A Valentine for Her Gay Ex-Husband

My country is mired in blood and secrecy at the moment. None of it has touched us personally — for we are the invincible urban middle-class, flayed by the market and government and social systems every day but alive till the end like cockroaches — except the fear that our streets might suddenly burst into riots.

Speaking of love in such circs might reek of pink escapsim, but speaking of this love isn’t.

This love speaks of people whose very existence was mired in blood and secrecy. It speaks of friendship, loyalty, dignity, and freedom. It is beauty carved of steel, and decorated with hope.

Read the full article here. If it makes you want to cry, let yourself. Some things deserve the validation of your tears: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/judith-newton/gay-husband-valentine_b_2641159.html

It was the middle-sixties, and homosexuality was still widely regarded as a neurosis, and my own ignorance was profound. But most importantly, I wanted to believe that therapy would be the “cure,” because I felt with him what I had longed to feel for most of my existence — happy, valued, loved, secure, at home.

[…]

After he began his sexual journey, we both fell in love with other men, but within two years, we were living as roommates and would continue to do so for the next 10 years. “If ever two people were made for each other,” we said, “it’s us.”

He met another man; I met another man too. Mine came to live with me. And Dick. I married my new man — with many second thoughts — and the three of us moved to a three-story Victorian house, ideal for sharing. When my daughter was born the following summer, life felt complete.

[A year later] On Thanksgiving morning, as we held hands, he died. [Of AIDS.] He was 46.

Perhaps the story of our love belongs to the 1960s, when everything seemed possible, a spirit we never lost. Had we come to each other in the 1970s, our marriage might never have taken place because in the 1970s, the lines between gay and straight were strictly drawn. But had we met in the 2010s, who knows? Genders, sexualities and modes of attachments have multiplied and blossomed and anything is possible today. In honor of him, I want to celebrate the day of romance with a Valentine that honors the many kinds of love that are in the offing — if we are flexible and creative enough to make them work, and if, in the end, we are open to possibility.

 

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