Am I Staying With My Transgender Wife Because I Fear Being Alone?

U.A. Nigro

After the world knows that your partner has come out as transgender, they seem to think that it is ok to ask you anything and everything related to your personal life. The most inappropriate questions about your relationship are up for discussion. It has been three years since my wife and I have gone public about her transition, and still I field the craziest inquiries. I have pondered this phenomenon many an evening, but I still do not understand why people think that this is acceptable. However, if you and your partner are at the beginning of this journey, let this be a warning to you. Be prepared for some line crossing questions to come your way.

When I have the time to quiet the world around me, I enjoy listening to the thoughts running around in my head. With the exception of those times when someone else's words haunt me. Recently, I was asked whether I truly wanted to stay in my marriage to my wife or was I just staying because I was afraid to be alone. After I had felt the rush of blood to my face, I answered this crazy inquiry right away by saying, there was no decision to make. I was in love with her when I made a vow to her for better or worse and I was in love with her the day that she told me that she was transgender. Later on that day when I was alone with my thoughts, I let those words rattle around for a little while.


So what exactly was this person trying to say? Did I appear scared or pathetic in their eyes? Were they trying to say that I am too old or too fat to be desirable to anyone else? Perhaps this person thought that I wanted to leave but didn't have the nerve? Do other people stay in relationships that they don't want to be in because it is better to be in an unwanted relationship than be alone? Is being without a partner really something to be afraid of? Did the person asking the question think that I am settling by staying with my wife? I was baffled to say the least. Where does a question like this even come from?

At this point, all of these ridiculous notions had made me dizzy, but I have surmised that the average human on the street knows nothing about the transgender population. To ask me such an obscene question you must think less of transgender people. You have shoved me into a little box and labeled it, along with my wife who you feel should have a defective label on her forehead. It is maddening. We are all cut from the same cloth. Transgender folks are no different from cisgender folks. We all have the same basic needs and wants. If your Aunt fell ill would you inquire if your Uncle was going to stay? I would like to think not.

I sometimes wish that I had a crystal ball, so that I could look into the future and be ready for these moments of ignorance, but I do not. It all comes down to education. We need to talk to one another with respect and listen with an open mind. True love is a force of nature. Just like a thunderstorm, it cannot be controlled. I can only follow my heart to where it leads me. Why should anyone care if that person happens to be transgender? My relationship has zero effect on your life.

Comments (4)
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U.A.  Nigro
U.A. Nigro


@BobbiDare, I think that you are probably correct. I have had so many women tell me that they could never stay. They would be their wife's best friend, but that would be it. @Mikaela Yes, we are through most of the tough stuff. My wife has been full time for several years now. I write so that other partners and spouses can see that transition is not the end of the world, and that if you truly love each other, your relationship will be stronger in the end. :)


"Am I Staying With My Transgender Wife Because I Fear Being Alone?"


“I still do not understand why people think that this is acceptable”

You read my mind.

“I have surmised that the average human on the street knows nothing about the transgender population”

I would also add that fundamentalist evangelical, republicans, tv, and comedians, have done their best over the course of history to devalue our humanity, our dignity, for their own, religious, political, and monetary, gains. I find the religious motivations to be the most egregious, disingenuous, insidious, of them all, you EXPECT BETTER of “christians” unquote, even if they genuinely believe you are a sinner, the lgbt is NOT a special class of people for their whims.

Don’t let the, ignorance, the divisiveness of our society, the hate, of others, take what you HAVE.

“It has been three years since my wife and I have gone public about her transition”

Sounds like you’ve made it through the hard part of married transition. Is this a trans issue? Have the two of you put so much energy into making it through to this time and are now setting into a lull, a routine, a new normal, that you were unprepared for?

“I made a vow to her for better or worse “

Well, there is that, and I do put a “LOT” on that, nearly everything on that. On the other hand, you must do what’s right for you, too. If you’re are not there, if your wife is not there, is there a relationship, is it healthy, for either of you, or is this a “NORMAL” low in the relationship, have the two of you done everything you can to bring it back, is there anything to bring back. Marriage is never easy over the long haul, nor should it be a battle, it's never an easy answer when you’ve reached certain milestones.


I interpreted this question as more about her personal fear of being alone. She was projecting onto your situation the emotions that she would feel: duped, discarded, angry, afraid and helpless. I am going through this with my wife and when I first told her she had all of those - and is still dealing with them. She is working through her feelings but when I told her her first reaction was that we were over as a couple, that she had lost her husband to be replaced with this stranger. Fortunately we are moving past this but I can imagine that the person who asked this question was thinking along those lines.

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