Thursday, September 19, 2013

A Chance at Happiness

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.


  1. I told my best friend I was in love with her when I was on my mission, and she had been in love with me for like four years. For a year she lived in the ecstasy of knowing all her dreams would come true...and then I told her I was gay and it would never happen. There were lots of tears and minsunderstandings after that. Obviously this is almost nothing compared to what you're going through, but I felt some incredibly smaller piece of what it feels to be depressed over the pain you caused someone else. I know it's nothing compared to what you're feeling--but because of that experience I know that what you're feeling is incredibly difficult. And you DO deserve to be happy, and so does your wife, and so do your children. And I believe that you'll all make it there.

  2. I'm sorry for the pain you're going through but happy that you seem to have a direction and are working toward what you and your family think is best. I'm glad you enjoyed the Affirmation conference.

  3. Sometimes the biggest realizations come from the oddest places. It is very eye-opening to realize that kids are hurting because of the things that we seem to be keeping from them. Give yourself time to go through all the emotions--and they'll come. Sending you and your family good thoughts and hopes for a smooth transition.

  4. I want you to know that I understand what you are feeling at this time. I know the pain, guilt, sorrow etc. It has been three years since my divorce. Looking back, it was the best and worst experience of my life. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I can relate to what you're feeling. If you need someone to talk to send me an email at Hang in there :)

  5. I feel for you. I don't know what it's like to be in your shoes... but I know how if I had taken just a few different steps at different times in my past, I would almost certainly be closer to where you are. I appreciate you reaching out to me to offer support to me... especially when you're going through SO much. I'm really impressed at your desire to help others, and I hope that if I can offer any help to you I'd be able to. Anyway, I've invited you to be on my gchat if you need to talk. Thank you for letting me share in hearing about these difficult things you're facing. It is actually very helpful, even though I'm not in quite the same boat.