Friday, November 30, 2007

An Entertaining Evening -- ALONE!

Yes, you read the title right.

And, based on some of the lectures I've received of late, it sounds like it was in the nick of time too! LOL.

Actually, I'm seeing some solid improvement in me over the past little while that I've not bothered to share with all of you. I guess I was too busy whining and working at getting the point across that divorce sucks....change alone sucks.......and at times, nothings helps a body more than a good.....solid......cry.

So, now, let me explain some of the growth I've been experiencing here in the past little while. First of all, I've stopped wallowing in the mire of what used to be....or what should have been......and mourning the loss of my little family. Actually, I haven't lost my family at all......just the location has changed....the names and faces all have remained. The only person I don't really think a lot about is Lovey. You see....since September and our visit with our son before he departed for Iraq cleared the air for me. I got a lot off my chest...and I was able to tell her a few things that had festered horribly.

Then, driving to the airport to pick up my daughter....and experiencing LOVEY OVERLOAD only served to expose the fact that the separation and divorce had, in a way, made me romanticize all the time with Lovey....and to magnify the good times..... My overload showed the bad times were still very much there....and that I have, in fact, gained a lot more good, solid ground than I give myself credit for.

So, with myself feeling pretty good about myself....and the fact that I had a good doctor's report today (had a thyroid scan to see what has caused my thyroid to shut down)....eveyrthing appears nodules, cysts, or tumors on the thyroid...but it is structurally sound. The next thing I have to do in a a week or so is to have a nuclear scan. Then we'll see what's causing it to misbehave...but at this point there's nothing to be frightened of.

Tonight I did something I have never done before: I took myself to dinner and to the Gay Men's Chorus Holiday Spectacular at George Washington University in DC. I've always gone with someone as company. It was like I was afraid to do things like this alone. Tonight though, I decided to do just that and I had a grand time. The music was beautiful......the eye candy was to die for......and I saw lots of people there that I knew. They came up and hugged me.....and were happy to see me.

All this was affirming to me.

Then, I came my puppy dog's wagging tail.....and he nearly licked me to death.

Hey, I'm on the mend...and continue to grow and grow. Divorce isn't easy....and old habits die hard.

But I'm on new ground now....and it feels pretty good!

Thanks to all of you who have voiced your concerns....and inquired about my wellbeing.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Lovey Overload

I got to be with Lovey waaaaaaaaay too much over this holiday weekend!

She rode with me up to the Baltimore Airport to pick up #2. She then wanted #2 to stay with her at her mother's house, which #2 did twice. She also had agreed to go shopping with #2 first thing on Black Friday (this is why #2 chose to stay there on Thanksgiving night), but then backed out at the very last minute. #2 was totally furious for her mom not wanting to spend the time with her.

She then got really livid, when Lovey got mad at her for not wanting to have lunch with her on Friday....before she was scheduled to return to her home in the beautiful Shenandoah Valley on Friday afternoon. Actually, Lovey didn't get around to leaving her mother's until Saturday morning.....after all she has always been the world's number one procrastinator!

Not only did I get to see and hear Lovey all the way to the airport and back, but it just so happened that she sat herself right next to me at Thanksgiving Dinner at her mother's house. (Yes, I was invited...and for the sake of my daughter, I did go!)

Go figure.

She kept making all these snide little comments about the fact that my mom probably would never want to see her again. (She's right.) Or, how she wishes she had the type of relationship with my mother that I have with her's. (I ignored that one.) Or the one I liked best is when Lovey's mother made a comment about the fact the my parents were coming to her house for lunch on Saturday, Lovey said, "Well, I'll be safely gone by then!) (Thank God!)

I'm not sure why she seems so desperate to have a relationship with my parents. In 25 years of marriage, it wasn't that important to her.


All during the dinner and afterwards, I took some really great family pictures. I did this primarily for Lovey's mother. Whenever she saw me with the camera, Lovey would ask, "Have you gotten any good ones of me?"

A might self absorbed I'd say.

The one thing that really bothers me though is the fact that #2 was feeling like she was in the middle. Her mom was really good at putting her there and then making her feel guilty.

I told #2 that for Christmas, I just want her to do whatever she feels necessary to make her happy. The rest of us will be tickled to death!

I hate divorce....especially my own.

But, I'm also thankful that Lovey is far, far away in her own pad.

I'm now able to live in peace.

Happy Belated Thanksgiving!

Friday, November 23, 2007

So Much To Ponder

It’s gotten a whole lot colder and windier here in Washington, D.C.

White puffy clouds are virtually whizzing by underneath the canopy of a briliant blue sky. I’m stuck, sitting inside at my office, trying to get caught up on a zillion projects while my staff is off, still celebrating the holiday.

Just when I think I have made some progress in acclimating to the whole divorce thing and the living alone thing….EEEEEOOOOOOWWWWWW… all comes flooding back into my heart, mind and soul.. The pain is not able to be fully described.

My mom and other caring souls have told me that I should “Just get over it.” Some have even suggested that I fall on my sword and ask for Lovey to reconsider a reconciliation!

Can you believe that one?

I can’t.

All I know is that I can’t just flip some internal switch to “get over it.” I am also confident when I say that the answer is definitely not to reconcile with Lovey.

This is just something that I’m going to have to process on my own…and deal with….and then move on.

I’m trying so desperately to figure out why I feel the way that I do. I mean, Why do I, a gay man, feel so miserable at times, about the breakup of a long term marriage, with a woman?

Why can’t I just move on? Turn the page. Shut the door or do whatever other metaphor seems appropriate.

Why do I have to feel like such damaged goods? Why do I feel so broken? So useless? So unloveable?

There is just so much to ponder. So many things to figure out.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Free Fall

Frank feels like he is in a free fall at the moment.

I guess this just comes with the territory of being gay. And...of being a divorced gay man, who happens to be alone.

My daughter, #2, arrived from Nashville early this the wee hours. Her flight arrived after midnight in Baltimore...and I went to pick her up with Lovey. #2 wanted both of us to meet her at the airport, which I did. I was civil...I was a good boy. But, man, I am really bothered by Lovey.....and I can certainly see how this divorce was the best thing for me.

I had a wonderful meal with my daughter, and my parents. They are with me for a few days for Thanksgiving. So, this is why I have been a little slow about posting the past few days. It has been've had some medical problems crop up out of nowhere. back has been driving me crazy for the past week...and I had a visit with my doctor to discuss the diabetes....and my most recent blood work. The sugars have declined considerably since the last time I had blood work done about 8 weeks ago. But now I have a new thyroid isn't working....and apprently ceased to work in October...about the same time as I went on the insulin.

So, it's kind of a bummer.

I was invited to the O'Lovey's house for dinner tonight with my daughter. There were 18 individuals there.....and it was fun being around everyone again.'s kind of hard trying to figure out what the rules of my new role are. I kept a rather low profile....and chit chatted with the family. Several of them came and gave me genuinely warm hugs....and pecks on the cheek to say how good I looked....and how glad they were to see me doing so well.

I smiled....and to be honest, I found myself wanting to say, "If you only knew."

Today I also got to hang around with my daughter somewhat. Gee, I am a sensitive creature.

Why is it when we are around people who genuine care for us, and they put an arm around our shoulder......or ask in that quiet and loving way, "Are you okay?" I well up with tears. They just stream down my face. Even after all this time....even after the divorce being final for almost 6 months.....even though I've been separated almost 3 years...., why do I still want to cry.

It scared #2....and she said that perhaps I should go to a shrink and talk about it.

She doesn't understand.

I'm not sure I fully understand....but the facts are rather stark:

A person I had lived with for 25 years ended it...and said some mighty hurtful things along the way. Even though I've been able to clear the air....and although I have received apologies.....that hurt is still there. It aches to my very core.

And there isn't anything I can do to make it better.

I just have to suffer with this...until the ache isn't as hurtful.

Until the ache totally goes away.

Tonight, the loneliness is starting to envelop me. What I wouldn't give to be able to feel a set of strong arms holding me as I fall asleep. Someone to say that they care for me or to at least say that I am loved.

My parents are fast asleep....the dog is in their room. My daughter is staying with her mother at Mom O'Lovey's house a couple of blocks away. I'm sitting here writing this.

Feeling as though a portion of my life is tumbling in a free fall into oblivion.

Will this ever get better do you suppose?

Will a man ever cross my path that is available fulltime for me? Someone that I can be a bit selfish with.....someone that I can feel close to again?

Where I'm not left to feel much like the left over turkey carcass in the refrigerator tomorrow afternoon? Cold....empty.....and dead?

Is this how the rest of my life will be.......the life of a gay, lonely and divorced man?

Friday, November 16, 2007

Clearing the Air

I am learning so much about myself. It’s amazing to reflect and see how I handle stress and how I handle conflict.

Early on in this blog I kept talking about how I felt like I had been misrepresented; that I was being portrayed inaccurately by Lovey, but that there was no really effective way for me to go about changing perspectives.

I decided to just suck it all up and keep moving forward. Let everyone think that I am the ogre.

It’s funny how things work out ultimately and how that I have been put into situations since that have allowed me to comment on my feelings and how things went down from my perspective.

Another case happened last night.

Mom O’Lovey decided to care for my cocker spaniel, Davy, while I traveled to WV this weekend with Brokeback to pick up my parents. They’re going to be spending about a week and a half with me for Thanksgiving. So, I’m very excited about it.

When I took the dog down to Mom O’Lovey’s house, she invited me to stay for dinner with her and her sister. I agreed.

We had a lovely time.

She kept making comments about my parents coming down to join her and Lovey and all the other sisters and brothers-in-law for Thanksgiving. I let it drop.

Finally when it came time to leave, she again made those comments and I finally took her aside and explained why that wouldn’t be a good idea.

“I’m not sure if you know this or not Mom, but my parents have some really significant issues with your daughter.”

“Oh?” Mom O’Lovey said.

“Yes,” I answered. I then explained the fact that during the marriage there were 8 significant deaths in my parent’s families, and Lovey – the good reverend, did not one time offer condolences, a call, a card, or her presence.

“That all spoke volumes to my mother and father,” I said. “Then when you couple in the fact that she never came to any reunions and there were some relatives she had never met, well, my parents are extremely hurt and feel very unloved…and therefore, it would be for the best, if they not be forced into a social situation with Lovey, if it can be helped.”

Mom O’Lovey immediately understood. She shook her head because she was totally unaware of all this. I then shared some other things to set the record straight….that apparently cast new light on some of the tales that Lovey had told about “that awful man she had been married to.”

My comments, weighed carefully and spoken in quiet tones carried a lot of weight with Mom O’Lovey. She sighed and shook her head because there was a lot she hadn’t heard.

I felt very relieved at having the opportunity to clear the air.

It was a long time coming.

Mom O’Lovey realizes that I am not necessarily the evil ogre I was originally portrayed as being.

Monday, November 12, 2007

The Empty Nest has been a very difficult one.

I cleaned out the children's rooms today. I came across some things that had been lovingly stored away...old Father's Day projects they had made for me....and that expressed their love to me. I even found some old ticket stubs from the theater where I took them to see many movies over the years.

It tore me up. I sat in the middle of their floor....and the tears flowed.

I know that I'm supposed to rejoice that my kids have grown into such wonderful young adults...but it still rips my heart out that they're gone. I suppose this is what the empty nest feels like.



My footsteps echo throughout the house...

Some of my friends think that I should have sold the house and bought something totally different. They say I should have changed my surroundings totally. They also said that I should go about getting a new job to just start in new surroundings and to enjoy new challenges. This wouldn't leave a lot of time for me to grieve all my losses.

Perhaps I should think about all this. Maybe I should sell the house....and move to something else now.

I don't know.

It's just been such a tough weekend....

Gray Monday Thoughts

It's Monday.....a federal holiday.....and I have the day off.

Lucky me.

The coffee is brewing....Davy, the cocker spaniel, is at my side, curled up asleep alongside me on the loveseat as I write this.

It's cold outside....gray and rainy. Just the kind of day a late autumn day should be.

I think it's the weather that affects my mood more than anything.

Once the coffee is made, I'm going to sip it...and ponder the rest of my day. I have to tear into the upstairs bedrooms and get them organized. I need to vacuum...and I also need to shampoo those well as to work on the wood floors of the main level. I also have to vaccum the stairways.

It's going to be a nonstop day for me. Once it begins.

But first, I need to just relax...and focus on me for a little while.

After all these years of being the provider...the protector. It's really kind of hard to begin to focus on me and my needs. There's so much to get used to now that I'm alone. Twenty-five years is a long time.....and as my friends have said repeatedly, "you aren't going to get used to things overnight."

So, here I sit...with the smell of coffee wafting through the air.....and my dog snoring.....and I'm being haunted by days of old.

It's so funny....when I was married, I used to long for those times when Lovey was away on a trip and for the kids to be in school. I could have a few moments to myself... I actually used to fantasize about living alone.

And now that I'm alone...I fantasize about living with someone....or romanticizing the time I had with Lovey... I sort of minimize all those bad times. And there were many.

Are we humans ever happy? Are we gay men every truly happy?

I mean, really happy?

If I had a trophy man in my life who lived with me 24/7, would I really be happy? Or would I zero in on his flaws...and then fantasize about living alone again?

Oh, the puppy dog just moved in closer and sighed. I wonder if he just sensed my sadness. In his own way he appears to be trying to make me feel better.

I'm glad I have him.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Sunday Morning Blues

Well, it's a cool Sunday Morning here in Alexandria.

I slept in late and I thought I'd go ahead and post this before my day got going. I need to go shower, shave and get ready for church. It's terrible but I am feeling so unmotivated and I have tons of things to get done before my company all arrive for the Thanksgiving Holiday.

Tomorrow is a federal holiday, and I also have Tuesday off. So, I've got plenty of time to get the place organized. The house isn't nearly as bad as the good old days when Lovey was here, but still I'm a little picky -- and it needs a good cleaning.

I'm just a tad down today. Not sure of the cause other than the fact it is the fact that I am all alone. My only company is my dog. Thank God for him!

I've also been thinking about where I was this time last week...with all my gay friends. I miss each of them too. A number of them have been keeping in touch with me via email. So that's nice.

Why does being gay have to be such a lonely existence? I mean I have tons and tons of friends thankfully, but they can't be available 24/7. I find that those times when they aren't available are the times when I'm loneliest.

Ah, I suppose this is the mystery of me.

You'd think that an only child would have things together and be able to deal with the aloneness better.

Not me!

It will be good to be with my church friends.

Saturday, November 10, 2007


One of the unhealthy side effects of being gay is paranoia.

It is really quite sad. It doesn't make one feel good. It leaves you wondering if you're being silly...or if you are really sensing something that is in need of further attention.

Well, today I had a bout of paranoia to strike.

And this is really silly.

I made a visit to my former mother-in-law's house. It was good getting to spend some time with her. I haven't been to her house in several weeks. So, it was good getting to talk to her and her sister.

As I talked with them, I told them that I had a copy of the movie, "Evening" and would they like to come down tonight and watch it on my big screen. They agreed, but they also said that they were going to dinner with the good dentists...did I want to go too? I said, okay. They then asked if the dentist could come too.

I said sure.

So, dinner time came and the dentist was there. However, he said that he couldn't come over.

Okay, this is the second time he has been invited to come to my house with the two ladies. It's the second time he's had something else that precluded him from coming over.

Keep in mind that this is a man who virtually stays with my former mother-in-law. He hasn't had much of a life. He's the lonely guy, according to Lovey. So that's why he is always at their house.

So, it strikes me as kind of odd that he doesn't come to my house when invited.

Oh, don't worry. I'm not going to lose any sleep tonight over this, but I do find it interesting.

Friday, November 09, 2007


I know that I have a lot of female readers.

So, in all humility, I'd like to ask them to please comment on this post.

Before I write it out I want to be sure to say that this is me writing...and I mean no harm. I'm just a formerly married gay guy that is having some difficulty here...and some of your all's insight would be very helpful.

It is no secret that I have lots of male friends who are closeted gays. They live, like I did, in their own private hell. Eeeking along from day-to-day. Hoping that no one will find one will ever know.

However, I have noticed them do some things that really drive me over the edge at times...that I just don't understand.

They complain about their lives. They want so badly to be able to have a steady live the gay be themselves....but in the same breath, they voice a horrible fear of their wives.

The fear that their wives will find out.

I suppose they feel that western civilization, as it is now known, will cease permanently.

Okay...I understand that fear....

But at the meeting I attended in Rhode Island, a number of the married guys voiced the fear of returning home. They've had an outstanding weekend.... They've had the opportunity of spending time with other guys who understand and who happen to be traveling a similar path.

They've made new friends, some of whom have never had real male friends before. They're learning to be social beings after having lived for years behind walls of solitude and fear.

Their wives knew that they were coming to this gathering of men.

So why the fear of returning home?

One of my friends returned home to a psycho wife... She actually mistreated him....and accused him of all manner of evil stuff...when all he did was to be able to join with other gay men to talk about their innermost feelings and thoughts?

Why do you women do that?

Why do you assume the worst?

Give us some credit.

Finally, there are those married men who make plans with their buds. If the wife wrinkles up her nose or says "I don't like it that you're doing that...." They cancel at the last minute -- only to spend hours on end bitching about the fact that their wives made them do it.

Or the husbands with controlling wives who, even though the husband has made some plans, take charge and change them all. Why couldn't the husband grow some balls and say, "No! I have it all arranged. Don't worry."

Why does it seem that the wives have to be the superior party in the marriage.....when it's supposed to be a partnership? Why do the husbands always feel the need to roll over and play dead.....and then whine about it when they could have done something to make it different? Perhaps these husbands should fold up their Rainbow flags and put them away.

I gave latitude to my former wife. I tried to please her on occasion. But, when I had made plans...and she tried to upset them....I'd simply say... "No."

Maybe this is why I'm now divorced?

Who knows?

But it seems to me that if you're married...there should be some give and take on both sides.....not an exhorbitant amount of giving on the gay husband's side of things. Being gay should not make you become a doormat to be steamrolled over routinely.

As I've said in this blog on several occasions.....when a husband has struggled with this issue for so long.....and he comes out....the issues suddenly becomes all about the wife.

Obviously...from what I've seen and heard lately, the marriage does too.

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

Strength for the Journey

The meeting in Rhode Island was one of the most meaningful I’ve attended in all my life. It ranks up there in importance very close to the religious retreat I attended back in August.

I suppose the reason for all this happens to be the fact that in both instances I’m presenting myself as an authentic gay man. Nothing extraordinary. Nothing perverted. Just your average, run-of-the-mill, garden variety, hot-blooded, American, gay male.

It is so liberating.

Many of the guys spoke to the fact that in growing up they had few male friends….primarily due to the fear of being discovered as gay. Man, I can relate to that. The majority of my life has been lived in fear of what others thought… And to finally arrive at the place where it doesn’t really matter….that you’re loved and accepted. Well, it’s hard to describe.

Being gay is so much more than slamming similar body parts together between the sheets.

It’s about intimacy and feeling close to another man that understands. Someone you can be yourself and not feel like you have to have the wall in place to be a “man.” It’s about being able to just run up and hug a friend…or even to greet him with a kiss.

Being gay is about how you view your world. It’s comraderie. It’s about being able to have fun….to be like a kid….to be goofy….to laugh…..and to actually love and connect with another man.

It’s being able to understand him….totally. No mystery.

And when it comes to the sexual intimacy….it’s passionate equally…’s intense……it’s affectionate……and you know how the various parts work….and what feels good and what doesn’t.

A number of the wives of the men that attended this meeting were fearful of letting their husbands attend this because their perception was that it would be nothing more than a sex-fest. I can assure you, it wasn’t any of this.

It was just a bunch of middle aged gay guys on similar paths comparing war stories…..feeling each other’s pain…..and caring for one another. Shedding tears here and there….

As I told my story….I lost it. I brokedown and cried…..and a number of the guys did the same as I finished.

Emotionally we connected. Simply.


One new friend actually spent a significant time holding me…..and allowing me to cry. God bless him!

Aw everyone….sometimes I think I have come such a long way…..and then I look up…and realize that I have even further to go.

There are so many twists and turns on this path.

It takes such strength to keep moving forward.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

That "Ache"

Okay, I’m back from my trip to Rhode Island.

To be honest, I’ve never really been a fan of New England. So, it hasn’t been at the top of my list of vacation hot spots or really any place that I had a driven desire to go visit. But this weekend was the annual gathering of my married men’s online group that I have been a member of for a very long time. I decided to attend. Primarily to reconnect with some of my old friends – to make new friends, and to explore the sites.

All told, there were about 35 men there. A lot of them are still married to their “best friends”….and they say that they have no intention of leaving them for another man. But in the next breath they also introduce you to their boyfriends or their life partners (male)….or however they wish to refer to that special man in their life.

In being around these men, I felt that old familiar “ache” stir up inside of me. Well, actually, it stirred up at least a couple of old familiar aches…that it has taken me several hours to get over.

Let me explain.

To hear all these guys talk about them having been married to their “best friend”….really hurt. Because there was a time in my life where I felt that I was married to a friend….. I thought I had all those things that one was supposed to have: the house, the cars, the kids, the successful career, the dog, etc. But, my best friend turned on me. She said that she didn’t love me any more.

And so I was summarily dumped.

That hurt. But that’s not what generates the ache now. It’s the pure fact that these men have wives that continue to stand with them…. One man said that his love for his wife has grown exponentially ever since she gave him the go ahead to explore his other self. He also said that he feels closer to her….and they talk more about everything.

I ached.

I ached because I knew that this is the relationship with Lovey I thought I would have ultimately. But, it won’t ever be.

God, how it aches…

And there isn’t a blessed thing I can do to make the ache go away. Only time will make it be so.

Another ache that I had this weekend was the fact that there were so many men present with the significant men in their lives. You could see it in their eyes….the contentment….the happiness…..the love.

In the main sessions, I watched as a few of the couples settled into a comfortable position.

An arm draped over a shoulder.

A body leaning into another.

A hand clasped in another.

A hand resting comfortably on a thigh or a gentle pat on a knee.

Yes, these men were content.

And in those moments when someone spoke….and a tear drifted down a cheek….there was that gentle nudge….or a hand to brush the tear away……or a gentle squeeze of the hand.

And, in me, there was that ache and the wish that my special guy was sitting next to me.

Thursday, November 01, 2007

Rainbows and Stuff!

As I get older, the gay pride symbol--the Rainbow Flag, becomes incrasingly moving to me.

Years ago, while I was i the closet, I used to walk at lunch time. Directly next to my building is the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, better known as NASA. I remember so very well always getting to the corner of the building just in time to see this well built youngish man ride up on his bicycle, tie it up to the street sign of his choice, and then to disappear into the middle of the building someepplace.

Now the unique thing about this young man, was the fact that my gaydar went off everytime I went near him. He had a beuatiful, buff body and he filled out his clothes quite nicely. AND, most importantly, on his bike was a beautiful rainbow sticker wrapped around the handle bars.

Yes, he was family. I was right.

So every day, I would look for that bike and most usually, I would find it and receive a trmendous blast of affirmation.

I also used to thrive on seeing gay pride stickers on the backs of cars. It made me happy inside. And I never spolk3e of it to a living soul until now through this blog.

Yes, I have another thing about rainbows that I only learned today. I was listening to an old Jim Croce song that speaks of rainbows.

A line from the song says something to the effect that, "You first have to have some rain before you can have a rainbow!"

I hadn't quite thought about that one before. But it's true!

The rain helps you to appreciate the beauty and calmness of the rainbow.

Perhaps one day I will appreciate rainbows more since I've had to endure so many storms in my life.

A Great Weekend Planned Ahead!

A couple of weeks ago I decided to do something special – just for me. I’m going to do something that I’ve wanted to do for the past couple of years, but never got the nerve to do it. So, this year I’m doing something about it!

I’m a member of an online group called HOW. HOW stands for Husbands Out to Wives. This is the group that I discovered a couple of weeks prior to my separation. They were holding their annual meeting in Baltimore that year and I had signed up to attend one day of it. That day was day two following the pronouncement from Lovey.

I was a wreck.

However, I have made so many very special friends in that group…and I have wanted to participate in subsequent gatherings, but just didn’t have the courage to commit. So, this year I decided to do it.

This year we are meeting in Providence, Rhode Island at the Providence Biltmore Hotel. I’m arriving super late tonight….and will be there until Monday morning. I’ll get to take part in all the workshops and offerings….and get to know all the guys better. Some of the men I know very well and they have taken time for me over the years to bring me up out of the pit.

So, that’s my weekend plans!

Wish me luck!