Friday, June 23, 2006

GOING to heaven! or not?

One of my favorite poems - by Emily Dickinson -- read to the end for the "twist"

GOING to heaven!
I don’t know when,
Pray do not ask me how,—
Indeed, I ’m too astonished
To think of answering you!
Going to heaven!—
How dim it sounds!
And yet it will be done
As sure as flocks go home at night
Unto the shepherd’s arm!

Perhaps you ’re going too!
Who knows?
If you should get there first,
Save just a little place for me
Close to the two I lost!

The smallest “robe” will fit me,
And just a bit of “crown”;
For you know we do not mind our dress
When we are going home.

I ’m glad I don’t believe it,
For it would stop my breath,
And I ’d like to look a little more
At such a curious earth!
I am glad they did believe it
Whom I have never found
Since the mighty autumn afternoon
I left them in the ground.

I absolutely love this poem. For so long, I believed that the after-life was more important than life itself. How sad! Right now, I'm not sure what I believe. If God is real, I don't believe that he would give us life just so we could wish it away. The idea of God is becoming more and more absurd to me. At the same time, though, I can't imagine how I would feel if my parents stopped believing.

And I can't imagine "coming out" to them about my current state of agnosticism. I guess that I have a closet of my own.

Not too long ago, one of Chris' (hurricane's) friends accused him of conveniently changing his theology so he could be gay:
It seems to me that this is very convenient. If, as you say, all church’s are “the creation of men”, then all of us can simply invent our own religion, each of us recreating God in our own image, to suit our needs.

I have thought a lot about this. The truth is - two things collided: long held religious beliefs (gay is bad) and inner feelings . . . life experience (God made me gay). These two ideas are diametrically opposed. They both can't be true.

When Eddy came out to our parents, his Mom's reaction was "God made you this way; it can't be wrong." My Mom's initial reaction was "God doesn't go against his word; he couldn't have made him gay." (She seems to be coming around on this).

So which is it? Which is true? Which idea lives? The one you know is true because you have experienced it, struggled with it, and it won't go away. One of my favorite quotes is "Reality is that which, when you stop believing in it, doesn't go away." ~Philip K. Dick

Chris and Eddy and __________ and Bea aren't trying to change God so we can sleep at night and have lascivious fun. Rather, the two ideas simply couldn't co-exist, so we believe in what rings most true.


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Wednesday, June 21, 2006

brutal honesty

Bigg says: I am a bit confused. I understand your wish for your husband to love you and to remain married to you. But the very fact that you're in the current situation should underline the fact that he can't "choose" to be straight at the expense of himself -- it just won't work.

So, my question is this: would you be willing to stay with him if he did "pick" you, but also "picked" himself? Could you deal with his need to explore who and what he is? Or would it mean giving up himself all over again?Truly, this is not a judgment. I am in a similar situation, and I would really like to know.All my best to you.

Dear Bigg:

I understand what you are saying. In fact, I really hesitated to post "pick Me" at all, and I am very glad that you commented because I was wanting to clarify it and wasn't sure where to start.

I understand that my "pick ME" wish is illogical (an either or fallacy?), mentally unhealthy (for both Eddy and me), and perhaps it was hurtful and unfair to express it. It is not a fair thing to ask someone to sacrifice themselves.

In all reality . . . logically . . . I wouldn't want him to pick ME over being himself. He has been miserable for forever. If things had kept going on the same as always -- with him in the closet to me and how miserable he was and how miserable he was to live with, we probably would have already filed for divorce.

BUT "pick ME" is how I feel when I look past the logic of it all. And his being gay, does not lessen the rejection factor - does not get him out of having rejected me on some level. I guess that is what I was feeling and trying to express. I think that most wives of gay men can't help feeling this way.

But back to your question: would you be willing to stay with him if he did "pick" you, but also "picked" himself? Could you deal with his need to explore who and what he is? Or would it mean giving up himself all over again?

Am I willing to stay with him? So far, I have stayed. When I was making plans to move out, it was because the pain of living with someone I loved who I was so certain that I was going to lose was becoming unbearable - not because I didn't love him. What does it mean for him to "explore"? Gay support groups? okay. Gay friends? fine. Sleeping with someone else? An open marriage? I can't go that far. Neither one of us has ever been with anyone else, ever. If he feels compelled to sleep with a man to find out if he can't live without having sex with a man, then I think that he already has his answer. And he would tell you the same. At that point we would, together, begin ending our marriage.

I guess that might mean I do expect him to "give himself up" a bit to stay married. Marriage is full of comprimises, and I have made my share of them as well.

However, the last thing that I want is for him to go backward deeper into the closet. I have told him many times that the best thing that he can do for me is to be brutally honest, and I am hoping that is what will happen.



Monday, June 19, 2006

Pick ME! Pick ME!

doesn't it all really boil down to this . . .
"pick ME! pick ME!"
my silent mantra for the last week

at the end of the day, he has a simple choice . . .
ME or being gay. How can he not pick ME?!

in this crazy emotional soup,
"pick ME!" is lurking at the bottom of it all

I know that it is not this simple,
not nearly this simple
I want him to be himself,
his honest-to-god real self.

but . . .

however mentally unhealthy I know that it is,
I wish he would sacrifice himself for me - for us.

countless times, I have told him - (and still I really mean it)
don't hate yourself
god doesn't hate you, really he doesn't
he made you this way
you are most beautiful this way
I am not angry with you.

this is just what is.

but . . .

"pick ME!" is what is for me.



Monday, June 12, 2006

Pain and a Piece of Cake

P A I N - we know about pain.

To my last post, Chris (aka hurricane) comments, "KK and I are to a point in our collective and individual journeys where we are both certain that knowing and dealing is far better than the pain of secret keeping."

There is definitely something to be said for "knowing and dealing." I am amazed and in awe of you, Chris and KK. You inspire me.

Over the weekend I finished, "A Piece of Cake," (a memoir) by Cupcake Brown. This girl was in pain. She started drinking and drugging and tricking at the age of eleven to deal with her pain. She grows up to be a junkie and gangbanger, hits rock bottom, but by the end of the book is a lawyer. Truly amazing.

What jumped out at me is that the key to her recovery seemed to be getting in touch with her pain, feeling it, and facing it, looking it in the eye, feeling it some more and not giving in to her desire to dull it with things that don't work (for her it was drugs, etc.). Because she made her recovery the most important thing in her life, she went as far as allowing herself to sob at work if she needed to. (She had a good boss). This was just stunning to me.


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Saturday, June 10, 2006

Dear Restored Vows,

Restored Vows writes:

Before we got married, I told my wife that I had same-sex attractions. I thought it would "go away" when I got married. It didn't.

My marriage is currently on the rocks. I am not very romantic and our love (sex) life is basically dead. Any advice for the romantically challenged?

I'd really like a wife's perspective on your thoughts and feelings. I am not out to my wife, but she knows something is up.

Dear Restored Vows,

I hope that I am not being too blunt or unkind, but here goes. . .

Advice for the romantically challenged: If you love her and want to stay with her, then fake affection - fake wanting her. Be nice to her. Do the dishes. If you are having "performance problems," use another part of your body to bring her to pleasure island. If you can't do this, then . . . do I have to finish the sentence?

She knows something is up: What can I say? I can't tell you whether to tell your wife or not, if that is what you are asking.

Countless times, Eddy has said that he wishes that he hadn't said anything to me. My reply is always, "So you wish that at this moment, even now, that you would still be deceiving me. Thanks a lot."

But that is me. In the field of information seeking behavior people fall between two extremes: monitors and blunters. In a nutshell, monitors want to know everything about a situation. Blunters don't.

I am definitely a monitor. I want to know the truth, no matter what it is, so I can deal with it. Your wife might not want to know. You told her once, and she chose not to deal with it then.

Soon after the "big announcement" a very dear friend of mine (who says that this is all a "phase" for Eddy - but that is another story) gave me a recording of Carly Simon singing "We Have No Secrets". Basically, the singer wishes that she didn't know everything. Sometimes it is better not to know everything.

When Eddy told me that his sexual attractions were same-sex, it took a huge weight off of my shoulders - there wasn't something wrong with me. A hundred different things suddenly made sense.

On the other hand, I was - and still am - completely crushed. There are days that no matter what I have said, and no matter that usually I like to hear the naked truth, I wish that I didn't know.

Or, perhaps it is that I am wishing that it just isn't true.

You have to ask yourself why you want to tell or not tell. If your affairs are really over, telling her just to relieve your conscience isn't really fair - it puts your burden onto her. It drags her into the closet with you. And, once you tell her, you can't take it back.

On the other hand, she's not getting any younger. If you tell her, you should tell her now.

Condoms or not, her health may be at risk; you really have a moral obligation to tell her now.

Marriage vows are made between two people. It takes both people to "restore" them.