I have started this post many times but I can't get my thoughts organized. I have been depressed for a few days but the fog has lifted so I decided to give it another chance.
This past weekend I was fortunate enough to attend the Affirmation conference. I went back and forth on whether I should attend or not. I wasn't sure if it would be a good fit for where I am at right now. I could not have been more wrong. This conference was exactly what I needed. I learned so much about myself that I cannot even attempt to share it all with you here, mainly because the written word is not my specialty...I would rather talk about it. Any way, it was wonderful to be with so many people who accepted me for who I am and where I am at in my spiritual journey. I was fed spiritually and emotionally. There were so many wonderful people in attendance and I am grateful I was able to meet new people and form new friendships. I am compiling ideas for a post to explore what I learned through the conference but needless to say I got a lot out of it and I am so glad that I was able to go.
I came home feeling uplifted and thought I was in a very good place emotionally and then my wife and I had a two hour conversation that changed all of that. I sank into a very dark place quickly. I have avoided just flat out telling her that I want a divorce because I was afraid of hurting her. But while I was away something happened that made me just blurt out that I wanted out in the middle of our conversations.
My wife had the sister missionaries over for dinner while I was gone. She told me how the sisters had asked my son if he missed his dad (my son is 4 ) his response hurt really bad but it is the truth...."he said yes but not too much because sometimes he makes my mom cry." We have been going through a lot lately, obviously, but we thought we had been hiding it from him. The sisters didn't pay too much attention to it, but I did. Immediately after my wife said that I responded by saying I want out. I explained that our issues are obviously affecting our son more than we thought and we can't keep going the way we are. She agreed. She opened up about how hurt she is and how embarrassed. She said she can't get over the fact that I got married to her when I knew I was gay. (She doesn't understand how repressed I was and that I didn't even fully understand my sexuality back then.) She expounded a lot on this but long story short...she has a hard time not hating me because she feels I should have just chosen not to get married. I agreed. We discussed this in length, along with other specifics of how our families are going to react as well as the birth mother of our second son who is adopted. I was an emotional wreck throughout this conversation. I feel so guilty about everything. I just kept thinking a single question: Why couldn't I have been more brave and stood up for myself so that I wouldn't have caused all of this suffering?
So I guess what I need to ask myself, even though I don't want to is: Will I be brave enough now? Throughout the course of the Affirmation conference I cam to realize how much I desire to be an activist. I have often heard the phrase, "be the change you want to see." How can I stay married and pretend I am happy and committed when in fact I desire a change for those of us that are gay. I do not want to be married and I do not want other gay people to feel that they must get married. So, will I stand up and do what I feel is right....Will I stand up and work for change? I have to stand up and be brave now. I cannot just stand on the sidelines anymore and watch my life pass by.
I was so depressed after my conversation with my wife it took me two days of recovery just to be able to function. What I realized was that I wasn't depressed about my marriage ending, I was depressed because of the pain I have caused and the pain I will continue to cause if I stay married. My wife and I have moved closer to divorce. It feels that it is merely a matter of time and money before we pull the trigger and I think both of us feel it is for the best. We both are afraid of what everyone else will think and how many of them will hate me, but this will not be the reason we stay together. The chance of happiness is better than the continuation of suffering we are both feeling.
Well there it is. This is where I/we are at. We shall see what unfolds but I am beginning to feel strength developing inside and I am encouraged by what I learned at the Affirmation conference. I apologize for this post it was merely a means for me to unload so that I can further process everything. I will post again when things are a little more coherent.