Wife who left ‘dream husband’ for woman explains why she gave up her marriage, house, and job


A woman who left her ‘dream husband,’ her house, and her career behind after realizing she was gay at 35 has opened up about how traveling the world and living out of a van has made her so much happier.

Lauren Burgess, now 37, a business coach from California, recalled going to bed every night feeling ‘grateful and content’ during the first few years of marriage to Matt, 40.

But over time, she soon began to realize that ‘something wasn’t right’ – and one day, she broke out in chronic hives and was told by doctors that it was due to stress. 

In an attempt to relax, she then embarked on a solo road trip around the West coast of America – and whilst she was traveling, she realized that she was a lesbian.

A woman who left her 'dream husband,' her house, and her career behind after realizing she was gay at 35 opened up about how traveling the world has made her so much happier

A woman who left her ‘dream husband,’ her house, and her career behind after realizing she was gay at 35 opened up about how traveling the world has made her so much happier

Lauren Burgess, now 37, from California, recalled going to bed every night feeling 'grateful and content' during the first few years of marriage to Matt, 40. They are seen together in 2020

Lauren Burgess, now 37, from California, recalled going to bed every night feeling ‘grateful and content’ during the first few years of marriage to Matt, 40. They are seen together in 2020

But over time, she soon began to realize that 'something wasn't right' - and one day, she broke out in chronic hives due to stress. She and Matt are pictured in 2018

But over time, she soon began to realize that ‘something wasn’t right’ – and one day, she broke out in chronic hives due to stress. She and Matt are pictured in 2018

In an attempt to relax, she then embarked on a solo road trip around the West coast of America - and whilst she was traveling, she realized that she was a lesbian

In an attempt to relax, she then embarked on a solo road trip around the West coast of America – and whilst she was traveling, she realized that she was a lesbian

In February 2021, she divorced her husband; she then moved out of their home together and decided to live full-time in a buggy so that she could see the world.

In February 2021, she divorced her husband; she then moved out of their home together and decided to live full-time in a buggy so that she could see the world

In February 2021, she divorced her husband; she then moved out of their home together and decided to live full-time in a buggy so that she could see the world

Now, she has settled in Joshua Tree, California, and said she is ‘living her dream life’ whilst embracing her sexuality.

‘I was living a life that I was told would make me happy. I had the dream husband, house, dog, and career – but I started to realize something wasn’t right,’ she explained recently.

‘I would go to bed every night grateful and content. I had a home and a job I was passionate about, but I worked very long hours which caused me to [get] hives.

‘I was in and out of hospital until my therapist told me I needed to drop something to get better.’

Then, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit in March 2020, Lauren found herself becoming depressed. 

Now, she has settled in Joshua Tree, California, and said she is 'living her dream life' whilst embracing her sexuality. Her home in Joshua Tree is seen above

Now, she has settled in Joshua Tree, California, and said she is 'living her dream life' whilst embracing her sexuality. Her home in Joshua Tree is seen above

Now, she has settled in Joshua Tree, California, and said she is ‘living her dream life’ whilst embracing her sexuality. Her home in Joshua Tree is seen above

'I was living a life that I was told would make me happy. I had the dream husband, house, dog, and career - but I started to realize something wasn't right,' she explained recently

‘I was living a life that I was told would make me happy. I had the dream husband, house, dog, and career – but I started to realize something wasn’t right,’ she explained recently

She bought a van on Craigslist and set out on her adventure, which she thought would last only a few weeks. And during that time, she discovered things about herself that she never knew

She bought a van on Craigslist and set out on her adventure, which she thought would last only a few weeks. And during that time, she discovered things about herself that she never knew

'On the trip it all clicked and I realized I was definitely gay. It all made sense. I knew I had to go back to my husband and talk about getting a divorce,' she recalled

‘On the trip it all clicked and I realized I was definitely gay. It all made sense. I knew I had to go back to my husband and talk about getting a divorce,’ she recalled

She and Matt entered into marriage counseling and planned a trip together – however, he decided last minute that he didn’t want to go.

‘I could hardly get out of bed,’ she admitted of the early months of the pandemic. ‘Matt and I started having marriage therapy and we discussed traveling.

‘But all of a sudden he changed his mind, and he had the confidence to tell me that it wasn’t what he wanted.’

Lauren decided that it was something she still wanted to pursue, so she bought a van on Craigslist and set out on her adventure.

However, during that time, she discovered some things about herself that she never knew. 

‘It was amazing,’ she recalled. ‘I’d been seeing a lot of people of social media talking about their sexuality and I began to realize that I might be bisexual. 

‘But on the trip it all clicked and I realized I was definitely gay. It all made sense. I knew I had to go back to my husband and talk about getting a divorce. 

While she admitted that telling Matt was 'really hard,' she added that he was 'supportive.' The two separated in February 2021. They are seen in 2019

While she admitted that telling Matt was ‘really hard,’ she added that he was ‘supportive.’ The two separated in February 2021. They are seen in 2019

'It's been really hard, but I had to follow my dreams,' she explained. 'I thought I was living the life of my dreams before but now I really am. Now I'm living my dream life travelling the world'

‘It’s been really hard, but I had to follow my dreams,’ she explained. ‘I thought I was living the life of my dreams before but now I really am. Now I’m living my dream life travelling the world’

She recently took a vacation to Europe, where she explored cities like Paris (pictured), Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Lisbon, and London

She recently took a vacation to Europe, where she explored cities like Paris, Amsterdam (pictured), Copenhagen, Lisbon, and London

She recently took a vacation to Europe, where she explored cities like Paris (left), Amsterdam (right), Copenhagen, Lisbon, and London

‘I had experimented with women in college but didn’t think anything of it. It was just a bit of fun back then.’ 

While she admitted that telling Matt was ‘really hard,’ she added that he was ‘supportive.’ The two separated in February 2021.

‘It was so hard, but he was supportive and understanding,’ she said. ‘It felt very selfish, and I had a lot to grieve.

‘Matt is an amazing person and I still have a lot of care there for him. It’s been really hard, but I had to follow my dreams.

‘I thought I was living the life of my dreams before but now I really am. Now I’m living my dream life travelling the world.’

After spending a year living out of her van, Lauren bought a house in Joshua Tree, California, in January 2022. She recently took a vacation to Europe, where she explored cities like Paris, Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Lisbon, and London. 



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