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Turning Tavern - help!

(32 Posts)
user1488881432 Tue 07-Mar-17 11:17:09

Hello there, is anyone from the earlier turning tavern threads about? Sorry, this is LONG but I could really do with some advice. I've been with my husband for nearly 15 years, and we have been married for 10. We have a 7 year old and a 4 year old. I am increasingly coming to realise and accept that I am probably gay.

I have always found women attractive and had crushes at different times, but never really thought of myself as anything but straight - at least until recently. Since my youngest was born, I've found it harder and harder to ignore my attraction to women. Simultaneously, about 3 years ago I started to realise I had feelings for a woman I see a lot of through her involvement with my children - I really can't avoid her, and when there are periods when I don't see her, I miss her so much.

I have always suspected that the woman I have feelings for is gay (she has always been very discreet about her private life) and during the autumn it started to become clear to me that she had feelings for me too. Over Christmas I was a bit of a mess, I just couldn't stop thinking about her and decided I really needed to know one way or another. The next time I had an opportunity to talk to her alone, I told her how I felt. She told me that she was gay and in a relationship but was really happy to support me and be a friend in working out what I wanted. All the signals she had been giving out (extended eye contact, making physical contact whenever she could) stopped, and I felt like an embarrassed idiot.

We had to keep seeing each other all the time, and over a few weeks it got less embarrassing again, and she then asked if I would go out for a drink with her. We went out and had such a nice time, and she talked a lot - that she has also had feelings for me for 3 years, she feels a sense of responsibility towards her current partner and is worried about hurting her, but wants to be with me. Since we went out the eye contact and everything else has started up again, and we are going out for another drink next week.

The problem is, on the one hand I am desperately attracted to her and feel a real connection with her, and on the other, I still love my husband, I don't want to hurt him, and I feel terrible about what leaving would do to him and my children. He is a kind, lovely man and I do find him attractive and we work really well together as a team but I just don't want to be intimate with him. We have only had sex three times since the summer, and each time it just feels so wrong. I have told him that I have been questioning my sexuality and he has been very understanding, but is also very upset.

I feel like I am on the cusp of the point of no return with this woman - the combination of weeks of flirting, alcohol and knowing we like each other feels quite heady, and for the first time I am considering lying to my husband about where I am going, which feels like a really shitty thing to do. But ending our relationship before I know if this might actually go anywhere or not also feels pretty crap.

Has anyone else been in this situation and either decided to stay with their husband and make the best of it, or left? I could really do with hearing from people who have walked this path before! Thank you.

NotTodaySatan Tue 07-Mar-17 11:25:20

I never understood the Turning Tavern threads. The amount of outright encouragement there was for cheating based purely on the fact that the other person was a woman was baffling.

You're married. If you want to sleep with other people, male or female, then get a divorce and fill your boots.

Your husband doesn't deserve to be cheated on and deceived.

CaoNiMartacus Tue 07-Mar-17 13:37:56

Veteran Taverner here.

NotToday, it isn't quite that simple, clearly - by the length and depth of the old Tavern threads!

OP, my situation was different from yours in that children weren't involved. That's a major issue, and definitely makes things more complicated. If I were you, I would put the kibosh on your growing involvement with the woman in question (WIQ as we used to say on the old threads!) and talk things through very seriously and honestly with your DH.

The situation is different from if the WIQ was a MIQ instead. The fact that she is female weighs heavily - it's about your sexuality, lifestyle, proclivities, etc. That's something you need to work out, without this specific woman in mind.

Patchouli666 Tue 07-Mar-17 14:20:12

So you want to keep your hubby hanging till you find out if you can make a go of things with this ow? And if it doesn't work out you'll go back to your poor hubby till the next vagina comes along that you fancy? Your poor husband

Vagabond Tue 07-Mar-17 14:26:30

Have you ever had sex with a woman? It might be something you really love and it might feel like being who you really are. Or it might not.

I think it's naive of anyone to suggest that you leave your husband before you find out. You have to - maybe - discover. But you also have to protect yourself.

Number 1 has to be living your true life, though. Don't get bullied on this thread, though. Some people don't see life in more than 1 dimension.

Good luck. Explore though.... it could be the making (or undoing?) of you.

AnyFucker Tue 07-Mar-17 14:40:08

It's quite clear you want to dabble before leaving the relative safety of your hetero relationship

That looks pretty "one dimensional" to me. It's called cheating

I also thought the TT threads were quite jarringly full of women egging each other on to make fools out of their existing partners. Scummy behaviour regardless of the sex of the participants.

JustSpeakSense Tue 07-Mar-17 15:03:33

It is not really relevant if the person you want to cheat with is male or female (or if you are straight / bi / gay)
If you want to explore a relationship with someone else then you need to end your marriage first.

Your DH deserves better than this, he sounds like a good man and is the father of your children. Show him the respect he deserves by being upfront and honest with him.

user1488881432 Tue 07-Mar-17 19:38:46

Thank you CaoNi and Vagabond for your replies. CaoNi, it is so hard to put her out of my mind when I see her nearly every day, but I see the sense in what you say. I first talked to my husband about questioning my sexuality in January, when I also began counselling. We have talked a lot since then, not about this particular woman but about how we are both feeling. I know not everyone will see things this way, but it feels wrong to end a marriage for something so uncertain, knowing he wants us to stay married.

And vagabond, nope, never so much as kissed a woman - there were opportunities in the dim and distant past which I never took up (long before I was married) and I now wonder if I was subconsciously afraid of where it would take me.

Do you think it is possible to stay in a marriage while feeling you are gay, and to make a success of it? In my heart of hearts that is what I would really like to do, but these feelings aren't going anywhere and I don't want us to end up in a miserable marriage full of resentment for one another.

user1488881432 Tue 07-Mar-17 19:42:04

Sorry, I meant to thank all of you for your replies. They weren't all easy to read but thank you still.

AnyFucker Tue 07-Mar-17 19:47:06

Good luck love, I do sympathise. But your husband sounds lovely and he doesn't deserve to get cheated on.

You are already having an emotional affair with this woman. For many people that is already a marriage ending boundary.

user1488881432 Tue 07-Mar-17 20:05:11

Thank you anyfucker - if only he were an arsehole this would be really easy! But he is as you say a lovely man, and that is what makes this so hard.

AnyFucker Tue 07-Mar-17 20:14:53

How do you think he might react if you brought it into the open completely and asked to go ahead with his blessing ?

It's a huuuuuuuuuge can of worms though

ClaryIsTheBest Tue 07-Mar-17 20:27:01

Well... Maybe he'd agree to an open relationship?

user1488881432 Tue 07-Mar-17 20:47:02

He did say some time ago that maybe he would need to give me space to explore this if we are to stay married, but the thought of trying to juggle that seems overwhelming - but then I can't say that an affair hasn't crossed my mind, and as anyfucker says I am pretty much already having an emotional affair, so that doesn't seem very logical! All that aside, given the role this woman has in our children's lives I think for all of us that would be a step too far.

PushingThru Tue 07-Mar-17 20:54:11

For goodness' sake don't go down the 'open relationship' route with your husband - you'd be merely hiding with him behind the male view that sex doesn't count unless there's a penis involved. It's dirtying & disrespectful to everybody involved. You're on the verge of falling in love with this woman.

PushingThru Tue 07-Mar-17 20:54:47

I'm gay myself by the way.

Saltfish Tue 07-Mar-17 20:59:54

If he is the upstanding man you say he is why would he want to stay married to you? You are gay...that isn't something that is up for debate or change...and your part? If you truly care about him why would you want him to stay with you when he could have a heterosexual woman that is truly capable of loving him in the way he needs? No one is going to give you or your husband a medal at the end of your lives for martyring yourselves and staying in what technically is a marriage of convenience.

As for the poster upthread that is questioning whether the OP will like lesbian sex...what the fuck does that have to do with anything?

I feel really frustrated with threads like this..just because you have been in a hetero relationship doesn't mean that is something you need to continue nor should you have to if your gayness is something you have suppressed your whole life. Life is short OP..leave. For your happiness and your husbands. He will be fine in the long run and so will you. Do not embark on an affair though:

ClaryIsTheBest Tue 07-Mar-17 21:01:42

"You'd be merely hiding with him behind the male view that sex doesn't count unless there's a penis involved. It's dirtying & disrespectful to everybody involved."

I personally don't get that... Why?

I mean, the OP could cheat. Obviously a bad idea. Especially when children are involved.

The OP couldn't act on it. But she has bascially already an emotional affair. So, ehh...

The OP could leaver her husband.

Or she could have an open relationship. Although: "All that aside, given the role this woman has in our children's lives I think for all of us that would be a step too far." So, an open relationship in this case does seem like a bad idea, tbh.

ClaryIsTheBest Tue 07-Mar-17 21:03:10


I'm not suggesting that the OP leaving her husband is wrong. That does seem like a reasonable decision in my personal opinion.

PushingThru Tue 07-Mar-17 21:11:40

Would anyone suggest that her husband should be approached with the idea of an open relationship if the other person was a man? No need to answer, just think for yourself why nobody, including him, would suggest that.

ClaryIsTheBest Tue 07-Mar-17 21:18:26

No need to answer, just think for yourself why nobody, including him, would suggest that.

I will answer. And in my case the answer is yes. of course.

PamDooveOrangeJoof Tue 07-Mar-17 21:20:52

Regardless of this woman if you don't want to be intimate with your husband, leave him. I would hate for someone to stay with me if they didn't want to have sex with me. And what, just throw him the occasional pity shag?

Leave him. You'll both be fine and he will be free to find someone who wants to be intimate with him and you can do whatever you want to do.

AnyFucker Tue 07-Mar-17 21:21:27

It is certainly not my bag, but I am led to believe that people do have successful open relationships

It's an option and certainly better than the path op is currently going down

PushingThru Wed 08-Mar-17 06:10:54

It's rare on mumsnet to see a woman being offered advice to suggest an open relationship to her husband when her head's been turned by another man. It's disingenuous to suggest otherwise.

OP, you've written that you feel that you're probably gay; this is obviously the salient point. If you deal with this honestly, you will feel so much better. It will take time, but you will. It might work out with this woman, it might not. Coming out relationships are notorious for being emotionally intense! Regardless, being a gay woman married to a man is a reality that doesn't mesh & will increasingly cause unhappiness for all involved.
Keep telling the truth to yourself, your husband and the woman you have met and make plans to end your marriage cleanly. This is the kindest way to act.

category12 Wed 08-Mar-17 07:12:11

You have to consider, it might be better for your DH in the long run if you split, despite the initial pain. Then he could have a chance of finding someone who desires and loves him. If you have ever read any of the threads about sexless marriages, you will know how saddening it can be to be married to someone who no longer wants sex with you for whatever reason. It's not fair to think it's just about whether you explore your sexuality or stay with him (or step out on him consensually or not). Are you suddenly going to fancy him and want a full sexlife with him again?

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