Excerpt: Dina Matos McGreevey's "Silent Partner"


The wife of former New Jersey Gov. Jim McGreevey, who admitted to being a "gay American" as he left office in 2004, tells her side of the story.

Dina Matos McGreevey's memoir, "Silent Partner: A Memoir of My Marriage," comes eight months after her estranged husband released his version of events called "The Confession."

Matos McGreevey and McGreevey are locked in a bitter divorce battle and fighting for custody of their 5-year-old daughter, Jacqueline

Matos McGreevey has denied knowing that her estranged husband was gay before or during their marriage. She says now she thinks he is bisexual.

Below is an excerpt from "Silent Partner: A Memoir of My Marriage."

First Encounter

When I think of all that happened during the eight years of my relationship with Jim McGreevey, the beginning -- how I met him, how I fell in love with him -- is the hardest story to tell, or at least to tell in the right way. When love goes out the door, courtship stories may go into the attic, never to be told again. It's no fun to recount the birth of a love that died a horrible death. My sadness and yes, my anger, cast long shadows and obscure much that was hopeful and happy. But if I don't tell this story carefully, Jim will look like someone you wouldn't trust to feed your cat over the weekend, much less someone who was the repository of so much trust, public and private. And if that's the man who emerges, what does that say about my judgment in marrying him?

Jim was devastated when his wife left him without any warning, and therefore he came to doubt his ability to read the emotions of someone he loved. Ironically, he put me in the same position, so that now, because I failed to read him, I've come to question my own ability to read anyone I might love. It was my own extreme sense of privacy that kept me from asking questions I would have considered intrusive if anyone had asked them of me. I know that now. And I know that it was my tendency towards privacy (not to mention my steadfast loyalty), that allowed Jim to keep secrets from me and, ultimately led to a marriage in so many ways counterfeit. Ironically, the person I was most suspicious of was Jim's first wife, Kari. That was a tragic red herring. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

Jim and I first met in October 1995 at the Armory, a Perth Amboy restaurant. The dinner was in honor of a Pretender. The irony isn't lost on me. Jim, as both a State Senator and the Mayor of Woodbridge, was a guest of honor, but the real Pretender, if that's not too much of an oxymoron, was the Duke of Braganca, heir to the Portuguese throne who was honored annually by a local Portuguese-American organization. This year the dinner was being held in Perth Amboy, a town near Woodbridge.

I noticed Jim when he came in. I didn't know who he was, but I thought he was handsome in a Tom Hanks kind of way, despite his old-fashioned barbershop haircut. He had a wide easy smile and exuded a kind of warmth that seemed to extend to each person in the small group he was talking to. It was early in the evening and things were just getting started when Manny Viegas, a friend who took an avuncular interest in me, came over.

"I want you to meet someone," he said. "Come with me."

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