My wife tells me that there are aspects of my “differentness” which are a huge benefit to her.
For example, I have the capacity to show her great kindness and attentiveness.
I do notice, when she wants me to notice, that she has put a lot of effort into getting ready for an evening out with friends.
I do buy her flowers, not just on the days when she might have a reasonable expectation of me doing so, but also randomly; surprisingly; unexpectedly; for no apparent reason other than I want you to know – I love you.
In recent years, I have been able to buy her jewellery, not perhaps of the standard and expense of that worn by the late Duchess of Windsor, but beautiful, understated, delicate sets of bracelet, pendant and ear-rings which compliment her outfits.
I am unusual, I suppose, in actually liking and noticing the jewellery which women wear, perhaps it is linked to my sexuality, perhaps not, but my wife tells me that she has benefited from my kindness in ways which she appreciates.
A few weeks ago we went out for dinner with three couples, our friends.
The table of eight split into four men on one side and four women on the other.
In truth, I’d be more comfortable with the women, but in this company, I was relaxed with the men – they are my friends but they do not know my truth.
Later, after we arrived home after the meal, my wife asked me if I had seen Theresa with a handkerchief on her head calling over to her husband Bill.
I had to admit, I had not seen it.
She said, we fell into conversation about how much our men notice us nowadays.
Sarah had come downstairs in a new dress and immaculate hair and make-up and her husband Andy had asked if she had seen the remote control for the TV – not a flicker of recognition she said.
Theresa had said, to much hilarity, that if I put a handkerchief on my head, Bill wouldn’t notice – look I’ll show you.
She placed a handkerchief on her head and called over to her husband and asked him a question.
He promptly answered without making reference to the handkerchief, which caused much amusement at their end.
I felt a bit embarrassed, said my wife, because you’re not like that; you do notice; you do pay attention, so when they asked me about you, I had to say,
“No, Will’s not like that, he does notice”
And these are the moments when I have a strong feeling that I am making a success in part of being married and being gay.
My next blog will be: Behaving As If It Had Gone Well