Red Responds: An Affair With a Close Friend

Amy in Morgan Hill writes:

I’m in an 8-year, fairly happy relationship. We have a few “issues” in the relationship surrounding intimacy (or lack thereof), lack of communication, and a drinking problem. As a result of these problems (mostly the intimacy) I ended up having an affair with a close friend. The physical affair is well over, but the emotional affair goes on (even though she says she’s moved on). I am conflicted. I love my partner but I believe that my former affair and I belong together. What do you sense about this?

Do I just want the former affair because I can’t have her, or is there something substantial there that I may be missing out on?

Dear Amy,

Your friend, the one you had the affair with, is moving on with her life. That does not mean she doesn’t still have feelings of love and passion towards you, it just means that she accepted that the affair had limits. For her, this was a beautiful experience with someone she loves, respects and trusts. It falls into the “what could have been” category in her mind.

Your friend comes through as very free-spirited. While she can be caught, it is not quite so easy to hold onto her. She’s not at that place where she can fully settle into a relationship for the long haul. This is something you really need to look at while you continue trying to sort through your feelings.

To say that you want a relationship with your friend simply because you can’t have her is only partially true. You have very real feelings for her, for the kind of relationship she represents, and there is a karmic connection between the two of you. Still, I don’t see your friend as your forever-partner. She is more of a taste of what a relationship could be – a wake-up call, if you will. I don’t see her as a lasting romance for you. Equally, I don’t see your current partner as your life-mate, either.

You’ve got some soul searching to do, Amy. It’s not that you can’t have the love and relationship you desire; you can. Just not with the women that currently surround you. The conflict you are currently experiencing in your emotional life isn’t going to last forever. It is just trying to teach you when to hold and when to let go.

Brightest Blessings,
Ext. 9226

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