Torn Between Two Lovers

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Dec 17, 2007 1:24 AM GMT
    ugh - it's difficult to know where to begin. I've been in a relationship for 11 years now, 8 of them living together. It has become stale & sexless - has been for years now. I have tried & tried & things remain the same. Now we are like some seniour citizen couple (actually early 40's) who are waiting for God.

    A year ago I met a guy online. I am in love with this man in a way that I have never felt before. He lives in a different country. We've met once for a week & it was intense - we're both in love. He's coming to visit in 12 days. I've just booked a flight to see him in a month. Our relationship consists mainly of words, and despite what I felt was my own better judgement, I have discovered that it is indeed possible to fall in love with someone over the internet. All we can do is talk - and talk we do.

    Now I feel like I'm cheating on 2 guys! Most days I agonise over this. Being with the online guy will mean HUGE changes to my life. Leaving my partner carries the possibility of enormous guilt. A relationship of 11 years entails entanglements (both financial & emotional) that I know will prove difficult to unwind (though of course not impossible).

    Ugh again .. I don't know where I'm going with this. I'm not ready to throw my life upside down for a guy I've met online & have only spent a week with in the flesh. I want to explore that possibility more & see what the potential is. I know how incredibly selfish that sounds - at the same time - if I was incredibly selfish, wouldn't I just run away to be with the man I've fallen in love with ?

    11 years is a long time, I know, but I'm not ready for retirement!! I've given up trying because it has gotten me nowhere. At the same time I don't know if I can start again & fail. Is it better the devil you know? Do I want my cake & want to eat it too? Can it really be that simple? (once upon a time I believed it was .. but oh how the tables have turned!!)
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    Dec 17, 2007 2:43 AM GMT
    I am sorry for you, my friend. I was in a relationship too years ago that had become stale and sexless. I tried everything, including suggesting couples therapy, opening the relationship, etc. He was having none of it. Reluctantly, I finally broke up with him. I still love him. But I wouldn't go on living like monks forever. So I understand.

    Incidentally, long after we broke up, he called me finally to suggest that he was willing to look into the couples therapy after all. By then I was with someone else (and that's a whole other story).
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Dec 17, 2007 3:08 AM GMT
    From what I read, it sounds like you've already done in the relationship. Do yourself and your current guy a favor - break it off with him now and try to find happiness for yourself and hopefully your guy will find someone he can be happy with, too.
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    Dec 17, 2007 3:14 AM GMT
    It's clearly a tough situation you find yourself in, mate, and I'm not really in a position to give you advice, but here goes.

    Relationships come in all sorts of forms, so your partner of 11 years has a huge impact on your life and will probably remain important to you no matter which way you turn. Trying to talk it through is always the best solution, even if you agree to end things romantically and just stay friends. You may even agree to remain living together as pals, if only to save the mess of splitting up assests etc.

    The new guy in your life may or may not work out, time will tell. It probably wouldn't be wise to seperate from a long term relationship only to find yourself back in the same position sometime in the future. But relationships often come with a use-by date, we're not always going to be forever and ever amen, no matter how much we may want that.

    Living in a sexless, loveless relationship is not healthy for either of you, so perhaps you should agree to end it calmly and politely and both move on.

    Good luck
    xxp
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    Dec 17, 2007 3:23 AM GMT
    I went through this about 8 years ago when I was 45, we had been togother 19 years. However there is one difference between us there was no one else involved.

    What I did was sat my ex down and spoke to him and told how I felt, and that I ws planning to leave as I was no longer prepared to be in this situation.

    We had several properties and investments which we had to work out.

    The main problem is of course you mutual friends, so what we did we went together and flew to each state and saw our friends and told them that we were separting and that we didn't want anyone to take sides.

    I moved to the otherside of the country, however I have now moved back to the same town with my new partner of 5years. My new partner is most accepting of the ex. to the point that we all have holidays together and enjoy a great friendship. My partner has always said you can not wipe 19 years of your life away, and my ex is part of that 19 years.

    I would suggest be honest with yourself firstly and then be honest with your partner, you do owe him that much after all this time.

    Good luck in what ever decision you make.
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    Dec 17, 2007 3:24 AM GMT
    I agree mostly with what's been said above. I left a 16 year relationship, and had all the repercussions that you mentioned. It helped that I wasn't leaving for someone else. We're friends now, and get along well. Timberoo said it well that you've been done with this relationship for a while. Deal with it at that level first. It could be that you're just so infatuated with the foreign guy as you're so hungry for attention, and thrilled to get it from him (could be more too.)

    I'd say talk with your current partner first in a loving way (as best you can) and try to separate first. I would guess he assumes there's a problem too if the sex dried up a while ago. He might be relieved to start transitioning the relationship to something else. Sounds like you've done that in all but name already.
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    Dec 17, 2007 5:04 AM GMT
    Not everything can last, even relationships. Sounds like you need to "divorce." However it's called life. You can read everyone's opinion on what to do, but remember we are not you. It's your decision not ours. "Listen to your heart, before you tell him good-bye."
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    Dec 17, 2007 9:42 AM GMT
    I think that first of all you need to put to one side your internet buddy. He seems more like a fantasy, get-out figure to me. You should concentrate on sorting out the real relationship in your life.

    Once you've sorted out all the problems in your current relationship then maybe you should get together with this new guy.
  • Laurence

    Posts: 942

    Dec 17, 2007 10:50 AM GMT
    It sounds like you're letting boredom in your long-term relationship cloud your judgement.

    This internet relationship sounds new and exciting and who doesn't like that crazy-in-lust freshness of a new relationship, but you might be putting more onto that than it is worth, just because you're having problems with your current long-term guy.

    Like Red and a couple of others say. You need to decide what you want from your current partner (over or not?) before moving on to someone new.

    Good luck in the hard decisions you will have to make.

    Lozx
  • GQjock

    Posts: 11648

    Dec 17, 2007 11:07 AM GMT
    Can I ask a question?

    What the hell are you doing in this "stale and sexless" relationship? There cannot be love there anymore if you're looking for it in other men...esp men who live in another country!

    You're putting your life in all this emotional bindery to keep things calm and somewhat quiet but you're fooing yourself
    you've got to let yourself go and live somewhat of a free existence
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    Dec 17, 2007 11:58 AM GMT
    Wow, how the hell do you keep one for 11 years, let alone manage to bag a second one? I can't even seem to grab one, but two! Lucky fucking bastard! I can't even find a fuck buddy that turns me on.
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    Dec 17, 2007 1:32 PM GMT
    Once when I was bored - without a date for a few months, I felt lonely. A brilliant friend told me that what I was going through was far better then being in a relationship with the WRONG person. At the time, I couldn't see how this could be true......until a time came when I found myself (years later) in a relationship with someone no longer right for me.

    We owe it to ourselves not to settle - better to be solo than with someone who drags us down. Sometimes we have to close one deal before we're ready for a new one.
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    Dec 17, 2007 2:28 PM GMT
    Start off by being honest with yourself and your current partner.

    You are cheating on him and lying about it. You call it 'stale and sexless'. That does not bode well for a relationship.

    Decide what you want, discuss it with your current partner, and do something about it.

    But stop running around behind his back and lying about it.

    No matter what is wrong now, you once obviously had something important together, and at minimum you own him your honesty and consideration.



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    Dec 17, 2007 2:34 PM GMT
    You should break up with your partner of 11 years because you both deserve better. He deserves someone who will be honest with him, which you obviously are not doing. you both deserve a relationship that makes you happy and this one obviously isnt doing that for you. it may be hard, it may be messy but just end it already.
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    Dec 17, 2007 3:04 PM GMT
    Chungo44, my hat's off to you - I think you're wise beyond your years.

    I was in an 8.5 year relationship that was essentially over in 2 - we were just going through the motions. After waiting for him to leave - which he didn't want to do in part because he had an easy ride - I finally told him that we both deserved to be happier than we were, and that we had to end it.

    He hates me to this day for doing it - but he's also finally found a good match.

    About two weeks after we broke up, I visited an internet chat buddy - JUST chat - in DC (I was living in SF) and discovered upon meeting him in person that he is the love of my life. We'll be 8 years this Christmas.

    So - Chungo, I think you've got it right. DutyPaid - if what you have is dead, then bury the body so you can BOTH move on. But spend some serious time with #2 before you consider it a done deal, OK?

    Joey
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    Dec 17, 2007 3:13 PM GMT
    I totally empathize with your situation. At the ripe old age of 30 I find myself in a similar situation. I would not call it stale and sexless, but it has definately lost that spark it once had.

    I find myself wanting to be with my partner, but kinda bored of seeing him all the time. I feel like we have assimilated into each other's lives too much and I feel this itch to go out and try new things.

    We have started to talk about being more open to a third person, but have seen some disasterous results of couples who's only bond is that they sleep with other people. I feel like I have become sexually distant from him, though he says I turn him on like noone else can.

    Am I being a brat? Have I lost interest? Or am I just realizing that spending your entire 20's in a relationship is great, but there is so much out there.

    Anyway, nice to know I am not alone out there. I have a best friend, but I think I need a lover.
  • drcharm

    Posts: 33

    Dec 17, 2007 4:46 PM GMT
    u r not inlove with online guy it just away to escape realy you love him becauz part of the relation is imagination u imagen it will be perfect soo u take the easy way what he knows about can he handle u for 11 yrs ?? u shill try to talk with ur life partner weather it right or not 11 yr is much time soo i think u shill work it out better dear take the save road
  • MikemikeMike

    Posts: 6932

    Dec 17, 2007 5:11 PM GMT
    How old is your partner, Maybe he need to have his hormone levels checked?? I don't feel the reader here has enough information to give any advice. I do feel no matter what the final decision is up to you. Just be sure it's what you really want and not just trading in the dog for a new puppy.

    good luck.
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    Dec 17, 2007 6:18 PM GMT
    Wow - thanks for the responses. For some reason I was expecting to be flamed & am pleasantly surprised now to find that that isn't the case.

    A few of you have hit on the idea that this relationship is already dead and sadly I suspect that is the case. I certainly never expected to be in a long term relationship & feel lonely! I also never expected to be in a long term relationship & have no sex life. Given that we've been here before (re: the issue of sex) and nothing changes I've had to drop it to maintain my own sanity. I ended up thinking that I was the freak because it seemed like I was placing sex above all else - not the case. Besides, I don't really see the value in "forced" sex, if you know what I mean.

    Now having just read that it does indeed seem that I am placing sex above all else! But I've also realised over the past few years that I can't even count on this man for emotional support when it's needed. More than once I've had to turn to friends to confide in & to help me process disturbances in my life because JD (as in John Doe) didn't see the point in dwelling on it! I mean - huh ?

    Oh - and another thing. What brought me to this website was hiring a PT in May of this year & getting myself into shape. To date I'v lost 10% body fat, over 12kgs & am now starting to get visibly muscular. Not a single word of encouragement. Not a single unsolicited compliment. In fact, at the beginning he actually made fun of my new eating regime & when I got angry told me to relax because he was only quoting Homer Simpson!

    Ugh - I don't want to demonise him as I understand how it is all too easy to do just that in order to justify infidelity & eventually leaving.

    jprichva
    I am sorry for you, my friend. I was in a relationship too years ago that had become stale and sexless. I tried everything, including suggesting couples therapy, opening the relationship, etc. He was having none of it.


    Yep - been there, done that. Suggested we hit the sex shops - ended up going alone. Suggested therapy - nope. Suggested opening the relationship - nope. Suggested exploring fantasies - nope. What we have now is the odd day a week fumbling about in the morning & I'm not great on morning sex. And did I just call that sex ? Because it's not. It's about as close to masturbation as you can get & lasts about as long. No intimacey, no kissing, no foreplay, just straight to the cock & that is most certainly NOT what I would call sex.

    cronkerTrying to talk it through is always the best solution, even if you agree to end things romantically and just stay friends. You may even agree to remain living together as pals, if only to save the mess of splitting up assests etc.


    It's the talking through that is the hard part. There never seems to be a "right" time. Without going into detail, we're working on a large project which is nearing completion & I'm thinking that that will be the time. The idea of living together as pals is one that I've contemplated a lot, it is afterall essentially what we are already doing & it would make life so much easier.

    That in itself kind of speaks volumes - that we can longer talk these things through. It's like for him if nothing is said then nothing is wrong even though things have remained the same.

    MikemikeMikeJust be sure it's what you really want and not just trading in the dog for a new puppy.


    lol - thanks for the smile. Trust me, I have thought of that over & over & over again. I've asked myself many times if this would have come to a head without the 2nd guy and I would have just kept numbing myself through the years.

    I'm not done with this yet but I have to run now. I'll come back to this & some of your other responses later.

    And thanks again !!
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    Dec 17, 2007 6:43 PM GMT
    Duty Paid,

    I was just perusing and I came across your post, "Torn between two lovers." Let me first tell you that I do not envy you in any way. It's a tough situation to be in and I give you credit.

    Anyway, I don't know why, but your post struck a chord with me. You say you've given up trying because it gets you nowhere. You describe your relationship as stale and sexless. I guess I have 2 questions for you to ask yourself:

    The first is, "What is the source of the staleness and lack of sex?" Is it a lack of love or a sense of complacency? There's a big difference. If it's a lack of love, that means you're already checked out and there's no point in staying in the relationship whether you get with your mysterious foreign lover or not. If it's a sense of complacency, perhaps a proper jolt of reality would shake your partner out of this rut.

    The second is: "Do I really feel so strongly for my foreign lover or is it an affectation of longing for something I can't have?" It's important for you to know. Like you said, leaving your partner is going to change your life immensely. Eleven years is a long time to be with someone - especially in the gay world. Is your new love a much-needed breath of fresh air that will become stale with time or is it truly what you've been looking for?

    So that's my 2 cents I suppose. I wish you luck and hope you do what's best for you. Remember, at the end of the day, you have yourself to account for. Make the decision that's best for you and worry about damage control later. If it's truly worth it, the change is only as hard as you make it.

    Joe_K
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    Dec 17, 2007 6:53 PM GMT
    Tell your lover that you cheated face the music, get out of the dead end-relationship so your lover can find the man that he's meant to be happy with.

    You have already left.

    You are only cheating on your lover, unless this other guy does not know that you have a lover.

    Have you cheated before because you appear to be very good at covering your tracks.

    My heart goes out to your lover man.


    WOW!
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    Dec 17, 2007 6:56 PM GMT
    Grow up, be a man, and tell your boyfriend what they hell is going on.

    as for the "bf", he's an escape valve and you are only pushing pent up emotions on someone you've seen for 7 days - stuff you'd rather have with your boyfriend I assume (if you truly have tried) .

    I know it's not popular to judge, but what you are doing is despicable, to yourself, to your boyfriend and to your new "bf"
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    Dec 18, 2007 12:47 AM GMT
    handstuartI would suggest be honest with yourself firstly and then be honest with your partner, you do owe him that much after all this time.

    Good luck in what ever decision you make.


    You're right of course - I do owe him that much & I am getting there.

    19 years !! So you know the entanglements. It is like a divorce. Properties, dogs, families... I mean even our respective families are close now. The Dad's go watch cricket together, the Mom's go shopping & discuss knitting. It feels like carrying a burden that just isn't about me - if that makes any sense.

    gettoknowitThat was Mary Wells, "Two Lovers".


    Love Mary Wells !! btw ... did the Zodiac test on that site .. comes up that my ideal partner is the same star sign as me. Go figure.

    LaurenceThis internet relationship sounds new and exciting and who doesn't like that crazy-in-lust freshness of a new relationship, but you might be putting more onto that than it is worth, just because you're having problems with your current long-term guy.


    Yep, I've thought of that too. I've told FG (as in foreign guy) that IF anything was to come of this for the 2 of us it would take a while.

    I think I'm slowly coming to the realisation that my current relationship has run it's course. I really don't see where it can go from here. Like I said, I've tried & tried in the past & nothing has changed.

    -----

    They both know about each other, except JD doesn't know the extent of my feelings for FG or that we've had sex. Though in all honesty he must strongly suspect. He knows we met online & he knows, of course, that I've gone to visit him. He knows that FG is coming here this month & that we're staying in another city .. without him!

    A few years ago I would have been right up there with you Ducky44 & growingmuscnyc - passing judgement & proclaiming what's right & wrong from afar. As for the cheating, well no, I haven't cheated on him before & I'm not really covering my tracks. Yes, I am being unfaithful & yes, I am lying by omission. I also happen to believe that each relationship is as different as the people involved & pronouncements on what one persons feels right or wrong for them can't necessarily apply to all.

    I know what I'm doing is wrong & I am trying to process this & it's tearing me apart. The thought of hurting JD fills me with dread & the thought of spending the rest of my life in this state has an equal amount of dread attached to it. I'm fast approaching paralysis by analysis.

    redheadguyI think that first of all you need to put to one side your internet buddy. He seems more like a fantasy, get-out figure to me. You should concentrate on sorting out the real relationship in your life.


    I have thought of putting that to one side & I haven't entirely dismissed that option yet either. matt45710 mentioned separation & I've thought of that too & in order for that to have any real value then I would guess that FG would have to be out of the picture, otherwise I'll just be muddying the waters further. It certainly doesn't help when FG mentions, in passing, that he'd consider looking for a job over here!

    PSBigJoeyDutyPaid - ... But spend some serious time with #2 before you consider it a done deal, OK?


    OK. That was kinda the plan .. IF I was gonna end it with #1, but like I said earlier - I'm coming to the realisation that it's pretty much dead already.

    DJBenns77Am I being a brat? Have I lost interest? Or am I just realizing that spending your entire 20's in a relationship is great, but there is so much out there.


    Oh but how I could add to those questions!! nice tatt btw ..

    Joe_KThe second is: "Do I really feel so strongly for my foreign lover or is it an affectation of longing for something I can't have?" It's important for you to know. Like you said, leaving your partner is going to change your life immensely. Eleven years is a long time to be with someone - especially in the gay world. Is your new love a much-needed breath of fresh air that will become stale with time or is it truly what you've been looking for?


    Good questions. As to the 2nd ... right now I feel strongly in a way that I have never felt before. It's completely insane. My relationship didn't get this way when I "met" FG - it had been that way for a while already. I think perhaps what was going on was a sense of "Here I am .. I'm going to have to live with this." And then I met someone else & all of a sudden new possibilities were there & a realisation that no, I don't have to live with this.

    I'm well aware of how callous & selfish it seems to be seen to be feathering the next nest before jumping out of the current one. This is all quite surprising & new to me, believe it or not. To date my romantic history has consisited of 2 relationships of 1 to 2 years each & my current one.

    ok .. now I'm just running on at the keyboard & probably running in circles at the same time ... time for a whisky *hic* and then bed ... Cheers all.

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    Dec 20, 2007 7:23 PM GMT
    Good luck with everything. I have found some seperation has helped me. Absencer makes the heart grow fonder... and the sex pound harder in my experience.

    The trick is not falling back into old bad habits. Get some distance, figure out what makes you tick individualkly and see if you can find that in your partner. Perhaps after so long you take each other for granted. My partner was pretty pleasantly surprised to find some of my, more interesting sexual turn on's.

    We finally came to the agreement to open up the relationship a little.

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    Dec 24, 2007 12:16 PM GMT
    Thanks DJ.

    And good luck to you too - hope it all works out.

    I've done a lot of thinking over the past few days about this & I'm not convinced that it's worth trying to salvage. I've been down that road before & nothing changes. You have to ask yourself eventually - is it worth it? Can you "change" someone? Is it your job to "educate" someone in what you believe are proper considerations to take in a relationship?

    For example - I've just found this out, through someone else, this morning. He's volunteered one of our cars for a friends to take for 2 days over the holidays. Didn't ask me & tell me about it, just said yes. Seems trivial I know, but this guy calls me this morning & says he is coming to get the car and I'm like - oh really? Ugh. The last time this guy borrowed a car it came back empty of petrol & filthy inside & out & I said, don't lend him a car again. So much for that then.

    Plus he has form with this - once he co-signed a mortgage with a friend so they could get a bank loan to buy a flat - completely unknown to me. And again I find this out through someone else! lol - anyway, now I'm just bitching ....

    Merry Christmas !!