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Queer Advice: I’m Married, but I Keep Thinking of Other Men

Don’t think the third time will be a charm if you continue to pursue relationships that do not honestly reflect who you are as a person.

DrLisaGriffin | March 12, 2013

Q: I need some advice. I’ve been married to my wife now for a couple years. Just recently it seems as though I’ve been ‘missing’ the opposite sex. Can’t get men out of my mind. I want to remain faithful to my wife, but I feel I have different needs. Some that she is not willing to help me with. I don’t want to force her into something that she will regret. I did that with my first wife, and it ended badly. I also don’t want to start looking elsewhere. And for the record, I came out to my wife before we met in person (online dating site/chat). So she knows everything.

A: What exactly did you say when you came out to your wife? Did you label yourself as gay? Bisexual? Did you say you wanted to be married to a woman but also like sex with men? Were you hoping that being married to a woman (or two) would “cure” you? What exactly do you mean by having needs she isn’t willing to help you with, and what did you force your first wife into that ended badly?

When people do marriage the traditional way, they agree to get all their sexual needs met by one person. That is a huge responsibility for that person and one of the reasons it’s so important to communicate a lot in advance about sex. Perhaps you thought your attractions to men were a phase. Perhaps there are certain sexual activities that are gratifying to you but that she is unwilling to try. In any case, ideally, the two of you would have been talking about these issues in detail long before you decided to get married, particularly if that marriage was going to involve sexual exclusivity.

I encourage you to find a therapist who is knowledgeable about sexuality and sexual orientation to help you sort yourself out. If the problem appears to be activity-based, you and your wife may benefit from consulting with a sex therapist. If you learn that staying married to this particular person means compromising your or her integrity or identity, you may decide to part ways. If so, don’t think the third time will be a charm if you continue to pursue relationships that do not honestly reflect who you are as a person.