Dear Jody

By |2003-10-23T09:00:00-04:00October 23rd, 2003|Uncategorized|

By Jody Valley

Readers sound off on ‘one too many’

(A 35-year-old gay man wrote recently saying that he was married with children and had a lover who was also happily married with childrenÑboth wives knowing and supportive of the two men’s relationship. He also maintained that both the men had great family lives, along with the relationship the two of them shared together. He claimed that this kind of arrangement was common in the gay community. This letter brought a rash of responses from readers:)

R: I know that there is GAMMA, but how “common” is it for gay people to marry heterosexually, and enjoy the marriage as a healthy, functional relationship?
Doubting

R: Jody, that 35-year-old guy who says that he has a wife, kids, so does his lover, and that all is going great must be in Denial Heaven. How can you have two partners in life and make them both happy. I have just one, and she’s all I can handle. I have a really hard time believing that you can devote yourself to two people and keep them both happy.
Busy Enough With One Love
R: I wish my wife would be open to such a situation. It’s not that I have asked her, but that I know she wouldn’t be 1. Horrified if she even knew I was gay, and 2. She’d never agree to something like that. That is why I have a secret life, and don’t get that emotionally involved with other guys.
Preferring the Old-Fashion Way

R: I’m disgusted with the guy who has a wife as well as a guy on the side. What kind of morals does he have? I don’t care if he claims that the wives are happy with the situation, I just don’t believe that. Just like I don’t believe that multiple wives of Mormon men are really happy. They have had shows on TV about how miserable those women are. How happy can you be knowing that you are sharing your significant other with another person. Sort of makes it not so “significant,” doesn’t it? Furthermore, I don’t believe him that this is all that common in the LGBT community. That is just his justification for behaving like he is.
Disgusted

(Well, I don’t know about “common,” but there is at least one other similar case from someone who feels it works. Read on:)

Ideal marriage?

R: I read the letter about the gay man who is in a relationship with another gay man and they both have families. It was eye opening to read this because I thought I was the only one in this situation. My wife and I have an agreement to an open marriage, and we both have partners on the side. We are both gay so it works out well for us. We have 2 children and one on the way. We did set up some rules that work for us, such as always using protection so we don’t contract diseases. We also check with each other to make sure the times work before we schedule anything with our lovers. Our lovers understand the situation and are willing to deal with it, even though they do not always think it ideal.
I’m sure there are some folks out there that are asking why we do this. Well, we want to be a traditional family and we can’t if we were both with our lover, instead of being married. My wife and I are good friends and enjoy being together. I don’t think this arrangement would work if this were not true. I could never have the job I do right now as a gay man, and my wife would be fired from her job. This works for us and I think we are wonderful parents to our children. When I tell people about our arrangement many of them are judgmental and unwilling to look outside the box and see that this can work for all concerned. Thanks for listening.
Outside the Box

About the Author:

BTL Staff
Between The Lines has been publishing LGBTQ-related content in Southeast Michigan since the early '90s. This year marks the publication's 27th anniversary.