~ kusala
[ ku-sa-la: Pali term meaning wholesome, skillful, good, meritorious. ]
[ Action characterized by this quality (kusala-kamma) is bound to result (eventually) in happiness and a favorable outcome. ]
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kusala.diaryland.com

2006-01-24 - 8:18 a.m.

Someone Else is Married to Your Husband

"... the right man for you might be out there right now and if you don't grab him, someone else will, and you'll have to spend the rest of your life knowing that someone else is married to your husband."
- Marie to Sally, When Harry Met Sally ©1989
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Things aren't even close to being at that level yet, but I have twinges of feeling like the above quote applies rather well right now, having found out a few days ago that Bob and Fred are "dating" (the definition of which is open to interpretation, this being a situation populated by gay men). I'm not necessarily sure if it's Bob or Fred who is my future-ex-husband, or ex-future-husband, or whatever, but the truth is I've been "involved" (see definition note above) with both of them in the distant-to-recent past.

The truth is also that I obviously did not want to "date," let alone marry, either Bob or Fred, otherwise I would have been dating, or be married to, one or the other of them (bwahahhahaha, he says, self-assuredly; "a soupçon of hubris makes reality go down...").

But still.

Part of me always feels this type of regret at some level when things don't "work out." It is very apparent with Bob, who has become one of my closest friends, for which I'm really grateful. We share a lot of good times. I guess I'm probably fearful of losing him not as a potential mate, but as a friend with whom I spend a lot of time. All the dinners, movie nights, road trips, [fill in the blank] that we have shared together might just end up being less frequent at some point if Fred becomes his new companion of choice. I know we'll remain good friends no matter what, but the truth is, relationships change a bit (not always for the worse, of course) when someone becomes the third wheel. Or maybe Bob, Fred, and I will become a happy threesome. Certainly I've managed to integrate Bob and Jodi into my social circle without anyone being left out.

I guess I'm not really exceedingly anxious about any of this. I think it's a nice development, since I know how eager Bob has been to have a "relationship" (see definition caveat again) with someone. I'm just noticing with curiosity how this has the potential to change certain aspects of our friendship, and that it's an opportunity for me to reflect on "lost opportunities" in terms of relationships. I told Bob clearly the other day that I've been really happy in terms of how our friendship has developed since the days of his unrequited "interest" in me.

Ah, unrequited interests: the running theme in the lives of many of us. Being either the unrequitor or the unrequitee. We love it. We couldn't live without it. Of course we couldn't.

But we also realize those aren't the only two options, and someday we'll be in a position again where the thème du jour is "Requited."

We can't make ourselves feel something we don't feel, but sometimes I do second-guess my motivations and wonder about the relationship opportunities I haven't seized because they haven't "felt" right. I'm ruled neither by feelings nor logic, exclusively, and that means that one seems to often be at odds with the other. I try to intellectualize my feelings, but I also sometimes try to allow my logic to be overriden by my emotions. Yes, it can be a lose-lose situation. I get wrapped up in the "what might have been if only I had....[fill in the blank]". It bothers me that there are people whom I love, but whom I am not in love with. I worry about whether this indicates some type of superficiality or flaw on my part, or if it's just The Way Things Are. Usually, I end up accepting the latter as the best (and most realistic) answer, but still, it's an occasional dilemma.

However, today (and hereafter), I'm especially grateful for all those people I can list in the category of Friend.

"Sometimes I don't even know if I need a lover, male or female. Sometimes I think I would settle for five good friends."
-Mona, Tales of the City


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