I’ve discovered that my husband was secretly having hook-ups and threesomes with men, over a decade.
Confronted, he asks forgiveness for his gay “lifestyle.” He apparently had hidden urges for most of our long marriage, which caused his negativity, angry meltdowns and constant criticism.
I now realize that this stress played a part in my having serious health issues.
As the gay community strengthened, he became active. He lied about “fantasies” watching gay porn.
Yet he’s been supportive lately. Discovering this duplicity is very painful. I’ve sought counselling and am treated for severe depression.
I’ve realized that for many years I’ve been used as a “beard” so he could live a double life with anonymous encounters.
He now says, “This was all in the past. I’ve changed for the better. It's a younger man’s world. We need to support each other in old age.”
After 52 years, I think I need a separation and a chance to find myself even if it’s late in life.
Devastated by his “Lifestyle”
It’s a terrible shock to feel “used” by your husband.
Yet, he doesn’t see it that way. Today, there’s greater awareness about sexual identity, and the “gay lifestyle” he felt the need to pursue.
Unfortunately, he hadn’t the courage required in those much-earlier years to tell you about his secret needs/desires.
Sadly, he blocked close, revealing communication through harshness towards you.
A separation might ultimately be beneficial for you, but not now, while you’re depressed and feeling fragile. Stay with your counselling and treatment for depression.
Meanwhile, your husband’s request for forgiveness needs to be backed up with a full discussion of what kind of life together that he now sees as possible and positive.
Dear Readers - The question is unavoidable: Why do some parents take the extreme measure of barring their parents and/or in-laws from any contact with their grandchildren?
The current topic of “grandparent alienation” is heartbreaking to people who feel they’ve been wrongly, unfairly and possibly illegally barred from relationships with their grandchildren.
So, I asked on October 16 for more information from “the parents’ side” of this contentious issue. Here’s one response:
“I’m the mother of four children. My parents are divorced, both re-married. I live in the same city as one of my parents and the step-parent spouse who took on a vigorous role as grandparent.
“Both are involved, helpful, loving grandparents with an open relationship with my children who love and adore them in return.
“My other parent’s spouse, from the start, showed total disinterest in my children or in being involved in visits, Skype contact or phone conversations.
“As a result, that out-of-town parent only chose to be present on the kids’ birthdays. Though there were other times that the couple were in town, my parent couldn’t fit in more than an hour’s presence.
“There’d be a last-minute phone call announcing a brief window of time, without consideration for the children’s scheduled activities and my availability as a working mom with four kids.
“For a few years, I still complied (against my partner’s better judgement) because I thought that a relationship with their grandparent was important.
“But it became obvious that my own relationship to that parent no longer existed. The rudeness and disrespect to me became intolerable. And my children lost interest, too.
“It really does matter that the grandparent has a healthy relationship to his/her own adult child who’s the parent.
“We need to protect our children from unhealthy, careless, selfish relationships.”
Reader’s Commentary Regarding the young woman who wants to marry an ex-convict (Oct. 3):
“I’ve worked for six years for a professional company that helps clients with a criminal record seal their record so that they can get on with their lives.
“I’ve spoken to thousands of offenders.
“This woman should take a step back.
“Many offenders who’ve spent time in jail have domestic assault convictions. That may be the reason for his divorce.
“At 37, does he have a legitimate work history? Is he working at a legitimate job now? Is he on government assistance like many ex-convicts?
“Most offenders are quite open about their record (except those with offences against children) but many don't accept any responsibility for their criminal conviction(s) itself.
“Most spouses of offenders that I speak to have not been told the whole story.
“Does she have problems (self-esteem) or addictions of her own?
“She needs to know the answers.”
Tip of the day:
Forgiveness is only possible if there are positive changes for a better future.