Lesbian Dating Tips are one big focus on this blog. But recently
someone asked a question that deserves a different response.
The question was left for me in the comments section
and I thought I’d talk about it today.
Here’s the question that JM asked:
“Is there any advise for those of us who are in love with someone who is in a long term heterosexual marriage. This woman person loves me and would like to be with me but can’t because of the kids and grand kids and the turmoil it may cause to the family unit.
She is a wreck and so am I because I hate to continue the relationship knowing that this is a HUGE change in her life and may not have a happy outcome.
How can I better support her if she chooses me over him and the kids?
What advise should I or could I be able to give her in this difficult time?”
(I’ve changed the words just an itsy bit so it reads more clearly here.)
I was once a married woman. I always knew I was attracted to women but the circumstances of my life led me to get married, have a couple of children and then finally at a certain point in my life I realized I had to make a change and leave my marriage. I wasn’t in love with another woman, I wasn’t having an affair and it still wasn’t an easy decision to make.
When a life change involves spouses, children, finances, property, extended family and more it can be overwhelming even when it’s what you want. If you’re uncertain about what you want then making a decision becomes more difficult.
When I realized I had to end my marriage, it was not a happy day for me. It was a day of reckoning and of facing myself in the mirror with truth standing beside me. It was a giant step in my no longer hating myself.
When you come out, you first must come out to yourself. In that step you are owning yourself and your desires in a deeply sacred way that open the door to self acceptance, self love and owning your life in a dramatically new way.
Coming Out Is A Sacred Event
And now for a rant… I believe the coming out process is sacred and I really hate hearing the term “I’m outing myself…” being used by straight people who are telling me they are spending too much, or not exercising or eating too much or are afraid of something they have to do like balance their check book, find new clients or interview for a job.
So far nothing any straight person has said about outing themselves includes the potential to lose your life, family, friends, health insurance or children; it doesn’t include possibly get beaten up, harassed daily, bullied, losing your job, not being allowed to marry the person you love, being kicked out of business establishments and on and on and on.
My Lesbian Lover is Married – What Do I Do?
JM, I’m not a therapist, but I recommend you see one and that your friend does also. She needs to get clear on why she was so open to a relationship outside her marriage.
Was she bored? Were she and her husband having problems? I’d have to guess yes, otherwise she wouldn’t have been open to you.
Have they become emotionally distant over the years and aren’t doing the work to keep love alive?
Again, I’m not a therapist, but let me ask you why you are dating someone who is in a committed relationship?
Do you think there isn’t anyone else who would love you?
Does dating someone who is married create interest because of the hiding part of the affair you are having?
What do you need to learn about yourself?
(And to be clear JM, I’m not judging you at all. Affairs happen. You are not bad and neither is she. There are lessons here for both of you and those lessons are learned by asking different and better questions.)
You are right in saying, that her just leaving may not be the right answer. If she leaves her marriage for you the weight of that alone could crush a relationship with you. She has to resolve both guilt and shame. She has to prepare for children and grand children who may not accept her or she may find out they love her no matter what and do accept her.
If you are spending time with her and her family, they will have to deal with feeling betrayed by the pretense of your being friends when really you were lovers.
Now we haven’t even begun to talk about her children and grandkids. Does divorce hurt? Yes. Does divorce mean the end of relationships? No. It means the individuals impacted have to learn new ways to interact and share their love. Is divorce the end of the world? No, life always goes on and people get through divorce and find happy lives on the other side (after a while) all the time.
The Grass Isn’t Always Greener In the Lesbian Trailer Park
This woman leaving her husband does not guarantee she’ll be happy. That’s one of the lies we get fed by TV, movies and some of our friends. Does this woman think she is lesbian or is she just in love with you?
JM, what I didn’t see you mention was that either of you are seeking counseling. Dear Gay Girl – get thee to a counselor!! If money is an issue, many work on a sliding scale.
And I believe that anything worth doing right, is worth making an investment. And I think counseling and therapy are great investments and more women should be seeking out therapy. If you work with a good therapist, you should be able to make fast progress in just three or four months.
JM, I do see in your question that you care a great deal about this woman and you don’t want her to suffer.
You asked how you can support her if she leaves him for you? Make sure she’s seeing a counselor for a good long while. She’s going to need someone who can hear her talk about her husband, children and grand kids all the time, over and over while she sorts through her guilt and shame to get to feeling good about her choices.
Guilt and shame will kill a relationship and any joy that could come from it.
Finally JM, what advice can you give her? It’s this. This is her decision because it is her life. It is not your decision to make. She must make her decision and be prepared to own it and live it out. She must make her decision based on what SHE believes is best for her. And whatever it means, she needs to work with a good counselor who works with coming out issues and marriage issues.
JM and anyone else having an affair with a married woman… it’s complicated and you need to approach things with care and patience. Some married woman meet a lesbian , fall in love and leave their husbands in a flash. They also don’t have guilt or shame about what they are doing. I’m fine with that but it’s not the story this reader has shared.
JM, I wish you happiness, joy and luck. I also am not judging anyone who is having an affair as bad or guilty of terrible things. I’ve met many women who had an affair and left their husband for a woman and are happy. I know a few husbands who loved their wives enough to say, “If that would make you happy, then do it.”
Most husbands don’t feel that way. Most husbands get mad, angry and often violent. So its not a small decision my friend. Seek out a counselor so you can make the best choice.
So readers have you ever been in this position? What did you do? How did it go? Would you do it again? Leave a comment below and let’s see where this conversation goes…
Warm hugs always,
Mary Malia is the Gay Girl Dating Coach. Her mission is to help lesbians break through the barriers to finding love and lasting relationship.
She’s been named #1 on the Top 10 Lesbian Dating Bloggers list. Mary focuses on helping you to love your gorgeous, handsome, sexy and juicy lesbian self while breaking through what holds you back from finding love, being mindful about your whole life and creating more happiness for yourself!