Carolyn Moos, we thought you should know: Here at the Straight Spouse Network, we are proud of you.
You didn’t ask for attention now that the world is chattering about your broken engagement to Jason Collins in 2009. You didn’t know your fiance was gay until he told you. And he told you just before he told the whole world. On the cover of Sports Illustrated, no less. And then on every news and talk show in creation.
Now Oprah wants to talk to him. And the President of the United States called to say he is so proud of him.
All that is fine. But WE are proud of YOU.
We know it is for the best that Jason broke off the engagement with you. We know it hurt, especially after 8 years. We know that he didn’t have to come out and tell the world he is gay. We know that what he has done – coming out, admitting that he lived a lie – took some strength and integrity. It was so important for him to do that. So many of us have never had the passing dignity or consideration of being told by our spouses and significant others, even when we find out. The Straight Spouse Network is the primary support group for anyone who has had this experience. We tend not to be the out and proud crowd, because we are busy recovering and putting our own lives back together.
We know that when a gay husband or lesbian wife or fiance comes out of the closet, there’s a lot of pressure for us to remain in the closet. The script of the inspirational coming out story of struggle is somehow not so noble when there’s a character in that story who was deceived, and used – often for many years. We know it is complicated. We also know that our stories, our lives, make many people uncomfortable. Who cares, some say. You had to know, others say. Other reactions from friends, acquaintances, family, public might be less kind.
You’ve had your share of that in the past few days. You could have declined to give interviews, stayed out of the limelight. But you are an important part of this story. And you told it like it is – and was – for you.
You told your story with grace, strength, dignity and poise. Its not an easy thing to talk about. But you did great!
We are not the President, we are not Oprah, we are not celebrities. But we are heterosexual men and women who have lived in someone else’s closet. Some of us have yet to emerge from those closets, into a world that is not always sympathetic or safe.
We are so very proud of you.