Tuesday, March 29, 2016

What I miss....and other ramblings

Well, it has been nearly two years since my last post. There was a time when this blog meant the world to me. It was a way for me to express myself at a time when I felt I had no where to turn. I am sitting in a friends living room in Utah it is nearly midnight and I cannot sleep. My life has spun out of control in many ways and I am sometimes overwhelmed with gratitude for what has transpired and less frequently filled with mourning for the parts of my old life that I miss.

In order for me to move forward I need to express the things that I miss,  but first, an update.

So, as of February 29, 2016 my wife and I are officially divorced. I moved out in August of 2015 initially taking a adjunct position at a university in Idaho, with the plan that the family would move to Idaho once I secured a full-time position. The position never materialized and I was fired for being gay, God bless Idaho, due to being outed by my then in-laws to the university president who happened to be their best friend. I left the church shortly there after. My whole life I dedicated myself to the church and when I needed it the most It tossed me out and treated me like I had no value. I came out to my parents and sister/brother-in-law. My dad and brother-in-law took it well and initially were very supportive. My sister and mom made my life a living hell. I haven't spoken to my sister since December 2014 and my mom since November 2015 (thank you policy change). I was officially terminated from my job at the Idaho university December 2014. Since the policy change my dad and brother-in-law have become more unbearable as all they can do is push the church on me. I have not asked any of my family to fight the church nor have I demanded that they have to change their beliefs on the whole gay issue, but they cannot even empathize and accept me for who I am. So, I have had to cut ties almost completely. The only time I speak to my dad is when he randomly shows up at my house (I live next door to my grandma so he comes by once and a while).  I now teach at a university in Utah, but have since decided that a career in music is not meant to be, so after this semester I will be returning to New York to pursue my MBA with an emphasis in Marketing/Brand management. I have developed a few meaningful friendships and cannot express how thankful I am that they came into my life.

I have been through the darkest moments of my life over the course of the last two years. I have been abandoned by my family (except for my grandma and a few distant cousins), I was abandoned by the church I dedicated my life to just for identifying as gay (having not been with a guy until I was fired and outed to church members by my ex-in-laws and decided divorce was sure). I have cried many nights due to loneliness because I miss my two beautiful boys. Suicide was a constant plot, stopped only by the fact that my children would have no means of support. There were times when I didn't get out of bed for five or six days. But gradually I began to heal. I started to process what it meant to be me. I have been working through my faith transition and my new single life. There are still painful days when I mourn what I had planned for my life to be as a straight mormon husband and father. I have gone back to New York frequently to visit my children. My ex-wife and I are still close and I consider her to be my best friend.

The list of what I miss:
1. My boys....I miss being a 24 hrs/day 7 days a week dad. Skype and phone calls are great but not the same. I loved being a dad and miss being close to my boys. I want to be there when they fall and get hurt, when they have exciting news to share and can barely talk because of excitment, and I want to be their to help them grow into men.
2. I miss the companionship of my ex-wife and our boys. I now live alone and there are many days where I am the only one in my home and I have no one to visit. Loneliness is perhaps the worst part of my current existence. I live in a rural place with no real gay community and very few friends. I have had to come to terms with myself all alone without distractions, which I hope is a positive thing but going through it has been hell. I worry constantly that I will never find someone to spend my life with and in the end I will grow old and die alone. I have never really dated or put myself out their so I have no idea how to do this so moving forward is difficult
3. Family...My parents, sister, cousins, and grandparents all only want me in their life if I meet their conditions. I feel like an outcast...one of the unwanted ones because the people I have always been so close to have turned their backs on me. For the first time in my life I have been alone on holidays without any family to be with. I thought I had been taught that family mattered most but I guess for my family that only applies if they do what the church says.
4. Church...the church gave me a sense of purpose and direction. I miss the ease of church doctrine telling me my life plan. I have to design and implement my own road map now and boy is that scary but in some ways exciting.

These are just a few of the things that I miss, perhaps the core of what I miss. Would I change how my life has unfolded? I don't think so...because I am now living authentically and openly. Yes there have been challenges and so much pain that just thinking about it makes me cry, but there has also been immense joy as I discover who I am and what I want out of life.

My journey is now my own and I am on a path for true acceptance.

Sunday, April 27, 2014

What's next?

So I just had a very depressing conversation with my wife and it only lasted maybe a minute. Today had been a very long day for me. Sacrament meeting was annoying as I had to sit through early 20 somethings talk about how much they know the church is true and blah, blah, blah. Then in Primary the theme for the month is "The Family is Ordained of God." The children have to repeat a quote from the proclamation. I just want to stand up and scream, " what about me and all of us LGBT people?" I am tired of feeling like a trapped rat. Then church was finally over and it was our week to do the cleaning of the building. My wife had a meeting so I wandered the building cleaning and wishing I could just run away. I got home in time to prepare a lesson for home teaching....which I love doing ;). I have to really carefully word things so that I don't feel like a liar. By the time I got home from home teaching I was done with everything. I refused to go to choir practice which frustrated my wife, but luckily our youngest fell asleep just in time for me to have an excuse.
When my wife got home it was business as usual. Watched an episode of Once Upon a Time, then Turn and she then started to get texts like crazy. I asked who is texting she said it was her sister (the one she has confided in about our situation). I didn't think anything of it but then she suddenly came into the living room and said that her sister texts her a lot because she knows everything now. I said ok, that's fine. Then she blurted out that her sister was worried that I was physically abusing her and forcing her to stay with me. I rolled my eyes and hide the tears. She laughed and said that she had finally convinced her sister that I was not abusing her and that she is in control of her situation. I shut down immediately I just wanted to sob. I am still holding back the tears as I type. Everyone is in bed and I am too upset to sleep. I mean what the hell??? So because I am gay I am now the scum of the earth and treat everyone like shit? I admit there are very intense moments between my wife and I but I have never even thought about going into a physical realm and I work hard to make sure that I avoid hurtful things in my speech when I am upset. I try to stay calm and use words to work myself through whatever I am feeling. This just makes me wonder what my wife has been telling her sister. I know she feels betrayed because of my being closeted for so long and that she feels deceived, I have acknowledged that her feelings are justified and I continually apologize. I thought that her sister was being supportive and understanding but instead it seems that she is trying to make things worse. My wife already wants a divorce, and we are trying to make that happen according to our own timeline, but it seems that her sister is trying to spur her on because she feels that my wife will give up and just stay. After my wife had shared this with me she didn't ask how I felt, she just turned to me and said  "I told you she would push for me to get out." I just shook my head. I am tired of feeling like a horrible person and my wife doesn't help because she is so flippant about everything in how she says it to me. It feels as though she thinks that our situation doesn't cause me any pain. I feel that for her I will forever be the asshole that married a woman to cure the gay and wasn't faithful enough to make it happen.
It is getting to the point that each night I go to bed exhausted emotionally most nights I feel on the verge of tears. Then each morning I wake up hoping for a good day only to end the day thinking what will happen tomorrow to make me feel worse. You see, on top of all of this personal bullshit, my career is in the toilet. Every audition is a resounding NO, because I am too young, not developed enough, lack experience, etc. I am beginning to wish I could move to Alaska and live off the land and never be around people again. But then I remember how much I love not having to kill my own food. Plus I would not have any malls and as a gay man I need a good mall in order to survive : ).
If I could have one wish I would wish to be out of this situation just so I can find happiness again. I don't consider myself a negative person (even though this post testifies otherwise), but I long for peace and happiness. I still find joy in my boys, I love and cherish every moment with them because I know there is change coming, but I feel I would be such a better father if I wasn't in a situation that constantly reminds me of all of my failures. Plus then I wouldn't always be wondering what's coming next?
To be fair to myself I feel that through my therapy and support group I have gotten a lot better at handling all of this, I mean I think the old me would have broken down and stayed in bed a long time ago but the new me keeps trucking onward (maybe this is a benefit of all of my pioneer ancestry). I do believe that eventually this will pass so for now I will just have to vent to my blog.

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Update

Well it has been a while, hasn't it? Things have been a little crazy for me for the past few weeks and I lost interest in blogging. But today has been a very emotional day for me and I need to empty my mind.

Church was very difficult for me. I have landed in atheist land and find myself mourning the loss of all of the plans I had for this and the next life. Seeing as how it is Easter my ward actually had very good talks and lessons centered on Jesus Christ, but I was not interested in the subjects being explored but rather in how I was responding. I found myself longing for the things were saying to be true. I wished that the church was right, that there was a way to escape being gay. I longed for there to be a God who loved me, and I wished that there was a savior of mankind. I nearly broke down in tears twice during the three hour block of meetings. I am the primary pianist and the children sang today in sacrament meeting. The song was beautiful and many in the meeting broke down in tears. I assume that it was due to the Easter message voiced through the song. I however was mourning my loss. I feel that I have lost all faith in the divine. My being gay has left me feeling abandoned and betrayed thus my faith is fading. I have had a hard time accepting the title of atheist but I feel for now I must. I am just so tired of kicking myself over my sexuality, my religious beliefs (or lack there of), and my marriage. I have to stop writing about this because it is still too dark a place for me to fully explore.

In other news....Three weeks ago my wife announced she wants a divorce because we have very different religious views and thus feelings about my being gay. I was numb for a day or two after this announcement, but I have come to terms with it. I am hunting for jobs and we have discussed that when I get a new job I will move and she will either stay here or move back to Idaho. She also mentioned to me that she wants to tell someone about our situation and I said that was fine. She told me that she was thinking she would tell her sister, I said that would be fine just please let me know before you do it. I had been gone for two weeks auditioning in New York City and when I got home after I unpacked and we were sitting down for dinner, my wife turned to me and told me she had told her sister everything two days earlier. Again, shocked but not upset at all. She told me her sisters response was tears and major amounts of empathy, which I thought was great! She then told me that her sister said she wanted to come get her and the boys and help them escape. I was hurt by that because it made me feel like I was a horrible father and person in general. But my wife explained that she said that she would not allow them to come and get her because this situation is her life and she has to work it out. I was proud of my wife for saying that it showed a lot of growth for her. She then told me that she had given her sister permission to tell our brother in law as well. I said fine they will all know anyway. So now her sister and her sister's husband know. They have been texting her to give her much needed support over the last week. Her sister called on Monday and invited her to visit them (a 10 hour drive away) for Easter. As an after thought they said that I could come too if I didn't think it would be too weird. To be fair her sister told my wife that she didn't hate me but that she felt bad for me and knows that this has to be hard. But, it seems they still think I should hide in shame, at least that's how it feels to me. But I have to be fair, my birthday was this week and of all of my wife's family they each wished me a  happy birthday and no one else did so I think maybe I am being a little too sensitive. I don't know I am just feeling like an emotional mess.

I have had a crush on this guy for a few months but I have failed to stop crushing on this guy and as I have gotten to know him more my feelings have deepened and I think it is full on love now. He is not the type I typically crush on and he has no idea how I feel. I keep hiding my feelings in an effort to stop feeling this way. I have never felt this way before, it is scary to me because I feel like he could never feel the same way about me and this just makes me resent my feelings even more. Plus, I am still married, so I don't want to be a cheater. But the biggest issue with this situation is that I realized this is the first time that I have felt real romantic love. I have crushed on guys before but this time is different. I feel drawn to him. I want to be close to him. I want to get to know him as deeply as possible. And I can't seem to shake the way I feel, even though I want these feelings to go away to make my life less complicated. I just want to fall in love and be with someone who loves me fully and who I am compatible with. Will that day ever come???? Will I ever fall in love with someone who will fall in love with me???? What is that like??? Will I be ready for it or is he even out there??? This all leaves me wishing I was straight, Good night, I need to stop writing because this is already a hot mess and I have no desire to read it to make edits. What ever!!!!

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

Who do you talk to...

Who do you talk to....
When no one is there?
Alone in the dark
Afraid of your heart.

Who do you talk to...
When no one cares?
To one's self I wonder
Trust your inner spite.

Who do you talk to...
When you can't hear
The voices you stifle
That hate your existence?

Who do you talk to...
When that loved one
asks you to leave?
Perhaps the moon?

Who do you talk to...
When you cry yourself to sleep?
Is God in existence?
Does he even care?

Who do you talk to...
When the heavens seem so silent
A Bishop, a Teacher,
or no one at all?

Who do you talk to...
When you decide your path.
A path of distinction
and change from those that proclaim their love

Who do you talk to...
When you are trapped
under the weight of it all?
A friend, A father
or no one at all?

Who do you talk to...
When dreams are gone,
All hope, and joy,
Escaping

Who do you talk to...
When no one seems to understand
A mother, A sister
or no one at all?

Who do you talk to...
when love enters your heart
A silent love
An unholy love

Who do you talk to...
As life begins to crumble.
A lawyer, A doctor,
or no one at all?

Who do you talk to...
When you doubt your very self
Your path
Your place

Who do you talk to...
When no one can comprehend
My struggles
My pain

Who do you talk to....
Unsure where to confide
In short, I'll settle for me,
a no one at all.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Mindfulness: The Power of Me!!

Last year has been an emotional roller coaster ride and I have had enough!!! I have decided to get off of the roller coaster and gain control of my emotional responses to my situation. I had buried and ignored my emotions for many years so it makes sense that when I initially began to allow myself to feel and experience my emotions they would tend to be a bit overwhelming. But, I had lost all sense of order in my life because I spent far to much time dwelling on regrets and daydreaming about imaginary possibilities. These thoughts have proven to be far to damaging to me emotionally and mentally. I ended hating my life and wishing for something else nearly all my waking hours. The affected my teaching, my relationships, and my education. Over the last two months I truly debated about shutting down again emotionally (after all I know how to function that way and it seems a lot easier) or else accept my reality and begin sorting my emotions by living in the now....the present!

Over the holidays I was blessed to be struck with the flu (influenza...if you haven't had it, it feels like death) and a pretty bad sinus infection. This cut into family time, causing me to miss Christmas Eve activities and most of Christmas day...followed by a short New Years celebration. As I write this I am deaf in my left ear due to a third infection as a result of the flu, a severe ear infection. But all of this gave me some much needed alone time to process how I should proceed. I decided that there is only one thing that will help me to truly enjoy my situation. I have to accept every moment and live in the now. By this I mean that I cannot allow myself to daydream, I cannot allow myself to wallow in my past, both of which only serve to cause me to regret my reality. Due to things beyond my control my situation will not be changing soon, thus, I must accept that and learn from these experiences. Every time I start to think about a what if or a could have been I cut the thought off instantly and instead pose the question: what about my now is causing me to retreat inward to find a different place? I have begin to learn a great deal about myself and have finally began to find a source of peace. Instead of dwelling on what could have been, should have been, or might very will be, I am truly immersing myself in the now. I feel so grounded and have lost the sense of being overwhelmed.

A positive result of this new approach to experiencing life has been an improved financial situation. I am a monetary hoarder. I love to save money and hate to spend it. My wife loves to spend money and has no problem doing so. I wear my shoes until they fall apart on my feet. All of the dress shoes I own have cracks in the bottoms of the soles, but you can't see the damage when I where them so I refuse to replace them, even though with the wet weather my feet always get soaked. I have been this way since I was a child. My mom would give us cash when we went on vacation as a child, I never spent it and even held on to the change when my parents would send me to buy things for them. By the time I was 12 years old I had saved nearly $1,000 in a tin can....when we packed up my room to move my mom saw the can and discovered the cash. That was when I opened my first savings account.

From the first day my wife and I got married I have been the accountant and obsessively watched our bank accounts. It mad me upset when she would just spend without checking the bank account and making sure all bills had been covered. Her spending habits have resulted in a few too many mad dashes to the bank to deposit cash to make sure we avoid fees. (Pause for a brief caveat: She is not frivolous but she has just never been very financially minded she has many other strengths.) This has always frustrated me and I have tried for years to get her involved in our finances.

The old me would just dwell on the regrets and ignore why this frustrated me and would avoid thinking about the now. So this year the day after we got off of the plane after our trip to Idaho, I decided to gently force her to be involved. I set up automatic bill pay for everything. I laid out our entire budget in excel, with a really simplistic break down of everything and then showed her how to use it. I explained all of the auto pays and detailed what I do before I go to the store to buy something, depending on how much I estimate I will spend. She was shocked at how much money we spend each month (rent in NY is not cheap). Besides writing a rent check occasionally, she didn't realize how groceries, electricity, gas, car payment, etc all added up. She committed to follow the budget and even gave a few suggestions on how we could work together to save more money each month so that we can gradually save six months worth of living expenses in savings. (This is for our eventual move to Germany). We didn't discuss our decision three months ago to divorce if we could get to a place we could afford it, we just focused on that moment and really came together to budget in better detail and as a partnership. This eliminated a lot of anxiety for me because I now knew that she understand our financial situation clearly and was on board with the actions we need to take in order to become more financially secure. This also made me feel less trapped in my marriage because it meant that we are both working toward the same financial goals which ultimately will enable us to divorce should we still choose.

So now every time we go some place we pay cash as often as we can and we keep all receipts to perfect our budget.

Another change in my life has been in spiritual realizations. I have been struggling with the very idea of the existence of a God. For too many years I felt ignored, unloved, and betrayed by a God that would make me gay and then abandon me to fend for myself. I felt I couldn't trust God and felt that he was never there for me because far to many prayers were given with fervent heart felt pleading with no sign of relief or peace given. As I suffered through all of the bullying I experienced growing up he was never there, no one ever intervened and I never felt he loved me because I was different and wanted bad things. I grew to resent God and never sought by faith to know he existed. As I lay on my sick bed I finally realized that I used to be so afraid that I would go to hell that I convinced myself that there was but to force a relationship with God and never allow faith into the mix. I knew God existed because he had to so that I wouldn't die and disappear into nothingness. Well, this last month I realized that I needed to be in the now with regards to my faith. I had to accept that all of the hurt I felt growing up meant that for my now experience, I had to allow myself to explore possibility that God does not exist. I have never felt so at peace in my life!! The moment I thought this was amazing. I am not saying I am an atheist, but I have opened myself up to the possibility that I very well might be. I no longer feel the need to prove to myself that God is real. The burden of proof rests on God. If I am to believe he must answer me in a manner that I can relate to as I search to understand or even believe if he exists. I do not have to prove myself correct. In other words I no longer feel the need to force myself to believe. I will be ok if there is no God. Maybe as I live each day for that day I will gradually see God in my life but for right now I am just taking everything a day at a time and trying to learn all I can about myself and not force myself to believe (I did that for too long and it blew up in my face). So in religious terms I describe myself as being agnostic with strong atheist leanings.

These two developments have brought me a great amount of peace and contentedness that I have been longing for most of my life. Beside the fact that my ear is killing me and I am deaf for the time being, I am sitting here with a huge smile on my face because of the peace I feel. I am gay, married to a woman, the father of two beautiful boys, a non-believing active mormon, a temporarily deaf opera singer and music teacher, and I am an Agnostic!

I conveyed all of this to my therapist for our first session together after two months off and she explained to me that I had been using mindfulness techniques and they seemed to be helping me a lot because I seemed less anxious, depressed, and all together more grounded. Needless to say I walked out of her office feeling good but ultimately proud that I had been able to set my own course and arrive at this place using my intuition and needs to reach such a balanced place emotionally. I sum up mindfulness as being the power of me!!!

PS It has now been over a year since I came out to my wife and though our relationship is dicey, I now can say I feel that I am in a better place personally.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Full Circle

I have been out to my wife for exactly 11 months as of yesterday (11/27). I would never have imagined that I would be where I am at now a year ago. I was miserable then. I knew that I was gay and that I had lied to my wife, my family, and my son. I hated who I was and felt so hopeless that I just wanted life to end. I was not contemplating suicide but rather I was hoping God would at least see fit to extend a small amount of mercy and give me some terminal disease to end it all for me. I prayed regularly for this to happen. I felt a little hope when some medical issues I had been dealing with intensified and the doctor I was working with thought it might be cancer. I was hopeful that God had heard these prayers (since he hadn't heard the thousands asking for my sexuality to change), after a myriad of testing and some invasive procedures I was declared healthy despite the permanent abdominal pain amongst other symptoms. I was so depressed not only was stuck being a closeted gay married unbelieving mormon, but now I had to live with constant pain. I became angry because God wouldn't allow me to bow out of my miserable existence with some slight form of dignity, no if I wanted out I would have to do it myself. I was at this point that I came out to my wife. I couldn't handle it anymore this was all to much to take, I had to tell someone and she was the only person in my life that I felt deserved to know.

The last eleven months have been an emotional roller coaster but I have learned so much about myself. I still struggle with marriage/lifestyle depression (my term for the type of depression I feel, because I feel it about my marriage and choices I made). In fact today has been one of the hardest days in the past few months. My family is in town and the gay issue came up yet again. I was thinking now might be the time to tell them but yet again my bigoted family sent me crawling back into the closet even more. We were watching TV and Modern Family came on. I started watching it ( after all it is my house so I can watch what I want. One family member spoke up and said that show is disgusting. I asked why? They replied that there were gays on it and that is disgusting. I laughed and responded that they realize there are gay people/couples in the real world? They said yea, but it's just so gross. I was dying inside by this point. I felt like breaking down and sobbing. Over the last two weeks my wife and I have reached a level of functionality in our relationship that is unprecedented for us. I would not say it is a permanent situation but it is bareable for the time being since I don't want to loose my boys. But the dark foreboding heavy feeling has been hanging over my head and gradually increasing each day. When I woke up on the day of the "disgusting" incident, I was feeling overwhelmingly trapped and wanted to escape. This conversation just sent me feeling it even worse and has sent me spiraling full circle to where I was a year ago.

If God hates the gays as much as the people in my life seem to think then why in the hell are we still even allowed to breath on this earth. Why do I exist? What the hell is my purpose? Why does life have to hurt so much? (Tears are streaming down my cheeks as I sit in the dark all alone pondering on these questions). I am exhausted with the constant battle I feel raging within me. I feel torn and broken. I have been fighting for the last 11 months to discover a balance in my life, to understand my situation and how to improve upon it, buy instead as of this very moment I feel as though I want God to wipe me from existence. The most peaceful thought for me is the idea of complete nothingness after this life. I do not want an eternity of living with the memory of my existence and the pain I have caused and experienced. I do not want to be stranded in a facade of a marriage and I cannot handle feeling ignored by a so called "Loving Father." I do not feel peace nor love from the church or the gospel right now. I feel as though there is no point to what I have been going through. I just want out. I want a family that accepts me and loves me I want a family that will at least create a space where I feel I can tell them what I struggle with, I am tired of walking through this life so completely alone. I thought marriage would mean connection, support, and love, but I am not connected with my wife and so I actually feel more disconnected, and unloved than when I was single.

I was always taught that doing what was right would bring happiness but I have done what I was taught was right and now I am so far from happiness it actually hurts. I am tired of feeling on the verge of tears every time I look at my boys and wonder if they might be gay, I desperately hope that they are not so that they do not have to deal with all that comes with that. I am tired of the facade I have to project in order to preserve my marriage. I am just tired. I want to get away. Hope is gone. I feel I am a shell of a person who is just marching through life trying to live as others have told him he should. The easiest way to summarize how I feel is that I have come full circle. I am where I started when I came out to my wife. I feel alone, misunderstood, unloved, unconnected, and Godless.

I have reached the conclusion that the only way for me to survive my current situation is to resort to my old methods for dealing with all of this. I have to shut off my emotions, severe all links to the gay side of myself both internally and externally, and just keep swimming. I have to stop thinking about this and stop writing about it. This will probably be my last blog post for a while if not forever because I just can't handle this all anymore. I am trying to live two lives: one that is your atypical mormon man and another that accepts my sexual identity and seeks to live true to myself. I can't do this anymore and since I am to afraid to move in the direction I truly want I will instead close up shop and bury the gay like I did for the last 30 years. Hell, whats another 30 years of doing it? At least I can see a finish line that way.

But then again maybe after I cry myself to sleep and eat a pound of turkey I will feel better and delete this post. Who knows and frankly I don't give a shit. All I know is that I am sick of feeling the way I do and so I have to shutdown to escape it since suicide will never be an option. Good luck to the rest of you on your journeys.

Monday, November 11, 2013

Sink or Swim

Therapy has been going really well for me. I am finding balance in my life and I am accepting things as they are not for what they have been. We have spent a lot of time helping me reconnect with my emotions and I couldn't be happier with the progress I have made. Last week in my session I admitted that I want to get divorced and move on with my life. So my therapist asked me what that future looks like for me. I was baffled for a moment as I had never fully explored what I wanted in my "gay" future. I have daydreamed about things but I had never really discussed this with anyone. I mentioned a few things but we had to cut it short due to time constraints so today we picked up where we left off last time.

This time however we spent a lot of time talking about the things that hold me back from moving forward in the direction that I would like to go. What I determined is that there are two reasons: 1) I don't want to cause my wife more pain and 2) Financially we are not in a place to facilitate a divorced living situation. I feel emotionally ready to get a divorce and move on but financially I m stuck. So the reality is that I will probably need to stay married for a while longer.

One of the most shocking moments for me during this session was when my therapist asked me what my feelings were about getting divorced. I explained to her that setting aside my feelings on how much this would change the lives of my two boys, I felt relief and like a weight would be lifted off of my shoulders. Until today I did not realize how disconnected I truly felt from my wife. Despite how our relationship has improved, after bottoming out when I told her I was gay, my relationship with my wife is still only a shell of what I feel a true relationship could be. I feel like we function as roommates who have children together. As I was explaining all this to her I began to realize that I do not know how to be in love. I have NEVER been in love. I was in love with the idea of marriage when I married my wife and I do love her to a certain degree but not the way a person should love another person in a relationship. I guess what I truly realized today was that though some gay men are able to find satisfaction and fulfillment in their mixed orientation marriages, I am not able to do that. This idea seems foreign to me. I told my therapist how foreign it seemed to me that some guys were able to do this. I said that I wished I could understand how they are able to do this and then maybe I could find happiness in our situation. I no longer believe in the church and so the whole plan of "happiness" that we are taught doesn't bear sway in my thought process. Meaning, I don't have to stay married to a woman to find happiness in this life so why should I do it, for her and my sake?

I really do want to move on for the chance of finding happiness over staying where I am at and knowing that I will not be happy. I told my therapist I would like to take a break from therapy to process this and assess how I could possibly make changes in my life to make my divorce possible. She agreed that this might be a good move for me so I can assess and then come back with my ideas so that we can take a look at strategies to deal with the reality of what a divorced and out me might have to face. All in all I feel that I am in a much better place than I was two months ago when I started therapy but I still feel like there are things I need to learn. Like how to face being openly gay and divorced but also figuring out how to be in love. I want to fall in love so badly that it hurts physically. I cannot just stay where I am at without ever experiencing being in love. No one deserves to live without having true love and I cannot allow myself to go on pretending its ok for me to just survive my life. I want to live it and LOVE it!!! So I guess this is the part where I either sink or swim but either way if I try to live life at least I will be truly living. So how do I move forward now???? That is the real question!