Sex & Love

“I’d Be Much Happier Married To A Religious Gay Man”

This PostSecret from an Orthodox Jewish woman is thought-provoking and a little heartbreaking Read More

By / February 3, 2014

If you aren’t familiar with the dark, delicious voyeurism that is PostSecret, this is what it is: the diary of the universe, on the internet, in postcard format.

Contributors send a postcard (yep—real, old-fashioned snail-mail) with a secret to the founder of the site, Frank Warren. Each week, Warren selects a bunch of highlights and posts them online. (Archives aren’t visible on the main site, but this unaffiliated Tumblr has ‘em all.)

A couple of weeks ago, this postcard went up, and it kind of blew me away. The handwritten note reads: “I’d be much happier married to religious gay man than as a single, Orthodox (straight) woman.” It’s a simple, unadorned statement, but terribly poignant—and I think a little ambiguous. Does she mean, “I’d be much happier married to religious gay man than remain single forever?”

Another possibility: might the author prefer to knowingly be married to a gay religious man than a straight religious man? If so, it’s a pretty damning indictment of her perception of sexism in heteronormative Orthodox Jewish culture. (Of course, this card is reflective of one woman’s experience, and it would be remiss to extrapolate it to apply to all straight Orthodox men.)

Whatever her story, the card provokes a lot of thoughts and—in interwebz speak—feels. Is being a single Orthodox woman more lonesome than being in a sham marriage? Or is this just heaping stereotype upon stereotype?

Your thoughts?

p.s. Kind-of-related: Areleh Harel, the Israeli rabbi who arranges marriages between gay men and gay women.