Hi, Dr. Bill
I need some serious advice please, if at all possible.
I am an openly gay male and have always found myself falling for straight men, I have done the same again recently.
It was completely unexpected this time as I have known him for a year and have never thought of him sexually. He has always had girlfriends, many in fact and they last on average 6 - 12 weeks; he has also been married.
Recently we all went out for drinks and met a couple of girls, he was attracted to one of them, they came back to his apartment and had a few drinks and then left. I stayed and said I would sleep on the sofa; he said no we can share his bed. Anyway cut a long story short we ended up spooning each other all night, nothing sexual happened although there were a few occasions when something could have, or so I think, it could be my over active imagination. Now I can't get this bloke out of my mind and it's driving me crazy. We text each other like nothing happened, but joked with friends the day after that we spooned all night
I had a really bad relationship 10 years ago and have never been able to hold down a relationship since. I am possessive and completely irrational when to comes to relationships; I didn't have a very good time growing up, shy, insecure bad relationship with father who basically made me feel like a piece of crap from a very young age, never thought much of myself etc etc etc. I have had counselling but I am still the same.
Why do I always fall for men I cannot have, almost to the point of obsession? I ain't getting any younger and if I continue like this I can see myself being single forever.
Any advice you can give me would be fantastic, anything at all.
Thanks & regards
Well, in a sense you've answered your own question. People who have low self-esteem, whatever the cause, generally wind up with the wrong people, for they feel deep down that they're not worthy of someone who might be more suitable for them. Falling again and again for inappropriate people is almost a form of emotional masochism. You need to stop punishing yourself for things you have no control over. If you have any issues over being gay, you have to realize that it's okay to be gay and it doesn't make you in the least unworthy of love.
Now I confess I'm a little confused about this business with spooning with the straight guy. Unless the couch was really uncomfortable I don't understand why he asked you to share the bed, even if he doesn't know that you're gay. I mean, I'm a gay guy, but I wouldn't ask another man, gay or straight, to share my bed unless I planned on having -- or wanted to have -- sex with him. Unless sex is involved, most people give unexpected guests the couch. Are you sure this guy is straight?
[Interjection: if by "spooning" you mean that the two of you basically cuddled together, that's one thing. The more archaic definition of "spooning" is basically "making out;" kissing. If that's what you were doing this guy ain't straight.]
Not to give you false hopes here, but you might -- in a joking fashion -- ask him why he insisted you share the bed [especially if he knows you're gay]. Is he bi-curious, you might ask. Ease into it with caution and sensitivity and you may get a surprise.
Then again, maybe the couch really is damn uncomfortable and he was too drunk to care who was in his bed. Or he might have been afraid you'd be offended if he insisted you take the couch, that you'd think he was intimating you'd come on to him.
But back to the main problem. Ask yourself if it's just coincidence that you keep falling for straight guys -- it happens to all of us now and then -- or do you seek them out? Would you prefer a less attractive straight man over a more attractive gay one? Do you resist relationships with other gay men? Is it their unavailability or merely the fact that they're straight?
Some gay men have an old-fashioned yen for supposedly heterosexual men, and it usually relates to those self-esteem issues. Because they feel inferior and are gay, they subconsciously feel all gay men are somehow inferior -- less than men -- and therefore they desire to be with a "superior" heterosexual man. You can see the problem, as in most cases a genuinely heterosexual man has absolutely no desire to be with a gay guy. "Straight" guys who have sex with men are either closet cases who live straight lives [with girlfriends, wives and children] or are at the very least bisexual; they aren't straight.
Since you say counseling hasn't done you any good, I would suggest putting yourself out there in the dating scene, using on-line sites to hook up with guys who are gay, who are attractive to you, and staying away from the straight guys and "bad boys." You deserve someone who will bring you happiness and not confusion and misery. There are plenty of nice, decent totally gay men out there who might make you the perfect partner. Try to curb that possessiveness -- until the fourth date, at least; it only scares people off. I recognize this is easier said than done, but it can be done with a little will power.
We all wind up falling for inappropriate guys [sheesh, I once developed an infatuation on a guy half my age who worked in a gay bar but insisted he was straight; talk about messed-up situations!] but the trick is to just refuse, no matter how difficult, to let it go too far. Your heart can go in directions that your head doesn't want to go, but sometimes you just have to say "this will not work" and move on.
Once you're convinced that this "spooning" character is really straight, get him out of your mind by pursuing the first gay guy who appeals to you and who seems to like you as well. It's great to have open-minded straight friends, but when it comes to sex and romance, always go gay.
I hope some of this has been of help to you. All the best!