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Torn between two men

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thikasabrik | 22:13 Tue 26th Jul 2005 | Body & Soul
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A friend of mine has asked me for advice and this one has me stumped. She is late 40's and a single parent and is in (non sexual) relationships with two men. One worships the ground she walks on and would marry her tomorrow. He's been there for her as a friend for 8 years but now wants more. She says she loves him but is not in love with him. The other guy was badly hurt by his ex wife and also adores my friend but has said he will never commit to a woman again. This is the guy she feels she is in love with. She is torn between them and asked me if I thought she should settle for the security of a relationship with the 1st guy or live in hope and die of despair with the 2nd guy. I'm no agony aunt and haven't a clue what to say to her. Help.

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It's a tricky one but one thing that I can say for certain is that settling down with someone that you're not in love with is a big mistake. I came close to marrying someone who would have done anything for me but I didn't love him in the same way. Looking back, I should have never even got close to settling down with him. The person I ended up with is someone who has caused me all kinds of grief, wouldn't commit, messed me around but he's the only person I want to be with ever. (He's calmed down over the years and we had our first child in Feb - both very happy!)

I heard this saying once that sums it up. Some people are settling down, some are just settling and some settle for nothing less than butterflies. I suppose it depends on which one your friend is!

Wish her luck for me, Lissy x

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What a brilliant saying lissy. I've just phoned her and quoted it and she says thanks.

I think she should give herself a complete break from both men. 

Maybe in time her soulmate will come along but if not she is better off alone than settling for anything less. 

This is the situation as I see it - guy number 1 loves her but she doesn't love him. She loves guy number 2 but he doesn't love her. What she obviously wants to do is get it on with guy number 2, and then go and cry on guy number 1's shoulder every time guy number 2 treats her bad, and of course he'll always be there for her cos he's a 'friend'. No. Tell her to find guy number 3 - someone she is friends with but also in love with.

A tough one indeed. Sound advice from lissyl78 though, settling for security over love is not a good idea - your friend will always wonder what may have been, and grow to resent the partner she has chosen. She must either wait for Number Two, or cut loose and try to find love elsewhere. The fact that neither relationship has developed on a sexual level suggests that she is destined always to be their friend, never their lover. Maybe a new relationship with someone else will resolve her feelings. Life eh? 
Number 1 means hoping she'll come to love him. Number 2 means hoping he'll come to love her. Both involve waiting for someone to change. Given that she can only change herself, not somebody else, I'd go for #1. But the real answer is doubtless andy's: neither is actually what she wants.

As a 51 yr old female who has been in very similar relationships I'd say as some of the others have - that neither is right. However your friend might find that if & when No 3 comes along No 2 might suddenly decide he's ready to commit after all. Now there's a dilemma!  But the chances are he won't be......!

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My friend thanks you all for your sound advice. She admitted that no. 1 is already getting on her nerves with his adoration so I guess that's him out of the door. Something she said today made me think she may not have been quite honest about the relationships being non sexual, but who am I pass comment.

You are all stars.

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My friend thanks you all for your sound advice. She admitted that no. 1 is already getting on her nerves with his adoration so I guess that's him out of the door. Something she said today made me think she may not have been quite honest about the relationships being non sexual, but who am I to pass comment.

You are all stars.

I think Ludwig's advice would be rather heartless to number 1 and would only complicate matters. However I agree with his/her final conclusion, and that is wait for number 3!

And from my experience and looking at that of many others, just because you are in love with someone doesn't mean it is going to work out and that it is the best thing to do. I have known women give up the security and stability of a particular man to chase after a guy they have become infatuated with. Only to have a hell-ish time because the guy won't commit, cannot be trusted. They themselves become insecure in the relationship. It affects their other friendships and relationships in general. My mother was an example. Aways moaning to friends and family, not knowing whether she was coming or going. Eventually she woke up and got rid of the guy. She found another man, who might not have set her heart on fire, but was absolutely great for her, and she eventually fell in love with him.

My advice is neither are what she is looking for, and she would be better off waiting and looking around elsewhere. But sometimes good advice is hard to take.

All the best.

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