Monday, February 9, 2009

Somebody Wants His Boyfriend

I recently moved in with a man I've been dating for several months. We've made a commitment to each other. Everything is going great but there is one problem -- his best friend. "Joe" is also gay and they've known each other for years. I have always had the feeling that Joe is secretly in love with my lover and pretty much hates me because of it. My lover can't seem to see that Joe's comments to me aren't meant to be funny but are actually bitchy. He poo poohs any suggestion that Joe has romantic feelings for him. I'm just afraid that Joe would do anything he could to tear us apart, even though my lover has only platonic feelings for him. My question: should I confront Joe about this or would it only make things worse? JB.

That could go either way. Remember first of all that if it's true that your lover only sees Joe as a friend, there isn't that much he could do to break the two of you up. Now if you suspect that he's surreptitiously trying to undermine the relationship by telling lies about you to your lover, then you might have to confront him about that. While this may be the last thing you are feeling, try using compassion over anger -- at least at first. if Joe is suffering unrequited love for your guy, and has been feeling this way for years, you can imagine how painful it is for him, and how much worse it got when the man he adores fell in love with someone else. That may be why he lashes out in "bitchy" fashion (not that that excuses him). Have a compassionate, friendly talk with him, don't put him on the defensive, tell him that you sympathize but that he needs to accept that your lover has somebody in his life now. He may deny everything -- a typical reaction and an attempt to save face -- but at least your message may get across to him. Make it clear that you'd like for the two of you to be friends. He may take the hint or he may need to absent himself from your lives because being on the outside looking in may simply be too painful for him.

In the meantime, for heaven's sake introduce the guy to as many hot friends as you've got so that maybe he'll fall desperately in love with somebody else.

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