coming out as lesbian later in life – lightening the load

In bloom_finally felixPart of coming to terms with my sexuality at this stage of my life has been the need to tell certain people what is going on with me. Namely, coming out to the people whose lives will be deeply impacted by this change.

I can’t help but wonder if I had reached this point in my 20s, before I was married and had children, if I would have felt the need to tell people. Would I have stressed and stumbled over my how, why, and who to justify my life and my love for someone else’s understanding?

I like to think I would have just lived my life and damn what anyone else thought about it. But as it stands now, there are people who need to know.

Of course my husband was the first person I told. Uttering the words “I’m pretty sure I’m gay,” to the man with whom I had spent my entire adult life was the hardest thing I ever had to do. Admitting to him that I had been unfaithful with a woman was like cutting off a piece of myself. Explaining that my attraction to women is not a reflection on his manhood, nor is it something I can simply turn off, is an ongoing conversation. It may never be resolved.

I have come to understand that I can only be accountable for myself in this. I can take full responsibility for my role in the demise of our marriage. I can do everything in my power to make this transition as smooth and painless as possible for my children. I cannot force my husband to accept or understand my need to live fully in my truth.

I realize he will hold me in contempt for a very long time. I accept that, though I hope he will not allow it to eat away at his own chance for happiness in the future.

The conversation with my closest friends has ranged from enthusiastically accepting to cool and indifferent to fascinated and very curious. Wherever they fall on that spectrum, I know that I still have their unconditional love and support. I’m very blessed in that respect.

I have drifted away from one acquaintance in this process. I revealed my news to her out of some misguided desire to share my innermost secrets. Her response was to bombard me with scripture then lay out all the reasons that I should go deeply into the closet and wait for the perfect man to come along and show me the error of my ways.

No regard of my need for love in a form that is right for me.

No consideration for my sanity or emotional well-being.

We have drifted apart and I have not reached out to her in quite some time. I wonder if she understands why?

Moving forward, I will be more discerning of who I wave my rainbow flag for. I plan to travel very lightly on the road ahead and am only packing love and acceptance. Anything else is getting tossed.

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About Felix Jay

I am Felix Jay, and I am gay as hell. Unfortunately, embracing this reality came after a 23-year relationship with a man, which included 12 years of marriage, and two children. This blog follows my journey to live my truth for the first time in my life, without devastating my family and losing my sanity in the process. Fully honest...completely authentic...and finally Felix.
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11 Responses to coming out as lesbian later in life – lightening the load

  1. Blessed Love says:

    “I plan to travel very lightly on the road ahead and am only packing love and acceptance. Anything else is getting tossed.” You have everything you need!!! Reading through your experience and seeing how you have grown in this process is inspiring. So glad to see you standing tall and full of power.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Felix Jay says:

      It’s been such a long road, B. And the best part is not only realizing how far I’ve come, but also finding amazing, fellow travelers along the way. Thank you for being such an amazing support.

      Like

  2. I’m sure I’ve had all these feelings this morning alone. I wish there was a guide to dropping the gay grenade in your marriage.

    Sigh.

    We will all there together!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Felix Jay says:

      That has been the hardest part. So much advice for coming out, telling your family, telling your kids….but how do you break this news to to a spouse? I realized I was on my own so long ago. Blogs like yours absolutely help.

      Liked by 1 person

      • There’s no manual for coming out while married with kids. Every marriage is different so they all take slightly different paths.

        I read everything I could find last year to understand and there were precious few resources.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I’m in that same place. Except I divorced before I realized who I was. I had been hiding for a long time. Now finding new relationship I find that treading lightly in who knows my truth is important. If it is worth destroyING those relationships. Or even exposing my partner to their reactions.

    Like

    • Felix Jay says:

      Hello, girlienthecloset. I have to apologize for my delay in replying, I’ve been neglecting my poor blog lately and was pleasantly surprised to find your comment in my moderation que. Thank you for sharing your experience. I am learning to listen to my gut when it comes to telling my truth. Especially as my husband and I work toward an amicable split…as much as I am anxious to be out loud and proud (waving the biggest rainbow flag I can find, actually), I really don’t want to cause him more pain than I already have. So I’m been careful to take it slow. Sometimes life — and love — has other plans for us, though. I’m interested to know how you handled questions and comments as you moved into your truth.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Most people are cool with it, though my situation is so different from yours. My ex lives in another state. He doesn’t have to face a whole lot of humiliation.

        I’m just standing in my truth with new people. My family like my parents are not aware. But I have never been one to flaunt my love life in front of them.

        My girlfriend is an interesting thing that perplexes me every day as she is much like me out, to everyone except mom and dad who know she “was” a lesbian but is reformed.

        She was a widow before coming out as well so her husband was spared.

        Whichever way, you take everything on a case by case basis. If you were straight no one would ask you if you were into men or not, unless they were into you, so just live your life.

        Like

      • Felix Jay says:

        Truly wise words. Thank you for sharing.

        Like

  4. 1rhymescheme says:

    I’m loving your words. Keep sharing them. They will open minds and turn hearts.

    Like

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