I was married to a straight woman for 9 years; a relationship I entered into while still living as a straight male, rather than the pan-romantic female that I am. I loved her very much, but in marrying her and committing to her, I deceived both of us and as a result, we both suffered because of my lie. I was selfish and it was difficult for me to let go, especially as I still consider her to be my soul mate in so many respects. She found out in 2011 that I was hiding something from her and seeing no other option at that point, I broke down and told her. It was curtains for our relationship, which was already on life support because we’d drifted apart and were living as roommates, rather than two people in love (I take the blame for most of that).
As difficult it was for me to let go, I’m actually glad that she ended it, as she probably saved both of us in doing so. Even if she’d accepted the situation and learnt to love me as a woman, it wouldn’t have felt right. It takes an extremely strong and loving relationship to survive a partner coming out as transgender; ours had no foundations to begin with and my ex wife could not budge in terms of her heterosexual identity. I do not blame her for that; she fell in love with what she thought was a male.
If she’d chosen to try to stay with me, I think it would have ultimately held me back. I could not be with someone who identified as a heterosexual woman or a gay man, even if it were possible for straight women or gay men to be attracted to me. Being in a heterosexual relationship, which I entered into as a male, with a female would have caused so much dysphoria and would have caused me to question her along the lines of “What do you see me as?”. I would never have been able to discover that I actually prefer to be in relationships with men. As pan-romantic as I am, I just feel that more of my needs are met with a man versus with a woman. I no longer seek out female partners; in fact, it’s highly unlikely that I’ll be in a relationship again, never mind a relationship with a woman.
I’ve known a few transwomen who stayed with their wives or girlfriends post transition. Kudos to them, but it wasn’t for me and it wasn’t for my ex wife either. We both needed to go our separate ways, as we were both holding each other back. She will always be my soul mate though and I hope she finds happiness. As for me, I know there’s little chance of me making it through this journey, never mind finding a boyfriend. I’ve only had a couple of encounters with men, but nothing that amounted to anything. The only interest I get on dating sites tends to be from chasers, super clingy guys or guys just looking for sex, despite my profile clearly stating that I am not interested in that.
The guilt caused by essentially taking a decade of someone’s life away to be with me is immense. I don’t ask for pity for it, neither do I want it or deserve it. It is something I have to carry with me to the grave and is one of many reminders as to why I wish I’d have transitioned earlier. For all our problems and fighting, she didn’t deserve that. Those are years that neither of us will ever get back, only I had a fucking choice to say something and put the brakes on, or I could’ve done the right thing and just told her from the beginning and taken a chance. But I tried to make the best of it and didn’t think that transition was ever going to be an option for me, so I buried it and tried to dismiss it as an illness, which I was utterly ashamed and embarrassed about. No one knew about my gender or my sexual orientation. Keeping it in was hell and required drugs, alcohol, running away, self harm and shifting the blame on anything or anyone else but myself or the real issue.
I am sure my ex wife has put it all behind her, but I wish she knew how grateful I am for all the years she gave me and for tbe big things (and little things) she used to do for me. She was my family; her family were my family too. She is a genuine and kind person who has had too much bad luck (including meeting me). Former friends only saw the way she treated me, but I deserved most of it.
I don’t know why I’m even bothering to write about this, when I have so many other issues going on. I am transgender, pre-op, pretty much asexual, ugly and with mental health issues. No one would want anything to do with me, not even as friends outside of the internet. Love is just a word to me; something that happens to normal people; a word that is hopelessly overused and cheapened by so many people who haven’t a clue what it really means.