31 January 2012, 10:15
Photo by Corrie Bond.
Boy or Girl? Girl or Boy? For the past nine months now, I’ve been asking myself this.
No, I’m not pregnant. I just happen to be in love with two amazing people: the strongest and most inspiring woman I have ever met, and a fantastic man who loves me, seemingly unconditionally. Problem is, social norms don’t “allow” for loving two people, even on two different continents, at the same time.
For months, I have been making mental “Pro/Con” lists, trying to figure out who I should be with. I’ve tried to “listen to my instinct”. I’ve sneakily tried to get advice “for a friend”. And yet, nine months later I still cannot make up my mind. It’s taken its toll on me, obviously, and on my relationships with these people. I don’t know how to fix that, and after all this time I still don’t know what would be “the best decision for all of us”, the one that makes the most people happy, or the least unhappy. I know there’s no quick fix, and someone/s is/are bound to get hurt, but how do I do what’s best, ultimately?
I turn to you because the countless emails you must receive probably give you a lot of insight in the weird and wonderful world of relationships, definitely much more than anyone I personally know, and I’m losing hope. Any advice/thoughts/pointers would be greatly appreciated if you have the time to spare.
Thank you for being an inspiration to love and believe in oneself and the world. I am of the opinion that you have helped thousands across the globe, and I can only hope that you will continue on this path. We all need us some lovin’!
(How Gossip Girl to call you that!)
Thank you so much for writing. Even though I don’t have a definite answer for you, I have an idea. I think that what is happening to you is probably quite common — a lot of us have been in love with more than one person at a time! — so hopefully we can help some other people, too!
Loving more than one gender can present problems, sometimes from unexpected sources. Even the queer community can be closed-minded. Some people think bisexuals are just straight people experimenting, & others feel that we should all pick one side & stick to it. But I think bisexuality is brilliant. In fact, it’s my favourite flavour of sexuality!
Bisexuality is about loving people for who they are. Nothing could be more beautiful than that!
That being said, I don’t think you should have to choose between them. Maybe that’s just me being an idealist; maybe that’s unrealistic. But then, I don’t think you wrote to me seeking practicality. I think you wrote to me because you want to see some possibilities. You were looking for some lemonade to be made out of all these lemons, so I’m going to pour you a big, tall glass!
You clearly don’t want to choose between these two people. You clearly — as you said! — CANNOT choose between them! When the pros & cons lists don’t work, a different approach needs to be taken.
If all three of you are comfortable being in a love triangle situation, I say, forge onward! Two lovers on two different continents: how magnificent! If nothing else, it guarantees you plenty of travel & kisses in far-flung destinations! But of course, you need to be thoughtful & very open in order to see some modicum of success with this. All relationships are tricky; relationships with an extra heart involved, even moreso. If you haven’t already, pick up a copy of The Ethical Slut: A Practical Guide to Polyamory, Open Relationships & Other Adventures & get readin’!
Of course, some people will say, “Polyamory doesn’t work,” & sometimes, they are right. But by that same token, 60% of marriages — yes, it used to be 50%, but it has gone up! — end in divorce! Very few relationships last forever, but that doesn’t mean you should shut yourself up in a cave & renounce all others! Very few writers become Oscar Wilde — in fact, only one so far has succeeded! — but that doesn’t mean we throw our pencils down in despair. No! It’s not always about the destination. The journey is full of pleasure, too.
Longevity alone does not dictate importance, or even significance. Sometimes our most interesting, challenging, rewarding & revealing friendships are the ones that only lasted 3 months. Two days spent in the countryside can colour every perception thereafter. Our lives can change in an instant, & every day is totally different — so why only play for longevity? Why do everything with an overarching view of the future?
No, no. Far better, then, to live for the moment: to embrace it, in all its richness & fullness. More often than not, you’ll find yourself, & your truth, way out there on the fringes of what society deems acceptable.
The only reason you wrote to me — as far as I can tell — is because you feel that “social norms” don’t allow for this kind of relationship to exist, let alone thrive. But as long as all three of you are happy & satisfied, then who are you hurting? The general public think their opinions matter, but they don’t. What goes on in your bedroom is your business, & you should never feel ashamed about it. Don’t live for an imaginary audience — do what feels right to YOU!
I believe that the more love you give away, the more you HAVE to give away. The simple act of BEING loving expands your capacity to love exponentially! I don’t think there is anything wrong with you being in love with two people at once. Actually, I think it’s fabulous.
Love is awesome,
P.S. Dear reader, have you ever been in love with more than one person at the same time? What did you do? What would your advice be to someone else in this situation? Let us know!
If you enjoyed this article, have a read of some of my other advice articles, like “I’m So Jealous!”: How To Deal With The Green-Eyed Monster When It Threatens To Get The Best Of You! & We’re More Friends Than Lovers… What Can I Do?