Love triangle has become a foursome
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I have a lover. I’m not doing any harm. His “sick” wife has given him permission to find sex somewhere else as long as he still loves her, too. I used to feel kind of sad for her and understood how cold and empty his love life had been before I came along. He will never desert her. At least that’s what I thought. Now she has found a “friend.” It is an old boyfriend of hers, who moved back to the city after his wife died.
Apparently, he visits her “as a friend” whenever he can, and it’s usually when her husband is away visiting me. I know it sounds strange, but I’m uncomfortable about this. I understood it when it was three people, even though it was strange she actually approved. It seems very weird to me that she now has another man when she was too sick for sex before. Why should my lover continue to love and support her when she has a second man? Why can’t he come live with me?
He has made no mention of changing anything. My nose is really out of joint about this, and I am tiffy when he comes over, like I’m spoiling for a fight when what I really want to say is, “Why don’t you leave her now that she has a guy and be with me?” Do you think he really loves his wife and he’s kind of jealous of her friend? If he really loved me, wouldn’t he want to live here now? I don’t understand it! Please explain. — Confused Lover, Downtown Dear Confused Lover: Before this new man entered the picture, you could tell yourself your lover was too good a man to leave his sick wife, but he really loved you more, and certainly you were his romantic love.
Now this other guy has shown up, and your lover feels some competition under his own roof. He isn’t saying, “Whew! Now I can get out of my marriage, and this old boyfriend can look after my wife.” In fact, he’s not moving closer to you at all. This might make you wonder if he ever loved you more than his wife; if she really was too sick, or if that was just a story he fed you; or what their deal really was. Was it an open marriage on both sides, or a discussion of sex with another partner?
That would be a disconcerting feeling, and no wonder you are so upset. Since this has become a game of chess, your next move is to ask him to move in with you. That’s a check, and possibly a checkmate. Then see what happens. He may just run. A talk with his wife would be interesting at that point. Write back, and tell us how this goes. Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: It’s almost cottage time, and I’m getting nervous. The single woman who moved into the cabin next to mine last year was getting way too friendly in the fall. Then we closed up our cottages, and went our separate ways.
What she doesn’t know is I’m a gay man. When I would have a guy up to the cottage for the weekend, she started popping in to visit. In September, she started bringing over food, such as pies she baked. The big question this spring is should I tell her I’m gay, or should I just tell her I’m not interested in her? It’s none of her business that I’m gay, and I don’t need gossip among other cottagers. How do I get her to stay away? — Dreading the Sight of Her, Winnipeg
Dear Dreading: Tell her you’re not interested in her romantically. She might say she isn’t interested either, just to hold onto her pride, but she won’t be back with pies anymore or try other ways to interest you. Tell her nicely, but don’t offer to be her friend. You want privacy on the weekend, so don’t give her drop-in-anytime status.
Let her figure out you’re gay, if she ever does. Hopefully, she’ll have set her sights on someone else by then. She might have even met a man over the winter and won’t be interested at you at all this summer. Please send your questions and comments to email@example.com or Miss Lonelyhearts c/o the Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.