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May 10

True Confessions: My boyfriend thinks he might be gay!

Filed under: Advice — posted by Breakup Girl @ 9:38 am

Classic advice from April 13, 1998


Dear Breakup Girl,

I’ve been in a relationship for seven years. And we’ve been through a lot — his stint in the army and subsequent time in rehab (drugs and alcohol and the army, don’t get me started), his messed-up family, and some of my stuff, too. We’ve been living together for a little over a year now, and have even discussed marriage … and then he drops a bomb: “I think I might be gay.”

He thinks he might be? You are or you aren’t, right? If he is, fine, but he needs to get out of my life because seeing him involved romantically with someone else will KILL me. He says he still loves me, and he’s really not sure if he is gay or not — he’s never acted on it. He’d never cheat on me in order to find out for sure. He is seeing a therapist, which I’m happy about.

But what about me? I’m left wondering if he’s always been gay and too repressed to tell me, or did I drive him to it? Or does he think he’s gay because he has several gay friends and as an artist, he admires many gay artists and authors and wants to be like them? He’s always been the type of guy who thinks he has to fit exactly into the stereotype of who he wants to be. When he was in the army, he got tattoos and drank morning, noon, and night. When he was “alternative” in high school, he colored his hair purple, wore army boots, and listened only to the Cure for two years. And now there’s this phase — he practically lives in a gay coffee house, and has put a gay pride sticker on his back bumper.

For all the pain he’s caused me with this “I’m gay” announcement, I still love him dearly. He’s the only man I’ve wanted to be with. What do I do? Put my life on hold while he “finds” himself (I did this once before with the army thing)? Or just tell him I can’t be tortured with this any longer and let him go, this time for good?

His answer to this is: “If I’m gay, I’m gay. I still love you and you’re the only one I want to be with.” Well, that’s fine, but what if he changes his mind down the line, and decides he’d be happier with a man? I’m closer to 30 than I am to 20 now — do I give up any chance of falling in love again by staying with him through this? (It feels like it sometimes!)

The worst part of this is that to ease my hurt (and his own guilt) I think he’s going to ask me to marry him. And oh, I want to, but for the right reasons. And I seriously doubt this is it. (Part of me wants to marry him, just to keep him with me — how screwed up is that?)

Oh, if any of my girlfriends came to me with this problem…I’d tell them to run. Run far, far, away. But it’s me, and I’m so in love I just can’t. Help me, BG, you’re my only hope. (I’m too embarrassed to tell this to any of my friends — I don’t want my life to be such a soap opera!)

— Charity Girl

Dear Charity Girl,

Breakup Girl checked with Breakup Psychotherapist Belleruth Naparstek about whether it’s possible to “drive” someone to be gay, and here is her esteemed opinion: “Oh, puh-leeze.

Now that we’ve got that, um, straight, here’s what else she said. “Either he’s gay — in which case he needs to go ahead and find that out and have his life, which will probably not include a straight wife — or he’s a borderline with such a baaaaaaad case of identity diffusion that he’s gonna have a whole other schtick in a coupla years. Like maybe Mr. Corporate Suit? Cowboy? Maybe he likes the outfits. But trust me, this is not someone you wait for.”

Take it from BG and BP, girlfriend: Run far, far away. Sorry.

Breakup Girl


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