A woman who spent years trying to “pray the gay away” from her husband has finally realized it won’t work. In a piece for Love What Matters, Ali Anne writes about marrying her husband, Kyle, despite knowing he was attracted to men. Ten years down the road, both spouses have realized that their mixed-orientation marriage isn’t working.
Graham Gremore summarizes the piece at Queerty:
“One day, Kyle had pulled me aside and told me that he ‘struggled’ with homosexuality. My response: ‘Wow, you’re going to need a really strong wife!’ Ali writes.
Both she and Kyle were raised in religious households where they were taught being gay was wrong and, if a person did experience same-sex attraction, they should “either live a celibate life, or, deny yourself and marry someone of the opposite sex and do your best to live a heterosexual lifestyle.”
“Kyle always knew he wanted a family, so living a heterosexual lifestyle was the only option for him — we were both under the assumption we would be able to pray the gay away.”
So Ali and Kyle got married. A few years later, they started having kids.
“Being parents was the highlight of our life,” Ali recalls. “Everything we did, we did with them in mind. Life was busy and beautiful.”Except not. Because eight years into their marriage, she says, “Kyle began feeling the weight of not being true to himself as a gay man.”
Who could’ve seen that coming? Besides everyone…
It would be all too easy to judge Ali for marrying someone she knew was “struggling” with homosexuality, but anti-gay indoctrination runs deep. She earnestly believed that, with enough prayer, Kyle could be “cured.” That’s what she thought would be best for him. Don’t blame her naiveté. Blame the toxicity of anti-gay rhetoric.
One evening [Kyle] told her, “If I am going to be around gay men, I’m going to want to be with a man. This is not just about sex with a man, this is about loving a man and being loved by a man. Ideally, I want to have a relationship with a man.”
That’s when Ali says she knew her marriage was over.
“It has been two years since we made the decision to end our marriage and our lives have drastically changed,” Ali writes. “Through our decision to end our marriage, coming out as gay (Kyle) and becoming an LGBTQ ally (myself) we lost 95% of our friends and family.”
That’s a sadly common reality when people come out of the closet. Luckily for Kyle, his ex-wife is affirming — and hopefully his kids will be accepting as well.