It has been 6 years since I realized my husband was gay. It has been 5 years since a divorce ripped through our family and sent ripples of hurt and anger not only through my heart, but also through my children's hearts. Time heals lots of wounds but the scars of divorce from a man I thought would be the perfect father and husband still remain.
Lately it seems like straight women being married to gay men is all over the media. You see our situation play out on TV dramas, on talk shows (Oprah had a number of shows lately dedicated to this subject), on the radio, on movies and in articles. As more men come out in their marriages, it seems like society is accepting this practice as a new "normal". Even my friends are commenting on how women facing this dilemma today don't have it so bad because "it's happening everywhere". I applaud gay men who are already married and who come clean with their spouses, don't get me wrong...but I can't stand the idea that because so many men are doing so, society is accepting this as "no big deal".
The men who are coming out as gay in their marriages may be having a bit easier time of it than in the past due to easing societal attitudes, but the women that this happens to are shocked, angry, sad, and frightened. We are forced into raising our children in a new way, forced to accept a lifestyle for them that we may or may not believe in. In an instant all the dreams we had of raising children must transform into an acceptance of their father and of new homes and new lives that has been thrust upon us.
The new lives we live are not "normal". I'm pleased to see that societal pressures may be easing - allowing more gay people to live as they wish. But the fallout from a marriage to a straight man that turns into a divorce from a gay man will change the lives of all involved. It can return to be a good life...but the trauma and dedication to turn hurt to healing is intense, painful and takes a very long time. I don't ever feel like my life will ever be "normal" again. My kids say the same. We entered into the sisterhood of straight wives unknowingly, and I am grateful to have the chance to help as many of my sisters as possible find a new life for themselves and their kids.
Written by Heather Cram. Heather is a former Straight Wife that has also written a book. You can contact Heather at Heather@ismyspousegay.com and find more information about her book at http://www.ismyspousegay.com/