I was born and raised in the Lutheran religion and attended a Lutheran elementary school. While I tried to make this religion work for me, there were things that did not make sense to me from an early age. Then, high school exposed me to science where I began to question more and doubt more of my religious training. Eventually, I would leave all this behind me, but that is a whole other story.
Fortunately the Lutherans believe masturbation is ok and I had a father who showed my two brothers how it was done. (Did not have any sisters.)
First term freshman at Michigan State in 1962, I met my wife to be. While we did not engage in intercourse, we did eventually masturbate each other. We both entered this relationship with no prior sex experience. SHE entered this relationship with very little knowledge of sex, PERIOD! 18 years old with no idea what a male or female orgasm was nor with any knowledge of the male erection--until I showed her. She was open and willing to learn, however. We continued frequent mutual masturbation for the next two years.
Two years later, still both virgins, we were married. She continued school to become an elementary teacher while I went to work. The next years saw 2 years of Army life for me while she began her teaching career. After being discharged, we started a family in the early '70's with 2 boys, bought and sold a few homes in the suburbs and lived the typical American middle class dream. We were good parents and worked together very well.
But I knew not all was perfect. Something was missing. While my wife and I had fairly frequent sex, there was no passion. This came to my realization when a woman with whom I worked told me she "wanted" me. My wife had never told me that nor really expressed it in any way. Our sex life was based on something her mother had told her, in my presence, around the time we were married. "What he doesn't get at home, he'll get somewhere else." My wife lived by this. Her sex drive was low but she seldom turned me down. But frequency without passion gets old after a while, and while I never thought I'd be one to have an affair with the gal who showed me passion.... 'but what I wasn't getting at home'. I found myself suffering the guilt of having had, not one, but thee affairs--two with women, one with a guy. I had no idea where this would all lead, but I didn't want to break up our family life with two wonderful boys. It was obvious all this would not go away. I was troubled.
The guy thing turned out to be helpful as it would eventually lead to a surprising insight on my part about my wife.
One evening reading the newspaper, we learned that the guy of a couple we had been friends with for years, was arrested for sexual solicitation of an undercover male police officer. This actually surprised my wife more than it did me. I had had fantasies of sex with Bruce but never took those thoughts too seriously. When I asked my wife what she thought of the idea of homosexuality in general, she said she found the whole idea "repulsive." I sensed something strange about her being that strong in her statement, but I knew that's what she thought she felt, anyway. Later I would realize she was in denial of herself.
Bruce's case was ruled entrapment and thrown out but my fantasies about Bruce would not be dealt with so easily. I began to think about experimenting with him, and the consequences of enjoying it scared me. I did not find men attractive, however there was something appealing about seeing a guys hard dick. But what if I was gay? How would I handle that?
Bruce and I DID play...and I DID enjoy it, but fortunately this was the late '70's and along with the coming out of the whole gay movement there was more information about gay sexuality available too. A couple books helped me understand what was going on with me. I learned that gayness was not a clear-cut and dried issue, that sexual preference is not rigid but can be fluid and that rigid labels are misleading. We can be sexual in different ways. I now felt OK with my sexual feelings and with who I was but had no idea how this would eventually affect my marriage or how I would resolve my guilt.
1982. Enter Flo.
My wife transferred to a different school. Her assistant principal was a single woman, a few years older. My wife talked a lot about Flo and I was curious to meet her. Since I attended most of the teachers' social functions, that would happen at the staff Christmas party. We came home that evening and I said, "Flo is gay."
My wife said, "You're full of shit.......how do yo know?"
I said I just knew. It was strong intuition and I had no doubts.
Over the next few months my wife and Flo became good friends and would talk on the phone and occasionally go shopping, etc.
Spring came and my wife came home from school one afternoon and said, "Guess what I heard today?"
"I dunno," I said.
"Flo is gay." She said.
"See, I told you. Did you asked her about it?" She said she had not yet but intended to soon."
Flo easily admitted to my wife she was, indeed, gay and had been all her adult life. She had been in her present live-in situation for several years.
Over the next several months, the four of us frequently would get together in our homes or even go out to dinner. Being a people observer, I quickly noticed a chemistry developing between my wife and Flo. This was a chemistry I had never observed between us even though we got along well. There was electricity here and there was no denying it....and no fighting it, I realized.
I decided to bring this to my wife's attention. She said she really enjoyed Flo but had not thought in terms beyond that. I suggested she give it some thought and think about her feelings.
My thinking at this point was that what I was seeing between then was as real as could be and there was absolutely no point in denying it or fighting it. If she felt an attraction for Flo, the best thing I could do was to encourage her to be herself, after all, I did truly love her.
We talked about this more and more and at one point I asked her if she if she ever had sex with another woman. I knew she hadn't but I saw an opening to reveal my experimentation with Bruce. She said she hadn't...and then asked if I had with a guy. I didn't hesitate to tell her. I added that at this stage of her life, with what was going on between her and Flo, she owed it to herself to experiment too. I would not object.
I knew she would at some point anyway because I knew Flo was a strong determined (but likable) person.
Long story short...our divorce came a year and a half or so later, 1986, when the boys were in high school. We went through probably the friendliest divorce ever, although it was not an easy thing to go through. It came down to the fact that she was willing to stay married in name only but she had chosen Flo to be her only lover. She said what she was feeling sexually now was something she had never felt before. She assured me I had been a very good lover and that none of this was my fault. It was just that she discovered another facet of herself.
I could not see staying in a fake marriage AT ALL. No way!!
In 1988 I discovered your hardcover book SEX FOR ONE. I was impressed. Like many people, I had thought of masturbation as a poor substitute for real sex. Naturally, between relationships, it was nice to know I was still having Real sex.
It was about 1995 when I saw SELFLOVING the first time. I had been involved in nudism for about 8 years at that point. The first thing that SO impressed me when watching it the first time was your explanation of full nudity while the woman were disrobing in your apartment. This, I thought to myself, "This is a woman who really knows what the hell she's doing."
Getting into your work, I see how important real sex education is. People, both men or woman, shouldn't have to wait until they are 40 to discover who they are sexually.