.

In the past, we’d get some snickers from people with the usual, “You didn’t know he was gay when you married him? It’s so obvious,” or “Was he gay when you married him?” Yes, those were the usual passive-aggressive comments we would hear as if we had missed the boat. Or they thought maybe we did know—but we were desperate. Sadly, that’s how ignorance thinks.

But back then—after the little slap down of accusation, we would be lifted up like a wine glass with some words of comfort including, “That’s so terrible. How could he do that to you?” Yep, those words would take away the sting of the initial slap in the face with a few soothing words.

Well, I don’t hear those words very much anymore. People don’t sympathize with us—the true victims of this situation. And that is what has changed the most. They are so impressed with these gay men who spent 20, 30, 40, and more years of their lives living their lies with us—their loving (although confused) wives giving up what these men claim were the “best years of their lives to their families.” So now that their dues have been paid, it is time for them treat themselves to authenticity in a world where they always belonged. Yep, they are the new heroes for their bravery. People applaud them for staying in their marriages until the children were grown and on their own.                                                                          

So, in other words, these men spent a few decades living a daily lie with their family. They were gay men playing the role of straight husbands. And yes, I mean playing a role. Gay men are not straight. They learn to “imitate” the actions of straight men. They study their body action, walk, arm motions, their speech, and heterosexual interests the same way that an actor prepares for a role. They usually have a lot of material to draw from via their family and friends. I always use the example of the comedian Lily Tomlin who is in the sitcom Frankie and Grace. Tomlin plays the role of a straight wife who in later life learns her husband is gay. She plays the role very well—because that’s what it is—a role. Tomlin is a lesbian who is honest about her sexuality. And yet, she is also an excellent actress who can portray a straight wife. That is different than being in a relationship with a partner. Then she would be in the same position as our gay husbands trying to figure out how not to get caught.

When most of our husbands were growing up, gay was taboo. Being straight was a requirement. “Practicing straight” was a daily job—and these guys learned how to imitate and play the role. In fact in many cases, they went beyond normal “straight behaviors.” Self-loathing or throwing us off-track often translated into anti-gay sentiments that these guys dropped in their conversations with straight people. My ex-husband would mock gay men who were effeminate calling them insulting names. He wasn’t “that kind of gay” as if it would make him less gay.

When people ask our women, “Didn’t you know he was gay when you married him,” the answer is a resounding NO. How would we know? My gay husband was a kung-Fu teacher who was tall, handsome, and muscular. Women fell for him fast and easy. He was the epitome of a macho athlete. Why would gay even enter into my mind? Gay men wanted men, not women, right? Why would a gay man romance me, claim to fall in love with me, make love to me (rather have sex with me) and want to marry me? That’s not what a gay man is supposed to do. But who knew? Not me. Not us.

This is where I find that times are different now. It’s a different “feeling” than it used to be. People don’t look at us as being on the losing side. They listen to these men’s words’ of, “I had a great marriage for 30 years. They were the happiest years of my life.” They assume because these men were so “happy,” we, their wives, must have been happy too. Wouldn’t that make sense? Our exes aren’t complaining about us—they are saying how wonderful the years were—at least in public. No doubt they were happy years—FOR THEM. Why not? They controlled the marriage. Most of us were slowly broken down step by step through emotional and sexual rejection. There was no intimacy for years or a sense of romance with our husbands. We worked harder and harder running in circles trying to make the man we loved happy because he never seemed happy. And although he didn’t blame us all of the time, he did blame us enough of the time for feeling “TRAPPED.” I love that word in a marriage—TRAPPED. My ex-husband used it daily. I couldn’t understand why he felt trapped, but it seems to be a common expression that gay married men use according to the women who are part of my support network.

They feel trapped because they ARE trapped in a marriage they don’t belong in—through their own doing. Yes, they trapped themselves—WE DID NOT TRAP THEM. No one told them they HAD to get married to us nor did we hold a gun to their head—that was their choice. But once they got into the marriage, it started unraveling for them. Things started to fall apart—and MOSTLY in the bedroom. These men believed that marriage would solve those sexual naggings and attractions to men—but it didn’t. If anything, they started intensifying within a short amount of time. This is when they start feeling “trapped.”

Getting back to my initial point, people assume we were the lucky ones to have such great guys for our husbands—even if they are gay in the end. After all, they are telling the world about how wonderful their marriages were. So, people ASSUME we must have been happy too. After all, if our husbands are saying it was great—why would we feel differently?

It’s so funny. These men who neglected us in every possible way and made us feel worthless are now saying publicly what a wonderful marriage they had. So who comes out the winner here? They do. No one ever thinks to interview their wives for a reaction. No one has any interest in finding out how we think.

Truth be told—I haven’t been able to find an interview with any wife of a famous gay man who came out from a wonderful marriage. Most likely, it’s because there are none. What was good for these men wasn’t good for us women. But that’s the point. No one is asking us. They are assuming we’re fine with everything just because our voices are silent.

There have been numerous actresses who have been married to gay men through the years. Some of the more famous ones include Judy Garland, her daughter, Liza Minelli, Amanda Blake, (who died from AIDS after her gay husband died), Vanessa Redgrave, Charlotte Rae, Angela Lansbury, Carrie Fisher, and Fran Drescher. I never hear anything negative about their after-lives together. Heck, Fran Drescher was double dating with her gay husband and did a television comedy about it.

And that’s the other problem. Our marriages became comedy series shows on television. Fran Drescher had a show for a couple of seasons called “Happily Divorced.” She and her husband loved each other so much they became best friends and double dated on the show. Ha, ha. Very funny. Well, people thought it was funny because they never lived this nightmare. This show did more to distort our cause than any progress we made over the years. I complained to the station with no response. And then there is Frankie and Grace. Another comedy that is more realistic about older women in long-term marriages to gay men, but again, it’s a comedy.

When the movie Brokeback Mountain was popular many years ago, I went to see it. Again, the reviews were rooting for these two men who had to hide their sexuality. Their wives were portrayed as totally unsympathetic. One was a passive woman who couldn’t stand up for herself, and the other was an aggressive bitchy like woman who didn’t care about her husband being gay. Neither one of these women represents the women I know and have worked with whose lives were devastated once they found out the truth.

My point is this. Our realities have never been presented realistically on the big screen or the little screen. We are either hysterically funny or pathetic women, so no one is looking to acknowledge our pain. We can be laughed at or minimized which is where we now stand today. As it wasn’t hard enough to live with this during our marriage with our gay husbands, now our life is viewed the same way by the public. Uggggh.

Unless we start standing up and yelling our feelings to people, nothing will change. That’s why our voices must be heard—whether it is in books or on radio shows. We can only hope that people will read and learn to understand so we have a fighting chance of being recognized and understood one day.

Much love,

Bonnie xoxo

 

 

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK - MAY 2020


BONNIE KAYE'S STRAIGHT TALK
MAY 2020     Volume 20, Issue 206
Bonnie’s Mantra:
LIFE WAS NEVER MEANT TO BE THIS COMPLICATED. PERIOD.
                   COMPUTER RADIO PODCASTS - www.blogtalkradio/bonnielkaye                    Live on Sunday night 8 p.m. EST or any time after the live broadcast!

I’M BACK!! J

Just when I was sure that I was finished my final newsletters last year, life changed. I assure you there was no epiphany that drove my desire to revive this newsletter. I thought I had said everything that needed to be said on this topic—and then some!! Nearly 19 years of newsletters gave me plenty of time to say it all—and then over and over again!

Actually, I was on the trail to retirement from Straight Wives last year. It was my 35th plus years of connecting with women from “discovery to recovery.” It wasn’t always a happy road because my heart was breaking daily from the pain that our women were going through year after year. Each week over the past 20 years, between 10 – 25 women would find me seeking sanity and hope. Well, at least I could offer them sanity. I also offered them no hope. Why no hope? Because I didn’t feel like lying about it. I wasn’t giving any straight woman a thumbs-up on having a gay husband and expecting to live a happy and fulfilling life. There are enough ignorant and misled “specialists” in the form of counselors, coaches, and therapists who can convince your husband that he has a “straight orientation” while he just has a longing for an oral or anal rise from a man because he was sexually abused when he was younger. Sorry—I’m not buying it.

But that’s me—the voice of doubt and gloom. But also—the voice of reason and future happiness. Women do not seek me out because they are happy. If they do, they haven’t read my website, newsletters, or books. They find me when they just can’t keep making excuses for the lack of love and lust in their lives. They are living at best with someone like a “brother” and at worst, an abuser. They know something is off in their marriage. But sadly, due to years of “gaylighting” by their husbands, they are reassured that the problems usually start with themselves instead of the forbidden culprit of GAY.
In 2010, I wrote this little article when I came up with the term “GAYLIGHT.”

GAYLIGHTING

In our support chats, hardly a week goes by where someone doesn’t bring up the term, “Gas Lighting.” This is a term taken from the old movie Gas Light from 1944 staring Ingrid Bergman and Charles Boyer. Although I never saw the movie until a few weeks ago, I was certainly familiar with the terminology from members of our support group who used it frequently to describe their situations with their gay spouses. After watching it, I realized that this terminology certainly has a connection for many of us.

According to the Internet:

From the film's title, "Gaslighting" acquired the meaning of ruthlessly manipulating an individual, for nefarious reasons, into believing something other than the truth.
Well, that certainly sums it up for some of us, doesn’t it? I know that I was made to feel “crazy” if I suggested to my husband that maybe…just maybe…he’s….ummmmm… oh yes—“bisexual.” That was the nice way for me to frame it in my own mind back in those days. He would tell me I’m out of my mind and…oh yes…CRAZY. How could I ever think something so horrible and disgusting? Now in the beginning, I felt a big sense of relief. But as time wore on, the relief turned to doubt—and not doubt about HIM—but rather about ME! And once self-doubt starts, it’s a quick progression down that road called “I can’t trust my judgment anymore.” Like the peeling onion, your self-confidence gets peeled down one layer at a time until it shrinks to nothing.

The problem with too many gay husbands is that they have to find a way to protect the lie they are living. Those three little words—and I don’t mean “I love you” but rather “I AM GAY”--are too difficult to say to you—and often to themselves. For them, it is easier to just make you think you are CRAZY when questioning their repeated lies that start to pile up and make little if any sense. How many times have you heard, “Are you out of your mind?” “How could you think such a think?”  or “What are you—CRAZY?” With a gay husband, in almost all of our cases we’ve heard these words more than once or twice.
So now I’ve added a new word to my “Bonnie Kaye’s Pocket Dictionary of Gay Husband Lingo” which includes some of those clarifying terms that I’ve made famous like Limbo Men and Straight-Gay Men. Now I am adding the term GAYLIGHTING.

This means:  “Your husband’s attempts to make you think that you are losing your mind when in fact you are just finding out his truth.”

Trust me—you’re not crazy, you’re just being “gaylighted.”

I felt the need to post that reminder that all of us have been reminded of too many times throughout our marriages. That may sound redundant, but it does keep repeating itself.

Getting back to my story, in my year of “retirement” from our cause, I never really had a chance to retire. I still received between 10 – 15 letters each week seeking help from new women who are hit with our realities. I am happy to help all of them by sending them information and finding support for them. I sent them my old newsletters, and there were many letters of thanks and appreciation. There were also many requests to get on a newsletter list that wasn’t happening anymore.
I really thought I would run out of things to say after 18 years, and the pressure of coming up with new issues month-in and month-out was a lot. And so I decided I needed a break. And I took one.

Now, a year later, I’m rested and re-nourished. I still have some thoughts inspired by my support members and new women/men coming my way. And so you’ll be hearing from me each quarter with some more thoughts and reminders. We go through so much on our journeys from “discovery to recovery” that sometimes we lose our sense of perspective. We get so “stuck in the muck” during this period that we can’t always process the many different feelings we have. And so I’m here to guide you by confirming your doubts to be truths and reconfirming your instincts.

THE  SHAME GAME
In my early years of my newsletters, I wrote about the “Blame Game.” That included the “If Only” game where you would question yourself endlessly about if only….If only I had been more supportive, if only I weighed less, if only I initiated sex more, if only I wasn’t so prudish in bed, if only, if only…..then my husband wouldn’t be gay. Remember that old game?

Over the years I have realized there is another game we all play. It’s called “The Shame Game.” I can also subtitle it as “The Ashamed Game.” Whether you want to admit it or not, there is a feeling of shame that overtakes most of us when we learn that our husbands are gay.

It takes a while until a wife understands that she has absolutely no part in her husband’s homosexuality or more importantly, the failure of the marriage. As soon as she said, “ I do,” she was being set up for failure. Marrying a gay man is a ticket to disaster in a marriage. I don’t care how nice he is and how not-nice you are. It’s not about nice—it’s about living with a man who can’t be a husband to you in a way that you need him to be because he is gay.

I talk to over 100 gay husbands each year. Most of them say that the marriage was doomed for a long time before the news of his homosexuality came out. How many of your husbands have told me that there were other problems besides gay? Almost all of them. Here are some of the complaints I hear followed by my responses:
1.    My wife has a bad body odor. (yes, it’s called WOMAN)
2.    Her breath is always sour. (because kissing a woman is repulsive to a gay man)
3.    My wife is always suspicious that I am cheating on her. (because you are)
4.    My wife is never supportive to me.(she is, but you don’t care about her)
5.    She is always depressed. (of course—you’re a gay man acting)
6.    She never initiates sex but complains because I don’t do it all of the time. (she is complaining because you DON’T do it most of the time)
7.    She’s not adventurous in bed. (she doesn’t want your kind of “adventure” like male sex toys and gay porno.)
8.    When I married her, she was 20 pounds thinner. (you didn’t want her then either.)
9.    I need my space and she doesn’t understand that. (to go to meet men for sex)
10. She thinks I’m keeping secrets from her because she doesn’t have my passwords. (she is 100% right about that because she’d find your gay stuff.)
And the list goes on.

Sadly, none of these reasons are legitimate. But while you’re living them, you don’t realize that. This is part of a calculated daily plan on the part of your husband to get you off his back—especially when it comes to SEX. That’s the real issue. If only you weren’t so needy—then maybe the marriage could work. But you want something from him that he doesn’t want to give to you. Oh, every now and then he’ll do it to you or for you—but not with you. And that’s the difference.
Almost every man can get an erection and dump the remains somewhere—yes, even deposit it in you when they try hard enough—but they are not doing it because they really want to. They are doing it so you will believe that they are straight. They tell me they fantasize about men and look at gay porno before they do the deed so they can get aroused. Sad to say, it’s not you doing the trick for them. But once they do it a few times—BINGO—you will now be convinced that sex is not a problem—especially for them.  

In the beginning, they put some effort into it to create an illusion of straight, but it doesn’t last for long. Too many women have described their experiences in the same way I felt about mine—doing the minimum to create an illusion. I remember when I met my gay husband how frustrating sex was from the beginning. It’s true we were in our mid-20’s, but we were both experienced. It wasn’t my first marriage. I knew what satisfying love making was about. This was back in 1978, and women were just getting liberated about sex. After our first few times together that left me feeling deflated, I tried really nicely to talk about upping the game so to speak. I approached it that every woman was different and had different needs. That’s when he first jumped up and yelled at me, “No woman has ever complained about me before you!!” He claimed to be very “experienced,” but he never mentioned that experience was with men—not women.

That was how the relationship started—with me feeling like a sex ogre because I wasn’t sexually satisfied with an “act of sex.” To prove that it wasn’t me, I went shopping at the bookstore and bought some books that were popular back in those days about women wanting to be sexually satisfied. “See, it’s not only me,” I would say hoping to defend myself. So he tried a little more to be accommodating, but you can tell when someone just doesn’t want to touch you where you want to be touched. It becomes degrading. So many of our women shared that degrading feeling of sexual rejection.

Years later after he came out, he admitted that I was the first woman he had ever been with, so at least he told the truth when he said, “No woman has ever complained before.” There were no other women before to complain. He was so charming, handsome, strong, and funny, so women always gravitated to him envying me for having him. They would tell me how lucky I was to have such a great guy. If only they knew…

What creates the shame for us is the lack of advocacy on the part of our women. While gay men have a cheering squad praising their “bravery” in living their “authentic life,” no medals are pinned on the chests of their wives for enduring years of emotional and sexual abuse and neglect. No one is having parades for us with banners flying high. Instead, we get indignant stares or comments such as, “You didn’t know? I thought everybody knew!!’ or “If he’s gay, how did he have sex with you and father your children?” This is where the shame unfolds—as if we are at fault for either being stupid not to see it or inadequate to “keep him straight.”
To add to this, some of these men throw it in our faces. “If you would have had better sex with me, I wouldn’t have had to look for oral sex with a man.” Or “I didn’t cheat on you just because I let a guy give me a blow job. Or often the families of our gay husbands who “love us” so much that we believed we were their daughters now look at us with accusing eyes thinking their sons weren’t gay when they married us—where did “we” screw up? And trust me, in 95% of our lives, blood is thicker than water when the marriage ends.

Shame is an emotion that is developed over time when you are made to feel inadequate or undeserving of anything better because you are not “good enough.” I think for most of us, this is the case. As the emotional abuse kicks into our marriages and starts knocking us down, the feelings of shame increase. It shakes our internal belief systems no matter how strong you were going into the relationship. The daily “strip down/slap down” breaks us down making us question our whole belief system. As long as our gay husbands can make us feel at fault, they feel safe—and our feeling of shame just increases. We internalize our husbands’ unhappiness and our lack of ability to make them not necessarily to love us—but to want us.

One of the ways our husbands pump up the shame is by telling us “how much they love us.” Yep, they say talk is cheap, but for women who are desperately trying to hang on to any hope at all, the word ‘love” sounds really promising. Somehow, that build-up never quite meets the hurdle of physical intimacy or love making, so once again the “build-up” is a “let down.”

This is where relationship illogic steps in. First, we are being told our husbands love us. Next, we’re told that if there are problems in the marriage—they are “OUR” problems—they don’t have a problem. So they love us, and they don’t have a problem—BUT THEY DON’T WANT TO BE WITH US. It can’t equate except for us to internalize that WE ARE THE PPOBLEM. This is where the shame comes in and sinks us like quick sand. We stop asking because it just hurts too much.
After the marriage ends, you might think that recovery would include ridding ourselves of the shame—but that doesn’t quite happen. Why? Because once people start finding out WHY our marriage ended, more SHAME comes our way.
“Your husband is gay? A lot of people make that up to punish their husband.”
“You didn’t know he was gay? We knew—we thought you didn’t care since everybody knew.”

“If he is gay, why is he getting married to a woman again?”
Ugh. As if we weren’t feeling bad enough to start with, now it’s time to retreat into our own closet—the one abandoned by our husband. Yes, he’s out and about and giving a shout-out while we are retreating into our second wave of shame. We’ve learned that people don’t get it, but it still hurts. It hurts that our experience is minimized while our husbands are being hailed our heroes for their bravery of living their new authentic lives after wasting 10, 15, 25, or 30 years of our lives.
I am still waiting for our medals for bravery and courage. Actually, I’d be happy to settle for a nod of the head of acknowledgement. I don’t need a ribbon or trinket. I just want someone to say—“I get it—and you are a hero!!”

To all of my readers—I do get it. You are all my heroes.
Happy Mother’s Day to all of you who are mothers who have to battle with challenges you face daily. Hold your children tight when you hug them. Feel their love because they genuinely love you.

BONNIE KAYE’S STRAIGHT WIVES TALK SHOW…

In January of 2020, I started back my weekly talk show. This time I was emphasizing some of the struggles women in our network are facing. I will be taking a break from the show after next week until July. You can listen to them any time you like. Here is the link to my past shows: 

With lots of love and hope!!  

Bonnie