Dear Dr Love,GREAT COLUMNS! I am a 22 closeted gay male who likes one of my best friends of 5 years (male). Throughout the 5 years we’ve made numerous gay jokes to and about each other. We’ve even sat beside each other in our boxers and tshirts before a few times, (long story).He is kind of seeing a girl now though, and the jokes have gotten less and less. I’m pretty sure they haven’t gotten that physical. He is also very discreet about their realtionship and doesn’t tell me alot about things between them.Before this he hadn’t had a g/f in about 6 years and had had no interest in getting one. He is very open minded about these types of subjects. Basically I thought alot of signs pointed to him being a closeted gay as well, but his recent behaviour, like spending alot of time with this girl tells me different.I guess my questions are. . . . . could he be gay and just trying to see if he can be straight? Or am I just leading myself on? Or could that have been a phase for him? Or could he of been waiting for me to make a move and now has moved on?thank you.
I’m glad you like my columns. I sure do put my heart into them, so I’m pleased that the effort is noticed. I wish I had a crystal ball because that ‘s the only way we would know for sure what is going through your friend’s head.If you’ve been reading my columns for a while, then you know that human beings are bisexual by nature. The fact that you sensed that your friend is attracted to you isn’t surprising. The question is does he wish to act on his bisexual urges or not. I am afraid that there is only one way to obtain answers to all your questions and that is to get up your courage and ask him where he’s coming from (no pun intended).I am sure that you are terrified to do this, for fear of being rejected and possibly out of fear of losing a good friend. You need to make a choice that is going to bolster rather than erode your ego. This means that you need to be sure that whatever way you choose to handle the situation, you choose an option that will make you feel good about yourself.If avoiding confronting the issue makes you disrespect yourself for not taking a risk, then it would be worse for your ego to keep silent. If you would feel good about yourself for taking the risk no matter what the outcome (including losing the friendship), then you know that talking with him is right for you to do.If you decide that it’s best for you to speak, then I suggest you broach the subject using an exploratory approach. Doing so opens allows you to have a conversation without sticking your neck out too far. For example, you could start by making a generalization about the fact that you heard that all humans are bisexual by nature. This generalization will make your friend feel more at ease to speak honestly with you, knowing that his feelings are normal. Then you could continue by saying that you sense that there is an attraction between the two of you and ask if he’s noticed this. If he refuses to admit the attraction, then you will be able to bow out gracefully, and avoid an overt rejection, since you won’t have made a direct pass at him.If he refuses to admit his attraction, you will know that he is too inhibited to admit his feelings. If he admits to having an attraction, then the two of you can openly discuss the pros and cons of acting upon your attraction to each other. Discuss what you think could be positive and what could be negative outcomes of acting on your attraction to each other.It will be interesting to see how your discussion evolves and what you both decide. Know that you aren’t obligated to act on your attraction. Many people live their lives without acting on their bisexual or homosexual urges. Likewise, people in monogamous relationships are accustomed to sitting on their desires for other people (again, no pun intended! ).Let me know what you decide and how it works out for you.