DEAR MISS LONELYHEARTS: I got married a year ago. On my honeymoon, right after the wedding last summer, I ran into my childhood friend, whom I have not seen for a few years. It is now a year later and I'm still thinking about him. Last night, I fantasized about what it'd feel like being with him. I keep thinking that I married the wrong man. I feel terrible and I want these feelings to stop! My husband is a good man and he doesn't deserve this. I'm not in contact with this other man -- that would be dangerous -- but how can I stop these feelings? How can I focus on my marriage and my husband? What do people do in these situations? Are there any books you can recommend to help me re-focus here? Divorce is out of the question. I care for my husband and want to make this work. Please help, I don't want to be a cheater. -- Guilty in my Mind, Winnipeg
Dear Guilty: Do you like being married? Some people don't like the feeling; they feel caged, even though they love the person they married. These people often fantasize about falling for someone hard because it would be an out, and it generally happens soon after the wedding. You'd be best to talk to a relationship counsellor or a psychologist, privately. It may not be your husband's fault at all. Find out if you are one of those people who feel they can't mate in captivity. A lot of people don't realize how free they are to leave a marriage these days. Once they understand they could walk any day, they feel freer to stay and enjoy it. Please see the letter below
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: I've been seeing this gentleman for several months now and he's great, I get butterflies. He makes me smile. I even still get giddy and nervous around him. We have busy schedules that don't overlap a ton, but it works. I've been in relationships in the past that have crumbled horribly and it's made me cautious with this one. We have taken things slowly, one step at a time. I hold him in high regard and care for him a great deal, but I feel putting a label on it will have me pressing a panic button and jumping. I recently went away and had a little bit of a rendezvous with a complete stranger while inebriated.
It was a little touching and kissing -- nothing else -- but I still feel horribly disgusted with myself. What do I do? Do I erase this from my memory and move on or do I bring it up? What if he hates me and we go our separate ways? I'm not sure I could emotionally handle it. And is it cheating since we both don't really know what the other is doing since we have never defined our relationship? -- Sad and Confused, Winnipeg
Dear Sad and Confused: If he had some kisses and touching with a complete stranger when he was away and inebriated, would you want to know? Is there really no label on what you have now? If there isn't, you don't need to talk about a deal that doesn't exist yet, but it may be time to talk about exclusivity starting now, and make that promise and keep it.
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts: You missed the mark with Nobody's Boy Toy, the 25-year-old weightlifter who is receiving unwanted comments from his female co-workers. He should report this to the human resources department where he works because no one should have to tolerate harassment in any form. The secretary who provided his phone number to the troll who called him to come over after the bar may have breached a policy of her employer and should be disciplined appropriately.
There is clearly a double standard when we think that sexual harassment only happens to women. No one should have to tolerate this type of behaviour from others. -- Believe in Equality, Winnipeg
Dear Believe: Thanks for writing in with your advice. While it is harder for a young guy to report women who are harassing him, the human resources people will take him seriously and straighten out these women, particularly the booty-caller and her accomplice.
Please send your questions or comments c/o firstname.lastname@example.org or mail letters to Miss Lonelyhearts c/o Winnipeg Free Press, 1355 Mountain Ave., Winnipeg, MB, R2X 3B6.