You guys are amazing. I expected to be criticized or at least mildly scolded considering I'm not transgender and I'm the one intiating this split. I reiterate that this is my persective only. My spouse considers me "chilly, weird, pissy, insulting, accusatory and deceptive" according to his recent letter to me all of which is fair to one degree or another. I don't get angry, I get cold. Thus depression (anger turned inward) and I've lost most of my relationships with family and friends over the years. This was the one relationship I never wanted to lose and it's rapidly disintigrating.
Maybe I was coming here hoping to be attacked, to shake me out of what I feel is a selfish and unfair conclusion to my marriage. I'm rather glad I wasn't considering how things are going right now. I have no idea where he is. He wasn't home when I got home from work and he's still gone though it's rather late. I'm partly worried, partly relieved but mostly feeling generally crappy about the entire situation. I love this person incredibly, but now I feel like I'm done with the marriage and I doubt more and more we'll remain friends. It's still early, not even a week since my disclosure, but it's getting ugly at home and I miss the peace and security I used to feel here, much as I miss what my relationship with my spouse used to be. I suspect he's in horrible pain right now, crying and cursing my name for betraying him. I feel sick.
I try to tell him I love him and I don't want to hurt him but this seems to make it worse. I don't know what to say except to be as honest as I can be considering my own confusion (which is rapidly diminishing as he has expressed little regard for me at this point) and guilt over my desire to find a new relationship where I can feel happy again. If you love someone, you put their happiness before your own. But perhaps this kills you inside until you are no longer capable of love and inevitably poison the relationship you have with the person you love. This is the hardest thing I've had to endure thus far in my life and I feel I may have made a terrible mistake. I'm half-expecting a call from the police to identify the body. I'm considering prayer, which is just frickin bizarre since I've always been a diehard atheist.
I'll keep you posted. Thanks for caring. I wish you all the best.
For me this crisis has been ongoing since last November so I've had time to process and come to terms with my feelings and my spouse hasn't. I expected and received a fair amount of anger and this is only fair. I think he feels committed regardless of whether he sleeps in the same bed as me so from his perspective I don't think this is a contradiction. I expressed my sadness that he wasn't sleeping with me anymore many months ago but not to the degree I should have to properly convey the extent of my feelings. I don't want to assign fault, but feel it is certainly my responsibility to communicate how I feel and I haven't until I told him Friday that I didn't want to be romantic/sexual/married anymore. So far I don't think he's really considered (or at least expressed consideration) for my feelings but one of my issues is that I feel that our relationship has mostly been about him and his needs. I doubt he'd agree and he's not here to offer his opinion so I want it to be clear this is just my perspective.
He never explicitly told me he was a transexual when I met him 15 yeara ago or as our relationship developed into a marriage 10 years ago. There are lots of things I see in hindsight that make sense now that I know this and I should have put the pieces of the puzzle together, but on the other hand that's not a common conclusion to draw (I hadn't had much experience with transexuality). Regardless, when he did definitively state he was a transexual I was supportive and I reaffirmed by commitment. I promised him I would stand by him, stay with him forever and be his mate with full knowledge of who he was. I am breaking that promise. I suppose I could have justified to myself leaving him when he disclosed this but not now. I'm in the camp that believes it shouldn't matter whether the person you love is male or female, but now I find it does matter to me. I am not living up to my own standards.
I can't see how he wouldn't hate me at this point. I'm ending our marriage. And to be clear, I love him, but I'm not in love with him anymore in the romantic sense. He seemed receptive to therapy at first, though against group therapy, but later said I was the one who should go to therapy (shortly after making an implied threat of suicide). I don't want to paint him as bad or crazy, just really hurt and confused and now in crisis himself.
Everyone's relationship feels special, but I don't know if our friendship could survive divorce/seperation. I don't know that he would survive at all... or me for that matter, being depressive myself and having attempted suicide when I was much younger. We're both fairly mentally ill (or at least I am as he feels he is now "healthy") and we've been each other's primary support for over 10 years.
I might try the idea of being on the same forum. It seems odd to semi-publically air our grievances, but we could get feedback at least. Neither of us are particularly gifted communicators, at least verbally, and I've thought of trying correspondence. Apparently he wrote me a letter today and told me about it when I got home. I haven't read it yet.
Thanks again for everyone's support here. Mucho appreciado.
I continue my little confessional with an update. I was confronted by my spouse for being distant and confessed I felt our marriage was in crisis and that I was unhappy and uncomfortable. That was 3 days ago. Things are very tense and I'm scared as hell he's going to get depressed/suicidal like he was before the beginning of the transition 3 years ago. This all feels like my fault. I should have dealt with this sooner and communicated better. Now I'm afraid to keep communicating. I told him I was on a message board looking for support so I edited some of my above posts to remove certain comments. There's nothing here now I haven't shared with him. I feel a little better now that I've gotten it off my chest. I think he hates me now.
I'm really scared. We've been together over 10 years. I don't know what I'd do without him but I'm wondering what it would be like to not live with him. I think that's what I want now. I offered to go to counseling/therapy. We'll see how that works out. I'd rather just work it out ourselves (and he made an excellent point about any non-transgender specialist therapist because they would take my "side" knee jerk because I'm the "normal" one- Me? Normal? Ahahahaha!) He's my best friend. If we lose our marriage and our friendship it will be a horrible event for both of us. I hate this. I don't need to be happy, but I refuse to be miserable.
Thanks MayaZ. Disclosure and therapy seem to be the consensus, and that makes sense. My worst fear is that I love my spouse but I don't have the cojones to stick by him. That's almost as hard to disclose to myself as it is to tell my spouse I don't think I want to be married anymore. At this point I'm in a holding pattern, trying to decipher my own feelings before I open my mouth and potentially devastate him.
I'm also afraid I'll be confronted by my spouse, who must have noticed I'm not wearing my wedding ring. He stopped wearing his because his fingers have thickened and he needs to have it resized, but hasn't yet. Will I lie? Will we fight? The best part of our relationship has been the lack of fighting. We still joke about our annual squabble, which generally only lasts a few minutes. I value that very highly, as I value our friendship. Regardless, disclosure of my feelings at this point is a very scary prospect for me.
I appreciate the feedback and the support. You've all been awesome.
I think of sexual preference as on a spectrum, and few people are absolutely on one side of the spectrum or the other. I think gender identity is similar. It's good and healthy for people to challenge the norms and push the boundaries of how a person is defined, by either gender or sexual orientation. I'm comfortable being male and heterosexual. That's who I am. I agree that people should be allowed to be whoever and whatever they are. Thanks for the feedback.
Thanks for the advice. As far as being perceived as gay, at first I was ok with it. I became more uncomfortable as time went on. It's worth examining for any latent homophobic tendencies I may have.
Therapy is difficult for many reasons. The first being the lack of therapists with experience regarding transexuals. My spouse went through that during early transition and had to settle for therapists willing to treat him to provide the requisite letters for the chest op and testosterone. It's also expensive and in my experience, having wrestled with depression in the past, not terribly effective. Finally, there's the disclosure that I feel our relationship is in crisis which would precipitate mutual crisis and make life generally uncomfortable. That's cowardly of me, and I shouldn't keep this from my spouse. I need to tell him how I feel and taking that step is scary.
So I'm wrestling with when and how to present this, and to do so in such a way that minimizes hurting him. He was horribly depressed for years because of this, a lot of it to do with how it would affect our relationship, and though he's much better now this could cause a relapse. I have a tendency to bottle up my feelings, especially when I have a good excuse to do so. But I'm hiding my feelings from him and that in itself will damage our relationship. How do I tell him, "I don't think I want to be married anymore," and trash our 10 year marriage and the life we have? I'm not sure that's what I really want, but that's how I feel right now. I thought it would go away. It's not.
Thanks for reading this. It helps just to get it off my chest.
Thank you so much Michael. I'm glad I'm not in the wrong place, though it might not be quite right. I imagine a lot of transgendered people feel that way in many places.
I do accept my spouse's gender identity. I've tried to be hugely supportive since he disclosed his desire to transition about 3 years ago. He is living as and accepted as a man by virtually all of his friends and family and certainly strangers or new acquaintences have no idea he is transexual at this point in the transition (post chest op, nearly 2 years of testosterone). He expresses complete commitment to me as we have been married for about 10 years and he says he's never been happier. I'm the one having the problem.
I hate to say it but I am uncomfortable being perceived as gay, which I am not. I have gay friends and have always been supportive of the gay community... I'm just not gay. I confess that this does bother me and really feel it shouldn't. Why should I care what someone else thinks of me? But it is uncomfortable. I suspect it's what gay people feel like when they try to pretend they're straight. I have only "come out" to my immediate family, close friends and to a couple of people at work. I still refer to him as my wife to most people at work, and I generally avoid the subject. I hate to feel ashamed, and I think a significant part of it may be living in a very socially conservative community. I don't want to have to explain this to everyone and feel judged and ostracized. But I should because it's who he is and who I am now. I suck.
At first, I was completely supportive and on board. I felt I had to be since he was having a crisis about the change and what that would mean to his relationship with me and his family. Now I'm having doubts that I can live this way longterm. I feel he's withdrawn from me physically and emotionally. He stopped sleeping in the same bed as me (citing my snoring and kicking) and I wonder if this was an excuse or if I was subconsciously trying to kick him out bed. At first I missed having him with me in bed, but now I would prefer not to sleep with him and I've been withdrawing from displays of affection, both at home and especially in public. I feel very badly about it. I stopped wearing my wedding ring. I suspect my marriage is going to end and that I will be the one to end it. Furthermore, I know this will devastate my spouse who's the last person in the world I want to hurt. But I'm hurting too. I miss the woman... though I understand he never really was a womanm, and that person isn't gone. I feel shallow, like my promises to him have been broken, and thus my promises to anyone else are equally illegitimate.
Personality wise, he has changed somewhat. Certain tendencies have become more pronounced. He's more agressive. Rougher. Louder. But he's the same person and I still love him hugely... just not romantically. I feel terrible, terrible guilt. And I think that guilt will hurt both of us. Gods I hope he's not reading this. Maybe it's my way of trying to communicate this to him, but I think that it would irrevocably damage our relationship if I did.
Anyone else out there in a similar situation? Either a FTM married to a guy or a guy married to a FTM. There's lots of women with MTFs as far as I can tell. My situation feels more unique, though similar, and I will learn what I can from their experiences. And since my friends are his friends, I really have no one to talk to about this.
I'll keep lurking. I really don't feel comfortable posting much on other topics because I'm not a transexual, and though I've read a bit on the subject sometimes I offend my spouse with the words I use or my attitude and I don't want to do that to anyone here (or him for that matter).
Thanks for the opportunity to vent. i hope there's someone out there like me and we can help each other. Heh, I know. Don't we all?
I'm probably in the wrong place and I truly don't want to offend anyone here but I am a straight male married to a FTM and looking for some advice/support/insight/peace while I struggle with my relationship. My spouse may be on this forum and I'd prefer to keep him from knowing my growing sense of crisis regarding our marriage. I looked for support groups for spouses of FTMs but they appear to be inactive or rarely used. Kick me out if I'm in the wrong place. Any help would be appreciated. Nice to meet you.