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Question MarkDear Mark,

How do I begin? I guess it’s just easiest to say it right off. I’m in love with my best friend’s boyfriend. I know it can never work. They’ve been together for 3 years. They’ve had some problems but have always worked on them. My best friend had been single for many years and we were always hanging out. We’ve known each other since high school and even moved to South Florida together. He was so happy when he met this guy (I’ll call him Frank) and I was happy for him. The three of us would do things together and we had a good time. I always found Frank very hot but of course never acted on it. One night my friend wasn’t feeling well and …

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Dear Mark,

How do I begin? I guess it’s just easiest to say it right off. I’m in love with my best friend’s boyfriend. I know it can never work. They’ve been together for 3 years. They’ve had some problems but have always worked on them. My best friend had been single for many years and we were always hanging out. We’ve known each other since high school and even moved to South Florida together. He was so happy when he met this guy (I’ll call him Frank) and I was happy for him. The three of us would do things together and we had a good time. I always found Frank very hot but of course never acted on it. One night my friend wasn’t feeling well and Frank and I went to a function together. He is such a nice guy and it felt so good to have his attention focused on me for the evening. Frank has always been very flirtatious. I don’t think he means anything by it. It’s just the way he is. He was kind of flirting with me like he always does but something about this night felt different. Maybe it was just me, but I began to see him in a different light. Nothing happened, of course, and I would guess Frank didn’t think anything of it. But I began to think about him in that way. Since then I can’t seem to get him out of my mind. I haven’t said anything, but notice him looking at me when we’re together. We’ve never spoken a word about it but I wonder what he’s thinking in is head. Does he feel the same way? What would happen if something did happen between us. And how awful would that be for my friend. I don’t want to hurt him, but I feel like my thoughts are consumed with Frank. How do I get past it?

Signed,

Brian,

Wilton Manors

Dear Brian,

Thanks for writing in. Sounds like a tough dilemma for you. Of course, you know the ‘right’ answer here. This guy, Frank, just isn’t available to you. The question I’m interested in is why you were attracted to him in the first place? What is it about him? What caught your eye? You didn’t tell me about your dating history. When was the last time you were in a relationship? What was your last boyfriend like? What did you like about him? These are important questions. Even though, at the moment, you are fixated on Frank. It seems you might be really thinking about your own life. . .and what’s missing. I suggest you keep quiet about your attraction. There is nothing to be gained by disclosure except hurt feelings. If you can’t handle being around him, I say back away for a while until you figure this thing out. Once you begin to get a plan for your life, your happiness, you will be able to rejoin your friend and his boyfriend. You may always be attracted to him, but once you are on a path for yourself, the attraction will seem less overwhelming. I hope this helps you in some way. If you have any more questions, feel free to write back.

Sincerely, Mark Rutherford LCSW

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