Dear Dr. Archer,
I've been in love with two men -- one for seven years and the other for five years.
Seven years ago I was separating from my husband and met Lover #1. He was married, but we fell in love. He could not leave his wife for me, so we just kept seeing each other, hiding it from his wife. After two years, I almost lost the hope to have a future with Lover #1, when I met Lover #2. He is single and a traveler.
I tried breaking up with Lover #1, but he begged me to stay. I would not have minded telling him I met someone, but I told him instead that I didn't see a future with him.
Because Lover #1 lives outside the country and Lover #2 is a traveler, I was able to manage to live with them at different periods of time. In other words, I was tricky enough to have them both.
But now, Lover #2, through little details, found out I had another lover. Lover #1 divorced his wife and wanted to marry me, and then found out I was seeing someone else. Now both want me to make a choice. I don't know who to choose!
They are two completely different individuals, but both have my attention. I'm attracted to each for different reasons. From the life I've lived with these two men, I feel happy and good -- and they feel the same. By the way, sex with Lover #2 is better.
I feel like I'm very bad; I have told so many lies to so many people for so long. I feel guilty and it's painful. My time is up, and now I totally don't know which one to choose! Please help!
First of all, with all of your guilt and lies, I wonder if you really want to marry either? You know there are two more choices: dump them both or tell them both that you’re not ready to make a commitment. That's assuming you really want to choose…..and I’m not convinced of that.
Consider this. You say these two men are very different, so that helps. It may take a while, but think -- which one makes you happier? Which one makes you smile and laugh the most? Which has the least annoying habits? Which one, when they're away, has you craving to be with them, making you smile even if they're not physically with you?
You can't choose Lover #2 just because of the sex. That's not going to work here because that's not what makes a meaningful relationship last. Between the two, who allows you to speak more easily? Still not sure? Test them out at different parts of the day, spending time doing little things. Eventually one will come out ahead.
I'd like you to read a letter which was sent to me last year called 'I'm In Love With Two Men!"
I'm going to give you the same advice I gave Navy, and that is to take your time. Remove yourself from both men so you can think straight if need be.
What's the hurry? You gave Lover #1 seven years and #2 five years. If they can't give you several months then are they really worth it?
Take your own sweet time until you can decide which one comes the closest to what you want and need. Who knows? While doing this someone else might show up that fits the bill perfectly.
In other words, don't settle. This is too important. Time is your best friend. Good luck.