Times’ gay affair debate reopens

Illustrated rainbow pride flag on a pink background.

A bride-to-be whose relationship breakdown captured the hearts and minds of T2 Debate readers after discovering her fiancé frequently visited gay saunas, has officially dumped the unnamed man.

The case of Iris Scott, who just days before her marriage discovered that her boyfriend had betrayed her with sexual encounters with gay men, generated huge debate in The Times last March when she asked readers what she should do.

Over 40 people responded to her article offering sympathy and views on love, relationships, trust, infidelity and homosexuality.

Some responses warned her to look out for sexual diseases while others talk about the importance of soul mates and related the issue to events in their own lives.

In a follow up to her original article, Scott today revealed that she originally gave the man another chance after he promised to seek help for an addiction to sex, until she later discovered he had also been visiting a female prostitute.

She wrote, “When the article was published, B (her former fiancé) was shocked. He’d given his permission and knew it was coming out. But seeing it laid out, a four-page, black-and-white wedding tragedy, was sobering. He seemed deeply disturbed and I felt guilty that I’d exposed him to public criticism in this way. But my guilt was misplaced – as was the assertion that he must be homosexual.

“Unbeknown to me, three weeks earlier, before I’d even decided to write the article, B had slept with a prostitute, or a “tart”, as he calls them, and then slept with me the next day. No wonder he was disturbed.

“There he was all over the papers, found guilty by a public jury of being a closet homosexual and all the time he knew that only a week ago he’d been having sex with a female prostitute. But he could hardly bring it up in his self-defence.

“A week later, I discovered what he’d done when I read a journal he left in my flat. My first article had been out of date even before I’d finished writing it. I just couldn’t keep up with his tailback of deceptions.

“This latest one was much more difficult to come to terms with than the gay sauna, not least because I was offended by his use of the word “tart” and wondered how he really views women. I couldn’t be angry with him for being confused or frightened about his sexuality, but this was different.

“My first story was headlined: ‘The ultimate betrayal’ but for me, this felt pretty damned ultimate. It cut deeper, perhaps because the prostitute felt more like a direct rejection of me as a female, but also because I’d stuck by him and assured him that if he was gay I’d be there for him.

This prompted her to end the relationship but she has since kept in touch and promised to help him overcome his obsession with sex.

The debate is now reopened for readers to decide if she has done the right thing.