Saturday, January 06, 2007

Insecurities


The saga continues...

It wasn't enough that all of the emotions of our "anniversary" of coming out were boiling at the surface, and the encounters with "boyfriends" at Church complicating matters... Now it was Will coming by at the house to say goodbye as he heads off to college again (out of state). I did not invite him to come. He came on his own. Though his coming to the house made me excited, it also made me very nervous. I immediately felt like I was two-timing my wife. But then I thought about it and realized this was a guy that just came to hang out and chat. What's so wrong about that?

Well plenty, I guess. In my naive way of desiring to have "it" both ways, I entertained him in good friendship and conversation - that was it. We chatted for about an hour together before my wife came down and saw us together - we weren't doing anything but talking. I could feel the ice in the room, the chill penetrated my every fiber as she stormed out not saying a word, but passing a glance at me communicating her displeasure with having Will in our house.

I haven't really discussed "Will" on my blog very much. I don't feel I need to, because for the most part I'm "over" him and have no romantic feelings as I once did. Let me just clarify that it was those very romantic feelings for him that triggered my coming "out" to my wife. And this being the week of the anniversary of that confession - well, needless to say, tensions were mile-high!

I knew I had to end our get together, even though I desired the thought of taking him to lunch or skiing or something... but I knew I couldn't. If I had gone with him, my marriage would have been over with.

In some ways I was angry - no, more perturbed that she would still be so jealous of him. I didn't do anything. We just talked.

We fondly hugged each other and rubbed our heads and necks together renewing a bit of the fire between us, but before it could get too far (with the thought that she'd come down again and find us in each other's arms) I escorted him out the back door and wished him well in his new semester.

So, now it was time to face the music! I went upstairs and found my wife crying, trying to hold back her emotions, though it was more than obvious that she was livid and angry and so intolerant of the "choices" I was making.

I tried to talk. She didn't want to talk about it. I didn't go away and waited for a few minutes to let her calm down. At first she resisted, but eventually I pulled her to the couch and we plopped down together and I held her tightly and she started to cry. I didn't say anything. I just was thinking that my "choices" were really impacting her more than I thought and I realized how innocent things in my eyes weren't so innocent in hers.

She finally spoke:

"What if I had a boyfriend that came to chat, how would you feel about that?"

I thought for a minute and could see that knowing that I was gay, having Will in my house would be like her having a boyfriend in my house as well. "I wouldn't like it at all," I responded quietly.

"So can't you see how this makes me feel?"

"Yeah, I see your point," I stammered.

"So, do you still have feelings for him? Do you still want to marry him?"

This second question floored me. Yes, I had and to a certain lesser degree have "feelings" for him, but I never thought of marrying him. It puzzled me that she would put our relationship in those terms. "Of course not," I rebutted, trying to figure out where she was going with this line of questioning.

"But you wanted to marry him at one point, did you not?" she questioned pointedly.

I didn't quite know what to say. All I could think of was: "I want to be married to you!"

"You do? You really STILL want to be married to me?" she asked tearfully but forcefully.

It finally dawned on my thick-headed, slow to catch on skull... she was feeling vulnerable and insecure! It was a fear of me desiring to leave her for him. It was a fear or insecurity of my abandoning her. I was fearful of her abandoning me! She wasn't so concerned of what we were doing together - trusting me that he came over just to chat - but it was more a concern that I no longer desired to be with her, to be a part of her and that I wanted to leave her for him. I realized in that moment that my actions were making her jealousy turn to vulnerability as she feels she is losing me to my desires for guys.

Fortunately (or unfortunately) the conversation did NOT turn to other guys, particularly toward "Tim". Had it turned to HIM I would have had a harder time being honest with her questions. It isn't that I intentionally hide these feelings; I just don't feel the need right now to open a new wound in such a state of vulnerability. As Tim is also leaving for college this week, I'm convinced that time will heal that wound and we can hold on to something bigger and more important than my desires for male relationships - important as they are to me right now in my trails and tribulations.

So, for now, both of them are gone! I've survived another first week of January! We are still married, though our relationship, at best, is insecure and vulnerable, as I continue to learn to manage my intense feelings of "love" for men, while at the same time managing my desires for eternal family.

I know this isn't an easy road I'm choosing. I know I could make it easier on myself by choosing one path or the other. I know some have questioned my motives for continuing this path seeking a different result - and diagnosing me as certifiably insane! But this is the tight rope I walk. I have hope in being able to get to the other side, but it isn't as easy as just saying that I won't do it again. I know I will. If not in reality, then in fantasy. I recognize my unfaithfulness. I want to stay true to the bigger picture here, to my covenants. Thoughts of already blowing them have entered my mind and so - what's the point of continuing to fight? I mean, is there any hope for someone so messed up like me???

But I do continue to fight for my marriage, even though my "love" for them has become important to "fight for" as well - as wrong as that may sound.

I guess I am most definitely institutionally insane!

9 comments:

emma said...

Hi Beck -- I am heartbroken to read your latest post, perhaps because so much of what you write rings true. I am not a person with SSA - I am married to someone who has it. Yet, I often tell myself his struggles are not so different than mine. He is attracted to other men because of his SSA. I am sometimes attracted to other men because of his SSA (well, I like to imagine parts of our lives together would be sooo much better if he didn't struggle with SSA, so sure, I fantasize sometimes about life with another man). My whole point with this is that no matter what our challenges, we all have them! My marriage (or the destruction thereof) would be another story if either I or my husband acted out on our fantasies. But we, like you, choose not to. As for getting around the whole 'as a man thinketh' ' thing, yes, I believe some of these unhealthy thoughts must be replaced, but that is a process, one that can take years of practice. Don't give up! If your wife is so inclined, and she may not be at this point, feel free to point her towards my blog: emma-emmawrites.blogspot.com. Wishing you a brighter new year! emma

Kim Mack said...

Beck, I talked about you on How I Deal ... hope you don't mind.

Beck said...

Emma: I am thrilled that you felt so inclined to comment on my blog. I appreciate that you feel the realness of my saga and that it "rings true". That is because it IS true. I couldn't make this stuff up if I wanted to. It's too bizarre.

I look forward to gaining from your insights. You add a voice that is mostly silent in this community of gay / SSA LDS sufferers.

I wish I could say it will be easy for you and your husband. From my experience, I know it won't be - but there is still hope.

Welcome and thank you!

Beck said...

Kim:

I am flabbergasted that you chose to disrupt your blog to post about my recent posts. Know that I appreciate your words and wisdom.

As I noted on your post, I sometimes reveal in my blog only the "Mr. Hyde" side of my life - the thoughts and feelings and passions and desires that I cannot and do not express anywhere else. But, because of this, I may portray that I truly am ONLY Mr. Hyde. I, too, have a Dr. Jekyl side to me as well. I do still have hope and faith and am at times still covenant-believing. I am active and faithful to my family duties and gospel responsibilities.

But that having been said, I am very much BOTH men. I have very much BOTH sides of me - and so I am rarely at peace. I desire to walk the fine line for I feel good in both. I know that may be counterintuitive to someone like yourself who knows better. My Dr. Jekyl side knows better as well... But I'm not free of Mr. Hyde's passions and because of that, I don't see them as totally negative. There is so much to experience, to feel, to know, and I don't know any of it!

Anyway, you've triggered even more thoughts. Maybe there is a blessing to all of this?

Riverbliss said...

Beck, I am so touched by your struggle as I struggle too. Two yrs. ago I came out of a 14-yr. relationship at God't unmistakable call that this restored gospel is true. I know the pain. I posted more on Kim's blog.

Thanks for sharing your struggle,
Riv

Kengo Biddles said...

Beck,

Miki has gone through similar moments. I don't know, but it might help if you were able to build a friendship with you, your wife, and your friends (Will, Tim, etc.) as she gets to know them with you, she won't necessarily feel that you're abandoning her.

I would take just as much time as you do with Tim and Will with your dear wife and help her to know that you are devoted to keeping your marriage working. I know that's how it's helped us to cope and move forward.

I'll post more on my blog.

Beck said...

KB: The guys are guys she knows very well. They have been part of the Ward and neighborhood. Though they are in their 20s now, she's since them grown up since they were young teenagers.

The problem is they "symbolize" everything that continues to be my "issue" and thus becomes a huge stumbling block for a mutual "friendship". I guess the good thing is both are gone away to college far away from me and so "out of sight / out of mind" right?

The real issue always comes back to me and my desires to have very real, close and personal male friendships - and typically those friendships are without her, not with her... They can't be close and personal and intimate with her... so I'm in withdrawl and trying to restructure again. But I choose to be where I am. I am not regretting my choice to be married. I hope that comes across clearly. Right?

Beck said...

RB: I didn't mean to overlook you. I didn't know I had so many female readers. Thanks for following along and I appreciate any comments you may have.

Thanks...

Kengo Biddles said...

It does come across fairly clear...I just wish there was a way we could discuss more real-time, because I empathize, and understand, and coming from my 4 years of full-disclosure marriage with a wife that has _serious_ trust issues, I would hope I could lend support if not give some ideas of a good direction to go.