From Anger to Acceptance by Debra Sutton



Once you find out your husband is gay and has been cheating with men. Has anyone ever told you well at least he wasn’t cheating with a woman. And if he was cheating with a woman that would be way worse. I’ve heard statements like this. I have to say they are way off base. I was married the first time to a straight man. My second marriage was to a gay man. Of course I did not know he was gay when I married him. My first husband cheated with women. It was very heartbreaking. Each time he cheated I was heartbroken. I always ended up staying. Over the years he figured I wasn’t going anywhere. Slowly over time my feelings toward him began to change. When I left and divorced my first husband. I met and married my gay husband. We were married shortly after we met. Being married to a straight man who cheated with women vs. marriage to a gay man who cheated with men. Hands down being married to the gay man who cheated with men was much worse. First of all my gay husband was never happy, he did not like himself. And he took all of his anger and frustration out on me. He lied to me for 22 years about who he was. So I never really knew him. At least I knew at some point my straight husband loved me. When you find out your husband is gay you know it is impossible for him to love you the way a man should love his wife. You feel used and like you wasted your years with a gay man. And you also feel the whole marriage was a lie. I felt robbed of my years. Years I could have spent with someone who truly loved me. Instead I was a cover for someone who was unable to accept himself. 

The gay husband would cause me physical and mental harm just to hurt me. There was no rhyme or reason for his attacks. I know now that he felt trapped. While he hated living with a woman he felt like he had to in order to give the appearance of being straight. Oh he always said he was sorry and begged me not to leave. And if I did leave he would beg me to come back. He had a desperate need to keep his cover around. I left one time for 6 months after he beat me in the head with a steel flash light for saying hello to one of his coworkers. I really did not believe I would ever go back. But I did end up going back much to my regret. The abuse did not end. There were cycles of apologies and abuse. I was so confused by his behavior throughout the marriage. I knew he suffered from alcoholism and depression. He also had to go on treatment for hepatitis C. I told myself I could not walk out on my husband who was ill. After all I did make marriage vows in sickness and in health. The things we tell ourselves to stay. I know know this is wrong. But at the time I made excuses for his horrible behavior. 

I also felt very sorry for him. He told me I was his best friend his only friend. And told me horror stories of his childhood. He made me feel like he was never shown love. I thought if I showed him enough love he could change. Abusive men like him do not change. I was doing a Google search recently for one of my post, and his name came up. He was arrested 9 months ago for beating up another woman. I’m sorry he did this to another woman. At the same time I am so grateful it was not me. 

In the beginning finding out my husband was gay I went through all the stages of grief. Anger being one of those stages. Anger is healthy and must be experienced. Once I had time away from the gay husband my mind began to clear. I looked back at all I went through with him. I know I never deserved any of it. The anger did leave and I reached acceptance. There is nothing I can do to change what happened. But this experience has changed me in a very positive way. I am so grateful for everything today. And I try to enjoy each new experience to the fullest. He can’t touch my life today. And I have peace now. I realize I am important and I am no longer willing to tolerate people who don’t appreciate me. “If you constantly find yourself trying to prove your worth to someone you have already forgotten your value.”~Quote

We all make it passed the pain and anger. None of us stay in that place forever. I know it feels like forever when when you are going through it. Don’t ever let anyone make you feel bad for your grief, or like you are taking too long to move on. Grief is different for everyone . It takes however long it takes. Being part of a support group for women going through this experience helped me move from anger to acceptance and then on to a new life as a single woman. The group was so essential to my healing. They validated me when I had been invalidated for so long. These women knew how I felt and what I was going through. They never judged me. And they were always honest with me. 

You cannot thrive in a marriage to a closeted gay man. If you are feeling confused and stuck in a marriage where you know something is not right. And you suspect your husband gay. You are not alone. I have a list of resources on this blog site. Just click the resources tab. If you would like to receive Bonnie Kaye’s monthly news letter write to BonKaye@aol.com

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7 thoughts on “From Anger to Acceptance by Debra Sutton

  1. My story is very similar but the real physical violence only started when I filed for divorce. He tried so hard to make me change my mind. But I stood my ground and I’m finally divorced. And it’s true, that being gay and wanting to sleep with men was by far worse than finding out if it’s another woman. I remember when I first had an inkling and then found all the emails he sent to other men, I was devastated. I remember confronting him and begging him to tell me it’s women and not men but ofcourse he denied everything. And for ten years he made me believe that it’s all in my head. But that’s their tactic. They try to manipulate you and brainwash you. It’s sad. Very sad.
    A few months ago I stumbled upon a blog post by this lady whose husband actually confessed to her he was gay and that he wanted a divorce. She was writing about how much she loves him and could never leave him. I commented and told her to leave. To run. I told her it’s not worth living such a lie. You know what she wrote back? She said, my situation is different. I love my gay husband and would do anything for him. I will not divorce him.
    I was shocked. Infact I felt very very sad for her. But to each their own I guess…and kudos to you for rising up again and making your voice heard. Thank you for sharing your story, hopefully it will help many many others out there in our situation.

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    1. Thank you euphoricifaqsingle mom. We all loved our husbands when we married them. I agree the woman should run. We deserve so much more than these men can ever give in a marriage. From my own personal experience having been married to a straight man and a gay man. The marriage to the gay man was much worse. Living in the lie and never knowing what was wrong was so emotionally damaging.

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  2. Debra, I didn’t know your husband hit you with a flashlight. Why on earth did you go back to him after that? My husband was never physically abusive with me, as I told you in my other comments, he was just distant and uninvolved, but if he had ever hit me, I think that would have been enough for me to run and never look back. I think my dad and brother would have gone over and kicked his *ss, too. I’m not trying to embarrass you for going back to him after that, but I just don’t understand it. Wedding vows don’t include that he has the right to hit you with a flashlight. It’s bad that he hit you, of course that’s terrible, but what was going on inside your own head that you would go back to something so terrible? I can’t fathom doing that, that’s the part I don’t understand. How did you make it okay for you to go back to somebody that dangerous? And when did you learn that it was not okay after all, and you were making a big mistake? That might help other women who go back to their abusive husbands, it doesn’t even matter if he’s gay or straight, abuse is abuse.

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    1. Arowen, you are so right. It was never ok for me to go back after that. I can go over all the reasons I went back and still you would not understand. It is hard for me to understand why I put up with abuse. I can only say that today I would never put up with abuse. I can talk about growing up in abuse and being abused as a child. I can tell you about trauma bonds. Still it is so hard to understand.

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    2. There are millions of women abused each year regardless of socio economic background. I write about domestic violence because I am a survivor, and I want to increase awareness. It turns out my husband was gay. Domestic Violence is an issue effecting all backgrounds it’s not just a gay issue.

      I found the following article helpful when addressing domestic violence issues.

      VICTIM BLAMING AND RELATIONSHIP ABUSE
      One of the Center’s main goals is to eliminate barriers and increase survivors’ access to safety, resources and support. Victim-blaming attitudes are one of these barriers and place survivors in greater danger.
      WHY IS IT DANGEROUS?
      Victim-blaming attitudes marginalize the victim/survivor and make it harder to come forward and report the abuse. If the survivor knows that you or society blames the survivor for the abuse, she will not feel safe or comfortable coming forward and talking to you.
      Victim-blaming attitudes also reinforce what the abuser has been saying all along; that it is the victim’s fault this is happening. It is NOT the victim’s fault or responsibility to fix the situation; it is the abuser’s choice. By engaging in victim-blaming attitudes, society allows the abuser to perpetrate relationship abuse or sexual assault while avoiding accountability for those actions.
      WHERE DOES IT COME FROM?
      In order to stop victim blaming, it is helpful to understand why people do it in the first place. One reason people blame a victim/survivor is to distance themselves from an unpleasant occurrence and this gives a false sense that this could not happen to them. By labeling or accusing the victim/survivor, others can see the victim/survivor as different from themselves.  People reassure themselves by thinking, “Because I am not like the victim/survivor, because I do not do that, this would never happen to me.” We need to help people understand that this is not a helpful reaction.

      http://stoprelationshipabuse.org/educated/avoiding-victim-blaming/

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  3. That helps me understand it a little better. I didn’t mean to be blaming you at all, or blaming the victim, if I wasn’t clear about that, I apologize. It’s just that you hear about stories like that and can’t imagine it, I guess you have to live it to know it. I understand that abuse is “learned behavior” – if you grow up in home where it happens, then that is what normal looks like to you, whether you are the victim or the abuser. Did your husband grow up with abusive parents, do you know? Do you mind me asking if you grew up in an abusive home? My parents home was nothing like that, so it’s hard for me to imagine what that must be like, or what it does to a person.

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