By Mark Rutherford LCSW
Dear Sexpert, My boyfriend and I just broke up after being together for almost
three years. We were really good friends before we started dating,
and about three months after we started sleeping together, he moved
in with me. We had a very good relationship, got along great, rarely
ever fought, and enjoyed each other’s company. But slowly I began
realizing he just wasn’t the right person for me. It pained me
greatly as this realization grew stronger and after almost three
years, I decided that it wasn’t fair to him to continue being
together if he wasn’t making me completely happy.
Now, considering we had been friends first, and are staying close friends,
is it a bad idea to continue to live together? There are two bedrooms, so we
wouldn’t have to sleep together anymore, but is it generally a bad
idea to continue cohabiting with someone after you’ve broken up?
Thanks for your advice.
Signed, Breaking Up is Hard to Do
Dear Breaking Up,
Your question falls under the heading of “case by case basis”. There are so many factors involved in transitioning from a love based relationship to one based on just friendship. Some couples find the sexual/emotional component to be the hardest change. The trouble spots that usually pop up are around outside sexual behavior and dating other people. Will the two of you have sex with each other at all anymore? Can you date other people? Is it okay to bring another guy home? Can you fuck another guy in your old shared bed? Do you tell each other about your outside sexual/emotional encounters or try to “spare” their feelings?
Another problem area is that around finances and the separation of previously joined assets. Do you separate your accounts? How will bills be paid? Do both names stay on the mortgage? Does furniture you have bought together as a couple get divided between the two of you? Who gets the dog should one of you decide to move?
What are the rules? Each couple is different. What works for one couple may not work at all for another couple. Some couples transition with minimum difficulty. Some couple’s find it is too hard to try to stay together and just be friends. My suggestion is to talk with your friend/ex-boyfriend and get some idea of where he is coming from. As the person who is being left, he probably has some thoughts of his own. Whether it be with a boyfriend or best friend, the ability to discuss all topics, good, bad and ugly, remains a crucial component.
There’s this guy at the local video store that I think may be interested in me. It’s not an adult video place or anything like that. It’s just for regular videos. I go in about once a week and every time I look up from the movies I’m browsing, he’s staring right at me. He always looks away immediately but then, like he’s trying to get his courage up, he looks back at me with his head slightly turned down. He checks me out almost every time. Honestly, I’m totally turned on by this kid.
He’s about ten years younger than me. I’m in my mid thirties and he’s probably somewhere in his twenties. He’s such a hottie though. He’s kind of got that punk thing going on with a few piercings and some tattoos and a goatee. But he has sweet blue eyes and I just want to come over the counter and fuck him right there in the store.
I know he is into me but I’m not sure how to make the first move. I have a somewhat high profile job in my town but I’m not in the closet or anything. People know I’m gay but it might not look too good for a professional man to be dating some kid. I know if I made a move he would accept. I’m just not sure what move I should make and how it might play out.
How you behave towards this young man depends on what you want from him. You talked a bit about how you would feel about dating him. Is this what you want? It sounds like you might just be sexually attracted to him and want to have sex with him (on the floor of the video store or elsewhere). Sex and dating are not the same thing. Sex can be incorporated into dating but it doesn’t have to be. So my first thought would be to narrow down what you want from him. A good hot fuck does not require dinner at the local see-and-be-seen restaurant. All you need is some lube, some condoms, and maybe an Eminem CD.
One thought would be to err on the side of discretion. Either chat him up some in the check out line or ask for help finding a particular video. Something along the lines of Pricilla Queen of the Desert or the first season of Queer as Folk DVD should give him a not so subtle hint that you are gay as well. Or you could slip him your name and number during checkout and see if he calls. This could be good if he is still in the closet and doesn’t want anyone else to know. Or you could go balls to the wall and just walk up and ask him home for a couple of hours of sweaty sex. I always prefer the direct approach but that’s just me. Your no nonsense approach might really appeal to him or scare him away. That’s a judgment call you will have to make in the moment.
However you decide to deal with this, I suggest you approach him in some way. Let him know that you are aware of his flirting and you appreciate it. It could be a hot trick or a fuck buddy. Who knows. He might even make a great boyfriend. May/December romances work all the time. However, it may never go beyond there but at least you will have some great masturbation material.