The Straight Spouse: A Memoir is a love story about a woman who is married to a man who turns out to be gay—and how she deals with it in unexpected ways. This story takes place in the early 1990s, and she believes she is the only woman in the world to face this unthinkable threat to her marriage. Her journey—sometimes disturbing, sometimes uplifting—is all about the importance of letting go and finding one’s own way through hard times.
What Some Readers Say:
“Vivian Fransen has written an honest and brave story. Like all well-told love stories, the reader falls in love, too. We flounder to find our footing when her perfect marriage is suddenly upended, and throughout her journey to wholeness, we are reminded that human resiliency is perhaps the most divine thing about us.”—Carolyn S. Briggs, author of Higher Ground: A Memoir of Salvation Found and Lost
“Vivian Fransen’s honest and touching memoir of her process in experiencing her spouse’s coming out as a gay man demonstrates levels of insight that can be immeasurably helpful to anyone in a similar situation. Her chronicle leads the reader from an alcohol-influenced disclosure through the pain and confusion of disentangling from love and an unpromising relationship. Vivian writes this with an emotional intelligence infused with growing clarity and compassion for her husband and herself. It will be my go-to recommendation for those experiencing such a challenging life experience.”—Chuck Rhoades, PhD
“With vivid and lively prose, Vivian Fransen has written an honest memoir of her marriage with all its love, complexity, and surprising turns. As her husband begins to come to grips with being gay, Fransen takes the reader on the difficult journey of the straight spouse. As a pastor, I know this book will be useful to clergy in helping Christian couples facing this complicated reality and to straight spouses who want to know they can find help and hope.”—Rev. Cynthia Cochran-Carney, Presbyterian pastor
“In a no-holds-barred memoir, Vivian Fransen details the ways her world is rocked when her husband discloses that he might be gay. She expresses emotions ranging from shock and fear to self-doubt, vulnerability, anger, resignation, determination, and humor as she journeys toward new love and reconnection with her Christian faith.”—Melanie Davis, PhD, author of Look Within: A Woman’s Journal; website: melaniedavisphd.com
“This is a must-read for anyone experiencing the shock of a partner coming out as gay. Ms. Fransen’s very personal story is filled with her pain, her questioning of her own worth, her survival, and her eventual growth and triumph. It is inspirational and heartwarming, yet a reality that is not uncommon in our fast-changing society.”—Constance M. Bowes, PhD, human sexuality therapist; email: email@example.com
“The struggles between a gay husband and a straight spouse are so painful because, in most cases, the love between the two partners still exists. This memoir is written from the heart, is honest, shows empathy, and ultimately provides hope, which is something every straight spouse desperately needs.”—Francine Barbetta, PsyD, author of A Pebble In His Shoe: The Diary Of A Straight Spouse; website: drbarbetta.com