Friday, July 29, 2011


After seven months of separation, we've had several meetings to discuss the details of our divorce.  It's something that I've been dreading for a long time and has been highly stressful for everyone.

Much hatred and bitterness still exists and will probably always be there. At the first meeting, there were many recriminations and the re-hashing of ancient history but no name-calling.  As emotions were so raw, we limited the time of each meeting. Tears were shed on both sides but overall, it went fairly well.

By the third meeting, it was "all business."   We came to a firm agreement on most items including all the major ones.

I recognize my wife's anger, sense of betrayal, her hurt at being abandoned at middle-age, the idea that her life has been destroyed.  This damage is something which I can never undo.  I don't think a coming-out, formerly closeted gay husband can ever truly imagine what it is like for the jilted wife to go through this.

In our province, mediation is required for every couple embarking on a divorce.  A lawyer recommended that we start with these face-to-face discussions as the cheapest path to divorce. Once all our issues are discussed between us, we would then work with a mediator to finalize the details.  One lawyer would draft the final divorce agreement, acting for both of us.  We both are in strong agreement that this is our only option to preserve our assets for ourselves and our kids.   In fact, fewer than 20% of divorces in my town ever reach a court room.  In adversarial divorce, there are no winners, only different degrees of losers.
Our settlement involves:
  • several houses changing ownership
  • the purchase of house and the sale of another one
  • the division of much "stuff" such as furniture, mainly complete
  • everyone moving to a different home (sort of a swap)
  • inheritance (some already received and some potential) which has been removed from the table
  •  pensions and retirement income
  • discussion of a future marriage (for me, with another man)
  • university costs ....   a big topic!

There are no child support or custody issues as the kids are older and already go back and forth freely between the two homes.... a perfect arrangement .  They all have excellent summer jobs and are earning much of their own spending money anyway.

Divorce never comes cheaply and this will be the biggest cost related to my coming-out.   I have no doubts at all that it will be worth it;  being finally free to live a truthful life.


  1. Glad to hear that things seem to be moving along. I understand settlements involve properties, pensions, etc.. I'm just wondering.. why the settlement involve discussion of your future marriage to another man?

  2. I truly wish your wife the best and that she may find peace. But I hope you understand that you cannot consider yourself "guilty" or "responsible" if she never finds that peace. She is an adult and as much this is hard for her, and despite her fragile emotional state, she must learn to deal with this situation in HER life and find HER own answers. There are people out there who have found THEIR own answers to pain and dissapointments leading them to peace and fulfillment.
    Take care

  3. J.R. As part of our agreement (not yet in writing or vetted by lawyers), I will get the family lake house as my residence. As it is on a prime piece of lakefront property, it likely will double in value in 10 years and be an extremely valuable piece of property.

    My wife and I both strongly feel that our children should become owners of this property after I die.

    If I remarried (and I might very well do this), that property as a "marital home" could automatically become 50% owned by my future spouse, cutting my children out. So... our divorce agreement / lake house deed will be worded so that the property must go to my kids eventually... sort of like a pre-nup, really.

  4. DeepBlue: Yes, I agree, my wife must find her own happiness. I sometimes think that she is incapable of happiness. I feel no guilt about this at all.

    However, I do want to treat her fairly during our settlement to assist her in reaching a good place. Otherwise, with all her emotional and mental health issues, my children will be forced to spend the rest of their lives dealing with the erratic behaviour of their mother.

  5. Off to a good start. How long does the lawyer or mediator predict until it is completed, assuming continued cooperation?

  6. Cubby, yes, it is going well! We need to take baby steps down this path, given that it is so fraught with emotion, with bitterness just beneath the surface. Pushing too hard may cause it to all explode. Also after 20 years of marriage, we can wait a few more months.

    We hope to be in our new homes before Christmas, but my wife hasn't found a suitable place yet. The mediator / lawyer business won't take long, but we have lots of discussion still needed and agreements to be made before we see the mediator. In between our meetings, we need "rest periods" to calm down emotionally.

    One year separation is needed before a divorce is possible, which will be February 2012. When will we be divorced? February? June? Who knows?

    I think my wife is finally starting to see a glimpse of the exciting new life that is opening up ahead of her. This is making things easier for all of us.

  7. Love and prayers to you and your wife. I think Deep Blue makes a very important point. Your new life has already taken you on exciting adventures; I am glad to see that your wife is starting to see the potential for her own "new life."

    I can't imagine the sense of betrayl she must feel, and how awful it is for you at times, to press on, fighting for your truth, while people you love are suffering. I don't really know how I would feel if this happened to me. I am not really dependent on my husband; as a matter of fact there has been a lot of "role reversal" in our marriage, and I'm not really sure what your marital situation has been.

    Stay positive; better days are ahead!

  8. Life in the Queue: thanks for those kind, reassuring words. Yes, my wife often struggles with that sense of betrayal, although she has said to me numerous times that she knows that I didn't know I was gay when we married. (and it's the truth) For her, the worst part is due to the fact that I grappled with an emerging attraction to men for the past 12 years without telling her.

    Our salaries and future pensions are the same, so she would not have been eligible for alimony. Despite this, I will be voluntarily providing income support to her until I retire, but I won't discuss the details online.

  9. just don't get into a rebound marriage !

  10. I envy you for being able to discuss and mediate the details. My wife and I are duelling it out with lawyers, which is stupid since we don't really have so many assets/issues (no property, grown kids). But she still feels anger and doesn't work, so I guess it is understandable that she wants the best deal possible.

  11. This post brought me back to that period of my life. Many scenes of my ex and me meeting together. We both attempted to make it as friendly and civil as possible, and it was. I like the way your province has the mediation, etc. Sounds a lot simpler! Looking back, it was a very emotional time, but thankfully, it's a brief period of time. It's much better on this end! Life goes on! And for the better! Good luck to you!

  12. Rich, thank you for those kind, experienced reassuring words! I will hang onto your words in the weeks and months to come!

  13. ouch, you think your wife is incabable of happiness? That's a catty thing to say... imagine if you had spent x years w/ a gay man you loved and he was uninterested in sex & suddenly left you for a woman. Years of rejection & you accepted it - til he finally left. That's a rough thing to reconcile w/ yourself. Good luck to her and to you. Be nice for the kids :)


Please tell me what you're thinking!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...