Dear Gems from Jen,
I have been with my male partner for 16 years now. We have children together and we love each other deeply. I’ve always been attracted to women, though, but have suppressed those feelings for years. Recently, these feelings bubbled up to the surface when I fell for my female friend. I never told her about my crush and I am not in complete shock about my feelings. What should I do? My partner knows about my feelings and is allowing me to explore them further. But I just do not know where to begin!
Dear At A Cross Roads,
You are very lucky to have such an understanding partner. My first suggestion is to consider whatever decision you make very carefully. Your male partner is accepting of these feelings now; however, once you allow these feelings to completely come to the surface your partner may not be so understanding. Are you willing to walk away from him? Bringing a third party into the relationship will most certainly change the dynamic between the two of you. What happens if you fall in love with your female friend? What happens if your partner is no longer so accepting? What happens if your female friend does not reciprocate these feelings? What happens if your female friend does reciprocate your feelings? What will happen with your children? These are just some of the questions you might consider asking yourself before you go and explore what it is you are feeling. This is where you begin. I do believe we need to be true to ourselves, but there are serious considerations before you go and discover your truth. Somehow, someway, suppressed feelings will inevitably re-surface. You are now learning this lesson.
Gems from Jen