Tuesday, October 10, 2006

What's My Two Cents Worth?

You can blame it on the full moon, or you could just say that a lot of people are experiencing similar situations. I received a few emails regarding the exact same topic. I’m not going to display names out of respect and privacy. One lady said I could use her situation for a post, so I’m taking this opportunity, only because there were a few more emails that trickled in after hers with the same exact thing.

Believe me, I’m not an expert on relationships or being a big ole dyke here. I’m just me. I love my partner, I’m comfortable being who I am, and I respect those who have their own set of values and personal preferences. So with that, please take whatever advice or opinion I give you with a grain of salt. I’m not a doctor nor a psychologist—but I do see one every week! (Maybe that gives me some sort of credit?)

Let’s talk about Mrs. Smith. What?... Too general of a name for you? Deal with it. So, Mrs. Smith emails me. She states that she has been married to her husband for over twenty years. She has six kids and a happy and “content” home life. She’s watched her children get married and have beautiful grandchildren. Her life is full of love, family and friends. Her house is large, and the amount of food she cooks for her little army is enough to make you realize why her husband married her. She is truly an amazing woman.

Mrs. Smith is struggling with something that has been haunting her since she was a teenager. She’s gay. She’s known she’s preferred the same gender ever since she was a kid. She married her husband, because they were high school sweethearts, and it was the right thing to do. She was brought up in a very conservative home. More on the terms of “WASPY”, but I’m not sure if that’s a slang term for it. I’ll use it anyway. I apologize to those who are offended by the term. It’s the only way I can describe her lifestyle this early in the morning. For those who don’t know what WASP means, it’s “white Anglo,-Saxon Protestant. (Or just click on the WASP link I provided for further details.)

Mrs. Smith is in her mid-fifties. She’s not happy, yet she and her husband play the role of two loving parents who seem to have a happy well-rounded marriage. It’s all a façade. She said that her husband doesn’t pay attention to her any longer, and the desires that she had when she was younger are coming up to the surface. Her fear is that she’ll hurt her kids terribly. She doesn’t want to break up the family, but she is so incredibly unhappy with her current situation.

Cheating wouldn’t be the option. She goes online quite often, searching for blogs that have similar situations, or trying to find people who would understand her. Well, she found me. I’m not sure if I was any help to her, but I do have my set opinions.

I suggested trying to spice it up with her husband, to see if they could get the spark back into their marriage. She said that there wasn’t any to begin with. The whole marriage was a complete lie, so that she would inherit the family’s wealth and have children. Tough call, huh? Why do so many people think that money will make them happier? Some people think that having a lot of children will make them happier. No one knows how life will turn out if you have children—for all you know, you could end up with a few bad eggs that wreak havoc. I’m just saying. A lot of people refuse to think that they cannot be content with what is right in front of them.

Well, now that she has made her choices, which resulted in family and wealth, she now has to face the real issue: her sexuality. The biggest fear for Mrs. Smith is her children knowing anything. I suggested she probably should be honest with her husband, and see how he handles it. Take it from there. The first step is admitting to it. But, that calls for the risk of him telling one or two of the children. Admitting to it is very difficult, unless you have someone you’re already in love with. And she does. She has a friend that she fell madly in love with, but nothing has transpired as of yet. She’s preventing a beautiful relationship which she would be happier in, due to the choices she made in life.

I think of it like this… Mrs. Smith isn’t happy. Mr. Smith certainly isn’t happy either. Later on when all of this boils over, and the kids finally know, the love that they have between all of them will pull them together. It’s not my place to give advice on a marriage, but this situation can lead into depression, resentment and guilt if nothing were to happen. Either way, honesty is the best way to go about it in my opinion.

It's best to do this "now" than wait years later, right? I think it’s late to begin with, but to have your remaining years staying in a stagnant marriage with no love, no passion, no zest for life is like dying a slow death. There’s so much in life to experience. If you’re with someone who doesn’t ignite that flame for you—think about how many years of that person’s life you could waste. Think about how many years of “your” life you could waste. Marriage is sharing experiences together, vacationing together, traveling together and loving one another mutually…and equally. If the two desire to have children, then there’s that option. I’m even speaking for homosexual couples. People think homosexuals can’t have babies. Artificial insemination, adoption and sperm donors from a close friend are all on the table for anybody. You can do anything. Don’t let anyone tell you that you can’t. You can.

People, places and things.

People change. People grow in and out of love. People change their minds, or have a change of heart. People may disappoint us and make us angry, but they’re human. It’s the inevitable. People set standards for one another and expect only the best. Give the benefit of the doubt, but always remember that we all make mistakes. Again, we’re human.

Places change. Places become home. Homes go on sale. Home is anywhere your heart desires to be; where your family stays to wait for you—even if it’s just your partner/spouse. Places are sentimental. There are places where people got engaged. Those unforgettable places will stay in the file cabinets of our minds forever. There are places that we sometimes need to go and get away from it all…even if that means your partner/spouse and family.

Things change. Circumstances can change instantly. Things can tear up a union, or make a situation better. Things can be sentimental as well—like a wedding ring or a necklace a loved one gave to you. They all hold meaning. There’s nothing wrong with keeping these valuable objects. Things are what people gave to us, to remind us that we were once loved—or still loved.

So, people places and things all add up to what? Life. And what changes on a consistent basis? Life! Sometimes it changes for the better, and sometimes it changes for the worse. With hope and faith, and realizing what you desire in life, you can have what you want. You can live the life you want. You can choose to be happy. A therapist once told me that I can choose to get out of my depression. He didn’t believe in medications. He believed in CBT (Cognitive Behavior Therapy) and the power of the mind to enable you to snap out of it. Again, you can do anything.

The power of the mind is great. The power of the Lord’s help is even greater. There’s this passage I say from the bible, right before I’m going to do something challenging…

“I can do everything with the help of Christ who gives me the strength I need.” ~Philippians 4:13

I say it three times before working out, before making a huge decision, or before approaching any obstacle. It really helps. Scientifically, you can say that it’s the power of the mind for those of you who are atheists, but spiritually, God gives me what I need, in order to get from point A. to point B.

So, Mrs. Smith, I don’t know what the “right” answer is for you, but all I can say is, if you’re that unhappy and you’re battling with depression, seek God. Pray to Him. Ask God to help you. He’ll never let you down. Pray and meditate. Don’t forget to listen though. God speaks to us in many ways. Be aware and open to the possibilities of subtle communication through the Spirit. Make sure you receive confirmation of the answer you received. Know that God loves you. He’ll give you anything you need—if it’s God willing. So before you start being honest with everyone, start being honest with God. Talk to the big guy first, before doing anything.

I wish I could give you more advice on what to do, but I don’t feel it’s my place to do so. I do know, that my heart goes out to you. I can only wish you happiness and contentment in your life---not the contentment where you’re ending up ‘settling for less than you want’-- I’m speaking of the type of contentment that makes your heart fill with joy.

You deserve only that.

So, maybe my readers can help you with their own advice and opinions to help you further along. I know that most of them are very intelligent and have some good insight about many things. I hope this helps!