What Does It Mean?
Straight Spouse Awareness
A straight spouse is a heterosexual person in a relationship with a Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, or Transgender person, usually unwittingly. We come from every socio economic background, race, religion, cultural identity, ethnicity, educational background, sex, and age group. You are a straight spouse even if you are already separated or divorced. If you identify as a straight spouse you are not alone.
The Family Pride Coalition found the following:
• 20 percent of all gay men in America are in a heterosexual marriage.
• 50 percent of all gay men in America have fathered children.
• 40 percent of all lesbians in America are married to a male partner.
• 75 percent of all lesbians have children.
Although the trauma of being a straight spouse can be overwhelming, it is important to realize that the situation you find yourself in is not your fault. The first year will probably be the toughest. Faced with this life-changing experience, you and your spouse can make life-giving decisions for your marriage, for one another, and for your children. These decisions may mean the end of your marriage. Moving on and letting go will take time.
This is NOT your fault!
Many straight spouses would love it if their gay spouses would be open and honest with them about their true sexual orientation. Many more would just like their closeted gay spouse to avoid blaming them for the break down and dysfunctions in their marriage. A little honesty and a little integrity would help heal so many hurts and bring clarity to many marriages. But most under cover, closeted spouses refuse to step up and be honest. Occasionally, a word of wisdom will come from an ex-spouse expressing how “screwed up” they were through the years. Does it change anything? Not really. But knowing the truth does help validate who you are, what you became because of your gay or lesbian spouse,and how you can change and move forward. It’s the first step towards healing the scars, bridging understanding, and bringing closure to a chapter in your lives.
Who would you be today if you had a heterosexual spouse? How would your destiny have changed if you were loved, nurtured, sexually desired with passion and tenderness, given emotional support and encouragement, and made to feel like you were part of a real couple in tune with each other’s needs, wants, and aspirations? What if you didn’t have to spend countless hours each day wondering why you were a failure as a spouse, a person and a lover? Ripping away your self-esteem layer by layer until you became a stranger to yourself and others? What if your spouses’ dishonesty and same sex infidelity didn’t change you so you become untrusting, suspicious, and doubting, questioning your ability to make rational decisions? How many of you were sidetracked through those “detours of deceit” that diverted you from the direction that life might have taken you otherwise?
Bottom line—no matter how much a homosexual loves a hetosexual, it is not the kind of love that fulfills the basic human need that all of us have. It is not the kind of love that can ever be returned to the degree that you are giving it. Even the best of mixed orientation relationships are barely more than great friendships—not the passion and excitement that make us thrive and look forward to waking up each day. And even these relationships are woven with dishonesty, distrust, infidelity, resentment, and frustration.
Straight spouses should be given a choice so they can at least be proactive about their health. When you practice same sex infidelity in secret you do not give your spouse a choice. You endanger his or her health in the worst possible way. It is time to be honest and face the consequences. Deceiving a spouse about your true sexual orientation is destructive in the worst possible way to your family and to both of you.
Remember: YOU ARE NOT ALONE! Seek help, you can be assured of confidentiality.