What should I do? I am lost.

Evie

Mod
I think at this stage of the game, while the wife may be the husband's best friend, clearly the wife does not reciprocate that feeling. And with all due respect, one does not treat one's best friend in this manner.
Hence the "if" and "honestly."
 

Magdlyn

Moderator
Staff member
I'm so sorry you are in this painful situation, and with 3 young kids in the mix, as well.

I am not sure what country you're in, but it's still difficult in most places, and in some place outright illegal, on pain of death, to practice homosexuality. Let's assume you're in the Western world, where being gay isn't a crime. It still common in more conservative areas, usually rural areas away from the coast, to be in denial of one's same-sex attraction. Your wife may have thought she needed to leave the woman-love stuff behind, settle down in a het marriage and have those kids. Now she's a bit older and realizing she has gone against her true nature.

Of course, it's not necessary for her or you to be monogamous with new partners, or to be single/unmarried to practice polyamory. And it's not "easier" for a woman to find a committed relationship than it is for a man. Women can find a guy for a one night stand quite easily. Finding a real committed relationship, with any gender, is pretty darn difficult. Maybe wife has found the woman of her dreams, maybe not. It's early days yet. She might want to just keep dating this new person for a year or two before making any major changes and upsetting the kids' lives and security.

In the past, it was not uncommon for a gay man to marry a gay woman, so they could present as cis/het to society at large, and carry on gay relationships on the down-low. In this case, you could certainly continue on as friends, even platonic roommates, while having romantic/sexual relationships with other partners. Older women who are not interested in having (more) kids can be quite happy poly-dating guys with kids, and even with a wife, as long as the guy has the free time. I am one of those women who has done this and has had it work out rather well. Any parent who is trying to date will have to put their kids first, of course. I hope your wife is, while she is all in NRE with her new gf!
 

icesong

Moderator
Staff member
Normally I'd be all in favor of defining your relationship with your wife the way you both want - a marriage doesn't necessarily have to be about sex and romance to be something that makes you both happy. I know a number of couples (one exceptionally well, LOL) who have consciously chosen not to have THAT part of their relationship continue while still making plans for the future - and that isn't just about the kids! (Artist and ArtistSpouse don't have any so that's certainly not the thing that holds them together.)

That said... I'm not sure I think that's great advice in this scenario. Not sure if you've heard of John Gottman, he's a relationship researcher who's more monogamy focused but a LOT of his writings are applicable to polyamorous situations. Anyway, one of his big things is that there are 4 Horsemen Of Relationship Doom: Contempt, Criticism, Defensiveness and Stonewalling. I'm not sure whether the "only slept with you because of obligation" falls under contempt or defensiveness.... but it's certainly riding one or both of those horses and it just doesn't sound like ya'll have a lot to *build* a platonic marriage on. Obviously you're only telling some small details of your story, but ... think about these questions:
  • Do you actually *like* to spend time together? Not just co-parenting time, but one-on-one time. (More specifically, do *both* of you enjoy that time?)
  • Do you trust her to have your back in the future, or is she going to prioritize her new partner to your detriment?
  • Is what relationship you have, absent sex and romance, *worth* the intense adjustment that this is going to be? Will having a platonic relationship (when presumably you don't want one) be more painful than a split?
I think if you can answer those, your path will become a lot more clear.
 

dingedheart

Well-known member
Honestly, right now I see it as they are basically separated in all but divorce papers
exactly ....that’s sort of been my point.

and are making a choice to either co-parent in the same house and maintain a platonic marriage (with honoured agreements around childcare to enable dating) or co-parent in different houses a la traditional divorce (which would guarantee time available to date but have a bunch of other hassles). Either way, the girlfriend is here to stay and Michael's only option for a sex life is elsewhere.
Also correct ....HOWEVER it might go way beyond a sex life for sex life sakes. He might have greater aspirations than just getting off.


If his wife is honestly his friend, best friend at that, and the girlfriend isn't a complete bitch, then all three of them can work towards a highly functional "modern family."
I have it on good authority the gf isn’t a bitch at all and actually a very lovely woman also caught in a rough spot.
 

Inaniel

Active member
I don't think OP should immediately jump to divorce... I can't see any conclusions that I am comfortable jumping to here...

I agree with the spirit of Magdlyn's post. And will add that people have made gay/hetero relationships work for longer than poly has been in the common vocabulary...

I'm not sure whether the "only slept with you because of obligation" falls under contempt or defensiveness.... but it's certainly riding one or both of those horses and it just doesn't sound like ya'll have a lot to *build* a platonic marriage on.

I have a different interpretation completely.... It could possibly fall under contempt or defensiveness, however Gottman's model is about relationship behaviors and we have a single data point; one statement... OP's wife can still love him and have no interest in hetero sex due to her now confirming her orientation... It might hurt OP, but sometimes the truth hurts. I do not see that statement as innately hateful...

OP; let us assume the old relationship is over. That means a new one is beginning. You decided to bring three children into the world so you can't just go your separate ways. Work with your spouse to figure out what priorities you share, if it happens to be the kids you can start to work outward from those priorates to develop a plan.. There are so many things to consider that having a guiding light will help.

I think it would be a great idea to consider counseling with someone who is friendly to alternative relationships styles. Even if this does trend towards a typical divorce; a counselor may be able to help keep the peace. An amicable divorce could pay dividends after the terms are settled. If your partner is in the grips of NRE that means emotions are running high, rushing to divorce could be a bad strategy for the variables at play right now...

We don't have the details necessary to help you... Decisions that you make will inevitably be based on your own income level, home prices in your area, libido, relationship philosophies, parenting philosophies, local dating pool/your personal dating value, ect...

Run the numbers for every scenario that you and your spouse consider. Talk to a lawyer and run the numbers for divorce. Knowledge will be an asset as you step into this new frontier...
 

Michael

New member
For anyone interested in the outcome.
last night was the worst argument that I have ever gotten into with anyone. The deal is sealed. Divorce is going to happen without a doubt. In fact I slept in my truck and her and her girlfriend shared my bed.
 

GalaGirl

Well-known member
I'm so sorry to hear about the worst argument ever.

Also sorry to hear that you all decided on divorce. Even if the healthiest choice for a situation? The process of divorce can be painful.

I hope for healing for all you and perhaps over a time, a good relationship for co-parenting and learning how to be a healthy divorced family.

hugs
Galagirl
 

Polymark

New member
For anyone interested in the outcome.
last night was the worst argument that I have ever gotten into with anyone. The deal is sealed. Divorce is going to happen without a doubt. In fact I slept in my truck and her and her girlfriend shared my bed.

Talk to a lawyer before moving out of the house. Who makes more money?
 

Polymark

New member
I make all of the money

You’ll be giving her a free ride for a while. Hopefully she’s good to the children. Try not to let this break you. Suicide rates are something like 10x higher for men going through divorce than women. Get a counselor. Manage your mental health.

You will get through it and find a better partner. Avoid lesbians like the plague, seriously. Don’t shack up with another chick with children; your finances will be completely fucked. Work n yourself and find a gal that compliments your income. Life will be easier and better.
 

Marcus

Well-known member
last night was the worst argument that I have ever gotten into with anyone. The deal is sealed. Divorce is going to happen without a doubt. In fact I slept in my truck and her and her girlfriend shared my bed.

As gross, and frustrating, and humiliating as a divorce in this society can be, I think this will be the best outcome in the end. She was pretty clearly done with the association as it stood and demonstrated that it needed to be scrapped.

With any luck you will be able to take some time to be alone with yourself and examine what choices you made that led you to this moment. Regardless of who is "right or wrong" we are party to almost all events that come our way and we can learn quite a bit from these chaotic moments.
 

Michael

New member
Thanks for the response. We discussed the situation. I asked her why she did the “bait and switch” and she thought she could suppress her feelings. Lesson learned.
 

HaloOnFire

Active member
I am terribly sorry to hear about this. I am echoing @GalaGirl and others in that I hope everyone can heal and grow from this. I wish you peace on your journey.
 

Marcus

Well-known member
Thanks for the response. We discussed the situation. I asked her why she did the “bait and switch” and she thought she could suppress her feelings. Lesson learned.

I don't think there needs to be a villain here. Painting it as a "bait and switch" is assigning malice to the situation when it's profoundly unlikely there was any malice intended.

The truth is that many simply don't have an accurate sense of themselves, and others are in hiding because what they *actually* want is socially complicated. In this case I would just take her at her word, she tried to fit into the mold and simply couldn't take it any more. It doesn't have much of anything to do with you or your relationship, this is just her on her journey. It sucks that you were the person who is getting sacrificed on her altar of self-discovery, but we don't always get to pick when we have a moment of clarity and simply must make a change.
 
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