I was contacted by a fellow “put upon wife” with some questions, and this was my response:
No, I don’t mind you emailing me at all. I don’t know really if I can be of much help though. I only know what I know, you know?:)
I was very fortunate in the fact that my husband had very much identified with his being gay long before he and I met, and he told me before we got married. Not to say that it hasn’t been a struggle for him, or that he has always been completely honest with me. But I was able to miss that whole “second adolescence” that most men go through when they achieve self discovery. It sounds very much like that is what your husband is going through. His whole world has been turned upside down, and he doesn’t know what is right or true anymore. It is a very precarious position because there are millions out there who want to tell him their version of truth, and he has a very willing ear. He is going to try out every idea and notion he can find until he finds the one that fits him best. This is where (your) prayer and patience come in.
This completely sucks for you. He gets to go out and find himself all over again, without any regard for his surroundings, and you are stuck home shouldering the responsibility for the life the two of you built together. However, you also have the greatest advantage: rationality. (well, kind of.) You know who you are, and what you believe. You know why you married him and every up and down of your life together. You remember it with great clarity. This can keep you grounded and sane. He doesn’t know it, but your solidity will be his touchstone when he realizes that he needs some solid ground.
The really hard, or easy part, whichever way you choose to make it, is turning it over to Christ. The only thing you have control over is you, your reactions, and your decisions. You may have bits of influence on your husband here and there, but how much you influence him depends on him, and how much he chooses to let you in. Someone told me once that Christ doesn’t ask us to trust man, he asks us to love man, but to trust Him. How true that is. I’m not required to trust my husband, but to love him, and leave all my trust in Christ. A couple of weeks ago in the temple, the Spirit told me to “leave Mikeal (my husband) alone, I’m taking care of him.” That is a tough cookie to chew for a control freak like me.
Once you begin to differentiate between your natural man thoughts and your spirits thoughts, you can see the divinity in your life. You can see where your own ideas and actions may be getting in the way of true healing and light. I have to take time every single day to draw light (as in the light of Christ/spirit/whatever you choose to call it) in to my presence. (I found an incredible book that just shines light into my soul every time I open it. It has enhanced my scripture study, my prayers, and led me to meditation.) I try to do it first thing in the morning, and then have several “snacks” throughout the day. (ensign, a scripture, music.) This is essential. I have always fought it, and still sometimes do, but it is the ONLY way I can function well. I also have to have some sort of physical exercise, I have to eat right, have some intellectual as well as social stimulation. Your needs may differ, but if you write down a list of things that make you shine, that make you feel alive, then whittle it down to five things, these are the things you need to keep yourself in balance. If you do that, it won’t much matter what stupid crazy insane thing your husband is up to today. It doesn’t mean you won’t hurt, it just will help you learn to trust in Him who deserves your trust. He WILL take care of you. He WILL give you comfort. You just have to ALLOW Him to.
It takes practice. Any skill (and this is definitely a skill) takes time to learn. Some days you won’t feel like it is working. But keep at it. YOU, ultimately are all that matters. If you are sick, you won’t be much help to anyone else.
I can’t tell you exactly what you should do in regards to your husband. Only God knows that answer. What I can tell you is how to get closer to God so you can hear that answer. My husband still looks at p*rn on occasion, and has had several hookups with random men throughout our marriage. It all culminated in his having an affair with a family friend two years ago. Yeah, I’m still here, and I adore him. I see who he *really* is underneath the behavior, and see the potential in our union. It also helps that he is incredibly loving, apologetic, remorseful, and good to me in every other way. He is trying every single day to be and do better. But the thing that truly matters is that I am learning more and more every day who I really am.
I hope there is something in there that you can use. Please contact me ANY time.
All my love,
**EDIT** I’m not implying that every man that comes out later in life becomes an adolescent jackass. I was just responding to the behaviors that her husband is engaging in.