When I heard NBA player Jason Collins had come out, I thought, Good for him. Yay! Come out, come out, wherever you are! But then I heard he'd had a finacée named Carolyn Moos for eight years. He broke up with her in 2009 -- but didn't tell her it was because he was gay. And I thought, Damn it. Why is this still going on? I get it. It's hard for anyone to come out, let alone a professional athlete who is still actively playing. That's why it's so important that someone be the first to do it. Then more gay men and women of all professions can feel safe doing it, and eventually no one will need to do it, because no one will give a fig about anyone's sexuality. But there always seems to be a straight spouse somewhere in the shadows, not getting the accolades, not getting the high-fives and congrats, who is just left bewildered, betrayed, and confused.
Carolyn says she never had a clue that Jason was gay, and I believe her. I didn't about my fiancé either. I'm sorry you will have to deal with all of those "Did you know?" questions, Carolyn. I had to deal with them too. People will be astonished that your fiance "turned gay" because you're "pretty." Believe me, you'll hear it all!
People will think there must have been some kind of major red flag you were ignoring. But what red flag could there be if a man is living with you, having sex with you, is engaged or married to you? Do you just walk around thinking, "Hm, maybe the guy I'm engaged to is gay even though we have sex and he says he is in love with me?" Of course not. That would make you insane. Also, people don't want to believe it could ever happen to them. It's easier for them to imagine you must have known or been really stupid. That way, they can feel safer.
Don't ask me why or how gay men can and will have sex with women for years if they prefer men. Ask them. I've never really gotten a straight (so to speak) answer about it. All I know is that men in their 20s and 30s are able to do it. It gets a bit more difficult when men get into their 40s, which is why so many men, ones who have been married for decades, who have children, come out in middle age. Maybe their hormones and testosterone are going gangbusters when they'e young, and they're able to have sex with women, even if it's not their first choice.
Neither Jason nor Carolyn has commented on whether he was cheating on her with men, but certainly she'll have to consider that he was. There's a good possibility. She'll have to get an AIDS test if she hasn't had one since they were together. She must be looking back on the relationship with new eyes.
Carolyn doesn't say why Jason said he was breaking up with her back in 2009 -- but if he blamed it on her, she would be angry now. Letting her go four years confused and hurt and thinking it was her. I'm telling you, ladies. If a guy breaks up with you for no apparent reason, don't stress about it too much. You never know the real reason.
He should have told her then and not let her find out when the rest of the world did. At least now she knows it wasn't her, and maybe that can offer her some degree of relief. But she still will be dealing with feeling like she lived with a stranger for almost a decade. And that's tough.
I'd tell Carolyn to join a support group. Those of us who have been through what she has won't question why she didn't know -- as if the burden of figuring out her fiance's lies somehow rests with her. It doesn't.
Carolyn seems like she's already moving towards acceptance and forgiveness. She told ABC News:
He’s really opening up a lot. I care a lot about him. I really think he will be in my life forever.
He very well may be. At least now she knows the truth -- and so does he. The truth shall set you free. Even if the truth can be a bitch sometimes.
Has this ever happened to you or a friend?
Image via Piers Morgan/YouTube