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Posted by: Depressed | 2008/07/02

My Father is bisexual!

Hi there

My father is bisexual and i found this out about three years ago. I really don't mind gays but when it comes to my father, it sickens me. What irratates me so much is that he kept it a secret throughout his marriage to my mother...of 30 years and after having three daughters!!!!

He phoned me last week and told me that he has five 'boyfriends'. Why are gay men so promiscuous? He wants to get married to the one...a Thai man. Please give me some advice. His not even divorced to my mother yet FFS!

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageGay, lesbian and bisexual expert

Hi Depressed, welcome to the forum and thanks for posting.

Great advice from several people and I have little to add. This isn't only about your father - it impacts on you personally in that your sense of him and the reality of who he has been in your life is being questioned. On some level your sense of reality has been challenged and your feelings are totally normal. We as gay people are sometimes impatient for people to accept us when we disclose our sexual orientation and we need to allow people space and time to come to terms with the news. This entails a process - you may have to mourn the loss of something as you knew it before you can simply accept the changed reality.

Please keep posting.

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Jane | 2008/07/02

It seems to me that you are more hurt by his hypocrisy and the way he has broken the news to you than by his being gay or bi sexual. You probably wondering what else about his life and the things he has taught you are true and real.

You must accept that you are not going to change him. I really suggest that you and if she wants, your mother (she must also be hurting like hell) go for counselling and advice to help you get through this. You must feel that you having been living a lie all your life and I am sure you feel completely lost, hurt and bewildered.

I really think that talking it out, your feelings and emotions with a professional will help.

God Bless and Good luck

Reply to Jane
Posted by: Nikkits | 2008/07/02

Depressed,

You received a lot of good advice here and I cannot add anything to that.

On a more general note however, I still find it sad, very very sad, that so many people, including you reacted with that terrible rejection as if your father is now suddenly not worth the same human being you have known all these years.

I have to take my hat off to him for having held on in a world of discomfort all these years despite knowing how he felt yet never could "come out" and live an honest life.

Deal with your anger by imagining yourself to have to live as a man, be treated like a man, seen as a man no matter how clearly you know you are a female. It is hypothatic but just think yourself into being born into such a dilema and then having to live like that, a lie, for 30 yeas plus. Admire your father for being who he is, YOUR FATHER.

I don’t blame you for being angry but I wish and pray everyday that one day the human race will forsake their prejudice and see all people as EQUAL regardless of their gender, sexual preferences, etc.

Nikkits

Reply to Nikkits
Posted by: Gareth | 2008/07/02

Hi HAPPY1 and thanks for posting here. I am sure that this is not an easy situation and that it really hurts to think about it. But like you say, you do love your dad and want him to be happy, so I want you to try and stand on the outside looking at this, and not through the hurt, because that is what blurs what you see and think right now (which I suppose is understandable). But first of all, let me clear up a misconception here (which I also feel you think because of looking through the personal pain you feel). Gay men are not all promiscious, in fact they are no more promiscious than straight people. Yes some are, but some straight people are as well, just look at how many men cheat on their wives.

Now, I want you to understand, I am sure this 30 years with your mom was no joyride for your dad too, knowing that he was gay or bisexual. I am sure he had hell inside himself too. I was married for only 2 years, without kids, and it nearly killed me to walk with this secret inside me. And stop looking at that 30 years as years wasted. He at least stuck around and provided a good upbringing for you and your sisters. The fact that they did not have such a great marriage is most probably a symptom of the storm that I was sure was brewing on his insides. you must also remember that 30 years ago it was absolutely unheard of for a gay man to "come out". It had to be a total secret and underground thing then, forcing thousands of gays to get married and have a family. It only started getting easier and more acceptible in the last decade or so. It is easy to blame him for lying all those years but I promise you that it really wasn't easy for him to walk with this inside him. And yes, maybe his promiscuity is now a result of "making up" for all those years where he had to live with it cooped up inside him - and I am not saying that is right behaviour, but try to understand why he might be behaving the way he is. And yes, I also smell some midlife-crisis here. I really feel sorry for him, I can only imagine what he had to go through.

Again, I am not trying to justify anything, I am trying to get you to look at it from a different point of view too.

You love him, so now is the time for you to get to know him. Be there for him, and try to build an open relationship with him, so that you can be his "counsellor". But yes, please try and get to a counsellor yourself, to help you cope, and to equip you to help him indirectly. And please be there for your mom too. I am sure that this is not easy on her as well.

Reply to Gareth
Posted by: LONEWOLF | 2008/07/02

Hi HAPPY1. The thing is he has the problems, not you. He did not have the guts to be himself years ago, and now want to take it out on everyone in the vicinity. He also wants to “catch-up” and tries to be what he is not. I also smell a mid-life crisis here. I suspected he would not consider counseling, well that is his loss. I can assure you he is not happy and will only be once he deals with all his issues homself. What you need to do is look after yourself and your mother and get some help in that department if necessary. He must be willing to address his issues, no one else can. He will have to decide to get help. Forcing him will be counter-productive. Show him your love by accepting him for what he is, although you must make it clear to him what you do not approve of. Do not repeat his hypocrisy by not being clear on what you feel. This must be extremely hard and I really suggest that you get professional help to get you through this. All the best

Reply to LONEWOLF
Posted by: 100% Str8 | 2008/07/02

Lonewolf makes an excellent point with Love and acceptance. In fact here is what David Richo says:

However, five (5) aspects of love are important to make us feel loved:

receiving ATTENTION
Receiving ACCEPTANCE
receiving APPRECIATION
receiving AFFECTION, and
being ALLOWED FREEDOM to live in accordance with our deepest needs and wishes (= 5 As)
These are building blocks of self-esteem, healthy ego, identity, coherent personality and happiness, so says David Richo in "How to Be an Adult in Relationships: Five Keys to Mindful Loving".

Yet he further cautions us to embrace five (5) things we cannot control or change, namely that:

Everything changes and ends;
Things do not always go according to plan;
Life is not always fair;
Pain is part of Life; and
People are not loving and loyal all the time


“Richo shows us that by dropping our deep-seated resistance to these givens (e.g. what your father taught you about ethnic groups etc.), we can find liberation and discover the true richness that life has to offer.” – David Richo, "the Five Things We Cannot Change and the Happiness We find by Embracing Them".

That was my two cents.

Str8 from the bottom of my heart!

Reply to 100% Str8
Posted by: HAPPY1 | 2008/07/02

Thank you for your advice Lonewolf.

I do love my father and i want him to be happy, even if that means being gay...i really don't mind. It's the simple fact that it was almost as if he was punishing my mother using verbal abuse for his 'not coming out of the closet'. My mother had to go through that for 30 years just to make sure that my sisters and i grew up in a 'stable' home.

My father would take councelling as an insult. Another thing is that he was totally against having relationships from different ethnic groups. In fact, he told me that if i ever had to come home with a black/coloured etc, that he would disown me for life. He expects me to go against everything he has ever taught me and except the fact that he mixes with different ethnic groups. One boyfriend is Indian, the other Thai and the rest white. I don't mind it at all...it's just the fact that he is contradicting himself and he is a hypocrite.

Reply to HAPPY1
Posted by: LONEWOLF | 2008/07/02

Hi Depressed. The answer is not that simple and I can only give you an opinion. We do not know much about the dynamics of your family background and how stable his relationship with your mother is. The point is, you cannot decide for him who he wants to spend his life with, nor can anything you do change his sexual preferences. I think his behavior in telling you about the five boyfriends, and matter of course telling you about the marriage is unacceptable and rather selfish of him, and I suspect there is some element of mischief in it. (Again I do not know him and how he usually acts). Many of us on this forum will suggest solutions and ideas, but in the end you will have to take all that is said and come to a solution. This is not going to go away, and even if he stops seeing his “boyfriends” or not marry as he says, a lot of damage has been done to the relationships between you and him, and him and your mother. I would seriously consider professional help. Do you think he would consider it? But I must warn you, the outcome of any counseling might not be what you want it to be. I gather from your post that you really love him. Part of love is always acceptance, and sometimes accepting the inevitable or sometimes what is not so nice. All the best and thank you for posting, but my humble opinion is professional help in some way.

Reply to LONEWOLF

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