What Mormon Enigma is going through right now has consumed me these last couple of days. I know it shouldn't, but it has. Maybe it's because I'm not so removed from such an emotional and all-encompassing experience as what he is going through.
As I've stated a few blogs ago, it has now been two years since "coming out" to my wife after 20 years of marriage. It is still very fresh and on-the-surface of our relationship. Yes, our ride over the course of the last two years has been rough and bumpy. My continuation of "attraction issues" and "infatuations" hasn't helped.
But, I want it to be clear that despite what my blog may say or portray, despite my lusting thoughts and romantic dreams for guys, both fictitious and real, despite my emphasis on this personal struggle (that remains mostly mental and internal - expressed openly only through my alter-ego of the queerosphere of MOHOs) I am committed to making it through this and staying with my wife and family.
I want to profess the following statements of belief that I feel have been neglected in my blog, and I want Mormon Enigma especially to hear them at this unique and particular life-changing time:
1. I am glad that I told my wife of my feelings, thoughts, and infatuations. Though by telling her, I have become somewhat limited in my "contact" with the same sex. This is both a good and bad thing. Good, in the sense that the path I was on was definitely leading to my doing something that would forever break up the family. Bad, in the sense that much of my contact with the same sex has been central to my "being". Thus, my angst continues on. But, still no regret in telling her.
2. My physical love for my wife (though not emphasized nearly as it may ought to be in this blog) is strong and constant. It is funny that prior to coming out, we were drifting hopelessly apart. I was not allowing her to be a part of my life more and more... and wished for no intimacy at all. Now, after two years, we are more intimate together than we ever were before! Though I still have "issues" and may not "desire" it as much as she does, she is more patient and understanding with me and we have established a level of physical intimacy that seems to work and strengthen the marriage. We have made it a point to be more affectionate in front of the kids encouraging them to see our affection more openly than we ever did before.
3. My emotional love for my wife has increased in the last two years since "coming out". There is a bonding that this "revealed secret" between us has created that wasn't there before.
4. My appreciation for my wife has magnified as I've realized what she could have done and what she has gone through because of my "coming out". She most definitely could have asked for / demanded a divorce. She was hurt, with feelings of a "wasted life" that I caused her to endure all through the "good years". She has suffered pain and loneliness as she has turned to no one for support as there hasn't been anyone there to turn to - no friend, no family, not even her mother - no church, no bishop, no neighbor... and so she has turned to me and I to her as we figure out this journey together. She has proven to be a ROCK and FOUNDATION of strength. As awful as some periods have been, sobbing uncontrollably (often times alone in the bathroom), she has found inner strength and peace and commitment and tenacity to make this work. These characteristics have come through in shining splendor! Had I not "come out" I may have missed seeing what a wonderful, amazing woman she really is.
5. In some ways, we are still the same. We still struggle. I still have my volcanic urges for male bonding and companionship that sometimes erupt and make our lives difficult. She still feels like she hasn't been good enough, beautiful enough, desirous enough to keep me from being attracted to men. She still feels and hopes that in time I will overcome this attraction and desire and she will become all that I want. We still are struggling to be on the same page of understanding on this one... We have a long way to go for her to truly understand what is going on inside of me and that this has ALWAYS been going on inside me and that it ISN'T HER FAULT... But, even more importantly to me and my self-worth and sanity - IT ISN'T MY FAULT EITHER!!!
6. We are committed more so than ever to our covenants and marriage vows (now don't laugh at me those of you who have followed the blog and know of my mind's thoughts and desires and requited loves... there is another side to the story). I know that she is the only woman for me. (And that means more than the fact that I haven't been interested in any other women!!!) I know that she is uniquely blessed with a combination of qualities that makes her perfect for me. We are best friends. We share so many likes and passions. Our kids are our focus. And we hold a firm faith in the sealing power of the priesthood and in keeping the marital covenants.
7. An interesting side comment from "coming out to my wife and myself": I find myself questioning my beliefs more, my core beliefs, my beliefs in the Church, the meaning behind all of this, and the questioning (as is my blog's overall theme) continues to grow - for I really don't have a clue as to what I'm doing here, but I'm trying to figure it out and do what is right. This isn't easy, but being more open with my wife about the uneasiness has been a good outcome.
Call me delusional, call me living a fantasy or a lie. You're probably right. No argument from me here. I am delusional. I live more of my life in a fantasy world as a means whereby to deal with my gayness in a heterosexual world. And thus, I'm living a lie. But you know... as much as I dream of being held and caressed and loved by another man, I can't imagine my life without my wife.
So, Mormon Enigma - I encourage you on! I am behind you and your wife all the way!!! I am the champion of your cause! I want to scream from the roof-tops that YOU'RE OKAY and SHE'S OKAY and you'll get through this and come out better - whatever your "better" means to you and she! I don't mean to imply by any means that my story is your story or should be your story! It isn't. You have your own story.
But if I can be of some source of inspiration or help at this critical time, then my coming out has been worth it, and this blog has been worth it, and this can be a BLESSING.
I do want to say this: If I can do it this long and with this much success (warts and all) then there is hope for you and what I see as an amazing woman you call your wife.