Mormons for Marriage had an interesting post that I saw this morning on mixed-orientation marriages. Apparently the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy has recently published a review of the research that has been performed on mixed-orientation marriages over the past 20 years. The post is an interesting read and the actual article even more so.
From the article's discussion, which I thought was a pretty apt description:
Mixed-orientation marriages are fraught with complexity, as reported in quantitative, qualitative, and case study research. Gay, bisexual, and lesbian spouses must manage homoerotic feelings or activities while maintaining their marriage and considering the needs of their straight spouse. Pressure from within is described in these data as arising from tension between societal expectations, love for spouse, and same-sex attraction; fear of losing one’s family; developing a cogent sense of self while compartmentalizing feelings and behaviors; dealing with ambiguity about one’s sexual identity across contexts; and being able to live intentionally and with integrity. Renegotiation of sexuality within marriage is a challenge for both partners in MOM, as is finding a network that accepts and supports both the individuals and couple as a whole. Friendship and love between spouses, along with shared children, led to family life and community integration. These were reported to deter couples from separating and to enhance their general life satisfaction.
And regarding the wives in a MOM:
Straight women in MOM experienced an array of responses after their husband’s coming out, ranging from outrage to relief. Such women’s experiences were often conceptualized in terms of loss, shock, and sadness. Responses included isolating themselves, feeling humiliated, seeking counseling, and attempting to renegotiate or dissolve their marriage. Many women sought counseling to reorganize their feelings and thoughts about their marriages. Sexual practices in marriages that endured included monogamy, celibacy, menage a` trois, open marriage, and variations on an agreement not to discuss extramarital sexual activity.