Thursday, June 30, 2011

See ya later, alligator!

I'm heading out of town to vacation with family.  Everyone please have a happy and safe 4th of July.  I mention safety because my ex got drunk two years ago on the 4th of July, had unprotected sex and is paying an enormous price for it now.

See ya after I get back.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Spread the wealth around a little (but this really is good news)

From the Associated Press:

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The Rhode Island Senate on Wednesday approved a bill that would allow same-sex couples to enter into civil unions, a measure that Gov. Lincoln Chafee's office says he intends to sign into law.

State senators voted 21-16 to endorse the bill, about two hours after it was voted out of committee. The legislation, which already has passed the state House, allows gay couples to enter into civil unions that offer the same rights and benefits given to married couples under Rhode Island law.

It is now headed to Chafee's desk for his signature. Ahead of the vote, the independent governor called the legislation an "incremental step" toward allowing gay marriage, which he supports.

Earlier this month, New York became the sixth state to allow gay marriage, joining Iowa, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Connecticut, as well as the District of Columbia. Several other states offer civil unions or domestic partnerships instead. Lawmakers modeled the Rhode Island bill on civil union laws enacted this year in Illinois, Delaware and Hawaii.

Senate President Teresa Paiva Weed, D-Newport, a notable opponent of gay marriage, spoke in favor of civil unions ahead of the vote, calling it a "historic day" for Rhode Island.

On the floor, debate of the contentious bill ahead of the vote remained civil, although one senator who voiced his religious opposition to the bill drew audible hisses.

Several gay marriage advocacy groups have urged Chafee to veto the bill because of what they call overly broad exemptions that would allow religious institutions to ignore rights given through civil unions. The measure would, for instance, let religious hospitals refuse a civil union spouse the right to make emergency medical decisions.

Those groups and some state senators on the floor Wednesday have also said civil unions don't go nearly far enough and treat gay couples as second-class citizens.

While it's correct "to say this bill is historic and consequential," said Sen. Rhoda Perry, D-Providence, it's also correct "to say this bill is not fair, nor equitable."

Some other senators compared the bill to the "separate but equal" doctrine that justified racial segregation.

Meanwhile, groups opposed to gay marriage, which supported the religious exemption but said it didn't go far enough, called civil unions a dangerous stepping stone to full gay marriage rights. Capitol police hauled off one activist opposed to the bill in handcuffs after he held up a sign condemning it during floor debate on the state budget and shouted slogans from the gallery ahead of the vote on civil unions.

"This is a disappointing and dangerous day for marriage in Rhode Island," said Chris Plante, executive director of the National Organization for Marriage-Rhode Island. The bill's passage "presents a clear threat to the definition of marriage and the religious liberties of tens of thousands of Rhode Islanders."

Like some senators, Plante said the matter was best decided by a statewide referendum.

The civil unions bill was introduced as a compromise after House Speaker Gordon Fox, D-Providence, said gay marriage legislation would not pass the General Assembly this year. Fox, who is openly gay, supports gay marriage but said it couldn't overcome opposition, particularly in the Senate.

The switch was a blow to the efforts of groups like Marriage Equality Rhode Island, which was among those calling on Chafee to veto the bill if it included the religious exemptions amendment.

Ray Sullivan, MERI's campaign director, called the exemption a "black eye on the state of Rhode Island."

Many senators heralded the bill as an example of tough legislative "compromise," a word Sullivan bristled at, asking how many straight senators would compromise their own rights.

"I'm not sure they'd be so quick to use the word compromise when it affects them," he said. "You compromise on tax policy. You compromise on labor negotiations. You don't compromise on people's fundamental human rights."

Still, other supporters of gay marriage called the bill a step in the right direction.

"We have made great progress in our goal of providing increased rights, benefits and protections for gay and lesbian couples," said Rep. Peter J. Petrarca, D-Lincoln, after the vote. Petrarca sponsored the bill in the House. "This bill is a step forward to ensuring equality and improving their quality of life."

Paiva Weed, the Senate president, said after the committee vote that, if the bill passed the Senate, she didn't expect a push next year for a gay marriage bill.

Sullivan begged to differ.

"We'll be back tomorrow and the next day and however long it takes for Rhode Islanders to be treated equally under the law," he said.

Go, Rhode Island!

Now let's get this same equality spread to some spots outside the extreme northeastern United States. We need marriage equality everywhere.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Wedding bells in New York

On June 24, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo signed legislation legalizing same-sex marriage in New York.

It's about damn time.  And every other state in the United States that hasn't legalized it needs to do so pronto.

And why?  From a legalistic point of view, it's so that gay and lesbians can enjoy the same rights as straight people.  And from a personal and selfish point of view, it's so gay men might stop marrying straight women and screwing up their lives.

Of course, the radical right wing fundamnmentalists are screaming that this will undermine the institution of marriage.  And to that, I post the following status I saw on Facebook on June 25:

So...let me get this STRAIGHT....Kelsey Grammer can end a 15yr marriage by phone, Larry King is on divorce #9, Britney Spears had a 55 hr marriage, Jesse James & Tiger Woods, while married, were having sex with EVERYONE, 53% of Americans get divorced and 30-60% cheat on their spouses. Yet, same-sex marriage is going to destroy the institution of marriage? Really? Re-post if you find this ironic.

Yeah, really.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Gimme a *&^%&ing break!

From Straight Guise

It's not a gay thing, it's a guy thing!

Straight Guise is about straight men who have sex with men (SMSM) who question their sexual orientation and are not gay. It is about the many reasons men engage in sexual contact with other men that are not about a homosexual identity.

Straight men cannot become gay and gay men cannot become straight. Gay men are not gay due to complicated childhood experiences such as sexual abuse or problematic parenting. Science is increasingly pointing to the evidence that gay men are born that way.

There is a significant difference between sexual identity, sexual behavior and sexual fantasy and Straight Guise helps teach what these are.
  



Become the man you were meant to be!


Written from Dr. Joe Kort's perspective as an openly gay psychotherapist who has counseled thousands of sexually confused men over the years, Straight Guise shows how this phenomenon crosses all ethnicities and cultures. Not a week goes by when I don’t receive distressed emails or phone calls from heterosexual men who worry they might be gay and from wives who have discovered their husbands engaged in gay hookups and relationships or exploring gay porn.

Written from Dr. Joe Kort's perspective as an openly gay psychotherapist who has counseled thousands of sexually confused men over the years, Straight Guise intends to help readers just as I have helped my clients, first by separating the two types of men in the world: There are men who are gay and bisexual and then there are heterosexual men who seek out sex with other men.

The difference is one of sexual preference versus sexual identity. Sexual Preferences are about various desires, positions and fantasies one has whereas sexual identity is about how one self-identities in terms of straight, gay, or bisexual.

Straight Guise is not about Reparative Therapy which is harmful. It also is not a site about only pathologizing straight men who have sex with men. It is focused on understanding and differentiating sexual orientaion, sexual acting out normal sexual interest heterosexual men have in sexual contact with other men.
IMHO, if it walks like a duck and it quacks like a duck and it looks like a duck, it's a duck.  If a man has sex with other men (except in certain situations like prison where sex with men becomes a survival technique) he is gay.  Period.

It's malarkey like this that makes gay husbands feel like what they have done is okay.  This man writes for Psychology Today, which just made me re-think my opinion of that magazine.  No respectable psychologist buys into this "sex with men for the heck of it" philosophy.

Dr. Kort gets two thumbs down from me. 


Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Very interesting...

I've always thought a lot of homophobia should be accompanied by the phrase "Methinks he doth protest too much." Seems I may be right.

New Study Links Homophobia with Homosexual Arousal
August 1996 Press Release

WASHINGTON -- Psychoanalytic theory holds that homophobia -- the fear, anxiety, anger, discomfort and aversion that some ostensibly heterosexual people hold for gay individuals -- is the result of repressed homosexual urges that the person is either unaware of or denies. A study appearing in the August 1996 issue of the Journal of Abnormal Psychology, published by the American Psychological Association (APA), provides new empirical evidence that is consistent with that theory.

Researchers at the University of Georgia conducted an experiment involving 35 homophobic men and 29 nonhomophobic men as measured by the Index of Homophobia scale. All the participants selected for the study described themselves as exclusively heterosexual both in terms of sexual arousal and experience.

Each participant was exposed to sexually explicit erotic stimuli consisting of heterosexual, male homosexual and lesbian videotapes (but not necessarily in that order). Their degree of sexual arousal was measured by penile plethysmography, which precisely measures and records male tumescence.

Men in both groups were aroused by about the same degree by the video depicting heterosexual sexual behavior and by the video showing two women engaged in sexual behavior. The only significant difference in degree of arousal between the two groups occurred when they viewed the video depicting male homosexual sex: 'The homophobic men showed a significant increase in penile circumference to the male homosexual video, but the control [nonhomophobic] men did not.'

Broken down further, the measurements showed that while 66% of the nonhomophobic group showed no significant tumescence while watching the male homosexual video, only 20% of the homophobic men showed little or no evidence of arousal. Similarly, while 24% of the nonhomophobic men showed definite tumescence while watching the homosexual video, 54% of the homophobic men did.

When asked to give their own subjective assessment of the degree to which they were aroused by watching each of the three videos, men in both groups gave answers that tracked fairly closely with the results of the objective physiological measurement, with one exception: the homophobic men significantly underestimated their degree of arousal by the male homosexual video.

Do these findings mean, then, that homophobia in men is a reaction to repressed homosexual urges, as psychoanalysis theorizes? While their findings are consistent with that theory, the authors note that there is another, competing theoretical explanation: anxiety. According to this theory, viewing the male homosexual videotape may have caused negative emotions (such as anxiety) in the homophobic men, but not in the nonhomophobic men. As the authors note, 'anxiety has been shown to enhance arousal and erection,' and so it is also possible that 'a response to homosexual stimuli [in these men] is a function of the threat condition rather than sexual arousal per se. These competing notions can and should be evaluated by future research.'

Article: 'Is Homophobia Associated With Homosexual Arousal?' by Henry E. Adams, Ph.D., Lester W. Wright, Jr., Ph.D. and Bethany A. Lohr, University of Georgia, in Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Vol. 105, No. 3, pp 440-445.

The American Psychological Association (APA), in Washington,DC, is the largest scientific and professional organization representing psychology in the United States and is the world's largest association of psychologists. APA's membership includes more than 142,000 researchers, educators, clinicians, consultants and students. Through its divisions in 49 subfields of psychology and affiliations with 58 state and Canadian provincial associations, APA works to advance psychology as a science, as a profession and as a means of promoting human welfare.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

You Can't Fix Stupid

Comedian Ron White is famous for his comedy routine "You can't fix stupid."

Well, here's a news flash for you: You can't fix gay either. Fix implies something is broken. Being gay isn't being broken. It's being the way God made you, even if it's different than "normal." Being gay is its own normal. I know this. Lots of people know this. But sadly, too many people in positions of power and influence continue to believe being gay is a choice and can be "fixed."

Someone directed me to the story of Kirk Murphy, a man who was part of a UCLA study conducted by George Rekers as part of his doctoral thesis.

In 1970, a well-known expert on homosexuality and transgender issues appeared on a local television talk show in Los Angeles to talk about feminine boys. He described how very young boys who behaved in a feminine manner would almost invariably grow up to become a homosexual. Alongside that expert was a gay man who described his own childhood and confirmed what the expert said. But there was hope, the expert announced. A new program at the University of California at Los Angeles would ensure these young boys grew up to become masculine, normal men. The expert gave a list of symptoms to watch out for, and urged his viewers to call him if their children exhibited the problems he described.

The mother of a four year, eleven month old boy saw that program that afternoon. She noted the list of symptoms that the expert gave and concluded that there was something seriously wrong with her son. She and her husband decided to take their young boy to UCLA for treatment to prevent him from growing up to be gay.

That young boy came under the care of a very young grad student by the name of George Alan Rekers. The boy’s treatment would become a subject of Rekers’s doctoral thesis, and the astounding success that Rekers claimed in curing the young boy would mark the start of a very impressive career. Rekers would write about “Kraig” in at least twenty publications during his career, a career which included becoming a very important activist in the promotion of anti-gay causes.

In this original BTB investigation, we speak with his family and friend who knew the real “Kraig” to uncover the truth behind Reker’s greatest success story. Their stories reveals the tragedy of a terrible experiment on a very young boy which would haunt him for the rest of his life. It is not only an indictment of a man who built his anti-gay career on Kirk’s suffering, but a rebuke to others — those in the mental health profession then and in the contemporary ex-gay movement today — who would place their careers and agendas ahead of the well-being of this young boy and countless others like him.
I think it's interesting to note that George Rekers, a psychologist and ordained Southern Baptist minister, was caught last year returning from a European vacation with a male escort he found on rentboy.com. The escort has claimed that Rekers is in fact gay.

In my humble opinion, maybe if folks would stop trying to fix something that's not broken, gay men would stop marrying straight women and messing up their lives. I've already blogged about religious hypocrisy and the Rekers story was part of it. I find this interesting, especially in light of a recent article in Psychology Today where homophobic men were found to be highly aroused by gay porn.

Go figure.

Thursday, June 16, 2011

FINALLY! Someone "gets" it.

Another review, but this is from someone who understands our plight.

Fran Drescher May Be “Happily Divorced,” But Not All Ex-Wives Are So Thrilled

Posted by carolyncastiglia on June 15th, 2011 at 9:49 pm

Fran Drescher, best known for her starring role in 90′s sitcom “The Nanny,” appeared on Good Morning America yesterday to talk about her latest television project, “Happily Divorced,” premiering tonight at 10:30 pm on TV Land. In it, Drescher plays an L.A. florist whose husband ends their decades-long marriage when he comes out of the closet.

“Happily Divorced” was created and written by Drescher and her real-life husband of 21 years, Peter Marc Jacobson, who also co-created “The Nanny.” It just so happens that two years after Drescher and Jacobson divorced, Jacobson announced that he’s gay. Drescher credits her uterine cancer survival with having “re-calibrated” her life with her ex, allowing them to become friends. She swears they didn’t divorce because her ex was gay, which is maybe why she’s not bitter about it. But Drescher does admit to missing some red flags while she was married to Jacobson. She told the Huffington Post, “He was very into my wardrobe, picking out my clothes, buying my clothes, picking out my shoes, discussing my makeup. But he was a very controlling person, and I kind of assumed it was him being a Svengali, which he was. He was also very into musicals, show tunes, Judy Garland, Diana Ross, Cher.” But, she says, “At the time, the ‘metrosexual’ was becoming a part of pop culture, so I chalked it up to that,” a sentiment she repeated on GMA.

Drescher should count herself one of the lucky ones, if not the luckiest broad to ever have been married to a gay man. Sure, Hollywood is rife with starlets who’ve survived marriages to boys who like boys: Judy Garland, Liza Minnelli, (like mother, like daughter!) Carrie Fisher, Katie Holmes (okay, okay)… but not every woman gets out of a “Brokeback Marriage” so unscathed.

Juliet Jeske, a friend of mine who sings and hosts burlesque shows in downtown Manhattan, says the concept of “Happily Divorced” makes her cringe. Jeske ended her marriage about two years ago, after her husband told her he was gay. “I am going to my support group for straight spouses tonight and the group is already talking about it,” she says. “Although I still love my ex-husband and consider him my friend my divorce has been devastating.” Like Drescher, Jeske worked closely with her ex-husband, and she says, “Since our split, my income has been nearly wiped out.” She adds, “I also can’t figure out dating at all so… I wouldn’t say I was happily divorced.”

According to The New York Times, there are up to “3.4 million American women who once were or are now married to men who have sex with men.” The Times article on the subject, written in 2006, one year after “Brokeback Mountain” was released and two years after the Jim McGreevey scandal, seems largely biased toward gay men who feel compelled to lie to the women they marry. “On the whole these are not marriages of convenience or cynical efforts to create cover,” the article contends. “Gay and bisexual men continue to marry for complex reasons, many impelled not only by discrimination, but also by wishful thinking, the layered ambiguities of sexual love and authentic affection.”

The article goes on to quote Joe Kort, a clinical social worker in Royal Oak, MI, as saying, “These men genuinely love their wives. They fall in love with their wives, they have children, they’re on a chemical, romantic high, and then after about seven years, the high falls away and their gay identity starts emerging. They don’t mean any harm.”

Kort then goes on to essentially blame the female victims in these mixed-orientation marriages, saying, “Straight people rarely marry gay people accidentally. Some women find gay men less judgmental and more flexible, while others unconsciously seek partnerships that are not sexually passionate.”

Michele Weiner-Davis, marriage therapist and author, counters Kort by calling his conjecture “psychobabble.” She says, “A lot of gay people don’t know they’re gay. So how in the world are their spouses supposed to have some sort of gaydar? Therapists should deal with the real issues — the shock to her system, that her husband wasn’t who she thought he was and the impact on her own identity.”

That shock to the system is what the premise of “Happily Divorced” seems to overlook. (He’s gay but it’s no problem, we’re just going to set each other up with guys from now on and be best friends like nothing ever happened!) Please. After all, a gay man leaving a mixed-orientation marriage has the excitement of sexual discovery to look forward to, while the woman he leaves feels washed-up, confused and alone. Kiri Blakeley, Forbes blogger and author of Can’t Think Straight, A Memoir of Mixed Up Love, knows all about being left behind in a blur, her husband suddenly craving – of all things – a bear. Blakeley’s husband came out to her – and himself – after a decade of marriage. Blakeley writes:

I didn’t see much bleakness in Aaron’s future. He was cute and hetero looking and acting. Men would be all over him. His friends were not homophobic and would all support him. His family might be shocked, but they too would come around because Aaron was such a sweet, lovable guy (not to mention he had a gay sister who had not been ostracized). Within a year, he’d be living in Chelsea with his hair- stylist boyfriend, wearing muscle shirts and walking his poodle. Meanwhile, I’d be the head case who scares away men due to my tendency to scream Areyougayareyougayareyougay? If they prefer a Seinfeld rerun instead of sex. You hear that cliché: feeling like you’re in a waking nightmare. And so it was. I sat in a chair across from Aaron with my bare knees pulled up under my chin, frantically wondering, “When will I wake up from this? None of this can be real.”

- From CAN’T THINK STRAIGHT Copyright © 2011 Kiri Blakeley. All rights reserved. Published by arrangement with Citadel Press/Kensington Publishing Corp.


So what’s my part in this, you might be wondering? Why do I care about the premise of “Happily Divorced?” Is my ex-husband gay? I don’t think so, but I often wondered while we were married if he was, since I knew in my gut he was hiding something. And that’s what brings me to my problem with “Happily Divorced.” As a woman who was lied to – albeit in a different way – for as long as Jeske and Blakeley (and thank God not as long as Drescher), I am so so so so so sick and tired of people telling me that I, too, should be in an amicable relationship with my ex. Occasional readers stumble on one post about my divorce and call me bitter or angry, then suggest that because of my supposed bitterness and anger I’m doing my child a disservice, that what I really ought to do is be kind to my ex, be friends with my ex, a man who lied to me for ten years. Um, no thanks. And anyone who can suggest I should “make an effort to maintain a respectful relationship” with my ex has clearly never been betrayed in the eviscerating, identity-destroying way I was, and I think Jeske and Blakeley were, too. What I don’t understand is why Drescher seems so okay about her divorce, but maybe it’s because even after their break-up, her husband still holds the purse strings.

My criticism of the show’s premise aside, I do find Drescher to be a charming actress (I’ll admit to watching re-runs of “The Nanny” when I can’t sleep and nothing else is on – and besides, she was in Spinal Tap for God’s sake). I look forward to tuning in shortly to see if the comedy stylings of Drescher and her hilarious co-star (and fellow Christopher Guest collaborator) John Michael Higgins can override the objectionable premise. (Oddly, Higgins is straight, despite being known for playing flamboyant characters.)

THANK YOU, Ms. Castiglia!

Another Not-So-Good Review

You can find it here.  They call it "jaw-droppingly bad."

It sure was!

A Few Reviews

Here's one from BuddyTV:

A premise by itself can't make a TV show great, but it can make it terrible. Such is the case with TV Land's newest original sitcom, Happily Divorced, starring Fran Drescher. The set-up is so painfully unfunny and flimsy that, even 20 years ago, it would've seemed like a bad idea pitched by some hacky network executive.

On Happily Divorced, Fran's husband of 18 years, Peter, wakes up suddenly one night in bed and announces that he's gay. If you're anything like me, you've already dismissed the entire series based on that simple premise.

Sadly, the show relies on that one joke to sustain an entire series, and the result is a sitcom as grating and annoying as Fran Drescher's voice. In the right context, she can be very funny, but the material here is so weak that every joke just falls flat.

It's a shame because Happily Divorced has assembled an impressive cast. Fran's gay husband is played by John Michael Higgins, who you probably recognize as a regular in Christopher Guest films, most notably as half of the gay couple from Best in Show. Fran's best friend is played by Everybody Hates Chris' Tichina Arnold and Fran's mom is played by EGOT winner Rita Moreno (which means she's won the Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony).

That's a high-caliber cast, one that Happily Divorced and its tired and cliche jokes don't deserve. It's a problem TV Land has had before.

When the network first launched original scripted sitcoms with Hot in Cleveland, it landed an instant success, and TV Land has tried to replicate that ever since. The previous effort, Retired at 35, failed for many of the same reasons that Happily Divorced is a failure: a bad premise.

Based on Hot in Cleveland, it feels like TV Land thinks all it needs to do is get a bunch of former sitcom stars, put them on a show together, and let the magic happen. That's misguided, and it's why just throwing Fran Drescher or George Segal into a show isn't enough to make it worth watching.

Hot in Cleveland is great because it honors the simplistic traditions of classic sitcoms. It's just about the crazy situations that four women find themselves in. It's not about a young man in a retirement community or a gay man living with his ex-wife. Sure, there was the initial premise of having three glamorous California women adjusting to life in the Midwest, but Hot in Cleveland doesn't rely on that premise as a crutch.

Happily Divorced is a gimmick sitcom, a show where there's some wacky and unusual premise to make it stand out. If the writing was good, it wouldn't need the gimmick. Seinfeld was a show about nothing, Friends was just about a group of friends. The best sitcoms don't have gimmicks, they just have funny characters and funny situations.

Happily Divorced has neither, and the sooner TV Land realizes why Hot in Cleveland is the only decent show it has, the sooner they can stop making sub-par comedies that try to replicate that success.
And from Variety:

TV Land's out-of-the-gate success with "Hot in Cleveland" is beginning to look more and more like a fluke. The network has followed that sprightly original comedy with the dismal "Retired at 35" and now even-worse "Happily Divorced," whose ability to attract viewers will hinge largely on their failure to differentiate this Fran Drescher vehicle from "The Nanny" reruns. The premise's autobiographical underpinnings notwithstanding, "Divorced" is so painfully broad and filled with gay stereotypes all but Drescher's most faithful fans will yearn to be separated from their TVs.

Drescher and ex-husband Peter Marc Jacobson (who co-created "The Nanny") drew inspiration from their real-life relationship in creating the show. It's promotable, surely, in a People magazine way; watchable is something else again.
 
Drescher's character is informed in the opening scene by her husband Peter (John Michael Higgins, a veteran of the Christopher Guest films who deserves considerably better) that he's finally realized he's gay.
"You've never even been with a man," she protests. "Trust me, it's not that great!" And so it goes.
Flash to six months later, and the pair are divorced but -- out of financial necessity that surely wasn't part of Drescher's actual story -- forced to continue sharing a house together. (Divorce is always hardest on those without syndication money.)
 
So Peter is constantly around, even when Fran brings home a hunky date (D.W. Moffett). Then there are her wacky parents (Rita Moreno, Robert Walden), who (along with everyone else) always suspected Peter was gay and are just so excited at the prospect someone -- Fran, Peter, heck, anybody -- might be getting laid.
Everything about the show feels as if it were plucked out of a time capsule stamped 1978, around the time "La Cage Aux Folles" was released, right down to the slogan, "He came out … but he didn't move out!"
 
Drescher has always been something of a made-for-sitcoms cartoon character -- Betty Boop's look wedded with Olive Oyl's voice -- so playing broadly comes naturally. Yet even with that disclaimer, the fact-based elements to fall back on and the "Born this way" subtext, it's hard to picture "Happily Divorced" collecting any GLAAD awards.
 
As with "Retired," TV Land will roll out the new sitcom behind fresh episodes of "Hot in Cleveland," which has already become a workhorse in that regard, treated by the network like "Seinfeld" and "Frasier" rolled into one.
 
Still, if this is as ambitious as the rerun-heavy Viacom channel plans to be with its original comedies, here's one vote for repeating the golden oldies until the sprockets come off.
Glad to see I'm not the only one who thinks this show stinks -- and not just from the perspective of the straight spouse.

The TVLand Forums

It seems that folks on the TVLand forums who loooooove "Happily Divorced" are allowed to express their opinions.  When I expressed mine, I was told to shut the hell up.  So much for open discussion.

I have to feel sorry for someone who thinks the hell of being a straight spouse is funny.  Wonder how hilarious they think autism is?  Or how amusing it is to see a quadraplegic try to get in and out of a wheelchair?

I'm just sayin...

Are you laughing?

Fran Drescher appeared on "The View" Tuesday to promote her new show.  Apparently the co-hosts thought the premise of having a gay husband was funny.

I'm not laughing.  Are you?

I sent ABC an email telling them I was insulted that they gave this show credence by giving it promotional time.  It isn't funny to take my hell and laugh about it.



Wednesday, June 15, 2011

This Just In!

I've been reading some preliminary reviews of "Happily Divorced" and the reviewers are unhappily unimpressed.

YAY!

Maybe it will get cancelled quickly and put the straight wives of the world out of their misery.

According to Atticus Finch

"If you can learn a simple trick, Scout, you'll get along a lot better with all kinds of folks. You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view, until you climb inside of his skin and walk around in it" ~ Atticus Finch in To Kill a Mockingbird

Truer words were never spoken.  How many times have you had someone say to you "You need to just get over it?"   Or "You need to move on?"  I've heard it too many times.

Until you have walked in the skin of a woman who has learned after decades of marriage that her husband is gay and has slept with dozens of men, often in their marital bed, you cannot begin to understand what she's gone through or is going through.  CANNOT UNDERSTAND.  Period.

And to say "move on" or "get over it" is cruel and uncaring.

Would you say that to a mother who is grieving over the death of her child?  To the wife whose beloved husband just died of cancer?  To the child who has lost a parent?

Then why would you say it to someone whose marriage and dreams for the future have died?

P.S.  Tonight I'll be watching the new Fran Drescher show on TVLand.  It's on at 10:30 Eastern/9:30 Central.  I don't believe in criticizing something unless I've actually seen it.  I want to be able to use personal viewing experience to base my complaint on.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Trending now

I use Yahoo as my Internet home page, and when I logged in this morning, I saw that the #1 topic in Yahoo searches was "Fran Drescher."


Click on photo to enlarge
I had a really good idea what this was going to be about, but I clicked on the link to make sure.  I was right.


Click on photo to enlarge

According to Bonnie Kaye, there are over four million women in the United States who are married or have been married to gay men.  And in the majority of those cases, things didn't end well.

So why is our suffering the topic of a sitcom?  I've already ranted about this before.  But I'll rant again.  I wish Fran Drescher no personal harm, but I sincerely hope this TV show is a miserable flop.  It sickens me that so many straight wives are struggling financially while Ms. Drescher and her gay ex-husband will be making money from this show. 

It's also a sad commentary that the American public finds this humorous.  It makes me weep for the future of mankind.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Dontcha just love the religious right?

I'm so sick of supposed Christians who preach one thing and practice another. Here's an example from May 2010.

I am a Christian.  I'm not perfect.  I can't spout Bible verses for every occasion.  But by golly I know that what these people did is wrong.  So if they're such great Christians, why couldn't they see that too?  I think the answer is obvious.
Baptist minister 'took ten-day holiday with male prostitute'


A Baptist minister and leading anti-gay activist faced the ruination of his career yesterday after being photographed returning from a European holiday with a male prostitute.


George Rekers, who sits on the board of a national organisation dedicated to changing the sexuality of gay men and lesbians, hired a companion from a website called Rentboy.com that offers clients a wide range of choices, from “rentboy” and “sugar daddy” to “masseur”.


Dr Rekers said he took the prostitute on the ten-day trip last month to London and Madrid as a travel assistant after a stint in hospital. “I had surgery,” he said when approached this week by the Miami New Times. “I can’t lift luggage. That’s why I hired him.” Photographs of the pair emerging from Miami international airport last month show the older man pushing their suitcases on a trolley.


Dr Rekers’s companion has been identified as a 20-year-old Puerto Rican whose entry on the Rentboy.com website gives his name as “Geo”. The site says that he is “sensual”, “wild” and “up for anything”. It also describes him as “versatile”, with a “nice ass”.


Contacted this week by reporters in Miami, he said he was surprised by Dr Rekers’s claim to have realised he was a prostitute only halfway through their holiday.


Geo’s profile on Rentboy.com is a bewildering mix of the banal and the specific. “I’m a college guy, masculine, educated, really easy going,” he says. “Great to get along with, can hold a conversation.” He lists stripping and go-go dancing among his talents. “I will do anything you say as long as you ask,” he promises.


Dr Rekers, who co-founded America’s most powerful Christian lobbying group, has testified as an expert in favour of bans on gay adoption in Florida and Arkansas. He has also written numerous books on homosexuality as a curable condition, including Growing Up Straight: What Families Should Know about Homosexuality.


Gay rights advocates called yesterday for him to step down from the board of the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (Narth), for which he lectures across the world. He is also closely linked with the Washington-based Family Research Council, which he founded with Dr James Dobson in 1983.


In an e-mailed response to questions about the European trip, he said: “My hero is Jesus Christ who loves even the culturally despised people, including sexual sinners and prostitutes. Like Jesus Christ, I deliberately spend time with sinners with the loving goal to try to help them.”


Dr Rekers also told a blogger who reached him via Facebook: “If you talk with my travel assistant . . . you will find I spent a great deal of time sharing scientific information on the desirability of abandoning homosexual intercourse, and I shared the gospel of Jesus Christ with him in great detail.”


In 2006 Ted Haggard resigned as a leader of the National Association of Evangelicals after a male prostitute claimed to have had sex with him for three years.


Ray Ashburn, a California state senator with a long record of opposing gay rights, was arrested and charged with drunk-driving this year while leaving a gay nightclub in Sacramento. In 1988 Jimmy Swaggart, one of America’s most successful televangelists, was found to have had regular paid sex with prostitutes.


Do as I say ...


• The televangelist Pat Robertson caused outrage when he said that the Haiti earthquake was caused by “a pact to the Devil” sworn by Haitians when they became independent of French rule


• Matt Baker, a Texan minister, was convicted of faking his wife’s suicide in 2009 so that he could have a relationship with a member of his church


• Kent Hovind, a creationist minister with his own dinosaur theme park in Florida, was sentenced to ten years in jail for falsely declaring bankruptcy and threatening investigators in 2006 Hovind paid employees in cash, claiming that they were all workers of God and therefore exempt from taxes


• The TV minister Jim Bakker shocked viewers of his television series when it emerged that he had had an affair with a secretary, paying her off with church funds. He was jailed in 1989 for fraud after paying himself and his wife, Tammy Faye, below, millions of dollars in church funds and concocting a timeshare scam at his theme park in South Carolina.


Friday, June 10, 2011

ATTENTION VISITORS



There have been 100 of you as of yesterday morning. 

But why haven't you commented?  

You can comment anonymously.  You don't have to leave your name.  I know you're there because the map tells me you are.

Let me hear from you.  Let the OTHER straight wives hear from you too.  We need each other.  There is power in knowing you aren't alone.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

My Name is Maggie and My Husband is Gay

He's my ex-husband now, but about two years ago I made the decision to seek a divorce.  I'd discovered a few months before that my husband was gay and had been quite active on the down-low.  At one point during the divorce process my attorney asked me to see if I could count the number of men my husband had been with over the previous four years.  When I got to three dozen (yes, THREE DOZEN), she told me to stop because that was enough evidence for her and more than enough hurt for me.

I felt sure I was the only woman in the world with this situation.  Well, I knew about Dina McGreevey whose husband was governor of New Jersey and, with Dina at his side, announced to the world he was a gay American.

I found this article about them at ABC.com. It is dated May 1, 2007.

McGreevey's Wife: 'He Was a Great Actor'

A self-absorbed con artist who married for political gain and would be running for president had a gay sex scandal not fouled his career.

That's the picture Dina Matos McGreevey painted of Jim McGreevey, her estranged husband and former New Jersey governor, on the day her memoir, "Silent Partner: A Memoir of My Marriage" hits bookstores. It comes eight months after her husband published his own version of the spectacle that unfolded in front of the nation, and as their divorce proceedings come to a head.

Through their very public displays, both the former governor and his wife seem intent on telling the public their version of the relationship, no matter how personal or disconnected each account may be from the other.

"I think it was all a charade for him," Matos McGreevey told Oprah Winfrey during a taping of today's show.
Matos McGreevey said she still doesn't believe McGreevey is homosexual, despite the sex scandal involving a male aide that forced his from office in 2004.

"I don't think he's just gay, I think he's bisexual," she said, describing their sex life together as satisfying throughout their marriage. "I never saw him checking out men, but I certainly saw him checking out women."
When she did learn of the affair four years after their 2000 marriage, she said she didn't leave him immediately to protect their daughter, Jacqueline, who was 2 at the time.

"No one ever said to me, 'He's gay,'" Matos McGreevey said. "It's a cliche, but the wife's always the last to know, and it's true."

Winfrey pressed the former New Jersey first lady about the press conference when McGreevey announced his homosexuality and resignation, asking why Matos McGreevey held a smile despite the bitter personal reality the announcement had for her.

She smiled, she said, because her calculating husband instructed her to.

"As his world was falling apart, he was still choreographing the entire day," Matos McGreevey said, quoting her husband as telling her to keep a strong face and play the role of "Jackie Kennedy."

She described secretive behavior that, in retrospect, should have made her question what she called a "fairy tale" marriage that began in 2000.

Not once did she go to McGreevey's parents' house, she said, even though it was just five miles away from their own. She said McGreevey kept finances secret, maintained a relationship that may have been inappropriate with his ex-wife, and kept his daughter from the previous marriage from ever meeting her.

"Silent Partners" is released eight months after McGreevey offered his own story in the book "The Confession" — in which the former governor wrote that his wife may have known he was gay.

While she flatly denies knowing about his gay affair, it was in preparing to chronicle his story, Matos McGreevey said, that she discovered notes that he acknowledged he had married her simply as a political prop.

When the book was published in September 2006, a contrite McGreevey sat on Winfrey's couch, telling her, "When you're in the closet, part of the hell of being in the closet is you're denying your own existence."

The sex he had with Matos McGreevey was "special" and "real for that moment," Mcgreevey told Winfrey in a clip the talk host aired as part of her Matos McGreevey interview.

"He was a great actor," she responded. "He kept these two worlds separate and was a master at it."

The couple, in court last Friday for their first public appearance together since McGreevey's bombshell resignation, have traded poor parenting accusations in divorce filings. One demand she has made is that McGreevey strip a 50-inch-by-60-inch photograph of a nude male from his wall.

For now, Jacqueline, now 5, lives with Matos McGreevey and visits her father, who lives with a male partner, every other weekend and on alternate Wednesdays.

Matos McGreevey told Winfrey that her estranged husband is not a remorseful man — and that, counter to his allegations that she is in denial, it's McGreevey who can't distinguish between what's real and what's not.

She said she is now single and distrustful of men because of her estranged husband. After McGreevey came out, she sought advice from Sen. Hillary Clinton, D-N.Y., a woman familiar with being dragged into a sex scandal involving a high-profile politician.

Matos McGreevey said that Clinton is now in a political position herself that McGreevey would very much like to be in — if it weren't for his sullied reputation.

"I have no doubt he would be running for president right now," Matos McGreevey said.
Scary thought, huh, that such a narcissist could have become president. I can totally relate to being married to a self-absorbed con artist who tries to shift blame away from himself.  I too am distrustful of men.  As the title of the article says, I often commented my ex-husband was a great actor.  Now he's just a great jerk who, like Jim McGreevey, can't distinguish reality from non-reality. 

I have a news flash for Dina, though.  Honey, if he's living with a man and having sex with a man, he's not bisexual, he's gay.  Period.  That big photo of a nude man should be a big clue too.  He might have been able to perform in bed with you, but you could probably bet your book royalties that he was thinking about a man while he was doing it. 

That's what my ex told someone about having sex with me.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Real Change



"Real change happens when the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of changing." ~ Sheldon Kopp, American psychotherapist, 1929-1999

The decision to ask for a divorce was not an easy one for me.  I married for life, and divorce was not in my vocabulary.  But staying married to a man who had lied to me and cheated on me for years was just not an option.

When I saw this quote, it made perfect sense to me and clearly defined how I felt two years ago when I was having to decide whether or not to go forward with a divorce.  The pain of staying married to my gay husband was far greater than the pain of leaving a marriage that had spanned more than three decades. 

It still hurts, but the hurt lessens each day.  I hope you can make the right change for YOU.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Oh wow! I got fan mail!

Several days ago I received a lovely email. It began

Dear Maggie,

I am a straight wife from Australia ( I even appear on your blog map!) and I have heard you speak often on Bonnie's radio show. I just wanted to let you know that I just love your new blog, and I check it a couple of times a week. You are such a strong and confident woman, and you are a real inspiration to me, and I am sure to many other straight wives around the world.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm just talking to thin air with the blog. Or I wonder if what I say makes any difference at all.

Well, it does to this reader from Australia, so I guess I'll keep going.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Dear Abby... Sincerely, Me

This letter appeared in Dear Abby on May 25, 2011

DEAR ABBY: I started a relationship with a co-worker. We went out for several months, and I found myself really enjoying his company. The feeling was mutual. After several months I told him I was developing feelings for him, more than just friends. He told me he was gay. I was shocked, saddened and angry all at the same time, but we went on to develop an even stronger friendship.
 
I have fallen in love with him, but I have had counseling and I believe those feelings are in check. We have a special bond that's hard to explain. For lack of a better term, we have used the words "soul mate" to describe this feeling. He has even said he would like a lifelong commitment with me and has thought about marrying me. He said holding hands, walks on the beach and romantic things aren't a problem for him to share with me, but he cannot offer me anything sexual.

He wants to share his life with me. We aren't kids - we're in our 40s and 50s. He's a wonderful man, and I do want him in my life. Is it wrong to think about a future with him?

- Confused on What to Do

DEAR CONFUSED: It's not wrong to think about it. But while you're thinking, consider carefully how important sex is to you. Some, not all, women would be content with what he's offering. But what if you should meet someone? You also need to know whether this man is ready, willing and capable of forgoing a sexual relationship with a man. How would you feel about it if HE met someone?

My advice is not to make a decision this important alone. Check in with your therapist and examine all of your feelings there. Also, contact the Straight Spouse Network, which was mentioned in a recent column, and talk frankly with others who are involved in mixed relationships. You'll find it online at www.StraightSpouse.org.
Dear Abby,

ARE YOU NUTS?  Why did you tell this woman to even consider this?  Did you not do some research and see that mixed orientation marriages do not work out?  And doesn't it send up even the smallest red flag that this man did not tell her he was gay up front?  She could stay friends with him, but dear dog, she should not take a walk down the aisle and attach herself legally to him.  What happens when he decides he wants sex, but not with her?  Is he going to go outside the marriage and troll Craigslist for partners?  If he neglected to tell her he was gay until she expressed feelings for him, he just might neglect to tell her he met a man at a motel for sex.

I hope Confused has done more than read your reply and has done a little research herself.  If she has, she'll quickly run in the opposite direction.

Sincerely,


Thursday, June 2, 2011

Not Happily Divorced

I don't watch a lot of sitcoms on television because quite frankly, I find them insulting. But there's a new one on TVLand I just might have to check out. Here's TVLand's blurb about Happily Divorced:

"Happily Divorced" centers around Los Angeles florist Fran (Drescher) as she deals with dating after finding out her realtor husband of 18 years (John Michael Higgins) is gay. Fran juggles her new relationships, while still living under the same roof with her ex-husband. The cast is rounded out by Fran's best friend Judi (Tichina Arnold), her parents Dori and Glen (Rita Moreno and Robert Walden) and her flower delivery employee Cesar (Valente Rodriguez). Written by Fran Drescher and Peter Marc Jacobson ("The Nanny," "What I Like About You")

The show is inspired by real life. Several years ago, Drescher learned her husband was gay. But this show should be a drama filled with angst and anger, not an attempt to make people laugh at the situation that nearly four million women face -- being married to a gay man.

Go back a few posts and you'll see that I'm not homophobic. But I am very disturbed that a TV network would make light of such a devastating situation is a marriage and milk it for laughs.

I will watch the first episode because I've always believed you can't judge something if you don't know about it first hand. The TVLand website has video clips from upcoming episodes and just from those I'm already angry. While the lead character, who is named Fran, is upset that her husband Peter (this is the name of Drescher's gay ex-husband), everyone else is making jokes about it.

Trust me, people. It's not funny. And if those of you reading this are part of the four million, you're not laughing either.

After the first episode I plan to write TVLand and let them know my feelings. Would they air a sitcom about a family with an autistic child? A marriage where the wife is dying from breast cancer? I think not. So why is having a gay husband so funny? I'll tell them why it's not funny, right down to how my ex-husband brought his lovers into our home and had sex with them in our bed.

The TVLand website has message boards too. I plan to invade them until they block my IP address. But I will let my feelings be heard.


EDITED JUNE 6: It seems TVLand has taken down their promo videos, but if you go here, you can still see about the show at the Happily Divorced link above.