I am reaching out to you for guidance and help in resolving a marriage gone sour. My wife has indicated that she has no feelings for me and is totally caught up with women's company. She is so preoccupied that she is not even available to our young children. I have tried talking to her to show good sense and reason, but apparently her heart and lower parts are responsive to women only. I am confused and distressed. Please advise.
It could well be that your wife had same sex attraction before she was married to you but had suppressed the thoughts and feelings. She has now decided to “come out” and disclose to you and others her sexual orientation.
I can well understand your sense of hurt having committed your time and effort to a heterosexual marital relationship that you signed up for and believed was going in an agreed direction, and now to discover that your partner is heading in an opposite direction.
It is always unsettling for both the person who wishes to come out, especially if he/she had given the impression to others that they were “straight”, and the partner who must deal with the reality of the revelation.
The challenge, as expected, is how to navigate this disclosure, particularly when children are involved. Is your wife going to play the double role of wife to you and partner to her female friend? Is she hoping that you will work with the programme?
If your wife is serious about her sexual orientation and is not just flirting with other women for fun and intrigue, she needs to have a conversation with her children and bring them in the loop as soon as possible. Is it that she will be exiting the marriage and enter into a co-parenting arrangement with you?
If, as you stated, she is so preoccupied elsewhere that she is unavailable to her children, that is indeed disconcerting. It is no different from a man who is so engaged with his male friends that he neglects his fatherly responsibilities.
While your wife may feel she has a right to actualise her sexual orientation, she must recognise that her motherly role is not suspended or cancelled, and she must behave as a responsible adult and manage her family commitments effectively.
The “good sense and reasoning” talk you would have with her must be centred on the children as she may not be interested in a lecture on sexuality. It would be highly recommended that you both sit with a trained professional counsellor to discuss how the marriage will be navigated with this change and how the children can be spared any negative repercussions.
If your wife believes her personal happiness will be attained by living out her sexual orientation, you will need to do what you must do to ensure that your happiness is also achieved. Regardless of the outcome, make sure you stay close to your children and give them the love and attention they need.
All the best.
Wayne Powell is a relationship counsellor. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com . Check out his work on www.seekingshalom.org and his Facebook page at https://www.fa cebook.com/MFTCounselor/.