View Full Version : Am I the only one?
11-05-2006, 12:13 PM
I have only posted on these forums a few times but I really need to talk about a situation in my life and don't know where to turn. I hope that someone here can relate to my story and give some support.
My partner and I have been together for almost two years. She is technically still married. Because of financial reasons she has not been able to file for divorce. I have tried to be patient about this situation as I love her very much. Her husband is supportive of her being a lesbian. They still own a home together and he lives there now. We live about an hour and a half away. She comes from a very small southern town that is very homophobic. When we first met she told me that her husband was her roommate because she didn't think I would want to be with someone that is still married. We worked through all that and I have tried to be understanding in this whole situation. My partner and her husband also still work together in the same office, so they see each other every day. She keeps telling me that they are going to divorce but she doesn't have the money. She really does not make a lot of money so I do believe that.
Ok, now that you know that background info, here is the rest! She is extremely closeted! She is out at work to two people. The only person in her family that knows is her older brother because they are very close. He does not approve but supports her. Her family is VERY religious. She comes from an Assembly of God/Pentocostal background. Her family HATES homosexuals and makes that fact quite known. A long time ago there was a rumor that my partner was gay. Her family told her that if it was true that she would never be able to see her nieces and nephews again. She would also never have contact with the rest of the family. She denied it then and said she would do it again. I am very close to her family. They call me their daughter! They think that we are roomates, and best friends. I know....it is hard to believe that people could be so clueless, But they are! My family loves my partner and treats her like a daughter in law. They know about us and love us both very much.
My partner just found out that her dad has terminal lung cancer and has six months to a year to live. She is now spending most of her time there. I am here at home. It bothers me that she is back in her small town so much and her husband lives there. I know I am being jealous and insecure but am having a hard time with it. Her family knows that they are seperated. I am not really a part of the family but to her I am. I am feeling really left out. I have mixed feelings with her being there so much given the fact that if they really knew who she was they would disown her. I am having a hard time being supportive but I don't know why! The funny thing is I am a hospice nurse! I know how to do this with other people's families but not in this situation. It is really bothering me to be there and be around such hatred and lies. I have to pretend every time I go there. Has anyone ever been in a situation like this? I really love this person but am not in the closet and have a hard time going back in!
I know this is very long. I just need some support. I would love to hear from people that have been in a situation like this and how they have handled it.
Thanks so much for reading such a long, dramatic story!
Christine (I can also be reached offline at email@example.com)
11-05-2006, 02:35 PM
That is a tough situation to be in and I don't really know exactly what the answer is to your problems. But it seems as of now that there are insurmountable obstacles right now to you having an ongoing relationship with her. You may have to accept the circumstances and accept the relationship as it is now, or move on.. you may have to realize that it may not work out in your favor in the long run. She is still in a relationship with her husband, and that may be for appearance sake and financially , but it may be one of the factors that will not change in her staying in that relationship. I was in a similar situation and it didn't work out to my advantage either. At the time she provided companionship as I was desperately lonely and dealing with struggles and issues in my own "marriage" to a man. But I was not in a traditional marriage, but common law and later we basically started living as roomates and not as man and wife. I was also confused, depressed and felt very isolated in the relationship with him,and was dealing with my feelings and attraction to other women. The thing is she had a traditional marriage and was still living with her husband... and had no intention of leaving him.(And he knew of her attraction to women. )I personally would never do that again. I feel like since she still was living in the context of man and wife..and wanted to stay in the relationship for financial and other reasons, it was time for me to leave. And that is something I will never do again either. That was unfair to him too. I can't change other people. But my relationship with her was pretty mixed up.. it wasn't healthy.. and I was often jealous of the time she spent with her husband and the things they would do together. I think you might be in a no -win situation as well. And do you really want that for yourself? Do you want to hang onto that when it may not turn out to be the relationship you want it to be? You need to ask yourself these questions. My personal opinion, if you see the red alert go off in your head , that may be trying to tell you something. Things with her may never change and you may be stuck in the position of the outsider looking in. I know one thing about myself I would never find that acceptable at this point in my life. I unintentionally trespassed on territory I shouldn't have. But I also learned from my mistakes as well. My intentions weren't evil as in trying to break up her marriage, but she had led me to believe that she was basically "unattached" to him in the beginning and ready to move on. That was not the case at all. I think perhaps she was looking for fun and excitement in life with another woman but without the strings attached. And often I was "on call" there when she wanted me to be around.. I say forget that.I also had to look at my own issues honestly and deal with those as well. She may have provided temporary alleviation from loneliness and offered some form of companionship and nurturing, but in the long run it was not in my best interest to stay in that type of situation. I know I am bearing my soul here, and many people might not approve of what I did.. But I am being honest and have learned from my past errors.:) I'm not here to judge other people either, I hope my own experiences will help bring more clarity to your situation, and help you in whatever choices you may need to make.
"A measure of a man is not the mistakes he makes, but what he learns from them."
11-05-2006, 03:14 PM
I will add, that I finally found a female partner who I lived with for almost five years. We both broke up because Terry was in a position of having to care for her parents and I was helping care for my own mother who has passed awy recently. Terry helped me alot mentally and emotionally as well as financially, she helped me get my ssi, and help for my problems. We did not break up because of fighting or or hard feelings or anything. Circumstances changed for both of us and we are still friends. But since my mother's death ,I am moving back in with my ex-male partner because of financial reasons and because of my son. If I could afford an apartrment and could live on what I make, I would do so. But we have a living arrangement, it is not going back to him to live with him as his wife... I need my independence and he needs his. But we will work together and help each other in raising my son. But as far as romantic, no. I will have the upstairs and he the downstairs.. we are now friends and that's the way it will stay.. as far as living there indefinitely, if my situation improves it will not be that way. We will still cooperate with my son. But I'm not going back to him on any basis of re-establishing a "marriage arrangement."And he has no such interest in me at this point either. I'm gay period. Nor will I be out chasing women for sex. (it's not me anyway) I have other priorities and , don't want to do that. But if I ever meet someone who is right for me I will move on with that relationship.. Terry is living with her parents, since she has to care for them, so living with her again isn't an option. My oldest brother asked me if I wanted to live with him, but it is too far away from my son and he needs me. I wouldn't be able to see him on a regular basis and I don't want my son growing up like that. The thing I will have a hard time with is living in an area where people are basically republican and conservative and it is in an upperscale neighborhhod. I don't feel comfortable with that.. as I tend to live simply and don't like the pressure of putting on appearances or keeping up with the Jones and trying to fit into their norms.... I don't dress as conventionally, I wear an ear cuff and a british jacket(LOL) It reminds me of the british invasion with the music of the beatles and the rolling stones. And sometimes I get disappoving looks .. but I am not changing to gain their acceptance. I used to dress very conventionally and tried to "look" like one of them. but now I don't. I have nothing aga:D :love: inst the people personally... but I just don't want the pressure to conform.. I am a democrat and I have different views. I am also not a conventional Christian, I tend to embrace other religions and cultures as well. I'm definitely not WASP and have no desire to be. I prefer to live in a neighborhood where there is more diversity and acceptance of other people of other cultures, races and backrounds.
11-05-2006, 05:21 PM
I have a friend who teaches at a fundamentalist college, lives with her girlfriend of many years, and for all intent and purposes lives a closeted life. The word gay doesn't pass her lips. And never will. And least, not in reference to herself or her partner. If the word gay was breathed even a little bit at school, she would lose her job, pension etc.
If you live in a rural midwest area, then this knd of situation is all too common, I fear. Women seem able- for whatever reason- to pull this sort of thing off. Men, on the other hand, don't seem able to fly under the radar as easily.
I totally understand your feelings of jealousy and yes- even- anger. I'm not surprised that, even though you have expertise in an area that could be of help to your partner's father, you can't make that area work.
From what you've written there seems to be several issues in play at once- all of them competing for attention. However, the determining factor in how all this is dealt with seems to be the homophobia of your partner's family. It's the force - and her reaction to that force- that keeps your partner still married and unable to tell her family she is gay. She fears losing contact with her family. In short, it sounds like you and you partner are being held hostage.
To be overly simple about this: I think you need a plan which includes counseling- both of you together- to deal with this. You may feel guilty about asking for this considering the circumstance (and money may be really tight), but your needs are important and the health and viability of the relationship itself will eventually be drawn into question if this isn't faced. It's soul killing. That your family accepts you both is a huge plus. And I bet that her family knows the deal but is just turning a blind eye- they don't want to know what they already know.
My own partner was ignored and kind of sidelined by various members of my family for a long while until we talked about it (well....it was more like a really loud discussion :rolleyes: ). I finally 'got' that I had to stop playing along with trying-to-curry-favor with my family- ie play out their dynamic- and challenge them on how they treated him. In sum: it was my feelings of fear that stood in the way.
With her father dying, your partner may feel like you would be asking too much of her in dealing with her family's homophobia. Yes- her plate is full. But you know what? This may be the best time to clear things up- while she can do so with her Dad- and with you. Have you thought of that?
Real change only seems to come when there is the impetus and motivation to do so. What more could your partner need? And one thought occurs to me here: you could train/teach your partner in how to deal with her father. One result would be she will have greater insight and trust with you. That can only be a good thing. You need more connection with each other now, not less.
11-05-2006, 11:08 PM
Maybe a simpler approach.
I am a student of Abraham (Abraham-Hicks.com).
Abraham would say the best is to ONLY focus on what part of the relationship feels good and do not try to change in her what you do not like.
It seems that she is treating her relationship with her husband very much in this way which is why they are amicable. He recognizes that she cannot change her sexuality and accepts it.
Show her that you love her and make love to her. Allow her the safety of her closet.
Don't push against something that you don't want in her or you'll just add to the attacks to her self-esteem that go on continually.
Be her sanctuary and her gay self esteem will grow and evaporate the fear that homophobia has imposed on her through her life. With growth she will come out, for only then will she be ready.
For your self meet your own needs first. socialize with other lesbians to grow and share what feels good. Monogamy may or may not be the best for you right now.
I myself have 4 lovers. love for one does not prohibit expression of love of others. each of my lovers activates in me a different aspect of love. I certainly could not change what I don't want in each of them. nor would any of us want to be without the love we all share.
love an' hugs,
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