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  1. This podcast hit me right between the eyes. I was unknowingly in a mixed orientation marriage for 24 and 1/2 years. He was living as a closeted gay man. I had no idea what was going on with his double life as he was presenting himself as a straight man, active Mormon and father of four kids. Every Sunday we were right there in our seats in our congregation, looking as we were supposed to look. When I finally did find out what was happening, we divorced. But, as a part of the process, I discovered I needed to be tested for HIV. He was having anonymous sex with men in bookstores, parks and other places around town. Since I had had a hysterectomy, and he had a vasectomy, he could not propose using condoms, and he wanted to perpetuate the cover he had created.
    He confessed his attraction and some incidents to our bishop during a temple recommend interview, (including times from his childhood that involved homosexual behavior) and was disfellowshipped. Our bishop, a mental health professional, encouraged us to stay together and work things out. This became impossible when I discovered there were many instances going back several years in addition to what he had confessed to me. There went any trust I had in him. Our marriage was built on the falsehood that he was not gay. If I knew then what I know now, I would not have married him, since the divorce rate for marriages like mine was 75-80%.
    We divorced, and I was tested, and the results were negative. During the time that we were separated, before the divorce, again, wanting to maintain his cover, he started seeing his high school sweetheart from years ago. We had kept in touch with her through her disastrous marriage, and helped he with practical things when we could.
    The divorce was finalized in December, and two weeks later he announced his engagement. They had been seeing each other since September and made plans. The wedding was supposed to take place on Valentine’s Day, but got postponed. In March, he came to me and asked if we would get back together, since he did not love his old girlfriend, still loved me, and was using her to have a place to live. He wanted to maintain that front for the world and could not address his sexuality. He had internalized 54 years of self loathing due to being told what an abomination he was to God.
    There are times in my life when I would say “no” firmly, but this time I went with “Hell, No!”
    They got married in April.
    But this is not the end of the story. Three years later, he was hospitalized with a severe case of necrotic pancreatitis, a virus that attacks and destroys the pancreas. He was in incredible pain and was put into a sedated state to deal with. In the next 10 days, his condition deteriorated. None of the antibiotics worked, and he was bleeding internally due to the fact that he had none of a clotting agent that the pancreas produced. Doctors made a last ditch effort to go in and stop the bleeding, but he died on the operating table. The doctors said they had never seen someone go so quickly from this. No one asked me, and I do not know if the new wife knew of his past. He told people he divorced me due to my bad temper (??) and the divorce was not due to anything he had done.
    That was over 20 years ago, but for years I worried just what had happened. Did he have HIV? I do not think he was ever tested, since he wanted to maintain his facade.
    I, and my children have left the church after all this time. One of the reasons was that the way I was treated as a divorced woman. I was a second class citizen, damaged goods, and obviously not fit for the celestial kingdom. There is more to my story, this is the Cliff Notes version. But yes, sex education is so deficient in Utah and has not seemed to improve after all this time.

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