I guess this is more of a vent than anything...Mods, I was unsure whether to put this here or in Personal Growth, but I thought I might get more support here. Hope that's OK but feel free to move it.
A little background: I'm a 37-yo woman involved in a het relationship with a great guy. We have two kids, and we're engaged. He is the first serious het relationship I've had since high school. In between, I have identified as bi, but mostly as lesbian -- it was only in 2000 or so that I started accepting my bisexuality, in part b/c I met and fell in love with DP.
When we got pregnant and I moved into his house, I found myself -- all of a sudden, or so it seemed -- turned into the very picture of typical housewifedom/motherhood. I a SAHM and I have all the outward trappings -- OK, we don't have a minivan
, but I have just turned into a schlumpy mom with the sneakers and sweats, with the harried, hurried frustration and the granola bars in my bag and the toys littering the backseat of the car, yk? In other words, I have totally lost myself and my identity -- not necessarily b/c of the sexuality issue, but just in general. I never, ever thought I'd be a parent, not even back in the day, before I came out. It just wasn't in my future...or so I thought. But I find I adore being a mom, and of course I love my kids, and I'm good at it. But there's still something nagging...a grief, perhaps, for the life I've left behind.
Until recently, I've been happy, or at least content, with DP and with our life together. I've been struggling with finding myself again, or rediscovering myself in this new environment, but on the whole I've been distracted with the day-to-day of raising the kids. But lately...I don't know, it's as though something has changed within me. I've been having dreams about all my ex-GFs. I've been thinking more than usual about who I used to be and how I've changed. I'm a member of the board of my son's preschool, and we've been having board meetings at a local LGBT coffeeshop, and it's bumming me out -- not that we're there, but that I'm me. That I no longer belong there, even though I feel like I do. Or I should. I wish I had some way to announce myself -- "Hey, even though I'm a parent, and I'm with these other parents, and I live with a guy...I'm still one of you! Honest!" But am I? I guess that's the crux of the matter. In addition to the lesbian relationships I had, it also meant so much to me to belong to this subculture, this community, and I no longer do. And that's hard. It's like I've bought into the heteropatriarchy that I rebelled against for so long. How could I have done this?
I've talked to DP about this, and about the fact that although we're engaged, it's hard for me to commit to him, knowing that that means committing to heterosexuality (at least in practice) -- unless we radically rethink our definitions of marriage and commitment, which I don't think either of us is prepared to do right now. He is a very cool guy, and understanding about all my ambivalence -- I couldn't be with him if I had to hide who I was and how I felt, yk?
I have a friend who is in a similar boat -- married w/kids, but still identifies as queer, and I love that I can be open with her, and talk about our past GFs and so on, but we are not that close and don't get together that often. Next time we do, I want to address this w/her and see what she says, but... Anyway, she recently introduced me to yet another bi/queer mama friend of hers, and I find myself fantasizing about this woman -- not sexually, per se, but just...about being with her. About somehow her husband and my partner being magically out of the picture and the two of us being a couple, a family with our kids. I'm not even particularly attracted to her. I just think she's really cool, and -- I dunno, maybe it's my only channel of fantasy/escapism? Maybe she just gives a face to my (hitherto unacknowledged) dreams of being able to be actively queer again?
I don't even know what I want. I can't leave DP -- financially I am not in a position to do that, and I love him, besides. He's a great dad, and I have no complaints (other than the usual complaints, you know?
but no serious ones). I feel really stuck and confused. I am a million miles from who I used to be, and while on the one hand that's great -- I've grown and changed for the better, a LOT -- on the other hand, I miss me.
I feel like I've erased myself for the sake of my partnership and my kids. Which -- you know, there's worse things in the world than sacrificing things for the love of others. I know this. But I am still plagued by this feeling of sadness and grief and loss and longing.
Anyhoo. If you've read this far, thank you.
I think writing this post has helped me take the first step towards working through my grief, and identifying my dissatisfaction. But if you have any words of advice or wisdom, I'd love to hear 'em.